ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

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

Wednesday, April 8, 2015
CNS Managing Editor Still Serving As Franklin Graham's PR Guy
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com managing editor Michael Chapman has added a couple more items in his quest to serve as Franklin Graham's PR agent:

For those keeping track at home, of the 72 articles Chapman has written for CNS since Jan. 1, 29 of them focus on Graham.

Chapman has yet to publicly explain why he thinks apparently everything Graham says is newsworthy. Nor has he said whether he has any sort of agreement with Graham in which he's compensated for giving so much attention to Graham's utterances.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:53 AM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: Yes to Obama Birthers, No to Ted Cruz Birthers
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily simply does not want to discuss Ted Cruz's eligibility to be president, even though by its own standards he's less eligible than Barack Obama. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 10:02 AM EDT
Tuesday, April 7, 2015
CNS' Hunter Is Still Obsessed With LGBT-Related Federal Spending
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com deputy managing editor Melanie Hunter is not done cherry-picking LGBT-related items in the federal budget she considers a waste of money.

Hunter dropped a pair of articles on April 2:

$133,920 Federal Study Examines LGBT Families

$199,080 NIH Grant for ‘Peer Advocates’ for Rural LGBT People

As usual, Hunter does not explain why she considers the expenditures a waste of money, something she has made clear by her singling them out.

Of the 15 articles Hunter has written since Jan. 1 on specific examples of federal spending, 12 of them focus on LGBT issues.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:18 PM EDT
Irony: WND Columnist Laments 'Misinformation'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Michael Brown laments in an April 1 WorldNetDaily column:

But who cares about the truth? Misinformation spreads much faster and is often much more convenient. And in this age of instant communication, an age marked by a lack of deep, critical thinking and the frequent absence of serious research, a catchy, misleading sound bite gets “halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on” (to quote and contemporize Winston Churchill’s famous saying about the speed with which a lie spreads).

[...]

Misinformation mobs are powerful, but they can (and must) be defeated.

Brown was talking about purported misinformation about right-wing causes, but he may has well have been talking about the publisher of his column.

We have copiously documented how WND is perhaps the greatest misinformer on the Internet. WND editor Joseph Farah is an inveterate liar -- he's unduly proud of that fact -- and his cavalier attitude toward the truth has been embraced by his employees, who promote misinformation and falsehoods while making no effort to fact-check.

Brown should clean up the misinformation in his own house before complaining about the state of others.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:57 AM EDT
Monday, April 6, 2015
Newsmax Still Suggesting Kerik Really Wasn't Guilty
Topic: Newsmax

Former New York City police commissioner Bernard Kerik has a new book out about his incarceration on corruption charges and his new crusade for prison reform -- and Newsmax, the chief component of the crusade to rehabilitate Kerik's reputation, still wants to promote the idea he really wasn't guilty of what he did.

An April 1 Newsmax article by David Patten uncritically promotes Kerik's book -- he proclaims it "like a late-night alarm jangling down an abandoned street ... a warning to be heeded" -- and adds a little editorial comment about the nature of the charges that landed Kerik in prison:

Kerik very nearly became head of the Department of Homeland Security in 2004. But he withdrew his name after it came to light that he did not pay payroll tax for his children's nanny.

He would ultimately become ensnared in a series of allegations that his defenders contended were politically motivated. Finally, after fighting a drawn-out, expensive legal battle, he pleaded guilty in 2009 to charges of tax fraud and making false statements.

Patten didn't explain who these "defenders" were, let alone that the chief defender is his employer.

In an interview with Kerik the previous day, Patten similarly asserted that Kerik "was battered by a flurry of allegations and probes that some saw as politically motivated." But he apparently never questioned Kerik about it in his interview -- perhaps because it would have clashed with the fact that Kerik put his "prison ID and inmate number right there on the cover of your book," as Patten also noted.

Kerik served his time and is owning his offenses. Why is Newsmax still trying to cover for him?


Posted by Terry K. at 9:47 PM EDT
NewsBusters Writer Graduates To Obama Conspiracy Theories
Topic: NewsBusters

Last week, NewsBusters' P.J. Gladnick peddled conspiracy theories about Harry Reid. Now, in an April 5 post, he's latched onto old conspiracy theories about President Obama:

Does anybody know what Barack Obama was doing during his college years? We know that he was the president of the Harvard Law Review but do we even know what articles, if any, he wrote for it? Beyond that his college years are almost completely blank as to his grades or activitivies to the extent that his time at Columbia University has been completely erased from memory. No professor nor student from that time even remembers him attending classes at Columbia. Compare that big MSM yawn to the recent mainstream media frenzy which included a 2223 word front page Washington Post story devoted to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's college career which ended before graduation. And now we have something of an MSM Crime Scene Investigation carried out by Politifact Wisconsin about Scott Walker's claim that he recently purchased a sweater at Kohl's department store for only a dollar.

Of course, it's been well documented that Obama attended Columbia, and that  Columbia considers him a graduate -- after all, he couldn't havegotten into Harvard Law School if he hadn't graduated from Columbia.

But as with many conspiracy theorists, such evidence isn't good enough. In a Twitter exchange we had with Gladnick, he demanded information about "Classes? Grades? Profs?" When we asked Gladnick if he was a birther -- since, after all, believing the conspiracy theory that Obama didn't actually attend Columbia is not that far from believing he wasn't born in the U.S., he freaked out and refused to answer the question (while also refusing to deny that he was) and hurled personal insults at us.

NewsBusters and its parent, the Media Research Center, used to consider themselves above such conspiracy-mongering. Not anymore, apparently. And, thus, the creeping WorldNetDaily-ization of the MRC continues.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:38 PM EDT
Muslim Derangement Syndrome Watch, Mychal Massie Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Whether it is another transpicuous display of Erebusic diversity (and it is), or another blatant attempt to transmogrify the Untied States into accepting the incursion of Islam as a valued tradition of America (and it is), all reasonable-minded Americans should be outraged.

The Pledge of Allegiance to the American flag isn’t a case of “should be” always said in English, it is a case of “it must always be” pledged in English. There is no acceptable reason for it to be otherwise. For this columnist and hundreds of millions of other Americans, English is recognized as the official language of the United States, regardless of the fact that Congress and Obama refuse to codify it as same. It is the language of those whose blood was shed – from which the Pledge was born.

[...]

Islam played no part in America’s history apart from ensuring that there was a robust supply of slaves.

I emphatically state that Muslims are not welcome to come here and form their own idea of government and establish their own definitions of what is acceptable based on their so-called religious beliefs. This is the United States of America. It is not an Islamic outpost.

[...]

Reciting the Pledge of Allegiance isn’t “a simple student activity to promote mutual understanding”; it is an act of reverence to those who gave their lives to make America free. It is a Pledge of loyalty born out of the debt that was paid in blood for America to become the greatest nation in the world, and if Muslims do not like that, then I submit perhaps they would be more comfortable back in the Middle East.

-- Mychal Massie, March 31 WND column


Posted by Terry K. at 10:30 AM EDT
Sunday, April 5, 2015
Charles Barkley and NewsBusters: The End of the Affair
Topic: NewsBusters

After less than two months, NewsBusters has ended its brief infatuation with Charles Barkley.

In a Feb. 20 post, Melissa Mullins praised Barkley for saying that he admired Jordan’s King Abdullah II for being "heroic" by personally going after those who had kidnapped and killed a Jordanian pilot and that his reaction to Hillary Clinton was to think about voting Republican.

That one-sided lovefest, alas, has come to a screeching halt. An April 3 post by Scott Whitlock lashes out at Barkley for having "sneered" that those who support "religious freedom" laws in Indiana are "religious nuts" who "hide behind the Bible." This was a "hateful attack" by Barkley,Whitlock assured us.

Whitlock didn't mention that NewsBusters had praised Barkley's opinions just a few weeks earlier; instead, he complained that "In 2008, CNN brought on Barkley to rail against 'fake Christians.'"

Whatever will Barkley do now that NewsBusters doesn't like him anymore? He'll probably figure out something.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:01 PM EDT
WND Publishes Matthew Vadum's Shoddily Written Attack On Federal Grants
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Matthew Vadum has always been a terrible researcher who can't get his facts right (and thinks we're inciting civil unrest by pointing out his sloppy work). No wonder WorldNetDaily is so eager to publish his work.

Vadum's March 29 WND article is a masterpiece of sloppy reporting, starting with this ominous opening:

The Obama administration is using your tax dollars to back a super-wealthy, left-wing charity that cuts checks to a myriad of avowedly "progressive" causes, including the notorious Media Matters for America, founded by Hillary Clinton ally and Fox News nemesis David Brock.

It's just one of many examples of how in the Obama era, government is handing out money to nonprofits that share the ideology and political inclinations of a president who looks back warmly on his time as a community organizer in Chicago.

It takes numerous paragraphs and even more numerous extraneous partisan attacks to lay it out, but the gist of Vadum's article is this: The Social Innovation Fund, which is administered by the taxpayer-supported Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), gave a $7.5 million grant to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation for a certain educational program that is "designed to increase the number of third graders who read proficiently in 11 high need school districts in San Mateo County, California."

Had Vadum stopped there, he would have been on safe ground. Instead he goes conspiratorial, accusing the Silicon Valley Community Foundation of being a "left-wing" nonprofit that is "already awash in private funds" due to its links with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Vadum claims the foundation "doesn’t represent the political proclivities of most Americans" because it has given some money to "left-wing" groups like the Center for Responsible Lending (a nonpartisan group that educates Americans about predatory lending practices) and the National Immigration Forum (which apparently violates Vadum's right-wing sensibilities by not hating immigrants).

Vadum suggests that the federal grant money is going to these purportedly "left-wing" causes:

So how did the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, which doesn’t represent the political proclivities of most Americans, get its hands on federal money?

Federal bureaucrats get to decide which groups and proposals are funded by the Social Innovation Fund. SIF creates a kind of artificial civil society, one designed from above by elites. It focuses on three areas that are hard to define with precision: “economic opportunity, youth development, and healthy futures.”

In practice, it means that bureaucrats and grant recipients propose more government spending and bigger government as solutions to more or less all problems.

It also means SIF uses taxpayer money to help groups hostile to the interests of taxpayers. Even worse, many of these groups want to remake society along radical left-wing lines.

In fact, such federal grants are typically watched closely to make sure the money is spent on the program it is intended, and the foundation must also verify that.

If Vadum's smear tactic sounds familiar, it is. Back in 2004, WND did the same thing to Teresa Heinz Kerry, wife of then-Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, by claiming that her donations to the Tides Foundation (which Vadum also accuses the Silicon Valley Community Foundation of funding) went to various and sundry radical causes, even though her donations were specifically earmarked for specific, non-radical purposes. When WND was finally forced to report the truth about Heinz Kerry and Tides, it then declared the truth was irrelevant to its anti-Kerry political crusade.

Vadum is doing the same thing here -- claiming that Obama is personally sending federal money to fund various "left-wing" groups while ignoring the specific programs for which that money is used. Vadum's entire WND series does this.

In a follow-up article, Vadum suggests that AARP received a CNCS grant because it was "one of Obamacare's chief cheerleaders" and "has an unabashedly left-wing political agenda" -- largely overlooking the fact that the grant given to AARP was for increasing financial stability in older women, which has nothing to do with Obamacare.

Another Vadum article attacks another CNCS funding recipient, the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation. Because Vadum is such a bad writer, it's suggested early on that the Clark Foundation is "named for President Obama's Marxist law-school mentor, known for his promotion of the radical 'critical race theory.'" But as Vadum later writes, the foundation is named after the "daughter of 19th century perfumer David Hall McConnell, founder of cosmetic giant Avon," and that his real issue is that "Clark Foundation has given grants to the Dorchester, Massachusetts-based organization BELL," named in honor of Derrick A. Bell Jr., Harvard Law’s first black tenured professor. Vadum notes that the CNCS money he's attacking goes toward "improving the educational skills and workforce readiness of economically disadvantaged young people as well as helping them to avoid high-risk behavior," but he doesn't explain why he apparently thinks that's an unworthy cause -- or bother to prove that any of it ever went to BELL.

Finally, Vadum complains that "The Obama administration has given $16.8 million since 2010 to its allies at a left-wing nonprofit known as the Local Initiatives Support Corp. LISC, in turn, has provided grants to many radical groups, including a Chicago-based nonprofit founded by the late Marxist activist Saul Alinsky." Needless to say, at no point does Vadum prove that any federal money went to that Alinsky-founded group (nor did he mention that Alinsky died more than 40 years ago). 

In short, Vadum is doing what he always does -- cranking out factually deficient, innuendo-laced right-wing screeds that are designed to keep up the hate factor on the right.

Strangely, such shoddy work has kept him employed as the "senior editor" at the Capital Research Center -- and, not so strangely, a byline at WND.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:39 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, April 5, 2015 9:02 PM EDT
Saturday, April 4, 2015
CNS Unemployment Numbers Distortion Watch
Topic: CNSNews.com

Ali Meyer does CNS' dirty work again in distorting the monthly unemployment numbers, ignoring any good news to once again cherry-pick the bad news:

Record 56,131,000 Women Not in Labor Force; Women's Labor Force Participation Matches 27-Year Low

Record 12,202,000 Black Americans Not in Labor Force

Americans Not in Labor Force Exceed 93 Million for First Time; 62.7% Labor Force Participation Matches 37-Year Low

Meyer couldn't find room in any of the three articles she wrote to mention that 126,000 jobs were created in March -- even though the number is considered a disappointment and, thus, ripe for CNS' bad-news-only approach to unemployment under the Obama administration.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:37 PM EDT
Gay Derangement Syndrome Watch, Supersize WorldNetDaily Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Does homosexuality cause harm? As the author of Romans rightly points out, it does. It makes homosexuals ill. And then it kills them. Unpleasantly, permanently and irremediably.

[...]

The Church’s continuous teaching on homosexuality is not some outmoded, fuddy-duddy, far-right, redneck hate-crime. It is born of love for those who might otherwise be drawn into the homosexual deathstyle. It is intended to prevent the misery, disease and death that homosexuality – no less than smoking – brings to its unfortunate practitioners.

Thirty years ago, I pointed out in the American Spectator that in the absence of the usual public-health measure to contain a new and fatal infection – immediate, compulsory, permanent isolation of carriers – millions would die of HIV. I also pointed out that Western sensibilities would not permit the identification and isolation of carriers.

-- Christopher Monckton, March 29 WorldNetDaily column

Considering that less than 2 percent of Americans self-identify as homosexual, why is there such a vigorous effort to accommodate homosexuals afoot, and to legitimize not only the lifestyles of homosexual men and women, but a broad range of generally unrelated sexual preferences, practices and gender identifications?

Further, why are the youngest of Americans – school children – a central focus in this endeavor of public policy?

Most importantly: From whence did this imperative arise?

The answers both illustrate and confirm something I have said for a long time: Efforts on the behalf of homosexuals in the area of civil rights have precious little to do with the civil rights of homosexuals (real or imagined) and everything to do with achieving the optimal moral debasement of American society.

Although many homosexuals argue for the normalcy of their sexual orientation, it is not their desires nor motivations that have driven the agenda reflected in the points described above. That was the brainchild of radical leftists, who have spent the last 50 years insinuating themselves into positions of influence in America.

Their objective of moral debasement gave rise to the imperative for neutralizing Christianity, America’s chief force for moral stability.

-- Erik Rush, April 1 WND column

By the way, if you don’t think this war on religious freedom is being carefully orchestrated, you are completely in the dark.

In each case I’ve studied, homosexual activists have specifically and deliberately targeted business owners who they know are Bible-believing, committed Christians. Anyone needing a photographer, a videographer, a caterer or a wedding-cake baker to commemorate their same-sex marriage vows should have no problem finding many eager for their business. This is not about “anti-gay discrimination.” This is about religious discrimination, religious bigotry, coercion and punishment targeted against individual believers and, in fact, a class of people based on their religious beliefs.

-- Joseph Farah, April 1 WND column

If the imperative to respect homosexual passion is imposed by law for all human beings, then the disposition to treat sexual passion as an irresistible impulse, rather than a choice, becomes the norm. What will become of the human species if this new imperative encourages homosexuality, tantalizing people with the prospect of sexual pleasure entirely unalloyed with any responsibility for procreation and child rearing?

As I observed in a recent article, the result could be precipitously declining natural birthrates and the concrete extinction of the human species. Is it wrong to act by law to forestall such consequences? Is it wrong for the people of Indiana or any other state to show their special regard for the exercise of unalienable right involved in procreation, employing for that purpose the power the U.S. Constitution’s 10th Amendment reserves to them?

-- Alan Keyes, April 2 WND column

Get off your knees, Gov. Pence; you’re not in a gay bathhouse (where only gays are, presumably, welcome). Muster a coherent defense of the bedrock of a free republic – and of civilization itself: the rights of private property and freedom of association.

Why do men like Mr. Pence, who understand these principles all too well, buckle before a mob of lobotomized tyrants with the intelligence of a Miley Cyrus?

-- Ilana Mercer, April 2 WND column

For [Tim Cook] and other homosexual activists, Christians cannot observe their religion and live by the Bible’s words they hold sacred without discriminating against gays. If this is about “how we treat each other as human beings,” as Cook writes, then how can he justify a same-sex couple going to a baker or photographer they well know is Christian, for whom homosexuality is a sin, and demand a cake or photography for a gay wedding? Can Tim Cook really believe that this is decent, tolerant, freedom loving human behavior?

The truth is that the objective of the homosexual campaign is not about American freedom. The objective is the de-legitimization and annihilation of Christianity in America.

-- Star Parker, April 3 WND column


Posted by Terry K. at 9:37 AM EDT
Friday, April 3, 2015
CNS Readers Call DC Delegate A 'Whore' For Being Pro-Choice
Topic: CNSNews.com

As we've observed, it seems that CNSNews.com publishes articles on certain subjects for the express purpose of letting its readers vent their anger and hatred.

So it appears in an April 2 CNS article by Lauretta Brown featuring a statement by District of Columbia congressional delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton that "Nothing is more under attack than reproductive choice in America today.Among the comments on the article are these:

  • Stupid ignorant wh*ore.
  • Iran is getting nukes and this whore is worried about contraception??? F*CK her and the PC crowd we have a Country to save!!!


As of this writing, the comments have remained posted for 19 hours, which means that either CNS' comment-monitoring  is lax or nonexistent or that CNS considers such a vile, degrading insult to be acceptable discourse in its comment threads.

Perhaps someone at CNS would like to explain.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:08 PM EDT
Even WND's Corsi Won't Question Cruz's Eligibility To Be President
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily is so averse to applying to Ted Cruz the same presidential "eligibility" standards it imposed on Barack Obama, even WND's chief birther won't touch the issue.

Corsi -- who promoted the issue so much at WND that he wormed his way onto Sheriff Joe Arpaio's incompetent "cold case posse" investigating Obama's eligibility, thus ensuring its investigation would be biased and the outcome predetermined -- has been utterly silent on the issue so far. He has said nothing about Cruz's eligibilty on his Twitter account (which he has blocked ConWebWatch from following, though there are plenty of ways around that) since Cruz announced his president run on March 23.

Corsi wrote about Cruz in a March 31 WND article -- but it had nothing to do with eligibility. The apparently more pressing issue was the links Cruz's wife has to the Council on Foreign Relations, a "globalist" group hated by right-wingers like Corsi.

Much of Corsi's article was dedicated to letting a Cruz spokesman spin away the link, stating that Heidi Cruz was merely a "term member" who worked on a single CFR report and that her contribution to it was "narrowly focused on economic issues." Corsi also quotes the spokesman saying that Cruz has called CFR “a pernicious nest of snakes” that is “working to undermine our sovereignty.”

Corsi also self-servingly refers to the "2007 bestselling book “The Late Great USA: The Coming Merger with Mexico and Canada,” while not mentioning that he wrote that book or explaining on what universe that book was "bestselling."

It seems WND has declared a total blackout on reporting on the question of Cruz's eligibility -- and WND's chief birther is playing along.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:39 AM EDT
Thursday, April 2, 2015
NewsBusters Promotes Harry Reid Conspiracy Theory
Topic: NewsBusters

We've noted NewsBusters' step toward WorldNetDaily territory by freaking out over yoga. Now it's picking up WND's penchant for conspiracy theories.

In a March 30 post, P.J. Gladnick  suggests there's more to Harry Reid's injury than has been reported, and that the media is somehow covering it up:

It has been three months since Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid's exercise equipment accident story and he remains blind in his injured eye. So when will Reid sue the exercise equipment company or even mention the brand name? So far nothing solid on this from Reid and the mainstream media continues to remain on incurious mode.

This was particularly noticebable last week when Reid announced that he won't be seeking re-relection. Speculation again heated up on talk radio and in the blogosphere about this accident but from the MSM.....the sounds of silence. Among those taking note of the strange circumstances of Reid's accident were Rush Limbaugh and John Hinderaker of Powerline who wrote two articles on this subject.

Gladnick avoids mentioning the gist of Hinderaker's conspiracy theory -- that Reid was beaten up by mobsters -- but he wants an "MSM reporter" to delve into it.

Of course, Gladnick and Hinderaker ignore the fact that there's absolutely no evidence to back up the conspiracy theory, as Bloomberg's David Weigel details, quoting the top political reporter in Nevada who would presumably know a thing or two about Reid:

There is, indeed, no evidence that mobsters actually broke through Reid's security detail and worked him over. But there is evidence that reporters were asking questions.

"Here's what I was able to piece together from people who should know," says Jon Ralston, a Nevada reporter who has covered Reid for years. "Reid is a fitness nut. He had just moved into his new Vegas house, and didn't have a place to do his band routine. So he attached it to something in his bathroom, which was a very dumb thing to do, it turns out. The whole mobster thing is just insane. Not just because there is no evidence, but it makes no sense."

[...]

Why, for Limbaugh et al, is the cover-up story believable? It's because they assume the media might prefer to cover a ridiculous story than to expose the corruption they're sure Harry Reid is guilty of. The problem: They haven't done as much work to prove that as reporters did to verify what actually happened to Reid—or as much work as reporters have done, over the years, to vet Reid's finances and associations.

In other words, Gladnick is engaging in what could be called Harry Reid Derangement Syndrome.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:27 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: Jesse Lee Peterson's Obama Derangement
Topic: WorldNetDaily
As with many WND columnists, Peterson has acquired the disease of spouting bizarre and hateful things about the president. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 6:30 PM 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

« April 2015 »
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

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