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Sunday, May 10, 2009
Sheppard's Double Standard on Linking Veterans to Violence
Topic: NewsBusters

How times change.

It was just a few weeks ago that NewsBusters' Noel Sheppard bashed a Department of Homeland Security report noting that, among other things, returning Iraq war veterans who are "facing significant challenges reintegrating into their communities could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists capable of carrying out violent attacks." In an April 14 NewsBusters post, Sheppard said the report "read like the paranoid accusations of liberal bloggers and leftwing shills on MSNBC and elsewhere."

Meanwhile, a CBS sports analyst, writing for a Dallas city magazine, appeared to back that up by stating that "if you gave any U.S. soldier a gun with two bullets in it and he found himself in an elevator with Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and Osama bin Laden, there`s a good chance that Nancy Pelosi would get shot twice, and Harry Reid and bin Laden would be strangled to death." But Sheppard couldn't bring himself to offer a forceful condemnation of the remarks -- instead, he equivocates and justifies. From a May 9 NewsBusters post:

Unfortunately, missing in all the outrage was some context. Now, readers are advised that I am by no means condoning what Feherty wrote. Depicting an American soldier killing elected officials is certainly going over the line. Let's be clear about that.

However, this "D" magazine issue devoted a good deal of space for Dallas writers to offer their opinions of how the area will be impacted by George W. Bush's return. 

[...]

So, before his comments about Pelosi and Reid, Feherty advocated the death of pro-lifers, child molesters, and those opposed to gay marriage.

[...]

As such, Feherty's point, however callously made, was that the media have been unduly harsh on Bush, and that despite all the anti-war sentiments, folks in the press have improperly represented the military's view of the former President, and have withheld from the public the contempt our soldiers feel for elected officials that have undermined their efforts.

Does that make Feherty's picture in that elevator any more acceptable?

To Sheppard, apparently it does.

As a special bonus, Sheppard repeats the false claim that the "far left" Media Matters (disclosure: our employer) is "George Soros funded."


Posted by Terry K. at 12:12 PM EDT
WND's Washington Back in Full Obama Derangement
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We were worried that Ellis Washington would no longer be able to channel the Obama-hate he has been spewing over the past year or so after writing a few columns on other subjects (though done in a similarly hateful manner.)

We needn't have worried. Washington is back in full Obama-hate effect in his May 9 column. He begins by quoting his own erroneous assertion from an earlier column that the character of Goldstein in George Orwell's "1984" was Big Brother's "minister of propaganda" (in fact, Goldstein was quite the opposite: the purported enemy of the state upon whom Big Brother's Two Minutes Hate was focused).

We're in for a fun ride, folks. Indeed, here's the first actual paragraph:

What do you call a man, a leader, a president of the greatest country in the history of the world that daily ignores constitutional strictures like separation of powers, which limits executive power? What do you call a pathological narcissist that daily creates vast, new totalitarian powers for himself by executive decree while the slavish Democrats, the irrelevant Republicans and the servile liberal media bow to his every will? How would you characterize Wall Street, private corporations, education, medicine, housing and energy who collectively tremble in fear if they don't obey his latest unconstitutional commands, that they will be the next recipient of his vengeful wrath?

Oh, but it gets better:

To a rational person who loves America and respects the traditions of the Founding Fathers, anti-federalism and executive restraint, the headlines are gut-wrenching, but to a proud fascist like President B. Hussein Obama, those dire headlines above read like the soothing, euphonious strains of a Wagnerian opera. And like Wagner's primo uomo, "Siegfried," a man who literally went to hell and back to learn how to fear, only more socialism, anarchy and nihilism can set the proper pretext for this Grand Finale. Only in Chaos Theory can the stage be adequately prepared for Obama Inc. to appear stage left to save America. Yet there is no salvation, no redemption – only a hellish, eternal nightmare that he himself created!

Washington comes up with a few more notorious characters to which he likens Obama:

Obama is utterly a revolutionary figure following a long, ignoble tradition of former great tyrants like Nebuchadnezzar, Caesar, Muhammad, Henry VIII, Napoleon, Mussolini, Woodrow Wilson, FDR, LBJ, Putin, Chavez and others. Obama Inc. thinks in grand, over-arching, totalizing themes rather than simply single programs as Clinton did with gays in the military or national health care in 1993. No, no, no – one program, even one-seventh of America's entire multi-trillion dollar economy, is much too small for Obama Inc. to be bothered with.

Then comes Washington's concluding spew:

One hundred ten days after taken the oath as president of the United States, who would have thought that Obama Inc., led by this unremarkable pol, this intellectually vacuous fascist from Harvard, could have achieved so much, so soon, yet here we are in the midst of a burgeoning totalitarian State equal in every respect but the year of George Orwell's "1984" – nevertheless we appear too stupid to realize where we are.

Ignorance (I don't know) and apathy (I don't care) are the twin narcotic drugs Obama Inc. has used to lobotomize America over the past 100 days, but his Machiavellian tactics go further back 100 years to Woodrow Wilson, who, according to Jonah Goldberg's excellent book, "Liberal Fascism," was America's first fascist president. Interestingly, Wilson's fascism (1913) predated Lenin's Bolshevik Revolution (1917) by four years and Mussolini's fascism (1922) by nine years.

Finally, precursors of Obama Inc. could be heard 330 years ago in the writings of the great English political philosopher Thomas Hobbes (1588–1679) who prophesied a tyrannical political figure like Obama in his magnum opus, "Leviathan" (1651) and summarized his entire oeuvre in one telling, succinct last utterance from his deathbed – A great leap into the dark.

Unless this narcissist, Manchurian Candidate is stopped, America will soon be plunged into a new Dark Age called Obama Inc.

Wow. Just ... wow.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:16 AM EDT
Saturday, May 9, 2009
Newsmax's 'Shocking' Announcement
Topic: Newsmax

Remember when Newsmax's Christopher Ruddy promised that during his May 7 Obama-bashing webinar that he "will be making an announcement that will absolutely shock you into action . . . I promise it"? Well, the webinar has come and gone, he has made his announcement, and it's ...

... a stock portfolio?


 

From a post-webinar email:

What would you do if I walked up and handed you a check for a million dollars?

Instantly giving you a 7-figure financial cushion.

You could blow it on exotic cars . . . a mansion . . . or maybe on some worthless extravagance.

Or you could take steps to turn that million into an even larger pile of cash?

The kind of money that will help protect you, your family, and the generations that follow.

From the coming Obama inflation nightmare.

Today you can take steps to begin to make your million-dollar daydream become a reality. Today your financial future is once again in your own hands and not those of Wall Street or Washington.

Today, you can take back your piece of the American Dream.

I believe so strongly in this mission -- this may shock you -- I’m going to put $1 million dollars of my own money “on the line” to do it!

[...]

And here’s what I will do for you: you will be given the opportunity to grow your own wealth -- as I grow mine.

And, I’m going to be 100% upfront and transparent about how I do it.

First, the idea of creating a fund whose holdings and trades are publicly disclosed isn't that new -- Jim Cramer has been doing it for years. In Ruddy's case, he plans to "implementing a proprietary investment strategy my Chief Financial Analyst has developed over the last 22 years to grow this $1 million safely . . . easily . . . and most importantly -- MASSIVELY!" Ruddy adds that he's "aiming for a 50% to 70% return in the next 12 months!"

Second, it's not quite "his" money. Note that the check is made out on the account of Newsmax Media, not Ruddy's personal account. Ruddy may be majority owner of Newsmax, but Richard Mellon Scaife owns the rest. That means he'sputting his partner's money into this venture as well.

Despite the populist, anti-Obama tone of the email, it's ultimately a business proposition -- Ruddy wants to sell you the stock picks he's using in his million-dollar portfolio. Only those who pay Ruddy's "charter membership fee" of $1,295 (which, of course, he claims is a discount off the "regular membership rate" and a steal for the value of the package he's offering, which he claims to be worth $6,818) will get access to them.

The fact that Ruddy has a million bucks he can afford to lose on this seems to demonstrate just how lucrative the ConWeb can be.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:02 PM EDT
Updated: Saturday, May 9, 2009 12:04 PM EDT
Heathering Spreads to WND
Topic: WorldNetDaily

The boys at NewsBusters aren't the only ones engaged in Heathering those who fail to strictly toe the right-wing line. In her May 8 WorldNetDaily column, unsubtly headlined "A cow is born," Ilana Mercer takes aim at the "cow" in question -- Meghan McCain:

Just as you thought American pop-politics could go no lower, a woman with real curb appeal appears on the political scene. Meghan McCain might just be the greatest ditz to date to emerge from that big tent Republicans keep touting. 

[...]

Meghan is like a dripping tap. If you've read the first few lines of a blog post, you've read all two diarrheic pages of it.

Ms. McCain's favorite, young Republican candidate is some "hottie" who believes in "the capital system," appeals to minorities and is wise to the use of the paparazzi (an absolute must).

[...]

As hopeless, Republicans have failed to make the only valid case against Meghan, and that is that she is really really stupid. (Laura Ingraham practically apologized for lampooning the girl's unmistakable moronity.) It is no accident that the woman studs her conversation with mind-numbing commonplaces and humbugs.

Ann Coulter could have easily dispatched of the ding-dong, as she did Keith Olbermann. A couple of masterful syllogisms mixed in with a few devastating facts, and that would be it. Alas, by denying Ms. McCain the satisfaction, Annie Orkin has left us with a pest-control problem.

Did I mention that the cerebrally challenged Ms. McCain hopes to unseat Ms. Coulter as the new, improved conservative Queen Bee? She writes: "I hope viewers understand Ann Coulter is not the woman we Republicans need representing us right now." The implication being, dot, dot, dot.

[...]

Clearly, Meghan McCain is not working with much ─ and is eminently qualified to dim debate in the Age of the Idiot.

A familial predisposition, it would seem. John McCain finished 894th out of 899 at the Naval Academy and lost five jets. As IQ ace Steve Sailer once quipped, "To lose one plane over Vietnam may be regarded as a heroic tragedy; to lose five planes here and there looks like carelessness."

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Mercer is not the first WND columnist to name-check Sailer, best known for his support of eugenics and who wrote of blacks stranded in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina: "The plain fact is that they tend to possess poorer native judgment than members of better-educated groups. Thus they need stricter moral guidance from society."


Posted by Terry K. at 12:59 AM EDT
Friday, May 8, 2009
Newsmax Ignores Disclaimer on Torture Briefing Docs
Topic: Newsmax

A May 7 Newsmax article asserted that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi "lied" when she said she wasn't briefed about how waterboarding was used about specific detainees, claiming that a recently released report from the National Intelligence Director's office "refutes in considerable detail Pelosi’s statement last month that she was never told about the use of waterboarding or other special interrogation tactics."

But Newsmax fails to note that a letter from CIA head Leon Panetta accompanied the report as submitted to the Senate Intelligence Committee stating that the report is based on, in part, "notes that summarized the best recollections of those individuals" who did the briefings, and that the committee "will have to determine whether this information is an accurate summary of what actually happened."

In other words, even the CIA won't vouch for the reliability of the report. But Newsmax won't tell you that.

UPDATE: A May 8 Newsmax article by Chris Gonsalves repeats Republican Rep. Pete Hoekstra's call "for the release of more CIA documents, and perhaps even congressional hearings, to determine what fellow lawmakers such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi knew about CIA interrogation methods like waterboarding." At no point does Golsalves mention the cover letter from Panetta raising questions about  the report's reliability, or the fact that, as Greg Sargent noted, Hoekstra himself has a copy of it.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:55 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, May 8, 2009 5:54 PM EDT
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Some Catholic members of the Obama administration were invited to attend the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast. According to the Washington Times, those invited included Joe Biden, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan and DHS Chief Janet Napolitano.

Since Obama wasn't going to be there, none of them knew who they should pray to anyway. So they just skipped the event and stayed at the White House where they could pray to, er, with, their boss.

-- Hal Lindsey, May 8 WorldNetDaily column


Posted by Terry K. at 11:21 AM EDT
WND Still Perpetuating Hate-Crimes Lies
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily seems to be backing away from the outright lie by uncritically declaring that the hate-crimes bill "would provide special protections for pedophiles." One would hope it's because they know it's a lie and they're dishonoring God by telling falsehoods, but we doubt it.

A May 8 WND article by Bob Unruh tempers things a bit, stating that the bill "has been dubbed the 'Pedophile Protection Act.'" But Unruh is still behaving unethically by repeating purported evidence that the bill protects pedophiles -- as we've detailed, a false claim -- but refusing to allow anyone to refute the claim by telling the truth. Unruh also uncritically repeats Matt Barber's false claim that Matthew Shepard "was killed during a robbery for drug money gone awry" while failing to note that one of Shepard's killers used a gay-panic defenseduring their murder trial.

How can a "news" organization that so blatantly lies to its readers be taken seriously? 


Posted by Terry K. at 11:10 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, May 11, 2009 12:03 AM EDT
Selective Outrage at the WJC
Topic: Western Journalism Center

The latest winner of the Claude Rains Memorial Gambling Awareness Award is the Western Journalism Center's Caleb Heimlich, who in a May 5 WJC blog post is shocked -- shocked! -- that people in the Obama administration watch MSNBC:

Today Kareem Dale, Obama’s special assistant to the president for arts and culture and a key White House advisor on disability policy stated that “at the white house, we always like to say we love MSNBC…” 

That is quite a shocking development. The White House watches the network that shills for them on a daily basis.

[...]

I am comforted to know that the President is watching the channel that parrots everything he says.

Was Heimlich -- or Floyd Brown or anyone else at the WJC -- similarly shocked (or comforted) to learn that the Bush administration kept its TVs tuned to Fox News, which shilled for him on a daily basis? Or that a Fox News host served in the Bush administration?Or that Vice President Dick Cheney demanded on out-of-town trips that all TVs in his hotel suite be pre-tuned to Fox News?

Somehow we suspect that neither Heimlich nor Brown were able to get themselves terribly worked up about that. Which, of course, nullifies what Heimlich has to say now.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:44 AM EDT
More Obama (And Souter) Smears From Ellis Washington
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Ellis Washington has toned down his Obama smears of late (gosh, you think we had something to do with that?), focusing recent columns on another bit of craziness, the purported need to abolish the exclusionary rule (something even libertarians oppose doing).

But Washington clearly can't restrain himself for long -- in his May 6 WorldNetDaily column, he references "Chairman Maobama" and calls Obama a "sophist and Manchurian Candidate."

Obama's not the target of this column, though; that would be Justice David Souter, whom Washington describes, along with Arlen Specter, as "two well-known traitors of the Republican Party; two proud enemies against America's most sacred and enduring principles like truth, loyalty, justice, godliness and respect for the original intent of the Constitution's framers." But Washington was just getting warmed up:

I am one of the few writers today to openly speculate that Souter's cloistered, monastic existence with mother dearest ostensibly gave this man a bitter resentment toward the American people, which impaired his ability to rightly judge on the weighty issues that hundreds of millions of people would be compelled by law to follow.

[...]

When Obama referred to Souter as "a fair-minded, independent judge who defied labels," that is a big lie. Souter is a liberal activist judge who believes that the Constitution is a "living document" that can be manipulated at-will to fit a radical, secular, socialist agenda. As far as relying on the constitutional text for judicial guidance is concerned, Souter's 19-year legacy on the Court showed him to be a modern-day Benedict Arnold.

There is not one judicial opinion that I've read of the hundreds Souter authored, concurred in, or dissented that is in any manner respectful of the original intent of the Constitution's framers.

[...]

For almost 20 years, Souter reveled and delighted in ramming his radical liberal activist opinions down the throats of the conservatives, the Christian right and the majority of American citizens who still believed that a judge's only legitimate duty is to interpret the Constitution according to the original intent of the Constitution's framers, not to show "empathy" and legislate from the bench as Souter has done.

Justice Souter's entire judicial legacy on the Supreme Court amounts to the cold, duplicitous kiss of a Judas.

And that's why I spell traitor S-O-U-T-E-R.

I think what we have here is a case of Souter Derangement Syndrome.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:21 AM EDT
Matt Barber, Liar
Topic: CNSNews.com

In his May 7 CNSNews.com column, professional gay-basher Matt Barber asserts that the federal hate-crimes bill "would grant special federal resources and preferred minority status to pedophiles, homosexuals, cross-dressers and... a host of other APA recognized “sexual orientations” (i.e., deviant sexual fetishes and perversions). 

As we've pointed out, that is a lie. Pedophilia or any of the other "deviant sexual fetishes and perversions" are not considered sexual orientations, disabilities or gender identities under federal law, nor are they defined as such under the hate-crimes bill, so they are not protected.

Barber repeats another related lie: that "the most famous supposed 'hate crimes' victim of all, Matthew Shepard ... was killed during a robbery for drug money gone awry." Barber, in perpetrating a false revisionism, has chosen to take the word of a known liar and convicted murderer over that of authorities who know that the killers mounted a gay-panic defense at trial. Funny that Barber overlooks that little fact.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:23 AM EDT
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Disclosure!
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We've repeatedly documented WorldNetDaily's regular violations of journalistic ethics by refusing to disclose its personal and financial interests in the topics and people it covers, so it's only fair to highlight them when then they do properly disclose such things.

A May 7 WND column by Jerome Corsi bashing Chris Christie, a Republican candidate for New Jersey governor, for his involvement in "a plea bargain with the operator of a Honduran sex-slave ring" begins with an unusual (for WND) disclaimer:

Editor's note: Jerome Corsi is a consultant for the Freedoms Defense Fund, a PAC that opposes Christie in the Republican primary and has funded his opponent, Steve Lonegan.

You may remember that Corsi was slow to disclose as he was bashing Ted Strickland in 2006 that he wrote a book with Strickland's opponent for Ohio governor, Ken Blackwell.

Good job, Jerome Corsi and WND. Now, can y'all get around to telling your readers about the relationship between WND and Orly Taitz?


Posted by Terry K. at 9:21 PM EDT
Newsmax Headline Watch
Topic: Newsmax

A May 6 Newsmax article carries the false headline, "Obama: No Prayer in the White House."

At no point does the article claim that President Obama has banned prayer in the White House. Rather, it's about how Obama has issued a proclamation marking today's National Day of Prayer "but not hold any public events with religious leaders as President George W. Bush did." The article even goes on to note that the Obama administration "has asked a judge to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, which claims the day violates the separation of church and state."


Posted by Terry K. at 12:52 PM EDT
New Article: Brad O'Leary Has A Cow
Topic: WorldNetDaily
The WorldNetDaily author buys misleading Zogby polls to push his anti-Obama agenda. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 11:04 AM EDT
WND's Double Standard on Secret Meetings
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A May 5 WorldNetDaily article highlights a "secret meeting" by the Bilderberg Group, "an elite invitation-only conference of influential members of the business, media and political community." The article adds: "Attendees of the Bilderberg conference are not allowed to speak a word of what was discussed in the meeting outside of the group. The group has no website and no minutes are kept of the meetings to ensure secrecy."

As we've detailed, WND editor Joseph Farah is also a member of a secretive group that bars news coverage that it can't orchestrate and forbids its member to talk about what was discussed behind closed doors: the Council for National Policy. For all of WND's fulimations about secret meetings -- it even sells books that purport to blow the lid off such secretive groups -- it has remained silent about Farah's participation in clandestine CNP confabs.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:16 AM EDT
Meet Molotov Mitchell
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In a May 6 "For the Record" video posted at WorldNetDaily attacking the DHS "right-wing extremism" report, Molotov Michell states: "Did you know that Hilter wasn't right-wing? He was actually a socialist. That's what Nazi means -- national socialist. He had a lot more in common with Obama than he did with Reagan or Bush or Bush Jr."

This is just the latest in a long string of such smears at WND.

Mitchell also includes the following image to accompany his words:

 

Mitchell also repeats the right-wing talking point that "the Ku Klux Klan wasn't a bunch of Republicans in those bedsheet ... the KKK was actually founded by and comprised of racist, inbred Democrats." This falsely implies that the Democratic Party carries the same policies on race it did in the 1800s (or even the 1950s). Surely a "for the record" dude like Michell knows that's false. Perhaps Mitchell can do a video on why white segregationists like Jesse Helms and Strom Thurmond switched their affiliation from Democratic to Republican in the 1960s after Democratic leaders expressed support for civil-rights legislation, or why Richard Nixon's "Southern strategy" was so successful in helping Republicans win elections.

In listing a number of people who purportedly fall under the DHS report's description of "right-wing extremist," Mitchell showed a picture of the Dalai Lama, with the caption "Anti-gay bigot":


In fact, here's what the Dalai Lama has had to say on the subject:

In a 1997 interview, the Dalai Lama (the leader of Tibetan Buddhism and a widely-respected spiritual figure) was asked about homosexuality. He did not offer any strong answer either way, but noted that all monks are expected to refrain from sex. For laypeople, he commented that the purpose of sex in general is for procreation, so homosexual acts do seem a bit unnatural. He said that sexual desires in themselves are natural, perhaps including homosexual desires, but that one should not try to increase those desires or indulge them without self-control.

In a 1993 talk given in Seattle, the Dalai Lama said:

nature arranged male and female organs "in such a manner that is very suitable... Same-sex organs cannot manage well." But he stopped short of condemning homosexual relationships altogether, saying if two people agree to enter a relationship that is not sexually abusive, "then I don't know. It's difficult to say." 

The Dalai Lama was more specific in a meeting with Buddhist leaders and human rights activists in San Francisco in 1997, where he commented that all forms of sex other than penile-vaginal sex are prohibited for Buddhists, whether between heterosexuals or homosexuals. At a press conference the day before the meeting, he said, "From a Buddhist point of view, [gay sex] is generally considered sexual misconduct." But he did note that this rule is for Buddhists, and from society's viewpoint, homosexual relationships can be "of mutual benefit, enjoyable, and harmless."

The Dalai Lama is well known for his activism for human rights, and this specifically includes equal rights for gays. According to an Office of Tibet spokeman, "His Holiness opposes violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation. He urges respect, tolerance, compassion, and the full recognition of human rights for all."

If Mitchell really believes in doing stuff "for the record," he should stick that "anti-gay bigot" caption where it much more accurately belongs: under a picture of Joseph Farah.

More about Molotov Mitchell: His real name is Jason, he has produced a number of inaccurate, smear-laden anti-Obama videos (including an embrace of the Obama birth certificate conspiracy), and  he's a part of something called the Zealot Movement, an extremist Christian movement built on the straight-edge punk lifestyle that, according to Mitchell, "avoid[s] the pitfalls of American, effeminised Christianity" and embraces "sexual purity through the practice of abstinence until marriage and the abolition of homosexuality."

"Abolition of homosexuality"? Interesting wording, that.

That would seem to fit in with his declared philosophy of embracing "the lost value of extremism." Too bad he's not all that worried about the lost value of accuracy. Then again, the willingness to smear Obama with extreme prejudice (and extreme inaccuracy) is obviously why Joseph Farah loves him so -- WND has been promoting Mitchell's videos since February.

UPDATE: Richard Bartholomew delves deeper into Molotov.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:00 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, May 8, 2009 2:49 AM EDT

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