WorldNetDaily has come out with its annual "Operation Spike" list of stories it claims "undeservedly 'spiked' by the establishment press." And as per usual, the list is largely comprised of misleading or bogus claims.
Unsurprisingly, given WND's deranged obsession with it, first place goes to "Charges that Barack Obama is not a natural born citizen of the U.S. and thus constitutionally ineligible to serve as president." Also unsurprisingly, WND fails to mention its own investigation of the issue, which concluded that the "certificate of live birth" released by the Obama campaign is "authentic" and that Philip Berg's lawsuit claiming that Obama is not a natural-born citizen "relies on discredited claims."
In second place was a "U.S. Senate committee report that hundreds of top scientists have testified they believe claims of man-caused global warming are fraudulent." But as we've noted, the vast majority of the "650 international experts" cited by WND -- from a report issued by Republican Sen. James Inhofe's press chief, Marc Morano -- are recycled from a previous report issued by Inhofe and Morano, a report that was criticized for including a number of people with no expertise in climate science (or science, period).
The article added that "more than 31,000 scientists, including more than 9,000 Ph.D.s, have signed a massive petition project that challenges belief in man-made global warming." But as we've detailed, that petition has been circulating for more than a decade, and the supporting materials sent by the petition's promoter, the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, included an opinion piece that is misleadingly presented as an official-looking peer-reviewed paper.
Under the third-place entry, which asserts that the "true causes of the sub-prime mortgage meltdown ... point directly to the Democratic Party," WND repeats a claim made in September that the mortgage crisis can be blamed on "unsound, politically correct lending practices." As we noted at the time, the claim comes off as a tacit endorsement of the illegal practice of redlining -- a refusal to offer banking services and/or loans in certain areas, something that in practice is racist because those areas were invariably minority-dominated. WND misleadingly claimed that two former officials of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Franklin Raines and James Johnson, are "Barack Obama advisers." In fact, both Raines and the Obama campaign denied that Raines was an Obama adviser, and Johnson quit as an adviser last June.
In fourth place is "Obama's ties to terrorists and extremists" -- another WND obsession of the guilt-by-association kind -- cited as one example Rashid Khalidi, "the anti-Israel Palestinian professor." But WND fails to note that Khalidi also has ties to a group chaired by Obama's Republican opponent, John McCain.
In fifth place was "The campaigns of third-party presidential candidates, and Ron Paul's sensationally successful grass-roots campaign." But WND spiked that story too -- as we've noted, WND's coverage of third-party candidates was minimal at best during the 2008 campaign.
As we've previously noted, it seems that the stories on the "Operation Spike" list were spiked for a reason -- they're designed more to promote WND and Joseph Farah's personal political agenda (and his personal grudges and obsessions) than to advance the cause of actual journalism.
(P.S. Want more interesting awards? The Slanties are coming next week.)