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Monday, January 13, 2020
Newsmax Lamely Attacks Christianity Today Over Editorial Critical of Trump
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax has been a loyal Trump-supporting outlet, so it has unsurprisingly joined others in the ConWeb in attacking Christianity Today editor Mark Galli's editorial advocating President Trump's impeachment.

A Dec. 20 article by David Patten tried to make the case that Christianity Today is a liberal publication though it was founded by Billy Graham, insisting that "A survey of the magazine’s Twitter posts suggest its opposition to Trump is hardly new" -- but he cited only four posts over a six-month span that offered criticism of Trump -- hardly evidence of aggressive "opposition." Patten went on to tout how "Responses from the Christian right are unwavering in their criticism of CT and their support for Trump," putting their names in boldface, though none of their criticisms addressed Galli's point that Trump has behaved in a "profoundly immoral" manner and has a "blackened moral record."

James Hirsen similarly failed to examine Galli's arguments with any kind of seriousness in his Dec. 23 column and instead labored to portray Galli and his publication as a liberal tool:

Galli penned a column that appeared to be written with the goal in mind of putting grins on the faces of leftists and garnering gobs of attention from the Trump-hating faction of the media.

Whether the above stated goal was mapped out or not, the end result was the same. The magazine’s image took a hit, the president was unfairly maligned, and the liberal media ate it all up.

[...]

When they found out that an ostensible spokesperson for evangelical Christians essentially used Democratic Party talking points to go after the president, the left-leaning media were filled with delight. Galli was predictably offered numerous media spots.

Guesting on NPR’s "Morning Edition" turned out to be a perfect venue in which to double down on his attacks on the president while letting loose with some additional jabs that seemed tailor-made for a CNN audition.

Galli, of course, repeated his call to negate the choice of America’s voters, but this time came up with other justifications, claiming that the president is in "psychological and moral confusion."

As propagandists are prone to do, Galli used highly manipulative and corrosive language that is designed to plant negative seeds and is deliberately crafted to poison the minds of potential voters. He compared the president to a physically abusive husband and then left the notion there to lie.

During his appearance, Galli denied that his publication is left-leaning. But the truth is, he and his magazine don’t even come close to being objective.

Of course, neither is Hirsen -- he's clearly too much of a pro-Trump propagandist to admit that his idol can do no wrong, hence his partisan attack on a publication he can't even prove is partisan (and, no, James, supporting immigration reform is not the hallmark of a partisan publication). He even sneered that the publication should change its name to "Un-Christianity Today." even as he failed to identify anything un-Christian about anything Galli wrote.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:18 PM EST
MRC's Graham Embraces Conspiracy Theory Over Impeachment Witness
Topic: Media Research Center

On Dec. 16, the Media Research Center's Curtis Houck claimed that "CNN’s existence can be boiled down to gaslighting Americans by deeming most everything President Trump and those not in the Resistance utter as conspiracy theories" and bashed a CNN host for having "entertained a wild conspiracy theory about not holding a Senate impeachment trial."

A couple weeks later, Houck's boss was entertaining his own conspiracy theory.

Tim Graham used a Jan. 2 post to boost conspiracy-mongering by the Washington Examiner's Eddie Scarry -- last seen around here getting a pass from the MRC for a tweet mocking the way a Democratic congresswoman dresses -- attacking the Washington Post over reporting that President Trump "falsely" accused National Security Council staffer and impeachment hearing witness Alex Vindman of plotting with the whistleblower who reported the subsdtance of Trump's "I need a favor" conversation with the Ukrainian president.Graham copy-and-pasted Scarry saying, "Vindman testified that he didn't know who the whistleblower is, but we shouldn't necessarily believe that — especially not after the televised hearing," citing how a line of Republican questioning to Vindman was blocked out of fear of outing the whistleblower, prompting Scarry to deduce (despite lacking any corroborating evidence) that Vindman talked to the whistleblower. Graham added:

Maybe the Post is speaking Clintonese on this one. Vindman spoke with the whistleblower -- he told him all his concerns -- but didn't plot with the whistleblower to "undermine" Trump.

Just as the Post would deny it's plotting to undermine Trump. Journalists are just safeguarding democracy. 

Scarry asked "why would the Washington Post feel such confidence that Vindman really wasn't interested in undermining the president?" That also raises the question: How much does the Post know directly from Vindman and the "whistleblower" that they've hidden through anonymous sourcing? 

Anonymous sourcing makes it harder to prove anyone's plotting to undermine anyone. That's why the media love to exploit it.

Again, there's no actual evidence that Vindman talked to, let alone plotted with, the whistleblower -- Scarry and Graham are merely speculating based on conjecture. As Media Matters summarized: "It’s possible Vindman talked to the whistleblower without being aware that they went on to file a complaint, or that Vindman provided the readout to someone who passed it along further. He might have an idea of who the whistleblower is but lack certainty."

Apparently, conspiracy theories are OK only when conservatives can make use of them.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:40 PM EST
WND Sources Anti-Trans Story To A White Nationalist
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An anonymously written Dec. 30 WorldNetDaily article begins:

A new report documents how a transsexual in Colorado and a partner shot nine students at their school, then later claimed the victims deserved it for their "transphobia."

In Maine, a transgender defended the murder of two parents because they failed to "accept" the the "transition."

And in Maryland, a transgender who also was a mass shooter killed three before using the gun for suicide.

Such violence isn't unusual, according to a report by the website National Justice.

The site said "individuals identifying as transgender are not only less likely to be victims of murder than biological women (and far less than men), their small population is well represented among murderers, serial killers and pedophiles."

So, what is this National Justice website WND is citing? Let's begin by looking at the source article itself,  which carries the byline of one Eric Striker. Look at Striker's archive at National Justice reveals articles with headlines such as "Jewish Brilliance: Synthetic Like Zirconia" (in which he highlights "Jewish underachievement" and complains that "We are convinced that Jews are our masters only because celebrating the group-achievements of far more accomplished Europeans is forbidden by the establishment") and "Zionist Money Already Corrupting the 2020 Elections" (in which he highlights that "8 out of 10" of the top political donors "are Jews").

There's also an article about a "dissident lawyer" named Augustus Invictus "who is accused of kidnapping his wife and children" and "suffering" in prison where he was put in solitary confinement and "denied his special religious diet." Invictus is a white supremacist with a history of violent incidents and abusive relationships who is a Holocaust denier and opposes allowing women to vote, and his "special religious diet" apparently involves a pagan faith that uses animal sacrifice.

Another article identifies Striker as the "editor-in-chief" of National Justice, fighting against a complaint from the web-security firm Cloudflare stating that the "abusive behavior" contained on the website violates its terms of service. Striker whined in response: "This publication is far more ethical in its practices than much of the mainstream media. This is nothing more than a good old fashioned press crackdown!"

Yes, Eric Striker is a white nationalist -- and it's not even his real name. The Southern Poverty Law Center identified Striker as the pseudonym of Joseph Jordan, a prolific alt-right writer who has also been published by the neo-Nazi Daily Stormer, where he was "blaming Jewish people for everything from Sports Illustrated swimsuit models not being thin enough for his taste to his belief that heavy metal music was becoming too politicized." He also appears to be of Hispanic descent.

This is who WND considers to be a credible source -- which tells us that its white nationalism problem remains an ongoing one.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 AM EST
Sunday, January 12, 2020
MRC Pushes Bogus Trump Movie-Edit Story
Topic: NewsBusters

NewsBusters blogger P.J. Gladnick complained in a Jan. 1 post:

One sign of Trump Derangement Syndrome is loathing any viewing of pre-politician Donald Trump popping up in old TV or movies. Every cameo could have been used to build Trump's celebrity, so they are all dreadful sins. This became apparent again when it was discovered CBC in Canada cut out the brief Donald Trump cameo scene in their broadcast of Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. Stick it to the Bad Orange Man of Baja Canada.

If the CBC thought that such a childish edit of that movie would go unnoticed, they were horribly wrong. The backlash was swift and strong as we shall see, starting with this December 25 report on their antics in ComicBook.Com,"Donald Trump's Cameo in Home Alone 2 Cut From Canadian Television Broadcast."

But this doesn't tell the whole story, since to do so would undermine the premise of Gladnick's post. As the CBC and others have pointed out,  the cut was made, along with eight minutes of other edits for make room for commercials, in 2014 -- two years before Trump became president and one year before he even announced his candidacy.

So, apparently, editing for time and commercials is suddenly "childish" in Gladnick's world.

Gladnick eventually admits this, but then -- apparently decided that inventing a conspiracy theory was more important than telling the truth -- unilaterally proclaimed that this was a "lame" excuse that was "almost as funny as the movie," adding:

The problem for the CBC is that they will now be reminded constantly about their little hit and run deletion of that scene on social media. 

Imagine how much work today's television networks will have editing all the Trump cameos out of their reruns. ... Good luck, Trump haters.

Gladnick offers no evidence that any media outlet is editing, or has even attempted to edit, Trump out of movies or TV shows.

But then, who is Gladnick to let the truth get in the way of a good, nonexistent conspiracy theory?


Posted by Terry K. at 6:31 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, January 12, 2020 6:32 PM EST
CNS-Mark Levin Stenography Watch
Topic: CNSNews.com

The last time we checked in, CNSNews.com was on pace for a third straight year of more than 100 artices uncritally repeating alleged pearls of wisdom from Mark Levin, his guests or his guest hosts. But the throttling back in October, when CNS published only three Levin items, continued for the rest of the year.

Surpisingly, CNS published only five Levin stenography items in the last two months of 2019:

That makes for a total of 96 Levin stenography items in 2019. While still a lot -- that's a pace of one article every 3.8 days --  it's down from the 2017 total of 105 and 2018's total of 135. Further, there was a one-month gap between the Nov. 18 "coup" item and the Dec. 18 "SCOTUS pick" item -- perhaps the longest period of time between Levin posts since CNS started transcribing him in earnest.

CNS, meanwhile, didn't stop promoting Levin otherwise. A Nov. 5 post by Craig Bannister touted how "Mark Levin’s Fox News Channel program, which dominated Sunday night cable news despite its 10 p.m. air time, has been rewarded with a new time slot," further gushing that "In addition to being an iconic conservative commentator, Levin is also a nationally-syndicated radio host, Constitutional scholar, and author." This was followed by an item by Melanie Arter -- since deleted without explanation -- that carried the headline "Mark Levin’s ‘Life, Liberty & Levin’ #1 Rated Show on Sunday."

Will CNS mend its Levin-promoting ways to get that number back into triple digits for 2020? We shall see.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:38 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, January 12, 2020 1:39 PM EST
Saturday, January 11, 2020
MRC Researcher Pretends He Can Read Don Lemon's Mind
Topic: Media Research Center

We know that Media Research Center "news analyst" Nicholas Fondacaro is a liar. He also pretends he can read minds as well. Fondacaro huffed in a Jan. 1 post:

Shortly after the United States started to ring in 2020 on Wednesday (and after more than a few drinks), CNN Tonight host Don Lemon announced he had a major New Year’s resolution for the upcoming election year that he wanted people to know about: “lean in harder” and “fight.” Essentially, he was vowing to be more biased in his reporting.

In fact, Lemon said nothing about being more "biased." He stated that "I'm going to lean in harder. I'm sick of the craziness. So, you thought I was -- I went hard in 2019. Watch 2020, baby. There's more to come. I'm a soldier. I'm ready to fight." Fondacaro is putting words in Lemon's mouth and pretending to read his mind.

Fondacaro went on to impart knowledge he can't possibly know when he later intoned: "Anyone who watches Lemon's nightly show knows there's only one side he fights for: the left." He linked to the NewsBusters topic page on Lemon, which cites only 11 examples of Lemon purportedly fighting for "the left" in the final three months of 2019.

If Lemon was really the incessant fighter on "the left" that Fondacaro insists he is, shouldn't the MRC have way more examples of it? And shouldn't Fondacaro care more about what Lemon actually instead of what he imagines Lemon said?


Posted by Terry K. at 11:43 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, January 12, 2020 7:09 PM EST
Your Thesaurus-Enhanced Mychal Massie Rant of the Day
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Anyone having seen "Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home" should instantly recognize Nancy Pelosi and her Erebusic cabal as the Klingon lawyer and contingent arguing that they demand justice: read, retribution for the destruction they brought upon themselves as a result of their unprovoked attacks and murders – including their murder of Kirk's son as they set about to steal the Genesis device. I'll be polite and not mention that the Klingon lawyer was easier on the eyes than Pelosi and her evil brood of calumniators.

The parallels between the aforementioned movie and the Pelosi Democrats are inescapable. They are guilty of grave misconduct and corruption and yet they insist upon President Trump being punished for nothing. They no longer even pretend to be innocent of prison-worthy crimes. It's just as the Klingon lawyer told Sarek, Spock's father, when he enumerated their criminal wrongdoings and asked if they denied same: "We deny nothing."

[...]

Intellectually honest people, even if they did not vote for President Trump, must admit the Democrats have perpetrated a sham and charade upon the American people. They're the ones who are guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors, not President Trump.

Obama was the very definition of corruption, and yet these pernicious marplots were silent. "Fast and Furious," Obama's illegal gunrunning operation, was enough to impeach and remove him from office.

[...]

Add to the aforementioned, the ophidian darling of the left, Hillary Clinton's weapons smuggling operation that led to the murder of Tyrone Woods, Ambassador Christopher Stevens, Sean Smith and Glen Doherty in Benghazi. But, what the heck? As Clinton said: "What difference does it make now?"

And Nancy Pelosi, the poster child for tardive dyskinesia between facial contortions, repeatedly babbles that President Trump is not above the law.

-- Mychal Massie, Dec. 23 WorldNetDaily column


Posted by Terry K. at 10:37 AM EST
Friday, January 10, 2020
CNS Suddenly Interested In The Opinions of Buttigieg's Husband
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com's pattern of gay-obsessed and biased coverage of Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg has not really abated all that much. For instance, a Dec. 26 article by managing editor Michael W. Chapman on criminal justice reform included for no apparent reason the irrelevant statement that "Pete Buttigieg, 37, is openly gay and is 'married' to Chasten Glezman, 30, a high school teacher. The two men met on the dating app Hinge." This is the second time that Chapman has irrelevantly referenced that Buttigieg and his husband met on a dating app.

Curiously, though, CNS has become suddenly interested in the views of Chasten Buttigieg over the past couple weeks through anonymously written articles:

  • Dec. 27: "Chasten Buttigieg, the husband of South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, currently refers to himself as the 'First Gent of South Bend' on Twitter and refers to himself as the 'First Gentleman' when he discusses what he will do if husband Pete becomes president of the United States."
  • Jan. 2: "When John Dickerson visited South Bend, Ind., to interview Pete Buttigieg and his husband, Chasten Buttigieg, for the April 21 edition of 'CBS Sunday Morning,' he asked Chasten when Pete first mentioned the possibility of running for president. Chasten said it happened 'when we were getting ready for bed and I was folding some laundry.'"
  • Jan. 3: "In an interview with CBS Sunday Morning, Chasten Buttigieg, husband of presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg explained why he became a school teacher. 'There’s just something magical about working with kids and getting them to believe in themselves,' Chasten Buttigieg said in response to a question from host John Dickerson.

CNS served up other weirdness in an anonymously written Jan. 8 article, which covered something Buttigieg said on a talk show... four months earlier. The only apparent news hook in the article is a note that Buttigieg is tied for first place in Iowa caucus polling.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:02 PM EST
MRC Goes On Attack Against Evangelical Magazine's Criticism of Trump
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center cannot tolerate any criticism of President Trump, even -- especially -- if it comes from a Christian viewpoint. So when Christianity Today editor Mark Galli wrote an editorial advocating President Trump's impeachment, the MRC made sure to go into freakout mode.

Aiden Jackson kicked off the freakout with a Dec. 20 post asserting that Christianity Today was "notorious for opposing Trump" -- but she could cite only one other piece from the magazine, which ran more than three years ago.Still, she insisted that "Readers of 'Christianity Today' would most likely find its inclusion of another anti- Trump op ed about as surprising as a Trump hit piece featured on ABC, which is to say not very."

Tim Graham followed by taking offense to Galli discussing the editorial on NPR, in which he likened evangelicals' relationship with Trump to a wife who puts up with a "verbally abusive spouse" because he's a good provider otherwise but then escalates to physical abuse.Graham couldn't be bothered to make a defense of Trump, instead huffing "If the evangelical is willing to insult Trump in the most viciously personal way imaginable, he is welcome to the taxpayer-subsidized airwaves.

Mark Finkelstein complained that MSNBC would "exploit for maximum political gain" the Christianity Today editorial by pointing out not inaccurately that right-wing evangelicals "would sell Jesus out if they thought they could get something from it." Like Graham, Finkelstein attacked the messenger: "It's always amazing to marvel at the chutzpah of Reverend Sharpton calling out someone else for exploiting their religious bona fides or race-baiting, or being a shameless con man. Holy Tawana Brawley!"

Graham and Brent Bozell groused that "The left has lunged to promote an editorial by Christianity Today magazine that insists Trump must be removed from office" before declaring the "the cultural winners and losers of 2019."

Finally, Jeffrey Lord whined that Galli's editorial "sounded no different than the average anti-Trump/Never-Trump blasts that routinely come from the outlets of the decidedly non-religious Leftist State Media," then ranted about "Christian elites" and how a "left-wing" editor at the rival Christian Post resigned after that publication ran an editorial defending Trump. Lord offered no evidence that this editor is "left-wing" other than his resignation.

Lord, like the rest of the MRC writers, offered no point-by-point rebuttal of Galli's editorial; instead, he declared that it was a "massive backfire" because such "rabid anti-Trumpism will prove to be one of the Trump campaigns biggest assets."


Posted by Terry K. at 3:35 AM EST
Thursday, January 9, 2020
CNS Defends Trump Meeting With Russian Foreign Minister
Topic: CNSNews.com

Patrick Goodenough -- who is probably the closest thing to a real reporter CNSNews.com has these days -- was curiously quick to rush to President Trump's defense over a meeting last month with the Russian foreign minister, effectively writing a post for CNS parent the Media Research Center instead of an actual "news" article:

As an MSNBC host and on-air analyst pondered what President Trump and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov could have been talking about in their Oval Office meeting on Tuesday, the analyst – a former State Department official – wanted to know why a president was meeting with a foreign minister at all.

“Why is a head of state meeting with the Russian foreign minister?” former Undersecretary for Public Diplomacy Richard Stengel wondered. “Vladimir Putin doesn’t meet with Mike Pompeo when he comes to Moscow. So it’s very curious and very strange.”

Later in the show – Lawrence O’Donnell’s “The Last Word” – Stengel said the Russians “love having Trump meeting with the foreign minister. He’s not even opening the door to Putin, he’s – foreign minister.”

“And, and surely Trump doesn’t understand that – that status imbalance that he’s engaging in?” suggested O’Donnell.

“Apparently,” Stengel added.

In fact, President Obama met with Lavrov, also in the Oval Office, on May 7, 2009 – two months after his administration declared a “reset” on relations with Moscow – and again on July 13, 2011.

And, despite Stengel’s assertion that Russian President Vladimir Putin “doesn’t meet with” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Moscow, Putin has held meetings with not only Pompeo but every secretary of state since Madeleine Albright – most of them at the Kremlin. 

But Goodenough curiously omitted the context of this meeting -- and he omitted the context of Stengel's comments. As the full "Last Word" segment shows, Stengel also said of the Lavrov meeting:

By the way, if you were writing the screenplay version of the Trump presidency and you said on the day that President Trump was indicted by the House on impeachment charges, on the day that the Inspector General released a report that saying the Russia investigation is fine, that he was meeting with the Russian foreign minister, you'd say, that's just too unlikely, it couldn't possibly happen. And the fact is he has no NSC, nobody to say, "Sir, I don't think it's such a good idea for you to meet with the foreign minister."

Goodenough can't possibly say that about the circumstances surrounding those other meetings.

Goodenough also complained that O'Donnell and Stengel doubted that Trump brought up Russian election meddling with Lavrov, despite the president and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo asserting that was the case and Lavrov quasi-denying the subject came up.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:10 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: Defections In The Gay-Bashing Ranks
Topic: The ConWeb
The ConWeb used to be able to count on Chick-fil-A and the Hallmark Channel to be indifferent, if not hostile, to LGBT rights and issues. Now they can't, and they're a little sad about it. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:16 AM EST
Wednesday, January 8, 2020
MRC Writer Recycles His Dance On The Newseum's Grave
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center hates the Newseum because it doesn't believe in journalism -- it only wants news with a right-wing bias, as demonstrated by its "news" divbision, CNSNews.com. Tim Graham's factually deficient meltdown in taking a clearly hyperbolic claim literally about a movie screening at the Newseum shows just how radioactive actual journalists (and, thus, the Newseum) is to the MRC denizens.

Therefore, the MRC couldn't have been happier at the idea of the Newseum shutting down. When it was first announced last January, Scott Whitlock couldn't resist dancing on the Newseum's grave 11 months early, ranting that it was a "self-indulgent journalistic shrine" and complaining it didn't uncritically promote conservative journalism and right-wing talk radio."

Upon the Newseum's actual closing at the end of 2019, Whitlock recycled his museum-bashing in a Dec. 26 post, once again calling it "self-indulgent" in his headline and rehashed his earlier criticism that "the Newseum downplayed bias and derided the 'advocacy journalism' of conservative talk radio."

Of course, Whitlock thinks all journalism should have the exact same bias as Rush Limbuagh and Mark Levin and that their views should never be questioned (witness how the MRC rushed to whitewash Rush's misogynist smear of Sandra Fluke). He and the MRC won't be happy until that happens.

No wonder a museum that celebrated the opposite enraged the MRC so much.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:22 PM EST
Pat Boone Goes The Divine-Donald Route On Ukraine
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Pat Boone's Dec. 24 WorldNetDaily column stated off complaining about Christianity Today editor Mark Galli's editorial advocating President Trump's impeachment, asserting that it was "so uncalled for, so unexpected from a publication whose sole purpose is to report what's happening in the Christian community at large – not to offer advice about totally political issues." Boone continued:

Abortion, illegal immigration, drug trafficking, prostitution, rampant pornography even on movie and TV screens – these are moral blights on our society Galli's magazine should address, because Christians can agree they are obvious spiritual threats to families, our children and America's future.

But to publicly jump into the middle of a far from settled controversy involving unproven charges against a duly elected president is terribly out of line for any "magazine," let alone one known as a Christian news service.

We would remind readers that Boone frequently made unproven charges against a duly elected president -- when that president was named Obama.

Boone then handwaved the key charges against Trump in the Ukraine scandal that led to his impeachment, declaring that there was "no harm done" and "that was that." Boone even purported to read the president's mind: "Trump was concerned about possibly facing Biden in the 2020 election – he would have eagerly embraced that unlikely possibility. Trump was understandably curious, not "digging for dirt," as has been repeatedly been charged."

This, by the way, from a man who thought that Obama should have been impeached because he allegedly faked his birth certificate. (It wasn't a fake.)

Then, Boone felt the need to lecture the editor of a Christian publication about Christianity:

So now I want to remind editor Galli, my Christian brother, of some very relevant biblical facts.

Jesus "hung out" with a lot of unsavory characters. The religious leaders, the Jewish hierarchy, were very critical of Him sitting and eating and even drinking with tax collectors and known publicans and sinners. Jesus answered that He had come specifically for people like them, rather than for supposed "good" people who didn't think they needed saving.

The same type of leaders criticized Jesus for accepting expensive fragrant oils from a known prostitute, whispering, "If He really knew what this woman is, He wouldn't have anything to do with her," and Jesus rebuked them for their hypocrisy and ignorance, commending the woman for preparing him for His coming death.

He noticed despised tax collector Zacchaeus up in the tree, and called him by name to come down and take Him to his house for dinner (resulting in the despised man's own salvation). He repeatedly surprised and scandalized the religious authorities by doing things they didn't approve, and were more openly criticized by Jesus than even the woman taken in adultery and about to be stoned, by law!

But Galli didn't criticize Trump for associating with "unsavory characters" -- he pointed out that Trump is an unsavory character who acted in a "profoundly immoral" manner.

Boone wasn't done lecturing, though, going into full divine-Donald mode:

So, brother Mark, you know the Bible; is Trump appointed by God?

Yes, we the people elected him, as we did Obama and Bush, Nixon and Clinton. But once we elected them, God authorized them to give us either what we need … or what we deserve. And as we continue to pray for them – as He orders us to do – God works through them and their decisions to show us both what we are, as individuals and a nation, and what we need to do to become more what He wants us to be.

Trump came to this office promising to "drain the swamp" of entrenched self-serving politicians and agencies, and amazingly, he's been doing that. You can certainly say that Jesus came to "drain the swamp" of hypocritical, self-righteous but ineffectual religious traditions – and HE did that.

His obvious flaws notwithstanding, Trump has been more supportive of Israel, the unborn, marriage and religious liberty than any other president in modern history. And furthermore, He operates under the expressed authority of God.

So, let him that is without sin cast the first stone.

In fact, Galli pointed out that the "grossly immoral character" of Trump "damages the institution of the presidency, damages the reputation of our country, and damages both the spirit and the future of our people" -- and that the magazine made the same call when Bill Clinton faced impeachment. We suspect that Boone wasn't similarly upset about that.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:17 AM EST
Tuesday, January 7, 2020
MRC Insists Soros' Survival In Nazi-Controlled Hungary Is 'Source of Great Controversy'
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has a weird obsession with George Soros, regularly freaking out over the money he gives to causes it doesn't like (and occasionally using anti-Semitic imagery in the process). It has even argued that it's not anti-Semitic to hate Soros. It's still trying to deny Soros his Jewish heritage.

Joseph Vazquez complained in a Nov. 14 post: "Accuse liberal billionaire George Soros of impropriety and you could be accused of anti-Semitism and be de-platformed. At least that’s what the Open Society Foundations is allegedly saying should happen to lawyer and Fox News guest Joe diGenova." DiGenova had ranted without evidence that Soros somehow "controls a very large part of the career foreign service of the United States State Department." Vazquez gave diGenova a pass on that, complaining instead of the call to remove diGenova from Fox News (which seems to have happened, though that's more likely because of his involvement in President Trump's Ukraine scandal.)

In a Dec. 26 post, Brad Wilmouth groused that a CNN anchor had accused Rudy Giuliani of "anti-Semitism and hatred" through his bizarre insistence that he is more Jewish than Soros. Wilmouth responded by insisting that Soros' tale of survival in Nazi-controlled Hungary is a "source of great controversy":

Philip Bump of The Washington Post argued "that bizarre comment that he's more Jewish than Soros. He makes that after having said that the former ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch, was under the control of Soros. So it is not only that he is, you know, assuming that he isn't enough Jewish, and not only that he's supporting these conspiracy theories broadly about Soros -- but he is spreading conspiracy theories very specifically about the person at the center of the impeachment without any evidence."

Coates and Bump did not clarify that what Soros did as a teenager to avoid persecution -- he posed as a Christian and even accompanied an official as he did inventory on a seized Jewish estate -- is a source of great controversy. Soros even stated in a CBS interview that he did not feel any guilt over what happened.

Actually, it's only a "source of great controversy" for Soros-haters like the MRC. Even the National Review article to which Wilmouth linked to prove this is somehow a "controversy" doesn't explain what's controversial about a teenager doing what he needed to do to survive the Nazi regime (in this case, posing as a Christian and helping a relative inventory Jewish property that had already been seized by the Nazis).

This is not the first time the MRC has done this; when Roseanne Barr falsely claimed that his survival tactic meant that that Soros was  collaborating with the Nazis, the MRC merely dismissed her claim as an "anti-Soros tweet" without bothering to debunk it.

Wilmouth then went on to invoke right-winger (and Jew, he's quick to point out) Dennis Prager insisting that "Criticism of Soros is rarely a lie, and its intent is rarely to create anti-Semitism." 

So how did the MRC go from  the claim being "anti-Soros" to a legitimate" source of great controversy"? Perhaps Wilmouth can explain. But then, explaining the facts would get in the way of the MRC's anti-Soros agenda.

Vazquez returned with a Jan. 7 post freaking out that "Godfather of the left" Soros (which, of course, sounds a bit anti-Semitic too, though the MRC did an entire report attacking Soros' philanthropy with that as the title) being named philanthropist of the year by an organization, ranting that Soros is "bankrolling leftist causes" and "currently supporting Big Government causes in the U.S. such as gun-control and a wealth-tax." Vazquez then went on an evidence-free attack of the Soros-founded Central European University as having a "radical left-wing history" dedicated to teaching "Soros’ own personal, bizarre leftist philosophy on “open society.”

Vazquez concluded with one final slam of Soros as having an "egotistical vision." But are the Mercers who fund the MRC any less egotistical? Vazquez didn't say.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:02 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, January 7, 2020 5:09 PM EST
CNS Now Offers Same-Day Service On Recycling GOP Talking Points
Topic: CNSNews.com

We've documented how CNSNews.com is so dedicated to advancing pro-Trump, pro-Republican talking points that it dedicates multiple articles to pushing the exact same talking points. While there's usually a few days between those articles parroting each other, it recently beat that by running both articles on the same day.

Susan Jones wrote in a Dec. 23 article headlined "Sen. Graham: 'I Want to Know How Far Up the Chain' the Trump-Russia Investigation Went":

"The Horowitz report is the first step in a long journey regarding FISA abuse," Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told "Sunday Morning Futures."

[...]

Yes, there's two questions I want to ask these people. When you signed the warrant application, how much time did you spend trying to figure out if it was actually true? And how far up the chain did this go?

Did President Obama know about the counterintelligence surveillance of the Trump campaign? Did Vice President Biden know? How much information was provided to Susan Rice? I want to know how far up the chain the investigation went. I want to know why so many people could sign a warrant application so flawed.

"Up the chain" was clearly the Republican talking point of the day, and CNS apparently received marching orders to hammer it. Literally just 18 minutes later, Jones wrote another article headlined "Sen. Cruz on FBI Abuse: 'How High Up the Chain Did This Go?'"

"One of the worst legacies of the Obama administration is the corruption of law enforcement and the intelligence community," Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) told "Sunday Morning Futures."

He was talking about the Justice Department inspector-general report, which detailed 17 serious misrepresentations the FBI and the Justice Department made to the FISA court to get a warrant to spy on Trump campaign volunteer Carter Page.

[...]

And, by the way, the big unanswered question is, how high up the chain did this go? We know that the deputy director of the FBI, McCabe, was read in and authorized this. We know the director of the FBI, James Comey, was read in and authorized this.

CNS even promoted the articles next to each other onits front page, as the screenshot shows, as if getting "up the chain" in the minds of its readers was the only (mandated?) goal.

Same-day service on recycled GOP talking points appears to be about all that CNS is good for these days.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:21 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, January 7, 2020 12:28 AM EST

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