CNS Keeps Up Its Obsession Over Afghan Troop Deaths Under Obama Topic: CNSNews.com
It's a new month, and you know what that means: a new Afghanistan body-count article from CNSNews.com's Edwin Mora.
There were 36 U.S. military casualties in Afghanistan reported for the month of May, marking the deadliest month for American forces so far in 2012.
The American soldiers’ death toll in May brought the total U.S. fatalities since the war started in October 2001 to 1,881, including 124 this year alone. Last month was also the deadliest May of the conflict, meaning the highest number casualties during May since the war began (see below).
When compared to the same period in 2011, the military deaths during the first five months of this year have decreased by about 20 percent, from 152 to 124.
For the 1,881 deaths that have occurred so far during the course of the decade-old war, 1,312, or an estimated 70 percent, have taken place since Barack Obama was inaugurated in January 2009.
As Mora has consistently done in using his body-count articles to politicize the Afghan war to bash President Obama, he disappears the fact that casualty rates were much higher at the peak of the Iraq War under President Bush. In fact, the words "BusH" and "Iraq" appear nowhere in Mora's article.
We've detailed how CNS' body-count reporting on Iraq prior to Obama's election was focused on the reduction in casualties.
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, Wayne Allyn Root Edition Topic: Newsmax
Obama is losing support like a sinking ship. The leaks are everywhere, among virtually every group.
Obama is living proof that familiarity breeds contempt. To really get to know Obama is to realize that his only real skill is giving speeches — with a teleprompter.
In this regard, Obama has a lot in common with Facebook. They are both all about hope and hype. But once you get to actually see the business model, there is nothing left to do but sell short.
Forget the polls. My gut instincts as a Vegas oddsmaker and common sense small businessman tell me this will be an historic landslide, and a world-class repudiation of Obama’s radical and risky socialist agenda.
NewsBusters: Anyone Who Criticizes Catholic Film Is 'Elitist' Topic: NewsBusters
As part of the Media Research Center's public relations campaign to promote the new film "For Greater Glory," about a Catholic martyr in Mexico, Scott Whitlock sneered in a June 1 NewsBusters post that any film critic who didn't like the film was nothing but an "elitist":
Elitist film critics at several big city papers, Friday, mocked the Christian-themed movie For Greater Glory as "catnip for crusaders," a movie that exploits the struggle for religious freedom with "maximum teary-eyed outrage."
Whitlock takes particular aim at Detroit News reviewer Tom Long, who in Whitlock's words "could barely hide his disinterest in the movie's subject matter." In fact, it's clear from Long's review that his complaint was that the movie gave him no reason to care:
[Director Dean Wright] succeeds in making enough noise, but what the noise is about is left pretty unclear. Why was the Mexican government, personified by Ruben Blades as President Plutarco Elias Calles, intent on secularizing Mexico? And why do we care?
We don't much. None of the characters here really catch fire, despite a cast that includes upcomer Oscar Issac, the venerable Peter O'Toole and (briefly) Eva Longoria.
Whitlock apparently doesn't understand what film critics do, one of which is judging how effectively a film conveys its message to those outside its intended audience. If a film is simply pushing emotional buttons and building set pieces and not making an effort to make viewers not already invested in the film's agenda care about what's going on, it is a failure at a certain level.
But Whitlock any everyone else at the MRC involved in its propagandistic promotion of the film don't care such things. They care only that a message that conforms to its right-wing was delivered.
WND Teams Up With Alex Jones to Go On Bilderberg Patrol Topic: WorldNetDaily
A June 2 WorldNetDaily article by Michael Thompson touts a gathering of "more than 1,000 protestors" outside the Washington-area convention center where the Bilderberg Group was meeting, "the secret conclave that gathers global leaders of finance and government."
Getting big play in Thompson's article his interview at the protest -- embedded in his article -- with Alex Jones, described only as a "radio personality" who "hosts the radio program 'The Alex Jones Show' and runs the popular news site Infowars.com."
Jones got more WND play in a June 1 article by Timothy P. Dionisopoulos, who, like Thompson, benignly described Jones only as "the founder of the news website Infowars.com." Dionisopoulos ignored Jones' history of conspiracy theories, despite the headline of his article being "Who are these people protesting Bilderberg?"
WND's public embrace of Jones is mainly the result of conspiracy theory convergence -- WND has long obsessed about the Bilderbergers as well, and it sells a book titled "The True Story of the Bilderberg Group," which calls the group " a shadow government whose top priority is to erase the sovereignty of all nation-states and supplant them with global corporate control of their economies under the surveillance of 'an electronic global police state.'"
The Media Research Center's Tim Graham has been saying more, um, interesting things in non-MRC venues.
OneNewsNow reports (h/t Right Wing Watch) that Graham said of MSNBC: "They're not just anti-war; they're anti-military. ... In particular, they're anti-American military."
And Media Matters notes that Graham is upset that the "news media" won't report on the "interesting development" that Barack Obama "had these white girlfriends. And how exactly would the black women feel about Obama having white girlfriends?"Media Matters responds: "The real question is who exactly -- in the year 2012 -- would consider the fact that Obama dated white women to be 'an interesting development'?"
We've previously noted Graham making making similarly bizarre statements in non-MRC media last month.
CNS Publishes, Then Deletes, Anti-Obama Propaganda Piece Topic: CNSNews.com
On June 1, CNSNews.com published the following "news" article by Patrick Burke that read more like a Romney campaign oppo-research hit piece:
President Barack Obama is holding six separate fundraisers in the Midwest on Friday, June 1 -- the same day the Labor Department reported the May unemployment rate ticked up to 8.2 percent from 8.1 percent.
On this day in 1984 -- when President Ronald Reagan also was running for re-election -- Reagan announced that the May unemployment rate had dropped to 7.4 percent.
When President Reagan announced the lower May unemployment rate on June 1, 1984, he was on his way, not to a fundraiser, but to Western Europe, to promote peace and democracy in the Cold War era.
"Some good news for the economy tonight," Peter Jennings, the late ABC News anchorman, announced on his June 1, 1984 broadcast, citing the drop in unemployment. Jennings noted that the unemployment rate was at its lowest level since 1981, and he called it "good political news for President Reagan."
"It means real people in every category of the labor force are going back to work." The report led the June 1, 1984 "World News Tonight" broadcast.
Upon arriving at Shannon Airport in Ireland on June 1, 1984 President Reagan delivered remarks, praising Irish heritage in the United States and expressing optimism for peace among democratic nations:
“We're beginning a mission to strengthen ties of friendship and cooperation among the world's leading democracies. It's our deepest hope and our earnest conviction that we can make genuine progress together toward a safer world, a more prosperous world, a far better world,” said Reagan.
Later that week, he visited Normandy Beach to commemorate the 40th anniversary of D-Day, and he also attended an economic summit in London.
On June 1, 2012, President Obama planned to speak at Honeywell -- an official presidential visit, which means taxpayers pay for his transportation.
According to the White House, he will deliver remarks "urging Congress to act on the 'To Do List'" -- legislation Obama favors and Republicans oppose.
Once the official Honeywell visit is over, President Obama will devote the rest of the day and evening to fundraisers, which the White House describes as "campaign events."
From the White House schedule for Friday, June 1, 2012:
1:15 PM - The President delivers remarks at a campaign event 1:50 PM - The President attends a campaign event 2:25 PM- The President attends a campaign event 3:20 PM - The President departs Minneapolis, Minnesota en route to Chicago, Illinois 4:20 PM - The President arrives in Chicago, Illinois 6:10 PM - The President delivers remarks at a campaign event 7:25 PM - The President delivers remarks at a campaign event 8:55 PM - The President delivers remarks at a campaign event
Here's a screenshot of the story -- note the "news" designator at the top:
Why did CNS delete this story? Perhaps because even CNS -- as rabidly anti-Obama as it is becoming, serving as the propaganda wing of the Media Research Center -- realized it couldn't ignore the blatantly partisan nature of Burke's "news" article.
There is no news value to Burke's piece; it exists only to attack the president and, by extension, promote Mitt Romney's Republican presidential campaign. As such, there's a potential conflict with federal laws governing 501(c)3 non-profit organizations, which forbids open advocacy for a political candidate. CNS is a division of the Media Research Center, which is a 501(c)3 group.
Does this mean that Terry Jeffrey and Co. will start to rein in its work as an anti-Obama propaganda mill? Unlikely, but we shall see.
MRC Unhappy That Discredited Anti-Abortion Activist Being Ignored Topic: Media Research Center
"There is nothing more predictable than networks burying negative news about Planned Parenthood," Paul Wilson writes in a May 30 Media Research Center Culture & Media Institute article. And there's nothing more predictable than the MRC complaining that its pet right-wing causes aren't covered, no matter how specious or trivial.
Here's what Wilson is complaining about this time:
Pro-life organization Live Action recently came out with a disturbing video showing a Planned Parenthood staffer in Texas assisting a Live Action actor to obtain a sex-selection abortion. That practice is where a fetus is aborted if the child is discovered to be of a certain gender (usually female). The broadcast outlets have completely ignored the controversy: ABC, CBS, and NBC have not devoted a single second of their May 29 evening broadcasts and May 30 morning broadcasts to coverage of the recent Live Action videos.
Left-wing outlets have gone into damage control, spinning the Live Action sting as a manufactured controversy.
But that's the truth -- this truly is a manufactured controversy, peddled by a discredited activist. Live Action's Lila Rose -- an associate of even more discredited right-wing activist James O'Keefe -- has been caught making a series of entrapment videos featuring fake "patients" with the explicit purpose of smearing Planned Parenthood to the extent of running it out of business. Rose is not interested in facts, she's only interested in destroying Planned Parenthood by whatever means necessary.
That sordid history, of course, is not mention by Wilson. Nor does Wilson mention the fact that Rose's current crusade is a hoax as well -- there simply is no evidence of any widespread effort to abort fetuses due to gender.
Wilson complained again in a May 31 CMI post that the broadcast TV networks (thus conveniently factoring out Fox News) are continuing to ignore the bogus Live Action-manufactured scandal, while they "went ballistic"when it was announced that the Susan G. Komen Foundation "was going to cease allocating funds to Planned Parenthood," but then later "caved to intense media pressure and reinstated funding for Planned Parenthood."
The MRC complained about coverage of the Komen at the time. It baselessly accused Planned Parenthood of making "vicious attacks" against the Komen foundation, while also grousing about the indisputable fact that Komen's cutting of funding to Planned Parenthood was the result of "bullying by the right" -- hiding the fact that the MRC was one of those bullies.
Wilson also disingenuously ranted that "a taxpayer-funded organization" was "assisting the practice of sex-selection abortion." In fact, there was no "sex-selection abortion" because the patient was fake, and no tax money to Planned Parenthood pays for abortion.
WND's Mercer: Black TSA Screeners Taking Revenge on White Passengers For Trayvon Martin, Or Something Topic: WorldNetDaily
Ilana Mercer writes in her May 31 WorldNetDaily column, headlined "The TSA's Trayvon Martin revenge":
I did see a tall and handsome TSA worker working-over a little old man (aged 80, perhaps). The agent was black; his victim Caucasian. It looked as though the former was examining the hunched old man’s colostomy bag. It took the agent forever. He appeared to be enjoying himself.
I lingered as long as I could, to bear witness. The cruel ordeal was still under way when I left the scene, some 15 minutes later.
Dare I say it? The girl who – no doubt by fluke – did not violate my constitutional, Fourth Amendment rights to be free of “unreasonable searches and seizures” was Caucasian.
A previous flying experience saw me subjected to – what are the odds? – the ministrations of a large African-American woman, who summoned me with a crooked finger for a pat down. In no time at all, her giant digits were on my chest and between my legs.
Amassed online is a critical mass of images in which TSA workers, often minorities, are feeling up and humiliating the most vulnerable members of white America – kids, old men and women, often infirm and incapacitated.
At 72.4 percent of the population, whites represent a much larger subset of travelers than blacks and Latinos. Obscene overrepresentation of minorities in the federal workforce guarantees the ubiquity of the disturbing visuals described.
However, if the Trayvon Martin affair has taught us anything, it is that the racial hostility at the nation’s airport is likely for real.
CNS Quotes Gay-Bashers To Crirticize Bill Opposing Gay Therapy Topic: CNSNews.com
A May 31 CNSNews.com article by Melanie Hunter highlights a California Senate vote on a bill "to prohibit parents from seeking professional counseling for their children with the goal of preventing them from becoming homosexuals." Hunter's two main sources in criticizing the bill head anti-gay hate groups.
Hunter quotes Randy Thomasson, "president of SaveCalifornia.com, a pro-family group based in California," as claiming that the bill would "withhold emotional, mental, and physical help from a child who has been raped or molested, who, as a result of this physical and emotional exploitation, is confused about his or her sexual identity."
The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated Save California as a hate groupfor lying, defaming and spreading false propangada about the LGBT community. Thomasson even blamed a bullied and murdered gay teen for his own death by being open about his sexuality.
Hunter also quoted Paul Cameron, described as "a leading researcher and clinician and chairman of the Family Research Institute." CAmeron asserts that "“Sexual activities and sexual preferences, especially in the case of children, can be modified and changed. ... It is ethically wrong to prohibit parents from seeking and receiving professional assistance to help their own children with serious problems like this.”
As the SPLC details, Cameron's work as a "leading researcher" has been rejected by both the American Psychological Association and the American Sociological Association. We've noted how WorldNetDaily's Molotov Mitchell cited a discredited study to support his claim of a "20-year life expectancy gap between homosexual men and straight men."
When your main sources are haters and/or discredited, it's hard to make an actual news article, yet that's what Hunter tries to pass this off as.
When a press-release mill decides you're not credible, you've got problems.
A May 30 WorldNetDaily article states that PRWeb, "the biggest press release factory in the world" has decided that WND is not “credible” and is a “biased source of news,” after an Obama-bashing group called BOPAC had a press release rejected purportedly for citing a WND article. Of course, any sentient being could tell you that.
Needless to say, WND took great umbrage at this. It declared that PRWeb had "set itself up as a new gatekeeper of political correctness and journalistic propriety," with added outrage and manhood-measuring from WND editor Joseph Farah:
PRWeb is owned by a publicly held company called Vocus, which doesn’t even include any editorial managers among its top executives.
“The question I have is who might Vocus or PRWeb have within its team with the journalistic credentials to make such a call,” wondered Farah. “I have more than 30 years of experience running major-market daily newspapers, doing investigative reporting, hosting a nationally syndicated talk-radio program, consulting with NBC and other major media outlets, teaching journalism at a major university. The WND editorial staff has hundreds of years of combined experiences like mine. Is there even one person at Vocus or PRWeb who has those kinds of credentials?”
Farah loves to beat his critics with his "journalistic credentials," as we found out (except that he learned we have journalistic credentials too).
WND followed up by trying to further spin things in a May 31 article making a vague claim that "WND has been officially accredited by the United Nations for all its departments and affiliates worldwide." WND offers no proof of this, despite claiming that "Confirmation has been delivered to the independent news site that the U.N. media accreditation department officially has approved WND’s letter and accompanying application." The rest of the article rehashes the PRWeb stuff.
The headline on the article states "U.N. recognizes WND as 'bona fide media,'" but that term appears nowhere in the article, quoted or otherwise.
MRC Shocked To Discover Ed Schultz Is Liberal Topic: Media Research Center
A May 30 Media Research Center "Media Reality Check" by Geoffrey Dickens makes thisshocking revelation, so shocking that he brought out the bold italic:
Tuesday’s recall election in Wisconsin marks the end point of MSNBC’s Ed Schultz’s 15 month-long mission to destroy Scott Walker. The conservative Republican governor’s attempt to fix that state’s budget crisis, by reigning in the public unions’ influence, sent Schultz on a rampage. The liberal talk show host turned his self-titled program, The Ed Show, into a hyper-partisan platform from which union activists, liberal journalists and Wisconsin state Democrats could join Schultz in his drive to oust the “radical” Walker out office.
From February 14, 2011 through May 18, 2012 anti-Walker guests dominated by a count of 237 (99.6%) to 1 (less than .5%). In that same span Schultz devoted a portion or a majority of 128 episodes to attacks on Walker.
In other words, the MRC has proved Schultz is liberal -- which Schultz has never denied.
Dickens goes on to make a false-equivalence argument:
Critics of cable news often suggest that MSNBC and Fox News Channel (FNC) are carbon copies of each other with FNC catering to the conservative side. However, over that same time period, Shultz’s 8 PM EDT time slot competitor -- FNC’s The O’Reilly Factor -- spent only 19 shows discussing Walker and those displayed a more balanced guest list with a total of 12 pro-Walker advocates (44%) to 8 (30%) Walker opponents, with 7 (26%) neutral voices.
Of course, Schultz's show and O'Reilly's show are not the same. A more direct parallel would be to Sean Hannity, whose Fox News show is shamelessly conservative. Then again, Bozell makes a weekly appearance on Hannity's show, and hannity makes sure that no alternate view to his complaints about "liberal bias" is allowed to intrude.
Speaking of Bozell, he devotes his June 1 column to further whining about Schultz's "full-throated advocacy of the Wisconsin union agenda." This shameless conservative hack dismisses Schultz as a "shameless liberal hack" and insists that "Fox looks much more objective than Ed Schultz." No mention of Hannity, of course.
In 1938, Action Comics stunned readers with something truly extraordinary, a spandex-clad character named Superman. And with the release of that 10-cent magazine, the mighty man from Krypton introduced one of the greatest art forms the world would ever know, the comic book. Like motion pictures and baseball, the comic book was invented right here in the good ol' U.S. of A., and we still remain the number-one producer of comic books to this day.
Actually, if Wikipedia is to be believed, the first comic book appeared in the United States in 1933. Wikipedia also states that Japanese comics, known as manga, "has many more followers and dwarfs American comics in readership."
Mitchell then asked, "So what have been comic books been saying about our culture since Obama came to power?" His answer:
Well, first off, Obama's rise from '07 to '08 ran right along side one of the most tragic storylines in all of comic book history, and that would be the death of Captain America. Since comic books are an American invention, and because Captain America is the single greatest mosaic, the greatest symbol of American values and patriotism, this is no coincidence.
Astually, the "death" of Captain America, aka Steve Rogers, took place in the very first issue of the 18-issue story arc, which came out in April 2007. in the 2009 series Captain America: Reborn, we learn that Rogers ... did not die! Nevertheless, Mitchell insists later in his video that "Captain America is dead."
Mitchell added: "It's also no coincidence that only halfway through Obama's administration, the other great symbol of American patriotism, that would be Superman, renounced his U.S. citizenship."
For a less conspiratorial view, here's what a Comics Alliance writer noted at the time:
The number one misunderstanding that pundits have had about this story is that it represents an insult to or rejection of America and its values, not as a decision to step back from American politics and foreign policy, as Superman more clearly indicates in the comic. Some of you may remember when Captain America stepped back from his patriotic identity in the '70s after becoming disillusioned with the country; that is distinctly not what is happening here. There is no disillusionment, no repudiation of "The American Way" -- a phrase, by the way, that was not initially associated with Superman, and only appeared after America became involved in World War II.
It's also worth noting that while Superman may be symbolically renouncing his national identity, Clark Kent is another matter entirely, and there's absolutely no reason to think that the Daily Planet reporter's citizenship will change in any way. One of the most fundamental tropes of superheroes is the concept that they have a civilian identity, and when they step into their superhero role, they conceal aspects of that personal identity in order to protect themselves and the people around them from the repercussions of their superheroic actions. In a sense, this is exactly what Superman is doing: removing his American identity from his "professional" identity because he is unwilling to compromise U.S. foreign policy or jeopardize the safety of the American people.
And it wouldn't be ol' Molotov unless he was freaking out about teh ghey:
And most recently, following on the heels of Barack Obama's newly discovered passion for gay marriage, Marvel Comics will make comic book history with the first gay superhero wedding. When asked why they would pen a gay wedding into comics, Marvel scribes said they were merely reflecting current events. They explained most of Marvel's superheroes live in New York, and since New York allows gay marriage, well, they thought it would be appropriate. They thought it would be relevant.
Now, as much as I hate to admit it, they're totally right. If most of their characters were from New Jersey or North Carolina, you couldn't have sch aplotline. It wouldn't an accurate reflection of current events.
As a reader noted in the comments, the first gay wedding in comics was between Apollo and the Midnighter, in the DC-published comic "The Authority" in 2002. (Mitchell responded in the comments that this "was so obscure, so fringe that it was irrelevant.")
Mitchell concluded by whining that superheroes are now fighting bullying and homophobia (cutting a little close to the bone there, Molotov?), adding "Panel by painful panel, comics have not only reflected the death of Captain America, but the death of America itself. This is the zeitgeist. This is the America Obama has wrought."
Meanwhile, Molotov Mitchell is simply overwrought.
MRC, CNS Shill for Movie About Catholic Martyr Topic: CNSNews.com
How much is the production company for the new independent film "For Greater Glory" paying the Media Research Center to promote it? However much it is, the MRC is producing.
Last week's interview between CNS editor in chief Terry Jeffrey and a actor from the film, Eduardo Verastegui -- in which he parrots Jeffrey's own derogatory attack of President Obama, likening him to Henry VIII (never mind the fact that Verastegui isn't even an American citizen) -- was just one part of it. A May 11 article by Jeffrey lionized the film as "an epic story of freedom that Hollywood would not make" and interviewed a star of the film, Andy Garcia.
May 30 saw an unusual MRC convergence -- both Jeffrey and MRC chief Brent Bozell devoted their columns to the film.
Bozell's column hints that he got an advance screening of the film -- presumably a perk for all the advance work the MRC is doing. He disingenously portrays a single negative review of the film on an obscure website as representative of the entire "secularist press." Bozell went on to slobber over the film: "it's a full-fledged major motion picture with grade-A talent. And it's wonderful."
Jeffrey did his own slobbering in his column: "Long after the politicians in power in Washington today have gone the way of Plutarco Elias Calles, Americans will still be watching this movie. Unlike most movies made today, it tells a story built to last."
Jeffrey also used the film as a excuse to further his anti-Obama agenda:
Nor could the makers of "For Greater Glory" have anticipated that less than two weeks before their movie was set to be released, 43 American Catholic dioceses and institutions — including the archdiocese of Washington, D.C., and the University of Notre Dame — would file 12 different lawsuits alleging that the Obama administration was attempting to force Catholics to act against their faith by commanding them to purchase and/or provide health care plans that cover sterilizations, artificial contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs.
As we've repeatedly detailed, morning-after pills and contraception covered under health care reform are not abortifacients under the medical definition.
UPDATE: Craig Bannister joins in the shilling in a CNS blog post, playing the Obama card -- headlining his post "Catholics Die Fighting President's Mandate in New Movie" and falsely suggesting that Obama "mandate[d] that all churches be closed" like the government officials in the movie -- and calling it "a humbling call to self-reflection and inspirational, the stuff of which legends are made."
Aaron Klein Anonymous Source Watch (With Bonus Support For A Dictator) Topic: WorldNetDaily
In a May 29 WorldNetDaily article, Aaron Klein claims that "the U.S. is backing protesters, many of whom, informed Middle Eastern security officials tell WND, are now pressing to openly announce an affiliation with the Muslim Brotherhood" in Syria. As is his modus operandi for such Obama-bashing claims, Klein quotes no one on the record. He cites the following to back up his reporting in the article:
"informed Middle Eastern security officials"
"Middle Eastern security officials" (it's not clear if these are as "informed" as his other group of "Middle Eastern security officials")
'Egyptian security officials"
"Several knowledgeable Egyptian and Arab security officials"
"One Egyptian security official"
"An Egyptian military attaché"
How many of these are the same people? Who knows? It's difficult to take such reporting seriously with this level of overlapping anonymity.
Not only is Klein hiding behind these supposed anonymous sources, the tone of his article is surprisingly solicitous of Syria's Assad regime, calling it merely embattled and giving the regime's spokesman plenty of space to deny that the regime was responsible for the execution of civilians, including children, in the town of Houla.
Newmax's Blakeman Botches Attack on Obama Topic: Newsmax
Brad Blakeman writes in a May 30 Newsmax column accusing Obama of various evil things:
By Obama demonizing venture capitalists and free markets he diverts attention away from his own intervention in free markets when he nationalized GM and presided over the laying off of tens of thousands of auto workers and suppliers, closed entire auto divisions like, Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Saturn and Hummer and closed thousands of U.S. dealerships in order to return GM to profitability.
In fact, GM announced its phase-out of the Oldsmobile nameplate in 2000 -- nine years before Obama took office -- and the final vehicles were made in 2004.