For the past two weeks, the Media Research Center has refused to devote any original coverage to the implosion of the "60 Minutes" Benghazi story it promoted. It's finally done so -- but only as a passing glance.
A Nov. 12 MRC item by Brad Wilmouth is devoted to attacking MSNBC's Chris Hayes for having "fretted about CBS News correspondent Lara Logan being biased in favor of military action against terrorists." As an aside, Wilmouth adds: "He also theorized that her retraction for using a dishonest source 'would be a huge story' if a conservative was being criticized, as he alluded to Dan Rather's story about former President George W. Bush and the National Guard."
Wilmouth doesn't mention that one key piece of evidence supporting Hayes' claim is his own item, which is the first original MRC work to acknowledge any problems with the "60 Minutes" story.
WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian is such a rabid Obama-hater that he has no problem with spreading disinformation and lies about the president -- which is problematic since Kupelian is supposed to be operating a "news" operation that relies on facts.
Thus, we have the spectacle of Kupelian using his Nov. 10 WND column to pretend that he can read Obama's mind -- which, in practice, means that Kupelian is inventing the "actual purpose" of Obama administration policies.
For instance, Kupelian claims that the "actual purpose" of the stimulus was "A slush-fund to further Democratic Party tax-and-spend policies, pay public employee union pension and health-care costs, fund pet projects like Solyndra and Lightspeed and provide pork for Democratic districts and states." Kupelianalso claimed that "the stimulus failed to help the economy, reduce unemployment or create “shovel-ready jobs” -- which is demonstrably false. (Remember, facts don't matter to Kupelian if the goal is attacking Obama.)
Kupelian then plays armchair psychologist, claiming that "the current president has often been characterized by mental health professionals and others as highly 'narcissistic.'"Kupelian names none of those "mental health professionals" making that purported diagnosis, of course.
Kupelian also rants that Obama uses "devious battle tactics for wresting power, and they come directly from Chicago Marxist Saul Alinsky. Remember, Obama practiced and taught Alinsky’s methods." He added: "If you distill Alinsky’s last and most famous book, 'Rules for Radicals,' into one overriding operating principle, the one that makes the rest of his ideas work – it would be intimidation."
But the plain truth is that we twice elected as president a man in the grip of dark forces. For whatever reasons, he displays a mysterious aversion to what is good, and an equally mysterious attraction to what is bad.
Thus, in his attempts to “transform” America to match his inner delusions as to what a just society should look like, he constantly plays games with us – “damn games” as Boehner complained – which in reality are a form of warfare aimed at bringing about revolutionary change.
Saul Alinsky would be proud of Kupelian. He's playing the game perfectly.
TruthRevolt Really Could Use An Editor Topic: Horowitz
A Nov. 11 TruthRevolt item claiming the Columbia Journalism Review that "has now suggested that CBS News ought never to cover issues negative to Democrats because CBS also owns the conservative imprint Threshold Editions" adds in parentheses: "Full disclosure: Threshold Editions is my publisher as well."
Why bother to highlight this when TruthRevolt performed an increasingly rare act of disclosure? Because the post carries no byline. Therefore, we do not know who exactly is making this disclosure, thus defeating the purpose of it.
Actually, it's a blog by Ben Shapiro first posted at Breitbart then rearranged for TruthRevolt consumption. The fact that the TruthRevolt version is anonymous yet carries a disclosure from the author is a sign that the folks at TruthRevolt could really use an editor.
Another sign: While the blog post correctly identifies the publisher involved in the CBS "60 Minutes" Benghazi debacle as Threshold Editions, the blog's subhead identifies the firm as "Threshold Books," which is not the name.
And both versions of the post exclude one point of contention that even TruthRevolt should agree was a problem: Nowhere in the "60 Minutes" piece was it mentioned that a division of CBS published a book featured on "60 Minutes." (It wasn't disclosed in the retraction, either.) As the Columbia Journalism Review article TruthRevolt criticizes notes, CBS essentially "ran a 12-minute infomercial" for a book published by another CBS division.
If TruthRevolt can't do any decent editing, it has no hope of growing behind the paleimitation of NewsBusters the site currently is.
You Know Who Else Supports Ethnic Cleansing, Mr. Farah? Topic: WorldNetDaily
Joseph Farah writes in his Nov. 8 WorldNetDaily column:
It’s tough to get consensus on what’s wrong and what’s right these days.
But there’s one thing almost all civilized people can agree on – “ethnic cleansing” is bad. “Ethnic cleansing” is defined as a policy of eliminating unwanted ethnic or religious groups by deportation, forcible displacement, mass murder or by threats of such acts, with the intent of creating a territory inhabited by people of a homogeneous or pure ethnicity, religion, culture and history. The U.S. led a NATO attack against Serbia in the 1990s on the mere accusation it was involved in ethnic cleansing policies directed against Muslims.
Nevertheless, even with this broad consensus opposing ethnic cleansing, there’s one place in the world nearly everyone supports ethnic cleansing.
It’s in the lands known as Judea and Samaria on the West Bank of the Jordan River under the administration of the Palestinian Authority. There – and only there – does the entire international community favor the complete elimination of all Jewish residents by deportation and forcible displacement if not by mass murder or threats of such acts.
That’s because the Palestinian Authority insists that the “Palestinian state” it seeks to create be 100 percent “Judenrein,” as Hitler would say – free of Jews. And that’s OK with all those supporting the concept of creating a new state based on ethnic cleansing and bigotry that would make Himmler blush.
Jews will simply be unwelcome in this future Palestinian state. End of story. It’s a non-negotiable demand.
Isn’t that the definition of ethnic cleansing?
Farah might want to have a little chat with his star reporter, Aaron Klein. Klein has admitted that "I personally do agree with some of the sentiments of Rabbi Meir Kahane." One of the "sentiments" of Kahane, expressed through his Kach movement in Israel (and carried on through its successor, Kahane Chai), is the expulsion of all Arabs from Israel.
That, according to Farah, is "the definition of ethnic cleansing." Which means that WND employs a reporter who, it would appear, believes in ethnic cleansing.
Farah happens to be in Israel right now leading what he describes in his column as a "tour of 400" through the country with WND-published author Jonathan Cahn. What better opportunity to broach the subject of Klein's Kahanist sympathies with his Jerusalem-based reporter?
MRC's Graham Sneers At 'Leftist Literary Rag' NY Review of Books Topic: NewsBusters
Tim Graham holds the title of director of media analysis at the Media Research Center. For Graham, sneering is a form of "media analysis."
How else to explain Graham's Nov. 8 NewsBusters post, which is ostensibly about a Washington Post article on the New York Review of Books but which is really about Graham's utter contempt for things he does not agree with. Graham sneers that the New York Review of Books is a "leftist literary rag," and how the Post article is a "waterfall of gush." Graham also described the Reivew as a "leftist rag" in the headline of his post.
Graham must not have been paying attention when NewsBusters associate editor Noel Sheppard unleashed his own mountain of gush on Ann Coulter: "Ann Coulter is one of the leading conservative voices in America with too many New York Times bestsellers to count. Her newest book, “Never Trust a Liberal Over Three - Especially a Republican,” is guaranteed to be her next bestseller. As NewsBusters readers know, Ann is a dear friend of the Media Research Center’s and a dear of mine [sic]."
This is what passes for "media analysis" at the Media Research Center, folks.
New Blog Catches WND's Corsi In Plagiarism, Other Journalistic Crimes Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily has long had a problem of its writers plagiarizing other sources, about which WND seems indifferent at best and encouraging at worst.
The latest example comes from a new blog examining the work of WND reporter Jerome Corsi, which documents how Corsi essentially copied two paragraphs of someone else's work for his book "Who Really Killed Kennedy?" which pushes the idea that the CIA was involved in President Kennedy's assassination.
But that's not all. Another post details how a single paragraph in Corsi's book manages to have no less than three major factual errors.
Another post questions Corsi's claim to be "in possession of" a document purporting to show how the U.S. bribed the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt when the only photo of the document WND displayed of it was taken from a Twitter post made nearly two months earlier. We had flagged this document as well, wondering why this supposed Egyptian document carried a date in German.
Public disgust with Obamacare brought Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli closer to a win in the Virgina gubernatorial race than anyone expected, says Republican pollster John McLaughlin.
Cuccinelli "was able to close [in] on Obamacare, on the issue" in "what everybody thought was going to be a landslide," McLaughlin, of John McLaughlin Associates, told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"It was an amazing thing because he was focused on Obamacare," he said of Cuccinelli.
"[Democratic Gov.-elect Terry] McAuliffe was trying to do a rerun of Obama's race where he was doing war on women, he was trying to run on these social issues, on the liberal social issues on abortion and other things, and, really, what people really care about is they're trying to make their lives just get by every day," McLaughlin said Monday.
He said polls on election night, "before the media could pollute them," showed that of 600 voters, "41 percent were conservatives. Only 23 percent were liberals."
Burke apparently didn't fact-check McLaughlin, because she lets his claims stand unchallenged. By contrast, Media Matters notes, polling has shown that the Affordable Care Act did not play a major role in the Virginia governor's race.
Also, what the heck does McLaughlin mean by polling "before the media could pollute them"? Burke is not terribly curious about that, either.
A foundation created by legendary screen actor Jimmy Stewart with the active support of President Ronald Reagan is launching a new initiative to support citizen whistleblowers of all kinds who step forward to expose corruption and abuses of power.
The American Spirit Foundation‘s Citizen’s Whistleblower Network is a new You Tube channel that will feature videos and first-hand accounts by citizens and independent investigative reporters.
The foundation’s website has a whistleblower section that features foundation co-founder Peter Paul, whose exposure of Hillary Clinton’s handling of campaign finances led to the indictment of her campaign finance director and a fine assessed to her campaign for hiding Paul’s in-kind contribution of more than $750,000.
Peter Paul? That name sounds familiar. The article goes on:
As WND reported, Paul is in a federal prison for manipulating the price of the stock in his company, from which he made the campaign donation, as it was collapsing. He blamed President Clinton in a lawsuit for sabotaging the company, Stan Lee Media, to get out of a $17 million agreement to serve as the company’s international promoter after he left the White House.
Calling himself a hidden political prisoner, Paul claims Attorney General Eric Holder and his Justice Department are obstructing justice by reneging on a sentencing agreement that would have released him from federal prison more than three years ago.
Paul is a former business partner of Spider-Man creator Stan Lee, who once served as chairman of the American Spirit Foundation. Paul was the foundation’s president and CEO.
“Hillary is carrying out her promise to finally destroy my family to punish me for exposing the corruption that elected her to the Senate,” Paul contended to WND in an email in March 2012 from the La Tuna federal facility in Anthony, Texas, near El Paso.
The "political prisoner" claim aside, that may be the most truthful description WND has given to Paul's crimes. As we've documented, WND has previously soft-pedaled Paul's criminal record in order to preserve what little credibility he has as a Clinton-basher.
And of course, Paul's claim to be a "political prisoner" -- which nobody at WND apparently felt the need to fact-check -- is completely overblown. If he was innocent of his crimes, why did he flee the U.S. for Brazil in 2001, then spend two years fighting extradition to the U.S.? Paul also ludicrously claimed that "the Clinton Justice Department had him jailed while he was in Brazil" despite the fact that the original indictment against Paul was not issued until June 2001, and he was arrested in Brazil in August 2001 -- months after the Clinton administration left office and, thus, no longer ran the Justice Department.
The unidentified WND writer failed to note the sheer hypocrisy of allowing a twice-convicted felon (he also has a conviction for cocaine possession under his belt) who's still in prison running any kind of whistleblower operation.
CNS Ignores Facts About Medicare To Bash Illegal Immigrants Topic: CNSNews.com
Barbara Hollingsworth -- who we last saw getting an apparently false article she wrote deleted without explanation -- tries her best to attack illegal immigrants in a Nov. 5 CNSNews.com article:
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) spent almost $29 million to cover Medicare Part D prescription drugs for 4,139 individuals “unlawfully present” in the U.S. and thus ineligible to receive federal health care benefits, according to an audit by Daniel Levinson, inspector general of the Department of Health & Human Services.
Hollingsworth described the payments as "unallowable" despite the fact that she also acknowledges that CMS does not have a policy on Medicare payments to undocumented immigrants.
Further, Hollingsworth did not mention that, as Media Matters noted when Fox News picked up the story, that undocumented immigrants contribute $14.4 billion more to the Medicare Trust Fund that they are given in benefits, thus helping contribute to the solvency of the program. Native-born Americans, meanwhile, accounted for a $31 billion deficit to the program.
But reporting all relevant facts was not on Hollingsworth's agenda for this story -- bashing "illegal aliens" was.
WND's Klein Waits Until '60 Minutes' Retracts Benghazi Story To Pile on Discredited Witness Topic: WorldNetDaily
Aaron Klein sounds rather smug in a Nov. 10 WorldNetDaily article:
Now discredited Benghazi whistleblower Dylan Davies scored a book deal and interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes,” even though evidence has been out in the open for over a year that his story conflicted with claims he made in both the book and interview.
On Friday, “60 Minutes” correspondent Lara Logan apologized and said the network was “wrong” for airing a report based in large part on claims made by Davies, a private contractor at the Blue Mountain Group that provided security at the Benghazi compound that was overrun by Islamist militants on Sept. 11, 2012.
Threshold Editions, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, has recalled Davies’ book, “The Embassy House,” spokeswoman Jennifer Robinson told CNN.
The retraction reportedly came after it was discovered Davies provided a conflicting account of his version of events – including where he was during and after the attack – in interviews with the FBI and in an unsigned Blue Mountain incident report provided to the State Department.
WND found, however, that all “60 Minutes” or the book publisher needed to do to discover the inconsistencies in Davies’ claims was search the Web for his last name and the word “Benghazi.”
The Telegraph reported: “Darryl Davies, the manager of the Benghazi contract for Blue Mountain, flew out of the city hours before the attack was launched.”
But Klein offers no evidence that he ran that search at any time before the "60 Minutes" retraction. Then again, Klein had no motivation to do so -- he didn't want Davies to be discredited.
In fact, less than a week ago, Klein was defending Davies, proclaiming that "alleged attempt to discredit a Benghazi guard possibly has backfired."
Of course, Klein was ultimately trying to spin things away from Davies, claiming that the incident report Davies submitted to Blue Mountain "provided a first-person account stating the attack was a coordinated jihadist assault."
The fact that Klein waited until "60 Minutes" retracted its story to tell readers about more conflicting stories from Davies shows that he cares more about taking down Obama than telling the truth.
The MRC Is Still Trying to Exonerate Herman Cain Topic: NewsBusters
Back in the early days of the 2012 presidential campaign, the Media Research Center was an aggressive defender of Herman Cain after allegations of sexual harrassment surfaced -- one of the benefits of being a personal friend of MRC chief Brent Bozell, apparently.
And, it appears, the MRC will never stop defending Cain. Noel Sheppard wrote in a Nov. 2 NewsBusters post on a new book claiming that fellow onetime Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman was the person who floated the sexual harrassment claims about Cain:
As for Cain, readers will certainly recall an October 2011 hit-piece in Politico accusing him of inappropriate behavior with two women.
Although Cain denied the allegations, the media firestorm that ensued was so fierce that he eventually withdrew from the race.
Not surprisingly, as soon as he exited, the accusers went back into their holes and we heard nothing more about the matter. Nothing.
Funny how that happens.
You mean like how we never really heard from Paula Jones again after President Clinton left office?
Sheppard also appears to have forgotten that the central fact of the claims against Cain -- that the National Restaurant Association did reach monetary agreements with two women to settle harassment claims while Cain headed the group -- has never been disputed, including by Cain himself.
That would seem to count for something. To Sheppard, though, telling the truth about Cain is just a "hit-piece."
AIM Acknowledges '60 Minutes' Benghazi Implosion; MRC Still Silent Topic: Accuracy in Media
We noted last week that while Accuracy in Media joined others in the ConWeb in promoting a CBS "60 Minutes" story that included the account of a purported eyewitness to the 2012 attack on a U.S. diplomatic facility in Benghazi, Libya, it also noted that the report failed to disclose that the purported eyewitness had also written a book published by a division of CBS. But it was also slow in responding to questions about the witness' credibility.
Now that the story of the "60 Minutes" witness, Dylan Davies aka "Morgan Jones," has completely imploded, AIM is finally acknowledging the problems in a Nov. 8 column by Roger Aronoff, in which he criticizes how "60 Minutes" correspondent Lara Logan and others "were apparently taken in by this charlatan" and "doubled down" after criticism first surfaced.
Aronoff also engages in some damage control, insisting that "While Davies’ account may have been a lie, the administration still has much to answer for." He adds:
Maybe “60 Minutes” can re-examine the rest of the material from their hundred or so interviews they did for the segment, and come up with a hard-hitting story, that is also accurate. As Lara Logan said in the “60 Minutes Overtime” website-only feature, which has been pulled from the “60 Minutes” website: “So, we left about 98 percent of what we learned on the floor—didn’t even report it—because unless we could substantiate it with primary sources that we truly trusted and whose motivations we trusted, then we didn’t even go there.”
Many lies have circulated regarding the Benghazi attacks of last year. This wasn’t the first. That is why Accuracy in Media founded the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi, which is searching for the truth behind the attacks.
You mean that kangaroo court that's stacked with Obama-haters and birthers?
Meanwhile, the Media Research Center, which also touted the now-discredited "60 Minutes" report, has been utterly silent on its implosion. The only acknowledgement of the controversy so far is an Associated Press article reprinted at CNSNews.com about Davie's book being withdrawn by its publishe.r
None of these six articles mention that 204,000 jobs were created in October.
Also, the "real unemployment rate" CNS references is a fallacy. Because it includes people who are working part-time but would like to find a full-time position, it cannot possibly be an "unemployment" rate.
One has to wonder: Is Dr. Keith C. Wold spinning in his grave because his money is going toward creating such biased and fallacious reporting?
That the establishment media have a leftward lean is news to no one these days, but an episode of reporting on a speech by conservative Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., seems to push the envelope.
It seems the media trumpeted, and even headlined, the senator’s references to abortion, even though he didn’t make any.
The Associated Press reported about Paul’s recent speech at the 10,000-student Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., with the headline: “Rand Paul warns eugenics on horizon unless conservatives stand up against abortion rights.”
Except that Paul didn’t mention abortion in the nearly 18-minute address.
Farah then provided an summary of Paul's speech, refusing to concede that all his talk about eugenics was a pretty obvious reference to abortion. As one Paul supporter stated, "Historically speaking, there is a direct connection between eugenics, birth control, abortion, and race selection. ... Nonetheless, as much as pro-choice advocates want to repudiate part of their movement’s history, these are well-documented facts and are often used to support pro-life policy positions.
Farah then sought to quickly gloss over Paul's plagiarism: "Paul has been under attack for alleged plagiarism in speeches and an article recently. He has conceded he inadvertently made mistakes in crediting sources and has set up a new system for correcting the oversight."
Farah is so focused on distracting from the plagiarism allegations, in fact, that she completely ignores the fact that one of the prime examples of Paul's plagiarism appears in the very speech she's defending. Paul's Liberty University speech on eugenics includes a plot synopsis of the film "Gattaca" -- which was pretty much copied from the Wikipedia entry on the film.
Now that's putting a political agenda before facts!
Newsmax weighed in with a Nov. 5 article by Courtney Coren, who cited not only crazy birther Paul Vallely but the right-wing Investor's Business Daily to back up the conspiracy. Which, on the whole, is about the same amount of solid, documented evidence that WND has -- which is to say, none.
Coren also uncritically repeats Vallely's claim that "we had an Air Force sergeant that was relieved of his duty by a squadron commander who was a woman — she's a lesbian — and he did not believe in same-sex marriages, so he was relieved by her"-- a claim that's been completely discredited.