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Sunday, November 11, 2018
What LGBT Stuff Is The MRC Freaking Out About Now?
Topic: Media Research Center

Yes, the Media Research Center is still freaking out about LGBT stuff. Let's investigate, shall we?

Matt Philbin is as hateful as ever, sneering: "Los Angeles has only one “LGBT-focused coffee shop.” This is surprising news to me, but then I believe pumpkin spiced latte is Big Coffee’s fiendish plot to turn America into a nation of jittery, fem Pajama Boys." Philbin is so homophobic that he feels the need to invent "the former daytime darling of L.A.’s queer social ecosystem, a makeup artist and part-time yoga instructor named Rudolfo," to mock a story about the financial plight of said coffee shop, cranking up the hateful snark:

Here’s a thought: maybe don’t be so gender-incontinent. Put the disco ball in the back. Lose the teal (keep the leather: you never know when some of those cis-gay guys might drop in. “As if!” sneered Rudolfo.) Maybe accept you might be misgendered by, say, every second person in order to make the joint a going concern. Look outside and see who other potential customers may be.

But solipsism, like deep voices and hairy legs, is brewed into this crowd.

Just as homophobia is deeply ingrained into Philbin and the rest of his MRC cohorts.

Lindsey Kornick declared that one of the "sneaky ways" that "raving lefty lunatic" Sean Penn has put a "liberal agenda" in his new Hulu show "The First" is that "The show really wants you to remember that Kayla is a queer woman. She has a wife she who discusses her feelings of frustration, and the two sleep together near the end of the third episode. Like the previous issue, there really is no need for these agendas as they also deal with the logistics of space travel and the lethal risk of another Mars mission."

Jay Maxson was mad that a media report noted "the first openly gay college football player to score a touchdown, complaining that the commentator "has been on board with the LGBT agenda for a long time."Maxson, of course, has been on board with the right-wing anti-LGBT agenda for a long time.

Annie Piper hates, hates, hates it when gay people are on her TV, specifically in an episode of "A Million Little Things" that focuses on an 11-year-old boy (bolding in original):

Wednesday night’s episode “Band of Dads” focused on one of the oldest topics in the books for liberal enthusiasts—homosexuality. This is something anyone who spends even a night or two a week watching TV should be no stranger to. We are all used to that one gay neighbor, or the gay best friend inserted into almost every show. It’s become so commonplace that if I were to write about every occurrence, I’d have a lot less free time on my hands.

[...]

As if it isn’t enough for ABC to make one of their youngest characters gay, they add in one more punch. Not only does Gary support same sex attraction—he encourages it and actually loves him "even more" for it. How quickly we go from tolerance to acceptance to celebration to preferential treatment.

Rebecca Downs similarly complains about people loving gays for being gay:

If there’s a theme in Star’s October 31 episode “Someday We’ll All Be Free,” it’s the suffering and healing of the black characters on the show, particularly the gay ones. The suffering of these characters is so righteous, that it is ultimately likened to the suffering of Jesus on the cross, and taken to mean that God has bestowed a special kind of love upon them.

[...]

Bobby could have reminded Miss Bruce about human dignity and worth, and that he is indeed loved by God. Instead, being black and gay is equated with the suffering Jesus as the Son of God endured during the crucifixion. For any demographic to be loved more or less by God, or to be considered having suffered in the same way in which Jesus did at his death, completely distorts the narrative of what the love of God is about. This includes how Jesus was the one who was sent to suffer and die in such a way.

By speaking about how being "made" black and gay shows Jesus “must really love” a person, and that blacks and gays are in a select group of being “the only ones,” the show doesn't remind of us of how we are all children of God, or seek to unite us as members of that human family. Instead, it focuses on a person’s demographics while hitting at "church folk." If this is supposed to be an episode about realizing the importance of healing and seeking help, Star actually hurts the cause.

And Maxson returns to rant that USA Today is "a blatant mouthpiece for the LGBT agenda" because it reported on a transgender female cyclist aiming for the Olympics, fearing that a "biological male" could earn an Olympic medal and huffing: "Perhaps that is what it will take for women ― real women ― to rise up in opposition to a movement that threatens to relegate them to permanent also-ran status in athletic competition."


Posted by Terry K. at 8:28 PM EST
CNS Brings In Pro-Trump Rabbi To Praise Trump's Response to Synogogue Shooting
Topic: CNSNews.com

We've highlighted how CNSNews.com has a thing for rloopy, abidly anti-Obama and pro-Trump rabbi Aryeh Spero. An Oct. 29 CNS blog post by Michael Morris lets Spero play Trump suck-up by ostentatiously praising President Trump's response to the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting:

Spokesman for the National Conference on Jewish Affairs (NCJA) lauded President Donald Trump’s heartfelt response and concern for Pittsburgh’s Jewish community yesterday, saying on behalf of the NCJA, “We commend President Trump for his heartfelt expressions of grief.”

“We commend President Trump for his heartfelt expressions of grief to Pittsburgh’s Jewish community, as well as to all American Jews regarding the slaughter at the Etz Chayim Synagogue on Saturday in Squirrel Hill,” stated Rabbi Aryeh Spero in a Facebook post. “It is quite obvious that the President was deeply distressed by the events Saturday and has made an upcoming priority in his schedule to go to Pittsburgh to be with the victims.”

[...]

Rabbi Aryeh Spero continued later in his Facebook post:

“We know that President Trump feels this tragedy very personally because he himself has attended synagogues and Jewish rituals as a father and grandfather to a Jewish daughter and grandchildren. The President, as did his late father, Fred, has had a history of supporting Jewish synagogues and causes, and the President continually demonstrates his love of the Jewish People and Israel. Safety for Jews around the world is of prime concern for Mr. Trump.”

We know llittle about this group, but any reputation the NCJA has of a legitimate spokesman for Jews in America is sullied by the presence of Spero, who appears to be placing political concerns before religion. Last year, presumably through Spero, the NCJA sucked up to Trumpa again by praising Trump for his allegedly "principled decision" to withdraw from the Iran nuclear agreement, further gushing: "We thank President Trump for acting on the facts regarding the Iranian regime’s nuclear program, and for his resoluteness and courageous leadership in protecting the safety and security of the American People."

The presence on the group's website of an article from the anti-Muslim Gatestone Institute complaining about "persecution of Christians" (!) is another sign that the group's true agenda is politics instead of Jewry.

Weirdly, CNS takes Spero's statement from his personal Facebook page -- not from any NCJA website -- upon which Spero has made only three posts this year, before which his most recent post was January 2014.

All of this looks a bit sketchy, if you ask us.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:00 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, November 25, 2018 11:21 AM EST
Saturday, November 10, 2018
Guy Who Called Obama A 'Skinny Ghetto Crackhead' Lectures On Civil Political Discourse
Topic: Media Research Center

Tim Graham and Brent Bozell whine in their Oct. 31 column:

The frightening exposure of pipe bombs being mailed to prominent Democrats and media outlets, followed by a horrific shooting in a synagogue in Pittsburgh, led to news networks lecturing, hour after hour, on the tone of our civic discourse.

Physicians, heal thyselves.

These are not dispassionate observers of the national scene. These are leftist partisans and they are cynically using national tragedies to equate conservative speech — conservative thought — to violence.

Yes, the guy who ranted that President Obama was a "skinny ghetto crackhead" is about to lecture us on proper political discourse.

The pair then play the whataboutism card:

In 1998, Eric Rudolph bombed an abortion clinic in Birmingham, killing a policeman. The media demanded that the pro-life movement condemn this violence. Pro-life leaders lined up before the cameras for humiliating we're-not-as-bad-as-this interviews.

In 1996, Ted Kaczynski, the Unabomber, was indicted for murdering three men with mail bombs. Authorities found Al Gore's book "Earth in the Balance" in Kaczynski's shack. No one in the media demanded Gore denounce this evil.

In 2009, Scott Roeder murdered late-term abortionist George Tiller in Kansas. Again pro-lifers were publicly shamed by the press. In 2013, monstrous abortionist Kermit Gosnell was convicted of killing three babies born alive, along with one mother. No reporter suggested the pro-abortion lobby bore any responsibility. No one condemned the agenda of NARAL, et cetera. Virtually no one bothered even covering the trial.

It's "humiliating" for anti-abortion activists to have to distance themselves from violence against abortion doctors and clinics, even though mainstream anti-abortion rhetoric frames abortion doctors as murderers and abortion clinics as perpetrating another Holocaust? Bozell and Graham have probably never spent a single second thinking about how humiliating it is for every American Muslim being forced to distance themselves from a terrorist attack. (They also can't name a single line out of Gore's book that could have directly inspired Kaczynski to his violent acts.)

Bozell and Graham ignore the fact that violent anti-abortion extremists are not that far from the anti-abortion mainstream. For instance, WorldNetDaily's Jack Cashill not only tried to claim that Rudolph was framed for the clinic attack and the 1996 Atlanta Olympics bombing that was purportedly actually carried out by Islamic extremists, he devoted a seven-part WND series to claiming that James Kopp was framed for the murder of abortion doctor Barnett Slepian, which worked until Kopp confessed to the murder. 

Further, we documented how the "news" operation Bozell runs, CNSNews.com, buried Roeder's links to the mainstream anti-abortion group Operation Rescue, nor did it report a statement from Randall Terry, a foundational figure in the anti-aboriton movement, effectively condoning Tiller's murder.

And, of course, Bozell and the MRC have for years been cynically exploiting Gosnell to further their right-wing anti-abortion agenda -- the exact behavior for which he attacked the "liberal media" at the beginning of his column.

So, once again, Graham and Bozell are ranting about behavior by others that they themselves engage in.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:57 AM EST
Conspiracy Time: WND's Rush Thinks MAGABomber Is A Secret 'Leftist Operative'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily columnist Erik Rush has always been conspiracy-happy and particularly Obama-deranged. He ratchets things up to a new level inhis Oct. 31 column, in which he argues that Cesar Sayoc (a.k.a. the MAGABomber), accused of mailing pipe bombs to prominent Democrats, is actually a secret "leftist operative":

Following a nationwide manhunt, on Friday federal authorities arrested 56-year-old Cesar Sayoc, a Florida man accused of sending explosive devices to prominent Democrats and critics of President Trump. Even prior to Sayoc’s capture, one could almost feel the anticipation of those on the left in the air, particularly the establishment press: The perpetrator was going to be found to be a Trump supporter, and they would exploit this fact to the nth degree.

As it happened, the evidence gleaned following Sayoc’s arrest suggested that he was in fact a very vocal Trump supporter and a registered Republican. Bear in mind that I used the term “suggested.” Immediately, the left began to exploit this apparent connection. Obviously, Sayoc’s actions had their genesis in Trump’s incivility, incendiary rhetoric, fascistic tendencies and calls for violence, as well as reflecting the general temperament of all who support Trump. Thus, the president should probably be removed from office and his supporters carted off to re-education camps forthwith.

[...]

There are also several aspects of Sayoc’s background and alleged crimes that give rise to incredulity and appear somewhat inconsistent for a dedicated Trump supporter, including amateurish construction of the explosive devices, Sayoc’s invisible (or at least limited) means of support and sketchy accounts from some of the ostensible targets.

Following these and other fishy facts revealed after Sayoc’s arrest, social media chatter immediately ensued, with rank-and-file conservatives postulating that the would-be bomber might be a leftist operative attempting to sow widespread fear of President Trump and his followers.

If one is motivated enough to do the research – or to consult my archive on related events – one will discover that there are distinct similarities between the backgrounds of Cesar Sayoc, James Holmes (the Aurora, Colorado, theater shooter), Adam Lanza (the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooter) and Aaron Alexis (the Washington, D.C., Naval Yard shooter). All but one were “fringe” elements and, though it was not widely reported, all of these individuals had direct or tangential ties to agencies that, it could be argued or deduced, had the capacity to recognize these men as marginalized and potentially unbalanced, and to subtly manipulate them into carrying out acts of violence.

As it happens, my knowledge of psychology surpasses what my formal education would suggest. I know that it is far easier to influence an individual utilizing mind control techniques than the average person might surmise, and that the methods available to clandestine agencies are far more sophisticated than most people know. It’s even easier if that person is mentally or emotionally compromised, and easier still if they are predisposed to such action.

[...]

If we wound up discovering that Cesar Sayoc was an unbalanced right-winger groomed for his role by leftist operatives, or simply a leftist operative himself, it should not be at all surprising given the boundless duplicity of the left and their aforementioned level of desperation.

Rush also suggests that Holmes, Lanza and Alexis may have been manipulated by Obama to commit their massacres in order to boost the argument for gun control:

The three mass shootings I mentioned all occurred during a time when the Obama administration was vigorously stumping for harsher gun control measures, so the motivation for these being staged incidents (in theory) is obvious. There were several other suspicious phenomena that tied those shootings together, such as circumstantial evidence that some involved crisis actors, which would be indicative of staged events.

If Rush so eagerly swallows such ridiculous conspiracy theories, perhaps his knowledge of psychology is not as all-encompassing as he would like us to think.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Rush is not the only WND columnist to push conspiracy theories about Sayoc. In his Oct. 28 column, Lowell Ponte suggests that Sayoc might be a Democrat-orchestrated "October surprise," though he does aver: "In all likelihood, Democrats did not invent Cesar Sayoc, a lone eccentric fixated on conspiracy theories who should be committed to the State Home for the Bewildered."

We would remind folks that Ponte is a conspiracy-fixated eccentric who is not so alone because WND has granted him weekly column space, though he has probably earned himself a room at the State Home for the Bewildered next door to Sayoc.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:19 AM EST
Friday, November 9, 2018
CNS Unemployment Coverage Distortion Watch
Topic: CNSNews.com

There were good numbers again in October's employment figures, and you know what that means: more pro-Trump rah-rah at CNSNews.com. The lead article by Susan Jones laid the rah-rah on thick, with an added pre-midterm boost:

The economy is the second most important issue for registered voters as the midterm election nears, a new Gallup Poll says. And there was very good economic news on Friday, as the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics rolled out the October employment report -- the final one before next week's midterm election.

The number of employed Americans has never been higher. The 156,562,000 Americans employed in October is the twefth record set under President Donald Trump. 

In October, the number of employed men age 20 and up -- 80,405,000 -- set the 12th record since Trump took office; and likewise, for the 12th time, the number of employed women age 20 and up set a record, reaching 70,909,000 in October.

The unemployment rate held at 3.7 percent, the same as September, which is the lowest it's been in decades -- since the end of 1969. And the Hispanic unemployment rate, 4.4 percent, has never been lower.

We also got the usual item on manufacturing jobs from editor in chief Terry Jeffrey since those increased -- though not his usual item on governement jobs, presumably because the BLS stated there was "little change" from the previous month, which means Jeffrey couldn't tout how many jobs Trump cut.

Jones' mention of the Hispanic unemployment rate got its own full item from Craig Bannister. A few days later, an MRC Latino post by Kathleen Krumhansl and Ken Oliver complained that news reports on Univision and Telemundo "pointedly neglected to include the third record-low in Hispanic unemployment reached under the Trump administration." That synergystic activism, of course, is the sole reason why CNS bothers to highlight the Hispanic unemployment rate in the first place.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:33 PM EST
WND Enlists Medical Misinformer to Fearmonger About Disease-Ridden Migrants
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Bogus fearmongering about George Soros isn't the only conspiracy theory about the migrant caravans that WorldNetDaily is promoting. WND serves up another one in a Nov. 1 article:

There’s a new warning about the three caravans of migrants coming from Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico toward the southern U.S. border: They could be carrying contagious diseases that would create havoc for America’s health system.

“Of course it could happen here,” said Dr. Jane Orient, the executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons.

Her comments came in a report by government watchdog Judicial Watch.

“It’s insane to bring in migrants from any country without proper health screening,” she said.

The caravans pose “a serious public health threat and could bring dangerous diseases into the country,” the report said.

Orient explained there are extremely drug-resistant strands of tuberculosis among the infectious diseases the Central American migrants are likely to bring in.

Others include mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue and chikungunya, both widespread in the region.

The problem here is that Orient has no credibility on this issue. As we've previously documented, Orient has since 2003 been managing editor of the AAPS' Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons, which means it was under her watch that a notorious 2005 journal article appeared ranting against illegal immigrants as filthy foreigners and falsely claiming that cases of leprosy in the U.S. have exploded. Even though the claim was discredited years ago, we're not aware that the journal has issued a correction, and the PDF of the article on the journal's website remains uncorrected.

Orient is a veritable font of medical misinformation. In 2016, she tried to blame cases of microcephaly on vaccines and not the Zika virus -- a claim that has been discredited.

Orient has spread misinformation about immigrants and diseases before, and to our knowledge, she has never apologized for doing so. There's no reason to trust her on the subject now.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:04 AM EST
Thursday, November 8, 2018
Bogus MRC Coverage 'Study' Watch
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has applied its highly dubious and ridiculously narrowly focused methodology to claim that media coverage of President Trump is too negative to coverage of the midterm elections. The headline of Rich Noyes' Oct. 30 post references "TV News," but that's only if you believe as Noyes apparently does that Fox News, CNN and MSNBC aren't on TV; once again, it's narrowly focused on the TV networks' evening newscasts. Noyes imparts:

With just one week to go before the 2018 midterm elections, the broadcast networks are heavily spinning their campaign coverage against the Republicans, even as President Trump’s campaign activities have received more airtime than all of the individual Senate, House, and gubernatorial contests combined.

Not only was network coverage of Republicans far more hostile (88% negative) than that meted out to Democrats (53% negative), but we found nearly ten times more negative statements about Republicans and President Trump (97) than all of the Democratic candidates combined (10).

In fact, coverage of the entire field of Democratic candidates would have been 67 percent positive if it hadn’t been for negative comments in stories about Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren’s DNA test.

Again, Noyes methodology is very narrowly defined:

We calculated spin by tallying all clearly positive and negative statements from non-partisan sources (in other words, reporters, anchors, voters and other unaffiliated sources). This excludes coverage that merely reflects the partisan back-and-forth of the campaign, in order to isolate the spin being imparted by the networks themselves. It also excludes “horse race assessments” about the candidate’s prospects for winning or losing.

And, again, Noyes can't be bothered to post the raw data so readers can double-check his almost certainly biased pronouncements of what constitutes a "negative" or "positive" statement, or expl;ain why neutral coverage wasn't factored in, or explain whether he thinks "negative" coverage can be the most accurate way to cover a given story, or whether he believes all stories must be "balanced" whether or not the story warrants it.

But dubious methodologies and murky data are how the MRC's "research" rolls.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:51 PM EST
WND Pushes More Anti-Muslim Activism From Right-Wing Legal Group
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In September, WorldNetDaily promoted the work of the right-wing Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund in fighting what it called "proselytizing" of Islam in a California school district. In fact, what was happening was an attempt to counter discrimination and bullying against a Muslim student and allowing Musilm groups explain to students that Muslims are not the evil people right-wingers portray them as.

Well, WND and the right-wing group were at it again in an anonymously written Oct. 27 article:

Parents of San Diego public school students have returned to a federal court in their case against the district’s promotion of Islam, asking the judge to reconsider her denial of their request to halt an “anti-Islamophobia initiative.”

The parents, who are organized as the Citizens For Quality Education San Diego, charge the San Diego Unified School District’s program in partnership with the Council on American-Islamic Relations favors Muslim students in violation of the Constitution.

Ahead of a hearing scheduled for Nov. 26, the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund, on behalf of the parents, have filed a brief in support of a motion asking the Judge Cynthia Bashant to reconsider her denial of a preliminary order to stop the program while the case proceeds.

The brief contends the judge overlooked material facts demonstrating the district is advancing the sectarian agenda of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR. It asserts her conclusion the district no longer is partnering with CAIR is “manifestly erroneous.”

The FCDF actually goes on to argue that there must be documented hatred of Muslims before any anti-Islamophobia initiative can take place, according to the article:

The brief contends the judge “ignored the statistics showing no evidence of Islamophobia in the school district and instead held that President Trump’s election was a reason compelling enough to override the parents’ argument that the initiative violates the First Amendment.”

[...]

“Relying on spurious claims of rampant nationwide ‘Islamophobia’ squarely conflicts with Supreme Court precedent,” said Daniel Piedra, FCDF’s executive director. “There is zero evidence of MAGA hat-wearing students prowling the schools and terrorizing Muslim students. No doubt the school district has good intentions, but a religiously preferential school program requires an actual problem in need of solving.”

The school’s deal with CAIR “offers Muslim students special bullying protections and empowers the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a controversial Islamic advocacy organization, to revise school curricula for a more ‘inclusive’ portrayal of Islam. CAIR also is authorized to prosecute students accused of being Islamophobic,” the legal team said.

“Government statistics show schoolchildren of all religions face bullying, not just Muslim students,” Piedra said. “While combating religiously motivated bullying is a compelling interest, any school initiative that singles out a specific religious sect for preferential treatment is unconstitutional.”

As with the previous article, WND simply rewrote an FCDF press release and couldn't be bothered to contact the school distric being sued by FCDF for a response. And it's not established how fighting anti-Muslim discrimination is the exact same thing as "promotion of Islam."

The WND article concludes by rehashing earlier attacks by anti-Muslim groups on schools after ominously stating, "The influence of Islam in public schools has become a nationwide issue." We don't recall WND ever complaining about, say, the influence of Christianity in public schools, except perhaps to argue there wasn't enough of it.

It's yet another example of lazy press-release journalism and reflexive anti-Muslim bias on WND's part. Not the sign of a "news" organization interested in surviving.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:25 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: The Kavanaugh Playbook At CNS
Topic: CNSNews.com
Like its Media Research Center parent, CNSNews.com had marching orders to push through Brett Kavanaugh's Supreme Court nomination and attack his accusers. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 9:23 AM EST
Wednesday, November 7, 2018
WND Pushes False Conspiracy Theories That Soros Is Behind Migrant Caravans
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Like any good right-wing conspiracy-obsessed website, WorldNetDaily hates George Soros After all, its columnists have pushed the false smear that Soros was a Nazi sympathizer during World War II, and it refused to correct the record when it had a chance. So it was unsurprising that WND latched onto dubious claims that a Soros-funded group and, thus, Soros himself -- was involved in the migrant caravan moving through Central America and Mexico toward the United States.

Brent Smith ranted in his Oct. 19 WND column: And who is coaching these marchers? Is it once again Pueblo Sin Fronteras, the George Soros funded group who bankrolled the April 2018 march to the border, or is it Honduran communist Bartolo Fuentes, looking to cause upheaval to regain power in his country?"

An anonymously written Oct. 22 WND article repeated Smith's speculation, adding speculation from the right-wing American Thinker site claiming that "Evidence of Soros funding of an earlier ‘spontaneous’ migration have been found among the tentacles of support that flow from his Open Society group coffers."

An Oct. 29 WND article repeated a claim from the highly discredited Gateway Pundit claiming that "the George Soros Open Society is working behind the scenes with the United Nations to assist illegal migrants like the caravans marching to the southern U.S. border." It also touted a claim from Judicial Watch's Chris Farrell, who "accused Soros of funding the migrant caravan," going on to invoke an even more discredited source: "Infowars said Judicial Watch is calling for a criminal investigation into funding for the campaign after its Chris Farrell suggested George Soros was linked to the move, including grant money given to his groups afer pushing leftist agendas."

WND columnist Mychal Massie wrote on Oct. 29 that "it’s Soros’ Open Society Foundations that are the primary threat to our way of life," ranting: "Bankrolling violent subversive groups for the express purpose of subverting the government of the United States of America and deconstructing our Constitution for purposes of bringing about insurrection is by definition sedition. This is exactly what George Soros has been knowingly funding since at least 1984." Massie added that "An example is the so-called “caravan of refugees,” which is an act of organized politico-subversion intended to create a Marxist climate of anti-American resentment from within the borders of America." Massie concluded his screed: "We are a country of laws, and it’s past time to investigate and punish the person behind this intended seditious subversion of our culture. 'Someone’s got to go to jail' for this, and that someone is George Soros. At the very least he should be deported back to Hungary where it is my understanding that their government would love to see him again."

Except that's not true at all. A New York Times fact-check found no evidence that Soros or Pueblos Sin Fronteras were involved in  the current caravan (though Pueblos Sin Fronteras has been involved in organizing earlier journeys). USA Today has documented how the Soros lie spread through right-wing social media.

This is not the first time WND has pushed such a Soros conspiracy theory. An April 29 article, headlined "Border Caravan? Call it the George Soros Express" -- promoted on WND's front page with the more benign headline "Who's paying for caravan to U.S. border?" -- blamed "billionaire George Soros" in part for purportedly funding a "well-organized caravan-style invasion" earlier this year, touting a state Republican official calling Soros a "leftist puppet master" -- a term that is considered to be longtime anti-Semitic language. But that didn't appear to be true either.

Embracing false conspiracy theories about George Soros is probably not the way to profitability for WND if it's genuinely interested in not going out of business.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:59 PM EST
MRC Blogger Claims To See Reporter's Secret Political Agenda In His Use Of A Common Pronoun
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center tends to do a lot of mind-reading in indicting various people in the media as "liberal." Mysterious MRC sports blogger Jay Maxson takes it to the next level by deducing political leanings from a person's use of a common pronoun.

Maxson's Oct. 29 NewsBusters post berates Huffington Post writer David Barden for writing about LeBron James' "political activism," particularly that he was spotted wearing a cap supporting Democratic Texas Senate candidate Beto O'Rourke. Maxson noted that Barden wrote of the cap that ""If we ever needed a clearer sign that LeBron James isn’t going to just 'shut up and dribble,' this is it," then divined Barden's purported partisan intent in writing that sentence: "From the start of his post, Barden identifies himself as a supporter of O'Rourke and James. The word 'we' is the second word in the post."

Funny, we just see a writer using a common rhetorical device that uses a common plural pronoun that can be resonably argued applies to all basketball fans and observers, not just LeBron and the writer. At no point does in his article does Barden state any personal political preferences -- he's simply reporting what James did.

That's the kind of right-wing paranoia that's driving the MRC these days.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:49 PM EST
WND Does More State-Media Work For Trump At Midterms
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Becoming total pro-Trump state media didn't keep WorldNetDaily from circling the drain not once but twice this year. So what did WND do to prepare its dwindling readership for the midterms? Double down on sucking up to Trump.

An anonymously written Oct. 29 article updated one of WND's old tricks, a dubious list of Trump's alleged "accomplishments":

If Americans want more of deregulation, lower taxes, economic growth, record-low unemployment, job creation, immigration enforcement, border security, a stronger military, conservative judges, improved trade deals and unprecedented foreign policy victories with nations such as North Korea, the party of the person they vote for in congressional elections matters.

Since WND published a list of 183 accomplishments in Trump’s first 14 months, the president has continued to fulfill campaign promises.

Most recently, Brett Kavanaugh became the second judge confirmed to the Supreme Court who interprets the Constitution according to the text, following Neil Gorsuch. The negotiation of a trade deal with Mexico and Canada to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, fulfilled a major campaign vow. Another eight trade deals have been negotiated with Japan, South Korea, Europe and China.

In a typical diplomatic victory, the Trump administration, employing tough sanctions and behind-the-scenes diplomatic maneuvers, secured in October the release of pastor Andrew Brunson from an otherwise defiant Turkish regime, without any apparent concessions.

The only thing more embarrassingly fawning than this article was WND editor Joseph Farah's Nov. 2 column promoting it:

Who knows how things will turn out next Tuesday?

If the results were based on good outcomes, the party supporting the incumbent president might just turn the midterm jinx on its head.

But there’s the media, of course.

There’s also the media-amplifiers at Google and Facebook and Twitter.

Then there’s academia.

There’s also the Big Cities.

There’s the Deep State.

And then there are stupid people.

Otherwise, how could he NOT rock the house?

It shouldn’t even be close.

I’m optimistic. I was in 2016. I said so. In fact, I may have been overly optimistic – even fantasizing about how even New Yorkers and Californians could shock the country with their votes.

But here’s what I want you to do for us right now – before it’s too late.

I want you to spread this BIG, BIG, BIG LIST OF TRUMP ACCOMPLISHMENTS far and wide before Election Day.

It’s truly breathtaking.

[...]

Before Trump, my standard was Reagan. I didn’t think we’d ever see another president like him. I was wrong. He out-conservatived Reagan – without even trying.

Where does the man get the energy, the stamina, the grit?

God bless him.

He did what he said he would do.

How often do you see that?

I can’t even think of a significant disappointment. When has that ever happened?

Farah's full-metal suck-up continued in his Nov. 5 column, with added Divine Donald silliness:

Despite all Donald Trump as done in the last 24 months, and make note of it, we are on the precipice of throwing it all away.

This is what not just the “fake news media” have done. This is what Google and Facebook have wrought on us all when powerful, special interests turn the truth on its head.

Am I throwing in the towel?

Not at all. I have never sold Donald Trump short. He is a force of nature. I’m always been a fan. He has stood boldly and with clarity. But I’m just not sure how far his voice can carry.

Maybe God gave us a stark choice between Barack Obama and Donald Trump and said: “Choose.”

Farah than complained: "There was a time in America at which we could talk to one another, respect differences of opinion and agree to disagree. That is long gone. There is no tolerance for dissent or disagreement." He wrote that without irony, apparently oblivious to his and WND's major role refusing to respect differences of opinion (he refused to call Obama the president, remember?) and his own very thin skin regarding any criticism of him and his website.

And just a few paragraphs earlier, he was demonizing and maliciously mischaracterizing anyone who disagreed with his view of the midterms:

Choose between one who believes in nation-states and one who does not.

Choose between one who breaks the law and one who does not.

Choose between one who fosters the production of wealth and one who does not.

Choose between one who supports life and one who does not.

Choose between one who supports Brett Kavanaugh and one who promotes scurrilous, unsubstantiated accusations.

Choose between one who acts in the best interest of his country and one who does not.

Choose between whether sovereign citizens vote or just anybody.

You get the idea. This is what it has become in the United States of America in 2018. It’s a critical state of the affairs indeed. Though we have been blessed by two years of Donald Trump, the choice is clear, and about half the country appears relatively close to choosing unwisely – whether they have been manipulated or conned.

Is a person who thinks that anyone who disagrees with him must have been  "manipulated or conned" into having those views really sincerely concerned with the failure to "respect differences of opinion and agree to disagree"? Highly unlikely.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:38 AM EST
Tuesday, November 6, 2018
CNS' Chapman Rants About 'Liberal Media' To Deflect From Trump's Heated Rhetoric
Topic: CNSNews.com

We've documented how CNSNews.com managing editor Michael W. Chapman is, at heart, a hard-right polemicist, and the commentary he chooses to publish -- as well as his own commentary, which leans hard in the hating-gays direction -- reflects that.

As befits a Media Research Center employee, Chapman reflexively attacks the "liberal media" for being biased despite running one of the most biased "news" organizations on the planet. His Oct. 29 blog post was a desperate bit of whataboutism designed to take the heat of President Trump's rhetoric in the wake of a series of pipe bombs sent to promient Democrats and actual news organizations by a Trump enthusiast and a massacre perpetrated by a man who hated a Jewish group for bringing in refugees in an echo of Trump's immigration policy:

The liberal media in America -- CNN, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, NBC, NPR, New York Times, most newspapers -- complain because President Donald Trump often calls them "fake news" and "the enemy of the people." They also charge that Trump's criticism fuels an uncivil atmosphere that sparks violence, e.g., they are now blaming Trump's rhetoric for the mail bomber and the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting. 

But the liberal media do not view their own extremist, hyperbolic "news reporting" and commentary as contributing to America's political incivility, even though their diction is far more militant, repulsive, and noxious than anything Trump has said about the press.

For instance, these liberal media prima donnas are comfortable in describing the president of the United States as a sociopath, a disturbed person, a traitor, white nationalist, white supremacist, white bigot, racist, sinister, destructive virus, treasonous, straight out of Munich 1928, Mussolini, Joseph Stalin, Nazi, evil, mentally unfit, dictatorship, Hitler, unfit to be human, domestic terrorist, psychologically troubled, hate monger, imperial wizard, neo-Nazi, Axis Power, unfit, a national security threat, piece of sh*t, killer, out of control, domestic terror group, a menace, nuts, dictator, mentally unstable, Putin's c**k holster, madman, giant a**hole, bigot-in-chief, and racist-in-residence. 

What follows is a long list of things Chapman copied-and-pasted from his MRC cohorts down the hall of things Trump has apprently been called. They're out of context, of course, since that would take too much work to copy and paste, and most are from commentators offering an opinion, not reporters claiming to be objective. And he certainly would never admit that there's a factual basis to the name-calling.

Funny, we don't recall Chapman ever complaining about vile things conservatives have said about Democratic presidents and politicians -- no mention of Hank Williams Jr. likening President Obama to Hitler,  no mention of Ted Nugent calling Obama a "subhuman mongrel" and a "chimpanzee" and telling him to "suck on my machine gun" (and calling Hillary Clinton a "worthless bitch") -- and certainly no mention of his boss, Brent Bozell, calling Obama a "skinny ghetto crackhead."

Chapman is being wildly and ridiculously hypocritical by attacking "liberal media" criticism of Trump whiled condoning the smear from the "media prima donnas" on his own side. But then, hypocrisy is the MRC way.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:44 PM EST
WND Gives Perpetual Congressional Candidate More Space To Tout His Sure-To-Lose Bid
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Art Robinson is a perpetual candidate who keeps getting the Republican bid to run against Democratic Rep. Peter DeFazio for a congressional seat in Oregon despite his long record of losing to DeFazio. WorldNetDaily loves him, though, and keeps giving him promotional space that's so rote that WND managing editor David Kupelian was recycling endorsements of Robinson from election to election.

This year -- his fifth bid to seat DeFazio, which is expected to end with yet another loss for Robinson -- WND has already given Robinson space for one column, and it gave him another one on Oct. 31, in which he rants about DeFazio and "career politicians" in general and heaps praise on President Trump, laughably claiming that Trump "has a strong Judeo-Christian ethic and a strong constitutional ethic."

As far as we know, WND did not give DeFazio similar space to make his own arguments to its readers -- thus making an effective in-kind contribution to Robinson's campaign. We'd be bothered by it if anybody outside WND's offices and Robinson's campaign thought Robinson wasn't going down in flames yet again.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:23 PM EST
MRC Mad That 'Murphy Brown' Counted How Many Lies Trump Has Told
Topic: Media Research Center

Karen Townsend served up some of that good ol' Media Research Center hate-watching in an Oct. 26 post about an episode of the rebooted "Murphy Brown":

The reboot of Murphy Brown is getting old quick. It has become a boring, paint by numbers exercise in liberal vanity, with shots (both direct and veiled) at President Trump, Melania, the Trump Hotel, and, of course, Fox News.

In the CBS show’s episode titled “The Girl Who Cried Wolf” airing October 25, Murphy Brown went to a frequent gag. Murphy (Candice Bergen) is forever in need of a new assistant and the show’s social media/tech guru comes up with a solution – an artificial intelligence one. Murphy is skeptical and then the techie, Pat (Nik Dodani), demonstrates by hammering Donald Trump as a liar.

Townsend then added a transcript in which the AI assistant notes that "President Trump has made false or misleading statements 5,247 times." She was apparently so bothered by this that she made this the headline of her piece: "Lame ‘Murphy Brown’ Hits at Trump for Lying '5,247 Times' in Office." Townsend doesn't dispute the claim, just complains that it was made.

Of course, Townsend can't dispute the claim because not only is it true, the number is actually underestimated. A few days after Townsend's post, the Washington Post reported that Trump has made 6,420 false or misleading statements since he took office.

Instead, Townsend laments: "Sadly, this show is still little more than a vehicle used to bash President Trump and conservatives, even if it’s only lame remarks sprinkled into the dialogue and a silly parody of a Trump property. I’d like to think it will be better in future episodes but I'm finding it hard to believe."

It seems that hate-watching TV for the MRC is starting to take its toll on Townsend.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:34 AM EST

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