Logrolling In Our Time: Trump and Newsmax Topic: Newsmax
The lovefest between Newsmax and Donald Trump isn't showing any signs of slowing down.
A May 23 Newsmax article is dedicated to ... Trump tweeting nice things about Newsmax:
Donald Trump has expressed high praise for Newsmax and its CEO Christopher Ruddy. The billionaire mogul tweeted: "Newsmax Media is one of the top media outlets in the country. Chris Ruddy has revolutionized political commentary and reporting."
The message was spread far and wide: Trump has more than 2,227,000 Twitter followers. And his TV show "Celebrity Apprentice" is one of NBC's most highly rated programs.
Newsmax is indeed a "top" media outlet — Newsmax.com has reached the No. 1 position in comScore’s News/Politics category.
Of the 61 million Americans comScore tracks seeking political news across all digital platforms, more than 13 million monthly unique visitors turned to Newsmax.com's political sites, exceeding such competitors as Huffington Post and Fox News in March.
As we detailed, Newsmax had to compare its entire website to mere parts of others to be able to say that.
Newsmax Media, a leading independent publisher, has announced that its flagship website, Newsmax.com, has reached the No. 1 position in comScore’s News/Politics category.
Of the 61 million Americans comScore tracks seeking political news across all digital platforms, more than 13 million monthly unique visitors turned to Newsmax.com's political sites, exceeding such competitors as HuffPost Politics and Fox News Politics in March.
See what Newsmax did there? It's comparing its entire site against parts of other websites. But Newsmax has a "politics" vertical as well, the traffic which the article does not see fit to break out despite the fact that it would be a much more direct comparison.
Newsmax also has dedicated sites for world news, financial news and health stuff, but Newsmax does not indicate whether traffic for those sites are counted as part of Newsmax's overall total.
James Hirsen used his May 13 Newsmax column to have a meltdown over a "Saturday Night Live" skit lampooning the congressional hearings on Benghazi. The skit's central joke was that nobody was paying attention to the hearings, so Republicans were bringing in TV-hyped convicted murderer Jodi Arias to boost ratings, but Hirsen failed to see the humor:
“Saturday Night Live” sunk to a new low in the content of its most recent opening sketch.
The Lorne Michaels-created late-night television show was once recognized for its fresh, brash sketches that combined comedy with commentary.
That was then, this is now. Apparently, SNL producers and writers prefer to be politically correct in their commentary and aggressive in the expression of their liberal biases rather than just plain funny.
The SNL comedy writers took great pains to depict the Republicans as engaging in purely partisan theatrics. The sick sketch had the chairman of the congressional committee calling convicted murderer Jodi Arias to testify. Also waiting in the wings to be sworn under oath as the next witness was suspected Ohio kidnapper and rapist Ariel Castro.
Although the opening of the bit implicitly acknowledged that the media had failed to properly cover the Benghazi hearings, the humor that was incorporated into the piece came in the form of mockery of GOP committee members, with negligible pokes at the media and zero ribbing of the Obama administration.
SNL’s Bill Hader portrayed Rep. Darrell Issa, the Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee. Kenan Thompson, who played Democrat Rep. Elijah Cummings, telegraphed the SNL writers’ mindset, when in character he declared, “Everyone knows that this [the hearings] is just a partisan witch hunt and a chance to attack the president and Secretary of State Clinton.”
Is Hirsen really saying with a straight face that Republicans have no partisan motive in pursuing alleged Benghazi scandals? If so, he's deluding himself; he offers no evidence to back up his suggestion.
Hirsen is described in his end-of-column bio as a "media analyst." With such biased and humor-challenged "analysis," Hirsen should be working for the Media Research Center.
Immigrant-Bashing Is James Walsh's Business, And Business Is Good Topic: Newsmax
James Walsh's job at Newsmax is to be its chief immigrant-basher, with a side of Obama-bashing -- a function he continued to perform in a couple recent columns.
One column denounced a recent rally for immigration reform as "a well-orchestrated, well-financed, Alinsky-style community-organizer protest," and claimed the presence of children "reflected the labor-union tactic of using children to evoke sympathy and gain publicity."
Walsh went on to claim that "Some observers of the rally questioned the cost of transporting, feeding, and housing the demonstrators, many of whom couldn’t speak English." He provided no evidence of any lack of English-speaking skills among the attendees, and the quotes he attributes to these "observers" have no backup either; they sound like his usual tactic of quoting purportedly real people who all happen to agree with him.
Walsh's May 3 column was dedicated to declaring that President Obama's policies "have the potential to erode U.S. culture, heritage, identity, and financial solvency." He rails against immigration reform (of course), Obamacare and foreign policy. We've previously noted Walsh's misleading defense of a military instructor who made inflammatory claims about Muslims.
Something intriguing has been happening at the “Tonight Show” with the content of host Jay Leno’s humor. The jokes that are flying are going where no late-night hosts have gone before.
Leno’s late-night TV colleagues, for the most part, have been blatantly partisan, particularly in the manner in which their material has been written.
Leno’s peers have made the occasional reference to President Obama within the context of their jokes; however, in a similar vein to the mainstream media, they have been perfunctory at best in their targeting of Obama or his administration, reserving their sharpest comedic barbs for the GOP.
Interestingly, Leno’s jokes have been taking aim at President Obama’s policies and the “Tonight Show” host appears to be going after some of the same uncomfortable truths that prior to now only conservative talk show hosts would dare to speak freely about.
Funny how Hirsen doesn't label Leno as "partisan" for his Obama jokes. Instead, he pontificates that "Leno’s humor contains substantive messages that might pose a danger to someone who lacks the clout to buck the Hollywood infrastructure" and declares Leno's humor to be "bold, honest" and deserving of a more appreciative home at Fox.
A story going unreported by the mainstream news media is the smashing of Army Lt. Col. Matthew Dooley’s career. Dooley, a highly regarded instructor at the Joint Forces Staff College, dared suggest that Islamists were involved in terror against the United States.
A board of review, consisting of three generals and two colonels, had approved Dooley for promotion, when Islamic organizations in the United States demanded that the Obama administration make an example of him. Chief of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey, an Obama appointee, overruled the Army’s recommendation and denied Dooley his promotion.
In fact, Dooley did much more than "suggest that Islamists were involved in terror." From Wired:
Dempsey shut down an elective course Dooley taught at the Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Virginia, which is under the auspices of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The course instructed senior officers at the lieutenant colonel, commander, colonel and Navy captain level that “there is no such thing as ‘moderate Islam,’” and that wartime protections against civilians of Islamic countries were “no longer relevant.”
Materials distributed by Dooley’s guest lecturers suggested inaccurately that President Obama is a Muslim. Similar material taught to the FBI in 2011 compared Islam to the Death Star in Star Wars. Dooley himself taught, “Your oath as a professional soldier forces you to pick a side here.”
Dooley considered the reduction of Islam to a “cult status” an acceptable outcome of what he considered a civilizational war. Accordingly, his instructional material is reminiscent of The Innocence of Muslims, the anti-Islam video that was used as a pretext in the Middle East over the past week for anti-American protests. Dooley was removed from the college and received an administrative reprimand for teaching material that Dempsey called “totally objectionable, against our values and it wasn’t academically sound.”
Apparently, the truth isn't sexy enough for Walsh, so he resorts to whitewashing the facts aboutwhat Dooley was teaching.
Newsmax was the chief promoter of Donald Trump's (ultimately unfulfilled) presidential ambitions in the 2012 campaign. Despite getting burned by its affiliation with Trump in an ill-fated attempt to co-host a presidential debate with him, Newsmax is touting Trump as president again.
"Trump Making GOP Speech — Is 2016 in the Cards?" reads the headline on an April 30 Newsmax article by Jim Meyers, who takes over where Ronald Kessler left off as chief of Trump-fluffing:
Donald Trump is scheduled to deliver a major address at the largest Republican gathering in Michigan, raising the question: Is Trump planning to run for president in 2016?
Trump will be the keynote speaker at the 124th Annual Oakland County Lincoln Day Dinner in Novi, Mich., just outside of Detroit, on May 21.
Observers are wondering why the billionaire mogul has agreed to travel to Michigan for the event. Some say Trump still has a taste for the presidency after talking about a run last year.
Meyers offers no evidence that speaking at "the largest Republican gathering in Michigan" is the springboard for anything, let alone an election that's more than three years away. But he and Newsmax certainly want you to think it does.
Newsmax Takes Obama Joke A Little Too Seriously Topic: Newsmax
Paul Scicchitano and Todd Beamon take a joke by President Obama at the White House Correspondents Dinner a little too seriously in an April 28 Newsmax article:
It may have been the first time President Barack Obama acknowledged what must have been a painful truth in front of an audience of millions.
“How do you like my new entrance music?” the president said gleefully after making his way to the podium of the Washington Correspondents’ Association gala on Saturday with rap music thumping in the background.
“Rush Limbaugh warned you about this — Second term baby,” he conceded to a wave of laughter.
Scicchitano and Beamon ultimately concede that "it was all good fun in an annual tradition that brings Hollywood to the Potomac and humbles not only the opposition, but also the jokester in chief in what can best be described as a uniquely American political experience."
Bitter Ex-CIA Guy Returns To Newsmax Topic: Newsmax
We've detailed how Kent Clizbe is a bitter ex-CIA man who likes to lash out at President Obama by invoking birtherism. Newsmax has given him another opportunity to be a crank, this time in the form of an April 24 column in which he agrees with Rush Limbaugh that the sheer liberalness of Boston turned the Tsarnaev brothers into radical Islamists who bombed the Boston Marathon:
Recently, talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh came under liberal media attack for linking the bombers’ behavior to the “liberal elite intellectual thought” that infects the Boston community.
Limbaugh explained to a caller on his show how such a mindset harms young kids.
“They hang around people that don’t like America, they get inspired or influenced by it somehow, and it’s no wonder,” Limbaugh said.
“And if you end up around the wrong people long enough and you’re young enough and impressionable enough, then that kind of thing can happen,” Limbaugh said.
With the questions swirling of why two upwardly mobile young people in America could commit such acts, a good place to start would be the “educations” the two Tsarnaev brothers received.
Younger brother Dzhokhar graduated from the celebrated Boston high school Cambridge Rindge and Latin School (CRLS). A graduate of CRLS has had years of anti-American claptrap crammed down his throat.
The only evidence Clizbe provides of this is that one teacher at the school likes "liberal elite darling" Howard Zinn, which apparently makes the teacher a "weenie."
No wonder Clizbe's an ex-CIA guy -- if he was making such sweeping generalizations based on a single example, that's sloppy sleuth work of the highest order.
Anti-Heathering: Newsmax's Ruddy Defends A Moderate Republican Topic: Newsmax
Call it anti-Heathering.
While the Media Research Center attacks any conservative who dares to even slightly deviate from the right-wing party line, Newsmax's Christopher Ruddy uses an April 24 column to defend the record of moderate Republican Sen. Susan Collins.
Ruddy rails against a "grossly unfair" attack ad against Collins for supporting a failed effort at expanded background checks on guns:
The fact is, Sen. Collins believes in the Second Amendment. She has earned a solid B-plus rating from the National Rifle Association.
She has also opposed some of the lunacy being pushed by the Democrats. For example, she voted to support legislation in 2007 prohibiting foreign and U.N. aid that restricts U.S. gun ownership. President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry recently indicated the U.S. would back such U.N. efforts.
On another key issue important to the NRA, Collins voted to support legislation in 2005 prohibiting lawsuits against gun manufacturers. In 1998, she also supported a law allowing the sale of guns without trigger locks.
Again, in 1999 she opposed a bill requiring background checks at gun shows.
Ruddy also defended Collins' Republican bona fides:
As for the allegation that she doesn’t “sound like” a Republican, it should be noted that Collins voted against Obamacare, voted in favor of the Bush-era tax cuts and their extension, supported the Iraq War Resolution authorizing President Bush to attack Iraq, and received a 0 percent rating from SANE (National Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy), indicating a pro-military voting record.
On fiscal policy, she is a conservative, supporting the idea of a balanced budget constitutional amendment and enforcing existing spending caps in the future.
Last year, the GOP was within a hair’s breadth in gaining control of the U.S. Senate, but they blew it by putting forward candidates out of sync with mainstream voters.
Republicans could easily make the same mistake in 2014 if some elements within the party unfairly target highly qualified candidates like Susan Collins.
Will the MRC start Heathering Ruddy and Newsmax for being insufficiently conservative? We shall see.
Newsmax Touts (Bulk-Purchase-Fueled) Sales of (Newsmax-Published) Obamacare Book Topic: Newsmax
Jim Meyers breathlessly writes in an April 12 Newsmax article:
The “ObamaCare Survival Guide” has reached a new sales milestone — it’s hit the coveted No. 1 spot on The New York Times best-seller list.
The Guide reached the Times’ best-seller list for paperback/advice in early February and remains there today.
The new first-place ranking will appear in the April 21 issue of The New York Times Book Review.
But if you look at the sales chart, you'll notice that there's a dagger symbol at the end of the “ObamaCare Survival Guide” entry. The end of the chart states: "A dagger (†) indicates that some retailers report receiving bulk orders." Bulk sales are a traditional method of boosting sales figures for conservative authors.
And many of those bulk sales appear to be coming from Newsmax itself. The book is Newsmax's latest loss leader, selling it for $4.95 with its usual bonus trial subscriptions to Newsmax magazine and other newsletters that one must opt out of in order to avoid being charged for a full year's subscription.
Meyers also fails to mention the key reason Newsmax is pushing this book so hard: Newsmax published it through its subsidiary Humanix Books.
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, Wayne Allyn Root Edition Topic: Newsmax
Ninety days is all it took to put the U.S. economy into a coma, to destroy any chance of recovery. Ninety days defined by what I call the Obama "Axis of Evil” — taxation, regulation, unionization, litigation, IRS intimidation, demonization, and government strangulation. The last 90 days of this Axis of Evil have sealed our fate.
There are no new jobs. There will be no new jobs. Creating jobs in Obama's America is like trying to grow healthy plants in a nuclear blast zone. Obama has turned the U.S. economy into a “Hostile Work Environment.” I call it Obamageddon.
Obama is like a drug addict with giant bills to pay and no income. He has to find a way to pay for his food stamps, disability and unemployment society. The bill to keep this Ponzi scheme going gets bigger by the hour. But with 90 million adults no longer working, and everyone who is willing to work being robbed to pay for a nation of deadbeats, who is left to jumpstart the economy? Who is left to create jobs? The answer is — clearly — no one.
Ninety days of the Obama "Axis of Evil” showcases what one man, supported by a blind, adoring liberal-biased media, can do to snuff out ambition, drive, work ethic, creativity, inspiration and enthusiasm — all in the name of equality, fairness and social justice.
An April 15 Newsmax article by Jim Meyers fawns over Morris' new radio show in Philadelphia. Meyers sticks to press-release boilerplace, mindlessly spouting things like "Morris, once called 'the most influential private citizen in America' by Time magazine, is a former Fox News commentator and adviser to President Bill Clinton."
No mention, of course, that the reason Morris is a former Fox News commentator is because of his abysmal record of punditry, or that Morris' purported status as "the most influential private citizen in America" was granted shortly before he resigned in disgrace from Bill Clinton's re-election campaign for dalliances with a call girl.
For some reason, Newsmax has decided to enter the breach and goose sales of the book.
An April 12 Newsmax article touts how Chafets' book "has soared to the top of Amazon.com’s list of best-selling books," going on to assert that "Chafets' book is drawing high praise not only for its penetrating look at the man credited with building Fox News into the top-rated cable news channel, but also for the significant revelations it offers about Ailes, his confrontation with President Obama, and other fascinating vignettes."
One significant fact Newsmax fails to mention: Two days earlier, it sent out an email to its mailing list imploring readers to buy the book at Amazon.
Scattered throughout that email are links stating, "Note: You can get this best-selling book from Amazon now — Go Here Now." It takes you to Amazon's page for the book, its URL coded so that Newsmax gets a cut of sales.
Both the email and article make the ludicrous claim that "Chafets is not a conservative — a frequent contributor to the New York Times Magazine and a former columnist for the New York Daily News, he was given unprecedented access to Ailes and others at Fox News with no strings attached." But as the New Republic details, Chafets certainly has special relations with conservatives like Ailes:
The author of more than a dozen books, Chafets has established himself as someone with special access to conservative figures, earned by the sympathetic profiles he writes of them. He seems credible, writes well, does actual reporting, and is published in center to center-left outlets like the New York Times Magazine and Newsweek. He frequently identifies himself as a member of the “mainstream media” or “lamestream media,” complete with quotation marks to deny an endorsement of either appellation.
The email even touts Rush Limbaugh's endorsement of the book without mentioning that Chafets also wrote a friendly bio of Limbaugh.
Newsmax might want to explain to its readers why it has felt the need to goose sales of Chafets' book. Out of the goodness of Christopher Ruddy's heart? Because Chafets' publisher is paying them? Please tell us.