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Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Why Does WND Care That Homeschoolers Allegedly Being Denied Flu Vaccine?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily has long fearmongered about flu vaccines. So why does it care that homeschooled students are allegedly being denied a vaccine?

A Nov. 13 WND article uncritically rewrites a press release by the Home School Legal Defense Association that officials in "two locations in Virginia" -- not specifically identified beyond their general location in the state, even though the HSLDA identifies one of the communities involved -- allegedly denied homeschooled children flu vaccines in line with being "target group identified by the federal government." WND made no apparent attempt to contact Virginia health officials, or any other officials the HSLDA claims it contacted, to corroborate the HSLDA story.

Supporting vaccinations is not only contradictory to previous WND policy, it's apparently out of line for the HSLDA as well, as indicated by the statement at the end of its press release: "Many parents have good reasons to not vaccinate their children. But for those who want it, they can now expect their children, as members of a target group, to have equitable access when the vaccine is available at public health departments." Indeed, HSLDA's Congressional Action Program lists as part of its "impressive track record" lobbying for a 1993 "Defeat of Mandatory National Vaccination Initiative."

But WND's flip on the issue is more interesting -- maybe it understands that vaccines do, in fact, save lives. But this kind of common sense is unusual for WND. Look for a big scary article in the near fugure to make up for it.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:51 PM EST
NewsReal Ignores How Stewart Busted Fox News
Topic: Horowitz

A Nov. 16 NewsReal post by Paul Cooper bashes outgoing White House communications director for noting that "Jon Stewart of the Daily Show on Comedy Central…That’s where you are getting fact-checking, investigative journalism these days," asserting that this statement means "Dunn actually believes The Daily Show is more legitimate journalism than FoxNews." Curiously absent from Cooper's post is any mention of the incident that prompted Dunn to make that claim.

From the Bloomberg interview of Dunn that Cooper references:

DUNN: I'll give you one fact -- actually fun fact from this week, is that the, you know, a opinion show on a certain news network was using edited footage to make it appear that a rally last week in political opposition to the president was much larger than it appeared. Some of you may have heard about this, that the people who went in and did the fact-checking on that and actually exposed this, this kind of spliced, edited video that was designed to make it appear that more people oppose the president than really do, the people who exposed this -- Jon Stewart on "The Daily Show" on Comedy Central, OK? Well, that's where you are getting, you know, fact-checking, investigative journalism these days, folks.

It is a different media environment. And the reality is that, you know, let's face it,  we're under no illusions about what the political agenda of certain news networks are.

Cooper also avoids repeating more inconvenient criticism of Fox, stating that Dunn "defends" MSNBC in the interview without noting that Dunn also pointed out that Fox News contributor Karl Rove "declared war on [NBC] during the previous administration, and you may recall that Fox actually applauded Karl for doing that."


Posted by Terry K. at 1:28 PM EST
Morris Falsely Claims Obama Opposes Fort Hood Probe
Topic: Newsmax

In a Nov. 16 Newsmax column -- also published at FrontPageMag -- Dick Morris falsely claims that "President Obama told the media in Alaska that he opposes a congressional investigation into the Fort Hood massacre."

In fact, Obama has said there "should" be a congressional investigation, but has also noted that he has ordered a military and intelligence investigation of the massacre and that "all of us should resist the temptation to turn this tragic event into the political theater that sometimes dominates the discussion here in Washington."


Posted by Terry K. at 11:54 AM EST
WND Highlights Gay Papers' Closing, Silent on Wash. Times Turmoil
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A Nov. 16 WorldNetDaily article highlights the closing of Windows Media, publisher of several "homosexual newspapers," leading to a discussion of how newspapers are "struggling to retain readership and advertising returns lost to Internet-based publications."

While WND has devoted an article to publications its readership would not be caught dead in close proximity of a copy of -- remember its anti-gay agenda -- WND has been essentially silent on the turmoil at what is arguably the most prominent conservative paper in America, the Washington Times.

As Talking Points Memo has detailed, a family feud among the heirs of Rev. Sun Myung Moon, whose Unification Church owns the paper, led to the removal of three top executives at the paper and the resignation of editor John Solomon.

A search of WND's archives shows no original articles on the Times's curent situation, even though more of its readers would be much more interested in it than the fate of a group of "homosexual newspapers." The archive does include a link to a Nov. 11 TPM article examining whether the turmoil would result in the Times going out of business.

WND has had a previous business relationship with the Times and related publications, as we've detailed, including a content-sharing agreement with now-defunct newsmagazine Insight and the appearance of Joseph Farah's column in the Times' weekly national edition. WND columnist Les Kinsolving even defended the paper by asserting "the fact that the Washington Times was founded by ex-convict and cult leader Sun Myung Moon should not detract from the fact that this daily newspaper has become one of this nation's most influential, and on Capitol Hill, most widely read daily newspapers."

Farah did at one point work up the courage to bite the hand that feeds him by criticizing Moon's "coronation ceremony" in a Senate office building, but that enmity quickly dissapated as WND penned a fawning tribute to the Times on its 25th anniversary.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:20 AM EST
Incoherent Analysis from Dick Morris
Topic: Newsmax

Dick Morris writes in his Nov. 14 Newsmax column:

President Barack Obama's decision to put Khalid Sheikh Mohammed on trial in New York City along with four others accused of helping destroy the World Trade Center and attack the Pentagon on 9/11 paints a bulls-eye for terrorists right on New York City, their favorite target. Now Obama has identified where the terrorists should focus their energies — on New York City.

But, as Jamison Foser points out, if New York is already the terrorists' "favorite target," why do they need a bulls-eye painted on it?

Responding to Morris' statement that "President Obama is affording the terrorists exactly what they wanted in the first place -- a global stage right near New York's theater district," Foser adds: "Really? The terrorists were that concerned about their proximity to New York's theater district?"


Posted by Terry K. at 1:04 AM EST
Monday, November 16, 2009
Newsmax Falsely Claims No President Had Bowed to Foreign Leader Before Obama
Topic: Newsmax

A Nov. 15 Newsmax article by Daniel Ruddy asserts that "No president of the United States in the more than 230 years since the country was founded in 1776 had ever bowed to a member of royalty. That was until Barack Obama’s presidency." The headline of Ruddy's article went further "No American President Ever Bowed to a Foreign Leader — Until Now."

Both claims are wrong.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:20 PM EST
Updated: Monday, November 16, 2009 2:35 PM EST
NewsReal Tries to Change the Subject on Carrie Prejean
Topic: Horowitz

Ben Johnson is furiously trying to spin bad news about Carrie Prejean.

A Nov. 12 NewsReal post tries to change the subject away from news about a solo sex tape Prejean made that allegedly, when California pageant officials informed Prejean about their knowledge of itsexistence, caused Prejean to quickly settle her lawsuit against them without receiving the million dollars in damages she sought. Johnson attempted to engage in speculation, baselessly suggesting that pageant officials were distributing a "underage pornographic video to smear Carrie Prejean."

First, Johnson offers no evidence that pageant officials were distributing the video. Second, Prejean may not have been underage at the time: TMZ reports that the ex-boyfriend to whom Prejean originally sent the video claims she was 20 at the time, not 17 as she claimed.

Johnson engages in more subject-changing in another Nov. 12 NewsReal post:

Some readers have asked if — with the release of topless photos and now a solo sex tape — conservatives, or Christians, or conservative Christians, should consider former Miss California Carrie Prejean a role model. The question strikes me as off-base, a hybrid of the cult of hero worship and the 24/7 media’s information overload.

The underlying issue in the Prejean case is not — or at least, it has never been for me — one of the pageant (near-)winner’s character or admirability. It’s a simple matter of the Left’s aggressive politicization of every aspect of life, including beauty pageants and football.

[...]

Does Carrie Prejean deserve such a status? The deeper question is: Who cares? The existence of topless photos, a solo sex tape, or a secret home altar to Baal are irrelevant to Prejean’s underlying story: as a contestant in a beauty contest, she was sabotaged by a bigoted hysteric and almost certainly lost the national crown on the basis of politics. From that moment, pageant officials seemed to try to find every conceivable way to revoke her Miss California title. Now, a string of sexually explicit photos and a video have hit the news — all because she gave an apologetic endorsement of a 5,000-year-old institution that happens to be the bedrock of civilization.

The issue is not whether Carrie Prejean is a model Christian, conservative role model, or a good spokesmodel. The issue is the unconscionable behavior of pageant officials and the media, and the Left’s insatiable desire to feast on the blood of its enemies. 

[...]

The fact that Prejean made a solo sex tape puts her in the company of approximately 100 percent of her fellow models. 

That strong breeze you feel is merely Johnson desperately trying to spin away the right-wing fetish for Prejean.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:17 PM EST
New Article -- Ellis Washington: Flamboyantly Wrong
Topic: WorldNetDaily
The WorldNetDaily columnist keeps up his record of overheated literary allusions, insults of President Obama, and general inability to get stuff correct. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 11:20 AM EST
Aaron Klein Still Smearing Chas Freeman
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Chas Freeman withdrew his nomination to serve on the National Intelligence Council months ago, yet Aaron Klein can't stop smearing him.

Klein's Nov. 15 WorldNetDaily article repeats the false suggestion that Freeman is linked to Osama bin Laden because "he has financial ties to the infamous bin Laden family," failing to note that, as we have detailed, Osama bin Laden is not linked to the family business interests and that the bin Laden family member heading those business interests renounced Osama in 1994.

Klein also repeated a claim that "Freeman once peddled a Saudi-funded book to U.S. public schools that falsely claims Muslims inhabited North America far before European explorers." But as we noted, all Klein has offered in the way of evidence is that the organization Fredman heads, the Middle East Policy Council, once promoted it -- not Freeman personally, as he claims.

The ostensible news peg for Klein's article (read: excuse to rehash false smears) is that Freeman said in a recent speech that "Israel has long assassinated peace-loving Palestinian leaders." Klein offers no evidence to contradict Freeman. Klein also acquiesces to the Israeli government line by referring to Israel's "alleged nuclear weapons program," even though its existence is not in dispute, Israel's refusal to confirm it notwithstanding.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:19 AM EST
Farah Blames WND Readers For Not Giving Him Money to Promote Birther Issue
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah has decided that he is not to blame for waning interest in WorldNetDaily's birther attacks. No, he writes in his Nov. 14 column, it's WND readers who are to blame:

And, in fact, we are erecting new billboards. The latest one went up this week in Pennsylvania.

Why not more?

I'll tell you why.

Because your enthusiasm has evidently waned. I'm afraid I have to pass the buck to you.

  • Petition signups are stagnant. We've been flirting with 500,000 for weeks – even months. Do you not know anyone who should have signed that petition by now? It's imperative that you help us get the word out. It's free. It's just an expression of the fact that you believe this is an important issue. I believe millions – tens of millions – agree with the sentiment. Help me find them. Make this petition go viral.
  • Contributions to the billboard campaign are down. Right now, every new billboard WND erects is costing us money. There are no donations to pay for new billboards or even to maintain the old ones. If you want to see an expansion of this very effective campaign, one that completely put this issue of eligibility on the map, you've got to help me spread the word.
  • Sales of our documentary, "A Question of Eligibility," the primer for understanding this issue, are down significantly. If you want to introduce someone to this topic, there is no better way than to lend them a copy. Again, if this is an important issue to you, help us get the word out.

Do you get the picture?

It's time to step up the pressure, not back off.

I can't carry this burden alone.

Unmentioned, of course, is the fact that Farah and WND have largely undermined their own case through lies and dishonesty:

  • WND has repeatedly made false and misleading claims on the issue.
  • "A Question of Eligibility" is similarly laden with them, and is little more than an overheated conspiratorial joke. Farah seems not to have considered that that's why it's not selling.
  • WND refuses to honestly report on the increasingly questionable legal work of birther lawyer Orly Taitz.
  • Farah himself admits he cares more about kicking Obama out of office than acting like a responsible journalist.

And in the spirit of acting like an activist instead of journalist, Farah tries to shake down his readers:

Get with the program.

I know times are tough.

I know few of us have any extra spending cash.

Many of us are without jobs, thanks to the Obamaconomy.

Yet, everyone can sign an electronic petition. It doesn't cost a thing.

Most people can contribute $5 to a worthwhile campaign, too. That's all I'm asking. Do what you can. Can you help me spread the word by sending this column around to all your friends?

Don't concede the presidency to Obama without making him prove his eligibility. It would be a terrible precedent. And it would be a disaster for the country. One year has been bad enough. Can you imagine four or more?

But isn't WND a profitable business operation? Why should Farah dun his readers for money when he should be putting his (and WND's) money where his mouth is? 


Posted by Terry K. at 1:07 AM EST
WND Ignores Death Threats By WND Readers
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A Nov. 9 WorldNetDaily article by Bob Unruh takes very seriously a comment in a thread on a gay blog claiming that "We will have gay and lesbian people strapping bombs to their chests and blowing up churches" because of right-wing Christian opposition to gay marriage. Unruh quotes anti-gay activists Peter LaBarbera and Matt Barber pontificating about the nature of the alleged threat and their claims to have "notified authorities of the threats."

Unruh did not mention death threats made by WorldNetDaily readers against Barack Obama in WND's own threads. As we detailed, WND readers made the following comments in a July 2008 thread for its daily poll:

  • "Well the OsamaBama logo looks a lot like a stylized target. Hopefully someone will interpret it as one soon."
  • "I say if the plane does not have a countries identification marking on it, consider it a terriorest aircraft and have a f-16 shoot that sucker down. If we let this slid, the terriorests will have a upper handd, so we cannot tell who is flying that plane, and it should be shot down before it reaches the U.S, coast line."

It is not known if WND, LaBarbera or Barber notified authorites about these threats. They do appear to have been deleted from the thread.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:09 AM EST
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Washington Wrong on 'Gorelick Wall'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Ellis Washington writes in his Nov. 14 WorldNetDaily column:

The second policy America has launched against itself is the infamous "Gorelick Wall." What is the Gorelick Wall? It is a policy developed by Clinton appointee and former Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick, who after the first terrorist bombings of the World Trade Center of Feb. 26, 1993, was placed as the head of a blue-ribbon commission to find the causes in our internal security that allowed these bombings to occur.

In March 1995, Gorelick cowrote a radical and treasonous memo that, in the words of Attorney General John Ashcroft, goes "beyond what is legally required ... [to] prevent any risk of creating an unwarranted appearance that FISA [the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] is being used to avoid procedural safeguards which would apply in a criminal investigation."

What does this mean? It means that the FBI cannot share intelligence with the CIA, the NSA, the DEA, ATF, the military or any other security agency in America. It is a unilateral, self-binding policy reminiscent of the proverbial saying, the right hand doesn't know what the left hand is doing.

Washington is wrong. As we've repeatedly pointed out, Gorelick didn't create the so-called "wall"; it was created in 1978. Her 1995 memo merely detailed procedures that she said permitted a freer exchange of information between criminal and counterterror investigators than had been allowed under the Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations. Additionally, she said, then-attorney general John Ashcroft's own deputy attorney formally reaffirmed the 1995 guidelines just a month before 9/11.

Further, Gorelick's memo applied only to the FBI and the Justice Department, not military and defense operations, so it had no bearing on whether or not information about alleged Fort Hood shooter Nadal Malik Hasan was shared between them, as Washington suggests.

Oddly, despite his rant, Washington acknowledges some of this; he repeats Sen. Slade Gorton's statement that "Nothing Jamie Gorelick wrote had the slightest impact on the Department of Defense or its willingness or ability to share intelligence information with other intelligence agencies," then adds that "I realize that we can't put all the blame on poor Ms. Gorelick," going on to attack "the treasonous 'Church Committee' of Sen. Frank Church, D-Idaho, in 1975. Church was one of the many enemies within that virtually destroyed the CIA, FBI and other intelligence agencies under the pretext of protecting Americans from being spied on, forcing the agencies to comply with the restrictive strictures of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978. Thanks, President Carter!"

The Church Committee was an attempt to rein in the excesses of the FBI and CIA, such as trying to assassinate foreign leaders and rifling through people's mail without a warrant.

But Washington then flip-flops again, stating: "I lay Maj. Hasan's murderous treachery directly at the feet of the Church Committee, for leading to FISA in 1978, the 1995 Gorelick Wall memo and, finally, to the 'manmade disaster' policies of Obama in 2009." He curiously hold Ashcroft harmless, even though his office reaffirmed Gorelick's guidelines a month before 9/11.

He concludes: "To paraphrase President Ronald Reagan's 1987 speech at Berlin, 'Mr. Obama tear down this Gorelick Wall!'"

This is falsehood devolving into incoherence. Washington, despite attacking the "Gorelick Wall," concedes that she didn't create it and that it has nothing whatsoever to do with Hasan. And Washington's demand that Obama "tear down this Gorelick Wall!" is nonsensical because it is already torn down; the Patriot Act effectively removed it.

But then, you're already used to Washington's incoherence.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:46 AM EST
Updated: Sunday, November 15, 2009 10:48 AM EST
Note to NewsReal:
Topic: Horowitz

If you're going to make fun of someone for having typos in his blog post, you probably should not have, on the day before you engaged in such fun-making, published a blog post with this headline:

 

 

 

That is all.

Hugs,

ConWebWatch


Posted by Terry K. at 12:03 AM EST
Saturday, November 14, 2009
CNS Again Baselessly Asserts 'Amnesty'
Topic: CNSNews.com

A Nov. 13 CNSNews.com article by Penny Starr carries the headline, "Napolitano Announces Obama Administration Plan to Give Amnesty to Illegal Aliens." But not only does the article fail to define "amnesty" -- as CNS frequently fails to do -- the word "amnesty" appears nowhere in the article.

Starr goes on to selectively quote Napolitano in her first paragraph, stating that the Obama administration favors a "fair pathway to earned legal status." This is immediately followed by Napolitano's full quote: "A tough and fair pathway to earned legal status will mandate that illegal immigrants meet a number of requirements—including registering, paying a fine, passing a criminal background check, fully paying all taxes and learning English." As noted above, no explanation is given as to how this could be considered "amnesty."


Posted by Terry K. at 10:44 AM EST
Arrest of Jewish Terrorist Contradicts Klein's Reporting
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In October 2008, a WorldNetDaily article by Aaron Klein featured an accusation by "prominent leader of the West Bank's Jewish communities" Daniela Weiss that the Israel Defense Force and Shin Bet Security Services "orchestrat[ed] a recent attack on an extreme leftist Israeli professor and then using the attack to demonize West Bank Jews ahead of an expected evacuation of the territory." The incident was a pipe bomb that exploded outside the house of Israeli professor Zeev Sternhell, whom Klein described as "a prominent proponent of expelling Jews from the West Bank."

Well, Klein and Weiss appear to have been proven wrong. Ynet News reports on the arrest of Yaakov (Jack) Teitel, a resident of a West Bank settlement, for numerous acts of terrorism, including the murder ot two Palestinians and, yes, the pipe bomb outside Sternhell's home.

Klein has long been protective of Jewish settlers in the West Bank -- as we noted, Klein in that October 2008 article failed to report that Weiss, at the same time she was making apparently false accusations against the Israeli government, had just been charged with assaulting a police officer and resisting arrestby trying to interfere with the arrest of a group of Jews suspected of setting fire to an Arab olive grove.

Klein has also condoned acts of violence by Jews; most notoriously, he described an AWOL Israeli solider who had shot and killed four people on a bus in Gaza has having been "murdered" by a "mob of Palestinians" who witnessed the shooting. Klein never described the soldier's victims as having been "murdered."

Klein has further hidden the extremist, violent backgrounds of the right-wing Israeli activists he writes about.

Klein has yet to report on Teitel's arrest, even though the story directly contradicts his previous reporting. It seems Klein ought to, at the very least, issue an update or correction of his original article.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:10 AM EST

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