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Friday, May 24, 2013
Logrolling In Our Time: Trump and Newsmax
Topic: Newsmax

The lovefest between Newsmax and Donald Trump isn't showing any signs of slowing down.

A May 23 Newsmax article is dedicated to ... Trump tweeting nice things about Newsmax:

Donald Trump has expressed high praise for Newsmax and its CEO Christopher Ruddy. The billionaire mogul tweeted: "Newsmax Media is one of the top media outlets in the country. Chris Ruddy has revolutionized political commentary and reporting."

The message was spread far and wide: Trump has more than 2,227,000 Twitter followers. And his TV show "Celebrity Apprentice" is one of NBC's most highly rated programs.

Newsmax is indeed a "top" media outlet — Newsmax.com has reached the No. 1 position in comScore’s News/Politics category.

Of the 61 million Americans comScore tracks seeking political news across all digital platforms, more than 13 million monthly unique visitors turned to Newsmax.com's political sites, exceeding such competitors as Huffington Post and Fox News in March.

As we detailed, Newsmax had to compare its entire website to mere parts of others to be able to say that.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:57 PM EDT
WND Tries to Blame Gays For Sexual Assaults In Military
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In a May 21 WorldNetDaily interview, Elaine Donnelly of the Center for Military Readiness falsely suggests that an increase in male-on-male sexual assaults in the military is linked to allowing gays to openly serve in the military. According to WND, Donnelly said "the military and the federal government are kidding themselves if they don’t think some major policy decisions aren’t contributing to the rise in sexual violence."

But as the Washington Times article WND and Donnelly refererence in support of their claims points out, very few of the male-on-male perpetrators are gay. Indeed, this is a longtime problem in the military that is unrelated to the status of gays.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:03 AM EDT
Thursday, May 23, 2013
CNS' Lucas Fails At Trying to Create An Obama Conspiracy
Topic: CNSNews.com

Fred Lucas smells a conspiracy in a May 20 CNSNews.com article:

The head of the National Treasury Employee Union (NTEU), which represents employees of the Internal Revenue Service, met with President Barack Obama in the White House one day before the manager of the IRS’s “Technical Unit” suggested establishing a “Sensitive Case Report” for the tax-exempt status applications of Tea Party groups, according to data from the official White House visitor log and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.

The White House visitor log shows that NTEU President Colleen Kelley met with Obama--“POTUS,” President of the United States--on March 31, 2010.

[...]

At 11:03 a.m. Monday, CNSNews.com e-mailed the White House press office, referencing the March 31, 2010 meeting between Kelley and Obama: “Did they discuss tea party groups or other conservative groups in any context?”

CNSNews.com also called the White House press office immediately and confirmed that it had received the e-mailed question.

As the White House press briefing was ending on Monday, CNSNews.com asked White House Press Secretary Jay Carney as he was leaving the podium, “Did the Treasury union chief talk about tea parties during her meeting with the president in March 2010?”

Carney did not respond.

Later on Monday afternoon, CNSNews.com again e-mailed the White House press office and Carney, with the same question sent earlier in the day. CNSNews.com also called the White House press office and confirmed that it had received the e-mailed question.

However, neither the press office nor Carney responded before this story was posted.

Had Lucas bothered to do a little actual research instead of trying to play gotcha by suggesting the White House's non-responses to him were evidence that Obama was trying to hide something, he would have learned that Kelley was one of 117 visitors who came to the Old Executive Office Building for what the log describes as a "Workplace Flexibility Forum," and she did not have a personal meeting with Obama.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:51 PM EDT
WND's Farah Ludicrously Calls Obama Gosnell's 'Accessory to Murder'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah begins his May 20 WorldNetDaily column by admitting that it "may seem loaded and over the top" to argue that President Obama is an "accessory to murder" in the Kermit Gosnell case. Given that this statement comes from a man who once accused Obama of trying to kill God (which earned Farah a coveted Slantie Award), clearly nothing is too loaded and over the top for Farah to spew when it comes to anything related to the president.

As we've come to expect from Farah, his over-the-top accusation against Obama is rooted in a lie. He writes:

Why can’t Obama talk about it?

Because Obama is on record as supporting the kind of thing Gosnell did.

[...]

 As an Illinois state senator, Obama twice voted against bills that would have “defined any aborted fetus that showed signs of life as a ‘born alive infant’ and entitled to legal protection.” He said he viewed the bills as backdoor attempts to deny women the right to abortion.

So, in other words, if Obama had his way, Gosnell would still be practicing – still free to kill more babies.

As we've repeatedly pointed out, Illinois already had a law at the time requiring medical care for a viable fetus that survived an abortion, and what Obama opposed were efforts to expand that law with a "born alive" clause requiring that any fetus that survived an abortion, even ones that could not survive outside the womb, receive medical care. Obama has said he opposed those bills because the law would likely have been struck down in the courts for giving legal status to fetuses, a requirement that a second doctor be present at abortions, and their lack of a "neutrality clause" to make sure the bill would not affect current abortion laws.

What Gosnell did was already illegal, and the proposed Illinois law would not have made it any more so.

This sort of casual mendacity gives away his little game of playing dumb about the partisan motive in his upcoming "Day of Prayer and Fasting." If Farah was a real Christian, he wouldn't lie with such impunity, and he would be begging forgiveness for his sins not only from God but from WND's readers.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:31 PM EDT
MRC's Graham Lets Bad Reporting Slide (When It Makes Obama Look Bad)
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Tim Graham demonstrates the flip side of his employer's multimillion-dollar campaign of intimidating reporters into not telling the truth about conservatives when it makes conservatives look bad; It won't call out bad reporting as long as it makes Obama look bad.

Graham uses a May 20 NewsBusters post to mock a Change.org petition criticizing ABC's Jonathan Karl for faulty reporting on the Benghazi talking-points emails. Graham stated that Karl's reporting was merely "inaccurate" without explaining how it was: Karl had claimed he had the actual emails when, in fact, all he had were paraphrased summaries (some of which were inaccurate) from Republican staffers.

Graham went on to snigger: "Joan Walsh at Salon is angry that Karl didn't make some sort of on-air correction on 'This Week' -- as if the networks are good at on-air corrections without a lawsuit pending." Graham wouldn't be so flip about Karl's bad reporting if Obama was a Republican.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:45 PM EDT
WND's Kinsolving: Why Isn't Bestiality Treated The Same As Homosexuality?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Raging homophobe Les Kinsolving is at it again, just asking in his May 20 WorldNetDaily column why bestiality isn't treated the same as homosexuality:

If lesbians, male homosexuals, bisexuals and transsexuals should have the right to marriage licenses – as a few states, including Maryland, now provide – why should the real animal lovers (whose orientation is bestiality) not be allowed to marry?

The argument that animals are incapable of making a choice is surely invalid in that some animals choose to run away when fondled by humans, while others do not – which certainly indicates their ability to choose.

Have there ever been any reports that apprehended practitioners of bestiality have as high a rate of AIDS and syphilis as do homosexuals?

Kinsolving sure knows a lot about sex with animals. Is there something you're not telling us, Les?


Posted by Terry K. at 1:50 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, May 23, 2013 1:52 PM EDT
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
NEW ARTICLE: Bridge Over Biased Waters
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center may have shut down its TimesWatch blog, but Clay Waters' shoddy Times-bashing lives on. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 11:50 PM EDT
WND's Farah Wants In On Some Of That Sweet IRS-Bashing Action
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Years of bogus Obama scandal-mongering means that nobody believes WorldNetDaily anymore, but editor Joseph Farah is desperate to keep his website relevant.

You can smell the desperation in the headline of his May 19 WND column: "Hey! I got audited too!" The column itself reflects the headline: The politically-motivated-IRS-audit train has left the station, and Farah is running after it trying to get aboard, invoking his own history of purportedly politically motivated audits against various entities he used to run:

I was a prominent target of Bill Clinton’s reign of Internal Revenue Service hell on individuals and tax-exempt organizations. And I was the guy who broke the story about it – long before there was a WND. Back then, I had to get the help of the Wall Street Journal, which, to its credit, gave me commentary space to lay out the whole story and turned the sordid tale into an 11-part series of editorials.

But in this day of historical forgetfulness, no one in the media seems to remember how Bill Clinton used the IRS to terrorize Paula Jones and many other women who had the misfortune of crossing his path along with a virtual who’s who of those who made his “enemies list” like me.

Farah fails to note the fact that a joint congressional committee, formed in response to complaints by Farah's Western Journalism Center and other groups, found "no credible evidence" that the IRS was biased against anti-Clinton groups.

Further, Farah expressed no concern that we remember about claims of politiclally motivated IRS audits under the Bush administration -- heck, at one time WND was essentially begging the Bush administration to sic the IRS on a group critical of the administration's agenda.

Farah generally doesn't miss an opportunity to portray himself as a victim, which is why he's so desperate to glom onto the IRS story.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:06 PM EDT
NewsBusters' Sheppard Issues Another Correction
Topic: NewsBusters

NewsBusters associate editor Noel Sheppard is practically a correction-generating machine, frequently putting his right-wing agenda ahead of the truth in such a manner that even the normally reluctant NewsBusters has to issue corrections (though not as many as should be issued).

And so we see it again in a May 21 post, in which Sheppard had repeatedly identified Lizz Winstead, who had made a tweet of questionable taste regarding the Oklahoma tornadoes that she quickly apologized for and deleted after the scope of the devastation became clear -- as co-creator of "Jon Stewart's Daily Show."

Well, no -- Winstead was co-creator of "The Daily Show" as hosted by Craig Kilborn. Near as we can tell, she hasn’t had any direct involvement in the show since 1998 or so, before Stewart became the host.

Well, Sheppard managed to figure that out after the fact, because he has added a correction to his post:

*****Update: The original version of this article referred to Jon Stewart's Daily Show. The headline and the text have been corrected as Craig Kilborn was the original host.

By contrast, Sheppard felt no need to apologize for stating in a tweet, "If contraceptives R 2 B covered by health insurance shouldn't alcohol since sober people don't need birth control?"

Remember, this guy has a actual title (and, presumably, commensurate salary) at the MRC -- which it appears he will continue to have despite his lengthy record of screw-ups.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:03 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, May 22, 2013 11:14 AM EDT
WND Basically Does A Push Poll on Obama Impeachment
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Bob Unruh waxes poetic -- and highly biased -- in a May 19 WorldNetDaily article:

The faux stone columns from his Denver acceptance speech are crumbling, the fireworks have fizzled and the unadulterated adulation of Barack Obama is a sour feeling of disillusion, as a new poll reveals half of America wants him impeached, including a stunning one in four Democrats.

“It may be early in the process for members of Congress to start planning for impeachment of Barack Obama, but the American public is building a serious appetite for it,” said Fritz Wenzel, of Wenzel Strategies, which did the telephone poll Thursday. It has a margin of error of 4.36 percent.

Yes, WND's ethically challenged pollster strikes again. But if you look at the questions Wenzel asked, they are so biased and so clearly designed to elicit an affirmative response for impeachment that it's no better than a push poll:

  • The administration of Democrat Barack Obama has still not satisfied congressional and media questions about just what it knew and when it knew it about the terrorist attack on U.S. diplomats in Benghazi, Libya, last September 11. That attack killed four Americans, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya. The Obama administration has changed its explanation of that attack several times since and has so far refused to identify those officials who made key decisions not to send help to stop the attacks, and who decided not to initially call the killings a terrorist attack. Knowing that and anything else you may be aware of about this issue, do you agree or disagree that President Obama should be impeached over his handling of this situation?
  • It has been learned that the Internal Revenue Service, under the administration of Democrat Barack Obama, has purposely targeted conservative and Christian groups for harassment over their tax exempt status while giving liberal nonprofit groups little or no scrutiny. Further, the IRS apparently leaked private tax information from these conservative groups to opposing liberal groups who were able to use that confidential information for political advantage. Knowing this and anything else you may be aware of about this issue, do you agree or disagree that President Obama should be impeached over his handling of this situation?
  • It has been learned that the U.S. Department of Justice under the administration of Democrat Barack Obama secretly obtained confidential telephone records of many reporters of the Associated Press in Washington, D.C. Attorney General Eric Holder has said his department obtained the phone records without the permission or knowledge of the Associated Press in order to find who in the federal government was leaking information about terrorist plots against America. AP officials have strongly protested this invasion of their privacy but the administration stands by its actions. Knowing this and anything else you may be aware of about this issue, do you agree or disagree that President Obama should be impeached over his handling of this situation?

Since WND is paying Wenzel good money to get the poll results it wants, it certainly won't tell you how abysmal Wenzel's polling was in the 2012 elections. Most notably, in the Missouri Senate race, Wenzel had Todd Akin ahead of Claire McCaskill by 4 points a few weeks before the election -- which McCaskill won by 16 points.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:39 AM EDT
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
CNS Takes 'Irrelevant' Remark Out of Context
Topic: CNSNews.com

Susan Jones does her best to take Obama adviser Dan Pfeifer's claim about it being "irrelevant" whether the IRS broke the law by allegedly giving extra scrutiny to the tax-exempt applications of tea-party groups out of context.

The headline of Jones' May 20 CNS article reads, "Obama's Point Man: 'The Law Is Irrelevant,'" and Jones herself wrote that Pfeifer "at one point told ABC's George Stephanopoulos, 'The law is irrelevant.'"

The full context of Pfeifer's remarks is, of course, buried farther down in the article. That context -- which Jones didn't see fit to lead with -- is that the legality of the IRS' actions are "irrelevant" because President Obama considers it to be wrong regardless.

This is yet another case in which CNS decided it would regurgitate right-wing talking points instead of report the truth.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:37 PM EDT
The WND Birther Blackout Is Back On
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Earlier this month, WorldNetDaily dipped its toes back into the birther pool after a post-election break. Now, WND is is full pre-election mode -- with all the blackouts of inconvenient facts that go along with it.

Bob Unruh devotes his May 19 WND article to regurgitating the birther talking points regarding the latest lawsuit, and he has no time for inconvenient facts. 

Unruh touts an affidavit from Cold Case Posse chief Mike Zullo asserting that "there was probable cause that forgery and fraud had been committed" regarding Obama's birth certificate. He makes no mention of Frank Arudini's deconstruction of a similar Zullo affidavit pointing out that, among many other falsehoods and deceptions, that Zullo claims to be speaking from "pesonal knowledge," which is simply false based on the legal definition of the term since "a full 60% of the affidavit has been told to him by Jerome Corsi or gleaned from other sources on the Web."

Unruh claims that the cold case posse was assembled by Sheriff Joe Arpaio "at the request of his constituents, who were concerned they were being defrauded by having an ineligible candidate on the 2012 election ballot." That's a highly disingenuous take on the truth; as we documented, WND's Jerome Corsi got the investigation ball rolling by making a birther presentation to a tea party group.

Unruh notes that Roy Moore is on the Alabama Supreme Court overseeing the case in question and "is on record previously questioning Obama’s constitutional eligibility to serve as president," but he doesn't bring up whether such a prejudicial opinion should disqualify him from judging this case.

Unruh fails to disclose that Larry Klayman, who is representing the birther side of this case, has done legal work for WND, thus violating longstanding journalistic ethics about reporting conflicts of interest.

We'll give Unruh a pass on this one since it was failed after his article was published, but don't look for any future reporting on an amicus brief filed by the Alabama Democratic party in the case that exposes yet another flaw in Zullo's affidavit: that it's signed "solely in his personal capacity and without any title, even an imaginary one."

So: The birther games have resumed at WND, and they have as much to do with reality as its earlier anti-Obama jihad.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:53 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 21, 2013 8:56 PM EDT
At NewsBusters, Telling The Truth = "Demonizing"
Topic: NewsBusters

Remember the Media Research Center's multimillion-dollar campaign last year of demanding that the media "Tell The Truth!" except when it made conservatives look bad? Well, they're still at it.

Jeffrey Meyer huffs in a headline on a May 20 NewsBusters post: 'MSNBC Dutifully Demonizes Conservative Black GOP Politician: ‘He Might Make Todd Akin Look Like A Moderate'." And how, exactly did MSNBC "demonize" this politician? By telling the truth.

Meyer complained that MSNBC's Chuck Todd "hammered the GOP’s nominee for Virginia Lieutenant Governor, African-American pastor E.W. Jackson, as extreme and someone who 'might make Todd Akin look like a moderate.' 'Can the GOP win in 2013 with a ticket of candidates who are best known for being very conservative and very outspoken on social issues?' Todd rhetorically asked before playing several clips of Jackson in a manner worthy of a liberal attack ad." If that wasn't enough, Meyer writes, "Nowhere in the segment did Todd feel it necessary to mention the passionate speech Jackson gave at the convention, instead choosing to mock the candidate as worse than Todd Akin, the U.S. Senate candidate last year now infamous for his "legitimate rape" remarks."

Oddly, Meyer doesn't include the content of the Jackson clips Todd played in the body of his item, only in the transcript at the end.Meyer also doesn't complain of any inaccuracy on Todd's part, only that Todd played accurate clips of Jackson saying:

E.W. JACKSON: Planned Parenthood has been far more lethal to black lives than the KKK ever was and the Democrat Party and their black civil rights allies are partners in this genocide.

[...]

JACKSON: I know that people say, well, it's unfair to associate homosexuality with pedophilia or some of these other perversions, but I believe that there is a direct connection because what they really want is absolute, complete and total sexual freedom.

Does Meyer not think these remarks are controversial? Or is he trying to work the ref as the MRC did last year, trying to discourage any scrutiny of Republican candidates?


Posted by Terry K. at 11:21 AM EDT
WND's Colin Flaherty Pretends He Knows About Kansas City
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Colin Flaherty is still trying to race-bait, this time in a May 19 WorldNetDaily column insisting that it's "black mobs," and only "black mobs," taking part in "dozens" of incidents in Kansas City:

I’ve talked to police. I’ve talked to victims. I’ve seen video. I’ve read Twitter streams and Facebook pages. I’ve read comments on Kansas City news sites. And every single one of these sources confirms one fact: Everyone involved in the dozens of episodes of racial violence and lawlessness at the Kansas City Plaza is black.

Or are all those observers as racist as the police? Selectively noticing just the black people? Are whites or Asians or Amish also making the Plaza a mini-war zone? And are police ignoring them?

Huh? What is this "Kansas City Plaza" he's talking about? Anyone who is remotely familiar with Kansas City knows the area he's referring to is called Country Club Plaza. If Flaherty had actually done the amount of research he claims he did, he would know that as well.

And are there really "dozens of episodes of racial violence and lawlessness" there? A report from a Kansas City TV station cites "several violent teen fights" in recent years, but we haven't seen any evidence of "dozens" of instances of "black mob violence" there.

But Flaherty wasn't done demonstrating his ignorance. Near the end of his column, he wrote: "Councilman Reed, another question: You want honesty? Then can you please honestly tell me where black people in Kansas got the idea that they can visibly and publicly break the law, hurt people, destroy property, over and over again?"

Again, as anyone remotely familiar with the area knows -- and Flaherty would know too if he'd done the research he claims he has -- Country Club Plaza is in Kansas City, Missouri. Unless Flaherty thinks all the "black people in Kansas" are crossing the border to make Kansas City look bad.

If Flaherty is incapable doing even the most basic research about the city he's writing about, his obsessive race-baiting must be just as factually shoddy.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:19 AM EDT
Monday, May 20, 2013
CNS Still Unhappy Feds Are Spending Money On Gays
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com remains unusually concerned that the federal government is spending money on gay people.

A May 15 article by Elizabeth Harrington states: "While the White House claims its stimulus package 'supported as many as 3.5 million jobs,' none were yielded from a $152,000 project to ready lesbians for 'adoptive parenthood.'" Harrington obviously disapproves of the expenditure, but she doesn't explain why.

CNS does have a particular disdain for LGBT folks being the beneficiary of federal largesse: Of the 20 articles currently listed on CNS' "Waste Watch" page, five of them involve LGBT issues.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:25 PM EDT

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