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Friday, June 24, 2005
WorldNetDaily's Idea of Balance
Topic: WorldNetDaily
A June 24 WorldNetDaily article by Ron Strom is a 49-paragraph opus about a man who is challenging his dismissal from an insurance company allegedly for writing an article critical of same-sex marriage that was published on several conservative web sites.

Of those 49 paragraphs, only four detail the response of the insurance company -- which hadn't even been served with the man's lawsuit challenging his dismissal -- and they don't show up until paragraph 40.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:33 PM EDT
When In Doubt, Bash a Clinton
Topic: Newsmax
NewsMax's chosen method of distracting from Bush adviser Karl Rove's claim that Democrats are soft on terror was a June 23 atricle that dragged out a post-9/11 speech by Bill Clinton that, according to the headline, "proves Rove right."

In the speech, Clinton noted the Crusades, slavery and the treatement of native Americans as examples of how "the killing of noncombatants for economic, political, or religious reasons has a very long history." NewsMax selectively cites from Clinton's speech, then concludes: "By the time Mr. Clinton was done with his terrorism history lesson, it was clear America got what it deserved on 9/11."

Of course, that's not what Clinton said at all. As the actual speech shows (and as ConWebWatch noted at the time), Clinton assigned no blame on the U.S. for 9/11; he also said "I support the efforts of President Bush, the national security team, and our allies in fighting the current terrorist threat" and that "no terrorist campaign has ever succeeded, and this one won't if you don't give it permission."

Even the Wall Street Journal's James Taranto defended Clinton, calling a Washington Times attack on the speech that took a NewsMax-like taken-out-of-context approach "unfair" and calling the speech incoherent ... but it's far from seditious."

Posted by Terry K. at 11:46 AM EDT
Thursday, June 23, 2005
Totally Manchurian
Topic: The ConWeb
Media Matters notes the following quote from Jay Severin about Hillary Clinton:

She's absolutely sociopathic. And she has a 50-50 chance of being the next president of the United States, save McCain. She's the Manchurian candidate.

But back in 2000, Paul Weyrich was running around claiming that McCain was the Manchurian candidate.

So, which one is it? We're confused. (Then again, maybe having two Manchurian candidates is part of the whole evil plan.)

Posted by Terry K. at 4:27 PM EDT
ConWeb Balance
Breakdown of a June 22 article by Melanie Hunter on the House's passage of an anti-blag-burning constitutional amendment:

Total paragraphs: 10

Paragraphs containing pro-amendment statements: 8

Paragraphs containing anti-amendment statements: 1

Posted by Terry K. at 4:15 PM EDT
New Article: Money Over Facts
Topic: Newsmax
NewsMax doesn't want to tell you the truth about "The Truth About Hillary"; it's too busy trying to sell you the book. Read more.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:01 AM EDT
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
Well, He Would Know
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Jack Cashill has a new book out, "Hoodwinked:
How Intellectual Hucksters Have Hijacked American Culture
," published by Nelson Current (aka the former incarnation of WND Books). WorldNetDaily, not surprisingly, is promoting the book in the usual ways, including a 10-part series of excerpts.

From the WND promo ad-slash-"news" article:

For a century, reveals "Hoodwinked," so-called "progressive" writers and filmmakers – multiculturalists like [Ward] Churchill and Alex Haley, sexual revolutionaries like Kinsey and Margaret Mead, quasi-Marxists like Noam Chomsky and Michael Moore, and radical naturalists like Paul Ehrlich and Rachel Carson – have been using falsehood and fraud as primary weapons in their assault on traditional American culture.

Unlikely to appear as an example in Cashill's book is Cashill himself, though he has perpetrated his own share of hookdwinking. As ConWebWatch has documented, Cashill wrote a seven-part opus (what is it with Cashill and multi-part articles?) purportedly demonstrating that anti-abortion extremist James Kopp was innocent of killing abortion doctor Barnett Slepian -- a few months before Kopp confessed to killing Slepian.

Hoodwinked, indeed.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:57 PM EDT
Tuesday, June 21, 2005
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Number of original WorldNetDaily "news" stories that mention the Downing Street Memo": 2

(A June 19 article attempting to debunk it, and a June 16 article on an online MSNBC poll noting that 94 percent of respondents agreed that President Bush misled the nation into war.)

Number of original WorldNetDaily "news" stories that mention the new TV ad for Carl's Jr. featuring Paris Hilton: 7

(The latest is a June 20 article on a parody ad; WND has made a point of noting that the ad is "blasted by some as soft-core pornography.")

Posted by Terry K. at 1:48 PM EDT
Scientology: Clinton's Fault
Topic: Accuracy in Media
Accuracy in Media has managed to come up with something else to blame on Bill Clinton: Scientology.

From a June 20 AIM column by Cliff Kincaid and Sherrie Gossett comparing the allged free pass given by the media to Tom Cruise's belief in Scientology to the media scrutiny given Mel Gibson's hardcore Catholicism in the wake of "The Passion of the Christ":

For years, Scientology fought a battle with the IRS because the government would not recognize its claim to be a religion. The IRS finally granted Scientology its desired status under President Bill Clinton, the recipient of massive donations from the Hollywood glitterati.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:13 PM EDT
Monday, June 20, 2005
New Article: The Post-Mortem on the Post-Mortem
Topic: The ConWeb
The ConWeb figures out how to go into attack mode on the Terri Schiavo autopsy report -- even bringing that "Nobel Prize nominee" doctor out of mothballs. Read more.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:42 AM EDT
Sunday, June 19, 2005
The Patty Murray Treatment, Part 2
Topic: Newsmax
Most bizarre spin on Richard Durbin's remarks (so far): A June 20 NewsMax column by John Perry claims that the remarks reveal a "sinister stain of anti-Semitism that Durbin's outburst made manifest" by allegedly "trivializing all those monstrous horrors" of the Holocaust:

When Durbin was saying what happened to Gitmo detainees was like what happened to those 11 million Nazi victims – more than half of them Jews – he was also, by definition, saying what happened during the Holocaust was no worse than what happened at Gitmo.


This was the worst sort of anti-Semitism. Lacking the candidness of an outright anti-Semitic slanderer, Durbin slithered around and used the rhetorical device of invidious comparison.

This long has been a part – alas, a growing part – of European culture, especially in France, where anti-Semitism thrives.


Every American of Jewish heritage – every American of non-Jewish heritage – should demand even more than an apology from Durbin. He should be told, "For shame, for shame, resign!"

Posted by Terry K. at 9:23 PM EDT
The Crisis Has Been Averted
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Ted Byfield's June 18 column for WorldNetDaily turns out to be not the one with the erroneous Barbara Walters statement. WND is thus spared from running yet another correction.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:40 PM EDT
Saturday, June 18, 2005
The Patty Murray Treatment
Topic: The ConWeb
Is the ConWeb giving Sen. Richard Durbin the Patty Murray treatment?

Murray is the senator from Washington state who, in 2002, suggested that Osama bin Laden had support in the Islamic world because he had built schools, roads and day care centers, and wondered why the U.S. hadn't done the same thing to build goodwill. The ConWeb -- WorldNetDaily in particular -- twisted this comment (which occurred on the heels of the uproar over Sen. Trent Lott's comments about Sen. Strom Thurmond) into a claim that Murray was praising bin Laden; NewsMax started calling Murray "Osama Mama." Meanwhile, a Republican congressman who actually did whitewash the Taliban faced no criticism from the ConWeb.

It looks like the ConWeb is trying to do the same to Durbin, taking his comments likening treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to the torture regimes of Nazis, Soviets and Pol Pot. Mostly, the ConWeb has ignored his specific allegations of abuse and tried to distort Durbin's comments as a condemnation of all U.S. military personnel.

A couple of examples:

-- A June 17 NewsMax article goes after Sen. Pat Leahy for defending Durbin by claiming that "I'd be very careful about taking quotes off the Wall Street Journal editorial page." NewsMax's response: "urbin's quotes, however, didn't appear in the Wall Street Journal, but were instead first covered by its sister web site," It's a distinction without a meaningful difference; the WSJ editorial page runs It also noted "Durbin's characterization of GI's as 'Nazis.'" Another June 17 article insisted that Durbin claimed that "U.S. troops at Guantanamo Bay conducted themselves like 'Nazis.'"

-- A June 18 WorldNetDaily commentary by Robert Knight downplays allegations of abuse: "Mr. Durbin might have been carried away after hearing about some of the techniques used to break the terror suspects, such as playing loud rap music, making them stand naked, lowering the temperature and so on. But so far, not one prisoner at Guantanamo has perished, nor has any suffered any permanent physical harm." Knight also calls Durbin hypocritical because he "smeared good Americans" at Gitmo while opposing a law banning so-called "partial-birth" abortion."

-- A June 17 Media Research Center "Media Reality Check" claimed that Durbin "wildly" made his accusations, called them "absurd" and "crazy," and insisted that "the issue is really moot." A June 17 CyberAlert called Durbin's remarks "outlandish" and complained that the networks didn't give them enough attention.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:14 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, June 18, 2005 12:07 PM EDT
Friday, June 17, 2005
You Read It Here First
Topic: Newsmax
In 2002, ConWebWatch was the first to report that Richard Mellon Scaife was an investor in NewsMax. Today's New York Times noted that fact in an article about NewsMax's role in promoting the discredited book "The Truth About Hillary."

(We don't get a chance to toot our own horn very often, so forgive us.)

NewsMax served up its own version of the Times article, marking the first time that it has been disclosed on its web site that Scaife (NewsMax founder Christopher Ruddy's former boss) is a NewsMax investor.

NewsMax also tried to spin the article to paint the Times as liberally biased, as it's wont to do. But why won't NewsMax tell its readers about the many factual errors already uncovered in it?

Posted by Terry K. at 7:33 PM EDT
New Article: Can't Stop Won't Stop
Topic: The ConWeb
The lying, that is. NewsMax and WorldNetDaily take a few more whacks at Jamie Gorelick without telling readers the truth about the "wall" she allegedly created. Read more.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:29 AM EDT
Columnist Corrections
Topic: WorldNetDaily
World O'Crap notes a correction columnist Michelle Malkin will be making: It turns out that, contrary to her June 15 column, ABC "The View" co-host Barbara Walters did not, in fact, use the words "gross and disgusting" to describe breastfeeding. Malkin blames Canadian columnist Ted Byfield for the misinformation. (Byfield's June 12 column contains the phrase; Byfield also notes in the column that he has "never seen" "The View," which would seem to be a warning light regarding the quote's veracity.)

The bad news: WorldNetDaily runs both Malkin's and Byfield's columns. The good news: WND has a chance to remove the error in Byfield's column before it appears on Saturday, lest it have to retract yet another article.

UPDATE: WND not only links to Malkin's correction, it named Walters' response to Malkin its "Letter of the Week." Does this mean WND is taking fairness and accuracy in journalism seriously for once? We'll believe it when Joseph Farah corrects his attacks on Jamie Gorelick.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:03 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, June 17, 2005 11:28 AM EDT

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