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Saturday, August 28, 2010
CNS Still Thinks Alveda King Is A Real Doctor
Topic: CNSNews.com

An Aug. 27 CNSNews.com article by Adam Cassandra touts claims by anti-abortion activist Alveda King trying to link herself to the legacy of her uncle, Martin Luther King Jr. CNS has frequently given her an unchallenged platform.

The headline and first paragraph of Cassandra's article refers to "Dr. Alveda King" even though, as we've previously noted (and others have pointed out), her doctorate appears to be honorary.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:11 AM EDT
Friday, August 27, 2010
Keyes Picks Up WND's Dubious Attack on Obama
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Alan Keyes writes in his Aug. 27 WorldNetDaily column:

Now we have the report that the relatives of some U.S. personnel in Afghanistan "have accused the U.S. government of leaving defenders of its freedoms without basics such as blankets, food, feminine hygiene supplies and even bullets."  If true these allegations suggest a degree of criminal neglect at the highest level of command that warrants the immediate dismissal of those responsible, including the one who lays still doubtful claim to the authority of commander in chief.

As we've pointed out, this WND-originated story is unsubstantiated, has no named sources, and contradicts WND's previous stance on questioning the military's supply chain when George W. Bush was president.

Keyes' embrace of this unsubstantiated story is intended to be evidence that "Obama's  dissipation of U.S. military strength and resources is intentional; that Obama's pattern of decisions and actions undermining the U.S. strategic posture is intentional; and that it is also his intention to give aid and comfort to the terrorist forces presently at war with the United States by repeated gestures of U.S. submission to Islamic authority, repeated fabrications about Islamic contributions to the history of the United States and repeated statements and other gestures of support for Muslim leaders such as those seeking to build, on the site of the 9/11 attacks, a monument to victory for the forces of Islamic terror."


Posted by Terry K. at 7:18 PM EDT
Ruddy 'Join[ed]' McCollum on Election Night
Topic: Newsmax

Christopher Ruddy's Aug. 26 Newsmax column was a letter to his readers:

I want to drop a note to you all about the recent Florida election.

I was honored to join Bill McCollum on election night in Orlando. Bill did not win, but in my book, he did not lose, either.

When you fight a good fight against a candidate with an overwhelming bank account, and you don't have the establishment media in your corner, it is an uphill battle.

As Theodore Roosevelt once remarked, the credit always goes to the "man in the arena" fighting for what he believes in against the odds.

Bill was that man in the arena.

As you know, Newsmax rarely endorses candidates in primary elections. However, I found Bill to be a man of remarkable integrity who has a tremendous record of service to his country.

I am glad Newsmax supported him and befriended him during this campaign.

I also am glad I befriended Bill's supporters and his campaign team, who were excellent, extremely responsive, and hard working. 

But Newsmax didn't merely "support" McCollum -- it slanted its news coverage of the election in McCollum's favor and against his opponent, Rick Scott. That's not exactly ethical journalistic behavior.

And joining McCollum on election night is not all Ruddy did for him. More on that soon.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:17 PM EDT
More Leading Questions from WND's Ethically Challenged Pollster
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An Aug. 24 WorldNetDaily article by Bob Unruh details the latest poll conducted for WND by its ethically challenged pollster, Fritz Wenzel, and darn if they aren't the usual leading questions we've come to expect from him.

Note the slanted wording of the questions and how they feed into creating an impression to be answered in the final question:

Recently some 20 states joined together to challenge the federal government's plans to force Americans to buy their own health-care insurance because, the states contend, it is unconstitutional to require citizens to purchase a product or service. Do you agree or disagree with this challenge?

Voters in Missouri recently overwhelmingly passed a ballot initiative calling for repeal of the federal health-care plan approved by Congress earlier this year. Do you agree or disagree with the Missouri ballot initiative?

While the federal government is suing Arizona for its law intended to curb illegal immigration, other states are lining up in support of Arizona. Do you agree or disagree with the state of Arizona in its fight with the federal government over immigration?

At least two state legislatures last year introduced bills to ensure future presidential candidates are required to prove constitutional eligibility before being placed on the ballot. Do you support or oppose such requirements?

Overall, since Barack Obama took over as president, do you think the federal government has been too aggressive in over-ruling the rights of individual states to pass and enforce their own laws, OR have they been too passive?

The first three questions highlight challenges to federal policy, and the final question asks if "the federal government has been too aggressive in over-ruling the rights of individual states to pass and enforce their own laws." Why, you'd think that was deliberate.

It was, of course. That's what WND is paying Wenzel to do.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:46 AM EDT
Bozell Takes Dr. Laura's Side, Pushes Bogus Study
Topic: Media Research Center

In his Aug. 25 column, Brent Bozell takes Dr. Laura's side on her N-word controversy, uncritically repeating her nonsensical claim that she was quitting her radio gig because "If she could not exercise her freedom of speech, she said, she was not interested in the job."

But she did exercise her freedom of speech; she simply does not want anyone to hold her accountable for what she says.

Bozell goes on to distort the facts about the controversy:

Watchdogs on the left had pounced on a conversation she had with a black woman in which she proclaimed something that everyone with cable TV knows is true. The N-word is acceptable vernacular for black comedians on HBO, but it’s not something you can ever, ever say if you’re not black.

While making this point, Dr. Laura purposely said the N-word repeatedly during this proclamation, and that was all the Left needed to start contacting sponsors, suggesting they shouldn’t want their products associated with this viciously racist talk show. It didn’t matter that even liberal editorialists in The Washington Post declared that there was nothing at all racist in what the doctor said.

The Left had found their to chance to silence her, and they pounced. All they needed to do was distort the context completely, and they did so masterfully.

As others have pointed out, Dr. Laura's use of the N-word may haveactually been the least offensive part of her rant:

In actuality, it's the rest of her rant that drips with racial animus. To recap: Dr. Laura immediately dismisses her caller's problems, uses a racist joke to prove her non-racism, insists that black people voted for Obama over nothing but racial solidarity (as if pre-Obama, African Americans never voted for Democrats), strongly resents the fact that "black guys" can use the N-word but she can't, and declares that "if you're that hypersensitive about color and don't have a sense of humor, don't marry outside of your race." Dr. Laura isn't known for her sensitivity, but this is an impressive display of raw racial resentment.

Nevertheless, Bozell goes on, because he has something to promote:

The hypocrites.  Leftists say outrageous things on the radio routinely, things they truly mean, too, and those remarks never see the light of day on ABC, CBS, and NBC. Talking about the N-word is wrong but wishing death on political enemies is okay when the rhetorical bombs are dropped on conservatives. The Media Research Center has a new report chronicling who the real radio hatemongers are. 

In fact, neither Bozell nor anyone else at the MRC have any idea "who the real radio hatemongers are" because they have done no comparative analysis of liberal vs. conservative radio hosts, and thus has not established an emperical basis on which to decide which "hatemongers" are more "real."

And as we've previously noted, the MRC reportfails to account for the fact that the liberal radio hosts it criticizes have a much smaller audience than the top conservative radio hosts, who do -- despite Bozell's insistence that no conservative has "ever said anything remotely similar" -- say offensive things on a regular basis.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:30 AM EDT
Thursday, August 26, 2010
WND Flip-Flops on Military Supply Questions
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Back in 2004, WND frowned upon the media making the Republican administration look bad by pointing out supply shortages for troops in Iraq.

A Dec. 9, 2004, article highlighted how "'disgruntled' soldiers' tough grilling of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in Iraq" was the work of aChattanooga newspaper reporter who allegedly "set up the soldiers to ask his questions about the lack of armored vehicles." This was followed by columnist Larry Elder scolding the reporter for making news instead of reporting it, as well as WND's Les Kinsolving asserting that "when Chattanooga Times Free Press reporter Edward Pitts rehearsed Army Specialist Thomas Wilson on what to ask Secretary Rumsfeld, the Pentagon had already up-armored 97 percent of the vehicles in Wilson's regimental combat team, and the last 20 of their 830 vehicles were in the up-armored pipeline."

Actually, as we detailed at the time, Pitts didn't "set up" the soldier with the question on vehicle armor; in an interview with Time magazine, the soldier said that while Pitts urged him to come up with some "intelligent questions," it was he, not Pitts, who came up with the question about the armor. Further, more than half of that "830 vehicles ... in the up-armored pipeline" had non-standard makeshift "hillbilly armor."

Now that WND no longer has to protect a Republican president, it's more free to make accusations about the military.

An Aug. 25 WND article claims that "The parents of an American soldier in Afghanistan have accused the U.S. government of leaving defenders of its freedoms without basics such as blankets, food, feminine hygiene supplies and even bullets." The claim, which came from Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin, provides no corroboration in the WND version, and no named source is quoted -- a much lower level of disclosure than was made in the 2004 story WND decried.

But hey, when the point is to attack Obama -- the front-page promo headline for the article calls it an "Obama outrage" -- minor things like disclosure and substantiation don't matter to WND.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:51 PM EDT
Newsmax Changes Its Mind, Likes Bush After All
Topic: Newsmax

As President Bush left office in January 2009, Newsmax was eager to throw dirt on the grave of his administration, declaring that "Bush’s legacy to his successor is two unresolved wars, a global image that is deeply tarnished, and the greatest economic crisis in modern times."

How times change. An Aug. 22 Newsmax article by right-wing shill David A. Patten touted how "Bush's mojo with the American public appears on the rise." Patten listed several reasons for this, including that "Several former Bush aides have infiltrated the media since leaving the White House, grabbing megaphones they use to push back against spin and distortion." He added that Bush "has demonstrated an ability to keep a low profile and stay out of the controversies that dogged him while in office." Patten also channeled his inner Ronald Kessler, claiming that "Bush kept America safe from terrorism. The jury's still out on Obama."

Patten also falsely suggested that Obama wants to keep most of the Bush tax cuts:

In 2001 and 2003, President Bush signed tax legislation that slashed income tax rates across the board. He also ended the estate tax while cutting dividend and capital gains taxes. The legislation passed but had a sunset provision forcing all the cuts to expire on Dec. 31 of this year. But polls show that Americans strongly favor fully renewing the Bush tax cuts and several leading Senate Democrats have embraced the idea. President Obama and the Congressional Democratic leadership want key portions of the cuts to expire while extending income tax relief to only those in the lower income brackets.

Unless Patten is redefining all income under $250,000 as "lower income," that's not exactly true.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:27 PM EDT
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, Ben Shapiro Division
Topic: CNSNews.com

Is Barack Hussein Obama a Muslim? No.
 
But there’s a reason 24 percent of Americans believe President Obama is a Muslim: Obama spends an inordinate amount of time stumping for Islam. Obama’s not Muslim. But he proselytizes for Islamic goals and dreams like a member of the faithful.

[...]

It bears repeating: Obama’s not a Muslim. But there are only two possible reasons why he would draw himself this close to the Muslim world in speech and deed. First, he could be duping the Muslim world, keeping his friends close and his enemies closer. This seems utterly unlikely as his most sincere statements seem to come with regard to the Muslim world. Second, he could feel true kinship with the Muslim world based on his childhood experiences and his Marxist multiculturalism. This rings true.
 
For the last time: Obama’s not a Muslim. He’s a sellout to the radical Muslim world. If a swath of the American people mistakes a president who sells out to Islamism for a Muslim president, there’s only one person to blame: Obama himself.

-- Ben Shapiro, Aug. 26 syndicated column, published by CNSNews.com


Posted by Terry K. at 2:19 PM EDT
CNS' Zombie 'Non-Believers' Story
Topic: CNSNews.com

Shortly after President Obama was inaugurated, CNSNews.com tried (and failed) to make a big deal out of Obama noting that America is a nation of, among other things, "non-believers." Even the normally conservative religious people CNS consulted didn't bite instead praising Obama for being inclusive and acknowledging our country's diversity.

But just like a villain in a horror movie, it seems, a failed right-wing attack is never really dead. Which may be the only logical explanation for why CNS editor Terry Jeffrey built his Aug. 25 column around the "non-believer" attack.

The only new things Jeffrey brings to it is a complaint that "a miniscule 0.7 percent of American adults—or 1,621,000 out of 228,182,000--are atheists" and a baseless claim that referencing nonbelievers "surely does not promote the American cause in the Islamic world—where our radical Muslim enemies, starting with al-Qaida, falsely claim Americans are infidels."

Some failed things are better left dead, something Jeffrey apparently hasn't figured out yet.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:23 AM EDT
New Article: Ann Coulter Doesn't Hate Gays Enough for WorldNetDaily
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WND drops Coulter as a speaker for its big conference, setting off a war of words that shows just how anti-gay Joseph Farah and crew really are. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 AM EDT
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Oops! Koch-Defending NewsBusters Doesn't Disclose MRC Accepted Koch Money
Topic: NewsBusters

An Aug. 23 NewsBusters post by P.J. Gladnick attacks New York magazine for publishing a "hit piece" article on businessmen Charles and David Koch over the alleged "thought crime" of "contributing to conservative causes."

Gladnick fails to mention that his publisher has taken Koch money as well. According to Conservative Transparency, the Media Research Center has accepted nearly $10,000 from the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation and the Koch Family-controlled Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation.

Gladnick also insists that the Center for Public Integrity is "a left-wing group which is funded by the aforementioned George Soros." But that supposed poolitical affiliation is doubtful -- as we documented, CPI underwrote the reporting that went into WorldNetDaily dubious hit job on Al Gore in the 2000 election, which drew an actual $165 million libel lawsuit from a Tennessee car dealer smeared in the article series. WND eventually admitted that the charges were false and settled the case out of court for an undisclosed sum.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:32 PM EDT
AIM Admits Wash. Times' Coverage Is Ideology Driven
Topic: Accuracy in Media

An Aug. 25 Accuracy in Media blog post by Don Irvine on the possibility that Rev. Sun Myung Moon will take over the Washington Times from his son led to some reminiscing on Don Irvine's part, who spills the beans on just how ideology-driven its news coverage was:

The Times started modestly in May of 1982 as a conservative alternative to the Washington Post though in the rush to launch Moon hired many former staffers of the defunct Washington Star many of whom were more interested in having a job than sharing the ideology of Moon.

That initially hampered the paper as liberals and conservatives fought internally on the stance it should take on certain issues.  I recall one conversation I had with a friend who worked there during those first few years who told me he was having a discussion about the Sandinistas in Nicaragua with a couple of other people at the national desk and that he was the only one that was against them.

As time went on the Times often took  hard line conservative stance especially during the Clinton years and scooped the Washington Post on more than one occasion to the consternation of the Post’s executive editor Ben Bradlee.

Of course, it's not news that the Washingto Times is heavily conservative. But Irvine's admission that there were issues with some journalists who were apparently more interested in reporting the news instead of pushing Moon's "ideology" -- and that AIM apparently endorses ideology over news -- reveals a lot about the Times (and a little about how AIM doesn't really care all that much about accuracy in media).


Posted by Terry K. at 2:13 PM EDT
Klein Puts Words in Rauf's Mouth
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An Aug. 24 WorldNetDaily article by Aaron Klein carries the headline "Ground Zero imam pushes 'eradication' of Jewish state."

But Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, who wants to build an Islamic cultural center near the Ground Zero site in New York, never said "eradication." In fact, the only person using it in the article is Klein himself:

The controversial imam behind a proposal to build an Islamic cultural center near Ground Zero has advocated a plan that is widely regarded here as promoting the eradication of Israel as a Jewish state.

In uncovered audio, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf pushes for a "one state" solution of Jews and Arabs sharing the same country.

While the idea may sound moderate to those unfamiliar with Mideast politics, such a proposal, which has been touted by Palestinian leaders, is seen by Israel as pressing for its destruction as a Jewish state. The population of Israeli Arabs combined with incoming Palestinians would cause Arabs to outnumber Jews, thus changing the Jewish character of the country.

Speaking at a recorded Australian lecture series in July 2005, Rauf outlined his views on Israel:

"The differences, perhaps, may lie on whether the solution lies in the two-state solution or in a one-state solution. I believe that you had someone here recently who spoke about having a one land and two people's solution to Israel.

And I personally – my own personal analysis tells me that a one-state solution is a more coherent one than a two-state solution. So if we address the underlying issue, if we figure out a way to create condominiums, to condominiamise Israel and Palestine so you have two peoples co-existing on one state, then we have a different paradigm which will allow us to move forward."

Such a "one state" solution has been called for in the past by Palestinian and Arab leaders, while Israeli officials have warned it would bring about the country's destruction.

Klein fails to offer the full context in which Rauf made his statement -- all that is quoted, in text and in the audio, is only the supposedly offending claim. Klein also offers no evidence that the idea Rauf forwarded is "widely regarded" as "promoting the eradication of Israel" -- in fact, he quotes no one specifically reacting to Rauf's idea.

Further, Klein fails to note, as Media Matters does, that former right-wing Likud Party official Moshe Arens has pointed out that Israel is "already a binational state, and also a multicultural and multi-sector state," and that Likud, which currently leads Israel's ruling coalition, is discussing alternatives to a two-state solution.

But remember, Klein is a sympathizer of far-right Israeli politics and has declared that he "agree[s] with some of the sentiments of Rabbi Meir Kahane" -- the most prominent of which was expulsion of all Arabs from Israel, as well as Gaza and the West Bank.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:19 PM EDT
CNS' Catholic Conflict of Interest
Topic: CNSNews.com

An Aug. 24 CNSNews.com article by Pete Winn touts criticism of President Obama's upcoming speech at New Orleans' Xavier University, a Catholic school, by Patrick Reilly, president of the Cardinal Newman Society, which Winn describes as "a lay Catholic educational organization."

But Winn doesn't disclose that his boss, Media Research Center chief Brent Bozell, is on the board of directors of the Cardinal Newman Society.

We detailed how CNS similarly failed to disclose this important fact when covering the group's criticism of Obama's speech at Notre Dame last year.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:36 AM EDT
MRC's Hypocritical Attack on Left-Wing Radio Hosts
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has issued a report by Rich Noyes asserting that liberal radio hosts are "The Real Radio Hatemongers," as opposed to conservative radio hosts. Of course, the MRC has to overlook a few things to reach that conclusion.

First, Noyes complains:

For two decades, conservative radio hosts have been under assault from the establishment media as mean-spirited, divisive and a menace to civil discourse. After the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, Bryant Gumbel smarmily insinuated that conservative broadcasters were the real villains: “Never do most of the radio hosts encourage outright violence, but the extent to which their attitudes may embolden and encourage some extremists has clearly become an issue.” Then-CBS anchor Dan Rather smeared: “You can turn on your radio in any city and still dial up hate talk: extremist, racist and violent rhetoric, from the hosts and those who call in.”

A dozen years later, ex-NBC Nightly News anchor Tom Brokaw was still hammering away: “The problem with talk radio is they mock anyone else’s point of view, and they do it often in a mindless fashion....We’ve lost the ability to have civil discourse in America, and it’s a big cancer on our political system as well.”

When conservative hosts say something that liberals want to paint as out of bounds — or when the Left falsifies quotes to impugn them — the news media seize the opportunity to stoke the fires of outrage. Journalists also have no problem heaping epithets on individual hosts. Sean Hannity is a “conservative junkyard dog,” according to CBS’s Morley Safer. Mark Levin is an “angry voice” speaking to “the wingnuts,” MSNBC’s Chris Matthews claimed. Time’s Joe Klein blasted both Hannity and Glenn Beck as “poisonous helium balloons” who peddle “hateful crap.” When radio host Bill Cunningham dared call then-presidential candidate Barack Hussein Obama by his full name in 2008, CNN’s Anderson Cooper branded it “sleazy campaigning” from “a two-bit radio host.”

Missing from Noyes' report is any attempt to disprove those criticisms, or even any specific quote from those conservative hosts. Noyes continues:

Yet the “news” media that have gone out of their way to demonize conservative hosts have had virtually nothing to say about the vile and vicious rhetoric that spills forth from the Left’s leading radio talk show hosts. MSNBC even gave Ed Schultz his own program in 2009, bringing his extremist rhetoric to an even wider audience.

And liberals like Bill Press don’t seem at all bothered by the vitriol emanating from his side of the airwaves. In the acknowledgments of Toxic Talk, Press went out of his way to praise his liberal comrades: “There may not be many national progressive talk show hosts, but the few who do broadcast every day are world-class. I’m proud to be in the company of Ed Schultz, Stephanie Miller, Thom Hartmann, Randi Rhodes, Ron Reagan, and Mike Malloy — and I’m in awe of their strong voices on the air.”

But the MRC has done the exact same thing -- demonize liberal hosts while giving conservative hosts a pass for their offensive words. As we've detailed, the MRC -- despite its own anti-obsenity agenda -- couldn't get worked up about Rush Limbaugh's repeated references to anal sex on his show.

Further, none of the liberal hosts the MRC is attacking has anywhere near the audience or corporate promotional backing of  the top right-wing hosts. The highest-rated hosts targeted by the MRC -- Ed Schultz and Thom Hartmann -- have only one-sixth the audience of the top right-wing talker, Rush Limbaugh. Their syndicator, Dial Global, has a much smaller presence than Premiere Radio Networks, the syndicator of the top three radio hosts, Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity. The report's biggest target, Mike Malloy, self-syndicates his show.

The MRC seems to have overlooked that the reason liberal talkers get so little attention in the media is because their audiences are proportionally small. That, coupled with the MRC's refusal to hold conservatives accountable for their words -- or even to acknowledge that they make controversial remarks too -- shows that this report is too hypocritical to be taken seriously.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:53 AM EDT

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