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Wednesday, February 29, 2012
CNS Is Still Putting Words In Obama's Mouth

Here's hot Matt Cover begins a Feb. 28 article:

President Obama – in a speech to the United Auto Workers union – said that “trying to climb to the very top” was not what America is “about,” saying that it was “greed” and that in reality “we’re all in it together.”

Count all of the separate quotes in that paragraph tht Cover has cobbled together to paint a distorted, cherry-picked version of what Obama said. Here's what Obama actually said in the relevant section of his speech, with the words Cover cherry-picked for his lead paragraph in bold:

OBAMA: I was telling you I visited Chrysler’s Jefferson North Plant in Detroit about a year and a half ago.  Now, the day I visited, some of the employees had won the lottery.  Not kidding.  They had won the lottery.  Now, you might think that after that they’d all be kicking back and retiring.  (Laughter.)  And no one would fault them for that.  Building cars is tough work.  But that’s not what they did.  The guy who bought --

AUDIENCE MEMBER: What did they do?

OBAMA:  Funny you ask. The guy who bought the winning ticket, he was a proud UAW member who worked on the line.  So he used some of his winnings to buy his wife the car that he builds because he’s really proud of his work. Then he bought brand new American flags for his hometown because he’s proud of his country.  (Applause.)  And he and the other winners are still clocking in at that plant today, because they’re proud of the part they and their coworkers play in America’s comeback.

See, that’s what America is about. America is not just looking out for yourself.  It’s not just about greed. It’s not just about trying to climb to the very top and keep everybody else down. When our assembly lines grind to a halt, we work together and we get them going again.  When somebody else falters, we try to give them a hand up, because we know we’re all in it together.

In other words, Cover is misleading about what Obama said. CNS does this sort of thing with disturbing frequency.

In the same vein,  the headline of a Feb. 28 CNS article by Fred Lucas reads, "Holder: 1st Amendment Allows Gov't to Force Catholics to Buy Sterilization-Contraception-Abortion Insurance." Of course, Attorney General Eric Holder never said the government would "force Catholics" to by "abortion insurance."

Apparently, accurately quoting what people say isn't enough for CNS. It is committing journalistic malpractice by twisting and misquoting the words Obama and Holder say for the sole purpose of villainizing them for its right-wing audience.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:15 PM EST
Updated: Wednesday, February 29, 2012 5:16 PM EST
Mychal Massie Just Can't Stop Lying About Michelle Obama
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Mychal Massie is so wrapped up in his sputtering, raging hatred of all things Obama that he is desperately clinging to the sleazy lies he apparently feels he must tell about them in order to feel better about himself.

Massie writes in his Feb. 27 WorldNetDaily column:

Then again, maybe she was exhausted from her personal $50,000 underwear shopping spree with the queen of Qatar, at Agent Provocateur, the store that bills itself as selling “the most erotic lingerie in the world.” Realizing that you’re responsible for closing down Madison Avenue can be tiring, and watching staff carry all those bags back to her limousines … whew! – that would sure wear me out.

As we pointed out the last time Massie wrote about this, it's a discredited lie. Massie presumably knows this, yet he repeats it anyway.

Mychal Massie is a sad, pathetic man who cannot stop telling lies. Any other media organization would fire him for his mendacity, but he writes for WND, where lying about Obama is tolerated and, it seems, even encouraged.

Similarly, the National Center for Public Policy Research -- where Massie heads up its Project 21 group of black conservatives -- is also apparently unconcerned by Massie's mendacity. Does the NCPPR also approve of lying in public about Obama?

Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 PM EST
NewsBusters' Silly Freakout Over Hybrids in HOV Lanes
Topic: NewsBusters

Tom Blumer spends a Feb. 26 NewsBusters post in freakout mode over the idea that California is allowing certain Chevy Volt models to use high-occupancy vehicle, or HOV, lanes without having to meet the passenger requirement:

Silly me. I thought "HOV" when used in connection with expressway traffic meant "High Occupancy Vehicle." Apparently not, now that California is allowing a 2012 version of the Chevy Volt to use HOV lanes, even by drivers who have no passengers. Maybe the acronym really stands for "Haughty Obama Vehicles." Or "Hapless Odd Vehicles." Or "Have-to Offload (these slow-selling) Vehicles." I'm sure readers can do better.


One upside: At least the drivers sitting stalled in the slow lanes won't have to worry about having a nearby Volt catching fire and having it spread to them.

In fact, California -- along with several other states -- has allowed hybrid vehicles to use HOV lanes with solo drivers since 2005, when a federal transportation law containing the provision was signed by ... President Bush. Blumer somehow forgot to mention that.

In other words, Blumer's freakout is competely silly and driven by a bizarre hatred for a car.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:45 AM EST
NEW ARTICLE: CNS' Obama-Bashing Body Count Obsession
Topic: is eager to tell you how many American soldiers have died in Afghanistan under President Obama -- and decidedly less eager to remind you of how many more died in Iraq under President Bush. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:38 AM EST
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Birther Bribery: WND Tries to Build Up Anticipation for Arpaio Posse News
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's campaign of sucking up to Joe Arpaio with this breathless preview of the "investigation" of Arpaio's "cold case posse" -- so important, in fact, that the article is unbylined:

A challenge to Barack Obama’s occupancy of the Oval Office was thrown out because “the voters ruled” on his eligibility in the 2008 election. Another was tossed when Obama didn’t even bother to show up to refute the evidence. And cases have been rejected by the U.S. Supreme Court because the justices are “avoiding” the issue.

But this week, for the first time, the results of a formal law enforcement investigation into Obama’s eligibility will be released.

WND TV will live-stream the news conference scheduled by Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Ariz., Thursday at 1 p.m. Mountain Time in Phoenix, or 3 p.m. Eastern. Arpaio previously has indicated there might be a “shock” in the report.

As before, WND offers no evidence that anyone other than birther conspiracists like Jerome Corsi ever talked to the posse. And as before, WND solicits donations for the posse.

P.S. While we're on the subject, an edited version of our piece detailing WND's birther bribery is up at Huffington Post.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:47 PM EST
NewsBusters Strains to Defend Santorum's Anti-College Attack
Topic: NewsBusters

NewsBusters' Ken Shepherd is in a snit because, in his words, MSNBC's Alex Wagner portrayed Rick Santorum as "anti-college, believing the acquisition of higher education to be a mark of snobbery." Shepherd retorted in a Feb. 27 NewsBusters post:

Far from saying that being college-educated is form of snobbery, what the former Republican senator said at an Americans for Prosperity event on Saturday -- and Wagner's producers aired earlier in the segment -- was as follows (emphases mine):

SANTORUM, first clip: President Obama once said he wants everybody in America to go to college. What a snob!

SANTORUM, second clip: There are good, decent men and women who go out and work hard everyday and put their skills to test that aren't taught by some liberal college professor that [is] trying to indoctrinate them.

Shepherd curiously fails to mention that the premise of Santorum's attack is false -- Obama never said that "everybody in America"should go to a four-year college where they are in danger of encountering "some liberal college professor." Obama said in a February 2009 speech (via

And so tonight, I ask every American to commit to at least one year or more of higher education or career training. This can be community college or a four-year school; vocational training or an apprenticeship. But whatever the training may be, every American will need to get more than a high school diploma. And dropping out of high school is no longer an option.

FactCheck also points out that Santorum's 2006 website stated that he is "equally committed to ensuring the every Pennsylvanian has access to higher education" -- the same position he's bashing Obama for promoting.

Santorum is twisting Obama's words. Will Shepherd call him out for that?

Posted by Terry K. at 1:11 PM EST
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, Terry Jeffrey Edition

Here is a simple question with an obvious answer: Is President Barack Obama more deferential to the religious sensibilities of Afghan Muslims or the religious freedom of American Catholics?

The answer: Obama is more deferential to the religious sensibilities of Muslims in Afghanistan than to the religious freedom of Catholics in the United States.


It is plain as day: Obama is more deferential to the religious sensibilities of Muslims in Afghanistan than he is to the constitutionally protected religious liberty of Catholics in the United States of America.

-- Terry Jeffrey, Feb. 24 column

Posted by Terry K. at 9:26 AM EST
WND Ignores Ex-Congressman's Conflict of Interest
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A Feb. 25 WorldNetDaily article by Jack Minor quotes Todd Tiahrt, "a former congressman from Kansas who now runs an aerospace and aviation consulting company," attacking President Obama over the Air Force awarding a contract for a new light attack aircraft to a Brazil-based company, Embraer, over the American competitor competing for the contract, Hawker Beechcraft.

Minor failed to mention, however, that Hawker Beechcraft is a client of Tiahrt's "aerospace and aviation consulting company."

Minor is so bereft of basic journalistic priniciples that not only did he refuse to report this clear conflict of interest -- granted, WND has a longtime problem with failing to disclose its own conflicts of interest in the stories it publishes -- he only tells one side of the story, that of Tiahrt and Hawker Beechcraft, making numerous unsupported claims along the way about the Beechcraft plane's purported superiority over the Embraer model. At no point does Minor contact Embraer or its American partner, SNC, for a response to Tiahrt's charges.

Of course, if Minor had done so, he would have had to deal with the idea that there is more than one side to the story, and he and WND are clearly not interested in fair and balanced journalism.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:25 AM EST
Monday, February 27, 2012
NewsBusters Misses the Point on Ultrasound Law
Topic: NewsBusters

Ina Feb. 23 NewsBusters post, Ken Shepherd complained that a MSNBC segment on a proposed Virginia law that required women seeking an abortion to undergo an ultrasound before the procedure failed to mention that "Planned Parenthood abortionists already perform ultrasounds before abortions."

Shepherd did the same thing in a Feb. 24 post highlighting a Washington Post article on the proposed law, responding that the article did not note that "abortionists in the Old Dominion who are affiliated with Planned Parenthood already do ultrasounds prior to conducting abortions."

Clay Waters echoed this talking point in a Feb. 22 MRC TimesWatch item, complaining that a New York Times article failed to mention that "the Virginia League of Planned Parenthood conducts ultrasounds before they perform abortions."

That's beside the point. The point is that an abdominal ultrasound is unlikely to produce an image when performed early in the pregnancy -- one-third of abortions are performed at six weeks or less. To obtain a usable ultrasound image that early requires that an instrument be placed inside the woman's vagina.

Does Shepherd think that the government should have the power to mandate that something be shoved inside a woman's vagina? Apparently so.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:36 PM EST
Stenography: CNS Echoes Republican Attack on Obama Over Gas Prices

As we've detailed, is treating Republican talking points as "news," to the point of simply rewriting Republican National Committee press releases. This happens again in a Feb. 24 article by Patrick Burke which begins:

The average price for one gallon of unleaded gasoline has increased nearly every month since Barack Obama was inaugurated in January 2009. At that time, when George W. Bush was leaving office, the price was $1.78 per gallon. Today, three years and one month later, the average price is $3.64.

As it so happened, the RNC released an anti-Obama ad making this exact point the day before Burke's article appeared.

Needless to say, Burke fails to mention that the low gas prices in 2009 were driven by a massive worldwide recession, a condition Burke probably doesn't want to return to (unless he can blame it on Obama, anyway). Burke also offers no evidence that Obama or his policies are to blame for the current increase in gas prices

Posted by Terry K. at 2:46 PM EST
AIM Falsely Portrays Garrison Keillor As NPR Employee
Topic: Accuracy in Media

In a Feb. 21 Accuracy in Media blog post, Logan Churchwell disapproves of radio host Garrison Keillor hosting a fundraiser for the Obama campaign. After rehashing Keillor's donations to Democratic causes, Churchwell writes:

The list goes on and on. Lisa Simeone and Michele Norris were both removed from their respective posts for violating NPR’s code of ethics in 2011 after disclosing involvement with political groups. Though Keillor is not on NPR’s news staff, this is further confirmation of NPR’s political leaning. How National Public Radio will weather these challenges to their objectivity in the face of potential federal funding bans remains to be seen.

Not only is Keillor not a member of "NPR’s news staff" -- he is an entertainer, after all -- he's not even an NPR employee. Keillor's show, "A Prairie Home Companion," is produced by Prairie Home Productions, and distributed nationwide by American Public Media.

So much for the "accuracy" part of Accuracy in Media.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:48 AM EST
MRC's Graham Ignores That Gingrich Was Lying About Obama and 'Infanticide'
Topic: NewsBusters

In a Feb. 23 NewsBusters post, the Media Research Center's Tim Graham has a fit because a writer attempted to debunk Newt Gingrich's claim that "not once" during the 2008 election "did anybody in the elite media ask why Barack Obama voted in favor of legalizing infanticide." Graham responded with a personal attack on the writer, Politico's Alexander Burns, after deeming his answer insufficient:

Is this what they taught the Harvard Class of 2008? One might think Burns spent more time partying than watching the media in '08, because Obama's three votes in the Illinois state legislature against a "Born-Alive Infants Protection Act" barely came up.

The Politico headline was "Newt: Media never asked Obama about 'infanticide' -- except it did." If Burns wanted to prove Gingrich wrong, he'd find an actual question about that. Click on the Burns link, and it's quite clear Chris Wallace was asking a more generic question to Obama, about whether he was truly a bridge-builder:


Overnight, Burns reported "conservative readers" pointed out to him what should have been obvious to him. His link didn't prove his case.

Actually, the real answer is this: Obama did not vote in favor of legalizing infanticide. Gingrich lied.

As the National Journal explained (via Media Matters):

According to Politifact, an independent fact-checking organization that looked into similar claims made by former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum on the campaign trail, Obama voiced his opposition to the new legislation as a state senator because it would have given legal status to fetuses and would thus have been struck down by the courts, and because Illinois already had laws to ensure infants who survived abortions would be given medical attention.

If Burns "didn't prove his case," then Graham ignored the truth entirely by failing to point out Gingrich's falsehood. Bad form for a so-called media watchdog.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:11 AM EST
Sunday, February 26, 2012
CNS' Starr Attacks Witness in Contraception Hearing, The Hearing Itself

Penny Starr's anti-Democratic, anti-contraception bias is clear in the first paragraph of her Feb. 24 article:

Because their witness was denied an opportunity to testify at last week’s Republican-led hearing on religious freedom, House Democrats staged a hearing of their own Thursday, playing to the media and framing the argument as one of “women’s health.”

Starr goes on to describe the hearing once again as "staged." At no point does she describe last week's Republican hearing on contraception -- which invited only religious figures and others opposed to contraception -- as "staged" or "playing to the media" even though it was no less so than the Democratic hearing.

Starr clings to the Republican talking point that the debate over mandating contraception coverage in Obamacare is one of "religious freedom," even quoting from last week's Republican hearing to make the point. She repeats another talking point, that the mandate "will force religiously affiliated schools and hospitals to provide services that some religions, including Catholicism, find morally wrong and impermissible" without explaining that a compromise shifting that particular funding burden from institutions that reject the coverage on moral grounds to the insurance companies all but eliminates that issue.

To emphasize her point, Starr writes: "Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif), who presided over last week’s hearing on freedom of religion and freedom of conscience, noted that his committee is responsible, not for health issues, but for government accountability." Starr doesn't explain how "religious freedom" is covered under Issa's committee's purported mandate of "government accountability."

Starr was apparently offended that the witness, Georgetown University law student Sandra Fluke, "describ[ed] birth control as 'medication,' said some women need it to cure disease," but she offers no evidence to contradict Fluke's claim.

Starr issued a more direct attack on Fluke in another Feb. 24 article, mocking Fluke's testimony that "a fellow female student at the law school-who is married--had to stop using contraception because she and her husband could not afford it" because "There are three federally funded Planned Parenthood clinics in Washington, D.C.--none being more than 3.2 miles from the Georgetown Law School."

Starr continues the mocking by noting that the Planned Parenthood website states that condoms "cost about $1 each, but are sometimes available for free."

Starr and CNS have long offered biased, hostile coverage of Planned Parenthood

Posted by Terry K. at 3:55 PM EST
Birther Bribery Watch: WND's Corsi Still Trying to Smear Arpaio Critic
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's efforts to buy a favorable ruling from Joe Arpaio's "cold case posse" birther "investigation" by sucking up to the sheriff continues with a nother article attacking an Arpaio opponent.

Jerome Corsi's Feb. 23 article plays the Alinsky card -- the headline describes activist Randy Parraz as an "Alinsky-style leftist," and Corsi writes that Parraz "made repeated Alinsky-like attempts to isolate and marginalize his political opponents." Cors's article even has the subhead "In Parraz, Saul Alinsky comes to Phoenix."

Corsi continued to smear Parraz, sneering that he "has an elite education" and holds "radical views." Corsi also repeats his previous baseless allegation that "Parraz appears to be coordinating efforts with the Department of Justice to discredit Arpaio ahead of the sheriff’s March 1 press conference in which he plans to release the preliminary results of his office’s Cold Case Posse investigation of Barack Obama’s birth certificate and his eligibility to be president."

Of course, Corsi appears to be coordinating with Arpaio himself. This was made even more apparent with WND's announcement that it will stream Arpaio's news conference announcing the results of the posse investigation, in conjunction with the Joseph Farah-founded Western Journalism Center.

Farah touts the streaming in his Feb. 23 WND column:

I don’t know for certain what Arpaio’s “Cold Case Posse” has found, but I strongly believe it could be a game-changer. If I’m right, will the Big Media that have stifled free-and-open debate and unimpeded rational discourse on the subject bother to cover it? If a tree falls in the forest and there is no one to hear it, does it make any sound?

Farah is probably lying about not knowing about the investigation's results -- given WND's repeated sucking up to Arpaio, it's extremely likely that Arpaio has leaked the results to Corsi. Would Farah and WND be so eager to live-stream the results if they didn't know the results in advance?After all, Corsi spent two days testifying before the posse, and no information has been presented that the posse heard from anyone other than birther conspiracists.

In other words, expect Arpaio's investigation to be rigged in favor of birthers -- and realize that WND helped to rig that result.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:40 PM EST
Saturday, February 25, 2012
MRC Won't Correct Bozell's Falsehoods on Oil
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's video of Brent Bozell's Feb. 23 appearance on Fox News' Hannity" may begin with a promition for its dubious "Tell the Truth" campaign, but it's clear that Bozell has exempted himself from that mantra.

During the appearance, Bozell said:

This president will say that he's allowing drilling, but he just won't give permits. Get this. Consider that oil production in this country was 10 million barrels a day when he took office. It's down to 7 million barrels a day, and here the president is giving a speech today blaming Republicans for this. I mean, this should be an issue. He needs to be called out on this.

There are three huge falsehoods in that statement. In fact, as Media Matters details, not only has the Obama administration issued hundreds of offshore drilling permits, oil production has actually increased under Obama (and domestic oil production hasn't been at 10 million barrels a day since the early 1970s).

The NewsBusters post accompanying the Bozell clip makes no mention of Bozell's falsehoods, let alone bother to correct them.

"Tell the Truth"? Bozell obviously can't. And his minions are desperately trying to hide that inconvenient fact.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:24 AM EST

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