WISHING YOU A HAPPY NEW YEAR

2010 draws to an end and I wanted to take a moment to thank you all, fellow-writers, commentators and those who just like to read, for your support to B-BBC over this past 12 months. Sometimes it can be very pressurised finding the time to keep things going and I do appreciate the great enthusiasm for the site.I get so many emails from you and wanted to let you know how informative these are, with so many great spots of BBC bias. I also wanted to wish all those who work for the BBC but who come here to peruse our writings a Happy New Year. We will be watching you very closely in 2011 and trust it brings the demise of your bloated biased organisation that little bit closer!

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RICHARD SAMBROOK


I was very pleased when Richard Sambrook contacted B-BBC, ostensibly to put the record straight about why he had spoken to the Common Purpose group. My recollection of him – mainly from when he was head of newsgathering at the BBC back in the 1990s – was that he was a pleasant, congenial man, and I thought he had been in touch because he thought my concerns about CP at the BBC were overblown.

Having dug a little, I am not so sure. Mr Sambrook was at the BBC for 30 years and he rose to become head of news, the most senior post in the news division, before blotting his copybook over the Andrew Gilligan claims about the Iraq war and the ensuing battle with Alastair Campbell and NuLabour. Soon after Greg Dyke (the most unplesant man in television I ever had dealings with) left the corporation following the Hutton inquiry, Richard was quietly moved into a different job as head of “global news”, which in practice meant that he had been demoted and – in BBC terms – exiled to the chilly corridors of the World Service. A bit like going to Siberia. However, he remained part of the Byfield-Thompson axis, and may thus be seen as one of the most pivotal figures in BBC news over a generation.

He left the corporation after 30 years about a year ago to join the London office of an outfit called Edelman, which boasts that it is the world’s largest indepedent PR company, with 3,300 employees and no less than 54 offices worldwide. His role is Global Vice Chairman and Chief Content Officer and with such a lord-high-everything name, no doubt has important influence there. So far so good, there’s nothing intrinsically wrong with PR (though some may disagree).

However, when I probed Edelman further, I began to smell a rat. In fact several. First, one of the most prominent boasts on Edeleman’s flash website is of working on this campaign:

Create standout for PUMA’s African Unity Kit and its role in supporting UNEPs International Year of Biodiversity project ‘Play For Life’ campaign in the build up to the World Cup in South Africa 2010

So Edelman are prominently part of the UN-biodiversity gravy train. Admittedly, that’s only one account of many they boast about, but I dug deeper. What I then found was this document, which, masquerading under a jargon title of “public engagement”, is actually a manual (scroll down to page 10 onwards) that could be taken straight from the Common Purpose or UN charter about “sustainability”, the code-word for greenie activism. The I found Edelman had been hired by energy company E.On at the time of the Kingsnorth power station protests. To cut a long story short, E.On has since become one of the world cheerleaders about AGW (presumably in reality because it is after the jampot of renewable energy subsidies) but under the cloak of Edelman’s crafty creed of “social responsibility” and and saving the world. Edelman has also been plugging for years press releases based on surveys it has commissioned that purport to show that business leaders round the world also support urgent action on sustainability and climate change.

So to sum up. Richard Sambrook, who professes that he is not really involved in Common Purpose, now works for an outfit that through its 54 branches worldwide seems to be a cheerleader for action on the green creed. That activism is cloaked in mealy-mouthed jargon PR words, but that’s what is involved. Mr Sambrook also – having worked for the BBC for 30 years as a key figure in news – must share responsibility for the fact that the BBC, too, is a virtually unqualified supporter of that same green creed. Common Purpose, as far as I can see, is simply another arm of that religion and that activism. My jury is out about how sinister or effective it is as an organisation, but that’s not the point.

All of this may be circumstantial, but my conclusion is that this is evidence that Mr Sambrook is an influential figure who is an integral part of the process of thoughtspeak that has now infected almost every facet of corporate and media communications. The only way these connections come to light is through sustained digging. What else is there?

Update: There’s far more than I first found in Edelman’s links with AGW, to the point that advocacy is clearly a speciality. Could Mr Sambrook’s BBC credentials on climate change be partly why he was hired? Here, they are handling a major Europe-wide initiative with the British Council to brainwash youngsters; and here, they are urging – at the behest of the fanatics at WWF – the whole of Hong Kong to switch out the lights in pursuit of their goals.

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BIAS OF THE YEAR

OK, we are almost at the end of 2010 and the BBC has clocked up another year of seething bias, or, as they prefer to call it, professional impartiality so profound it is in their DNA. So, let me ask you what was YOUR biased moment of the year? There’s so much choice – not least their appalling coverage of the General Election. But the bit that turned MY stomach the most was their coverage of the Hate Flotilla incident back in late May. I ended up getting caught up in the media crossfire for my “audacious” comments defending Israel and I  was once again struck by the hatred the BBC has of Israel and their fawning over anti-Semitic scum. There were so many other incidents…what is your stand out memory from the passing year?

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THE GREAT NON FLU EPIDEMIC

Sorry about frequency of my posting here – but I live in a drought in the wettest part of the United Kingdom. BBC doing everything possible to avoid holding the Minister directly responsible (IRA terrorist Conor Murphy) to account so instead ……let’s talk about the great flu epidemic which is killing millions as I write.
Hang on – killing 12 people. Anyway, the BBC meme has the evil Coalition (excepting Saint Vince and Saint Simon of Hughes)  to blame because it cut the wonderfully informative TV ad campaign advising people to..erm..exercise basic hygiene. I was contacted by a Biased BBC reader who shared the following today;

“On Tuesday this week (the 28th December) my wife made a comment on the BBC News website regarding the flu jab. As a pregnant woman she qualified to have the flu jab and following the issue being discussed on BBC Breakfast on Monday the 20th, she had the jab.  

Her comment to the BBC site was to the effect that despite BBC news announcing that the NHS was contacting “at risk” groups to advise them to have the flu jab, she had not received any such advice, despite seeing both doctor and midwife regularly for the past 4 months.

Not a big deal but she had her say. 

Less than an hour after making the comment, my wife was contacted by the BBC asking for an interview for the evening news. 

However during a later phone conversation with the BBC, it became clear that my wife was being asked to blame the absence of flu jab advertising for not getting the jab until the previous week.

When my wife made the specific point that she had commented to refute the assertion that the NHS were contacting everybody at risk, as her own (anecdotal) evidence contradicted this, the BBC researcher told her that she could “say that the lack of advertising had compounded this”.

My wife then said she would not have time to do the interview and rang off.”

Need I say more? My thanks to the reader and, as they say, impartiality is in their genes. 
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Accentuate the Negative, Eliminate the Positive. (Don’t mess with Mister In- Between)

I wrote the following article last week, but events prevented me from finishing it. Now I see that E.O.Z. has written on a similar theme, and has come to similar conclusions. So here’s mine.

I’ve touched previously on the fate of refugees from the Horn of Africa after their perilous journey to Israel. Many of those that survived had been subjected to rape and abuse along the way. Strange that they took the trouble to make for such an evil, brutal, racist country.

The BBC obliquely criticises Israel for putting a limit on the numbers to whom it can provide sanctuary. They utter nary a peep over the reasons they seek refuge, nor a squeek of condemnation of the people-traffikers murderers and rapists who foment their harrowing predicament, because they’re too busy implying that Israel should accept unlimited illegal immigration.
The BBC is fixated solely upon the measures the Israeli government has taken to stem the flow, because a wall is being constructed to secure Israel’s pourous border with Egypt, a wall which the BBC impliedly deems to be a racist apartheid separation barrier.

Meanwhile, back at the UK, we proudly boast about our reputation for tolerance. Some would say the reckless pursuit of this ideal might be about to turn round and slap us in the face. Some may wonder, what if those we have bent over backwards to accommodate don’t reciprocate? Some might speculate that there’s little sign that they will.

Could we, ourselves, one day, be outsiders wondering where to seek refuge? Some might think that in our haste to embrace diversity and multiculturalism, we’ve embraced our own extinction, and little baby tolerance has been thrown out with the bathwater.

Israel was envisaged as a homeland and sanctuary for Jews. An insurance policy which history tells us is a must-have. Nevertheless, Israel is diverse and multicultural, and refugees from far and wide already squeeze in, but Israel must prioritise the preservation of its Jewish identity, or it will cease to be fit for purpose.

Not that the BBC will understand this need. Having backed the total abandonment of our own national identity, the BBC rigidly perceives Israel as racist, that it has no business trying to retain its Jewish identity, and it must do the decent thing and abandon it. before it can be seen as a decent country like Britain.

This article is typical.
The first paragraph sets out the plight of the African migrants in bold type. The emphasis is on Israel’s efforts to limit overwhelming mass illegal immigration. It concentrates on personal ‘human interest’ stories, leaving Israel looking hard-hearted and racist for putting ‘full up’ on the door. Someone from an organisation called Hotline for Migrant Workers is wheeled in to criticise the Israeli governent without a trace of sympathy or understanding of a dilemma which has not been taken into consideration at all.

Some would say this is the usual fare, e.g. reporting from Israel which ignores historical context, disregards Israel’s omnipresent existential stuggle and fails to acknowledge that its citizens are under constant threat from hostile duplicitous and violent neighbours who are hell bent on exterminating them.
In other words it treats Israel as though it was a London suburb.

The BBC must get real and grasp the fact that Israel isn’t London. They should also get into their heads, if it isn’t too late, that as things stand, even London isn’t London.

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Making Allowances

Often you have to make allowances for things you see or hear, especially when the topic is you-know-what. For example, when you suspect that English isn’t someone’s first language, or in certain cases, that human isn’t their first state of being.

When evaluating their choice of Richard Ingrams as guest editor of today’s Today, you have to take into consideration that the BBC is institutionally antisemitic, but even after making such allowances, his particular edition merits a thumbs down.
Even if we were all obsessed with proving James Hanratty’s innocence, the handling of this item, by any standards, was shoddy.
The DNA evidence was flawed because it was kept in a folder with hairs, fluff, toenail clippings and other detritus?
What sort of a folder was this? Cardboard? Even in the days of Dixon of Dock Green it seems odd that evidence collected with surgical gloves and white suits would then be shoved into a hairy old folder and shaken up. Later, someone called it a container. What sort of container?
But most of all, we heard a sound clip in which the rape victim swore the rapist was Hanratty. Why did no-one subsequently refer to that?

Whenever I hear the name Richard (I have developed a habit, when confronted by letters to the editor in support of the Israeli government, to look at the signature to see if the writer has a Jewish name. If so, I tend not to read it) Ingrams I automatically assume it’s crap. In fact I have developed a habit, when confronted by the voice of Richard Ingrams, of finding it pompous, high-pitched and repressed. The poor chap is stuck in the Britain of schoolboys with short trousers.

Talking of voices, another peculiar item that avoided the nub in the way they often do on Today, was the discussion about the pitch and tone of voices we find annoying, which avoided analysing the real reason, which is of course the delivery and idiosyncratic pronunciation as per Robert Peston and Neil Nunes. So never mind that Peston draws out random words like a bleating lamb, and pronounces others with a strange explosive stutter, it’s merely the pitch we find unattractive.
So Sarah Montague and Corrie Corfield get letters telling them to just shut up? Oh hilarity, they frame them and put them in the bog.

And another thing. The man who saw ghosts. He himself was obviously the Ghost of Christmas Past, and Ingrams didn’t spot it because he was too busy going hahahahahahah in an annoying high pitched manner.
Then we had that great orator George Galloway, who has made so many wonderful speeches, who’s to say which was his finest? Could it have been the one he made to the indefatigable Sadaam, or when presenting his generous cash donation to Ismail Haniyeh, or at a rally where he said something like “If anyone dares to touch a hair on the head of a Moslem burka I’ll personally ….something or other blah blah.”

You have to make allowances for the BBC. What variety of racist other than a hate-filled antisemite would they deem a worthy guest editor?

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INTELLIGENCE MISSING!

Wondered if you came across this televisual delight from the State Broadcaster? It’s the “Intelligence Squared Debate” and as balanced as you would expect…

“An Elected House of Lords Will Be Bad For British Democracy”. Nik Gowing chairs, with speakers Vernon Bogdanor, Shami Chakrabarti, Sir Simon Jenkins, Lord Adonis and Polly Toynbee and Billy Bragg.

Oh joy. Thanks to the brave B-BBC reader who valiantly watched at least some of this leftist tripe.

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MORE COMMON PURPOSE…

Further digging into Common Purpose to follow up yesterday’s post. I accept fully Lloyd’s observation (in the comments) that £150,000 spent by the BBC on Common Purpose over seven years is small beer, when you consider that BBC income was around £17bn in the same period. But John Anderson also made an important point. The BBC should surely not be sending anyone on courses that are not directly related to broadcasting. The fact that senior management is authorising such expenditure on a significant scale suggests endorsement (even if only tacit) at the highest levels of the corporation. And there is further evidence that very senior management do endorse CP – Richard Sambrook (whom I know well), the former head of news, and a pivotal figure in BBC senior management over the past two decades, has attended the course.

Such endorsement does not, of course, mean that the BBC is being run on CP principles. A staff of 20,000 cannot be herded like sheep. However, as anyone who has been involved in political organisation will attest, a 100-or-so dedicated individuals (the figure that have attended CP courses) – if they have support, or are not opposed, in the right quarters – can have a disproportionate and highly effective influence. It looks to me, from the fact that Mr Sambrook and Robert Peston have so publicly supported CP, that the highest levels of the BBC are very definitely not opposed to its agenda and aims.

And although Lloyd drew a blank in his search for further BBC connections, I am not so sure. I looked for example, at Futerra, an ultra-greenie PR outfit which I have noted in the past the BBC has also used for “training” purposes. This is run by Solitaire Townsend,who fully endorses the type of greenie-lefty agenda being pushed by CP. She also sits on the board of an outfit called Tomorrow’s Company, which – like Futerra – is up to its gills in sustainable development, UN goals and everything that the BBC holds so dearly. Also on the board of this outfit is a chap called Grahame Broadbent. He happens to be – wait for it – operations director of Common Purpose, and former managing director of think tank Demos, founded by Julia Middleton (and beloved by the BBC), the founder of CP, and the vehicle through which she has carved political influence.

This, of course, still looks tenuous and is circumstantial. But isn’t this how these organisations operate? And I say it again. Wherever there is vigorous prosecution of liberal-left greenie goals, the BBC also seems to be there. By contrast, has anyone yet found a significant BBC UKIP or Adam Smith Institute connection?

Update: I am happy to accept (see posting below) that Richard Sambrook has spoken at, but not actually undergone CP training. I am also delighted that he has posted here – the highest level (in his case ex-, because he now works in PR) BBC input I can ever recall to B-BBC, though of course, I was also threatened with libel proceedings some time ago by Richard Black.

What Richard doesn’t say speaks volumes. Why did the corporation spend £150,000 on sending dozens of staff on these courses when quite patently they have liberal-left, greenie, EU-supporting, take-over-the-world approach? Why do the BBC send staff on training courses to organisations like Futerra? He says he has spoken at many other groups – but why do anything at all that can be interpreted as endorsement of such a cause? When I worked at the BBC, back in the 1980s, I am pretty sure such actions would not have been sanctioned.

Incidentally, Richard, I do know you well (albeit from a long time ago), even if you do not recognise my name.

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LOVING THE CALIPHATE….

The propaganda is always there, as brought to my attention by an eagle-eyed B-BBC reader;

‘Missile attacks by US drones in Pakistan’s tribal areas have more than trebled under the Obama administration, research by the BBC Urdu service shows. Compared with 25 drone strikes between January 2008 and January 2009, there were at least 87 such attacks between President Obama taking office on 20 January 2009 and the end of June 2010.’

(more than trebled’…Pre-Obama: 25 strikes in 12 months = 2 / month Post-Obama: 87 strikes in 17 months = 5.1 / month)

‘The militant backlash over the same period has been even more violent. Extremists have struck more than 140 times in various Pakistani locations, killing more than 1,700 people and injuring hundreds more, the BBC research shows.’

(‘backlash’ – meaning militant direct retaliation for the strikes, implying that if we stop the attacks they will too.
But…)

‘While attacks by militants cannot be described as direct retaliation for drone strikes, they are firmly part of the battle the US and Pakistani authorities are fighting against radical Islam’s operational bases in Pakistan.’

So militant attacks aren’t direct retaliation. Then what are they? Indirect retaliation? Or a systematic campaign of violence intended to destabilise the Pakistani government, a step en route to the re-establishment of the caliphate.

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SHARIA GOOD, BOMBAY BAD!

Tough one for the BBC. On the upside, those Mumbai folks have introduced a Sharia linked Index in their primary financial institution! But – gasp – they insist on calling it the BOMBAY Stock Exchange. Maybe the BBC should remind them that such references to their Imperial past are just..offensive to right thinking liberals?

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COMMON PURPOSE AT THE BBC

I have begun to dig into BBC connections with a shadowy organisation called Common Purpose. This, according to some, is a sinister conspiratorial group – run by a scary woman called Julia Middleton – that is seeking to create an alternative government in the UK under the guise of a leadership programme. Opponents of CP have built interesting evidence that it has already managed to infiltrate many senior posts in organisations such as the police, and is busy consolidating that hold through more than 100 regional operations in the UK and many more abroad.

What are its goals? Broadly – as a perusal of the opponents’ website quickly shows – liberal-left elitist, pro-EU and strongly in favour of “sustainability”, a word used by greenies as shorthand for a left-wing agenda to destroy the capitalist system and the West.

Unsurprisingly for such a group, BBC connections are not hard to find. Bees to a honeypot. The corporation has spent more than £150,000 on sending dozens of its senior staff on CP “courses”, and business editor Robert Peston and International Development correspondent David Loyn are not only acolytes but serve on the board of what seems to be a CP subsidiary called the Media Standards Trust (alongside figures such as Amelia Fawcett, chairman of the Guardian Media Group and Baroness Helena Kennedy QC) which ostensibly aims to improve standards of journalism; in practice this means reporting in line with CP goals and policies.

Scratch the surface of the CP website and it quickly becomes apparent that one of its main goals is to ensure that we are all indoctrinated about the evils of climate change, through projects with names such as CHANGEit(sic). It works towards doing this with Deutsche Bank, an organisation that is so besotted by AGW that it publishes pamphlets on how to spot and root out sceptics.

CP was brought to my attention the other night by a journalist friend; I had never heard of it, but within seconds of digging was struck by the huge neon-lit signposts leading to the BBC. Is there nothing the corporation is not doing to foster its political agenda?

If B-BBC readers know anything first-hand about CP, or better still, have been on one of its courses (or knows someone who has), I’d love to hear from you: robinhorbury@gmail.com. I am not normally one for conspiracy theories, but this one is intriguing. Common Purpose may be completely harmless, but somehow, I doubt it.

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CHINESE ENLIGHTENMENT

Happened to catch the seasonal “Woman’s Hour” programme this morning! (I’m in touch with my feminine side!)
Was intrigued to hear lavish praise being bestowed on China’s euphemistic “One Child” policy to the murmured approval of all. The sanitisation of this savage Chinese practise was complete with the consensus being it helped Chinese girls. You couldn’t make it up.

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BBC MAN "FREEZING TO DEATH"…IN OZ

On the BBC website, there’s still not a shred of attempted analysis of why this winter has so far been so cold not just here but now in the US – and why their beloved Met Office has got it so wrong. Odd, perhaps, in the context of the BBC’s warming fervour? Elsewhere on the web, there’s acres of discussion, and the warmists themselves have gone into overdrive trying to tell us that this is not climate, it’s weather, and in any case, the severe cooling is actually warming because we might be cold but Greenland isn’t. What will it take, I wonder, for Richard Black or Roger Harrabin to spring into action?

Meanwhile, as the boys and girls of the BBC polish their silence in their nice warm offices, even the BBC’s leading cricket commentator, Jonathan Agnew, has filed this from Melbourne:

It seems a bit odd saying this but for summer it is very cold here. Temperatures have been down at around 13 degrees with a biting wind. It is not much fun sitting in a big ground like that with virtually no sunshine, freezing to death.

A whole army of Neros (back at base) fiddling while Rome burns?

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Mark Mardell And The Golden Age

Mark Mardell is basking in The President’s glory in his latest blog post, and getting things completely wrong, as usual. Although Mardell is aware that He isn’t really as magical and all-powerful as He once was, he still wants his audience to know just how incredible His Rule has been for us all.

A Golden Age in the White House come to an end?

The only chink in His armor, to hear Mardell tell it, is the “horse trading” deal with the Republicans on extending the Bush tax cuts. That was the one where the President had to call in Bill Clinton to convince enough Dems to vote for it and not screw everyone over for purely ideological purposes. But what Mardell doesn’t want you to know is that this was such a problem for Him that He has now banned the use of of the word “triangulating” by His staff. How pathetic is that?

What’s really ridiculous here is that, while Mardell is preaching so enthusiastically about His accomplishments, it was only a week ago that he was clucking his tongue at how these same accomplishments he’s praising now were rammed through during the lame-duck session of Congress in a way that looked “unseemly” to outsiders like him.

But that’s all forgotten now, I suppose, while we bask in His glory. This has been a magical year for the US, one in which He brought us one step further out of the darkness.

Will you remember the 111th Congress as a Golden Age? I suspect Mr Obama wants the American people to learn to feel nostalgia for the past two years.

So do you, Mark, which is why you and your colleagues always promote the White House talking points.

Of course, Republicans regard it as a period of unmitigated disaster.

Only Republicans? Once again Mardell displays either his ignorance or his deliberate dishonesty. What about all those independents who regretted voting for Him the first time and went Republican in November? What about all those Democrat candidates who ran against ObamaCare and higher taxes? The Tea Party movement wasn’t an exclusively far-right Republican club the BBC kept trying to tell you it was. Yet Mardell is still stuck in hyper-partisan mode.

Many Americans will regard it as a period of much muddle and unnecessary politicking.

No, that’s only those on the far Left who supported even the most extreme parts of the President’s and Democrat leadership’s agenda. Much of the rest of the country hit the streets to protest it, and/or voted in November to kick many of them out. Only far-Left ideologues like Mark Mardell think that the Tea Party movement and politicians starting to listen to the people was “unnecessary”. As usual, the mindset is “Let’s all work together: when it’s my idea. When you want your way, that’s nasty politicking and bad for the country.” Mardell is speaking from one side of the argument.

Even die-hard Democrats don’t feel a huge amount of pride in its achievements.

Ah, so Mardell does remember his blog post from last week. But why wouldn’t they feel much pride? Because so much of it was ultimately bad for the country? Is it because the really far-Left voices are angry that the President hasn’t done enough to move the country further to the Left? Mardell isn’t going to tell you. He’s only projecting his own disappointment that it wasn’t all glorious and everyone is ecstatic about His Administration. Why isn’t Mardell asking if the President and Pelosi and Reid maybe went too far to the Left for the nation’s comfort? It’s because he agrees with the ideology behind all of it, and thinks that anyone against it is a Republican stooge.

Yet Mr Obama said that it was “the most productive two years that we’ve had in generations”. He wants the day to be remembered as a time when things got done, when people could agree, when progress could be made. It is going to be an interesting new year.

See? “When people could agree”. It was a Democrat-controlled Congress. They got their way a lot. Nobody in the country thinks the last two years were about bi-partisan loveliness. That’s an absolute joke. The President and His staff know perfectly well that they had to force everything through, and that they won’t be able to do it in a real bi-partisan atmosphere. It’s moronic to suggest otherwise. The President spent two years denigrating His “enemies”. And Mardell believes He wants everyone to think it was all friendly reaching across the aisle? The President wants everyone to realize how great He is, not how bi-partisan Washington has become. Mardell’s rewriting history at an alarming rate.

Even in the lame-duck session, the only thing besides the tax bill which was bi-partisan was the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and enough Republicans were happy to do it that He didn’t have to actually do anything. He passed the buck to Congress on this one, and they did it themselves. Yet we’re all supposed to think it’s one of His triumphs. He had very little to do with this, but don’t expect Mardell to tell you the truth.

No mention, of course, of the failed gargantuan spending bill, or the DREAM Act, which died because the Tea Party movement put Republicans and a few Dems on notice. No, we only hear about His successes. No mention of the defeat in November because that’s all been wiped away by the passage of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, right? Take that, hecklers! If the country voted overwhelmingly against so much of what the President and the Congress achieved these past two years, why would they remember it as a Golden Age? It’s silly to even think such a thing, unless one is a Democrat ideologue.

It’s echoes of St. Jon Stewart’s “Rally to Restore Smugness”: Let’s all work together – for the Democrat agenda. Working together is good – for the Democrat agenda. Mardell whines about it when he’s worried it doesn’t make his beloved Obamessiah look good, but then leaps at the chance to celebrate it when it suits his message.

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