Topic: Accuracy in Media
We've detailed how Don Feder has offered shoddy and misleading evidence to forward Accuracy in Media's campaign to boycott the New York Times. That continues in a Nov. 24 column Feder wrote for WorldNetDaily.
In portraying the Times' coverage of the presidential campaign as "biased, brutish and business as usual," Feder offers numerous misleading claims and unsupported or hypocritical assertions.
Feder claims "the Times tried to soft-peddle Obama's ties to unrepentant terrorist William Ayers" adding:
An Oct. 17 editorial charged that by bringing up Ayers, McCain and his running mate had moved beyond mere "distortions," driving deep "into the dark territory of race-baiting and xenophobia." Since Ayers is white and native-born, this left many Times-watchers scratching their heads.
In fact, the editorial in question was published on Oct. 8, not Oct. 17, and the remarks about "race-baiting and xenophobia" were not in reference to Ayers. The editorial also stated:
Ms. Palin, in particular, revels in the attack. Her campaign rallies have become spectacles of anger and insult. “This is not a man who sees America as you see it and how I see America,” Ms. Palin has taken to saying.
Her demagoguery has elicited some frightening, intolerable responses. A recent Washington Post report said at a rally in Florida this week a man yelled “kill him!” as Ms. Palin delivered that line and others shouted epithets at an African-American member of a TV crew.
Of course, Feder made of AIM's relationship with another "unrepentant terrorist," G. Gordon Liddy. Indeed, Feder and Liddy served together as judges for the Media Research Center's annual awards in 1997.
Feder also wrote:
In an Oct. 3 story on the vice-presidential debate, the Times characteristically reported that the governor "used a steady grin, folksy manner and carefully scripted talking points." In other words, Palin is a hick, a rube – a political Stepford wife who would have been lost without her script (doubtless written by the RNC). In a companion editorial, the paper charged that Palin "never got beyond talking points in 90 minutes, mostly repeating clichés and tired attack lines and energetically refusing to answer far too many questions."
Feder offers no evidence that Palin did, in fact, venture beyond Republican talking points during the debate or that she did not refuse to answer all the questions she was asked.
Feder referred to the Times "coverage of Palin's daughter's unwed pregnancy" as "sleaze." In fact, the Times did not first report this; the McCain campaign announced it.
Feder claimed that the Times "studiously ignored" alleged statements in support of Obama by terrorists and dictators, including Fidel Castro's statement that Obama is "the most progressive candidate to the U.S. presidency." As we noted the last time he did this, Feder took Castro's words out of context; Castro was giving Obama a compliment that was backhanded at best and that Castro also called the U.S. embargo against Cuba that Obama pledged to maintain "an act of genocide." As PolitiFact also noted, Castro did not actually endorse either Obama or John McCain.
Feder also noted that "Ahmed Yousef (a top Hamas adviser) compared Obama to John F. Kennedy," which came from an interview Yousef did with WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein and right-wing radio host John Batchelor. As we've detailed, there are numerous questions about the interview regarding the nature of Yousef's participation in it that Klein has yet to answer.
Matching Feder's dishonesty in attacking the Times is AIM's promotion of Feder's column. A Nov. 25 AIM press release states:
Boycott The New York Times editor Don Feder said today that “palpable bias” at the paper has contributed to steep declines in The Times’ readership, advertising revenue, and stock value. The New York Times Company dramatically slashed its quarterly dividend last week, and its shares have lost 66.8% of their value this year.
But Feder did not mention the Times Company stock price in his column. And like the MRC, Feder and AIM ignore other more logical and plausible reasons for the decline, such as the paradigm shift from print to online and the growing commoditization of news.