WorldNetDaily keeps trying to make a mountain out of a molehill, as this May 7 article by Bob Unruh shows:
It’s been confirmed now – there WAS election interference.
By the Barack Obama administration.
The American Center for Law and Justice has revealed it has uncovered documents showing the Obama State Department even misled Congress about U.S. tax money being used to try to manipulate the results of an election in Israel, America’s strongest ally in the Middle East.
The organization confirmed that through its Freedom of Information Act case involving the U.S. State Department’s support for OneVoice Israel and OneVoice Palestine, it obtained revealing details.
“While the United States regularly issues grants to international organizations that provide services such as humanitarian relief, educational opportunities, and even opportunities and activities aimed at encouraging democratic voter participation, it turns out the OneVoice organizations went well beyond such measures and actively campaigned against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the 2015 elections – using resources established and developed with grant funds from the Obama State Department,” the ACLJ has reported.
And, the ACLJ found, “one of the senior advisers to OneVoice Palestine was none other than the son of Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian Authority – something the Obama Administration clearly knew (since these documents were in its possession).”
As we pointed out the last time WND hyped the right-wing ACLJ's dubious claims about this non-scandal, it's been public record since 2003 that Abbas' son was an adviser to OneVoice -- as were Israeli politicians from across the political spectrum, including Netanyahu's Likud party.
And the ACLJ's hyperventilating and heavy implication about this non-scandal doesn't change the fact that the money paid to OneVoice by the State Department paid for a separate project, 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 infrastructure the grant paid for.
As expected, Unruh quotes only the ACLJ and can't be bothered to contact OneVoice or anyone else involved in this non-story for a reaction.
CNS Promotes Bogus Attack on Calif. Bill Banning Conversion Therapy Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com managing editor Michael W. Chapman is no stranger to the CNS culture of stenography. Thus, he kicks off an April 27 article -- headlined "Liberty Counsel: CA Bill Against Gay Conversion Could Ban Christian Books, Speech" -- with some dedicated stenography:
The California House recently passed legislation (AB 2943) that says "advertising, offering to engage in, or engaging in sexual orientation change efforts with an individual" is a fraudulaent business practice, and if it passes in the Senate and becomes law, it could result in certain books, speakers, and conferences being banned, including the Bible, said Mat Staver, president of the Liberty Counsel.
The bill "is so broad that it bans books, printed materials and advertisements that provide information that a person facing unwanted same-sex attractions or gender confusion can change," said Staver. "[It] is a dramatic infringement on First Amendment rights and is a classic viewpoint discrimination. It declares certain kinds of speech as consumer fraud."
Interestingly, Chapman actually includes alternative views that shoot down Liberty Counsel's alarmism; several paragraphs later, he quotes the head of the group Save California as saying that it is "not likely" that the bill would ban the Bible. Yet the fact that the article contains differing views is not reflected in the headline.
Chapman never bothers to seek out the sponsor of the bill, Evan Low, who has specifically stated that the bill does not ban book sales, let alone that of the Bible.
Interestingly, while Chapman labels a California assemblyman who supports the bill as a "liberal Democrat" and the Human Rights Campaign, which also supports the bill, as "a pro-homosexuality advocacy group," he does not provide any ideological labels for Liberty Counsel and Save California -- both of which are right-wing anti-LGBT groups.
Chapman did go on to try and rebut the HRC:
The HRC also claimed that there is no "credible evidence" that conversion therapy can help a person turn away from same-sex attraction. However, some doctors have shown how homosexuality can be prevented and explained how reparative therapy can repair people.
Chapman provides as an example of "some doctors" a link to the biography of Joseph Nicolosi, a psychologist and a founder of the notoriously anti-gay group NARTH who championed conversion therapy. And the link on "reparative therapy" goes to a YouTube video of a 1974 TV appearance by fellow anti-gay psychiatrist and NARTH co-founder Charles Socarides, whose son is gay. Chapman doesn't seem to understand that critical thinking about homosexuality has evolved over the past 40 years.
And that's the closest Chapman ever comes to providing any evidence to back up the view of himself and his right-wing anti-gay buddies that conversion therapy works.
WND Gives Perpetual Candidate Another Platform Topic: WorldNetDaily
Art Robinson is such a perpetual candidate for the Oregon congressional seat held by Peter DeFazio -- and such a buddy of WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian -- that Kupelian simply reruns his endorsement columns for Robinson (and the attendant whitewashing of controversies regarding the homeschool curriculum Robinson developed and the climate denier petition he started) with only minor tweaks to fit the appropriate year.
Well, Robinson is at it again, trying for a fifth time for the Republican nomination to run against Democrat DeFazio, which means Robinson is sorely testing the rule about repeating the same behavior and expecting different results (after having been soundly defeated the previous four times, receiving more than 40 percent of the vote only once). And WND has given Robinson a forum to tout his campaign.
Robinson's May 8 column is centered around thatthe idea that if elected, Robinson "would replace the political staffers in the Oregon office with real people. In this way, our office could have a much greater influence on wisdom in the Congress."
That falsely assumes that the staffers who currently work there aren't "real" and, thus, somehow evil because are familiar with the political process. That's just lame populism, which Robinson feeds into with an highly unrealistic image of how one of these "real people," a hypothetical timber faller, would operate in his would-be office:
When that timber faller throws one of those long Oregon chain saws over his shoulder and walks down the halls in Congress, they will never forget it. And, his seminar on work in Oregon forests – across the hall the next day in the Capitol building – will have standing room only. He will speak in the language and dialect of his working people. I guarantee that the denizens of Congress will learn this language!
That timber faller will be there day after day. Each day he will sally forth from that desk spreading needed knowledge about Oregon forests throughout the Capitol building.
At this rate, Robinson's campaign will go about as well as his previous ones.
MRC Is Unhappy That A TV Show Insufficiently Retracted A Story It Never Aired Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Kyle Drennen grouses in a May 4 post:
After MSNBC spent four hours on Thursday breathlessly promoting what turned out to be a false story that federal investigators had been “wiretapping” President Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen for months, NBC’s Today show on Friday only managed 41 seconds of air time to correct the phony bombshell.
First: This is a strange complaint to make given that the original claim never appeared on the "Today" show and, indeed, was made on a completely different channel. "Today" was not obligated to correct reporting that was never made on the show.
Second: We would remind Drennen that his employer breathlessly promoted a false story by Fox News before the 2016 election claiming that an indictment of Hillary Clinton was imminent -- so much so that MRC chief Brent Bozell declared that "We will report developments on this continuing cover-up every hour from here on out." None of those hours, though, were devoted to telling MRC readers that Fox News retracted the story.
If the MRC can't be bothered to tell its readers that a story it heavily promoted has been retracted, it has no moral authority whatsoever to demand that a TV show retract a story that it never aired.
Ministry 'Adopts' Farah Book (Whatever That Means) For the Tax-Deductible Contributions Topic: WorldNetDaily
We highlighted that when WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah launched his crowdfunding to publish his new religious book that there was an option for a tax-deductible donation through a small ministry called Gospel for All Nations. WND has now shed a little more light on that:
Gospel for All Nations, a ministry focused on bringing the “Good News” to the least reached peoples of the world, has “adopted” Joseph Farah’s upcoming book release, “The Gospel in Every Book of the Old Testament,” providing a non-profit, tax-exempt opportunity for churches, corporations, foundations and individuals to support what is being called a “breakthrough Bible book,” WND and WND Books have announced.
Farah says voluntary financial support is desperately needed to meet the overwhelming public demand for the book, which systematically finds the Gospel in all 39 books of the Hebrew Scriptures.
Like dozens of other Christian leaders who have endorsed the book – including Franklin Graham, Mike Huckabee, Ben Kinchlow, Ray Comfort, Jack Van Impe and Greg Laurie – Gospel for All Nations sees the book as a breakthrough because of its focus on a forgotten component of the Gospel which Jesus and His disciples emphasized.
“This project fits squarely within our own objectives as an organization: to disseminate the gospel message,” said Richmond Douglas, ministerial and worldwide missions director of Gospel for All Nations.
Farah urges those seeking a tax-exemption to send their contributions directly to Gospel for All Nations to help defray the costs of printing and promotion of “The Gospel in Every Book of the Old Testament”for its September release.
“We literally need hundreds of thousands of dollars to get this book into churches for educational and evangelism purposes as well as to the retail stores across the country, which are expressing high demand for it and its focus on what Jesus called ‘the Gospel of the Kingdom,'” said Farah.
The way WND puts scare quotes around "adopted" tells us there's something more going on -- which neither WND nor Gospel for All Nations (which simply reprinted the WND article) want to talk about. Itappears that it's a business deal of some sort in which Gospel for All Nations agrees to lend its tax-deductible status to WND for unspecified things in return. Shouldn't they publicly disclose the nature of this relationship before anyone donates money to it?
As before, Farah and WND never prove that there is "overwhelming public demand" for Farah's book (beyond the blurbs they solicited through those "special VIP advance reader copies" it sent out) or why they need $200,000 for a massive first printing of it, instead of doing what many small publishers do by starting small and using the profits from those sales to publish more books. They also don't explain why, if the book is such a sure thing, why WND can't get a bank loan for the initial printing. Is it because WND's credit is so shot that no bank will lend to them?
There's still a whiff of shadiness to this entire venture -- something that could be dispelled if WND would be more forthcoming about its financial situation and its arrangement with Gospel for All Nations.
WND -- Which Portrayed Obama As A Narcissistic Psychopath -- Complains When Trump's Mental Health Is Questioned Topic: WorldNetDaily
Bob Unruh complains in an April 27 WorldNetDaily article:
All presidents undergo regular physicals – and sometimes their medical status is reported publicly, since the free world depends on a healthy U.S. president.
But before now, there’s been no insistence on a mental health evaluation – not while John F. Kennedy was turning the White House into the Playboy Mansion, or while Bill Clinton was carrying on with an intern in the Oval Office, or when George W. Bush was under intense stress after 9/11, or when Barack Obama tried to cancel the First Amendment religious rights of nuns around the world and demand they pay for their employees’ abortions.
Now, however, with a president who, however controversial, is indisputably growing the nation’s economy, rolling back social-agenda experiments in the U.S. military and making progress in denuclearizing North Korea, such evaluations suddenly are needed.
The “psychiatrists and psychologists” in the book boast of their “civic ‘duty to warn'” America about Trump, even if it violates ethics rules.
Lastly, there’s Michael Tansey, who though announcing he will be “not diagnosing” the president, was a contributor to Lee’s book “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump,” and has lectured on “Trump and Delusional Disorder.” He argues that Trump exhibits much more than run-of-the-mill Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and that America’s chief executive suffers, instead, from the more “serious and dangerous Delusional Disorder.”
First: Unruh is lying when he claimed that Obama "tried to cancel the First Amendment religious rights of nuns around the world and demand they pay for their employees’ abortions." This is an apparent reference to the Little Sisters of the Poor case, in which the order is suing to prevent being associated with providing birth control, even though the Affordable Care Act provides for an accomodation allowing a third-party provider to offer such coverage -- which the Little Sisters of the Poor has refused to sign up for. In other words, the nuns aren't being forced to do anything.
(Also, since the First Amendment is an American principle, it does not apply to anyone else "around the world.")
Second: WND's writers and columnists have previously not had any problem with armchair diagnoses of a president's (or a presidential candidate's) alleged mental state. For example:
WND managing editor David Kupelian asserted that Hillary Clinton is a "malignant" narcissist who is "always phony, manipulative, calculating, blaming, deflecting – always lying," adding: "That’s Nurse Ratched. And that’s Hillary Clinton." Kupelian also claimed that Obama's "behavior as president matches perfectly the clinical symptoms of 'narcissistic personality disorder.'"
Ellis Washington claimed that Obama is "a pathological narcissist that daily creates vast, new totalitarian powers for himself."
Erik Rush declared that "Many Americans, and even a few trained in behavioral science, have identified President Obama as a deeply pathological narcissist."
Ali Sina claimed that Obama's "language, posture and demeanor suggest that he may suffer from narcissistic personality disorder, or NPD," adding that "NPD is the prime disorder experienced by all the madmen of history – from Hitler to Stalin, Mao, Kim, Pol Pot, Osama, Khomeini, Saddam and Idi Amin."
Ted Nugent called Obama a "psychopathic liar in chief."
Gina Loudon devoted way too much time to trying to demonstrate that Obama is a psychopath, citing in part his "mysterious and shady past." She added: "No one knew that Pol Pot, Hitler or Ceausescu were psychopaths until they knew. Could America be more perceptive, more insightful, more predictive of a psychopath in leadership before it is too late?"
WND also sells a book by Lyle Rossiter that makes a blanket armchair diagnosis of all liberals as mentally ill, suffering from "a massive transference of neurosis acted out in the world's political arenas, with devastating effects on the institutions of liberty."
That's justanotherflip-flop of WND's standards regarding Trump compared with its treatment of Obama.
MRC's Double Standard on 'Bitter 'Complaints About Anonymous Sources Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Kyle Drennen writes in an April 27 post that "In a statement to The Washington Post on Thursday, disgraced former Today show anchor Matt Lauer bitterly went after his sexual harassment accusers, dismissing the “many false stories” about his behavior “from anonymous or biased sources.” The comments came amid a lengthy Post report on NBC’s poor handling of such allegations, which also detailed new accusations of harassment against former NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw."
So you're "bitter" if you complain about anonymously sourced reporting? In that case, the MRC is very bitter.
Tim Graham and Brent Bozell complained in a Martch 2017 column that "It’s beyond irony that the press that champions transparency also advocates relying on completely opaque sources on a daily basis," adding, "wouldn’t it help to know if these liberal newspapers are relying on Obama holdovers and granting them all the benefits of anonymity?" They also grumbled: "But we never know the donation records of 'senior U.S. officials' placed anonymously on the front page, do we? The liberal media merely insist 'Trust us.'"
Graham and Bozell bashed anonymous sources again in a May 2017 column attacking the Washington Post: "How many times must we attend the same movie? As we've seen so many times since Trump became president, these are anonymous leaks coming from nameless, faceless people whose motives might be pure, or could be poisonous." They added:
Earth to the Post: your new motto is “Democracy dies in darkness,” but anonymous sourcing is darkness. Every source who hides behind a wall as he tries to ruin other people’s careers is a self-serving coward with a personal or political axe to grind. Without knowing an identity, the public has no way of telling... anything. It’s idiotic for the press to demand transparency in government at the exact same time it rewards government officials who refuse to be transparent themselves.
Journalists pat themselves on the back that they would never be “stenographers to power,” but they’re worse than that now. In their zeal to destroy Trump, they've become stenographers to anonymous power.
Graham reinforced his bitter argument in a TV appearance that same month (on Fox News, natch), grousing that "the news media today gets to use these anonymous sources, and the anonymous sources can say all sorts of terrible things about Trump" and repeating the "stenographers to anonymous power" talking point.
This bitterness is doubly hypocritical, given that just before the 2016 election, the MRC expended lots of time and energy promoting an anonymously sourced Fox News story suggesting that Hillary Clinton's indictment was imminent. But Fox News later had to retract that story -- something the MRC never told its readers about.
So it seems the MRC is bitter about anonymous sources only when they fail to advance its right-wing agenda.
WND Columnist Is Sad God Won't Help Him Hate Gays Topic: WorldNetDaily
Gays picketed churches and religious organizations. Opponents of Prop 8 posted the names of supporters and their addresses on websites. Companies who supported the amendment were boycotted. People lost their jobs or resigned for supporting Prop 8. Bitter ads were placed in newspapers and so forth.
Prop 8 opponents then filed federal lawsuits against the state of California, citing the new law was illegal according to the U.S. Constitution under the 14th Amendment’s equal protection and due process clause.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Attorney General Jerry Brown refused to defend Prop 8 in the various court cases. Outside legal groups were forced to take up the fight against the opponents of Prop 8. But in the end, the decision by Schwarzenegger and Brown not to back Prop 8 ended up being the law’s downfall. The Supreme Court ruled in 2013 the proponents of Prop 8 had no legal standing in its courtroom.
Thus, same-sex marriage became a reality in California.
Did the same Christians who cheered and clapped for joy on election night in 2008 fall to their knees and weep after Prop 8 was struck down, realizing God had not backed their efforts after all? Most of us didn’t, but we should have done that.
Why didn’t God back the proponents of Prop 8?
In fact, why has God failed to back most of the Christian efforts against the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender forces over the last five or six years? LGBT groups are now entrenched in the California K-12 public school systems through books used in school curriculum, teacher indoctrinations, special days commemorating LGBT accomplishments and heroes, sex education classes and more. It’s been victory after victory for them.
And now, Assembly Bill AB 2943, could be the first step toward banning Bible sales in the state of California because of LGBT concerns.
Why is God failing to back Christians in this all-out struggle against the kingdom of darkness?
“Blow the trumpet in Zion …”(Joel 2:1)
There is no doubt Satan and evil men possess major influence in the state of California, but they are not California’s biggest problem right now. God is our primary problem. Our only hope is to repent of our apathy, lethargy, compromise and to wholeheartedly return to God, following the instructions written in the book of Joel.
It’s my belief that my home state of California will either go one way or another in our battle with God. We will either be an example of God’s great mercy or His fearsome judgment to the rest of America.
-- Larry Nevenhoven, April 27 WorldNetDaily column
CNS' Jeffrey Toadies to Trump On GOP Russia Report Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com editor in chief Terry Jeffrey is rather desperate to keep a pro-Trump bias at the website he operates. In service of that, CNS loves to pushtheidea that no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, even investigations into it have not been completed.
So when the Republicans on the Senate Intelligence Committee released a report echoing that same talking point, Jeffrey pounced on it:
The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence published a redacted version of its final report on its investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, concluding that there is no evidence the Trump campaign “colluded, coordinated, or conspired with the Russian government.”
In the course of its investigation, the committee says, it “interviewed 73 witnesses, conducted 9 hearings and briefings, reviewed approximately 307,900 documents, and issued 20 subpoenas.”
Among the committee’s findings:
--“When asked directly, none of the interviewed witnesses provided evidence of collusion, coordination, or conspiracy between the Trump campaign and the Russian government.”
--“The committee found no evidence that President Trump’s pre-campaign business dealings formed the basis for collusion during the campaign.”
--“There is no evidence that Trump associates were involved in the theft or publication of Clinton campaign-related emails, although Trump associates had numerous ill-advised contact with Wikileaks.”
--“Donald Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort attended a June 9, 2016 meeting at Trump Tower where they expected to receive—but did not ultimately obtain—derogatory information on candidate Clinton from Russian sources.”
--“The committee found no evidence that meetings between Trump associates—including Jeff Sessions—and official representatives of the Russian government—including Ambassador Kislyak—reflected collusion, coordination, or conspiracy with the Russian government.”
The committee said it investigated “Trump’s business dealings,” “the campaign’s policy positions and personnel,” “involvement in or knowledge about the publication of stolen emails,” and “meetings with Russians,” but did not discover evidence of “collusion, conspiracy or coordination.”
Jeffrey did not tell his readers that this report came from the Republican side of the committee, which has a vested interest in protecting Trump by downplaying accusations of collusion. He also did not mention that the committee's Democrats issued a separate report, which claimed that Republicans ended the committee's work prematurely.
That was accompanied by another article from Jeffrey highlighting how "When former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper met with the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on July 17, 2017 as part of the committee’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, Clappers aid he had no evidence of collusion between the Russian and the Trump campaign." Jeffrey didn't mention that Clapper ceased being DNI at the end of President Obama's term, and therefore he would likely have no knowledge of findings of government investigations launched in the six months between his departure as DNI and his committee testimony or from any probes launched before he left.
These article appear to be more about Jeffrey sucking up to Trump than they are about reporting useful, balanced information to CNS readers.
WND Claims Christian School Was 'Banned By City' (It Wasn't) Topic: WorldNetDaily
Under the screaming headline "Christian school banned by city and Supremes let it happen," WorldNetDaily's Bob Unruh huffs:
The U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear a case in which a Michigan township changed its zoning laws to prevent a Christian school from entering the community.
“This is a deeply disappointing decision, not only because of what it means for our clients, but because it will embolden other cities and towns across the country to keep religious organizations from contributing to their community,” said Hiram Sasser, general counsel to First Liberty, which represents Livingston Christian Schoolin the case against Genoa Charter Township.
“We are extremely disappointed the Supreme Court will allow this terrible precedent to stand.”
The case developed in 2016 when Livingston found a new location on the property of Brighton Church of the Nazarene.
The local planning commission approved the plan, the community supported it and even experts summoned by the township were in favor.
Then the town council rejected the application.
First Liberty said at the time the township “threatened the survival of the school as a religious institution because, as the record demonstrates, the school has no viable alternative location.”
Sasser said the city refused to let the Christian school move to the church “or, for that matter, anywhere else in town” despite the fact “federal law expressly prohibits the government using zoning laws to keep religious institutions out of their town.”
Unruh doesn't explain to his readers that First Liberty's argument is effectively bogus. As we explained when WND first pushed this case, the school was never "banned" from the city; it had other options for a location, and it had been utilizing them while this bogus case wound through the court system.
Indeed, the entire lawsuit is actualy completely moot -- another thing Unruh failed to report -- because the school submitted an amended plan for the Nazarene site last fall and the township approved it. So it has its site after all, and school and its right-wing legal team wasted taxpayer time and money -- $100,000 of township money, by one estimate -- trying to falsely turn a zoning dispute into a religious freedom case, presumably in an attempt to raise money for First Liberty.
And because Unruh and WND care nothing about the journalistic principle of telling both sides of the story, they have effectively published a press release for First Liberty. Which means the fake news at WND hasn't stopped.
Reminder: MRC's Tally of Trump's 'Negative' Media Coverage Is Bogus Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center is at it again, as Rich Noyes writes:
The liberal media’s war against President Trump was as fierce as ever during the first four months of 2018, but the onslaught appears to be for naught: In the face of massive and hostile coverage from ABC, CBS and NBC, Trump’s overall job approval rating actually rose, from 37 percent in mid-December to roughly 43 percent at the end of April.
The Media Research Center studied all broadcast evening news coverage of the President from January 1 through April 30, and found 90 percent of the evaluative comments about Trump were negative — precisely the same hostile tone we documented in 2017.
But unlike last year, when the RealClearPolitics average depicted a slow but steady erosion in the President’s job approval numbers, the public has apparently warmed to Trump in 2018, even as the networks are as frosty as ever.
But as we've pointed out everytime the MRC promotes this so-called study, it's utterly bogus and meaningless, and here's why:
It focuses only on a tiny sliver of news -- the evening newscasts on the three networks -- and suggests it's indicative of all media.
It pretends there was never any neutral coverage of Trump. Indeed, the study explicitly rejects neutral coverage -- even though that's arguable the bulk of news coverage -- dishonestly counting "only explicitly evaluative statements."
It fails to take into account the stories themselves and whether negative coverage is deserved or admit that negative coverage is the most accurate way to cover a given story.
It again fails to provide the raw data or the actual statements it evaluated so its work could be evaluated by others. If the MRC's work was genuine and rigorous, wouldn't it be happy to provide the data to back it up?
Noyes even manages to mislead about Trump's poll numbers. As FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver points out, the 43 percent approval that Noyes cites is close to Trump's ceiling; his approval rating has never ventured out of the range of 36 percent to 44 percent -- the narrowest range in the first 500 days of a presidency in the history of modern polling.
But then, providing an accurate record of media coverage of Trump is not the MRC's goal -- promoting a pro-Trump, anti-media agenda is. Which means that MRC chief Brent Bozell couldn't be prouder that Trump referenced his bogus "research" in a tweet.
WND Columnist Seems To Think Only Americans Should Be Allowed To Play Baseball Topic: WorldNetDaily
Yes, Andy Schlafly really does complain there are too many foreigners playing baseball in his May 1 WorldNetDaily column:
Baseball has been in a slow slide in fan attendance, and the dismal attendance last year was the lowest in 15 years. But the particularly poor start this year should spark some soul-searching about what has happened to our national pastime.
The rules of baseball have not significantly changed over the past century, but the players certainly have. Today baseball has become a sport for foreigners playing on workers’ “P-1” visas, which are every bit as objectionable as the “H-1B” visas Phyllis Schlafly and other Trump supporters have complained about for years.
Roughly a quarter of Major League Baseball consists today of foreign-born players, and an even higher percentage of foreigners have flooded the minor leagues. Today, some minor league rosters look more like a World Cup soccer team than a baseball squad.
Owners have figured out that they can sign foreign players to smaller bonuses, and have greater strings attached, rather than give nice contracts to American youngsters. The foreigners do not play baseball any better than Americans, and few of the foreign players are genuine Hall of Fame candidates.
In sharp contrast with a quarter-century ago, every baseball team today has a high-paid foreign player. Free traders brag about this as a model that Americans should imitate in other industries, but the reality is that fans prefer rooting for hometown heroes like Lou Gehrig, who grew up in New York City, played baseball for Columbia University and then became the “Pride of the Yankees.”
Jackie Robinson, and Willie Mays and Hank Aaron after him, inspired a generation of young African-Americans to become baseball stars like them. That motivation is gone today with the deluge of foreign players on P-1 visas, and without enough black baseball stars hardly any young African-Americans play the sport anymore.
While major league teams have an oversupply of foreign players, and even more in the minor leagues, nearly one-third today have only one black player on their roster. Last year there were fewer black players in Major League Baseball than 1958, shortly after Jackie Robinson retired.
Baseball was a fabulous way to inspire multiple generations of boys to play a healthy game that emphasizes the virtues of teamwork, patience, discipline and following rules. But something is lost in the translation, and the motivation is lost, when the visa program is abused to reward foreigners rather than American youth.
Actually, Major League Baseball is a meritocracy in which the best players play no matter where they're from.
One gets the impression that 50 years ago, Schlafly would be complaining there were too many black players in baseball.
As it did last month, CNSNews.com's coverage of April's job numbers downplays the number of new jobs created -- a sign it doesn't consider that number impressive enough -- in favor of cherry-picked stats that make President Trump look better.
Instead, Susan Jones' main story touts how "Not since May 2001, 17 years ago, has the number of unemployed Americans been this low." It's not until the ninth paragraph that Jones mentions that there has been no real change in the labor force participation rate under Trump -- a number it heavily emphasized when Barack Obama was president when it was similarly stagnant. The jobs-created number didn't get mentioned until the 10th paragraph.
This story joined by the usual Trump-era sidebars by Terry Jeffrey on government employment and manufacturing jobs. The latter attacks Obama for "a one-month decline of 289,000" in manufacturing jobs the month he took office but doesn't mention that the economy was in the midst of cratering into a major recession at the time; Jeffrey also credits Trump for 304,000 manufacturing jobs since he took office but not the hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs created under Obama since the end of the recession -- a fact illustrated by the chart accompanying his article.
An article by Michael W. Chapman touts how "The national unemployment rate for blacks in April 2018 was 6.6%, the lowest it has been since the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) started compiling such data in 1972, some 46 years ago," but he fails to mention that the rate decline is merely the continuation of a trend begun under Obama.
Tellingly, Jones waited three days to do an article offering a closer look at the labor force participation rate and how it hasn't really changed under Trump -- something she would never have waited to do under Trump. The article's headline is quick to hype that the stagnant participation rate is driven largely by baby boomers retiring -- also a fact CNS was reluctant to admit during the Obmaa years.
WND Columnists Still Trying to Defend Bill Cosby Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's columnists have a soft spot for Bill Cosby, even after allegations of sexual assault surfaced -- for example, Jesse Lee Peterson insisted the charges were part of a liberal conspiracy against him.
Now that Cosby has actually been convicted on a sexual assault charge, WND columnists are still trying to defend him. Carl Jackson took a Peterson-esque conspiracy route, claiming Cosby was targeted because he made speeches critical of the black community and lamenting that nondisclosure agreements are coming back to bite him:
Initially, they were hard to believe, hard to fathom, but as witnesses came forward in larger numbers, the accusations became impossible to dismiss. Having said all of that, Bill Cosby’s conviction at his retrial would not have been possible if two things hadn’t occurred:
If the New York Times had not obtained and released Cosby’s deposition transcript from his 2005 testimony regarding Andrea Constand’s civil suit against him. Ultimately, Constand was rewarded $3.4 million after signing a confidentiality agreement that banned both parties from releasing the documents. Apparently, the transcript itself was never sealed despite the agreement.
Secondly, Cosby’s conviction in the retrial wouldn’t have been possible if Judge O’Neill, who presided over the first trial that resulted in a hung jury, hadn’t allowed testimony of five accusers with unfounded claims to tip the scale in favor of the prosecution. According to the New York Post, criminal defense attorney Stuart Slotnick, who has followed the trial for two years, believes there are “strong grounds for appeal,” since it was clear the prosecution couldn’t convict Cosby based on Andrea Constand’s testimony alone. In addition to her testimony, Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele used testimony from other accusers – who, again, offered no proof or evidence – to establish a pattern of behavior from Cosby. This could be problematic for the prosecution because Bill Cosby was never charged in any case regarding the accusers that testified against him. Judge O’Neill never explained why he allowed their testimony.
In a court of law, it shouldn’t matter what you think about Cosby; what should matter is what you can prove. Like it or not, that’s our system. Furthermore, let’s be honest, had Cosby not began advocating for family values in the black community, none of this would’ve ever been exposed. In the end, it isn’t my goal to defend Cosby’s despicable acts, if his accusers are telling the whole truth. If they are being totally truthful, Cosby has no one to blame but himself for his legal problems. However, it’s clear to me that nondisclosure agreements mean nothing in the era of the #MeToo movement, and unproven testimony from witnesses is enough to put you away for life. The latter especially should disturb us all.
Barry Farber, meanwihle, wants President Trump to pardon Cosby and insrtead be sentenced to provide uplifting messages to people:
Why not admit it? I want President Trump to pardon Bill Cosby.
And, yes, I’m aware of all the rapacious evil I’m abetting and the glorious victory over those forces I’m seeking to annul. And I still want Trump to pardon Cosby.
Bill Cosby’s entire life up to these criminal adventures with women is one huge mitigating circumstance. Bill Cosby’s contribution to the betterment of America is unique. Please don’t tumble into that common error of calling somebody or something “rather unique” or “kind of unique.” “Unique” is an absolute, and calling Cosby unique means there’s no one like him, past or present. Cosby mobilized the healing power of television to deflect rising tension between the two major races, and his life and work gave rise, oddly enough, to good solid moral messages whose penetrating power dwarfs those of any sermon in any church, synagogue or ashram.
Bill Cosby’s uniqueness in his contribution to us calls for unique treatment from us. But should we therefore annul his conviction and apologize to him? Certainly not!
In return for no jail time, Cosby will agree to speaking engagements before appropriate audiences of young people. He will reach those audiences with a strong message on building a life that’s praiseworthy and stays praiseworthy lest it all come crashing down on them as it did on him!
Farber doesn't seem to understand that Cosby's "praiseworthy" public life was revealed as a sham through his private behavior, making any uplifting message he might offer now moot and hypocritical.