ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

ConWebWatch: home | archive/search | about | primer | shop

Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Kessler Missed the Memo on Williams
Topic: Newsmax

I, the same column in which he went into full-fledged (and baseless) conspiracy mode over NPR's firing of Juan Williams, WorldNetDaily's Joseph Farah insisted that Williams is "a bona fide liberal," adding that "I have always respected him as a thoughtful liberal commentator."

But somebody didn't get the right-wing memo that Farah did. Newsmax's Ronald Kessler wrote in his Oct. 25 column:

Fired NPR analyst Juan Williams is usually labeled a liberal. But I know a different Juan Williams.

I’ve been privileged to be a friend of Williams since the late 1970s, when we were both Washington Post reporters.

We would have lunch together and continued to socialize with our wives and kids after we both left the paper.

As a friend, it makes no difference to me whether Williams is a liberal, a conservative, or none of the above. But the fact is, Williams is no liberal.


To be sure, Williams usually takes the liberal side on Fox News’ round table discussions, often contributing points of view that add credibility to his argument. But on Bill O’Reilly’s Fox News show, he often sides with conservatives.

I once asked him why he comes across as a liberal in discussions on Fox News when I know him as leaning more to the conservative side. He said, in effect, that someone has to do it, meaning he is simply being a good commentator.

Oops! So much for the conventional right-wing narrative.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:04 PM EDT
WND Columnist Steals From Limbaugh
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Judson Phillips has been listening to a little too much Rush Limbaugh. Phillips writes in his Oct. 25 WorldNetDaily column:

A few days ago on CNN, White House political adviser David Axelrod said people should stay up all night for the election results, certainly hinting there would be some surprise outcome.

Elections always generate surprises. David Axelrod, with his gloating little prediction, scares the living daylights out of me.

I have been writing for several weeks, on Tea Party Nation and other sites, that this election is not in the bag for the conservatives, as many people want us to believe. We are dealing with liberals, and liberals never voluntarily surrender power. They have made vote fraud almost an art form. I have been telling people we need to be very worried about this election being stolen by the liberals.

Phillips appears to have stolen this thought from Limbaugh, who uttered it five days before Phillips' column appeared.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:18 PM EDT
Newsmax Touts Fearmongering About Election Fraud
Topic: Newsmax

It's election time, so Newsmax's David Patten is in full-fledged shill mode.

Patten begins his Oct. 25 article ominously:

Like the mythological hydra that grew two heads for every one cut off, the controversial ACORN group has been reborn under a swarm of new names and poses an "epidemic" voter-fraud threat that could alter the outcome of midterm elections, GOP leaders warn.

But Patten quotes only one "GOP leader": David Norcross, chairman of the Republican National Lawyers Association. Patten gives him plent of room to make unchallenged claims about voter fraud, at one point asserting: "It's an epidemic. ... It's laughable that the left calls voter fraud nonexistent. It's very much existent."

Needless to say, Patten has no interest in telling his readers the full story. As TPM points out, Norcross' group has been training lawyers in Illinois, where GOP Senate candidate Mark Kirk got into hot water over his announcement that the campaign planned to deploy voter integrity squads in predominately minority neighborhoods throughout the state.

TPM also quotes voter fraud expert Tova Andrea Wang stating that the type of language used by Norcross is a perfect example of groups exaggerating the threat of voter fraud for political gain: "It's exactly the kind of inflammatory language that is less than useful at this time in the election cycle. It's the kind of language that is meant to gin up all sorts of unfounded conspiracy theories to steal the election which simply don't go on."

UPDATE: This is an regular ritual; Newsmax fearmongered about election fraud in 2004 and 2008.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:47 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, October 26, 2010 8:45 PM EDT
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Concomitant with the electoral revolutionaries massing in the distance, there's little doubt that the president also perceives the recent demise of "multikulti" in Europe and Americans' discovery of the race card's emetic properties as a harbinger of our beginning to reject progressives' insistence that we collectively kiss the behinds of every malicious, parasitic, ethnocentric faction that slithers across (or flies over) our borders. On all fronts whereupon the left realized staggering gains over the last several decades, they have suddenly begun to lose ground – and fast.

Now, I wouldn't expect Obama to peel off his clothing and streak gibbering across the north lawn of the White House for all the press to see just yet – but it's clear that the pressure is getting to him, and to his spoiled, radical brat pack.

-- Erik Rush, Oct. 21 WorldNetDaily column

Heaven knows we've had other mediocre men in the Oval Office, but I'm pretty certain we've never had another who was so contemptuous of our nation. Whether it's because of his family background, his education or his unfortunate choice of mentors, it's as if he views America through the wrong end of a telescope. Instead of a great, good and generous country, he sees something small and distant, hardly worth his time and certainly undeserving of his respect and devotion. Ask him what he likes most about America and I suspect his honest answer would be our golf courses.

-- Burt Prelutsky, Oct. 22 WorldNetDaily column

How do we explain the current sorry spectacle of a highly intelligent president who repeatedly makes bad choices and decisions? Make no mistake about it – President Obama has done just that. Ever pause and wonder how ostensibly perspicacious individuals can show remarkable errors in judgment? History is filled with people like this, proving repeatedly intelligence is no guarantee of good judgment and decision-making. Why?


His high intelligence (fast CPU) notwithstanding, President Obama is handicapped by faulty data and bad programming – both indelibly imprinted upon him by his life-long studies and associations: his mentor, communist Frank Marshall Davis, the writings of communist Saul Alinsky, the rantings of black liberation theology proponent the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and associations with former Weatherman radical terrorist Bill Ayers, plus many more. Is it small wonder then that Obama does things no other president has ever done before? He grovels and apologizes to the world for America's "arrogance" and "mistakes," reaches out to the likes of Chavez and Ahmadinejad, snubs the U.K., brings sanctions against Honduras for ousting Chavez wannabe Zelaya, offering unwavering support for the NEA, SEIU and UAW (a root cause of GM's downfall) while openly supporting a socialist single-payer health-care system and redistribution of wealth.


So then why did we elect Obama? Continuing metaphorically, the answer lies in the 1960s, when the American body politic was infected by the self-replicating, insidious virus of liberalism. Spawned and nurtured in liberal academia, this virus and its other iterations – socialism and progressivism – has worked its way into every aspect of our society, while being enthusiastically embraced and promoted by a vacuous, nonetheless arrogant liberal media. Consequently, over the intervening decades we have been assaulted and benumbed by a seemingly endless concatenation of liberalism's ruinous policies and ideologies: affirmative action, forced busing, dumbed-down public schools, proliferating entitlements, environmental extremism, sanctuary cities, gay marriage, cultural relativism, multiculturalism, Afro-centrism, political correctness and a lot more. Capping the resultant zeitgeist was white guilt – making Barack Obama a shoo-in in 2008.

-- Andy Logar, Oct. 23 WorldNetDaily column

It is a well-established fact that $400 million, coupled with a shrewd marketing team, can place a man with zero executive experience and less than five years of legislative background into the seat behind the Oval Office desk. It's a seat from which a young, inexperienced man is making the decisions that are fundamentally changing America forever, a seat of power like no other. How did he get there? Money and manipulation.

Craig R. Smith, Oct. 25 WorldNetDaily column

Posted by Terry K. at 9:16 AM EDT
MRC Again Obssesses Over Supposedly Excessive Gayness
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center operates under the assumption that any media coverage that is not explicitly anti-gay is, thus, "pro-gay" (and also complains that anti-gay activists are described as anti-gay activists). That peculiar definition showed itself in the MRC empire over the past few days.

An Oct. 22 NewsBusters post by Matthew Balan asserted:

CNN continued its promotion of the left-wing agenda of homosexual activist groups by devoting five segments on Wednesday to promoting GLAAD's "Spirit Day" or "Wear Purple Day." The network promoted the organization's website for the special day, which, as anchor John Roberts described it, was organized "to show support for gay and lesbian youth and honor teens who have taken their lives in recent weeks."

Balan doesn't explain why that is so horrible, beyond the unspoken apparent belief that nothing good about gays should be said on TV.

The next day, Tim Graham weirdly gloated that "Despite CNN committing five segments to helping the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) celebrate the new 'Spirit Day' against anti-gay bullying, GLAAD somehow left CNN out of their list of participating TV 'news' outlets."

Over at, an Oct. 25 article by Michael Chapman on President Obama's message for It Gets Better Project aimed at countering the bullying of gay youth carries the headline, "Obama Records Pro-Gay Video Message for Youth."

Huh? Because Obama doesn't want gay teens to kill themselves, that's "pro-gay"? Apparently, surviving adolescence is not an optimal outcome for gay youth as far as CNS is concerned.

This was joined by an article by Eric Scheiner complaining that "Facebook announced on October 19th, that it’s working with the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GSLEN) to prevent and remove what it considers anti-gay comments from it’s social website. However, Facebook still includes pages with such names as 'I Hate the Pope,' "I Hate Conservatives,' and 'I Hate Democrats.'"

Posted by Terry K. at 12:06 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, October 26, 2010 9:21 AM EDT
Monday, October 25, 2010
Caruba Ignores the Obvious

Alan Caruba writes in his Oct. 25 column:

Big Government kept getting bigger as agencies such as the Security Exchange Commission increased its budget by twenty percent to $1.2 billion, more than triple its size in 2000. It is expected to increase by more than one thousand people to about 4,700 regulators, a 36% increase from 2007.

This is the same SEC that failed to spot Bernie Madoff’s $50-billion Ponzi scheme and which failed to do anything about the “toxic assets” that led to the government bailout of banks, investment firms, and AIG, an insurance company.

Did Caruba not consider the possibility that the reason the SEC is expanding is in order to address deficiencies that kept it from adequately recognizing the Madoff scandal, et al?

One can only marvel at folks like Obama who are so caught up in their hatred that they overlook the obvious.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:28 PM EDT
WND's Evidence-Free War on Kinsey
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Over the past week, WorldNetDaily launched its latest salvo against long-dead sex researcher Alfred Kinsey, this time promoting a claim by a woman who says Kinsey paid her father "to rape her and then report to him on the attacks." But the story lacks evidence to support it, and reporter Brian Fitzpatrick makes no effort to contact the Kinsey Institute for a response.

In one interview transcript, the woman, using the psuedonym "Esther White," makes the allegation based on childhood memories. The woman's statements are littered with qualifiers (emphasis added):

  • "I think that's when they made the deal to use the information they got before for Kinsey's second book, the one about women."
  • "I think the Kinsey people at IU talked my grandfather into getting involved."
  • "He realized he had been duped by Kinsey, I think."
  • "They had to do the charting first, then they got paid for it. The check was probably $6,000."

There's no mention by Fitzpatrick of any evidence that would substantiate the woman's claims; Fitzpatrick and WND are merely taking the woman at her word.

Fitzpatrick's lack of curiosity goes further: At no point in any of the several articles he wrote in his series of attacks does he even bother to contact the Kinsey Institute for a response. Instead, he repeats previous claims by the institute that Kinsey "did not carry out experiments on children; he did not hire, collaborate, or persuade people to carry out experiments on children." Fitzpatrick did, however, find time to contact numerous Kinsey critics to further the anti-Kinsey attacks.

Nevertheless, WND's Joseph Farah chimes in to portray the woman's unsubstantiated claims as "fully documented" -- even though not a shred of documentation has been presented.

All of this, of course, is in the service of trying to sell you something -- in this case, Judith Reisman's latest, WND-published anti-Kinsey screed. As we've previously detailed, Reisman has largely been discredited due to her own hateful obssession with Kinsey being put before sound research.

A real reporter would have noted Reisman's credibility problems, and also would have demanded actual evidence from the woman concerning the Kinsey link to her alleged molestation. But Fitzpatrick is not a real reporter.

But since WND is not a real news organization, he fits in perfectly.

UPDATE: Actually, WND's being even more dishonest than usual. Contrary to its portrayal of the "Esther White" story as something new, Reisman wrote in her 2003 book "Kinsey: Crimes and Consequences" that she interviewed White in 1997, and that she hadtold her story in a British documentary, "Kinsey's Paedophiles," that Fitzpatrick identified as airing in 1998.

The only thing new that WND adds to the story is Fitzpatrick's own presumably recent interview with "White." 

Like WND, Reisman indicates no substantive documentation to support the charges made by "White," only a "sworn statement" that she offered no further details about.

(Thanks to alert ConWebWatch reader L.C. for the tip.)

Posted by Terry K. at 2:17 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, October 25, 2010 9:08 PM EDT
Patten's Unsubstantiated Attack on Dems
Topic: Newsmax

An Oct. 24 Newsmax article by serial misleader David Patten carries the headline, "2010: Democrats Set Records for Dirtiest Election Ever." Too bad that Patten doesn't actually prove this and conducts no emperical analysis to demonstrate any "records" were set.

Patten references the "extraordinarily negative tone that political campaigns are striking this year," adding:

Faced with an angry electorate and a poisonous anti-incumbent zeitgeist, many Democratic incumbents feel they have no choice but to launch personal attacks against their opponents.

While Republicans have been taking aim at Democrats voting record, including their backing a $787 billion stimulus that failed to produce the promised jobs and a $500 billion cut to Medicare for Seniors, Democrats have gotten mean with ad hominen [sic] attacks.

But Patten never offers anything beyond cherry-picked anecdotal evidence to support his claim. None of the people he quotes specifically make the claim that Democratic candidates have been more negative than Republicans.

Patten concludes:

The worst-ad award may go to a group called Latinos for Reform. It targets Hispanics in Nevada, complaining of Democrats' broken promises. But the ad urges Hispanics in both English and Spanish to stay home on Election Day. "Don't vote this November. This is the only way to send them a clear message: You can no longer take us for granted. Don't vote." Hispanic organizations are blasting the ad as a blatant attempt at voter suppression.

But the man behind Latinos for Reform is a Republican activist. Doesn't that pretty much undermine Patten's entire premise?.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:06 PM EDT
Shocker: WND Debunks False Claim About Obama
Topic: WorldNetDaily

It's ultimately self-serving, but WorldNetDaily did something extrordinary last week: it debunked a false claim about President Obama. From an Oct. 21 WND article:

A video by the Republican National Trust has falsely accused President Obama of accepting campaign contributions from the Hamas terrorist organization.

In a blast e-mail, the GOP Trust, an ally of the website, has touted a newly released, 25-minute video as capable of "chang[ing] this election and catapult[ing] Conservatives into Congress if enough voters see it before Election Day."

"Our film is the ONLY strategy for Conservatives that NATIONALIZES this election," continued the GOP Trust e-mail.

The GOP Trust e-mail went on to spell "aggressive" wrong: "THIS IS THE MOST AGREESIVE ELECTION STRATEGY EVER LAUNCHED."

The entire film is based on news stories that have already been reported, with some of the stories first breaking at WND. Many of the stories have received wide attention on talk radio and the Fox News Channel.

The video accuses Obama of taking money from Hamas.

"During his presidential election," begins the narrator, "he wound up with a record shattering $750 million in his campaign. To this day, he refuses to report from whence it came. One reason might be that some of it comes from Hamas, which also endorsed Obama for president."

Hamas, however, has never been accused of funding Obama's presidential campaign.

The ad apparently confused a different report – that Palestinian brothers inside the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip illegally contributed to Obama's campaign.

So not only does WND get to tweak a competitor in linking GOP Trust to Newsmax, the article goes on to rehash its own out-of-date reporting. Then, because the GOP Trust ad referenced "the radicalism of some of Obama's 'czars,'" the article goes on to take credit for Anita Dunn leaving the the White House because she "stepped down immediately after WND released a video of her boasting how Obama's presidential campaign 'controlled' the media."

As we've previously detailed, Politico reported months before WND focused on Dunn that she was filling her White House job on an interim basis. And WND's framing of the quote is false as well -- Dunn is talking about efforts by political campaigns to manage media coverage of their candidate, which every political campaign of any size tries to do. There's nothing remotely surprising about that at all.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:43 AM EDT
Bozell Takes the Taliban Approach to Art
Topic: Media Research Center

Brent Bozell writes in his Oct. 22 column:

But what makes this story different is that Kathleen Folden, bless her heart, entered the gallery, broke into the artwork with a crowbar and ripped it to pieces. She didn’t really destroy the art, since it was one of several prints, but she did express a rebuttal of sorts to the constant artistic besmirching of Jesus. Someone offended back.

But as Oliver Willis points out, that's pretty much what the Taliban did to art it didn't like:

In Afghanistan recently, supreme Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar issued an edict against un-Islamic graven images, which means all idolatrous images of humans and animals. As a result, the Taliban are destroying all ancient sculptures. Explosives, tanks, and anti-aircraft weapons blew apart two colossal images of the Buddha in Bamiyan Province, 230 kilometers (150 miles) from the capital of Kabul.

Way to side with our enemies, Brent.

UPDATE: Sadly, No! gets into a Twitter fight with the MRC's Tim Graham over Bozell's column.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:39 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, October 25, 2010 7:37 PM EDT
Sunday, October 24, 2010
Portraits of (Right-Wing) Success
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's latest book is something of a vanity project, written by a WND columnist and profiling people like WND editor Joseph Farah.

WND enlisted the notoriously hateful and fact-averse Burt Prelutsky to write "Profiles of Success," in which Prelutsky interviews "writers, actors, athletes, politicians, entrepreneurs, developers, directors, musicians, evens an animal therapist" about how they "successfully pursued their dreams."

The list of interviewees, however, appears to fall into two main categories: Right-wingers, and friends and acquaintances of Burt Prelutsky. Farah is joined on the right-wing side by the likes of Newt Gingrich, Ralph Peters, Jesse Lee Peterson, Michele Bachmann and Andrew Breitbart. Many of the celebrities he picks are also right-leaning, such as Pat Boone, James Woods, Curt Schilling and Orson Bean (who also happens to be Breitbart's father-in-law).

There's not an obvious liberal to be found -- which was probably the point.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:08 PM EDT
AIM's Kincaid: Palin "Had Every Right To Question" Manhood of Writer
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Cliff Kincaid writes in the "Cliff's Notes" section of the Oct. 22 Accuracy in Media "AIM Report" that the writer who did a profile of Sarah Palin for Vanity Fair is "not a man in the traditional sense" because he's gay, and thus "
Palin had every right to question his manhood":

Ruth Marcus of The Washington Post accused Sarah Palin of offending homosexuals when she remarked that the author of a Vanity Fair hatchet job about her was “impotent and limp and gutless.” Marcus wrote, “The Vanity Fair writer, Michael Joseph Gross, is gay, which makes matters worse —conjuring the stereotype of ‘limp-wristed.’ But whatever the sexual orientation of the offending reporter, Palin should not have been questioning his manhood.”

Palin had every right to question his manhood, since he is not a man in the traditional sense and wrote a cowardly piece. But her remarks were probably directed at his “journalism,” which Marcus admits was sloppy and full of unverifiable and anonymous quotes. Nevertheless, Gross was on the CBS News “The Early Show” with his “revelations.” Host Erica Hill, who substitutes for Katie Couric on the CBS Evening News, called the article “fascinating.”

Marcus was more concerned with Palin’s response to the shoddy article than with the fact that it was written by a homosexual journalist with an axe to grind. Palin has long opposed gay marriage, which makes her an obvious target for homosexuals like Gross.

The Marcus criticism of Palin shows how “sensitive” the Post has become on matters involving homosexuality. The paper does not tolerate any criticism of the homosexual lifestyle. It has been a cheerleader for gay rights for years and was one of the first newspapers to run announcements of gay “unions” as if they were marriages. It is sad that this once mighty newspaper has degenerated into a mouthpiece for the homosexual movement.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:16 PM EDT
NewsBusters Shocked-By-The-Unshocking Watch
Topic: NewsBusters

Usually it's Noel Sheppard who's shocked by the unshocking. Now, his fellow NewsBusters mate Tim Graham tries to horn in on the action with an Oct. 20 post headlined "Shocking: Maria Shriver's Daughter Excited Over Jon Stewart-Stephen Colbert Rally."

Even if Graham meant this sarcastically -- Graham went on that this admission "must thrill liberal hearts, who want something (anything) that fires up liberal young people" -- so what? Why attack Maria Shriver's daughter? What did she ever do to Graham beyond committing the apparent sin of liking Jon Stewart and being the daughter of someone he despises?

And conservatives complain about liberals engaging in personal attacks.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:29 AM EDT
Saturday, October 23, 2010
WND, Newsmax Spin Conspiracy Over Williams Firing
Topic: Newsmax

NPR's firing of Juan Williams has kicked the ConWeb into baseless conspiracy-mongering over whether it was done on the orders of George Soros, who recently made a sizable donation to NPR.

In an Oct. 21 Newsmax article, headlined "A Soros Connection to Juan Williams Firing?" Jim Meyers claimed Williams' firing "has raised speculation that liberal NPR patron George Soros may have influenced the media organization’s decision to ax Williams on Wednesday." But Meyers cites nobody speculating that.

The conspiracy-happy Joseph Farah at WorldNetDaily, meanwhile, had no problem being more explicit: "This is a very big deal and suggests a totalitarian mindset is very much in control of NPR – not surprising given the additional support it receives from George Soros."

Farah goes on to falsely claim that "NPR concedes Williams was fired only for this comment." In fact, as the Washington Post reported, "NPR said it fired commentator Juan Williams because of a pattern of commentaries that violated the news organization's guidelines, and not solely because of Williams's statements about Muslims and terrorism on a Fox News program." The Post adds: "NPR officials say they have repeatedly told Williams that some of his statements on Fox violate NPR's ground rules for its news analysts. The rules ban NPR analysts from making speculative statements or rendering opinions on TV that would be deemed unacceptable if uttered on an NPR program."

He also calls NPR a "government media source" that is "state-sponsored, taxpayer-supported media propaganda" without offering any evidence of such "propaganda."

Posted by Terry K. at 11:54 AM EDT
Klayman's Race Card: Obama Rules 'His People,' Not White People
Topic: WorldNetDaily

There's garden-variety Obama derangement at WorldNetDaily, and then there's Slantie-level Obama derangement. Larry Klayman brings the latter by playing the race card in his Oct. 22 WND column:

But in the last two years, this pride has turned to deep-seated resentment and horror – as we have witnessed Obama seemingly favoring his own race and true religious allegiance over whites, Christians and Jews. On the eve of the congressional elections of 2010, when most experts predict that Obama's Democrats will lose control of at least the U.S. House of Representatives, it has become increasingly clear to not only tea partiers, but also most of the white Judeo-Christian electorate, that President Obama is not a ruler for all of the people, but rather "his people."


Suffice it to say that the majority of white Christians and Jews no longer see Obama as the president of "We the People" but instead "his" people. And, while the Republican Party may rejoice at this given its prospects in the upcoming congressional elections, there is no reason to be pleased for the country. For President Obama has not united the races and religions, but instead divided and pitted them against each other. The level of hostility one sees "in the streets," with a reverse backlash against blacks and Muslims, is frightening and potentially explosive.

When the leader of the United States ceases to be the ruler of all the people, but only a select few, the nation stands even more – particularly during a severe continuing economic depression – on the precipice of chaos, rebellion and ultimately revolution.

President Obama, even though you – given your dismal record of governance – may be our president for only another two and one half years, I implore you, as a white Christian and Jew, to be the leader of all of us.

Klayman is projecting. He's the one who's injecting race into things by insisting that Obama rules only "his people."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:38 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, October 23, 2010 12:46 AM EDT

Newer | Latest | Older

Bookmark and Share

Get the WorldNetDaily Lies sticker!

Find more neat stuff at the ConWebWatch store!

Buy through this Amazon link and support ConWebWatch!

Support This Site

« October 2010 »
1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30

Bloggers' Rights at EFF
Support Bloggers' Rights!

News Media Blog Network

Add to Google