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Sunday, February 13, 2011
Joseph Farah Thin Skin Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

It wouldn't be Joseph Farah if he wasn't acting thin-skinned about his media competition, and he has devoted a couple recent columns to this thin-skinned attitude.

In his Feb. 4 WorldNetDaily column, Farah complains that "two big newspapers – one in the U.S. and one in the U.K. – chose to rewrite WND news stories, using content exclusively from WND, without ever once citing their source for the information." Farah names them both -- the New York Daily News and the UK's Daily Mail, dismissing them as "trashy tabloids" that "have their place" as "tomorrow's birdcage liners" which "have no professional standards" and "do very little real reporting"and are "mouthpieces for fat-cat corporate owners who have agendas."

But Farah went further in attacking one of those papers:

One of the reports, in the Daily News, even had a byline attached to its story, suggesting a reporter had demonstrated some enterprise in gathering the facts. Well, to me, it was like a thief who left behind a calling card.

So, I dashed off a note to Daily News staff writer Michael Sheridan with a little challenge: "I'm getting pretty sick of your uncredited rewrites of WND content. Do I need to complain to your editor and go public with this example of shameless unprofessionalism? Or do you want to just knock it off because it's the right thing to do?"

I never heard from Sheridan – so here we are.

Farah didn't mention that he made any similar attempt at reparations from the Daily Mail. Perhaps that's because WND uses the Daily Mail as a source. Over the past three months, WND has published four articles citing the Daily Mail as a source.

That runs counter to Farah's claim that the Daily Mail doesn't have "anything worth stealing." Which, of course, is exactly what WND is doing, credited or not.

Farah also claimed:

Have you ever noticed the way WND credits other media all the time?

If we get information from another news source, we typically cite that source – whether it's a major newspaper or wire service or a one-man blog.

Well, no, they don't.

In his Feb. 11 column, Farah was aghast that "AOL has agreed to purchase the Huffington Puffington Post for some $300 million and to place left-wing activist and non-journalist in charge of the entire AOL news operation," going on to call Ariana Huffington "a good shakedown artist."Farah goes on to lament that "it's amazingly sad what money can do to buy credibility where none actually exists.

It seems like Farah is having a fit of professional jealousy. Farah has been running WND a lot longer than Huffington's website has been around, and the value of his website is a lot closer to the $1 the Washington Times sold for than the $315 million AOL bought HuffPo for.

Farah complains that Huffington "made a name for herself with the Huffington Puffington Post by opening up her website to a parade of celebrity know-nothings to hurl the most irresponsible and groundless accusations against public figures with whom she disagrees." This conveniently ignores the fact that WND's main function upon its 1997 founding was to attack President Clinton, and functions today as a font of anti-Obama attacks.

Farah concludes with a personal attack on Huffington and her alleged devotion to an Indian guru. Given that the top two officials at WND have ties to accused cult leader Roy Masters, Farah has little room to complain about such things.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:17 PM EST
Waters' Slobbering Review of Anti-NY Times Book
Topic: Media Research Center

In a Feb. 11 MRC TimesWatch post, Clay Waters serves up a laughably fawning review of William McGowan's anti-New York Times book, "Gray Lady Down." Waters hyperbolically calls it "a carefully researched and devastatingly convincing critique of the Times losing its commitment to objective reporting."

Waters' employer, of course, operates a "news" division that doesn't know the meaning of objective reporting.

Throughout his slobbering review, Waters fails to identify McGowan as a conservative or a book as a conservative-oriented attack. Waters also injects his own right-wing bias into the review, at one point denouncing Obama's speech on racial issues as "unmemorable." According to who? Does anyone who isn't predisposed to denigrating every word that comes out of Obama's mouth think that?

Then again, perhaps he doesn't have to identify McGowan as a conservative, since he tacitly admits it in a sad bit of self-promotion:

In a brief foray into partisan politics, McGowan cites a fine media watchdog site called Times Watch, which analyzed a month of stories the Times did on Barack Obama and Republican John McCain during a slice of the 2008 campaign and found that positive portrayals for Obama outnumbering negative ones by a 3:1 ratio. When it came to McCain, that positive/negative ratio was reversed.

Still, Waters does attempt to keep up the pretense of McGowan being a nonpartisan writer, asserting that McGowan just wants "a much better version of the Times than is being produced by the current regime," a conclusion with which "all but the most politically in denial Americans would surely agree."

Posted by Terry K. at 11:36 AM EST
Saturday, February 12, 2011
Lincoln Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Tomorrow is Abraham Lincoln's birthday. Familiar Lincoln idolaters will gather to celebrate the birth, on Feb. 12, 1809, of the 16th president of the United States and finesse his role in "the butchering business" – to use professor J. R. Pole's turn-of-phrase. Court historian Doris Kearns Goodwin is sure to make a media appearance to extol the virtues of the president who shed the blood of brothers in great quantities and urged into existence the "American System" of taxpayer-sponsored grants of government privilege to politically connected corporations.


The "pseudo-intellectuals who [are] devoted to pulling the wool over the public's eyes" have a lot to answer for. Lincoln's violent, unconstitutional revolution took the lives of 620,000 individuals (including 50,000 Southern civilians, blacks included), maimed thousands and brought about "the near destruction of 40 percent of the nation's economy." "The costs of an action cannot be dismissed as irrelevant to morality," wrote the Mises Institute's David Gordon in "Secession, State & Liberty." Almost every other country at the time chose the path of peaceful emancipation. Yet today's Americans look upon the terrible forces Lincoln unleashed as glorious events, the native appetite having habituated to carnage over time.


The more plausible explanation is that, in 1861, Lincoln kidnapped and killed the Constitution. The Jacobins who lionize Lincoln's actions (by referring to his billowing prose) have been covering up his crimes and ignoring the consequences of his coup ever since.

-- Ilana Mercer, Feb. 11 WorldNetDailiy column

Posted by Terry K. at 12:02 PM EST
Clay Waters Doesn't Know What Amnesty Means
Topic: Media Research Center

Clay Waters asserts in a Feb. 9 MRC TimesWatch item that the New York Times is on an "Amnesty-for-Illegals Hobby Horse," claiming that the DREAM Act "would have granted amnesty to hundreds of thousands of student illegals."

Wrong. As we've detailed, "amnesty" is defined as "a general pardon for offenses, esp. political offenses, against a government, often granted before any trial or conviction." The implication is that there are no preconditions before the amnesty is given. Since the DREAM Act would require that "student illegals" enroll in college or serve in the military as a prerequisite for applying for legal permanent residency and, eventually, citizenship -- as well as meet certain residency requirements in order to qualify for benefits under the act -- it is by definition not amnesty.

Pretending that every proposal to put illegal immigrants on a path to citizenship is "amnesty," as the MRC is wont to do, is simply factually inaccurate.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:43 AM EST
Friday, February 11, 2011
Same As The Old Boss: Kessler Sucks Up to New CPAC Chief Too
Topic: Newsmax

As a longtime buddy of the American Conservative Union's David Keene and recipient of the ACU's "Robert Novak Journalist of the Year Award," it was inevitable that Newsmax's Ronald Kessler would help Keene deflect controversies surrounding CPAC, which the ACU operates, regarding its allowing the gay conservative group GOProud to participate (and completely ignoring claims that Keene's ex-wife embezzled money from the group).

Thus, it's even more inevitable that Kessler would similarly suck up to Keene's replacement as ACU leader, Al Cardenas -- and that's exactly what he does in a Feb. 10 Newsmax column, touting how Cardenas is "a mentor of Sen. Marco Rubio" and once told off Fidel Castro.

Kessler also gives Keene a valedictory toast, declaring that he is "one of the country’s most astute political observers" who is "proud that he leaves the 1 million-member ACU on a sound footing." He also baselessly declares the ACU's ratings for members of Congress "the gold standard for assessing the ideology of members of Congress."

Kessler also serves up another dismissal of CPAC controversies:

Some critics claimed that Cardenas was not socially conservative enough. Others attacked Keene for allowing GOProud, a gay conservative organization, to have a booth at CPAC. Still others criticized CPAC for not putting enough emphasis on national security issues in its selection of speakers.

Given that the conservative movement encompasses those who believe in strong national security, fiscal restraint, and socially conservative values, tensions will inevitably arise among those who wish to advance only one of those causes and don’t recognize the value of combining forces to win elections.

“Unfortunately, we have conservatives who think that the movement ought to be defined in terms of themselves,” Keene says. “But that’s not the way you build a very popular movement. It’s not the way you attract very many people. And it’s certainly not the way you win an election.”

No mention, of course, of Keene's ex-wife's alleged embezzling.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:51 PM EST
WND Falsely Claims "Obama, Soros Create 'Palestine'"
Topic: WorldNetDaily

The headline of Aaron Klein's Feb. 10 article states "Obama, Soros create 'Palestine'."

Wrong -- not even Klein's article does that. Rather, it obsesses over semantics:

In partnership with a government fund initiated by Barack Obama, philanthropist and billionaire activist George Soros is investing in a private equity company that just launched in the Palestinian territories.

The company, Siraj Fund Management Company, says it was created "for the sole purpose of managing investment funds in Palestine."

The new company's website repeatedly refers to what it calls the "country" of "Palestine." There is, however, no such country as Palestine. Siraj is apparently referring to territories controlled by the Palestinian Authority.

There is no "creation" of Palestine by Obama and Soros -- a fund management company that has received investment money from Soros and from an initiative "to support technological development in Muslim-majority countries" announced by Obama in 2009 (under the auspices of a government-operated development finance institution, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, that was founded in 1971) has chosen to use the word "Palestine" to describe the area where it will be managing funds, perhaps because Klein's suggested construct of "territories controlled by the Palestinian Authority" doesn't exactly roll of the tongue.

If we can't blame the headline's lie on Klein, we can still blame him for some fundamental dishonesty. He repeats his misleading claim that a reported issued by a Soros-funded group "urges the Egyptian regime to allow the [Muslim Brotherhood] to participate in political life" without also noting that the report also called for the Brotherhood to moderate its views.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:34 PM EST
Farah's Strained Attempt Equating Homosexuality, Adultery
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah writes in his Feb. 8 worldNetDaily column:

The U.S. military is being ordered to start accepting and recruiting active and open homosexuals into all services at the very same time it is prosecuting and imprisoning heterosexual adulterers.

This strikes me as somewhat schizophrenic.

If you doubt me, let me submit the case of William C. Gurney, the former top enlisted man for the Air Force Materiel Command at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio.

On Jan. 28, the master sergeant was sentenced at a court-martial to 20 months in military prison and given a dishonorable discharge for sex-related charges with 10 female airmen.

Reports from the courtroom said he appeared stunned.

I'm not surprised. I'm stunned, too.

The question on the minds of many Americans upon hearing this news will be: "Is homosexual sex in the military OK, while heterosexual carousing is not?"

The charges he was convicted of include indecent conduct, dereliction of duty, adultery, failure to maintain professional relationships and misuse of government communications equipment including a computer, cell phone and e-mail account he used to send and receive sexually charged text messages and photos.

A law professor said the punishment was designed to send a message about how the Air Force is going to treat "sexual harassment." However, Gurney wasn't convicted of sexual harassment. He was convicted instead of adultery, among other charges.

Now, understand I don't have a problem with Gurney's conviction or his sentence.

I just question how the military can justify punishing and expelling adulterers while embracing open homosexuality.

To believe what Farah believes, one must gloss over, as he does, exactly what Gurney was accused of doing.

From a separate Dayton Daily News article from the one Farah linked to:

On Thursday, the jury deliberated more than six hours at Scott Air Force Base before finding Gurney guilty of mistreating two female airman by making repeated sexually offensive comments to them and pursuing sexual relationships with them.

The jury acquitted Gurney on three remaining charges, unwanted touching of an airman’s breasts and buttocks; and trying to influence Air Force personnel to assign two women he liked to where he would have access to them.


Gurney used his authority to find and zero in on the airmen he liked, Maj. Patricia Gruen, the government’s chief prosecutor, told the jury. He made one of the photos that highlighted his genitals and was electronically transmit to an airman in his AFMC office at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Gruen said in her closing argument.

“He used this organization like his own personal,” Gruen told the jurors, known as court members in military parlance. “This is how Chief Gurney chose to use his prestigious position as a command chief.”

Arguably, adultery was the least of the offenses Gurney was guilty of. But Farah also appears to be ignorant of the military definition of adultery. From Slate:

Proving adultery under military guidelines is no mean prosecutorial feat. According to Article 134 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, the prosecution must prove that the accused not only committed the indiscretion, but also that his or her conduct "was to the prejudice of good order and discipline in the armed forces or was of a nature to bring discredit upon the armed forces." In other words, the affair must somehow have hampered the military's ability to do its job—say, by lowering morale on a base, or by damaging the public's faith in the armed forces.

In April 2002, President Bush further discouraged adultery prosecutions by issuing an executive order that clarified the circumstances that might necessitate legal action. Although the order maintained that "adultery is clearly unacceptable conduct," it also listed a variety of factors that commanders should take into consideration before proceeding with a court martial. These include the accused's rank, the impact of the affair on the involved parties' job performance, and whether any of the hanky-panky took place while the accused was on the clock.

In other words, Gurney had to engage in much more than mere sexual intercourse with a woman who wasn't his wife to be convicted of adultery.

It's absurd for Farah to conflate adultery as defined by the military with mere gay sex. But he does anyway:

Adulterers have no political lobby. There are no pro-adultery organizations with any political clout. Adulterers don't get together and raise money for politicians to promote their lifestyle. Homosexuals, on the other hand, are extremely politically active.

Then again, Farah thinks adulterers should die. Imagine what he thinks should happen to gays.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:14 AM EST
Updated: Friday, February 11, 2011 2:16 AM EST
CNS' Silly Japanese Car Freak-Out

The headline on Penny Starr's Feb. 9 article shouts: "U.S. Transportation Secretary: I Told My Daughter to Buy Japanese Car."

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said today that he told his daughter to buy a Japanese car--a Toyota Sienna--and that she did so.

LaHood's comment came as he announced the results of a 10-month long Department of Transportation study that was undertaken to determine whether electronic systems could have been responsible for reports of sudden acceleration in Toyota vehicles. The study determined that this was not the case.

LaHood's statement that he told his daughter to buy a Japanese car also came less than two months after he announced a "Buy America" campaign at the Department of Transportation (DOT).

What Starr doesn't mention: the Sienna is built in Indiana.

Also, the DOT's "Buy America" campaign is targeted at infrastructure improvements, not vehicle purchases. If it did apply to vehicles, the Indiana-built Sienna would likely qualify.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:46 AM EST
Thursday, February 10, 2011
NEW ARTICLE: Aaron Klein, Mubarak Mouthpiece
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's Jerusalem reporter does the bidding of the Egyptian dictator while relying on distortions and anonymous sources to dismiss the will of the Egyptian people -- even apparently making sure the regime got copies of his Obama smear book. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:46 PM EST
NewsBusters Praises CPAC White Its Parent Boycotts It
Topic: NewsBusters

A Feb. 10 NewsBusters post by Ken Shepherd begins: "Today marks the opening of the 38th annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). Regardless of where you may stand on internal debates about some of this year's co-sponsors, there's no denying that for nearly four decades its been an enduring legacy of conservative political activism."

Shepherd curiously didn't mention that his employer and the operator of NewsBusters, the Media Research Center, has taken a clear stand on those "internal debates" -- and it's the opposite of the stand Shepherd is taking.

As we've noted, the MRC is boycotting CPAC this year over its inclusion of the gay conservative group GOProud -- a fact it has yet to report in any straightforward fashion to its readers. It hasn't even bothered to issue a press release to announce its decision.

The closest we've seen is a Feb. 9 NewsBusters post by Matthew Balan stating that CNN contributor Jon Avlon "erroneously included Capital Research Center" on a list of groups boycotting CPAC, parenthetically adding, "perhaps he meant the Media Research Center, the parent company of NewsBusters."

It seems that the MRC's dealings with CPAC -- taking a bold stand by boycotting, but not terribly eager to publicize that stand -- are nearly as cowardly and contradictory as that of WorldNetDaily.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:15 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, February 10, 2011 3:01 PM EST
Meanwhile ...
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily tried to put its own bizarre spin on the unrest in Egypt with a Feb. 5 article suggesting that the "pale rider" depicted in the Book of Revelation was captured in a video image of the protests. Of course, Revelation's "pale rider" was a harbinger of plague, which we have not seen in Egypt.

Richard Bartholomew has more.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:00 PM EST
After F-Word Allusion Freak-Out, NewsBusters Give Palin A Pass On 'WTF'
Topic: NewsBusters

When NewsBusters' Mark Finkelstein had a bizarre freak-out over MSNBC's Cenk Uygur using the word "friggin'," -- calling it "profanity with malice aforethought" and a "vulgar new low" -- we noted that he remained silent over Sarah Palin's use of "WTF."

Meanwhile, another NewsBuster has weighed in on Palin's vulgarity, and not surprisingly, she gets a total pass.

In a Feb. 8 post, NewsBusters' Noel Sheppard writes:


It was also interesting to see Schultz use the phrase "Big f-in deal."

When former Alaska governor Sarah Palin recently referred to Barack Obama having several "WTF moments" in his State of the Union address, numerous MSNBC commentators thought it was childish of her despite the fact that she was making a hip pun with the President's oft-repeated "Winning the Future" line.

So "friggin'" is a "vulgar new low," while "WTF is a "hip pun." Got that?

Sheppard concludes: "As I've said for years, it takes a staggering amount of rationalizations to be a liberal these days." It appears it takes even more rationalization to be a Media Research Center employee.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:10 PM EST
Why Are WND Authors And Columnists Attending CPAC?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

For all of the anti-gay and anti-Muslim hate WorldNetDaily has spewed against CPAC for allowing GOProud to take part in the conservative convention (and not allowing Farah to do a birther panel), you'd think that anyone associated with WND would be barred from participating.

Well, you'd be wrong.

A Feb. 8 WND article touts how Phyllis Schlafly -- "a columnist for WND" and co-author of a book "scheduled for release by WND Books March 15" -- "is scheduled to tell an audience at the Conservative Political Action Conference Feb. 11 about the dangers of the feminist movement."

She's not the only one. The CPAC master schedule lists Jack Cashill -- also a WND columnist and author of an upcoming WND-published book -- as signing books on Feb. 12 at noon.

If WND editor Joseph Farah was a genuinely principled person, he would have kept everyone associated with WND from setting foot in the place. But when it comes right down to it, he cares more about selling books and fattening his wallet than he does staying completely true to the principles he claims to have.

UPDATE: That's not all. WND "senior staff writer" Jerome Corsi is reporting from CPAC.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:27 AM EST
Updated: Thursday, February 10, 2011 12:16 PM EST
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Bozell Whines Media Isn't Covering Planned Parenthood Sting Hoax
Topic: Media Research Center

Brent Bozell, as he is wont to do, spends his Feb. 9 column whining that some story isn't being covered by the "liberal media" -- in this case, the "shocking" and "damning" entrapment videos by anti-abortion activist Lila Rose at Planned Parenthood.

Bozell has to hide the facts to keep you thinking that this story is "shocking" and "damning." Nowhere does Bozell mention that Planned Parenthood contacted the Justice Department after visits from Rose's activist group Live Action warning of possible sex trafficking -- the very offense Rose's hired actors were trying to convince Planned Parenthood they were engaging in.

Bozell seems to be failing to consider the fact that the reason the "liberal media" is not reporting this story is because there's no story here.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:23 PM EST
Barbara Simpson's Obama Derangement
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Barbara Simpson has a fit of Obama derangment in her Feb. 7 WorldNetDaily column:

As if not bad enough, other released cables show that Barack Obama used Britain's nuclear secrets as bargaining chips in getting the Russians to sign the START treaty.

To make it clear: The United States betrayed long-time alliances with Britain by giving Russia secret information about every Trident missile the Brits have, as well as their nuclear capability.

Britain had steadfastly refused to agree to share the Trident information with Russia. Despite that, the U.S., in its determination to get the START treaty signed, gave the information to Russia anyway. Now, not only will the number of British warheads be known but also the number of missiles.

Can they ever trust us again?

That Barack Obama would betray Britain is disgusting to anyone with any sense of history who knows the unique political and social relationship between the two countries. But Obama has his own agenda and loyalty to democratic and freedom-loving friends isn't part of it.

In fact, the language that required the disclosure appeared in the original 1991 START treaty, and both U.S. and British officials  called the Telegraph report "bunk."

Simpson also referenced the alleged "arbitrary return of former Prime Minister Tony Blair's gift of the Churchill statue" by the Obama administration. In fact, the decision to return the Churchill bust -- which was on loan to President Bush and not a gift -- was made by the Bush administration, not Obama.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:22 AM EST

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