"Hip" is how rapt reporters referred to the iPod the president and first lady gave the queen of England. Thanks to his fawning friends in the British and American media, Barack Obama got away with giving another foreign dignitary a vulgar gift.
Shades of the reality show "Cribs" …
The queen might have preferred a rare recording of the great cellist Pablo Casals performing at the Kennedy White House. Jacqueline Kennedy was a cultured lady with impeccable taste.
Sheppard Wants All Journalists to Insult Obama Topic: NewsBusters
Remember when Noel Sheppard hypocritically claimed that, unlike liberal media watchdogs who wdant "complete and total elimination of all opinion and viewpoints that are not in complete and total lockstep with their own," whereas he just wants "a fair and balanced media"?
What are we to make, then, of Sheppard's enthusiastic approval of a British journalist who called President Obama's appearance at the G-20 summit a "disappointment" and a "bore"?
The only possible takeaway is that he wants all journalists to insult Obama like this guy did.
An April 1 Newsmax article by Jim Meyers uncritically repeats Dick Morris' contention that Republican Jim Tedisco made "a teriffic showing" in the essentially tied New York special congressional election against Democrat Scott Murphy:
“This is a seat held by a Democratic congresswoman in one of the bluest of the blue states, 70 days after a president was overwhelmingly elected who’s a Democrat.
“Let’s remember that 57 percent still approve of what Obama is doing, and the fact that Tedisco came so close that the absentee ballots might put him over the top I think was an extraordinary showing…
At no point does Meyers or Morris mention the fact that a month before the election, Tedisco held an double-digit lead in polling -- a lead that was completely erased by Election Day -- let alone explain how that happened. Nor do they mention that registered Republicans heavily outnumber registered Democrats.
Meyers also wrote that, according to Morris, Tuesday’s result shows that President Barack Obama is already "in trouble": "But the issue is not why didn’t the Republican win, but why didn’t the Democrat win by a lot."
This is surprisingly shot down by Newsmax reporter David Patten, who himself has been caught spinning the Tedisco-Murphy race. In an April 2 article, Patten quotes political analyst Larry Sabato:
Weary of pundits claiming the election would have great symbolic importance for the Obama administration, Sabato added, “In a way, I’m glad it’s a dead heat. Special elections like this one are given entirely too much prominence. In isolation, and so far from a general election, they really don’t tell us much, or anything, of lasting importance.”
Patten, however, didn't highlight Morris' previous remarks declaring that the closeness of the race meant that Obama was "in trouble."
WND's Obama-Hate Extends to Ads Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's seething Obama-hate even extends to its ads. The following ad is currently running at WND:
Funny, we thought one paid the local power company, not Obama, for electricity. And what does "Prepare for Osama's strike!" even mean?
The ad itself, meanwhile -- from a company called HomeMadeEnergy.org -- does not even mention Obama. Did the advertiser sign off on this copy, or is WND merely projecting its Obama-hate where it doesn't belong?
Floyd Brown is proving himself to be as mendacious about the media as he is about President Obama.
Brown -- as we've detailed, the smearmonger who's the new head of the right-wing attack group Western Journalism Center -- asserts in an April 2 FrontPageMag column that the New York Times "missed" Obama's Special Olympics remark during his appearance on Jay Leno's show. In fact, the Times ran a story and blog post on Obama's apology for the remark, as well as publishing the complete transcript of the appearance on its website.
The premise of Brown's column is little more than a parroting of talking points from the Media Research Center -- that a "politically correct and liberal-biased newspaper industry that engages in censorship is the real reason for the industry’s woes and decline," not the paradigm shift from print to online. Brown cites a poll claiming that "fewer than 20 percent of Americans said they could believe “all or most” media reporting" without noting that organizations like the MRC have spent millions of dollars over many years to raise doubts about the media and promote anecdotal evidence of "liberal bias" while ignoring evidence to the contrary.
In railing against the "liberal-biased newspaper industry" for losing money, Brown fails to mention that the three most prominent conservative newspapers -- the New York Post, the Washington Times, and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review -- were money-losers long before the current newspaper crisis, and the only reason they remain in business is because of the deep pockets of their billionaire owners.
Brown also doesn't seem to understand that accusations of press "censorship" that he makes go both ways. We could claim, for example, that Brown is engaging in "censorship" by not highlighting our WJC profile on his WJC blog, even though it appeared at the Huffington Post, which has higher traffic than some of the websites Brown links to, and even though it would be of interest to his readers.
The general cluelessness of Brown's media critique demonstrates he cares nothing about genuine journalism and would seem to be a harbinger of how he plans to manipulate the WJC -- as a partisan cudgel against Obama.
Erik Rush Tries Reviving Discredited Obama-Muslim Link Topic: WorldNetDaily
Erik Rush has distinguished himself as one of the more unhinged Obama-haters at WorldNetDaily -- hurling the Nazi smear, likening Obama to a prison rapist and calling Attorney General Eric Holder a piece of shit. In his April 2 column, Rush tries to revive the long-discredited Obama-is-a-Muslim falsehood:
While he has given indications that he may be a closet Muslim (among other things; often, he's too inscrutable to tell), the common denominator vis-à-vis his actions since becoming president remains: Anything to compromise the United States or tear down its institutions is at least worthy of consideration.
More recently, President Obama has made overtures toward gratuitously recruiting Muslims for positions in the White House. Then, the United Nations Human Rights Council approved a measure backed by Muslim nations urging the passage of international laws protecting Islam from "criticism." Are we to believe that this action, pertaining to a religion that does nothing but inspire criticism, accidentally coincided with Obama's election to the White House?
Fortunately, the insinuation of Muslims into our society has been, until recently, very slow. Unfortunately, we now have the "perfect storm" of a substantial Muslim population in the U.S., a rekindled global atmosphere of Islamic extremism, a brainwashed, feminized populace and a subversive president. It has indeed been a stealth effort, which Barack Obama is willfully helping to consummate.
The refererence to "gratuitously recruiting Muslims for positions in the White House," by the way, goes to a badly written and misleading WND article that misportrays the issue at hand.
Kincaid Peddles Scare Tactics on Obama Nominee Topic: Accuracy in Media
In a April 1 Accuracy in Media column, Cliff Kincaid attacks Harold Hongju Koh, the dean of Yale Law School whom President Obama has nominated as State Department legal adviser, claiming that Koh "has extremely radical views that seem to subordinate U.S. laws and the U.S. Constitution to so-called international law" and that "one has to conclude that Koh believes in a world government financed by global taxes" and "wants to see this dangerous New World Order implemented."
In fact, Kincaid's just repeating discredited right-wing talking points. As Dahlia Lithwick at Slate details:
The underlying legal charge from the right is that Koh is a "transnationalist" who seeks to subjugate all of America to elite international courts. We've heard these claims from conservative critics before. They amount to just this: The mere acknowledgment that a body of law exists outside the United States is tantamount to claiming that America is enslaved to that law. The recognition that international law even exists somehow transforms the U.S. Supreme Court into a sort of intermediate court of appeals that must answer to the Dreaded Court of Elitist European Preferences.
But Kincaid isn't really interested in truth. He spends much of his column playing guilt-by-association by citing the purported one-world-government leanings of Koh's "acknowledged mentor," whom Kincaid calls "a dangerous crackpot."
Kincaid also writes of Koh: "Some say he even would allow the application of Islamic Shariah law in the U.S."That claim is apparently rooted in a letter by lawyer Steven J. Stein that he cc'd to National Review regarding a speech Koh gave, in which Stein cited cherry-picked Koran verses. But as Richard Bartholomew notes: "Islamic law is a complex phenomenon that has developed in many different ways, and only a fool would suggest it can be encapsulated in a few random sanguinary verses from the Koran."
Further, at least one conservative anti-Koh blogger has pointed out the spuriousness of that charge, calling it "an unsubstantiated overheard and poorly commented handoff from a Koh staffer. The thing is attacking him on being pro Sharia is easily refuted by looking back at some 2007 House testimony he gave."
WND Can't Stop Lying About Obama Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily lies and lies and lies about Barack Obama, to the point where the only possible conclusion for its existence is that Joseph Farah and crew have decided its readers are suckers and will believe anything they publish.
WND's inability to stop lying about Obama is approaching the pathological. An April 2 WND article repeats one of those lies:
Obama believes the Constitution is flawed, because it fails to address wealth redistribution, and he says the Supreme Court should have intervened years ago to accomplish that.
Obama told Chicago's public station WBEZ-FM that "redistributive change" is needed, pointing to what he regarded as a failure of the U.S. Supreme Court under Chief Justice Earl Warren in its rulings on civil rights issues in the 1960s.
The Warren court, he said, failed to "break free from the essential constraints" in the U.S. Constitution and launch a major redistribution of wealth. But Obama, then an Illinois state lawmaker, said the legislative branch of government, rather than the courts, probably was the ideal avenue for accomplishing that goal.
As we've explained, Obama NEVER said any of that. WND is putting words in his mouth and lying about him -- something it has repeatedlydone on this issue.
The Obama-hate at WND headquarters must be at a toxic level. How else to explain WND's utter disregard for the facts and its willingness to trash what little credibility it has by repeating such obvious lies? Farah appears to be disturbingly eager to immolate his own website in order to bring down Obama.
Sadly, it appears no WND employee has the guts to stand up to their employer's lies -- indeed, this article lacks a byline -- despite the fact that WND's complete lack of credibility destroys their own as well.
More Global Warming Bamboozlement From Phil Brennan Topic: Newsmax
Longtime global warming bamboozler Phil Brennan is at it again in his March 31 Newsmax column, declaring that "The climate stopped warming around 1998. During the past 10 years, she's lowered the thermostat to the extent this year is moving rapidly toward the distinction as one of the coldest on record."
In fact, 2008, while slightly cooler than previous years due to a La Niña cycle, was the 10th warmest year on record, and actual scientists point out that the Earth remains in a warming trend.
FrontPageMag Substitutes Obama Birth Certificate Conspiracy With New Conspiracy Topic: Horowitz
Good news: A major right-wing site is denouncing the Obama birth certificate conspiracy theory. Bad news: It's substituting an even more stupid one.
Following up on David Horowitz's March 30 attempt to get his fellow right-wingers to back away from Obama Derangement Syndrome (because it worked so well with them the last time he tried it), an April 1 FrontPageMag article by Andrew Walden attempts to put a stake through the heart of the birth certificate conspiracy:
For Obama to have been born in Kenya, Ann Dunham and Barack Obama Sr. would have had to fly from Honolulu to Mombasa, give birth in a substandard third world hospital, fly back and then somehow arrange for a fraudulent birth certificate to be entered by the State of Hawai'i on August 8, 1961 (at the time governed by Republican William Quinn). They would have also somehow planted the phony birth announcement in the Honolulu Advertiser (at the time edited by Republican Thurston Twigg-Smith) and the Honolulu Star-Bulletin. Hawai'i’s current Republican Governor Linda Lingle would also have to be complicit in the cover-up as would all of the leftist 1960s University of Hawaii friends of Ann Dunham and Barack Obama Sr—among them US Rep Neil Abercrombie.
Walden even calls out WorldNetDaily -- one of the mainpromoters of the conspiracy -- for getting stuff wrong:
Since Hawai'i law forbids the release of birth certificates to anybody not authorized by Barack Obama or his family, Obama further feeds the paranoia by choosing not to grant such permissions. A World Net Daily story claiming Hawai'i’s Republican Governor Linda Lingle ‘sealed’ the birth certificate is totally false. The governor’s office has asked for a retraction.
It's rather curious, not to mention yet another breach of journalistic ethics, that WND has not reported the governor's denial or otherwise responded publicly to it -- indeed, the Oct. 26, 2008, WND article by Jerome Corsi making this apparently false claim remains live. Erik Rush even repeated the false claim in a December 2008 Newsmax column.
Then, Walden blows it by claiming that right-wing obsession over the birth certificate is exactly what Obama wants them to do:
By refusing media requests for a look at the actual paper birth certificate, Obama’s campaign gave sly backhanded assistance to the forgery hype. The internet release of the birth certificate via hyper-partisan website Daily Kos on June 12 before posting it on a campaign website was likely calculated to fuel the frenzy. This is Obama’s Gramscianstrategydesigned to redirect the opposition down a blind alley.
Obama benefits from creating an opposition which seems to be standing by the side of the road impotently pointing to a piece of paper as if it could stop 63 million voters from anointing their ‘chosen one’. Birth certificate lawsuit plaintiff Phil Berg is a Democrat and whether he understands it or not, he has done great work on behalf of his party.
It is time for folks to stop being played by the Obama campaign and drop this counter productive ‘phony birth certificate’ nonsense.
As the Huffington Post's Jason Linkins put it, Walden is "substituting an utterly insane conspiracy theory with a thunderously obtuse one."
Walden might not be a fan of the birth certificate conspiracy, but he has been a promoter of other Obama conspracies: As we've noted, Accuracy in Media has reprinted Walden's purported exposure of "the Frank Marshall Davis netweork in Hawaii,"and AIM's Cliff Kincaid has approvingly cited Walden's work of examining "Davis’s Sex Rebel book."
Ultimately, Walden's complaint seems to boil down to that the birth certificate conspiracy is drawing attention away from his own conspiracy.
Bozell Wrong on Poll Methodology Topic: Media Research Center
In his April 1 column, Brent Bozell writes about a Washington Post poll that prompted responses he doesn't like (namely, that Americans like President Obama):
They did the usual tricks for a more liberal sample of “public opinion” – they polled on the weekend and oversampled Democrats (36 percent Democrat, 25 percent Republican). By themselves, these things are shameless – but expected. And still that wasn’t enough of a slant. Check out the way this question was asked by the Post pollsters.
As we've previously detailed, polling more Democrats than Republicans is a reflection of reality. Even Rich Galen, Republican strategist and columnist for Bozell's CNSNews.com, concedes that "those who claim to be Democrats outweigh those who claim to be Republicans by 7 to 9 percentage points."
As for Bozell's unsupported assertion that weekend polling skews liberal, Jamison Foser at County Fair points out that it's spurious at best.
Reisman: GLSEN = Hitler Youth Topic: WorldNetDaily
It's April Fool's day, but Judith Reisman sounds deadly serious in her April 1 WorldNetDaily tirade:
Such American classroom indoctrination is now found in "hate" and sexual diversity training and in 3,500 nationwide Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN) school clubs. Under color of a "Safe Schools Movement" battling alleged "bullying" of so-called "gay" children (K-12), some see GLSEN as a modern version of the Hitler Youth and as preparing the ground for a larger, sweeping, schoolroom Youth Brigade.
The similarities between Hitler's National Socialist Teachers Association (NSTA) and the Rockefeller and Playboy funded National Education Association (NEA) and American Library Association (ALA) troubles some World War II elders. Like Hitler's NSTA, our NEA also largely guides the "ideological indoctrination of teachers." (Ronald J. Berger "Fathoming the Holocaust," Aldine Transaction, 2002, p. 50) Moreover, NSTA, the NEA, GLSEN and the Hitler Youth all seek to sever schoolchildren from their parent's religious and sexual training.
Both the GLSEN youth and the Hitler Youth were trained to be revolutionary leaders of the brave new world order.
Nobody could be this hateful in real life, could they? Actually, Reisman arguably is -- we've documented her smears of sex researcher Alfred Kinsey, about whom she is completely obsessed. Plus, she's writing for a website that loves to hurl Nazi smears.
Ellis Washington's Obama Insult du Jour: Idolatry! Topic: WorldNetDaily
Ellis Washington seems to have taken our advice to come up with new, more creative ways to insult President Obama to heart. His April 1 WorldNetDaily column accuses Obama of idolatry:
Let's look at Obama the messiah who even before he had secured the presidency had the arrogance and self-deification to invent out of whole cloth the "Office of the President-Elect," replete with his own graven image (seal) signifying his transcendent power, authority and divinity.
Other examples of graven images of Obama the messiah are the following:
His trusty teleprompter goes wherever Obama goes. I wonder whose words are spoken into his ear for him to parrot. Words that are "engraved" on that conspicuous electronic devise that has such control over our president and over our nation. For example, Obama recently thanked himself for hosting a leader from Ireland. Why? Because the teleprompter told him to. Who is this invisible, mysterious, diabolical voice We the People did not elect to any office?
Obama's multi-billion-dollar bailouts are a form of graven image to the almighty dollar. These unconstitutional acts are similar to the fascist totalitarian tactics of Mussolini. Obama has all but dispensed with any pretext of a company having to take money from the federal government for him to usurp control.
Under Obama "Corleone," all private enterprise is vulnerable to his seemingly insatiable lust for power and control. Monday's action against GM's CEO was just his most blatant deification of himself.
Obama sees himself as a demigod, a living breathing graven image to be worshiped through the bureaucracy of the State, like Wilson, FDR and LBJ before him. Constitutional strictures are irrelevant to him.
Needless to say, Washington doesn't actually support any of these contentions with facts. And the part about Obama " thank[ing] himself for hosting a leader from Ireland" was actually a joke.
Washington can't change old ways, however, as he revisits previous insults. In addition to the "Corleone" reference, Washington likens Obama to a Nazi. Washington also declares that Woodrow Wilson "was America's first fascist president" and that "Wilson is a closer model to Obama than FDR, JFK or LBJ."
A March 31 Newsmax article by David Patten on how New York Republicans are seeking "a wide-ranging injunction to prevent Minnesota-style snafus seen in the Al Franken-Norm Coleman race from disrupting the hard-fought 20th congressional district race in upstate New York" carries the headline: "NY GOP Moves To Block Franken-Style Vote Grab."
At no point in the article does Patten support the headline's contention that questions about the Minnesota election and recount, in which the lead transferred from Coleman to Franken, equates to Franken "grabbing" votes from Coleman.
Patten has previouslyaccused Franken of instigating a "vote grab" -- also baselessly.
In a March 31 FrontPageMag article, which he claims is the speech he would have given to a college Republican group railing against hate-crime laws had he not be subject to "an organized and highly disruptive demonstration by a mob of socialists, 'peace activists,' and homosexuals," Don Feder writes:
Take the 1998 homicide of Matthew Shepard. Was Shepard murdered because he was a homosexual? Possibly. But it’s equally plausible that he died because his murderers wanted drug money, and Shepard (weighing in at 105 pounds) was an easy mark. According to a 2004 report by ABC’s “20/20,” that’s what many close to the case believe.
As we detailed, what Feder portrays as "many close to the case" is in fact merely one of the men who killed Shepard -- who has a history of telling lies about his role in the death of Shepard and who mounted a gay-panic defense during his murder trial -- changing his story. The others are right-wingers like Feder who believe the killer because his new story fits in with their anti-gay agenda.
Here's what an actual person "close to the case" -- the former police chief of Laramie, Wyo. -- said at the time about the killer's new story: "Only three people know what really happened that night. ... One of them is dead and the other two are known liars and convicted felons -- murderers."
Indeed, Feder is a veritable font of misleading far-right talking points in this speech-that-never-was. He recounts the overblown case of anti-gay protesters who were arrested at a 2004 gay event in Philadelphia, claiming they "could have been sentenced 47 years in prison and $90,000 in fines," adding, "They weren’t disruptive. They didn’t attempt to block access to the event." In fact, as we detailed at the time, the leader of the protesters, Michael Marcavage, carried a bullhorn, leading his protest in the middle of the celebration and refusing to obey an order to go to an area on the edge of the event. (Feder doesn't explain how the use of a bullhorn can be anything but disruptive.) Further, even the attorney for the gay group that organized the event said, "They might get six to 12 months probation. ... Nobody's going to jail for 47 years" (the charges were ultimately dropped).
Feder also repeats the case of college librarian Scott Savage, who was accused of "sex-discrimination and harassment ... for recommending four books," one of which was David Kupelian's anti-gay "The Marketing of Evil." We realize Feder could care less about getting facts straight (witness his work for Accuracy in Media's anti-New York Times website), but as we've noted, the actual accusation against Savage was "harassment based on sexual orientation," something functionally different from what Feder said.