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Thursday, January 25, 2018
Sick: MRC Mocks CNN For Reacting To Death Threats Against It
Topic: Media Research Center

How sick, cynical and hafe-filled is the Media Research Center? Its first reaction to the arrest of a man who issued death threats against employees at CNN was to mock CNN for reacting to it.

On Jan. 22, it was reported that a Michigan man was arrested for making 22 calls to CNN headquarters in Atlanta threating violence against its employees, stating at one point, "Fake news. I'm coming to gun you all down." 

You'd think that the MRC -- despite hating CNN with the passion of a thousand suns -- would issue a statement that violence or threats of violence against the news media is frowned upon. But for two days it was silent -- even MRC officials Brent Bozell and Tim Graham said nothing.

Finally, a Jan. 24 NewsBusters post by Randy Hall addressed the issue -- but only through attacking CNN anchor Don Lemon for reacting to it. Lemon suggested that President Trump's repeated attacks on CNN as "fake news' may have spurred thte death threats, and Hall wasn't having it, declaring that Lemon was engaging in "a pathetic act of self-sanctimonious behavior" by raising the issue.

Hall quoted Lemon saying "When you tweet a doctored video of you body slamming CNN, people are watching," followed by political analyst Brian Karem stating to Trump, "You're complicit in any harm to any journalist anywhere in the United States by encouraging the violence that you encourage."Which you'd think would be self-explanatory, but apparently it wasn't toHall; instead, he retorted: "Wait, so Brian, would that mean that you'd agree that James Hodgkinson was inspired by Rachel Maddow and Bernie Sanders to try and murder Republican congressmen in June at a Virginia baseball field?"

Hall offered no evidence that Maddow or Sanders ever encouraged violence against any Republican congressman.

Meanwhile, Graham broke his silence on the CNN death threats by retweeting Hall's post with the embellishing insult of "SOUR Don Lemon." Yeah, well, when one's life has been threatened, it does tend to make one a bit sour.

This, by the way, is the same MRC that can't stop blaming the Southern Poverty Law Center for a 2012 shooting at the right-wing Family Research Council, even though the SPLC never encouraged violence or had any personal contact with the shooter beforehand (he admitted looking at the SPLC's list of anti-gay hate groups, of which the FRC is one, before the shooting).


Posted by Terry K. at 9:51 PM EST
WND Serves Up Another Suck-Up Profile Of A Trump Staffer
Topic: WorldNetDaily

As an unabashed, highly biased pro-Trump operation, WorldNetDaily is prone to the occasional sycophantic profile of Trump operatives; i,e, its embarassingly fawning article last year about then-White House press secretary Sean Spicer. WND has struck again in the form of a Jan. 11 article in which Bob Unruh sucks up to White House adviser Stephen Miller:

President Trump is not known for being a weak personality.

Many of his advisers have been cast in roughly the same mold: a little bit brash, certainly blunt, not inclined to use euphemisms.

One such personality was Stephen Bannon, the former chief strategist, whose bluntness eventually conflicted with the president’s own.

But now another blunt-speaking personality, who has a take-no-prisoners attitude with the media, is emerging as a power player for the president.

In the last week, he’s been “thrown out” of a television channel’s headquarters and has been the focus of complaints that his demands are holding up legislation.

He’s Stephen Miller, and McClatchy recently cited fretting by “even Republicans” in Congress that he was setting down requirements that were limiting their chances of passing an immigration deal.

Unruh's article appears to have been spurred by his combative interview with CNN's Jake Tapper. Unruh spun that "Tapper appeared to become flustered by Miller’s defense of the president and his refusal to answer some questions."


Posted by Terry K. at 4:05 PM EST
MRC Promotes Accused Sexual Harasser's Stock Picks To Its Readers
Topic: Media Research Center

We've detailed how the Media Research Center has studiously overlooked allegations of sexual harassment against Fox Business host Charles Payne, as well as a subsequent lawsuit from a woman, onetime Fox News commentator Scottie Nell Hughes, who says he coerced her into having a sexual relationship with him.

Now, the MRC is actually taking money from Payne.

A Jan. 24 email sent to members of the MRC's mailing list from InvestorPlace, a financial news website that pays Payne for a branded newsletter containing stock picks as well as something called "Charles Payne's Smart Investing," described as "a once-in-a-lifetime, 12-month journey to help you reclaim your American Dream" open to "a small number of individual investors." The email touts "5 New Trump Trades" promoted by Payne in a very ribght-wing-friendly manner:

Fellow American,

The fake news media is lying to you—again.

And this time, it could cost you a fortune.

In their desperate attempt to knock down President Trump at every turn, they want you to believe that his Make America Great Again agenda is floundering.

But you and I know better.

My name is Charles Payne, and you may know me from my show on Fox Business News or my regular appearances on Fox News.

And today I want to make sure you know the truth about President Trump’s progress and how to profit from it in 2018.

President Trump has quickly slashed regulations that were crushing businesses, killing jobs and holding back spending.

And now he’s about to push through the biggest tax reform our country has seen since Ronald Reagan.

His ambitious plans for America have unleashed corporate spending, fueled a raging bull market and sent consumer confidence soaring to 17-year highs.

And that is creating huge profits for smart investors.

The message includes a disclaimer: "Please note that the following message reflects the opinions and representations of our advertiser alone, and not necessarily the opinion or editorial positions of CNSNews.com or the Media Research Center." But given how (selectively) offended the MRC got over the sexual harassment issue, it's just not a good look when someone has rented its email list to promote an accused sexual harasser.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:01 AM EST
Wednesday, January 24, 2018
WND Cheers How Trump Insults His Critics, With Help From Lying Filmmaker
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily loves everything about Donald Trump -- even (or maybe especially) how he insults and belittles people. Which brings us to a Jan. 14 article touting a new doucmentary called "Trump: The Art of the Insult." The filmmaker, Joel Gilbert, effuses:

“Trump’s branding approach is actually a leftist tactic,” Gilbert argues. “A fan who watched my DVD wrote in an email, ‘Saul Alinsky works for us now!’ Donald Trump is the most media savvy person to enter politics, ever! He manipulates the media and controls the narrative with total ease by tweeting literally in his spare time in the early morning or just before bed. The Left is not in his league, they are still stuck on the losing narrative ‘Trump is not a nice guy’ and that’s all they’ve got.

“Trump’s tactics are about strength, taking a stand, and defending his turf and principles, and these things can only help him. Calling out opponents who behave badly, such as Sen. Diane Feinstein for illegally releasing committee transcripts, is a perfect example of Trump taking a stand and redirecting the narrative by branding Sen. Feinstein’s outrageous conduct of violating Senate rules. It’s also a warning to others to stay in line or you could be next!”

You might remember Joel Gilbert as  the liar and charlatan behind the utterly discredited film "Dreams From My Real Father," which made the completely false claim that Barack Obama's mother posed nude for Frank Marshall Davis. (WND still sells that bogus film, by the way.)

Needless to say, WND doesn't mention Gilbert's factually challenged history. It does, however, quote Gilbert spouting the expected anti-Obama right-wing talking points:

“In 1840, French traveler Alexis Tocqueville wrote in his book, ‘Democracy In America’: ‘Everyone in America has the vote and thus is a contributor to law-making. Anyone wishing to attack the law is thus reduced to adopting one of two courses: they must either change the nation’s opinion or trample its wishes under foot.’ Obama did trample, he interfered in the 2012 Democratic election by unleashing the IRS against the tea party movement and conservative organizations. This prevented conservatives from organizing, while the Left was allowed to exercise free speech unhindered.

“There was no need for Russian interference in 2012, we had our own Bolshevik in the White House using the tools of state to maintain power. Next Obama interfered in the 2016 election by using the FBI and DOJ to spy on the Trump campaign. Trump inspired voters because they knew the Republican Party needed a fighter in order to defeat the radical left. The fighting spirit that got Trump elected continues and must continue for him to succeed in office.”

Gilbert's film also got a seal of approval from another Obama-hating conspiracy-monger, Jack Cashill, whose Jan. 17 WND column touts it as "a hilarious trip down memory lane, especially for early Trump backers. With minimal commentary, Gilbert shows Trump being Trump as he slices and dices his way through the Republican primaries and then somehow manages to outwit the deep state to beat Hillary Clinton in the general."

Like his WND colleagues, Cashill makes sure not to bring up Gilbert's fabulist past that would be disqualifying anywhere else  -- which may be yet another reason WND is circling the drain right now.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:31 PM EST
CNS Again Privileges Alveda King With Bogus 'Dr.' Title
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com has a bad habit of privileging anti-abortion activist Alveda King with the "Dr." title even though her doctorate is honorary, not earned, and thus has no business being used in someone's title.

CNS managing editor Michael W. Chapman bestows this bogus title on King once again in a Jan. 17 article:

During a discussion about religious freedom in America, Dr. Alveda King, the niece of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., said that Facebook had "pulled down" ads for a movie about Roe v. Wade because the social media giant does not "want the message of the injustice of abortion broadcast," which, she added, is a "violation of religious freedom" and "very discriminatory." 

Dr. King is one of the executive producers of the movie, which includes Hollywood actor Jon Voight. The fundraising website for the film can be viewed at Roevwademovie.com.

Dr. King made her remarks during a special edition of Washington Watch with Tony Perkins, who is the president of the Family Research Council (FRC). The live show on Tuesday was broadcast on the Facebook page of the FRC in honor of Religious Freedom Day.  President Donald Trump proclaimed Jan. 16, 2018 as Religious Freedom Day on Tuesday. 

While discussing religious liberty in America and abroad, both Tony Perkins and Dr. King praised the power of social media to spread information and especially the Gospel. However, as Dr. King explained, social media is not as freedom-loving as one might think.

And so on. It's a shame such misinformation is becoming a greater presence at CNS.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:31 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: WND's Fake-News Failure
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily is facing another "existential threat" and begging for money again. Maybe if it didn't regularly publish fake news, WND wouldn't be in this predicament. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:36 AM EST
Tuesday, January 23, 2018
CNS Uncritically Touts Misleading Trump Admin Stats on 'Foreign-Born' Terrorists
Topic: CNSNews.com

Craig Bannister, a good Trump stenographer like the rest of his CNSNews.com colleagues, writes in a Jan. 16 blog post:

Three of four (73%) convicted international terrorists were foreign-born, a new Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Justice (DOJ) study reveals.

On Tuesday, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) released a reportdocumenting that three out of every four, or 402, individuals convicted of international terrorism-related charges in U.S. federal courts between September 11, 2001, and December 31, 2016 were foreign-born.

“This report is a clear reminder of why we cannot continue to rely on immigration policy based on pre-9/11 thinking that leaves us woefully vulnerable to foreign-born terrorists, Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said, announcing the report:

[...]

The report reveals that at least 549 individuals were convicted of international terrorism-related charges in U.S. federal courts between September 11, 2001, and December 31, 2016. An analysis conducted by DHS determined that approximately 73 percent (402 of these 549 individuals) were foreign-born.  

Because Bannister made sure to stick to the Trump script, he didn't report the rest of the story. As actual reporters have pointed out, the report skews its numbers toward building up the foreign-born number by including people arrested overseas, including people convicted of charges not directly related to terrorism and excluding perpetrators of domestic terrorism.

If Bannister didn't stick to the script, he woludn't be the Trump stenographer CNS demands that he be.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:36 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 9:42 PM EST
Fake News: WND's 'New Scandal' Is A Very Old Non-Scandal
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An anonymous WorldNetDaily writer really tries to ramp up the meaning in a Jan. 17 article headlined "New scandal in Obama's war against Netanyahu":

Democrats in Washington have expressed outrage over still-unproved allegations the Trump campaign colluded with Russia in the 2016 U.S. presidential election to defeat their candidate, Hillary Clinton.

But Democrats and their media allies have been virtually silent regarding evidence of interference by Democrat Barack Obama in Israel’s elections.

Last October, WND CEO Joseph Farah pointed out the Obama administration sent money in 2015 to a non-profit U.S. group that sought to prevent Benjamin Netanyahu from forming a coalition government to remain as prime minister.

A probe by the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations found that the Obama State Department gave $349,276 in U.S. taxpayer-funded grants to a political group in Israel called OneVoice to build a campaign operation that, subsequently, was used to try to persuade Israelis to vote against Netanyahu.

Now there’s new information, according to the American Center for Law and Justice, that the Obama administration’s intervention was even worse.

ACLJ said that in response to a Freedom of Information Act request, it “uncovered a startling revelation.”

“Yasser Mahmoud Abbas, son of Mahmoud Abbas, the leader of the terrorist-allied Palestinian Authority, was also a senior leader and advisor to OneVoice – and, as demonstrated by the contents of the documents themselves, the Obama administration knew this,” ACLJ said in a report Wednesday.

“In short, the Obama State Department gave U.S. taxpayer dollars to a terrorist-affiliated organization (the PA recently united with the terrorist group Hamas) to unseat the democratically elected leader of the only free democracy in the Middle East and a vital U.S. ally.”

Just one problem, and WND would have known it if it bothered to do a basic Google search, like we did: This isn't "new information" at all.

Abbas was publicly listed as a member of OneVoice as far back as 2003, when OneVoice was founded to encourage a negotiated settlement to Israeli-Palestinian violence. When someone tried to make an issue of this in 2015 -- more evidence that this is not "new information" and that ACLJ is lying -- OneVoice issued a statement:

"Mahmoud Abbas' son is a member of the Advisory Council of OneVoice in the Palestinian Authority, which is working toward a diplomatic agreement and two states for two peoples. Just as Michi Ratzon, who ran in the Likud primaries, served on the Advisory Council in Israel, and David Azoulay, Avraham Michaeli, Yitzhak Vaknin and Yitzhak Cohen from Shas serve in the movement's lobby in Knesset, as do MK Elazar Stern, MK Rabbi Dov Lipman and many others.

"Any attempt to tie his influence to the movement in Israel is foolish and untrue. We do not recall any such claims or complaints about the issue when OneVoice led a campaign in support of Prime Minister Netanyahu when he was considering the option of a diplomatic arrangement."

Likud is the political party to which Netanyahu belongs.

as we've previously documented, there isn't a scandal here, despite Farah's fervent wish to create one. OneVoice received a $350,000 grant for a project unrelated to the Israeli election, and it was later revealed that OneVoice later used intrastructure that grant paid for in its campaign against Netanyahu in the election. A Senate subcommittee found that OneVoice fully complied with the terms of the original grant, no grant money was used in the election, and the State Department placed no limitations on the post-grant use of those resources.

In other words, WND is lying about the intent of the grant money because it has never been proven that it was given with the ultimate goal of being used against Netanyahu.

Despite that, Farah used his October 2017 column to insist that "The U.S. government, in the hands of Barack Obama, intervened in a foreign election with the express purpose of impacting the results."

With such reporting that credulously promotes false claims it could fact-check if it wanted to, is it any wonder WND is circling the drain right now?


Posted by Terry K. at 6:09 PM EST
MRC Is Mad The Media Accurately Quoted Trump's Vulgarity
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Tim Graham huffs in a Jan. 15 post (bolding is his):

In the contest for Most Offended News Network after President Trump reportedly referred to African nations as “s***hole” countries, CNN wins hands down. NewsBusters staff combed through CNN transcripts on Nexis for the S-hole word in the 24 hours of January 12 – the first full day after The Washington Post reported the controversy – and found CNN staffers and CNN guests uncorked the profanity 195 times in one day.

That doesn't count Saturday, Sunday or Monday. They could be headed for 1,000 by now. It also doesn't count the amount of time they put the S-word on screen (sometimes twice, as you can see on Cuomo's temporary prime time show.)

Compare that to Fox News Channel. Their curse count was zero. FNC told staff and guests not to say it.

Missing from Graham's post: any criticism of Trump for saying the vulgar word in the first place, let alone any criticism of him for saying it about certain African countries. If Trump hadn't said it, CNN would not have needed to report it, and Fox News would not have to devise a way to dance around it.

In short, Graham is complaining that CNN reported Trump's word accurately.

In a companion piece at the MRC's "news" division, Craig Bannister touts how Republican Rep. Lamar Smith regurgitated Graham's post on the House floor, additionally complaining that "There was a time when the media would show some respect for family values. But no more." Bannister gives no indication that Smith also criticized Trump for saying the word in the first place or the context in which he said it, so we must assume that he did not.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:16 AM EST
Monday, January 22, 2018
WND's Farah Is Hypocritically Cool With Trump's Alleged Affair With Porn Star
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah has forwarded various reasons why his website has to beg for money -- none of which, strangely enough, have to do with the nature of WND's content, which you'd think would be central to why WND has trouble staying in business. But whether Farah wants to admit it or not, WND's biased, credibility-deprived content is an issue, especially when it's so biased as to be hypocritical.

Farah's own Jan. 16 column is a prime example.He declares that reports that President Trump had an affair with porn star Stormy Daniels are"just media’s latest desperate effort to trash Trump":

First of all, as an evangelical, Bible-believing Christian, I believe any sexual activity outside of marriage is sinful, a transgression of the law of God. I don’t approve of it. I don’t condone it. I don’t excuse it. I don’t rationalize it. I would tell Donald Trump the same thing if he sought my counsel, which he does not.

Yet, the very media institutions making so much of this would scoff at the biblical standard I follow. So, what exactly is their beef? Let’s say Trump had consensual sex with the porn star, which is far from certain. There is no allegation of harassment, which is how the major media seem to define sin these days. Would it be wrong because she was a porn star? Where is that law written in the gospel according to the media?

I have no idea what the facts of this encounter actually are, but I do know that people sometimes make allegations against famous people – especially when they are running for president. Democrats and their friends in the media knew that in 1992 and 1996 and defended a presidential candidate and a sitting president in those years against dozens and dozens of allegations, including at least one very serious and credible one of rape, others about sexual harassment, others about crude and lewd behavior.

How did the Democrats and their apparatchiks in the media respond? With a collective yawn, little reporting, no outrage, little concern, lectures about this being part of his “private life” and pleas to “move on.”

I would also note that Donald Trump and his attorney took care of this matter with his own money. There are currently dozens of secret allegations on file in Washington against members of the House and Senate for sexual harassment and other sex-related claims. They have all been silenced with payoffs by the taxpayers of the United States.

Lastly, I can only point out that the alleged “incident” between Trump and Clifford dates back to 2006 when Donald Trump was a private citizen, not seeking elective political office and, especially important, a registered Democrat, giving major contributions to officials and candidates of that party. He was also, interestingly, a media star. In other words, he was a very different Donald Trump then. His values were Democratic Party values. His values were media values.

It’s no wonder Trump would want to quash that story during his presidential campaign.

Lastly, with all the attention this incident has received in the last few days, nobody, except Trump and Clifford, probably know what happened. They both officially deny anything[.]

So, we all know what this is about – politics. It’s about the relentless character assassination of a private citizen who went to Washington to shake things up. He was duly elected as president and the media and Democrats can’t accept that reality. They can’t believe this guy actually beat them. And they will keep slinging the mud until he is out of the White House and they can get back to business as usual in the nation’s swampy capital.

Do I have that about right?

Remember that Farah also claims his website offers coverage from a "Judeo-Christian worldview." If that were actually true, Farah would be attacking Trump's numerous extramarital affairs and sexual harassment (and at least one very serious and credible one of rape) with the same vigor that he attacked Bill Clinton's. But he does not, because he does not believe that.

In dismissing criticism of Trump over his sexual dalliances as nothing but "politics" and "relentless character assassination," he is exposing the fact that all of his attacks against Clinton over the same thing were nothing but politics and character assassination as well. He's totally down with Trump's sexual deviancy because Trump is his guy. He cannot prove that Trump was "a very different Donald Trump then" -- all he knows is that Trump's in power now and claims to much more closely align to Farah's agenda. As long as Trump's political agenda meshes with Farah's, Farah will cast a blind eye to Trump's sex life because he doesn't want to endanger Trump's presidency.

Farah is exposing himself as being just as amoral as the "mainstream media" he loves to despise. If he actually cared about Judeo-Christiann morality, wouldn't WND have distanced itself from the book it published by anti-Semite and white nationalist Paul Nehlen? WND has had weeks to do so, but it has remained silent.

Farah's cynicism and hypocrisy here is breathtaking -- and the opposite of Christian. No wonder WND's circling the drain.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:47 PM EST
CNS Puts Pro-Trump Spin on Disastrous TV Interview With WH Adviser
Topic: CNSNews.com

It was almost universally agreed that White House adviser Stephen Miller's Jan. 7 interview with CNN's Jake Tapper was a disaster for Miller, who refused to answer questions Tapper had asked him and instead serving up glowing tributes to President Trump as a "political genius."

But Trump tweeted that Miller "destroyed" the "flunky" Tapper in the interview. Thus, CNS' Melanie Arter had her marching orders to spin things in Miller's favor, and that's exactly what she does in her article on the interview. It was headlined "WH Adviser Stephen Miller Takes CNN to Task for Negative Trump News Coverage," and it only got more spin-tastic from there:

In an interview Sunday with CNN’s “State of the Union with Jake Tapper,” White House Senior Policy Adviser Stephen Miller took Tapper to task for his network’s negative coverage of President Donald Trump.

When asked to address Trump’s tweets Saturday defending himself against claims that he is not mentally fit to be president prompted by author Michael Wolff’s unflattering book, “Fire and Fury,” Miller said the president’s tweets help his cause in demonstrating that he is stable enough for the job.

Then Miller criticized CNN, saying it has “a real crisis of legitimacy.”

[...]

When Miller tried to steer the conversation back to the president’s experiences, Tapper ended the interview.

“Okay, you’re not answering the questions,” Tapper said.

“You have 24 hours a day of anti-Trump material. You’re not going to give three minutes for the American people to hear the real experience of Donald Trump,” Miller said.

“There’s one viewer that you care about right now, and you’re being obsequious,” Tapper said.

Oddly, Arter didn't include what Tapper said after the "obsequious" remark: "You’re being a factotum in order to please him." Perhaps she would have to explain to CNS' readers what "factotum" means.

Arter did, however, make sure to add that "Miller’s exchange with Tapper comes one day before the president planned to hold what he called 'the most dishonest and corrupt media awards of the year.'"


Posted by Terry K. at 2:13 PM EST
WND Surprisingly Splits On Trump's Vulgarity
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Unsurprisingly, WorldNetDaily writers had a lot to say about President Trump's reported use of the term "shithole countries" to describe certain other nations. Surprisingly, though, that reaction was not uniformly pro-Trump.

Jesse Lee Peterson, needless to say, was pro-Trump: "The president allegedly asked, 'Why are we having all these people from s—hole countries come here?' This is a question every American who cares about our country should be asking." He then attacked "black homosexual CNN host Don Lemon" for using the word and accusing Trump of racism, going on to complain that "Radical homosexuals and liberals ... can’t see that Donald Trump is tough, smart, and looking out for America."

Dennis Prager averred that Trump could have used a better word like "dysfunctional" to describe those countries, but then rushed to Trump's defense, declaring, "The press’ constant description of Trump as a racist, a white supremacist, a fascist and an anti-Semite has been a Big Lie."

By contrast, Rita Dunaway repudiated Trump's remark: "President Trump was not speaking for America’s true conservatives when he made his repulsive, potty-mouthed comment about immigrants from El Salvador, Haiti and certain African nations. He certainly was not speaking for me."

Michael Brown, though, was somewhat offended by Trump's use of the word but seemed to be even more so that the word was reported accurately in the media:

President Trump is hardly the first president to use a vulgarity (meaning, behind closed doors, or at the least, away from a mic), but this is the first time it seems the whole nation now feels empowered to be obscene. Why? And why was it that many Trump supporters cheered him on when he dropped the F-bomb early in his campaign? What’s to celebrate?

And while our communication has been getting more profane, it has also become much more explicit sexually. It’s not enough to report that a woman alleges that a famous man assaulted her. We must hear the details of what they did and how they did it.

In the past, such salacious reports would have been found in the crassest tabloids, if not porn magazines. Today, they’re part of our daily news intake.

Surely, this desensitizing is hurting us more than helping us.

Perhaps, but if Trump hadn't said it, it wouldn't have been needed to be reported on.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:57 AM EST
Sunday, January 21, 2018
CNS' Year of Judicial Watch Stenography
Topic: CNSNews.com

We've documented how, through much of 2017, CNSNews.com has served as a public-relations agent for the right-wing legal group Judicial Watch, rewriting their press releases as "news" articles. CNS closed out 2017 in the same mode. Here's the Judicial Watch stenography CNS published -- mostly written by CNS managing editor Michael W. Chapman -- through the end of 2017:

For the record, that's at least 31 articles uncritically forwarding Judicial Watch talking points CNS published in 2017, plus three columns by Judical Watch chief Tom Fitton. Chapman made no attempt to talk to anyone else for their reaction to Judicial Watch's politically motivated campaign, nor does he ask why Judicial Watch is so strangely uninterested in Russian interference in U.S. elections.

CNS appears to be ramping up the stenography for 2018. Here's what it's published so far already since Jan. 1:

Chapman also regurgitated Judicial Watch's weird, purposeless attack on the National Mango Board.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:48 PM EST
Fringe WND Still Promoting Sue-Happy Defamer Larry Klayman
Topic: WorldNetDaily

If WorldNetDaily is trying to clean up its act in order to show the world it deserves to live, it isn't doing a very good job of it. It has continued to publish fake news, and it's still birther.

Another sign of this: giving Larry Klayman a new promotional push. As if publishing his column for years wasn't enough.

We've documented how Klayman is a terrible lawyer and sue-happy defamer who stumbles into big rulings more out of sheer luck than any prosecutorial skill.Now, for some reason, WND has decided to promote his latest Clinton-hating crusade, as described in a Jan. 5 article by Bob Unruh:

He sued the National Security Agency and won in district court.

He sued to get Barack Obama’s birth certificate.

He sued journalists.

He sued the Taliban and al-Qaida.

He sued Cuba and won a multimillion-dollar judgment.

He sued to get then-President Obama deported.

Now, Larry Klayman, the former Justice Department lawyer and founder of Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch, has obtained on a petition the signatures of almost 11,000 people who want him named special counsel to investigate the Clintons, Uranium One and Fusion GPS.

He has filed a separate legal action that seeks to remove Robert Mueller as special counsel.

It's never explained how Klayman obtained these signatures or if he has instituted any sort of verification system showing that the signatories are who they say they are, if they've signed the petition more than once, or even if they're American citizens. He does provide an alleged list of signatories, though.

The end of Unruh's article rather hilariously links to WND's own petition demanding a special prosecutor to investigate Hi.llary Clinton. Like Klayman's petition, there's no transparency and no apparent verification mechanism.

Then, in a Jan. 15 article, Unruh strokes Klayman's ego some more:

A veteran Washington courtroom fighter, Larry Klayman of Freedom Watch, confirmed Monday he has filed a lawsuit that puts special counsel Robert Mueller’s communications with the media in a bull’s-eye.

“Robert Mueller and his staff, who are alleged to have illegally leaked grand jury information to damage the president, his family and associates, have thus far been untouched by the inept and inert Justice Department, run by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who appears afraid that he himself may be indicted by Mueller for alleged Russian collusion and obstruction of justice,” Klayman said.

“Freedom Watch is not afraid and is doing the job of my former alma mater, which has regrettably become the ‘Department of Prosecutorial Misconduct and Injustice.’ I will not rest until Robert Mueller and his partisan leftist prosecutors are removed and replaced with an honest and ethical special counsel and staff, who will not abuse their authority for political purposes, but instead expeditiously conduct and conclude this Russian collusion investigation on the merits before more harm is done to the nation.”

His, filed in federal court in Washington, is against Mueller, the DOJ and the FBI.

Since we know that WND accepts money to publish "news" articles, one has to wonder what financial deal has been worked out for WND to publish such shameless promotion of Klayman.

(Pictured: Larry Klayman and WND editor Joseph Farah at 2013 anti-Obama rally in Washington D.C. No, Klayman never followed up on his threat to sue me for distributing a factual flyer about his background at the rally.)


Posted by Terry K. at 6:54 PM EST
Saturday, January 20, 2018
NewsBusters Blogger Gives Trump Credit for Black Unemployment Trend Started Under Obama
Topic: NewsBusters

We've noted how NewsBusters blogger Tom Blumer is loath to give President Obama credit for creating the economy whose coattails President Trump is currently riding. He does so again in a Jan. 12 post:

The seasonally adjusted black unemployment rate in December was 6.8 percent, the first time that rate has ever fallen below 7 percent. A look at the monthly detail for all 46 years of available data shows that the previous lows were 7.0 percent, seen in both April 2000 and September 2017.

No other month during 1999 or 2000, the last time black unemployment dipped to historically low levels, came in under 7.3 percent. Almost no one knows that 2017 contains four of the five lowest reported monthly black unemployment rates on record: June's 7.1 percent, September's 7.0 percent, November's 7.2 percent, and December's 6.8 percent.

Digging further, December's raw unemployment rate of 6.3 percent (before seasonal adjustments) is by far the lowest December on record. The previous December low was 6.9 percent in 2000.

It's hard to imagine that the Big Three networks would have failed to report this remarkable story if it had occurred during Barack Obama's presidency.

Blumer fails to acknowledge, however, that most of that did happen under Obama. As the graph of seasonally adjusted black unemployment that illustrates Blumer's post illustrates, black unemployment has been on a steady downward trend since 2012.

Nevertheless, Blumer continued ranting:

The black unemployment rate in January 2009, the surveys for which were conducted a week before his inauguration, was 12.7 percent. Despite trillions of dollars of so-called stimulus from record federal budget deficits and over $4 trillion in unprecedented "money-from-nothing" quantitative easing by the Federal Reserve, the black unemployment rate at first just kept on rising, peaking at 16.8 percent in March 2010. It didn't move permanently below 15 percent until early 2012, didn't stay below the 12.7 percent Obama "inherited" until November 2013, and didn't get below 11.3 percent, the previous decade's pre-recession peak, until September 2014, almost seven years after Obama he was inaugurated. By that time, white unemployment was only 5.1 percent. That's a lot of suffering.

Blumer doesn't mention it despite his inclusion of another graph partially illustrating the fact, but black employment has always been roughly twice as high as white unemployment, and that gap typically increases in times of recession, which the first part of the Obama presidency inarguably was. Yet Blumer just can't credit Obama for the drop in black unemployment in the last half of his presidency.

As before with the economic numbers, Blumer cites no specific policy that has earned Trump the right to take credit for the current low in black unemployment.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:14 AM EST

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