ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

ConWebWatch: home | archive/search | about | primer | shop

Friday, March 21, 2014
CNS' Charlie Daniels Distorts Obama's Comments on Constitution

Charlie Daniels writes in a March 18 column:

President Obama has made the statement that the U.S. Constitution is a flawed document.

It is not a president's job to decide the merits of the Constitution but rather to enforce it as it is, or convene enough states to call for a constitutional convention and change it. It is not in his purvey or power to decide whether to enforce and defend it, it is in his oath of office and when he in any way refuses to abide by every sentence in the document, he violates his oath.

Daniels thus becomes the latest right-winger to willfully misinterpret what Obama said in a 2001 interview.

To support his claim about Obama, Daniels links to a 2008 Newsmax article quoting Obama saying that the Constitution is "a remarkable political document that paved the way for where we are now" but also "reflected the fundamental flaw of this country that continues to this day.” Newsmax adds that "Obama did not elaborate on the 'fundamental flaw' that persists."

But as we've documented, when you look at the context of the interview, the "fundamental flaw" Obama was referring to was the Constitution's tolerance of slavery.

Is Daniels saying that Obama or any president should have tolerated a Constitution that permitted slavery? Sure seems that way.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:58 PM EDT
More Obama Lies From WND's Farah, Now With Added Out-Of-Context Numbers
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah has always been a shameless liar, and he does it again in his March 18 WorldNetDaily column:

Who says Barack Obama isn’t doing all he can to help his country?

There are some cynics out there who don’t believe it. Some even suggest he’s doing his best to wreck it.

The facts suggest otherwise.

If the gospels of Matthew and Luke are correct, and one’s heart is where one’s treasure is, then Obama truly loves his country.

What am I talking about?

For several years now, WND has been tracking the administration’s investment in what Michelle Obama calls her husband’s “home country in Kenya.” I don’t call it that, mind you – never have. That’s what Obama’s wife calls it.

You gotta love how Farah makes a false statement -- that for Obama, Kenya is "his country" -- and then five paragraphs later denies he has done such a thing and blames it on Obama's wife.

Anyway, the point of the article is to sum up WND's selective reporting on "projects and spending Obama has directed to Kenya." No context is provided, of course; Farah can't be bothered to tell us any actual funding figures for previous years or funding for other countries in Africa. He's just cherry-picked these numbers and wants you to think that they mean something even though they're utterly devoid of context.

Like we said, Farah is a shameless liar.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:03 PM EDT
MRC's Graham Keeps Up The Misguided Pierce-Rage
Topic: NewsBusters

Tim Graham and the Media Reserarch Center have been misportraying an article about Ted Kennedy for more than a decade now, and they're certainly not going to stop now.

In a March 10 NewsBusters post bashing "left-wing crazy man Charles Pierce," Graham adds that "Pierce is the (unintentional) funny man who imagined Chappaquiddick victim Mary Jo Kopechne thanking Ted Kennedy in her old age...'if she had lived.'"

As we've repeatedly documented, Pierce was not praising Kennedy -- the full context, and Pierce's declared intent, was to show that the Chappaquiddick incident effectively keeps him from having the "moral credibility" to be elected president.

But the truth doesn't pay at the MRC -- fitting a narrative. And Graham is apparently going to keep cramming Pierce in his discredited narrative no matter what.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:05 AM EDT
Thursday, March 20, 2014
WND's Unruh Still Whitewashing Phill Kline's Misconduct
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Bob Unruh has been a dutiful stenographer for anti-abortion zealout Phill Kline. Unruh's whitewashing continues in a March 15 WND article:

Former Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline, whose law license was suspended by the state Supreme Court because of rules violations in a politically charged case where one of his investigation targets had partied with then-Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, is calling on the U.S. Supreme Court to cut through the biases held by state court officials and overturn the decision.

The petition to the U.S. Supreme Court has been filed by the Life Legal Defense Fund on behalf of Kline, who was punished as a result of his incendiary work to investigate and bring into compliance with the law the abortion industry in his state.

The legal ethics case was brought against him after complaints from abortion industry players who had been under investigation for refusing to comply with the state’s abortion reporting laws.

Yeah, Unruh would love to have you believe that Kline is being persecuted for his anti-abortion activism. But that would be a lie. As we've documented, Kline was found to have violated 11 rules governing the professional conduct of attorneys during his tenure as Kansas attorney general and a later post as a district attorney.The court cited three aggravating factors to support the indefinite suspension: selfish motive, a pattern of misconduct and his refusal to acknowledge the wrongful nature of any of his misconduct.

Instead, Unruh would have you believe that Kline merely committed "minor, if not irrelevant, inaccuracies." Unruh is playing stenographer again, this time lovingly detailing an appeal Kline's suspension while refusing to tell the full story or even letting any Kline critic have the floor for even a single paragraph.

But then, Unruh is not a journalist -- he's a lazy stenographer.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:58 PM EDT
MRC Pretends Obama Is Giving Away The Internet
Topic: Media Research Center

A March 17 Media Research Center item by Scott Whitlock is headlined "Networks Yawn as Obama Administration Gives Away the Internet." Whitlock touts how "Fox News extensively covered this development, but the network morning and evening shows ignored the monumental decision," concluding that "BC, NBC and CBS couldn't be bothered with wondering if giving away the internet is a good idea."

Perhaps that's because Obama is not, in fact, "giving away the internet."

As we noted when GOP operative Brad Blakeman went on a similar tear about it, the plan to transfer ICANN, the body that manages Internet names and addresses, to international control has been in the works since 1998, and it was always the plan that the U.S. would eventually relinquish control over ICANN.

In touting Fox News' coverage of the subject, Whitlock ignores the fact that Fox got it wrong by framing it as Obama "giving away the internet."Whitlock also invokes Mike Huckabee's criticism of Obama's alleged "giving away the Internet" without explaining what expertise, if any (and we're certainly not aware of any), that Huckabee has on the subject.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:46 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: WND's Military Coup
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's Michael Maloof tried to get less-than-stable ex-military officers to bash President Obama -- at least until it became clear that what they really wanted was to overthrow the president. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 11:47 AM EDT
Wednesday, March 19, 2014
WND's Latest Desperate Grab At Credibility Fails Miserably
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily spent much of the past year touting how some previously unknown website proclaimed it to be "trustworthy" (conveniently ignoring the child-sex charges against a minister at the church that ran the website). Now WND is making another desperate grab for credibility.

A March 11 WND article proclaims:

Less than 48 hours after added a new category for “Top Websites 2014,” a small but enthusiastic band of WND fans made it No. 1 – topping Google, Amazon, Twitter, Facebook and Netflix among many other more well-known giants.

Though only a few hundred votes had been cast, the expression of Internet users is not without precedent, says Joseph Farah, founder of


“What does all this mean?” asked Farah rhetorically. “It doesn’t mean we’re the biggest website, of course – not even close with behemoths like Google and YouTube around. But it is a measure of loyalty and passion. WND has always evoked those qualities – and, I hope, always will.”

Tellingly, WND does not include a link to the list in its article. That's because if it did, it would be clear that the ranking is utterly meaningless.

It's also a very volatile list. As of this writing, WND is ranked 33rd out of the 36 websites listed. The top of the list is now dominated by gay-themed websites and blogs -- mainly because the currently top-ranked site, the gay blog Joe.My.God., had his readers freep the poll. It seems that Joe.My.God.'s readers are much more loyal and passionate than WND's.

Despite Farah touting the temporary ranking as one of "loyalty and passion," it was nothing of the sort. The screenshot at Joe.My.God of WND at the top of the list showed that it received only 68 positive votes. As of this writing, WND has received only 71 positive votes and a whopping 3,405 negative votes. 

Note one other thing: Ranker lists the person who submitted each website to the list. The person who submitted WND? Joseph Farah.

There are myriad reasons nobody believes WND, and desperate grabs at credibility are just one of them.

P.S. That minister, by the way, was found guilty of the child sex charges and sentenced to 20 years in prison. WND, which published a December 2012 article by Bob Unruh taking the minister's side and portraying his prosecution as anti-Christian bias, did not cover the trial or sentencing.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:32 PM EDT
Meanwhile ...
Right Wing Watch catches editor in chief Terry Jeffrey ranting during a radio appearance about public education, accusing President Obama of “federalizing 4-year-olds” by promoting preschool and declaring that Obama and Kathleen Sebelius favor "something akin to" the Communist Manifesto model for education.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:32 PM EDT
WND's Kupelian Still Fearmongering About Antidepressants
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian loves to fearmonger about antidepressants. He does so again in a March 16 WND column:

Without a doubt, they’re two of today’s most alarming health trends:

  • A staggering one in every 50 American children now has some form of autism, according to the most recent reporting from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • The number of people now taking antidepressants like Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft, Effexor, Luvox and Celexa – all with the FDA’s scary “black box” suicidality warning label – has become equally stratospheric, with 11 percent of all Americans 12-and-over taking them, and an astonishing 23 percent – almost one in four – of women in their 40s and 50s.

These two megatrends intersect, researchers say, when pregnant women are treated for depression, anxiety and other maladies with antidepressants.

Indeed, multiple studies conducted over several years now lead research scientists to conclude that women taking any brand of modern antidepressants – commonly called “SSRIs” (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) – while pregnant run an increased risk of giving birth to a child with an autism spectrum disorder.

Yet, the public – most importantly, the tens of millions of American women currently taking antidepressants, including 7-13 percent of all pregnant women – strangely has heard very little about this research and its important implications.

Perhaps that's because such research is not conclusive.

He highlights a two-year-old "groundbreaking peer-reviewed study out of California-based Kaiser Permanente documented a significantly increased prevalence of children born with autism spectrum disorders in pregnant mothers taking antidepressants, especially during the first trimester, compared with mothers not taking such medications." But he buries mention of a Danish study published in December found no increased risk. WebMD goes on to summarize the limits of previous studies, including the one Kupelian highlighted:

In one recent U.S. study, mothers' SSRI use during pregnancy was tied to a twofold increase in the odds that her child would have autism. A Swedish study saw a similar pattern, though the risk linked to the drugs was smaller.

But both studies included only small numbers of children who had autism and were exposed to antidepressants in the womb.

The new study is "the largest to date" to look at the issue, using records for more than 600,000 children born in Denmark, said lead researcher Anders Hviid, of the Statens Serum Institute in Copenhagen.

And overall, his team found, there was no clear link between SSRI use during pregnancy and children's autism risk.

WebMD goes on to point out it may be the underlying depression, and not the antidepressant, that contributes to increased autism risk. Indeed, in the Danish study, "once the researchers factored in the psychiatric disorders themselves, that statistical link fell away."

Kupelian tries to pick apart that study, relying on the Kaiser Permanente researcher who gave the results he wanted. He also quotes Dr. David Healy, who has been accused of fearmongering about every drug approved since 1990.

Should the risks of antidepressants be investigated? Absolutely. But Kupelian is an unreliable messenger -- as we've documented, he blamed  Andrea Yates killing her five children on antidepressant use, ignoring the fact that Yates and her husband were in thrall to a fundamentalist Christian minister who led them to live a needlessly austere lifestyle.

Kupelian is not speaking knowledgably -- he's simply trying to scare people.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:37 AM EDT
Tuesday, March 18, 2014
No, Brad Blakeman, Obama Is Not Giving Away The Internet
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax gives space for Republican operative Brad Blakeman to rant:

Republican strategist Brad Blakeman is slamming plans by the U.S. government to open up the body that manages Internet names and addresses to the global Internet community.

Blakeman, who warned in a Newsmax column in 2010 that President Barack Obama was surrendering control of the Internet, told Newsmax TV's John Bachman and J.D. Hayworth on "America's Forum" Monday, that the administration's decision has been a long time coming.

"I gave a factual account of what the president was going to do and sure enough now in 2014, safely re-elected, our internationalist president is seeking to give our most important precious asset, the Internet, to basically international control. The United States developed it with taxpayer dollars at DARPA, which is at the Pentagon, as an open architecture networking. We didn’t keep it for ourselves, we monetized it and were able to make countries a lot smarter, a lot freer and now the president seeks to be beholden. It does not make any sense. It's not in our interest," he said.


Asked whether he would agree with a foreign policy expert who over the weekend likened the move to the giveaway of the Panama Canal in the 1970s, Blakeman replied, "No, it is more dangerous than that. The Panama Canal is certainly important to us, but nowhere near important as the Internet, which touches every American household. Our military uses the Internet now, our other government agencies as well as our private sectors rely on it.

"We created it. Nobody has ever made a complaint about America not being free and open and giving access to those who wanted it either through the registration of domain names or the giving out of IP addresses."

Blakeman said it is just another example of Obama's strategy of appeasement.

In fact, the plan to transfer ICANN, the body that manages Internet names and addresses, to international control has been in the works since 1998, and it was always the plan that the U.S. would eventually relinquish control over ICANN.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:39 PM EDT
WND's Flaherty Finds More Blacks To Race-Bait About
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's Colin Flaherty is taking a short break from race-baiting about "black mobs" in order to race-bait about black politicians. He writes in a March 16 WND article:

The attorney general of Pennsylvania shut down an investigation of corrupt elected officials because everyone they caught – on tape – taking cash and gifts … was a black Democrat.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the sting operation began with a deal: A black lobbyist (who had been accused of fraud and participated in the sting to gain favorable treatment from the authorities) offered elected officials – black and white, Democrat and Republican – cash and gifts in exchange for votes.

Over a three-year period, the lobbyist found a handful of politicians willing to take the deal.

“Sources with knowledge of the sting said the investigation made financial pitches to both Republicans and Democrats, but only Democrats accepted the payments,” said the Inquirer.

Furthermore, all the offending Democrats were black, members of the Philadelphia delegation to the state legislature.

But Flaherty, as he's prone to do, obsesses over the racial aspect, downplaying claims that the investigation was problematic in other areas.

One key clue to Flaherty's race-baiting agenda is that he omits the name of the lobbyist at thecenter of the sting -- Tyron Ali -- identifying him only as a "black lobbyist." In fact, Ali does not appear to be black at all.

Flaherty mentions only in passing that Ali "was under investigation for $430,000 in fraud as well as other cases of violations of election law." Ali had been more than under investigation -- he was charged with more than 1,700 counts related to defrauding the state by diverting money earmarked for meals for low-income children and senior citizens for his own use. The press release announcing Ali's arrest mentions nothing about "election law." Strangely, every single count against Ali was dismissed via secret negotiations between Ali's attorney and and the state attorney general's office.

But Flaherty doesn't care about such trifles -- not when there's black people to race-bait about.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:58 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, March 18, 2014 8:59 PM EDT
MRC Promotes Falsehood-Prone Todd Starnes
Topic: Media Research Center

Kristine Marsh devotes a March 13 Media Research Center Culture & Media Institute article to promoting the latest book by right-wing Fox News commentator Todd Starnes. Marsh allows Starnes to promote numerous dubious and unsubstantiated claims without any pushback:

In a recent interview, Starnes told the MRC’s Culture and Media Institute, “That is really disturbing for me. There isn’t a Christian influence or even family-friendly influence coming out of Hollywood anymore.” He cited the increasingly anti-Christian Saturday Night Live, which in a single recent episode mocked pro-lifers and the Bible. Another example is ABC’s mercifully cancelled “GCB” (“Good Christian Bitches”). The name says it all.

“God Less” is rife with examples of Christians forced to stand by while gays and other liberals relentlessly push their agenda. The litany is becoming familiar: bakery owners from Colorado and Oregon that refused to bake wedding cakes for same-sex couples; a Christian t-shirt company that would not print shirts for a gay pride rally; a New Mexico wedding photographer that would not give her services to a lesbian wedding;  college students across the country who were bullied by their professors to wear “gay pride” apparel or write essays that contradicted their Christian beliefs; and teachers who were punished for signing pro-traditional marriage pledges, not attending pro-gay plays or posting their beliefs on their personal Facebook pages.


Telling such stories, of course, makes Starnes awfully unpopular in certain circles, “It’s getting to the point that I don’t mind the death threats,” he laughed, “as long as they’re creative.” To him, it’s a matter of preserving the right to speak up. “Sometimes stuff gets to you but its all opinion and everyone has one. That is what I love about America –hearing everyone’s ideas. The Left doesn’t appreciate that. They have this mentality that you can have an opinion as long as that’s my opinion. I know that because I live among them in New York.”

Marsh doesn't mention the real reason Starnes is  "awfully unpopular in certain circles": His tales of Christian persecution tend to be overblown, if not outright false. For example, Alan Noble of Patheos has documented a few recent examples of Starnes' so-called reporting being exaggerated to the point of falsehood. Noble points out that "consistently deceives and manipulates facts in order to exaggerate or fabricate incidences of Christian persecution," adding, "For our own good, we need to reject and denounce hucksters like Starnes."

Marsh, it seems, is too busy promoting Starnes' book to contemplate the possibility that he's not the reporter he claims to be.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:25 PM EDT
WND's Kant Slobbers Over Sarah Palin
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's Garth Kant brings his fanboy tendencies -- last seen when he served as the (presumably) unpaid PR rep for Steve Stockman's joke of a run for John Cornyn's Texas Senate seat -- to a new subject in a March 16 WND article:

It’s not everyday Sarah Palin calls to chat.

So, the woman on the other end of the line cautiously asked, “I’m going to go out on a limb. Can we get your endorsement for our book?”

“Oh, yeah, absolutely. I would love to. Whatever I can do. And I’ll post it, I’ll tweet it. I’ll do whatever you need me to do. You guys are awesome!” raved Palin.

The book Palin is so eager to endorse is WND Books’ upcoming blockbuster, “What Women REALLY Want.”

It is written by WND’s Dr. Gina Loudon and her colleagues at Politichicks, Ann-Marie Murrell and Morgan Brittany.

The theme of the book, empowering strong and independent women, resonated immediately with Palin.

And the authors hope women all across America will feel the same way.

Loudon and Murrell were discussing “What Women REALLY Want” on “The Dennis Prager Show” when “Mama Grizzly” decided she had to throw her support behind the authors.

Kant wasn't done fawning over Palin:

But CPAC wasn’t entirely under the sway of the GOP establishment. They made sure to make Palin, author of “Going Rogue,” the featured, and closing, speaker.

And she did not disappoint.

As WND reported last weekend, Palin brought down the house with a speech that radiated with hope and an optimism that the dawn of a new era of conservatism is here.

She ended on a soaring high note, bringing the crowd to its feet for the umpteenth time, while declaring, “I have never been more optimistic about the future. The best is yet to come.”

Well, WND doesn't exactly bother with journalism these days, so Kant's silly, sycophantic fanboyism fits right in with that.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:43 AM EDT
Monday, March 17, 2014
Newsmax Hauls Out 'D.C. Super Lawyer' To Defend Republican Senator
Topic: Newsmax

David Patten uses a March 15 Newsmax article to haul out "D.C. super lawyer Cleta Mitchell" to vociferously defend Republican Sen. Mike Lee against suggestions of corruption -- necessary because the claim was reported by a conservative newspaper, the Washington Times:

“I think this is a smear,” Mitchell told Newsmax, “and you can quote me on that. I think this is a smear. Mike Lee is as honest as the day is long.”

A well-known figure in conservative politics, Mitchell advised Lee on the short-sale of his former Alpine, Utah home. That transaction is at the center of what she sees as a transparent attempt to impugn Lee’s reputation.

Urgent: Do You Approve Or Disapprove of President Obama's Job Performance? Vote Now in Urgent Poll

“He talked to me at the time to make sure that he didn’t break any rules, that whatever he did was done completely in accordance not just with the rules and the law, but to make sure there was no appearance of impropriety,” she stated.

Brian Phillips, Lee’s communications director, issued a one-sentence statement Friday regarding the latest developments as reported by Washington Times editor and vice president John Solomon.

"The article doesn't present any new information about the senator and, as it relates to his house, the senator filed all the required documentation,” Phillips stated.


Although Solomon stated that a common pool of witnesses is providing leads about each senator, Mitchell maintained Friday that the issues affecting Reid and Lee “are absolutely unrelated.” She added that she has confirmed this “with sources,” and believes the source of the smear is someone in Utah.

“There’s no relationship between Harry Reid and Mike Lee on this,” Mitchell told Newsmax. “… These are two completely different scenarios that have somehow gotten reported as the same thing, when they’re absolutely unrelated.”

As someone who worked with Lee on the matter in question, Mitchell is essentially advocating for a client. Did anybody think she wasn't going to defend Lee?

Posted by Terry K. at 9:58 PM EDT
WND's Kupelian Dishonestly Suggests Terrorism Caused 1999 Plane Crash
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian uses a March 16 WND article to try and liken the missing Malaysian airliner -- about which we continue to know nothing -- to the 1999 crash of a EgyptAir plane that he tries to blame on terrorism:

Less than 15 years ago, in October 1999, one of the worst air disasters in modern history occurred when Egypt Air Flight 990 crashed into the Atlantic shortly after takeoff from New York.

It wasn’t until two-and-a-half years later that the National Transportation Safety Board finally reached the conclusion many observers and analysts had claimed immediately after the crash – that the plane’s Egyptian copilot, Gameel El-Batouty, had cut power to the engines and intentionally sent the plane plummeting into the ocean, killing all 217 people aboard.

The U.S. government panel declined to suggest a motive, except to speculate that El-Batouty might have “committed suicide.” And the Los Angeles Times suggested El-Batouty might have been taking revenge against an Egypt Air executive who was aboard the flight.

However, to most people, “mass murder” or “terrorism” constituted a more apt description than “suicide” regarding the wanton annihilation of hundreds of passengers. Despite the fact that the copilot, El-Batouty, had calmly repeated over and over the Arabic phrase “Tawakkalt ala Allah” – meaning “I rely on Allah” – for almost a minute and a half during his deed – and that such behavior, according to the NTSB report, “is not consistent with the reaction that would be expected from a pilot who is encountering an unexpected or uncommanded flight condition” – the federal report steered clear of suggesting jihad as a motive.

Based on flight-data recorder and other evidence, the Atlantic Monthly in 2001 published “The Crash of EgyptAir 990,” a chilling, moment-by-moment reconstruction of how “El-Batouty had gone haywire” after the main pilot took a bathroom break, leaving him free to purposely crash the plane.

Kupelian didn't read that Atlantic Monthly article close enough, for it notes that the FBI failed to uncover any terrorist links to the pilot. While we will likely never learn the truth about why the pilot deliberately crashed the plane, one possibility is that an EgyptAir executive who had demoted the pilot was a passenger on the plane.

It's a more logical explanation than Kupelian's suggestion of terrorism, which is not supported by any official investigation. But when has lack of evidence ever stopped anyone at WND before?

Posted by Terry K. at 7:48 PM EDT

Newer | Latest | Older

Bookmark and Share

Get the WorldNetDaily Lies sticker!

Find more neat stuff at the ConWebWatch store!

Buy through this Amazon link and support ConWebWatch!

Support This Site

« March 2014 »
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31

Bloggers' Rights at EFF
Support Bloggers' Rights!

News Media Blog Network

Add to Google