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Monday, May 21, 2012
Farah Tries Pre-Emptive Strike on SPLC Article About WND
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah ends his May 18 WorldNetDaily column by saying that "the SPLC doesn’t waste its ammunition on ineffective enemies." Neither, of course, does WND (we can attest to that) -- Farah's column is a pre-emptive strike on the Southern Poverty Law Center in advance of an upcoming SPLC article on WND.

Farah dumps long paragraphs of previous SPLC work on WND, nitpicks minor factual inaccuracies, then bashes the SPLC for being nothing more than "a smarmy, money-driven pseudo-charity that leans to the left of the Communist Party USA whose specialty is attack pieces."

Given how Farah is turning WND into a for-profit anti-Obama super PAC, his criticism of SPLC's fundraising is laughable. His bashing SPLC for "attack pieces" is doubly so, since that's pretty much WND's stock in trade.

Farah goes on to grumble that SPLC leader Morris Dees "pays himself more than $280,000 a year," but he's silent about how much he pays himself as the head of WND.

Meanwhile, we'll be looking forward to that SPLC profile. We'll know it's out when Farah has another freak-out over it.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:07 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, May 21, 2012 10:31 PM EDT
Bozell Bashes NBC For Promoting Howard Stern, Silent About Hannity Hosting Shock Jock
Topic: Media Research Center

Brent Bozell uses his May 18 column to criticize NBC for allowing Howard Stern to be a judge on "America's Got Talent":

Howard Stern has not been missed since he took his smutty shtick off the airwaves and onto the unregulated Sirius satellite radio.

His super fans — the brainiacs still playing their VHS tapes of a Stern show called "Butt Bongo Fiesta" — have made the satellite radio chiefs happy, but Stern has almost vanished as an icon of pop culture. He even scaled back his radio schedule to three days a week, semi-retiring.

So why in the blazes would NBC make the decision to revive his career by bringing him on as a judge of their summer talent show "America's Got Talent," a family show watched by millions of children? They knew exactly what they were buying. They just never stop believing that shock will sell.

Meanwhile, Bozell has been silent about another network that has worked to mainstream another shock jock banished to satellite radio -- probably because Bozell himself also appears on that same channel.

As we've detailed, Sean Hannity regularly has as a panelist on his Fox News show Anthony Cumia, of the radio team Opie and Anthony -- most recently on May 17. Bozell appears as a weekly guest on Hannity's show, despite the fact that he has long been critical of Opie and Anthony and their outrageous stunts.

Assume that Bozell will keep his hypocritical silence about his friend Hannity giving a forum to what even Bozell admits is an offensive shock jock.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:37 PM EDT
Kessler Touts Discredited Author's Anti-Obama Book
Topic: Newsmax

Ronald Kessler devoted his May 15 Newsmax column to promoting the new Obama-bashing book by Edward Klein, "The Amateur," focusing on one of Kessler's favorite subjects, Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

As Media Matters has detailed, Klein's book "is filled with lazy research, bad writing, bizarre generalizations ('Political wives have always found something to complain about') and gossip forwarded by anonymous sources -- exactly what you should expect from an Ed Klein book."

Kessler, of course, says nothing about Klein's credibility problems -- indeed, he essentially takes credit for being the source for one claim Klein makes, that Obama and Wright had a secret meeting prior to their public split. We've previously noted that Kessler considers Klein a "friend," a personal relationship he does not disclose here.

Needless to say, Kessler sets all of this up to whine yet again that his reporting on Wright was ignored by the "mainstream media" in 2007:

As noted in my story "Media Blackout on Rev. Wright Started in 2007," for three months during Obama’s primary campaign, the mainstream media ignored Newsmax stories reporting on Rev. Wright’s hate-filled sermons; his denunciations of America, whites, and Israel; and the fact that he gave an award for lifetime achievement to Louis Farrakhan.

By the time the media picked up the stories, Obama was ahead of Hillary Clinton in the primary elections.

According to a Hillary Clinton aide quoted in David Remnick’s “The Ridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama,” if the media had run the Wright story just two months earlier, Obama’s candidacy “would have been over.”

Perhaps Kessler should get some counseling in order to get over that.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:22 AM EDT
MRC Perpetuates Churchill Bust Falsehood
Topic: Media Research Center

In a May 18 MRC Culture & Media Institute article that's more agitprop than "research," Matt Philbin peddles one false or misleading claim after another to whine that "the broadcast networks have mostly ignored, and major newspapers have excused or minimized, [President Obama's] slights to America’s unambiguous friends." Here's the most egregious one:

“Throwing Churchill out of the Oval Office” – “It is hard to think of a more derogatory message to send to the British people within days of taking office than to fling a bust of Winston Churchill out of the Oval Office and send it packing back to the British Embassy,” Gardiner wrote, “not least as it was a loaned gift from Britain to the United States as a powerful display of solidarity in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington.”

ABC, CBS and NBC all ignored the offending gesture. U.S. newspapers noted it – in some case because readers had written in to ask about the story they’d heard second hand. If it bothered the papers, they didn’t say so.

What Philbin doesn't tell you: The networks ignored the story because it isn't true.

The British Embassy has confirmed that the bust was "uniquely lent" to Bush, and was scheduled to be returned at the end of Bush's term -- as reported in the UK Telegraph story to which Philbin himself links to back up his claim.

We thought Philbin's employer was the Media Research Center, not the Media Conspiracy Theory Promotion Center.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:35 AM EDT
Sunday, May 20, 2012
MRC's Hadro Can't Stop Freaking Out About Gays on CNN
Topic: NewsBusters

We've detailed how the Media Research Center's Matt Hadro's apparent main job is to complain whenever gays appear on CNN. He had a triple shot of complaining this week.

In a May 15 NewsBusters post, Hadro complains that CNN "above and beyond journalistic standards" to report on how "a man pushing for same-sex marriage made a viral video of himself and his deceased partner." Hadro huffed: "The fact that the report came on the heels of President Obama's announcement in favor of gay marriage last week – where CNN hosted an overwhelming majority of pro-gay guests – might say a lot about CNN's cheerleading for same-sex marriage."

Hadro then complained in a May 17 post:

CNN continued its ridiculous narrative of tying gay rights to the civil rights movement of the 1960s, on Tuesday's Starting Point. Anchor Brooke Baldwin and her panel battered Virginia Delegate Bob Marshall for blocking the nomination of a gay prosecutor to the state's bench, even though Marshall argued that he was unfit for the position because of his activism and not his orientation.

Hadro also does a drive-by Heathering of Margaret Hoover, calling her a "phoney-conservative."

In another May 17 post, Hadro gets back to complaining about gays being on TV, grumbling that CNN's Suzanne Malveaux wasn't mean to a gay activist:

Zach Wahls is an activist lobbying Congress on behalf of gay rights issues, and yet CNN's Suzanne Malveaux rolled out the red carpet for him with nary a critical question on Thursday's 12 p.m. hour of Newsroom.

When Wahls, the author of a book titled "My Two Moms," made light of the "big gay scourge" that some say America faces, Malveaux laughed and flattered him "That was really funny, Zach." Sensing an opportunity, she added "Do you think that we need to use more humor to get – to further this discussion?"

As in, those opposed to same-sex marriage need to lighten up a bit, and some humor will help "further this discussion." Malveaux certainly did her part to further the gay agenda by teeing up the gay activist with complete softballs, enabling him to air his agenda with no debate.

Yeah, we wouldn't want an activist to further his agenda on TV, would we?


Posted by Terry K. at 10:20 PM EDT
AIM (!) Complains About Disgraced Bloggers Finding Work
Topic: Accuracy in Media

In a May 18 blog post, Accuracy in Media chairman Don Irvine complains that U.S. News & World Report hired blogger Elizabeth Flock, who resigned from the Washington Post "after it was revealed that she made extensive use of material from Discovery News without attribution in a post in April." Citing another case of apparent plagiarsm by Flock, Irvine added, "These problems apparently weren’t serious enough to prevent U.S. News from hiring Flock and giving her a high profile assignment."

That's an odd criticism from Irvine, who allowed a disgraced blogger to keep blogging at AIM.

In December 2009, AIM blogger Allie Duzett libelously claimed that then-Obama official Kevin Jennings is a "pedophile," a claim had AIM had to quickly retract and apologize for. Despite exposing her employer to legal action, Duzett was allowed to continue to write more posts for AIM. She even wrote for the Heritage Foundation for a while.

It seems AIM not only tolerated its disgraced blogger, it helped her get another job. So why is Irvine complaining about Elizabeth Flock?


Posted by Terry K. at 9:41 AM EDT
Saturday, May 19, 2012
CNS Fawns Over Sebelius Heckler At Georgetown
Topic: CNSNews.com

As Craig Bannister's endorsement of censoring HHS Secretery Kathleen Sebelius by disinviting her from her speaker slot at Georgetown University indicates, CNSNews.com had every intention of making its coverage of Sebelius' actual speech as biased as it could.

And that's exactly what it did. Edwin Mora's May 18 article on the speech starts with him trying to read Sebelius' mind and squeeze in a political attack:

Speaking at a graduation ceremony for Georgetown University's Public Policy Institute on Friday, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius quoted President John F. Kennedy in what may have been a rebuttal to the Catholic bishops of the United States who have criticized Sebelius for issuing a health-care regulation that the bishops have described as "an unprecedented attack on religious liberty" and an "unjust law" that Catholics in good conscience cannot obey. 

Hey, Edwin, isn't the news what Sebelius actually said, not what you think she meant?

But Mora wasn't done. Following in Bannister's censorial footsteps, he devoted a separate article to uncritically fawning over the far-right heckler that interrupted Sebelius' speech, complete with video interview of him tossing softball questions to him. Mora touted him as a "young activist" who was "alluding to Biblical scripture" in his heckling.

Mora goes on to note that the heckler, David Lewis, "is a member of a pro-life group called 'The Society of Truth and Justice,' led by pro-life activist Randall Terry, who is running in the Democratic primary against Obama."

Mora is silent, however, about Terry's record of anti-abortion extremism. As we've detailed, Terry essentially endorsed the murder of abortion doctor George Tiller -- an endorsement CNS ignored in trying to distanceTiller's murderer, Scott Roeder, from the anti-abortion movement (despite his links to one mainstream anti-abortion group, Operation Rescue).

If CNS shunned Terry then as a fringe figure, why is Mora embracing the heckler in his thrall now?

Is it too much to ask Mora and CNS to report honestly on the anti-abortion movement it so clearly supports? Apparently so.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:44 AM EDT
WND's Mercer Mocks Child On Time Cover As 'Chunky Garden Gnome'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We're not defending the infamous Time magazine cover of a mother breastfeeding her nearly 4-year-old child, nor are we venturing into the propriety of such behavior, let alone putting on the cover of a magazine. It does seem, however, a little beyond the pale to launch an attack on the child, and that's what Ilana Mercer does in her May 16 WorldNetDaily column, calling him, among other things, a "chunky, garden gnome of a child":

“Obscene” better captures the mien of the Madonna and child that brazenly stare into the camera – and at America. Time’s cover-models are Jamie Lynne Grumet, 26, self-styled, “attachment” parent, and Aram, her chunky, garden gnome of a child.

(And “hollow-elite,” also a Murray moniker, fits Time Managing Editor Rick Stengel. Stengel, whose hagiographical tributes to Nelson Mandela have practically been serialized – he has completed two, perhaps a third is planned? – has helped cloak Mandela in the raiment of sainthood. Mandela, that paragon of virtue, has never raised his authoritative voice against the pogroms that have seen thousands of white South Africans murdered and mutilated by blacks.)

In any event, Aram is a real feeder, if you know what I mean.

Grumet junior is large for his tender age of 4. His gaze is cunning, never cute. The miniature man already reaches up to his non-gnomic mom’s waist. To help Aram get at the prized pair – mom’s perky breasts – Time’s artistic director has used a stool.

All the better to satisfy mom’s “maternal” urges, “Nudge nudge, wink wink. Say no-more, say no-more.”

One other tender touch: Porno-mom’s pelvis is tilted slightly in the direction of her gnome’s grubby hands.

At this stage, bullying would be the best corrective intervention this kid could hope for. In a better world – one in which propriety had not been pulverized – odious Aram would be taunted mercilessly at play school. Were he to make it that far, boob-boy is sure to be smacked about the head by a few manly college boys, later in life.

[...]

From the little we’ve seen of him, Aram is awfully unpleasant, a walking, whinging DSM-5 textbook – that’s the psychiatric Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders – in the making.

Despite what one thinks of the mother's behavior, the child is innocent and doesn't really deserve mocking, particularly by someone who has her own issues.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:20 AM EDT
Friday, May 18, 2012
Newsmax Columnist: Ron Paul Forever!
Topic: Newsmax

Doug Wead has been Newsmax's most enthusiastic supporter of Ron Paul's presidential ambitions. Now that Paul has suspended his campaign, though, Wead doesn't want it to end.

Wead still clings to the Ron Paul cause in his May 15 column:

Ron Paul is not out. He is up!

"We are absolutely not dropping out of this race! We are focusing our efforts squarely on winning delegates and party leadership positions at state conventions, declared Jesse Benton, campaign chairman for Ron Paul.

Paul announced Tuesday he would not be competing in the upcoming state primaries, saying that he would focus, instead, on his delegate strategy. This is a strategy that is working, by the way, and transforming the Republican Party.

Needless to say, Wead is fully on board with Paul's new strategy of trying to poach delegates at the Republican convention,e even as he sorta concedes that it's a lost cause:

The delegate strategy is working. That is the way we will impact the platform in Tampa, Fla.. That is the way we will begin the process of change. It is through the caucuses that we are attracting youth, like the 21-year-old woman recently elected to the national committee from Maine or the Ron Paul Hispanics or the independents who have never been involved in party politics.

[...]

Our people have been punched, yelled at, lied to and worked until they can hardly stand. But on they come, fighting for their children, fighting for their future, angry at the corruption of the banks, of Wall Street, of the lobbyists, of the Congress, of the White House. The battle for liberty is not over. It has just taken on a new phase. It cannot be stopped by the national media. If that were the case it would never have been born in the first place.

And some will say that it is a lost cause, which I will not concede but it does remind me of Clarence Darrow's famous line, "Lost causes are the only ones worth fighting for."

And that, it appears, is what Wead will cling to.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:39 PM EDT
CBN's Stakelbeck Joins WND
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Erick Stakelbeck, whose main job is to be an "authority on terrorism and national security issues" for Pat Robertson's CBN, is now doing videos for WorldNetDaily.

It's not terribly surprising. Stakelbeck's mission is to make alarmist claims to bash Muslims with a little Biblical prophecy mixed in, despite his complete lack of credentials on the subject (he is a former sports reporter). This sort of thing has earned him spots on Fox News and other right-wing outlets, and his association with WND simply moves him even further to the right.

Stak elbeck's first WND video is an interview with Geert Wilders, the Dutch anti-Muslim activist. Stakelbeck plays softball with Wilders and allows him to play the victim, claiming Wilders was "subjected to a kangaroo court in his own country" for allegedly inciting anti-Muslim hatred, an effort that has included likening the Quran to "Mein Kampf."

Obviously, the Muslim-haters at WND eat this sort of thing up. And Stakelbeck has chosen to play to them by associating himself with the increasingly fringe WND.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:55 PM EDT
Meanwhile ...
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Tim Graham has been making statements in non-MRC venues of late.

Media Matters notes that Graham has tweeted about ABC's Robin Roberts' interview with Obama in which he revealed his suport for same-sex marriage: "If black Christian voters still vote for Obama now, they're not really Christians. Just like Robin Roberts for being such a lamb on ABC."

That, of course, is nothing but Graham expanding upon the MRC's anti-gay agenda, only this time he's attacking the sincere beliefs of millions of Christians who don't believe that gays are evil simply because they're gay.

Then, Right Wing Watch highlights an interview Graham gave to right-wing radio host Janet Mefford, in which he claims that Obama's same-sex marriage announcement was "a tragic moment for the country, a very dark moment, a very depressing moment." He went on to say that it would be nice if anti-gay pastors like Harry Jackson could speak about same-sex marriage during interviews just as "he does at his church."

Right Wing Watch responds: "Graham may be on to something, as TV interviews might be much more candid and exhilarating if Harry Jackson told the hosts at PBS or MSNBC that demonic forces, specifically the Queen of Heaven, are responsible for gay rights, just as he preaches in church."


Posted by Terry K. at 10:01 AM EDT
WND Still Bashing Higher Education, Vox Day Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's utter disdain for book-learnin' continues in a May 13 column by Vox Day, who follows the WND script in claiming that a college education does not provide an adequate return on investment. His weird little twist on the argument is that it's not a physical asset:

However, the main reason one cannot consider the cost of a college degree to be an investment is because a degree is not transferable and holds no intrinsic value. Unlike stocks, bonds, housing or even art, the owner of a degree cannot sell it. It is no more an investment than an airplane ticket or a bus token. There are, to be sure, many jobs in government and corporate America that require college degrees, but it makes no sense to argue for the intrinsic value of college degrees on the basis of artificial requirements that only have the potential to limit one’s future income.

None of this should be taken to mean that college educations are totally worthless or that it makes no sense for anyone to pursue a college degree. What it does mean, however, is that no prospective college student or parent can blithely accept the results of the return-on-investment studies and expect them to have any meaningful application to any individual situation. Every college decision must stand or fall on its own unique financial merits, and, in many cases, a careful review will demonstrate that taking out a student loan and paying large sums of money in return for a 60 percent chance of obtaining college degree does not make financial sense.

Day, of course, has a college degree, from the (presumably) pricey private liberal arts school Bucknell. He offers no opinion on the intrinsic value of his own degree.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:00 AM EDT
Thursday, May 17, 2012
NewsBusters' Double Standard on People's Backgrounds
Topic: NewsBusters

In a May 16 NewsBusters post, Ken Shepherd touts an item by Breitbart blogger John Nolte complaining about Politico reporting on the lengthy criminal record of a person who appears in a Romney ad -- or, in Shepherd's words, "digging up dirt on a private citizen who supports his Republican opponent."

Why, Shepherd and his NewsBusters buddies would never condone something so gauche as to investigate the backgrounds of private citizens who play a role in political campaigns.

Wrong.

Back in 2007, right-wing bloggers, most prominently Michelle Malkin, felt the need to attack Graeme Frost, a 12-year-old boy who delivered a radio address in support of the federal Children's Health Insurance Program, by skulking around his house and deciding that he and his family lived too well to qualify for the program. This, of course, ignored the reality of the Frost family's situation.

In a October 2007 NewsBusters post, Shepherd promoted "conservative bloggers who brought scrutiny to bear on Frost's parents" and denounced "a lapdog liberal media that uncritically relayed the Frost family's account."

Shepherd expressed no reservations whatsoever about "conservative blogs raising questions about the Frost family," but apparently nobody is supposed to check into the background of someone who appears in a conservative ad. Go figure.

Just add this to the massive pile of double standards by the boys of NewsBusters and the MRC.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:13 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, May 17, 2012 3:39 PM EDT
WND Bizarrely Blames Obama For 'Wrecking NASCAR'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joe Kovacs begins his May 17 article, headlined "Study: Obama economy wrecking NASCAR," this way:

With President Obama at the wheel of the U.S. economy, the car-racing industry appears to be wrecking, with few signs of getting back on the right track.

That according to a new study examining the financial state of NASCAR, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing.

Just one little problem: The facts don't back Kovacs up.

Kovacs is citing a study paid for by Race Fans 4 Freedom, which claims to be "an independent nonprofit dedicated to empowering race fans with the knowledge of what has made America the best and the ability to unite as a driving force for the future of our country." In other words, a right-wing group. Kovacs mentions nothing about the group's partisan leanings.

There is one word notably absent from the study: "Obama." That's right -- unlike Kovacs, the study doesn't explicitly blame Obama.

Also, Kovacs manages to further discredit himself by including a graphic from the study in his article:

Note that the decline in NASCAR attendance began in 2006 -- three years before Obama took office. It defies logic to blame Obama for that, but Kovacs has decided to do that anyway.

Is this bogus, mindless Obama-bashing more of that "real news" Kovacs says he came to WND to report?


Posted by Terry K. at 1:01 PM EDT
AIM's Kincaid Insinuates Frank Marshall Davis Is Obama's Father
Topic: Accuracy in Media

The Newsweek cover calling Barack Obama "the first gay president" for endorsing same-sex marriage was all the impetus Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid needed to start hurling sleazy insinuations.

The virulently homophobic Kincaid headlined his May 14 AIM column "How Our “Gay President” Learned About Sex," implying that Obama is gay. Kincaid never actually gets there, though -- his column is mostly a screed about Frank Marshall Davis, "Obama’s communist mentor" who "drank heavily and smoked dope, wrote a pornographic novel in which the author declared, 'under certain circumstances I am bisexual."

Kincaid does insinuate, however, that Davis is Obama's father, claiming that Davis "discussed having sex with a young girl named 'Anne.'" Of course, Kincaid offers no evidence to back this up.

Kincaid is bringing up Davis as a distraction from the revelation that Mitt Romney, as a prep school student, forcibly cut the hair of a fellow student who was presumed to be gay, insisting that this is "a much bigger story than a haircut."

(P.S. The whole silliness about Davis being Obama's father completely undermines the idea that Obama isn't constitutionally eligible to be president.)


Posted by Terry K. at 12:06 PM EDT

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