Prayer Breakfast Organizer Flip-Flops on Farah's Invitation Topic: WorldNetDaily
Last week we noted how Media Matters (disclosure: my employer) reported on WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah being removed from the guest list of a Inauguration Day prayer breakfast. Since then, somebody's story has changed.
Media Matters' source for the story was Rev. Merrie Turner, organizer of the prayer breakfast. But Turner is suddenly singing a different tune.
A Jan. 15 WND article by Bob Unruh said that Turner has "repudiated" what she told to Media Matters:
“The misinformation resulted from a number of factors: a confusion over the exact status of guests combined with the fluidity of the program, erroneous assumptions, miscommunication, a train of questioning by Media Matters as to whether we would allow anyone to use the event as a platform to attack the president, my desire to clarify that the event was not about anyone doing so, and what appears to be the aim of Media Matters to attack and humiliate Joseph Farah.”
She explained, “Joseph Farah was asked for his help regarding the event. He graciously gave it. He never invited himself to the event. Nor did he ever ask or expect anything in return. We affirm that the event is to pray for America at a critical time and juncture, for the American presidency and government. We also want to clearly state and affirm that it would be an honor to have Joseph Farah be part.
“I am truly sorry for anything said or spoken, any confusion and miscommunication, and for any distress this may have caused Joseph Farah,” she said.
Media Matters responded to the WND article by pointing out that Turner "has made no effort to contact Media Matters with any complaint about the report or any requests for corrections or clarifications about her comments," and that Turner is refusing to respond to requests for clarification and even hung up on a Media Matters reporter.
What happened? Did Turner get caught telling the truth and then had to backpedal to salvage relationships with Farah allies? We don't know; we do know that WND has no interest in finding out.
Meanwhile, Farah used his Jan. 16 column to rehash Unruh's artile, bash Media Matters and its "libel" against him , and whine that "the Media Matters story was picked up uncritically by news outlets, especially ones labeling themselves as 'Christian.'"
Curiously missing from Farah's column: any mention of Media Matters' response to Turner's flip-flop, even though it was published several hours before Farah's column appeared.
Farah seems to have not considered the possibility that Turner is only telling him what he wants to hear to get himself out of trouble.
Also, Farah obviously does not know the definition of libel, even though he has worked in journalism for three decades. Here's a refresher for Farah:
Newsmax Fearmongers About Obama's Executive Actions on Guns Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax's Jim Meyers turns up the fearmongering over President Obama's executive actions on gun regulations in a Jan. 16 article:
You’re visiting a doctor because you have flu symptoms. After checking your heart, pulse and other vital signs, the doctor says, “By the way, the federal government has authorized me to ask you: What type and how many guns do you have in your home?"
Sound like George Orwell’s 1984?
No. It’s 2013.
And if President Barack Obama gets his way by executive order, doctors across the country could play a key role in his new gun control initiative.
In fact, Obama's executive action does not require doctors to ask patients about guns, nor does it require doctors to report gun owners to law enforcement.
Newsmax promoted Meyers' story on its front page with this misleading graphic:
Not even Meyer offers any evidence to back up the suggestion that doctors will turn children into snitches against their parents.
The utter and rank hypocrisy of NewsBusters associate editor Noel Sheppard knows no bounds.
We recently highlighted Sheppard's complaint that Stephen Colbert called the National Rifle Association's Wayne LaPierre Wednesday, "f--ked in the head"; Sheppard went on to use Colbert as an example of the deplorable state of political discourse, despite Sheppard's own record of condoning insults against non-conservatives.
Now, just a mere five days after his rant against Colbert and "the toxic political tone in our nation," Sheppard flip-flopped again. In a Jan. 15 post, Sheppard approvingly quotes Colbert telling CNN host Piers Morgan to "get the f--k out of Dodge." Sheppard added: "Colbert's expletive was obviously deleted, and meant as a joke. Despite this, I quite imagine many across the fruited plain - including those that have signed a White House petition for Morgan's deportation - agree with him."
Funny that Colbert gets the joke defense here, when Sheppard refused to concede that Colbert's similar remark to LaPierre was a joke. Doesn't Sheppard understand how silly he looks by having such blatant double standards?
WorldNetDaily -- which has longengaged in fearmongering over vaccines -- devotes a Jan. 14 article to an anti-vaccine rant by right-wing radio host MIchael Savage:
“The flu vaccine?” he asked. “No, I wouldn’t take it.”
Savage noted “not everything your government tells you is true.”
“So it’s good to have a cynic in radio who questions authority,” he said.
The vaccine, he pointed out, contains formaldehyde and thimerosal – an organic compound containing mercury, which impairs the neurological and immune systems – along with detergents, antibiotics and allergens that cause infertility.
The CDC itself, he noted, lists some of these ingredients on its own website as harmful, though it insists the amounts in vaccines is negligible.
Someone may well say, Savage acknowledged,” Well, I took the shot and it didn’t kill me.”
But when you’re older, he argued, “and you get ALS or Alzheimer’s disease or MS, or you watch your kid develop seizures, or your kid becomes autistic, God forbid, what are you going to say?”
The relationship between the vaccine and any one person acquiring these diseases can’t be known for certain, he said, “But why increase the chances of inducing such illnesses in yourself and your children?”
Needless to say, WND made no attempt to talk to an actual medical expert for a response to Savage's paranoia. Nor did WND disclose its business relationship with Savage in the form of hosting his website. Such refusal to disclose a conflict of interest runs counter to accepted journalistic ethics.
NEW ARTICLE -- 2013 Slanties: Oppa Slantie Style Topic: The ConWeb
Biased reporting, wild claims, bizarre conspiracy theories -- it must be time to review the year in the ConWeb. Hey, sexy lady, let's do this! Read more >>
WND's John Rocker Thinks We Should Emulate Alex Jones -- Then Says Armed Jews Could Have Stopped Holocaust Topic: WorldNetDaily
John Rocker writes in his Jan. 14 WorldNetDaily column:
Now, there are many areas where Alex Jones, the host of “The Alex Jones Show” and man behind InfoWars.com, and I disagree politically, but having appeared on his show before I can say that his stance for freedom, American sovereignty and the Second Amendment deserves not just respect but emulation.
Appearing on “Piers Morgan Tonight” with Piers Morgan, a British expatriate who serves as a 21st century version of a King George Redcoat championing the disarming of the American people, Jones let him have it in a way that no individual from the GOP or the NRA – save the late, great Charlton Heston who is sorely needed now – has dared when confronting any mouthpiece for Obama’s gun-grab.
Here’s the main point of the conversation, with Jones telling Morgan, “The Second Amendment isn’t there for duck hunting, it’s there to protect us from tyrannical government and street thugs.”
He’d even go one step further, saying, “1776 will commence again if you try to take our firearms.”
Jones has the type of energy I like and, more importantly, that is desperately needed by patriotic Americans who are beginning to view the actions of the Obama administration as treasonous and the milquetoast response by the GOP as pedestrian.
Meanwhile, Rocker does his best Alex Jones emulation:
Absolute certainties are a rare thing in this life, but one I think can be collectively agreed upon is the undeniable fact that the Holocaust would have never taken place had the Jewish citizenry of Hitler’s Germany had the right to bear arms and defended themselves with those arms.
Despite this being a popular talking point by some on the right wing, this is demonstrably false. Gun ownership was never widespread in Germany, even when there were few if any controls on people’s rights to own firearms. To suggest, then, that the Holocaust was made possible by the lack of armed Jews is pure nonsense on the facts alone.
More significantly, Rocker’s nonsense here downplays if not ignores the fact that it was not some tangential gun policy that led to the Holocaust, but the actual policy of implementing the Holocaust which led to the Holocaust. Jews were not targets of opportunity by the Nazis, seized upon because, hey look, they’re unarmed. They were intentionally and systematically targeted for persecution and extermination by the government, which had millions of troops under its command, armed with state-of-the-art weaponry. To suggest that some “Red Dawn”-style uprising would have prevented the Nazis from committing their crimes against humanity is pure, facile revenge fantasy, the likes of which can only be espoused by a person who has no experience with persecution.
Or maybe it’s worse. Perhaps Rocker and his ilk really don’t think that armed Jews would have stopped the Nazis and, instead, are cynically using the Holocaust as a prop in the latest act of political theater. Perhaps they view the Holocaust as a useful and emotionally-laden example with which to guilt, shame or manipulate their opponents in a modern day political dustup.
If so, it’s more despicable than it is ignorant. Way more despicable than anything the younger Rocker told Jeff Pearlman in that interview that got him into trouble back in the 90s.
The mainstream media initially gave little or no coverage to presidential candidate Barack Obama's failure to produce a birth certificate, then lambasted those who questioned his eligibility for the White House.
But the press is already bringing up the question of Cruz's eligibility for president — which suggests that Democratic sympathizers are worried about his possible run for the White House in 2016.
Obama was born in Hawaii to an American mother and a Kenyan father, although some questioned his Hawaiian birth. Cruz was born in Canada to an American mother and a Cuban father who were working in the petroleum industry, and he lived in Canada for four years before his family moved to Texas.
WND Fake-Name Reporter Pushes Yet Another Anonymous Claim Topic: WorldNetDaily
The pseudonymous "Reza Kahlili" keeps piling up the anonymity gambits in his latest WorldNetDaily article:
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is convening an emergency meeting Monday of his cabinet and others from the Supreme National Security Council over WND’s revelation of the Islamic regime’s secret nuclear facility.
The exclusive WND report on Jan. 7 said the secret facility is in Khondab near the city of Arak in central Iran.
According to a source in the Revolutionary Guards intelligence unit with access to Iran’s nuclear program, Iran is scrambling to find out who leaked the information.
Needless to say, "Kahlili" offers no actual proof of any of this. As we've detailed, his claimed source for this is the same one who reportedly said that Iran has has "genetically altered" smallpox, which can't possibly be true because naturally occuring smallpox was eradicated in 1977 and the only place the disease exists is in two highly secure laboratories in the U.S. and Russia.
But then, following journalistic standards is not exactly high on WND's priority list -- fear and smear is, which is why it has hired someone hiding behind a fake name and unverifiable anonymous sources to be a "reporter."
Noel Sheppard: Stop With The Nixon Jokes! Topic: NewsBusters
Leave it to Noel Sheppard to defend the honor of Richard Nixon, which he does in a Jan. 9 NewsBusters post complaining that NBC's Brian Williams said that fellow NBCer Al Roker's unfortunate post-stomach-stapling incident of incontence in the White House "hasn't happened in the West Wing since Nixon discovered the tapes."
This leads to a lengthy rant from Sheppard:
Yet why did Williams feel the need to go so far back in history to something that likely most of the audience would be too young to understand?
Certainly there have been other things that have happened in more recent American history that have similarly shocked and disturbed a president.
For example, Williams might have said, “That kind of thing that happened to Al hasn't happened in the West Wing since Carter heard about hostages being taken at our embassy in Iran.”
Or how about, “That kind of thing that happened to Al hasn't happened in the West Wing since the Drudge Report broke the news about Clinton and Monica Lewinsky?”
Or “That kind of thing that happened to Al hasn't happened in the West Wing since Clinton heard he was being impeached?”
On the other hand, if he really wanted to express how rare such an occurrence is, Williams might have said, “That kind of thing that happened to Al hasn't happened in the West Wing since the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.” At least this wouldn’t have involved a political scandal.
No, the butt of this distasteful joke about a president having an embarrassing accident in the White House of course had to be a Republican.
Color me very unsurprised.
And color us unsurprised that Sheppard is exactly the kind of partisan hack would defend a notoriously corrupt politician simply because he's a Republican.
WND's Corsi Launches Bogus Attacks on John Brennan Topic: WorldNetDaily
Jerome Corsi writes in a Jan. 9 WorldNetDaily article:
While concern has mounted that former Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel’s nomination to be secretary of defense should be blocked because of past expressed hostility for Israel, little attention has been given to CIA-nominee John Brennan’s view of Islam.
In a speech delivered Aug. 9, 2009, to the Center for Strategic and International Studies that is archived on the White House website, Brennan said using “a legitimate term, ‘jihad’ – meaning to purify oneself or to wage a holy struggle for a moral goal” – to describe terrorists “risks reinforcing the idea that the United States is somehow at war with Islam itself.”
In fact, terrorism and religious experts agree that Brennan is correct in not referring to terrorists as "jihadists" because jihad has a legitimate non-violent context in Islam and, as Brennan pointed out, it would reinforce the idea that the U.S. is fighting against Islam and not terrorists.
Corsi also complains that Brennan said that "U.S. foreign policy should encourage greater assimilation of the Hezbollah terrorist organization into the Lebanese government." But he failed to report that the goal of doing so is to encourage the group's moderates and move the organization further away from committing terrorist acts.
But Corsi isn't done trying to falsely delegitimize Brennan. In a Jan. 8 article, he goes through various contortions of guilt by association to link Brennan to "what many suspect was an effort to sanitize Obama’s passport records." Corsi names none of the "many" who "suspect" this.
According to Corsi, Brennan in 2008 was the head of a company with a government contract with the State Department, and one of its employees was reprimanded for breaching the privacy of the passport records of Obama and John McCain. Corsi goes on to state that "a well-placed but unnamed source" told "investigated reporter" Ken Timmerman "that the real point of the passport breach incidents was to cauterize the Obama file, removing from it any information that could prove damaging to his eligibility to be president." This then turns into a tale of a drug dealer who supposedly had "information related to the State Department employees who had breached Obama’s passport records" but who turned up mysteriously dead.
Corsi, by the way, has no proof any of this is connected -- he's just trying to keep his increasingly discredited anti-Obama conspiracy theories alive.
From there, Corsi jumps to suggesting conspiracy theories about Obama's 1981 visit to Pakistan, which he allegedly disclosed "Two weeks after the report that Obama’s passport records had been breached." Corsi hyperventilates: Did Obama use an Indonesian passport to travel to Indonesia and Pakistan in 1981, and was he concerned the breach of his passport records might end up disclosing such information, if true?
CNS Quietly Makes Another False Article Disappear Topic: CNSNews.com
Penny Starr wrote in a Jan. 14 CNSNews.com article:
A Department of Justice (DOJ) report on "Homicide Trends in the United States, 1980-2008," indicates that Americans under 18 are more than 3.5 times more likely to be murdered by poisoning than by a gun shot.
Americans under 18 are also 3.4 times more likely to be murdered by arson than by a gun.
The data show that of all Americans under 18 who were murdered between 1980 and 2008, 28.6 percent were poisoned, 27.9 percent were killed by arson, and 8.1 percent were killed with a gun.
The data also show that between 1980 and 2008, 17.9 percent of the murders of Americans under 18 were in multiple homicides.
But Starr misread the chart in the DOJ report. Here's the relevant information:
The second column of numbers denotes victims under 18. While Starr apparently read the numbers vertically, they're supposed to be read horizontally. The chart does not say that 28.6 percent of murdered children were killed with poison, it says that 28.6 percent of the people murdered by poison were children.
CNS made Starr's article quietly disappear without explanation or apology, making this the second article in the past 24 hours CNS has had to remove for false or questionable claims. Starr's article, meanwhile, is still in Google cache, and a screenshot of the erroneous article is below.
WND Can't Stop Hiding Truth About Esquire Lawsuit Dismissal Topic: WorldNetDaily
Lest we give WorldNetDaily too much credit for commiting a rare act of actual journalism, it's important to remember that the vast majority of the original "news" WND publishes is biased, misleading or incomplete (or even completely false).
A (sadly) much more typical example of WND's journalism is a Jan. 11 article about the latest filing by failed lawyer Larry Klayman in WND's defamation lawsuit against Esquire magazine for a parody article claiming that WND had decided to recall and pulp Jerome Corsi's birther book.
As they have repeatedly done, WND and Klayman rail against Esquire and the judge that dismissed the lawsuit while not only refusing to tell the full story or quote from any legal brief filed by the defendants, they also fail to tell their readers the reason the lawsuit was dismissed.
And it's a pretty damning reason: WND editor Joseph Farah admitted at the time the Esquire blog post was published that he knew it was a parody. As the ruling states, Farah "immediately recognized" that the Esquire article was satire -- telling the Daily Caller that the post was “a very poorly executed parody” -- until it became "inconvenient" for him to do so. The judge added: "Political satire can be, and often is, uncomfortable to its targets, but that does not render it any less satiric or any less an expression on a topic of public concern."
That truth remains inconvenient for Farah, Klayman and WND. And that sort of thing is why nobody believes WND.
CNS Disappears Disputed Claim About Walmart Suspending Ammo Sales Topic: CNSNews.com
A Jan. 14 CNSNews.com blog post by Gregory Gwyn-Williams Jr. claimed that Walmart "will no longer place new ammunition orders pending “the upcoming decision on the Second Amendment.'" Gwyn-Williams cited a blog post at InvestmentWatch citing questionably verified claims and declared, "AMMO RATIONING IMMINENT!!!"
But it seems that there's some dispute over the claim -- so much so that CNS removed Gwyn-Williams' without explanation or apology. The link to his blog post now redirects to the main CNS blog page, and his CNS archive makes no mention of the post.
The shocking reason why? WND did something completely out of character given its history of shoddy and false reporting: it contacted Walmart headquarters.
A follow-up WND article by Chelsea Schilling -- who has her own lengthy history of shoddy reporting -- quoted a Walmart spokesperson as saying that the claim is "inaccurate" and that the retailer is not cutting back on ammo orders.But Schilling also quoted alleged "WND readers" who claimed that their local Walmart stores were not ordering any more.
Much as we can't believe we're saying this, WND performed some actual journalism for once, though it appears the story is not settled. CNS, meanwhile, needs to explain to its readers why it pulled Gwyn-Williams' blog post without telling its readers why.
Yes, there are obvious risks such an individual calling Obama out as a communist and a would-be dictator, knowing that the press would circle the wagons and do their best to make such a person the laughingstock of the century. Need I say that the gravity of our situation should outweigh personal risk?
The political theater we have witnessed over the last weeks was not simply varying degrees of cowardice on the part of GOP lawmakers. We didn’t get to the brink of communism over several decades without their knowledge. Over the last year or so, I posed questions in this space as to whether Republican leaders might have been planning to lose to Obama in the 2012 election, and if they might indeed be merely posturing for the benefit of the electorate in their efforts to oppose him.
I am asked every day by frustrated and often enraged people why Republican leaders are not pursuing any number of issues – some criminal in nature – that might serve to politically defang this president. The only answer I have left is complicity.
Which brings me to the radical community organizer who now occupies the White House. Though I give Barack Obama an “A” for what he has managed to accomplish during his first four years in office – moving the country toward Marxism and dictatorial rule at Mach speed – it has been a two-edged sword for him. He has moved so swiftly that he has also awakened millions of snoozing serfs who had heretofore been quietly and obediently marching in lockstep toward their enslavement.
Today, and as just one example among an ever-expanding array of disgraceful illegal acts by our judges on a daily basis, the refusal of courts to hear eligibility challenges concerning the status of Barack Hussein Obama as a “natural born citizen” reinforces the reality that we no longer have a functional legal system. Notwithstanding that the result is a black-Muslim, anti-white, anti-Semitic and anti-Christian “Manchurian candidate” fraudster socialist tyrant in the Oval Office – bent on tearing down and destroying the pillars of our formerly capitalist society – “We the People” have been left defenseless, legally, by the judges who have taken an oath to obey the U.S. Constitution, the law and mete out justice.
The man who is president has taken hold of the survival of the United States and the Constitution and the media while other elected officials seemingly ignore what’s happening right before their eyes.
There was an election, but what does that mean? What’s the impact on the future for me, my children and their children?
Any thinking person, and there are too few of them, knows there will be an enormous impact. Unfortunately, the average American citizen who re-elected this administration is totally unaware of the destruction that awaits them.
In the same way that whoever is elected president in 2016 will be fortunate because he or she will be compared to Barack Obama, the worst person who has ever disgraced the office, 2013 will only need to be better than 2012. And considering that we suffered through 10 months of non-stop electioneering only to re-elect Obama, 2013 should have a pretty easy time of it.
Hey, folks, remember the good old days when candidate Barack Obama at least pretended to be bipartisan and conciliatory? Now it’s as if he’s on a mission to prove he was faking it.
Obama is behaving like a bitter ex-spouse who knows all our hot buttons and delights in pushing them. He is governing by crisis, fear, alienation, cronyism and anti-constitutional fiat. He is openly flaunting his militant radicalism, as if he’s trying to provoke us – and his second term hasn’t even begun.
I was disgusted – physically sickened, in fact – when Barack Obama, president of these Divided States of America, shamelessly exploited the Sandy Hook memorial service to lay the groundwork for his unconstitutional gun-confiscation scheme. It was slimy to the extreme.
I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised. That’s what liberals do. Every time some evil nutjob – pumped full of psychotropic drugs by NEA members who don’t want to deal with them – shoots-up the place, the left’s collective mouth begins to water.
I really, really hope this president and his authoritarian cohorts in Congress will slow down, take a deep breath and realize that, right now, they’re playing a very dangerous game of chicken. If they try what I think they might, but hope they don’t, I fear this nation – already on the precipice of widespread civil unrest and economic disaster – might finally spiral into to utter chaos, into a second civil war.
But then again, that may be exactly what they have in mind.
Since the fraudulent re-election of Barack Hussein Obama as president – the “mullah in chief” not eligible to be president as he is not a natural born citizen – he has thrown his weight around as if he were our king.
In my last column, I made the historical connection between presidents Wilson and Obama, characterizing Obama as “Wilson reborn.” In other words, if the radical legislation Wilson signed 100 years ago in 1913 was what I call “the birth of a Tragedy,” then America is collectively living through the ghoulish resurrection of Wilson through Obama.