NewsReal Falsely Portrays Maddow Show Segment Topic: Horowitz
A Sept. 5 NewsReal post by Paul Cooper falsely portrays a segment on MSNBC's "The Rachel Maddow Show" as on in which "guest host Ana Marie Cox called for censorship of blogs like NewsRealblog.com and WorldNetDaily (which is her focus)" and that "Cox and [guest Sam] Tanenhaus both are ready to call all moderate Republicans to silence and 'reign in' [sic] conservative blogs."
But WND is more than the "focus" of the segment -- it's the only outlet mentioned. Not only is NewsReal not mentioned, despite Cooper's suggestion otherwise, no other "conservative blog" is either. And Cox didn't "call for censorship"; as Cooper goes on to write, she urged mainstream conservatives to denounce such fringe publications as WND and not mainstream their conspiracy theories.
Cooper then writes:
The focus of the interview is suggesting that conservative blogs are promoting “conspiracy theories” like the Obama birthers. Cox and Tanenhaus draw a comparison to the 1960s when William F. Buckley Jr. effectively wrote the John Birch Society out of the conservative movement by denouncing them as crank conspiracists. Cox and Tanenhaus claim that there’s no one in the Conservative Movement doing this today. This is a complete lie. “Mainstream,” “moderate” conservatives have denounced the Birther Conspiracy. David Horowitz, NewsReal, Mike Huckabee, and Ann Coulter have all dismissed the notion that President Barack Obama is not a natural born citizen.
But the birther issue is not the only conspiracy theory Cox cited. She also noted WND's role in promoting the "deather" issue -- the discredited idea that health care reformcontains "death panels" -- and that "it's currently warning that the White House is spying on your Facebook page." Cooper doesn't mention these -- perhaps because his fellow NewsReal writers, far from dismissing it, haveendorsed the "death panel" attack.
Further, Cooper's claim that "'Mainstream,' 'moderate' conservatives have denounced the Birther Conspiracy" belies the fact that such denunciation has not been consistent. As Cooper Cox and Tanenhaus note:
TANENHAUS: Now what we see are supposed intellectuals on the right who are really mouthpieces of the party and don't differ with it in any way. So they give you not denunciations of these sorts of conspiracy theories but highbrow versions of them. In other words, they agree.
COX: Like in the National Review recently, actually, about this birther thing, they sort of very -- I think very proudly pat themselves on the back about running this editorial saying that they didn't buy into the birther movement. But then --
TANENHAUS: They pulled out some evidence.
COX: That's right.
TANENHAUS: Well, you know, the great historian --
COX: They pulled -- they had someone write a piece that said, "Well, I don't believe in the birther movement, but it raises some interesting questions."
Indeed, while NewsReal sister publication FrontPageMag did denounce the birthers back in April, it has not done so in any significant way since then -- and we don't see Cooper exactly rushing to do any substantive denunciation now.
David Weigel at the Washington Independent has a good article on WorldNetDaily's role in promulgating conspiracy theories and attacking the Obama administration, such has its campaign against Obama adviser Van Jones.
And MSNBC's "Rachel Maddow Show," with Ana Marie Cox as guest host, highlights WND's conspiracy theories as well.
The latest to board the crazy train that is the right-wingfreak-out over President Obama's upcoming speech to students:
A Sept. 4 Accuracy in Media column by Rita Kramer invokes the "Hitler Jugend," adding: "It's ridiculous to imagine Obama Youth, isn't it? Here? Once, in the beginning, it seemed ridiculous there too." Too bad for Kramer that Obama's not doing that.
Jeff Poor began his Sept. 3 MRC Culture & Media Institute column by invoking Obama's purported narcisissm: "His weekly address on health care Aug. 22 mentioned the word “I” eight times ... The week before when he talked about health care, he said “I” 12 times." Poor goes on to baselessly denounce Obama's speech as "indoctrination" and that it "should serve as a larger reminder that this kind of manipulation of young people occurs every day in America at the hands of the NEA." Poor adds: "Conservatives of all stripes – social conservatives, libertarians, Christian conservatives and more – all need to unify to stop government from manipulating our young people." If any manipulating is to be done, Poor seems to be saying, it's conservatives who should be doing it.
Meanwhile, Bob Unruh hides a partisan agenda in a Sept. 5 article highlighting the claims of the right-wing Liberty counsel and its founder, Mathew Staver, that Obama's speech is illegal. Unruh describes Staver as "A lawyer whose work has included myriad civil rights disputes and who has practice before the U.S. Supreme Court ," refusing to accurately identify Staver's right-wing, anti-Obama agenda.
WND Takes Credit for Van Jones' Scalp Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily wasted no time in taking credit for Van Jones quitting as President Obama 's green jobs czar, throwing up an article and column to that effect on a Saturday night of a holiday weekend to do so.
A Sept. 6 article credited Jones' resignation on "pressure mounted over his extremist history first exposed in WND." Joseph Farah's column was even less modest, carrying the headline "WND brings down the 'red czar'." He demanded: "Do you expect those so ferociously attacking WND as a 'conspiracy site' to recognize it was this news agency that first broke the Van Jones story in April and relentlessly pursued it for five months to the bitter end?"
But WND's reporting on Jones was conspiratorial and littered with guilt-by-association accusations, such as an Aug. 13 article claiming that Jones "served on the board of an environmental activist group at which a founder of the Weather Underground terrorist organization is a top director." This kind of reporting smacks of McCarthyism, pure and simple.
Plus, there's the fact that WND's reporting is sounreliableanddiscredited that the first reaction any sensible reader should have is to dismiss it out of hand. Farah has no one to blame for that but himself, due to his longtime pattern of putting his hatred of Democrats before the truth.
Farah seems to think that because WND's inflammatory actually had real-life consequences, WND is therefore not a "conspiracy site." He couldn't be further from the truth, given the fact that his website is claiming that Obama was to put his political enemies in concentration camps and kill Americans by forcibly giving them swine flu shots -- fearmongering that could have the effect of WND being responsible for the deaths of Americans.
It wouldn't be a Farah column if he wasn't self-aggrandizing and self-pitying. The former comes when he conflates the questionable ties of an obscure government official to a presidential sex scandal: "Once there was a story of a blue dress. Now there's the story of a red czar."
The latter comes when -- after denying that WND is a "conspiracy site" -- Farah asserts a conspiracy against WND:
I strongly suspect that the recent fusillade of attacks on WND – from the left and the right – over our unrelenting coverage of the missing birth certificate and other Obama papers was actually orchestrated as much by those who saw us closing in on Van Jones as over our pursuit of the eligibility story.
Of course, if you know me and WND, the relentless pursuit of the truth and our focus on all government waste, fraud, abuse and corruption won't end here. This is what we do. This is what we have always done. This is what we will continue to do no matter from which direction the brickbats fly.
But for WND, "unrelenting coverage" of the birth certificate equates to frequentlyfalse coverage. And as we have pointedout, that is not what WND has "always done," unless you append "when a Democrat is in the White House" to it.
NewsBusters' College Thesis Double Standard Topic: NewsBusters
NewsBusters has been fretting that too much attention is being paid to a Regent University master's thesis written by Virginia Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell, in which he supports numerous hard-right views, such as declaring working women and feminists "detrimental" to the family and the idea of married couples using contraception "illogical."
Scott Whitlock complained about the Washington Post's "frenzied attack" on McDonnell over the thesis, later expressing his dismay that the Post has done "nine articles in five days" on "a 20-year-old master’s thesis on the family structure." Noel Sheppard suggested that the Post is doing to McDonnell what it did to George Allen, the 2006 Virginia Republican senatorial candidate who got caught on tape calling a staffer for his Democratic opponent, Jim Webb, the offensive name "macaca," which Sheppard dismissed as "a word he uttered that likely nobody in the nation had ever heard of prior to that point." Sheppard doesn't explain how the relative obscurity of an insult somehow makes it less offensive.
But some college theses are more equal than others at NewsBusters. A June 18, 2008, post by Clay Waters appeared to complain that not enough attention was being given to Michelle Obama's undergraduate thesis, even though it is four years older than McDonnell's:
Has anyone except perhaps Hitchens and the Obama campaign read Michelle Obama's 225-page graduate thesis on race relations at Princeton in its entirety? The Times seems to be giving Michelle Obama the benefit of the doubt, even though her choice of topic bespeaks a bit of an obsession with race.
Funny, NewsBusters has yet to describe the subject of McDonnell's thesis as indicative of an "obsession" with feminists and fornicators.
In a Sept. 1 and Sept. 3 WorldNetDaily article on swine flu vaccines -- a subject about which WND is fearmongering -- Chelsea Schilling references a claim by "investigative journalist Wayne Madsen" that "even scientists who helped develop a vaccine for small pox are saying they will not take the vaccine and urging friends and family to refrain from taking the injection as well." But Madsen has a record of making dubious claims -- including claims about Barack Obama's birth certificate that apparently even WND didn't find credible enough to embrace.
Madsen has already made one discredited claim about swine flu: that it is the result of "gene splicing" and could not have occurred naturally. In fact, research has shown that the progenitor for the virus first surfaced in pig farming and processing operations in 1998.
WND reported in October 2008 that one claim in a lawsuit filed by Philip Berg over Obama's birth certificate was that "Wayne Madsen, Journalist with Online Journal as a contributing writer and published an article on June 9, 2008, stating that a research team went to Mombassa, Kenya, and located a Certificate Registering the birth of Barack Obama, Jr. at a Kenya Maternity Hospital, to his father, a Kenyan citizen and his mother, a U.S. citizen." But WND has not referenced the claim since, suggesting that it doesn't believe it to be true (despite WND's history of reporting false claims on the subject).
Madsen has also claimed that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is working with increasingly discredited birther lawyer Orly Taitz and conservative groups in the U.S. to use the birth certificate issue against Obama in retaliation for the Obama Administration's pressure on Israel to restrict expansion of Israeli settlements in the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem. You'd think that this would be a claim tailor-made for WND, since it merges two of its favorite obsessions, the birther stuff and Aaron Klein's efforts to portray Obama as pro-Muslim and anti-Israel (mostly through anonymoussources).
But WND has curiously kept its hands off that claim as well. Do they not believe it? Or are they a functioning part of Netanyahu's conspiracy?
Given that WND apparently can't trust Madsen's reporting on other subjects it's interested in, it's strange that Schilling has decided he is trustworthy on the subject of swine flu vaccines -- even though he has previously been discredited.
After initially claiming that he saw "nothing harmful " in what Obama was planning to say to students, Mangru quickly descends into that Obama might grade students on how they react to his speech, which then devolves into him irrationally asserting it to be fact:
What if these letters were required to be scanned into a central government database? What if the students were graded based on whether they helped Obama or not? Imagine if your child received a B instead of an A because he or she didn’t help out Obama enough.
In a couple of years, reelection will come up. Will students get better grades if they march the streets with Obama campaign signs? Or maybe that will just be an extra credit assignment.
The next question you might ask is, what did Obama have plan for our children in grades 7-12?
To think that in America, the land of the free, that we would force our children to be accountable to Obama, or force them to be inspired by Obama, and then have their grades decided by that.
Even worse, all of this indoctrination is being done with taxpayer money.
That’s right America. The tax dollars that we all pay are going for the production of this video, the streaming of this video to every classroom in America, all of the support materials on how the children should be accountable to Obama and be inspired by Obama, every single little thing… all funded with our taxpayer money.
Do you want to pay taxes to have your children forced to be accountable to Obama?
By the end, Mangru is in full rant mode:
But to go after the children, there is something wrong with that on a very fundamental level. To go after young and impressionable minds and tell them that they have to be inspired by our President and accountable to the President, that just crosses the line.
Children should be inspired by their parents and should be accountable to their parents, not to Big Government and its almighty leader President Barack Obama.
Perhaps Mangru needs to stick to financial analysis.
Examiner News Article Reflects Editorial Topic: Washington Examiner
The Washington Examiner unsurprisingly joins the right-wingfreak-out over President Obama's speech to students, using a Sept. 4 editorial to call it a "Dear Leader" speech and asserting, "providing mass life-counseling to school kids is not what presidents are elected to do."
Also unsurprisingly, the Examiner fails to mention that Republican presidents have engaged in the same kind of "mass life-counseling to school kids."
Perhaps unsurprising as well is that an Examiner news article directly reflects the editorial's agenda. The Sept. 4 article by Leah Fabel touts out one school district is refusing to show Obama's speech to its studentsand highlights how "conservatives blasted it as an attempt to indoctrinate young minds." Fabel gives space to the Cato Institute's Neal McCluskey to claim that the White House sent "detailed instructions to schools nationwide on how to glorify the president and the presidency, and push them to drive social change" but doesn't give similar space to anyone who sees no partisan, megalomanical agenda. Fabel also follows in the editorial's footsteps by failing to note that Republican presidents have also given speeches to students.
With such biased reporting, the Examiner runs the risk that its news content is portrayed as anti-liberal and pro-conservative as its news content.
Phil Elmore writes in his Sept. 3 WorldNetDaily column that President Obama is "brittle" and "oversensitive" and "cannot abide criticism," while his supporters regularly express "their deep and abiding outrage over those who've had the temerity, the unmitigated gall, to question the Obama administration's motley crew of radical left-wing advisers, czars, consultants, and bureaucrats." Elmore goes on to take a swing at us in the process:
A tiny blog called ConWebWatch even granted me their "Obama Derangement Award" for daring to question the president's desire to control your day-to-day communications and speech.
Elmore howled in a paranoid manner about "Glorious Leader Obama" endeavoring "to place his Orwellian visage on the telescreens of the nation's media outlets" so that "citizens are inundated with the inevitability of Obama's increasingly statist rule."
Elmore linked to WND's oft-repeatedlie that Obama wants to create an army of, in Elmore's words, "fascist brownshirts."
Elmore asserted that Obama "Twitters his daily enemies list through his Blackberry while waiting for his latest firearms prohibitions to be uploaded to iTunes as podcasts."
Elmore complained that Obama "appointed a chief information officer (a post that sounds disturbingly similar to some form of propaganda ministry, in title if not in fact)" -- apparently unaware that nearly every organization or business of significant size employs a chief information officer, which has nothing to do with propaganda.
There's a huge difference between "daring to question" Obama and making crazy, factually challenged statements about him. Too bad Elmore doesn't see the difference. Indeed, Elmore provides a link in his current column to radio host and conspiracytheorist Alex Jones, which serves as more evidence of Elmore's own unhinged approach.
Elmore seems to be unaware that the right to criticize and question others sets in motion the right of others to criticize and question you. And if you're making false claims and using unhinged rhetoric, expect to be criticized for it.
That's our job. If Elmore can dish it out, he should be able to take it.
WND Misleads on White House Archiving Topic: WorldNetDaily
A Sept. 2 WorldNetDaily article by Chelsea Schilling falsely portrays the scope of archiving the Obama White House plans to do of archiving its presence on social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace.
Schilling uncritically repeats claims by the National Legal and Policy Center that the White House "is hiring a contractor to harvest information about Americans from its pages on social networking websites such as Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr."
In fact, as the right-wing Hot Air has detailed, the NLPCs claims are faulty:
The Presidential Records Act (PRA) essentially requires each administration to keep every pixel and keystroke ever published for later review by Congress or investigators, in case illegal activity takes place. We have seen this invoked ex post facto to the Clinton and Bush administrations, in the latter over e-mails sent and received outside the White House mail system. At that time, legal experts and investigators insisted that everything produced by an administration for anything remotely concerning official business had to be archived within the EOP.
A more careful reading of this RFP shows that to be the project. The contract directs the contractor to archive the “information posted on publicly-accessible web sites where the EOP maintains a presence“, including social networking sites like MySpace, Twitter, and so on. It doesn’t call for everything on those networks to be archived, but only “information posted by non-EOP persons on publicly-accessible web sites where the EOP maintains a presence[,] both comments posted on pages created by EOP and messages sent to EOP accounts on those web sites.” In other words, the archiving will include interaction on EOP websites and pages, but not anything else.
The headline of Schilling's article -- "On Facebook, MySpace? Obama's got your e-mail; White House spammer-in-chief wants contractor to track critics" -- manages not only to falsely suggest that the White House wants to collect information about everyone on those sites, it falsely suggests that the White House is specifically targeting its critics, something for which there is absoulutely no evidence.
A Sept. 4 WND article by Aaron Klein repeats the NLPC's faulty analysis, again falsely suggesting that the White House wants to gather information on all users, not just interactions with White House pages on those sites.
NewsReal joins the right-wing freak-out over a speech by President Obama to schoolchildren with a Sept. 3 post by Joseph Klein:
The Obama forces are getting desperate. They are using Saul Alinsky’s tactics for radicals against sincere Americans concerned with the direction in which Obama is taking the country.
This is right out of Alinsky Rules Eight and Twelve: “Attack, attack, attack from all sides, never giving the reeling organization a chance to rest, regroup, recover and re-strategize…Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions.”
The President is also hoping to influence voters through their children. This is a version of Alinsky’s Rule Eight – “As the opposition masters one approach, hit them from the flank with something new.” The children are Obama’s new flank, as he delivers a broadcast live via the White House’s Web site to the nation’s school children just a day before his address to Congress.
Schools are being strongly encouraged to have their students watch the speech and have been given training materials to use with the kids as a follow-up. Students will be asked to ponder such questions as: “What specific job is he asking me to do? Is he asking anything of anyone else? Teachers? Principals? Parents? The American people?”
With their parents watching the President’s prime time speech on health care the following night, will it be a mere coincidence if their kids start bugging them about what they plan to do to help the President?
It looks like Obama is adding another rule to the Alinsky set: ”Exploit the children to sell your arguments.”
Before Klein goes off the deep end with this, he might want to see what his boss, David Horowitz, is up to:
Americans - your friends and neighbors - do not fully realize the radical changes Barack Obama and the socialists in Congress are foisting upon our way of life!
But you do. And I do as well. Today the Obamaites, George Soros, Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, Rahm Emanuel, Harry Reid - the small but powerful group of left-wing radicals who are at the controls of this transformation are all disciples of the 1960s radical Saul Alinsky. Alinsky's book, Rules for Radicals, was the Little Red Book for the college radicals of the 1960s. I know, I was one of them.
I am writing a new booklet that I must blanket on college campuses as the new school year starts. This booklet - "Alinsky's Rules for Obama's Radicalism" - paints a clear picture of Barack Obama's agenda for our nation. And we have prepared an advertisement to run in papers around the country calling on Americans to derail this train before it's too late.
I urgently need your support. Will you help the Freedom Center with a contribution of $25, $50 or $100 would help lift us out of our budget emergency; $1,000 would be a terrific aid to getting our ads in newspapers and my new booklet published.
So, Horowitz is using Alinskyite tactics to accuse Obama of ... using Alinskyite tactics. And is writing "a new booklet" that he "must blanket on college campuses" -- that is, in Klein's words, exploit the children -- to do so.
Horowitz needs to explain why, if Alinsky's tactics are so horrible, he's using them too.
Taitz Still Filing Frivolous Lawsuits; WND Still Silent Topic: WorldNetDaily
Orly Taitz apparently remains persona non grata at WorldNetDaily -- it still hasn't reported on her activities since she promoted the discredited "Kenyan birth certificate" that WND touted without bothering to verify its authenticity beforehand. Wonder if WND will ever have the guts to tell its readers why it has decided to ignore Taitz, despite their longtime symbiotic relationship.
Too bad, because Taitz has filed a new lawsuit on behalf of another soldier who refuses to fulfill her military obligations because of purported "irreparable injury due to forced and involuntary compliance with unlawful and/or unconstitutionally rendered orders" because Obama's citizenship hasn't been verified to her satisfaction.
The filing is quite entertaining -- not the least of which is the reference to "the monstrosity of being compelled to wage war under an illegal dictator compared by many and actually comparable to Adolph Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Mao Tse-Tung, Idi Amin, and Francois and Jean-Claude Duvalier" -- but this passage caught our eye:
Plaintiff submits that the reservations under which she would be forced to act if she were forced and required against her will to obey the orders for her to serve this President are neither conjectural nor speculative nor merely based on opinion or doubt.
Rather the vast preponderance of the credible evidence, all of the clear and convincing evidence, and some facts indicate beyond reasonable doubt that the President is an alien, possibly even an unnaturalized or even an unadmitted illegal alien (admitted just a few days ago, by United States Representative Diane Watson of California’s 33rd Congressional District to have been born in Kenya), without so much as lawful residency in the United States. Some of the relevant evidence is shown in Exhibit B (Affidavit of Neal Sankey with attachments) and Exhibit B (August 1, 2009 released copy of Kenya Birth Certificate).
Yes, Taitz is submitting as evidence the discredited "Kenyan birth certificate," even though her former fawning admirers at WND have discredited it.
Also note that Taitz is claiming that Obama is "an unnaturalized or even an unadmitted illegal alien" based on a statement by Rep. Watson (which Taitz does not detail further). What Taitz is apparently referring to is this statement by Watson: "People look at the United States as a country that has changed it's way and elected someone from Kenya and Kansas, I'll put it like that."
Which, of course, is evidence of exactly nothing. It's a statement about diversity, not a legally admissible claim about Obama's parentage.
WND has taken the occasional stride in debunking the most obviously false birth certificate-related claims -- for instance, a Sept. 2 article by Jerome Corsi arguing that a "Kenyan birth certificate" being offered for sale on eBay is a forgery. Why won't WND demonstrate that it truly is, in Joseph Farah's words, "beholden only to the truth" by telling the truth about Orly Taitz instead of silently cutting ties?
Cashill Still Peddling Killer's Sob Story Topic: WorldNetDaily
Jack Cashill's Sept. 3 WorldNetDaily column is, in most part, a letter from current Cashill cause celebre Steven Nary, who's serving a prison sentence for killing a man in 1996. Cashill declared that Nary "unintentionally killed" man.
Yeah, choking a guy for "not more than five minutes" was totally unintentional. Lying to the police was apparently unintentional too.
Erik Rush: Obama Just Like O.J. Simpson Topic: WorldNetDaily
What do you do for an encore after you've called the attorney general a piece of shit and the president a prison rapist? If you're Erik Rush, you liken the president to a murderer. From Rush's Sept. 3 WorldNetDaily column:
Football legend and actor O.J. Simpson was a truly beloved American icon. The quintessential American success story, he projected an amicable, wholesome, larger-than-life figure. His triumphs were even more noteworthy because he was a black man who had risen to fame and fortune during the Civil Rights Movement era.
In 1995, Simpson was put on trial for the murders of Nicole Brown (his second ex-wife) and a male friend. As a result, authorities and the press were able to delve into his affairs as no one had previously done. Only then did Americans learn that he was a beast and a brute, an obsessively controlling, chronic wife beater, emotional abuser and philanderer. In short, he was a pathological narcissist for whom whimsy, pleasure and image were paramount. Worse, his behavior had been validated and reinforced by the fact that he had been catered to by those around him, personally and professionally, for decades. After beating the murder rap, Simpson continued to manipulate and bully those around him. Twelve years later, his capricious conduct earned him a lengthy prison sentence for numerous firearms charges, robbery, burglary, assault and kidnapping.
Many Americans, and even a few trained in behavioral science, have identified President Obama as a deeply pathological narcissist. He has also managed to masterfully control his environment. While his detractors contend that his façade has been maintained by a complicit press, this may only be partially true. According to experts, the profoundly narcissistic frequently astonish casual observers when the extent of control they have been able to maintain over their environment (primarily, people close to them) is finally revealed.
NewsBusters Posts Misleading Pat Boone Column Topic: NewsBusters
Is Pat Boone a NewsBuster now? It appears so -- he has his own account and everything.
Unfortunately, Boone's first post for NewsBusters is a column from June that, as we detailed at the time, contains several quotes of President Obama that were either taken out of context to distort their meaning or are paraphrases of Obama (which are also taken out of context), not direct quotes as Boone portrays them.
Is a column full of false and misleading quotes really what NewsBusters wants to publish, even if it's from Pat Boone?