Journalistic Crimes of the WND Author
Alex Newman smears teachers as criminals in his WorldNetDaily-published book. He's also written "news" articles for WND filled with falsehoods and deceptions.
By Terry Krepel
Newman normally writes for the New American, the magazine published by the far-right John Birch Society, which tells you the level of so-called journalism WND is churning out these days. Newman's main mark at WND is being co-author, along with longtime WND columnist Samuel Blumenfeld, of the WND-published book "Crimes of the Educators." (Blumenfeld died a couple months after the book was published in April 2015.) And yes, he really does seem to think teachers are criminals on the level of Hitler and Pol Pot -- an comparison absurd on its face and should alone be enough to disqualify their book from serious consideration. But WND believes in the Big Lie technique -- complete with an elaborate conspiracy theory to supposedly prove it, as illustrated by the book's promotional copy:
Utopian dictators like Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot and Mao are criminals genocidal psychopaths who have killed more human beings in the last hundred years than any other ideologues in history. They don't limit their murder to individuals, but to entire nations.
There is evidence that the whole-language approach does not work with students who have dyslexia, but Newman and Blumenfeld are apparently claiming that the mere act of teaching whole-language causes dyslexia, a claim that appears to be absurd on its face.
Newman and Blumenfeld ignore one key problem with phonics: There are so many common English words that violate the standard sound-symbol rules that at least some memorization of words -- the "whole language" approach they despise -- is necessary to be fully literate.
As befits Newman's extremism, the May 2015 WND article documented Newsman's appearance on conspiracy-monger Alex Jones' radio show to promote his book, where he spews more slanders of teachers:
When you put all of this together, says Newman, it’s not only horrifying, but it’s a crime against the American people.
The article also stated that the authors "decry public schools for destroying children’s religious beliefs by teaching evolution and secular humanist doctrines. The authors note that lack of religion is a hallmark of totalitarian societies." Talk about your base demonization.
Newman has since tried to walk back his smearing of teachers. In an April 9 WND article beating up once again on John Dewey, this time for his "humanist beliefs" that allegedly forced Christianity out of public schools in order to "soften Americans’ attitudes toward socialism," Newman makes sure to note that regarding the "educators" who are committing "crimes" according to his book's title, "I think it’s important to say we don’t mean the average teacher in the classroom; we’re talking about the education establishment." It seems Newman is realizing that smearing teachers as criminals may not be helping book sales, so he's rather lamely redefining "educators" instead.
While Newman and Blumenfeld's book is laughable and paranoiac -- complete with references to "socialist utopians" who want to create "a global government, a global society, a single world religion" -- that's WND's stock in trade.
Newman penned another anti-education screed for a Jan. 4 WND column, in which he rants against the recently passed Every Student Succeeds Act but never says exactly what he objects to, other than a kneejerk assumption that because it comes from the Obama administration, it must be bad. Despite his utter lack of evidence, Newman insisted that the law is "yet another 1,061-page reason to yank their children out of government schools immediately. As if more reasons were really needed." Newman went on to twist the most innocent statements into something out of context and, thus nefarious. For instance:
Quoting Nelson Mandela, [Education Secretary Arne] Duncan has also publicly referred to education as “the most powerful weapon” to “change the world.” Your kids, then, are being weaponized and brainwashed, and the man overseeing it all is bragging about it in public speeches.
Newman goes on to rhapsodize about homeschooling: "From much better academics and socialization to better college and employment prospects, homeschoolers literally have all of the advantages." Well, not necessarily; WND has defended many terrible homeschoolers over the years.
Newman concludes: "In short: Homeschool or die!" He makes sure not to mention that sometimes you get both.
In the tradition of WND columnist Ilana Mercer and WND writer Anthony LoBaido, Newman appears to be a bit sad that South Africa is no longer under the racist apartheid system. In a June 2013 WND article, Newman worried about "the future of increasingly marginalized European-descent South Africans." But the people Newman quotes in support of that view tended to be right-wing extremists.
For instance, Newman quoted Dan Roodt, identified only as being with the "Pro-Afrikaans Action Group, PRAAG," as lamenting, “The advent of black rule has been devastating for whole groups of whites, even highly educated ones." To provide a clue as to where Roodt's racial views truly lie, he wrote a 2012 article for the white nationalist website American Renaissance in which he approvingly quotes AmRen leader Jared Taylor asking that "the Republican Party be loyal to its electorate and become the unabashed champion of white interests." Roodt added: "We need to form a global network to keep America from falling into the hands of anti-white zealots. ... If the United States goes the way of South Africa, whites everywhere will be in danger."
Roodt was also a fellow traveler of Eugene Terreblanche, a white supremacist (and a favorite of Ilana Mercer) who headed the militant Afrikaner Resistance Movement (AWB) until he was killed by two black farmhands.
Newman also writes:
For an increasingly significant segment of the population, it is becoming clearer that today’s South Africa is simply not sustainable in the long term.
Newman also touted how Genocide Watch "raised its alert level on South Africa to stage 6 out of 8 the planning and preparation phase of the extermination process" without mentioning that the group had actually lowered the level to stage 5 due to developments within the country.
Finally, Newman tried to play down the offensive parts of apartheid, describing its end in 1994 as "when the Western establishment and Soviet powers finally succeeded in forcing the anti-communist, white-dominated government to relinquish power." No mention of how the entire society was built on white racism.
Newman returned to the subject of south Africa in a December 2013 article, carrying the alarmist headline "Can whites escape post-Mandela bloodbath?" Newman avoided quoting white supremacists this time around, but he doesn't skimp on the racial fearmongering:
With the death of South African revolutionary icon Nelson Mandela, outside analysts and locals alike are expressing fear of a coming genocide of European-descent Afrikaners.
Newman didn't mention that at the time, South Africa's current murder rate was the same as it was in 1970 -- and likely lower given that crime data from South Africa's independent homelands were likely underreported or not reported at all during the 1970s.
Newman also doesn't mention that there are also racist whites in South Africa, some of whom are militant -- like the ones he quoted in his earlier article. But that would have interfered with the race-baiting that has become a staple of WND's "news" coverage.
Rampant 'pro-abortion' violence?
A December 2014 article by Newman begins with an apparent falsehood:
It was Sept. 11, 2009, just outside a high school in the small Michigan town of Owosso when Jim Pouillon, 63, was murdered for doing what he thought was right: protesting against abortion, which he considered murder.
In fact, Pouillon's son has stated that his father was a domestic abuser who "really didn't care" and took part in anti-abortion protests to indulge in his "pathologic hatred of women." Pouillon's son continued:
Again, my dad didn't care about abortion. He wanted to hurt people, upset people. He enjoyed making people suffer.
But never mind the facts: The goal of Newman's article is to promote the idea that violence against anti-abortion activists is "common and widespread." Newman cites only "a two-week review by WND" that's heavy on statistics by the rabidly anti-abortion group Human Life International, so the objectivity of its numbers are questionable. Indeed, Newman offers no evidence he double-checked HLI's numbers in his supposedly extensive "two-week review."
Newman also features quotes from Operation Rescue leader Troy Newman lamenting death threats against him by "the enemies of God the radical homosexuals, the God-haters, the atheists, the abortionists." Not only didn't Alex Newman mention that WND published a book by Troy Newman, he ignored Operation Rescue's links to Scott Roeder, who murdered abortion doctor George Tiller. Troy Newman and his Operation Rescue lieutenant Cheryl Sullenger -- who served time in prison for plotting to bomb an abortion clinic -- had numerous contacts with Roeder in the years before he murdered Tiller, and Roeder has stated that Troy Newman told him it “wouldn't upset” him if Tiller were murdered.
LGBT scare tactics
Alex Newman echoes WND's anti-gay scare tactics in a November 2014 article:
If you live in Minnesota, your high-school daughter might soon be showering next to a male after athletic practice if a “transgender” policy being considered by the Minnesota State High School League is approved next month.
Needless to say, Newman ignores evidence that undermines his fearmongering -- namely, that experts in 12 states that have banned discrimination in public accommodations based on gender identity have reported no problems whatsoever with sexual assaults or any other crimes in connection with accommodating transgenders.
Indeed -- echoing another WND tactic -- Newman interviewed only critics of nondiscrimination ordinances for his article, making no effort whatsoever to give supporters a chance to respond.
And, as per usual for WND's anti-gay agenda, Newman's article is accompanied with a completely unrelated picture of a screaming Janet Leigh in a still from the film "Psycho" -- the reaction WND presumably wants its readers to have in any discussion of gender identity.