MRC Transgender Freakout Watch Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's ongoing transgender freakout continues with a Jan. 24 Culture & Media Institute item by Kristine Marsh complaining about a Huffington Post piece about how a young transgendered girl wrote an essay about President Obama not mentioning transgenders in his inaugural speech.
Marsh takes umbrage at the mere existence o fthe 11-year-old Sadie, sneering that she is "a boy pretending to be a girl," then bashing her mother for purportedly having "inflicted the condition on her child."
Marsh then rants: "Unfortunately there is a disturbing trend of parents encouraging gender confusion in children as young as three or four, liberal educators and activists working to normalize it, and plenty in the media happy to enable them." One of those links goes to one of the MRC's most bizarre transgender freakouts, in which a J. Crew designer was accused of "blatant propaganda celebrating transgendered children" for painting her young son's toenails pink.
Is Farah Really Willing To 'Close The Chapter' On Birtherism? Topic: WorldNetDaily
Joseph Farah made an interesting statement in his Jan. 20 WorldNetDaily column.
After ranting yet again about the records President Obama has not released, including "his legitimate birth records, which, according to the only law enforcement investigation ever conducted on the matter determined those he has produced are fraudulent," he adds:
Now, you can agree with me and Sheriff Joe Arpaio on the last one or not. But it really doesn’t matter. In fact, I’m even willing to close the chapter on the birth certificate matter. Though the question remains, how is this guy eligible to be president when he, according to his own story, is the son of a Kenyan goat herder and an American woman too young to bestow natural born citizenship on her son – no matter where he was born? And why all the secrecy about something as innocent as a birth certificate?
Let's take apart the false statements and false hubris in this statement.
First, since Obama was born in the United States -- and WND has forwarded no credible evidence that he wasn't -- he didn't need his mother to transfer citizenship to him. The clause Farahis referring to applies only if the birth takes place outside of the U.S.
Third, if Farah really does want to "close the chapter on the birth certificate matter" -- an offer that suggests he knows how discredited his birther conspiracies are -- he should do so by telling his readers that it is discredited, that he was wrong to pursue this obsession for so long after it was discredited, and issuing an abject apology for spending nearly five years reporting things he knew or should have known to be false, thus completely destroying whatever credibility his "news" organization may have had.
It's obvious that Farah will do no such thing -- he seems to think that he has enough gullible readers who will believe anything he says. That's why there's a Jan. 24 WND article featuring Arpaio investigation leader Mike Zullo challenging Colin Powell, who has dismissed birthers, to come "at my expense to the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, and I will sit down with him and show him the evidence that we have accumulated that brings us to the only logical conclusion – that this document (Obama’s birth certificate) is manufactured."
It seems that WND still believes birtherism is a winner. There's no way Farah will ever "close the chapter."
WND's Klein Just Can't Stop Smearing Vartan Gregorian Topic: WorldNetDaily
In 2011, WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein wrote a number of smear pieces on Vartan Gregorian, attempting to portray a respected scholar who has received the Presidential Medal of Freedom as a radical Muslim who's working to undermine America.
Klein can't leave well enough alone -- he uses a Jan. 24 WND article to repeat those smears and add new ones.
Klein's dubious hook this time is that Gregorian is on the board of Qatar Foundation International, which is working with the federal government "to facilitate an online program aiming to connect all U.S. schools with classrooms abroad by 2016." Klein claims that the foundation "is close to the Muslim Brotherhood." His evidence? "In January 2012, it launched the Research Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics under the guidance of Tariq Ramadan, who serves as the center’s director. Ramadan is the grandson of the notorious founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, Hassan al Banna."
In fact, Ramadan is no terrorist, and he has condemned terrorism as being against the teachings of Islam. Klein offers no evidence that Ramadan plays any role whatsoever in the Muslim Brotherhood today.
Klein goes back in time to repeat the false and baseless guilt-by-assocation smears that marred his earlier reporting:
He claimed that Gregorian "was appointed by Obama in 2009 as a White House fellow." In fact, he was named to the board of the organization that oversees the White House Fellows program.
He claimd that "Gregorian was central in [Bill] Ayers’ recruitment of Obama to serve as the first chairman of the project, the Chicago Annenberg Challenge – a job in which Obama worked closely on a regular basis with Ayers." In fact, The New York Times reported that, "according to several people involved," Ayers "played no role" in choosing Obama.
Klein claimed that "Gregorian is closely tied to the Muslim leaders behind the controversial Islamic cultural center to be built near the site of the Sept. 11 attacks" because he is on the board of the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. And so is Michael Bloomberg, Rudy Giuliani, all four living former presidents, and 9/11 widow Debra Burlingame, to name a few.
Klein repeated criticism of a book on Islam by Gregorian issued by the Middle East Forum, without explaining that it's an anti-Muslim group or that the quotes of Gregorian being cited are misleading and out of context.
We wrote about Klein's falsehoods and smears a year and a half ago, yet he couldn't be bothered to correct the record. Copying-and-pasting is for bad and lazy reporters -- which Klein apparently is.
A special shout-out to Danette Clark and Brenda J. Elliott, who contributed "additional research" to Klein's article. Apparently, they're just as slovenly about facts as Klein.
MRC's Thatcher Doesn't Understand What A Newspaper Editorial Is Topic: Media Research Center
Liz Thatcher concludes a Jan. 21 Media Research Center Culture & Media Institute item complaining 18 of the top 20 newspapers in the U.S. "pushed gun control in editorials" by ranting:
It shouldn’t be too surprising that newspapers campaigned so aggressively for stricter gun control laws. They, like other proclaimed journalists, have lost touch with what their job actually is – to report the news. Instead, many of our leading newspapers have become advocacy outlets for the left. Ironically, these newspapers have lost respect for the Constitution that gives them the right to operate freely.
Thatcher apparently doesn't understand the difference between a news article an an editorial. Editorials are not for "reporting the news" -- they're for expressing an opinion.
Further, in calling for increased gun control does not equate to newspapers having "lost respect for the Constitution that gives them the right to operate freely." Even conservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia doesn't believe Second Amendment rights are absolute.
Nevertheless, Thatcher bashed the New York Times for supposedly having "completely dismissed the Second Amendment" by stating that "he Second Amendment does not provide each American with an absolute right to own guns."
In the comments for her article, Thatcher reacted to criticism of it by stating, "I'm an analyst, not a journalist." We'll agree that Thatcher is not a journalist, but judging by her errors of fact and logic, she's not much of an analyst either.
WND Still Baselessly Blaming Drugs for Newtown Massacre Topic: WorldNetDaily
As we've noted, WorldNetDaily is already blaming psychiatric drugs for Adam Lanza committing the Newtown massacre, even though it isn't known what drugs, if any, Lanza had been taking.
WND takes that up a notch with a Jan. 22 article by Jerome Corsi featuring a doctor, David Healy, who is fearmongering about the drugs:
In an exclusive in-person interview in New York City with WND, London-based Dr. David Healy criticized pharmaceutical companies that have made billions of dollars marketing Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, known as SSRIs.
Psychotropic drugs “prescribed for school children cause violent behavior,” Healy stated.
The drugs are widely used in the U.S. as antidepressants by doctors working in the mental health field and increasingly by primary care doctors, he noted.
Healey insisted the problem today is that doctors working with schools to control the behavior of children are inclined to prescribe SSRI drugs without serious consideration of adverse consequences.
“The pharmaceutical companies made these drugs with the idea of making money,” he said. “There’s a wide range of problems when it comes to looking at these drugs for children. Very few children have serious problems that warrant treatment with pills that have the risks SSRI drugs have.”
The drugs can make children “aggressive and hostile,” he noted.
WND contended that putting more mental illness screening into schools would actually increase the incidence of school shootings, not reduce the violence.
“You can draw a line between the number of child psychiatrists in the United States and the number of school shootings, and you will find that both have gone up in the same direction at the same time,” he said.
He sees a “propaganda campaign” being conducted in the U.S. in the wake of the Aurora, Colo., cinema shooting and the Newtown, Conn., school shooting asserting gun violence is being caused by mental illness and could be stopped by additional school programs that screen for it.
“If school children are screened for mental illness problems, this presumably will lead more medical doctors to put more students on more pills,” he said. “I would predict then the outcome of more school screenings for mental illness will be more mass killings, even if the guns are taken away and the mass killings are not done with guns.”
Corsi doesn't mention that Healy has been roundly criticized for his excessive alarmism about drugs.
Writing at Forbes, John LaMattina states that Healy insists that "any drug approved since 1990 should be considered a possible candidate for late side-effects":
Where does he get this? What makes 1990 special? His implication is that the studies done in support of new drug applications (NDAs) prior to 1990 were more thorough and vigorous. This is absurd. Furthermore, his singling out of biologic drugs makes no sense at all. The fact of the matter is that the pre-approval testing of drugs in the 1980s was far less vigorous than what now happens. Back then, a new drug to treat the pain of arthritis would only need to complete 90 days of continuous testing before approval. Similarly, lipid lowering drugs were approved with only LDL lowering properties and a year of patient exposure. This same paradigm held for novel anti-diabetic agents where simple blood glucose lowering and 12 months of testing in patients were the norm. Today, for drugs such as these that are to be used chronically, sponsors are required to show that their new medicine actually improves the long-term health of a patient. Thus, pre-approval testing to show the reduction of heart attacks and strokes for drugs to treat obesity, diabetes or heart disease are needed – studies that generally involve tens of thousands of patients to be dosed for 3 – 5 years. Such studies are needed not just for FDA approval but also for convincing payers to reimburse patients for these new drugs.
The hurdles that must be overcome to get a new drug approved are higher than they have been in the history of medicine. Does this mean that new drugs are totally safe? Absolutely not. But to say that newer drugs are less safe than older ones is incorrect.
Corsi doesn't mention the controversy over his views, but then, fearmongering is what Corsi and WND are all about.
Newsmax Goes Into Radio, Hires Steve Malzberg Topic: Newsmax
A Jan. 25 Newsmax article reports that Steve Malzberg has been signed to host a radio show that Newsmax plans to syndicate as well as simulcast on its website. Newsmax has even set up a new company for the venture, Newsmax Broadcasting LLC. Newsmax has more:
“The Steve Malzberg Show” will be the channel’s first live-streaming TV show. Newsmax plans to develop a cost-free 24/7 TV streaming channel over the next several months.
The Steve Malzberg radio and TV simulcast will be unique for talk, focused on breaking news and featuring fast-changing topics and guests, combined with cutting-edge viewer and listener interaction through the Internet.
Newsmax Broadcasting is building a terrestrial radio network of affiliated stations for the Steve Malzberg show. Stations that affiliate will be supported by Newsmax and its 10 million viewer audience across the nation.
Malzberg has been without a steady radio gig since being ousted at New York's WOR radio in September 2011. Malzberg has written a column for Newsmax off and on since 2001.
This isn't Newsmax's first broadcasting venture -- it bought time on CNBC in 2001 to air an infomercial-slash-news program that, near as we can tell, made only a single appearance despite plans to do it at least monthly.
WND's Klein Pushes Idea That Obama Is The Devil Topic: WorldNetDaily
Despite his protestations to the contrary, it's undeniable that WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein has it in for President Obama and has been trying to destroy him for years.
The utter hatred and contempt with which Klein treats Obama reaches a new cynical depth with a Jan. 25 WND article in which he promotes the idea that a fly landing on Obama's forehead means that the president is actually the devil.
News reports have recounted Obama’s history of attracting flies during recorded interviews and speeches.
Already, religious and other websites are using the headlines to point out that a biblical reference for Satan, the Semitic deity Beelzebub, literally translates from Hebrew into “Lord of the Flies.”
The End Times blog named Obama the “Lord of the Flies.”
The blog connects Obama to Beelzebub, writing, “This really isn’t an academic question. The Lord of the Flies is real.”
Over at RevalationNow.net, a posting by “editorial staff” muses about whether Obama is possessed by a demonic entity.
“I feel like I am watching a horror movie and the secret evil character is revealed by the evil signs around him,” the post reads.
Beelzebub is first referenced in 2 Kings 1:2-3, 6, 16, in which Beelzebub is described as the god of the Philistine city of Ekron.
Jewish scholars have interpreted the title “Lord of Flies” as the Hebrew way of comparing followers of the Canaanite deity Baal to flies.
The name Beelzebub is found throughout the New Testament, mostly as a reference to the prince of demons.
This is what's considered "news" at WND. But then, WND also considers portraying Obama as the literal Antichrist to be "news."
If Klein had any sense of shame -- which, sadly, he doesn't -- he would apologize for writing this.
CNS Adds Bias To More AP Headlines Topic: CNSNews.com
It's been a while since we caught CNSNews.com adding bias to one of the Associated Press articles it publishes, but CNS seems to have rediscovered its love of slanting editorial copy.
A Jan. 24 Associated Press article on groups asking President Obama to sign an executive order banning federal contractors from discriminating against gay employees carries the headline "Gay rights groups seek order on employee bias."
Run that story through CNS' bias machine, and the headline magically turns into "Homosexual Advocacy Groups Seek Executive Order Banning Discrimination in Workplace."
Why did CNS change "gay rights" to "homosexual advocacy" in the headline when they didn't bother to do so in the article itself? Who knows? Could be laziness, could be that AP doesn't allow those kind of edits.
Meanwhile, a Jan. 25 AP article was sent out with the headline "Schools Must Provide Sports for Disabled, US Says."
But the CNS headline on the same article editorializes: "Shades of Title IX: Schools Must Provide Sports for Disabled, Obama Administration Says."
Whatever the reason for all this extracurricular editing, CNS is clearly unhappy that AP's articles aren't biased enough. That CNS is using AP articles at all remains strange since its corporate parent, the Media Research Center, regularly bashes the AP and even has a NewsBusters blogger, Tom Blumer, has sniffing out purported bias at the AP and other wire services as his main beat.
WND Lets Plaintiff In Abortion Case Overstate Things Topic: WorldNetDaily
Under the headline "The woman who started legal abortion," a Jan. 22 WorldNetDaily article tells the story of Sandra Cano, who was "Doe" in Doe v. Bolton, a 1973 case overturning an extremely restrictive abortion law in Georgia that was decided by the Supreme Court the same day its Roe v. Wade ruling was issued. WND lets Cano uncritically claim that she didn't realize she was the plaintiff until after the Supreme Court ruling, that she had never asked for an abortion (though the ruling claims that Doe "was denied an abortion after eight weeks of pregnancy"), and is pro-life. Cano is also quoted as saying, "because of me abortion was created."
Well, no -- abortion had been around for a very long time before Doe v. Bolton ever existed. And even if Cano and WND are talking about "legal abortion." that existed as well, in about one-third of the states by 1973.
While a companion ruling to Roe v. Wade, Doe v. Bolton more specifically overturned certain onerous clauses in Georgia abortion law, such as requiring an accredited hospital, two doctors and a hospital committee to sign off on the abortion, as well as that the woman seeking an abortion must be a Georgia resident.
The mysterious writer of the WND article (it's unbylined) went well beyond the established facts to present Cano's case. Then again, going well beyond the facts is what WND does.
NewsBusters' Unironic Likening Of Rachel Maddow To North Korean News Topic: NewsBusters
NewsBusters blogger Jack Coleman describes himself as "a recovering former liberal journalist from Massachusetts." He's recovered so much, it appears, that he's become a right-wing ranter who cares nothing about journalism.
Take, for example, his Jan. 22 post about MSNBC's Rachel Maddow enthusing over an inauguration ball for President Obama. He warns "nausea may ensue," and grumbles, "OK, that settles it. This is what it's like to watch the news in North Korea."
First: Maddow is a commentator, not a journalist, so gushing a little too much over Obama is hardly a capital offense.
Second: Coleman would likely be just as gushy had Mitt Romney won the election.
Third: Does Coleman really want to see "what it's like to watch the news in North Korea"? He should try Fox News, where Obama is nothing less than an enemy of the state. Or maybe read -- oh, I don't know -- NewsBusters, where conservatives who aren't conservative enough get the gulag treatment (well, Heathering).
Jerome Corsi's New Attacks On Kerry Being Ignored, As They Should Be Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's Jerome Corsi declared last month that he would try to swift-boat John Kerry again in an attempt to derail his nomination as secretary of state, and he's finally making good on the promise with a Jan. 23 WND article rehashing his old attacks.
But his work is making nary a ripple because Americans know something they didn't when Corsi first appeared on the scene in 2004 for his first round of Kerry-bashing: how Corsi operates. Media Matters has a convenient compendium of Corsi's many journalistic offenses, mostly in the birther realm.
Corsi's lack of credibility is compounded by the even greater lack of credibility embodied by his employer. WND has utterly beclowned and destroyed itself by spending the past four years trying to destroy Obama and his administration by any means necessary, including publishing lies and lurid rumors. As a result of WND putting the politics of personal destruction ahead of time-honored journalistic principles, nobody believes anything it has to say.
Corsi has been laying the seeds of his irrelevence for years through his shoddy reporting as published by a "news" outlet where shoddiness is the coin of the realm. He has no one to blame but himself.
CNS' Lucas Puts Words In Obama's Mouth Topic: CNSNews.com
Putting "love" in scare quotes when referring to gay relationships wasn't the only shennanigan CNSNews.com pulled on President Obama's inauguration speech. In a Jan. 21 article, Fred Lucas has decided he can read Obama's mind:
President Barack Obama seemed to reject entitlement reform in his second Inaugural address Monday, even saying Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security “free us to take the risks that make this country great.”
Praising Social Security does not equal rejecting any reform of the program, and Lucas does not explain how it does.
CNS just loves to put words in the mouths of its ideological enemies.
WND's New Reporter Already Picking Up Obama-Hating Habits Topic: WorldNetDaily
Taylor Rose is new to WorldNetDaily, but he's already picking up the Obama-hate that is so endemic there. Rose begins a Jan. 22 WND article this way:
Barack Obama probably is one of the most abortion-minded politicians Washington ever has seen, and under his watch pro-lifers have been hounded by the Department of Justice, Planned Parenthood tax funding has rocketed to $540 million and coming health care laws are going to force business leaders of faith to pay for abortifacients in violation of their religious rights.
Rose makes no effort to back up any of this, and his implication that federal money to Planned Parenthood is used for abortion is a lie.
Also note that Rose does not identify Obama as the president of the United States, which makes one wonder if he even recognizes Obama's election.
Rose is also picking up bad habits from his WND stablemate Bob Unruh by focusing only on anti-abortion activists and refusing to let any pro-choice activists respond.
Speaking of Unruh, he uses a Jan. 22 WND article to give a platform to right-wing activist Mathew Staver to spew that Obama is forcing Americans to fund "'a Hitler-kind of killing machine' through the hundreds of millions of federal taxpayer dollars given to Planned Parenthood." Like Rose, Unruh can't be bothered to explain that federal money to Planned Parenthood doesn't pay for abortion.
Rose is definitely learning the ways of WND. Unfortunately, they have nothing to do with responsible journalism.
Jim Meyers and Kathleen Walter do the deed in a Jan. 15 article detailng an "exclusive interview" in which Keene is permitted to uncritically forward attacks on President Obama and his "rabid advisers" who are purportedly behind his alleged gun grab.
Meyers and Walter even got a second article out of the interview, in which Keene claims NRA membership is up afther the Newtown massacare "because the Obama administration’s gun control efforts are .scaring people." Meyers and Walter apparently never considered that the NRA's anti-Obama scare tactics might be what's actually scaring people.