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Tuesday, October 23, 2018
WND Makes A Big Deal About Changing Its E-Commerce Back End
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An Oct. 9 WorldNetDaily article tries to turn a back-end software change into a big deal:

While the digital monopoly “Speech-Code Cartel” continues to squeeze the alternative, independent media – including WND, the original online news pioneer – journalism sites like WND are scrambling to survive in this hostile new online environment by reinventing themselves in many key ways.

As part of that reevaluation and reinvention, WND is leaving behind one of the super-giants of Silicon Valley – Oracle-Netsuite – in favor of a new e-commerce partner: Texas-based BigCommerce.com.

Although there may be a few hiccups along the way as the transition is completed, it’s time to introduce readers to the new WND Superstore – which will save WND money so it can remain a free, independent and influential media voice, not only in the news it reports and publishes, but in the books, movies and other products it offers to the public.

[...]

Today, WND takes one more step in its reassertion of independence and liberty with a new e-commerce site.

“We urge you to try it,” says Farah. “You may find this new store doesn’t recognize you as a past customer. We hope you will give us a little grace and have a little patience with us, because you are our lifeline in this titanic fight to slay these dragons, these billion-dollar behemoths, and to keep the promise of inalienable, God-given rights of free speech, freedom of the press, freedom of religion and free elections alive.”

In other words: WND switched its e-commerce storefront software from NetSuite to BigCommerce because it's cheaper -- WND editor Joseph Farah doesn't even attack Oracle as part of the "cartel" trying to drive him out of business -- and for reasons Farah doesn't explain, WND couldn't transfer customer information from the old platform to the new one.

Judging by the Missouri address at the bottom of the store website, fulfillment for WND -- where the orders are actually picked, packed and shipped -- apparently continues to take place at a company called REKO Market Direct.

Meanwhile, we see that despite the software change, WND's store is still selling the e-book version of "No Campus for White Men," the book by Scott Greer it published in 2017, while Greer was writing white nationalist and anti-Semitic screeds under an assumed name for a racist journal. It's also still selling (albeit at the bargain-basement price of $2.99) the WND-published book "Why We Left Islam," the star attraction of which is Walid Shoebat, the self-proclaimed former terrorist turned "Christian Zionist" who has now gone full-blown anti-Semitic. WND still has yet to publicly address its relationship with Greer and Shoebat following these revelations. It still hasn't spoken publicly about Paul Nehlen, whose book WND published and heavily promoted before his white nationalism anda nti-Semitism became publicly known. WND eventually removed his book and an anti-Mulsim film he made from its store and scrubbed him from the WND Books website.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:05 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 7:12 PM EDT
CNS Managing Editor, Donohue Split on Catholic Cardinal's Links to Sexual Abuse
Topic: CNSNews.com

There seems to be a bit of a split between CNS managing editor Michael W. Chapman and CNS columnist (and friend of the Media Research Center) Bill Donohue of the Catholic League (where MRC chief Brent Bozell sits on the board of advisers) over Cardinal Donald Wuerl, who resigned his post as archbishop of Washington, D.C., amid questions about how he handled sexual abuse allegations against another cardinal, Theodore McCarrick, when both were in the Pittsburgh diocese.

An Oct. 12 article by Chapman highlighted Pope Francis accepting Wuerl's resignation, though he doesn't explicitly highlight the pope that appointed him to the Washington position, unlike what he did to another archbishop -- perhaps because it was Pope Benedict, beloved by conservatives like Chapman, and not Pope Francis, whom Chapman would like to tie to purportedly insufficiently Catholic behavior like not completely despising gay people.

Chapman noted that "Wuerl's name appears in the document [investigating sexual abuse among Catholic clergy in Pennsylvania] more than 200 times and the report shows that 19 abuse cases surfaced while he was Bishop of Pittsburgh. However, it also shows that in 18 of those cases he quickly removed the accused priests from ministry." He added that "Cardinal Wuerl and Cardinal McCarrick have been close friends for many years. Wuerl has been criticized over his denials that he knew anything about McCarrick's homosexual predation of seminarians, even though it reportedly was an open secret among priests in New York, New Jersey and Washington for decades." He also noted that Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano's attack on the church for reportedly covering up for McCarrick "is also critical of Cardinal Wuerl."

Donohue, meanwhile, has staunchly defended Wuerl. In an August column published at Newsmax, he claimed that Wuerl was being "unfairly trashed," adding: I have known Cardinal Wuerl for 30 years, having first met him when I was a professor at a local Pittsburgh Catholic college, La Roche. I had the opportunity to assess his record during his first five years of service: it was meritorious, and it has only gotten better." He concluded: "Cardinal Donald Wuerl is a good man who deserves our commendation, not condemnation."

After Wuerl's resignation, CNS published a column by Donohue once again defending him, this time also attacking his fellow conservatives for calling for Wuerl's head:

Some argue that Cardinal Wuerl should be held accountable for the behavior of Theodore McCarrick, his predecessor in Washington. But Wuerl had no authority over McCarrick when he was abusing seminarians in New Jersey. Moreover, to blame Wuerl for McCarrick's refusal to abide by restrictions placed on him by Rome is similarly misplaced: No one at the Vatican ever asked Wuerl to be McCarrick's policeman.

The pressure on Wuerl to resign came partly from the left, but mostly from the right. Right-wing activist groups, along with normally level-headed conservative Catholic writers and pundits—this includes some priests—have led the way. The former are vindictive and lie with abandon. The latter approach this issue the way some in the “#MeToo” movement have acted.

[...]

He has become the scapegoat for Catholic conservative purists who are angry about the abuse scandal. Others are angry as well, but they do not approach this subject with childlike innocence. To be explicit, those who are familiar with the complex issues that the bishops have faced, and who do not insist that today's standards be used to judge decades-old cases, have a more mature understanding of the problem.

[...]

These carping conservatives love to take wide swipes at the hierarchy, patting themselves on the back for being so right. But purists are a problem in all institutions, and it matters not a whit what side they are on. Mr. Clean exists only in their heads.

Kudos to Pope Francis for being so kind to Cardinal Donald Wuerl.

Apparently, if you're Donohue's buddy, he gives you a pass on your questionable behavior.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:21 AM EDT
Monday, October 22, 2018
Newsmax's Hirsen Can't Describe The Tweets That Got Roseanne Barr Fired
Topic: Newsmax

James Hirsen's Oct. 15 Newsmax column largely repeats a claim forwarded by the factually dubious UK Daily Mail that anonymous ABC executives were experiencing "doubts and trepidation" over continuing "Roseanne" as "The Connors" after firing Roseanne Barr over a pair of racially inflammatory and conspiratorial tweets.

Curiously, though, Hirsen never gets around to describing the content of the tweets that got Barr fired. He called them "controversial" and "career-changing" for Barr, but didn't repeat what she said.

In case Hirsen has forgotten, Barr described former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett, who is black, as what you get if "Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby." Barr also tweeted the false right-wing narrative that liberal bogeyman George Soros is a Nazi. (She also tweeted the utterly false claim that Chelsea Clinton was married to Soros' nephew.)

Why doesn't Hirsen want to remind his readers exactly what Barr tweeted that got her fired? Because he's trying to soften her image of Barr and turning her into merely an enthusiastic Trump supporter in order to bolster the case -- again, based on anonymous speculation from a news source known for caring little about the truth -- that "it is likely that ABC executives are experiencing regret over another hasty decision that was made by the television network." He goes on to tout about how the first episode of "Last Man Standing" on Fox after moving from ABC got good ratings; stars conservative comedian Tim Allen, who like Barr is "also a supporter of President Trump."

This isn't the first time Hirsen has taken Barr's side. In his June 4 column, he pooh-poohed the idea of a Roseanne-without-Roseanne reboot because "Barr had built a sizable reservoir of conventional fandom during her syndication run of 25 years" as well as "the bond that she shares with millions of people, many of whom voted for President Trump, who were chiefly responsible for the phenomenal ratings of the show and who managed to transform a television debut into a cultural event." He refused to detail the content of Barr's tweets then too, vaguely referring only to an "ill-fated tweet."

In a July 23 column, instead lamented that "a single tweet posted during personal non-working hours" cost her her career. He wouldn't repeat the actual language Barr used but instead euphemistically insisted that "Roseanne used a common hip hop term for a woman in reference to the former White House aide under President Obama." Somehow, we doubt Hirsen is sufficiently down with the street to know whether a "Planet of the Apes" reference in describing a black woman -- or is it the Muslim Brotherhood reference? -- actually is "a common hip hop term."


Posted by Terry K. at 8:56 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, October 22, 2018 9:04 PM EDT
MRC's Twitter-Haters Don't Explain Why They Don't Just Move to Gab
Topic: Media Research Center

For a while now, the Media Research Center has been pushing the narrative that Twitter discriminates against conservataives -- while almost completely ignoring the existence of an alternative.

The lone mention of one at the MRC's main content site, NewsBusters, came in a Sept. 10 post by Corinne Weaver complaining that Google removed the Gab app from its Android store for violating hate-speech policies (though this actually happened more than a year ago). Over at MRCTV, folks were a little more vociferous toward Gab:

  • An August 2017 post touted how James Damore, who lost his job at Google after writing a screed alleging that the company was discriminating against conservatives, "has been offered a job at Gab, a Twitter competitor for free speech activists."
  • In January, P. Gardner Goldsmith gushed that "Social media platform Gab.ai is blossoming exponentially thanks to the dissatisfaction of conservative and libertarian Twitter users giving up on the big blue bird."
  • Goldsmith gushed again on Sept. 24 after right-wing actor James Woods was suspended by Twitter: "So maybe, just maybe, Twitter CEO [Jack] Dorsey’s statements don’t match the actions of his corporation. Perhaps that is why so many people have migrated to Gab as a free alternative.

So, with all this conservative hate atainst Twitter, why doesn't the MRC just abandon it altogether and move to Gab? Weaver vaguely alluded to the issue by noting that Gab "has some questionable users"; however, she failed to elaborate further on how exactly "hate speech" got Gab kicked out of the Android store.

As Ars Technica points out, Gab is the place togo "when right-wing trolls and outright racists get kicked off of Twitter," and it doesn't ban content that attacks people based on their race, gender, or other protected category. Additionally, Gab's frog logo looks not unlike Pepe, the cartoon frog alt-right extremists have adopted. The MRC considers itself to be a respectable right-wing organization that doesn't associate with such fringe elements.

Another reason the MRC won't put its money where its mouth is and actually leave Twitter is because it knows where its bread is buttered, and raging against Twitter is an attention-getting narrative it wouldn't have if it just up and quit Twitter -- it's more profitable to stay than leave. After all, as one observer noted (on Twitter, natch), an right-wing-only social network "will give users no way to trigger the libs, and so what's the point? People will just get bored."


Posted by Terry K. at 3:34 PM EDT
Another Historical Reference Gets Shoehorned On Kavanaugh Saga
Topic: WorldNetDaily

ConWeb columnists have tried various historical allusions to bring into the Brett Kavanaugh saga, from Emmitt Till to the trial "To Kill A Mockingbird" -- never mind that, unlike with Kavanaugh, racism was the primary driving factor in both cases and the accusers were proven to have made false accusations.

Now comes Paul Kengor, who uses his Oct. 8 WorldNetDaily column to invoke another less-than-perfect allusion: the Scottsboro Boys, a group of black teenagers falsely accused of raping two white teen girls in the 1930s. Kengor then attempts to shoehorn Kavanaugh into the Scottsboro Boys narrative:

Well, truth be told, with the ideological perversities and pathologies of the left, this one can be (partly) tidied up with some nifty identity-racial politics. Here you go: The Scottsboro boys were black men, whereas Brett Kavanaugh is a white man, and a pro-life white man, and a conservative Catholic, and seeking to fill a crucial Supreme Court seat that could threaten the left’s holy grail: Roe v. Wade. Thus, Kavanaugh is a complete reprobate, never to be believed. By contrast, on the left’s ideological totem pole, the Scottsboro boys assume, by nature of their skin color, an elevated victim status that compels them to be believed, just as Kavanaugh’s position at the bottom rung of the pole (near the slimy pond scum) demands a verdict of presumed guilt.

For the confused, or unanointed, just ask a millennial college grad. This is what your children learn in our universities with your life savings. This is the price you pay for their indoctrination.

But while those curious mental gyrations help a liberal navigate how and why Brett Kavanaugh must be presumed guilty and the Scottsboro boys presumed innocent, it does leave the messy problem of what to do with the left’s new dogma that women never lie about sexual assault.

[...]

So, liberals, especially those of you dominating our universities, how will you re-evaluate the Scottsboro case in light of your newfangled political sloganeering in October 2018? I’d like to be in the Gender Theory classroom at Swarthmore or Yale when the gals take up that one. Then again, maybe not.

We've previously caught Kengor falsely smearing Margaret Sanger as a racist sympathizer of the Ku Klux Klan, a claim he walked back only reluctantly, so he's not above imposing his right-wing politics where it doesn't belong. And gratutious shots at "the Gender Theory classroom at Swarthmore or Yale" would be relevant if Kengor held his own side to the same scrutiny -- but he hasn't.

In a March column in the right-wing American Spectator, Kengor claimed to have been "troubled" by Juanita Broaddrick's rape accusation against Bill Clinton, but he never questioned the veracity of Broaddrick or other Clinton accusers. Apparently, women who make harassment claims against liberals must always be believed.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:55 AM EDT
Sunday, October 21, 2018
CNS Badgers Catholic Bishop For Not Hating Gays Enough
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com managing editor Michael W. Chapman is so Catholic, he feels he can lecture the pope about Catholicism. Now he feels the need to badger a Catholic bishop for, apparently, not hating gays to Chapman's satisfaction.

An Oct. 8 article by Chapman complained that Archbishop of Chicago Blase Cupich -- whom Chapman made sure to note was "appointed to head the Archdiocese of Chicago (in 2014) and elevated to the rank of Cardinal by Pope Francis (in 2016)," as a good right-wing, gay-bashing, anti-Francis Catholic would -- "would not say whether he supports the Catholic Church's teaching on homosexuality, which defines homosexual acts as 'intrinsically disordered' and which cannot be approved under any circumstances." He then details just how much he had been badgering Cupich for an answer to his question:

Over the last two weeks, CNSNews.com has sent multiple e-mails and placed several telephone calls to the Archdiocese's Communications Director Anne Maselli. CNSNews.com referenced a recent case where a priest had been removed from a parish reportedly because he helped burn a gay rainbow/crucifix banner and asked this question: "Does Cardinal Cupich believe and support what the Catholic Catechism teaches about homosexuality in paragraph 2357?"

In full, in the email, CNSNews.com asked, "Given the rainbow banner and question of an 'anti-gay hate crime,' I wanted ask Cardinal Cupich if he believes in and supports the Catholic Church's teaching on homosexuality as defined in the Catechism, 2357?

"That section states, in part, 'Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that 'homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.' They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved."

Instead of answering the question, Anne Maselli claimed that a quote attributed to her in the Chicago Tribune about the gay rainbow banner burning was inaccurate, and she added, "We do not have any additional comments at this time."

CNSNews.com then re-sent the same question to Maselli several times -- "Does Cardinal Cupich believe and support what the Catholic Catechism teaches about homosexuality in paragraph 2357?" -- and she replied again,"We have no further comment to share."

Chapman's final paragraph seemed to show the real reason he was badgering Cuptich: "In early September, two priests with the Archdiocese of Chicago were arrested in Miami Beach for engaging in oral sex -- "Lewd and Lascivious Behavior" -- in a parked car on a busy street at about 3:00 p.m." (Yes, Chapman wrote about that too.)

The next day, Chapman launched another attack on Cupich. After once again complaining that Cupich "was appointed by Pope Francis (in 2014) to oversee the Archdiocese of Chicago," Chapman huffed that Cupich "said that it was not his policy to deny Holy Communion or Catholic funerals to people in same-sex marriages." Chapman portrayed this as a new issue, but he didn't report that Cupich's statement, in a public TV interview, came from a July 2017 appearance -- more than a year old.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:40 PM EDT
Saturday, October 20, 2018
What If WND's Craige McMillan Was A Conspiracy-Obsessed Nutball?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

What if the Bloomberg espionage article is true and our critical infrastructure has been hacked at the hardware level by China?

What if our cellphones, personal computers and other popular electronic devices all had a tiny chip installed at the Chinese factories where big-name U.S. companies outsourced them for manufacture or assembly?

What if the executives of big-name U.S. corporations didn’t know? What if they did know? What if they sold access to your info? What if that’s how they got so rich and powerful?

[...]

What if Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 flight which was lost was an earlier test? What if some of our military flight crashes were caused by someone besides the pilot gaining control of the aircraft? What if self-driving cars have the same chip?

What if the hackers weren’t in China? What if another government simply paid the Chinese to install the chip? What if the hack was by another foreign government? What if the Chinese built in another back door for themselves? What if the hack was being exploited by our own government? What if it was done by rogue elements within our intelligence agencies?

What if big-tech corporate artificial intelligence programs are working together, not competing? What if all the data they collect from all the big sites across the web that detail your every key press, mouse click and social media thought is being used to create “believable bot personalities” to control public opinion and discussion in all future elections? What if big tech decides they, not the electorate, should control the world? What if they have already gained the power to make it so?

-- Craige McMillan, Oct. 12 WorldNetDaily column


Posted by Terry K. at 11:58 AM EDT
Friday, October 19, 2018
Nike Ad Prompts New Spasm of Kaepernick Derangement Syndrome At The MRC
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center predictably freaks out whenever anyone says something nice about Colin Kaepernick and the protests that cost him a place as an NFL player. Needless to say, the MRC went into full rage mode when Nike debuted an ad featuring Kaepernick.

The mysterious Jay Maxson unsubtly headlined his post "Nike -- From ‘Just Do It’ to ‘F*** the Police’," despite the fact that he never quotes anyone from Nike (or Kaepernick, for that matter) using that term (apparently, Maxson was listening to a lot of gangsta rap when he wrote his post). Maxson sneered that Nike is "headquartered in the progressive cocoon of metropolitan Portland" and sneered further of Kaepernick: "Born of an African-American mother and raised by a white family, Kaepernick has been oppressed by multi-million dollar contracts while compiling a losing record as a starting NFL quarterback. Now he'll be further oppressed by millions more from the Nike contract. How generous of Nike to rescue Kaepernick from the unemployment lines too."

Matt Philbin, meanwhile, was ready to do some grave-dancing:

It was supposed to be an inspirational advertising tagline, not a self-fulfilling prophecy. “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything,” is the phrase Nike used to introduce unemployed QB Colin Kaepernick as the face of its 30th anniversary “Just Do It” campaign.

It turns out “Get Woke, Go Broke” is a little closer to the mark. Morning Consult, the brand research firm, interviewed 8,000 Americans about Nike’s Kaepernick campaign, and that "SWOOSHing" sound you hear is the shoemaker's brand deflating.

“Before the announcement, Nike had a net +69 favorable impression among consumers, it has now declined 34 points to +35 favorable,” according to Morning Consult. Thirty-four points? You’d think that a company that produces wildly overpriced sneakers in Third World sweatshops wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize its brand approval.

Strangely, Morning Consult has not said much about Nike's favorability since then. On Sept. 20, it reported that following a low of +28, the favorability had increased to +39 and was continuing to rise. It also reported that Nike's key demographics were more likely to buy its products after the ad appeared.

Nevertheless, Philbin was content with cheering that "short-term, a little bit of cosmic justice has been served.

Meanwhile, Nike's stock hit new highs just a couple weeks after the ad debuted, and the company's value increased by $6 billion. But Maxson and Philbin don't want to talk about that.

UPDATE: The MRC's Tim Graham and  Brent Bozell gloated over how Nike lost $4 billion in value immediately after the ad appeared, prompting them to chortle, "This decision has backfired so badly it should be made a case study in The Stupidest Marketing Plan Ever Devised." The pair have been silent so far on how Nike regained that valuation and then some.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:27 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, October 22, 2018 2:22 PM EDT
Obama Derangement Sufferers At WND Continue to Worry About Trump Derangement
Topic: WorldNetDaily

For some reason, the Obama Derangement Syndrome victims at WorldNetDaily love to lecture about Trump Derangement Syndrome.

WND gave a Sept. 30 column to Lyle Rossiter -- who wrote a book sold by WND  that made an armchair diagnosis of all liberals as mentally ill -- purporting to take a "close look" at Trump Derangement Syndrome. In giving a pass to Trump for his boorish and impulsive behavior, he tries to pretend there was no such thing as Obama Derangement Syndrome:

The mindset in this syndrome sees Trump as a hateful man bent on destroying lives. But there is no evidence to support this view. Trump is more than 70 years old and has no record of criminal behavior or history of destructiveness in other ways. He is certainly self-centered, egotistical and grandiose, and he is often boorish, insulting and contemptuous. He gets defensive easily and retaliates when offended in ways that are adolescent at best. He can be careless with facts and he lies too often. He has been unfaithful to his wife. There is ample evidence for all of these allegations on casual observation. But many of these traits have been prominent in other political figures. Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, for instance, have engaged in far more serious wrongdoing, but have not evoked a fraction of the agitation that characterizes the TDS.

In fact, Trump is not all bad. He has several good traits that are by now well known to persons who are not prejudiced against him. Stories of Trump’s personal generosity, kindness and willingness to put forth great effort for good causes are common knowledge. His record as president for only 20 months is surprisingly impressive. Under his leadership, America is enjoying resurgent economic growth, more jobs, lower taxes, fewer regulations, increased work-force participation, reduced numbers of food-stamp recipients and greater productivity. Most Americans approve of Trump’s determination to protect our country’s borders. Most Americans are more optimistic since he took office. Trump has attacked with great vigor a corrupt, illegal and massively exploitative Deep State that has become entrenched in the bowels of Washington for decades.

By any reasonable standards, these are constructive achievements, not damaging attacks on America or Americans.

[...]

But persons with Trump Derangement Syndrome don’t see a mixed human being with good and bad traits. They see instead an intensely evil man with diabolical goals. These views of Donald Trump distort the reality of who and what he is; they distort his motives and his goals for himself, for America and the world.

Substitute Trump for Obama in that last paragraph, and you have WND's worldview of Obama.

Speaking of which, an Oct. 14 WND article used the Trump dereangement meme to promote WND managing editor David Kupelian's years-old book "The Snapping of the American Mind":

“The Democrats have become totally unhinged. They’ve gone crazy.”

That’s how President Donald Trump described the opposition party this week at his massive Iowa rally, adding, “They want to destroy everything.”

Strong words, but who can deny that today’s Democratic Party, increasingly swallowed up by the radical left, seems to have completely lost its sanity? From the current epidemic of leftwing mob violence, to the shockingly brutal and dishonest campaign to destroy Brett Kavanaugh, to open attacks on everything from border enforcement to the Electoral College, to the glorification of mental illnesses like transgenderism, to the growing demonization of white people just for being white and men just for being men, America evidently is at war with a mysterious – and yes, crazy – internal enemy.

Fortunately, what is really transpiring in today’s America – including the solution – is explained with unusual clarity and depth in “The Snapping of the American Mind” by David Kupelian.

Kupelian once claimed that Obama was engaged in "the date-rape of America," so maybe he's not the ideal person to look disdainfully upon extreme politically motivated behavior.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:05 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, October 22, 2018 2:07 PM EDT
Thursday, October 18, 2018
CNS Weirdly Bothered By Collins' Claim That Kavanaugh Won't Overturn Roe v. Wade
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com's coverage of the Brett Kavanaugh saga was already wildly biased, but we're not quite sure what to make of this.

An Oct. 7 article, anonymously written and credited only to "CNSNews.com Staff" and headlined "Sen. Susan Collins Explains Why She Doesn’t Believe Kavanaugh Will Vote to Overturn Roe v. Wade," featured how Republican senator Collins -- one of the swing votes who eventually voted for Kavanaugh's confirmation -- "explained why she did not believe Kavanaugh would vote to overturn Roe v. Wade":

She suggested, instead, that he would be like Justices Sandra Day O’Connor, Anthony Kennedy and David Souter—all of whom, she noted, were appointed by Republican presidents at a time when the Republican platform called for overturning Roe.

All joined in the Supreme Court's 1992 opinion in Planned Parenthood v. Casey opinion that upheld Roe.

Most notably, Collins said in her explanation of why she was not worried that Kavanaugh would overturn Roe that Kavanaugh had told her when they were discussing his nomination that he did not think five sitting justices—a majority of the nine member court—would be a sufficient number “to overturn long-established precedent.”

This was after he had testified, she noted, that Roe--upheld by Casey--was “precedent on precedent.”

That kind of article is par for the course for the rabidly anti-abortion CNS. They want Roe v. Wade overturned, which was the point of its pro-Kavanaugh "news" coverage, and they're perhaps a little annoyed at the idea of precedent.

The next day, Susan Jones wrote an article that covered the same exact territory under the very similar headline "Collins: 'I Do Not Believe That Brett Kavanaugh Will Overturn Roe v. Wade'":

How can you be 100 percent sure that Justice Brett Kavanaugh will not overturn Roe v. Wade? CNN's Dana Bash asked Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) on Sunday's "State of the Union."

"I do not believe that Brett Kavanaugh will overturn Roe v. Wade," Collins said, noting that precedents are not often overturned.

"And listen to the standards that he put forth, again, in his conversations with me and also in the hearing. He says, for a precedent, among established precedents like Roe, to be overturned, it would have to have been grievously wrong and deeply inconsistent. He noted that Roe had been reaffirmed 19 years later by Planned Parenthood vs. Casey and that it was 'precedent on precedent'. He said it should be extremely rare that it'd be overturned."

"You have obviously full confidence?" Bash asked Collins.

"I do," Collins replied.

Jones did offer a little more context for CNS' weird concern: "Collins cast one of the deciding votes in favor of Kavanaugh's confirmation on Sunday, despite her support for abortion. Bash noted that Planned Parenthood gave Collins an award last year for her work on protecting reproductive rights."

Jones' article got the lead slot on CNS' front page that day, despite it effectively being a rewrite.

UPDATE: Jones also lazily and uncritically repeated Collins' incorrect assertion that "Planned Parenthood opposed three pro-choice justices just because they were nominated by Republican presidents -- David Souter, Sandra Day O'Connor and Justice Kennedy." In fact, while Planned Parenthood opposed Souter -- because he didn't make his position on abortion clear during the confirmation hearings, not because he was nominated by a Republican president -- it actually endorsed O'Connor but took no position on Kennedy.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:50 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 7:19 PM EDT
WND Takes A Ride On The 'Gosnell' PR Train
Topic: WorldNetDaily

The Media Research Center isn't the only ConWeb outlet doing the bidding of Phelim McAleer and the other makers of the anti-abortion movie about rogue abortionist Kermit Gosnell.

Like the MRC, WND repeated the story of the "leaked" emails (from the movie's executive producer) from NPR over negotiations over a sponsorship to promote the film as it if was a real story and not the publicity stunt it actually was. WND then found another bit of publicity even the MRC didn't latch onto: A Sept. 25 article by Art Moore how, according to the film's producers, they were forced to cancel a screening because the hotel where it was to take place scheduled it "at the same time Planned Parenthood hosts a $400 a plate gala dinner headlined by Cecille Richards, the organization’s former CEO." Moore quoted only the producers and made no apparent attempt to contact the hotel or Planned Parenthood to verify the story or to get another side, like a real reporter would.

Despite the complete lack of corroboration of the "Gosnell" producers' claims about the cancellation, Moore followed up with them anyway in a Oct. 1 article claiming that "McAleer rejected a payment from the hotel to settle the matter, calling it 'blood money.'" Again, no proof is provided to support the claim, and Moore once again can't be bothered to verify it with anybody else.

When the movie opened, the promos came fast and furious:

  • WND ran an an article featuring Rush Limbaugh begging people to see it because "It’s not the political movie that the left would make about a story like this."
  • Moore penned another PR piece, claiming "McAleer told WND" that Facebook is blocking ads for the film because they "don't want this film to succeed." Surprisingly, Moore did take a stab at balance, writing that "Facebook’s press office has not replied to WND’s request for comment." Not that Moore would have given the comment much play if Facebook had responded.
  • A column by consipracy-obsessed WND columnist Jack Cashill gave the expected glowing, highly biased review: "It is well produced, powerful and thoroughly provocative. That said, the major media are refusing to review the movie for much the same reason they refused to report on the trial. Any honest look at abortion unnerves them."
  • "Marisa Martin" chimed in with her own gushy review, declaring that "it shows what abortion looks, sounds like and smells like."

And when the film generated a paltry $1.1 million on its opening weekend despite showing on nearly 700 screens, good enough only for 12th place, WND rushed to spin it away. Under the misleading headline "'Gosnell' movie defies abortion cartel with big opening," WND cherry-picked numbers to declare that the film was "the No. 1 independent film and was No. 8 in per screen averages" and completely ignored the total weekend take. WND boosted the spin factor even higher by quoting McAleer and the film's oddly anonymous publicist.

It's unclear whether McAleer and Co. paid WND for the fawning publicity, as appears to have been the case with the MRC -- WND could certainly use the money.

UPDATE: WND also published an column by "Gosnell" producer John Sullivan -- the guy who "leaked" the NPR emails -- engaging in WND's campaign of bashing Google and Facebook for purportedly censoring conservatives that also manages to sneak a pro-Trump narrative: "I’m not as concerned about Russians hijacking our elections and our free speech. I’m far more concerned about my fellow citizens who live in area codes like 310, 415 and 212 who try every trick in the book to silence fellow citizens who disagree with them, by rigging – yes, rigging – the game so that they win and their opponents lose in the battle of ideas, before the game even begins."

UPDATE 2: An Oct. 18 article by Moore is largely a summary of previous articles WND has published on the film, with additional emphasis on how few reviews have been done on the film. Moore apparently did not ask McAleer and the rest of the production team whether they made the film available for advance reviews through whatever usual channels advance screenings are made.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:46 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, October 22, 2018 2:17 PM EDT
Wednesday, October 17, 2018
MRC Forgets It Used To Hate Kanye West
Topic: Media Research Center

Kanye West is suddenly the Media Research Center's favorite rapper, now that he's hanging out with President Trump. As a result, he's now getting the full right-wing defense:

  • Ryan Foley huffed that "many" people at CNN "spent the entire week slamming Kanye West as mentally ill and/or directing racial slurs at him."
  • Foley also complained that CNN's Chris Cuomo called the Kanye-Trump meeting a "traveshamockery," adding that "Cuomo also made sure to take shots at West’s mental health ... as he attempted to make the case that people should not take the meeting between President Trump and West seriously."
  • Nicholas Fondcaro grumbled that "the broadcast networks spent 5 minutes and 59 seconds on Kanye’s visit to the White House (ABC = 1 minute, 58 seconds; CBS = 2 minutes, 4 seconds; NBC = 1 minute, 57 seconds). But when it came to the policy proposals Kanye and [Jim] Brown were there to promote, the nets punted with a total of 27 seconds."
  • Scott Whitlock claimed that "When it comes to the so-called mainstream media, it’s a case of Kanye West vs. Kanye West" since some media outlets who now criticize West "gushed over the 'thoughtful' entertainer when he derided then-President George W. Bush as a racist."

But Whitlock and the rest of his MRC cohorts will not remind you that it's Kanye vs. Kanye at the MRC as well. Until his political flip-flop, the MRC despised West.

In 2011, the MRC's Erin Brown was outraged that a preview for the video for West's song "Monster" "shows the rapper making sexual advances to a dead or drugged female corpse in his bed, and several dead, lingerie-clad women are seen hanging with chains around their necks." Brown added: "West has objectified women in his videos before such as the 2005 hit 'Gold Digger,' in which attractive young females were seen throughout the video in provocative lingerie dancing around West. But none have gone so far as 'Monster,' which sexually objectifies a woman to the point of death."

Catherine Maggio complained that "Monster" includes "28 F-words," adding about the video: "West's so-called "art piece" opens revealing a dead, young girl, hanging from a ceiling in a noose, wearing nothing but underwear and heels. The video is centered around the graphic violence against and the death of the women in the video, who are often shown wearing only underwear or lying face down, naked, bloody and dead. We are warned before the video that it is to be taken as art, but the saddest thing is that violence and necrophilia would be considered 'art' by anyone at all."

A 2012 post by Paul Wilson declared that West and Jay-Z "have once again expressed their love of gratuitous violence" through their song "No Church in the Wild," the video for which includes "anti-police riots."Wilson further huffed that "Kanye showed up to support the Occupy Movement wearing expensive gold chains," which made him "the embodiment of the 1 percent."

In 2013, NewsBusters' Noel Sheppard cheered a Jay Leno joke about "Kanye West wanting to be the Obama of clothing saying, 'To achieve his goal, he's designing fashion nobody wants and offering it on a website that doesn't work.'"

Sheppard also mocked -- given current events, highly ironically -- one commentator's suggestion that President Obama should meet with West: "Does the President of the United States really need a vulgar, anti-Semitic manager who thinks Obama's inability to get his agenda passed is because black people don't have the connections that Jewish people do?"

In a 2013 column, MRC chief Brent Bozell bashed Weset as a "nattering, narcissistic rapper" and whined that the New York Times was "pandering to West's colossal self-regard," He took offense to West's criticism of Bush, claiming that "West lashed, for no reason, and stupidly, arrogantly, and rudely declared that President Bush 'doesn’t care about black people.,'" then added: "West aspires to be a limousine leftist, a race-baiting revolutionary driving a $760,000 Lamborghini. How many poor Katrina victims could he feed if he didn’t have those car payments?"

And in another 2013 column headlined "Kanye, Go Away," Bozell took offense to Kanye  "ofending the Jews" by saying blacks "don’t have the same level of connections as Jewish people." Bozell ranted that "This oppressed man is worth an estimated $100 million. But victimization is way too seductive to let go." Bozell added:

It’s just ridiculous that mega-rich black rappers complain about their terrible plight. Or is that all just part of their cynical marketing? Don’t count it as a political act. It’s a craven business strategy. Aren’t they and their race-baiting enablers easily accused of strangling the people’s view of what is possible in America? If Kanye West can’t handle the heat of public opinion – especially the opinion of people who live outside the bubble of his ideological apple-polishers –  he should just go away.

The other night he performed in the Sprint Center in Kansas City, a venue that was 75 percent empty. Maybe I’m not the only one wishing him to go away.

Funny how none of this derogatory history was referenced by the MRC in its Trump-era defense of West.

Bozell and the MRC clearly aren't wishing for Kanye to go away anymore -- at least, not as long they can exploit him in order to boost Trump.

UPDATE: In its Kanye flip-flop, the MRC is doing the same thing it accused the media of doing when President Obama invited the rapper Common to the White House in 2011 for a poetry event. Scott Whitlock huffed that Common "has repeatedly defended cop killers such as Mumia Abu-Jamal," and Tim Graham took offense to Common's lyric that God "was able to Barack us" and declared that the media assert that "raising questions about songs honoring convicted cop killers was not a legitimate line of inquiry" (of course, the MRC no longer considers raising questions about Kanye's song a legitimate line of inquiry).

And of course, Bozell felt compelled to rant: "Everyone from record companies to record buyers should be condemned for enabling "music" that glamorizes killing police officers. It's ridiculous and offensive that a black multi-millionaire like Common can still pretend America and the police officers who protect Americans of all colors are racist. It's even more offensive that this man would be honored as a poet at the People's House." Again, Bozell will never raise this issue about Kanye.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:59 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, October 17, 2018 5:28 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE -- Beyond Paul Nehlen: WND's White Nationalism Problem
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Two more WorldNetDaily-published authors have shown their true colors of support for white nationalism and/or anti-Semitism. But WND has been flirting with white nationalists and race-baiters for years. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 3:11 PM EDT
Tuesday, October 16, 2018
Another CNS Trump Administration Stenography Factual Fail
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNS is so commited to stenography for the Trump administration that it rarely bothers to fact-check President Trump or his officials, even when they say something obviously misleading.

It does so again in a Sept. 21 article by Melanie Arter recounting a speech given by Attorney General Jeff Sessions in which he "blamed the spike in murders in Chicago on the Obama administration’s consent decree, which called for police reforms in response to police harassment and brutality claims." Arter uncritically recounted how "Sessions explained that the consent decree resulted in more violent crime, the victims of which were mostly African-American and Latino. It also required police officers to fill out lengthy paperwork and submit it to the American Civil Liberties Union, a former judge, and a public database for everyone they stopped" and copy-and-pasted rrom his speech:

John’s predecessor as United States Attorney, Zachary Fardon, said in an open letter to the City that the ACLU agreement “[told] cops if you go talk to those kids on the corner, you’re going to have to take 40 minutes to fill out a form, and you’re going to have to give them a receipt with your badge number on it. And he noted that as a result, by January 2016, ‘the city was on fire’ because ‘the rule of law, law enforcement, had been delegitimized.

But Fardon responded in an op-ed that Sessions selectively quoted from his open letter and ignored other reasons than the consent decree that Chicago crime was on the upswing:

Last year, when I resigned as U.S. attorney in Chicago, I issued an open letter in which I cited the ACLU deal as a contributor to the drag on officer stops in 2016. I named other extraordinary events, including the release of the Laquan McDonald video, the firing of CPD’s police chief and the launch of a DOJ civil rights investigation of CPD, all of which occurred in the last six weeks of 2015, as contributors as well.

Last month, in a speech in Palatine, Ill., Sessions quoted from my letter, which he called “honest and important.” He referenced only the ACLU portion of the letter and used that to support his theme that such agreements hamper police and inflame violence.

If Sessions had read the rest of my letter, he would know that my No. 1 recommendation to curb violent crime in Chicago was that we get a broad federal consent decree for CPD — one that goes well beyond addressing “stop and frisk” and guarantees Chicago police officers the training, supervision, equipment and support they need to succeed.

[...]

Law enforcement is not the entire solution, but it’s a big part. A consent decree will give our cops support, training and the credibility they need to engage in effective and constitutional policing. A consent decree will give our South and West side citizens greater trust in our officers and institutions, and greater safety in their neighborhoods.

If Sessions spent more time in violence-afflicted neighborhoods, he would know that we still have kids who are growing up more afraid of police than of gangs. When that changes, we mark the beginning of a new Chicago. Sessions is wrong about the CPD consent decree. Those who know and love this great city must hold true.

Arter also uncritically copy-and-pasted from Sessions' speech: "One of the most tragic examples is Baltimore. After the death of Freddie Gray, violence and riots followed. City leadership signed a consent decree with the ACLU. The results were the same as in Chicago." In fact, the Baltimore consent decree did not involve the ACLU, and it was approved two months after Sessions was confirmed as attorney general.

Sessions also insisted that "rape more than tripled" in Baltimore after the consent decree. In fact, while reported rapes increased, they did not triple, and at least some of the increase can be attributed to the FBI changing the definition of rape to be more expansive.

Once again, Arter has published false and misleading information out of either laziness or a desire to suck up to the Trump administration. Not a good look for a "news" operation.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:25 PM EDT
WND Obama Derangement Syndrome, Barry Farber Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Yes, I’ll admit I felt sympathy for ex-President Obama. Never enough to vote for him, mind you. I’d feel sympathy for any politician thrust by fate into a comparison with President Trump. Now I wish there were a way to get that sympathy back.

It’s not enough to allege that Obama fell short of Trump in nine out of 12 key areas of government. The entire Obama presidency is a full-blown embarrassment compared to Trump’s. Obama did his time. He rules the Free World no more. I was willing to let it go at that. But that was before Obama trashed the sacred tradition that previous presidents should be seen – and seldom even that! – but never heard criticizing a sitting successor. This maxim should require no reminders, given the startling success of Trump stacked up alongside the multiple failures of Obama. Obama’s broad-daylight attempt to hijack credit away from Trump for America’s economic well-being is the most egregious case of political larceny ever attempted.

I was a witness. It was pitiful. At least Trump’s ego-acrobatics are fun and funny, and a good time is had by all. But when he stood up before all those innocent young people at Illinois University, Obama showed us an ego in great pain, unable to come to terms with his own inadequacies.

“It didn’t start with Trump,” intoned the ex-president. “Trump was a symptom. Not a cause!” Those words cut so deep I didn’t even have to write them down. An analogy begs to be unfurled.

Imagine a football team with two quarterbacks. Let’s call them Barack and Donald. Barack throws six interceptions in a row, the first four of which are run back for touchdowns for the opposing team. Then Barack throws an incompletion, and they take him out of the game.

Donald comes in and throws six touchdown passes. And it’s pretty clear to all the fans what the quarterback prospects are for the team, though out of politeness not much is said about it. And the team with Donald as quarterback zooms off into a wildly successful season.

But wait! Barack calls a press conference. He has something to say. Barack is irked by all the buzz among football fans about how well things are going now that they’ve discovered who’s who among their quarterbacks. He’s beyond irked. He’s got his own view as to who’s who among quarterbacks, and he wants the world to know it.

Listen to Quarterback Barack: “After an admittedly slow start, the last three passes I threw were not run back for touchdowns. That’s progress! And that last one wasn’t even intercepted. It was incomplete. That’s a lot better than intercepted! So, you see, our recovery didn’t start with Donald. Donald is a symptom that things were getting much better. Donald was not the cause. Clearly, the improvement started during my administration as quarterback – and don’t you forget it!

-- Barry Farber, Sept. 11 WorldNetDaily column


Posted by Terry K. at 4:25 PM EDT

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