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Friday, July 24, 2009
Farah Claims Censorship: Where's the Evidence?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In a Jluy 24 WorldNetDaily article, WND's Joseph Farah is alleging "a broad pattern of Internet search engine censorship" by search engines such as Google and Bing "blocking WND's extensive coverage of questions surrounding Barack Obama's eligibility for office." He adds:

"In more than 12 years of Internet experience, I have never seen anything like this," said Farah. "As of today, all the major search engines systematically began scrubbing our content. This happened at the very moment this story broke into the mainstream." 

Farah offers no evidence of this -- no data, no screenshots. Nothing.

So, naturally, he will go on Michael Savage's radio show to talk about something he has made no effort to prove.

Also of note in that article is the caption under the picture of Obama: "Barack Obama, the man elected president." Not "President Obama."

Farah refuses to acknowledge that Obama is the president. How paranoid and pathological is that?

UPDATE: Another July 24 article, by Drew Zahn, attempts to provide some details. The main complaint isn't really censorship -- it's that  Google doesn't rank WND's stories as high in searches as WND would like it to, though the birther issue is "a story that no news organization has followed more closely than WND."

What Zahn and WND appear to be ignoring is the fact that WND's record of honesty in reporting on the birth certificate issue is shaky at best and whose claims are easily debunked, even by its fellow right-wingers. Furher, it has a long record of telling documented lies about Obama.

It seems to us that Google is doing the prudent thing in tweaking its algorhithms to downplay such unreliable websites as WND. Why should Google, et al, be in the business of promoting WND's false and misleading information?

Posted by Terry K. at 4:32 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, July 24, 2009 10:54 PM EDT
New WND Video Features Rogue's Gallery of Birthers
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A July 24 WorldNetDaily article touts an upcoming WND video that purports to document "he critical issues surrounding the constitutional eligibility of Barack Obama to serve as president." The video, according to the article, "four key presenters" who will "bring the issue home" Jerome Corsi, Orly Taitz, Alan Keyes, and Janet Porter.

Media Matters has brief profiles on Corsi, Taitz and Keyes and the lack of credibility they bring to this issue (and pretty much everything else they touch). In addition, we've documented Corsi's lies about Obama and Porter's apparent misuse of the resources of her Faith2Action group to fuel her personal anti-Obama jihad (as well as peddling her own Obama birth lies).

What this rogue's gallery of presenters means is that we will be treated the the usual pack of lies WND has been peddling for months. Will Farah do the proper journalistic thing and give space at WND for critics to respond? Don't count on it.

The article goes on to claim that "the award-winning filmmaking team" behind WND's video "made the unusual request to keep its identity secret for fear of retribution from the administration." Funny, we figured it was because they didn't want their names associated with this steaming pile of discredited lies.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:37 AM EDT
LeBoutillier Makes Up Obama Quote
Topic: Newsmax

John LeBoutillier, in a July 23 Newsmax column, falsely claimed that President Obama, in his remarks on an police incident involving Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, "slurred the Cambridge police as 'stupid.'"

Obama did no such thing. He did say, given that Gates had apparently offered documentation to police that he was the person who owned the house he was breaking into, that "the Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof that they were in their own home."

LeBoutillier went on to denounce Obama's "decades as a scofflaw" -- that would be 17 parking tickets that went unpaid for years.

LeBoutillier isn't the only Newsmax columnist to falsely exploit Obama's statement for maximum Obama-hate value: Ronald Kessler insisted that the media is "suppressing the online police report recounting this ugly incident" - which, conveniently for Kessler, makes Gates look bad.

Kessler also claimed that Obama's statement that "blacks and Hispanics are picked up more frequently, and often time for no cause, casts suspicion even when there is good cause" purportedly "ignored the unfortunate fact that blacks account for four times more violent crimes than people of other races."

Posted by Terry K. at 9:20 AM EDT
Your Jackie Mason Bile-Filled Rant of the Week
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In this week's anti-Obama rant, Jackie Mason falsely asserts that President Obama wants to create "a national health care system" like Canada, where you have to "wait six months to see a doctor" and "people with all kinds of terminal diseases that could possibly be saved, terrible problems that they could possibly -- all of a sudden lose their lives or lose their limbs." And European health care sucks too: "If, God forbid, you broke your leg and you have a chance to fix it, it will deteriorate by the time you see a doctor."

In fact, Obama has explicitly stated that he is not implementing a health care system like those in Canada or Europe.

Mason makes sure not to scrimp on the Obama-hate:

You will die because of the system, because of his pledge of allegiance to the idea of the socialistic principles he's involved in. He never studied it, he never cared about the consequences of it, he doesn't care how he destroys everybody. All the figures, all the proof from every sources that it's wrong, it's impossible and it's unworkable. And he doesn't care as long as he proves the point that he wants all everything. And that's all he cares about. I'll own the system, we'll become a socialistic society, he'll become a dictator, and you'll be wiped out. Is this what you wanted? That's what you're gonna get.

Just another addition to Mason's fetid pile of Obama-hate.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:08 AM EDT
Bozell Hides Facts to Defend Right-Wing Talk Radio
Topic: Media Research Center

Brent Bozell's July 21 column seeks to prove that liberal talk radio is so much more offensive than conservative talk radio -- by leaving out inconvenient details about conservative talk radio.

Bozell went after liberal talker and TV host Ed Schultz, making sure to dismiss him as having "six children – and about six listeners." Bozell cited an attack by Schultz on Rush Limbaugh as a "drug-ridden loser" -- but failed tomention that Limbaugh is the one who got personal first by smearing him as "Mr. Ed."

(The July 19 NewsBusters post by P.J. Gladnick from which Bozell apparently lifted his information about Schultz's rant similarly failed to report Limbaugh's provocation.)

Bozell also reached back to "the Clinton years" -- well, actually, copies-and-pastes out of a 1995 MRC article -- to rehash "a CBS News promo set out to warn the public about the dangers of Gordon Liddy: 'The words are shocking... What he says may not be illegal, but is it dangerous? Has free speech gone too far?'"

Curiously, Bozell doesn't mention what Liddy was saying on his radio show about that time that would have provoked such concern. And what was Liddy telling his listeners? How to shoot federal law enforcement agents. The MRC, by the way, took Liddy's side by lamely claiming, "Liddy meant shooting in self-defense."

As for Bozell's claim that "never will you hear a credible conservative talk show host -- say, Rush, or Hannity, or Levin or Ingraham -- resort to this sort of ugliness," the Media Matters Action Network begs to differ.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:38 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, July 24, 2009 1:16 AM EDT
Thursday, July 23, 2009
The Browns Mislead on Michelle Obama
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In a July 23 WorldNetDaily column, Floyd and Mary Beth Brown cite as evidence that President "Obama is out of touch with Middle America" and exhibits "overt elitism" a report that "Michelle Obama totes around a $6,000 Italian alligator-skin clutch."

In fact, it was not "a $6,000 Italian alligator-skin clutch." As the New York Daily News reported, it was an $875 patent leather clutch.

The Browns also asserted that "unemployment climbed above 10 percent." In fact, the most recent numbers peg the national unemployment rate at 9.7 percent -- which, last time we checked, was not "above 10 percent."

Floyd Brown, if you'll recall, is the head of the Western Journalism Center. Why should anyone trusts what he and his organization put out if they can't even get basic facts right?

P.S. The column does not disclose the fact that WND editor Joseph Farah founded the WJC, but then, WND has a long history of not disclosing conflicts of interest.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:28 PM EDT
Ralph Peters Is A Leftist?
Topic: Horowitz

A July 22 NewsReal post by Joseph Klein suggests that Ralph Peters -- by claiming that Bowe Bergdahl, an American soldier captured by the Taliban, was AWOL at the time of his capture, deserves whatever the Taliban does to him -- is part of "Left’s own propaganda campaign that we are losing an unjust war and that it is time to bring all of our soldiers home."

In fact, Peters is very much a right-winger, a supporter of Dick Cheney and the Iraq war, not to mention someone who despises President Obama. He is definitely not part of "the Left."

In addition to getting Peters' ideology wrong, Klein didn't reveal the full extent of what Peters said, stating only that Peters "suggested" that Bergdahl "had intended to go AWOL" (though noting that "Mr. Peters should be certain beyond a reasonable doubt before leveling such charges"). In fact, Peters called Bergdahl a "liar" and added that if Bergdahl is a deserter, "the Taliban can save us a lot of legal hassles and legal bills."

Posted by Terry K. at 2:11 PM EDT
Farah Still Lying About Obama's Grandmother
Topic: WorldNetDaily

When Joseph Farah latches onto a lie, he won't let go of it no matter how imbecilic he looks clinging to it long after he's been discredited.

Which is how we get the sad spectacle of Farah, in his July 23 WorldNetDaily column, asserting as "the most compelling facts that make you skeptical of Obama's birth story"  the claim that "The only living person who claims publicly to have been present at Obama's birth is his paternal grandmother, Sarah Obama, who says the birth took place in Mombassa, Kenya."

As we have repeatedly documented every time Farah and others at WND spew this lie, she didn't say that.

WND purports to have a affadavit supporting this claim, but it has never made it public -- so, by WND's own logic, it must not exist. As we've also noted, if Farah truly believes this claim, he would have sent a $10,000 check to Sarah Obama by now -- but it hasn't.

If Farah won't put his money where his mouth is, he should stop spewing such lies.

Farah also demonstrates in his column that he doesn't read his own website by asking, "Why won't a birth hospital in Hawaii come forward to verify the historic event – the birth of the baby who would become the first black president?" Because, as WND itself reported, privacy laws prohibit it.

We thought Farah cared about the privacy of medical records. Apparently not, if it the records of his political enemies are the issue.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:29 AM EDT
Shocker: WJC Debunks Key Birther Claims
Topic: Western Journalism Center

We've detailed how the Western Journalism Center, under the leadership of right-wing activist Floyd Brown, has positioned itself as a promoter of the Obama birth certificate conpsiracy. So when it starts debunking key birther claims, perhaps one should listen.

A July 21 unbylined WJC blog post reviews a CNN appearance by birthers Alan Keyes and Orly Taitz. It began in the usual sycophantic way, asserting that "Dr Keyes spoke very well in the minute or so allotted him" -- a laughable claim giving that Keyes' response to the mountain of evidence presented by CNN's Kitty Pilgrim was to demand "some evidence."

But then, the post takes a shockingly reality-based turn, asserting: "On the other hand, from her interview it seems that Orly Taitz is building her case on 2 premises, one false and the other irrelevant."

The post states: "Orly Taitz asserts that 'to be president there have to be two parents who are citizens.' This is false." Citing "Blackstone’s classic exposition in 1765 ... from the Commentaries on the Laws of England" -- funny, we thought conservatives were opposed to using foreign law to make decisions in the U.S. -- the post continues:

Blackstone explicitly grounds natural-born status on location (jus soli), not parentage, except when the child is born abroad.  The notion that both parents have to be citizens is false.  All children born on American soil are natural-born subjects or citizens.  

WJC then goes on to claim that suggest that, based on Blackwell, "If [Obama] was born on foreign soil, the fact that his father was not an American citizen would disqualify him from natural-born citizenship." But the WJC curiously fails to mention what U.S. law has to say on the subject -- as we've noted, legal scholars have pointed out that courts have ruled any child born to at least one U.S. citizen is a U.S. citizen, and claims that Obama's mother was too young to confer citizenship on her son are false.

Even more shocking, WJC demolishes another key claim, that Obama's "certification of live birth" is suspect because of a 1982 law that allowed people not born in Hawaii to obtain Hawaiian birth certificates:

Under Act 182 H.B. NO. 3016-82, state policies and procedures could accommodate even “children born out of State” (this is the actual language of Act 182) with an original birth certificate on record.  But though Act 182 does provide children born out of state with a birth certificate it does not provide them with birth certificates that say that these children were born in Hawaii or at a specific location in Hawaii.  Consequently these birth certificates cannot engender Certifications of Live Birth which state that the subject was born in Honolulu, as the purported Obama Certification of Live Birth does.  So if the Obama Certification of Live Birth was not forged, it could not have been engendered by an Act 182-authorized birth certificate for “children born out of state”.  And if it was forged, the false information on it was not based on anything that could be on an Act-182 authorized birth certificate.  So Orly Taitz’ assertion that “Hawaii has statute 338 that allows foreign-born children of Hawaiian residents to get Hawaiian birth certificates” is irrelevant.

One of the key pieces of evidence regularly cited by WorldNetDaily -- whose CEO Joseph Farah founded the WJC -- is that a certification of live birth "is easily obtainable for children not born in Hawaii." Thus, the WJC has destroyed one of WND's major claims attempting to discredit the birth certificate.

The WJC tries to salvage things by baselessly insisting that "it is increasingly clear that Obama was not born in Hawaii," but no evidence is offered to back that claim up -- which suggests to us that it's is as bogus as the claims it just busted. But it has undermined its case, and the case of its fellow birther travelers, by this sudden fit of truth.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:25 AM EDT
Newsmax Goes Full Birther
Topic: Newsmax

We've previously noted how Newsmax took a few tentative stabs before the 2008 presidential election at repeating baseless claims about Barack Obama's birth certificate -- yet also credited Obama for knocking down those claims. Since then, Newsmax has largely stayed away from the issue (aside from the occasional wacky column).

Until now, that is. Newsmax appears to have decided it will follow WorldNetDaily's lead and fully embrace the conspiracy.

A July 22 article by Jim Meyers purports to correct MSNBC's Chris Matthews over his assertion that Obama has released a valid birth certificate:

But Matthews made a false claim. Obama has never released his actual birth certificate. He has released another document, often provided by state authorities in lieu of a birth certificate, called a certificate of live birth.


The indisputable fact is that Obama has not released his birth certificate, which the state of Hawaii issues for all citizens born there.

Instead, his campaign has only released his certificate of live birth from the state of Hawaii, which is a document that offers a summarized version of the birth certificate.

Adhering closely to the conpsiracy's talking points, Meyers went on to insist that "Obama is the only president in history whose birthplace is unknown to the public" and that "Obama’s refusal to release his birth certificate does mean that Obama remains one of America’s most mysterious and opaque presidents ever."

Meyers concluded: "Chris Matthews, get your facts straight and demand full disclosure – that’s the best way to keep an honest government."

Full metal birther, baby!

Posted by Terry K. at 12:48 AM EDT
Aaron Klein Mighty Wurlitzer Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A July 21 WorldNetDaily article by Aaron Klein once again invokes the Rabbinical Congress for Peace. As we've detailed, the group is a frequent go-to source of easy attacks on Klein's favorite targets -- in this case, President Obama.

As per usual, Klein fails to tell his readers about the right-wing nature of the congress, describing it benignly as a "coalition of Israeli rabbinic leaders."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:08 AM EDT
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Kessler Hides Hoenlein's Reversal
Topic: Newsmax

Ronald Kessler uses a July 22 Newsmax column touting how right-wing Zionist Organization of America head Morton Klein was allegedly "barred" from attending a meeting of Jewish leaders at the White House to recount how "Klein and Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, believed Obama’s Jewish support was eroding as a result of his recent Middle East activities."

But, as we've detailed, Hoenlein never made that specific claim, and Hoenlein has since distanced himself from Kessler's interview of him.

Kessler never mentions Hoenlein's reversal -- after all, Kessler was trying to have Hoenlein fill the role of Jewish critic of Obama that Klein has ably stepped into.

While Kessler describes Klein as a "major Jewish leader" and an "important Jewish leader," at no point does he mention Klein's or ZOA's right-wing leanings -- though Klein's attacks on Obama clearly demonstrate that bias.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:22 PM EDT
Porter's False Attacks on Health Care Reform
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In her July 21 WorldNetDaily column, Janet Porter falsely claims that health care reform would mean "jail sentences for those who seek treatment outside the socialized health care system." That's an apparent reference to an Investor's Business Daily editorial claiming that the health reform bill contiains "a provision making individual private medical insurance illegal." It doesn't.

Porter also writes:

Even the Mayo Clinic, which Obama touted as the health care model, said, "… the proposed legislation misses the opportunity to help create higher-quality, more affordable health care for patients. In fact, it will do the opposite."


In fact, the Mayo Clinic did not criticize Obama's approach to health care reform. It criticized the House reform bill for not including "a fundamental lever -- a change in Medicare payment policy -- to help drive necessary improvements in American health care" -- a reform Obama supports.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:57 PM EDT
Newsmax Falsely Claims Obama Not Familiar With Health Reform Bill
Topic: Newsmax

A July 21 Newsmax article by David Patten asserts:

Members of Congress haven't read the 1,018-page proposed healthcare-reform legislation, but then, apparently neither has President Obama.

The president recently confessed he is "not familiar" with key provisions of the legislation.

Patten goes on to write that during a conference call with bloggers, "a blogger referenced an article in Investor's Business Daily indicating Section 102 of the House bill would 'outlaw' private insurance," and that Obama responded that he was "not familiar with the provision you are talking about."

Actually, that IBD "article" is an editorial, and the claim that the bill would outlaw private insurance is false. Why should Obama be familiar with a section of the health care reform bill that doesn't exist?

Patten even concedes the point later in the article: "No version of the legislation now under consideration 'outlaws' private insurance coverage." But then he adds: "However, it increases its cost relative to publicly subsidized plans in a way that leads some experts to believe private insurance would no longer be a viable option."

The only "experts" he cites to back up his point, however, is the decidedly partisan and anti-reform Heritage Foundation. Then again, Patten's false claim that Obama is unfamiliar with the bill is lifted from Heritage as well (not to mention the Drudge Report).

Posted by Terry K. at 9:27 AM EDT
New Article: Meet Molotov Mitchell
Topic: WorldNetDaily
The WorldNetDaily video commentator claims he's talking "for the record," but his version of the "record" is filled with lies and smears. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:16 AM EDT

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