CNS Gives Right-Wing Architecture Critic A Platform Topic: CNSNews.com
Did you know there's a right-wing political movement in architecture? We didn't either until we came across an April 4 CNSNews.com article by Barbara Hollingsworth.
The article stars Justin Shubow of something called the National Civic Art Society ranting over the idea that a government office building in Washington, D.C., is being considered for the National Register of Historic Places because it's among the first such modernist-style buildings in the city. Shubow declares that he "would like to see the building torn down and replaced" because it's "unpleasant and unliked," like apparently all modern architecture is:
Shubow pointed out that a National Register listing “makes it more difficult to make alterations to it and also affects development in the neighborhood.
“So one of the results could be the encouragement of building other Modernist buildings around it, as opposed to beautiful, inspiring classical buildings - the sorts of buildings we all associate with Washington, D.C.,” he said.
That seems like a lot of energy and hate to waste over a government building, which suggests there's something deeper happening.
Indeed, there is. The National Civic Art Society is apparently some sort of right-wing group; two of its leaders are officials with the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation (a rather plain rendition of the Goddess of Democracy created by the Tiananmen Square protesters), and only about half have any sort of stated art or architecture background. (Shubow himself is a lawyer by training.) Its advisers include representatives of right-wing think tanks such as the Ethics and Public Policy Center, the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute.
The society's main job right now is hating the proposed Eisenhower Memorial for being designed by modernist architect Frank Gehry and not being being part of the "classical tradition" in Washington. Shubow demands that the design competition for the memorial be reopened and that it be dominated by "a classical design, one that comports with the best of our memorial tradition."
The society's "about us" page includees even more ranting against modern architecture. Just as right-wing jurists think the only good Constitution is a dead one, the society believes the only good architectural style is the dead, rigid form that was good enough for Rome, Athens and the Founders:
George Washington and Thomas Jefferson consciously chose the classical style to physically embody the new nation's form of government and political aspirations--architecture they intended to be a model for the entire country. The Founders understood that the classical tradition, harkening back to democratic Athens and republican Rome, is time-honored and timeless. It is unparalleled in its dignity, beauty, and harmony, not to mention its legibility to the common man.
Needless to say, Hollingsworth made no effort whatsoever to seek out the view of any other architect to counter Shubow's anti-modernist rantings, making this yet another unbalanced work from the decidedly unbalanced reporter.
WND Treats Disgraced, Philandering Adulterer As A Credible Expert on Islam Topic: WorldNetDaily
You might remember John Guandolo as the former FBI agent who's better known as a serial philanderer and adulterer who jeopardized a federal investigation by having sex with a witness and trying to get her to donate money to a right-wing "anti-terrorism" organization. But according to WorldNetDaily, he's a steller expert on Islam whose past transgressions are not to bespoken of.
Well, Guandolo is back, and WND is still censoring his past.
In a March 24 WND article, Leo Hohmann touts Guandolo as "a former Marine and instructor at the U.S. Army War College who now provides training to law enforcement agencies that want to learn more about the jihadist network in the U.S." Not only does Hohmann fail to make an effort to provide an alternative viewpoint -- thus violating WND editor Joseph Farah's purported insistence that his reporters are "required to seek out multiple sources and contrary viewpoints in news articles" -- he doesn't disclose Guandolo's disgraceful past,. After all, that clearly runs counter to anything a "former Marine" would do and would undermine Guandolo's already shaky credibility.
Hohmann followed up with an April 3 article in which he again features Guandolo, describing him this time as "a former FBI counter-terrorism agent specializing in Quranic-inspired violence," adding that "After leaving the FBI Guandolo formed Understanding the Threat, an organization that teaches the tenets of Islam to law enforcement agencies." Hohmann doesn't mention that Guandolo left the FBI in disgrace after jeopardizing an investigation with his sleazy behavior.
(Oh, and as Right Wing Watch notes, the study Hohmann and Guandolo promote claiming that 80 percent of mosques in the U.S. promote radical beliefs is completely bogus.)
So, it seems that not only does WND not enforce its claimed standards on reporters, it has no standards whatsoever for the ethical behavior of its sources.
Does MRC's Use Of 'Protesters' Violate Its Nonprofit Tax Status? Topic: Media Research Center
In an April 7 NewsBusters post, the Media Research Center's Kyle Drennen whines that "security for NBC’s Today expelled a conservative protester on the plaza outside the morning show’s New York City studio for holding up a 'Don’t Believe the Liberal Media' sign." But he waits until the final paragraph of the four-paragraph post for an important disclosure: "The protesters were part of the Media Research Center’s Tell the Truth 2016 campaign to 'stop the liberal media from rigging the 2016 elections.'"
So the MRC is hiring protesters to photobomb TV shows now? How does that fulfill its purported mission to be "a research and education organization"? More importantly, does that violate the MRC's nonprofit tax status?
The IRS states that 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations like the MRC are "absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office." The MRC's anti-media campaign is effectively that -- its thwarted protest is arguably an intervention against Hillary Clinton and in favor of Republican presidential candidates, given how much it attacks the show for failing to uncritically repeat right-wing talking points.
Staging political protests -- which is what the MRC's protesters were doing -- doesn't seem to be part of the purview of an organization under the MRC's tax status. Of course, we're not lawyers, so an actual attorney may differ.
AIM's Kincaid Promotes Discredited Vaccine-Autism Link Topic: Accuracy in Media
Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid has been an anti-vaxxer for a while, pushing the discredited idea that vaccines cause autism. He has insisted that "the science is not settled" on the subject, and he's touted the anti-vaxxers at the National Vaccine Information Center as credible spokespeople when they simply want to fearmonger.
Kincaid begins his April 4 column by needlessly making things political, ranting that "liberals and the left-wingers who come down on the side of the drug companies, known as Big Pharma. They want government to force parents to have their infants injected with potentially dangerous vaccines that may be linked to the developmental disorder known as autism."
Kincaid then promotes former NBC executive Bob Wright, who has a new book out that touches on the subject. Kincaid notes that Wright founded the autism advocacy group Autism Speaks, but not that the group has taken the position that "Vaccines do not cause autism" (though that position statement is accompanied by a more ambiguous one by Wright insisting that "Scientific research has not directly connected autism to vaccines").
Kincaid then opromoted the film "VAXXED: From Cover-up to Catastrophe," which he benignly called "a documentary about the possible link between vaccines and autism that is based largely on the work of a CDC whistleblower." Actually, the film is made by Andrew Wakefield, a now-defrocked doctor whose 1998 study claiming to link vaccines to autism has been retracted by the medical journal that published it and has been called a fraud.
Kincaid then credulously writes this:
Dr. Stephanie Seneff, a research scientist from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), says in the trailer for the film that if present trends continue, by 2032 half of the children—and 80 percent of the boys—will be autistic. She says, “This will be a complete catastrophe if we just let it happen.”
That's complete and utter bull. In fact, the autism rate among children has leveled off at 1 in 68, and increasing diagnosis rates in previous years likely had much to do with a "learning curve" among doctors when it came to properly diagnosing autism spectrum disorders.
Meanwhile, Kincaid howls that "vaccines have led to the dramatic increase in autism" and rants that vaccines "have become a cash cow for Big Pharma. There is a vested financial interest in increasing the number of vaccines, and making them mandatory at earlier ages." Perhaps Kincaid should disclose what his vested financial interests are in perpetuating a falsehood.
MRC Lets Megyn Kelly Deny Fox News' Bias Topic: Media Research Center
Curtis Houck writes in an April 3 MRC NewsBusters post:
Megyn Kelly sat down for her latest interview with CBS/PBS host Charlie Rose and in one portion that aired on CBS News Sunday Morning, The Kelly File host rejected Rose's belief that there's "a right-wing bias" at Fox News and not a liberal bias across the larger news media.
After playing some clips from her early years at the Fox News Channel (FNC), Rose pointed out that not only is she someone who "doesn't hold back," but she has been "equally aggressive in her defense of Fox News."
Kelly responded that she does, however, "believe that there is a left leaning bias in news, in most of news" and in turn Rose put forth the belief among the liberal media that they're not bias but it's Fox who has an agenda.
She then firmly shot back: "No I don't. I think Fox News is far and balanced. The conservatives who are on air here make no bones about their ideology."
When Rose pressed her on whether or not many at FNC have a "closer relationship with Donald Trump," Kelly did not dispute it seeing as how he's "on our air every day."
Since this is the Media Research Center we're talking about, it's not going to point out that Kelly is actually telling a falsehood when she claims Fox News is "fair and balanced"; it is not, and neither is she. But that's to be expected -- MRC officials would like to continue appearing on Fox News, after all (including onKelly'sshow).
But Houck rather dishonestly whitewashes Rose's question to Kelly about whether "many at FNC have a .closer relationship with Donald Trump.'"In fact, as the transcript attached to Houck's post shows, Rose's actual question was, "But does Fox News have closer relationship with Donald Trump, with the Republican Party than it does with liberals and Democratic Party?"
In other words, Rose highlighted Fox's close Republican ties, and it's not clear that Kelly's response was limited only to Trump, as Houck insinuates.
We know that the MRC is in bed with Fox, presumably to keep that sweet airtime flowing its way. But at least tell the truth, guys.
WND Management Splits On Cruz Topic: WorldNetDaily
It's rare that WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah and managing editor David Kupelian have presented themselves publicly as anything but unified on their particular (far-right, Obama-hating, gay-bashing) mission, but the 2016 Republican presidential election has changed things, it appears.
On April 4, Kupelian wrote a column suggesting that Ted Cruz is not acting "moral" for lobbying Donald Trump's delegates to vote for Cruz after the first ballot (which Trump presumably will not win) at the Republican National Convention. Kupelian concedes that it's legal to do, since Republican delegates are not bound to their particular candidate after the first ballot, but he plays the morality card anyway.
That's a laughable position since Kupelian himself has run WND in an amoral way by permitting numerous falsehoods to appear on its pages, along with the dishonest and hateful campaign to destroy President Obama Kupelian helped to spearhead on WND's pages and the current attempt to reposition WND as a "Christian website."
Then, the next day, Farah -- who's already on record as such a Cruz supporter that he abandoned birtherism so he won't be forced to go birther on the guy -- published a column say that, yes, Cruz was acting morally and that it's "just politics."
And then, because WND rately lets an opportunity to promote itself go to waste, there was a "news" article touting the controversy, how it has "overflowed onto the pages of WND" and the "passionate reader responses" it has engendered.
Actually, we wanted to hear more about the Farah-Kuplelian split and what it means for WND. These are the top two guys, after all, and a philosophical dispute so severe that it's playing out on the pages of WND deserves to be treated as more than a promotional opportunity.
Newsmax Still Doesn't Want To Admit That Kessler Used To Work There Topic: Newsmax
The last time Ronald Kessler appeared on Newsmax TV, nobody seemed to want to admit that Kessler served as Newsmax's Washington correspondent for six years. That's holding up for another recent appearance.
On his March 28 show, Newsmax TV host Ed Berliner introduced Kessler as a "New York Times bestselling author, veteran American journalist who has written extensively about security from the perspective of the CIA, Secret Service and FBI" -- but not as a former Newsmax correspondent. The accompanying Newsmax article promoting Kessler's appeaerance also omits Kessler's former employment there.
If Kessler is on good enough terms with Newsmax to appear on its TV shows, why isn't he good enough for Newsmax to admit he used to work there?
NEW ARTICLE: Jesse Lee Peterson, White Supremacist? Topic: WorldNetDaily
The black right-wing WorldNetDaily columnist is laughably portrayed as a "civil rights leader," so why does he disparage blacks -- and defend white people's anger at blacks -- at every opportunity? Read more >>
MRC: It's Not Biased For Fox To Ask Cruz About Sex Scandal, But It Is Bias For ABC To Play Fox Clip Of It Topic: Media Research Center
Curtis Houck huffs in an April 4 MRC NewsBusters item:
On the night before voters in Wisconsin go to the polls for the presidential primary, ABC’s World News Tonight found it worthwhile to spend nearly its entire time allotted for Ted Cruz rehashing the unsubstantiated smears from the National Enquirer tabloid about extramarital affairs.
All told, the networks wasted 55 seconds (out of the one minute and 16 seconds spent on Cruz) working to help resurrect the story in light of Megyn Kelly’s brief exchange with Cruz in a taped town hall that will air as an hour-long special on the Fox News Channel.
Anchor David Muir led into Republican campaign correspondent Tom Llamas’s report by harping on Trump being “in damage control” after his abortion comments last week and an interview one of Trump’s ex-wives recently gave before proclaiming: “Ted Cruz this evening, asked by Megyn Kelly, ‘have you committed adultery?’”
Wait a minute. Houck is not criticizing Megyn Kelly and Fox News for asking Cruz about about the "unsubstantiated smears" regarding Cruz, but he's accusing ABC for being biased for playing a clip of the Fox News segment? Yep.
How is this not a blatant double standard? Well, Houck has a pretty lame explanation that exonderates Fox News:
At the end of the day, it’s one matter for Kelly to spend a small amount of time alluding to the smear since she had an hour to speak with Cruz, but it’s another for a network newscast with only a handful of minutes to summarize the day’s news and harping on something that hasn’t been corroborated.
So, let us get this straight: It's not bias for Fox to focus on the Cruz scandal becsause it was a "small amount" of a larger interview, but it's bias for ABC to do so because it has "only a handful of minutes to summarize the day’s news."
CNS Reporter Is Sad Poor Blacks Will Get To Live In White Suburbs Topic: CNSNews.com
We've noted how the Media Research Center has slowly been turning into WND. Now it's creeping into WND-esque race-baiting.
In a March 25 CNSNews.com article, Susan Jones sounds the alarm about a "landmark" settlement in suburban Baltimore that means "low-income housing" (read: black people) will be coming to "affluent" suburbs (read: white people). She grumbles: "The goal is to move low- and very-low-income people out of the city and into the suburbs." As she's wont to do, Jones adds a little editorial snarking to her "news" article:
The county must, within 180 days, introduce (and keep trying to pass) legislation that prohibits housing discrimination based on a person's lawful source of income. This means a landlord can't refuse someone housing if he or she plans to pay the rent with Social Security or other public assistance instead of a paycheck (job!).
As WND did when it tackled the issue of housing inequality in the Baltimore suburbs a few months earlier, Jones ignores the history of racial discrimination in Baltimore and its suburbs that keep blacks in the inner city and out of the suburbs.
While Jones mocks the idea that the Baltimore suburbs must pass a law prohibiting discrimination against the type of income used to pay rent, she doesn't explain why such discrimination is a good thing. And her sneering that people who have housing vouchers don't have "jobs!" -- and, therefore, are lazy bums who aren't even white -- ignores the fact that people who are on disability and cannot work are also eligible to receive housing vouchers.
Jones is simply engaging in lazy reporting that caters to her right-wing (and, we can presume, mostly white) CNS audience.
Farah Lies About WND And Its Mission (Wait, It's A 'Christian' Website Now?) Topic: WorldNetDaily
Joseph Farah used his March 29 WorldNetDaily column to rant about how he's going to stop patronizing the various business interests that allegedly blocked the signing of an anti-gay law in Georgia, which he insists really isn't anti-gay because "Nowhere in the bill does it mention 'gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.'" He then adds: "Might I also suggest that you get serious about media alternatives like WND, the largest Christian news site in the world, the largest Christian content site in the world and one that is pledged, first and foremost, to telling you the truth?"
Wait, what? WND is a "Christian" website now?
It would appear so. WND's "about" page -- which, for some reason, has its own domain name. aboutwnd.com -- blares that it is "the largest Christian website in the world -- bigger than any ministry site, bigger than any Christian broadcast site, bigger than any Christian content site, bigger even than the Vatican’s site."
And the idea that WND is "pledged, first and foremost, to telling you the truth"is utterly laughable, given themassivepileoflies WND has peddled over the years.
Farah piled on the false self-aggrandization in an April 1 column that's mostly about a reader named Chris who thought that WND's Chelsea Schilling was the reporter allegedly accosted by Donald Trump's campaign manager. He continued:
WND was launched 19 years ago as the very first independent online news agency. It was founded for the very reason Chris suggests – because the news media had lost its way, its sense of mission, its purpose and commitment to the facts without the bias.
From my standpoint, there are too many casual news consumers who are not using any discernment in reading the news, often jumping to conclusions and not really understanding the facts presented – let alone who is presenting them.
That’s a real problem for news agencies like WND. How in the world do things get so twisted?
Because WND is contributing to the twisting of facts that Farah is ostensibly complaining about. Remember that WND has refused to publish facts that contradict its Obama birther conspiracy theories.
And when WND's readers do actually use discernment against WND, Farah gets all bent out of shape -- as when readers called out Farah's endorsement of Ted Cruz for president by pointing out that by WND's own standards as applied to Barack Obama, he's not eligible.
This all goes to credibility and truth -- something Farah and WND threw away in its obsessive attempt to destroy Obama and which they have yet to rebuild. There's a reason nobody believes WND, and pretending it's now a "Christian website" that has only ever cared about the truth is just one of them.
NewsBusters Blogger Is Mad A Cable TV Show Says Being Gay Isn't A Choice Topic: NewsBusters
Such fortuitous timing! The same day we posted our profile of NewsBusters' Dylan Gwinn and his record of homophobia and inaccuracy, he comes through again.
For some reason, the lower-tier sports guy is reviewing TV shows for the Media Research Center, and he's extremely put out that "The Fosters," a show on Freeform (the cable channel formerly known as ABC Family, which probably has lower ratings than Fox News, a channel the MRC doesn't think needs to be monitored) talked about the gays, and the idea that one can't choose to be gay:
Yeah, and she’s lying now. Specifically, about the concept of free will. Free will would be completely unnecessary if it meant people could only choose what they biologically are. Because there is no choice in that. Your biology is pre-determined. Which of course, is precisely the point she’s trying to make: that gay people can’t use free will to change because it’s not a choice.
However, straight and gay people do make the choice to change all the time.
People like Cynthia Nixon from Sex and the City, who actually had a husband and a family before deciding to become a lesbian. Not only did Nixon decide to change her sexuality. But she even went so far as to say it was her choice to become a lesbian. Not something she was pre-determined to do.
Was her gay gene just “dormant” for the first few decades of her life? No, she used her free will because her biology was not pre-determined by anything called a gay gene. A reality that’s pretty horrifying to the activists behind shows like The Fosters. Which is why Nixon was heavily criticized by those in her own community for telling the truth.
Which of course is why scenes like this and shows like The Fosters exist. To make sure the inconvenient truths about the agenda the LGBT community is pushing remain conveniently hidden.
Gwinn conveniently omits the fact that in the ABC News article to which he links to support his assertion about Nixon's alleged "choice" to be lesbian, it quotes gay blogger Jon Aravosis explain that if you can freely choose the sex of your sexual partner, you're not gay (or straight):
If you like both flavors, men and women, you're bisexual, you're not gay, so please don't tell people that you are gay, and that gay people can "choose" their sexual orientation, i.e., will it out of nowhere. Because they can't," he wrote. "Every religious right hatemonger is now going to quote this woman every single time they want to deny us our civil rights."
And by golly, Gwinn proves Aravosis' final sentence correct. He does hate gays with the passion of a religious-right hatemonger, even cheering that openly gay football player Michael Sam didn't catch on in the pros.
Gwinn also whines that "The Fosters," by noting such things, is engaging in "LGBT activism and indoctrination" -- a rather rich accusation from someone working for an organziation dedicated to anti-LGBT activism and indoctrination.
WND Relieved To Know That Cop-Killer Is Black Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's race-baiting may have become more subtle in order to hang onto ad revenue, but that doesn't mean it won't be blatant when the situation demands.
Take this April 1 article by Cheryl Chumley, in which the overriding feeling is relief that the man who killed a police officer at a bus station in Richmond, Va., has been revealed as black. The headline reads "Richmond cop killed finally ID'd as black man," and Chumley echoes the sentiment:
After nearly a day-and-a-half of waiting, authorities in Richmond, Virginia, have finally officially released the name of the suspect who was killed during a shooting attack on police at a bus station that left a law enforcement official dead and others injured – and he’s a black man who hails from the Chicago area.
WTVR CBS 6 reporter Mark Holmberg first reported late Thursday evening the name of the gunman as James Brown III, 34, of Aurora, Illinois, located about 40 miles outside Chicago. But police didn’t confirm the name until Friday morning, saying they needed to inform next of kin of his death.
As if the race of the shooter was the most important thing about this story. Of course, for the race-baiters at WND, it actually is.
As has been the pattern at CNSNews.com for the past few months, Susan Jones' lead story on March's umployment leads with the labor force participation rate. She fails as usual to mention the relevant fact that the labor force number -- since it includes students and retirees who aren't looking for jobs -- is a unreliable number for discussing unemployment.
Instead of recruiting Michael Chapman to write another article about how the black unemployment rate is double that of whites (which it has always been since statistics began to be kept, and which is referenced in Jones' article), Terry Jeffrey weighs in with an article on new data show "The United States lost 29,000 manufacturing jobs in March while gaining jobs in retail trade, food services and drinking establishments." Jeffrey's implication that this is somehow President Obama's fault is undermined by a chart accompanying his article that shows not only retail jobs eclipsed manufacturing jobs around 2003 -- under a Republican president -- but that manufacturing jobs were at their lowest levels since the 1940s in 2009, and that employment in the manufacturing sector has mostly been on the increase since then.
Speaking of Stupidity in Higher Education... Topic: Media Research Center
So the Media Research Center is promoting its MRCTV with ads like this:
Of course, it's not like getting college students to say dumb things on camera is difficult, or anything to be proud of as a career.
But when we think of "stupidity in higher education," we think of MRCTV's Dan Joseph pretending to be "transgender" by going to a college campus, dressing in gym shorts and a tank top speaking with a lisp (because, you know, transgender) and demanding to use the women's locker room because "I have the man parts but, you know, inside I feel more like a woman."
Maybe Joseph needs to go back to college (assuming he ever went in the first place) so he can learn what being transgender actually means. He won't, of course, because the MRC is paying him to mock transgenders, not tell the truth.