The headline for Scott Whitlock's June 27 NewsBusters post reads, "Cocky Journalists Declared ObamaCare Would Be Upheld, Maybe by a 8-1 Vote." As the URL indicates, Whitlock started out by referring to "Cocky, Condescending Journalists," but the middle word mysteriously disappeared somewhere along the line.
Anyway, Whitlock is rather upset that "journalists over the past few months have dismissed and derided the concept that the President's signature legislation could be declared unconstitutional." But the first three examples Whitlock cites aren't from journalists:
CNN's Jeffrey Toobin is a legal analyst, not a journalist.
Even Whitlock admits that Linda Greenhouse is an "ex-New York Times Supreme Court reporter." He curiously fails to mention, however, what Greenhouse does now: she's a journalist in residence at Yale Law School, not a working journalist.
Andrew Cohen is a legal analyst and legal editor for CBS Radio News, not a working journalist.
Whilock names only one person who's anywhere close to being a working journalist, NPR's Nina Totenberg.
Whitlock huffily concludes: "If the Supreme Court strikes down all or part of Obamacare, Thursday, will these journalists admit they weren't quite the constitutional experts they claimed to be?"
Since the vast majority of Obamacare was upheld as constitutional, will Whitlock admit that these "journalists" kinda knew what they were talking about after all?
WorldNetDaily devotes yet another article to whining that White House press secretary Jay Carney is ignoring poor widdle Les Kinsolving and his stupid questions:
Several questions about how the White House will respond should the U.S. House, as many expect, hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress weren’t answered at today’s White House news briefing.
Press Secretary Jay Carney allowed CBS and Fox News to ask seven questions each, NBC to ask five and CNN and Bloomberg to ask four each, but he did not recognize Les Kinsolving, WND’s correspondent at the White House.
Kinsolving had wanted to ask about an assertion by Cornell law professor Josh Cafetz that “if the House holds Holder in contempt, it can send its sergeant-at-arms to arrest him, and hold him until his contempt is purged.”
Kinsolving also wanted to ask whether Obama would enlist the FBI or the armed forces “to protect the attorney general.” In addition, he wanted to know whether Obama would expect Congress to impeach Holder or cut funding for the Department of Justice should the standoff continue.
As we've repeatedlydetailed, Kinsolving is a hack reporter who has not earned the respect he demands from an administration he clearly despises. WND gives no reason why Carney should take questions from a "news" organization that is single-mindedly obsessed with destroying the Obama presidency and has no interest in telling the truth about Obama.
Gainor followed that up by melodramatically declaring, "Since I won't ever accept this ruling or pay the tax, looks like jail is in my future."
Other MRC employees joined in the collective right-wing gnashing of teeth and rending of garments. Matt Hadro groused, "Anyone else feel sick right now like they did when ObamaCare passed and Obama was elected POTUS?
And Matt Philbin whined, "Another step in the decent from exceptionalism. Welcome to the 'shining mediocrity on a hill.'"
Meanwhile, the employer of all these people, Brent Bozell, put on the hat of his right-wing activism group, For America -- or so the Daily Caller portrays it -- to rant that Roberts is "a traitor to his philosophy," adding that this demonstrates that conservatives "need a good three man margin on the court. They can’t be satisfied with a majority, because you just can’t trust them."
WND Beats Dead Horse of Kagan Recusal on Health Care Reform Topic: WorldNetDaily
Even as the Supreme Court was on the verge of announcing its decision on the constitutionality of health care reform, one ConWeb outlet was still trying to beat the dead horse of trying to get Elena Kagan to recuse from deliberating on it. Surprisingly, it's not CNSNews.com.
In a June 25 WorldNetDailiy article, Unruh uncritically repeated a claim from right-wing legal group Judicial Watch that "A huge cloud looms over the coming U.S. Supreme Court decision on Barack Obama’s health-care law" because "Elena Kagan served in the Obama administration when the law advanced through Congress and now is on the Supreme Court bench sitting in judgment of it."
Email exchanges previously made public reveal that during Kagan’s time as solicitor general, her office helped develop a strategy to defend Obamacare legally.
Ordinary judicial ethics would mandate that if she participated in such discussions, she should not later sit in judgment of the law, Judicial Watch has argued.
In fact, as we've detailed, it has been made clear that Kagan appointed others to develop that strategy and she was walled off from those deliberations.
As with CNS' Terry Jeffrey, Unruh was silent about Justice Clarence Thomas' apparent conflict of interest -- his wife is a right-wing activist who founded a group that has attacked health care reform -- that would also theoretically demand recusal.
MRC Can't Stop Playing Down Anti-Mormonism Among Conservatives Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center has long been selectively oblivious to right-wing criticism of Mitt Romney's Mormon religion. In April, for instance, Matt Philbin wrote that "the only ones who believe Romney’s religion worth discussion are liberal reporters themselves" -- conveniently ignoring the numerousevangelicals who raised questions about Romney's Mormonism during the Republican presidential primary.
One of those critics was Robert Jeffress, a prominent evangelical pastor and a supporter of Romney rival Rick Perry. The MRC did its best to ignore Jeffress' anti-Mormon remarks, even blaming the media for reporting them, as in a October 2011 NewsBusters post by Scott Whitlock. In another October 2011 post, Brad Wilmouth tried to spin it away by parroting a Fox News claim that "self-identified Republican voters are substantially more willing to accept a Mormon President compared to Democrats."
(The MRC has been trying to divert attention from Jeffress for years. In a 2007 post, Ken Shepherd whined that an "anti-Mitt Romney sermon" by Jeffress was reported in a newsapaper "a full 18 days" after the remarks were made, laughably insisting that any controversy in evangelical circles about Romney's religion "might be rather dormant" and blaming the media for "pushing a storyline to influence the presidential election.")
The MRC is at it again. In a June 27 NewsBusters post, Jeffrey Meyer complains that MSNBC's Martin Bashir is "painting Republicans as anti-Mormom bigots who are terrified of their own presumptive presidential nominee's faith." Meyer insisted that "Bashir doesn’t know that anti-Mormonism is more common among Democrats not Republicans" and quoted Southern Baptist leader Richard Land expressed, “most evangelicals already know what Mormonism believes and most of them are prepared to vote for Mitt Romney in a general election against Barack Obama in spite of his Mormonism.”
Not only is Meyer completely silent about Jeffress (who has since grudgingly endorsed Romney), it turns out that another Southern Baptist official, Todd Akin, has said that it would be easier for Christians to vote for Newt Gingrich -- who's on his third marriage and has committed adultery -- than Romney.
This is just another example of the MRC not wanting the truth to be told about something that makes conservatives look bad.
NEW ARTICLE -- Out There, Exhibit 56: Ellis Washington's Imaginary Socrates Topic: WorldNetDaily
The WorldNetDaily columnist loves to present skewed so-called "dialectics" in which he plays the great Greek philosopher as a judgmental, ad hominem-throwing right-wing nutjob -- not unlike Washington himself. Read more >>
Fred Lucas puts words in Obama's mouth in a June 26 CNSNews.com article:
Listing the reasons why Americans should vote for him, President Barack Obama told an audience at a high school in New Hampshire on Monday that failure to subsidize abortions and contraception is the same as “restricting access” to those services.
At no point does Obama say that he supports "subsidized abortions." In fact, the word "abortion" appears nowhere in the Obama speech Lucas is writing about, and it certainly doesn't appear in the speech excerpt Lucas includes in his article.
Lucas is simply making up stuff here, inventing meanings for Obama's reference to "restricting access to birth control or defunding Planned Parenthood." As we've previously detailed, no federal money awarded to Planned Parenthood is spent on abortions, no matter how much CNS falsely implies it.
Why does Lucas think it's OK to lie so blatantly about Obama? Because his boss, Terry Jeffrey, has made Obama-hate a major part of CNS' editorial policy.
Newsmax's Ruddy Lies About Obama's Immigration Policy Topic: Newsmax
Christopher Ruddy writes in his June 26 Newsmax column:
Despite lacking overall public support, President Obama’s recent decision to offer amnesty to the children of illegal aliens who meet certain criteria and are in the country in good standing, which could apply to 800,000 people, is a deft political move that may help him keep the White House — unless his GOP rival Mitt Romney acts decisively.
First, it's not "amnesty." As we've pointed out, the policy change permits prosecutorial discretion in delaying legal action against certain undocumented immigrants -- something that, by definition, is not "amnesty."
Second, this policy does not lack public support -- which Ruddy would know if he had read his own website. A June 19 Newsmax article stated that most voters "agree with President Obama’s decision to allow young people brought here illegally who meet certain criteria to avoid deportation."
The article highlighted a poll by the right-leaning Rasmussen Reports finding that 71 percent of Americans "think someone brought to this country illegally when they were under 16 should be allowed to apply for a work permit rather than be deported if they have no criminal record, have graduated from high school or have served in the military" -- the same group of people affected by Obama's policy change. Further, 58 percent of Republicans support that policy.
Ruddy also encourages Mitt Romney to pick Marco Rubio as his vice president, because he is "a favorite of conservatives and would be a historic choice for Romney, one that would demonstrate in a very powerful way a desire to bring Hispanics into the Republican Party and a future Romney administration."
More Birther Stuff WND Won't Report Topic: WorldNetDaily
We already know that WorldNetDaily won't tell its readers about any inconvenient facts that disrupt its birther narrative. Here are a couple more.
On June 22, Salon's Irin Carmon reported that during a recent visit to Kenya, she paid a visit to Barack Obama's step-grandmother, Sarah. After asking a certain question in a straightforward manner -- unlike, say, a certain Anabaptist minister -- and got a straightforward answer:
I said, “Some people want to believe that the president was born in Kenya. Have these people ever bothered you or asked for his birth certificate?”
Mrs. Obama looked concerned, started to protest. But it turned out it was because the rabbits, post-coitus, had started to run away via a security guard’s carelessly ajar gate.
I repeated my question and it was translated. Mrs. Obama wrinkled up her face. Then the interpreter jumped in: “She says, ‘But Barack Obama wasn’t born in Kenya.’” That should settle it.
It won't settle things for WND, which has repeatedly pushed the claim that Sarah Obama said Barack was born in Kenya.
Also, the Obama Conspiracy blog notes that a complaint has been filed with the Internal Revenue Service challenging the Cold Case Posse's 501(c)3 status because of its alleged political activity in its "investigation" of Obama's "eligibility" -- posse leader Mike Zullo has indicated that the investigation has a goal of affecting the 2012 election -- as well as members of the posse using it for personal gain in the form of Zullo and Jerome Corsi keeping the profits from their e-book on the investigation.
You won't hear about any of this unless WND figures out a way to spin it.
CNSNews.com, as we've detailed, is rapidly turning itself into a flytrap for racists, misogynists and homophobes -- something editor in chief Terry Jeffrey seems to be actively trying to make happen.
We see this again in a June 24 article by Jeffrey on President Obama marking the 40th anniversary fo Title IX , a federal law barring discrimination in education. The headline on Jeffrey's article indicates the Obama-hate he brings to it: 25% Fewer Men Than Women Graduate College; Obama: It's ‘A Great Accomplishment ... For America'."
Jeffrey's readers respond to his hatred -- oh boy, do they respond. The comment threads contain the usual misogynism one can expect in an article about giving women equal rights, with a bit of conspiracy theorizing blaming the Rockefellers for feminism:
Jeffrey also managed attract a couple of outright racists to his thread, who call Obama an "African chimp" and a "dark-skinned baboon":
The fact that such offensive statements have remained posted in the thread for at least a day after they were posted -- not to mention the number of "likes" those comments received -- shows that CNS doesn't care about the kind of readers it attracts. It certainly doesn't mind that such hateful people like its website.
Aaron Klein Guilt-By-Association Watch Topic: WorldNetDaily
Aaron Klein loves to hurl specious guilt-by-association attacks against the Obama administration. He tries again with this June 25 article:
Saleha Mahmood Abedin, the mother of Hillary Clinton’s chief of staff, reportedly served in the women’s division of the Muslim Brotherhood alongside the wife of Egypt’s new president, the Brotherhood’s Mohammed Mursi.
That's right -- Hillary Clinton is somehow "tied" to the Muslim Brotherhood because of the mother of her chief of staff.
But that's not the best part. Guess who the source for this information is?
Now, author Walid Shoebat is reporting that while she acted as one of 63 leaders of the Muslim Sisterhood, the de facto female version of the Muslim Brotherhood, Saleha Abedin served alongside Najla Ali Mahmoud, the wife of Mursi. Both were members of the Sisterhood’s Guidance Bureau, found Shoebat.
That would be the same Walid Shoebat who has been credibly accused of embellishing, if not outright lying about, his alleged background as a former terrorist. Klein, of course, mentions nothing about Shoebat's lack of credibility.
The fact that Klein thinks Shoebat is credible speaks volumes about the credibility of Klein and WND.
AIM: Putting Obama's Words In Proper Context Is 'Spin' Topic: Accuracy in Media
The idea that it's "spin" to accurately report what President Obama says in its proper context is spreading from the Media Research Center to Accuracy in Media.
In a June 22 AIM post -- also, fittingly, posted at the MRC's NewsBusters -- Republican Rep. Lamar Smith complains that the media is telling the truth about Obama's remark that "the private sector is doing fine" by pointing out the fact that he was speaking about job growth in the private sector vs. job losses in the public sector. But Smith -- who leads something called the Media Fairness Caucus in the House -- does not believe in fairness and accuracy when it comes to Obama :
Americans’ economic situations are not “fine.” Shortly after President Obama’s address on the economy, the Federal Reserve issued a new report that found Americans’ average net worth dropped by nearly 40% from 2007 to 2010. It is common sense that this new report would be highlighted by the media in contrast to President Obama’s claim a couple days earlier that the “private sector is doing fine.”
Americans deserve true objective reports from the media instead of biased reports to protect the President. Americans are concerned about the economy as many are unemployed or underemployed. The liberal national media owe it to the American public to provide objective coverage when discussing this and other issues.
But the media Smith cited were reporting accurately about Obama's remarks. The fact that the truth is inconvenient to Smith's right-wing agenda doesn't change that.
John Rocker Is Now A WND Columnist Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily has announced that it has hired former baseball player John Rocker as an "exclusive weekly columnist." If that name sounds familiar, WND is eager to explain it away:
A fierce defender of conservative values, Rocker says his book, “Scars and Strikes,”is a wake-up call to those who base their perception of him on the Sports Illustrated article that led to a 14-game suspension from baseball in 2000. MLB Commissioner Bud Selig assigned Rocker to mandatory “sensitivity” training as part of his “sentence.”
Jeff Pearlman was the Sports Illustrated writer whose report sparked a media firestorm aimed at Rocker.
Commenting on ever playing for a New York team, Rocker told Pearlman: “I would retire first. It’s the most hectic, nerve-racking city. Imagine having to take the [Number] 7 train to the ballpark, looking like you’re [riding through] Beirut next to some kid with purple hair next to some queer with AIDS right next to some dude who just got out of jail for the fourth time right next to some 20-year-old mom with four kids. It’s depressing.”
Rocker’s teammates and friends in Major League Baseball rushed to defend him, but the damage was done.
That's right -- a guy best known for making numerous insensitive racial remarks now writes for WND.
WND softened up its readers toward Rocker in a May 29 profile by Michael Thompson, who described Rocker's racially charged rhetoric as merely "politically incorrect" and claimed that "Rocker was the first victim of many shots in the politically correct war waged against patriotic Americans."
Thompson also helped Rocker get back at Pearlman, calling him "notorious" and claiming without evidence that Pearlman "goaded" Rocker "into saying controversial things." Thompson uncritically quoted Rocker saying that Pearlman penned "eerily similar hatchet jobs to dozens of other subjects during his 20 year career."
Thompson made no apparent effort to contact Pearlman for his response to Rocker's attacks.
Thompson did further sucking up to Rocker in an accompanying article recounting how Rocker once went "an incredible 21-and-a-half innings without giving up a run in the playoffs."
After getting such fawning, uncritical treatment in which his every personal attack on Pearlman is treated as the gospel truth, why wouldn't Rocker want to write for WND?
Joseph Farah's Myopic Support of Syrian Dictator Topic: WorldNetDaily
We've detailed how WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein is taking the side of murderous Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. Now his boss is doing the same thing:
In his June 22 WND column, Joseph Farah at least concedes, unlike Klein, that Assad is a bad person. But that's OK because the other side is worse:
Now, don’t get me wrong. I have always been a staunch critic of Bashar al-Assad and his tyrant father before him. But, in the Middle East, the choice is often between bad and worse. And, predictably, Barack Obama has chosen worse by siding with Islamists over the authoritarian dictator with plenty of faults of his own.
For Americans, our prime concern should be humanitarian in a conflict like this. While Syria is an anti-Semitic and anti-Israel police state, what will inevitably follow the fall of Assad will make the current regime look like a benevolent picture of stability by comparison.
Syria is the home of one of the largest Christian populations in the Middle East. That is largely due to the Christian refugee crisis that was brought about largely due to the turmoil in Iraq since the U.S. intervention there. While Assad is a bad actor, he has been tolerant of religious minorities, including Christians. In fact, Assad, an Alawite, is part of a religious minority himself.
But if the Assad regime falls, it will mean genocide for the Christian community. In fact, the escalating rebellion is already taking its toll on Syrian Christians.
Farah is engaging in the worst kind of myopia here: Muslims bad, Christians good. Sure, Assad is a dictator who is killing his own people and destroying his country to stay in power, but hey, he's not targeting Christians!
In short: As long as the non-Christians are only attacking and killing themselves, the violence in Syria doesn't matter.