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Tuesday, January 30, 2018
NEW ARTICLE: The Stenography Factory
Topic: WorldNetDaily
CNSNews.com gives up journalism to serve as servile stenographers (and a damage-control squad) for the Trump White House, as well as for friendly opinion-mongers and pro-Trump legal groups. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 8:21 PM EST
Dueling WND Columnists, Radium-In-Water Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Well, here’s one for the record books.

Drinking water for more than 170 million Americans in all 50 states contains radioactive elements that are carcinogenic, according to a nonprofit group’s investigation released this past week.

The report examined the levels of six radioactive contaminants in drinking water, including radon, radium and uranium. Its primary focus was on radium because it is naturally occurring though a dangerous carcinogen, according to Newsweek.

[...]

From radioactive carcinogens to lead poisoning, could our tap water be another contributor to the increased rates of cancer in children and adults today?

Friends, this should not be, especially in the greatest industrialized nation in the world with the greatest of health resources. Once again, we the people are left on our own without the government’s help to right the national wrongs.

This countrywide drinking water disaster is one more reason I’m super proud that my wife, Gena, established CForce Water Bottling Co. on our own Texas Lone Wolf Ranch in 2015. Gena is actually the CEO and majority owner and is registered as a National Certified Woman Owned Business through NWBOC/ WOSB Certified and HUB – historically underutilized business.

-- Chuck Norris, Jan. 14 WorldNetDaily column

On Jan. 11, 2018, Newsweek ran the headline, “170 million Americans have cancer-causing radioactive elements in their drinking water.” This headline was very similar to those run by many other news outlets – but are the headlines justified, or is it just another example of the ineptness of the media?

First: The original information was not peer reviewed or published in any scientific journal, but generated by the Environmental Working Group (EWG). So, the first point here is the media’s sloppy coverage of the EWG reporting science or junk-science. Have reporters taken the time to validate the reliability of EWG’s source?

[...]

The bottom-line: If you believe all the food phobia fears the media and purported consumer groups would like you to embrace, you had better learn to enjoy your anorexic diet, because all foods contain potential carcinogens, and you would croak from water intoxication long before you would perish from the infinitesimal amount of radium in your water.

-- David Lightsey, Jan. 17 WND column


Posted by Terry K. at 3:10 PM EST
MRC's Bozell Falls for O'Keefe's Bogus Twitter 'Shadow Ban' Story
Topic: Media Research Center

James O'Keefe screwed the pooch when he got busted for trying to fool the Washington Post with a bogus sexual harassment "victim" of Roy Moore -- and even then, the Media Research Center's Brent Bozell was slow to denounce O'Keefe, if only to preserve his self-proclaimed "moral standing" in the conservative media and hide the fact that the MRC has been an enthusiastic promoter of O'Keefe's previous charades.

When O'Keefe did another goofy sting -- in the form of secretly recorded videos of a random Twitter employee who said something about "shadow banning" conservatives -- he managed to un-screw the pooch in Bozell's eyes. Cue Bozell's usual pop-eyed freakout mode:

I have been a critic of some of James O'Keefe's work in the past, so I have the credentials to say the following: What O'Keefe has produced is not just extraordinary but it demands national attention. If social media is the communications vehicle of the future —  and it is —  then this represents the most sinister threat to free speech in history. That is no exaggeration. The radical left is out to censor the voices of all with whom they disagree. O'Keefe has proven it. Every American needs to watch this —  if, of course, Twitter will allow it.

Yes, Bozell really did claim that this purported "shadow banning" was "the most sinister threat to free speech in history."

Bozell followed this with an open letter to Twitter's CEO insisting that "Project Veritas’s videos provide evidence which cannot be disputed."

Well, actually, it can. As tech news site Ars Technica details:

If you talk to enough people at an organization with thousands of employees, it's inevitable that you'll catch some of them saying stuff that at least sounds bad. We don't know how many Twitter employees O'Keefe's organization talked to who didn't say anything embarrassing—or even directly contradicted O'Keefe's thesis that Twitter is systematically censoring conservatives.

[...]

The group definitely established that Twitter's workforce is predominantly liberal—something that will be unsurprising to anyone familiar with the politics of the Bay Area. Given the power of Twitter's content moderators and engineers, there's an obvious danger that the company's liberal biases will cause them to treat conservative content more harshly than liberal content.

What Project Veritas hasn't uncovered, however, is any evidence that Twitter is systematically using its platform to silence conservative voices. When an engineer talked about "banning a way of talking," he was clearly not referring to conservatives. The same is true of another former engineer's discussion of "shadow banning"—and it's not even clear if Twitter still engages in shadow banning at all.

[...]

Project Veritas did find one person involved in Twitter's content moderation policy who said he saw the policy being used more strictly against conservatives than liberals. But that's about it. O'Keefe didn't find any evidence of systematic anti-conservative bias in Twitter's policies or filtering algorithms.

Which might explain why we haven't heard much about this non-scandal from Bozell and the MRC since his initial rage. Bozell probably doesn't want to admit he got burned by someone he should never have trusted in the first place.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:37 AM EST
Monday, January 29, 2018
WND's Farah Pretends He Doesn't Care That Trump's Actions Fulfill End-Times Prophecy
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah huffs in his Jan. 21 WorldNetDaily column:

Here is a headline in Newsweek from Jan. 12: “Trump Will Start the End of the World, Claim Evangelicals Who Support Him.”

Did any evangelicals actually say that in the article? No.

Is there any truth to the claim? No.

In fact, I think I can better speak for evangelicals than the headline writers and fake-news purveyors at Newsweek. I’ve been one for over 40 years. I founded and run the largest Christian website in the world. I write books on the subject – including many on prophecy.

Evangelical Christians do not overwhelmingly support President Donald Trump because they believe he’ll cause the world to end, as Newsweek asserts, without any substantiation or evidence.

[...]

I could go on ad infinitum.

But I neither know nor have I ever met a single evangelical Christian who supports Trump because he’s going to end the world. Neither has anyone at Newsweek. And that’s what demonstrates it’s a fake-news machine.

The Newsweek article went on to say “many evangelical Christians believe that Trump was chosen by God to usher in a new era, a part of history called the ‘end times.’ Beliefs about this time period differ, but it is broadly considered the end of the world, the time when Jesus returns to Earth and judges all people.”

Newsweek quotes one misguided pastor to build its narrative, concluding he represents “many.” He does not. He is quoted as saying: “What kick-starts the end times into motion is Israel’s political boundaries being re-established to what God promised the Israelites according to the Bible.” That’s just silly.

God doesn’t need the help of Donald Trump to set His timing for the return of the Jewish Messiah to Earth.

It will not surprise you to learn that Farah is being less than honest here. Here's how the Newsweek article lays it out in a way Farah won't tell you it did:

Jerusalem has a central role as the city of prophecy and the place where the end of times plays out. According to the prophecy, a 1,000-year period of peace must be followed by seven years of tribulation, during which wars, disease, and natural disasters will lay waste to the earth. In the book of Revelation, Israel is described as a nation that exists during the time of tribulation, and Jerusalem's Jewish temple is resurrected during this period. The last temple was destroyed around 70 A.D, and today there is a mosque on the Temple Mount where the previous two temples are believed to have stood. Evangelicals believe that a unified Israel with control over Jerusalem will facilitate the construction of a new Jewish temple, and set the groundwork for the end of times. 

That’s where Trump comes in.

[...]

“Most evangelicals subscribe to a belief in pre-millennialism, the belief that the second coming of Christ will begin a 1,000-year period where Christ will rule over a peaceful and prosperous earth,” Neil J. Young, a religion historian, told Newsweek. Young, who holds a Ph.D. in history from Columbia University, writes frequently on evangelical culture and politics. 

“Israel is a key part of this story, too, as Christians believe that events there are fundamental to bringing about the end times,” Young continued. “At this point, Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is the only concrete thing that his evangelical supporters can point to as part of fulfilling biblical prophecy to bring about the second coming of Christ."

You know who else has promoted the notion that Trump recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is one in a series of events -- inculding building the third temple -- that will start the end times? Farah's own website.

An April 2017 WND article touts one of its favorite pastors, Mark Biltz -- who we last saw trying to hijack last year's eclipse -- as confirming the idea the construction of the third temple signifies the start of the end times:

Biltz says Christians need to be closely following these developments. Though he cautions “of that day and hour no one knows,” the reconstruction of the Third Temple would be a critical sign the last days are actually at hand.

“In the Christian community many are waiting for the Temple to rebuilt as a sure sign of the last days about to be fulfilled,” he said. “One thing we know for sure is history keeps repeating itself. We don’t know the form yet. Whether it’s a full-blown Temple or just a prefab one that can be thrown together quickly, we will have to wait and see. It may not be anything more than an altar doing Passover sacrifices.

“But one thing is for sure. If the Temple is rebuilt and sacrifices are resumed, hold on to your shorts as the time is short!”

Then, a Dec. 10 WND article promoted a claim that Trump's recognition of Israel would help head to the construction of the third temple:

While Muslims jeer, Israelis cheer President Trump’s Jerusalem declaration, prompting Jewish religious activists to suggest building the Third Temple is closer to reality than ever before.

“What he did … was an enormous step in bringing the Temple,” said Asaf Fried, official spokesman for the United Temple Movement, an association of organizations working towards making the Third Temple a reality.

He added, “This necessarily had to come from a non-Jew in order to bring them into the process, so they will be able to take their part in the Temple.”

Fried sees Trump’s role similar to the one played by Cyrus, the Persian king who ended the Babylonian exile and helped build the Second Jewish Temple.

“There have been amazing advances towards bringing the Temple this year. It was clear that Trump was part of that process, guided by Hashem (God),” Fried declared.

Curiously, the article didn't reference WND's previous claim that construction of the third temple would signify the start of the end times.

One can also argue that Farah himself ascribes to this view. In a 2016 column written on one of his Holy Land tours (the one in which he and Jonathan Cahn staged a publicity stunt on the Temple Mount), Farah touted "an amazing prophecy dating back to 1217 by a scholarly and highly respected rabbi by the name of Judah Ben Samuel":

It was not until the Six Day War in 1967 when the entire “west bank” of the holy land was conquered by the Israeli army that the whole city of Jerusalem passed back into the possession of Israel. So once again the prophecy made by the rabbi 750 years previously was fulfilled to the letter.

It certainly would be significant if indeed both 1917 and 1967 were Jubilee years, considering the significance of what happened in Jerusalem in those years. But it gets better.

The rabbi also prophesied that during the 10th Jubilee, Jerusalem would be under the control of the Jews and the Messianic “end times” would begin. The 10th Jubilee began in 1967 and will be concluded in – 2017.

What should we expect to happen in 2017? I will leave that to your imagination.

But one thing is certain: Judah Ben Samuel made some truly remarkable prophecies that came to pass. We’ll have to wait until next year to see if his final prediction does as well.

Remember, Farah is a guy who claimed that "I have no doubts that someone actually colluded with the Trump campaign to bring it victory in 2016. That someone was the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel who repeatedly promised in the Bible to bless those who bless Israel and curse those who curse it." So he's totally down with the idea of Trump fulfilling prophecy.

Farah may not be supporting Trump for the explicit purpose of bringing about the end times -- his column lists "many good reasons" why he and his fellow evangelicals do, one of which just happens to be "He respects Israel and recognizes Jerusalem as its eternal capital and the capital of no other nation or people in the history of the world" -- but he certainly can't be displeased that Trump's actions are in line with his own eschatological beliefs.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:40 PM EST
Updated: Monday, January 29, 2018 8:52 PM EST
Dishonest CNS Editor Just Can't Stop Perpetuating False Planned Parenthood Myth
Topic: CNSNews.com

Earlier this month, we caught CNSNews.com editor in chief Terry Jeffrey perpetuating his website's long, dishonest history of falsely suggesting that federal money to Planned Parenthood pays for abortion -- something that is prohibited by law -- by placing the amount of federal money it receives in close proximity to the number of abortions its clinics perform. It seems Jeffrey is determined to continue his dishonestly.

He writes in a Jan. 10 column:

Planned Parenthood has now released its 2016-2017 annual report. It says its affiliates performed 321,384 abortions in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2016.

It also says Planned Parenthood received $543.7 million in government money in the year that ended on June 30, 2017 — which included the first five months of the Trump administration.

Planned Parenthood takes money from federal taxpayers primarily through Medicaid and the Title X Family Planning Program. In 2012, according to a Government Accountability Office analysis cited by the Congressional Research Service in a May 2017 report, Planned Parenthood affiliates received "$400.56 million in Medicaid reimbursements (including both federal and state dollars)" and "$64.35 million in Title X funding."

This was followed with a complaint that "the Mexico City Policy does not stop federal Medicaid and Title X money from going to domestic Planned Parenthood affiliates — the affiliates that aborted 321,384 babies in the United States in fiscal 2016." Jeffrey refused to explain that Medicaid and Title X money to Planned Parenthood does not pay for abortion.

Jeffrey did it again in his Jan. 19 column:

In its recently released 2016-2017 annual report, Planned Parenthood said that its affiliates did 321,384 abortions in the year that ended on Sept. 30, 2016 and got $543.7 million in government money in the year that ended on June 30, 2017.

The Congressional Research Service reports that in 2012, Planned Parenthood affiliates took in $64.35 million in Title X family planning funding from the federal government and $400.56 million in federal and state Medicaid money.

Again, Jeffrey refused to make clear that none of this federal money pays for abortion.

CNS' mission statement claims it's a "news source" for those "who put a higher premium on balance than spin." But Jeffrey's journalistic dishonesty shows CNS puts right-wing spin first and foremost.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:51 PM EST
Thank-You Campaign Makes WND's Farah A Total Trump Suck-Up
Topic: WorldNetDaily

If anything has illustrated WorldNetDaily's abject fealty toward President Trump, it's WND's "Thank Trump" campaign. And editor Joseph Farah has gone to embarrassing lengths to promote it.

Farah unsurprisingly used his pre-Thanksgiving column to tout it:

I am so thankful for Donald J. Trump. I thank God daily for the privilege of waking up in a country led by a man who seems driven to take America back from the brink of absolute ruin.

That’s why I launched a week ago the ThankTrump.US campaign, so everyone could express their gratitude to the president in a meaningful way, with personalized digital cards sent his way. Because it’s off to such a great start, I’m extending it through at least February to give Americans the opportunity to hear about it and take part – for free!

Make sure you take a look at the Big List of Trump’s first-year accomplishments, which is updated constantly with new achievements. If that doesn’t inspire you to take part in this project, nothing will.

Farah went biblical to promote it in a Dec. 14 column:

Specifically, I was thinking about that verse in 2 Kings when Elisha said: “Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.”

Do you believe that?

Then let President Trump and his White House team know we’ve got their backs – with our votes, with our energy, with our feet, with our voices and with our prayers.

[...]

Yes, it looks like Trump’s opposition is overwhelming. His adversaries are powerful, organized, wealthy, determined, and they have devised wicked plots against him. They conspire to remove him from power and demoralize all those responsible for electing him.

But, as Elisha said: “Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.” You can help deliver that message to President Trump through this campaign and with your fervent prayers that can open the eyes of the spiritually blind.

Am I passionate about this effort? Yes, I am. But I need help spreading the word, delivering this very good news – not only to President Trump, but to the entire nation and the whole world.

Farah enthused further in his Dec. 20 column:

It’s time like this, when I am in a celebratory mood, that I urge everyone who agrees with me to join the ThankTrump.us campaign. Where else do you have the opportunity, in your euphoria about his accomplishments, his tenacity, his spirit, his determination and his courage to express your gratitude publicly with a digital personalized thank-you card?

The answer is nowhere!

Also, spread the news through social media. Counteract the negativism of the left.

ENCOURAGE him! That’s what this campaign is about. Everyone needs encouragement – even Donald Trump.

Even if he doesn’t need it, you owe it to yourself to give it to him because his presidency could well be a once-in-your-lifetime opportunity for a rebirth of American greatness.

On Dec. 25, Farah got mad that Time magazine didn't name Trump as person of the year, going on to bloviate:

So, it’s safe to say Donald J. Trump is not only the person of the year in 2017. He’s a force of nature that will continue to overshadow the competition for years to come.

Maybe he’s the person of the decade.

Maybe he’s the person of the century.

Maybe he’s the person of the millennium.

Person of the year, however, would be a giant, anti-climactic understatement.

And, of course, there was a plug for his thank-Trump campaign, asserting that "When someone like Trump leaves his comfortable existence of wealth and comfort to enter public life with the intent of slaying dragons, I say he needs and deserves encouragement."

In his Dec. 28 column, Farah insisted his campaign has "gone viral":

There’s something wonderful about campaigns like this. Already, it’s clear to me that this simple idea has caught fire. Every day, I hear more and more commentators and pundits suggesting there’s a lot for which to thank our president.

I wish I had millions of dollars to make great ads promoting this idea. I’m glad others do and are taking up my challenge to thank the president both directly and publicly for all he’s done.

WND even ran an article every day in January before the anniversary of Trump's inauguration plugging the campaign, with Farah's full endorsement:

“Jan. 20 marks the anniversary of the president’s Inauguration Day, so it’s a great time to let him know how much you appreciate all he’s done for the country in such a short time,” said Joseph Farah, WND’s founder who launched the campaign just before Thanksgiving. “It’s a record of accomplishment unparalleled in modern American history.”

[...]

“As President Trump heads into a new year, it’s important he doesn’t lose the courage and boldness that have enabled him to defy the establishment and get so much done for the American people,” said Farah. “Given all the opposition he faces, it would be too easy for him to surrender to the forces that besiege him.”

That’s why ThankTrump.us is so important. As 2018 begins, it is a perfect time to look back with thankfulness to the man who made 2017 such a great year for America.

WND even harnessed Ugandan President Yoweni Museveni's praise for Trump in an article as evidence that "a word of thanks also has come to Trump from overseas." Needless to say, WND didn't report that Museveni is a corrupt dictator who lifted an age limit on his office so he could stay on the job, jailed his critics and spent $77 of state money on expenses related to his residence.

Perhaps this servile fealty to Trump -- which demonstrates the complete opposite of its current claim to be "credible, independent and fearless" --  is one more reason why WND is circling the drain.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:11 AM EST
Sunday, January 28, 2018
MRC Thinks April Ryan 'Gushed' About Receiving Death Threats
Topic: Media Research Center

Given the revelations of a man who ranted about "fake news" and threatened to kill (which it just can't seem to get worked up enough about to criticize), an Jan. 18 Media Research Center post by Kristine Marsh seems even more harsher in hindsight.

In it, Marsh mocks journalists -- including, ironically, CNN's Jim Acosta, as "crazy" for being concerned about his safety and seems to suggest Acosta deserves anything that might be coming to him for being such a purportedly biased reporter (bolding is hers):

As if their biased outbursts on CNN weren’t enough, chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta and political analyst April Ryan got the chance to unleash more of their rage at President Trump, in a friendly event hosted by the Newseum in Washington D.C., January 17, called “Journalism in the Trump Era.”

The left-wing Committee to Protect Journalists also sponsored the event, and set the tone for the anti-Trump ranting to come, declaring that it was “abundantly clear” that President Trump “[was] doing serious damage to the U.S. standing globally, and embolden[ing] autocrats around the world.”

After that insane claim, Acosta and Ryan tried to keep the crazy flowing, while answering questions about how dangerous Trump was to freedom and democracy.

The Newseum’s Gene Policinski moderated the panel, and first asked if anyone had ever felt threatened while doing their job.

Acosta answered first, automatically going to the most extreme, saying he “absolutely receives death threats,” as do his other colleagues at CNN. Sighing heavily, Ryan agreed, gushing:

It’s very real for some of us...For me it’s real. I’ve been getting death threats just for asking a question. A logical question...the FBI is on speed dial, so is the Secret Service and local police department.

Acosta added that he read a book recently whose cover art showed a t-shirt with a journalist, a rope, and a tree, reading, “Some assembly required.” Acosta complained the tacky t-shirt was somehow proof that we would soon be seeing dead journalists on the side of the road:

I remember seeing that t-shirt at Trump rallies, during the campaign. We have to get through our minds, that that is un-American. We don’t kill journalists in this country. The moment that that happens, the moment that there’s a dead journalist on the side of the highway, because of the rhetoric coming out of the White House from the President of the United States, is a day that we become something less than the United States of America. Full stop. End of story.

Acosta worried that it would take “an intervening event” to “shake people’s consciousness, to sort of snap them out of this...some folks are under a spell where they think it’s okay to go after us like this, and they’re going to have to get it shocked out of their system,” he ranted.

Yes, Marsh actually claimed that Ryan "gushed" about receiving death threats. That's not how that works.

Marsh then huffed that "Acosta then rebuked his 'friend' John Roberts’ network, saying Fox, by contrast, 'had an agenda, which is to turn people off of the press. It’s determined, it’s purposeful, and it’s bad for our democracy,' ther CNN journalist slammed." Only at the MRC is it a "slam" to point out the indisputable fact that Fox News is biased.

Marsh ended with a final slam at Acosta in order to portray him as a raving lunatic (havaing already claimed he was "ranting" and expressing "rage" in a "tirade"): We’ve seen this behavior before from Acosta. Last year, at another media event held by the Newseum,he declared that it was “un-American” for Trump to attack CNN, while it was perfectly acceptable for him to scream at the president during press conferences."


Posted by Terry K. at 9:20 PM EST
WND Again Whines People Are Doing to Trump What It Did to Obama (And Hillary)
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In an anonymously written Jan. 17 article, WorldNetDaily complains that the "mainstream media" have "declared open season on the president’s health, claiming the physician must be lying about it."

Among those complaints:

As WND reported, without ever having examined Trump, psychological professionals have called the president “psychotic,” “narcissistic,” “paranoid,” “hypomanic,” “emotionally unstable,” “delusional” and “psychologically isolated” and claimed he has a  “dangerous mental illness.” One physician suggested Trump could be suffering from an untreated sexually transmitted disease known as neurosyphilis.

And one psychiatrist who claimed to have briefed more than a dozen U.S. lawmakers on Trump’s mental state – demanding an “emergency” evaluation and even restraint by force of the president – may not even have a license in her home state of Connecticut.

As we've pointed out, WND made many of these same complaints about President Obama declaring him to be an "unhinged" "reckless" "bombastic" "psychopath." WND managing editor David Kupelian devoted an entire 2015 column to portraying Obama as a "delusional" "malignant narcissistic" "sociopath." WND columnist Gina Loudon even argued that Obama was a "psychopath" on the level of Hitler and Pol Pot.

Yes, WND is projecting again.

WND also whined that the media "routinely ignored and downplayed former Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s physical collapse, uncontrollable coughing fits and self-reported memory failure" and that "the mainstream media called reports of Hillary’s declining state 'conspiracy theories' and even demanded news outlets stop talking about the issue."

Because that's pretty much what they were. WND fed those conspiracy theories, largely in an attempt to distract from questions about Trump's health, and even called in Dolly Kyle Browning -- not a medical expert -- to opinion on Hillary's health.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:33 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, January 28, 2018 6:43 PM EST
Saturday, January 27, 2018
MRC's Graham Defends Pro-Trump Commentator, Downplays His History of Offensive Remarks
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Tim Graham is in reflexive CNN-bashing mode at the start of his Jan. 19 post:

CNN is beginning to look like it can’t abide paying a CNN contributor for pro-Trump analysis. Ed Martin, the Missouri GOP official who replaced Jeffrey Lord as the channel’s die-hard Trump analyst, was dumped on Thursday after a brief four-month stint.

CNN confirmed the move to The Hollywood Reporter.Lord told them in September that Martin was a "smart guy" who will "go against the grain" on the air....and "After a while, it will add up and there will surely be those pushing to get rid of him."

"CNN terminated me today for cause," Martin said in an emailed response to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Thursday night. "Strange since they told me my ratings were great."

In a subsequent email, Martin said the network didn't say why he was fired. He hasn't appeared on the network since mid-December, when, on his radio show after a contentious night at CNN after Roy Moore was defeated in the special election in Alabama, he referred to fellow panelists as "racists" and "black racists." That would appear to be Ana Navarro and Symone Sanders.

Graham seems to have overlooked the "for cause" part of Martin's statement -- where he smeared his CNN colleagues as racists for disagreeing with him -- which seems to put the lie to Martin's subsequent claim that he doesn't know why he was fired. Further, Martin has a long history of offensive remarks that CNN should have perhaps looked into before hiring him in the first place.

Graham then whines:

Leftist sites like Right Wing Watch oppose the very idea of a paid pro-Trump contributor slot at CNN. It's awfully difficult to work for CNN and defend Trump when CNN wages 24/7 war on Trump, asserting it's "Facts First," so anyone defending  Trump is apparently....Lies First? CNN loads the panels so that everyone mocks the Outlier...who they pay to be a target.

Funny, we don't remember Graham complaining about Fox News doing the exact same type of panel-stacking -- butr then, it's to promote a conservative agenda and mock liberals and the paid "outlier" (there's a reason "Fox News Democrat" is an actual thing).

Also: His link to Right Wing Watch that  purportedly proves that liberals "oppose the very idea of a paid pro-Trump contributor slot at CNN" goes to a link roundup, and the only one of those links that relates to CNN is a Media Matters item detailing Martin's "black racists" smear. Graham also missed the part in the Hollywood Reporter report confirming Martin's departure in which Media Matters CEO Angelo Carusone explained that Martin, like Lord before him, cared only about "dishonesty and disruptions during on-air discussions," adding: "Hopefully now CNN will finally recognize that they'll better serve their audience by hiring an inclusive group of honest brokers representing a wide range of perspectives rather than someone dedicated to defending one person, Donald Trump, no matter what."

In other words, Graham is falsely framing the issue to advance his own conservative -- and pro-Trump right or wrong -- agenda. Not a surprise.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:29 AM EST
Disgraced Ex-Cop Kerik Now A Newsmax Columnist
Topic: Newsmax

For some reason -- perhaps something having to do with serving as his image rehab consultant after he was busted on corruption charges that sent him to prison -- Newsmax appears to have given Bernard Kerik a regular column. And he has ended up being probably the last thing Newsmax needs: yet another pro-Trump cheerleader.

In his Jan. 5 column, Kerik cited his own experience in railing against the Trump-Russia investigation:

As someone that has run the largest police department (NYPD) and jail system (Rikers Island) in our country with unparalleled successes and achievements, and has also been the target of a selective and political prosecution by the U.S. Justice Department, I cannot stress enough, the urgency for president Donald Trump to act and force the U.S. Attorney General to do the job he was sworn to do.

We would remind people that Kerik pleaded guilty to the several counts that sent him to prison -- mostly tax-related offenses -- which undercuts his argument that he was a victim of a "selective and political prosecution." Kerik of all people should know that those in law enforcement (Kerik was formerly the New York City police commissioner) face extra scrutiny when accused of wrongdoing.

Then, Kerik mounts a bizarre defense of, all people, Rod Blagojevich:

When you think of politically motivated and overzealous prosecutions, think for a moment of the case against Rod Blagojevich… conspiring to sell Barack Obama’s senate seat, an act that was never carried out. He gained nothing personally, professionally or financially… he just talked about it, and he was sent to prison for 14 years. We sent an American citizen to prison for 14 years for talking about something he didn’t do. He wasn’t talking about murder, a terror attack, or some violent act.

[...]

Blagojevich was talking about politics, like every member of Congress does every day of their career. They don’t pick their nose unless there’s some benefit to their office or career, yet we sent Blagojevich to prison for 14 years. Did the punishment fit the crime? Hell no! His case wasn’t about justice. His prosecution was as political as the investigation today, targeting the President of the United States and his family, by Robert Mueller, the Special Counsel.

But as one writer points out, that was far from the only thing Blagojevich did:

It's important to remember that it wasn't just his giddiness over having the statutory power to appoint someone to Barack Obama's Senate seat and his alleged plans to use that authority as leverage for himself that landed him in the clink. Federal prosecutors also documented how Blago tried to shake down an executive at then Children's Memorial Hospital for a $50,000 campaign contribution in exchange for his providing $8 million in state health funds. So not only was Obama's seat "golden," but apparently reimbursements for treating sick kids were as well.

In his Jan. 12 column, Kerik defended Trump over his reference to "shithole countries" like a good Trump lackey:

I received about 25 texts and calls yesterday concerning President Trump's comments relating to a "s***hole country."

I cannot speak for the president, but I'm pretty confident he's talking about dictatorships, countries with crime rates that make Chicago look like Disney, and countries that have corrupt governments that steal their international support, causing mass starvation. Countries that have no religious, economic, press freedoms, and/or support for human and women's rights. Countries in which there are mass slaughters of Christians, and no rule of law, where you can be jailed or imprisoned at the drop of a dime with no due process.

The left and the president's personal and political critics are trying to make this about race, and it's not. It's about countries that are so sub-standard to ours that most Americans couldn't even imagine their existence, and none in their right mind would ever consider living there.

That's what I think a "s***hole country" is.

What's most annoying about all of this, isn't what the president said, it's the slimy coward and disloyal piece of garbage that was in that room and ran to the press with this non-sense.

This is what every American hates about Washington, D.C., and our spineless political leadership that's doing everything in their power to make this country fail, and not succeed.

The swamp can't get drained fast enough!

Also of note: Kerik's Newsmax bio highlights how he "has been recognized in more than 100 awards for meritorious and heroic service," but makes no reference to his prison stint.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:07 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, January 27, 2018 10:36 AM EST
Friday, January 26, 2018
MRC's Bozell Still Mad That Jeff Flake Stole A Book Title From His Father
Topic: Media Research Center

Last August, Media Research Center chief Brent Bozell turned his MRC, ostensibly a nonprofit operation, into a vehicle for his personal grievances by attacking Sen. Jeff Flake over the title his book "Conscience of a Conservative," which is the same title as the book Bozell's father ghost-wrote for Barry Goldwater in the 1960s.

When Flake delived a Senate floor speech  arguing that some of President Trump's actions were akin to those undertaken by dictators such as Josef Stalin, Bozell ran to his favorite TV channel to level even more personal insults at Flake, as lovingly documentted in a Jan. 15 NewsBusters post:

Media Research Center President Brent Bozell was on fire ripping Republican Senator Jeff Flake (Ariz.) during Monday afternoon’s Cavuto: Coast to Coast, telling FBN host Neil Cavuto that Flake is an “intellectual fraud” “who is working overtime to curry favor with” the liberal media.

Bozell’s comments were directed at Flake in reaction to an upcoming speech in which Flake will compare President Trump to the evil, murderous, and communist Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. 

“I think it's stunning. If this were anybody else saying this about the President of the United States, and I think he would be thrown out of his office...But this is a man, Jeff Flake, who is working overtime to curry favor with the national press corps that despise Donald Trump and they’re loving that he says it,” Bozell began. 

He wasn’t done though, adding that Flake is not only “an intellectual” and “political fraud,” but someone who “stole the title of Conscience of a Conservative, the best-selling polemic in history and made it his own” despite having been “elected by the Tea Party and immediately stabbed them in the back.”

Cavuto took particular issue with Flake’s comparison, arguing that “I think you lose an audience of things at the Hitler comparison, I would say the Stalin comparison” because “[t]here’s no one to compare Hitler to except Hitler, no one to compare Stalin except Stalin, so stop it already.”

Yep, he's still abusing his own organization to deal with personal grievances.

Regarding Bozell's claim that "If this were anybody else saying this about the President of the United States, and I think he would be thrown out of his office": When Republican Rep. Randy Weber likened President Obama to Hitler in 2015, the MRC didn't not demand that Weber "be thrown out of his office"; rather, it attacked anyone who criticized the comparison by playing the whataboutism card.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:05 PM EST
WND Still Selling Paul Nehlen's Book, Still Silent On His Anti-Semitism
Topic: WorldNetDaily

As we've documented, WorldNetDaily has not been an enthusiastic promoter of Paul Nehlen's political campaign for Paul Ryan's congressional seat, but it also published his book "Wage the Battle." But that promotion seemed to fade away as Nehlen's rhetoric turned more white nationalist and anti-Semitic; it hasn't actively promoted Nehlen on its website since September, but it never said why.

Meanwhile, Nehlen has turned even more anti-Semitic, ranting about "Jewish media" and coordinating with alt-right supporters to attack it.

Throughout all of this, however, WND has continued selling Nehlen's book -- it's still for sale in WND's online store (as is its e-book version), and it still pops up in the italic-type promotions among the headlines on its front page. WND's store also sold Nehlen's anti-Muslim film "Hijrah" -- which it also promoted in WND "news" articles -- but that appears to no longer be available. The Internet Archive lists "Hijrah" as being available from the store as recently as Jan. 11.

And despite the growing disgust with Nehlen among conservatives -- heck, even the alt-right leaders at Breitbart have washed their hands of him -- WND has yet to issue a public statement regarding its relationship with Nehlen.

Why? One reason could be that WND's book division appears to have gone dormant. The WND Books Twitter account hasn't made a post since October, the "coming soon" page of its website features books that have been out for nearly a year, and its front page is still featuring, yes, Paul Nehlen's book (though the bottom of the front page lists "coming soon" titles with release dates for next month). 

Still, even though WND is shedding personnel as it circles the train, you'd think Joseph Farah -- you know, the guy who runs the company -- would want to take a few minutes away from issuing pleas for money to say something about an author it published whose increasingly offensive and discrediting behavior is affecting WND's reputation and future business prospects (well, as much as it can be affected at this point, given that WND already has a well-earned reputation for fake news).

This is a public-relations crisis WND should be addressing, but it's not for some reason -- it can't possibly need money so badly as to continue to sell the book of an anti-Semite. Perhaps its inability to handle this is more evidence that WND doesn't deserve to live.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:53 AM EST
Updated: Friday, January 26, 2018 12:58 AM EST
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

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