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Friday, April 20, 2012
Meanwhile ...
Topic: Media Research Center

Media Matters has gotten a hold of the Media Research Center's latest fundraising letter, in which Brent Bozell and Co. go completely paranoid over George Soros. Bozell rather flamboyantly declares that the MRC is "a direct threat to his media empire -- THE ONLY THREAT REALLY."

As we've documented, the MRC has vastly overstated the influence Soros wields over media while ignoring the fact that a handful of conservative billionaires have sunk much more money into their media outlets in a single year than Soros has spent in a decade.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:14 PM EDT
NewsBusters: Obama Is Just As Offensive As Ted Nugent!
Topic: NewsBusters

Yes, Brad Wilmouth wrote this in an April 21 NewsBusters post:

Uniquely among the broadcast network evening newscasts, Wednesday's NBC Nightly News highlighted controversial comments about President Obama recently made by conservative rocker Ted Nugent, even bringing up another controversial clip from 2007.

But correspondent Andrea Mitchell failed to mention that Obama has his own history of using violent metaphors, as, during the 2008 campaign, then-Senator Obama gave a speech in which he spoke of bringing a gun to a knife fight.

Obama is just as offensive as Ted Nugent? Really?

Interestingly, Wilmouth quotes only one of the "controversial" things Nugent said, and he completely ignores the apparent death threat of Nugent's statement that he will either be dead or in jail if Obama is re-elected.

Wilmouth also euphemistically notes that NBC aired "a clip of Nugent attacking Obama and Hillary Clinton at a concert in 2007," but was careful not to mention what he actually said:  Obama is a "piece of shit" who should "suck on my machine gun," and Clinton is a "worthless bitch."

Of coruse, given that the MRC all but endorsed Rush Limbaugh's sliming of Sandra Fluke as a "slut," it's likely that Wilmouth agrees with Nugent's assessment, though he's clearly too gutless to say so in public.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:10 PM EDT
CNS' Jeffrey Puts Words In Obama's Mouth Again

CNS keeps up its dishonest habit of putting words in the mouths of President Obama and others its right-wing agenda opposes with an April 19 article by editor Terry Jeffrey that begins this way:

"You don’t want to buy it, fine. We’ll fine you into oblivion."

That, says a lawyer representing a number of Catholic institutions, is what the Obama administration will say to his clients if the federal courts do not strike down a regulation the administration has issued that requires all health insurance plans to cover sterilizations and artificial contraceptives, including those that induce abortions.

At no point does Jeffrey lift a finger to do any actual reporting and, you know, contact the Obama administration to see if they think this is an accurate characterization of the administration's position on the issue.

Which, by the way, it isn't. The administration has announced that for those religious-affiliated institutions that object to covering contraception for moral reasons, that will be paid for by their insurance companies, not the institutions.

But then, if you're putting false statements in someone's mouth, why wouldn't you keep on lying?

Posted by Terry K. at 9:52 AM EDT
Our Challenge to Brent Bozell
Topic: Media Research Center

The hypocritical NewsBusters freakout over a "Daily Show" segment that briefly touched upon the idea of "vagina mangers" seemed too stupid for the Media Research Center not to do something further with -- and we were right.

Cue the indignant MRC press release:

Today, Media Research Center President Brent Bozell publicly dared The Daily Show host Jon Stewart to desecrate either the Koran or the Torah on national television in the same manner he offended millions of American Christians by portraying the Nativity as an accessory for female genitals. Bozell makes the challenge well aware that Stewart’s brand of “comedy” applies only to liberal-approved anti-Christian bigotry.

“Come on, Jon. We dare you to prove you are an equal opportunity bigot. Your grotesque stunt displaying a Nativity scene in a vulgar manner to take a jab at Fox News is but the latest in a long line of unacceptable behavior and hypocrisy when it comes to the media’s treatment of traditional Christianity.  Doing something similar with the Koran or the Torah is equally offensive.  Since you’re so brave to offend Christians, are you equally brave to offend Muslims and Jews?  We dare you.

Bozell continued:

"Stewart thought he was being cute when he displayed a manger scene in front of a woman’s genitals to mock those allegedly ignoring the 'war on women.' If he’s such a daring political comedian, he should demonstrate his boldness by performing the same routine, but this time with a Koran and the Torah.

"Otherwise he is not only a bigot but also an outright coward.”

Here's a little dare for Bozell: Man up, stop bending over for Rush Limbaugh, and explicitly denounce him for his three-day tirade of denigration against Sandra Fluke, and demand that he return his MRC "William F. Buckley, Jr. Award for Media Excellence."

We already know Bozell is an outright coward, and he is a misogynist by proxy for his tepid, mealy-mouthed faux protestations of Limbaugh ("Let’s all agree Limbaugh crossed a line" is hardly the profile in courage that was called for here). Unless he can stand up to his fellow right-wing ideologues for what is right in the form of basic human decency, he will never be anything more than a spineless twit.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:37 AM EDT
Thursday, April 19, 2012
WND Goes Gaga for Nugent's Obama Derangement
Topic: WorldNetDaily

What gets the folks at WorldNetDaily off? Spewing hate at President Obama.

That seems to be the explanation behind WND's disturbingly enthusiastic embrace of Ted Nugent's most recent nasty attacks on Obama and other administration officials, in particular his assertion that "if Barack Obama becomes the president in November, I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year." It flooded the zone in defense of Nugent, promoting the dubious idea that this wasn't actually a threat against Obama's life:

Look who’s defending Nugent on Obama ‘threat’

Nugent rips ‘brain-dead, soulless, heartless idiot’

Nugent: Secret Service was with me at NRA

Ted Nugent fires back at Secret Service probe

Nugent: American duty to 'spotlight cockroaches'

Results of Nugent's tals with Secret Service

In none of these articles, however, did WND mention Nugent's earlier declaration that Obama is a "piece of shit" who should "suck on my machine gun" -- which is even harder to deny is a death threat -- or calling Hillary Clinton a "worthless bitch."

How gaga has WND gone for Nugent's raging hatred? It created a petition (read: email harvesting scheme) to support him. The petition insists that Nugent "was only using metaphors to accentuate his irrefutable message: America is in deep trouble, and its citizens must act." Again, no mention of the "suck my machine gun" attack.

And then, because it wouldn't be WND if it didn't try to cash in on this somehow, there's this slide-out graphic on WND's front page:

Yes, Obama-hate really gets the boys at WND hot.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:06 PM EDT
WND's Massie: If Obama Had A Son, He'd Look Like A Murderous Thug
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Mychal Massie headlined his April 16 WorldNetDaily column "If Obama had son, he'd look like Shawn Tyson." Massie helpfully informs us who Tyson is:

Obama and his Justice Department were silent when 25-year-old James Cooper and 24-year-old James Kouzaris were brutally murdered by 17-year-old Shawn Tyson, a black thug, as they begged for their lives. They were white tourists who had been out drinking and stumbled into Tyson’s Sarasota, Fla., neighborhood. Tyson’s plan was to rob them, but finding they had no money, he murdered them.

Referencing Martin, Obama said: “You know, if I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.” I think it bears noting that if Obama had a son, he would also look like the boys who set Allen Coon on fire and Shawn Tyson. Don’t their families and the American people – whom Obama took an oath to represent – deserve the same concern he shows for black hoodlums?

In other word: Massie is saying that Obama's son would look like a murderous thug.

Massie doesn't mention that, by his theory, his own son would look like a murderous thug too.

Of course, Massie is no stranger to such outbreaks of Obama derangement.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:10 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, April 19, 2012 2:11 PM EDT
Newsmax's Wead Still Clinging to Idea of Ron Paul Presidency
Topic: Newsmax

Doug Wead just can't quit Ron Paul.

Wead has regularly used his Newsmax column to promote Paul's presidential prospects. And even though Mitt Romney has all but locked up the Republican nomination, Wead is still touting Paul.

In his April 12 column, Paul touted how Paul "met quietly" with evangelical leaders after a recent rally, going on to suggest that evangelicals disenchanged with Rick Santorum's withdrawal from the race may move their support to Paul, "as their best voice of protest and the best way to force Romney to deal with them."

Somewhat admirable devotion to a lost cause, Doug.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:47 AM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: Brent Bozell's Vendetta Against NBC
Topic: Media Research Center
The MRC chief is trying to enlist his right-wing buddies in Congress to harass and destroy a business in order to further his partisan anti-media agenda. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:27 AM EDT
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
WND Hiding Arpaio Lieutenant's Disbarment
Topic: WorldNetDaily

As we've documented, WorldNetDaily -- as the public-relations arm of Joe Arpaio's -- is simply not going to report any unpleasant news about the Arizona sheriff.

That's why you will read nowhere at WND that Andrew Thomas, the former Maricopa County attorney who worked closely with Arpaio for several years, has been disbarred for abusing his powers as a prosecutor to target his political enemies -- which also happened to be Arpaio's political enemies.

Given WND's role as Apraio's stenographer, you will also not be surprised that WND has previously come to  Thomas' defense.

An unbylined Oct. 28 article claimed that Thomas and two associates were simply trying to "follow the book and apply the law to actions by the system’s power brokers and others." citing a local newspaper blogger who claimed that Thomas was "the victim of a witch hunt." The article goes on to declare the bar association's charging document against Thomas and his associates "apparently politically charged" and quotes in full a resolution by local Republicans denouncing it.

It's hard to spin away disbarment to Arpaio's satisfaction. Indeed, Talking Points Memo argues that this could be the scandal that ultimately brings Arpaio down. Arpaio is mentioned 48 times in the Arizona Supreme Court’s disciplinary panel ruling to disbar Thomas.

IT seems clear that if Arpaio goes down, WND's current stab at making its birther obsession -- putting the veneer of credibility on it by an Arpaio-led "investigation" that merely regurgitated WND's own conspiracy theories -- does as well.

That's why WND won't tell you about Thomas' fate.

UPDATE: Dr. Conspiracy observes regarding the disbarment ruling against Thomas: "What is most disturbing from the point of view of this blog is the fact that the County Attorney and the Sheriff’s office made a false statement of probable cause to further their own interests and not the cause of justice. Sound familiar?"

Posted by Terry K. at 9:42 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, April 19, 2012 12:29 AM EDT
MRC Ignores Evidence of Fox News' Bias
Topic: Media Research Center

If there's one thing the Media Research Center will not do, it's admit that Fox News is has a right-wing bias perhaps even more pronounced than that of the "liberal media" it loves to rail against. It will refuse to do so even when the evidence is right in front of their collective faces.

An April 12 MRC item by Scott Whitlock touts how John Stossel said he "left the liberal confines of ABC News 'because it sucked there.'" While Whitlock portrayed Stosse's disdain for ABC as evidence of its purported liberal bias, Stossel's statement that he "begged" for a job at Fox News was not portrayed as what it is -- evidence that Stossel wanted to work somewhere where his right-wing ideology would be tolerated.

Meanwhile, going completely unmentioned by the MRC is even more damning evidence of Fox's bias. As Media Matters detailed, washed-up Republican presidential candidates Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich have both accused Fox of being biased toward Mitt Romney, and that bias helped Romney become the presumptive Republican nominee.

We couldn't find Santorum's or Gingrich's  accusations mentioned anywhere on MRC's NewsBusters, the most likely place for them to appear.

Funny how an organization that screams about bias regarding every other news organization suddenly can't find any on Fox News? But that's the way it's always been -- the MRC has been cultivating this blind spot for years.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:00 PM EDT
Cashill Still Whitewashing His Favorite Murderer
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Jack Cashill's April 11 WorldNetDaily column weighs in on the Trayvon Martin case, drawing parallels to his favorited convicted killer, Steven Nary:

Nary and Zimmerman have a good deal in common. Most notably, each killed a man acting in what he believed to be self-defense.

Then, too, the incident that landed each in hot water happened during a year when a Democratic president was up for re-election, Nary in March 1996, Zimmerman in February 2012.

A third common denominator in this unhappy trifecta is that each killed a member of a highly protected political class: Trayvon Martin being a black youth and Juan Pifarre, Nary’s “victim,” a well-connected gay Hispanic.

If Zimmerman has an advantage it is that he will be tried in Florida, where he should have a fighting chance. Nary was tried in San Francisco, where he had no chance at all.

Cashill goes on to rehash his whitewashed version of Nary's case: Nary, then a Navy enlistee, "was lured from a co-ed dance club to the apartment of a gay predator," Juan Pifarre, Nary killed the "chunky, coked-up" man in self-defense of a homosexual advance, and when he got back to his ship, "Nary told the chaplain, unaware that San Francisco had morphed into the equivalent of Jim Crow Alabama."

As he has before, Cashill leaves out certain inconvenient details:

  • Nary allowed Pifarre to perform oral sex on him, for which Pifarre offered to pay Nary $40.
  • Nary told police he choked Pifarre for five minutes, and the apartment where Nary killed Pifarre was strewn with blood. That seems to undermine Cashill's insistence that Nary killed Pifarre in self-defense.
  • Nary originally denied any sexual contact with Pifarre and told the Navy medic who treated the broken hand Nary suffered in killing Pifarre that he had hurt it playing basketball.

Cashill now concedes that "Nary’s memory on what happened chez Pifarre has always been imperfect."

That revisionist history out of the way, Cashill smeared Martin as "a 6′ 3″ wannabe gangster," adding of jurors in the Zimmerman trial: "Hanging over their heads will be the threat of much worse riots – like those that ensued after jurors in L.A. returned the “wrong” verdict in the trial of the police officers who arrested Rodney King. Jurors will also have to worry that if they judge Zimmerman not guilty, the threats now directed at Zimmerman would be directed at them."

Posted by Terry K. at 9:30 AM EDT
CNS Disappears Limbaugh From Article On Sandra Fluke -- Then Lets Misogynist Readers Take His Place

Edwin Mora devoted an April 16 article to an appearance by Sandra Fluke at Georgetown University. Mora noted that Fluke "ecame a national figure in February when she testified at a House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee hearing put together by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California."

Well, not really -- Fluke became a national figure after Rush Limbaugh spent three days denigrating her as a "slut" and a "prostitute" for talking about birth control in public. But Mora makes no mention whatsoever of Limbaugh in his article.

Mora's readers, however, more than made up for Limbaugh's mysterious disappearance by hurling the same insults at Fluke -- and then some:

As we've pointed out, misogynist, racist and homophobic cowards who hide behind fake names to spew their bile appear to be the kind of audience Terry Jeffrey is seeking out for CNS these days.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:04 AM EDT
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
NewsBusters' Double Standard on Absurdity
Topic: NewsBusters

NewsBusters and its Media Research Center parent were all to eager to accept Rush Limbaugh's so-called apology for his three-day denigration of Sandra Fluke by buying his explanation that he was just "illustrat[ing] the absurd with absurdity." The MRC's Brent Baker dismissed Limbaugh's misogyny as nothing more than "a bit of humor."

As you might imagine given the MRC's sorry record of double standards, non-conservatives who illustrate the absurd with absurdity don't get the same break.

In an April 17 NewsBusters post, Josh St. Louis huffs that "The Daily Show's" Jon Stewart was being "snarky" in "mocking Fox News for dismissing the Democratic/MSNBC 'war on women' meme," but that he "desecrate[d]" Christianity by saying, after noting that Fox has embraced other wars like the "war on Christmas": "What can women do to generate the same sense of outrage from Fox as the removal of decorative slightly poisonous holiday plants? Perhaps they could play into the theme? Maybe women could protect their reproductive organs from unwanted medical intrusions with vagina mangers."

What? Stewart doesn't get the same credit for absurdity Limbaugh gets?

Nope -- St. Louis grouses, "Makes you wonder if Jon Stewart would make the same sort of disgusting 'jokes' about Judaism or Islam?"

Apparently, only right-wing radio hosts are allowed to be absurd.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:44 PM EDT
Another WND Birther Petition, More Lack of Transparency
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Starting in 2008, WorldNetDaily heavily promoted a petition "demanding that the constitutional eligibility requirement be taken seriously and that any and all controlling legal authorities in this matter examine the complete birth certificate of Barack Obama, including the actual city and hospital of birth, and make that document available to the American people for inspection." But as we documented, the petition itself lacked the transparency WND was demanding from Obama, with no independent way to verify the number of signatures WND claimed or any apparent mechanism to weed out fake names. Indeed, as one enterprising blogger discovered, it was all too easy to inflate the number of signatures by signing up under multiple names and a fake email address -- 216 at last count.

Now, WND is back at it again, with a new petition demanding that "the 112th Congress immediately undertake a full and impartial investigation into the constitutional eligibility of Barack Hussein Obama to serve as president of the United States." And once again, WND is promoting the heck out of it, with the most recent article touting how the petition "is nearing 40,000 names."

Alas, WND is once again refusing to be transparent about the process, providing no mechanism for independently checking the veracity and number of signatures -- an ironic bit of obfuscation in a petition demanding transparency. This means WND's new petition will be as open to fraud as the old one.

Why, it's almost as if WND is cynically creating these petitions to build up its mailing list or something -- after all, an email address is one of the required entry fields on the petition.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:57 PM EDT
NewsBusters Unhappy A Manufactured Controversy Is Identified As Such
Topic: NewsBusters

Mark Finkelstein complains in an April 13 NewsBusters post that "Chuck Todd used variations on the phrase 'manufactured controversy' no fewer than eight times in dismissing the controversy around [Hilary] Rosen's 'Ann Romney never worked a day in her life' remarks," adding that Todd was "doing work the White House will certainly savor."

Finkelstein didn't dispute the accuracy of Todd's statement, though.

Kyle Drennen echoes Finkelstein's complaint in an April 13 MRC item. Again, like Finkelstein, Drennen did not dispure the accuracy of Todd's statement.

Which seems to make this yet another example of the Media Research Center attacking people in the media for telling the truth.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:20 AM EDT

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