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Tuesday, November 25, 2014
NEW ARTICLE: Jesse Lee Peterson Has Issues With Women
Topic: WorldNetDaily
The WorldNetDaily columnist and right-wing-endorsed commentator is quick to defend those accused of domestic violence and sexual assault -- and to blame their problems on "radical feminists." Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 7:27 PM EST
The MRC's War On (And Jealousy Of) Jon Stewart
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has been focusing its ire on "Daily Show" host Jon Stewart in recent days.

MRC officials Brent Bozell and Tim Graham devoted their Nov. 21 column to bashing Stewart and sneering at the people who enjoy his brand of political satire -- or, as they call it, "his snarky conservative-trashing show" -- calling them "flatterers, sycophants, and every other synonym in the thesaurus for obsequious."

Bozell and Graham whined that Stewart responded to right-wing "mockery of Obama's patriotism" in the criticism of the president's salute with a coffee cup in his hand. But they don't mention is that President George W. Bush did the same thing while holding a dog, and not only did it not get held up for public ridicule at the time, the MRC complained that it was brought up as a way to "muddy the waters" over their criticism of Obama.

Bozell and Graham don't mention one reason why they are so upset at "The Daily Show" -- earlier this year, Stewart mocked Bozell for complaining that a Spanish-language channel was helping its viewers to comply with Obamacare.

Graham went off again in a Nov. 24 NewsBusters post, downplaying Stewart's influence because he "generally draws about 1 to 1.2 million viewers, less than ABC's Nightline draws at 12:30 in the morning. It typically gets beat by a second airing of The O'Reilly Factor." Graham, of course, doesn't mention that Stewart's audience is more desirable to advertisers than O'Reilly's: 65 percent of Stewart's audience is under 50, while 64 percent of O'Reilly's audience is over 50.

Graham also ranted that Stewart "makes more than $25 million a year," but doesn't explain what that has to do with anything.

An then there was Jeffrey Lord's Nov. 22 NewsBusters attack on Stewart. Lord takes offense at Stewart for arguing Fox News right-winger Sean Hannity is "acting" rather than pushing sincerely held beliefs, but rather than respond to Stewart's charges (other than to insist that Hannity "a deeply well-grounded, thoughtful man with boundless empathy"), he launched an ad hominem attack on  Stewart, accusing him of being "loathsome, disingenuous, cynical and devious" because ... well, there are toomany white people on his show, and he once aired an edited video, which completely justifies Hannity doing the same.

Lord also cites economist Peter Schiff's complaint about how his "Daily Show" interview was edited, highlighting his statement that the "mentally retarded" would be happy to work for $2 an hour. Lord didn't mention that Schiff likes to engage in stunts like protesting a minimum wage hike in a Walmart parking lot.

Lord concludes: "Jon Stewart is a funny guy. A talented guy. But there are words for what comedy’s Jon Stewart and academia’s Jon Gruber are about. The words 'devious' and 'loathsome' are but two."

The truth is, however, that the MRC is totally jealous of Stewart's success, and it wants a piece of that action.

In September, the MRC sent to its mailing list accusing Stewart of being among the comedians who "advance a leftist agenda under the guise of comedy and brainwash America's young people each and every dayIs it any wonder that the youth of America are turning into leftist Obama zombies?"

The email went on to solicit donations to upgrade the MRC's sad little web comedy show, "NewsBusted" (a title, by the way, that the MRC stole from us):

When we started NewsBusted, we wanted to change that by creating at least one comedy show where socialism isn't worshiped and where American values aren't derided.

NewsBusted is the one comedy show where joke writers aren't afraid to serve up the ridicule that Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Harry Reid, and Nancy Pelosi so richly deserve.

We have a specific goal for 2015 – to raise enough money to upgrade all aspects of the audio and video production of NewsBustedit’s time for a major, high tech upgrade—in High Definition!

Quality television audio & video production doesn’t come cheap. For nearly seven years, our production team has been using the SAME standard definition camera, the SAME microphones, the SAME lighting system, the SAME editing bay, the SAME graphics package, and the SAME sound mixing board… NewsBusted is long overdue for a high tech upgrade and 2015 is the year to do it!

I need you to donate today so that we can start producing better sounding and better looking episodes of NewsBusted – in high definition! We need your generous contribution to keep the laughs coming!

How does investing thousands of dollars (well, other poeple's dollars) in a comedy show further the MRC's ostensible mission as an "educational" organization -- not to mention qualify under tax law as being tax-deductible? We don't know either.

We do know, however, that "NewsBusted" probably wouldn't survive if it was subjected to the free market where ratings and viewership matters -- the same place where Stewart and "The Daily Show" are thriving. Which makes the normally free-market MRC's jealousy of Stewart that much more ironic.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:29 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, November 25, 2014 5:38 PM EST
WND's Klein Plays Word Games To Attack GOP Benghazi Report
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We've noted how WorldNetDaily ignored the release of the Republican-led House committee report on the attacks on the diplomatic facilities in Benghazi -- which just so happened to shoot down WND reporter Aaron Klein's claim that the CIA was using the Benghazi facility to ship arms from Libya to Syrian rebels.

It took three days for Klein to respond, and he's in full spin mode in a Nov. 24 WND article, which he claims is an "extensive review" of the "five major problems with the new House report." Klein tries to avoid the discrediting of his own claims by playing word-parsing:

The new report states the “CIA conducted no unauthorized activity in Benghazi and was not collecting and shipping arms to Syria.”

The report noted multiple media outlets have reported allegations the CIA collected weapons in Benghazi and facilitated weapons from Libya to Syria.

“The eyewitness testimony and thousands of pages of CIA cables and emails that the committee reviewed provide no support for this allegation,” states the report.

As evidence the CIA was not involved in weapons transfers, the report documents that “each witness reported seeing only standard CIA security weapons at the base.”

“No witness testified that non-CIA weapons were brought to the Annex.”

However, most mainstream allegations about weapons transfers did not claim any weapons were stored or transferred through the CIA annex.

But that's exactly what Klein effectively claimed. As we've noted, Klein asserted that "The U.S. special mission in Benghazi and the nearby CIA annex were utilized in part to coordinate arms shipments to the jihadist rebels fighting the Syrian regime, with Ambassador Christopher Stevens playing a central role."

Klein continues with more word-parsing:

The new report utilizes specific phraseology to deny the CIA was involved in collecting any weapons in Benghazi. It states the CIA “was not collecting and shipping arms to Syria.”

However, the use of the word “and” leaves open the possibility the intelligence community was collecting weapons that were not shipped to Syria.

The report further states: “The Benghazi Annex was not itself collecting weapons. The Committee has not seen any credible information to dispute these facts.”

This phraseology, particularly the use of the word “itself,” leaves open the possibility another facility was involved in a weapons-procurement effort.

The report hints the State Department, not the CIA, may have been leading a weapons collection effort.

Klein then tries to change the subject:

The denial of weapons transfers is at odds with numerous major news media accounts of U.S.-aided weapons transfers by Arab countries to Mideast rebels.

The New York Times reported March 25, 2013, that the covert aid to the Syrian rebels started on a small scale and continued intermittently through the fall of 2012, expanding into a steady and much heavier flow later that year, including a large procurement from Croatia.

The Times reported that from offices at “secret locations,” American intelligence officers “helped the Arab governments shop for weapons … and have vetted rebel commanders and groups to determine who should receive the weapons as they arrive.”

In March 2011, Reuters exclusively reported Obama had signed a secret order authorizing covert U.S. government support for the rebel forces in Libya seeking to oust Gaddafi, quoting U.S. government officials.

Also that month, the London Independent reported “the Americans have asked Saudi Arabia if it can supply weapons to the rebels in Benghazi.”

But the question is not whether the U.S. attempted to steer weapons to Syrian rebels, it's whether that was done through the CIA annex at Benghazi. The fact that Klein tries to broaden the subject to obscure how he's been discredited is a tacit admission that he knows the committee report is correct.

Klein loves playing word games: He also complains that "The new House Intelligence Committee report repeatedly refers to the U.S. building in Benghazi as a 'Temporary Mission Facility.' However, the State Department has carefully labeled its facility in Benghazi a 'U.S. Special Mission.'"

Klein also fails to admit that the report was issued by a Republican-led committee, though it's referenced in the headline.

If the most damning things Klein can come up with to attack the GOP-led report are word games, they're simply not as "major" as Klein wants you to believe.

The fact that Klein is sticking to his anti-Obama narrative even as credible investigators demolish the underpinnnings of his claims is just one more reason why nobody believes WND.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:15 PM EST
Monday, November 24, 2014
CNS Ignored Benghazi Report, But Highlighted Criticism Of It
Topic: CNSNews.com

The Republican-led House Intelligence Committee released a report on Friday that debunked many right-wing conspiracy theories about the attack on a diplomatic facility in Benghazi, Libya. CNSNews.com -- despite claiming to be a "news" organization, ignored the report.

CNS did not notice the report until nearly three days later, when a Nov. 24 article by Susan Jones framed it in an attack by Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, who called the report "full of crap."

CNS was apparently busy covering other issues it deemed more important, like how much golf President Obama played over the weekend. Priorities!


Posted by Terry K. at 9:17 PM EST
Sunday, November 23, 2014
CNS' Starr Peddles Oil Industry Propaganda on Keystone Pipeline
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com reporter Penny Starr has long been a reliable propagandist for the fossil fuel industries (which is a major donor to the Media Research Center). She proves it again in a Nov. 17 CNS article in which she shills for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. Starr heavily quotes those with a direct financial interest in getting the pipeline built, including longtime buddy the American Petroleum Institute:

The American Petroleum Institute, the trade association that advocates on behalf of the U.S. oil and gas industry, on Monday issued a plea to Obama about the pipeline and its benefits.

“Mr. President, do not outsource the 42,000 American jobs this pipeline represents, to move Canadian and U.S. energy resources from North Dakota and Montana, to U.S. refineries on the Gulf Coast,” API President and CEO Jack Gerard said in a statement.

“Americans are embracing our domestic energy renaissance but they can’t fully benefit from it unless there is a robust infrastructure system to transport the fuels they demand,” he added.

[...]

TransCanada, the company in charge of the Keystone XL pipeline construction, calls it “the definition of shovel-ready infrastructure project,” and cites the State Department’s own findings. (The department is in control of the project’s destiny because of its “international” element.)

“Almost overnight, Keystone XL could put 9,000 hard-working American men and women directly to work,” TransCanada says on its website. “The U.S. State Department’s Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement found that the project would support more than 42,000 direct and indirect jobs nationwide.”

But Starr doesn't report the full context of the State Department's job predictions. PolitiFact points out that the 42,000 jobs that would be "support[ed]" by the pipeline doesn't mean that 42,000 jobs would be created. The vast majority of those jobs are temporary and would last only as long as the pipeline is being constructed, and a number of them already exist. The operation and maintenance of the pipeline after construction will create only about 50 jobs.

Starr goes on to regurgitate more claims from TransCanada:

“Keystone XL Pipeline will have the capacity to transport 830,000 barrels per day of crude oil from Canada and the continental United States to refineries on the Gulf Coast, where it can displace much of the higher-priced oil those refineries currently import from overseas,” TransCanada says.

“This view is backed up by a December, 2010 U.S. Department of Energy study which states: ‘Increased Canadian oil imports will help reduce U.S. imports of foreign oil from sources outside of North America.’”

But as the Christian Science Monitor reported, Canadian oil exports to the U.S. will increase whether or not Keystone XL is built. And Reuters notes that a significant amount of the crude oil coming through Keystone XL would be exported.

Because Starr is in propaganda mode, she won't report any of those inconvenient facts to her readers.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:13 PM EST
House GOP Shoots Down Aaron Klein's Benghazi-Syria Conspiracy
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Since the attack on diplomatic facilities in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012, WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein has pushed the (anonymously sourced) claim that the Benghazi facility was used to ship arms from Libya to Syrian rebels. That claim is a centerpiece of Klein's failed book on Benghazi, as Klein's own website describes:

The U.S. special mission in Benghazi and the nearby CIA annex were utilized in part to coordinate arms shipments to the jihadist rebels fighting the Syrian regime, with Ambassador Christopher Stevens playing a central role, documents an explosive new book released today.

The activities, which included a separate, unprecedented multi-million-dollar weapons collection effort from Libyan militias who did not want to give up their weapons, may have prompted the Sept. 11, 2012, attack, charges the new book.

The findings and more are revealed in the new work by radio host and WND reporter Aaron Klein, “The REAL Benghazi Story: What the White House and Hillary Don’t Want You to Know.”

Klein asserts the arms-to-rebels scheme that ran through Benghazi “might amount to the Fast and Furious of the Middle East, the Iran-Contra of the Obama administration.”

[...]

According to information cited by Klein, Stevens served less as a diplomat and more as an arms dealer and intelligence coordinator for assistance to the so-called Arab Spring, with particular emphasis on the Syrian rebels.

Just one problem with that narrative: The newly released Republican-led House report on Benghazi discredits the accusation:

Multiple media outlets have reported allegations about CIA collecting weapons in Benghazi and facilitating weapons from Libya to Syria. The eyewintess testimony and thousands of pages of CIA cables and emails that the Committee reviewed provide no support for this allegation.

Committee Members and staff asked all wigness what they observed at the Benghazi Annex and whether they had any informationto support allegations about weapons being collected and transported to Syria. Each witness reported seeing only standard CIA security weapons at the base. No witness testified that non-CIA weapons were brought to the Annex. Security personnel and officers testified they had complete access to the Annex and would have observed any weapons, such as MANPADs, stored at the facility. Security personnel and officers also testified that nobody told them to hide or withhold any information from the Committee. This record is consistent throughout the Committee interviews by members and staff.

According to testimony from CIA Deputy Director Morell and confirmed by other witnesses, the CIA's mission in Benghazi was to collect foreign intelligence. From the Annex in Benghazi, the CIA was collecting intelligence about foreign entities that were themselves collecting weapons in Libya and facilitating their passage to Syria. The Benghazi Annex was not itself collecting weapons. The Committee has not seen any credible information to dispute these facts.

Don't expect a correction from Klein on this, let alone WND recalling Klein's book due to the false information contained in it. Not only is that not how WND rolls -- indeed, WND has yet to acknowledge the existence of the House GOP report on Benghazi, even though it has been out for nearly two days -- Klein's book tanked badly enough that the effort is barely worth it. As of this writing, "The REAL Benghazi Story" has slid to No. 80,072 in sales at Amazon.com less than three months after its release.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 PM EST
Saturday, November 22, 2014
MRC Attacks 'Hippie-Hypocrite' Neil Young
Topic: Media Research Center

It was apparently a slow day at the Media Research Center a couple weeks back, because Geoffrey Dickens decided to have a fit about Neil Young appearing on "The Charlie Rose Show" and featuring a clip of Young singing a song opposing fracking:

Within seconds after playing the clip the PBS host also asked Young about his new memoir in which the singer “covers everything from his love of cars and painting to his crusade for Mother Earth.” However, Rose never once asked the environmental activist if he felt guilty about all the fossil fuels he’s used in his cars or his painting. Rose also never mentioned all the fossil fuels used in the promotion of Young’s over 50 year-long career in the production and transport of his vinyl records, tapes, CDs. Rose also didn’t bring up the fossil fuels that were utilized in sending Young, his band and crew members on all those tours over the years.

Wow. Dickens is bashing Young for using "fossil fuels" in his painting? Really, Geoffrey? And Dickens seems to have overlooked the fact that he converted one of his beloved cars, a formerly gas-guzzing 1959 Lincoln Continental, to run on cellulosic ethanol.

Besides, Dickens is about a decade late in calling out Young's alleged hypocrisy. The Toronto Star reported:

A vocal champion of environmental issues for most of his career, Young nevertheless managed to conveniently ignore the dichotomy inherent in his fetish for gas-guzzling, fume-belching classic automobiles until he and Crazy Horse took their earth-conscious rock opera Greendale on the road in 2003.

One day after the accompanying movie was finished, Sarah White — a friend of Young’s daughter enlisted to play an activist protesting against oil companies and a “villainous, anti-environment, pollution-spreading corporation” called POWERCO in the Greendale film — cornered him and, “with all of the intensity of youth unbridled,” called him a hypocrite for going out on tour with a fleet of fossil fuel-reliant trucks, buses and airplanes immediately after making a stand against the very same sort of wastefulness onscreen and on record. It stung. And it stuck.

“She was absolutely right,” he writes in Special Deluxe. “Imagine a character in my own story telling me that I was hypocritical for not practising what I was preaching. That was a seminal moment.”

“Yeah, it made a big difference to me,” Young now says of that conversation. “I had the feeling already that we had to do something different, but this young lady made a very clear point. It’s just knowledge. You just accrue knowledge. If you’re interested in something, you gather knowledge.”

From that point on, as documented in Special Deluxe’s sharpened third act, Young set about dutifully reconfiguring his tour transportation to ensure that it ran on renewable, lower-emission biofuel whilst versing himself in the science of climate change and renewable energy to a customarily “obsessive” degree.

If Dickens had bothered to do any actual research before writing his item, he would have learned not only about the converted Lincoln but also that Young has been running his tour transportation on biofuel for years.

But then, the Media Research Center isn't really about "research," it's about promoting an ideology and trotting out tired old insults like "hippie" to smear anyone who opposes them.

(Photo: AutoBlog)


Posted by Terry K. at 9:06 PM EST
Updated: Saturday, November 22, 2014 9:50 PM EST
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, Supersize WorldNetDaily Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

When Barack Obama and his political henchmen get done with his plan to transform this country, we’ll end up being a country of one state.

He’s taking us apart bit by bit. When he’s done, we’ll no longer be the United States – 50 states with rights and obligations, with states’ rights preeminent – but one country under the thumb and rule of the federal government with no individual states rights.

We’ll not be the United States because at every level, he and his minions in legislatures, the courts and the bureaucracies are overriding state laws and enforcing federal restrictions instead.

-- Barbara Simpson, Nov. 16 WorldNetDaily column

Richard Nixon was driven from office in shame for actions that do not begin to rise to the level of this health-care fraud. Enough of the talk. We demand action on behalf of the American people. We need state attorneys general and Congress to take immediate action to have Obama punished for defrauding the American people. In fact, I would further argue that the lawyers who argued in support of Obamacare also knowingly participated in the lie and that they should be held accountable as well.

-- Mychal Massie, Nov. 17 WND column

At a time when the country needs an actual leader at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the great Community Organizer in Chief comes shining through again to illuminate exactly why he’s unfit to be president of the United States.

Facts are irrelevant to Barack Obama, and it’s obvious he still harbors lingering resentment for having to hold a beer summit with his friend Henry Louis Gates and Sgt. James Crowley. In the case of Obama meeting secretly with the Ferguson protest leaders, it’s obvious who truly “acted stupidly” in once again displaying a complete aversion to being a leader interested in healing wounds instead of pouring salt on them.

But then again, Democrats nationwide attempted to utilize the unrest in Ferguson to drive black voters to the polls, filled with the type of racial resentment that must keep Obama and Holder awake at night thinking there’s a Klansman behind every door they encounter.

-- John Rocker, Nov. 17 WND column

Obama knows that all of these options leave the GOP between a rock and a hard place, and that is exactly the way he wants it. He is daring them to try and impeach him, believing that they will suffer the same fate they did when they went after Clinton. He is betting that the American people won’t go for it and the Republicans will be ruined if they do. The White House is using impeachment as bait in the hopes that the GOP will destroy its own credibility. Why do you think most of the impeachment talk is coming from his party and not the Republicans?

-- Morgan Brittany, Nov. 18 WND column

When Rush Limbaugh contradicts Obama’s statement that he (Obama) is not an emperor, he tacitly accepts the ideological paradigm Obama actually professes. Of course, I’m reasonably sure he does not intend to do so. An emperor is one who commands the law by virtue of his power. So far, Obama has successfully demonstrated his power to do pretty much as he wills. So, according to his Marxist paradigm, he is an emperor.

-- Alan Keyes, Nov. 20 WND column

Would-be dictators and bullies must be opposed, resisted and defeated. It will not be acceptable for Congress to sit on its hands after Obama’s usurpation. It must act not as a matter of partisan competition but on behalf of the Constitution itself and the sovereignty of the American people, which it has a sacred duty to safeguard.

Now that Obama is declaring war on the Constitution and attempting to further emasculate Congress, it must draw and use every weapon in its constitutional arsenal to nullify Obama’s action – and to deter future tyrants from following his disgraceful example.

-- David Limbaugh, Nov. 20 WND column

If the president could have carried out this executive order the whole time legally, THEN WHY HASN’T HE? If it’s legal for the Executive to do this, then Congress’ action or inaction is completely irrelevant. The only possible conclusion is that this whole episode is entirely political at best, completely illegal at worst.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why many, including myself, simply don’t trust this man. He is a deceiver. I’ve said this in private, and I will say so now publicly: Whenever this president speaks, I feel like saying, “I have never heard nothing in so many words.”

-- Joshua Charles, Nov. 21 WND column

One can’t resist noting that on Oct. 2, 2014, we at Freedom Watch petitioned the Department of Homeland Security to deport Barack Hussein Obama, due to his use of falsified identity documents. Perhaps Obama has a personal soft spot for not wanting the United States to deport people not legally in the country. Freedom Watch calls for all illegal aliens to be returned to their country of birth, including Obama.

-- Larry Klayman, Nov. 21 WND column


Posted by Terry K. at 10:39 AM EST
Friday, November 21, 2014
CNS Reporter Demands That Activist Be Censored
Topic: CNSNews.com

The Media Research Center just loves to portray the media as "censoring" a given pet conservative cause, so you'd think they'd oppose any form of censorship. Not so.

In a Nov. 20 tweet, CNSNews.com reporter Penny Starr demanded that an activist with whom she disagreed be prohibited from expressing his views: "This anti-Christian man should not be a witness at Congressional hearings. Why should he be given credibility?"

Starr is referring to Michael Weinstein, head of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, which opposes religious extremism in the military.

Starr is so committed to shutting Weinstein up that she devoted an entire Nov. 20 CNS article to repeating Republican Rep. Randy Forbes' ad hominem attacks on Weinstein simply for showing up to testify at a congressional hearing on religious freedom in the military.

Starr is so determined to bash Weinstein that she never explains why the hearing was held in the first place.

Apparently, at the MRC freedom of speech is granted only when the MRC agrees with that speech.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:14 PM EST
WND Parrots Sheriff's Bogus Stats On Illegal Immigrants
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In a Nov. 19 WorldNetDaily article, Leo Hohmann plays stenographer for a group of sheriffs who are "march on the nation’s capital, hoping to send a message to President Obama and Congress that they oppose amnesty for illegal immigrants." Hohmann uncritically quotes from a letter written by the sheriffs:

Given the fact that 25 people are killed each day by illegal immigrants, and our schools are becoming overcrowded and more costly, our public health is threatened by new diseases and ailments introduced by people living in our communities illegally, and the fact that benefits are being given and violations of the law forgiven for a select group of non-citizens, makes clear our obligation to act now before we erode the confidence and the faith citizens have in Sheriffs across the country and throughout our history.

The sheriffs are repeating a zombie lie that, as we've detailed, WND has been peddling since 2006.

The idea that "25 people are killed each day by illegal immigrants" was first promoted by anti-immigrant Republican Rep. Steve King, who claimed to have "extrapolated" this figure from a claim that 28 percent of all U.S. prison inmates are "criminal aliens" -- which itself is false, overstating the number of inmates by a factor of four.

The sheriff's claim that "our public health is threatened by new diseases and ailments introduced by people living in our communities illegally" is simply an echo of fearmongering peddled by the likes of WND's own Jerome Corsi.

Hohmann reports that this anti-immigrant effort is being spearheaded by "two sheriffs from Massachusetts – Bristol County Sheriff Thomas Hodgson and Plymouth County Sheriff Joseph McDonald." The fact that he can't be bothered to call out the sheriff's rank fearmongering and fact-check their bogus statistics is just another reason why nobody believes WND.

(Photo of Sheriff Thomas Hodgson via WND)


Posted by Terry K. at 9:28 AM EST
Thursday, November 20, 2014
Tim Graham's Hypocritical Attack On Media Bias
Topic: Media Research Center

Tim Graham huffs in his latest anti-gay freakout in a Nov. 19 NewsBusters post:

Washington Post “social change reporter” Sandhya Somashekhar wrote a front-page story for Wednesday’s editions on how the Barilla pasta company completely surrendered to the gay left. The headline was “A recipe for recovery: Barilla makes amends to gay groups.”

As usual, the Post divided the conflict into “gay rights groups” and “social conservatives.” Gay activist Bob Witeck described the conservative view as “stupid and backwards.” Conservatives said...nothing. There was no space for rebuttal. “Social change” moves faster when “backwards” gets censored.

[...]

Nobody in the story gets to say, for example, that "Human Rights Campaign" is a funny name for an anti-free speech group. "Discriminatory" speech -- soon to include sermons inside churches, if Houston is any example -- must be squashed. Nobody gets to say "discriminatory" things like "transgender-related health care" such as the amputation of breasts and genitals isn't "health care." In today's progressive Post, those things are better left unthought, not just unsaid.

Graham has not expressed that same concern about "censorship" when it's practiced by a "news" organization that operates down the hall from him.

As we've documented, CNSNews.com -- operated by Graham's employer, the Media Research Center -- frequently censors the parts of stories that conflict with its right-wing agenda, resulting in stenographical documents masquerading as "news" articles, to the point that it actually uncritically presented the Church of Scientology's stance against psychiatric drugs.

Unless Graham and his fellow MRC superiors can get CNS to act like the "news" organization it portrays itself as, Graham has no moral standing to attack the purported "censorship" of the "liberal media."

This hypocrisy undermines the entire mission of the MRC, but Graham, Brent Bozell and the rest of the MRC crew don't seem to recognize it.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:37 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, November 20, 2014 3:43 PM EST
Molotov Mitchell Abandoned His Far-Right Principles, Still Lost NC Election
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In his Nov. 18 WorldNetDaily video, Molotov Mitchell reviewed his campaign for North Carolina's legislature, in which he lost by a 2-1 margin. Mitchell unsurprisingly spun his massive loss as positively as he could, insisting that he got more votes than any previous Republican in his "ice-blue district."

Mitchell also claimed that his campaign showed that voters respect conservative candidates who stand their ground, saying that "sticking to your principles and not running from them is an effective campaign strategy."

In fact, Mitchell did run from his principles during his campaign in order to make himself appear less extreme. Indeed, he tried to renounce the two things he's arguably best known for -- his birtherism and his disdain for gays. The Raleigh News & Observer reported:

He’s been weighing in on national politics for years through his video commentaries and other films. In the videos, he’s argued that President Barack Obama wasn’t born in the United States, adding that “if I were a leader in the armed forces, I might be thinking coup d’etat right about now.” He’s called North Carolina’s Moral Monday protestors “ugly, mindless, littering, loitering hobos.” And his film “Gates of Hell” features a group of “black power assassins” who kill abortion doctors.

As a candidate, Mitchell has distanced himself from his video career. He says the commentaries were done in his role as an “entertainer.”

“It was to poke the bear on the left,” he said. “It doesn’t matter where Barack Obama was born.”

The News & Observer also noted Mitchell's attempt to distance himself from his support for anti-gay laws:

Mitchell has been called “anti-gay” because of a video he produced in 2010 supporting a Ugandan law that would impose the death penalty on homosexuals.

“What I supported was the right of Uganda to create whatever legislation it wants,” Mitchell said, adding that he doesn’t hate gay people or think they should be killed.

“I support the democratic process,” he said. “I really believe in freedom.”

That's an utterly disingenuous defense. As we've previously noted, Mitchell has called for the "abolition of homosexuality," and he defended his support for the law as something the Founding Fathers would also support. And it's unlikely Mitchell would be defending Uganda's right "to create whatever legislation it wants" if it was Christians instead of gays that faced the death penalty.

The News & Observer reported Mitchell's defense as it also noted that Mitchell ludicrously denounced a school anti-bullying policy as a “transgender kindergarten curriculum.”

In his video, Mitchell hinted that he would run for office again, even as he insulted his would-be consituents as "the most hard-core, Birkenstock-wearing, Che Guevara-loving socialists this side of Leningrad." That disdain for people who disagree with him demonstrates that Mitchell lost his election justly.

Also, Leningrad hasn't existed for decades. Mitchell might want to check out a map sometime.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:55 AM EST
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Newsmax TV To Air What Sure Sounds Like A JFK Conspiracy Show
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax is strategically vague in a Nov. 13 article promoting a new show on its fledgling TV channel:

Marking the 51st anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination on Nov. 22, 1963, Newsmax TV will air the explosive, world premiere one-hour documentary "I Killed JFK" on Thursday Nov. 20, at 9 p.m. ET.

The documentary adds to the diverse programming featured on Newsmax TV, the new news, information and lifestyle channel that is currently ramping up to a formal roll-out in 2015.

Produced by Barry Katz Entertainment, "I Killed JFK" features never-before seen footage of the confessed killer of President Kennedy. The film presents compelling forensic and eyewitness evidence previously unavailable to the public. The documentary also includes interviews with the alleged assassin as well as two former FBI agents who found the assassin’s confessions credible.

"Until now, no one has ever confessed to the murder of JFK, and most people still believe that Lee Harvey Oswald was the killer. After the world sees this special, I am confident that the greatest mystery of our generation will finally be solved," said Executive Producer Barry Katz.

"As we ramp up Newsmax TV for our official launch, we're offering a range of provocative and original programming that interests a large and under-served audience, including the generation raised in the aftermath of that tragic day in Dallas," Newsmax Media CEO Christopher Ruddy said. "They’ll see a movie that adds to the scholarship and the debate surrounding the president's assassination."

"We are heartened by Newsmax TV's decision to bring this important and revealing program to the American public. We all deserve to know the truth behind what was truly one of the saddest moments in our country’s history," added Ernest Cartwright, co-executive producer for the project.

We couldn't find any other information about this documentary beyond a bare-bones website promoting the producers' production company. Reading between the lines, one can surmise that it appears to be another one of those JFK conspiracy things. As far as we know, Oswald never confessed to killing JFK, so the references above to the "alleged assassin" who allegedly confessed is apparently a reference to somebody else.

That doesn't exactly bode well for Newsmax TV's attempt to be something of a mainstream news outlet.

Interestingly, Newsmax is not the only part of the ConWeb going with JFK assassination conspiracy theories. The URL CorsiOnJFK.com takes you to WorldNetDaily hack Jerome Corsi's latest e-book claiming to summarize " the most important new research investigating the JFK assassination." In it, Corsi says he "believes investigations into the JFK Assassination are close to establishing irrefutable evidence documenting the JFK assassination a government-organized coup d’état, not the act of a lone-gun assassin." The website add: "Dr. Corsi fully expects the final true history of the JFK assassination will expose to the American pubic the history of CIA lies and disinformation that have distorted U.S. history since World War II, in favor of a series of international conflicts and wars favored by the military-industrial complex that JFK lost his life trying to prevent."

The fact that Corsi has already discounted his e-book to $4.90 (original price $9.99) tells you pretty much what even its author thinks his book is worth.

(Photo: How Stuff Works)


Posted by Terry K. at 9:48 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, November 20, 2014 12:21 PM EST
MRC Still Clings To 'Climategate' Myths
Topic: Media Research Center

A Nov. 17 Media Research Center post by Joseph Rossell tries to revive an old conspiracy:

President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping’s deal to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in both countries couldn’t have come at a more ironic time.

Their Nov. 11, announcement came just days before the fifth anniversary of ClimateGate, which cast a pall over the credibility of major climate research institutions. On Nov. 17, 2009, it was discovered that hundreds of emails and files were either hacked or leaked from the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia (UEA). According to Roger Pielke, Jr., months before ClimateGate, CRU admitted it did not have the raw data its climate science is based on.

Note how Rossell blithely notes the "Climategate" documents were "either hacked or leaked." By contrast, the MRC had a fit when documents detailing the conservative Heartland Institute's strategy to promote global warming denialism were released, screaming that they were "falsely obtained" in a "vicious" and "sleazy attack" by the head of a "George Soros-funded" group. Rossell expresses no concern that the "Climategate" emails were "falsely obtained" as part of a "vicious" attack against climate scientists because he agrees with such attacks.

Rossell then cherry-picks 10 random, out-of-context statements from the "Climategate" emails to portray them as killing the credibility of climate science. But Rossell ignores the entirety of climate science study, which affirms the consensus that global warming exists. For example, PolitiFact states:

So, to say that the CRU e-mails debunk the science supporting climate change leaves out the important point that CRU isn't the only organization looking at the issue. Indeed, there are reams of data that show temperatures are increasing and that greater concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are largely to blame. 

An Associated Press review of the emails show that they "don't support claims that the science of global warming was faked" and "don't undercut the vast body of evidence showing the world is warming because of man-made greenhouse gas emissions."

But who needs facts when Rossell can simply regurgitate a discredited political narrative?


Posted by Terry K. at 11:09 AM EST
Tuesday, November 18, 2014
CNS'Hollingsworth Returns To Stenographer Mode
Topic: CNSNews.com

Barbara Hollingsworth's Nov. 14 CNSNews.com article is yet another of her stenography extravaganzas, dutifully regurgitating the "seven reasons why [Americans] should not sign up for Obamacare" offered by the anti-Obamacare group Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom.

Hollingsworth even uncritically forwards CCHF president Twila Brase's tortured argument that health coverage through Obamacare isn't really private coverage even though the policy"says Cigna, or Kaiser or WellPoint."

As is typical for a Hollingsworth stenography piece, she makes no effort to balance her article with the views of someone who opposes the CCHF's anti-Obamacare ideology, even though the article is presented as "news." Thus, you won't hear any criticism of Brase's dangerous central argument, that it's better to have no health insurance than to have Obamacare. As Bloomberg View opined when Brase peddled this argument last year:

That claim is absurd on its face: Even if you believe that exchange-purchased insurance will offer fewer care options than other types of coverage, some insurance is leagues better than none. Forget about the penalty for not carrying insurance; what if that 22-year-old needs medical care? He can pay his doctors directly, Brase responded, or seek charity care.


[...]

So Brase's advice that people who can't afford insurance outside the exchanges simply go without makes perfect sense -- but only if you're rich, you never get sick, or you only get sick during open enrollment. And how about access to preventive care to keep you from getting sick in the first place, you ask? Well, if you're worried about that, you'd better reconsider your commitment to freedom, my friend.

Again, Hollingsworth doesn't care about journalism, she cares about forwarding an ideology. That makes her a failure as a journalist, but an apparent success as a CNS senior editor.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:51 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, November 18, 2014 6:53 PM EST

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