MRC's Gainor, Bozell Miss The Point on Reza Aslan Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Dan Gainor makes an attempt to defend FoxNews.com's atrocious interview with author Reza Aslan at, of course, FoxNews.com:
There’s nothing the left likes better than attacking Fox News. Almost all liberal media “analysis” revolves around such activity, without ever noting the outlandishly liberal biases of the traditional outlets that outnumber Fox like the Persians outnumbered the Spartans. Throw in a chance to defend Islam and bash Christians and you get to light up the Internet like a Christmas (or Solstice) tree.
That was the case when Lauren Green, religion correspondent for Fox News (the folks who run this website), interviewed the controversial author of the new book “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth.” In a Fox News.com Live interview Green dared to ask Reza Aslan, a Muslim who converted to Christianity and then back to Islam, the most obvious of questions:
“Now, I want to clarify: You are a Muslim, so why did you write a book about the founder of Christianity?”
Gainor is missing the point. The issue is not that Green asked the question; it's that she spent most of the 9-minute interview re-asking the question, and much of the rest of the time insisting that Aslan respond to criticisms of his book that Green had yet to do any discussion of its contents.
Indeed, as the Washington Post's Erik Wemple points out, Green's line of questioning was a clear sign that she hadn't read the book whose author she was interviewing. Gainor makes no mention of that; instead, he attacks Wemple for daring to criticize Green, adding, "In the liberal media, one dare not ever question the motives of Muslims."
Meanwhile, Gainor's boss, Brent Bozell, managed to get it even less in a Fox News appearance. Like Gainor, Bozell defended Green for asking the question, ignoring that she spent most of the interview obsessing over the issue.
Bozell, however, spent most of the appearance bashing Aslan, bizarrely claiming that Alsan is "not a very good Muslim" if he put scholarship before his religion.
We have to wonder: Does Bozell think Robert Spencer is a "good Christian" because he writes books trashing Islam?
Bozell also complained that Aslan said "he had a history degree in religion. In fact, he doesn't." This appears to be a line of attack taken from the conservative Catholic publication First Things, which splits hairs over the fact that Aslan's Ph.D. is actually in the sociology of religion. As TPM' Josh Marshall writes:
I’m sorry. This is silly. Plenty of ‘historians’ - as in working academic historians - have degrees in sociology. How common that is generally depends on methodological framework you work in. This is especially so in the academic study of ‘religion’ since people study the topic sometimes in History Departments, other times in separate Religion Departments and sometimes in Sociology or Anthropology Departments. And this doesn’t even get to programs of religious instruction where you’re possibly studying theology but might also be studying from a history-based disciplinary focus. I have some sense of these things because I have a history PhD. This is not a ‘lie’ unless you’re really clueless or just hunting for gotchas.
It seems that, like Green, Gainor and Bozell are looking to bash an author of a book they can't be bothered to read.
As Aslan himself pointed out about his Fox interview, it's all about selling a product, and fear sells a product.
WND's Mitchell Smears Huma Abedin As A 'Muslim Brotherhood Asset-Slash-Mole' Topic: WorldNetDaily
Molotov Mitchell channels his WorldNetDaily co-worker Aaron Klein in his latest WND video, playing guilt-by-association to smear Huma Abedin as a "Muslim Brotherhood asset-slash-mole":
I mean, she’s the Muslim equivalent of a mob princess. I mean, she wanted to she could have this guy blown to smithereens by the Muslim brotherhood. In fact, Anthony better watch it because that can still happen. But why hasn't she? I mean, why the act? In a word, taqiyyah.
In Islam, taqiyyah is the practice of appeasing or deceiving infidels so that a greater strategic play can be made further down the road. Now, a lot of conservatives have yukked it up about how stupid Huma is to be standing by this gu, and I get it, it's the low-hanging fruit. I believe that Huma is far smarter than these guys give her credit for. I think she's keeping up this camouflage as a politican's doting wife because she wants to keep up the high security clearance that she enjoys by being close to high-profile Democrats.
So keep your eyes on this chick. She doesn’t have to be wearing a burqa to be undercover.
A few moments later in his video, without any trace of irony, ol' Molotov mocked conspiracy theorists who thought that George Zimmerman's rescue of a family from a wrecked SUV was staged. Go figure.
No, Michael Reagan, Obama Did Not Support A 'Stand Your Ground' Law Topic: Newsmax
Michael Reagan writes in his July 29 Newsmax column:
Using a technique pioneered by former Sen. John Kerry, President Obama was actually for ‘Stand Your Ground’ laws before he was against them. As the National Review’s John Fund discovered, in 2004 Obama didn’t just vote for — he co–sponsored — S.B. 2386 that actually expanded Illinois’ ‘Stand Your Ground’ law.
Democrats — who controlled both houses in the legislature — had no problem with Obama’s law or the concept of self–defense. His bill was passed unanimously by the state senate and with only two votes against in the state house.
But that was then, this is now and in his Trayvon Martin speech last week Obama was definitely against the same type of ‘Stand Your Ground’ law he co–sponsored in Illinois.
As we've previously noted, Obama supported a change in Illinois' "castle doctrine," which is not analogous to Florida's "stand your ground" law.
WND has been reporting on the trend to militarize local police departments for more than a decade. Here is a list of reports on the trend, which recently has begun to garner significant additional attention:
WND founder and CEO Joseph Farah wrote in a 1998 column titled “The cops are out of control” that while in years past seeing a police officer gave him a sense of security, it was no longer the case because of recent actions at the time by SWAT teams.
So, actually, it's not so big -- Minor doesn't list that many, and he has to go back to 1998 to compile as many as he does. And at least one of the cases he cites is not as "innocent" as he portrays. He writes:
In 2008, WND reported an incident involving SWAT members of a Colorado sheriff’s department who stormed a family’s house and held them at gunpoint to take custody of an 11-year-old for a medical exam sought by social services.
The 11-year-old, Jonathan Shiflett, had suffered bruises while horsing around in a mobile home park near New Castle where the family lives. But his father, Tom Shiflett, refused to allow paramedics who arrived after a neighbor apparently called 911 to treat his son. The father refused to allow the ambulance crew to take Jonathan to a hospital.
Multiple visits by police officers and sheriff’s deputies brought the same response, as did a visit from Social Services employees, who reported to court authorities:
“Thomas Shiflett shouted at this worker and advised this worker that if he obtained a court order, he better ‘bring an army,’” according to an affidavit filed by Matthew McGaugh, a caseworker for the Garfield County Department of Social Services.
The statement to “bring an army” was the basis for the sheriff’s executing a SWAT raid despite a court order simply directing him to search the home and remove the child.
Minor doesn't think that Shiflett's clear threat was sufficient cause to justify an armed response to him, "innocent" or not?
Minor avoided a related controversy to this case, in which WND's Bob Unruh was accused by a county sheriff of misquoting him in a WND article. Unruh denied it of course, then attacked the sheriff for not telling him the whole story.
AIM's 'Citizens Commission on Benghazi' Is A Kangaroo Court Topic: Accuracy in Media
A July 29 Accuracy in Media post by Roger Aronoff announced AIM's formation of a "Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi." This group, Aronoff claimed, "will focus on resolving some of the many questions surrounding the September 11th attacks last year on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, and the nearby CIA Annex, that remain unanswered to this day."
Actually, this "citizens' commission" looks more like a kangaroo court.
Here are the people on AIM's little commission:
Larry Bailey, Capt. (SEAL), USN (Ret.)
Charles Jones, B/Gen., USAF (Ret.)
Clare Lopez, former CIA operations officer
Admiral James Lyons (Ret.)
General Thomas McInerney (Ret.)
Wayne Morris Col USMC (Ret)
Wayne Simmons, former CIA officer
General Paul Vallely (Ret.)
Former Congressman and Retired Army Colonel Allen West
Of the rest, Lopez is a supporter of the MEK, which until recently was considered a terrorist group by the US government, and has written for the rabidly anti-Muslim Clarion Project; Simmons says the U.S. should profile students from Muslim countries and claims waterboarding is not torture; and Lyons claims that the scandal involving an extramarital affair by David Petraeus was a cover for Benghazi, suggesting that slain ambassador Christopher Stevens was supposed to be kidnapped and held hostage in exchange for release of "blind sheik" Omar Abdel-Rahman.
Only Morris appears to have made no public statements attacking Obama, and even that is suspect given that he's on a "citizens' commission" with other conspiracy theorists and Obama-haters.
Media Matters reports that during AIM's press conference announcing the "citizens' commission," several speakers lauded Fox News for its role in pushing forward attacks on the Obama administration over Benghazi. Speakers also repeated discredited claims, such as that a stand-down order had been issued preventing a military response to the Benghazi attack.
So far, it looks like AIM's "citizens' commission" has as much credibility -- and as much interest in fairness and facts -- as Joe Arpaio's "cold case posse" on Obama's birth certificate.
The Republicans who currently command the House of Representatives, rightly anticipating that Mr. Obama’s massive vote-buying among those whom his party’s policies have imprisoned in permanent, cringing dependence upon Auntie Sam for everything from food stamps (getting on for 50 million claimants) to Obailoutcare, decided to show who was boss by setting a limit on the amount the U.S. Treasury was allowed to borrow.
-- Christopher Monckton, July 16 WorldNetDaily column
Past presidents, both Bushes and the current impostor president, Barry Soetoro, aka Obama, have attended Alfalfa dinners. If you haven’t made the inner circle of elites, don’t expect an invitation.
Radical revolutionaries like Barack Obama, Hugo Chavez, Fidel Castro, Vladimir Lenin and Mao Zedong all see, or have seen, themselves as “freedom fighters.” Yep, virtually all communists/Marxists/socialists/progressives/liberals sincerely believe they are champions of freedom. Have you ever heard a left-wing dictator say he is against freedom?
However, in reality, what is going on in the country today between blacks and whites is far from funny. It is the sad result of black racism by the likes of Jackson, Sharpton and, even worse, our so-called President Barack Hussein Obama who effectively and predictably sided with the Martin family from the get go of this tragic mess.
WND has reported extensively on the failed efforts of U.S. first lady Michelle Obama to impose her brand of healthy eating on American school children. Even her own daughters, Sasha and Malia, opted out of healthy eating for Asian cuisine, and one school boycotted her food regimen. It isn’t working, but that isn’t what matters to Michelle Obama. Based on her actions, what matters to her is that those who are useful to her keep believing that she means well.
It had been speculated for some time that the Obama administration was clandestinely running guns to Syrian rebels, and that this was the reason for the assault, at least in part. I have gone as far as to suggest that the president himself either allowed or facilitated the attack in order to destroy evidence of the operation.
He is still beating the war drums of racism as he has from the beginning of this case. I don’t mean that he is fighting racism. I mean he is inflaming the passions of anti-white and anti-Hispanic black racism. He’s doing it knowingly. He’s doing it intentionally. And he’s doing it for the worst of all reasons – political gain and manipulation of his constituency, those Rush Limbaugh describes accurately as “low-information voters.”
I don’t believe Obama has any sympathy for Trayvon Martin. If he did, where’s his sympathy for the dozens of black youths killed daily and weekly in this country by mostly black perps? Why is a black death at the hands of a white or Hispanic man more appalling to Obama than a multitude of black deaths at the hands of blacks?
There is only one answer: Racism.
Am I saying Barack Obama is a racist? Yes I am. And as he continues down this path, I will continue to say it.
Plain and simple, Obama is the most despicable, criminally minded fraud to have ever occupied the Oval Office. He is not merely a disgrace, but a dangerous man whose allegiance to Islam, disdain of Jews and Christians, and favoritism toward all things black have cast him into the role of a very cheap, bigoted and hateful man. In contrast, Obama makes the felonious former President Bill Clinton look like a Boy Scout.
Yes, David Kupelian Knows A Lot About Lying Topic: WorldNetDaily
David Kupelian begins his July 28 WorldNetDaily column by declaring, "I thought I knew a lot about lying."
Why, yes, he does. As we've documented, Kupelian has used his position as WND managing editor to peddle myths, bias, and outright lies about President Obama and related subjects.
But, sadly, Kupelian wasn't making the kind of confession he needed to in order to properly repent for his sins (just like his boss, Joseph Farah). Rather, he's shilling for WND's new book by former Soviet Bloc intelligence official Ion Mihai Pacepa (another WND-linked writer who, like Reza Kahlili, does not make public appearances unaltered).In desperately trying to link Pacepa to Obama, Kupelian trots out his usual hateful smears:
First, forgive the unpleasant reminder, but in an era when the gravest threats to America emanate from two malevolent, expansionist ideologies – Marxism and Shariah Islam – we have twice elected a president in thrall to both. And the cowardly and craven news media made it happen. Moreover, government is broken, our culture is in the toilet, family breakdown is rampant, drug dependency (illegal and legal) are the new normal and God is increasingly being shut out of our society. You get the picture.
As we try to comprehend how America could possibly have sunk so low so quickly (remember, just 25 years ago Reagan was president and it was “morning in America”), along comes Ion Mihai Pacepa to once again expose the secret super-lies of sociopathic leaders and to shine his unique light into the oncoming darkness.
Of course, Kupelian is something of a sociopath as well. What other kind of person who seek to so desperately try and personally destroy a president and pretend it's "journalism"?
MRC Howled About Journolist, Is Silent About Groundswell Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center howled when the existence of Journolist -- an email list that included journalists and liberal think-tankers discussing political issues -- was revealed. NewsBusters alone has six pages of posts referencing it, and the MRC has two pages of links. MRC chief Brent Bozell declared that Journolist proved that journalists are "political strategists" who serve as "a shameless channel for leftist message coordination."
Bozell added, "What's most shocking is the silence. How many in the "mainstream" press are publicly denouncing those members of JournoList for their blatant disregard of journalistic ethics? Listen to the crickets..."
Last week, Mother Jones revealed the existence of Groundswell, an email list for conservative journalists and think-tankers that demonstrated that right-wing journalists are little more than a shameless channel for message coordination.
What has the MRC had to say about Groundswell? Listen to the crickets.
No MRC site, including NewsBusters, has made a peep to date about Groundswell despite all the noise it made denouncing Journolist.
WND's Geller Smears Muslim Author for Writing A Book on Jesus Topic: WorldNetDaily
Pamela Geller uses her July 23 WorldNetDaily column to take potshots at author Reza Aslan for daring to write a book on Jesus:
Recently this immature creep wrote a book (or more likely, had it written for him) about Jesus, with the pejorative title “Zealot.” The enemedia machine is in full throttle to deliver this seditious hater a bestseller. In what can only have been inspired by the Goebbels template, Reza Aslan will not only be on the Bill Maher show and “The Daily Show,” but this subversive lowlife will be speaking at universities like NYU, Ohio State and the University of Southern California, as well as at numerous public libraries and (gasp) synagogues like Temple Judea in Palm Beach, at upwards of $30,000 a pop. Despite denying basic Christian doctrines, he is speaking at several churches and even preaching the Sunday sermon at one.
You should ask yourself, how did we get here? How can a reasonable, educated and pre-eminent scholar like Robert Spencer be relegated to the very fringe (if that) of the literary world, while jihadist operatives like the vicious Reza Aslan are carried on the shoulders of the media and intelligentsia like a football hero at the end of an impossibly fought game.
Who would have imagined that 12 years after 9/11 the media and academic elite would laud this pro-nuclear Khomeinist? He is funded by who knows who, and he employs vicious trolls who spend their days spreading libel and defamation about Spencer and other freedom fighters, much the way the wicked witch of the west used the flying monkeys – and they, too, are very well paid.
Needless to say, GHeller doesn't back up any of smears of Aslan. As Aslan pointed out in a FoxNews.com interview by the hostile and misguided Lauren Green, he holds numerous degrees and wrote the book as a historian, not a Muslim.
Yet Geller wants us to believe that Aslan is inferior to her Muslim-hating comrade, Robert Spencer:
Not so long ago, Robert Spencer, one of the world’s leading scholars on Islam, wrote an extraordinary book entitled “Did Muhammad Exist?” It was a brilliant, original and scholarly work investigating the legitimate questions surrounding the historical value of the early Islamic texts about Muhammad. Spencer pulled together information from ancient documents with linguistic and archaeological data in a remarkable re-evaluation of Islam’s origins.
Robert Spencer is a writer without peer and a nonpareil scholar, the author of 12 books on Islam, jihad and related topics, including two New York Times bestsellers. Yet “Did Muhammad Exist?” was ignored and dismissed by the intelligentsia, the media elite and subversive academia.
But unlike Aslan, Spencer has no documented scholarship in studying Islam. And if Aslan is disqualifed from writing about Jesus because he is a Muslim, Spencer -- a Melkitte Catholic -- is similarly disqualifed from writing about Islam.
Further, as one critic has pointed out, Spencer does not speak or understand Arabic, which one would think would be a prerequisite to be the scholar of Islam that Spencer proclaims himself to be. Another critic says that Spencer's book "goes to an extreme in its disregard for proper source criticism, and its arguments have more in common with those skeptical and atheist critics of early Christianity than with the best of modern historical scholarship."
Geller wants us to believe that an anti-Muslim activist should be more trusted to write about Muslims than a highly credentialed religious historian's work on Jesus.
Newsmax's Latest Scheme: Fleece The Government For All It's Worth Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax has a notablehistory of promoting dubious financial schemes to its readers. Now Newsmax is at it again -- this time with one that would seem to be at cross purposes to its conservative agenda.
Media Matters' Simon Maloy details how the Newsmax-published Franklin Prosperity Report is telling its audience to take advantage of a "weird trick" to go on taxpayer-funded vacations and "add $1000 to monthly Social Security checks," despite Newsmax being otherwise opposed to instances of government waste.
The Newsmax page telling you all about it says that people over 50 can "Grab up to $20,500 of the trillions in money, services, and other goodies that Uncle Sam may have ALREADY allocated for your family for 2013 — and find out about more than 40 unclaimed government grants, giveaways, and subsidized trips."
This is the usual Newsmax modus operandi -- throwing in a bunch of "free" reports on top of a "free" trial subscription to two Newsmax newsletters that you must cancel at the end of the "free" period to avoid being charged for an entire year's subscription to them, at a cost of $144 for both (which Newsmax optimistically frames as "convenient automatic renewal").
WND's Flaherty: It's Prudent To Assume That All Black People Are Violent Topic: WorldNetDaily
It seemed like a reasonable question: The AP reporter asked me if I thought the pundits and police overreacted to the Trayvon verdict when they predicted and prepared for riots, mayhem, lawlessness and all sorts of other black mob violence.
Toure and his crew on MSNBC thought so. He said anyone who anticipated violence was a racist, blah, blah, blah. The other panelists dutifully and mournfully nodded their head in agreement as they always do when Toure makes one of his pronouncements on pervasive and permanent racism.
Which is pretty much all the time.
Post-verdict, we saw some violence, with the worst in Oakland and Los Angeles. Like most black mob violence, police and media tried to pretend it was less than it was.
Now the Associated Press, Time magazine and others are wondering if all the preparations for post-Trayvon violence were overkill, a symptom of the white racism and white supremacy keeping so many black Americans down.
This is not a hypothetical question. It is the exact question city leaders in Indianapolis had to answer just a few days after the acquittal as they prepared for their annual Black Expo. For the last 10 years, Black Expo has featured some nasty violence, shootings, looting, rampaging and other mayhem after the Friday and Saturday night events released thousands of black people into the downtown.
Last year, police were ready. This year too: They turned downtown into a police state complete with towers, high-powered weapons, dogs, SWAT, tactical vehicles, infra red binoculars and police breaking up crowds of five or more and telling them to split up.
Miami Beach was faced with the same choice over the Memorial Day weekend as it prepared for the 300,000 black people in town for the annual Black Beach Week.
This event has a similar history, but way worse: Shootings. Lawlessness. Robberies. Assaults. Defiance. Property destruction. Vandalism. Drugs. And like Indianapolis, trash: Mountains and mountains of trash on the streets and beaches of this town that manages to stay pristine 51 weeks a year.
Miami Beach used the same play book: Towers. Lights. Dogs. Guns. Cops. Cops. And more cops everywhere.
After the fact, some saw the lack of violence in Indy and Miami as a success. Others wondered if all the police presence was an overreaction. Profiling.
So you make the call: Cops stopped riots. Or riot preparation is just another example of the over-policing that fills prisons with disproportionate amounts of black people.
Easy enough to settle. Call Indy. Call Miami Beach. Ask the Mayors if they plan on going cop-less next year.
Newsmax Sticks False Headline On AP Article Topic: Newsmax
A July 28 Associated Press article states that "Four out of 5 U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near-poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives, a sign of deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream."
WND Reveals 'Secret' About Huma Abedin (That It Reported Months Ago) Topic: WorldNetDaily
A July 25 WorldNetDaily article by Aaron Klein carries the headline "The explosive secret Huma is hiding." According to Klein, "there is a glaring part of Huma Abedin’s personal story that is not being told – her ties to the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamic supremacists."
But this supposedly "secret" information was previously reported by WND months ago. And it's all the kind of guilt-by-association attacks that Klein specializes in.
Klein writes: "As WND reported last August, a manifesto commissioned by the ruling Saudi Arabian monarchy places the work of an institute that employed Abedin at the forefront of a grand plan to mobilize U.S. Muslim minorities to transform America into a Saudi-style Islamic state, according to Arabic-language researcher Walid Shoebat." Klein makes no mention of the fact that numerous questions have been raised about Shoebat's self-proclaimed ex-terrorist background, as well as the finances of the charity Shoebat operates, making him a less-than-credible source.
The otherclaims about Abedin rehashed by Klein from earlier WND articles are also sourced to the untrustworthy Shoebat. And Klein provides no direct link between Abedin and terrorist activity.
Surprisingly, Klein comes off as a voice of reason on Abedin compared with WND columnist Diana West, who slimes Abedin as "a veritable Muslim Brotherhood princess."
CNS' Jeffrey Selectively Reports on Pope's Speech Topic: CNSNews.com
Terry Jeffrey writes in a July 26 CNSNews.com article:
Speaking in the impoverished Varginha neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Thursday, Pope Francis said that it is necessary to "give bread to the hungry," but stressed that society cannot promote the common good when it ignores the "fundamental pillars that govern a nation"--listing as the first two of these "life" and "family."
Jeffrey made no mention of the pope's main message during his Varginha speech -- that the wealthy should do more to help achieve justice for the poor:
Speaking amid cheers in the soccer field of a Rio de Janeiro shanty town, Pope Francis urged people who are more economically privileged to “never tire” of working for solidarity and social justice.
“The Brazilian people, particularly the humblest among you, can offer the world a valuable lesson in solidarity, a word that is too often forgotten or silenced, because it is uncomfortable,” he said July 25 to the residents of Varginha, a “favela” of the city hosting World Youth Day.
He continued, “I would like to make an appeal to those in possession of greater resources, to public authorities and to all people of good will who are working for social justice: never tire of working for a more just world, marked by greater solidarity.”
Is that message from the pope not important to a man who makes more than $122,000 a year?