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Tuesday, February 11, 2014
CNS' Starr Can't Be Bothered To Tell A Balanced Story
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com's tradition of one-sided reporting continues in a Feb. 11 article by Penny Starr, in which she details how "A coalition of pro-family and traditional values groups sent a letter yesterday to Attorney General Eric Holder and FBI Director James Comey asking that the Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigations to stop using the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) as a resource and authority on hate crimes."

Missing from Starr's article: Any reaction from the SPLC to the letter. There's no evidence Starr even bothered to contact them for a response. Thus, conservative smears of the SPLC as "anti-Christian" stand unchallenged, despite CNS' mission statement to "fairly present all legitimate sides of a story."


Posted by Terry K. at 3:28 PM EST
WND's Big IRS Scandal 'Smoking Gun' Isn't
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein thinks he has a "smoking gun" in the IRS non-scandal:

Though President Obama insists the Internal Revenue Service is not guilty of the political targeting of nonprofits, WND has learned the agency contracts with an avowedly “progressive” organization supported by George Soros to process data filed by smaller tax-exempt groups.

The federal agency process sends details contained in the annual filings for organizations with $50,000 in annual receipts or less to the Urban Institute, which is funded at least partly by government payments as well as contributions from far-left activist George Soros.

The IRS page directs groups to file with the Urban Institute, although apparently other providers also can file the Form 990 documentation, which is required of every nonprofit, small and large.

Yeah, that's Klein's "smoking gun."  No evidence that the Urban Institute has done anything other compile Form 990 information for the IRS -- just that it's a supposedly liberal group. In other words, classic guilt by association.

Klein makes sure to bury key information that undermines his conspiracy:

The Urban Institute’s partnership with the IRS, meanwhile, goes back to 1997, when the nonprofit was contracted to digitize and help make the data associated with Form 990s more accessible to the public.

Also in 1997, the Urban Institute contracted with Philanthropic Research, Inc., which later renamed itself GuideStar, to digitize form 990s.

So the Urban institute has worked with the IRS for close to 20 years, with apparently no problem until Klein decided to play guilt by association. If it were an actual problem, you'd think that the Bush administration would have done something about it. But they apparently didn't.

Despite the big pile of nothing here, Klein's boss, Joseph Farah, is ready to flog it:

It’s a simple story but presents an open-and-shut case that the IRS has been discriminating against conservatives for nearly 20 years – and the Obama administration has knowingly taken advantage of policies implemented by Bill and Hillary Clinton and set them on hyper drive.

Well, no -- again, this is simply guilt by association, and no wrongdoing has been proven, let alone alleged. But then, when has WND ever needed evidence to promote its smears?


Posted by Terry K. at 2:13 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, February 11, 2014 2:14 PM EST
AIM's Kincaid Ignores Anti-Gay Agenda Of Groups Aligning With Putin
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Cliff Kincaid writes in a Feb. 7 Accuracy in Media column:

The 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi aren’t the only platform for Russian President Vladimir Putin to assert himself on the international stage. He is reportedly planning to preside over a major Moscow conference in September sponsored by the World Congress of Families, a pro-family coalition that includes several high-profile American conservative organizations.

Putin, who is recently divorced and is said to have a mistress, will present himself as a defender of the Christian faith and Christian values, in contrast to the decline and decadence of the West. He is counting on conservatives in attendance to ignore the fact that he was a Soviet KGB officer and ran its successor, the FSB. 

Weirdly, Kincaid is completely silent about the main reason these "pro-family" groups have latched onto Putin: the recently passed law in Russia banning alleged pro-gay "propaganda."

Right Wing Watch notes that "the WCF and the Religious Right groups it partners with are ardent promoters of anti-gay legislation worldwide, and they love Russia's anti-gay President Vladimir Putin."

Perhaps Kincaid's silence on the issue is because he actually supports Putin on this -- after all, he's been a longtime gay-basher who supports a proposed law in Uganda that would permit the execution of homosexuals.

In September, Kincaid huffed that a group headed by William Kristol "critical of Russia for passing legislation to protect children from homosexual propaganda." In a December column, Kincaid criticized the hosts of CNN's "Crossfire" for critizing the Russian anti-gay law and supporting President Obama's more to send gay athletes as part of a U.S. delegation to the Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

Perhaps Kincaid doesn't want to admit that homophobia is a key Putin value, lest it undermine his own homophobia.

UPDATE: Kincaid finally addresses the issue in a Feb. 11 column, in which defends Putin's crackdown on gay activity as "understandable" and laments the media's "gross exaggerations" about Russia's anti-gay law:

Media coverage of Russia during the Olympic Games has proven to be extremely inaccurate, from the gross exaggerations about the effects of Russia’s anti-gay propaganda law, to NBC’s claim in a report for the Olympics opening ceremony that Soviet communism was a “pivotal experiment”—and not a tragedy—in the country’s history.

The topic of homosexual rights has dominated most of the coverage. Fareed Zakaria made the false claim on CNN that homosexuality has been “criminalized,” or outlawed, in Russia while Megyn Kelly of Fox News insisted that Russian President Putin is somehow guilty of “homophobia” because he signed a law prohibiting the recruitment of children to the homosexual lifestyle.

By any objective standard, the Russian response to America’s export of homosexuality under Obama is understandable, not objectionable, and it doesn’t constitute “homophobia.” They passed a law to keep homosexual propaganda from children. But this does not mean that Russia is on the right course and should be applauded by conservatives.

The narrow focus on gay rights, which is the intense concern of many in the U.S. media, misses the big picture—that Putin is posturing globally as a pro-family values champion willing to confront America’s dying and decadent culture. Some conservatives are so disgusted by the course Obama has put America on that they seem willing to suspend their critical thinking abilities and embrace Putin as sincere.

And somehow, this is all Obama's fault:

Say what you will about Putin, but he has a vision for his country that is enticing to the Russians and draws a contrast with the West, which is suffering through a period of decline and decay under Obama. The year 2014 has been declared the “Year of Culture in Russia,” and Putin says “It is intended to be a year of enlightenment, emphasis on our cultural roots, patriotism, values and ethics.”

In contrast to Obama, who embraces and promotes every deviant and perverted lifestyle choice, Putin sounds very appealing. But appearances can be deceiving and American conservatives eager to embrace this kind of “conservatism” would be wise to stop and examine what is really going on in Russia. The evidence indicates it is a clever ruse to mask the emergence of a resurgent Russia, built on the Soviet “experiment.”

[...]

It is difficult to see one area—except for gay rights—in which Obama is not doing Putin’s bidding. Obama’s homosexual agenda only makes Putin look stronger and more appealing on the world stage, even driving American conservatives into the arms of the would-be Russian dictator.

So, yeah, Kincaid is totally down with Putin's anti-gay crackdown, even if he has to hold his nose at the idea that it's the one thing that keeps him from completely rejecting Putin.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:16 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, February 11, 2014 4:53 PM EST
LoBaido Returns to WND With Odd Musings About Oakland Raiders
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Anthony LoBaido -- the guy who wrote a post-9/11 God-damn-America screed so extreme and hateful that WorldNetDaily eventually removed it from its website despite editor Joseph Farah defending it (we named a Slantie Award after him), and also the guy who hung out with white supremacists in South Africa -- is back. And this time, he's trying to extract social commentary out of observing Oakland Raiders fans.

LoBaido's very long Feb. 9 WND article is filled with clumsy metaphors (describing a woman who attempted suicide by jumping off the top deck of the Raiders' stadium as having "tumble[d] downward like a stunt dummy, or the parachuting gang of bank robbers in the film, “Point Break”) and clumsier self-aggrandizement (he touts how Raytheon "offered me a position of senior training and development director working with the new National Armed Forces of Afghanistan" but didn't take the job becuase "I wanted $345,000 per year to put my life on the line").

But clumsiest of all are LoBaido's attempts to shoehorn his griping about the world into a study of rabid football fans, to the point where it's unclear just how LoBaido really feels besides superior and judgmental. He laments that some female Raiders fans "would cut and alter their tops to show off their cleavage just enough to make them enticing, as if they had it down to an exact science." He then adds: "You have to wonder what happened to modesty, but considering the siege of pornography in society, the thirst for modesty has been all but quenched."

A few paragraphs later, LoBaido serves up this train wreck of a paragraph:

People were chanting “USA!” even though both Iraq and Afghanistan have long since been lost, military suicides have climbed to more than 20 per day and egregious criminality from Abu Ghraib to Robert Bales have unraveled before our eyes. Yet it was good to see the American spirit was still alive, and it made me proud to be on hand, and proud to be an American. The giant American flag spread across the football field was almost awe inspiring. That said, one could not avoid the feeling that we were cheering for both an American mystique and an Oakland Raiders mystique that have evaporated like the morning fog, as the prestige, influence, financial might, morality, prosperity and standing of our nation steadily declines.

Elsewhere, LoBaido takes numerous odd digressions, including a brief history of the city of Oakland and about how his mom's favorite football player was Jim Plunkett, and repeatedly misspells the name of Raiders quarterback Matt McGloin. He also serves up this:

Another memory that I can’t seem to shake is that of all the security at the games. When I was walking in to the stadium for the final game of the season against Denver, one of the security guards told me, “Christians are dangerous.” He was actually checking me for a knife.

He said, “We don’t want you stabbing anybody.” You know, as if …

I said reflexively, “I’m just a boring, Christian guy.” I mean, I used to work at a grocery store when I was a teenager. I used to work at a gas station, too. Just like Jim Plunkett.

The security guard then said, “We all know Christians are dangerous, too.” (Like Kurt Warner?)

We were thinking more like James Kopp, or  perhaps the militias in the Central African Republic. Or maybe the South African white supremacists LoBbaido hung out with.

LoBaido concludes that football keeps our collective minds off real problems, like China or deadly gamma rays:

Perhaps some will say that these thoughts deserve additional introspection. How does the NFL, with its violence, showmanship, antics, drinking and criminality, reflect postmodern America, if at all? There were the shootings at Sandy Hook in Connecticut and the storm we came to know as “Sandy.” Is our society, and our world, coming apart? Yet while we may indeed live in a society where is seems that nothing is sacred, we can at least hold onto the fact that for many Americans, football is still sacred. That, in and of itself, offers at least a modicum of comfort.

Distractions like the NFL will have to be enough to keep us from slipping into the “Black Hole,” as we live in a world where China has launched a new fleet of stealthy submarines loaded with intercontinental ballistic missiles bought and paid for at Wal-Mart, and a constant flood of immensely powerful gamma ray bursts threaten life on Earth.

An editor's note states that Lobaido "was given season tickets to attend the Oakland Raiders NFL home games," which apparently resulted in this. Let this be a lesson to anyone thinking about giving away such things.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:43 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, February 11, 2014 1:46 AM EST
Monday, February 10, 2014
CNS' Jeffrey Ignores Key Facts In Touting Catholic Education
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com's pro-Catholic bias continues in a Feb. 10 article by editor Terry Jeffrey:

Students who attended Catholic high schools were approximately twice as likely as students who attended public high schools to go on and graduate from college, according to a new report from the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics.

According to the report, 61.9 percent of Catholic high school students went on to earn a bachelor’s degree or higher by the time they were 8 years out of high school. By contrast, only 31.1 percent of public school students had gone on to earn a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Jeffrey doesn't mention one key reason why that is: Catholic schools get to be selective about the students they enroll, while public schools do not.

A pro-Catholic education website even admits this, citing as one reason for higher achievement rates that "smarter parents send their smarter students to Catholic schools, an effect called pre-selection."

Since Catholic schools are in large part selective, they can also remove students who do not perform well -- and those students usually end up in public schools.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:41 PM EST
Updated: Monday, February 10, 2014 5:42 PM EST
WND's Kupelian Serves Up Hypocritical Drug Rant
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian has long had a hypocritially adversarial relationship with prescription drugs. For example, he has previously attacked antidepressants while citing the case of Andrea Yates, who killed her five children, as an argument against them while ignoring the fact that she and her husband were in thrall to a fundamentalist Christian preacher who likely contributed to her mindset.

Kupelian takes on painkiller abuse in a Feb. 9 WND column:

“Prescription drug abuse,” announced the CDC, “is the fastest growing drug problem in the United States.”

The skyrocketing rate of drug-overdose death rates “has been driven,” says the report, “by increased use of a class of prescription drugs called opioid analgesics” – drugs like hydrocodone (brand names Norco, Vicodin), hydromorphone (Dilaudid, Exalgo), oxycodone (OxyContin, Percocet) and morphine (Astramorph, Avinza).

“Opioid analgesics suppress your perception of pain,” explains WebMD, “and calm your emotional response to pain by reducing the number of pain signals sent by the nervous system and the brain’s reaction to those pain signals.”

For the last decade, “more overdose deaths have involved opioid analgesics than heroin and cocaine combined,” reports the CDC. In addition, “for every unintentional overdose death related to an opioid analgesic, nine persons are admitted for substance abuse treatment, 35 visit emergency departments, 161 report drug abuse or dependence, and 461 report nonmedical uses of opioid analgesics.” In other words, it’s an epidemic.

America’s traditional drug paradigm has long been something like this: On the one hand is the respectable, legal, medical world where enlightened doctors prescribe their patients wonder drugs that relieve their symptoms and make them feel more comfortable – OxyContin, anti-anxiety drugs (Valium, Xanax), sleeping pills, stimulants, mood stabilizers and, more recently, marijuana, hallucinogens and so forth.

On the other hand is the sleazy, criminal world of drug pushers who supply low-life users and addicts with drugs to satiate their habits, make them feel better and relieve their stresses, troubles and anxieties – drugs like OxyContin and other illegally obtained psych meds, marijuana, stimulants, cocaine, hallucinogens and so forth.

But WND has as a columnist Lee Hieb, a past president of the right-wing Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. We've documented how the AAPS defended a doctor who prescribed massive doses of painkillers like morphine and OxyContin to patients, some of whom abused and resold the pills. The DEA stated that the doctor's actions "caused at least one death, several nonfatal overdoses, and countless addicted patients."

The AAPS has a list of doctors who have prosecuted for overprescription of painkillers, stating that because of this prosecution, "tens of thousands have been deprived of life-saving treatment."

If Kupelian is really concerned about drug misuse, he should rethink his employer's relationship with Hieb and AAPS.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:38 PM EST
Updated: Monday, February 10, 2014 2:43 PM EST
Bozell Turns Heathering Into A Political Movement
Topic: Media Research Center

Apparently, Brent Bozell has decided that Heathering conservatives who aren't conservative enough has worked so well, he's turning it into a movement.

TPM reports on Bozell's latest project, launched while wearing the hat of his PAC, ForAmerica:

ForAmerica announced Tuesday that it's pouring six-figures into its "Dump The Leadership" campaign.

It probably won't come as a surprise that the man behind the group is none other than L. Brent Bozell III, the right-wing flamethrower who's proven himself plenty willing to take on the GOP establishment.

After Paul Ryan hashed out a bipartisan budget deal late last year, Bozell predicted that the conservative base would "stampede away from a party that has lost its principles and bearings.”

"Time and again, year after year, the Republican leadership in the House and Senate has come to grassroots conservatives, and Tea Party supporters pleading for our money, our volunteers, our time, our energy and our votes," Bozell told CNN in a statement.

Bozell said the group will use digital ads between now and November to target House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX).

Interestingly, ForAmerica shares the same offices as the MRC, which makes one wonder where, exactly, the line between the two organizations is.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:11 PM EST
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, Supersize WorldNetDaily Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Last Tuesday, fraudulently elected President Barack Hussein Obama treated the American people to yet another empty and frightening speech. Not even eligible to be standing on the podium addressing a joint session of Congress for the State of the Union Address – as Obama is not a natural born citizen, as required by the Constitution, sired in the United States by two citizen parents – the socialist, anti-Semitic, anti-Christian and anti-white, anti-Israeli, Muslim-sympathizer-in-chief spewed forth a masterful performance, all the while ignoring the cancer that has metastasized in his administration – a cancer that threatens the continued existence of our severely wounded nation.

-- Larry Klayman, Jan. 31 WorldNetDaily column

America, we’ve got to stop celebrating American communists, communist sympathizers and liberal fascist radicals like Pete Seeger, Hollywood, Broadway, Obama and the Democratic Socialist Party, and instead marginalize and punish them as the traitors they truly are.

-- Ellis Washington, Jan. 31 WorldNetDaily column

The words of Obama and Rodgers disgusted me.

I’d flunk them and their parties.

The Democrats for deceptively and deliberately changing our laws and seeding the bureaucracy and the judiciary with like-minded deceivers who will remain to do their damage long after Barack Obama has gone on to become an even richer half-black, half-white man who still thinks people dislike him because of his skin color.

And flunk the Republicans, too, for allowing it to happen.

-- Barbara Simpson, Feb. 2 WND column

Dinesh D’Souza can’t say it. So let me say it for him: Barack Obama is using and abusing his power to come after his enemies with a vengeance.

-- Joseph Farah, Feb. 2 WND column

I will believe Barack Obama’s heart is in the right place when he vows that he is a follower of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and will take no actions and make no pronouncements that he cannot square with His Holy Word. I will believe Barack Obama’s heart is in the right place when he repents of all the evil he has wrought since assuming office five years ago. I will believe Barack Obama’s heart is in the right place when he turns from his wicked ways, scrupulously follows the law of the land and listens not only for the voice of God but for the voice of the people he is sworn to serve.

-- Joseph Farah, Feb. 3 WND column

A few days ago, [Lars] Hedegaard wrote me with a new assignment:

“Would you write something about a disturbing phenomenon: the fact that Obama rules by decree and neglects the Constitution. How can this go on? Nixon was a complete amateur compared to this would-be Kim Jong-un. It looks like a coup d’etat. Nobody talks about it in Europe.”

[...]

But Obama’s systematic assaults on constitutional governance require more than defunding, and more than static. They require, first and most urgently, a full airing. Impeachment, which may begin with an impeachment inquiry, is the means the Constitution provided us. It offers the way “forward,” as the president might say, to re-establish that America is a nation of laws, not men.

-- Diana West, Feb. 6 WND column

Was Obama’s move against Dinesh D’Souza a kind of Rubicon, across which we must expect new and higher benchmarks of tyranny? However that may be, thanks to the quisling temperament of the GOP leadership, only a determined push from the grass roots will re-energize Congress’ constitutional power to thwart dictatorship. America needs a Congress willing and able to call Obama to account by way of the Constitution’s impeachment/removal provisions. Without that impetus, the political class will fall-in behind his bid to free the U.S. government’s power from all semblance of prior constraint (too many of them quite eagerly).

The political change needed to get this result must either overthrow the quisling leadership of the GOP, or else forge the basis for a national grass-roots voter mobilization poised to replace the now shiftless Republican Party. If things just go on as they are, liberty will fail for lack of a party of liberty willing to battle against the elitist faction’s budding tyrants.

-- Alan Keyes, Feb. 6 WND column

While the left’s tactics were disgraceful, I was pleased that someone had finally caught the nation’s attention with the hard truth – that our president is an anti-Semitic, anti-Christian bigot who favors Muslim interests over our own. It needed to be said.

-- Larry Klayman, Feb. 7 WND column


Posted by Terry K. at 9:53 AM EST
Sunday, February 9, 2014
At The MRC, Telling the Truth Is 'White House Spin'
Topic: Media Research Center

It is simply not accurate to say that a new Congressional Budget Office concluded that Obamacare will eliminate more than 2 million jobs -- to the contrary, the report said that the number of full-time-equivalent workers will decline by that amount because they will choose not to because of Obamacare subsidies. In other words, it's an issue of supply, not demand.

Yet the Media Research Center insists that accurately portraying what the CBO said is nothing more than "White House spin."

Matt Hadro complained that "the networks played to the White House spin that ObamaCare won't cut jobs since those expected to move from full-time to part-time work would do so voluntarily."

Kyle Drennen falsely declared that the CBO report stated that "ObamaCare will cost the American economy about 2.5 million jobs." Drennen then bashed NBC's Chuck Todd for noting how "Republicans immediately seized on" the Congressional Budget Office report on ObamaCare costing the economy over 2 million jobs "and spun it the way they want to spin it."

Drennen did ultimately condede the truth, but decided it wasn't important:

While it's true that the CBO report does not speak to current employees be fired over ObamaCare, it does conclude that 2.5 million people will give up working in order to receive governments subsidies instead. Not exactly the formula for growing a struggling economy.  

Scott Whitlock got it wrong as well, claiming that the CBO said "ObamaCare will likely cost the U.S. 2.3 million jobs."

Matt Hadro asserted that "Liberal columnist Paul Krugman ludicrously blamed the press for 'malpractice' in reporting that ObamaCare would cut two million full-time jobs," insisting that "Krugman's cry of 'malpractice' is silly after the media either ignored the CBO or gave a White House-friendly spin."

But the right-wing media did get it wrong -- as did the MRC. But you won't see them doing a fact-check on it anytime soon.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:12 PM EST
Colin Flaherty's Race-Baiting Psychologist Checks In Again
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Last month, we profiled Marlin Newburn, the retired psychologist who plays a key role in bolstering Colin Flaherty's race-baiting and "black mob" fearmongering at WorldNetDaily. He contributes again in a Feb. 8 WND article by Flaherty in which he obsesses over a black man convicted of killing a white college student who according to Flaherty "repeatedly referred to his victim as the 'little white boy.'":

“After at least two generations (now) of black people being immersed in resentment politics administered by their race-hustling idols, they have become the creatures they claim to despise,” said Newburn. “That’s the primary toxic by-product of harboring a resentment, and the young psychopath’s remorselessly labeling his victim a ‘little white boy’ demonstrates this predictable result.

“The MSM’s viewpoint is that black people need their ongoing protection due to ancestral suffering inflicted at the hands of non-black people. This is pre-adolescent, lazy, and enabling logic that perpetuates the misery, but the mainstream reporter apparently gets the wonderful feeling they’re helping an imaginary downtrodden race.

“Another result in sustaining and then nurturing resentments is that the carrier begins rationalizing like a common, habitual felon in that they speak and act on emotions instead of rational thought. This then carries over into nearly every other aspect of their daily lives since they’ve become conditioned to believe they’re not responsible for anything. Can’t read? It’s the school’s fault. No jobs? It’s not because they have no skills, discipline, or sense of responsibility. It’s because someone won’t just give them one.

“In short, criminals like Seandell believe themselves to be officially exempt from any failures or setbacks in their lives. Their handlers in the media and those with the title of ‘reverend’ told them so. The resentment and chronic failure continue due to these disastrous fantasies.”

Nice bit of armchair psychology there, Marlin. No wonder he's latched onto Flaherty.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:27 PM EST
Saturday, February 8, 2014
CNS Unemployment Numbers Distortion Watch
Topic: CNSNews.com

It's another month of new unemployment numbers, which means it's time for CNSNews.com to cherry-pick the bad ones:

Hiring Weaker Than Expected in January

1,154,000 Fewer Americans Working Today Than 6 Years Ago

Teen Unemployment: 20.7%, More Than Three Times the National Average

That's how CNS rolls, of course.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:53 PM EST
Newsmax's Ruddy Hangs With Donald Trump
Topic: Newsmax

The Newsmax-Donald Trump romance -- which started with Newsmax promoting Trump's presidential aspirations, followed by a failed attempt to host a Republican presidential debate -- is continuing apace.

Last Sunday, Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy hung out at Trump's  Super Bowl party in Palm Beach. Ruddy tweeted a photo of him and Trump that also went out on Newsmax's Twitter account:

That served as the basis for a  Feb. 4 Newsmax article by Alexandra Ward that touted how "Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy joined billionaire Donald Trump at his Super Bowl Bash in Palm Beach, Fla., on Sunday and heard first-hand from the real estate mogul what his key election plank would be if he chooses to run for governor of New York later this year."

So it seems Newsmax will continue to serve as Trump's public-relations agents for some time to come.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:13 PM EST
Friday, February 7, 2014
AIM Column Wants To Fix The News, But Not The Right-Wing Media
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Daniel Greenfield's Feb. 2 Accuracy in Media column is called "Fixing the News," but you can't fix something properly if you misdiagnose the problem.

Greenfield starts off by getting his facts wrong in claiming that a New York Times investigation of the Benghazi attack published in December had been discredited: "It did not take very long for a Senate report and other media outlets to shoot down the story which had left out information about the Al Qaeda links of the attackers, but did include a dubious claim that the attackers had been angry about a YouTube video." In fact, the article has not been discredited, and the Times reporter stands by the article.

But never mind the facts, Greenfield is on a roll:

There are things about the news that actually do need to be fixed and political bias tops the list.

Even though David Kilpatrick’s story was discredited shortly after it was published, Kilpatrick and the New York Times suffered no personal or professional consequences for a story that supported the administration’s line on Benghazi. That is markedly different from what happened to Lara Logan and 60 Minutes for airing a Benghazi report that the administration did not approve of.

Both stories suffered from errors, but while 60 Minutes was deceived, the New York Times did the deceiving. And yet Lara Logan has been denounced for journalistic malpractice, while hardly anyone in the media has criticized Kilpatrick for attempting to sell blatantly refried nonsense that had long ago been discredited and that not even the administration was willing to stand behind.

Despite claiming that "political bias" in reporting needs to be fixes, there's only particular side he's concerned about:

Serious news however comes with so much political context that it’s easier to just rewrite Think Progress or Media Matters content than to do any original reporting on a national or international issue. There is safety in numbers because it’s harder to lynch a reporter whose only crime is reworking an AP story that is based on a Media Matters email that is based on a White House press release.

Greenfield provides no evidence that any of this has ever happened. (Disclosure: I work for Media Matters.)  Further, he appears to not be aware that the right-wing media actually does what he accuses the "liberal media" of doing -- for example, CNSNews.com's enthusiasm for shilling for the oil and gas industry.

Greenfield continues his rant:

The news is broken because it follows the left’s usual model of insider highbrow content and outsider lowbrow content. That same model destroyed art, literature and theater. Now it’s wiping out the news media. The general public gets cat videos, pop stars and stories about a Republican who said something racist. The insiders get endless analyses that read like a case of college sophomore arrested development accompanied by politically correct spin on the latest trends.

"Insider highbrow content and outsider lowbrow content"? That sounds like the Daily Caller, where right-wing politics shares space with pictures of hot babes. Yet Greenfield, to our knowledge, has not raised any objections to that.

Greenfield tries to end on an overused right-wing slam:

The news media has become just another outlet in the culture war of the left. Its business model can’t be fixed because it isn’t in business to make money, but to indoctrinate. It doesn’t care about the financial bottom line, but about the political bottom line. Its future is boutique journalism funded by liberal billionaires looking to influence policy by subsidizing failed media outlets that would otherwise go on the block for a buck just like Newsweek.

Meanwhile, right-wing journalism is boutique journalism funded by conservative billionaires looking to influence policy by subsidizing failed media outlets that would otherwise go on the block for a buck just like the Washington Times.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:23 PM EST
WND Cheers Threat of Divine Punishment for Kerry
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily loves it when someone issues death threats in the name of Israel. Joe Kovacs happily writes in a Feb. 6 WND article:

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is now being warned he’s risking the divine wrath of God if he continues plans for Israel that some feel is a war against the Almighty.

“By the power of our Holy Torah, we admonish you to cease immediately all efforts to achieve these disastrous agreements – in order to avoid severe Heavenly punishment for everyone involved,” a group of Israeli rabbis wrote Kerry in a letter on Sunday.

According to Israel National News, rabbis from the Committee to Save the Land and People of Israel are warning Kerry about his “antagonism” of the Jewish state, sharply criticizing him for plans “to establish an Arab capital in Jerusalem for Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, and to have Israel withdraw to the 1949 Armistice lines.”

Over the weekend, Kerry threatened Israel with an international boycott if peace talks fail.

“Your incessant efforts to expropriate integral parts of our Holy Land and hand them over to Abbas’ terrorist gang, amount to a declaration of war against the Creator and Ruler of the universe. For G-d awarded the entire Land of Israel to our ancestors, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, in order that they bequeath it, as an everlasting inheritance, to their descendants, the Jewish people, until the end of all time,” the rabbis’ letter opens.

If Kovacs and WND didn't approve of this threat, they wouldn't have let the claim not only stand unchallenged but be bolstered by birther Carl Gallups, whose WND-published book dubiously claims that a similar curse led to the stroke and ultimate death of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.

Kovacs' lazy reporting falsely leaves the impression that these extremist rabbis hold a view that is mainstream. Nothing could be fartherfrom the truth: The Jerusalem Post describes the group of rabbis as "hard-line," and two leading American Orthodox Jewish groups criticized the rabbis for "degenerating into personal venom and threats."

But hey, support for murderous extremist rabbis is just another reason why nobody believes WND.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:17 PM EST
Will MRC's Bozell Admit He's Doing The Same Thing He's Accusing Obama Of?
Topic: Media Research Center

A Feb. 4 NewsBusters post states:

MRC president Brent Bozell appeared on "Cavuto" on the Fox Business channel on Monday night to discuss Bill O'Reilly's Super Bowl interview with President Obama.

Bozell said O'Reilly did a good job, but he wished he would have pushed back harder on the president's attacks on Fox News. "He’s speaking to his base. He’s speaking to his radical base – that’s what he’s got left – and he’s trying to mobilize them."

Bozell is basically admitting the MRC's modus operandi here. If Obama criticizing Fox's clear bias is "speaking to his radical base," so is Bozell's obsession with the "liberal media."

The fact that MRC must resort to dishonest "research" to prove the continued existence of its "liberal media" meme  suggests it can't be backed up any other way. That means Bozell's posturing is solely to mobilize the right-wing base (and, of course, to raise money so the MRC can perpetuate the fraud).

Of course, as with Bozell's faux outrage about others who engage in "character assassination," the guy who called President Obama a "skinny ghetto crackhead" will never, ever admit that the rules he demands others live by should also apply to himself and his employees.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:53 PM EST

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