ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

ConWebWatch: home | archive/search | about | primer | shop

Friday, July 13, 2012
Newsmax Image Rehabilitation Watch
Topic: Newsmax

A July 11 Newsmax article by Todd Beamon and John Bachman features, for no apparent reason, former Republican Rep. Vito Fossella opinion on Mitt Romney's chances of winning the White House, among other election-related topics.

As we've previously detailed, Newsmax has been trying to rehabilitate Fossella's reputation after he left office in disgrace when a DUI arrest led to the revelation that Fossella had a mistress in Washington and had fathered a child with her.

Beamon and Bachman are careful not to explain how Fossella became an ex-congressman.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:07 PM EDT
Alan Caruba Misleads About Terrorism Study
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Alan Caruba writes in his July 11 Accuracy in Media column:

A study, “Profiles of Perpetrators of Terrorism”, commissioned by the Department of Homeland Security identified the following characteristics of potential “terrorists.”

# Americans who believe their “way of life” is under attack;

# Americans who are “fiercely nationalistic (as opposed to universal and international in orientation)”;

# People who consider themselves “anti-global” (presumably those who are wary of the loss of American sovereignty, opposed to the United Nations, etc.);

# Americans who are “suspicious of centralized federal authority”;

# Americans who are “reverent of individual liberty”;

# People who “believe in conspiracy theories that involve grave threat to national sovereignty and/or personal liberty.”

This is a President who called for a “Civilian National Security Force” on July 2, 2008, one that would be “just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded as the U.S. military.”

Obama is putting in force everything a tyranny requires to replace the Republic.

As we detailed when WorldNetDaily tried the same misleading distortion, the study in question describes those "Perpetrators of Terrorism" as pepple involved in paramilitary or survivalist groups first and foremost, who may alsobe “suspicious of centralized federal authority” and “reverent of individual liberty.” Caruba dishonestly omits the study's reference to paramilitary or survivalist traits.

As for the "Civilian National Security Force" stuff -- which WND also has lied about -- Obama has specifically stated that it refers to an expansion of the foreign service.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:48 AM EDT
Noel Sheppard Laughably Claims 'New Study Thoroughly Debunks Global Warming'
Topic: NewsBusters

Under the headline "New Study Thoroughly Debunks Global Warming, Will Media Notice?" global warming denier Noel Sheppard writes in a July 11 NewsBusters post of a new study he claims, yes, debunks global warming.

Of course, it does no such thing. As Media Matters details, the study, in the journal Nature, estimated temperatures going back 2,000 years by analyzing the density of tree rings taken only from northern Finland and Sweden, and the record they produced only reflects temperatures between June and August. There's nothing "global" about the study.

Further, the study doesn't cover the past 100 years, which Sheppard sorta admits by including a graph in his post showing a sharp rise in temperatures in the past century.

Sheppard seems to know that the facts don't live up to his screaming, overstated headline. By the second paragraph of his post, he was already altering what he claimed the study found, that it "completely debunks all previous claims that temperatures in recent decades are in any way historic." But if he looked at that graph, he would see that the rate of temperature in the past century is arguably surprisingly rapid for such ashort period of time, especially compared with the slow overall rate of decline the graph shows over the previous centuries.

As is his wont, Sheppard took a cheap shot at Al Gore, calling global warming "Nobel laureate Al Gore's favorite money-making scam." Sheppard didn't say how much money he has made by being a professional denier.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:31 AM EDT
Thursday, July 12, 2012
'It's No Crime To Feign Enthusiasm': WND Writers Unenthusiastically Back Romney
Topic: WorldNetDaily

So, what’s the matter with you? Do you suppose there’s some kind of political “heaven” where your eventual admittance will be a lot smoother if you can show you weren’t all that keen on Romney in the first place? Are you aware Mitt Romney is the only American with the ways and means to save us all? England begged America, in 1940, when England stood alone, “If you cannot help us, please don’t hinder us.” That’s an apt message from the Romney campaign to all who see the need to stop Obama.

Nobody’s asking you to lie, or even spin. Just select which pro-Romney truths glide most comfortably off your tongue and let’s hear them; loudly and with enthusiasm. It’s no crime to feign enthusiasm, in a worthy cause. Enthusiasm is vital in politics. Your own vote requires no enthusiasm. But your ability to get others to the polls, to donate, to volunteer, to get good things going – that demands enthusiasm. Morale is major. And with early love of Obama gone four years sour, Romney is much better positioned today to generate higher and wilder waves of morale.

If I can show enthusiasm for Romney, without a single day of acting school, you’ve got no excuse. Blunders. Failures. Disappointments. Cosmic idiocies. We’ve got them all, and our production rate is sure to climb in these remaining weeks. But that’s no excuse for failure to get in there and yell and scream and fight and produce and get it done for Mitt Romney.

-- Barry Farber, June 10 WorldNetDaily column

Based on his long and contradictory political record, I do not have much hope that Romney is going to do a 180 if he wins. I don’t think he will steer the nation on the U-turn course that is absolutely necessary to save us from the brink of disaster.

However, the idea of a second term for Obama genuinely scares me. I don’t believe America could ever recover from such a cataclysm. The country will suffer irreparable harm, if it hasn’t done so already.

While I remain a principled constitutionalist who doesn’t believe in voting for anyone who does not understand and embrace its limitations on federal power, I believe 2012 is one of those rare election years in which freedom-loving Americans will, out of necessity, be forced to vote defensively.

I won’t be voting for Romney because I think he will save America or reverse our dangerous course. But I will likely be voting for him to buy America the time it needs to avoid catastrophe. It’s just that simple – and sad.

-- Joseph Farah, July 10 WND column


Posted by Terry K. at 10:23 PM EDT
MRC's Idea of 'Research': Cherry-Picked Quotes
Topic: Media Research Center

We're all too familiar with the Media Research Center's idea of "media research." Here's another example.

A July 9 "special edition" of the MRC's "Notable Quotables" feature purports to document "the media’s continuing love affair with Barack Obama." The headline on it reads, "Special Edition: Still Slobbering Over Barack Obama."

But the MRC has a peculiar definition of "still" and "continuing." Only two of the 26 quotes listed are from this year; many of them date from 2009. But really -- 26 cherry-picked quotes over four years somehow proves that "the media" is "still slobbering" over Obama?

The MRC also fails to distinguish between reporters and commentators. It even throws in as one example "Simon & Schuster’s promotional language for The Promise: President Obama, Year One, a book released May 18, 2010, by Newsweek senior editor Jonathan Alter." Press releases are part of "the media"?

The MRC, it seems, is so obsessed with treating any positive description of Obama as "slobbering" that its manufactured outrage over it is utterly meaningless. Its supporters, though, seem unable to tell the difference between it and genuine outrage, so such shoddy "research" must be working out for the MRC.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:54 PM EDT
Newsmax Now Publishing 'Dr.' Alveda King
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax has added anti-abortion activist Alveda King as a columnist. But that's not all -- Newsmax is calling her "Dr. Alveda King," as the header on her column archive shows:

But as we've noted, and others have pointed out, King has never earned a doctorate degree; the one being referenced here is honorary.

People who have never earned a Ph.D. don't get to call themselves "Dr." -- and anyway, standard news style is to reserve that title only for those with medical degrees -- but Alveda King does, and Newsmax, which should know better, is allowing it to happen.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:48 AM EDT
WND Is Now Defending Its Race-Baiting
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We've detailed WorldNetDaily's massive race-baiting effort by hyping alleged incidents of violence by "mobs" of blacks. The latest effort, a July 11 article by race-baiting expert Colin Flaherty repeating an unsubstantiated claim that "99.9 percent" of defendants in "murders, rapes, robberies and home invasions" in one city were "Afro-American," adds for the first time an editor's note explaining said race-baiting:

Editor’s note: Colin Flaherty has done more reporting than any other journalist on what appears to be a nationwide trend of skyrocketing black-on-white crime, violence and abuse. WND features these reports to counterbalance the virtual blackout by the rest of the media due to their concerns that reporting such incidents would be inflammatory or even racist. WND considers it racist not to report racial abuse solely because of the skin color of the perpetrators or victims.

But isn't it racist to report only violence committed by blacks, as WND is doing? WND doesn't seem to want to answer that question. It's more happy to pretend it's offering "balance" when WND has never practiced such balance on its own website.

Note also WND's weasel words claiming that there "appears to be a nationwide trend of skyrocketing black-on-white crime, violence and abuse." Not that there actually is one -- WND is clearly interested only in appearance, not fact.

Indeed, WND is a tad defensive about its race-baiting. Responding to ConWebWatch's highlighting of a recent Flaherty piece, WND tweeted: "Reporting facts is not 'race-baiting' Chicago is a war zone right now. So is Baltimore."

WND seems to think that reporting "facts" is a sufficient defense for its race-baiting. But it has never claimed that it reports all the facts -- and it's there the problem resides.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:38 AM EDT
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
CNS' Jeffrey: Sterilization Is 'Mutiliation,' Like Cutting An Optic Nerve
Topic: CNSNews.com

So, what does sterilization do to a woman? And why does Obama want all women "with reproductive capacity" to be offered one for free?

Specifically, sterilization mutilates part of a woman's body so it can no longer carry out its natural and healthy function.

By analogy, if a doctor severed a woman's optic nerve her eyes would no longer see. Here, a doctor severs a woman's fallopian tubes so her womb can no longer conceive a child.

Obama manifestly believes offering this particular mutilation free of charge to all women — but not men — is good. But why?

-- Terry Jeffrey, July 11 CNSNews.com column


Posted by Terry K. at 9:46 PM EDT
WND's Klein Still Shilling for Assad Regime
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Aaron Klein continues his cozying up to murderous Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad with a July 10 WorldNetDaily that even grants anonymity to a member of Assad's regime.

From the article:

At least 5,000 global jihadists are positioned near Syria’s borders with Turkey and Lebanon attempting to infiltrate Syria to aid the opposition fighting Bashar al-Assad’s regime, a senior Syrian government official claimed to WND.

The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the Syrian military hopes to quell the opposition entirely by the start of Ramadan, July 19.

Is a spokesperson for a regime accused of killing thousands of its own people really worth granting the privilege of anonymity? Klein apparently thinks so. Then again, this isn't the first time Klein has granted anonymity to terrorists.

Klein also uncritically repeated the Assad regime's spin that "it was a group affiliated with al-Qaida, armed by Turkey, that slaughtered more than 100 civilians in their homes in Houla in May." As we've previously noted, numerous named eyewitnesses have confirmed that the massacre was the work of the regime, while those pushing Assad's spin are anonymous.

Maybe that's why Klein signed on as an Assad shill -- he loves those anonymous sources. He did the same thing for Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:07 PM EDT
NewsBusters Hides The Facts Behind GM's Sales Figures
Topic: NewsBusters

Seton Motley screeched in a July 10 NewsBusters post that "The Jurassic Press was in full-throated ObamaChorus mode in reporting on General Motors (GM)’s allegedly strong June sales," while supposedly overlooking the fact that the increase was driven by "government purchases."

Motley cited a claim from the right-wing National Legal and Policy Center that "government purchases of GM vehicles rose a whopping 79% in June," but that claim is presented without context -- it's never explained where the number came from, or what the actual numbers they're based on are. It's an empty, undocumented number, but it suits Motley's purposes, so he continued to screech:

Meaning Barack Obama is now campaigning on the “success” of - the government buying cars from...the government’s car company. With our money.

That’s like you setting up a lemonade stand for your kids. You buy them the lemons, sugar, cups and pitchers - and then buy most of the lemonade yourself.

Except you are President Obama. Your kids are the United Autoworkers Union. And the lemonade cost $50 billion.

At least you get to tax your neighbors for the $50 billion.

Again - in what Bizarro-world is this auto bailout the “success” the Jurassic Press incessantly reports it is?

Meanwhile, more credible and non-hysterical sources had a more realistic take on GM's numbers.  The Detroit Free Press points out that fleet sales, under which government sales fall, typically peak this time of year:

GM’s increase was helped by an increase in fleet sales. GM’s sales to fleet customers increased 36% in June while retail sales increased 7.9%.

McNeil said GM’s big increase in fleet sales is was driven by seasonal deliveries.

“Next month you can expect our fleet volume and our fleet mix to be down,” McNeil said.

For the year, GM expects fleet sales to government agencies, daily rental companies and commercial customers to account for about 25% of its sales.

Further, Bloomberg reports that the percentage of fleet sales at GM is actually smaller than that of a certain other auto manufacturer that didn't take a bailout:

GM sales to fleet customers, such as governments and rental-car companies, rose 36 percent last month, making up 32 percent of the company’s sales. Ford said its fleet sales accounted for 35 percent of its deliveries, down from 37 percent a year earlier.

Don't wait up for Motley to tell the full truth about GM's sales numbers.
That's not the business he's in.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:39 AM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: Joe Kovacs vs. 'Real News'
Topic: WorldNetDaily
The WorldNetDaily executive news editor says he joined WND to report "real news" -- you know, like anti-Obama conspiracy theories or what Rush Limbaugh says on his radio show. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:34 AM EDT
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
AIM's Kincaid: Fox News Isn't Biased Enough Against Obama
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Fox News' anti-Obama bias is already pretty prodigious. But it's not enough for Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid -- he wants Rupert Murdoch to order his channel to hurl even more dubious smears against the president (and bring back the discredited Glenn Beck while he's at it).

From Kincaid's July 6 AIM column:

While O’Reilly and Sean Hannity have examined some of the controversy over Obama’s socialist agenda, there is a bigger story to tell—one that could win the channel a major journalism prize. It is the Obama connection to Communist Party member Frank Marshall Davis.

Of course, if Murdoch wants to get tough, he could start by bringing back Beck—Glenn Beck, that is. Glenn Beck wasn’t afraid to tell the truth about Obama—and his associates, such as Van Jones, and Obama’s patron, George Soros. That may have been what got him fired.

[...]

At about the same time, Joel Gilbert’s provocative film, “Dreams from My Real Father,” is scheduled for official release. Fox News could and should cover it now. I’m sure Gilbert would provide a copy to them, if they do not already have it. I have seen this film in advance. It, too, is devastating. It will make you wonder what we really know about Obama, not in terms of where he was born, but his political agenda and personal loyalties.

[...]

These two researchers, [Paul] Kengor and Gilbert, could explain, better than anyone, the mystery in the Oval Office. All that it would take is an order from Murdoch to Roger Ailes, president of Fox News, to get to the bottom of the controversy over Obama’s Marxist roots. Four years after Obama was elected president, isn’t it about time for what the late Andrew Breitbart called “the Vetting?”

As we've pointed out, the central argument of Gilbert's film -- that Davis is Obama's real father -- is nothing but conjecture and speculation, based on photos of a woman he can't even prove is Obama's mother who posed nude for Davis. It's nothing more than a sleazy smear piece designed to make money off Obama-haters.

But Kincaid is gullible enough -- and enough of an Obama-hater -- to fall for it, and that's all that matters at AIM.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:07 PM EDT
Newsmax Still Slobbering Over Trump
Topic: Newsmax

What was the most important story at Newsmax for a good portion of today? Donald Trump opening a new golf course:

(Click on image for full-size version.)

Note the story at the top of the "related" stack: "Trump Awarded With 'Statesman of the Year' Honor." That's right -- the Republican Party of Sarasota County, Fla., gave him that award. Makes you wonder what their criteria is.

After pushing the idea of Trump as president, then trying (and failing) to co-host a presidential debate with him, Newsmax remains infatuated with Trump.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:24 PM EDT
WND Perpetuates Myth That Police Didn't Protect Christians
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A July 9 WorldNetDaily article claims that that "Christian leader" Ruben Israel is "working with the American Freedom Law Center" to go after officials in Dearborn, Mich., because police offers purportedly "threaten[ed] Christians with disorderly conduct while angry Muslims were heaving chunks of concrete, stones, bottles and debris at them.

There's lots wrong with this article. First, Israel is no "Christian leader" -- he's a street preacher.

Second, WND downplays the fact that Israel's band of protesters at the Dearborn Arab event -- whom the article portrays as doing little more than "holding signs about their faith"-- were taunting and inciting the group of Muslims that eventually retaliated. As we detailed, the Christ and Pop Culture blog reported that Israel's group was carrying a pig head on a pole -- as Israel explained to police, that's because Muslims are “petrified” of pigs and so it “ke

Third, it's simply false that police did nothing to stop the conflict between the Muslim and Christian groups. According to the Christ and Pop Culture blog, police intervened several times.

But WND clearly has no intention of reporting the full truth about this incident -- the article's awkward statement that "WND later learned that the Christian crowd had been carrying a pole with a pig’s head attached to the top, further angering the Muslim crowd" tells us that WND originally promoted this story with no evidence whatsoever that Israel provoked the Muslims. Thus its readers will never know how hateful Ruben Israel is -- or that he doesn't have a case.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:36 AM EDT
Will Noel Sheppard Acknowlege Joan Walsh's Criticism? (Or Will He Continue to Behave Like A Jerk?)
Topic: NewsBusters

We know that NewsBusters associate editor Noel Sheppard is ultimately kind of a coward -- after all, he has blocked us from following his Twitter account. Now, he is similarly silent about a commentator who has responded to his petulant attacks.

In a July 4 NewsBusters post, Sheppard goes off on Salon's Joan Walsh for (accurately) describing Republicans as "a white, older base that doesn’t quite understand the way healthcare works" during an appearance on Tavis Smiley's show. He did this mostly by insulting and personally attacking Walsh:

Let's call a spade a spade: the arrogance, hypocrisy and racism of Salon's Joan Walsh knows no bounds.

[...]

Lest we forget this is the same woman who in March wrote a column titled "What's the Matter With White People" and is so proud of the idea she's turning it into a book.

You see, racism for Walsh is a common theme to be repeated whenever possible.

As for Republicans being "worried that some people are going to get something for nothing," shouldn't that concern all Americans?

Or is the country Walsh pines for one where a growing majority of idle citizens take from the decreasing minority that actually work for a living?

Yes, those last two questions were rhetorical.

As for Walsh, she sadly represents the voices on the far-left in this nation that don't believe people are entitled to more if they work harder and smarter than others, and even more sadly speaks for those that still want to divide this nation along racial lines.

How someone so arrogant, bigoted, and closed-minded could become the editor at large of any publication in this country today is both shocking and disheartening.

Even worse, Walsh has now become a mainstay on that joke of a so-called "news network" MSNBC.

You can't swing a dead cat anymore without hitting her on some MSNBC program spewing her divisive opinions.

Let's hope it's so frequent that viewers have become numb to her much as they did Keith Olbermann.

The next day, Walsh responded on her Salon blog, marvelously (to borrow a Sheppard-ism) calling Sheppard "umbrage-addicted" and defending her views:

We are living in a moment when right-wing extremists are casting any critical observation about white people as racism — and the mainstream media, already tongue-tied about race, has no idea how to respond.

Ironically, I get criticized from the left sometimes for downplaying the role that race plays in the backlash against President Obama. More frequently, though, I’m trashed from the right for overplaying it. Journalists like to comfort themselves by saying that when both sides are mad at you, you must be doing something right. But I know from experience: Sometimes it means you’re wrong. I don’t think I’m wrong here – although occasionally I am wrong about this tough racial stuff. I’m just wondering if it’s possible to get it right, in an atmosphere where one side is determined to prove the divisive and ludicrous idea that Obama-era liberalism is animated by anti-white racism.

But it is just a fact that Republicans today are disproportionately white and older than the rest of the country. It’s almost certainly a fact that Mitt Romney is more comfortable around white people (unless he leads a secret multi-culti life that we don’t know about). Look at his crowds. Look at his friends. Look at his advisors. Look at that video where he sings “Who Let the Dogs Out?” with black people on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Jacksonville, Fla.

[...]

I’m flat-out stunned at the way the right has managed to push this notion that whites are suffering a new surge of racism, mainly at the hands of African-Americans and their liberal allies of other races. Like me. In his shrieky best seller, “Suicide of a Superpower,” Pat Buchanan warned that even Obama-supporting whites would soon “discover what it is like to ride in the back of the bus.” Rush Limbaugh has called me “the real racist” (and more affectionately, “the Magic Honky”). The late Andrew Breitbart, who made me a special target (although, affectionately, he often remarked that he liked my hair), lived to find “reverse racists,” but particularly black “racists.” He thought he found one in Shirley Sherrod, but of course he was wrong; she was the opposite of a racist. His spawn think they found one in Joe Williams. They’re wrong, too.

Over on the white nationalist site Stormfront, they didn’t like my interview with Tavis Smiley, either. (Sorry, I won’t link there.) The more sympathetic Stormfront posters want me to know that I’ll be a victim of anti-white genocide thanks to my Obama support; the idiots want to know if I’m Jewish, even though I told Smiley I’m Irish Catholic. But then the KKK hated Catholics as well as Jews and blacks, so maybe it doesn’t matter.

[...]

I guess I’m going to find out soon. My book comes out Aug. 13 – you can pre-order it here. I’m going to send a copy to Noel Sheppard. Maybe he’ll see my argument with a little more clarity.

Will Sheppard act like a gentleman for once when he gets that book and seriously consider Walsh's views instead of spewing kneejerk right-wing talking points?

To borrow another Sheppard-ism: Yes, that was a rhetorical question.

UPDATE: Guess who else agrees with Walsh's assessment? None other than Republican strategist Ed Rollins In a Fox News appearance, Rollins said of the Republican Party: "It is a bunch of old, white guys, and unfortunately, a lot of them are fat like me – like Haley Barbour, my former deputy, and others."


Posted by Terry K. at 12:08 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, July 10, 2012 9:53 AM EDT

Newer | Latest | Older

Bookmark and Share

Get the WorldNetDaily Lies sticker!

Find more neat stuff at the ConWebWatch store!

Read my blog on Kindle

Support This Site

« July 2012 »
S M T W T F S
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31

Bloggers' Rights at EFF
Support Bloggers' Rights!

News Media Blog Network

Add to Technorati Favorites

Add to Google

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to My AOL