ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

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

Thursday, February 16, 2012
Noel Sheppard: "Sober People Don't Need Birth Control" (It's A Joke!)
Topic: NewsBusters

NewsBusters' Noel Sheppard writes in a Feb. 16 tweet: "If contraceptives R 2 B covered by health insurance shouldn't alcohol since sober people don't need birth control?"

This is immediately followed by tweets insisting that he was joking:

"It's called a joke, dude. Go rent a sense of humor."

"You're into comic books and you can't tell a joke when you see one? Now THAT's entertainment!"

Sheppard has yet to explain where exactly the humor is in his "joke," espeically on a day when prominent right-wing financier Foster Friess was apparently not joking when he insisted that a little aspirin between your knees was an effective contraceptive.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:54 PM EST
WND's Kinsolving Has Earned the Contempt He Receives
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's Les Kinsolving has another whining fit about White House press secretary Jay Carney being mean to him by not taking another of his stupid questions:

White House press secretary Jay Carney was described as “rude” when he dismissed without consideration a couple of questions from Les Kinsolving, WND’s correspondent at the White House, during the daily news briefing today.

Kinsolving had prepared to ask a question or two about the court ruling in New York that lets school officials discriminate against churches by renting facilities to any other group.

Kinsolving, however, didn’t even get the question out, as Carney, apparently referencing a previous question from Kinsolving about a formal Senate vote, warned him to “keep it clean.”


Kinsolving told WND that he’s never experienced such treatment from a press secretary in the White House. As the reporter who is the second-most senior on the White House beat, Kinsolving has worked with some 16 or 17 different press secretaries since the 1970s when he began attending the White House briefings.

“I’ve never before seen behavior by a White House press secretary like this,” he said. “I’ve never before been denied the opportunity to ask questions by any of the other press secretaries I’ve covered.”

The headline on this article is "See White House Contempt for WND Correspondent." But there's no mention of the contempt WND and Kinsolving has for the Obama White House.

WND is so amoral that it publishes lies and smears about Obama and his administration with impunity and violates journalistic ethics on a regular basis. Kinsolving, meanwhile, is a right-wing hack, and a raging homophobe to boot, who whines every time his biased shenanigans are pushed back against.

If there is "contempt" against Kinsolving and WND, it is because they have behaved in a contemptuous manner. They have not earned the right to be taken seriously as journalists.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:55 PM EST
MRC Frets Over Comic Book Character Having An Abortion
Topic: Media Research Center

In 2010, the Media Research Center railed against a characterization of Superman it didn't like. Now, the MRC has found another comic-book plot it disapproves of.

In a Feb. 13 MRC Culture & Media Institute post, Paul Wilson asserts that the "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" comic book is "promoting abortion" because the title character decides to have one. Wilson reads the fictional character's mind: "In other words, for Buffy, abortion is a convenient way of cleaning up a mess, created by a lack of self-control."

Wilson then states: "But by publishing a comic where a woman gets an abortion, the creator of the comic has effectively taken the side of abortion." That's a pure Depiction-Equals-Approval Fallacy.

Wilson goes on to rant about how "Buffy’s abortion decision is merely the latest in a recent spate of pro-abortion propaganda in the entertainment industry":

Grey’s Anatomy, which is produced by a Shonda Rhimes, board member of the Los Angeles Planned Parenthood, inserted a pro-abortion message into a September 2011 episode, by positively depicting one of the doctors killing her baby. Private Practice, also produced by Rhimes, was even more overt in supporting abortion in a May 2011 episode, featuring a “pro-life” doctor who admitted to an abortion doctor who had just performed a partial-birth abortion that “you helped that woman.” Friday Night Lights also featured a pro-abortion message in a July 2010 episode, with the moral counselor of the show counseling a young woman to "think about her life, think about what's important to her and what she wants."

Such knee-jerk attacks -- and dismissal of any portrayal of abortion in the media that isn't negative as "pro-abortion" -- are exactly what "Buffy" creator Joss Whedon was trying to counter with his storyline. From a USA Today article:

Whedon points out that Friday Night Lights is one show that recently tackled abortion with the proper respect. And he concedes there's a little bit of a political jab in the Buffy story line. It's not that women should be on one side or the other, he says, but that people have to make this decision and talk about it.

"It offends me that people who purport to be discussing a decision that is as crucial and painful as any a young woman has to make won't even say something that they think is going to make some people angry."


"I don't tend to write straight dramas where real life just impinges," he says. "But because I don't, when I do it is very interesting to slap people in the face with just an absolute of life."

Wilson is apparently not interested in dealing with real life -- He's rather just mindlessly spout right-wing talking points.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:16 PM EST
Obama Derangement: Newsmax's Ponte Likens Obama to Evita Peron
Topic: Newsmax

In Argentina during the late 1940s, fascist ruler Juan Peron's wife Evita had a cunning way to win political support.

She would go on the radio and shower listeners with gifts, but not at her or the government's expense. Evita would announce that Pedro's Hardware Store had agreed to give free washing machines to the first 50 workers who asked for them.

The storeowner had made no such agreement, nor was even consulted. But when a mob of "shirtless" Peronistas arrived demanding the free goodies Evita promised, most owners were too frightened to call the first lady a liar or risk having their store ransacked, torched, or targeted for political retaliation by refusing.

Last Friday President Barack Obama offered the Roman Catholic Church what he called an "accommodation . . . not a compromise" on Obamacare's requirement that all employer health insurance must provide female workers with free birth control and abortion-inducing drugs.


President Obama, in what his spokespeople call "balancing" the (constitutional) right to practice one’s religion with the (non-constitutional) "right" of women to receive free anti-reproductive medication, offered a very Evita-like accommodation.

-- Lowell Ponte, Feb. 14 Newsmax column

Posted by Terry K. at 10:43 AM EST
Tim Graham Anti-Gay Freakout Watch
Topic: Media Research Center

It's been, what, a few days since Media Research Center director of media analysis Tim Graham's last anti-gay freakout? So we were due for another one.

This time, Graham's anti-gay ire du jour is directed at Google for inculding a same-sex couple in its Valentine's Day doodle, and at the Washington Post for reporting it. Oddly, Graham seemed to be more offended by the same-sex couple illustration than he was of the doodles of interspecies love. Still, he sneered: "Gay advocates would likely claim that the cartoon before the end is awfully 'heteronormative.' Perhaps they'll complain that they don't like to be compared to love between an astronaut and a space alien."

The Post drew further ire from Graham because "below a photo of Shirley and Arthur Siden on their 70th wedding anniversary, is a photo of a carving in a tree in Rock Creek park saying 'TED N DARYL,'" as well as "a photo of two black men embracing."

Posted by Terry K. at 2:21 AM EST
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
WND's Corsi Claims Investment Firm Fired Him Over Story He Wrote
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Over the past few days, WorldNetDaily's Jerome Corsi has been taking a break from birther conspiracy theories and kissing up to Joe Arpaio to peddle a claim from a former employee of the bank HSBC that the company took part in "an international money-laundering scheme." Corsi thought so much of thisstory that he appeared on Alex Jones' video webcast to promote it.

Now, according to a Feb. 14 WND article, Corsi is claiming that Gilford Securities, "a Manhattan investment firm that serves institutional and retail clients" where Corsi worked as a "senior managing director," has fired him over the HSBC story. Corsi, of course, is quick to blame the victim, and he offers no actual evidence that his dismissal is retaliation for the HSBC story:

Corsi said Gilford notified him Monday that it would file a U-5 form with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, or FINRA, to deregister him from the firm due to “corporate reorganization.”

Gilford Securities declined comment to WND.

Corsi said the firm is responding to his series of reports on the charges of former HSBC manager John Cruz. The whistleblower has provided WND with 1,000 pages of customer account records he claims are evidence of an international money-laundering scheme by HSBC, which reportedly is under investigation by a U.S. Senate committee.

“I was completely blindsided by the reaction of the firm to the HSBC stories,” Corsi said. “I thought Gilford would be proud that a member of the firm had sufficient courage to do the right thing – make public and report suspected money laundering activity when first hearing about or learning about credible allegations, regardless what firm the allegations involved.”

Corsi noted that he never made any accusations about Gilford and was not investigating anything related to the firm.

“I pointed out to Gilford that firing me could create a chilling atmosphere where others in the firm might think twice before reporting suspicions of money laundering,” he said.

We have no idea about the veracity of the HSBC story. We do, however, know about the veracity of Corsi, and that alone is enough to raise red flags about it.

Corsi has spent the past couple of years peddling his birther conspriacies, suppressing inconvenient facts in the process. Most recently, he has been cranking out hagiographic stories about Joe Arpaio in the apparent hope that his "cold case posse" will return a pro-birther result. Both of these are egregious journalistic violations.

This raises another question: Why was Corsi so poorly compensated as a WND "senior staff writer" that he had to get a second job? Is Joseph Farah really that cheap?And it's not like that Gilford appeared all that happy to be employing him; much of his WND work while employed at Gilford required a disclaimer that "The views, opinions, positions or strategies expressed by the author are his alone and do not necessarily reflect Gilford Securities Incorporated's views, opinions, positions or strategies."

Given that Corsi seemed to be spending a lot of his time running around the country peddling birther nonsense, when did he have time to do his job at Gilford?

Corsi and WND seem to have ignored, deliberately or otherwise, the possibility that Gilford got tired of having to associate itself with a nutjob like Corsi.

Both Corsi and WND have a track record that tells us we should not take this story at face value. Or anything that comes from them, really.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:05 PM EST
Updated: Wednesday, February 15, 2012 3:16 PM EST
MRC Still Complaining That Reporting on CPAC Uses the Word 'Conservative'
Topic: Media Research Center

Remember last weekend, when the MRC's Clay Waters was upset that the New York Times labeled a conservative gathering as a conservative and the conservatives who attended it conservative as well? He's still whining about it.

From Waters' Feb. 13 TimesWatch post:

New York Times reporter Jeff Zeleny reported Saturday from Mitt Romney’s speech to the annual Conservative Political Action Conference in D.C., “Romney’s Record as Governor Resumes Central Role in Nomination Fight,” and noted that Mitt Romney used the “conservative” label “at least 25 times during a 25-minute speech.” Funny Zeleny should mention that, considering a Friday Times report from CPAC contains 23 instances of the word  “conservative” in a 28-paragraph story, making it as popular a word choice as the conjunction “and.”

Zeleny's Saturday dispatch was only slightly less label-happy, using the word 12 times, not counting quoted material or the name of the conference itself. (Is the name Conservative Political Action Conference not a sufficient giveaway?)

This is the insight the MRC is paying Waters for?

Posted by Terry K. at 1:59 PM EST
AIM's Irvine Pretends Cliff Kincaid Doesn't Work For Him
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Accuracy in Media chairman Don Irvine uses a Feb. 12 blog post to promote Cliff Kincaid's campaign to return Glenn Beck to Fox News. Irvine describes Kincaid only as a "veteran journalist," adding, "In an interview at CPAC this weekend Kincaid told me of his concerns that Beck, who left Fox News last year and is now airing his own programming on the Internet on his subscriber based GBTV, was a victim of left-wing, George Soros-funded efforts to pressure Fox to part company with Beck."

Weirdly, Irvine fails to mention that Kincaid also works for AIM -- in fact, he's listed only behind Irvine on the AIM website's list of employees, where it's noted that he joined AIM in 1978.

Why would Irvine deny the obvious? We have no idea.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:43 AM EST
WND's Lamb Repeats Pipeline Jobs Myth
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Henry Lamb writes in a Feb. 10 WorldNetDaily attack on President Obama:

His adoring press amplified Obama’s criticism of the Republican-controlled House for not approving his jobs bill, which included a healthy tax increase. “We can’t wait,” was his cry to the public. He failed to mention that the Republican House had passed more than 20 jobs bills that the Democrat-controlled Senate refused even to consider. He failed to mention that more than 20,000 jobs were left awaiting only his approval on the Keystone Pipeline project — studied for more than three years by the EPA.

The idea that the Keystone XL pipeline would create "more than 20,000 jobs" has been roundly discredited. Those inflated numbers came from the pipelines builder; in fact, pipeline construction would create, at most, 6,000 jobs, and it would create a mere 50 permanent jobs.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:30 AM EST
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
NEW ARTICLE: (Don't) Tell the Truth!
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's latest anti-"liberal media" campaign encourages truth-telling -- except when it comes to the scandals of conservative candidates like Newt Gingrich, in which case it wants the media to shut up. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:59 PM EST
CNS Runs 8-Month-Old AP Story As New

On Feb. 13, published an Associated Press article stating that "French lawmakers on Tuesday rejected a bill presented by the opposition Socialist Party seeking to legalize same-sex marriage, despite growing public support for gay rights."

Just one problem: That article came out eight months ago.

The ABC News website has the same article, dated June 14, 2011:

Note the change CNS made to the headline, putting "marriage" in scare quotes. It's unlikely that AP sent out the story that way, since the ABC version of the article has no such scare quotes. It's just another example of CNS adding right-wing bias to AP stories.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:48 AM EST
Jeffrey Abandons Journalism, Signs On to Anti-Obama Attack Effort

It's been clear for quite some time that Terry Jeffrey was turning into nothing more than an anti-Obama attack machine. Now, Jeffrey's personal hatred of Obama has made the transition complete.

A Feb. 13 CNS article details how "A sweeping alliance of fiscal, social and national security conservatives and leaders of the Tea Party movement came together on Monday to denounce the attack that President Barack Obama has launched on the free exercise of religion by ordering virtually all Americans to buy health insurance plans that pay for sterilizations, contraceptives and abortifacients even if doing so forces them to act against their consciences and the teachings of their faith." It states:

Conservative journalists joining their voices in the cause include National Review Publisher Jack Fowler, American Spectator Publisher Al Regnery, Washington Examiner Editorial Page Editor Mark Tapscott, Editor Joseph Farah, Western Journalism Center President Floyd Brown, nationally syndicated columnist David Limbaugh, and the author of this article, who is also a nationally syndicated columnist.

Who is "the author of this article"? Terry Jeffrey.

In other words: Terry Jeffrey no longer cares about real journalism -- only destroying Obama. He appears to be hiding behind his status as a "nationally syndicated columnist," but he's also the editor-in-chief of a "news" organization, and there's no reason whatsoever not to think that Jeffrey will use that position to twist CNS' "news" reports to attack Obama and turn CNS even more anti-Obama than it already is.

This blatant bias, of course, means he not a "journalist" -- he's a propagandist. He has thrown in his lot with fellow propagandists, including third-rate hacks like Joseph Farah and Floyd Brown, who are even less associated with "journalism" than Jeffrey is.

If it wasn't obvious already, it is now: By joining forces with Farah to attack Obama, Jeffrey is bringing CNS down to the level of WorldNetDaily. Does this mean Jeffrey will be going birther soon?

Posted by Terry K. at 10:32 AM EST
WND's Washington Peddles More Ginsburg Falsehoods
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Ellis Washington calling Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg a traitor over statement that Egypt should look to constitutions newer than that of the United States in drafting a new constitution -- based on an out-of-context statement while ignoring Ginsburg's praise of the Constitution in the remainder of her interview -- is far from the only instance of dishonesty in his Feb. 10 WorldNetDaily column.

Reacting to Ginsburg's praise of the South African constitution, Washington wrote:

Why would a member of America’s highest court, founded under the oldest, most venerated and imitated Constitution in the world, place another constitution above the U.S. Constitution on foreign soil? Why would she praise South Africa – a nation whose 46 years of racial apartheid (1948-94) amounted to Jim Crow, involuntary servitude and slavery of tens of millions of black Africans, Indians, coloreds and others, and whose constitution actually has much less human rights protections than the U.S. Constitution?

In fact, the current South African constitution was adopted in 1996, after apartheid had ended. Washington offers no evidence for his claim that it "has much less human rights protections than the U.S. Constitution."

Washington plucks another Ginsburg statement out of contexts, attacking Ginsburg's statement in a New York Times interview that "I had thought at the time Roe was decided, there was concern about population growth and particularly growth in populations that we don’t want to have too many of" as claiming that abortion was designed "reducing the number of social undesirables." In fact, Ginsburg was attributing that view to others, not herself.

Later in a rant about how "the diabolical lineage is self-evident: Sanger–Ginsburg–Obama," Washington cites "scientific studies exposing a direct link between women who had abortions and increased rates of breast cancer." In fact, actual scientists linked to the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute have found no correlation between abortion and breast cancer.

Washington has a history of lying about Ginsburg.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:21 AM EST
Monday, February 13, 2012
NewsBusters' Sheppard Likens Al Sharpton to Jefferson Davis
Topic: NewsBusters

Noel Sheppard goes a bizarre rant in a Feb. 11 NewsBusters post over Al Sharpton's contention that a person's basic rights shouldn't be put to a vote.

Sheppard asserted that Sharpton's statement is "something that every American on both sides of the aisle should totally fear," adding:

As should be obvious, the discussion was dealing with the 9th Circuit Court in California striking down that state's Proposition 8 which made same sex marriages illegal.

National Review's Salam observed that the people's voice in such a controversial issue is essential in actually resolving the matter long term. Here we are almost 40 years after nine justices on the Supreme Court decided the fate of abortion in this country and we're still arguing about it.

As such, maybe citizens' views in such a contentious matter should be required to truly settle it.

When Sharpton said to conservative writer Reihan Salam that "if you had civil rights voted on, I'd be sitting in the back of the bus and with a bad eye driver you'd be sitting next to me. So don't think about voting for rights," Sheppard freaked out even more:

First off, that was a despicably cheap shot at the dark-skinned Salam who's the son of Bangladeshi immigrants. Sadly, liberals have no problem making racially-insensitive comments aimed at conservatives.

Of course, Jim Crow-era discrimination laws did not cover only blacks but anyone of dark skin, so Sharpton's remark is accurate. Sheppard did not mention whether he thinks his boss Brent Bozell's claim that President looks like a "skinny ghetto crackhead" was a similar "despicably cheap shot" at a "dark-skinned" man.

Sheppard continued:

But the rest of Sharpton's point was equally preposterous. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was approved by both chambers of Congress with wide majorities. It passed 289 to 126 in the House and 73 to 27 in the Senate.

Although this didn't come to a popular vote across the nation, at least 535 members of Congress representing the wishes of the electorate decided on this groundbreaking piece of legislation.

That's a far cry from what happened Tuesday when three judges - not appointed by the people of California but instead hand-picked by governors - overruled the wishes of millions of citizens they're supposed to serve.

Sheppard did not say whether he opposed Brown v. Board of Education, the Supreme Court decision that desegregated public schools, because it was not put to a public vote. Nor does he explain why rights -- even basic rights such as those covered in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 -- should be granted only when "the majority" agrees they should be.

The capper of craziness, comes in an addition to the blog:

Update: Eagle-eyed Twitter follower @BrettBannor accurately notes that in his February 22, 1862, inaugural address, the Confederacy's Jefferson Davis also argued against "the tyranny of the majority." He was referring to the majority's wish to give slaves the right to be free.

I wonder if Sharpton would rail against "the tyranny of the majority" in this instance.

Yes, Sheppard is likening Sharpton to the president of the Confederacy. We can't even think of a response to that kind of stupidity.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:53 PM EST
Updated: Monday, February 13, 2012 2:55 PM EST
WND's Corsi Still Sucking Up to Arpaio
Topic: WorldNetDaily

As we've detailed, WorldNetDaily appears to be trying to buy a favorable outcome from Sheriff Joe Arpaio's "cold case posse" birther investigation through fawning coverage, raising money for the posse investigation, and even airbrushing him out of controversies to keep him from being besmirched by it.

Jerome Corsi has been Arpaio's chief fluffer at WND. What has he been up to lately?

A Jan. 27 article touted how an "Obama supporter" was arrested for making a threat against Arpaio. Corsi was spoon-fed that claim from Arpaio himself: "The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office in a press release Friday revealed that the suspect’s Internet postings indicate he is an avid supporter of Obama and that Arpaio’s ongoing investigation into the legitimacy of Obama’s birth certificate may be behind the threat to kill the sheriff." Corsi soes not offer any evidence to substantiate the claim.

Corsi proclaimed in a Feb. 6 article that Arpaio "told WND today his office has scheduled a news conference in Phoenix for March 1 to release findings of the Cold Case Posse that has been investigating Barack Obama’s birth certificate and eligibility to be president." Corsi did not disclose that he "spent 18 hours over a two-day period" testifying before the posse, nor has he indicated that the posse has ever taken testimony from people who were not birther conspiracists like himself. Corsi conculdes the article with a solicitation for donations to the posse.

Speaking of donations, WND has now sent out a total of seven emails to date to members of its mailing list begging for donations. The solicitation is in the form of a letter from WND editor Joseph Farah in which he claims that the posse investigaion "is likely our last chance to get to the truth about Obama and to restore constitutional integrity to our political system."

That wording tells us that Farah, Corsi and WND believe the investigation will be rigged in favor of birthers -- and that WND's sucking up to Arpaio is designed to help ensure that result.

Most people would call that bribery. What does WND call it?

Posted by Terry K. at 1:16 PM EST

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

« February 2012 »
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

Bloggers' Rights at EFF
Support Bloggers' Rights!

News Media Blog Network

Add to Google