NewsBusters' Double Standard on Absurdity Topic: NewsBusters
NewsBusters and its Media Research Center parent were all to eager to accept Rush Limbaugh's so-called apology for his three-day denigration of Sandra Fluke by buying his explanation that he was just "illustrat[ing] the absurd with absurdity." The MRC's Brent Baker dismissed Limbaugh's misogyny as nothing more than "a bit of humor."
In an April 17 NewsBusters post, Josh St. Louis huffs that "The Daily Show's" Jon Stewart was being "snarky" in "mocking Fox News for dismissing the Democratic/MSNBC 'war on women' meme," but that he "desecrate[d]" Christianity by saying, after noting that Fox has embraced other wars like the "war on Christmas": "What can women do to generate the same sense of outrage from Fox as the removal of decorative slightly poisonous holiday plants? Perhaps they could play into the theme? Maybe women could protect their reproductive organs from unwanted medical intrusions with vagina mangers."
What? Stewart doesn't get the same credit for absurdity Limbaugh gets?
Nope -- St. Louis grouses, "Makes you wonder if Jon Stewart would make the same sort of disgusting 'jokes' about Judaism or Islam?"
Apparently, only right-wing radio hosts are allowed to be absurd.
Another WND Birther Petition, More Lack of Transparency Topic: WorldNetDaily
Starting in 2008, WorldNetDaily heavily promoted a petition "demanding that the constitutional eligibility requirement be taken seriously and that any and all controlling legal authorities in this matter examine the complete birth certificate of Barack Obama, including the actual city and hospital of birth, and make that document available to the American people for inspection." But as we documented, the petition itself lacked the transparency WND was demanding from Obama, with no independent way to verify the number of signatures WND claimed or any apparent mechanism to weed out fake names. Indeed, as one enterprising blogger discovered, it was all too easy to inflate the number of signatures by signing up under multiple names and a fake email address -- 216 at last count.
Now, WND is back at it again, with a new petition demanding that "the 112th Congress immediately undertake a full and impartial investigation into the constitutional eligibility of Barack Hussein Obama to serve as president of the United States." And once again, WND is promoting the heck out of it, with the most recent article touting how the petition "is nearing 40,000 names."
Alas, WND is once again refusing to be transparent about the process, providing no mechanism for independently checking the veracity and number of signatures -- an ironic bit of obfuscation in a petition demanding transparency. This means WND's new petition will be as open to fraud as the old one.
Why, it's almost as if WND is cynically creating these petitions to build up its mailing list or something -- after all, an email address is one of the required entry fields on the petition.
NewsBusters Unhappy A Manufactured Controversy Is Identified As Such Topic: NewsBusters
Mark Finkelstein complains in an April 13 NewsBusters post that "Chuck Todd used variations on the phrase 'manufactured controversy' no fewer than eight times in dismissing the controversy around [Hilary] Rosen's 'Ann Romney never worked a day in her life' remarks," adding that Todd was "doing work the White House will certainly savor."
Finkelstein didn't dispute the accuracy of Todd's statement, though.
Kyle Drennen echoes Finkelstein's complaint in an April 13 MRC item. Again, like Finkelstein, Drennen did not dispure the accuracy of Todd's statement.
Which seems to make this yet another example of the Media Research Center attacking people in the media for telling the truth.
CNS' Jeffrey Offended by Obama's Joke Topic: CNSNews.com
We hate to imagine the spittle-flecked rants that go on inside Terry Jeffrey's office every time President Obama says something he doesn't like -- which, judging by the vitriolic obsession with which Jeffrey writes about him, is apparently quite often.
So, what has set off Jeffrey this time? A little joke Obama told.
Just two days after President Barack Obama gave a sharply edged response to news anchor Larry Conners of KMOV in St. Louis after Conners had asked the president about Americans who “get frustrated and even angered when they see the first family jetting around [to] different vacations and so forth,” Obama told a panel at the Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia that part of his job there was to scout out locations for a future vacation with First Lady Michelle Obama.
That's right -- Jefrrey devoted an entire article to grousing about this little joke Obama told. He's so livid that he can't even identify Obama's remark as a joke -- he's treating it as a totally serious statement, even though Obama got laughs and applause when he said it.
Jeffrey is so humorless that he finds an innocuous joke offensive. That's how much he utterly despises Obama.
So, can we stop pretending now that CNS under Jeffrey is a "news" organization?
Why Didn't Kessler Give Secret Service Scandal Scoop To Newsmax? Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax's Ronald Kessler is getting credit for breaking the story about allegations that Secret Service agents hired prostitutes while accompanying the president on his trip to Colombia.
But Kessler didn't break that story at Newsmax. He let the Washington Post have it.
The initial Post article on the scandal states that the paper "was alerted to the investigation by Ronald Kessler, a former Post reporter and author of several nonfiction books." Kessler has given only a couple of follow-upstories to his employer.
Why would Kessler give a huge story to another news outlet, not the one that employs him? Giving away a story to a competitor is highly unusual.
Perhaps Kessler didn't think that Newsmax would give the story the proper exposure, given that most people likely see it as a partisan website and not a genuine news organization.
That exposure by giving the story to the Post, though, would also give Kessler a platform to peddle his book on the Secret Service -- as well as his agenda, which includes highlighting allegations of lax security and demanding the firing of Secret Service director Mark Sullivan.
One had to assume that Newsmax had to sign off on Kessler giving this huge story away to another news organization, given that Kessler has promoted follow-ups on the website. Still, it's surprising that Newsmax would do so, since Kessler's media appearances have downplayed the fact that he works for Newsmax -- meaning that it's not benefiting from its employee's high media profile.
WND Columnists Defend John Derbyshire Over Racist Screed Topic: WorldNetDaily
John Derbyshire's racially charged screed -- in which he advised that parents tell their children to be wary of black people -- which got him fired from National Review even though said screed appeared in a different publication -- has been endorsed, implicitly if not explicitly, by two WorldNetDaily columnists.
In an April 12 column, Ilana Mercer proclaimed Derbyshire an "iconoclast" and proudly noted that he contribnuted a blurb for one of her books. Mercer then runs to Derbyshire's defense:
Tons of pixels have since been spilt in response to Derbyshire’s article and subsequent dismissal. The dimwitted discourse reflects a polemical landscape from which the Derbs of this world have been uprooted. None of John’s critics can write or reason as he does. None has his “range of historical and literary allusion,” as Mark Steyn observed. John Derbyshire’s is pellucid prose at its best.
A staff writer at The Atlantic epitomizes this fluffy, unfocused, Meghan McCain-like waffle (punctuated with a lot of, “I feel”) that lands you a job at a top publication. “As someone who places a high value on both robust public discourse and the fact that racism is now taboo,” he whimpered, “I won’t even try to mediate between these two except to say that … Derbyshire’s piece was wrongheaded.”
That’s it? A feeble, frightened assertion is a substitute for an argument?
Such cyber-ejaculate gushed from similar androgynous androids, possessors of the Y chromosome.
For my part, I cop to Western man’s individualist disdain – could it be his weakness? – for race as an organizing principle. For me, the road to freedom lies in beating back the state, so that individuals may regain freedom of association, dominion over property, the absolute right of self-defense; the right to hire, fire and, generally, associate at will.
Vox Day devoted his April 15 column to an interview with Derbyshhire, in which Day notes: "For the most part, there’s been a tremendous amount of support for you across the right blogosphere, whereas there hasn’t been much defense of Rich Lowry’s position except by the other writers at National Review. I would estimate that 80 to 85 percent of the comments have been running in your favor. I thought that was really striking, because I’m not sure that would have been the case 10 years ago."
Day goes on to ask Derbyshire: "National Review has a long and rather Stalinist history of purging its writers, including Joe Sobran, Samuel Francis and Ann Coulter, and now you. Is this part of National Review’s culture or is there something else going on there?" If Wikipedia is to be believed, Sobran was dismissed from National Review after William F. Buckley called Sobran's writing "contextually antisemitic." Sobran also spoke at conferences organized by Holocaust denier David Irving. Francis, meanwhile, held some rather racist views, including calling interracial sexual relationships "an intentional act of moral subversion" and declaring that "neither 'slavery' nor 'racism' as an institution is a sin."
Does Day agree with the extremist views of Sobran and Francis? That may explain his fealty for Derbyshire.
Noel Sheppard Defends Michael Savage's Smear of Kids With Autism Topic: NewsBusters
NewsBusters normally steers clear of right-wing extremists like Michael Savage (even though its operator, Brent Bozell, would fit right in on Savage's show for his calling Obama a "skinny ghetto crackhead"). Which is why it's odd to see Noel Sheppard running to Savage's defense in an April 14 post.
Sheppard notes that an episode of ABC's "What Would You Do?" deals with "how people respond in a public setting when an autistic child acts up," apparently inspired by Savage's statement that in "99 percent" of autism diagonses, "it's a brat who hasn't been told to cut the act out." Sheppard compained that it wasn't noted that Savage's words "were spoken almost four years ago," then defended Savage's attack by noting that some callers to his radio show -- "including a school psychologist - [were] agreeing with him that autism like so many childhood behavior disorders is overdiagnosed oftentimes for financial reasons." Sheppard then complained: "Did What Would You Do? even casually address the possibility that autism is currently being overdiagnosed in America? Not at all. Instead the show depicted Savage as a kook for thinking so."
Sheppard didn't note the rest of what Savage said in his anti-autism rant, in which he went far beyond concerns about overdiagnosis and well into insulting those with autism as coddled brats who need someone to tell them to "act like a man":
SAVAGE: Now, you want me to tell you my opinion on autism, since I'm not talking about autism? A fraud, a racket. For a long while, we were hearing that every minority child had asthma. Why did they sudden -- why was there an asthma epidemic amongst minority children? Because I'll tell you why: The children got extra welfare if they were disabled, and they got extra help in school. It was a money racket. Everyone went in and was told [fake cough], "When the nurse looks at you, you go [fake cough], 'I don't know, the dust got me.' " See, everyone had asthma from the minority community. That was number one.
Now, the illness du jour is autism. You know what autism is? I'll tell you what autism is. In 99 percent of the cases, it's a brat who hasn't been told to cut the act out. That's what autism is.
What do you mean they scream and they're silent? They don't have a father around to tell them, "Don't act like a moron. You'll get nowhere in life. Stop acting like a putz. Straighten up. Act like a man. Don't sit there crying and screaming, idiot."
Autism -- everybody has an illness. If I behaved like a fool, my father called me a fool. And he said to me, "Don't behave like a fool." The worst thing he said -- "Don't behave like a fool. Don't be anybody's dummy. Don't sound like an idiot. Don't act like a girl. Don't cry." That's what I was raised with. That's what you should raise your children with. Stop with the sensitivity training. You're turning your son into a girl, and you're turning your nation into a nation of losers and beaten men. That's why we have the politicians we have.
Further, Savage has called autism a "phony disease" -- which undermines Sheppard's argument that he was concerned only about overdiagnosis. Savage later recast his attack to claim he was taken out of context.
Sheppard needs to ask himself if he really thinks Michael Savage is a credible spokesman for autism overdiagnosis.
Echo Chamber: WND Touts Its Columnists' Obama Derangement Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily thinks the paranoid rantings of its columnists are news. That appears to be the explanation behind an April 13 WND article by Bob Unruh, which begins this way:
There always have been those few who have launched diatribes over the dictatorial actions of any given U.S. presidential administration, over civil rights, foreign affairs, the economy, the draft or a dozen other topics – even though the Constitution was written specifically to prevent the collection of too much power by one branch of government.
Now, again, there are words like “egocentric megalomaniac” being ascribed to the White House, and warnings about detention camps and government surveillance of its citizens.
Who called Obama an "egocentric megalomaniac"? None other tha WND columnist and obsessive Obama-hater Mychal Massie, whose claim that "many" call Obama that remains unsubstantiated.
Unruh also name-checks the Obama derangement of other WND columnists like Robert Ringer and Erik Rush.
Meanwhile, Unruh appears to be treating the idea that Obama wants to round up dissenters and put them in "detention camps" as a real thing. It's not.
Unruh also rehashes one of WND's favorite zombie lies:
As a presidential candidate Obama called for a “national civilian security force” that would be as big and as well-funded as the half-trillion dollar U.S. military. And a study a short time later confirmed that there are several ways to create the suggested “Stability Police Force” so that it legally could operate inside the U.S. borders.
As we've repeatedlypointed out, Obama has explained that he was referring to an expansion of the foreign service and diplomatic and humanitarian aid. Unruh's suggestion that Obama provided no such explanation, or that it means something other than what he said it did, is nothing but a bald-faced lie.
CNS Gives Its Readers Opportunity to Insult Planned Parenthood President Topic: CNSNews.com
As we'veseen, CNSNews.com appears to posts "news" stories for no other purpose than to allow its readers to hurl denigrating insults while hiding behind anonymous screen names. The fact that CNS makes little effort to keep its comment threads from descending into racism and hatred tells us that this is the readership Terry Jeffrey -- and, by extention, Brent Bozell -- wants for his website.
Following in this tradition is an April 9 CNS article by Patrick Burke featuring Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards describing how she obtained birth control from Planned Parenthood while a college student. That was all the excuse CNS readers needed to hurl denigrating. misogynist insults at Richards, portraying her as a "slut," a "ho bag" and a "baby murdering whore," among many other things:
Are Jeffrey and Bozell proud that these are the people who now read CNS? They must be, since they have shown little interest in doing anything about it.
MRC Doesn't Like the Media Telling the Truth Topic: Media Research Center
We've detailed how the Media Research Center's "Tell the Truth" campaign is curiously hostile to anyone who actually does. It does so again in a TimesWatch item by Clay Waters.
Waters uses his item to mock New YorkTimes writer Joe Nocera for accurately pointing out that right-wing media outlets like Fox News have been carrying out a vendetta against the Chevy Volt hybrid car. Waters portrays Nocera's criticism of Volt-bashers as "what he saw as a Fox News conspiracy campaign against it."
Waters doesn't mention that Nocera is correct. As Media Matters points out, Fox and other right-wing media have relentlessly attacked the Volt as part of its anti-Obama agenda (even though the Volt had been in development well before the federal government bailed out GM).
In other words, Waters is mad at Nocera for telling the truth. But isn't that what the MRC wants?
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, Robert Ringer Edition Topic: WorldNetDaily
I began warning about Barack Obama’s dictatorial ambitions before he even won the 2008 presidential election. Now, finally, more people are beginning to take this possibility as a serious threat.
Obama’s recent contention that it would be “unprecedented” for the Supreme Court to overrule congressional legislation had dictatorship written all over it. It was, quite obviously, an ignorant slip on his part.
I will say yet again what I have been saying for more than three years: If polls indicate that Obama is going to win the upcoming election, no problem. He’ll keep flashing that fake Barry Obama grin until Nov. 7, then move swiftly to begin unleashing a dictatorial full monty – consisting of more regulations, higher taxes and less freedom – that will shock all but his staunchest Marxist allies.
Nothing will be off limits – a national police force, instant citizenship for all Third World people who want to come to America, forced equalization of income (except for Obama’s wealthy supporters), widespread use of tax audits to carry out vendettas against enemies of his administration, a virtual end to oil drilling, coal mining and gas exploration, suspension of habeas corpus, a new sedition act that will make it a crime to speak out against the government, the police, or the military … and much, much more.
On the other hand, two or three months before the election, if the polls clearly show that Obama is going to go down in defeat, I believe there’s better than a 50-50 chance of a major “emergency” coincidentally making its appearance, convincingly manufactured in such a way as to cause the average entitlement junkie to agree that we must rally around the president and “postpone” the November elections.
Dictatorship and total collapse is in the air. I can feel it. That’s why it was encouraging when Lt. Col. Terry Lakin, a decorated Army doctor, refused to go to Afghanistan unless Barack Obama would make his birth certificate public, which resulted in his serving six months in prison and being dishonorably discharged. But it’s far more discouraging that no other high-ranking officer has had the courage to join him.
This is an important issue, because I continue to believe that if a dictatorship starts to emerge (many would argue that it already has), it may ultimately get down to a question of whether, at the moment of truth, the military will take orders from Barack Obama or, instead, side with American citizens.
Those who chuckle at all this would do well to bone up on their history.
MRC Selective Outrage Watch Topic: Media Research Center
Lauren Thompson used an April 10 MRC Culture & Media Institute item to complain that "ABC is running its second show this season with the word 'bitch' in the title, and there’s only silence from the exquisitely sensitive feminists so aghast at Rush Limbaugh’s comments about left-wing activist Sandra Fluke."
Of course, given that Thompson's fellow MRC co-workers all but endorsed Limbaugh's repeated smearing of Fluke as a "slut," a "prostitute" and worse, she's probably the last person who should complain about the hypocrisy of others.
Sheppard Touts Pickens Quote, Omits That Pickens Is MRC Funder Topic: NewsBusters
Noel Sheppard devotes an April 11 NewsBusters post to recounting how oilman T. Boone Pickens said on MSNBC that "I've lost my a--" in wind power.
Unmentioned by Sheppard: Pickens is a major funder of NewsBusters' owner, the Media Research Center, to the point that the MRC has an endowed position of T. Boone Pickens Fellow, currently held by Dan Gainor.
Sheppard similarly failed to make this crucial disclosure in a December post touting something else Pickens said.
Wayne Allyn Root Is Glad Ted Kennedy Is Dead Topic: Newsmax
Wayne Allyn Root's obsessive hatred for all things Obama takes a bizarre turn in his April 10 Newsmax column, in which he praises Ted Kennedy for dying at the right time to throw a wrench in Obama's agenda:
No, I was never a big fan of Ted Kennedy while he was alive and screwing over the taxpayers.
But in death I’ve started to really appreciate the guy. He has managed to do in death what he never accomplished in life — become a hero and patriot. In death, Teddy Kennedy saved America and capitalism from Obama.
Ted Kennedy’s death changed the course of history. It opened the door for Scott Brown to become the new Massachusetts senator, the first Republican to win in almost half a century.
That one gift from Kennedy deprived Obama of the 60th vote he needed in the U.S. Senate to push through every socialist program his little heart desired. So by dying, Ted Kennedy became the anti-Obama.
Who knows what Obama, Reid and Pelosi could have accomplished if they still had that 60th vote? The GOP was powerless to stop Obama, with Kennedy still in his seat. But it wasn’t to be. Kennedy's brain tumor turned out to be a cancer for the Obama agenda.
In death, Ted Kennedy became a patriot and hero . . . to conservatives. What a way to go Teddy. It makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside to know you single-handedly changed the course of history and saved America from Obama.
I never thought I’d say this, but let’s raise a glass of Irish whiskey . . . and toast our savior Ted Kennedy!
WND Just Republishing RNC Press Releases Now Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetdaily has almost always put its right-wing bias ahead of actual journalism. Now, it's apparently taking the next step by republishing Republican press releases.
An April 11 WND article by Joe Kovacs touts how "The Republican National Committee has produced a video showing separate speeches a year apart from Obama talking about financial issues. The strange thing is that the sentences uttered by the president are virtually identical."
Did WND ever care about journalism? Well, Kovacs' partisan laziness demonstrates it sure doesn't now.