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Thursday, October 23, 2008
Craige McMillan's Amnesia
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Craige McMillan dedicates his Oct. 23 WorldNetDaily column to promoting Philip Berg's lawsuit over Barack Obama's birth certificate, apparently oblivious -- intentionally or otherwise -- to the fact that his employer declared that Berg's lawsuit " relies on discredited claims."

In addition to smearing Obama supporters as "inbred East Coast fools" and treating baseless speculation as something that is "probably very close to the mark," McMillan channels Hal Lindsey in claiming a conspiracy behind's debunking of the fake-birth-certificate claim:

As for and it's assurances that the short form "certification" of birth is real, that organization is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Obama's former sugar daddy, the Annenberg Foundation. Come to think of it, isn't the Annenberg Foundation the same organization that unrepentant domestic terrorist Bill Ayers used to "spread the wealth around"?


Posted by Terry K. at 7:00 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, October 23, 2008 7:30 PM EDT
NewsBusters on Palin's $150,000 Wardrobe: Dismiss, Attack
Topic: NewsBusters

The boys at NewsBusters are eager to change the subject away from Sarah Palin's $150,000 wardrobe -- at least, when they're not attacking anyone who brings it up.

Kyle Drennen tried to do the former: "What exactly is the difference between Sarah Palin getting her clothes at Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus and Obama getting his clothes at Nordstrom’s and Bloomingdale’s?" Well, Obama didn't have the DNC pay for his clothes, and there's no evidence he's spending $150,000 a month on them.

Matthew Balan chose the latter route, declaring that CNN's Jack Cafferty was suffering from "Palin Derangement Syndrome" after he brought it up: "Jack, you’ve had a tough time recently, between your wife’s recent death and the unscheduled surgery. Isn’t about time that you just let the subject of Sarah Palin go?"

And Brent Baker sniffed that it's all "another media-generated controversy."

By contrast, here are the search results on NewsBusters for "john edwards haircut." No concern that we could find about it being a "media-generated controversy."

UPDATE: Clay Waters added that the New York Times "compiled an online slide show featuring Palin in various outfits, with photos accompanied by catty commentary." By contrast, Waters happily pointed out that Times columnist Maureen Dowd "grabbed hold of Edwards' hair and yanked on it" in a 2007 column.

Waters then went the distraction route: "Also at NRO, Lisa Schiffren explains why this was money well spent for the GOP."

Posted by Terry K. at 3:09 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, October 23, 2008 7:26 PM EDT
WND's Sanchez Misleads on Military Poll
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An Oct. 23 WorldNetDaily column by Matt Sanchez touted a Military Times poll that, in Sanchez's words, "showed John McCain defeating Barack Obama by 68 percent to 23, if the members of the United States military were electing the next president. That's nearly a 3-to-1 gap." Sanchez didn't tell his readers about the flaws in the poll.

Military Times stated that the poll was "a voluntary survey of 4,293 active-duty, National Guard and reserve subscribers and former subscribers to Army Times, Navy Times, Marine Corps Times and Air Force Times," adding:

The results of the Military Times 2008 Election Poll are not representative of the opinions of the military as a whole. The group surveyed is older, more senior in rank and less ethnically diverse than the overall armed services.

Military Times further stated:

McCain’s majority wanes among women and disappears altogether among black respondents.

Nearly eight out of 10 black service members indicated they intend to vote for Obama despite his lack of military service and despite McCain’s record as a naval aviator and prisoner of war in Vietnam.

In other words, it's not a reliable, scientifically conducted poll. Sanchez shouldn't pretend it is.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:48 PM EDT
Newsmax Flip-Flops on Obama Birth Certificate
Topic: Newsmax

A couple days ago, we detailed how Newsmax's Lowell Ponte bought into the lie that Barack Obama's birth certificate is fake, ignoring the evidence -- even by his fellow right-wingers at WorldNetDaily -- that it's real.

Newsmax seems to have had a change of heart. An Oct. 22 article by David Patten attacking Obama for being the "most secretive Democratic presidential candidate ever" also, in a stab at balance, cited examples in which "the Obama campaign has offered to provide additional information to reporters if they have specific questions or issues," one of them being ... the birth certificate:

When Internet rumors began to fly that perhaps Obama was born outside the United States, for example, the campaign released images of a birth certificate that verified his birthplace as Honolulu, Hawaii. When that led to suggestions the birth certificate had been altered, the campaign again responded, allowing reporters to examine the actual birth certificate, complete with raised seal. (In late July, according to, a researcher uncovered an announcement of Obama’s birth in the August 13, 1961 edition of the Honolulu Advertiser). 

Patten might want to send an email to Ponte or something to alert him of this stunning news ... that everyone else but Ponte knows. 

Posted by Terry K. at 12:46 PM EDT
Is WND Taking Blinders Off About Purported Michelle Obama Tape?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Is WorldNetDaily conceding it chose to be suckered by African Press International?

An Oct. 22 article by Bob Unruh strikes a skeptical tone for the first time at WND about API's claim that it has an auditotape of an interview it claims it conducted with Michelle Obama, highlighting Fox News' denial that it was negotiating with API for the "embarrassing recordings." Unruh even calls it an "alleged conversation" and refers to "purported 'Michelle Obama tapes.'"

That's a change from WND's previous reporting on the issue, which uncritically took API at its word despite obvious red flags about its credibility. WND has a history of believing the worst about Obama and presenting it as fact, then not retracting and apologizing when it turns out to be false. But that's what happens when you put a political agenda before journalism.

The blinders aren't completely off, though -- Unruh notes that API's alleged lawyer, attorney, Philip Berg, is "coincidentally pursuing a court challenge over Barack Obama's birthplace" but fails to mention that WND previously delcared that Berg's lawsuit "relies on discredited claims." (WND has an amnesia problem about that.)

Posted by Terry K. at 9:27 AM EDT
Updated: Thursday, October 23, 2008 9:33 AM EDT
New Article: When Criticism Becomes Campaigning
Topic: Accuracy in Media
In two new projects, Accuracy in Media confuses shilling for John McCain with exposing "liberal media bias." Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 1:54 AM EDT
Corsi's Memogate: Will He Retract His Articles?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

As we've documented, WorldNetDaily's Jerome Corsi made several claims regarding Barack Obama's relationship with Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga using clearly fake documents as the only disclosed evidence to support them.

Corsi has so far been silent, refusing to either defend his claims or retract them due to the discredited evidence; he has hinted at a "fake but accurate" defense, claiming that criticism of his documents didn't counter the "substantive point" of his accusations. Actually, it does if there's no other evidence -- which, if it exists, Corsi has yet to present to his readers.

Corsi is in a corner here. Will he supply non-fake evidence, or retract his claims altogether? The world is waiting.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:13 AM EDT
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

If Bill Clinton was the first black president, Barack Obama, if elected, will be the first "gay" president. No, I don't mean he'll personally decorate the West Wing, open a bathhouse in the Rose Garden or take up with Barney Frank. I mean he'll be the most radically pro-homosexual, anti-family president in history.

-- Matt Barber, Oct. 22 WorldNetDaily column

UPDATE: publishes Barber's derangement as well.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:08 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, October 24, 2008 9:20 AM EDT
Softball CNN Interview of Palin Not Fluffy Enough for MRC
Topic: Media Research Center

George Zornick at Altercation detailed how the softball interview of Sarah Palin by CNN's Drew Griffin was "shameful" in being so "McCain-friendly," burying questions about Troopergate and almost apologizing for asking about it at all, even though there's clear wrongdoing documented on Palin's part.

But it wasn't sycophantic enough for the Media Research Center: One of those softballs took a National Review article out of context. And that's what has Brent Bozell's knickers in a twist. From an Oct. 22 MRC press release:

"CNN ripped the National Review’s Byron York’s quote completely out of context and stood its meaning on its head, all so they could dishonestly bash Gov. Palin with it. This is the lowest form of sub-tabloid journalism. CNN’s distortion simply proves York to be correct: the media are out to destroy Sarah Palin.

"York's quote, properly cited, assails the media for its horrible misrepresentations of Gov. Palin. And CNN reinforces his assessment of their tactics by misrepresenting what he wrote so they could again bash Gov. Palin.

"CNN clearly knows they did something wrong, as evidenced by their removing the question from their online video. But that’s not enough. CNN should immediately correct the record, and apologize to Gov. Palin, Byron York and National Review and their viewers who were again subjected to their special form of journalistic malpractice."

Yeah, CNN is out to get Palin all right, what with those harsh, biased questions from Griffin, like:

  • "You seemed to be very much on your game. You get huge crowds. Even bigger crowds than John McCain. Why is that?"
  • "[T]wo months ago, it was all about who you were, where you were from and Wasilla, Alaska. I think, now it's just the economy. And you are the only person in this race with executive experience, who's taken over governments as mayor and governor. What will you do, day one, to tell the American people, things are changing for the better?"
  • "Governor, is Barack Obama a socialist?"
  • "Do you think his intention though, if not a socialist, is to move away from capitalism, true capitalism?"
  • "But they were talking about the fact that your experience as governor is not getting out. Do you feel trapped in this campaign, that your message is not getting out, and if so who do you blame?"

The man's a liberal media buzzsaw, that Drew Griffin.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:36 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, October 22, 2008 7:28 PM EDT
NewsBusters Whitewashes Bachmann's Statements
Topic: NewsBusters

NewsBusters is desperately trying to play down Republican Rep. Michelle Bachmann's suggestion that all Democrats and liberals are anti-American and called for a "penetrating expose" in the media of what members of Congress are "anti-American."

Tim Graham wrote that "the media should be investigating [Obama's] associations with very anti-American voices" and claimed that Bachmann was "ducking [Chris] Matthews’ attempts to have her declare all liberals are anti-American," even though it's clear by the transcript he attached to his post that she had suggested exactly that.

Justin McCarthy wrote only that Bachmann "stated that Obama has associated with anti-American individuals," adding, "Is this a case of labeling one anti-American for a simple disagreement?"

Geoffrey Dickens claimed that "Matthews pushed Bachmann to say Obama and liberal members of Congress were anti-American," but didn't note that Bachmann had already suggested as much.

Mark Finkelstein, meanwhile, didn't address Bachmann's words but, rather, attacked a Minnesota columnist the "Today" show had on to talk about Bachmann words as "a hyper-partisan Democrat." Finkelstein then bizarrely claims that when the columnist referedd to Power Line as "the biggest link in a daisy chain of right-wing blogs," he was making an "indecent" reference, helpfully linking a link to the "vulgar" Urban Dictionary definition of "daisy chain," conveniently ignoring the fact that there are more common and benign interpretations.

I guess we know what's on Finkelstein's mind...


Posted by Terry K. at 5:05 PM EDT
Calling Aaron Klein ...
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Certainly WorldNetDaily's dauntless tracker of terrorist endorsements will get right on the story and tell his readers all about Al Qaeda endorsing John McCain.

Uh, right? 

Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 PM EDT
Clinton Derangement Withdrawal Syndrome
Topic: Accuracy in Media

We figured some members of the ConWeb would have problems getting over the fact that they don't have Hillary Clinton to kick around anymore for this presidential campaign.

That seems to be the logical explanation for Roger Aronoff's Oct. 21 Accuracy in Media column. Declaring that "It is an open secret, despite the protestations, that the Clintons do not want Obama to win," he constructs his own little Clinton conspiracy:

Could the Clintons be orchestrating one of the biggest October surprises of them all? A story that has been simmering in the blogosphere for months has finally gotten onto at least a couple of news sites. That would be the story of whether or not Obama is legally qualified to be president. The questions involve the truth of where he was born and the status of his citizenship. 


The lawsuit was by a Philadelphia attorney, Philip Berg, who is the former deputy attorney general of Pennsylvania, and a former Democratic Party official there as well. He was also a strong Hillary supporter in the primaries.

In the full conspiracy spirit, Aronoff buys into the birth certificate canard despite acknowledging that both and WorldNetDaily have debunked it and even stating that "We at AIM looked at it at the time, and didn’t feel there was enough to go on to run with the story." But that means nothing when there's a Clinton involved, however tangentally:

[T]he fact that this story is out there cannot be denied. The question is, will it be resolved in any way before the November 4 election, and the bigger question: will anyone in the mainstream media even report on this story, and investigate who, if anyone, is behind Berg on this matter, much less the validity of his claims.

So even though Aronoff doesn't think the birth certificate lacks evidence and even though it's been debunked by third-party sources he appears to consider authoritative, it must still be "resolved." Is Aronoff really that desperate to indulge in some nostalgic Clinton conspiracy-mongering?

Posted by Terry K. at 9:22 AM EDT
Ponte Pushes Obama Birth Certificate Lie (Among Others)
Topic: Newsmax

In an Oct. 20 Newsmax article ostensibly trying to prove that what the obama campaign calls "smears" against their candidate are in fact "mostly true," Lowell Ponte focuses on one that is utterly false -- questions about Obama's birth certificate:

As proof, the Obama’s campaign has produced a “certificate of live birth” from Hawaii indicating that Barack Hussein Obama II was born Aug. 4, 1961. Critics, however say the document could have easily been forged and is not a substitute for a certified birth certificate.

No reporter has been allowed to see the original certificate of live birth or its certificate number, which is blacked out on copies of it on the Obama site.

Ponte fails to note that proves the critics (and Ponte) wrong: staffers have now seen, touched, examined and photographed the original birth certificate. We conclude that it meets all of the requirements from the State Department for proving U.S. citizenship. Claims that the document lacks a raised seal or a signature are false. We have posted high-resolution photographs of the document as "supporting documents" to this article. Our conclusion: Obama was born in the U.S.A. just as he has always said.

Ponte further fails to note that even his right-wing fellow travelers at WorldNetDaily agree (even if WND forgets that it did so):

A separate WND investigation into Obama's birth certificate utilizing forgery experts also found the document to be authentic. The investigation also revealed methods used by some of the bloggers to determine the document was fake involved forgeries, in that a few bloggers added text and images to the certificate scan that weren't originally there.

(Ponte's not the only Newsmax writer embracing the birth certificate lie; Geoff Metcalf insisted in an Oct. 20 column that a "Certified copy of original birth certificate" has not been released.)

Ponte also perpetuates other falsehoods under the guise telling the "truth."

Ponte writes of the Obama website's statements regarding William Ayers: "It does not mention that Obama and Ayers worked together on the board distributing millions of dollars with the aim of radicalizing Chicago schoolchildren. Nor does the site acknowledge that Obama kicked off his first political campaign in the living room of Ayers, the former Weather Underground leader."

Ponte fails to mention that the Chicago Annenberg Challege, on which both Obama and Ayers worked, was funded by prominent Republican Walter Annenberg, and contrary to his claim that it had "the aim of radicalizing Chicago schoolchildren," educational reviewers found that the project, in fact, "reflected ... mainstream thinking among education reformers." Further, according tothe Chicago Sun-Times' Lynn Sweet, "Obama's formal kick-off to announce his run for state senate was at the Hyde Park Ramada Inn on Sept. 19, 1995," and the coffee reception in Ayers' living was one of several held around the same time.

-- Ponte also claims that Obama "pocketed more than $105,000 in political contributions, the third-highest amount given to any lawmaker, directly from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac." But he fails to mention that McCain McCain has accepted at least $169,000 from "directors, officers and lobbyists" connected to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac during the 2008 election cycle.

-- Ponte repeats his previous false claim that Project Vote was run by ACORN when Obama ran an operation for the group in 1992.

-- Ponte falsely suggested that when Obama said of his daughters, "[I]f they make a mistake, I don't want them punished with a baby. I don't want them punished with an STD at the age of 16," that he was referring to abortion. In fact, Obama was answering a question on sex education.Ponte also claims that "Nurses have reported instances in which surviving aborted babies were left by abortionists to die without water, food, or warmth," without also noting that the claims made by that nurse, Jill Stanek were never substantiated.

-- Ponte suggested that the reason that Obama canceled a planned visit to wounded soldiers in a German military hospital was because Pentagon officials said he "could not have his visits with hospitalized soldiers videotaped by the media," adding, "Prominent liberal mainstream media reporters such as NBC’s Andrea Mitchell rushed to defend Obama, saying that the press had never planned to cover his visits to military sickbeds." But Ponte never disproves Mitchell's claim.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:21 AM EDT
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

It's January 22, 2009, for 911 News, I'm Janet Porter. Two days after the inauguration of Barack Obama as president, the Middle Eastern reaction is the same. (VIDEO: TERRORISTS DANCING IN THE STREETS.) Obama campaign supporters from al-Qaida to Hamas to Hezbollah, to Islamic Jihad and the Muslim Brotherhood, continue to dance in the streets.

The "Death to America Coalition" released a statement: "We have not celebrated like this since 9/11!"

President Obama thanked campaign contributor William Ayers by appointing him as director of Homeland Security. Ayers, who bombed the Pentagon, and after 9/11 said he wished he could have done more, in a statement released today, said, "Now I can."

-- Janet (Folger) Porter, Oct. 21 WorldNetDaily column (with video!)

Sadly, No! has more.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:06 PM EDT
Meanwhile, Over At HuffPo...
Topic: WorldNetDaily
In case you haven't read it yet, our expose of Jerome Corsi's dubious documents is now up at Huffington Post.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:57 PM EDT

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