There's No Place Like WND (For Discredited Filmmakers And Unethical Reporting)
Joel Gilbert knows the best way to get WorldNetDaily to promote his new anti-Obama film and ignore his track record of falsehoods: Put Jerome Corsi in the movie.
By Terry Krepel
The false claims in Gilbert's 2012 anti-Obama film "Dreams From My Real Father" -- especially his sleazy claim that Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, posed for nude photos taken by Frank Marshall Davis -- were exposed by blogger Loren Collins. Gilbert has yet to publicly acknowledge, let alone apologize for, his falsehoods, though he has engaged in some after-the-fact alterations of his film PR to make them slightly less misleading, and he is aware of Collins' work to the extent that he tried to get a Collins video removed from YouTube because it contained promotional footage of the film.
That same year, Gilbert promoted a claim that Obama's wedding ring contains Arabic writing -- which turned out to be so demonstrably false that even birthers were moved to debunk it.
Yet Gilbert has his champions in the ConWeb; chief among them is WorldNetDaily's Jerome Corsi. Not only did Corsi embrace Gilbert's salacious attack on Obama's mother as part of his own campaign of sleaze against Obama, he gullibly swallowed Gilbert's false claim about Obama's ring. Corsi also couldn't be bothered to correct the record when Gilbert's claims were discredited.
Gilbert undoubtedly took notice of that. He rewarded Corsi the only way he could: by putting him in his next anti-Obama hit job, "There's No Place Like Utopia." For good measure, he put WND columnist Jack Cashill in his film as well.
And despite being repeatedly burned by Gilbert's lies, Corsi repaid Gilbert by promoting the film at WND. If it looks like a quid pro quo, well, it probably is -- Gilbert's casting has essentially bought positive coverage from WND.
How positive? Corsi kicked off the publicity campaign for a film in which he appears with a May 13 article that reads like a press release written by Gilbert himself. Since this is a press release, Corsi makes no mention of Gilbert's trail of lies -- rivaling the Wizard of Oz that Gilbert's new film is inspired by -- even though Corsi himself was burned by them.
Corsi devoted another fawning WND article to the film on July 14. While Corsi admits he's in the film -- though not until the 27th paragraph of his article -- he's too invested in delivering the rah-rah coverage Gilbert knew he could count on to mention his substantial history of fraud.
Corsi held up his end of the logrolling once again in a July 21 WND article, in which he touted "strong box office results at its premiere," adding how "Each showing had long lines and sellout, or near sellout, crowds that responded enthusiastically with sustained applause at the conclusion," and interviews with "various moviegoers" who invariably loved the film, as well as with Gilbert basking in those glowing reviews. This time Corsi waited until the 32nd paragraph of his article that he appears in the movie he's writing about.
It's all ridiculously blatant cheerleading, and WND is complicit -- what self-respecting news organization would let a so-called reporter present as a "news" article gushing PR pieces on a film he appears in? It's a textbook example of how to violate journalistic ethics.
Of course, Gilbert doesn't care because he's getting what he wants. And it's not as if anyone expects ethical, accurate journalism from anyone at WND, especially Corsi.
This is just another reason why nobody believes WND.
AIM's Kincaid jumps on the Gilbert bandwagon
Corsi is not the only ConWeb writer eager to sign on as a PR agent for Gilbert and willing to turn a blind eye to his trail of falsehoods. Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid, ironically enough, isn't bothered by Gilbert's inaccuracies.
Indeed, given that Collins' expose came out shortly before Kincaid's column appeared, it was abundantly clear that Gilbert has plenty to hide -- and that Kincaid would help him hide it.
Kincaid followed in Corsi's footsteps by devoting a May 20 column to Gilbert's new Obama-bashing film. Kincaid lionized Gilbert as "the filmmaker who exposed Barack Obama’s Marxist background, and debt to a pro-Soviet Communist Party operative," and proclaims that Gilbert's previous film, "Dreams From My Real Father," "examined the hidden history of America’s first black president in a serious and matter-of-fact manner."
Kincaid dutifully slobbered over "There's No Place Like Utopia" in a July 17 column:
The film is both serious and entertaining. It makes you laugh and almost want to cry, as he skillfully describes what seems like the planned destruction of America.
Just as Gilbert bought Jerome Corsi's loyalty by putting him in his film, he appears to have done something similar to buy Kincaid's promotional skills: Much of his column is devoted to lovingly detailing how the late anti-communist obsessive (and Kincaid buddy) Larry Grathwohl is "one of the stars" of Gilbert's film.