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Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Unruh's One-Sided Attack on Kagan
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Bob Unruh's May 10 WorldNetDaily article on Elena Kagan's Supreme Court nomination is a highly biased affair, quoting only right-wing groups critical of Kagan and making no apparent effort to talk to anyone for a response. (Biased reporting is Unruh's stock-in-trade at WND.) As a result several false claims stand uncorrected by Unruh.

For instance, Unruh writes that "Kagan had tossed military recruiters from the Harvard Law School campus because of the military's 'discrimination' against homosexuals because they were not allowed to openly portray their chosen lifestyle in the ranks." Unruh also claimed that Kagan's "bold criticism" of the military'sDon't Ask, Don't Tell policy included "included throwing military recruiters off campus," and quoted the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins as saying Kagan is "marked by kicking the military off campus during the height of the Iraq War." Unruh further quoted Perkins claiming that Kagan has "hostility to the U.S. military" and a similar attack from the right-wing Center for Military Preparedness claiming Kagan has expressed "deliberate hostility" toward the military.

If Unruh was concerned with reporting facts -- you know, committing actual journalism -- instead of regurgitating right-wing talking points, he would know those claims are false. Kagan has repeatedly praised the military, she did not kick military recruiters off campus, and military recruitment at Harvard Law School was not impacted by the one single semester Kagan blocked military recruiters from using the school's career office.

Unruh also uncricially repeats a claim from Jewish World Review that Kagan "treated two liberal law professors with kid gloves when they were busted for plagiarism." In fact, Harvard investigated the allegations and found no deliberate wrongdoing, and there is no evidence that the findings were motivated by politics.

Further, Unruh quotes several critics calling Kagan "pro-abortion" while offering no evidence to support the claim. In fact, she supported a late-term abortion ban in the 1990s.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:26 PM EDT
Newsmax's Patten Repeats Malicioiusly False YAF Claim
Topic: Newsmax

A May 10 Newsmax article by David Patten uncritically repeats the maliciously false claim by Young America's Foundation that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan "trampled on the rights" of students during her tenure as the dean of Harvard Law School, and "segregated" students who sought to meet with military recruiters to hear about possible careers in the U.S. armed services.

Patten made no apparent effort to investigate YAF's claims. If he had, he would have found that YAF's attack is untrue.

First, students had access to military recruiters during Kagan's entire tenure as dean. Kagan prohibited military recruiters from using Harvard Law School's Office of Career Services for only one semester, spring 2005. During that semester, students could meet with military recruiters at the Harvard Law School Veterans Association office.

Second, Kagan consistently followed the law. The semester military recruiters were banned from using the OCS office followed a federal appeals court ruling that declared the Solomon Amendment -- which denied federal funding to schools that prohibited military recruiters on campus -- unconstitutional.

Third, military recruitment at Harvard Law School did not drop as a result of Kagan's behavior. Indeed, the number of graduates who entered the military from each of the classes that would have been affected by the single semester military recruiters were prohibited from using the OCS office was equal to or greater than the number who entered the military from any of Harvard's previous five classes.

YAF is spreading a malicious lie, and Patten allowed YAP to do it. That makes Patten a propagandist, not a journalist.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:37 PM EDT
Vox Day On Reclaiming 'Traditional White Anglo-Saxon Protestant Culture'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

If Americans can find the courage to consciously reject the myth of the melting pot and expel the Mexicans from the American Southwest, the Arabs from Detroit and the Somalis from Minneapolis, they can reclaim their traditional white Anglo-Saxon Protestant culture. This is highly improbable because so many descendants of that culture have rejected it in favor of the vibrancy of diversity while those who haven't are far too frightened of criticism and social rejection to even articulate their thoughts. 

-- Vox Day, May 10 WorldNetDaily column

(World O'Crap expands on Mr. Day's writings. Also, Mr. Day has previously approvingly cited the Nazis as a model for removing millions of people from a country, a statement so outrageous even WND was moved to remove it.)

UPDATE: We have more at Media Matters.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:30 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 11, 2010 7:45 PM EDT
Klein Now Misleading About What He Wrote In His Book
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Appearing on the May 10 edition of Fox Business Network's "Happy Hour," WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein said:

And by the way, in the book, I show Obama in the 1990s was a member of the New Party, which was a socialist party that sought to infiltrate the Democrat Party to push it so far leftwards that it ultimately turns into a socialist party. I found newspaper evidence and personally interviewed the founder of the New Party, Marxist Carl Davidson, who recounted to me in the book Obama’s membership and participation with this socialist party.

That's not true at all. As we detailed, Klein quotes Davidson saying quite the opposite to claiming that Obama was a New Party member -- Davidson said that Obama never signed the party contract Klein described as "stipulating [candidates] would have a 'visible and active membership' with the party." Klein also quoted Davidson saying that "Obama was never a man of the left, either in his view or in being a member of an actual socialist organization" -- which, by Klein's own definition, excludes the New Party.

Klein misled in his book; now he's misleading about what he wrote in his book.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:46 AM EDT
Jim Kouri's Ever-Shifting Immigrant-Bashing
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Jim Kouri claimed in a May 4 Accuracy in Media column:

On April 7, 2007, the U.S. Justice Department issued a report on criminal aliens that were incarcerated in federal and state prisons and local jails.

In the population study of 55,322 illegal aliens, researchers found that they were arrested at least a total of 459,614 times, averaging about 8 arrests per illegal alien. Nearly all had more than one arrest. Thirty-eight percent (about 21,000) had between two and five arrests, 32 percent (about 18,000) had between six and 10 arrests, and 26 percent (about 15,000) had 11 or more arrests. Most of the arrests occurred after 1990.

Sound familiar? Kouri made almost the exact same claim in a column published in ... 2005:

On April 7, 2005, the US Justice Department issued a report on criminal aliens that were incarcerated in federal and state prisons and local jails. The report contained information on the number of criminal aliens incarcerated, their country of citizenship or country of birth, and the cost to incarcerate them. Congress also requested that the Government Accounting Office provide information on the criminal history of aliens incarcerated in federal and state prisons or local jails who had entered the country illegally.

In the population study of a sampling of 55,322 illegal aliens, researchers found that they were arrested at least a total of 459,614 times, averaging about 8 arrests per illegal alien. Nearly all had more than 1 arrest. Thirty-eight percent (about 21,000) had between 2 and 5 arrests, 32 percent (about 18,000) had between 6 and 10 arrests, and 26 percent (about 15,000) had 11 or more arrests.

It's highly unlikely that two government studies released exactly two years apart would repeat exactly the same numbers. And, of course, that didn't happen.

It turns out that neither date Kouri supplied is correct, nor is the issuing agency he cites. Kouri's numbers come from a May 9, 2005 report from the Governmental Accountability Office, issued by request from a group of House Republicans including the notoriously anti-immigrant Steve King.

While the numbers Kouri cites are correct as far as they go, though out of context -- it does stand to reason that illegal immigrants spending time in jail are there because they committed numerous crimes -- he misleads by portraying them as representative of the criminality of all illegal immigrants. Indeed, the report includes the disclaimer that "our analysis is not designed to infer conclusions about the arrest history of other illegal aliens not in our study population who entered the country illegally and have been arrested."

Of course, Kouri does exactly that, baselessly asserting an "escalation in alien crime" and claiming that "Handling the myriad problems associated with alien crimes is often beyond the capabilities of local police departments."

But if Kouri is so lazy as to invent new release dates for the report he's using for evidence, why listen to anything else he has to say?

(We've previously caught Kouri in a flare-up of Obama Derangment Syndrome and defending the murderous Branch Davidians.)

Posted by Terry K. at 7:24 AM EDT
WND Already Launching Anti-Kagan Petition (And Money-Making Scheme)
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Well, that didn't take long: Joseph Farah has already started a petition drive at WorldNetDaily to oppose Elena Kagan's Supreme Court nomination. Too bad it's not based on anything factual.

"Kagan is a radical anti-military and pro-abortion zealot," Farah is quoted as saying. Both claims are false -- Kagan is very supportive of the military, and she supported a late-term abortion ban in the 1990s.

WND hasn't told these things to its readers, so it's no surprise that Farah is so ignorant.

Perhap's he's too busy trying to make a buck off the nomination. Farah has also launched yet another of those junk mail-blasting schemes that he's so fond of, which "allows any American citizen to generate 100 individually addressed letters to every U.S. senator, each including the name of the sender and all delivered by Fed Ex for the low price of just $24.95."

IT seems Farah is so preoccupied with counting his money that he can't be bothered to tell the truth.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:05 AM EDT
Monday, May 10, 2010
CNS, Newsmax Repeat False Attacks on Kagan

The ConWeb seems to think that quoting from press releases equates to journalism.

A May 10 Newsmax article is solely dedicated to a rewritten press release from the right-leaning Center for Military Readiness, which claims that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan has shown "deliberate hostility" toward the military, adding, "It is unfortunate that President Barack Obama has chosen to replace the only military veteran on the Supreme Court with a nominee whose only significant record indicates deliberate hostility and opposition to laws protecting the culture and best interests of the American military."

In fact, Kagan is not only not "hostile" to the military, she has repeatedly praised it.

Meanwhile, a May 10 article by Susan Jones uncriticzlly forwards the complaints by "conservative groups" about Kagan, including the false claim she has "anti-military views." Jones also cites Kagan's "lack of judicial experience" without noting that the last justice with no judicial experience was William Rehnquist, or that the chief reason Kagan has no judicial experience is because Republicans blocked her nomination for two years in the 1990s.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:38 PM EDT
WND's Klein Misleads on Kagan
Topic: WorldNetDaily

As is his wont, Aaron Klein tries his best to smear yet another member of the Obama administration by unleashing false and misleading attacks on Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan.

In one May 10 article, Klein rehashes right-wing attacks on Kagan without identifying any of the groups he cited by their political ideology. These include an assertion by the right-wing Move America Forward that Kagan is "radically anti-military" -- a claim that is utterly false.

In another article, Klein purports to read the contents of Kagan's mind when she was a college student, baselessly claiming that in her Princeton undergraduate thesis, Kagan "lamented the decline of socialism in the country as "sad" for those who still hope to 'change America.'" In fact, Kagan never claimed in her thesis that she personally supported socialism, and Klein is lying when he suggests she did.

UPDATE: Klein tosses out yet another misleading claim in a new article -- that Kagan "argued certain forms of speech that promote 'racial or gender inequality' could be 'disappeared.'" It's not until the fourth paragraph that Klein notes Kagan is referring to the "uncoerced disappearance" of such speech [emphasis ours].

Posted by Terry K. at 8:03 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, May 10, 2010 10:24 PM EDT
Kessler Falsely Suggests Obama Hid Health Reform Report
Topic: Newsmax

Ronald Kessler writes in his May 6 Newsmax column regarding a Department of Heatlh and Human Services report claiming that the cost of the health care reform bill will be higher than originally estimated:

Richard S. Foster, the chief actuary of Medicare and Medicaid who prepared the report, says the reason his analysis did not come out before the bill was passed is that he “didn’t have access to the reconciliation legislation itself until it was publicly issued on March 18, which was three days before the House vote took place on March 21. Because of the complexity of the reconciliation changes, it wasn’t possible to estimate the package prior to the vote.”

In other words, the White House, which claims to endorse transparency, had no interest in telling the public the real costs of the bill until after it was passed. Otherwise, it would have made sure that Foster received the appropriate information in time to prepare an analysis.


Now it turns out Obama misled the country about a measure that affects one-fifth of the economy, yet there is no outrage except from Republicans. The news media have treated the story as a non-event.

The New York Times played the story on Foster’s report on page A8. The Washington Post and USA Today did not run a story. With the exception of Fox News, none of the networks touched it.

If Obama were a company that advertised such false claims, the Federal Trade Commission would take action. If Obama were a Republican, the news media would play his deception as a scandal.

But Obama is neither. He is a pitchman who has victimized the American people with his sham reform.

The idea that the Obama administration conspired to withhold the report until after the vote -- first promoted by an anonymous report in the American Spectator and repeated by Newsmax -- has been discredited.

Further, the report that was eventually released is, according to Time magazine, "nearly identical" to Foster's report on the Senate health reform bill -- which was issued in January. If you'll recall, the House voted on the Senate reform bill; the updated report reflects changes made in the accompanying reconciliation bill that the Senate later approved.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:29 PM EDT
Newsmax's False Headline
Topic: Newsmax

A May 9 Newsmax article on pay for military personnel carries the headline: "Outrage: Obama Administration Targets Military for Pay Reductions."

That headline is a lie. As the Washington Post article that Newsmax based its article on states, The Obama administration is not proposing a "pay reduction" for military personnel, it is proposing a smaller pay increase than Congress:

The Pentagon wants a pay raise of 1.4 percent for service members next year, an increase based on the Employment Cost Index, which the Labor Department uses to measure private-sector salary increases. Congress, as it has for the past several years, has indicated it favors a slightly bigger bump, of 1.9 percent.

Proposing a smaller raise is not proposing a "pay reduction."

UPDATE: On her Facebook page, Sarah Palin links to the Newsmax story and repeats the false headline: "Soldier pay decreases in the midst of overspending elsewhere and government union pay raises? Seriously? What are our priorities?"

Posted by Terry K. at 9:45 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, May 10, 2010 7:42 PM EDT
CNS Corrects (One) False Claim

A May 6 article (as posted at Free Republic) by Fred Lucas carried the headline, "Gibbs Can't Say, Won’t Check, If Obama Used Sexual Slur Against Tea Party Activists." The article began, "White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said he did not know and could not imagine asking President Barack Obama whether he used the vulgar sexual term 'tea baggers' to describe Americans active in the Tea Party movement."

But Lucas didn't tell the whole story -- as the transcript of the May 6 White House press briefing shows, Gibbs added, "I can’t imagine I’m going to ask the President that. But I will entertain it. ... I will check."

So  CNS had to walk it back. Lucas' article now begins with a correction: 

Correction: An initial posting of this story by Fred Lucas had incorrectly reported that White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said in his Thursday, May 6, 2010 press briefing that he would not check if President Barack Obama had used the term “tea baggers” to describe activists in the Tea Party movement. In response to a question about whether President Obama had used the term tea baggers, Gibbs actually said, “I can’t imagine I’m going to ask the President that. But I will entertain it.” Gibbs later added, “I will check.” 

So CNS does make corrections after all. It still hasn't corrected Matt Cover's false claim that when then-Transportation Security Administration director nominee Erroll Southers referred to some groups that post a domestic security threat as being "Christian-identity oriented,"he was referring to a specific extremist group called Christian Identity and not to Christianity in general.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:24 AM EDT
WND's Meaningless New Anti-'Amnesty' Scheme
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily has a new money-making scheme.

In the tradition of its dubious and factually inaccurate "pink slip" campaign, WND has concocted a new letter-writing campaign designed to fleece its readers. This time, WND will send a letter on your behalf to all 100 senators that opposes "amnesty" for illegal immigrants.

Just one problem: At no point in the letter or the WND article promoting it is "amnesty" defined. The article suggests that "comprehensive immigration reform" is the same thing as "amnesty," but it offers no explanation of why this is so. Instead, we're treated to Joseph Farah ranting that "Amnesty will tear this country apart" and "Americans will not accept the destruction of their country lying down."

Farah will, however, shamlessly embrace making a buck off of people's fears.

WND is also playing the same numbers game it did with the "pink slip" campaign, promoting the number of letters issued rather than the (unimpressive) number of people WND has fleeced to send them. It's now touting that it's sent "50,000 individual letters to senators in the first week"; if you do your math and divide that by 100, that's only 500 people who have taken part.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:54 AM EDT
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Newsmax Email Makes False Claim About Obama
Topic: Newsmax

A May 6 email to Newsmax's mailing list contains the following subject line: "Insider: Obama May Stop All Oil-Drilling, Wants Lithium."

But the email itself -- a third-party promotion hyping the stock of a company involved with the "miracle mineral" lithium -- doesn't make that claim. Heck, it doesn't even mention Obama at all. And the only mention of oil is in a claim that lithium will "get us off foreign oil sold to us by people who hate us."

So who's responsible for making this utterly false and completely unsubstantiated claim about Obama? Given that the email itself doesn't make this claim, suspicion must fall on Newsmax. It's previously harnessed Obama-bashing to make a buck through shilling investment schemes, so why wouldn't it toss out a casual, libelous smear to plug someone's stock?

Posted by Terry K. at 10:58 PM EDT
CNS Twists Pelosi's Words

The headline of the May 6 article by Edwin Mora blares: "Pelosi: It’s Cheaper to Treat Teens for Drug Use Than Interdict Drugs at Border." The statement is repeated in the first paragraph of Mora's article.

Mora and CNS are twisting Pelosi's words. They have framed the article to suggest that Pelosi doesn't support interdicting drugs at the border and endorses drug use among teens, which of course is completely false. Mora knows that too -- but he doesn'ty report the full truth until farther down in the article. It's not until the ninth paragraph that he puts Pelosi's words in their proper context: "To solve the drug problem, she said, requires reducing demand."

And it's not until the very end that Mora notes the actual question he asked of Pelosi: "Madame Speaker, the Justice Department has reported that one in five teenagers used illicit drugs last year and that most of those drugs came across the border from Mexico. Are you committed to sealing the border against the influx of illegal drugs from Mexico and, if so, do you have a target date in mind for getting that done?"

It's a gotcha question, its goal to illogically equate not "sealing the border" with endorsing teen drug use. Such a question penalizes any nuanced answer, and that's exactly what Mora does to Pelosi.

The dozens of outraged comments at the end of the article show that Mora's word-twisting had the intended effect of inflaming anti-Pelosi hatred.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:00 AM EDT
WND's Shameless Bizarro World
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Sometimes you gotta look in awe at the utter shamelessness of WorldNetDaily.

WND devoted an entire story to the satirical suggestion by a "conspiracy website" that a promotion for Aaron Klein's conspiracy-laden, birther-promoting, Obama-bashing book caused the recent stock market "flash crash."

WND also performs a bit of cleverness that the rest of us would call a false claim. The "conspiracy website" WND is referring to,, is not a "conspiracy website"; rather, it debunks conspiracy theories -- like WND's long-held belief that Obama is not an American citizen.

This means that WND is bizarrely suggesting that the people telling the truth about Obama are the real conspiracy theorists. Talk about Bizarro World...

Posted by Terry K. at 12:24 AM EDT

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