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Tuesday, September 19, 2017
MRC Churns Out Another Bogus Study
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center appears to be on a roll with its biased so-called "studies." It served up another one on Sept. 13 courtesy of Mike Ciandella:

The twin disasters of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma showcased once again the media's reflex to use such tragedies to push for liberal climate change policies.

In their pursuit of this agenda, the broadcast networks' have heavily criticized the Trump administration's policies on the environment. From January 20 through August 31, MRC analysts tallied 75 stories discussing the President and climate change, totaling 73 minutes, 43 seconds of network airtime.

The commentary in these stories was as one-sided as the rest of Trump's coverage has been, with 88 percent of evaluative statements criticizing the President, vs. a mere 12 percent that praised him.

Once again, Ciandella ignores the vast majority of of the media universe to portray a half-hour of time on three channels as representative of the entire "media." Also note that Ciandella is trying to politiclze science by declaring that anything that supports the scientific consensus on climate change to be "liberal."

And we have another dubious "methodology":

Methodology: Our measure of spin was designed to isolate the networks’ own slant, not the back-and-forth of partisan politics. Thus, our analysts ignored soundbites which merely showcased the traditional party line (Republicans supporting Trump, Democrats criticizing him), and instead tallied evaluative statements which imparted a clear positive or negative tone to the story, such as statements from experts presented as non-partisan, voters, or opinionated statements from the networks’ own reporters.

Using these criteria, MRC analysts tallied 121 evaluative statements about the Trump administration’s approach to the environment from January 20 to August 31, 2017, of which 106 (88%) were negative vs. a mere 15 (12%) which were positive.

Again, "negative" and "positive" are subjective values, not objective ones that can be subject to scientific definition and rigor, and Ciandella is either ignoring neutral statements or forcing them into "negative" or "positive" camps.

Ciandella's bias is obvious in the examples he cites (again, the MRC refused to release full documentation of the study results), in which he portrays the reporting of facts as negative:

The most consistent factor in all of this coverage was the criticism. NBC Nightly News correspondent Matt Bradley’s July 30 quip that “President Donald Trump shifts American climate commitments into reverse” was typical of the media attitude towards the president’s environmental policies.

On June 2, Nightly News correspondent Kristen Welker promoted an anti-Trump protest over this decision, hyping “the backlash is only heating up.”

The same night, CBS Evening News’s anchor Anthony Mason spoke of the “world of opposition to withdraw from the Paris climate accord.” Correspondent Chip Reid echoed by referencing “worldwide condemnation.”

NBC Nightly News, anchor Savannah Guthrie on June 1 criticized the move to withdraw from the climate treaty: “detractors say it is a stunning abandonment of the U.S.’s leadership in the world, and a grave threat to the planet itself.”

To their credit, CBS stood alone in interviewing a conservative to hear the other side of the climate change debate. On April 22, CBS Evening News, correspondent Dean Reynolds noted that Joe Bast, CEO of The Heartland Institute, “looks with approval on Mr. Trump’s decision to roll back regulations limiting greenhouse gases, and to his appointments of fellow skeptics in the administration. Climate change, he [Bast] says, is a naturally occurring cyclical phenomenon caused mostly by the sun, not an approaching disaster accelerated by carbon dioxide emissions caused by humans.”

However, before stating this position, Reynolds noted that “most climate scientists, the United Nations, as well as NASA, dismiss these arguments as propaganda for fossil fuels.

So Ciandella is effectively proving Stephen Colbert correct once again: Reality does have a well-known liberal bias.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:14 PM EDT
John McCain Derangement Syndrome
Topic: WorldNetDaily

John McCain is losing it! Or, perhaps this is the real McCain finally coming out. During his 30 years in the Senate, McCain has fooled the public and pretended to be a conservative Republican. The fake news media have depicted him as a “maverick” who isn’t afraid to stand up to his own party. But McCain has always been a RINO, and he is not an honorable man. The election of President Trump is exposing his true nature and lack of character.

McCain, 81, is a Navy veteran who spent five-and-a-half years as a prisoner of war in the Vietnam War, and he has never gotten over Donald Trump mocking him as “not a war hero” during the 2016 campaign. He needs to get over his anger before he passes from this earth.

With the encouragement of President Trump, millions of Americans wished McCain well and prayed for his recovery after he was diagnosed with brain cancer in late July, only to be betrayed by him when he joined with liberal Republicans to defeat the GOP’s “skinny repeal” of Obamacare.

[...]

With his unrelenting attack against Trump, McCain is revealing himself, and he doesn’t even realize it.

We have a great president who is working hard to make “America Great Again,” and this cowardly RINO is fighting against him and against the good people in this country. Arizonans, I blame you, because you had a chance to get rid of this man, but you voted for him over and over again.

I recall when John McCain spoke in Southern California in 2008 during his presidential run against Obama. I thought he was a good guy. I voted for him because he presented himself as a conservative who loved his country and the military – I didn’t know he was a RINO!

-- Jesse Lee Peterson, Sept. 3 WorldNetDaily column


Posted by Terry K. at 5:05 PM EDT
Monday, September 18, 2017
MRC Writer Is Still Defending Gay Conversion Therapy
Topic: Media Research Center

Media Research Center writer Dawn Slusher has been extremely concerned that the TV show "Greenleaf" has a storyline about Kevin, a married man who is conflicted by his attraction to other men and attempts to deal with them by attending a church group involved with gay conversion therapy, fretting that the oft-discredited therapy will be discredited further and insisting that conversion therapy works.

Remarking in an Aug. 17 post on a scene in which Kevin confronts the leader of the conversion therapy program on how it's not working, Slusher rants (bolding is hers):

Suddenly, instead of Kevin voluntarily wanting to change because of his faith, he's now blaming the group leader for driving him crazy? And this was never about the group leader or anyone other than God, telling His followers what is right in His Word.

The question is, will the show use this storyline to show that Kevin truly wants to continue fighting his urges and is only angry because he failed, and that maybe he will try again once he calms down?

Or will they make Kevin to be the hero against those horrible conversion therapy groups that try so hard to help Christians make their own choices based on their faith rather than their flesh? (So awful of these groups to help such people despite the many success stories, right? God forbid people seek to live as they feel called to by their faith and voluntarily seek out the support of such groups to suppress urges they’d rather not have.)

Seeing that this is liberal Hollywood, and the Oprah Network at that, my money is on the former. Especially since Charity finds a letter Kevin left behind before leaving the house to confront the group and she seems extremely concerned. My guess is that the show will paint Kevin as suicidal in a future episode. Not because of his inner struggle between his faith and his desires, though, but because of Fortitude Families and intolerant Christians.

All the blame must lie with those who are trying to help Christians live out their faith. Because, of course.

Note to Slusher: Just because someone voluntarily seeks out something that's been proven to be psychologically harmful doesn't mean they should be encouraged to do it.

And, as before, Slusher's evidence that gay conversion therapy is a "success" are a pro-conversion therapy group that cites the virulently anti-gay group NARTH for backup, as well as Walt Heyer, a current fave of anti-gay activists who admits he was misdiagnosed as transgender.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:21 PM EDT
WND's Farah Still Has Thin Skin, But Doesn't Disprove White-Nationalist Allegations
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah's thin skin shows up yet again in his Sept. 12 WorldNetDaily column, in which he rants that an obscure blog has committed a "blood libel" against him:

A blog called “Peacock Panache” posted a diatribe called “The Trump Administration: A Confederacy of Dunces,” by Sheila Kennedy. It sought to discredit executive branch officials through a tactic the left used to detest – “guilt by association.” When liberals and leftists were linked in the past to Communists and socialists, they doth protest such connections as “McCarthyite” smears.

But the left has fully embraced the tactic and raised it to an art form.

What caught my eye about this particular piece was the attempted smear of John Kenneth Bush, Trump’s nominee for the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. One of his grave offenses was that his wife purportedly called slavery and abortion two of America’s greatest tragedies. I don’t know if the accusation is true or not, but … what’s wrong with that? Bush’s second offense, according to the post, was: “He consistently cited WorldNetDaily, an extremist publication known for peddling conspiracy theories and white nationalism, including the lie that Obama was not born in the United States.”

Meet the SPLC’s “white nationalist conspiracy spin cycle.”

Since I, as the founder of WND, openly detest white supremacy and all forms of racism, this lie struck a nerve. So, I dashed off a demand for retraction and public apology from Tim Peacock, the managing editor of Peacock Panache.

I explained that WND has never and would never promote “white nationalism” and that his blog’s claim is an outrageous and actionable lie – and clearly defamatory.

But, of course, the little Peacock knows better than me, my friends, my family members, my employees about my reputation and integrity as a Christian who believes all people are created in the image of God.

And how does he know better?

His authority is the SPLC, which sees me and WND as instruments of hatred and evil personified.

He also cites the objective folks at Media Matters to prove WND is a tool of white supremacists.

It’s a blood libel, but not beneath political activists who, without a shred of decency or humanity, don’t mind putting targets on the backs of people just because they have differences of opinion.

Farah is crying some massive crocodile tears here. He and his website spent the entire Obama administration putting targets on the backs of people just because they have differences of opinion.

But notice what else he does here: He attacks the sources of the allegations against him and WND without ever denying the allegations. The SPLC link details how WND gave a forum to race-baiting, black-mob-obsessed author Colin Flaherty, who gained popularlity in white-nationalist circles with his WND work.

The Media Matters link, meanwhile, documents how white-nationalist radio host James Edwards said he worked with WND to promote a highly dubious birther claim by Tim Adams while Edwards was broadcasting from a convention of the white-nationalist Council of Conservative Citizens (WND never explained what Adams was doing there in the first place).

Farah doesn't deny that Flaherty is a white nationalist -- though it had to cut him loose after his obsession jeopardized its Google ad revenue --nor does he deny that WND worked with a white nationalist radio host to get Adams place on his show at a white nationalist group's conference.

It doesn't matter how much Farah rants that the blog's allegations are an "actionable lie" and a "blood libel" and threatens to silence it, since Farah never disproves the claims. And it doesn't matter how much Farah insists that he's not a white supremacist, since his website undeniably tried to profit from it. If he really put his principles where his business is, WND would never have published anything by Flaherty or teamed with Adams.

It's even more laughable that Farah is making an appeal to his own "reputation and integrity as a Christian who believes all people are created in the image of God," when he's an unrepentant liar.

Farah finally rants: "At what point does SPLC bear moral, financial and legal responsibility for such acts of defamation and terrorism?" This from the editor of a "news" organization that's cited in the manifesto of mass murder Anders Breivik and whose editorial agenda parallels the white-supremacist obsessions of mass murder Dylann Roof, and has irresponsibly pushed anti-vaccine myths that likely caused people to die unnecessarily.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:37 AM EDT
Sunday, September 17, 2017
CNS' Chapman Keeps Spreading the Anti-LGBT Hate
Topic: CNSNews.com

LGBT-hating CNSNews.com managing editor Michael W. Chapman just keeps spreading the gay-bashing on his website.

On Sept. 6, Chapman posted two articles -- by "liberal Camille Paglia" and "feminist Germaine Greer" -- critical of transgenders. CNS, however, has previously published conservative-friendly pronouncements by Paglia, including a previous attack on transgenders, which tells us she's not the "liberal" it claims she is. CNS has also published a previous attack on transgenders by Greer.

On Sept. 13, Chapman uncritically repeated a rant by anti-gay Rev. E.W. Jackson in which he asserted that the LGBT community "hates Christianity" and that gaywho "brag about their sin" are responsible for "all kinds of disorder and chaos and, yes, natural disasters and so forth."

Chapman then deliberately failed to get Chelsea Manning's name correct in a Sept. 14 article, referring to her as "Bradley 'Chelsea' Manning."Chapman did it again the next day, adding that Manning is "a former U.S. Army soldier who now identifies as a 'woman'."

Most media outlets identify transgender individuals to as they present themselves in public, but Chapman has decided he knows better than those biased, respectful journalists.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:31 PM EDT
MRC Decrees: Don't Talk About Climate Change During A Hurricane
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center gets plenty of love from conservative writers like Joe Concha, and it makes sure to return that love.

In a Sept. 11 MRC post, Curtis Houck cheers on Concha's haranguing of MSNBC's Ali Velshi for committing the offense of talking about climate change during a hurricane:

On Sunday night, MSNBC’s Ali Velshi showcased his desire to not let a deadly crisis like Hurricane Irma go to waste, reaffirming his belief that it’s appropriate to discuss climate change as the cause of hurricanes like Irma while lives were at stake.

Velshi made this pathetic proclamation during a Twitter debate with The Hill’s Joe Concha, who had tweeted that the media had largely been doing their job when it came to the hurricane.

[...]

Concha calmly replied that there was a “[t]ime and a place for that conversation...[b]ut while people’s homes & business are being devastated isn’t that time.”

When Velshi hit back that “I think this is the perfect time to have that discussion,” Concha seemed exasperated:

[...]

Just as the left largely congregates to gun control after a shooting while people lay dead, many of those same folks can’t help but talk up global warming while lives are at risk from flooding, high winds, storm surge, and tornadoes. And this doesn’t even touch the fact that these storms have been causing catastrophic damage for centuries.

People can debate the issue like any other topic, but as Concha astutely argued, the day of landfall isn’t the time for that.

Note Houck's biased language designed to paint those who point out that climate change have a role in hurricanes as irrational if not completely crazy: Velshi is "pathetic" and "hit back" at Concha, while Concha responded "calmly" and "astutely."Houck also attacked Velshi as among "liberal journalists" who were confined to comfy, safe studios in New York City and Washington" during the hurricane. But Concha, we can presume, was nowhere near the hurricane either, but he doesn't get slammed as a liberal elite.

Yet for all of this manufactured indignation over the proper time to discuss climate change in relation to hurridcanes, neither Houck nor Concha identified a specific time when that conversation could take place. We suspect that for them, the real answer is never.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:55 AM EDT
Saturday, September 16, 2017
CNS Creates Fakeish-News Attack on SPLC
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com blogger Craig Bannister is a terrible media analyst and desperate Trump spinmeister. Now he's peddlling badly researched fake-ish news. He wrote in an Aug. 31 post:

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has now branded hundreds of counties, cities, schools and U.S. military bases as potential catalysts to “unleash more turmoil and bloodshed” – because of their names.

The SPLC website says it has compiled a list of 1,503 place names, monuments and symbols it wants its supporters to demand be eradicated:

[...]

“We will never solve our community’s problems if an entire group of citizens is alienated or feels targeted for discrimination,” SPLC says.

But those quoted statements don't appear in the SPLC document to which Bannister links -- they are in a separate document.

And in neither of those documents does the SPLC assert that confederate monuments should be "eradicated," as Bannister claims. The document to which Bannister failed to link has a form letter stating that monuments should be moved to "an appropriate place," adding: "Confederate symbols belong in museums and on private property. In museums, we can learn their full history."

Bannister also asserted that the SPLC listed "The top 10 most hateful states, ranked by SPLC by number of offenses." IN fact, in neither document does the SPLC call these states "hateful."

Bannister is engaging in dishonesty that borders fakery. Ironic, since right-wingers love to attackk the SPLC for falsely labeling right-wing anti-gay groups as "hate groups."


Posted by Terry K. at 10:26 AM EDT
WND Falsely Claims Hillary Took No Blame For Election Loss in Memoir
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Alicia Powe rehashes a right-wing Hillary-bashing meme in a Sept. 10 WorldNetDaily article:

The odds were stacked against Donald Trump to win the presidency in a 2016 race with an entitled Hillary Clinton.

Clinton, a former U.S. secretary of state and former first lady, spent her entire adult life preparing to become the first female president, and she was the establishment candidate.

Not only were the mainstream media blatantly in favor of Clinton over Sen. Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primary and then Donald Trump in the general election, the Democratic National Committee brazenly admitted that it rigged its primary to ensure Clinton, even with all her scandals, would be its nominee.

At one point, she was projected to have a 90 percent chance of becoming the next president.

And when she lost, someone – anyone – had to be blamed.

Anyone but Hillary Clinton, of course.

In her upcoming 500-page memoir, “What Happened,” Clinton reportedly lists all the outside forces responsible for her stunning defeat.

Given that Powe's article appeared two days before Clinton's book was officially released, she was merely speculating about the full extent of it contents -- speculation she got wrong.

People who actually read the book before writing about it found that "Clinton doesn’t spare any of the major players from blame — and that includes herself." Mistakes she admitted making include running a "traditional" campaign against Trump's "reality TV show," as well as not realizing "how quickly the ground was shifting under our feet”" in the national mood.

Heck, even the Hillary-haters at Fox News admitted that she was "taking some of the blame" for her election loss.

In other words, the premise of Powe's article is lazy, fake news. No correction has been issued as of this writing.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 AM EDT
Friday, September 15, 2017
CNS Inadvertently Lets Liberty Counsel Demostrate SPLC's 'Hate Group' Designation Is Correct
Topic: CNSNews.com

It likely wasn't CNSNews.com managing editor Michael W. Chapman's intent, but he gave Liberty Counsel chairman Mat Staver enough rope to hang himself.

In an Aug. 31 article, Chapman played stenographer to Staver's rant against the Southern Poverty Law Center listing "Christian and conservative organizations" as hate groups "is not unlike how the Nazis treated the Jews." Needless to say -- and we can assume this because Chapman did not transcribe it -- Staver didn't mention the fact that these groups' unambiguously demonstated hatred toward gays is the reason the SPLC gave them the "hate group" designation.

Chapman then touted Staver's own brand of malicious hate:

Earlier, [radio host Jim] Schneider asked about white supremacy and how an estimated 266 black children are killed every day in America by abortion.

Staver said, “Well, talk about white supremacy! That’s exactly what [Planned Parenthood founder] Margaret Sanger was all about. She wanted ultimately to create a super race. She was a social Darwinist, and she wanted to eliminate certain populations, including the black population. That’s why she put her then-contraception, later-abortion clinics into these minority neighborhoods to stop the reproduction of these minority communities, and including the African American community."

In fact, Sanger was not a "white supremacist" and did not seek to eliminate the "black population."

Sanger also ranted:

"One of Sanger’s closest friends and influential colleagues was the white supremacist Lothrop Stoddard, author of The Rising Tide of Color Against White World-Supremacy. In the book he offered his solution for the threat posed by the darker races: 'Just as we isolate bacterial invasions, and starve out the bacteria, by limiting the area and amount of their food supply, so we can compel an inferior race to remain in its native habitat.' When the book came out, Sanger was sufficiently impressed to invite him to join the board of directors of the American Birth Control League."

In fact, a review of Stoddard's book in the Birth Control Review, which Sanger ran for several hears, was critical of it.

Staver also invoked the Ernst Rudin article in the Birth Control Review years after Sanger let the publication, as well as an out-of-context reference to Sanger's speech to a KKK auxiliary.

Staver is spreading malicious lies -- thus demonstrating why groups like his are labeled as hate groups by the SPLC. (And we haven't even gotten around to mentioning Liberty Counsel's suspected role in helping a woman it represented flee the country with her child in order to avoid having to share custody with her former lesbian partner.

As a side note, it's telling about the state of journalism at CNS that Chapman couldn't be bothered to do a fact-check on Staver, despite the numerous falsehoods we found in his rant. 


Posted by Terry K. at 2:56 PM EDT
Shocker: WND Attempts Actual Journalism, While CNS, MRC Did Stenography
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Conservative publisher Regnery Publishing was seeking fawning right-wing media coverage of its attack on the New York Times book bestseller list, and that's what it mostly got from the ConWeb.

The Media Research Center was totally in stenography mode. A CNSNews.com article by Craig Bannister touted how Regnery insisted that the Times list "has become so discredited and tainted by bias that it will no longer be trusted or cited." At the MRC's NewsBusters, Corrine Weaver totally bought into Regnery's storyline, accusing the Times' list of "inherent corruption" and attacked the Times for not ranking one right-wing book at its "correct position," though she has no idea whatsoever what that "correct position" was.

Neither the CNS or MRC items bothered to seek out, let alone report, the Times' side of the story.

By contrast, WorldNetDaily -- though still completely biased -- actually hinted at the core of the issue Regnery has with the Times list. In a Sept. 4 article, Art Moore claimed that the Times "did not respond to WND's request for comment," but noted, unlike tthe MRC stenographers, that the Times has previously said that its list excludes bulk sales.

This has been a longtime issue, since bulk sales have long juiced sales of conservative books through book clubs and to think tanks and PACs as free or deeply discounted promotional items. There are even businesses that organize people to buy thousands of copies of a book for the sole purpose of getting that book on the bestseller list (something Ted Cruz allegedly got caught doing).

Moore went on to quote Regnery author (and general buffoon) Dinesh D'Souza as saying that "there needs to be a way of taking into account massive bulk sales, but, ultimately, 'a book sold is a book sold.'" Well, not quite; in 2007, five Regnery authors sued the publisher over allegedly shorchanging them on royalites because of bulk sales of their books to book clubs with the same ownership as Regnery.

It's a sad state of journalism at the MRC when the division tasked with performing said journalism is being outdone by WND on that front.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:53 AM EDT
Thursday, September 14, 2017
MRC Shocked To Discover TV Show About Porn Has A Lot of Sex In It
Topic: Media Research Center

In a Sept. 10 post, the Media Research Center's Lindsay Kornick is shocked -- shocked! -- to that the new HBO show "The Deuce," about the porn industry in the 1970s, has a lot of sex in it:

The description of the newest HBO show, brought to us by Marxist creator David Simon, The Deuce reads, “The story of the legalization and ensuing rise of the porn industry in New York beginning in the 1970s.” If a plot like that doesn’t make your stomach churn, get your supply of eye-bleach ready for what’s sadly up to be the latest hit show on HBO’s hands - because this story, along with HBO itself, is all too ready to remind us that sex sells.

The September 10th pilot introduces us to New York City in 1971 and follows a variety of characters ranging from mob members to street pimps to sex workers to college students. I would tell you the plot, but this show seems far more interested in sexual imagery than original characters and storytelling that might mean something. The gratuitous sex I can almost forgive (okay, that’s a lie, I never will), but the sheer and mind-numbing boredom is the waterboarding icing on top of this torture cake. And there’s a lot to cover.

Over the course of this way-too-long pilot, we are treated to not one, not two, but FIVE graphic sex scenes. Forget everything you’ve known about the old X-rating, apparently everything goes now on television. Naked breasts or even an exposed penis is no longer a taboo but a feature. This show may try to lean on the “realistic” element of it being based on a true story, but that assumes that people want to get these scenes seared into their brains on a Sunday night.

Hang on, there’s more! One of those sex scenes just so happens to involve an underaged participant with "sex worker" Candy (Maggie Gyllenhaal). For a sexually hungry boy’s birthday, his friends pool their funds together for some time in a motel where he fondles her bare breasts. We’re now throwing all forms of morality to the wind for, what the New York Times review calls, “Pure capitalism: desire quantified in $20 bills and in the quarters pumped into peep-show booths.” Sorry liberals, you don’t get to pawn off your failures to society onto capitalism this time. I’ve seen mud puddles less dirty than this show.

Kornick's evidence that Simon is a "Marxist creator" is a 2013 NewsBusters post on a speech by Simon in which he at no point calls himself a Marxist but says Marx accurately described the state of America now.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:27 PM EDT
WND's Farah Lies About Margaret Sanger
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Inveterate liar Joseph Farah spent his Sept. 8 WorldNetDaily column ranting that Margaret Sanger "had ties to the KKK and the Nazis and was a white supremacist." Shockingly, he provides what he calls evidence to back up his claims. Let's look at them, shall we?

She addressed the Ku Klux Klan, fans of Sanger because of her own racism and plans for reducing the population of blacks in America;

We'll concede that happened -- though it was actually to a meeting of the women's division of it, not the main KKK -- but speaking before a any group does not equal a "tie" to it. As we've pointed out, the KKK was something of a mainstream group, though still clandestine, at the time she spoke to. Sanger said in her autobiography that she would speak to any group that would have her.

Her eugenics plans inspired the Nazi sterilization law of 1933 and the subsequent Nazi euthanasia laws;

While the 1933 law reportedly took its inspiration from American models, Sanger was far from the only eugenicist in the U.S. -- it was a popular belief in the 1920s.

In 1939, as Hitler was devising his “final solution,” Sanger proposed her infamous “Negro Project,” in which she wrote “the most successful educational approach to the Negro is through a religious appeal. We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the Minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members”;

As we've documented, the context of that statement involved recruiting black leaders for the effort to allay suspicions blacks might have had about whites like Sanger being involved -- the complete opposite of what Farah claims.

Sanger was closely tied to Ernst Rudin, who served as Hitler’s director of genetic sterilization. An April 1933 article by Rudin – entitled “Eugenic Sterilization: An Urgent Need” – for Sanger’s monthly magazine, The Birth Control Review, detailed the establishment of the Nazi Society for Racial Hygiene and advocated its replication in the United States. A subsequent article by Leon Whitney published the following June by Sanger, entitled “Selective Sterilization,” praises and defends the Third Reich’s pre-holocaust “race purification” program.

In fact, Sanger was never "closely tied" to Rudin. She had left the Birth Control Review a full four years earlier and no longer had any affiliation with the publication when Rudin's article was published.

Farah's efforts to tar Sanger as a "Nazi fan" -- a term he actually uses later in his column -- are ludicrous, given that the Nazis opposed contraception and burned her family-planning books. And there's no evidence Sanger was ever a virulent racist or that she coerced women into using birth control.

In short, Farah is lying again. As usual.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:50 PM EDT
There's Plenty Wrong With The MRC's Latest So-Called Study
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has been getting some great right-wing press for its latest so-called study. For example, conservative media reporter Joe Concha gushed in an appearance on Fox News, "I get they're conservative, but no one challenges their data."

Wrong, Joe. We've always challenged the MRC's data, and we'll do so once again here.

The MRC's new "study" by Rich Noyes and Mike Ciandella arrived under the headline "The Liberal Media’s Summer of Pummeling Trump." And therein lies the MRC's first deception. The "study" does not examine the entire media, or even the entire "liberal media" -- it looks only at the evening newscasts on ABC, NBC and CBS. That's a very tiny sliver of the media, a half-hour on three channels. Throughout their report, Noyes and Ciandella repeatedly conflate this sliver with all of "TV."

Noyes and Ciandella then offered what they claimed was a "methodology":

Methodology: Our measure of spin was designed to isolate the networks’ own slant, not the back-and-forth of partisan politics. Thus, our analysts ignored soundbites which merely showcased the traditional party line (Republicans supporting Trump, Democrats criticizing him), and instead tallied evaluative statements which imparted a clear positive or negative tone to the story, such as statements from experts presented as non-partisan, voters, or opinionated statements from the networks’ own reporters.

Using these criteria, MRC analysts tallied 1,567 evaluative statements about the Trump administration in June, July and August, of which 1,422 (91%) were negative vs. a mere 145 (9%) which were positive. Since Trump took office on January 20, there have been 4,144 such evaluative statements, of which 3,712 (90%) were negative, vs. 432 (10%) which were positive.

First: "Spin" is not something that can be measured objectively -- it's an entirely subjective value. Similarly, "positive" and "negative" are subjective as well. Given the MRC's inherent bias against those very evening newscasts, it's predisposed to find negative evaluations, making its results even more biased and making that 91% number highly suspicious.

Second: The "evaluative statements" were only only positive or negative? There were no neutral evaluations? It's unlikely that all of the statements were so binary.

Third: Noyes and Ciandella make no evaluation of whether the Trump actions that were evaluated deserved the negative responses they claim to have documented, despite claiming that "All Presidents deserve critical news coverage from time to time." Instead, they assert without evidence that Trump is as "highly controversial" as President Obama was, but "Obama’s policies matched the liberal media’s preferences, while Trump’s agenda clearly clashes with the establishment media’s world view."

Fourth: Noyes and Ciandella don't provide a list of the "evaluative statements" they tallied, which makes this something of a black-box exercise. Perhaps they don't want people to know just how subjective their judgments are.

While Concha doesn't appear to think so, there's plenty to challenge about the MRC's data -- and it demonstrates that this study does not display scientific rigor and is too biased to be taken seriously as anything other than red meat for right-wing activists. You know, like most MRC "studies."


Posted by Terry K. at 8:43 AM EDT
Updated: Thursday, September 14, 2017 8:53 AM EDT
Wednesday, September 13, 2017
WND's Ignorant 'School Is Child Abuse' Smear
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A pair of recent WorldNetDaily columns took on variations of an overused right-wing theme: that public schools are terrible to the point of "child abuse."

Anti-Kinsey obsessive Judith Reisman remains as obsessed as ever in an Aug. 31 column in which she, as near as we can tell, wants sex-education teachers arrested for distributing obscene material to children, claiming that such materials constitute "child sex abuse." Her evidence of this allegedly "obsecne" material is ... a 40-year-old pamphlet she does not prove was ever distributed in any classroom. She also bizarrely claims the sex-ed book "It's Perfectly Normal" has been "grooming child predators of every stripe."

Then, in a Sept. 4 column headlined "Sending kids to public schools is child abuse," Mychal Massie huffed that "The public school system has become a taxpayer-funded brothel where teachers have sexual relations with students and children are inculcated with deviant sexual depravity. It is our duty as Christians to provide avenues of rescue for children and families from the zeitgeist of sexual perversion extolled in public schools."

Massie then declared his preference for children to undergo forced indoctrination into Christianity:

I argued that as Christians, the summum bonum is to reach people for Christ and to manage well the resources God placed in our charge. I argued that we should advocate and then facilitate the coordination of resources to financially support private Christian schools. I contended that it was pointless to throw good money after bad in spending massive amounts of money in court battles regarding such issues as whether a grade-school child can give thanks for his food in the school cafeteria and to wage legal fights over whether children can wear a T-shirt to public school that says “Jesus Loves You.”

I argued that those sums of money could be used to bring children out of public schools and into a Christian education environment. I said that we could make it a nationwide effort and use it to evangelize. I spoke of how to implement the equitable funding of same and what it would mean for advancing the Kingdom of God on earth. As a coda to this point, I add that there were no paupers at this event. The attendees were in the top tax brackets. There was real money and real old money.

Massie doesn't explain how the forced indoctrination he advocates is any better than those public-school methods he despises.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:06 PM EDT
Yes, The MRC Is Anti-Media
Topic: Media Research Center

In an Aug. 29 post, the Media Research Center's Curtis Houck denounces the whole minor imbroglio over Melania Trump wearing stilettoes on her way to a presidential trip to visit victims of Hurricane Harvey. Houck insisted that this was "why people hate the media" and that the number of media outlets that reported the story "showed that many in the national and political media have no foresight for what actually matters." Then he added:

Liberal media defenders can claim that such criticism is delegitimizing the news media and that’s not what NewsBusters is dedicated to be doing. Rather, we’re simply bringing to light stories like these in which the media have done themselves a disservice to the public. 

Wrong. The MRC's goal is exactly to delegitimize the news media -- or, more to the point, any media that doesn't mindlessly promote right-wing talking points. That's why there is a Fox News-shaped blind spot in its media coverage (plus, it doesn't want to alienate the main TV outlet for its talking heads).

If the MRC really cared about "stories like these in which the media have done themselves a disservice to the public," where was its outrage when the right-wing media went crazy because President Obama put dijon mustard on his hamburger? Or when he mentioned arugula? Nowhere that we could find.

And if the MRC wasn't trying to delegitimize the media, it wouldn't be such a slavish acolyte to Donald Trump's even more hateful anti-media rhetoric.

Yes, Curtis, the MRC's job is to delegitimize any media that fails to advance a right-wing agenda. Until it can find it within itself to hold all media to account, let's not pretend otherwise.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:27 PM EDT

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