Kessler Touts Discredited Author's Anti-Obama Book Topic: Newsmax
Ronald Kessler devoted his May 15 Newsmax column to promoting the new Obama-bashing book by Edward Klein, "The Amateur," focusing on one of Kessler's favorite subjects, Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
As Media Matters has detailed, Klein's book "is filled with lazy research, bad writing, bizarre generalizations ('Political wives have always found something to complain about') and gossip forwarded by anonymous sources -- exactly what you should expect from an Ed Klein book."
Kessler, of course, says nothing about Klein's credibility problems -- indeed, he essentially takes credit for being the source for one claim Klein makes, that Obama and Wright had a secret meeting prior to their public split. We've previously noted that Kessler considers Klein a "friend," a personal relationship he does not disclose here.
Needless to say, Kessler sets all of this up to whine yetagain that his reporting on Wright was ignored by the "mainstream media" in 2007:
As noted in my story "Media Blackout on Rev. Wright Started in 2007," for three months during Obama’s primary campaign, the mainstream media ignored Newsmax stories reporting on Rev. Wright’s hate-filled sermons; his denunciations of America, whites, and Israel; and the fact that he gave an award for lifetime achievement to Louis Farrakhan.
By the time the media picked up the stories, Obama was ahead of Hillary Clinton in the primary elections.
According to a Hillary Clinton aide quoted in David Remnick’s “The Ridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama,” if the media had run the Wright story just two months earlier, Obama’s candidacy “would have been over.”
Perhaps Kessler should get some counseling in order to get over that.
MRC Perpetuates Churchill Bust Falsehood Topic: Media Research Center
In a May 18 MRC Culture & Media Institute article that's more agitprop than "research," Matt Philbin peddles one false or misleading claim after another to whine that "the broadcast networks have mostly ignored, and major newspapers have excused or minimized, [President Obama's] slights to America’s unambiguous friends." Here's the most egregious one:
“Throwing Churchill out of the Oval Office” – “It is hard to think of a more derogatory message to send to the British people within days of taking office than to fling a bust of Winston Churchill out of the Oval Office and send it packing back to the British Embassy,” Gardiner wrote, “not least as it was a loaned gift from Britain to the United States as a powerful display of solidarity in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington.”
ABC, CBS and NBC all ignored the offending gesture. U.S. newspapers noted it – in some case because readers had written in to ask about the story they’d heard second hand. If it bothered the papers, they didn’t say so.
What Philbin doesn't tell you: The networks ignored the story because it isn't true.
The British Embassy has confirmed that the bust was "uniquely lent" to Bush, and was scheduled to be returned at the end of Bush's term -- as reported in the UK Telegraph story to which Philbin himself links to back up his claim.
We thought Philbin's employer was the Media Research Center, not the Media Conspiracy Theory Promotion Center.
MRC's Hadro Can't Stop Freaking Out About Gays on CNN Topic: NewsBusters
We'vedetailedhow the Media Research Center's Matt Hadro's apparent main job is to complain whenever gays appear on CNN. He had a triple shot of complaining this week.
In a May 15 NewsBusters post, Hadro complains that CNN "above and beyond journalistic standards" to report on how "a man pushing for same-sex marriage made a viral video of himself and his deceased partner." Hadro huffed: "The fact that the report came on the heels of President Obama's announcement in favor of gay marriage last week – where CNN hosted an overwhelming majority of pro-gay guests – might say a lot about CNN's cheerleading for same-sex marriage."
CNN continued its ridiculous narrative of tying gay rights to the civil rights movement of the 1960s, on Tuesday's Starting Point. Anchor Brooke Baldwin and her panel battered Virginia Delegate Bob Marshall for blocking the nomination of a gay prosecutor to the state's bench, even though Marshall argued that he was unfit for the position because of his activism and not his orientation.
Hadro also does a drive-by Heathering of Margaret Hoover, calling her a "phoney-conservative."
In another May 17 post, Hadro gets back to complaining about gays being on TV, grumbling that CNN's Suzanne Malveaux wasn't mean to a gay activist:
Zach Wahls is an activist lobbying Congress on behalf of gay rights issues, and yet CNN's Suzanne Malveaux rolled out the red carpet for him with nary a critical question on Thursday's 12 p.m. hour of Newsroom.
When Wahls, the author of a book titled "My Two Moms," made light of the "big gay scourge" that some say America faces, Malveaux laughed and flattered him "That was really funny, Zach." Sensing an opportunity, she added "Do you think that we need to use more humor to get – to further this discussion?"
As in, those opposed to same-sex marriage need to lighten up a bit, and some humor will help "further this discussion." Malveaux certainly did her part to further the gay agenda by teeing up the gay activist with complete softballs, enabling him to air his agenda with no debate.
Yeah, we wouldn't want an activist to further his agenda on TV, would we?
AIM (!) Complains About Disgraced Bloggers Finding Work Topic: Accuracy in Media
In a May 18 blog post, Accuracy in Media chairman Don Irvine complains that U.S. News & World Report hired blogger Elizabeth Flock, who resigned from the Washington Post "after it was revealed that she made extensive use of material from Discovery News without attribution in a post in April." Citing another case of apparent plagiarsm by Flock, Irvine added, "These problems apparently weren’t serious enough to prevent U.S. News from hiring Flock and giving her a high profile assignment."
That's an odd criticism from Irvine, who allowed a disgraced blogger to keep blogging at AIM.
In December 2009, AIM blogger Allie Duzett libelously claimed that then-Obama official Kevin Jennings is a "pedophile," a claim had AIM had to quickly retract and apologize for. Despite exposing her employer to legal action, Duzett was allowed to continue to write moreposts for AIM. She even wrote for the Heritage Foundation for a while.
It seems AIM not only tolerated its disgraced blogger, it helped her get another job. So why is Irvine complaining about Elizabeth Flock?
CNS Fawns Over Sebelius Heckler At Georgetown Topic: CNSNews.com
As Craig Bannister's endorsement of censoring HHS Secretery Kathleen Sebelius by disinviting her from her speaker slot at Georgetown University indicates, CNSNews.com had every intention of making its coverage of Sebelius' actual speech as biased as it could.
And that's exactly what it did. Edwin Mora's May 18 article on the speech starts with him trying to read Sebelius' mind and squeeze in a political attack:
Speaking at a graduation ceremony for Georgetown University's Public Policy Institute on Friday, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius quoted President John F. Kennedy in what may have been a rebuttal to the Catholic bishops of the United States who have criticized Sebelius for issuing a health-care regulation that the bishops have described as "an unprecedented attack on religious liberty" and an "unjust law" that Catholics in good conscience cannot obey.
Hey, Edwin, isn't the news what Sebelius actually said, not what you think she meant?
But Mora wasn't done. Following in Bannister's censorial footsteps, he devoted a separate article to uncritically fawning over the far-right heckler that interrupted Sebelius' speech, complete with video interview of him tossing softball questions to him. Mora touted him as a "young activist" who was "alluding to Biblical scripture" in his heckling.
Mora goes on to note that the heckler, David Lewis, "is a member of a pro-life group called 'The Society of Truth and Justice,' led by pro-life activist Randall Terry, who is running in the Democratic primary against Obama."
Mora is silent, however, about Terry's record of anti-abortion extremism. As we've detailed, Terry essentially endorsed the murder of abortion doctor George Tiller -- an endorsement CNS ignored in trying to distanceTiller's murderer, Scott Roeder, from the anti-abortion movement (despite his links to one mainstream anti-abortion group, Operation Rescue).
If CNS shunned Terry then as a fringe figure, why is Mora embracing the heckler in his thrall now?
Is it too much to ask Mora and CNS to report honestly on the anti-abortion movement it so clearly supports? Apparently so.
WND's Mercer Mocks Child On Time Cover As 'Chunky Garden Gnome' Topic: WorldNetDaily
We're not defending the infamous Time magazine cover of a mother breastfeeding her nearly 4-year-old child, nor are we venturing into the propriety of such behavior, let alone putting on the cover of a magazine. It does seem, however, a little beyond the pale to launch an attack on the child, and that's what Ilana Mercer does in her May 16 WorldNetDaily column, calling him, among other things, a "chunky, garden gnome of a child":
“Obscene” better captures the mien of the Madonna and child that brazenly stare into the camera – and at America. Time’s cover-models are Jamie Lynne Grumet, 26, self-styled, “attachment” parent, and Aram, her chunky, garden gnome of a child.
(And “hollow-elite,” also a Murray moniker, fits Time Managing Editor Rick Stengel. Stengel, whose hagiographical tributes to Nelson Mandela have practically been serialized – he has completed two, perhaps a third is planned? – has helped cloak Mandela in the raiment of sainthood. Mandela, that paragon of virtue, has never raised his authoritative voice against the pogroms that have seen thousands of white South Africans murdered and mutilated by blacks.)
In any event, Aram is a real feeder, if you know what I mean.
Grumet junior is large for his tender age of 4. His gaze is cunning, never cute. The miniature man already reaches up to his non-gnomic mom’s waist. To help Aram get at the prized pair – mom’s perky breasts – Time’s artistic director has used a stool.
All the better to satisfy mom’s “maternal” urges, “Nudge nudge, wink wink. Say no-more, say no-more.”
One other tender touch: Porno-mom’s pelvis is tilted slightly in the direction of her gnome’s grubby hands.
At this stage, bullying would be the best corrective intervention this kid could hope for. In a better world – one in which propriety had not been pulverized – odious Aram would be taunted mercilessly at play school. Were he to make it that far, boob-boy is sure to be smacked about the head by a few manly college boys, later in life.
From the little we’ve seen of him, Aram is awfully unpleasant, a walking, whinging DSM-5 textbook – that’s the psychiatric Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders – in the making.
Despite what one thinks of the mother's behavior, the child is innocent and doesn't really deserve mocking, particularly by someone who has her own issues.
Newsmax Columnist: Ron Paul Forever! Topic: Newsmax
Doug Wead has been Newsmax's mostenthusiasticsupporter of Ron Paul's presidential ambitions. Now that Paul has suspended his campaign, though, Wead doesn't want it to end.
Wead still clings to the Ron Paul cause in his May 15 column:
Ron Paul is not out. He is up!
"We are absolutely not dropping out of this race! We are focusing our efforts squarely on winning delegates and party leadership positions at state conventions, declared Jesse Benton, campaign chairman for Ron Paul.
Paul announced Tuesday he would not be competing in the upcoming state primaries, saying that he would focus, instead, on his delegate strategy. This is a strategy that is working, by the way, and transforming the Republican Party.
Needless to say, Wead is fully on board with Paul's new strategy of trying to poach delegates at the Republican convention,e even as he sorta concedes that it's a lost cause:
The delegate strategy is working. That is the way we will impact the platform in Tampa, Fla.. That is the way we will begin the process of change. It is through the caucuses that we are attracting youth, like the 21-year-old woman recently elected to the national committee from Maine or the Ron Paul Hispanics or the independents who have never been involved in party politics.
Our people have been punched, yelled at, lied to and worked until they can hardly stand. But on they come, fighting for their children, fighting for their future, angry at the corruption of the banks, of Wall Street, of the lobbyists, of the Congress, of the White House. The battle for liberty is not over. It has just taken on a new phase. It cannot be stopped by the national media. If that were the case it would never have been born in the first place.
And some will say that it is a lost cause, which I will not concede but it does remind me of Clarence Darrow's famous line, "Lost causes are the only ones worth fighting for."
Erick Stakelbeck, whose main job is to be an "authority on terrorism and national security issues" for Pat Robertson's CBN, is now doing videos for WorldNetDaily.
It's not terribly surprising. Stakelbeck's mission is to make alarmist claims to bash Muslims with a little Biblical prophecy mixed in, despite his complete lack of credentials on the subject (he is a former sports reporter). This sort of thing has earned him spots on Fox News and other right-wing outlets, and his association with WND simply moves him even further to the right.
Stak elbeck's first WND video is an interview with Geert Wilders, the Dutch anti-Muslim activist. Stakelbeck plays softball with Wilders and allows him to play the victim, claiming Wilders was "subjected to a kangaroo court in his own country" for allegedly inciting anti-Muslim hatred, an effort that has included likening the Quran to "Mein Kampf."
Obviously, the Muslim-haters at WND eat this sort of thing up. And Stakelbeck has chosen to play to them by associating himself with the increasingly fringe WND.
The Media Research Center's Tim Graham has been making statements in non-MRC venues of late.
Media Matters notes that Graham has tweeted about ABC's Robin Roberts' interview with Obama in which he revealed his suport for same-sex marriage: "If black Christian voters still vote for Obama now, they're not really Christians. Just like Robin Roberts for being such a lamb on ABC."
That, of course, is nothing but Graham expanding upon the MRC's anti-gay agenda, only this time he's attacking the sincere beliefs of millions of Christians who don't believe that gays are evil simply because they're gay.
Then, Right Wing Watch highlights an interview Graham gave to right-wing radio host Janet Mefford, in which he claims that Obama's same-sex marriage announcement was "a tragic moment for the country, a very dark moment, a very depressing moment." He went on to say that it would be nice if anti-gay pastors like Harry Jackson could speak about same-sex marriage during interviews just as "he does at his church."
WND Still Bashing Higher Education, Vox Day Edition Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's utterdisdain for book-learnin' continues in a May 13 column by Vox Day, who follows the WND script in claiming that a college education does not provide an adequate return on investment. His weird little twist on the argument is that it's not a physical asset:
However, the main reason one cannot consider the cost of a college degree to be an investment is because a degree is not transferable and holds no intrinsic value. Unlike stocks, bonds, housing or even art, the owner of a degree cannot sell it. It is no more an investment than an airplane ticket or a bus token. There are, to be sure, many jobs in government and corporate America that require college degrees, but it makes no sense to argue for the intrinsic value of college degrees on the basis of artificial requirements that only have the potential to limit one’s future income.
None of this should be taken to mean that college educations are totally worthless or that it makes no sense for anyone to pursue a college degree. What it does mean, however, is that no prospective college student or parent can blithely accept the results of the return-on-investment studies and expect them to have any meaningful application to any individual situation. Every college decision must stand or fall on its own unique financial merits, and, in many cases, a careful review will demonstrate that taking out a student loan and paying large sums of money in return for a 60 percent chance of obtaining college degree does not make financial sense.
Day, of course, has a college degree, from the (presumably) pricey private liberal arts school Bucknell. He offers no opinion on the intrinsic value of his own degree.
NewsBusters' Double Standard on People's Backgrounds Topic: NewsBusters
In a May 16 NewsBusters post, Ken Shepherd touts an item by Breitbart blogger John Nolte complaining about Politico reporting on the lengthy criminal record of a person who appears in a Romney ad -- or, in Shepherd's words, "digging up dirt on a private citizen who supports his Republican opponent."
Why, Shepherd and his NewsBusters buddies would never condone something so gauche as to investigate the backgrounds of private citizens who play a role in political campaigns.
Back in 2007, right-wing bloggers, most prominently Michelle Malkin, felt the need to attack Graeme Frost, a 12-year-old boy who delivered a radio address in support of the federal Children's Health Insurance Program, by skulking around his house and deciding that he and his family lived too well to qualify for the program. This, of course, ignored the reality of the Frost family's situation.
In a October 2007 NewsBusters post, Shepherd promoted "conservative bloggers who brought scrutiny to bear on Frost's parents" and denounced "a lapdog liberal media that uncritically relayed the Frost family's account."
Shepherd expressed no reservations whatsoever about "conservative blogs raising questions about the Frost family," but apparently nobody is supposed to check into the background of someone who appears in a conservative ad. Go figure.
WND Bizarrely Blames Obama For 'Wrecking NASCAR' Topic: WorldNetDaily
Joe Kovacs begins his May 17 article, headlined "Study: Obama economy wrecking NASCAR," this way:
With President Obama at the wheel of the U.S. economy, the car-racing industry appears to be wrecking, with few signs of getting back on the right track.
That according to a new study examining the financial state of NASCAR, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing.
Just one little problem: The facts don't back Kovacs up.
Kovacs is citing a study paid for by Race Fans 4 Freedom, which claims to be "an independent nonprofit dedicated to empowering race fans with the knowledge of what has made America the best and the ability to unite as a driving force for the future of our country." In other words, a right-wing group. Kovacs mentions nothing about the group's partisan leanings.
There is one word notably absent from the study: "Obama." That's right -- unlike Kovacs, the study doesn't explicitly blame Obama.
Also, Kovacs manages to further discredit himself by including a graphic from the study in his article:
Note that the decline in NASCAR attendance began in 2006 -- three years before Obama took office. It defies logic to blame Obama for that, but Kovacs has decided to do that anyway.
Is this bogus, mindless Obama-bashing more of that "real news" Kovacs says he came to WND to report?
AIM's Kincaid Insinuates Frank Marshall Davis Is Obama's Father Topic: Accuracy in Media
The Newsweek cover calling Barack Obama "the first gay president" for endorsing same-sex marriage was all the impetus Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid needed to start hurling sleazy insinuations.
The virulentlyhomophobic Kincaid headlined his May 14 AIM column "How Our “Gay President” Learned About Sex," implying that Obama is gay. Kincaid never actually gets there, though -- his column is mostly a screed about Frank Marshall Davis, "Obama’s communist mentor" who "drank heavily and smoked dope, wrote a pornographic novel in which the author declared, 'under certain circumstances I am bisexual."
Kincaid does insinuate, however, that Davis is Obama's father, claiming that Davis "discussed having sex with a young girl named 'Anne.'" Of course, Kincaid offers no evidence to back this up.
Kincaid is bringing up Davis as a distraction from the revelation that Mitt Romney, as a prep school student, forcibly cut the hair of a fellow student who was presumed to be gay, insisting that this is "a much bigger story than a haircut."
(P.S. The whole silliness about Davis being Obama's father completely undermines the idea that Obama isn't constitutionally eligible to be president.)
WND Can't Stop Pushing Vaccine-Autism Link Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily has longbeen a fearmonger about vaccines, including promoting a purported link between vaccines and autism. Even though such a link has been all but discredited, WND is still clinging to it.
A May 4 WND article by Dave Tombers carries the headline, "Do vaccines really cause autism?" Tombers begins by explaining autism spectrum disorders for which "a staggering number of families are still searching for answers to the cause."
Tombers then shows off his Google skills:
An Internet search for the cause of autism points in every direction, except when it comes to thimerosal, a phased out mercury-containing preservative in many childhood vaccinations.
Once considered a potential cause of the neurological disorder, most doctors, government entities and pharmacies now dispute thimerosal has any connection. At least one report released by the CDC claims there are no medical studies that show a link between autism and childhood vaccines.
Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind., isn’t buying it.
Then, Tombers embraces the autism-vaccine link and starts sounding conspiratorial:
More than one study claims a connection between mercury and autism.
In the same year the feds released data acknowledging a drastic increase in the prevalence of autism in American children, a 2011 study in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health found a “statistically significant relationship” between mercury and autism.
According to the study, “the higher the proportion of children receiving recommended vaccines, the higher was the prevalence of autism.”
Another 2011 study in the Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry questioned more than just thimerosal in vaccines but aluminum as well.
According to the report, the number of children from countries with the highest rates of ASDs appear to also have the highest exposure to aluminum in vaccines.
However, the medical community steers away from vaccines as a cause and instead continues to question what is causing the terrible disorder.
It's not until the 26th paragraph of his article that Tombers gets around to noting the evidence against a vaccine-autism link, including the discrediting of a study by Andrew Wakefield -- but that is followed by quotes from Wakefield defending his work.
As we've noted, WND devoted no original coverage to the discrediting of Wakefield, being first mention only in a column by Phil Elmore.
Tombers concludes with the anti-vaccine ranting of one "Dr. Mary Ann Block of Texas":
Many cringe when they hear about parents skipping vaccines for their children, yet Block has found the dangers to be unmistakable.
She explains there is more to a vaccine than just the active ingredients, and a close look at labels should make one shudder.
“Thimerosal, a mercury derivative, is still found in many vaccines in trace amounts,” she told WND.
Propylene glycol, or antifreeze; phenol, a disinfectant dye; formaldehyde, a carcinogenic preservative; aluminum hydroxide; aluminum phosphate; and even human aborted fetal tissue are among a long list of other chemicals Block cited.
“Why would anyone think it’s OK, much less safe, to inject these toxic substances into anybody, especially infants,” she asked.
We've previously detailed how Tombers (near as we can tell) wrote a WND article in January on a professor suing his school alleging retaliation over, among other things, "autism causation" -- a euphemism for anti-vaccine activism, despite the fact that he is a linguist by training.
MRC Dances On Grave of 'GCB,' Still Won't Publish List of Offenses Topic: Media Research Center
There was much celebrating at the desk of the Media Research Center's Lauren Thompson this week: ABC has canceled thet show "GCB."
As we've detailed, Thompson dutifully watched the show every week, tallying a list of the show's alleged offenses against Christianity, which stood at 157 offenses according to the most recent count she publicized. Curiously, Thompson refused to publish a full running list of the purported offenses.
The cancellation of "GCB," however, caused Thompson to take a victory lap in the form of a May 14 MRC Culture & Media Institute post saying "good riddance" to the show and ranting about how it racked up "more than 100 attacks on Christianity in its short run."
Again, Thompson failed to publish that now-complete list of offenses. What's holding her back? Since she made such a big deal out of keeping the list in the first place, you'd think she'd be eager to fully inform her readers.
Of course, it could also have been that Thompson never intended to fully document the number of offenses, just toss around an absurdly high number for shock value (and, of course, fundraising purposes).
Either way, Thompson is being dishonest. time to fish or cut bait, dear.