Media Bias: CNS Spins Away John Dean's Testimony Topic: CNSNews.com
For a "news" organization that's run by a "media research" group that rages against media bias, CNSNews.com sure publishes a lot of biased news. Its coverage of the John Dean's congressional testimony was another example.
CNS' framing was clear from the start, as Susan Jones' June 4 article on the announcement of Dean's testimony, portraying "the Democrat-led [sic] House Judiciary Committee" using Dean's testimony as an "attempt to move forward with impeachment." Jones also portrayed Dean as a serial complainer because "In March 2006, Dean also recommended the censure of President George W. Bush in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee."
As the testimony date neared, Jones served up more biased previews. She huffed in one article:
The hearing will feature long-ago White House Counsel John Dean, now a staunch anti-Trumper, who helped cover up crimes in the Richard Nixon administration, then became a key witness against Nixon.
John Dean has nothing to do with the case Democrats are trying to build against Trump, but he will serve as a publicity-generator for the pro-impeachment cause.
In the second, Jones went into pro-Trump spin mode, insisting that what Trump did is nothing like Watergate and treating a dubious Trump tweet as the indisuputable truth:
But one glaring area of difference between Nixon and Trump is that Nixon became aware, after the fact, of the Watergate burglary, the underlying crime that he tried to cover up.
The FBI opened its counterintelligence investigation into Donald Trump without a crime having been alleged.
As Trump repeatedly has tweeted: "NO COLLUSION, NO OBSTRUCTION. Besides, how can you have Obstruction when not only was there No Collusion (by Trump), but the bad actions were done by the 'other' side? The greatest con-job in the history of American Politics!"
In fact, even conservative Fox News anchor Bret Baier has pointed out that "This was not, as the President says time and time again, no collusion, no obstruction. It was much more nuanced than that."
In CNS' only article regarding Dean's actual testimony, managing editor Michael W. Chapman stepped in to personally attack Dean and cite none of his actual testimony:
During Tuesday's House Judiciary Committee hearing on the Mueller Report, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) criticized witness John Dean, a disbarred lawyer and convicted felon, because he had "no knowledge of a single fact on the Mueller Report" and was only there, as a 1970's Watergate culprit, to function as a "prop" for the Democrats.
John Dean, 80, was the White House Counsel to President Richard Nixon from July 1970 to April 1973. Dean testified against his colleagues and was given a reduced sentence for obstruction of justice in the Watergate scandal. He was also disbarred as a lawyer. He has written several books about Watergate and abuses of executive power.
Rep. Gaetz said, “Here we sit today in this hearing, with the Ghost of Christmas Past [John Dean] because the chairman of the committee has gone to the Speaker of the House [Nancy Pelosi] and sought permission to open an impeachment inquiry. But she has said no, and so instead of opening an impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump … we’re here reopening the impeachment hearing inquiry potentially into Richard Nixon -- sort of playing out our own version of That '70s Show."
"What I really regret is you're here as a prop," said Gaetz to Dean. “You are functionally here as a prop because [the Democrats] can’t impeach President Trump because 70% of Democrats want something that 60% of Americans don’t.”
Chapman concluded by spinning the Mueller report, misleadingly claiming that it "concluded that no Americans and no one in the Trump 2016 campaign colluded with Russians to affect the election. In addition, the report found no evidence that President Trump had obstructed justice."
Jones served up her own follow-up, which framed Dean as among "anti-Trump partisans" who testified at the hearing. While Jones, unlike her boss, did devote a couple paragraphs to what Dean actually said, she gave much more space to Trump and pro-Trump Republicans attacking Dean.
MRC Has Another Anti-Gay Cartoon Freakout Topic: Media Research Center
Gay cartoon freakouts appear to be a trend at the Media Research Center. Jorge Plaza served up his contribution in a June 13 post:
Remember the days when you could plop your kid in front of the TV without worrying about lefty indoctrination? Well, those days are over. Yesterday, My Little Pony will premiere an episode featuring a lesbian couple on Saturday for Discovery Family. This is coupled with a tweet from the Cartoon Networkcelebrating Pride Month.
On the next episode of My Little Pony, the characters “Aunt Holiday” and “Auntie Lofty” will act as the parents of the school-age pony “Scootaloo.” The Aunt and Auntie pair were confirmed to be a lesbian couple on Twitter by the show’s writer and producer Michael Vogel. Vogel, who is gay, also tweeted that show writers Nicole Dubuc and Josh Haber are doing “what we can to bring more EQuality to EQuestria!! [sic] #PrideMonth”
A depiction of a pony as non-heterosexual is "lefty indoctrination"? That's apparently what that is in MRC world.
But Plaza wasn't done ranting about non-hetero cartoons, taking aim at the Cartoon Network and "Steven Universe":
The extremely popular Cartoon Network sells LGBT-themed merchandise on their website including a pillow case that depicts a cartoon lesbian wedding. The image is a reference to an episode from “Steven Universe” where the female characters Rose Quartz (a pansexual) and Pearl get married and perform a sensual “fusion.”
Steven Universe is one of Cartoon Network’s highest rated shows; it is currently entering its sixth season with a film to be released late this year. Most of the show’s characters are humanoid aliens that have the ability of “fusion” -- where two or more characters with a strong emotional connection combine their bodies to generate a more powerful form.
These fusions are often romantic, and the writers intentionally use them as a metaphor for sex in same-sex and/or polyamorous relationships. Premiered in 2013, the show’s first season revealed that one of the characters, Garnet, is the product of a romantic fusion between two other female characters, Ruby and Sapphire. In another episode, the middle-school aged characters Steven and Connie fuse to create “Stevonnie,” who identifies as gender queer and uses the pronouns “they/them.” The show’s creator Rebecca Sugar is bisexual and speaks openly about the show’s LGBT themes.
Plaza concluded by huffing: "With shows like Steven Universe, it’s no wonder that 59% of Generation Z (those born from the mid-90s to mid-2000s) believe that there are more than two genders with only two-thirds identifying as exclusively heterosexual. If parents are not vigilant, childhood gender dysphoria will only worsen as cartoons teach kids to explore their sexuality.
So Plaza thinks cartoons are making people gay? What's his stance on soy?
Irony: Anti-Vaxxers At WND Fret About Mumps Outbreak At Border Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily fretted in an anonymously written June 14 article: "Thousands of illegal aliens flooding across America’s southern border, part of what President Trump repeatedly has described as a national emergency, have been segregated now because they’ve been exposed to either mumps, chicken pox or both."
Yes, we are supposed to believe that WND -- which hasalengthyrecord of fearmongering people into not getting vaccinations for diseases like mumps and chicken pox -- is suddenly concerned about the spread of such diseases. Of course, as we saw when it falsely blamed Islam for a measles outbreak in a Somali immigrant community -- WND flip-flops on that policy when it can blame immigrants and migrants for disease outbreaks.
And that's exactly what WND is doing here, further ranting that "There also have been problems with measles and flu among the population of illegal migrants who have broken American laws to enter the nation, and now are being provided services at the expense of U.S. taxpayers."
Then, just as it did a few days earlier, it called up its favorite dubious doc to do even more fearmongering:
Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for Physicians for Civil Defense issued a statement that while public health officials “are preoccupied” with measles, there are hundreds of the newcomers arriving from the war-torn Democratic Republic of the Congo, “where thousands have Ebola.”
That potential impact is huge, since, “in the entire U.S., there are about half a dozen hospital beds equipped for safe treatment of Ebola victims,” the group said.
“We were very fortunate to escape a disastrous outbreak here during the epidemic in West Africa. There are two new vaccines that generate antibodies, but we don’t know how protective they would be – if you are one of the few who could get a dose.”
Further, HIV and drug-resistant tuberculosis both are prevalent in Africa.
The statement, from Jane Orient, M.D., said officials and news outlets all should be demanding to know whether entrants from Congo are screened for Ebola, and what precautions are being taken to protect workers.
“Double gloving? Masks and eye protection? Incineration of medical waste? How long are entrants quarantined? The incubation period can be longer than 21 days. What if there is a needle-stick injury? If a case of Ebola is suspected, what is being done to protect other migrants?” her statement continued.
We, of course, know Orient for her association with the far-right Association for American Physicians and Surgeons. Physicians for Civil Defense appears to be just Orient, and its website is just a blog.
But no matter which hat she's wearing, Orient is lying about the existence of an Ebola threat in the U.S. As we documented, any Africans arriving from the Democratic Republic of Congo likely left months ago, and as even she concedes, the Ebola incubation period is 21 days, meaning that any Ebola patient will be struck with the disease long before they arrive in the U.S.
MRC's Political Director Spouts The Company Line Topic: CNSNews.com
If the Media Research Center is supposed to be a 501(c)3 "research and education organization" that's not supposed to be very involved in politics, why does it have a political director?
Indeed it does, and Christian Robey is that man. And to show he's an MRC company man, he dabbled in the whole "media research" thing -- or, as it plays out that the MRC, kneejerk bashing of the "liberal media" -- in a June 11 CNSNews.com column. He begins by whining in classic MRC style we've heard a million times from his co-workers:
Ever since the Mueller Report was released on April 18th, and as America moves closer to the 2020 presidential election, our country is quickly wrenching itself apart along partisan lines. Disturbingly, the media are enthusiastically throwing gasoline on this rift.
Liberal journalists are not merely playing the role of partisan commentators. It’s bad enough that they are. Could it be as it appears, that some reporters may have actually colluded with entities at various government agencies throughout the ongoing Russia collusion saga?
Indeed the media may be the “enemy of the people.”
He continued by offering up a dubious defense of President Trump:
A State of the Union on CNN with Jake Tapper, where Tapper asked Kellyanne Conway whether President Trump's response to Charlottesville was, as he has said, “perfect.”
Conway forcefully made the case that the President's “very fine people on both sides” comment was clearly in reference to people peacefully opposing the removal of Confederate statues, not to the neo-Nazis. After several back and forths with Conway, Tapper simply wouldn’t drop his criticism of it not being “perfect.” Conway eventually shot back, “It looks like you, and others, looking at 2020, are worried that this guy can't be beaten fairly and squarely.” Obviously, Tapper was employing the racism dog whistle and Kelly Anne was not having any of it.
The problem with such an exchange is not the actual conversation, but the implication. Tapper’s comments were insidious accusations of racism speaking on behalf of the left. By harkening back to Charlottesville, Tapper was drudging up old accusations that the president and his “basket of deplorables” are the worst type of people this nation has to offer – neo-Nazis and racists.
But as an actual news outlet has documented, the Charlottesville rally was organized by a white nationalist and featured neo-Nazis and white supremacists, meaning that even if some people were defending Confederate statues, "this rally was clearly not one for your average supporter of Confederate monuments."
Robey also overgeneralizes by suggesting that the media is painting all Trump supporters as "deplorables." But even Hillary Clinton, in the speech transcript Robey attached to his article, described only half of Trump supporters as "deplorables ... racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic—you name it" whom Trump's campaign "has lifted up."
Robey concluded by repeating the bogus generalization: "When the media regard nearly half the American people with such disdain, and report the news accordingly – and during an already divided time in our history – the end result may well be a house divided against itself, which cannot stand. If and when it all comes down, the media will have played a pivotal role in bringing our American house down." Robey woin't tell you that he and the MRC have the exact same view from the opposite side: They dismiss and despise the half of America they deem non-conservative as "socialists" and "elites" -- and treat them accordingly.
Is that not just as divisive as what Robey claims the media is doing? Will that also "bring our American house down"? Sure -- just don't expect Robey to admit it. He's a company man, after all.
AIM Cherry-Picks To Pretend Trump Isn't A Liar Topic: Accuracy in Media
Accuracy in Media's Brian McNicoll is enough of a Trumpophile that he labors to find loopholes to prove that President Trump doesn't lie. He does this again in a June 19 piece claiming that the Washington Post "featured some of the claims of Trump lies that were among the 1,400 claims of 'false and misleading statements' that were debunked in Accuracy in Media’s 10,000 Lies in 10 Days series."
McNicoll runs into an immediate veracity problem, in that there really is no such thing as a "10,000 Lies in 10 Days series" at AIM, at least that we could find in the form McNicoll claims it exists. There areafewarticles in which McNicoll attacks the Post for tracking Trump's falsehoods, but only one of those appears after the Post reached the 10,000-falsehood milestone, and McNicoll doesn't link to any of them. Also, the Post doesn't call them "lies" -- which claims intent to lie on the part of Trump that the Post can't prove in many cases -- sticking instead to "false and misleading statements."
McNicoll's defense of Trump is rather lame. For instance:
The Post took issue with Trump’s claim that his tax cuts and reforms were the largest in American history.
“This is a Bottomless Pinocchio claim, our worst rating,” [Post reporter Salvador] Rizzo wrote. “Trump’s tax cut amounted to nearly 0.9 percent of gross domestic product, meaning it was far smaller than President Ronald Reagan’s tax cut in 1981, which was 2.89 percent of GDP. Trump’s tax cut is the eighth-largest on record – smaller eve, than two tax cuts passed under Obama.”
But as pointed out in “10,000 Lies in 10 Days,” Trump’s tax cuts were the largest in whole dollars in U.S. history, and whole dollars is a credible metric.
Well, not really. Whole, or current, dollars are always higher than dollars in the past, and adjusting for inflation is the only way to make a credible comparison between past and present monetary claims.
McNicoll did even more pro-Trump spinning:
It also claims Trump was lying when he said, “In the eight years before I took office, on average we lost 2,000 manufacturing jobs a month. Since my inauguration, we’ve added 16,000 manufacturing jobs a month. That didn’t happen by accident.”
Rizzo’s response was that Trump was lying because he chose January 2009 – the month President Obama took office – as his baseline, and that at this point, the U.S. was “smack-dab in the middle of the longest U.S. recession since World War II.”
Rizzo says manufacturing employment began a “slow but steady recovery in April 2010, during Obama’s second year in office. That steady rate of growth has continued and accelerated under Trump.”
This is false. In June 2016, President Obama gave a speech in which he accused Trump of having a “magic wand” because manufacturing jobs “are just not going to come back.” The U.S. had lost 31,000 manufacturing jobs from January 2016 till June of that year, and manufacturing jobs grew by 96,000 over the last 26 months of his presidency.
But the first 26 months under Trump brought 479,000 more manufacturing jobs – 399 percent more than Obama’s record.
Butr McNicoll is cherry-picking numbers just like Trump did. Manufacturing jobs under Obama did, in fact, grow at an overall steady pace from their lowest recession-driven number in March 2010, and over 900,000 manufacturing jobs were created from that point until January 2017, when Obama left office. McNicoll is not about to give any credit to Obama for that.
MRC Sports Blogger Sneers At Idea of Equity for Women's Soccer Topic: Media Research Center
Mysterious Media Research Center sports blogger is at it again, devoting a June 9 post to attacking the U.S. women's soccer team and player Megan Rapinoe in particular for filing a lawsuit against US Soccer for gender discrimination.
Maxson sneered that Rapinoe "earns a six-figure salary as a pro soccer player" but didn't his/her readers that the men's soccer players make much more -- the women make 38 percent of what the men do despite being much less successful in international play. Maxson sneered further: "Rapinoe also complained that men's soccer has the gall to schedule two tournaments while the women's World Cup is ongoing. Apparently, equality requires the men's game to come to a complete standstill during the women's World Cup."
In keeping with his/her gay-bashing ways, Maxson was similarly outraged that "four team members are pushing for radical cultural change" by co-founding a company to make gender-neutral clothing in inclusive sizing, to which Maxson huffed: "Non-binary ways inclusive, that is."
Maxson went on to grumble that "this team is heavily dominated by an LGBT influence. Ellis is married to a woman. The face of the national team in recent years has been lesbians Megan Rapinoe and Abby Wambach. The team has rainbow-themed uniform numbers, and a Christian hopeful of playing with the team last year, Jaelene Hinkle, was considered an undesired 'heretic' to hostile media and fans."
As we've noted, Hinkle declined a call-up to the team in 2017 because she was so bigoted that she refused to wear the rainbow-themed jersey. Sounds like Maxson's kind of people -- though he/she ignores several team players who consider themselves Christian and, unlike Hinkle, are not afraid to associate with people slightly different from them.
WND Helps Its Dubious Doc Play The Bogus Ebola Card on Border Crossings Topic: WorldNetDaily
Dubious WorldNetDaily doc Jane Orient of the far-right Association of American Physicans and Surgeons plays both sides of the fearmongering fence -- not only does she fearmonger about vaccines, she fearmongers about the diseases allegedly being brought into the country by unvaccinated people (which could largely be eradicated by, you know, the vaccines she opposes). She does the latter in a June 10 WND article by Bob Unruh:
Border Patrol agents are accustomed to dealing with illegal aliens trying to enter the U.S. And to handling drug dealers, or at least those who haul contraband into the U.S. There even are occasional shootings at the agency’s facilities.
But there’s probably nothing to trigger a surge in adrenaline for one of those federal workers as realizing that the person you just encountered may be infected with tuberculosis, or measles, or chicken pox.
It’s an issue that needs a lot more attention than it is getting, according to an expert, the executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, Dr. Jane Orient.
She told WND Monday that things that immigration officers need to know about those coming into the country are whether they have communicable diseases, where they’ve been and who they’ve encountered, where they’re going and who will they encounter, and if they are getting – or should be getting – had medical treatment for various exposures.
“All of these things we really don’t know,” she said. “Deliberately.”
Orient was concerned.
“The problem is bringing in people who may have a disease you don’t know about. You don’t know where they’ve been, or where they’re going, who they’ve been in contact with,” she said.
Sometimes people are contagious with a communicable disease without showing symptoms, and can transmit a virus.
That, she warned, “can be fatal.”
She cited the Ebola cases found in the United States only a few years ago. Then, one patient just showed up at a Dallas hospital.
In fact, there is no outbreak of Ebola at the southern border -- it's basically impossible since Ebola has an incubation period of 21 days and Africans who turn up on the border have typically been in transit for months before they get there. Further, the case of Ebola involved a man who entered the U.S. legally from Liberia but failed to tell officials of his contact with an Ebola victim before his flight to the U.S.
Unruh also let Orient claim without evidence that "most immigrants may have" latent tuberculosis, failing to mention that Orient, as the managinging editor of the AAPS' Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons, published a 2005 article that falsely claimed cases of leprosy in the U.S. have exploded because of immigration. Orient and the AAPS have yet to issue a correction.
Unruh didn't help his credibility by citing a second, even more dubious source: "Kalen McBreen reported at Infowars that 'hundreds' of newcomers today have come from an area in the Congo in Africa to San Antonio, and hundreds more are en route." It tells you someting about the state of journalism at WND that it considers Infowars a credible source.
Needless to say, neither Unruh nor Orient made any mention of vaccines that might help curb any actual disease outbreak they could blame on filthy immigrants.
MRC's Graham Mad That Conservative Put Logic Before Politics Topic: Media Research Center
Tim Graham is the Media Research Center's designated hate-listener to National Public Radio, and his NPR-related posts are largely dedicated to ranting that David Brooks, who appears on a fair-and-balanced weekly panel discussion, isn't ranty and shouty and kneejerk pro-Trump and far-right like Sean Hannity. In a May 26 post, Graham gave National Review's Ranesh Ponnuru -- subbing for Brooks on the weekly panel -- the same treatment, accusing him of the crime of being reasonable and logical:
National Public Radio has rotated some other pundits to sit in the "conservative" chair of David Brooks on their Week in Politics review on All Things Considered on Friday nights, often leading to a better, stronger representation of the conservative viewpoint. Sadly, on Friday, Ramesh Ponnuru of National Review was very Brooks-ish, throwing scorn on the declassification of intelligence that might explain the Russian collusion narrative. It's like he doesn't read Andrew McCarthy at NRO, who argues "Russiagate has always been a political narrative masquerading as a federal investigation."
It tells you a lot about Graham's right-wing worldview that he thinks conspiracy-monger McCarthy is the reasonable one.
Graham went on to grouse that Ponnuru "actually underlined that the Attorney General has lost any credibility to be seen as neutral. He said nothing about whether the FBI was neutral in 2016, or whether the media has ever been neutral on this." He further huffed:
No one expects a conservative pundit to agree with the administration on everything. But it would be nice to at least push back against the liberal narrative on taxpayer-funded broadcasting, that there is "no evidence" of wrongdoing in the Russian "collusion" shenanigans, and to note the fascinating take that the Left and the media suddenly oppose more transparency and declassification.
For representing the side of National Review, Ponnuru deserves a "high degree of skepticism on substance."
But Graham is very much expecting -- nay, demanding -- that Ponnuru be an unblinkingly defender of all things Trump, because Trump equals conservativism equals Republicanism, and no one is allowed to deviate from the path.
After Ponnuru responded to Graham at the National Review website by pointing out that Graham didn't actually respond to any point he made on NPR, Graham just had to sneer in response:
Let's start with this: Ponnuru is bringing more passion to attacking me than he did in offering any critique of liberals on NPR. This was the point.
Ponnuri is a whip-smart analyst. He shouldn't pretend he doesn't understand what I was saying, or what "going full David Brooks" means. Let's spell it out: Ponnuru, in tone and content, couldn't be distinguished from the liberal pundit, or the liberal NPR anchor. They all sounded the same.
No article would have been written if he had told the NPR anchor "the Russia-collusion story is over" or anything contentious. Why couldn't he call a liberal less than lucid on NPR? Is he afraid of not being invited back?
The inclusion of the word "collusion" was in reference to Hillary's campaign colluding with Russians on the Christopher Steele dossier, which was used to begin surveillance on Carter Page. [Sabrina] Siddiqui insisted there was "no evidence" of improper monkey business there. Ponnuru offered no rebuttal.
No, Tim, the Clinton campaign was not "colluding with Russians"; it paid Fusion GPS, who in turn paid Christopher Steele for opposition research, who uncovered the Trump-Russia links. All of which is legal.
Graham seems not to have considered that Ponnuru offered "no rebuttal" to Siddiqui is because there really is no "monkey business." To claim otherwise is to demand that Ponnuru promote a conspiratorial right-wing narrative, no matter how loony or bogus it is.
In short, Graham seems to be mad at Ponnuru because he has integrity in putting logic and facts ahead of a dubious political narrative.
Again? WND -- Which Loved To Diagnose Obama As Mentally Ill -- Complains When Others The Same to Trump Topic: WorldNetDaily
An anonymously written June 16 WorldNetDaily article complains:
Psychiatrist Bandy Lee, a Yale faculty member who repeatedly and unashamedly has announced a psychiatric diagnosis for President Donald Trump even though she’s never met him, and who previously has condemned him as unstable, dangerous and in need of being locked up, is at it again.
This time the member of the Yale department of psychiatry gave an interview to a writer expressing blatantly anti-Trump comments at Salon.
Chauncey DeVega sets up his Salon article by asserting that the report from FBI special counsel Robert Mueller presented to the nation a set of “damning” facts: “Donald Trump obstructed justice. Trump and his inner circle both publicly and privately sought to collude with Russian agents to influence the 2016 presidential election.”
From there, Lee explained how she convened a panel to evaluate Trump “based upon his behavior as detailed in the 448-page Mueller report.”
Wrote DeVega, “Their definitive conclusion: Trump is mentally unfit, a threat to the United States and the world, and as such should have his powers severely restricted while he is put under a doctor’s care.”
She’s not alone among psychologists who, never having examined Trump, have openly violated their own “Goldwater Rule” and labeled the president with frightening diagnoses ranging from “psychotic,” “narcissistic,” “paranoid,” “hypomanic,” “emotionally unstable” and “delusional” to “psychologically isolated.”
As we documented the last time WND issued a similar complaint, its own writers had no reticence about making armchair diagnoses about President Obama, including but not limited to ,"pathological narcissist" and "psychopath," not to mention engaged in "the date-rape of America." And WND continues to sell a book by psychiatrist Lyle Rossiter that makes a blanket armchair diagnosis of all liberals as mentally ill.
This is just another example of WND's projection in complaining that people are doing to Trump what it did to Obama.
NEW ARTICLE: At CNS, It's Buttigieg-Bashing Time Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com, a "news" organization filled with gay-bashers, is unsurprisingly eager to repeatedly remind you that Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg is gay. Read more >>
NewsBusters Blogger Concerned About Notorious Prison ... When A Trump Associate Was Set To Go There Topic: NewsBusters
The Media Research Center, it seems, is concerned about prison conditions only when it's feared a prominent Trump supporter might end up in one.
Mark Finkelstein spent a June 10 NewsBusters post ranting at MSNBC's Joe Scarborough for being cheerful about the possibility that convicted felon Paul Manafort, onetime Trump presidential campaign manager, might be sent to a New York City prison whose reputation precedes it:
The liberal media feigns horror over "lock her up" refrains. But when it comes to a Trump associate actually being locked up in a notoriously awful jail, well, that's a cause for mirth and hilarity.
And thus it was that on today's Morning Joe, Joe Scarborough joked about Paul Manfort being confined at Rikers Island, which has been described as a "hellhole," as here, here, and "the most notorious jail in America."
At the end of the segment, there was more ribbing by the panel of Lemire's clothes. Meacham facetiously spoke of "the Paul Manafort Collection." Responded Scarborough: "available at Rikers Island." The panel found that amusing, with laughter all around.
A regular laugh riot, that Joe. Wonder if he's ever visited Rikers? Keep this one in mind next time you hear Scarborough or another member of the liberal media expressing righteous indignation about "lock her up."
It will not surprise you to learn that the MRC is not been concerned about conditions at Rikers Island before now. In 2014, Tim Graham cheered conservative actress Stacey Dash's retort to Kanye West's likening of paparazzi to rape that "maybe he needs to spend some time on Rikers Island. Go to Rikers for a little while and then he'll know what rape is." And in 2018, Randy Hall denounced the "progressive" leanings of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, expressed in part by his criticism of New York City's plans to take 10 years to build new jails to replace Rikers.
Manafort, though, escaped his Rikers fate after Trump's Department of Justice curiously and unusually intervened and had him placed at a less notorious NYC facility. Finkelstein has yet to provide a follow-up about that.
WND's Peterson Falsely Claims He Doesn't Spread Hate Topic: WorldNetDaily
Jesse Lee Peterson spent his June 9 WorldNetDaily column complaining about alleged censorship and demonitization of himself and fellow "conservative and independent voices." He claimed that "YouTube demonetized my channel minutes after taking down two of my videos condemning anti-Jewish hatred by Muslim Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and fringe white extremists who hate Jews." Given that Peterson has spewed nothing but hate at Omar -- in one Facebook video headlined "How Did White America Allow a Muslim into Congress?" Peterson called Omar an "evil, nasty refugee ... from another country" who only "pretend[s] that they like America in order to get into your government" -- we'll accept YouTube's judgment.
Among those other Peterson listed as "conservative and independent voices" like him who are allegedly censored and demonetized by YouTube were Stefan Molyneux and Gavin McInnes -- the former a white supremacist and the latter the founder of the thuggist misogynistic hate group the Proud Boys (which Peterson thinks is just a "fraternity"). Peterson then claimed:
My channel and many others demonetized by YouTube do not spread hate. Every day on my daily radio broadcast (streamed live on YouTube) I tell people to stop blaming and hating others. I repudiate all hatred, blame, and victimhood. In fact, I wrote an entire book on how to overcome it. I rebuke callers on my radio show who harbor hatred toward Jews, whites, blacks or any other group. I encourage them to drop their anger and forgive so they can go free.
Peterson concluded his column with more gay-bashing, including the declaration that "We all know YouTube’s latest adpocalypse is an attempt to silence the truth and purge conservatives in order to appease far-left LGBT activists."
MRC's Graham, Bozell Push False (But Trump-Approved) Mueller Report Narrative Topic: Media Research Center
It's never a good sign when the first column you write following the publication of your new book contains a demonstrable falsehood. But the Media Research Center's Tim Graham and Brent Bozell do just that in their June 5 column, a day after their media-bashing book "Unmasked" dropped:
Color us surprised. The nightly news obsession over nonexistent Trump-Russia collusion isn't abating. It's actually growing! They cannot be shamed. They cannot be shaken by inconvenient facts. It's been established there was no collusion, no obstruction, no high crime that's impeachable, and so what? The media are hammering this collusion theme more than ever.
Color us surprised too -- that Graham and Bozell are sticking to the much-less-than-true pro-Trump narrative that the Mueller report found "no collusion, no obstruction, no high crime that's impeachable."
As the Mueller report pointed out, collusion is not a specific crime but conspiracy is, and Mueller himself said that "If we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so" -- which he did not, and which arguably opens a path to an impeachment inquiry. Even one of the MRC's friends at Fox News, Bret Baier, agreed by saying that "This was not, as the President says time and time again, no collusion, no obstruction. It was much more nuanced than that." Funny that Graham and Bozell made no note of that, even as they go on to falsely claim that "Mueller cleared Trump completely on the charge of collusion while stating there was not enough evidence to indict him on obstruction of justice."
As we've noted, Graham took a different viewpoint when the investigation target had a different last name and political affiliation, insisting that a lack of evidence to indict Hillary Clinton for perjury in the White House travel office probe of the 1990s didn't mean she was "cleared completely" and did nothing wrong, though "the Clintons always suggest that if they’re not indicted, then they have 'done nothing wrong.'"
But our dynamic right-wing duo have a narrative to advance. They accuse the media of "irrational behavior" in reporting on Mueller's nuance and whining, "What a waste of our time, this incessant speculation of doom from the press, repeated thousands of times ad nauseam."
CNS' Bannister Can't Be Bothered to Fact-Check Trump Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com just loves to uncritically repeat whatever President Trump has to say regardless of whether it's true -- and it's certainly not going to strain itself bothering to fact-check the president for the benefit of its reading audience. This happened again in a June 5 post by Craig Bannister:
Asked if he believes in climate change, President Donald Trump told “Good Morning Britain” Host Piers Morgan that he believes in weather change.
“Do you personally believe in climate change?” Morgan asked Trump in an interview Tuesday during Trump’s visit to the U.K.
“I believe that there is a change in weather. And, I think it changes both ways,” Trump responded, reminding Morgan that climate activists used to make the specific claim that the planet was warming. But, now, they invoke the broader term, “extreme weather,” which includes all types of weather events, such as tornados and hurricanes:
But as an actual fact-checker (not Bannister) pointed out, Trump's words ranged between unclear and completely wrong:
If Trump is referring to a change in weather over many decades, then he’s describing climate. If not, he’s simply stating that weather — which is inherently variable — changes. That would be correct, but it also isn’t saying much. And it’s not commenting on climate change. Either way, his response is potentially misleading, and touches on a common failure to understand the difference between climate and weather.
Trump also contends that the terminology surrounding climate change has purposely shifted over the years, starting first as “global warming,” morphing into “climate change” and finally becoming “extreme weather.” This misrepresents the history of the terms.
As we explained in 2016, when Ted Cruz made the same argument about “climate change” and “global warming,” the two terms both go back decades in the scientific literature, and technically refer to slightly different concepts, although they are often used interchangeably.
Global warming, according to NASA, specifically means the warming of the Earth over the last century or so, because of the burning of fossil fuels.
Climate change is a broader concept, in that it includes higher temperatures as a result of global warming, but also other changes that result from that warming, such as sea level rise, shifting precipitation patterns and yes, some extreme weather.
Extreme weather has become a more commonly talked-about feature or example of climate change, but it is not used by scientists in place of “climate change” or “global warming.” In 2014, for example, the National Climate Assessment stated, “Changes in extreme weather and climate events, such as heat waves and droughts, are the primary way that most people experience climate change.”
“Extreme weather” on its own simply means highly unusual weather. Extreme weather can include heat waves, drought, heavy downpours, floods or other storms. Not all types of extreme weather have been linked to climate change, and it’s difficult to say any particular event was affected by climate change.
Nevertheless, scientists have made progress in what’s called attribution science, and are increasingly more confident about linking individual storms or events to climate change. In these cases, scientists are not saying that climate change caused the event, but that climate change made conditions more likely or more severe.
That wasn't that hard to do -- it just required someone interested in reporting the truth, which you'd think someone employed by a "news" organization would want to to. Bannister apparently isn't.
MRC Finds A Way to Hate Gayle King Topic: Media Research Center
Who couldn't possibly like the eminently likeable "CBS Ths Morning" co-host Gayle King? The Media Research Center, apparently.
Scott Whitlock spent a June 11 post complaining that the Washington Post did a "gushing, 3,000 profile [sic] of King, huffing that "The gushing language used in the piece was so adulatory that it might have been out of place in a press release." Whitlock further complained that the article did not "identify King as a Democratic donor. Instead, readers are simply told about how loyal the host is to her 'public friends,'"whining: "King isn’t just friends with the Obamas, she vacationed with them. But there’s no reason she can’t still be objective, right? Just because she’s donated thousands of dollars to Democrats?"
Whitlock then declared that "King’s world view is so far left that she doesn’t even realize she’s out of touch with half the country.
Two days later, Whitlock was incensed that the Post article was highlighted on the show:
CBS This Morning co-hosts on Wednesday read aloud the glowing praise Washington Post and quoted the gushing praise about the “soothing voice of reason.” King listened along as Dokoupil cheered, “I thought I might talk about a little article I found today.”
Not exactly showcasing his colleague’s modesty, he told viewers: “Not only does she have a Washington Post cover but a Hollywood Reporter cover. You’re our cover girl this morning. And a choice quote from the Washington Post article which I think sums you up well here.”
As before, Whitlock groused that the Post article "never mentioned that King was a Democratic donor" and that "King also vacationed with the Obamas and openly lobbied the very liberal Oprah Winfrey (her good friend) to run for President. Apparently, CBS doesn’t have a problem with any of this."