MRC Is Weirdly Sensitive About Idea That Reagan Had Alzheimer's Symptoms While President Topic: Media Research Center
Last fall, the Media Research Center had a weird little freakout over the idea that Ronald Reagan might have been suffering from symptoms of Alzheimer's disease while president, calling anyone who would raise the issue "deranged" -- even though Reagan's son, Ron Reagan Jr., has said he observed possible early signs of the disease in his father.
The MRC continues to be bizarrely sensitive about the issue, however. Curtis Houck put the word "disgusting" in the headline of his Jan. 8 post attacking a couple of people on MSNBC for talking about it:
Continuing the liberal media’s insistence that they can diagnose someone as mentally or physically ill, Monday’s Deadline: White House on MSNBC featured detestable liberal Republicans Nicolle Wallace and David Jolly asserting that Ronald Reagan had Alzheimer’s while president to the point that he may have been unfit for office.
Wallace used the late Michael Deaver (and YouTube videos) as her main sources for claims Reagan having Alzheimer’s while in office, wondering to Jolly if Trump knew about Reagan while tweeting over the weekend: “I don't know if the President doesn't know, has never heard Michael Deavers — the late Michael Deaver post-White House really heartfelt, really honest, really frank articulations of what it was like to see Ronald Reagan age.”
“I wondered today, rereading Donald Trump's tweets about Reagan, if he knew that Ronald Reagan was suspected to have had the early signs of Alzheimer's during his second term as President,” she concluded.
Bill O’Reilly made this claim in his much-maligned book Killing Reagan and it drew widespread condemnation. At the time, George Will penned an absolutely scathing takedown on the book, including the portions about Regan having Alzheimer’s while in office.
Reagan biographer Craig Shirley trashed the book as “garbage” and “total B.S.” for peddling such views. Reagan library executive director John Heubusch said the book was “a disservice to history.”
The Heritage Foundation’s Lee Edwards addressed Reagan’s health in reviewing a Shirley book, writing in 2015 that Reagan “had no serious health problems before his Alzheimer’s diagnosis in 1994.”
When Reagan’s son Ron alleged the same in 2011, his half-brother Michael denied the claim by arguing that Ron “was an embarrassment to his father when he was alive and today he became an embarrassment to his mother.”
Houck didn't mention that all of those deniers are Reagan hagiographers who have a vested interest in bending history to obscure the idea that Reagan might have had health problems while in office. And Michael Reagan insulting his half-brother is evidence of absolutely nothing.
Then, in a Jan. 12 post, Kyle Drennen attacked CBS' Dr. John LaPook for accurately stating that "there are questions about whether Ronald Reagan had symptoms of Alzheimer’s while in office." Drennen retorted: "The claim about Reagan has been repeatedly dispelled by experts of his presidency. George Will denounced the notion as 'slander' in a 2015 Washington Post column. Reagan biographer Craig Shirley called it 'total B.S.'" Like Houck, Drennen didn't admit that Will and Shirley are Reagan hagiographers.
Needless to say, Tomczak does not call out the publisher of his column, presumably because he would like to continue to be published. Instead, he complains that movies based on real people don't stick to what he thinks should be said about them. First, he huffed that "The Darkest Hour," the film about Winston Churchill, has a scene that "erroneously depicts him as uncertain of the direction to take and needing to poll citizens on a subway before deciding what to do. This is blatantly false because Churchill was a man of steely conviction who never wavered in his resolve to stop Hitler."
Next, Tomczak complained that a new film about Tonya Harding tried to "sympathetically present her as a somewhat victimized woman who unfortunately got mixed up with the wrong crowd and subsequently fell short in her quest. The truth is, Tonya Harding was out-of-control and squandered her opportunities because she made deliberate choices to get involved with low-lifers who discussed killing her nemesis." Then he served up revisionist history on another story:
The film, “The Post” with Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep portrays them as champions at the Washington Post publishing top secret Pentagon papers revealing U.S. government lies about the Vietnam War. What is blatantly false is piling on President Nixon as a sinister villain, when in actuality he sought legal recourse to prevent publishing sensitive confidential information that would harm our diplomatic standing as we tried to extricate America from an unpopular war. He tried to protect Democrats LBJ and JFK whom the papers revealed as misleading the masses.
In fact, the Supreme Court found that the government failed to prove its case that publication of the Pentagon Papers harmed national security.
Tomczak then grumbled: "In the coming days, I fully expect Hollywood to release a big budget film depicting the life of former President Barack Obama in the most glowing, flattering way imaginable. For those who 'have ears to hear,' I offer '10 Reasons Why Barack Obama Was Our Worst President' as a factual rebuttal." That article, on Tomczak's personal website, mostly attacks Obama as a "counterfeit" Christian who failed to hate gays as much as Tomczak does and repeats other right-wing Obama-hating talking points.
CNS Follows White House Marching Orders on Steve Bannon Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com these days is mostly about being faithful to the dictates of the Trump White House. And when Steve Bannon was quoted in Michael Wolff's book criticizing the Trump administration and its related scandals, CNS was there to eagerly help the White House make sure that Bannon is persona non grata.
CNS' Melanie Arter dutifully transcribed official White House reaction in twoarticles on Jan. 3, the day book exerpts were released. The headline of the second article, though, sums up just how much being sucked up to means for this adminstration and inadvertently reveals the game CNS is currently playing: "White House on Steve Bannon: Going After President’s Son ‘Not the Best Way to Curry Favor’."
The next day, Susan Jones wrote an flashback article on Bannon -- which was CNS' lead story for part of that day -- insisting last September that the current investigation into Trump's connections with Russia was a "farce,"the goal of which is to try and discredit Bannon's assertion in the Wolff book that there is something to the investigation. She followed that with an article touting how Trump tweeted that Bannon was "Sloppy Steve."
On Jan. 7, CNS published an unusual weekend column by Tim Donner attacking Bannon and declaring, "Let's not mince words here. Bannon is toast." Donner added that Trump supporters with stick with their "game-changing president" over "a guy who rode the wave into the White House before imploding and turning on the man who put him there."
CNS couldn't have followed the Trump agenda any closer if they had been told by the Trump White House what to publish -- which, for all we know, may have actually happened.
WND Still Doing Joe Arpaio's Bidding Topic: WorldNetDaily
Perhaps one reason that WorldNetDaily is teetering on financial ruin is because of its unusually close relationship with unsavory types.
WND was so tight with then-Sheriff Joe Arpaio that not only was it able to maneuver Arpaio into launching that bogus, biased "cold case posse" looking into President Obama's birth certificate, it was able to slip then-WND reporter Jerome Corsi onto it (who, as a birther dead-ender, did nothing to help the posse's credibility).
Having finally lost re-election to his sheriff post after too much corruption, Arpaio is now running for the Republican nomination to a Senate seat in Arizona. And WND is there to lionize him some more. Cue stenography by WND's Bob Unruh in a Jan. 9 article:
He set up work camps for jail inmates and clothed them in pink during his decades as sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona. He also fought on the front lines of the war against illegal aliens entering the United States and sued Barack Obama over the issue.
Now he wants to take his no-nonsense approach to government to Washington to help President Trump.
Sheriff Joe Arpaio, an octogenarian who has stated repeatedly that he’s not done being a public servant, announced Tuesday he’s seeking to replace outgoing Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz..
“Moments ago, I filed the paperwork to run for United States Senate in Arizona to fill the seat that Jeff Flake is leaving behind,” he wrote in an email. “This is NOT going to be easy, and I pray to have your continued support today on DAY ONE of my campaign.”
Unruh whitewashed Arpaio's legacy of corruption by claiming that he merely "went too far trying to protect Americans from illegal aliens."
Shortly after that article was published, it was followed by another one, this one anonymously written, declaring that "It took only a few hours after self-described “America’s toughest sheriff” Joe Arpaio announced his bid for the U.S. Senate to move into a statistical tie with the front-runner."
This article was largely a rehash of Unruh's article, including his proud delcaration that Arpaio "was behind the only official law-enforcement investigation of Barack Obama’s birth certificate. His investigators concluded that the birth certificate Obama presented at the White House as an official government document almost certainly is a forgery." No mention, of course,of how WND worked with Arpaio to sleaze into existence, or how that so-called investigation's findings have been completely discredited.
Of course, another reason WND is teetering on financial ruin is that it refuses to tell its readers the truth about Arpaio, his corruption and his bogus birther investigation.
That snide unprofessionalism pops up again in a Jan. 3 post by the MRC's Scott Whitlock in which he rants about the new movie "The Post" for being positive about the power of journalism. The headline on his post actually starts out with the word "Barf."
Yep, crude insults are a surefire way to argue a point about "media bias."
Whitlock doesn't do much in the way of fact-checking in his post -- indeed, he challenges none of the history in "The Post" movie -- but does a bit of lame whataboutism in whining that ">there's no film exposing actions such as Barack Obama spying on Fox News reporter James Rosen or how the ex-president derailed a government effort to stop Hezbollah’s trafficking of cocaine. But, then, Obama is a Democrat."
Whitlock also whined that "there are almost NO Republicans in The Post and the film is mostly a conversation between the left and the center-left." As if it mattered what political persuasion one was during the Pentagon Papers incident, which is what "The Post" is about.
The "barf" comment, besides being unprofessional, shows just how little the MRC cares for the media, and its desire to silence any voice that does not spout pro-Trump talking points 24-7.
WND's Farah Hypocritically Complains About Intellectual Property Abuse Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah complains in his Jan. 7 column:
If you or I committed plagiarism, or facilitated another’s act of plagiarism, we wouldn’t get away with it.
And that’s good. That’s right.
But if a mega-corporation like Facebook did, it would. In fact, it does.
Let me explain how.
I’m going to give you one example with all the vital details. I’m going to name names, so there’s no doubt about whether I’m speaking in theoretical terms, making stuff up or, as we say now, just creating “fake news.”
The example I’m going to provide is hardly the only instance I’ve seen on Facebook. I will tell you in advance that I have taken all the steps Facebook recommends in its processes to protect intellectual property claims with little success. That’s why I think it’s fair to say that Facebook does not really put a high priority on fighting violations of intellectual property rights for a corporation with the resources to do it right.
There’s a Facebook page under the name Atticus Howard that has a history of copying my verbatim writings and posting them without attribution, without links, without credit of any kind. I don’t know if the Facebook page is monetized by the person responsible, but I know Facebook is a super big business that is monetized in the extreme by all of its users – one way or another.
You know who else monetizes the stolen intellectual property of others? Joseph Farah.
Virtually every day of WND's existence, employees of Farah's website copies and pastes the first few paragraphs of articles from other news organizations into articles at WND. While WND links to and credits the source article, there's no evidence that WND seeks permission from or compensates the sources for its use of the article, since WND is not a member of any news or information syndicator.
In the past, Farah has insisted that WND is merely engaging in "fair use" through such practices. Still, as a copy-and-paste job done for the benefit of a private, pro-profit enterprise, the practice adds no value -- it's just straight theft, and announcing from whom it's being stolen is hardly a mitigating factor. It may not be illegal, but it is certain unethical to take another's intellectual property without permission for your own for-profit use.
Farah's criticism of being plagiarized is ironic given how WND has had issues with plagiarism over the years -- the most embarrassing example being a 2011 WND-commissioned report attacking Obama, which it claimed was conducted by "trusted Kenyan professionals" but turned out to be largely plagiarized from news articles. WND has also been a promoter of alt-right figure Jack Posobiec, who has been caught plagiarizing the work of others.
It might be possible to feel for Farah and WND over his intellectual-property issues, the thing we're feeling the most is karma.
As questions about President Trump's mental fitness began to swell in the wake of Michael Wolff's book, two of his biggest buddies and boosters -- both tied to Newsmax -- knew it was time to come to his defense.
First, Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy went on CNN to vouch for Trump's sanity, while also humble-bragging about how much he hangs out with the president:
"I was with the president in early December, and I spent an hour and a half with him in the private residence, and the conversation was terrific," said Ruddy. "He was not repeating things."
Ruddy mentioned he also was joined by a mutual friend, a respected medical doctor.
"He had no belief and view that the president was mentally incompetent and unfit. This is just an absurdity and it's really trash, actually," Ruddy said.
Ruddy also noted that he first met Trump 20 years ago, and has been around him often this past year, adding that Trump is not "psychologically unfit or has 'lost it,'” as Wolff claims.
Ruddy added that he saw Trump "every other day" over a 10-day period during the Christmas holidays, and talked with him numerous times.
“He was remembering things, he was on point, he was following up on discussions," said Ruddy. "I brought to the golf club a well-respected New York Times reporter who had a half-hour sit-down interview with him, Michael Schmidt ... but I don't believe Michael walked out and said, 'This man is crazy, this man is unfit.'"
My book is about unique access to Trump and his aides. In fact, I interviewed him last weekend the night before the Mar-a-Lago New Year's Eve party and he was perfectly normal, on top of everything. He said that this interview he's giving me is the only interview he's doing for a book or will do for a book. And I obviously don't want to go into a lot of detail about my book coming out April 3 -- "Inside the Trump White House: Changin the Rules of the Game" -- oreven the Michael Wolff book, which I will be going into with the inside story of how that book was done, but I do have a personal experience that I can share with you about the book.
Kessler later claims that his book is "the real story of Trump and his presidency, and it's something that you can bank on." Given the absurd amount of Trump-fluffing Kessler has done over the past two decades, we somehow doubt that.
(Photo: Ronald Kessler and his wife, Pamela, with Donald Trump, from Kessler's 1999 book "The Season," in which he actually wrote of Trump: "His typical facial expression is to set his mouth in a moue, somewhere between a pucker and a pout. It says, 'I'm a handsome guy. I'm going to WIN.'")
WND's Rush Doesn't Need Evidence To Call Trump Sex Accusers Liars Topic: WorldNetDaily
Erik Rush's Jan. 3 WorldNetDaily column is largely paranoid ranting about how President Trump, "as the consummate capitalist, represents a symbolic as well as an existential threat to the elite-run oligarchical collectivist model the political establishment is attempting to install in America." But the column is headlined "Trump sex accusers' crimes and the fake-scandal racket," and Rush makes sure to go there by, yes, claiming without evidence that Trump's accusers are making things up for money:
Among the most widespread animadversions cast in Donald Trump’s direction has been the claim that he is a misogynist and/or a sexual predator of some sort. Although this backfired during the 2016 campaign when Trump’s political enemies proved incapable of finding any women able to corroborate these charges out of the thousands with whom Trump has worked and employed over decades, they obviously have not given up.
One of the prominent stories in the current news cycle has become that of Trump’s political enemies having conspired during the campaign to financially compensate prospective Trump accusers for their testimony against him. As reported in the New York Times last week, celebrity lawyer Lisa Bloom, who was working with a number of prospective Trump accusers, received at least $500,000 from donors supporting Hillary Clinton during the campaign to this end. Among them was Susie Tompkins Buell, founder of Esprit Clothing and a long-time Clinton donor. According to the Times, Bloom reportedly solicited donors by saying that she was working with women who might “find the courage to speak out” against Trump if the donors would provide funds for them.
Bloom, daughter of the equally odious celebrity attorney Gloria Allred, was largely responsible for employing similarly unethical methods to oust Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly last spring.
This is not only illustrative of the lack of scruples evidenced by people like Lisa Bloom, but it is also illegal. Such action-conspiring with individuals to proffer false testimony against another in a legal proceeding falls well within the purview of anti-conspiracy statutes and should be prosecuted accordingly, as is the case when members of organized crime do likewise. More importantly, it is essential to recognize that any rationalization or justification for going after Trump in this manner represents the culture of abject lawlessness described earlier.
As I pointed out last November, once again, we have liars, cheats and thieves with law degrees abetted by other liars, cheats and thieves with law degrees, all of whom are well-acquainted with the most effective ways to skirt – or break – the law. The government-media complex, which repeatedly overlooked dozens of crimes committed by the previous administration and its surrogates, nevertheless holds out the vain hope that an undoctored photo of Trump handing Russian President Vladimir Putin a fat check or raping someone on the Capitol steps at High Noon will eventually materialize.
Barring that, it’s become evident that they intend to simply make something up.
Still more important is the realization that the willingness of the political establishment to engage in these tactics illustrates how none of this is about Trump at all. We are indeed in the midst of a carefully crafted, protracted political coup of the foulest order, orchestrated by individuals no less vile and acrimonious than the old Soviet apparatchiks who enslaved generations of people during the last century.
Rush, meanwhile, would never apply the same logic to Bill Clinton, given that some of Bill Clinton's accusers got paid off. He would never concede that many of the people promoting Clibnton's accusers were "liars, cheats and thieves with law degrees." He would never say that Clinton's sex scandals were never about Clinton at all but about a "political coup."
It appears that Rush is pathologically devoted to protecting Trump, facts be damned.
CNS Editor Perpetuates Misinformation About Planned Parenthood Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com has a long, sadhistory of perpetuating a falsehood: that federal money to Planned Parenthood pays for abortions. CNS editor in chief Terry Jeffrey -- who has done this before -- is all too eager to perpetuate that misinformation. He writes in a Jan. 2 CNS article:
Planned Parenthood says its affiliates did 321,384 abortions in the fiscal year that ended on Sept. 30, 2016, according to its newly released 2016-2017 annual report.
In the same report, Planned Parenthood says its affiliates received $543.7 million in payments from government—“Government Health Services Reimbursements & Grants,” the report calls them—in the year that ended on June 30, 2017.
Jeffrey does not report, however, that money from Title X and Medicaid -- which is where the federal funding to Planned Parenthood comes from -- by law cannot pay for abortions.
Then, in his Jan. 3 column, Jeffrey repeated his dishonesty:
Planned Parenthood has now released its 2016-2017 annual report. It says its affiliates performed 321,384 abortions in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2016.
It also says Planned Parenthood received $543.7 million in government money in the year that ended on June 30, 2017 — which included the first five months of the Trump administration.
Planned Parenthood takes money from federal taxpayers primarily through Medicaid and the Title X Family Planning Program. In 2012, according to a Government Accountability Office analysis cited by the Congressional Research Service in a May 2017 report, Planned Parenthood affiliates received "$400.56 million in Medicaid reimbursements (including both federal and state dollars)" and "$64.35 million in Title X funding."
But the Mexico City Policy does not stop federal Medicaid and Title X money from going to domestic Planned Parenthood affiliates — the affiliates that aborted 321,384 babies in the United States in fiscal 2016.
Again, Jeffrey failed to report the inconvenient fact that Medicaid and Title X money does not and cannot pay for abortion. Instead, he rants that Republican spending bills "have permitted federal funding of Planned Parenthood to continue -- again, despite the fact that none of that federal funding pays for abortion.
WND Still Freaking Out About Fixed Antiquties Destroyed By ISIS Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily has a weirdniche of freaking out over reproductions of ancient artifacts destroyed by ISIS -- but downplaying that fact and ludicrously portraying it as a revival of pagan worship. That freakout and downplaying continues over the latest project, the reconstruction of a lion statue ISIS destroyed when it invaded Palmyra, Syria (where ISIS also destroyed an ancient temple, and whose arch reproduction sent WND on its original freakout).
A Jan. 2 WND article by Bob Unruh complains that "a third project is nearing completion, and it again has a theme of pagan gods," though he only describes the project at first as "a statue of a lion." He eventually identifies it as the Lion of al-Lat, but even he can't figure out just how pagan it is, conceding that "There are several trains of thought regarding al-Lat.
Unruh mentions only in passing that the statue was "damaged by ISIS," but he doesn't admit that the reproduction was completed three months ago, meaning Unruh is a little late to this story. Instead, he quotes a Daniel Ashur, member of Israel's self-proclaimed Sanhedrin -- whose extremism WND has previously praised -- to freak out about the "alarming series of events, meaning the statue's reconstruction. He apparently did not consider ISIS' wanton destruction of a priceless piece of antiquity to be alarming.
Because UNESCO helped fund the restoration, Unruh uncritically quoted Ashur ranting that the restortation was some sort of anti-Israel New World Order maneuver, despite the fact that the statue has nothing whatsoever to do with Israel:
“The entire mission of the organization is to blur the differences between the nations in order to bring them all under one roof and one authority in a New World Order,” he said. “The truth is, as the Bible says, there are 70 distinct nations. The U.N. believes they can create nations out of thin air. Once they do that, they can say that there are many gods, even ones you can create by 3-D printing.”
He pointed out the U.N.’s long-standing and dominant anti-Israel bias. After all, it has voted to condemn the state of Israel more than all of the human rights offenders around the globe combined.
“Because Israel stands as proof of what a nation is and the concept of one God, the U.N. has a vendetta against Israel and is irrationally biased against us,” Rabbi Assur explained to BIN.
“They have a messianic vision of a unified government that will fix the world without God and without the Torah. This has always been the goal of idolatry, beginning with Egypt and continuing with the attempts of Rome and Greece to spread paganism across the world. Now we are seeing its modern manifestation.”
He warned: “The New World Order promotes that everything is one, genders are all the same, there are no borders between nations. They believe everything is one, except God.”
The fact that WND gives an uncritical platform to this kind of paranoid, fact-free ranting -- not to mention falsely reporting the motives behind these restorations and reconstructions, giving the unmistakable impression that it's on the side of ISIS in destroying priceless antiquties -- is one reason it's in deep financial trouble.
Tom Blumer, in a Dec. 29 NewsBusters post, is very upset that a Politico article would point out the obvious and note that the good economic numbers President Trump is taking credit for are a continuation of the grtowing economy under President Obama:
So Trump supposedly inherited reasonably strong or tolerable growth, job creation, wages, and stock market performance. That's all so wrong it's very hard for me to keep from laughing.
Let's also be clear, because the Politico pair aggressively tried to muddy the waters with meaningless comparisons to Obama's first year: What matters is what kind of momentum and accumulated damage Obama bequeathed to his successor. It's clear that Trump got an unprecedented amount of the latter, principally a mountainous national debt, massive over-regulation, and the monstrosity known as Obamacare, and very little of the former, which will be discussed in the rest of this post.
Start with growth. Our 44th president's economy turned in average annualized growth of 1.5 percent during his administration's final six quarters:
Exactly how is the growth of above 3 percent seen in the second and third quarters of this year "squarely built" on six quarters of growth which averaged barely half of that? The obvious answer is that it isn't. (Who "owns" the first quarter of 2017 is subject to debate, but if one thinks it belongs to Obama, then the seven-quarter average rounds down to 1.5 percent.)
We also should not forget that several economists were trying to manage expectations for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's continuation of Obama's high-regulation, slow-growth economy by claiming that the best level of growth the U.S. economy could achieve would be 2 percent from here on out.
Now let's look atjob creation. The Politico pair overlooked two important things.
The first is that there has been a decided change in the mix of full-time and part-time jobs added this year compared to 2016 — and it has been towards full-time employment:
The clear shift towards full-time employment is an indication of greater business confidence in the Trump administration after it inherited a business environment sorely lacking it.
The second is that the government may be understating this year's level of job creation. That's because ADP's private-sector jobs estimate shows 2.296 million jobs added during the first 11 months of the year, which is 422,000 more than the 1.874 million reported by the government's Bureau of Labor Statistics. If ADP is right — and it may very well be, because its methodology appears to give it a better chance of detecting job creation at startup and emerging companies on a timely basis than BLS — the difference of roughly 38,000 jobs per month would bring Trump's monthly average per the Establishment Survey of employer payrolls to 212,000, well above the 2016 average of 187,000.
As to wages, increases in average hourly pay haven't improved, but thanks to the heavier concentration of full-time jobs, the average work week has nudged up a bit, leading to a larger increase in average weekly pay during the past 12 months than that seen during calendar 2016:
To be clear, this year's performance in this area hasn't been satisfactory, but it's an improvement, especially compared to the 2.3 percent compound growth in weekly earnings seen during the last six years of the Obama administration.
Thus, it's obvious that Donald Trump inherited no meaningful "legacy" of economic momentum from Barack Obama. Though Politico reporters White and Cook, and others in the establishment press, will no doubt continue brazenly pretending otherwise, no one should be fooled.
For all of Blumer's bluster, at no point does he name any specific economic policy detail Trump has implemented that he can directly attribute to the improved 2017 numbers. That tells us Blumer just can't admit that it really is Obama's economic momentum for which Trump is taking credit.
WND Whitewashes Far-Right Extremism of German Anti-Muslim Activist Topic: WorldNetDaily
An anonymous WorldNetDaily writer states in a Jan. 2 article:
Freedom of speech has been effectively abolished online in Germany, as the country has begun enforcing strict censorship laws designed to prohibit the expression of “hate” online.
The Network Enforcement Act (NetzDG) mandates all social networking platforms with more than 2 million members must investigate and delete “illegal” content within one day of a complaint being received.
Facebook, Twitter, Google, YouTube, Snapchat and Instagram are among the sites which fall under the purview of the new law.
The fine for failing to delete illegal content can be as high as 50 million euros.
Deputy leader Beatrix von Storch of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) Party, which opposes the surging Islamization of the country under the government of Angela Merkel, has been called the first victim of the new law.
On New Year’s Eve, von Storch criticized Cologne police for expressing holiday wishes in Arabic, claiming they were trying to appease “barbarians.”
In fact, von Storch did a lot more than that; she called them "barbarian, Muslim, gang-raping hordes of men." In other words, clearly hate speech.
Also, the AfD party of which von Storch is a member goes far beyond WND's benign description of opposing "the surging Islamization of the country." It's a far-right party that borders on Naziism, to the point that it's calling for the term "volkisch" -- which the Nazis used to describe members of the German race -- to be rehabilitated, while another AfD leader called Berlin's Holocaust memorial a "monument of shame." It has also been found that hateful posts by AfD on Facebook are directly linked to violent attacks on immigrant groups in Germany.
CNS Gives Operation Rescue (But Not The SPLC) A Pass On Violence Linked To It Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com managing editor Michael W. Chapman devoted a Jan. 3 article to telling us how "One of the leading pro-life organizations in the United States, Operation Rescue, has named President Donald Trump its person of the year and awarded him its 2017 Pro-Life Person of the Year Malachi Award." Chapman later writes, "Operation Rescue was founded in 1986 and is based in Wichita, Kansas. It counts as one of its greatest successes the reduction of the number of abortionists in San Diego County."
Chapman, needless to say, was never going to mention Operation Rescue's link to anti-abortion violence. As we'vedocumented, Scott Roeder, murderer of abortion doctor George Tiller, had a sticky note with the phone number for Operation Rescue's Cheryl Sullenger in his car at the time he was arrested, and Roeder has claimed that Operation Rescue chief Troy Newman once told him that it “wouldnʼt upset” him if Tiller were murdered. Further, Sullenger was sentenced to three years in prison in 1988 for plotting to bomb an abortion clinic.
CNS has not been so reticient to repeat tangental links to violence when they involve non-conservative groups. An August 2017 article referencing the Southern Poverty Law Center took care to extensively note this:
In 2013, left-wing domestic terrorist Floyd Corkins attempted to commit mass murder at the [Family Research Council's] headquarters and arrived in the building’s lobby with a bag full of ammunition and 15 Chick-fil-a sandwiches, which he intended to place on the people he killed.
A security guard was shot by Corkins, but managed to apprehend him before law enforcement arrived.
When the FBI asked Corkins how he had heard about the organization, he told them the SPLC had labeled the group an “anti-gay” organization on their website’s “hate map.”
If CNS is blaming the SPLC for the FRC shooting -- despite the fact that, unlike with Roeder and Operation Rescue, Corkins never had any contact with any SPLC employee and merely looked at its website -- there's no reason it shouldn't also hang Tiller's murder on Operation Rescue. Fair's fair, right?
Well, it would be if CNS wasn't so outrageously biased.
Divine Donald Watch, Jesse Lee Peterson Edition Topic: WorldNetDaily
In this country and the world in 2017, God gave us a great gift in President Donald Trump. He defeats his enemies with pure love and truth. He’s not intimidated by the dominant culture of political correctness, the hate-filled attacks directed against older, straight, white Christian men of power. Trump does not cater to corrupt liberal blacks, feminist women or radical “LGBT” propagandists who wish to weaken the country. He faces opposition on every side, but he maintains his winning spirit and overcomes evil with good.
Not everyone realizes what we have in the president. The dirty women who participated in the disgusting “Women’s March” promoting abortion and everything else evil, they’re gearing up to do it again. The so-called “#MeToo movement,” mostly an attack on masculinity apparently meant to take down the president, is wearing on the people’s nerves and patience.
President Trump, supported by football fans, military veterans and everyone who loves America, shamed NFL leadership into quelling the blatant disrespect by Colin Kaepernick and other shameless and brainwashed kneeling black thugs who turned their backs on the country and shamefully misled children to do the same.
-- Jesse Lee Peterson, Dec. 31 WorldNetDaily column
MRC's Double Standard on Salacious Books of Questionable Accuracy About The White House Topic: Media Research Center
Unsurprisingly, the Media Research Center has gone ballistic over Michael Wolff's sensational book on the Trump White House, particularly focused on trying to discredit the book:
Tim Graham highlighted a claim that Wolff made up quotes in the book.
Scott Whitlock got angry when one TV host said that "Even if not all of it is true, the spirit of the book is," harrumphing, "And how much untruth is too much for the journalist?"
Kyle Drennen dismissed Wolff's book as "salacious and unverified."
Nicholas Fondacaro served up the requisite irrelevant, extremely narrowly defined coverage comparison, grousing that TV network news "found more interest in Wolff’s palace intrigue that the Iranian people’s struggle for freedom." (The MRC has already praised the Trump toadies at "Fox & Friends" for catering to Trump's agenda by hyping the Iran protests.)
Drennen also highlighted a TV host he claimed "questioned [Wolff's] credibility," asserting that "Wolff has a long history of getting facts wrong or even making things up."
Fondacaro also complained about an ABC segment in which "Clinton lackey George Stephanopoulos led a largely liberal panel in fawning over the book even as he speculated that only ‘50 percent’ of the book was actually true."
MRC chief Brent Bozell groused that the media was, in the words of an anonymous MRC public-relations writer, "totally ignoring the books’s blatant falsehoods."
Chris Reeves asserted that the book commits "basic factual errors."
Drennen once again proclaimed the book to be "unsubstantiated," adding "When even harsh Trump critics like Colbert are unwilling to accept Wolff’s book as fact, perhaps it’s time for it to be labeled as fiction."
Curtis Houck insisted that the book is "error-laden."
But when a right-wing author penned about about a Democratic president it knew had factual issues, the MRC demanded media coverage of it.
In May 2012, the MRC published a NewsBusters post by Jill Stanek outlining factual errors in Edward Klein's book "The Amateur," that was heavily reliant on anonymous sources to bash the Obama White House. Stanek wrote that Klein's depiction of Obama's vote on an anti-abortion law when he was a Illinois state senator "was wrong on just about every point," adding that "I’ve been reading his book and find it quite interesting but wonder how much of it is accurate, if this was any indication."
But six days later, NewsBusters' Randy Hall demanded that the media cover Klein's book anyway:
Democratic political operatives have been furious in their denunciations of author Ed Klein and his new book The Amateur, a biography of President Obama which relies heavily (although not entirely) on anonymous sources to paint a highly unflattering picture of its subject.
That is to be expected but surely Klein’s tales might make for good television. Supposedly, journalists care primarily about a good story more than anything else. And Klein’s book certainly has them, including secret feuds between First Lady Michelle Obama and TV billionaire Oprah Winfrey as well as tales of former president Bill Clinton privately bashing Barack Obama as an “amateur.” Unfortunately for Klein, however, he is being almost totally ignored by the elite media.
Given that we don’t know who Klein’s sources were on some of his more sensational accusations, it’s tough to vouch for his credibility. On the other hand, given their previous love of repeating anonymous allegations against Republicans, the TV networks and other elite American media ought to at the very least examine and report on Klein’s allegations against President Obama. That, or stop reporting on such charges altogether.
Except that Klein destroyed his credibility a long time ago, to the extent that even top conservatives disregard his work. If nothing else, Wolff has a better track record for accuracy.