Topic: The ConWeb
A May 16 Reason Online article points out ConWebWatch as part of the new wave of media watchdogs.
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
You Know the Drill
Topic: Accuracy in Media
Another Cliff Kincaid column attacking Dana Priest, another false claim that her story on secret CIA detention centers isn't true, no acknowledgement that one of AIM's favorite news sources, NewsMax, reported evidence appearing to support Priest's story.
WND Ramps Up Red-Baiting of Professor
In the latest installment of the Scott Savage/Alliance Defense Fund saga, a May 15 WorldNetDaily article recaps a Columbus Dispatch op-ed by Savage, in which he responds to a previous op-ed by professor Christopher Phelps.
WND cheerfully repeats Savage's misstatement of Phelps' claim about what Savage was charged with, without explaining what the issue is about. Savage claimed that Phelps "claimed that the complaint wasn’t even about sexual harassment"; in fact, Phelps wrote that the complaints against Savage by two professors were "in reference to 'harassment based on sexual orientation,' or discrimination, not sexual harassment."
WND also pads out its article with expanded red-baiting of Phelps. It called Phelps a "far-left professor" in the first paragraph, repeated its comparison of Savage as "a devout and conservative Quaker" with Phelps admitting being "on the left of the left" and his decade-old praise of Marxism, and recounted the platform of Phelps' 1996 campaign for a Senate seat as a socialist. The article also quotes David Kupelian (the WND editor whose book Savage recommended, touching off this whole controversy) bashing Phelps as a "rabid socialist ... who extols values that have cost millions of lives in the last century and left hundreds of millions in poverty and despair." Kupelian never addresses what Phelps wrote.
In short, your classic ad hominem attack.
And, as always, WND concludes with a plug for Kupelian's book -- which, more and more, is what WND's coverage of this issue is all about.
NewsBusters Fails to Correct False Claim
A May 15 NewsBusters item by Brent Baker uncritically repeated first lady Laura Bush's contention that the media is "enjoying" playing up President Bush's rock-bottom poll numbers and her claim that "back when poll numbers were good, I don't think they put them on the front page but now the bad ones are there."
That's false; Media Matters has compiled numerous instances in which positive Bush poll numbers were touted on the front pages of The New York Times and The Washington Post.
UPDATE: Baker repeated this item in his May 16 CyberAlert -- and still, no acknowledgement that Laura Bush's claim is false.
Monday, May 15, 2006
Vox: No Apologies
Expecting Vox Day to apologize for his comments? Be prepared to wait a long, long time. From his blog:
But apparently today's column gave numerous double-digit IQs the vapors, as they were unable to ascertain that the IDENTIFICATION, FORCED TRANSPORTATION and MURDER of six million Jews in four years by the National Socialists proves that President Bush was absolutely incorrect - and presumably lying - when he stated that IDENTIFYING and FORCIBLY TRANSPORTING twelve million illegal aliens was not possible.
Then again, the guy is overly enamored with Nazi analogies, having claimed that Hillary Clinton has "national socialist instincts."
On the other hand, we appear to have a front-runner for next year's Slanties.
WND's News Priorities
The top story on WorldNetDaily right now is that of "[a] Democrat candidate in Alabama who denies the Holocaust occurred and seeks to 'reawaken white racial awareness.'"
Meanwhile, an article by a WND columnist promoting the perhaps more offensive idea that the Nazis set an example to follow for getting millions of people out of a country remains unacknowledged and buried -- headline No. 17 -- on WND's commentary page.
Quote of the Day
[President Bush, aka "Dear Jorge"] lied when he said: "Massive deportation of the people here ["the Mexican nationals who have helped lower America's wage rates by 16 percent over the last 32 years"] is unrealistic – it's just not going to work."
-- Vox Day, WorldNetDaily, May 15
More about Mr. Day here.
Double Standard on Scandalous Behavior
Topic: Media Research Center
A May 11 item by Tim Graham at the MRC's Times Watch attacks a New York Times article for reporting on the seamy details of the personal life of the leading Republican contender for Hillary Clinton's New York Senate seat, John Spencer. Graham plays the MRC's version of the Clinton Equivocation, claiming that the Times gave Bill Clinton a pass in the 1992 presidential race when Gennifer Flowers made her allegations public.
Graham insists that while the behavior of Spencer -- who, strangely, Graham does not actually name in full in this item, referring only to "Mr. Spencer" -- is not the issue, though he does aver that "New York Republicans can and should wince at Spencer’s personal life." Rather, Graham insists, "the issue here is the shifting standards of the New York Times, depending on which side of the civility divide the Clintons are placed."
Graham seems to ignore that much of the seamy Clinton allegations were peddled by political enemies or gold-digging ex-paramours, while in Spencer's case, the person pushing them is a fellow Republican, his opponent KT McFarland. We don't recall any of Clinton's Democratic opponents making similar attacks on him in 1992.
Additionally, in showing that he has no qualms about using scandalous behavior against a political opponent when it suits him, Graham takes a whack at Ed Rollins, a McFarland adviser, noting "the irony of Mr. Rollins throwing around the adultery card, considering he was the Hillary in his own publicly documented marriage meltdown."
Are we sure Spencer's seamy personal life isn't the issue? Given Graham's eagerness to change the subject, perhaps it is.
The Masters of WorldNetDaily: Update
The Roy Masters/WorldNetDaily connection grows: Rusty Humphries, a host syndicated by Masters' Talk Radio Network who has cozy connections with WND reporter Aaron Klein, is now a WND columnist.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
WND Cites Misleading Poll
A May 13 WorldNetDaily article on for House speaker Newt Gingrich's views on immigration states:
Gingrich, who will appear on NBC's "Meet the Press" tomorrow, cited a recent poll released by Zogby and the Center for Immigration Studies showing overwhelming support – 65% to 30% – for the House bill, a measure that emphasizes enforcement.
But, as Media Matters reports, this poll is misleading because it misrepresented both the House immigration measure and the competing Senate measure to respondents. It soft-pedaled the harsher aspects of the House bill and failed to tell respondents about the enforcement provisions in the House measure. Additionally, the Senate version described in the Zogby poll was superceded by a compromise proposal with somewhat altered provisions 10 days before Zogby took its poll, but Zogby notes only the original version and doesn't mention the compromise.
Additionally, WND fails to describe the Center for Immigration Studies as an anti-immigration group with an interest in passing the harsher House version of the bill -- and thus, paying for a poll that shows support for it. As Media Matters also noted, most other polls on the issue run counter to Zogby's conclusions.
Friday, May 12, 2006
Shorter Jack Cashill
Those 9-11 conspiracy theories are getting more attention than my Clinton conspiracy theories.
Cashill does, however, give the Clintons a backhanded compliment:
Almost anything the Clintons were accused of doing during those two years [1995 and 1996] they might actually have done, but even they would not have dreamt of staging a 9-11.
The Echo Chamber: NewsBusters Cites WND
From a May 12 NewsBusters post by Mithridate Ombud:
World Net Daily points out that the Associated Press drove by a Swedish study that finds lesbians react differently to sex hormones than heterosexual women. Evidently, the desire of the AP was to claim that homosexuality is genetic, that it can't be helped.
Aside from the absurdity of citing WorldNetDaily as a credible source for anything -- given its history of bias, lies and plagiarism -- the article that Ombud cites isn't a "news" article at all. It's a May 10 commentary by Robert Knight of Concerned Women for America's Culture & Family Institute (where Knight's article was first posted). Knight is even more biased and agenda-driven on this issue than WND, which makes him even less of an authoritative source.
Non-Conservative News at NewsMax
Cliff Kincaid might want to rethink his war on Dana Priest over the CIA secret-prison story that Kincaid insists is false. From, of all people, Ken Timmerman at NewsMax:
The U.S. government acknowledged yesterday that the CIA operated "a very high number" of secret flights that stopped in Europe en route to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba according to members of the European Parliament visiting Washington, DC.
Original news on NewsMax that makes the Bush administration look bad? We're shocked, too.
NewsMax Promotes (Yet Another) Anti-Hillary Book
To absolutely no one's surprise, NewsMax has glommed onto the latest anti-Hillary book. A May 12 article by Carl Limbacher promotes John Podhoretz's book "Can She Be Stopped?" accompanied by a summary of Podhoretz's 10-point plan to "expose Hillary as the far-left liberal that she truly is."
Perhaps just as unsurprisingly, Limbacher failed to note that Podhoretz trashed the last anti-Hillary book that came out (and was heavily promoted by NewsMax), Ed Klein's "The Truth About Hillary," as we've previously noted.
More News From the ADF's PR Division
WorldNetDaily's aversion to actually talking to anyone at Ohio State University-Mansfield regarding the Scott Savage controversy continues with a May 11 article that recounts the case through the new angle of excerpting a May 6 Columbus Dispatch op-ed by Christopher Phelps, one of the professors who criticized Savage for recommending WND managing editor David Kupelian's book "The Marketing of Evil." It's a selective quoting of Phelps' op-ed, focusing on his claim that Kupelian's book is "unabashed bigotry" and a "screed."
Predictably, rather than responding to anything Phelps actually wrote, WND attacked Phelps as a leftist who has praised Marxism. And WND omitted a factual correction Phelps pointed out: Savage was accused of "harassment based on sexual orientation" -- which Phelps describes as "discrimination" -- not "sexual harassment," the term WND lifted out of inaccurate Alliance Defense Fund press releases and repeats here, falsely stating that Savage was accused of being a "sexual harasser."
WND also calls "The Marketing of Evil" a "bestselling" book and "one of the hottest-selling books in the country" but fails to provide evidence of it other than the deficient example of the book "topping Amazon.com's 'Current Events' bestseller chart for more than a week."
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