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Saturday, July 24, 2010
No, Obama Didn't Campaign for Kenya's Odinga in 2006
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In a July 15 article, WorldNetDaily promoted right-wing author Andrew McCarthy's claims that then-Sen. Barack Obama campaigned for "communist Luo" Raila Odinga during a 2006 visit to Kenya and that such campaigning, on top of Obama's criticism of Kenya's endemic corruption, is a violation of the federal Logan Act.

Over at Media Matters, we debunk these claims -- Obama never campaigned for Odinga, and nothing Obama actually did in Kenya was a violation of the Logan Act, under which no one has ever been prosecuted.

WND has made the false claim about Obama and Odinga several times before, including in a July 19 article by Jerome Corsi that contains other Obama-Kenya falsehoods.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:49 AM EDT
Shirley Sherrod Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Look, Mr. Olbermann: You are no Emile Zola. You don't even rise to the level of the kings and queen of Kvetch TV, John and Larry King and Anderson Cooper of CNN.

And Sherrod is no Dreyfus. She was fired by an administration that mistook her for a worse racist than she actually was. The Obama posse overestimated the extent of Sherrod's animus for whites. She turned out to be merely a mezzanine-level racist.

Neither is Sherrod's story one of "redemption and cross-racial friendship," as Newsweek put it slightly less hyperbolically than did MSNBC's frontman. Shirley Sherrod's is a tale of the triumph of low expectations and black racial exculpation in contemporary America.

Here is a USDA worker, whose pay and perks are provided by wealthier Americans – given that this country has the steepest, most progressive tax system among all Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development countries. Yet she disdains the very "haves" who've funded her existence and facilitated her "life's work." By her own admission, Sherrod arrived each day at work eager to toil for the betterment of nobody but blacks.


The acme of ethics in American: a black woman who has graduated from hard-core to soft bigotry.

-- Ilana Mercer, July 23 WorldNetDaily column

Posted by Terry K. at 12:02 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, July 24, 2010 12:03 AM EDT
Friday, July 23, 2010
For Gainor, Right-Wing Talking Points = 'Good Reporting'
Topic: Media Research Center

Congressman-threatener Dan Gainor writes in his July 21 MRC Business & Media Institute column:

Unicorns, ogres and dragons you can find aplenty on the network news shows. Fair journalists and the stories they should be covering, not so much.

And what are these stories that "fair journalists ... should be covering"? The New Black Panther Party and "Climate Gate," among other right-wing darlings.

This ignores the fact that the New Black Panther story is propped up by a Republican activist portraying himself as a "whistleblower" who has no firsthand knowledge of the claims he's making, as well as incessant but empty fearmongering by Fox News.

As for "Climate Gate," there's also no there there -- the authors of the stolen emails were cleared of the most serious charges and most of the minor ones, despite the efforts of Gainor and his MRC fellow travelers to claim otherwise.

Gainor hasn't proven that there's anything to these stories that, if truthfully reported, rise to the level of actual news.

While Gainor obsesses about unicorns, ogres and dragons, his real problem is that he's trying to snooker us into hunting another mythical creature: the snipe.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:31 PM EDT
Kinsolving Suggests Quarantining AIDS Victims
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Is there any record that President Obama's fellow Democrat President Franklin D. Roosevelt ever disagreed with, or took any action against, authorities of his native state of New York, for their years of quarantining Mary Mallon?

In 1915, working under an assumed name in New York City's Sloane Maternity Hospital (where I was born in 1927), she spread typhoid fever to 25 doctors, nurses and staff – two of whom died.

They were only a few of those she infected and killed.

She was sent to a penal institution, North Brother Island, off the Bronx, where she was kept in quarantine until her death in 1938.

If "typhoid Mary" Mallon was so isolated for so long, to protect the public from typhoid, when will New York and the United States begin protecting the public from spreaders of the far deadlier disease of AIDS?

-- Les Kinsolving, July 21 WorldNetDaily column

Posted by Terry K. at 3:16 PM EDT
NewsBusters' Double Standard on Violence Toward Others
Topic: NewsBusters

A July 22 NewsBusters post by Tim Graham complained that in the cherry-picked Journolist email released, there appears a "call for violence," namely that  "Spencer Ackerman (now with Wired magazine) is again talking about putting conservatives through a plate-glass window (as in the Caller's first piece), in this case terrorism expert Michael Ledeen."The previous day, Graham highlighted another cherry-picked Journolist post from "an NPR producer who admits flaming hatred for Rush Limbaugh" and wrote that if Rush Limbaugh were dying, she would "Laugh loudly like a maniac and watch his eyes bug out."

Graham, meanwhile, has been silent about a call for violence made by one of his own co-workers. Dan Gainor, the Media Research Center's vice president for business and culture, Twittered the other day, "I'll give $100 to first Rep. who punches smary [sic] idiot Alan Grayson in the nose."

Apparently, threatening people with violence is perfectly OK when conservatives do it.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:19 AM EDT
O’Reilly Teams Up With Newsmax for Another Webcast
Topic: Newsmax

On July 21, Newsmax -- following up on its previous partnership with Bill O’Reilly, in which O’Reilly appeared in a Newsmax webcast designed to sell its financial products -- issued an email announcing that O’Reilly will star in a new upcoming webcast.

Described as “A Newsmax Undercover Report,” the email states that “This Internet Broadcast Will Feature Bill O’Reilly and What He Is Doing to Prepare” for what Newsmax calls “the Largest Tax Hike in America’s History,” the expiration of the Bush tax cuts. In the email, Newsmax financial publisher Aaron DeHoog follows Newsmax tradition by engaging in anti-Obama fearmongering (underline in original):

Dear Newsmax Reader,

I’ll cut straight to the chase.

You are about to be directly hit with a full assault from the IRS.

And you should heed this warning and prepare yourself accordingly.

To pay down our massive federal deficit, President Obama is going to come calling for what he believes is your portion of our $13.2 trillion tab.

In fact, as we stand now in his eyes, you are responsible for more than $119,000 (that’s exactly how much each citizen owes, according to my sources).

So you are going to be slapped with new Medicare taxes, cap and trade, and a value-added tax.

And President Obama is just getting started.

Once he intentionally lets the Bush tax cuts expire, tens of millions of Americans will feel a direct impact to their retirement savings.

And that’s just on the federal level.

In fact, Obama’s fiscal year 2011 budget calls for keeping the Bush tax cuts for all except individuals making more than $200,000 a year and couples making $250,000.

DeHoog goes on to write, “You need sound advice in these days of extortion from over-taxation.” That sound advice will be coming in part from O’Reilly, who will tell how he is “preparing.” This is the same O’Reilly, by the way, who has repeatedly pointed out that he’s “not an economist.”

What this webcast will inevitably be is yet another infomercial for a Newsmax financial product, even though it can be expected that O’Reilly, as he did last time, will claim he’s not there to endorse said financial product. Of course, O’Reilly’s presence can logically be seen as an implicit endorsement, whether he wants to admit it or not.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:19 AM EDT
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Bozell Doubles Down on Sherrod Lie
Topic: Media Research Center

Brent Bozell doubles down on the lie that Shirley Sherrod is a racist, saying it even more emphatically on the July 21 edition of Mark Levin's radio show:

BOZELL: I watched the full tape. It gets worse, it doesn't get better. It's not that Andrew Breitbart took out something that was going to somehow get her off the hook. She hangs herself later on with footage that Andrew Breitbart, I believe, did not have on his.


She goes on to say, "Some of the racism we thought was buried, didn't it resurface?" The audience applauds. "We endured eight years of the Bushes, and didn't do the stuff these Republicans are doing because we have a black president." Here is a woman who is herself inserting racism into the debate, and conservatives somehow have to apologize?


I thought that what we were leading to was her saying that she had come to the realization it wasn't about racism, that it was about poverty. That was the theme of her speech. Until you listen to it carefully, and what's she saying is it's racism and poverty. She's inserting racism and class warfare into this debate. I mean, this is what we're up against.

Bozell is trying to change the subject from the fact he falsely smeared her as a racist. He's throwing more cherry-picked, out-of-context quotes around to disguise his own libelous behavior.Given that he has already embraced cherry-picked, out-of-context quotes to falsely smear Sherrod as a racist, there's no reason to believe that more cherry-picked quotes will make his point.

And if Bozell will not apologize for his false and libelous smear, he is certainly not going to hold Andrew Breitbart accountable for his irresponsibility in posting the cherry-picked clips in the first place.

It's yet another reminder that the Media Research Center cares abolutely nothing about media research -- it's all about partisan politics, which may very well violate its current tax-exempt status.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:17 PM EDT
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

He has an already legendary taste for Kobe beef, one of the most expensive delicacies on the planet, and one of the fattiest, while his wife condescendingly chastises Americans for their diets and "lavish lifestyles." I don't know if I'd feel comfortable even admitting I had an affinity for that particular culinary extravagance – let alone indulging in it regularly – if I had any access whatever to the public purse strings, as does our president, Barack Hussein Obama.

This sort of cavalier behavior – even if the president does pay for his own meals – is pretty much standard fare for the progressive; it isn't given a second thought. Lacking even the rationale of the robber baron, who at least creates jobs through the goods or services he provides, progressives succeed by virtue of their lack of virtue, then enjoy opulence and privilege whilst living out a parasitic existence on the backs of those who do produce.

In the instance of our current chief executive, his inopportune indulgences and trust-fund-baby lifestyle, no pretext nor rationalization is forthcoming, let alone some justification, since his propaganda ministry, the establishment press, absolutely refuses to hold him accountable.

-- Erik Rush, July 15 WorldNetDaily column

It is quite conceivable that President Obama has already decided to not seek a second term in 2012 and therefore can afford to ignore public opinion and "do the right thing" by his own compass – not only on border security and amnesty but all across the board. The problem for the nation is that his compass is set on the goal of a socialist America within a new international socialist order where borders – and the Constitution's limits on his power – are of little consequence.

-- Tom Tancredo, July 17 WorldNetDaily column

After President Obama repeatedly and emphatically promised last summer that Obamacare would not use federal funds to pay for abortions (and even signed a supportive presidential order to boot), last week it was revealed that federal funds were being funneled to provide for abortive services in Pennsylvania and New Mexico.

This presidential lie is tragically just one more in an unprecedented string of flat-out falsehoods reaching back to Obama's campaign promise to "clean up both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue" with "the most sweeping ethics reform in history."

-- Chuck Norris, July 19 WorldNetDaiily column (making a claim that's unequivocally false)

Posted by Terry K. at 6:36 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, July 23, 2010 7:20 AM EDT
Newsmax Disappears Breitbart From Sherrod Story
Topic: Newsmax

A July 21 Newsmax article by David Patten portrays a "a chastened White House" apologizing to Shirley Sherrod after being '[b]lasted by pundits on both ends of the political spectrum for its firing of a USDA worker who made racially tinged remarks."

But Patten curiously disappears the name of the person who is responsible for posting the dishonestly edited videos that falsely portrayed Sherrod has having made "racially tinged" remarks -- Andrew Breitbart.

How does one write an entire story about Sherrod and fail to mention the person who put the false narrative in motion? We don't know, but Patten has achieved it. Then again, Patten is a horribly biased reporter.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:20 PM EDT
AIM's Kincaid Still Fantasizing About Gays in the Military
Topic: Accuracy in Media

When we read the Onion article headlined "Repeal Of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Paves Way For Gay Sex Right On Battlefield, Opponents Fantasize," we immediately thought of Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid, who regularly inveighs against gays in the military amid shots of really hot guys -- presumably what Kincaid envisisions when thinks about gays in the military.

Kincaid's July 19 AIM column is more of the same, touching on various anti-gay subjects he has made over the past several months -- gays in the military, gay marriage, "gay blood" -- with some updated right-wing talking points.

Kincaid also announces that he is "honored to be invited to be a part of" an upcoming "Truth Academy" being held by the rabidly anti-gay Americans for Truth about Homosexuality. He oes on to praise AFTAH leader Peter LaBarbera as "one of those brave few taking a leadership role in the effort to preserve traditional American social and religious values." Kincaid writes that LaBarbera has been "[f]ighting off the predictable smears of 'hater' and 'homophobe' from the gay-run Media Matters group and the Southern Poverty Law Center," failing to mention the fact that such statements are "predictable" because they are true.

Kincaid completed his point with photo promoting his column on the AIM front page, apparently ripped directly from his subconscious:

It's as if Kincaid is channeling the critic in the Onion article who said, "If this is repealed, what's to stop all-night sex romps from breaking out while U.S. servicemen are hiding in a bunker, or crawling around an irrigation ditch bathed only by the light of the moon, or, say, the dozens of other situations I've already thought through in elaborate detail?"

Posted by Terry K. at 7:27 AM EDT
New Article: WorldNetDaily's Ethically Challenged Pollster
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Fritz Wenzel left a newspaper job under an ethical cloud, and now he's asking skewed questions designed to give WND the anti-Obama poll results it desires. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:16 AM EDT
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
MRC Disappears Breitbart From Right-Wing Talking Points on Sherrod
Topic: Media Research Center

Since the Media Research Center -- led by chief smearer Brent Bozell -- has no problem falsely smearing Shirley Sherrod as a racist, it should be no surprise that the MRC is perpetuating false right-wing talking points to keep the lie alive.

A July 21 item by Brent Baker complains that evening newscasts were portraying Sherrod "as a victim of distorted editing of the video of her remarks." Baker doesn't mention that his boss and fellow MRC employees were the ones who victimized Sherrod by falsely smearing her as a racist on the basis of that "distorted editing."

A July 21 NewsBusters post by Rich Noyes uncritically repeats the false claim by Fox News' Steve Doocy that his network "never mentioned the story until after Sherrod had quit." In fact, reported the story before Sherrod resigned.

Neither Baker nor Noyes bother to mention the existence of Andrew Breitbart, who first posted the distorted video that Bozell and Co. based their false smears on, and without whom Sherrod would not have been victimized -- either by the MRC or the network news.

If Baker and Noyes are not going to mention Breitbart, they certainly aren't going to admit that the MRC did, in fact, falsely smear Sherrod as a racist, let alone issue the apology and retraction she deserves.

UPDATE: A July 21 NewsBusters post by Brad Wilmouth went into full fox News defense mode, complaining that  MSNBC's Rachel Maddow "suggested that FNC would never show [Sherrod's] side of the story even though, by that time Tuesday night, several FNC shows had already informed viewers of some of the details in Sherrod’s favor." Wilmouth added that "Maddow’s show even chose to only present to her viewers clips from FNC that ran Monday and Tuesday morning which portrayed Sherrod’s comments as racist, without airing any of the clips from shows later Tuesday which showed FNC personalities conveying more of her side of the story."

Wilmouth didn't explain why Fox News' later coverage excuses its falsely smearing Sherrod as a racist or its initial lack of interest in telling the full story.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:29 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, July 22, 2010 8:55 AM EDT
News Outlets Have Higher Standards Than Bozell
Topic: Media Research Center

MRC chief Brent Bozell's demand that the media falsely smear Shirley Sherrod was silly on its face, but his claim that the media ignored the story was based on an even more silly assumption: that the media has the same abysmally low standards as he does.

Turns out the media was well aware of the story; they -- unlike Bozell -- just chose to wait until Sherrod's words could be put in context.

CNN's Rick Sanchez pointed out that the network "had the story ... Monday before noon, and we decided not to go with the story because we didn't have a chance to verify it, because we hadn't seen the speech ourselves, because we weren't sure if part of the speech had been edited, because we hadn't had a chance to reach out to Shirley Sherrod. So because we didn't have those things, we here at CNN did not do this story."

Fox News' Shepard Smith said that he didn't run the story on his show because "we didn't who shot it, we didn't know when it was shot, we didn't know the context of the statement, and because of the history of videos on the site where it was posted. In short, we did not and do not trust the source."

Are these standards too high for Bozell? It appears so -- he had no problem promoting misleadingly edited videos whose source he did not know and whose context he made no effort to learn.

That's a lot of things, but it most definitely not "media research."

P.S. Bozell has yet to apologize for falsely smearing Sherrod as a racist, thus opening himself up to potential legal action against him on libel charges. He should know the drill, since he's been sued over making false claims before, over which the Parents Television Council, which he headed at the time, ultimately had to pay millions in damages and publish a retraction.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:43 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 7:48 PM EDT
Finally! Hirsen Reports on Gibson's Slurs -- But Still Defends Him
Topic: Newsmax

It has taken more than two weeks, but Newsmax's James Hirsen has finally gotten around to reporting on the hateful, violent phone calls of his friend, Mel Gibson.

Hirsen leads his July 20 "Left Coast Report" with the Gibson story, albeit narrowly focusing on the possibility of Gibson facing domestic violence charges. Hirsen makes no effort to describe the contents of the phone conversations that have been released; instead, Hirsen highlights claims that "experts concluded that the audio was edited" and a photo of Gibson's ex-girlfriend circulating on the Internet "has been altered." Hirsen also makes sure to note that Gibson’s estranged wife "said he never was abusive to her or acted in a violent way toward their seven children throughout almost 30 years of marriage."

After pointing out that Gibson "has no serious conviction on his record" and that the probable outcome for him would be "probation and counseling," Hirsen does something shocking -- he discloses his relationship with Gibson:

Note: Mel Gibson is a business associate and friend. My sincere hope is that he will receive fair treatment in the media and the courts. I hope, too, that he receives the best available assistance for the personal issues with which he is dealing.

As we've detailed, Hirsen and Gibson have a longstanding relationship dating back at least several years, and this is the first time he has disclosed it at Newsmax.

Hirsen does more defending of Gibson in a July 20 Newsmax interview, in which he asserts that the Gibson heard on the videotapes "is not the person that I know." Hirsen goes on to predict a comeback. From the accompanying article by Jim Meyers:

“For the moment, all the experts are proclaiming his career over,” Hirsen says.

“But he has his own studio. He is autonomous, so it’s not going to stop his work. It may stop certain people from working with him for some time, but that has to do with what actions he takes in the future.

“He has received a tremendous boost from people like Whoopi Goldberg, Robert Downey Jr., and mostly people who have had some sort of relationship with him and his family and know the man, as opposed to those who are judging him strictly by the stories and the tapes.

“He’s been in the business a very long time and there are tons of people who have worked with him and know him. That person on the tape is not the person that I know or that other people who have worked with Mr. Gibson know. He has a long history of being a tremendous family man, a good father, a generous person, easy to work with, with all kinds of positive attributes.”

Hirsen adds, "I think we have not heard the other side, and I think we need to wait and hear the other side of the story."

Newsmax does include excerpts of the Gibson tapes in the video, and the article notes that Hirsen "considers himself a friend of Gibson." As in his "Left Coast Report," Hirsen highlights claims that the tapes are edited and the picture of the ex-girlfriend is altered.

Hirsen also asserted that Gibson "has a long history of being a tremendous family man, a good father, a generous person, easy to work with, just all kinds of positive attributes."

So Hirsen is still defending his buddy -- just as he did when Gibson went on an anti-Semitic tirade. As we detailed, Hirsen insisted that Gibson had apologized sufficiently for the "untoward statements."

Posted by Terry K. at 3:33 PM EDT
Corsi Repeats Discredited Lies About Obama, Kenya
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In a July 19 WorldNetDaily article repeating discredited claims that a proposed new Kenyan constitution is a significant expansion of abortion rights, Jerome Corsi reached into his little bag of Obama smears and repeated false claims about what he claimed are "Obama's links to [Kenyan prime minister Raila] Odinga":

The Obama administration's funding of Kenyan internal politics appears to follow a pattern then-Sen. Obama first set on his 2006 Senate-funded visit to Kenya.

During that trip in 2006, Obama campaigned so openly for Odinga that Kenyan government spokesman Alfred Mutua went on Kenyan television on behalf of Kenyan President Kibaki to object that Obama was meddling inappropriately in Kenyan politics, as WND reported.

WND reported in 2008 that Obama raised almost $1 million for Odinga during the run-up to Kenya's 2007 presidential election.

Obama did not campaign for Odinga. As noted when Corsi made the same claim in his anti-Obama book:

What we can confirm is that Obama has remained neutral in Kenyan politics, and did not support Odinga during his trip. Odinga attended some of Obama's events while Obama was in Kenya, and clearly wanted to associate himself with Obama, but there is no evidence to indicate that Obama "openly supported" Odinga. 


Corsi states that Obama "openly supported" Raila Odinga. We found public statements from Obama during the trip saying the exact opposite. We found no other evidence to support Corsi's statement, so we rate his statement False.

Further, as we detailed in 2008 when Corsi first told this lie, Obama did not raise "almost $1 million for Odinga." The documents Corsi is relying on to support the claim are clearly forged (and busted it as well).

Corsi implies that Obama has acted on behalf of Odinga because he is "a Luo tribesman like Obama's father." In fact, as PolitiFact noted, Obama "gave a high-profile speech the need for the country to move beyond corruption and tribal rivalries. This undercuts Corsi's theory that Obama was motivated by his Luo tribal heritage."

Posted by Terry K. at 8:48 AM EDT

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