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Tuesday, December 27, 2005
Defending Dick Morris
Topic: Newsmax
A Dec. 25 NewsMax article runs to the defense of Dick Morris after the New York Times panned Morris' "Condi vs. Hillary" book by rather lamely claiming that Morris isn't the only one who, in the review's words, "clearly has some unresolved issues with Hillary Clinton."

NewsMax fails to note that, in addition to his unresolved Hillary issues, Morris has a dismal history of political prognostication.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:59 AM EST
Updated: Wednesday, December 28, 2005 11:23 AM EST
'Rape of the Marlboro Man'
Topic: WorldNetDaily
A Dec. 27 WorldNetDaily column by David "Matrix" Kupelian is at least the fifth commentary WND has published attacking "Brokeback Mountain," and the first to claim that the film is about "raping the 'Marlboro Man,' that revered American symbol of rugged individualism and masculinity." Kupelian goes on to claim the the movie's goal is to "desensitize us to the immoral and destructive reality of what we're seeing, while fervently coaxing us into embracing that which we once rightly shunned."

Bonus points to Kupelian for likening homosexuality to drug use and pedophilia:

I guarantee Hollywood could make a movie about a man and his drug dealer, or an adult-child sexual relationship, that would pull on our emotions and create some level of sympathy for the characters. Furthermore, in at least some cases, it would make us doubt our conscience – a gift directly from God, the perception of right and wrong that he puts in each one of us – our inner knowing that this was a totally unhealthy and self-destructive relationship.


As I said at the outset, Hollywood has now raped the Marlboro Man. It has taken a revered symbol of America – the cowboy – with all the powerful emotions and associations that are rooted deep down in the pioneering American soul, and grafted onto it a self-destructive lifestyle it wants to force down Americans' throats.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:35 AM EST
Monday, December 26, 2005
More Accurate, Still Meaningless, Part 2
Topic: WorldNetDaily
So WorldNetDaily has increased the security on its daily online poll "discourage hackers and prevent skewing of results."

Wouldn't the money WND spent to secure a meaningless online poll have been better spent, say, making Joseph Farah take a course on journalistic ethics?

Posted by Terry K. at 11:11 AM EST
Sunday, December 25, 2005
'This Beautiful Black Woman"
Topic: Media Research Center
A Dec. 23 NewsBusters post by Tim Graham notes that a Washington Post magazine profile on Republican lobbyist Angela McGlowan "never mentioned what makes this beautiful black woman different from the norm -- that Republican resume."

We somehow suspect that Graham has never referred to any black female Democrat -- say, Donna Brazile -- as a "beautiful black woman."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:26 AM EST
Saturday, December 24, 2005
New Article: Another Less-Than-Whole Story
Topic: WorldNetDaily
A WorldNetDaily reporter's book on the Terri Schiavo case is as biased and incomplete as WND's coverage of it. Read more.

Also, the article on WND's press release-fueled war on Christmas has been updated to add the latest press releases turned into WND articles.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:35 PM EST
Gay-Bashing Column of the Day
Topic: WorldNetDaily
In a Dec. 24 WorldNetDaily column, John Haskins, associate director of the Massachusetts-based Parents' Rights Coalition, rails against gay marriage, though he prefers the term "sodomy marriage." He calls it a "constitutional, moral and sociological aberration," "ceremonialization of anal sodomy," and something he claims is "as illegal as cannibalism." Bonus points are awarded for Haskins' reference to "the Boston Globe's activist homosexual editors."

Posted by Terry K. at 4:41 PM EST
Last-Minute Press Release Rewrite
Topic: WorldNetDaily
A Dec. 23 WorldNetDaily article regurgitates a "war on Christmas" press release from Liberty Counsel. It adds info from WND's press release-cum-news article earlier that day.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:44 AM EST
Friday, December 23, 2005
'Equal-Opportunity Crook'?
Topic: Media Research Center
We're still trying to figure out why Lyford Beverage, in a Dec. 22 NewsBusters post, has a bee in his bonnet over an AP article. Ah, we get it now -- it tells facts that contradict Beverage's false assertion that Jack Abramoff was an "equal-opportunity crook."

Yet the outside research Beverage cites proves the AP article's underlying point, that Republicans benefited more than Democrats from Abramoff's dirty money. In Beverage's words:

The Republicans, overall, received about twice what the Democrats did, nothing like 11-1. Of the top 10 recipients, 7 were Republicans and 3 Democrats. Of the top 15, 10 were Republicans and 5 were Democrats.

...thus contradicting his own assertion earlier in the post that Abramoff was an "equal-opportunity crook."

Posted by Terry K. at 6:15 PM EST
Another WND Press Release Rewrite
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily squeezes in one more entry for this year's collection of press release-generated "war on Christmas" articles with a Dec. 23 article based on -- and structured exactly the same as -- an Alliance Defense Fund press release.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:37 AM EST
Thursday, December 22, 2005
Clinton Equivocation Watch
Topic: Newsmax
You knew it was coming: A Dec. 22 NewsMax article asserting that anything Clinton (allegedly) did trumps any abuse of civil liberties by the Bush administration under the Patriot Act.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:22 PM EST
Bias Study Bias
Topic: Media Research Center
A Dec. 19 NewsBusters post by Mithridate Ombud breathlessly touts a UCLA-sponsored study by Tim Groseclose and Jeffrey Milyo as one that "objectively quantifies media bias," finding, in Ombud's words, that "Yes, Virginia, there is a leftist media bias." But the study, it turns out, is highly flawed, from its conservative links (Groseclose and Milyo have conservative think tank connections) to some outright bizarre assumptions (the ACLU is conservative? The pro-military RAND Corporation is liberal?).

Nevertheless, expect the MRC to add this study to its list of evidence of a liberal media bias -- and to never speak of the study's serious flaws.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:58 PM EST
Dubious CNS Labeling
A Dec. 22 article by Randy Hall on reaction to the failure of an amendment to permit oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge describes Earthjustice as a "green group" (it calls itself a "non-profit public interest law firm") but describes the conservative National Center for Policy Analysis as only a "research institute."

Posted by Terry K. at 11:49 AM EST
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Pirro's Out
Topic: Newsmax
Jeanine Pirro officially quits New York Senate race. NewsMax prepares to work up boundless, reality-defying enthusiasm for Hillary's new opponent. Whoever it may be.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:47 PM EST
Slantie Wannabes
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Do WorldNetDaily columnists know that the Slanties are coming up? Apparently so, because there is a minor rush to submit candidates for the LoBaido Award:

-- In a Dec. 20 column, Bruce Shortt tosses out another anti-public education rant:

Surely few are wholly unaware that violent crime and sexual abuse of students in the government's schools are far from uncommon. And surely few can be wholly unaware that the government's schools now incorporate curricula and programs that both are a threat to our children's physical and psychological health and are, in many instances, pornographic.


If the parents of 1960 had been confronted with today's government school system, they would have immediately recognized it as child abuse and shut it down.

-- Judith Reisman, in a Dec. 20 column, starts off by making the mistake that anything WND has to say about a purported teacher-student "sexpidemic" has any basis in reality -- "Anyone notice the number of female teachers arrested lately for sexually abusing boys and girls?" -- then descends into a discussion about "erototoxins," whatever the hell they are:

Although a 2000 U.S. Department Of Justice report "The Sexual Victimization of College Women" mentioned pornography, the latest research eluded any question of how pornography – erototoxins – shape college life.

What a mess. Sounds like a job for World O'Crap.

-- It's not a WND column per se, but for the past few days, WND has featured a link to a Dec. 9 column by Tony Snow that gets the facts wrong regarding an decade-long independent counsel named David Barrett, who started off investigating Clinton-era official Henry Cisneros and meandered into alleged IRS abuses. Snow claimed that Democratic senators "took the highly unusual step earlier this year of trying to slip into an Iraq-war spending bill an amendment to suppress every word of the Barrett report."

In fact, when the senators introduced the amendment that would cut off funding for Barrett's $21 million investigation, he had already delivered his report to a three-judge panel for review, and cutting off funding (the amendment failed, by the way) would have had no impact on the release of the report.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:41 PM EST
AIM and Hatfill
Topic: Accuracy in Media
In our recent ConWebWatch article on Anthony LoBaido's reporting on South Africa for WorldNetDaily, one passing mention caught our eye: a claim that Steven Hatfill, the scientist suspected but never charged in post-9/11 anthrax attacks, had ties to extremist South African militias. A Dec. 20 Accuracy in Media column by Cliff Kincaid, which runs once again to the defense of Steven Hatfill, reminds us of that again.

We have no idea of Hatfill's culpability in the anthrax attacks, but we wondered: In all of its defenses, did AIM previously mention this unusual connection? Turns out it did -- but downplayed it and otherwise explained it away.

An August 2002 AIM Report states:

An association with the "white racist" governments of Zimbabwe and South Africa makes Hatfill an easy mark and target. He is politically incorrect. From all appearances, Hatfill appears to be an anti-communist who believed that the U.S. was vulnerable to a chemical/biological attack, and he worked on ways to counter those threats.

That's all the detail AIM serves up about this, aside from the occasional reference to his "background as an anti-communist in Southern Africa." In AIM's eyes, apparently, being anti-communist is enough to trump the fact that Hatfill has associated with violent white supremacists. Go figure.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:37 AM EST

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