MRC Doubles Down on Benghazi Attack Transcript Trutherism Topic: Media Research Center
Matthew Sheffield set the template at the Media Research Center: He read President Obama's mind, and has decided that while Obama referenced "acts of terror" in denouncing the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi during a Rose Garden speech, he was not calling the attack itself an "act of terror" because "this is not what he meant by it."
Now, the rest of the MRC is doubling down on Sheffield's version of transcript trutherism to launch an attack on presidential debate moderator Candy Crowley for pointing out that Obama did, in fact, call the Benghazi attack an "act of terror."
Brent Bozell ranted, pretty much is only mode of operation, in an Oct. 17 MRC press release:
Candy Crowley was an utter disaster last night, and was, by far, the worst moderator of the 2012 election.
The Libya cover-up continues, and the national news media need to start asking some tough questions – including questions about one of their own. If Obama was correct that on Day 1 he said it was a terrorist attack, why did his UN ambassador say on five different national interviews that it was a YouTube video that was responsible, and who put her up to it?
If he saw this as a terrorist attack from the very beginning, why did the president himself blame it on a video six times during a UN speech? Why has he made the statement so many times, as has Hillary Clinton, as has Jay Carney, as have others?
And why did Candy Crowley validate this lie?
If the national media don’t start asking these questions soon, they also will be guilty of enabling a massive cover-up.
The rest of the release reiterated Bozell's remarks, while providing absolutely no evidence to back it up:
Last night, in what was the most stunning and disgraceful single example of moderator malpractice in the history of presidential debates, CNN’s Candy Crowley allowed Barack Obama to lie to the American people about his administration’s Libya cover-up. Even worse, she then validated this lie of extraordinary magnitude by certifying it as honest and by attacking Mitt Romney when he pressed the president on his administration’s cover-up. Crowley robbed tens of millions of Americans of the truth on national primetime television. Real journalists – who were fed the Obama Administration’s Libya lies for two weeks – should be furious.
The release went on to reference a MRC item that supposedly "documented that since 1992, moderators have called upon voters with a liberal agenda twice as often as those with a conservative agenda." But if you look at the Oct. 16 item, write Rich Noyes fails to document his methodology for categorizing the "agenda" of debate questions. Without that, Noyes' piece is meaningless as "media research" and is nothing more than partisan electioneering.
Noyes echoed this in an Oct. 17 NewsBusters post in which he purported to relay "The Facts" regarding the debate. He repeated his unsubstantiated claim that "since 1992, moderators have called upon voters with a liberal agenda twice as often as those with a conservative agenda," going on to declare that "Obama only speaking generically about how 'no acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this nation,' not assigning that label to the violence in Benghazi." But Obama did not specifically exclude the Benghazi attack from the "acts of terror" he was referring to, so word-parsing works both ways.
Other MRC writers have joined in the doubling down:
Clay Waters declared that "it's quite correct to say that Obama did not call the attack an 'act of terror.'" He also complained that New York Times writers " falsely insisted that President Obama had called the Benghazi attacks 'an act of terror.'"
Tom Blumer ranted: "Candy Crowley, her establishment press excuse-makers (for her and President Obama), and supporters of the President are going to have to resort to finding penumbras emanating from Obama's September 12 Rose Garden appearance -- y'know, the one during which the press and Democrats insist that the President really, really did call the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya a terrorist attack." Like the rest of his MRC bretheren, Blumer ignores that Obama did not specifically exlude Benghazi from his reference to "acts of terror."
CNSNews.com communications director Craig Bannister declared that "Obama did utter the words 'act of terror' - saying that such acts will not 'shake' America - but, did not specify that the attack on the U.S. embassy was such an attack."
That's the MRC's story, and they're sticking to it, no matter how much reality they have to ignore in the process.
In his Oct. 15 WND article, Flaherty peddles yet another story of "black mob violence" by highlighting what's called the "knockout game," chortling that the perpetrators messed with "The Wrong Guy," which resulted in one of them being shot dead. But as we've pointed out when Flaherty has done this in the past, the "knockout game" is not a "black thing," it's a product of a certin inner-city adolescent culture.
Then, in an Oct. 16 article, Flaherty turned his attention to University of Wisconsin football player Montee Ball, who "has not been the same since five black men attacked him in August, sending him to the emergency room with head injuries," meaning that "Black mob violence has claimed another victim: This time, the Heisman Trophy. And maybe even a national college football championship."
Well, actually, not so much. Last weekend, Ball ran for a career-high 247 yards and scored three touchdowns, in the process setting a the Big Ten record for career TDs.
But never mind the facts -- Flaherty just wants to fearmonger, declaring that "Black mob violence is a new feature of life at college campuses around the country" with his usual cherry-picked compendium of isolated incidents he's trying to cobble into an "epidemic." He even references a "college black mob violence tour" despite the fact that he identifies no "black mob" roaming from campus to campus across the country beating up people.
In an Oct. 16 NewsBusters post, Matthew Sheffield ranted that presidential debate moderator Candy Crowley "disgraced herself" by her "incorrect seconding of Obama's statement that he declared the Libya terrorist attacks to be 'terror.'"
Sheffield then asserted: "While Obama did indeed use the word, this is not what he meant by it. Instead, he was simply referring to 'acts of terror.' There was no mention of Al Qaeda or any of its affiliates with respect to the actual attack on the U.S. embassy in Benghazi."
Sheffield is not only parsing words, he's reading minds. How does he know what Obama "meant" by his reference to "acts of terror" in his Rose Garden speech? He doesn't. Nor can he prove has later assertion that Obama was "willing to deliberately misquote himself."
Sheffield also doesn't provide any evidence that it was known by anyone in the immediate aftermath of the attack that Al Qaeda was involved. If it wasn't, there would have been no reason for Obama to mention "Al Qaeda or any of its affiliates."
If Sheffield is going to play this sort of word-splicing game, he should also acknowledge that Obama did not specifically exclude the Benghazi attack from his references to "acts of terror," and that one can reasonably conclude that because he did not, Obama considered the Benghazi attack to be a terrorist act.
But Sheffield doesn't care about facts, he cares about trying to score political points and cares even more about Obama being defeated. He goes on to rant: "If Obama truly believed it was terrorism, he likely would have inserted this. He also wouldn't have gone on multiple fund-raising trips after the incident happened nor would he (and his underlings) have repeatedly blamed an internet video for the attacks for 2 solid weeks."
In fact, the video did play a role in the attack. The New York Times reported:
To Libyans who witnessed the assault and know the attackers, there is little doubt what occurred: a well-known group of local Islamist militants struck without any warning or protest, and they did it in retaliation for the video. That is what the fighters said at the time, speaking emotionally of their anger at the video without mentioning Al Qaeda, Osama bin Laden or the terrorist strikes of 11 years earlier. And it is an explanation that tracks with their history as a local militant group determined to protect Libya from Western influence.
Sheffield wasn't done screeching about Crowley, though -- he called her essentially accurate claim "offensive," hyperbolically asserting that "America had just witnessed one of the most outrageous acts of liberal bias in history."
Sheffield isn't engaging in media analysis -- he's trying desperately to spin for Mitt Romney, repeating conservative talking points without regard for their accuracy. That's the mark of partisan activist, not a media analyst.
'Dreams From My Real Father' Discredited; Will WND's Corsi Report? Topic: WorldNetDaily
For the past several months, WorldNetDaily -- led by Jerome Corsi -- has been promoting Joel Gilbert's anti-Obama film "Dreams From My Real Father," which posits that Obama's father is Frank Marshall Davis, and Obama's mother posed nude for him in Hawaii. Like many other things Corsi has been involved with, that claim has been utterly discredited.
Loren Collins at the Barackryphal blog has utterly demolished Gilbert's claims in a seven-part series demonstrating Gilbert's falsehoods and history of mendacity. Perhaps most importantly, Collins shot down the claim that Ann Dunham posed for Davis by proving that photos that Gilbert claims are of Dunham were actually published in an erotica magazine when Dunham was 15 -- years before she and her family moved to Hawaii -- and are of a woman considerably older than 15.
Collins also made a videotaped debunking of the photo claim. As Collins explains, Gilbert apparently tried to suppress the video by filing a frivolous copyright claim against it that temporarily removed it from YouTube (despite Collins' usage of a clip from an ad for Gilbert's film clearly falling under fair use). Collins removed the offending section and reposted the video.
So Gilbert clearly knows about Collins' work to the extent that he tried to keep others from seeing it. But so far, Gilbert has not responded publicly to it. And you know what that means -- Corsi will ignore it as well.
After all, Corsi has done such a bang-up job of suppressing any criticism of his rapidly imploding birther conspiracy theories, there's no reason he won't put the same effort into ignoring how Gilbert's smear of Obama (and false and malicious slut-shaming of his mother) has been discredited.
MRC Spins for Romney on Abortion Topic: Media Research Center
Newsmax isn't the only ConWeb outlet that was desperate to spin away concerns over Mitt Romney's statement "There’s no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda."
In an Oct. 10 Media Research Center item, Matthew Balan claimd that CBS' Norah O'Donnell was "repeatedly hinting that Mitt Romney flip-flopped on the issue of abortion." Balan added that "O'Donnell conspicuously failed to mention that during the same interview, Romney promised to 'reinstate the Mexico City policy....that foreign aid dollars...would not be used to carry out abortion in other countries.'"
But as Balan himself admits in the very next paragraph, reinstating the Mexico City policy would be done via executive order, not legislation.
Balan wasn't done spinning, though. After quoting from the interview in which Romney made the statement, Balan wrote, "Note that the Republican didn't say anything about Supreme Court nominees (which would be needed to overturn Roe v. Wade), nor did he give an answer as to whether he would sign pro-life legislation if it reached his desk as president. But O'Donnell glossed this over completely, and badgered her guest about Romney's supposed flip-flop in giving that answer."
Balan concluded by huffing, "With this kind of a record, the CBS anchor has all the marks of an Obama campaign stenographer." And Balan has all the marks of a Romney campaign spin doctor. Is that even allowed under the MRC's nonprofit status?
WND's Farah Is STILL Wondering Why Nobody Beleives His Website Topic: WorldNetDaily
In Joseph Farah's world, being (justly) ignored means you make the same argument again, only more shrill.
Farah already devoted an Oct. 6 column to complaining that the rest of the world is ignoring Reza Kahlili's WND-published claim that President Obama purportedly cut a deal with Iran to stop its uranium enrichment as a pre-election "October surprise." But everyone ignored that too, so Farah is trying again in his Oct. 11 column:
Last week, WND reported the breathtaking story, based on impeccable Iranian sources, that Barack Obama sent an emissary to Qatar to meet with a representative of the ayatollah to offer a secret deal – one that would help Obama win his re-election bid.
It was a shocker – even by Obama standards.
The White House was offering Iran a deal to reduce international sanctions against the rogue, terrorist-supporting nation developing nuclear weapons if it simply agreed to suspend uranium enrichment for two weeks before the U.S. election – allowing Obama to announce a phony “diplomatic coup.”
As the story pointed out, this could well be the “October Surprise” Obama planned to overcome his fading support among the American public. It was quite a story, indeed. But it was not picked up by a single news agency in the country – therefore leaving open the possibility Obama can still pull it off.
To say the least, this kind of reporting is expensive and risky. How did the rest of the media respond? With another collective yawn.
In other words, the word is not getting out. Despite the precision and grainy detail offered by WND’s reports, the rest of the media simply ignored these startling revelations, as if they never happened.
As we pointed out last time, Kahlili's sources are anonumous, so there's no way anyone can judge how "impeccable" they are. Further, Kahlili's fearmongering claims -- he's best known for his discredited claim that Iran was planning nuclear suicide bombings with "a thousand suitcase bombs spread around Europe and the U.S." -- are treated with skepticism by actual Middle East analysts.
In other words, Kahlili can't be trusted. But that inconvenient fact isn't stopping Farah from going into full conspiracy mode:
Could it be that important national security stories are taking a backseat to the fluff and celebrity gossip spewed out by the media on an hourly basis?
Could it be we don’t have a free press in America any longer – only a state-sponsored, controlled media?
Could it be that even the so-called alternative press in America – which doesn’t do this kind of investigative reporting itself – is guarding its own franchises and businesses by failing to acknowledge the one independent, alternative news agency, the original, I might add, that is kicking butt and taking no prisoners in its efforts to seek out and sort out the truth?
Of course, Farah ignores the elephant in the room: WND has so beclowned and discredited itself with its near-pathologiclal obsession with smearing President Obama with all manner of sleaze and untruths that nobody believes what's published there.
Led by Jerome Corsi, WND is so invested in the idea that Obama's birth certificate is fake -- even instigating Sheriff Joe Arpaio's cold case posse "investigation" of the issue and sucking up to Arpaio so hard that Corsi was a de facto member of the posse -- that it has refused to acknowledge all evidence (and there's a lot) that contradicts Corsi's conspiracy theory.
Just in the past week, Corsi's big "scoop" that blurry, blown-up photos prove a ring Obama wears contains the statement "There is no god except Allah" in Arabic was shot down by one of his own birther buddies, Mara Zebest. And yes, Farah wrote a column wondering why the media was ignoring this too.
It's simple -- nobody believes WND. Even birthers have stopped believing it. Farah has nobody but himself to blame for that.
Kessler Repeats Unsubstantiated Attack on Biden Topic: Newsmax
The flip side to Ronald Kessler's Romney-fluffing is attacks on Mitt Romney's enemies, chief among them President Obama and Vice Presdient Joe Biden.
Kessler devotes his Oct. 15 Newsmax column to the latter, declaring that "Biden’s arrogance during the debate also provides a window on his character."Kessler then rehashes an attack on Biden he first peddled in June:
Since becoming vice president, Biden has come down with a malady known by insiders as White House-itis. As described in my book, “In the President’s Secret Service: Behind the Scenes with Agents in the Line of Fire and the Presidents They Protect,” it befalls presidents, vice presidents, and White House aides who are not well grounded to begin with and let the intoxicating power of the White House go to their head.
As noted in my story, "Biden Spends $1 Million Annually for Weekend Trips," every Friday the vice president takes a helicopter designated as Marine Two from the vice president’s residence in northwest Washington to Joint Base Andrews in Maryland. He then hops on Air Force Two to fly back to his home in Delaware. At the end of the weekend, he returns on Air Force Two, usually a Boeing C-32.
On Saturdays in warm weather, Biden regularly returns to Andrews on the airplane to play golf at the base with President Obama. After the game, he flies back to Delaware. On Sunday evening, he returns on the plane to Washington — all at taxpayer expense.
The Boeing C-32 is a specially configured Boeing 757-200 commercial jet. The cost of flying the plane is $22,000 an hour, so each half-hour trip to or from Delaware costs about $10,000. Each golf game costs taxpayers $20,000. At that rate, the annual cost to taxpayers of Biden’s weekend trips is well over $1 million. That does not include so-called deadhead flights when the plane often flies back to Washington empty and then returns empty to pick up Biden.
In addition, the Secret Service rents more than 20 condominiums in the Wilmington area for agents who must accompany Biden when he returns to his home state. Rather than try to find hotel space, the Secret Service decided to rent the condos in part because, even when he knows his schedule in advance, Biden rarely tells agents until the last minute when he will be returning to Wilmington beyond his weekend trips. As a result, agents cannot plan their own lives.
A Secret Service agent says that since Air Force Two parks at Andrews, Obama is obviously aware that Biden is running up a huge government tab for each game of golf they play.
But Kessler, both here and in his original June article, fails to back up his claims, and he relies on an unverifiable anonymous Secret Service agent to make his attacks.
Kessler has more than proven himself to be a pro-Romney hack. Why trust his attacks on Obama and Biden?
WND Tries to Spin Chuck Norris' Apocalyptic Video Topic: WorldNetDaily
Last month, Chuck Norris released a video in which the clear implication was that if President Obama was re-elected, it could result in "one thousand years of darkness."
Apparently, Norris didn't take kindly to how crazy that sounded, so he re-edited the video. And WorldNetDaily is only too happy to properly spin things from what the "establishment media" said about it.
In an Oct. 9 article, WND wants it known that Norris was merely quoting Ronald Reagan, not specifically saying crazy things about Obama's re-election:
A public-service announcement by martial arts, television and movie star Chuck Norris and his wife, Gena, that encouraged people of faith to vote in this election included a quotation from President Ronald Reagan in which he said failing to preserve the United States would be to sentence children “to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness.”
So this is what the establishment media wrote:
“Vote for Romney or Suffer ‘a Thousand Years of Darkness,’ Says Chuck Norris” from Adweek
“Chuck Norris: If Obama Is Reelected, It Could Bring About ‘One Thousand Years Of Darkness” from Mediaite
“Chuck Norris Warns of ‘Thousand Years of Darkness’ if Obama Reelected” from Hollywood Gossip
and “Chuck Norris: America faces ’1,000 years of darkness’ if Obama wins reelection” from NBC
The video has gone viral, being viewed by millions. There’s no doubt of its influence, even though it does not endorse a presidential candidate, because of the impact of previous statements from Norris that were endorsements.
But to counter the spin created by the legacy media reports, those who made the original public service announcement now have released a new edition, this time including a video clip of Ronald Reagan, to make doubly sure people understand who was making that statement.
We didn't know that Mediaite and AdWeek were the "establishment media."
The implication that Obama will destroy the country if re-elected, and would be better off under Mitt Romney, remains. He still implies that Obama is "evil" by repeating the famous Edmund Burke quote about good men doing nothing. And the implication that Obama will plunge the country into "a thousand years of darkness" remains obvious despite the words coming out of Reagan's mouth instead of Norris'.
Despite WND's spin job, Norris is still an Obama-hating crazy man.
In an Oct. 12 CNSNews.com article, Patrick Goodenough offered up a strange, biased fact-check of the vice presidential debate.
Biased because, well, it's CNS. Seven statements from Joe Biden were cited, versus two from Paul Ryan. Strange because it focused on foreign policy questions (CNS published no other fact-check on the rest of the debate) and because of Goodenough's approach to fact-checking.
Responding to a pair of Biden statements highlighting how Iran is "more isolated today than when we took office" and that "the world for the first time totally united in opposition" to Iran getting a nuclear weapon, Goodenough responded by ... referencing a meeting a non-aligned organizations that was recently held in Iran.
How does that disprove Biden's claim that Iran is isolated in the international community? Goodenough doesn't explain. No other fact-checker we could find addressed the claim, which means it must be true.
Meanwhile, Goodenough served as an apologist for Ryan on his statement that "It took the president two weeks to acknowledge that" the attack on the U.S. consulate "was a terrorist attack":
On September 18, one week after the attack, Obama used the words “extremists and terrorists” to describe those who attacked the consulate and other U.S. missions. It would have been easy to miss, however: The president did not use the phrase in an Oval Office statement or at a White House press conference, but on CBS’ “The Late Show.”
Goodenough shows his anti-Democrat bias in responding to Biden's claim that President Obama has met with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu "a dozen times":
Obama has met with Netanyahu nine times since taking office. The Israeli leader reportedly requested a tenth meeting on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in New York last month, but no meeting was scheduled. Instead Obama made his fifth appearance on the daytime television show, “The View.”
It's a strange, nitpicky and lazy fact-check -- just the kind of thing you'd expect CNS to churn out.
Matt Barber Peddles Long-Debunked Lie About Obama Topic: WorldNetDaily
Matt Barber uses his Oct. 12 WorldNetDaily column to repeat an outright lie about President Obama:
Moreover, during the 2008 campaign, Obama lamented that the Supreme Court, under Chief Justice Earl Warren, failed to “break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution.”
Let that sink in a moment. In his own words, this man – a man solemnly sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution – has betrayed utter disdain for it. He has, in essence, admitted that he views our most sacred founding document as a “constraint” against his thinly veiled efforts to “fundamentally transform” America into Greece.
As we documented four years ago, Obama was not "lamenting" that the Warren Court didn't "break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution" -- he was making the accurate observation that because it didn't, the Warren Court wasn't as "radical" as people think it is.
Barber dishonestly took Obama's quote out of context and lied about what Obama said. On top of that, Barber falsely claims that Obama said this in 2008; in fact, it comes from a 2001 interview that surfaced in the 2008 campaign.
Barber works for right-wing legal group Liberty Counsel. Surely he knows what happens when you deliberately tell a lie -- some people call that perjury. Does Barber have the moral character to correct his lie and apologize for telling it? Doubtful.
MRC Botches Unemployment Rate Analysis; WIll It Correct? Topic: Media Research Center
An Oct. 5 Media Research Center Business & Media Institute item by Dan Gainor and Julia Seymour repeated claims that September's drop in the unemployment rate was driven by "a huge jump in part-time workers." Turns out that's wrong.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of people with full-time jobs increased by 838,000 in September to 115.2 million, while the number of people with part-time jobs declined by 26,000 to 27.7 million.
In other words: All of the gains in employment were due to full-time jobs.
It’s right there in Table A-9.
How did all of those people get it wrong? By looking at separate table ( Table A-8 ) that shows a big spike in the number of people who want a full-time job but who are forced to settle for less than 35 hours of work because of the tepid economy or weak demand at their company.
The BLS explains that the number of people involuntarily working part-time rose, even though the total number of part-timers declined. It’s the total number of part-timers that helps determine the unemployment rate.
The MRC is not exactly known for correcting items unless they're so obviously wrong that it can't be avoided. You'd think this would fall under that category, but it's more likely that Gainor and Seymour will just shove this under the rug and stay silent about their error.
WND's Ellis Washington Ludicrously Likens Obama to Caligula Topic: WorldNetDaily
Ellis Washington regularly beclowns himself in his WorldNetDaily -- see, for instance, his insistence on turning Socrates into a right-wing nutjob like he is. Washington achieves a new level of ... something in his Oct. 12 column by drawing wildly wrong, and unintentionally hilarious, parallels between President Obama and, yes, Caligula by treating every lunatic Obama conspiracy theory -- up to and including Obama killing his gay lovers -- as proven fact:
And now comes, I, Gaius Julius Caesar Germanicus-Caligula (A.D. 12-A.D. 41). I was the third son of Germanicus (nephew of Tiberius), and Agrippina the elder and was born at Antium in A.D. 12.
And now comes, I, Barack Hussein Obama (1961-). I was the illegitimate first son of Stanley Anne Durham and my real father, the Soviet agent and communist propagandist, Frank Marshall Davis. We were born four weeks apart (Aug. 4/Aug. 31).
I, Caligula, know that there were rumors surrounding the death of Tiberius. It is very likely that the 77-year-old emperor did not simply die of old age. On my authority, Naevius Cordus Sertorius Macro, commander of the Praetorians, rushed inside and smothered Tiberius with a cushion, suffocating him.
I, Obama, had several gay lovers that I had to dispense with including – Donald Young, the openly-gay choir director of the church in Chicago of which I, Obama, was a member for some 20 years – Jeremiah Wright’s Trinity United Church of Christ black liberation theology. There were two other openly gay men in Wright’s church: Larry Bland and Nate Spencer. We were all members of Wright’s “Down Low Club.” In late 2007, as I, Obama, began my ascent to be the Democratic Socialist Party’s presidential nominee, in a span of one-and-a-half months, all three men conveniently died.
I, Obama, like my predecessors, Tiberius, Caligula and Nero, am indeed a narcissist neophyte, like the ambitious, arrogant Phaeton of Greek mythology, who assumed he could drive Helios’ (his sun god father’s) chariot to prove he was divine, but all his tragic leadership accomplished was to scorch the planet and render large parts of the earth a perpetual desert wasteland. To stop Phaeton and his genocidal madness, Zeus was forced to kill him.
Will Romney/Ryan be able to stop Obama’s socialist madness from ruining America, killing liberty and deconstructing our sacred Judeo-Christian traditions beyond remedy?
A better question: Is Ellis Washington's madness, in the form of a raging case of Obama Deragement Syndrome, beyond remedy? It appears so.
No wonder Washington complains that he can't get a tenure-track teaching job. What sane person would hire someone who writes such a ludicrous and hate-filled analogy like this?
In the 11-minute video of the interview attached to the article, Kessler tosses softball after softball to Romney, heavy on "somebody did this, what's your reaction" type of questions that prompts Romney to spout his usual talking points. These are hardly the kind of challenging questions one expects from someone who purports to be a journalist, though is exactly the kind of question one expects of a Romney sycophant.
Sample question from Kessler:
Ann Romney mentioned to me that when you are at Bain Capital,, you almost never brought work home because you were devoted to your family, you wanted to spend time with your kids. Looking back, I wish I had been that way as a father. That's pretty remarkable, and I wonder how that translates into a desire to strengthen families, what you would do in that regard.
It's unclear when the interview was conducted (it appears to have been on Oct. 12 because Romney referenced the vice presidential debate "last night"), but at one point Kessler said to Romney that "wholesale gasoline prices went up again today." But gas prices have been trending down for the past month.
Even Birthers Aren't Buying WND's Obama Ring Story Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's Jerome Corsi has managed to write something that even birthers are skeptical about.
We've noted the craziness of Corsi's claim that blurry, blown-up photos prove that a ring Obama has worn reads "There is no god except Allah." Turns out we're not the only ones.
The Birther Report blog (aka Obama Release Your Records) cited a "prominent computer software and graphics expert" who says that the claim by Corsi, via Obama-hating filmmaker Joel Gilbert, is a "major hoax," that Gilbert's images were Photoshopped, and that a high-resolution image of Obama's ring shows that it has no Arabic symbols on it.
That prompted Corsi to pen a follow-up article responding to the Birther Report's then-unnamed expert having Gilbert insisting that he "made no alteration whatsoever" to the pattern on the ring. Corsi made no mention of the high-resolution image.
In response to that, the Birther Report named its "expert" -- turns out it's none other than Mara Zebest, a birther who made a supporting appearance alongside Corsi last year at WND's press conference announcing its defamation lawsuit against Esquire magazine (recently booted out of court). In a June 2011 article, Corsi touted Zebest as "a nationally recognized computer expert who has served as contributing author and technical editor for more than 100 books on Adobe and Microsoft software."
Corsi has not addressed the issue at WND since the Birther Report's "expert" was revealed to be Zebest.
This isn't the only instance of right-wingers backing away from Corsi's ring claim:
A Free Republic thread on Corsi's article is filled with detractors, one of whom wrote, "there is a reason why WND is known (even here) as 'World Nut Daily.'"
Richard Bartholomew notes that anti-Muslim activist Pam Geller, who initially blogged in support of Corsi's article, apparently deleted that post without explanation.
Meanwhile, Corsi's boss, WND editor Joseph Farah, was wondering (as he's prone to do) why nobody else was covering Corsi's big scoop:
Would you consider this to be a rather explosive story weeks before the presidential election?
I would, too.
But the abject lack of curiosity by the media – both establishment and alternative – is, shall we say, somewhat stunning.
That’s not to say the public isn’t fascinated. In fact, the story is off the charts in terms of readership. More people read the story and viewed the images and analysis in the first few hours of its release than watch CNN in the same time period.
Yet it is another of those stories about which we cannot speak – at least insofar as the self-appointed information cops have determined.
I don’t know about you, but I think this is an important story – maybe one of the biggest of the presidential election year. That it had to wait so long to be told reflects the inherent mystery still surrounding the man in the White House and a hapless press just too afraid to go certain places in the pursuit of the truth.
Farah appears not to have considered the possibility that nobody else is reporting the story becuase it isn't true.
When can we expect a correction and apology from Corsi and Farah about this? Our impression of that answer is here.
Anti-Muslim Activist Victimizes Blogger With DMCA Complaint Topic: The ConWeb
Richard Bartholomew -- a friend of ConWebWatch who writes the excellent Bartholomew's Notes on Religion blog -- had a run-in with British anti-Muslim activist Charlie Flowers, and it temporarilly shut down his blog.
Bartholomew had written a blog about Flowers in which he quoted comments Flowers made on his Facebook page. In retaliation, Flowers contacted Bartholomew's U.S.-based hosting company and filed a complaint under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The host shut down Bartholomew's site, restoring it only after Bartholomew deleted the offending Flowers post. Bartholomew declined to file a counterclaim because it would make his home address available to Flowers, who has clearly demonstrated himself to be vindictive.
Bartholomew correctly points out, "The notion that someone should be able forbid any quotation of their words is manifestly absurd, and if applied generally would make any kind of journalism impossible."