• And now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine...

    Then and Now

    Democrats were whistling a different tune five years ago, at least some of them were, when a Republican administration wanted to raise the debt ceiling.

    Then-Senator Obama voted no and said -- quote -- "Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today, onto the backs of our children and grandchildren." He has since said that was a political consideration back then.

    The conservative blog NewsBusters points out, in November of 2004, after the debt ceiling was raised by the GOP, NBC correspondent Andrea Mitchell chided Republicans, saying quote -- "they ought to be ashamed of themselves."

    Earlier this week, Chris Matthews of NBC called Republican opposition to tax increases in a debt ceiling deal "terrorism" and Mitchell called the situation a "crisis."

    Koch Money

    The billionaire Koch brothers are frequent targets of the left, for their support of conservative causes. Which is why one Koch Industries executive was shocked when he received a fundraising appeal from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC).

    DSCC chairwoman and Washington Senator Patty Murray even left a voicemail soliciting support from Koch Industries.

    (BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

    SEN. PATTY MURRAY, D-WASH.: As you know I chair the DSCC you have been a past supporter of ours through your PAC and I wanted to catch up with you to see if you'd be willing to renew your membership.

    (END AUDIO CLIP)

    The Koch executive responded -- writing quote -- "DSCC politics have become so cynical that you actually expect people whom you routinely denounce to give DSCC money."

    The committee wrote back that the requests were a result of a staff error -- but added -- quote -- "the bigger and more troubling mistake is the long political history of your employer."

    Fireworks Facade

    Boston's Fourth of July fireworks displayed on CBS were a bit too good to be true.

    The Globe reports viewers later realized the shots of fireworks exploding behind the State House, Quincy Market and Fenway Park were not physically possible.

    The show's producer confirmed some of the footage was digitally altered and superimposed over different landmarks but said it was OK because the broadcast was entertainment and not news.