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Thursday, October 10, 2013
Meanwhile ...
Topic: Media Research Center
Media Matters highlights the "unabashed transphobia" of the Media Research Center's Matt Philbin, as displayed in a Washington Times op-ed claiming that LGBT movement is part of a broader left-wing effort to "dismantle" Western civilization.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:49 PM EDT
WND Launches Meaningless Petition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An Oct. 8 WorldNetDaily article is dedicated to touting WND's latest anti-Obama petition:

Got your Obamacare rate hikes? Like the deductible? How about the coverage? Still want it? Or is there another path you’d like to see Congress take?

The time to tell your representatives and senators is right now, or, as the minister says at weddings, “forever hold your peace.”

A new petition has been launched urging Congress to roll back President Obama’s “fundamental transformation of America.”

The issues are multiple: the government shutdown because Obama refused to compromise with House Republicans, the president’s demand to have unfettered access to borrowing and spending more taxpayer money, the intimidating warning that if the GOP doesn’t cave in Obama will allow the “full faith and credit” of the nation to be compromised.

It’s a petition urging the House of Representatives to “stand strong and united, and not to cave in to the ‘make-the-shutdown-hurt’ and extortionist tactics of President Barack Obama.”

The article strangely doesn't mention the fact that WND created the petition. Nor does the article state what WND will do with the petition when it gets enough signatures, however many that may be.

Perhaps that's because the petition itself is beside the point - the real goal is to serve as a vehicle for gathering email addresses. The end of the petition states:

Notice: You will also be signed up for WND's free emails so you can keep up to date with breaking news and special offers from WND. You may change your email preferences at any time.

This petition may not go anywhere -- heck, it's almost guaranteed not to -- but WND will have a longer email list it can sell to advertisers.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:48 PM EDT
NewsBusters Throws Evangelicals Under the Bus to Deflect From Catholic Sex Abuse
Topic: NewsBusters

We've documented how NewsBusters' Dave Pierre is so desperate to distract people from sexual abuse in the Catholic Church that he'll throw other religions under the bus.

Pierre has done it again in an Oct. 7 post:

Just last week, Boz Tchividjian, a prominent Liberty University law professor and the grandson of Billy Graham, stood before a roomful of journalists and declared that Evangelical missions are a "magnet" for sexual abusers and that Evangelicals "are worse" than the Catholic Church at handling the problem.

Speaking to the annual gathering of the Religion Newswriters Association (RNA) in Austin, Texas, Tchividjian said that Evangelicals have "sacrificed the souls" of innocent children, and of known data from abuse cases, a shocking 25 percent are repeat cases, he claimed. Tchividjian is also the executive director of an organization called Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (GRACE), which works on combating abuse in the Evangelical community.

Last summer, GRACE spearheaded an online petition condemning the "silence" and "inattention" to sex abuse in Evangelical organizations, especially its missions.
Where are you, mainstream media?

Despite reporting saying that Tchividjian made his remarks to a "roomful of journalists," not a single major American media outlet reported Tchividjian's eye-opening and shocking claims. (Update: As this post was going to publication, we saw that Huffington Post did indeed post a story about Tchividjian's claims.)

Pierre neglects to mention that the evangelical community is not made up of a single organization with a worldwide reach in which there were systematic efforts to hide abuse, as what happened in the Catholic Church. Evangelicals are made up of several small denominations, none of which even approaches the size of the Catholic Church, and numerous unaffiliated church communities.

While sexual abuse of children is horrific no matter where it takes place, Pierre has not demonstrated that any condoning or cover-up of such abuse has occured on the level of what happened in the Catholic Church. Without a single large organization to point at, such abuse will continue to be reported on a local level.

Pierre is simply continuing his campaign of distracting attention from Catholic sexual abuse by pointing elsewhere.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:34 PM EDT
WND's Lee Hieb Piles Up The Falsehoods And Deceptions
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We don't know who keeps track of such things, but Dr. Lee Hieb seems to have approached some kind of record for having the most falsehoods and deceptions in a single column.

Hieb begins her Oct. 7 WorldNetDaily column:

So, Warren Buffet woke up and called foul to Obamacare. John Boehner finally found a spine and tried to call a halt to Obamacare. But does it matter? Isn’t it all too little, too late?

In fact, Buffett (whose name Hieb misspells throughout her column) did not say such a thing -- the remarks were taken out of context and originally spoken three years ago. Buffett himself said, “It’s 100 percent wrong … totally false.”

Hieb then wrote:

I presume that the “Wizard of Omaha,” whose house I pass frequently on my way to and from shopping, is not stupid financially. He presumably gets the idea that you cannot spend more than you make, nor can you pay people to be idle.

First, Buffett is called the "Oracle of Omaha." Second, it seems highly doubtful that Hieb really does "frequently" pass by Buffett's house.

According to Hieb's LinkedIn profile, she is a surgeon at Stewart Memorial Community Hospital in Lake City, Iowa, which is, according to Google Maps' preferred route, 132 miles from Omaha. One online bio of Hieb states that "She currently divides her time between an Orthopaedic practice in Iowa, chicken raising and caring for her husband and two sons," which further suggests she has little time to go out of her way to drive by Buffett's Omaha home.

She appears to live in Logan, Iowa, which is closer to Obama but still nearly 40 miles away. She seems to be kept busy there fighting city notices to remove chickens from her property. With so much traveling between Logan and Lake City, Obama would be far out of her way to visit with the frequency she claims, let alone to go as far into the city as one must to drive past Buffett's house.

Hieb then rants:

But until we hold Congress to the Constitution, it doesn’t matter what law they pass anywhere about anything. You can go to jail for all sorts of violations of their little bureaucrat regulations, which is how Dr. Natale ended in Federal Prison for something he wrote in an operative note and how an ophthalmologist in San Diego ended in federal prison for choosing the wrong CPT codes and how a businessman ended in prison for importing the wrong subspecies of crustacean.

Dr. John Natale was imprisoned for something a little more serious than "something he wrote in an operative note." Most people would call it Medicare fraud. According to the Chicago Tribune, Natale was convicted on two counts of making false statements, and "the trial jury found that for at least two patients in 2004, Natale prepared false post-operation reports containing details about aneurysm repairs that he never performed, and falsely describing the surgeries he did perform as being more complex and elaborate than they actually were." The judge also found that Natale obstructed justice while testifying in his own behalf at trial.

Hieb doesn't give enough info on "ophthalmologist in San Diego ended in federal prison for choosing the wrong CPT codes," but it appears she's referring to Jeffrey Rutgard, whose case the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons -- where Hieb is past president -- has championed. Rutgard was convicted in 1992 of 132 counts of fraud (which presumably involved a lot more than putting down the wrong billing codes), for which he was sentenced to 11 years in prison and ordered to pay $16 million in restitution. On appeal, some of the charges were dropped and that sentence vacated; he was resentenced to time served in prison.

To what end is Hieb directing all of these falsehoods and misrepresentations? Bashing Obamacare, of course. Hieb does graciously concede that Obamacare did not start "the collapse of America," but asserts that it "will be the straw on the camel’s back to finish."

Posted by Terry K. at 2:51 AM EDT
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC's Double Standard on Vaccines
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center hates it when people fearmonger about vaccines -- while it fearmongers about anti-HPV vaccines like Gardasil. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 8:29 PM EDT
WND's Farah Conspiracy-Mongers About Shooting Outside Capitol
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah writes in his Oct. 6 WorldNetDaily column:

I wonder if Holder will zealously pursue charges against the Capitol police for riddling with gunfire the car and body of a young mother and black dental hygienist, Miriam Carey, whose baby was with her at the time.

I kinda doubt it.

Did Miriam Carey break the law? Yes.

Did she have a bad driving day? Yes.

Did she make some very bad decisions? Yes.

But did she try to kill anyone? I have not seen any evidence to that effect.

It sounds to me like she freaked out because she was surrounded by men pointing guns at her and her baby.

Should the police think twice about pointing guns at people in such situations? Maybe.

Should the police think twice about firing their weapons at a car that might be carrying an innocent child? Yes.

Should the police think twice about using an execution-style firing squad on an unarmed woman when she finally exits her vehicle? Yes.

Should Farah think twice before engaging in such conspiratorial speculation? Yes.

Farah's admonition about the police "firing their weapons at a car that might be carrying an innocent child" is nonsensical. He seems not to understand that every car "might be carrying an innocent child," and he offers no evidence that police had any reason to suspect a child was in the car in the first place.

We suspect that Farah would advise police to be less reticent about shooting a suspect if said suspect "might be" a Muslim.

Such paranoiac ranting is of a piece with his house attorney, Larry Klayman, who declared that the police who shot and killed Carey were "Obama's henchmen." No wonder Farah keeps such an obviously incompetent lawyer on the WND payroll.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:43 PM EDT
Newsmax's Hirsen Unhappy With Pro-Obamacare 'Propaganda'
Topic: Newsmax

James Hirsen begins his Oct. 7 Newsmax column by grousing that "Young Americans are being inundated with propaganda that sings the praises of Obamacare."

That's ironic, considering that Hirsen's column appears at a website that inundates its readers with propaganda opposing Obamacare.

But Hirsen is willing to turn a blind eye to that as he bashes "liberal Hollywood elitists" for supporting "the mounting Obamacare debacle." (That sounds like propagandistic language, doesn't it?)

Hirsen takes particular offense to a "Saturday Night Live" skit mocking Michele Bachmann and John Boehner that "additionally made the GOP’s efforts in Congress the subject of further humiliation." Hirsen called the skit "pornographic" and huffed: "Hopefully, for the public, this will be the last straw. No private or public figure should have to endure this type of nationally televised wholesale ridicule and derision, political leaders of any party affiliation being no exception."

Funny, we can't recall a single instance when Hirsen came out so aggressively against ridicule of a liberal. Perhaps Hirsen can point us to one, if it exists.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:51 AM EDT
Updated: Thursday, November 14, 2013 12:49 AM EST
WND Removes Aborigines From 'Black Mob' Article, Doesn't Explain Why
Topic: WorldNetDaily

It took a while, but WorldNetDaily has removed the image of Australian aborigines from an Oct. 6 article by Colin Flahery that's supposed to be about "black mob violence."

But in typical WND style, it has not mentioned the deletion of the dishonest image to its readers, let alone publicly explain why it was deleted. Tweets and emails directed at WND by ConWebWatch have gone unanswered, though one could surmise that the deletion is our answer.

But we still have the screenshot of the erroneous image, as well as its use in promoting the article (above), so we will continue to bring this up as necessary until WND publicly explains the snafu to its readers.

Yes, we're clearly horrible people for demanding WND live up to professional journalism standards. But they fancy themselves to be real journalists, so we will hold them to that standard until they tell us not to.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:32 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 11:10 AM EDT
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
MRC Whines That Fringe Climate Deniers Are Being Ignored
Topic: Media Research Center

Julia Seymour writes in an Oct. 2 MRC Business & Media Institute item:

The UN’s climate panel (IPCC) released its latest warning about "catastrophic" climate change on Sept. 27, garnering the frantic attention of all three broadcast networks that night. CBS even aired a claim about temperatures rising “more than 200 degrees."

Predictably, the evening news shows on ABC, CBS and NBC Sept. 27 repeated the IPCC’s dire warnings without including any skeptics and without mentioning past failures such as their inability to accurately predict warming or sea level rise.

ABC’s “World News with Diane Sawyer,” NBC “Nightly News” and CBS “Evening News” all failed to include criticism of the IPCC with the exception of a swipe against “skeptics” on ABC. NBC continued to link weather events like Hurricane Sandy to climate change while CBS aired a statistic that one scientist called “meaningless.”

With the words “big warning” onscreen, ABC announced the “landmark” report from “top scientists.” Dan Harris went on to mention weather events including “superstorm Sandy,” and ominously warned that the “UN report says we will be seeing much more of these kinds of things in the coming decades as a result of climate change ...” Of course, that’s what the IPCC has been saying for years.

Harris acknowledged the existence of other viewpoints, but immediately tore them down saying, “skeptics have predictably accused the UN panel of being alarmist, but Princeton climate scientist Michael Oppenheimer, who is on the panel, says this is a major wake up call.” Yet Oppenheimer himself has been accused of activist junk science by other scientists, according to meteorologist Anthony Watts’ website. Harris didn’t happen to mention that.

Seymour didn't mention that these "other viewpoints" are considered fringe within the scientific community. One recent review of 12,000 peer-reviewed abstracts on "global warming" and "global climate change" showed that 97 percent of the papers that took a position on the cause said humans were causing it.

Seymour quotes deniers like Roy Spencer to attack the IPCC report. In fact, Spencer has a lengthy record of misleading on climate change.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:55 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 6:56 PM EDT
WND: Gay Rights Are A 'Trojan Horse for Totalitarianism'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

The latest issue of WorldNetDaily's Whistleblower magazine is heavy on the gay-bashing:

When it started, who could possibly have known it would turn out like this?

After all, it emerged right after the historic ’60s Civil Rights movement, which nobly outlawed racial segregation in America. And in the warm glow of the Martin Luther King era, many people came to believe “gays” were simply the next group needing protection from discrimination.

Of course, being an overwhelmingly Christian nation meant millions of Americans strongly objected to homosexuality on moral and religious grounds. But Americans are also the most pluralistic, tolerant and open-minded people on earth, and were increasingly inclined to give “gay rights” activists the benefit of the doubt.

Eventually warming up to a growing “gay-friendly” culture (promoted at every turn by the news and entertainment media), Americans abandoned their previous caution, flung their doors wide open and heartily welcomed the “gay rights” agenda with open arms.

However, it was a Trojan Horse. And most people had no idea what lay in waiting.

Today – as documented in October’s groundbreaking Whistleblower issue, titled “THE NEW SEXUAL REVOLUTION” – a new totalitarian order is sweeping the land.

Among the gay-bashing articles in this issue include anti-gay activist Scott Lively's rant that the rainbow belongs to God, not gays, and that Russians at the upcoming Sochi Olympics should take the rainbow back to prevent it from being used as a protest against Russia's law banning homosexual "propaganda."

Apparently, Lively and WND don't think that a Russian law censoring free speech is totalitarian at all.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:49 PM EDT
MRC Doesn't Like That Its Shutdown-Blame Study Is Being Mocked
Topic: Media Research Center

Remember how the Media Research Center complained because Republicans were accurately being blamed for the government shutdown? Now the MRC is complaining because it's being mocked for coming to that conclusion.

Tim Graham writes in an Oct. 4 NewsBusters post:

Jon Stewart “stooped” to publicizing a Media Research Center study last night on “The Daily Show.” Actually, he mocked an MRC study by Rich Noyes as adding a bucket to Fox’s “Bull[bleep] Mountain.”

Ah, yes, Jon Stewart, the man who said “Crossfire” was ruining America with its harsh partisan talk and held a “Rally for Sanity” with his keynote address announcing “We can have animus and not be enemies.” Apparently, blaming Republicans for the shutdown is like blaming floods on water[.]

Like MRC "study" author Rich Noyes before him, Graham doesn't address why it's wrong to blame Republicans for the shutdown -- he's just complaining that it's being done, because defending Republicans is his job.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:30 PM EDT
WND Treats Logrolling Review As 'News'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An unidentified WorldNetDaily writer breathlessly gushes in an Oct. 6 article:

According to a top Christian film-rating organization, “Disinformation,” the acclaimed new documentary from WND Films, is “a brilliant exposé of the communist strategy to destroy the West” which showcases a “very strong moral worldview” and “every minute of this two-part documentary is worth watching.”

That’s the assessment of MOVIEGUIDE, founded by Ted Baehr, chairman of the Christian Film & Television Commission and a well-known movie critic.

After reprinting much of the review, WND states:

“Disinformation,” concluded the review, which gave the production a four-star (highest possible) rating, “is a massive work, but well edited and keeps your attention throughout its running time. Although it could have been trimmed a little and tweaked in certain places, overall it is a must-see video exposé of communism. With time running out on faith and freedom, “Disinformation” is highly recommended viewing for every concerned American.”

Unmentioned by this anonymous WND writer:

  • Ted Baehr is a friend of WND editor Joseph Farah. In 2011, Farah touted his 23-year friendship with Baehr, adding that "I consider Ted Baehr a hero" and urging readers to donate to his "wonderful ministry."
  • WND published Baehr's 2011 book “How to Succeed in Hollywood (Without Losing Your Soul).”
  • WND has a business relationship with Baehr's Movieguide, publishing its reviews on the WND website.

This is not a review -- it's logrolling. The fact that WND is treating this "review" as "news" only confirms its logrolling nature.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:20 AM EDT
Monday, October 7, 2013
Bill Donohue At Newsmax: De Blasio Has 'Problem With the Truth' Because He Changed His Name
Topic: Newsmax

Bill Donohue huffs in an Oct. 1 Newsmax column about Democratic New York City mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio:

Quite frankly, Bill de Blasio has a problem with the truth. He was born Warren Wilhelm, Jr. in 1961. When he graduated from New York University in 1983 (where he was heavily involved in leftist causes), he changed his name to Warren de Blasio-Wilhelm. In 2002, he changed his name again, settling on Bill de Blasio. The only reason we know this is because the media put the spotlight on him, forcing the issue.

Donohue, of course, didn't mention why de Blasio changed his name, which has been explained:

"I came from a pretty broken family and my father was not around for much of my upbringing. And the side of my family that really brought me up was my mom's side, which is the de Blasio side," he said in an interview that aired on Hot 97-FM Wednesday morning.

De Blasio was asked about a Daily News story this week chronicling the evolution of his name.

"Over time I did make two changes," he said. "First I hyphenated my last names, and then I decided that really my mom's last name was the one that represented who I was and I ultimately made that change. But I am the same person throughout."

The candidate said he had always been called "Bill" or "Billy" by his family.

"I was given the formal name Warren when I was born, but for reasons I still don't understand was never called it. I was always called Bill or Billy my whole life. It's a mystery in my family but that's how it happened," he said.

That's not the only sleaziness Donohue engaged in. He also sneers that maybe de Blasio will "honeymoon in North Korea" if he wins.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:02 PM EDT
WND's Ellis Washington Again Pretends He's Not Likening Obama to Hitler
Topic: WorldNetDaily

For a guy who insists he's not likening President Obama to Hitler, Ellis Washington sure spends a lot of time likening Obama to Hitler.

Washington does so again in his Oct. 4 WorldNetDaily column, while of course denying he's doing any such thing:

One aspect of Hitler’s socialist universal health-care model was “racial hygiene,” the removal of certain “undesirable” segments of society who are judged beneath the Aryan ideal, thus “life unworthy of existence,” as Hitler would repeatedly say. Using his brutal panzer divisions, Hitler literally rolled out his universal health care throughout occupied France, Belgium and the Netherlands – those nations with mainly “Aryan” populations. Hitler used his military thugs of the Gestapo and SS Stormtroopers to implement universal health care in those very countries that he desired to Aryanize and perfect by sanitizing the populations through sterilization and medical murder of all persons unfortunate to have physical or mental defects.

Of course, I do not contend that Obama is Hitler, but if America foolishly adopt policies of national socialism, then we fail to learn from history the innumerable grotesqueries, inhumanity and genocide of previous nations who tried universal health care. To grant governments this god-like power over birth, life and death issues will be misused, not exactly as it was in Nazi Germany, nevertheless a tragedy for society.

Pro tip: If you've written a column titled "Hitlercare vs. Obamacare," if you've included the above Hitler-Obama image with your column, and if you've stated that "Obama is using his Gestapo and SS Stormtroppers or so-called “navigators” (e.g., the youth, the unions, Planned Parenthood, NAACP, ACORN, La Raza, etc.) to propagandize the poor, the miseducated and minorities who are being exploited to lead this final blitzkrieg toward forcing universal health care," you are, in fact, contending that Obama is Hitler.

Stop lying to us, Ellis. Especially stop telling us lies that are so transparently false.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:20 PM EDT
MRC Runs With Distortion Of Harry Reid's Words on Cancer Research
Topic: Media Research Center

Last week, it came to light that members of the conservative media are working to coordinate messaging on the government shutdown with the office of Sen. Ted Cruz. The Media Research Center has not mentioned this development to its readers (just like it has yet to mention the existence of another right-wing message coordination effort, Groundswell, despite its outrage ofer a liberal-leaning listserv, Journolist).

Whether or not anyone at the MRC is actually involved in Groundswell or Cruz's office, it's certainly trying to reinforce right-wing talking points. That was made even more clear with its effort to distort something Sen. Harry Reid said.

Susan Jones writes in an Oct. 3 article about an exchange between Reid and CNN reporter Dana Bash about a Republican attempt to fund the government on a piecemeal basis by, for instance, funding cancer research at the National Institutes for Health:

Bash tried again: "But if you can help one child with cancer, why won't you do it?"

"Listen," Reid said. "What -- why would we want to do that? I have 1,100 people at Nellis Air Force Base that are sitting home. They have -- they have a few problems of their own. To have someone of your intelligence suggest such a thing maybe means you're as irresponsible and reckless."

Jones conveniently left out the fact that  Reid's statement "why would we want to do that?" wasn't a response to Bash. As the video accompanying Jones' article shows, after Bash answered her question, Sen. Charles Schumer said, "Why pit one against the other?" and Reid picked up on that.

The rest of the MRC ran with the distortion:

  • NewsBusters' Tom Blumer got angry with responsible reporters putting Reid's words in their proper context, insisting that Politico's Dylan Byers "pretended that an interjected remark by New York Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer meant something, when it didn't."
  • NewsBusters' Randy Hall also edited out Schumer's statement in recounting how Reid's response was "loaded with venom."
  • The MRC's Matthew Balan wrote that "Nancy Cordes stood out on Wednesday's CBS Evening News for pointing out Senator Harry Reid's eyebrow-raising "why would I want to do that" answer to a question about approving funding for cancer research for children."
  • NewsBusters' Blumer later huffed in response to a claim that Republican outrage over Reid is "manufactred": "As to what Harry Reid said on Wednesday, it was self-evidently outrageous. CNN reporter and virtual card-carrying liberal Dana Bash, the person who questioned Reid, certainly felt that way. As if that wasn't enough, Reid, attacked Bash for having the nerve to ask a reasonable question."

Of course, at the MRC, full context matters only for conservatives, not liberals.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:39 PM EDT

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