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Thursday, November 17, 2016
MRC Would Rather Distract Than Talk About Steve Bannon
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has decided how it will address the controversy of Donald Trump naming white nationalist- and anti-Semitic-linked Breitbart News leader Steve Bannon as his top adviser: distract, distract, distract.

First up is Matt Philbin, who wonders why the media wants to talk about Bannon and not "anti-Catholic bigot" John Podesta, Hillary Clinton's campaign manager.Of course, the reason is that Podesta is not an "anti-Catholic bigot" at all -- as Philbin admits, Podesta -- a Catholic himself -- was critical only of conservative Catholicism. Nevertheless, Philbin sneered that Podesta is a "self-hating Catholic" and should "try the Episcopalians" if he wants a religion that respects gender equality.

Philbin then dismissed a media report pointing out Bannon's links to white nationalism because it came from "from Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center, which is itself a left-wing hate group whose business model is screaming 'Neo-Nazi!' at conservative groups and then letting donations from aging lefties pour in." At no point does Philbin actually address the white nationalism charge -- he's attacking the messenger.

Sarah Stites was next in the distraction brigade, with the subject of distraction this time being gay activist Dan Savage: "The networks have all written stories condemning Bannon’s alleged anti-semitism, but what about Savage’s hateful words about the Catholic church?" Um, because nobody has appointed Savage to be a presidential adviser?

She was followed by Rich Noyes, who pointed to yet another not-conservative the media is purportedly ignoring to focus on Bannon:

Since Sunday evening, ABC, CBS and NBC (along with a host of other establishment media outlets) have been engaged in a feeding frenzy over Donald Trump’s appointment of Steve Bannon, with reporters relentlessly employing phrases such as “white nationalist,” “white supremacist,” “extremist,” “racist” and “anti-Semitic” to solidify the image of Bannon as a dangerous pick for a top White House position.

But since Friday, those same networks have been blind to the controversies surrounding the top candidate for Democratic National Committee Chairman, Rep. Keith Ellison. Ellison has been accused of ties to the radical Nation of Islam, the Muslim Brotherhood, and once suggested the 9/11 terrorist attacks were akin to the infamous Reichstag fire used to propel Hitler’s Nazi party into absolute power in 1933 Germany.

In fact, as Media Matters documented in noting the Islamophobic nature of the attacks on Ellison, the congressman hasn't had a link to the Nation of Islam since 1995 when he organized a group to attend the Million Man March, and Ellison has since denounced the Nation of Islam's "bigoted and anti-Semitic" statements.

By contrast, Noyes lamented that Bannon was being targed with "long-dropped charges of 'domestic violence,' and unsubstantiated accusations from Bannon’s ex-wife that he didn’t want his children 'going to school with Jews.'" When has the MRC ever refrained from attacking a liberal because the charges were "long-dropped" or unsubstantiated?

Finally, Brittany Hughes pops up at MRCTV -- seemingly replacing Dan Joseph, who near as we can tell is no longer an MRC employee after being a fervent never-Trumper during the election -- to harangue the media for even questioning Bannon (and found even more people to distract with) because HOW DARE THEY:

So, to all of you out there in the media who suddenly decided that you give a rip about ethics and morality, here's my response: Just. Shut. Up. This is why Americans are sick of you and it's why your ratings are in the toilet. They're sick of left-wing journalists pointing their almighty finger at conservatives whenever they scratch their nose wrong, while totally ignoring liberals who spew all kinds of filthy, nasty mess.

The Clintons have lined their pockets with millions from Middle Eastern countries that stone gay people and deny women basic rights, and somehow Hillary is still a feminist LGBT champion.  Huma Abedin's family published a radical Muslim magazine that promoted Sharia law and advocated against women's rights, and Huma Abedin was listed as an editor on it for years, and you never batted an eyelash.

Actually, according to people who actually read such things and are not right-wing former WorldNetDaily employees taking articles out of context, that "radical Muslim magazine" is a mostly staid academic journal that covers a broad range of issues.

But who cares about facts? Hughes doesn't. She's on a spittle-filled roll, having apparently taken ranting lessons from her boss, Brent Bozell:

You just spent the last eight years defending a president who actively incites racial divides and who thinks terrorists are just climate change victims with employment problems. Yeah, it matters who Trump surrounds himself with. It matters that they have principles and ethics. But you do not get to point a finger at anyone in the Trump camp when you have done nothing but ignore the left's lies, race-baiting, Christian-bashing and open deception for years. So consider this your invitation to Shut. Up.

If Hughes' screed was meant to signal that only conservatives would judge Bannon, that part is a bit unclear because she was too busy screaming at the media to issue any sort of judgment.

The furious pace (literally, in Hughes' case) at which the MRC is trying to talk about anything but Steve Bannon tells us that they know his record is a legitimate issue to attack.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:52 PM EST

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