NewsBusters Glosses Over Plagiarist's Conservative Ties Topic: NewsBusters
NewsBusters had little to say about BuzzFeed's Benny Johnson being fired for plagiarism, using it only as the introduction to a "weekend open thread" in a July 26 post.
NewsBusters clipped a Huffington Post item noting that "Benny Johnson was previously with Glenn Beck's The Blaze, and has also written for Breitbart News," but it avoided further discussion of the unavoidable conclusion those ties mean: Johnson is a conservative.
Outlets like the Blaze and Breitbart are ideologically driven -- much more so than the mainstream media outlets NewsBusters' minders at the Media Research Center love to fearmonger about -- so it's unlikely that Johnson could have gotten jobs there without demonstrating a commitment to right-wing ideology. That says a lot about right-wing media ethics, but you won't hear NewsBusters talk about that.
NewsBusters also won't mention the fact that it previously promoted a Johnson post at BuzzFeed item later found to have contained plagiarized content. A February 2013 post by Randy Hall highlighted a Johnson item headlined “7 Things Democrats Would Have Freaked Out About if Bush Had Done Them”; that item now contains an editor's note that "This post has been corrected to remove phrasing that was copied from The Hill. BuzzFeed takes its responsibility to readers very seriously, and plagiarism is a major breach of that responsibility."
NewsBusters has long covered for the mistakes of conservative writers. When conservative Washington Post blogger Ben Domenech was forced to resign after evidence of plagiarism surfaced, the MRC did what it could to change the subject. Tim Graham asserted that "What the Domenech fiasco should show is that left-wingers like those Media Mutterers are quite furious in attempting to keep the liberal media as liberal as they can muster," and Greg Sheffield claimed that the Post "cave[d] in to left-wing pressure" to fire Domenech while not mentioning his plagiarism.
(Interestingly, Domenech has rehabilitated himself, now running the the Federalist website, and NewsBusters likes to cite him.)
WND's Loudon Tries To Capitalize On Teen Daughter's Relationship With 57-Year-Old Actor Topic: WorldNetDaily
What to make of Gina Loudon?
We've already noted her apparent mental health issues as manifested in the dishonesty and Obama derangement that appears in her WorldNetDaily column. Now she has devoted her July 27 WND column to her 18-year-old daughter's relationship with a 57-year-old man.
Loudon begins her column with this odd note:
This is a very personal family matter. With all the darkness, violence, conflict and trauma in the world today, it’s stunning that the news media would focus in on a personal family matter and exploit sensationally for a little titillation. But it is what it is. This is an emotional topic for me – not one I was prepared to deal with publicly. But here are my thoughts and feelings as I balance the privacy of my family, my concern and love I have for my daughter and the curiosity of the public over the latest “entertainment” story.
I would ask for the prayers of your readers that God takes charge of this situation for the best interests of all concerned.
Loudon can't possibly be that naive. The man her daughter happens to be having a relationship with (described in the headline as a "well-known actor" though we had never heard of him until now) is Steven Bauer, currently starring in a critically acclaimed TV show, "Ray Donovan," and he was once married to and has a son with actress Melanie Griffith. The two made their relationship public by attending a movie premiere together. Does Loudon really think that the entertainment media would ignore such catnip?
Loudon's column is about her trepidation about, and ultimate acceptance of, her daughter's relationship. But it's about something else too -- damage control and an attempt to control the narrative. It's as if Loudon has decided that if anyone was going to "exploit sensationally" her daughter's relationship, it would be her.
How else to explain the somewhat sultry-looking mother-daughter picture that begins Loudon's column (shown above)? That's an odd image to use in a column in which you're trying to convince readers that your daughter "has remained (and remains) pure until marriage" despite dating a 57-year-old actor.
Loudon's attempt to capitalize on her daughter's relationship may be more disturbing than the relationship itself.
CNS' Hollingsworth Dutifully Transcribes More Right-Wing Talking Points Topic: CNSNews.com
Barbara Hollingsworth has yet another fit of lazy journalism in which she decides to serve as stenographer for a right-wing activist group in a July 22 CNSNews.com article. This time, she uncritically repeats attacks from the Institute for Energy Research that a new report warning of the dangers of climate change "is just another attempt by economic and political elites to impose a carbon tax on Americans."
Of Course WND Loves Heckler Who Called Obama The Antichrist Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily devotes an entire July 25 article to how some random heckler called President Obama the Antichrist:
A heckler blasted Barack Obama during the president’s speech in Los Angeles this week, calling him the “anti-Christ” and warning him that he would be “destroyed,” before being ushered out by a police officer.
When Obama got up to speak, the man, wearing a blue shirt and standing at the front of an otherwise Obama-adoring crowd, shouted: “Jesus Christ created the heaven and the earth. … You are the anti-Christ. You are the anti-Christ. … You will be destroyed. You will be destroyed.’
Amid a mixture of cheers and boos from the crowd, with several people shaking their heads, the man continued shouting as an officer came and took his arm and led him away.
Curiously, WND fails to take the opportunity to let its readers know that it was an early rider on the Antichrist bandwagon.
As we've documented, WND has been pushing this idea since even before Obama was elected, later promoting a anonymous YouTube video (since revealed to be the work of Carl Gallups, under his nom de smear PPSimmons) erroneously quoting Scripture to claim that the Bible has identified Obama as the Antichrist.
This is a rare example of the WND self-promotion machine failing.
(Image: Mark Geary's Kickstarter for "A Is For Antichrist")
WND's Erik Rush Is Still A Putin Propagandist Topic: WorldNetDaily
Erik Rush loves serving as a propagandist for Russia's Vladimir Putin. He does so again in his July 23 WorldNetDaily column, in which he defends Russia from accusations taht it's responsible for the shootdown of the Malaysian Airlines plane in eastern Ukraine:
Immediately after MH17 was downed, what one reporter called “a torrent of deafening propaganda” burst forth from the Ukrainian government, the Obama administration and its surrogates; this, before any evidence whatsoever emerged definitively implicating anyone. News consumers were treated to reports of everything from Russian separatists allegedly gloating on social media that they’d shot the plane down, to Vladimir Putin having ordered the strike just for kicks.
All in all, it seemed quite the over-reaction to something that might have simply been a tragic byproduct of war.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko compared the tragedy to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the United States. Then, on Monday, President Obama accused Russian separatists controlling the crash site of tampering with evidence and intimidating international investigators by firing their weapons into the air. He said that this “begs the question, ‘what exactly are they trying to hide?’” Considering the Alinskyite penchant for projection so often employed by this White House, for me the question immediately became one of what Washington and Kiev might be trying to hide.
While most intelligent people found it easy to surmise that the pro-Moscow forces might have inadvertently shot down the Boeing 777, thinking it a military aircraft, the aggregate of objective reporting that has emerged, juxtaposed against the West’s strident accusations, suggests alternative possibilities.
Given the geopolitical climate and the duplicity of the Obama administration, we may never know the whole truth, but the fact is that Washington and Kiev would have had quite a bit to gain politically in the intentional downing of this jet and the implication of pro-Russian militias. With the world chafing at the cruel and criminal acts of Russia’s proxies in Ukraine, it would be far easier for the West to justify an escalation of the diplomatic and economic offensive against Russia. It would also not be the first time Ukrainian forces had employed “false flag” attacks to secure their political objectives, as they did during the street-fighting phase of their civil war and in the intimidation of Ukrainian Jews.
Oh, yes – I realize that this will be viewed by many as another anti-Obama far-right conspiracy theory, but I believe that it is at least as viable a proposition as the administration’s narrative.
In support of this, there has been far more empirical evidence potentially exonerating the Russian separatists – or at least supporting the “inadvertent downing” theory – than there is for a case of malicious disregard on their part, or of Russian aggression. The New York Post reported on Tuesday that “[T]he United States hasn’t found proof of direct Russian government involvement in shooting down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17,” while Washington intelligence officials and “sources” continue to blame Moscow for supplying weapons to the pro-Moscow forces, thereby creating the conditions that led to the deadly attack.
I’m sure that the irony of the innumerable instances in which the Obama administration created conditions that led to far more chaos and death is not wasted on the reader; but I digress.
If this desperate attempt to take the heat off Russia in the MH17 downing sounds familiar, that's because it is. The state-controlled Russian media has been pushing variousconspiracytheories aiming to impicate anyone by the Russians in the shootdown.
We hope Rush is getting paid well by the Putin regime -- better than he gets paid by WND, anyway.
Tim Graham's Week-Long Transgender Freakout Topic: Media Research Center
Media Research Center director of media analysis Tim Graham has had an extended transgender freakout over the past week:
In a July 18 NewsBusters post, Graham fretted that a “trans woman” who "worked for the John Kerry for President campaign in Florida in 2004" was running a a Republican to become Nevada's "first gender-confused state legislator."
The same day, Graham huffed that "National Public Radio’s Diane Rehm Show devoted a unanimous hour on Monday to the transgender 'struggle for civil rights.'" He further huffed: "See how the media agenda and the transgender agenda are exaclty the same: build maximum 'visibility' toward a 'tipping point,' and exclude any and all opponents unless they neatly fit a convenient narrative of hate and bullying."
And that's different from how right-wingers create Obama "scandals" ... how?
But Graham wasn't done venting about the existence of transgenders. On July 23, he targeted NPR once again, grousing that "NPR’s nationally distributed Fresh Air talk show devoted 43 minutes to 'the growing number of people who identify as transgender.'" He added, "Naturally, religion and the idea of nature and natural law only came up as something triumphantly overcome."
Corsi holds up his end of the logrolling once again in a July 21 WND article, in which he touts "strong box office results at its premiere," adding how "Each showing had long lines and sellout, or near sellout, crowds that responded enthusiastically with sustained applause at the conclusion," and interviews with "various moviegoers" who invariably loved the film, as well as with Gilbert basking in said glowing reviews.
Corsi didn't mention until the 32nd paragraph of his article that he appears in the movie he's writing about.
MRC Censors Mark Levin's Bizarre Religious Attack on Jon Stewart Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center haslongpromoted the musings of right-wing radio host Mark Levin without disclosing that it pays Levin to promote the MRC on his radio show. Now, the MRC is going into full protection mode for Levin.
An anonymous July 23 NewsBusters post (attributed only to "NB Staff" -- why the secrecy, guys?) touts how, in a Fox News appearance, "talk-radio star and author Mark Levin attacked Jon Stewart for trashing Israel -- and then mocking critics by insisting he should be allowed to have nuance. The weird part of this post is that that it's essentially stenography: it simply transcribes Levin, who did not identify any specific statement that Stewart made supposedly "trashing Israel," and the posts adds no detail to substantiate Levin's attack.
This was joined by a July 23 CNSNews.com article by Michael Chapman also transcribing Levin and also not providing any specific examples of Stewart's supposedly offensive remarks; Chapman vaguely states only that Stewart has made "acerbic jokes and comments concerning Hamas's ongoing missile attacks against Israel" and "has joked about the situation in Israel and Gaza."
Not only do these MRC promotions for Levin fail to disclose the MRC's business relationship with Levin -- which makes its promotion of him look for all the world like a quid pro quo -- they had an offensive attack by Levin on Stewart.
In a rant against Stewart last week on his radio show, Levin bizarrely declares, "I don't trust Jews who change their names."
You know who else obsesses over Jewish entertainers who changed their names (and there have been a lot of them over the years, which means Levin also doesn't trust much of the mainstream of entertainment for, oh, the past century)? The neo-Nazis at Stormfront.
(Yes, we know Levin is Jewish, which makes his weird obsession with Stewart's name all the more disturbing.)
The MRC might want to take a break from its mutual back-scratching with Levin to explain to its readers why Levin and Stormfront share a hobby.
UPDATE: A July 25 CNS article by Susan Jones documents a lawsuit filed against the Environmental Protection Agency by Levin's legal foundation, which also fails to disclose the MRC's business relationship with Levin.
NEW ARTICLE -- Misfiring Back: WND And Todd Akin's Book Botch Topic: WorldNetDaily
Has there ever been a more ill-conceived book-publicity strategy then WorldNetDaily's attempt to re-litigate Akin's controversial "legitimate rape" gaffe with such transparent dishonesty? Read more >>
Aaron Klein Anonymous Source Watch Topic: WorldNetDaily
A July 22 WorldNetDaily article by Aaron Klein declares that "Officials in Jerusalem are quietly wondering whether the Federal Aviation Administration’s prohibition on U.S. flights to Tel Aviv is partially a tactic to pressure Israel into a cease-fire." His source: "several Jerusalem diplomats who spoke on condition of anonymity." That, of course, is meaningless since Klein has given his readers no reason for anyone to trust the anonymous sources Klein loves to hide behind.
Incidentially, Klein doesn't reveal his anonymous sources until the 15th paragraph of his article; before that point, he quotes actual, named, "aviation experts" who point out that "the FAA and airliners are likely taking necessary precautions after a Malaysia Airlines jet was shot down by a missile over Ukraine while at cruising altitude, killing all 298 people on board."
In other words, by admitting the FAA is acting prudently, Klein undermines the entire premise of his article as an attack on the Obama administration. Oops.
CNS Claims Global Warming Has Ended Because Of Cool Weather In U.S. Topic: CNSNews.com
Can you spot the major science failure in the headline of Penny Starr's July 21 CNSNews.com article, "Global Warming? U.S. Temps Up 0.1 Degrees above 20th Century Average, 2014 Coolest Since 1993"?
That's right -- suggesting that global warming has been disproved because of a few cool months in the U.S. is utterly dishonest.
Starr herself confuses with her article:
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) 2014 weather highlights show that from January to June, the temperature in the U.S. has risen by only 0.1 degrees Fahrenheit compared with the average temperature for the 20th century.
NOAA highlights also show that recorded temperatures in the U.S. for the first half of 2014 are the coldest since 1993.
Starr doesn't tell you, however, that globally, last month was the hottest June in 134 years of record-keeping. That would seem to be an important fact to note in an article about climate -- especially since it's in the same NOAA data from which she pulls her U.S. weather data -- but Starr doesn't think so.
What Starr has done is written an article that is technically accurate but so absurdly narrow in focus as to be useless for anything other than political propaganda. Just the way CNS likes it, we presume.
WND Serves As Propagandist For Anti-Immigration Protests Topic: WorldNetDaily
Leo Hohmann writes in a July 18 WorldNetDaily article:
Call it the summer of discontent.
Or simmering anger.
As Central American children continue to illegally pour across the U.S. southern border, thousands of Americans poured onto the streets Friday in 319 cities and towns across the country.
Well, that's an unusually precise accounting of protests. How did Hohmann obtain this number? Did he count them himself? He doesn't say. Indeed, there's no evidence Hohmann did much to "report" his story beyond going to one protest in Oklahoma City and talking to anti-immigration activists.
Hohmann certainly won't report the truth about the protests, as Right Wing Watch found:
The protests were a bust. Local news reports and pictures posted on social media show anemic turnout, from about 40 people in front of the United Nations in New York to just three at a McClellan, Texas, border control station who wondered if they had gotten the wrong address.
That's a far cry from the "thousands" Hohmann claims attended but can't be bothered to substantiate. It appears Hohmann is just regurgitating what the protest organizers told him.
That's not journalism the way actual journalists practice it, but it's close enough for WND.
WND Promotes More Armchair Diagnoses of Obama's Mental State Topic: WorldNetDaily
Last month, Dr. Gina Loudon made an armchair diagnosis of President Obama as going insane, later defending her politically motivated ranting masquerading as pseudo-medicine. Loudon defends it once again in her July 20 WorldNetDaily column by declaring that we can trust her because she's a doctor, dammit ... or something:
I have a background in psychology. I am declaring the statists of America insane.
Statists were enraged when I went on Lou Dobbs’ show and said that Americans might want to question the sanity of the current president. My hate mail stacked up, as did threats, and other disparagements. I twirl my lipstick in anticipation of the vitriol I will incur from this piece, but someone has to point out the big, fat, cake-eating, poorly endowed, and yes, insane, naked emperor.
People in my field have a convenient “out” when it comes to their profession staying dominated by statists. You see, if you are a “professional” in a mental health field, you aren’t “allowed” to “diagnose” a public official (ostensibly because you haven’t personally analyzed the individual, and regardless of how obviously insane the daily behavior of the person becomes. So I guess Hitler was of a sound mind. Good to know).
Not only that.
You laymen out there aren’t allowed to diagnose insanity, either. After all, you aren’t professionals. We are. So be quiet, you, or we will label you insane. After all, we are the professionals. But we only diagnose you. Makes for better tyrann… uh, therapy. Yes. You understand? Do you need another blue pill?
That makes it simple for the ladder-pulling statists to facilitate radicalism in every facet of culture and society. If no one can call the leadership insane, then the only people labelable are the ones screaming that something is wrong. Smile for the cameras, crazy one. That’s YOU! And it is easy to dismiss the ranting of a crazy person, so the statists marginalize those who aren’t lockstep with their view.
That, my friends, is how insanity is institutionalized and instituted.
Obviously, Loudon couldn't possibly be the one who's demonstrating mental issues. She's a doctor, dammit!
Loudon's not the only armchair psychologist at WND. Andrew G. Hodges -- a self-proclaimed forensic profiler who got a lot of WND press a couple years back when he purported to read Obama's mind through a pseudo-scientific method purports to uncover "secret" confessions in the president's words -- is back, and he insists that Obama is "slipping mentally":
“On June 27, he said that Republican inaction ‘drives you nuts … and it drives me nuts.’ He reveals his enormous internal pressure – far greater than his conscious mind knows.
“Appreciate his casual psycholinguistic reference to ‘madness’ in a deeper scarier way. Obama is warning us that he’s slipping mentally,” Hodges wrote.
He said at the recent Minnesota speeches, Obama was under pressure from various groups over the “the IRS lying about ‘lost’ emails about persecuting conservative non-profits, the NSA spying on everyday Americans, Benghazi cover-ups, setting free five brutal terrorists from Club Gitmo to gain back a deserter” and “fostering the onslaught of unaccompanied illegal immigrant children on the southern border.”
“Obama declared, ‘I’m not sure which of the things I’ve done they [Republicans] find most offensive,’” Hodges said. “Denial represents a classic way of telling the truth. A person rationalizes his behavior consciously – yet unconsciously he admits his actual actions. When we read through his denial confession, we can see that he really means ‘Deep down I’m sure of the many offensive things I’ve done to Americans.’ Note his word, ‘offensive.’ Secretly Obama confesses, ‘I’ve been on offense – to the extreme.’ It fits with reality – his behavior has been shocking, far beyond mere political fuss.”
You know WND is desperate to smear Obama when they have to resort to political hacks and charlatans to filter their smears through.
Terry Jeffrey's Immigration Metaphor Misfire Topic: CNSNews.com
Terry Jeffrey writes in his July 16 CNSNews.com column:
Sam, the wealthiest man in his neighborhood, lives in a big beautiful house with a massive backyard punctuated by a large, deep swimming pool.
While Sam is personally not very fond of children — he supports abortion on demand and believes the government should force all employers to offer female workers free sterilizations — he nonetheless lives in a neighborhood that teems with little ones.
The children are particularly attracted to Sam's beautiful pool — and, on those rare occasions when Sam is actually in his backyard, he frequently finds himself shooing these children away.
Worried relatives have repeatedly warned Sam that he ought to build a fence around his yard — or at least around his pool — to guard against the awful possibility that a neighborhood child might otherwise drown.
But Sam does not want a fence. He objects that it would mar the aesthetics of his yard, and that if some kid really wanted to get into the pool he could climb over the fence.
So, should Sam build one? If he went out one morning and found a boy had drowned in his pool, would he have some culpability for that child's unnecessary death?
The answers are yes and yes.
And, although it is not a perfect analogy, Sam's pool is a little like Uncle Sam's territory near our border with Mexico.
There is no doubt people are tempted to enter U.S. property without the permission of the U.S. government. There is also no doubt this can be a dangerous, even deadly, thing to do.
No, Mr. Jeffrey, your analogy isn't perfect -- heck, it's not even remotely analogous. The act of crossing the border isn't deadly, and America is not an "attractive nuisance" like an unfenced pool where something could go wrong simply by being in the presence of it.
Jeffrey goes on to cite the example of a teenager from Guatemala whose body was found in Texas. But the United States didn't kill him; the trip from Guatemala likely played a factor.
If Jeffrey wants a more perfect analogy, he should have that unfenced pool surrounded by miles of barbed wire, thorns and a few land mines thrown in for good measure.
If Jeffrey thinks America is an unfenced pool in need of a double-layer fence with armed border guards, he clearly doesn't understand anything about immigration. But given his previous attempt at analogy, we already knew that.
Jesse Lee Peterson complains in a July 20 WorldNetDaily column:
Fatherless homes – combined with the left’s policies and attacks on free speech – are creating thugs and cop killers.
The murder of 23-year-old Jersey City Police Officer Melvin Santiago and the death of 43-year-old Eric Garner, who died while resisting arrest by NYPD officers, have put the national spotlight on police and black relations.
The cop killer’s wife inflamed the situation by saying that her black thug husband – who was shot and killed after executing officer Santiago – should have shot more cops.
Progressives of all colors have intimidated most white Americans with the “R” word (racist), and now whites rarely comment on black criminality. These same progressives are perpetuating the fatherlessness and anti-police attitude that is wreaking havoc on America’s inner cities.
But wait -- wasn't the highest profile cop-killing prior to the Garner incident a case of Jerad Miller, a right-winger with an unhealthy anti-police attitude that WND encourages? Miller did like a couple of WND fellow travelers, after all.
It's utterly hypocritical for WND to publish a column decrying an "anti-police attitude" it has done much to promote.