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Wednesday, February 13, 2013
ConWebWatch On Reality Check Radio Tonight
Topic: The ConWeb

Programming note: ConWebWatch's Terry Krepel will be on Reality Check Radio tonight starting at 9 p.m. ET, talking about WorldNetDaily's long record of failure in trying to destroy President Obama.

Listen here.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:49 PM EST
Note To Joseph Farah: A Serial Killer Does Admire Your Website
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah begins his Feb. 11 WorldNetDaily column this way:

If a serial killer, like Christopher Dorner, the former LAPD cop turned murderer currently terrorizing Californians, said in his manifesto he admired me, I would try to use whatever influence I had with him to talk him out of his cold-blooded rampage and war on his former police department.

But that’s just me.

But a serial killer did give Farah's website his stamp of approval -- and far from trying to talk him down, Farah couldn't run away fast enough.

Anders Breivik killed 77 people in Norway in an attempt to further his far-right, anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim ideology -- an ideology not unfamiliar to WND readers. Indeed, Breivik's manifesto cites WND six times, WND columist Pamela Geller is cited more than a dozen times, as is WND's favorite self-proclaimed ex-terrorist Walid Shoebat.

How did WND react to this?

  • It refused to tell its readers that it was cited in the manifesto.
  • It posted a video by the pseudonymous birther PPSimmons attempting to deny that Breivik is a right-wing Christian.
  • And Farah played the "No True Scotsman" fallacy by insisting that Breivik could not possibly be a Christian because Christians don't kill people like that, further declaring that "Breivik demonstrates his lack of understanding of the most basic Christian principles."

Of course, Farah doesn't actually care that a serial killer finds his website informative -- hey, the guy's boosting WND's page counts! His goal is to bash the liberals cited in Dorner's manifesto for not doing what he failed to do regarding Brevik.

Dorner praised conservatives in his manifesto as well, but you don't hear Farah demanding that Tim Tebow play negotiator.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:47 PM EST
NewsBusters Pushes Anti-Global Warming Canards
Topic: NewsBusters

In a Feb. 11 NewsBusters post, Matt Vespa takes a shot at Erika Bolstad, a writer for "the left-wing McClatchy Newspapers," for stating that Marco Rubio "doesn't think much of climate change," which puts him "squarely in the anti-science wing of his party." Vespa retorts:

Well, Ms. Bolstad should get her facts right. According to the UK Meteorological Office, global warming stopped sixteen years ago. Furthermore, it could cost the world economy $700 billion per year to avert rising temperatures that aren’t rising, and that's a drop in the bucket to the estimated $5 trillion dollars nations need to spend on power, water, infrastructure, and agriculture.

What's more, bucking scientific consensus, whether it be real or imagined, is not anti-science. Indeed, it's at the heart of scientific exploration. At any rate, Climate Depot's Marc Morano found 1,000 “anti-science” global warming skeptics who had this to say:

First, Vespa's claim that "global warming stopped sixteen years ago" relies on cherry-picked data and choosing an arbitrary starting point; the long-term trend demonstrates continued global warming.

Second, picking 1,000 "global warming skeptics" out of context ignores the fact that 97 percent of climate experts agree that global warming is manmade. And Morano's list is flawed because it's not limited to climate change researchers; he's merely citing "scientists," at least some of whom have no training or experience in climate research.

Vespa is the second MRC writer this year to have invoked the 1,000 scientists promoted by Morano, a former "reporter" at the MRC-owned

Posted by Terry K. at 10:27 AM EST
WND Trades Obama Birtherism For Obama Impeachment
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Having destroyed what little credibility it had by spending four years obsessing over increasingly discredited conspiracy theories about President Obama's birth certificate, WorldNetDaily has largely abandoned that line of attack. Unfortunately for WND, its new line of anti-Obama attacks -- agitating for his impeachment -- isn't going to restore WND's reputation.

WND, of course, has been calling for Obama's impeachment almost from the time he took office. In 2010, it cooperated with the Joseph Farah-founded Western Journalism Center on a book called " The Case For Impeachment" that was filled with factual errors and outright falsehoods.

But with Obama's re-election -- and, thus, the utter failure of WND's anti-Obama crusade that made it little more than a for-profit super PAC -- WND has apparently decided that impeachment, not birtherism, is where it's at.

A Feb. 11 WND article by Chelsea Schilling featured "a bipartisan panel of top constitutional experts" (well, three lawyers, including far-right birther lawyer Herb Titus) who evaluated "12 popular arguments for impeaching Obama."

Schilling's longtime problem with getting things wrong crops up here. Oone of Obama's supposedly impeachable offenses is that he "appointed more than 30 unelected 'czars' to positions in federal agencies while the Constitution requires that such appointments be vetted by Congress." In fact, of the 30 "czars" Obama had appointed by September 2009, 10 were confirmed by the Senate, and two others were appointed to positions specifically created by statute. Further, at least 13 of those "czars" had counterparts in the Bush administration, and we don't recall WND calling for Bush's impeachment over that.

According to the handy-dandy graphics accompanying each charge, Schilling's attorneys found only two alleged offenses deemed "severe" enough to be impeachable: "Obama’s U.S. citizen ‘hit list’" and "Illegally conducting war against Libya."

This was followed by an article the next day highlighting Code Pink co-founder Medea Benjamin's call for Obama's impeachment, made on WND reporter Aaron Klein's radio sho.

WND also has a petition one can sign demanding that Congress "immediately undertake a full and impartial investigation into the many blatantly unconstitutional actions of Barack Obama, with particular focus on the illegal war against Libya and the illegal “kill list” of U.S. citizens – offenses universally condemned by top constitutional experts as both unprecedented and unquestionably impeachable."

Because it wouldn't be WND if it wasn't trying to cash in on  a story it's promoting, WND's online store has plenty of "Impeach Obama" tsotchkes, as evidence by a big front-page ad:

That's our WND -- frequently wrong, but never afraid to make a buck on it.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:10 AM EST
Updated: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 4:45 PM EST
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
CNS' Jeffrey Already Smearing John Kerry In New Job

John Kerry hasn't been in his new job as secretary of state for a full week yet, but editor in chief Terry Jeffrey is already trying to smear him.

A Feb. 11 CNS article by Jeffrey carries the headline "Kerry Took More Security on Trip to Arlington, Va., Than State Dept. Posted in Benghazi."

 And yes, that's exactly what the article is about:

Secretary of State John Kerry took a larger detail of security agents on a trip to Arlington, Va., last week, when he went to visit—of all places—the headquarters of the department’s security bureau, than the State Department deployed to its compound in Benghazi, Libya, in the days leading up to the Sept. 11, 2012 terrorist attacks.

Apparently, nobody told Jeffrey that Kerry had no involvement whatsoever with any of the events surrounding the Benghazi attacks. But then, when do sleazy smears have anything to do with facts?

Posted by Terry K. at 6:48 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, February 12, 2013 6:49 PM EST
WND Mysteriously Deletes Smear Piece On Sandy Hook Dad
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily was very proud of its story on Neil Heslin, father of one of the children killed in the Sandy Hook school massacre. Here's how it was promoted in an email:

Charles C. Johnson's story attacked Heslin -- who came out in favor of bans on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines after the massacre and was the subject of a debate over whether he had been heckled at a hearing -- as someone who has "repeatedly endangered citizen lives by driving drunk and without a license." Here's what it looked like on the WND website, where it was proclaimed as a "WND Exclusive":

But Johnson's story has since been removed from WND's website -- the link to the story now redirects to a search page. The story, however, is still available through Google cache, and a tweet promoting the article remains on WND's Twitter account.

Why did WND remove Johnson's story? We don't know -- no explanation has been published on the website, and a message to WND requesting one has so far gone unanswered.

Johnson is a writer who has contributed to numerous right-wing websites like the Daily Caller, Breitbart and PJ Media.

The fact that WND would publish such a smear job on a father whose young son was killed in a massacre, and then delete it without explanation or apology, is yet another reason why nobody believes WND.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:00 AM EST
Noel Sheppard's Logical Failure
Topic: NewsBusters

As most readers know by now, Noel Sheppard isn't the sharpest tool in the NewsBusters shed, willing to ignore facts, reality and ethnic slurs in the service of bashing those who aren't as conservative as he is.

In a Feb. 11 post, Sheppard highlights Fox News CEO Roger Ailes' grousing that President obama "likes to divide people into groups," followed by media critic Howard Kurtz's response, "What in Obama’s record casts him as a racially divisive leader?"

Sheppard retorted: "Really, Howie? You think race relations are better in America today than they were before Obama took office?" Sheppard then cited a poll stating that fewer people believe race relations will get better under Obama than they did in 2008.

But Sheppard is presuming that Obama is solely to blame for that number dropping -- something for which he presents no evidence whatsoever. In fact, as Media Matters details, two clear culprits in dividing people have been ... Ailes and Fox News, from Ailes' campaign work for Richard Nixon to Fox's hiring of Glenn Beck, who called Obama a "racist."

You were saying, Noel?

Posted by Terry K. at 10:18 AM EST
WND's Zahn Turns Movie Review Into Liberal-Bashing Rant
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's Drew Zahn has a peculiar approach to reviewing movies, which includes regaling us with his far-right ideology, from likening President Obama to an evil fairytale queen to hating a Disney film for teaching children to think for themselves to pretending his love for "Red Dawn" isn't political.

Sometimes,  the review is barely there, buried under Zahn's ideology. Here's how Zahn begins his Feb. 10 review of the film "Identity Thief":

Women are unequal, so we’ll have a “sexual revolution” …
People in the inner city are disproportionately poor, so we’ll ensure their “welfare” …

Not every religion is welcome in our schools, so we’ll kick God out altogether …

We have millions without access to health care, so we’ll create a government safety net and mandate everyone has insurance …

And now that we’ve enacted all these liberal “reforms” …

… women are no longer honored by men, their sexuality demeaned from sacred to casual, and 50 million of their children are dead to abortion.

… generations of inner city children grow up without fathers, and whole communities have lost the will to work, looking to government to provide for them.

… rampant immorality, crime, drugs, teen pregnancy and general adolescent stupidity reign in our schools, as academic standards tumble to the sewers.

… insurance rates are through the roof, businesses are being buried in health-care costs, doctors are leaving the profession in droves and insurance plans and employers are dropping people, so millions who had good private insurance may soon have to rely on an inferior government plan. And I haven’t even talked about rationing and the very real “death panels” yet.

Gee, how are those reforms working out for ya?

The same way liberal reforms almost always work out. They address a real problem … and make it worse.

The same thing happens in Hollywood. Perfectly good stories, intriguing ideas and talented actors are put together on a well-intentioned project … then a triple dose of liberalism turns the whole movie to dung.

It's not until the 12th paragraph that Zahn gives his readers any indication this is supposed to be a movie review. He ends the review by blaming the movie's alleged lack of quality on liberals:

All the good intentions are there.

But then the liberal agenda gets its hooks into it – and another funny movie, another good story, another great performance are all destroyed by a phenomenon all-too common in Hollywood, the ruinous effects of a liberal agenda.

Zahn could have said that it's a bad movie. Instead, he turns his "review" into agitprop. He most likely didn't learn that from Siskel & Ebert.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:24 AM EST
Monday, February 11, 2013
NewsBusters Announces Pope's Resignation With Misleading Claims
Topic: NewsBusters

Here's how NewsBusters, in a Feb. 11 post credited only to "NB Staff," announced the resignation of Pope Benedict

Pope Benedict, the man liberal reporters slammed as "God's Rottweiler," is resigning. A spokesman for the Vatican did not have any more information and did not reveal a possible reason for the 85-year-old's resignation. Fox News reports "The last pope to resign was Pope Gregory XII, who stepped down in 1415 in a deal to end the Great Western Schism among competing papal claimants."

The pope may have based his decision on watching all the press reports insisting Pope John Paul II resign due to his failing health from Parkinson's disease. The college of cardinals will elect a new leader for the world's Catholics in mid-March.

Actually, conservative-leaning publications like U.S. News & World Report and the News Corp.-owned Sky News have called the pope "God's Rottweiler." further, the conservative-leaning Canadian paper National Post called it one of the "nicknames that Ratzinger’s fans considered badges of honour."

As far as NewsBusters blaming "press reports" on the pope's health for the resignation, Reuters reports that the pope faced no outside pressure to resign.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:10 PM EST
WND Peddles Philanderer's Claim That John Brennan Is A Muslim
Topic: WorldNetDaily

There are so many reasons that nobody believes WorldNetDaily, and WND keeps serving up more of them.

A Feb. 10 WND article by Drew Zahn begins:

One of the FBI’s former top experts on Islam has announced that President Obama’s pick to head the Central Intelligence Agency, John Brennan, converted to Islam years ago in Saudi Arabia.

And who is this so-called "expert"? None other than John Guandolo, whom you might remember as a serial philanderer and adulterer who jeopardized a federal investigation by having sex with a witness and trying to get her to donate money to a right-wing "anti-terrorism" organization.

WND makes no mention of Guandolo's disgraceful behavior -- which arguably discredits his accusations -- despite WND editor Joseph Farah's insistence that WND follows "highest editorial standards and practices by experienced journalists." (Of course, you already know Farah is lying about that.)

WND similarly failed to mention Guandolo's adulterous background in a 2011 article that also uncritically repeated a claim he made.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:23 PM EST
CNS Columnist Disappears Limbaugh From Fluke Backstory

Judie Brown writes of Sandra Fluke in a Feb. 10 column:

Nobody knew who she was until February of 2012 when Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and her colleagues on the House Steering Committee held a special hearing concerning the religious exemption on contraceptive coverage contained in the then-newly introduced Obama mandate.

The only person called to testify at this hearing was Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke. This was to be the first time we would hear her name, but it certainly was not to be the last.

Fluke became the instant darling of feminists and the liberal media. Her unapologetic attack on people of faith who object to the Obama birth control mandate made her immediately welcome.

First, Brown fails to explain why that one-person hearing took place: House Republicans had blocked Fluke from testifying at an earlier hearing on the contraceptive mandate.

Second, one very important person is missing from Brown's timeline: Rush Limbaugh.  It was his three-day tirade of misogyny and sleazy attacks against Fluke -- not her testimony -- that made her an "instant darling."

CNS writers have a habit of disappearing Limbaugh from the Sandra Fluke story.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:18 PM EST
Updated: Monday, February 11, 2013 1:19 PM EST
Lying Preacher Bradlee Dean Still As Anti-Gay As Ever
Topic: WorldNetDaily

If lying preacher Bradlee Dean was trying to moderate his views on gays in the wake of his failed defamation lawsuit against Rachel Maddow (in reality, he has a better case against his lawyer, Larry Klayman, for incompetent representation), it's not working.

If you'll recall, Dean had accused Maddow of falsely claiming he supported killing gays, ignoring Maddow's disclaimer in which she said, "Mr. Bradlee with two e's later clarified that he didn't really mean to sanction murder of gay people. He said, 'We have never and will never call for the execution of homosexuals.' Which is nice."

What's not as nice, however, is Dean's Feb. 8 WorldNetDaily column, which is one long rant against admitting gays into the Boy Scouts. First, he confuses homosexuality with pedophilia, which aren't the same thing.

Then, he uses inflammatory language to impugn gays -- claiming that "the radicals used totalitarian means in an attempt to bully the BSA into submission" and referencing "the radical homosexual lobby’s bully pulpit."He goes on to baselessly suggest that Canada has an "epidemic of child sex abuse" because gays were allowed into the Boy Scouts there, concluding, "It is time to wake up, America, and heed Canada’s warnings before it’s too late."

Does this not sound like a guy who really could support killing gays if he thought he could get away with it?

It's probably in Dean's best interests if Klayman hides this information from the judge to whom he appealed the dismissal of Dean's lawsuit. But you can't hide such things from a judge, can you?

Posted by Terry K. at 12:49 AM EST
Sunday, February 10, 2013
MRC Hides That Alleged Cop Killer Also Praised Conservatives
Topic: Media Research Center

Discussing the shooting spree by alleged cop killer Christopher Dorner in  his weekly appearance on Sean Hannity's Fox News show, Media Research Center chief Brent Bozell complained about what was explained in a Feb. 8 NewsBusters post as "the liberal media's deliberate papering over of the left-wing views that inspired him." similarly, another Feb. 8 NewsBusters post by Matt Vespa complained that NPR failed to note that "it's pretty clear from his manifesto that he has has liberal affinities, which some in the media seem to be hesitant to document in their reports." And a Feb. 8 MRC TimesWatch post by Clay Waters grouses that the New York Times hasn't reported that Dorner "praised liberal media personalities in his oddly chatty 'manifesto' posted on Facebook."

All of these MRC writers are leaving something out as well: Dorner's manifesto also praised some conservatives.

For instance, Horner wrote of radio host Bill Handel, who has expressed anti-Muslim and anti-health care reform sympathies on his radio show: "Bill Handel, your effin awesome. For years I enjoyed your show."

Horner similarly praised notoriously anti-immigrant (and anti-gay, and who got suspended from their show for calling Whitney Houston a "crack ho") Los Angeles radio hosts John and Ken: John and Ken from KFI, never mute your facts and personal opinions. You are one of the few media personalities who speak the truth, even when the truth is not popular. I will miss listening to your discussions."

Horner also had words of encouragement for conservative poster boy Tim Tebow: 

Tebow, I really wanted to see you take charge of an offense again and the game. You are not a good QB by todays standards, but you are a great football player who knows how to lead a team and WIN. You will be "Tebowing" when you reach your next team. I have faith in you. Get out of that circus they call the Jets and away from the reality TV star, Rex Ryan, and Mark Rapist Sanchez.

Gee, wonder why the MRC doesn't want us to know about this? Perhaps because fully quoting from the manifesto shows Horner to be all over the place politically and can't be pinned down to a single ideology (and is probably crazy).

Posted by Terry K. at 10:21 PM EST
WND Tries To Spin Away Rachel Maddow's Criticism Of It
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In 2011, WorldNetDaily editor declared, "I don’t pay too much attention to MSNBC and Rachel Maddow. About the only time I watch this kind of programming is when it focuses on me." It's in that spirit of selective obliviousness -- and Farah's notoriously thin skin -- that a Feb. 5 WND article by Bob Unruh is dedicated to spinning away Maddow's criticism of WND:

MSNBC host Rachel Maddow says it’s really hard for the left wing of the U.S. government to operate because the other half – the conservatives – are not willing to adopt the “evidence” she suggests is irrefutable.

And she can’t stop herself from taking public swipes at WND for its reporting on some of the issues liberals have had difficulty advancing.

Immediately thereafter, Unruh quotes Maddow mentioning the false story about "the Muslim Obama jihad on child Reagan’s home" without acknowledging that WND promoted that false story.

The bulk of Unruh's article  is dedicated to rebutting claims by Maddow and fellow MSNBC host Chris Hayes on the issue of global warming -- an issue about what Maddow did not specifically criticize.

Unruh wrote that Maddow and Hayes "did not discuss the evidence from emails leaked from the University of East Anglia, the premiere global warming advocacy center," going on to reference how WND columnist Christopher Monckton is "regarded as an expert on the issue." But in doing so, Unruh ends up justifying Maddow's criticism of WND:

  • Monckton is not a scientist, has made numerous misleading and incorrect claims about climate change and once falsely claimed to be a Nobel laureate, making him a very dubious "expert."
  • The stolen emails do not offer evidence of any sort of conspiracy to perpetuate the false notion of climate change, as Unruh and Monckton suggest.

Unruh quotes Monckton citing one stolen email stating, "The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment, and it is a travesty that we can’t." But that's taken out of context; as Wired points out, the article accompanying the email states that global warming is continuing, despite random temperature variations that would seem to suggest otherwise, and the scientist in question has responded by saying that the email was noting that "we don’t have an observing system adequate to track it, but there are all other kinds of signs aside from global mean temperatures — including melting of Arctic sea ice and rising sea levels and a lot of other indicators — that global warming is continuing."

Unruh also repeats a claim that "a recent report in the Daily Mail of London said the purported 'consensus' on global warming is disintegrating after new data indicate the planet has not warmed in 15 years." In fact, the Daily Mail distorted the data by picking an arbitrary starting point that obscures the overall warming trend as demonstrated over a longer period of time.

Unruh then wrote that "Maddow launched into another rant about WND’s reporting about of several issues involving Obama," but he makes no effort to rebut anything she said. That's because he can't -- among the things Maddow highlights is WND's discredited claim that Obama's wedding ring contains Arabic characters stating, "There is no god except Allah" and Jerome Corsi's peddling of unsupported claims that Obama is secretly gay.

Unruh concludes by stating that Maddow's "outspokenness occasionally has landed trouble at her doorstep. A lawsuit, now on appeal, alleges that she defamed a Christian minister by maliciously asserting he advocated the execution of homosexuals." That, of course, would be lying preacher Bradlee Dean. Unruh does not mention that Dean's lawyer, Larry Klayman, has done work for WND, making this yet another conflict of interest that WND has failed to disclose as basic journalistic ethics demand.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:39 AM EST
Saturday, February 9, 2013
Newsmax's Doug Wead Shifts His Paul-Fawning From Ron to Rand
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax columnist Doug Wead spent a good chunk of the 2012 presidential election process being a cheerleader for Ron Paul. Now that Paul has retired from Congress, it's no surprise that Wead has turned his attention to Paul's son, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul.

And that's exactly what Wead does in his Feb. 7 column praising Rand Paul's speech at the Heritage Foundation, where he "outlin[ed] before the stuffy G.K. Chesterton conservatives in the audience a new foreign policy for the Republican Party, one that offers a better fit for new realities."

Wead went on to proclaim himself (and PUal) a member of the "liberty movement," whatever that means, and  concludes with a fawning flourish: "We can only hope that our nation will come out of its stupor and find the wisdom in Rand Paul’s clarion call."

Posted by Terry K. at 9:37 PM EST

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