ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

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

Monday, January 23, 2017
WND Columnist: Obscure Anti-Trump World Leaders Influenced U.S. Voters, Russia Didn't
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Irwin N. Graulich uses a Jan. 17 WorldNetDaily column to make a very strained attempt to deny Russian influence on the presidential election:

“Donald Trump is an illegitimate president.” Really? How so? Rep. John Lewis tells us it is the Russians. President Bill Clinton explains carefully that it was James Comey. Donna Brazile focuses on Donald Trump’s racism, sexism and bigotry which appeals to a certain large segment of America. Robbie Mook thinks Hillary simply took too much for granted. And Jennifer Palmieri blamed Trump’s association with white supremacists. Excuses, excuses …

Anyone who says an outside source was responsible for Donald Trump’s victory and not the American people is rather ignorant of the many manifestations of an election. Virtually every election of the 20th and 21st centuries had many outside factors affect its outcome. In this election, most world leaders rooted for Hillary Clinton and made it be known publicly. Of course they all influenced the final results.

The socialist European Union, leftist Central and South America, big-government controlled Asia, the dictatorial Middle East, with the exception of Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel, all made damaging, harmful public statements about candidate Trump. Hacking is nothing compared to the world’s leading ultraliberal, socialist politicians using television, the media and the Internet to speak about “Trump’s incompetence, danger, stupidity and craziness.”

[...]

So let us all think this through carefully. If Russia secretly releases statements against Hillary Clinton on a website, through WikiLeaks or through a cyber attack – the American people will believe it en masse and change their votes to Donald Trump. And this is considered, by many Democratic leaders, serious disinformation that changed the final election results.

Yet, when world leaders, who are mostly left of center, publicly and emphatically call the Republican candidate for president every name in the book, that is somehow not considered to be disinformation that attempted to change the American voters’ minds. Something really is not making sense here. Come on, Congressman Lewis. You are smarter than that.

But of the 28 "world leaders" Graulich names, the vast majority of American have never heard of most of them -- do you know who "Søren Espersen, a foreign affairs spokesperson for the Danish People’s Party" is? -- and nearly all of them were never widely reported in the U.S.

By contrast, the actions the Russians are alleged to have taken to interfere in the presidential election were specifically targeted at Americans in order to boost Trump and/or attack Hillary Clinton. The  U.S. intelligence report on it shows that Russian meddling "blends covert intelligence operations — such as cyber activity — with overt efforts by Russian Government agencies, state-funded media, third-party intermediaries, and paid social media users or 'trolls.'" That included gaining illicit access to Democratic campaign emails.

Did any of those 28 "world leaders" Graulich cited do anything more than make a simple statement critical of Trump? Does Graulich really thing that a critical statement that in most cases was never even reported in U.S. media is the same thing as the elaborate Russian campaign that aimed to, in the intelligence report's words, "undermine public faith in the US democratic process, denigrate Secretary Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency"? Please.

This is just another pathetic attempt by WND to downplay Russian meddling in the election to protect Donald Trump.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:07 PM EST
Fake News: MRC Falsely Portrays End-of-Life Counseling As 'Death Panels'
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Matthew Balan complained in a Jan. 12 post that NPR's "All Things Considered" "played up the long-term effect of the anti-ObamaCare "death panel" talking point and labeled this phrase 'fake news.'" Balan then perpetuated that fake news:

[Host Don] Gonyea first noted that the "death panel" phrase was "coined" by Sarah Palin in a 2009 post on Facebook, where the former Alaska governor "imagined her elderly parents or her child with Down syndrome standing — quote, 'in front of Obama's death panel and being denied care.'" He continued with soundbites from talk show host Rush Limbaugh and Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, who "echoed Palin's dire warnings." However, he never explained the specific proposal in ObamaCare that these anti-ObamaCare talking heads were decrying.

Los Angeles Times correspondent Noam Levey reported in a July 8, 2015 article that the Obama administration has "revived a proposal to reimburse physicians for talking with their Medicare patients about how patients want to be cared for as they near death." Levey disclosed that this "new regulation threatens to revive the 'death panel' campaign that Republicans successfully used to demonize the federal health law as it was being debated." So, the concept that NPR deemed as "fake news" is, in fact, a real thing.

But even the conservative National Review points out that "Paid end-of-life counseling and advance planning are not 'death panels.'" Wesley J. Smith continues, debunking longtime right-wing health care misinformer Betsy McCaughey:

To accept McCaughey’s prescription, one would have to believe that doctors don’t give a fig about their patients and greedily drool over the prospect of the unwanted and unproductive being pushed into the grave. That’s simply not true.

More, one would have to accept the premise that hospice is not humane, but avaricious and abusive. There are horror stories, to be sure, but so many more examples of beneficence and hope in hospice. Irresponsibly trashing hospice can cause real harm to individuals and push society toward accepting assisted suicide!

Besides, advance-care planning is important, and people should not wait until seriously ill or at admission into a hospital.

There is a way to ensure that an advance directive doesn’t become a death panel. Don’t sign a “living will” that gives doctors or bean counters decision-making power.

Rather, prepare a durable power of attorney for health care in which you decide who gets to make choices for you when you can’t. 

We've shown how the MRC refuses to have a serious conversation about fake news. Now it's creating some.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:10 PM EST
WND's Farah: CNN Reporter Who Challenged Trump Must've Been On Drugs
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah starts his Jan. 17 WorldNetDaily column recounting how he had to deal with drug-testing potential employees while "running daily newsrooms and newspapers in major markets," claiming that many potential hires flunked the drug test and that even after being told how long it takes for pot to clear out of one's system sufficiently to past a drug test, it seemed that "many" of them "would rather smoke pot than get the job they wanted."

This was all prelude for his malicious attack on CNN's Jim Acosta for daring to challenge Donald Trump at a press conference:

After watching CNN reporter Jim Acosta’s outrageously rude, obnoxious, arrogant, insufferable performance at President-elect Donald Trump’s first news conference, he should, at the very least, be required to pee in a cup before ever being allowed to set foot in the White House, the Capitol, the Supreme Court or, for that matter, in the driver’s seat of any motor vehicle with more than four cylinders.

Don’t you think?

His act was like a commercial for such a proposal – not to mention one for a psychiatric screening.

It seems Farah has forgotten the time one of his own reporters was even more rude and arrogant to a president.

In 1999, Paul Sperry -- a onetime WND reporter but at the time a reporter for the right-wing Investor's Business Daily, attended a social event at the White House at which President Clinton was to make a brief appearance. Despite the fact that it was a casual, off-the-record event, Sperry insisted on pigeonholing Clinton about various scandals right-wingers like himself were obsessed with.  And he kept pressing the issue after Clinton declined to answer, not unlike Acosta tried to do with Trump.

But WND didn't call  Sperry "outrageously rude, obnoxious, arrogant, insufferable." Quite the opposite -- a 2000 WND article in which Sperry spun his version of events touted how Sperry "challeng[ed]" Clinton "with tough questions about issues of concern to the American people." Sperry sneered that Clinton was "the most corrupt president in U.S. history" and chortled at how, during his questioning, "Clinton’s face turned a darker hue of red, almost the purplish color of raw hamburger meat that’s been left out on the counter." Sperry went on to complain: "Funny how the press corps suddenly stands on ceremony when a Democrat is in the White House" and grumbled that his press colleagues "seem more interested in currying favor with this White House and maintaining their good standing in the Washington cocktail class than ferreting out the truth for the American people and holding the president accountable for sending our national security to China in a handbasket."

Farah will never say that about any reporter who challenges Trump, as his malicious attack on Acosta demonstrates -- despite the fact there is arguably no real difference in the two incidents other than the political party in office.

(You might remember that Sperry launched a factually challenged attack on Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin during the presidential campaign last fall.)

Farah added that he doesn't have a problem with reporters using drugs at WND: "'Druggies' just don’t seem to have the desire to work here. I’ll let you decide for yourself why that is true." Well, some might consider the brand of right-wing Christianity Farah and his WND reporters espouse to be a sort of drug, since it seems to make them do things like launch malicious personal attacks on people with whom they disagree.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:06 AM EST
Updated: Monday, January 23, 2017 1:08 AM EST
Sunday, January 22, 2017
CNS' Inauguration Coverage As Biased And Pro-Trump As You'd Expect
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com's coverage of the inauguration contained numerous solicitation links to "Support MRC's Inauguration Coverage" (which seems to confirm that CNS has no editorial independence from its Media Research Center parent and is little more than the MRC in inverted pyramid form). That link goes to a page with the headline "How Will We Remember Inauguration 2017? Defend American History from the LYING LIBERAL MEDIA!" followed by "Support ACCURATE, OBJECTIVE coverage from the Media Research Center to counter FAKE news and manipulative reporting!"

"Accurate"? Only in a technical sense. "Objective"? That is, to coin a phrase, an alternative fact. One needs only look at CNS' inauguration coverage to see just how far from objectivity it was.

The coverage began with Susan Jones shamelessly touting how "When it comes to Friday's weather, President-elect Donald Trump is looking on the bright side, even if it rains." She then oozed over "Melanie’s [sic] elegant blue dress with matching shoes and gloves" and rhapsodizing how "Friday's sunrise glowed pink and gold in Washington, as seen in this screen grab from C-SPAN."

Jones also gave a platform for Trump to talk about his "great" and "beautiful" Cabinet picks. Surprisingly, she actually tried  to engage in objective reporting by noting Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer's criticism of some of Trump's cabinet picks,though the overall balance of the article was pro-Trump.

Barbara Hollingsworh, meanwhile, touted how "Both President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence will swear their oaths of office Friday on historic Bibles used by former Republican Presidents Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan."

CNS then managed to squeeze four articles out of Trump's inauguration speech -- easy to do when you're simply engaging in stenography:

That was followed by an article from Hollingsworth heaping praise on the speech from right-wingers and "presidential historian Craig Shirley" (who is not identified as a conservative). It's not until the 27th paragraph of her article that Hollingworth concedes that "others voiced disappointment with the tone and content of Trump’s first speech as president," and conservatives were quoting as saying Trump's speech had a "darker tone" and "did not take the high road."

CNS even managed to dredge up Samuel Wurzelbacher, aka "Joe the Plumber," to gush about how he voted for Trump because he believes in "a strong economy, a strong military and strong borders."

CNS' coverage of the outgoing Obama administration, by contrast, was uniformly negative.

CNS managing editor Michael W. Chapman repeated a homophobic smear by anti-gay minister and WorldNetDaily columnist Jesse Lee Peterson, who claimed that President Obama pardoned Chelsea Manning because "he has some type of issue going on that causes him to identify with these types of people."

Jones huffed that Obama's final tweet as president was "urging his supporters to check out his newly created Obama Foundation." Neither Jones nor anyone else at CNS has seen fit to mention the new Trump White House website promotes Melania Trump's QVC jewelry collection.

CNS editor in chief attacked Obama in two articles best summed up by their headlines: "Obama Leaves U.S.A $9,335,000,000,000 Deeper in Debt" and "Obama Was First President to Spend More on Welfare Than Defense."

CNS' Patrick Goodenough took offense to outgoing Secretary of State John Kerry praising those of his generation who "went out and fought" for women's liberation and equal rights and against the Vietnam war. His article was illustrated by a 1972 picture of Kerry testifying Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing about the Vietnam War.

CNS did devote an article to criticism of Trump's inauguration speech, but Eric Scheiner talked to only one person, one who was apparently chosen to be self-discrediting: a Democratic congressman from Massachusetts named McGovern.

It seems the MRC's claim that it puts out "objective coverage" is nothing more than fake news.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:15 PM EST
WND Revels In Being Able To Go Birther In Public Again
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Now that Donald Trump's election made it safe to go birther again, WorldNetDaily -- in particular, reporter Bob Unruh -- has been totally embracing it.

After the last-gasp Dec. 15 press conference by ousted sheriff Joe Arpaio and Cold Case Posse chief Mike Zullo, WND's Bob Unruh has been rounding up various tidbits that didn't make the original presser:

  • A Dec. 25 article repeated Zullo's claim that  "evidence suggests the involvement of the Hawaiian government in the alleged fabrication."
  • On Jan. 2,  Unruh regurgitated Zullo's assertion that Hawaii officials "never confirmed the document’s validity. The “information” about the birth, yes. But not the document itself."
  • Another Jan. 2 article by Unruh touted Arpaio promulgating his conspiracy under the guise of purportedly "schooling" a TV reporter.

Unruh also wrote a Dec. 28 article spining a poll founding that one-third of respondents don't believe Obama was born in Hawaii and that he was probably born in Kenya as proof of its reporting and not people falling for discredited conspiracy theories.

Needless to say, Unruh -- as WND has for years -- censored any mention of the copious evidence  that discredits birther conspiracy theories and the sloppy work done by Zullo. Dr. Conspiracy, for example, pokes holes in Zullo's main claim, that the date stamp on Obama's birther certificate was at exactly the same angle asanother birth certificate issued around the same time.

Nor does Unruh question why Zullo has not publicly released the full analyses from Reed Hayes (who is a handwriting expert, not a digital document expert) and the Italian forensic laboratory he claims he relied on to make his conclusions.

It's so safe to be a birther again even WND editor Joseph Farah is doing it, after months of ducking the issue in order to avoid having to apply WND's Obama birther standards to Ted Cruz. Farah's Jan. 20 column cheered how the birther issue allegedly helped propel Donald Trump to the presidency:

Note what Trump said. He said the issue resonated with people. He added that it made him very popular.

Later in 2016 he answered a question from CNN by changing the subject: “Who cares right now? We’re talking about something else, OK? I have my own theory on Obama. Someday I will write a book.”

It was not until September 2016, two months before the election, that Trump said for the first time: “President Barack Obama was born in the United States.”

Many assumed that was the end of the controversy.

But is it? Could there be more to the eligibility story than where Obama was born?

What if Obama, as president, cooked up a phony document 18 months before his re-election bid?

Just asking.

Keep in mind something Trump said in that interview with Jonathan Karl: “Let’s just see what happens over time.”

Throughout his column, Farah gives Trump a pass for both pushing unsubstantiated and unverified birther claims and for flatly declaring that Obama was born in the U.S. when absolutely nobody (including Farah) believes he meant it. All that matters to him that Trump raised the visibility of the issue, not whether any of it is true. (Remember, WND loves publishing fake news.)

Farah also forgot to mention the pertinent fact that he and birther extraordinaire Jerome Corsi were advising Trump behind the scenes on his birther crusade.

What we will see happen over time from WND is Farah and Unruh promoting Zullo's conspiratorial claims as undisputed fact, censor anyone who does dispute them and refuse to demand transparancy from Zullo's investigation. Heck, WND has so far been afraid to tell its readers that Arpaio's replacement as Maricopa County sheriff is disbanding Zullo's cold case posse.

Yes, Trump's election means it's safe for Farah and WND to be openly birther again. That doesn't mean they've become any less dishonest about it.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:13 AM EST
Updated: Sunday, January 22, 2017 1:17 AM EST
Saturday, January 21, 2017
MRC Laughably Declares MSNBC To Be 'State Run TV,' Forgets Fox News Under Bush
Topic: Media Research Center

A Jan. 17 Media Research Center post by Scott Whitlock complains that "Disgraced journalist Brian Williams on Monday offered up a glowing documentary on Barack Obama that censored the President’s numerous scandals and controversies." While Whitlock curiously buries the name of the network the special appears on -- MSNBC -- his headline declares it to be "State Run TV."

Whitlock ignores that by his same definition -- overly positive coverage of a sitting president -- Fox News was "state run TV" during the Bush administration. Fox News was granted numerous exclusive opportunities to hurl softball questions at President Bush, including touting of his alleged legacy and, yes, a TV special dedicated to fawning over "his extraordinarily consequential tenure."

And given how hard Fox News fought both on camera and behind the scenes to get Donald Trump elected president, it's all but certain that it will resume its role as "state run TV."

But Whitlock and the MRC will never call Fox News that, of course -- it doesn't want to do anything that would put its frequent appearances on the channel (and sister channel Fox Business) in jeopardy.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:00 AM EST
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, End-Of-Term Supersize WorldNetDaily Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Here is the producer’s pitch for a series called “Legacy.”

In the White House is a newly installed president named “Trump.” He is a billionaire businessman and former television reality show star. He has never held public office and firmly believes that he has a mandate to undo or change nearly everything his predecessor “accomplished.”

Meanwhile, living 2 miles away is the former president, named “Obama,” who is breaking from tradition and remaining in Washington. In the pilot script, we learn that Obama spent all of his political capital trying to prevent the current president from winning the election while backing a flawed candidate who ran on continuing Obama’s “legacy.” There are emotional “flashback” scenes from the recent campaign when Obama repeatedly asks voters to keep his legacy alive by voting for his chosen successor.

[...]

And so the stage is set. A clash of presidential Titans with verbal fireworks frequently erupting. As part of the media plan, Obama clings to the limelight with his high-profile socializing. Because of all the favorable media coverage, he is mobbed by adoring fans as he flits about town. Obama has a habit of making snide, sometimes cryptic remarks to reporters about Trump’s actions or policies. This infuriates the president who strikes back in a variety of subtle and not so subtle ways generating endless media coverage while escalating the war between Trump and Obama.

-- Myra Adams, Jan. 12 WorldNetDaily column

The only thing that made sitting through Obama’s Farewell Address bearable was the realization that he would have to vacate the premises in 10 days. But I must confess I spent the entire 53 minutes feeling sorry for myself and thinking about the sacrifices I make for my art, including sitting through eight State of the Union addresses and all 7,500 presidential debates.

Some people wondered why Obama decided to make Chicago the venue for his speech. But when the crowd greeted his appearance with five full minutes of applause, the question was quickly answered. Where else would he have found so many pinheads willing to overlook the reality of the Obama era?

-- Burt Prelutsky, Oct. 17 WND column

After eight years of dramatic change, Barak Obama has transformed a once hopeful America into something no one could have ever imagined — Pottersville.

[...]

Fortunately for America, as in “It’s a Wonderful Life,” the story of Barack Obama’s American Pottersville does have a happy ending.

Instead of a third Obama term under clone Hillary Clinton, Americans are being given another gift – a chance to see what America would look like with secure borders, a vibrant economy free from the shackles of socialism, the moral fiber and the rule of law restored, terrorists on the run at home and abroad – and Barack Obama’s Pottersville fading on the ash heap of history and Bedford Falls once again coming back into focus.

Yes, it will be a wonderful life again in the U.S. beginning on Jan. 20, 2017, for all Americans, whether they know it now or not.

-- "George Bailey" ("a pseudonym"), Jan. 18 WND column

President Barack Obama and his team still engage in a hissy fit over Donald Trump’s questioning Obama’s place of birth. To even raise the issue is to “otherwise” the first black president. In short, they argue, it is racist. But to claim that Vladimir Putin put Trump in the White House is nothing more than an obvious observation, right? When the Supreme Court ruled in favor of George W. Bush in 2000, a number of disgruntled Democrats referred to him as “President Select.”

-- Larry Elder, Jan. 18 WND column

Considering that liberals were oh-so-keen to remind us on many occasions that Obama was a duly-elected chief executive despite the fact that he routinely used the Constitution as bath tissue, destroyed our health-care system, sabotaged our economy and fire-hosed Miracle-Gro® onto radical Islam, one would think that they might at least wait to see what Trump did in his first few months as president before passing judgment. Not a chance.

-- Erik Rush, Jan. 18 WND column

Its been a long eight years since the first inauguration of now former President Barack Hussein Obama, a man who fooled the masses into being elected as a visionary black man for all people. Instead, over his reign, marked by his racial hatred toward whites and his favoritism toward his Muslim half over Christians and Jews in particular, the nation’s capital, Washington, D.C, felt to me as if it were under “occupation” by hostile “foreign” forces. Indeed, on my many trips here over Obama’s two terms as president I would often remark to my colleagues on the way to court proceedings that it seemed to me the government buildings were taken over by hostile “space aliens.” I simply no longer felt a part of our country’s body politic. While I could not fully put my finger on it, there was something terribly evil lurking under the surface of this, one of the most beautiful cities on earth.

-- Larry Klayman, Jan. 20 WND column


Posted by Terry K. at 12:39 AM EST
Friday, January 20, 2017
Newsmax Columnist Demands Intel Loyalty to Trump Over Country
Topic: Newsmax

Fred Fleitz used to run LIGNET, Newsmax's now-defunct "global intelligence and forecasting" service that tried (and failed) to charge $299 a year for analysis from ex-intelligence officials. Now it seems he's reduced to shilling for Donald Trump and throwing his former fellow intelligence types under the bus.

In a Jan. 6 Newsmax column, Fleitz expresses his rage that an intelligence report on Russian meddling in the presidential election was leaked to the media, complaining that this highlights "growing tension between President-elect Donald Trump and the U.S. intelligence community," and such leaks will "only widen the rift between Trump and U.S. intelligence agencies." 

Apparently, Trump isn't at fault for perpetuating the rift.

Fleitz then demands total loyalty to Trump from the intel community, before even the good of the country:

How did the intelligence officials who leaked to NBC expect Mr. Trump to react? Did they give any thought to the damage these leaks would cause to relations between their agencies and the president-elect?

President Trump will need and deserve a U.S. intelligence community that provides him with hard hitting and objective analysis devoid of politics. It’s time for Director of National Intelligence Clapper and other intelligence officials to stop complaining about Donald Trump "disparaging" U.S. intelligence agencies and demand that intelligence officers stop trying to undermine our new president.

I am certain that the vast majority of intelligence officers welcome the opportunity to support Mr. Trump. If the handful of intelligence officers who have been leaking against Trump cannot accept his election and their responsibility to loyally serve the next president, they need to resign immediately.

Did Fleitz demand that the intel community be loyal to President Obama, or did he encourage them to undermine his presidency? We don't know. Perhaps Fleitz can enlighten us.

Fleitz doesn't explain if intel folks should stay loyal to Trump even as evidence mounts of the unseemly close connection between Trump's presidential campaign and Russia?


Posted by Terry K. at 5:07 PM EST
CNS Reporter Can't Decide Whether She Likes EPA Nominee
Topic: CNSNews.com

It seems CNSNews.com can't quite decide what to make of EPA administrator nominee Scott Pruitt.

CNS' Melanie Hunter wrote a Jan. 18 article touting Pruitt saying conservatively correct things about climate change at his confirmation hearing, under the headline "EPA Nominee: Climate Change ‘Subject to Continuing Debate’."

An hour later, however, Hunter had to highlight a Pruitt statement that wasn't conservatively correct, in an article carrying the headline "EPA Nominee: ‘I Do Not Believe That Climate Change Is a Hoax’."

In that article, she also grumbled that "Similarly, Interior Secretary nominee Rep. Ryan Zinke (R-Mont.) told the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Tuesday that he did not believe climate change was 'a hoax.'"

In between those two articles, though, Hunter wrote a third one, in which Pruitt got further due from Hunter for sticking to right-wing orthodoxy, 

Environmental Protection Agency nominee Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt told the Senate Wednesday that he rejects the false narrative that “if you’re pro-energy, you’re anti-environment, and if you’re pro-environment, you’re anti-energy.”

“If confirmed, I would lead EPA with the following principles in mind: First, we must reject the false paradigm that if you’re pro-energy, you’re anti-environment, and if you’re pro-environment, you’re anti-energy. I utterly reject that narrative,” Pruitt said in his opening statement at his confirmation hearing.

“In this nation, we can grow our economy, harvest the resources God has blessed us with, while also being good stewards of the air, land and water by which we’ve been favored. It is not an either/or proposition,” Pruitt said.

So, presuming that two pro-Pruitt articles outweigh the negative one, maybe Hunter really likes Pruitt after all.

And thus, once again, we see how CNS' bias works: unprofesional cheerleading combined with occasional disdain for even the slightest deviation from the right-wing reservation.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:47 PM EST
WND: All Mosques Should Be Presumed To Be Radical
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Leo Hohmann's not the only WorldNetDaily reporter pushing anti-Muslim hate.

Garth Kant has been writing a series of articles essentially claiming that all mosques in the U.S. should be considered hotbeds of radicalism. In the first, on Jan. 4, Kant tries to downplayhis intent:

Not all mosques may become havens or breeding grounds for terrorists or radical Islamists.

But, mosques usually serve as “centers of gravity” for jihadi rings, according to Philip Haney, one of the nation’s top experts on radical Islam and former terrorist identification expert for the Department of Homeland Security.

Haney told WND that mosques are typically where the radicalization of Muslims occurs in the United States.

Yes, it's Philip Haney, the WND-published Muslim-hater. Kant also cites in his article "former FBI counter-terrorism trainer John Guandolo," who's best known as a disgraced, philandering adulterer.

Kant goes on to play alleged guilt-by-association -- no actual proof, mind you -- with a Muslim group, the All Dulles Area Muslim ­Society, that wants to build a mosque in Virginia but is being stymied in part by land-use issues:

Haney, who studied Arabic culture and language while working as a scientist in the Middle East before becoming a founding member of the Department of Homeland Security in 2002, told WND that ADAMS is part of the global Waqf, he mentioned earlier.

And that it is administered through the North American Islamic Trust, or, NAIT, another major co-conspirator in the 2008 Holy Land Foundation trial.

Kant's Jan. 8 article is headlined "How to tell if your neighborhood mosque is radical." The short answer: it's a mosque. He again calls in Haney to downplay that assumption, once again asserting that "not all mosques may become havens or breeding grounds for terrorists or radical Islamists, they usually serve as 'centers of gravity' for jihadi rings."

Kant also calls on Karen Lugo, author of a book that describes how to stop mosques by using local zoning and land-use statutes, to talk about forcing what are effectively loyalty oaths on mosque builders to supposedly determine if "the leader would put strict Islamic Shariah law above U.S. constitutional law on a variety of issues,"' because "the Shariah threat discourages assimilation."

Kant adds: "Lugo said people should be wary when they learn of such seemingly innocuous initiatives as living like a Muslim for 30 days or efforts to remove St. Valentine’s Day from the school calendar."

Of course, if Kant was talking about a Christian church doing such things, that would be call evangelism.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:47 AM EST
Thursday, January 19, 2017
Bozell's MRC Bashed Hillary's Lack of Pressers, Now Hopes Trump Never Holds Another One
Topic: Media Research Center

For much of the 2016 campaign, the Media Research Center -- despite a nonprofit tax status that prohibits it from explicit involvement in politics -- repeatedly attacked Hillary Clinton for not holding a press conference at sufficient intervals during her presidential campaign, huffed that the questions weren't anti-Hillary enough when she did hold one, and even complained when an NPR media critic said she "may have a point" when there are other ways to hear from a candidate.

Flash forward to after the election, and the MRC is hypocritically cheering how Trump is showing new ways to hear from a candidate.

  • MRC chief Brent Bozell celebrated how the media is "being neutered" and "neutralized" because "Donald Trump will go around them, not talk to them," adding: "Look, he has got 25 million Twitter followers and Facebook fans. He can converse directly with them. And if the media cover his posts, his tweets, they have got to cover what he said. That allows him to control the conversation."
  • MRC VP Dan Gainor touted how Trump "doesn’t need the media, he is the media."
  • Gainor later promoted Trump's "Twitter presidency," claiming that "I think the American public like the fact that he is speaking directly -- you know, typos and all."

Funny, Hillary never got love from the MRC for going around the media.

And after all the demands for Hillary to hold a presser, the MRC would be hypocritically happy if Trump never held another one.

In a tantrum following Buzzfeed's publication of an unverified dossier of salacious information about Trump, Bozell ranted that Trump is right to not hold pressers:

Any media outlet that does not produce a news story that declares BuzzFeed’s story fake news is giving aid and comfort to fake news and furthering its proliferation. This fiasco is exactly why the media’s ratings are in the toilet. It’s exactly why Donald Trump said the election was rigged and it’s also why Donald Trump hasn’t done many press conferences. BuzzFeed should stick to cat gifs for the foreseeable future until they figure out how to do journalism. And President-elect Trump shouldn't conduct any more press conferences unless and until the 'news' media start treating him fairly.

Actually, "unverified" does not equal "fake news." Remember, the claim of a Bill Clinton affair was unverified at the time the Drudge Report touted it.

Besides, Bozell doesn't want the media to give "fair" treatment -- he wants the media to be Trump's lapdogs, to uncritically report whatever he says and ignore any impropriety or scandal. You know, like how Bozell's "news" outlet, CNSNews.com, covered Trump during the campaign.

Bozell made this crystal clear when he declared in a Jan. 18 appearance on Fox News division Fox Business -- the preferred MRC outlet because it gives Bozell the uncritical coverage he demands the media give Trump -- that reporters are "enemies" of Trump:

These are people who are constantly against him. There is no semblance of objectivity going on. ... They are there as a hostile entity and if they’re going to be that hostile to him, the President-elect has the right, I think, to say, 'I'm not going to stand there, by you people who have no vestige of objectivity. I'm going to pick and choose who I want there.'

Bozell's view of the media has always been a partisan caricature designed to raise money and create a sense of victimhood among conservatives. The only "improvement" he has ever sought is the creation of more right-wing media bias. No wonder he flip-flopped to get behind Trump, who hates the media for not being right-wing stenographers as much as he does.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:56 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, January 19, 2017 4:58 PM EST
Fake News: WND Treats Trump Protest Hoax As Fact
Topic: WorldNetDaily

For a so-called news organization that purports to despise fake news, WorldNetDaily sure publishes a lot of it. Now it's published another one.

Bob Urnuh wrote in a Jan. 16 article, under the scary headline "VIDEO: ACID-ATTACK PLOT FOR TRUMP INAUGURATION":

An undercover video of leftists meeting in Washington, D.C., has exposed a well-advanced plot to use foul-smelling butyric acid to disrupt this week’s “Deploraball” event in honor of Donald Trump’s inauguration.

The video released by James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas showed the rabidly anti-Trump coalition already had scouted the National Press Building, and members were confident they could release acid there “with no negative consequences for our side, nor any collateral damage.”

The video exposing the plot includes statements from several members of the group DC Anti-fascist Coalition, which is allied with other far-left groups plotting to prevent Trump’s inauguration as president.

Project Veritas said the group plotted to deploy butyric acid at the National Press Club during the Deploraball event scheduled for Thursday.

Just one problem: Project Veritas was punked. The Washingtonian explains that the the Anti-fascist Coalition made up the story to flush out someone they (correctly) suspected was a Project Veritas mole. The goal was to feed the suspected mole a story about "the kind of things high-school students would want to plan involving stink bombs and sprinkler systems."

Unruh knew this story was a hoax. How? He noted that in his story -- but not until the 25th paragraph, spending the entirety of his article portraying the hoax as real.

That's the very definition of fake news -- and WND has done it yet again.

We have met the "real fake news media," WND, and it is you.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:57 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC's Film Promotion Division
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center and its CNS "news" division don't just bash films they don't like, they relentlessly plug the ones they do like -- read: conform to the MRC's right-wing agenda -- then censors their failure at the box office. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 8:50 AM EST
Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Slantie Award Namesake Returns to WND To Say More Odd Things
Topic: WorldNetDaily

It was just last week that we unveiled our annual Slantie Awards, which includes the LoBaido Award for whacked-out commentary. And guess who has suddenly resurfaced at WorldNetDaily? The man himself.

Yes, Anthony LoBaido -- the adventurer of sorts who once trained with white pro-apartheid mercenaries in South Africa -- is back. (We last wrote about him in 2014, when he was making odd musings about the Oakland Raiders.) He's such an oddball fringey guy that the only claim of subtstance in his WND bio is that he "has published 373 articles on WND from 53 countries around the world." That's it, apparently; hanging out with violent racist mercenaries didn't make the resume cut.

Which explains why he's back at WND with a Jan. 15 column, headlined "Trump and the Coming Gaming Boom." Newver mind, of course, that the gambling industry has been booming just fine without Donald Trump as president.

Turns out LoBaido is mostly talking about online gambling, largely illegal in the U.S. He goes on to pump up Trump's role as a "casino mogul":

Casino speculation is rife in the Silver State. What does the future hold for the casino and gambling world in 2017 and beyond? Questions abound. For example, what really went on behind the scenes when the U.S. gaming bills dating back to 2006 made online casinos illegal virtually overnight? Who pulled the strings, and what are the chances of the strings becoming untangled when the U.S. president-elect is a casino mogul himself?

[...]

Looking around the United States, we see California has its casinos – some related in a direct or tangential way to Native American Indians. Nevada has Reno and Las Vegas, cities that are what they are. Missouri – let’s say the space between St. Louis and Alton, Illinois – has its niche of riverboat gambling, amongst other places to engage in games of chance. Atlantic City is the Las Vegas of the East Coast. The shadowy area in this grand spectacle is the slice of gambling that’s carried out over the Internet.

Remember Trump’s Taj Mahal? It’s likely that the same man who became synonymous with gaming in the 1980s and 1990s might well see gambling (including online gambling) as being good for the bottom line in various states of the union. He’s not likely to be offended by the proposition. Having watched alcohol ravage his brother, Trump himself does not drink. Yet he does not eschew gaming. As such, that’s likely to have an influence upon his legislative bent.

LoBaido hasn't been paying attention, has he? Trump is no longer a "casino mogul" --  it's now just a tiny part of his business empire. As far as Atlantic City being "the Las Vegas of the East Coast" goes, LoBaido apparently missed how casinos there have been closing over the past few years ... the most recent being the Trump Taj Mahal, which filed for bankruptcy a whopping four times since its 1990 opening before finally closing for good. All Trump-linked casinos in Atlantic City have now closed.

Meanwhile, online gambling is already legal in New Jersey, where Atlantic City is located. But Trump's nominee for attorney general, Jeff Sessions, says he wants to review the U.S. Justice Department ruling that made online gambling in New Jersey (as well as Nevada and Delaware) possible, which he opposed at the time.

LoBaido's column is shockingly ignorant, even by WND standards. And that's saying something, considering that WND is apparenly the only place left that will publish him.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:55 PM EST
MRC Tries to Downplay GOP Effort to Gut Ethics Panel
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Reserach Center did its best to spin away congressional Republicans' attempt in the new Congress to gut an independent House ethics panel.

Kyle Drennen downplayed the whole thing, insisting that Republicans had merely "dared to make bureaucratic changes" to the panel, and he was more upset that the media reported on it. Then he tried to change the subject: "While the media were eager to hype fears that Republicans would not be held accountable for corruption, the press repeatedly looked the other way when elected Democrats were embroiled in scandal in recent years. A 2014 Media Research Center study listed numerous examples of Democratic corruption swept under the rug by the networks."

Nicholas Fondacaro not only repeated Drennan's Democrat-blaming distraction, he took the media to task for reporting that even Donald Trump thought gutting the ethics panel was a bad idea:

The liberal Big Three networks finally found a use for President-elect Donald Trump, and it’s to smear Republican members of Congress. The same networks who blacked-out unethical Democrats were up in arms Tuesday after the House GOP attempted to reform the Office of Congressional Ethics, but after it’s retraction they credited the president-elect. “The best-laid plans of Republicans armed with a head of steam and an ambitious to-do list went off the rails this opening day of the new Congress after a tweet from Donald Trump,” announced Anchor Lester Holt on NBC Nightly News.

Fondacaro also complained that media reports made an "insinuation that the GOP’s actions were to allow themselves to act unethically." But he doesn't explain what he thinks is the correct way to interpret the GOP attempt to gut thte ethics office.

After the House GOP reversed its attempt to gut the ethics office, Drennen returned to complain that "all three network morning shows delighted in the GOP reversing course on the issue and satisfyingly proclaimed that the minor controversy had tarnished the first day of the 115th Congress."

Note that Drennen downgraded the controversy even further, from "bureaucratic changes" to a "minor controversy."


Posted by Terry K. at 2:14 PM EST

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

« January 2017 »
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 31

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