WND Tries to Rebrand Anti-Gay Conversion Therapy As 'Gender-Confusion Counseling' Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily has longbeen a hotbed of LGBT-hating animus, and it continues to be so with its coverage of anti-gay conversion therapy -- which, of course, it doesn't see as anti-gay.
Last year, WND tried to brand state bans on conversion therapy as "Must Stay Gay" laws (without explaining why folks must be forced to stop being gay). Now it's obfuscating about the therapy itself by calling it "gender-confusion counseling," as it did in a Jan. 27 article touting a right-wing legal group's latest lawsuit:
A lawsuit contends Maryland’s ban on any gender-confusion counseling that does not promote homosexuality or transgenderism violates the constitutional rights of counselors, parents and youth alike.
Liberty Counsel’s complaint seeks preliminary and permanent injunctions against the new state requirement.
The state measure prohibits minors from receiving voluntary counseling from licensed professionals to reduce or eliminate unwanted same-sex attractions or gender confusion.
Such restrictions have been adopted in several states already, but the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in large part against states taking such moves, based on the First Amendment.
Advocates for the homosexual lifestyle have worked through lawmakers to impose the restrictions, which ban any counseling that does not advocate homosexuality and transgenderism.
WND never provides evidence that conversion therapy works; instead, it uncritically quotes from Liberty Counsel's complaint to vaguely complain that "Maryland purports to try to 'protect' youngsters with its ban on counseling, but the “evidence” included in the law 'misrepresents the empirical record.' And studies that were cited were biased."
Indeed, the Liberty Counsel complaint spends a lot of time ranting about one study questioning conversion therapy. It also promotes supposed guidelines for therapy forwarded by something called the Alliance for Therapeutic Choice and Scientific Integrity -- which, it turns out, is a rebrand of the notorious anti-gay group NARTH, and which still shames same-sex attraction.The complaint never identifies the Alliance as an anti-gay group.
A Jan. 30 article -- like the earlier one, anonymously written -- didn't go the rebranding route, but did promote a separate Liberty Counsel lawsuit that takes a different legal tack by claiming conversion-therapy bans violate the First Amendment. WND then misrepsents what conversion therapy bans are about:
The fight has been going on for years already: pro-homosexual activists in city and state lawmaking bodies want to ban anything that suggests same-sex relationships are not the ideal, and so they try to ban speech that carries that message.
In the counseling fight, it’s that governments are trying to censor any counseling speech that could be viewed as not endorsing same-sex relationships.
Actually, legislators see the harm that an unproven therapy can do to youngsters -- considering how they're so heavily based in shame -- and are trying to keep them from being victims of anti-gay "therapists" trying to coerce them into not being gay.
Again, WND provides no evidence that conversion therapy actually works in a consistent and replicable way.
An anonymously written Feb. 10 WND article promoted yet another Liberty Counsel lawsuit over conversion therapy, this time in New Jersey, again invoking First Amendment rights. Once more, WND doesn't note that Liberty Counsel provided any evidence that conversion therapy works and again falsely claims that "the issue is governments trying to censor any counseling speech that does not endorse same-sex relationships."
MRC Misleads In Claiming Secret Anti-Abortion Videos Weren't Edited Topic: Media Research Center
A Jan. 18 Media Research Center post by Matt Philbin touted a federal appeals court decision that, according to him, puts the lie to the Planned Parenthood/media talking points about the infamous 2015 undercover “baby parts” videos being deceptively edited," which "should be a blow to the extensive list of media outlets that dutifully repeated Planned Parenthood’s damage control statement about the video." Bill D'Agostino followed up the same day with a post furthering this talking point:
It's never been disputed that the "baby parts" video were edited. The individuals behind the camera chose when to press record, when to stop, and what bits of recorded conversation to leave out of their finished product. The question is, and always has been, did any of the edits give viewers a false impression of what the raw footage actually showed – for example, by stringing together unrelated or out-of-context statements? According to the 5th Circuit Court's decision and based in part on a forensic analysis that compared the raw footage to the edited videos, the answer is no.
Thus the claim that the Planned Parenthood videos were "deceptively edited" is no longer accurate. That's a problem for the organizations and news outlets who published celebratory articles containing that talking point back when the now-vacated ruling was first issued.
D'Agostino then provided a "list of organizations and news outlets who have repeated the now-disproven line about 'deceptive edits'," huffily adding, "It's anybody's guess as to how many of them will issue updates or corrections."
It appears D'Agostino and Philbin are confusing issues. It's indisputable that the Center for Medical Progress, the anti-abortion group that perpetrated the sting, rolled out their attack of the day designed to spark conservative outrage with a video that was, yes, deceptively edited. Only later did CMP release the full, supposedly unedited video that, more often than not, contradicted claims made in the edited version.
The ruling is unclear on what video or videos are being talked about. Rather, it narrowly states only that video submitted by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission’s Office of Inspector General in support of its attempt to defund Planned Parenthood in the state "was authentic and not deceptively edited." Indeed, a firm paid by Planned Parenthood found there were edits to the longer "unedited" videos as well. It does not refer to the body of short videos CMP released that were, in fact, deceptively edited, as demonstrated by the unedited videos they released hours later, or does it claim, as Philbin and D'Agostiono suggest, that all CMP-released videos were unedited.
So, yes, CMP did release tapes that were deceptively edited -- the court ruling does not change this fact. D'Agostino provides only a laundry list of articles at various website and does not fact-check regarding the specific claim of editing they're making. Nobody needs to correct anything, since the MRC does not prove any specific claim false.
Of course, this misleading claim spread elsewhere at the MRC: A Jan. 23 CNSNews.com article by Emily Ward similarly falsely suggested that the court's ruling applied to all CMP videos.
AIM Thinks Repeating Pro-Trump Talking Points Is 'Fact-Checking' Topic: Accuracy in Media
Brian McNicoll spends his Feb. 6 Accuracy in Media article rebutting Washington Post fact-checkers writing about claims in President Trump's State of the Union address by ... repeating pro-rump talking points and being mad that the Post won't give Trump credit for anything that happened between the 2016 election and his inauguration:
The Washington Post took issue with Trump’s economic successes in its “Fact Checking President Trump’s 2019 State of the Union address” by Glenn Kessler, Salvador Rizzo and Meg Kelly.
To Trump’s claim that “We have created 5.3 million new jobs and importantly added 600,000 new manufacturing jobs,” it wrote: “Trump often inflates the number of jogs created under his presidency by counting Election Day, rather than when he took the oath of office.”
But the economy began to recover from its eight moribund years under President Obama immediately upon Trump winning the election. On the day after he won in 2016, the Dow soared 257 points and neared lifetime highs. Business investment began almost immediately. Banks began to lend again. Defense contractors ramped up for increased orders. Trump did start making a difference from the day he was elected.
Since he took office – the only measure the Post will accept – it says 436,000 manufacturing jobs were created. But that compares to 900,000 created by Obama – over seven years, compared to barely two for Trump – and “the number of manufacturing jobs is still nearly 1 million below the level at the start of the Great Recession in 2007.”
McNicoll offers no proof that "Business investment began almost immediately. Banks began to lend again. Defense contractors ramped up for increased orders" immediately after the 2016 election solely because Trump was elected. Actually, it can be easily argued that Trump is simply continuing Obama's economy, since major economic trend lines are simply continuing their Obama-era trajectory.
McNicoll is also disingenously comparing job creation during Obama's entire presidency -- which started with a major recession -- with the two years of Trump's presidency. As the Post has also reported, average monthly job growth in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 under Obama outpaced that of 2017 under Trump, and 2018's figure through October matched 2015 but fell short of 2014.
Additionally, CNS published no article on Stacey Abrams' Democratic rebuttal to Trump's address -- effectively censoring its existence for its readers. It did, however, publish a column by Tom Kilgannon of Freedom Alliance declaring that State of the Union rebuttals should be banned because they're "pointless, petty and uninspired" and "only perpetuates distrust and discord in our political life." Kilgannon claimed he was making a bipartisan demand -- "It matters not whether the respondent is Stacy Abrams or Marco Rubio, the evening belongs to the president" -- but we found no instance of Kilgannon making the same demand while Barack Obama was president.
CNS' Media Research Center would be up in arms if it found bias this blatant at a "liberal" media outlet.
WND Finds A New Conspiracy Theory To Promote Topic: WorldNetDaily
There's a hot new conspiracy theory going around: that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg could not possibly have attended an event in Washington, D.C., last week -- described as her first public appearance since cancer surgery in December -- because no photos exist of the event, perhaps because she's dying or dead.
And WorldNetDaily -- conspiracy theorists extraordinare -- wants in on that action. Thus, an anonymously written Feb. 5 article:
U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Ginsburg has promised to retire when she can no long work at “full steam.”
For the past six weeks or so, following surgery, she’s been working from home, according to the court.
On Monday, however, she reportedly attended a concert put on by her daughter-in-law at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.
But the American Mirror blog points out that in the age of digital cameras, no one apparently has documented her public appearance.
“Attendees at the Notorious RBG in Song described Ginsburg as ‘glam,’ and ‘resplendent,’ and ‘magnificent,’ but you’ll have to take their word for it,” the blog said. “In an era when every person is carrying a camera and isn’t afraid to use it, there wasn’t a single snap of the 85-year-old to be found. Every media story that covered her alleged appearance used file photos.”
Several reporters “claimed to have spotted Ginsburg,” the blog said.
NPR reporter Nina Totenberg wrote on Twitter, “Spotted at a concert by her daughter-in-law, the notorious RBG out for the first time after her surgery in December!”
But the American Mirror said: “Folks online aren’t buying it, with more than a few pointing out the obvious: Why no pictures?”
Twitter user Edwin Motes wrote, “Well until I see her in a new video or sitting on the SCOTUS hearing cases, I won’t believe the likes of the Washington Post!”
As an actual news outlet reported, the reason there are no photos is that photography was forbidden at the event. A Washington Post reporter who actually witnessed the event in question and saw Ginsburg there has been accused of either lying or having seen her body double instead.
Promoting conspiracy theories got WND into the financialhole it's currently in, and continuing to embrace them won't help it get out.
At The MRC, Personal Attacks Are 'Media Research' Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center seems to have given up doing anything that remotely resembles "media research" these days. When it's issuing bogus "research" that's narrowly crafted to forward the MRC's right-wing agenda, it's issuing personal attacks against people for the offense of not being as right-wing as it is.
One recent example: The mysterious Jay Maxson marked Bob Costas' departure from NBC Sports with a hateful diatribe sparked by his being triggered by any injection of politics into sports that isn't right-wing or overtly Christian (even if the person injecting said Christian messaging played a part in a double murder). Maxson ranted that Costas has "worn out his welcome among sport fans who tune into sports broadcasts for sports and prefer that politics be left to the newscasters." He then listed what he claimed were Costas' "most disgusting political lectures and controversies," one of which was simply receiving an award. This was objectionable, Maxson huffed, because it's "a who's who award that goes to the left-stream media's heaviest hitters, including: Anderson Cooper, Gwen Ifill, Scott Pelley, Bob Schieffer, Christiane Amanpour, Diane Sawyer, Brian Williams, Tom Brokaw, Helen Thomas, Al Michaels and Ben Bradlee, among others."
Maxson was also offended that Costas pointed out the overall homophobia of Russia during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, which earned him "the Gold Medal awarded by GLAAD, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation." Maxson does not dispute the accuracy of Costas' observation -- only that it was voiced.
Another example: A Jan. 21 post by Gabriel Hays went well beyond criticizing Lady Gaga for criticizing Vice President Mike Pence from the stage of her Las Vegas residency -- the MRC is now reviewing Vegas stage shows now -- to attacking her for daring to speak out at all:
For an artist who spent the better part of a decade trying to be as unique as possible, she sure has ended up the same way as the rest of her colleagues: as a sour, angry, liberal.
The sad thing is that her deluded opinions are amplified by her pop star status — even more so now because she has become an A-list actress. Still there’s hope that, as with most of these Hollywood types, many people are starting to see them as preening windbags whose “Christian” goodwill only extends to those to kiss their butts or spoon feed them the political worldview that they’re most comfortable with.
Hays seems to be lacking Christian goodwill and, with such nasty attacks, seems to be moving quickly toward being a preening windbag in the tradition of his boss, Brent Bozell.
National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow said Monday that the economy is “very strong” despite the government shutdown and that no “permanent damage” was done.
“I still think the economy is very strong. I know there are some disagreements, sut I think, as the numbers shake out, the Commerce Department is reopening, we're going to get a GDP report probably next week, we'll get a jobs report this Friday. So that'll work out,” he said.
“Based on things we've talked about here -- unemployment claims, low; industrial production, strong; business investment, strong; holiday sales, very strong -- I still think we're on a three percent trend line growth rate, and I'm proud of that. I think that the program of lower tax rates, and regulatory rollback, and opening up energy and so forth is working and is continuing to work,” Kudlow said, adding that he thinks the optimists “are going to be right.”
Arter is certainly not going to mention -- and she doesn't -- Kudlow's long history of terrible economic predictions, as we'vedocumented, even though it's newsworthy regarding his veracity as an economic adviser. Yet Arter lets Kudlow attack without challenge the economic reports of the Congressional Budget Office, even though he's frequentlywrong in his CBO-bashing. (Though Kudlow has no problem with CBO numbers that align with his political agenda.)
This is what happens when pushing a political agenda becomes more important than reporting the news.
What LGBT Stuff Is The MRC Freaking Out About Now? Topic: Media Research Center
Yes, the Media Research Center is still freaking out about LGBT stuff. Let's document the atrocities, shall we?
Karen Townsend is stuck hate-watching "I Am Jazz," about a transgender teenager, and she sympathizes most with Jazz's father, who's been ambivalent about the transitioning process:
Jeanette reminds me of a stereotype of a stage mother. She is much more comfortable and supportive of Jazz’s transgender life than her husband, Greg seems to be. He is frequently uncomfortable with the constant chatter about vaginas and penises, for example, and he lets Jeanette know that he will not be eating the penis cake she intends to bake for the party. Most of all, Jeanette and Jazz are gung-ho for the party because it will make Greg feel uncomfortable. How sad, if you ask me.
In the following episode, which featured Jazz's "bottom surgery," Townsend took offense when the surgeon declared, "It's a girl!" at the end of it: "Really? Did Jazz’s chromosomes change on the operating table? How cliché. It was as though a baby was delivered."
The mysterious Jay Maxson ranted that anyone who criticizes a proposed South Dakota bill to require participation in high school sports based on birth gender as "gender deniers" and ranted about "the kettle of 'misinformation' coming directly from LGBT-conforming media."
Maxson was even triggered about something that's not at all gay: the Los Angeles Rams' cheerleading squad including two men, the first male cheerleaders to accompany a team to a Super Bowl -- and turned into something vaguely gay anyway. Maxson huffed that this was "history in the making that contributes to the feminization of the American male" and denounced it as "this effeminate form of masculinity."
Tim Graham had a meltdown over PBS discussing President Trump's ban on transgender people in the military without having an transgender-hating activist on:
The true sour cherry on top came when Feliciano asked the ACLU advocate to address how the media coverage is insufficiently progressive. It even "perpetuates misconceptions." To which many Americans would say: The biggest misconception on this issue is people looking at their genitals and denying their gender. But that viewpoint is verboten on taxpayer-funded PBS.
Allowing a debate would be "dehumanizing" and somehow questioning the "existence" of gender-deniers. Nobody's denying they're "real" people or that they have a "core humanity." But you can't even say that on PBS.
Brad Wilmouth similarly complained that CNN "provided a sympathetic forum to transgender activist and former Navy SEAL Kristin Beck to complain about a new policy by the Trump administration that puts restrictions on the recruitment of transgenders by the military for the future."
Lindsey Kornick, meanwhile, is stuck hate-watching "Supergirl," so the idea that the show will introduce a transgender superhero is grinding on her:
The January 27 episode “Blood Memory” has our transgender superhero-to-be Nia Nal (Nicole Maines) going back to "her" fictional hometown of Parthas with friend and boss Kara Danvers aka Supergirl (Melissa Benoist). Previous episodes have revealed that not only is Nia a transgender woman but she is also part alien with the ability to dream the future. Yes, this one character has hit the liberal and super-power jackpot. That’s only part of the annoyance.
Parthas is, in fact, a haven where humans and aliens live peacefully and progressively. They are so progressive that they even quickly and readily except gender dysphoria as normal.
Parthas is praised as some form of paradise, but any place that encourages transitioning young as “affirming an authentic self” sounds like a nightmare. Anyone who really cares about a family member or an “authentic self” should realize that most children who go through gender dysphoria eventually outgrow it by the time they become adults. If anything, transitioning Nia at a young age is probably the opposite of affirming her authentic self.
And Alexander Hall was not pleased that Facebook reported that its "LGBTQ employment has jumped to eight percent in 2018, far higher than the 2017 Gallup Poll estimate that claims only 4.5 percent of the national population is LGBT," a 14.29 percent jump. He huffed that "This won’t surprise social conservatives, who have complained heavily about mistreatment on the platform — especially on moral issues like marriage." Hall is conveniently ignoring all the times Facebook has sucked up to conservatives to respond to that criticism.
We have an idea: Hall should disclose what percentage of the MRC workforce is LGBTQ -- if he has the guts.
WND's Peterson Plays the Victim, Lacks Proof Topic: WorldNetDaily
Jesse Lee Peterson huffed in his Jan. 20 WorldNetDaily column:
This weekend I was physically assaulted at the Women’s March in Los Angeles.
My staff and I attended the march on Saturday, as we have in previous years to do street interviews for my web series “ The Fallen State TV.” It was a typical Women’s March with a cadre of leftist Democrats (of all races) representing LGBTQ, Planned Parenthood, environmentalists, pro-illegal immigration groups and others radical leftists. Some of the marchers wore pink p—y hats and were screaming obscenities about Donald Trump and the “patriarchy.”
There was one universal theme at the Women’s March in Los Angeles: Donald Trump is bad, and conservative Christian men – especially white men – need to be stripped of their “toxic masculinity” and their “white privilege.”
While I wasn’t surprised by their awful signs and hateful words, this year’s crowd was more hostile toward Trump supporters and anyone else who disagreed with their leftist world view.
The rage and hatred these people have toward President Trump and for his supporters was on full display. During my interview with two feminists (who appeared to be lesbians), I was physically assaulted for supporting the president and the big beautiful border wall. The attack was sudden and violent. One woman repeatedly kicked me while the other physically assaulted me with blows to my head, neck and shoulders. They also threw drinks and liquids on me while repeatedly calling me a n-gger!
Meanwhile, I was surrounded by an angry mob screaming and cursing at me. It was wild, and I was shocked that these leftists were bold enough to attack me in public for being a black Trump supporter. This was a hate crime; these out-of-control feminists must be stopped.
Strangely, Peterson provides no documentary evidence of this alleged assault, though he claimed to be filming for his "web series." He links only to a general YouTube page to the series as well as a 2017 video headlined "Jesse Peterson Crashes 'Dirty' Women's March" -- which may be alluding to something Peterson's not telling us.
Note that Peterson never describes what led up to the alleged incidents against him -- or, again, supplies video of it. We're guessing that any alleged "attack" on Peterson did not occur unprovoked, or that Peterson was merely standing and doing nothing when he was purportedly "surrounded by an angry mob screaming and cursing at me." Peterson is a provocateur -- he wants this sort of reaction from people so he can play the victim. After all, he loves to portray President Trump as the "Great White Hope" while being ignorant of (or very aware of) the phrase's racist origin. He likely said -- or shouted -- something similarly provocative to the marchers and generally acting like a jerk.
For provocateurs like Peterson, the only thing worse than a negative reaction to his provocations is no reaction at all. He's only playing the victim to get attention.
Will CNS Report On Bozell's Tangental Link to Trump-Russia Scandal? Doubtful Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com -- as befits a loyal pro-Trump stenographer -- typically doesn't report on negative things about President Trump unless it can be spun to his advantage, which is why much of its reporting on the Trump-Russia investigation is mostly limited to random people insisting that there was no collusion. It's also why the only story CNS has published about Russian operative Maria Butina and her alleged attempt to infiltrate the conservative movement by acting as a gun-rights enthusiast is framed around the idea that the arrest of a former U.S. Marine by Russian authorities was done in retaliation for Butina's arrest.
But there's another tangent to this story that nobody at CNS or its Media Research Center parent want to talk about -- because it involves MRC chief Brent Bozell.
Butina was romantically involved with a conservative political operative, Paul Erickson, who helped ingratiate her with various conservative groups (and who also just got indicted in relation to the Butina case). Despite his conservative bona fides, Erickson was a bit of a scammer, and Bozell got scammed, as a newspaper in Erickson's home state of South Dakota reported:
Erickson, 56, landed in hot water with many of his associates, including L. Brent Bozell, III, a descendant of conservative royalty, over a failed business deal that ended up in court.
In the late 1990s, Erickson set out to use some of the contacts he had developed over the years to raise money for a nursing home and Alzheimer's care company called Compass Care. Investors were sold on the idea of building 24 facilities that would be Christian based.
Although Erickson raised money, the venture went nowhere. By 2003, the same year in which he was telling donors he wanted to raise money to defeat Daschle, creditors began seeking judgments worth hundreds of thousands of dollars against Compass Care, including on the red Ford Mustang Erickson drove.
The creditors included Blue Stem Capital Partners, an investment company founded by former GOP Lt. Gov. Steve Kirby, who ran for governor in 2002.
In 2007, Bozell filed suit against Erickson after losing nearly all of a $200,000 investment into Compass Care. The lawsuit showed how deep Erickson was willing to tap his conservative allies to raise money.
Bozell, the founder of the Media Research Center, a group founded to highlight alleged liberal bias in the media, had an unmatched pedigree within the conservative movement.
His father had been among the post-World War II intellectuals who revived the conservative movement, and his uncle, William F. Buckley, was the founder of National Review, a conservative magazine that for decades represented the zenith in conservative thought.
In his lawsuit, Bozell said he had known Erickson socially for years.
"Defendant Erickson had from time to time represented to plaintiff Bozell that he was an astute businessman and an accomplished investor of his own and other people's money," the lawsuit said.
Erickson, the lawsuit said, promised Bozell that he would double his money. Bozell sued a year and a half after nearly all of his money disappeared.
A court eventually awarded Bozell a judgment of $190,000. Christopher Craig, a lawyer who represented Bozell in the case, said the judgment, which includes interest, was never paid.
Don't look for CNS to report on any aspect of this story anytime soon.
WND Leaps On Northam Blackface Story -- But Still Won't Talk About The Racist Writers It Published Topic: WorldNetDaily
When news broke that Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam had a picture of a person in blackface and another in a Ku Klux Klan robe on his page in his medical school's yearbook, WorldNetDaily uncurprisingly pounced. In addition to the original story on the controversy, it did a follow-up suggesting that Northam's refusal to shake hands with his opponent in a 2013 debate with his opponent for lieutenant governor, the notoriously homophobic provocateur E.W. Jackson, was a racist act, and another on Virginia's attorney general admitting to a blackface act in college.
But WND is hardly one to pass judgment on the racist acts of others, given how many racists it has published over the years.
As we've documented, three authors whose books were published by WND were exposed last year alone as having white nationalist and/or anti-Semitic views: Paul Nehlen, the Wisconsin politician who quickly became an anti-Semitic white nationalist after WND published his book in 2017; Scott Greer, whose "No Campus for White Men" was published in 2017 and who was later found to have written articles under a pseudonym for a white nationalist journal; and Walid Shoebat, whose questionable claim to be a Palestinian terrorist turned "Christian Zionist" was the centerpiece of WND's 2008 anthology "Why I Left Islam" and who has since given up the "Zionist" part and become a full-blown anti-Semite. And that's on top of serving as the home for the race-baiting, "black mob violence"-obsessed rants of Colin Flaherty (and republishing his book "Wtite Girl Bleed A Lot") and publishing columnist Ilana Mercer, who can't quite stop pining for the days of apartheid in her native South Africa.
WND was very slow to respond to the Nehlen controversy, only belatedly and quietly withdrawing his books and an anti-Muslim film he made from the WND's online store and scrubbing him from the WND Books website -- but it never issued a public statement denouncing him or his views. It was similarly silent when the hate of Greer and Shoebat were exposed.
Perhaps WND should clean up its own closet o' racism before dunking on the situation in Virginia. Some might call what it's doing now projection.
CNN Derangement Syndrome: MRC Feeds Conspiracy Theory Over Roger Stone's Arrest Topic: Media Research Center
We were a bit surprised to see CNSNews.com latch onto the conspiracy theory that CNN cameras were present at Roger Stone's arrest because they were tipped off by Robert Mueller instead of, say, had been following the story long enough to know that he was being arrested and staking out his house just in case.
Given that, we are less surprised to see that CNS' parent, the Media Research Center, hates CNN enough to give the conspiracy theory a test ride as well.
Chief CNN-hater Curtis Houck wrote in a Jan. 25 post:
Americans awoke Friday morning to find that, as expected, Trump associate and InfoWars fan Roger Stone been arrested by the FBI at his Ft. Lauderdale, Florida home on seven counts related to the Trump-Russia probe.
But what made this long-expected arrest surprsing? Well, somehow CNN had a camera and producer on scene for the arrest, airing by 6:37 a.m. Eastern providing footage of armed agents swarming his house. According to CNN, they just had a hunch.
Not surprisingly, more than a few people are skeptical of this and, also not surprisingly, CNN is puffing its chestwhile attacking those expressing doubts.
The rest of Houck's post was dedicated to on-air CNN discussions about how its cameras captured Stone's arrest, including the key assertion from a CNN producer that reporters had noticed "unusual grand jury activity" the day before that was suggestive of a Stone arrest. But Houck refused to concede CNN's point that the "skeptical" conspiracy-mongers are wrong. He linked to a right-wing Daily Caller article that similarly advances the conspiracy theory without telling readers it's bogus.
Houck and the MRC hate CNN so much that it can't even give the network credit for a scoop without mixing a conspiracy theory into it. The MRC has also refused to correct the record after spreading the false claim that CNN scripted a question for a Parkland massacre survivor at a CNN-televised forum.
CNSNews.com's coverage of January's employment numbers brought more pro-Trump rah-rah, since the numbers were good enough. The main story by Susan Jones trumpeted in its headline: "Labor Force Participation at Trump-Era High of 63.2% in January," but further down in the article she concedes that number isn't actually that good:
The 163,229,000 who participated in the labor force equaled 63.2 percent of the 258,239,000 civilian noninstitutionalized population.
The participation rate was 62.9 percent when Trump took office, and it has showed little change since then, as retiring baby boomers offset additions to the nation's workforce.
As we've documented, CNS regularly played up the relatively low labor force participation rate during the Obama administration, but it only rarely told readers it was due to baby boomers retiring.
From there, we get our usual sidebars Terry Jeffrey obsessing about manufacturing jobs and goverment jobs, and Craig Bannister hyping Hispanic employment for the seeming purpose of CNS' Media Research Center parent trying to shame Hispanic TV networks into reporting it. CNS also published another op-ed by Mickey Levy -- which first appeared at the right-wing Manhattan Institute -- touting the good numbers.
This time, though, CNS also threw in an anonymously written article featuring House Speaker Nancy Pelosi responding to the numbers "by issuing a statement attacking congressional Republicans for embracing an attitude that 'disrespects workers.'"
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC's Failing War Against Facebook Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's narrative that Facebook is unrelentingly hostile to conservatives keeps getting undermined every time it's revealed how much Facebook is sucking up to conservatives in an attempt to respond to those attacks. Read more >>
WND's Farah Says He Doesn't Know Roger Stone; Evidence Suggests Otherwise Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah rants in his Jan. 25 column:
You probably didn’t hear FBI Director Chris Wray whining about what makes him really mad – that some of his agents are not working because they’re not getting paid during the government shutdown, forcing other agents to cover their assignments.
He had his little hissy-fit the very day a dozen of his agents conducted a pre-dawn raid – SWAT-style – on Roger Stone’s house. They were packing lots of heat – automatic weapons, body armor. They banged on the door in the residential area of Fort Lauderdale demanding the guy who fully cooperated with Special Counsel Robert Mueller investigation into alleged “Russian collusion” with the 2016 Donald Trump presidential campaign come out with his hands up.
He was cuffed and treated like a terrorist mastermind or drug kingpin for his process crimes by Wray’s agents – presumably at his command.
You know what makes me angry? Gestapo police-state tactics by the FBI, Mueller and Wray.
I don’t know Roger Stone, but I know he’s no threat to me, his neighbors or the national security of the United States. It’s an absolute disgrace how he was arrested Friday. If the FBI hasn’t humiliated itself enough over the last several years, the spectacle of Stone’s raid made the agency look like either a joke or confirmation it is indeed a highly politicized national police agency punishing people whose only crimes are being in the periphery of President Trump.
We somehow doubt that Farah doesn't know Roger Stone -- he was a key figure in their reporting during the 2016 election.
As we documented, WND and then-reporter Jerome Corsi aligned themselves with Stone starting in 2015: WND columnist Myra Adams conducted an interview with Stone in which he listed Corsi, and Corsi used WND to promote an anti-Clinton book co-written by Stone. Corsi then worked with Stone to use WND to promote a man who claims without evidence to be Bill Clinton's illegitmate son. And in October 2016, a month before the election, Myra Adams interviewed Stone again.
Further, Corsi, while still at WND, was working with Stone when he found out that Russian operatives, not murdered Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich, stole DNC emails and gave them to WikiLeaks -- and still allowed WND to promote Seth Rich conspiracy theories for months afterward.
On top of that, Farah played a bit role in the current controversy involving Mueller, Corsi and Stone. The Washington Post reported in November that Corsi said that he offered to fly to London in July or August 2016 and meet with WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange if Farah would buy the plane ticket.
There may have been Farah-Stone contact well before that. The New York Times reported that in 2012, Stone urged Donald Trump to promote Obama birther conspiracy theories, which put Trump in conversation with Farah and Corsi.
There's enough incidental contact here that makes Farah's claim that he doesn't know Stone to be highly suspect. And we haven't even gotten to his odious "Gestapo" reference, which is highly hypocritical given how offended WND gets when anyone uses a Nazi reference in describing Trump.