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Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Corsi Joins WND's Ariz. Shooting Misinfo Parade
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Somebody, it seems, doesn't want Aaron Klein to have all the fun in slinging false and misleading claims at WorldNetDaily about the Arizona shooting. Jerome Corsi wants a piece of that action, too.

Corsi jumped into the fray with a Jan. 9 article featuring the bizarre assertion that "the YouTube website of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords suggests she subscribed to the YouTube channel of her suspected attempted assassin, Jarred Loughner, at some point before the shooting incident." While his article contains a lot of screenshots of web pages, none of them prove that, as Corsi later stated, "Gifford subscribed to Loughner's website since Oct. 25, 2010."

Even later, Corsi contradicts himself: "A cached version of the Giffords website, dated Dec. 26, shows there was no link to the suspect's channel on that date."  But rather than accepting the logical explanation that Giffords did not subscribe to Loughter's page at the time and only did so after the shooting, Corsi speculated that this lack of evidence was "giving rise to speculation that the site was changed after that point, or possibly even hacked."

The only source Corsi cites for any of this is speculation from right-wing Muslim-hater (and former Newsmax columnist) Pam Geller.

As if that weren't enough, Corsi throws in a completely false claim, that "is now known that Loughner worked for Gifford's election campaign in 2007." In fact, all that is known -- as Corsi acknowledges at the end of his article -- is that "in Loughner's home was found a form letter from Giffords' office, thanking him for attending a 2007 event." That is not the same thing as having "worked for Gifford's election campaign."

But then, this is the same guy whose vaunted documents he obtained during a trip to Kenya to find something to smear President Obama with were clearly fakes (not that Corsi has ever acknowledged that fact, mind you).

If that bit of incompetence wasn't enough, Corsi then tries to present himself as an expert on punk rock, asserting in a Jan. 10 article that Loughner "may have been inspired by the radical leftist punk-rock band Anti-Flag, one of his favorite bands."

Essentially, all Corsi has done here is read a tweet by someone who claimed Anti-Flag was one of Loughner's favorite bands, found a music lyrics website (he even links to it) and copied-and-pasted from selected songs. That, apparently, is Corsi's idea of journalism.

for good measure, Corsi also throws is a gratuitous, unsupported slam on an unrelated figure he apparently despises. Noting that Reuters Media's Anthony DeRosa was corresponding via Twitter with the Loughner friend who made the claim about Anti-Flag, Corsi added that DeRosa "has had a history of tweeting continuing attacks on Fox News and Fox News talk show hosts Glenn Beck and Bill O'Reilly, as well as a wide range of conservative media and political figures." He offers no evidence to back up this claim, and it's immaterial to his attack on music he undoubtedly doesn't like.

DeRosa, by the way, is not even a journalist, as Corsi suggests; he describes himself as "a Proposition Leader at Reuters Media working on strategic partnerships in print, online and broadcast media."

But then, Corsi's own journalistic standards are pretty abysmal, so it's unlikely he knows the difference.

UPDATE: For a much more responsible and less deliberately inflammatory take on the same subject, the Washington Post examines another song linked to Loughner and, unlike Corsi, talks to actual experts on the issue.

UPDATE 2: A reader points out that Corsi probably did not intend to write that Gifford subscribed to Loughner's YouTube channel "since Oct. 25, 2010," since he states in the preceding paragraph that that was the day the account was created, and he is instead guilty of misusing the word "since." Point taken, but it's telling of WND's editorial standards and Corsi's writing skills that this poorly written statement remains in the article a day after we pointed it out (and we're pretty sure they read us).

Posted by Terry K. at 12:16 AM EST
Updated: Wednesday, January 12, 2011 12:29 AM EST

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