The MRC's Foolish Fail Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center recently started a website called "Liberal Media Fools," which claims: "Inside the liberal media echo chamber is a fools’ school churning out pathetic, biased reporting disguised as journalism. It’s as if each media personality is in the running for the dumbest quote of the year!" adding that "the stupid is strong."
Well, yes, it is -- on this website. The first entry highlights MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell calling Barack Obama's book "Dreams From My Father" "the finest literary work ever authored by a President of the United States," sneering: "Move over Federalist Papers, the Monroe Doctrine, and the Gettysburg Address, because according to MSNBC’s O’Donnell, these historical works have been overshadowed by Barack Obama’s Dreams From My Father."
The MRC ignores the fact that none of those documents were intended as literature. The Federalist Papers are a series of essays written in support of ratification of the Constitution (and only one of the three writers became president). The Monroe Doctrine was an statement of U.S. foreign policy. The Gettysburg Address was a speech. While they may be shining examples of political expression and speechmaking, they are not literature. By contrast, Obama's book was not a political manifesto but, rather, an examination of race and his upbringing.
The MRC also forgets the fact that O'Donnell was not acting as a journalist when he said that; he was the host of an opinion show. IN other words, O'Donnell's statement was never "disguised as journalism," as the MRC claims.
What does it say about the quality of the list that the first one is such a mess?
Needless to say, there's no benign purpose behind the website; it's an email-harvesting operation with the promise of a copy of the MRC's latest compilation of "the most outrageous quotes in the liberal media."
Joseph Farah Anti-Gay Rant Watch Topic: WorldNetDaily
In yet another anti-gay rant dismissing sexual orientation as a "lifestyle choice," Joseph Farah throws this into his April 9 WorldNetDaily column:
Health is a big issue for government these days. Anti-smoking proclamations are all the rage. Cities are banning transfats and Big Gulps. The first lady is telling kids what kind of foods they can and cannot eat. No one, however, is talking about the health effects of homosexuality, sodomy, promiscuity and adultery any more. Those topics, once understood by anyone and everyone, are not even open for discussion for fear of being called a bigot or a prude. But I’m going to risk the barbs by doing just that.
It was a big news story throughout the world 18 months ago when actor Michael Douglas explained his throat cancer did not come from smoking, but rather from a sexually transmitted disease associated with oral sex. Do you remember that? Nobody, by the way, disputed the diagnosis. Everyone seemingly therefore understands there are indeed health risks associated uniquely with sodomy and, presumably, to other types of sexual behavior.
Farah, as usual, is hiding a pertinent detail. Douglas' cancer was caused by the HPV virus; CBS notes that HPV can be blocked by a vaccine like Gardasil.
But, in addition to hating gays, Farah opposes the HPV vaccine as well.
WND has regularly fearmongered about Gardasil. Farah himself wrote an incredibly dishonest column in 2012 declaring that people "will die and get seriously ill as a result of the vaccine." He wrote that "There are more than 100 strains of HPV; Gardasil and Cervarix, the most commonly prescribed vaccines, offer protection against two of them." In fact, according to the article he cites to back him up, those two strains cause 70 percent of cervical cancers, and Gardasil also prevents two other HPV strains that cause 90 percent of genital wart cases.
Farah went on to cite Dr. Joseph Mercola as an expert in fearmongering about HPV. As we've documented, Mercola is a fringe seller of health supplements who has been twice ordered by the Food and Drug Administration to stop making claims about his supplements that go beyond their intended uses.
It seems Farah has no problem with letting people suffer and die of preventable diseases if he disapproves of how those diseases were contracted.
Tim Graham Transgender Freakout Watch Topic: Media Research Center
Tim Graham is apparently the Media Research Center's designated person to freak out that anyone but straight white people get portrayed in the media, and he's particularly sensitive to transgenders not being treated negatively, as they apparently should be.
Graham's latest transgender freakout actually involves cross-dressing, not transgenderism, but Graham is still upset:
In their constant celebration of gender-bending, NPR still has time for old-fashioned transvestites. On the April 3 Morning Edition, their headline was “Longtime Couple Found That Clothes Didn't Make The Man.” The producer, Liyna Anwar, tweeted “He's a Vietnam vet who teaches electric power tech. He just does it all in a dress.”
Naturally, this is a story of violent disapproval and bigotry in need of relief from NPR and other compassionate media outlets.
This report was part of the “StoryCorps” project dedicated to preserving the stories of American lives. As NPR explained, "These conversations are archived at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress, allowing participants to leave a legacy for future generations."
This narrative form cozily omits any questioning, especially critical questioning. That's simply not allowed when making America safe for "gender fluidity" is the morning subject.
Graham doesn't answer what purpose the "critical questioning" he seeks would fill, except to denigrate the subject -- which would seem to be the entire point as far as Graham is concerned.
I want to express sincere apologies to any country or people across the world who consider the United States their ally and friend – people who believe they could trust the U.S. to keep a secret, to support treaties, to encourage freedom, to be a peacemaker yet lead the free world, to maintain the military strength to support freedom.
I apologize because since the inauguration of Barack Hussein Obama as president, all that has changed, and we are all at risk.
So a cornerstone of Obama’s agenda is to create an authority higher than the Supreme Court – secret, unelected U.N. tribunals with the power to overrule American lawmakers and courts. What part of this is consistent with the oath he swore to preserve protect and defend the Constitution?
This is a clear attack on our national sovereignty and our Constitution. Is this what Obama meant when he promised to fundamentally transform America?
Is he Andreas Lubitz in the Oval Office, setting the nation on a steady, gradual yet deliberate path to oblivion?
The silence from the U.S. government regarding the above atrocities is shameful. Barack Hussein Obama has long ago chosen his side. His quick condemnation of any alleged persecution of Muslims, and utter silence as Christians are slaughtered like animals, tells us all what we need to know. And his outrageous sellout of Israel both before and after its recent elections should have awakened every Jewish person.
We as Christians need to adjust to a new reality – our “leaders” will not save us. A new era of self-reliance must begin, and it must start now!
Liberals point out that Fox News is always looking for trouble in the Obama administration. Liberals fail to add how good Fox is at finding it! Only Fox, that I know of, emblazoned in a headline position in its coverage the story of Obama snubbing the secretary-general of NATO.
With something like a dozen different political parties fighting for supremacy in Israel, there is very little that Israelis ever agree about, but one thing they know for certain is that Obama hates Jews and has a soft spot for Islamics, even for the demented likes of the Ayatollah Khamenei.
President Obama has announced a “deal” with the government of Iran that allows the mullahs openly dedicated to our destruction to proceed on their path to develop nuclear weapons. No one is really surprised by the sellout, as it follows a long train of pro-Islamic policies and a willful blindness to Iran’s jihadist activities and ambitions.
The jihadist gun is loaded and pointed at our head, and soon those bullets will be nuclear warheads. Yet, none dare call it treason.
The alliance between leftists and Muslims against Christians may be more apparent in Britain than it is in America, since the process has advanced much further in the U.K. – but not to worry; President Barack Hussein Obama has been moving the course of Islamist infiltration handily along.
What if Obama isn’t looking to his “legacy”? What if the threat of nuclear devastation he helps to arm with this agreement (an America-hating Iran with nuclear bombs) is to be brandished, along with a related threat from ongoing terrorist uprisings on U.S. soil, to create the exigent circumstances needed to justify imposing martial law throughout the United States and a plausible excuse for demanding that Obama remain in office until the emergency passes?
There it is. The unthinkable scenario predicated upon the thought that Barack Obama and those who lifted him to power are precisely what they appear to be – the enemies of America’s power, its prosperity, its constitutional liberty, its moral strength, indeed of everything about America except their own boundless ambition. Why is it at all inconceivable that people willing to collude with and arm our boldest enemies may be doing so for the sake of their own power? Why should we be unwilling to ponder the possibility that the Obama faction has agreed to help Iran achieve hegemony in the Middle East in order to help themselves to dictatorial control over the United States? What certainty do we have that, in some secret, back-channel codicil, this agreement is not already in place?
You may believe a coup d’état “could never happen here.” But the danger we face is not some beer hall putsch. It’s is more like the consolidation of tyrannical power Hitler’s faction completed after he was appointed chancellor of Germany. But if such a denouement is already in view for the United States, isn’t it urgently necessary to begin doing what must be done to prevent its completion? As food for urgent thought, I will propose such a strategy in the next article to be published on my blog. Are you willing to think about it yet?
MRC Takes A Dump On Bob Schieffer Topic: Media Research Center
It seems that the Media Research Center doesn't believe anyone who isn't in lockstep with its right-wing agenda has any right to be treated with anything remotely resembling. It's true of the conservatives who fail to toe the right-wing line, and it's even more true of the news media the MRC despises.
MRC researcher Jeffrey Meyer's reaction to CBS "Face the Nation" host Bob Schieffer retiring after 46 years at the network -- a feat in itself that should earn maybe a little respect -- was to take a figurative dump on Schieffer, devoting an April 9 NewsBusters post to sneering at the network giving Schieffer a nice sendoff, under the disrespectful headline "CBS Oozes ‘Giant of Journalism,’ 'Amazing' Bob Schieffer Retiring":
At most companies, when someone who's worked for the company for 46 years retires, they get a nice speech and a nice watch. But at a TV news network, the audience is subjected to the most extreme fawning, complete with the bizarre notion that no one has ever criticized the retiring journalist.
Following CBS reporter Bob Schieffer announcing his retirement this summer, Charlie Rose deemed Schieffer a “giant of journalism” who had a “legendary career” at CBS News. While Rose claimed that he “never heard anyone at CBS or anywhere else say a bad word about Bob Schieffer” longtime CBS anchor was known for saying “bad things” things about Republicans.
We here at NewsBusters have compiled a list of Scheiffer’s worst quotes at CBS, from trashing Conservatives to cheering on Democrats to more recently praising Obama’s Lincolnesque speeches[.]
What Jeffrey calls the "worst" of Schieffer is mostly just Schieffer not blindly repeating the right-wing talking points the way the MRC wants them. Is Schieffer saying that Franklin Roosevelt was a great president or that Sarah Palin served as an attack dog for John McCain during their 2008 presidential campaign really the "worst" things he said? It is if you're offended by anyone who won't spout conservative dogma, as Meyer apparently is.
We suspect that when Brent Bozell or Tim Graham retire from the MRC, Meyer will be oozing profusely. Which makes him a hypocrite as well as disrespectful.
WND's Unruh Censors Cliven Bundy's Violent, Racist Rhetoric To Mark 'Liberty Celebration' Topic: WorldNetDaily
Bob Unruh is in full hagiographic mode in an April 8 WorldNetDaily article:
A “liberty celebration” is on tap this weekend, Friday through Sunday, at the Bundy ranch in Nevada where just a year ago the family and hundreds of supporters stared down the federal government over plans to confiscate cattle from their historic grazing grounds.
And ranch patriarch Cliven Bundy says the fight really isn’t over for Americans until the federal government is pushed back into Washington and stays there.
Federal bureaucrats “are still moving forward,” he told WND.
“What they’re doing now, they are coming into organizations, county organizations, police forces, city forces, even state forces … buying their way in,” he said.
Bundy said the population of the U.S. – which he calls “We the People” – need to teach the federal bureaucrats their job under the Constitution is limited to designated responsibilities, such as establishing monetary policy and maintaining a national defense, and the rest is left to the sovereign states.
It was just a year ago that the Bundy family, reinforced by hundreds of like-minded Americans who converged on the Nevada desert to offer their support, stared down the federal government, which had come to confiscate the ranch cattle.
You'll recall, of course, that WND was one of Bundy's biggest backers, lionizing Bundy and those "like-minded Americans" who helped throw a temper tantrum and escalating the situation during last year's standoff.
Unruh made no mention of the threats of violence that came from Bundy and his "like-minded Americans" -- better known as militia thugs -- or a plan by one rogue militia member to use women as human shields during the standoff. Here's one of those charming "like-minded Americans" preparing to assassinate law enforcement during the standoff:
Unruh also fails to mention the racist statements Bundy made, claiming that blacks were "better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy." At the time, WND tried to do damage control by scrounging up the only black person it could find to explain away Bundy's offensive remarks: Alan Keyes.
It's telling that Unruh has to hide so many inconvenient facts about Bundy in order to present him as a right-wing hero. But then, nobody reads WND to get the facts, do they?
Newsmax TV Running Another Program On JFK, For Some Reason Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax breathlessly announces in an April 8 article by Bill Hoffmann:
An explosive new documentary reveals how President John F. Kennedy's unquenchable sexual appetite was just days from being exposed by the press when he was assassinated in Dallas.
"JFK's Women: The Scandals Revealed" — to be aired Saturday, 8 p.m. ET., exclusively on Newsmax TV — bares the truth behind the endless string of tawdry affairs involving the nation's 35th president.
From blonde bombshell Marilyn Monroe to mob honey Judith Campbell to East German stunner Ellen Rometsch, Kennedy shamelessly and indiscriminately hopped from bed to bed with beauty after beauty.
Kennedy was so hooked on random sex romps that he was seemingly prepared to risk his political career in return for quick carnal thrills.
And Newsmax TV's unflinching look at JFK and the women he bedded is essential viewing for all Americans who want to know what really happened in Camelot.
"JFK's Women: The Scandals Revealed" adds to the diverse programming featured on Newsmax TV, America's fast-growing news and information channel, carried in more than 40 million U.S. satellite and cable homes.
Despite its suggestion, this film is not a Newsmax production -- it appears to be the same documentary that aired on Canadian TV in 2013.
This is the second show in a year Newsmax TV has aired on JFK. Last November, it ran a program featuring the less-than-credible claims of someone who claims to have been the man on the grassy knoll at JFK's assassination. It's unclear why Newsmax TV considers films about JFK to be a key component toward ratings success for its fledgling cable channel.
WND Finally Boards Harry Reid Conspiracy Bandwagon, 6 Days After The MRC Topic: WorldNetDaily
This might be a first: The Media Research Center beat WorldNetDaily to a conspiracy theory.
Last week, NewsBusters' P.J. Gladnick excitedly promoted a conspiracy theory that Harry Reid's exercise injuries were actually from a Las Vegas mafia beatdown. WND's Garth Kant belatedly got around to doing his own version of the conspiracy theory in an April 8 article. He promotes speculative and unverified claims that Reid's own brother is responsible for the beatdown, which in the process violated the confidentiality of Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.
Kant suggests that the Capitol Police's declining to comment on the incident is some kind of cover-up, proclaiming that "Skeptics have begun to openly doubt the explanation" Reid gave for his injuries. Kant is simply rewriting the work of others and does no original reporting here. He couldn't be bothered to do something as basic as contact Reid himself.
Gladnick's article arrived a good six days before Kant's. The WND-ization of the MRC is continuing apace.
'Quote Mark Bias' Makes NewsBusters Angry Topic: NewsBusters
The Media Research Center appears to be running out of things to be offended about. Thus, we have an April 4 NewsBusters item by Quin Hillyer complaining about, yes, "quote mark bias":
Media watchers in the past week rightly have criticized multiple media outlets for suddenly deciding that religious freedom needs quotation marks, as in “religious freedom.” Leave it to the news pages of The Wall Street Journal, though, to use those quotation marks, which by their nature indicate that the very concept is in dispute, in the same story with the term gay rights published without the same punctuation.
So we have a situation where the notion of religious freedom, the very bedrock of America’s settlement in the 1600s and its founding as a nation in the late 1700s, is seen as such a questionable idea that it merits quotation marks. But “gay rights,” a concept only invented in the past 30 years or so, and one not even enshrined in federal law or recognized by federal courts as involving a “protected class,” nonetheless is expressed straightforwardly, unambiguously, as so uncontroversial that it can stand on its own without being set off by special punctuation or other emphasis.
Similarly, no quotation marks or other indicators of controversy attend the passage in paragraph five discussing “the rights of gay and lesbian couples to wed.” But the very next sentence – and this is where the editorializing becomes even more explicit than mere punctuation differences – says that the “political response” of religious people “has been to promote the so-called religious-freedom legislation at the state level.”
Read that again. It’s the so-called religious-freedom legislation. Really? Gay rights is stated as a given, but First Amendment rights are merely “so-called”???
Twice more the news article uses the term “gay rights” without quotation marks.
Hillyer ignores the idea that perhaps "religious freedom" deserves scare quotes if its enforcement restricts the rights of others. Observers have noted that the Indiana religious freedom law, as originally passed, was conceived tas a means of excluding gays and same-sex couples from accessing employment, housing, and public accommodations on the same terms as other people.
And why does Hillyer think "gay rights" is so controversial that it needs scare quote? Does he not think such a thing should exist at all and that gays must be discriminated against simply for existing? Judging by Hillyer's annoyance with gays being so darn public with their gayness -- he literally says they're "frightening the horses" -- apparently so.
Hillyer concluded by sneering, "All in all, a more biased 'news article' could hardly be imagined. Please note the quotation marks." Apparently, if a news article says something Hillyer doesn't like, it isn't "news."
WND Omits That Reposted 'Criticism' Of Islam That Got Coach Fired Is False Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily has a sad in an unbylined April 7 article:
A Maine lacrosse coach who reposted on Facebook a viral open letter challenging President Obama’s claim that Muslims have played a role in America throughout its history has lost his job.
The Conway Daily Sun reported Scott Lees, who had coached the Fryeburg Academy’s boys lacrosse team for four years, was forced to resign over the posting.
“I thought it was an interesting letter to President Obama and his current administration, who are not paying attention to Israel and focusing on Iran,” he told the Sun.
The letter, which has been circulating on the Web, is a challenge to Obama’s statement in Cairo, Egypt, early in his administration that Islam “has always been a part of America’s history.”
Get the real story about Islam in Washington, in “Radical Islam in the House: The Plan to Take America for the Global Islamic State.”
The letter asks: “Have you ever seen a Muslim hospital? Have you heard a Muslim orchestra? Have you seen a Muslim band march in a parade? Have you witnessed a Muslim charity?”
“Were those Muslims that were in America when the Pilgrims first landed? Funny, I thought they were Native American Indians. Were those Muslims that celebrated the first Thanksgiving day? Sorry again, those were Pilgrims and Native American Indians. Can you show me one Muslim signature on the United States Constitution? Declaration of Independence? Bill of Rights? Didn’t think so. Did Muslims fight for this country’s freedom from England? No. Did Muslims fight during the Civil War to free the slaves in America? No, they did not. In fact, Muslims to this day are still the largest traffickers in human slavery. Your own half-brother, a devout Muslim, still advocates slavery himself, even though Muslims of Arabic descent refer to black Muslims as ‘pug nosed slaves.’ Says a lot of what the Muslim world really thinks of your family’s ‘rich Islamic heritage,’ doesn’t it Mr. Obama?”
The piece also questions Muslim participation in the Civil Rights Movement and the pursuit of Women’s Suffrage. It points out Muslims were aligned with Adolf Hitler during World War II and were found “rejoicing” after the 9/11 attacks.
WND doesn't mention that, like a lot of things "circulating on the Web," is largely false and designed to inflame anti-Muslim sentiment. As Georgetown University researcher Nathan Lean pointed out:
The questions were intended to be rhetorical, with an implicit answer of “no” resounding after each one. ... But a closer examination of history proves that Muslims have done many of them. They are an important and integral part of America’s national fabric and contribute in many meaningful ways to its success and growth.
There are more than 20,000 Muslim physicians in the United States, Lean noted, and the hospital itself is an Egyptian invention. Criticism of the purported lack of Muslim orchestras rings hollow because "Few orchestras are comprised exclusively of members from one particular faith, and many are organized along ethnic or other lines"; besides, the violin has its origins in 10th century bowing instruments of Islamic civilization. And the reason there are no Muslim signatures on the Constitution or Declaration of Independence is because "the first major wave of Muslim immigration to the U.S. occurred in the mid-to-late 19th Century — nearly 100 years after those documents were written."
Lean then asks whether those who promote this Web screed "see an increase in Muslim hospitals, orchestras, charities and marching bands as a welcomed sign of the rich and diverse social fabric of America, or would they decry it an alarming indication of some grand Islamic conspiracy to take over the United States?"
We're guessing Lees and WND would see it as the latter. WND isn't that interested in reporting the truth, after all.
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.
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 >>
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.
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?