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Sunday, October 2, 2016
NewsBusters Argues Clinton Didn't Really Deny Alleged Rape Because Spokesman Issued His Statement
Topic: NewsBusters

NewsBusters blogger Tom Blumer has been living on the rhetorical edge. Last week, Blumer was trying to justify the racism of Trump supporters by arguing that it's really not racist to believe that blacks are less intelligent and more rude because liberals made them that way.

Now, in a Sept. 29 post, Blumer is straining logic to its limits by insisting that Bill Clinton's denial that he raped Juanita Braoddrick isn't real because the denial came from spokesmen and not directly from Clinton's mouth.

No, really. Blumer is actually arguing this:

In a narrow sense, the item discussed here really shouldn't be newsworthy, because it's based on history which has for all practical purposes long been settled. But now that it's being treated as news, let's look into the can of worms at least two media outlets have chosen to open, perhaps without fully grasping the consequences of their doing so.

Leada Gore, an reporter who says she's "been covering Alabama news for more than 20 years," reported Tuesday morning that Ed Henry, an Alabama lawmaker who is also the state's Donald Trump for President co-chair, tweeted a sharp response to accusations of sexism directed at Trump by Hillary Clinton in Monday night's debate, specifically: "It is ironic that Lying Hillary blast (sic) Trump as a sexist when she is married to Bill, who is likely a rapist." We're supposed to believe that this tweet is controversial or over the top. It is, of course, no such thing.

Leada, you may not like it, and the topic may be unpleasant, but Henry's tweet really isn't beyond the pale. Nevertheless, the Associated Press has posted an abbreviated story based on Gore's work at its main national site. Both reports critically err in claiming that "Bill Clinton has adamantly denied" the related rape charge.


Why couldn't the president -- on national television -- offer an "adamant denial" of his own? Why answer in such an indirect and lawyerly way? Kendall was (and still is) Bill Clinton's lawyer. That denial reads: "Any allegation that the president assaulted Mrs. Broaddrick more than 20 years ago is absolutely false. Beyond that, we're not going to comment."

As Broaddrick's son Kevin Hickey stated in an April 12, 1999 story at the New York Observer, "He didn’t even say, ‘The President told me this. How do we know it’s not David Kendall’s opinion of what happened?” The key is: We don't — and if you ask Mr. Kendall anything about his statement, he'll either say nothing if not under oath or cite attorney-client privilege if he is. Mr. Kendall's "denial" also could be read as a tacit admission that the encounter on the date Broaddrick contends that the rape occurred did indeed occur, and that if Mr. Clinton were ever to speak on the matter, he would likely attempt to defend that encounter as consensual.

But wait a minute. I just indicated that Bill Clinton has never spoken on the matter, while both the and AP items (each saved in full for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes) have implied that he "adamantly denied" the charges personally[.]


So let's be clear here. In the circumstances, nothing short of a direct denial spoken by Bill Clinton himself constitutes a genuine denial. Is there any evidence that Bill Clinton himself has denied Juanita Broaddrick's rape allegation in his own voice since she made it over 17 years ago?


What needs to be removed from both the and AP reports is their statement that Bill Clinton has "adamantly denied" the charges. Unless they can drum up some evidence to support that claim which has surfaced in the past eight months, there is no record that Bill Clinton himself has ever done that himself.

Yep, that's Blumer's argument -- Clinton's denial is not "a genuine denial" unless Clinton himself is on record saying it. Sad, yet not unexpected from a guy who insists racism isn't really racism.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:25 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, October 2, 2016 9:16 PM EDT
WND Portrays Obama Smugly Looking Down On Its Readers -- Again
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We've documented how WorldNetDaily is exceedingly fond of appending out-of-context pictures of Obama to its article in order to suggest he's smugly mocking WND readers. WND does this again in a Sept. 15 article by Bob Unruh:

WND is being doubly dishonest this time because the article is not about anything Obama personally did or said -- it'a about a U.S. Commission on Civil Rights letter pointing out that anti-gay religious activists are hiding behind the First Amendment to perpetuate their discrimination. True to form, Unruh uses the letter to play the persecution card, quoting only critics of the letter and whining that "The commissioners deliberately chose to single out for denigration Christian colleges or organizations that don’t promote homosexuality and business owners who choose not to endorse homosexuality with their artistic talents, such as photography and cake-making."

How much does WND know what they're doing by using this photo in this context? If you download the picture, you'll see that WND has named the photo "obama_shrug_smirk.jpg". 

Posted by Terry K. at 11:48 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, October 2, 2016 11:54 AM EDT
Saturday, October 1, 2016
NewsBusters Blogger Gloats Over Tim Tebow Homer
Topic: NewsBusters

Factually challenged NewsBusters blogger Dylan Gwinn dedicates an entire Sept. 28 post to Tim Tebow hitting a home run in his first at-bat in an instructional league. Gwinn sarcastically adds that "If you listen carefully, you can hear the leftist, sports media clap and cheer with joy for Tebow and his incredible achievement."

First, it's not that big of a deal. Instructional league is the absolute lowest run of professional baseball, and it's no more newsworthy than any other instructional league player who hits a homer.

Second, the un-newsworthiness of Tebow's homer is underscored by the fact that he didn't get so much as a hit in the five other at-bats he had in that same game -- something Gwinn curiously fails to mention. That means Tebow's batting average after that game was a less-than-incredible .180.

(Even the pitcher who gave up the homer to Tebow was good-natured about it, tweeting to him that "I thought we agreed you were taking first pitch" and quipping about himself, "Tough day for that kid! Probably should spend the rest of his instructs focused on locating his fastball down!")

Third, the "leftist sports media" did, in fact, note Tebow's homer. We found stories about it at ESPN, Sports Illustrated, Time magazine and the New York Times, among many others. Heck, even TMZ wrote about it.

Nevertheless, Gwinn concludes his post by sneering, "Choke on it sports media."

Remember, Gwinn's tiny tantrum here is all about a low-level baseball player getting one hit in six at-bats.

UPDATE: Gwinn's Media Research Center colleague, commentary editor Michael Morris, gushed even more profusely about Tebow's homer, calling it "typical Tebow" and adding, "Just what will happen next in the storied sports career of the Florida native? We’ll all just have to wait and see." Like Gwinn, Morris didn't mention that Tebow went hitless in his other five at-bats.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:44 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, October 2, 2016 10:44 AM EDT
WND Falsely Claims Mall Shooter Committed Voter Fraud
Topic: WorldNetDaily

On Sept. 28, WorldNetDaily published an anonymously written article claiming that Arcan Cetin, the "Turkish immigrant" suspected in the shooting deaths of five people in a Washington state mall, committed "voter fraud" by voting in state elections because he is a "permanent resident alien with a green card" but "not a citizen with the right to vote."

Just one problem with that: it's not true.

(The tone of the article, which seems to be equating voter fraud with mass murder, is another thing altogether.)

Right Wing Watch reports that this story originated with the right-wing voting suppressors at True the Vote.The only source WND's anonymous reporter cites is "KVI News," which is apparently a reference to Seattle radio station KVI, whose "news" feed shows it doesn't actually have a news department -- the station broadcasts right-wing talkers. Local KVI host John Carlson interviewed Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman, which is apparently where WND culled its quotes of her from.

But as Right Wing Watch noted, a Seattle TV station has reported federal officials saying that after further investigation, Cetin is a naturalized U.S. citizen and, thus, legally registered to vote.

WND has not corrected its article as of this writing. But since WND has a tendency to make articles disappear without warning or explanation, we've copied it below for posterity should this false article meet the same fake.

* * *

'We don't have a provision in state law ... to verify someone’s citizenship'

Add voter fraud to the list of Arcan Cetin’s offenses.

Cetin, 20, is the Turkish immigrant arrested Saturday for the Friday night shooting and killing of five people in a Burlington, Washington, mall. Security camera’s show Cetin entering the mall briefly without a weapon, leaving and then returning with a rifle.

Cetin fled but was apprehended 24 hours later. He has reportedly confessed to the five murders.

Now, election officials and Washington Secretary of State, Kim Wyman, have confirmed that Cetin was illegally registered to vote and voted in three elections in the state in 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Cetin is classified as a permanent resident alien with a green card that allows him to work, but he is not a citizen with the right to vote.

Cetin immigrated to the U.S. from Turkey when he was 6-years-old.

Voters in Washington must attest to their American citizenship when registering to vote, but the state does not require proof. Election officials told KVI News the state’s election system operates on the honor system.

“We don’t have a provision in state law that allows us – either county elections officials or the Secretary of State’s office – to verify someone’s citizenship,” said Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman.

“So, we’re in this place where we want to make sure we’re maintaining people’s confidence in the elections and the integrity of the process, but also that we’re giving this individual, like we would any voter, his due process. We’re moving forward, and that investigation is really coming out of the investigation from the shootings.”

Washington sets the penalty for voting by a non-citizen at up to five years in prison or a $10,000 fine.

“The penalties are very serious. That’s why we want to make sure we’re very measured, and this is why we want to make sure we’re very calm and purposeful in how we move forward,” Wyman saidd. “The stakes are very high on both sides. You want to keep the confidence level high, but you also want to protect the voting rights of everyone.”

Wyman admitted she had no way of knowing how many non-citizens were registered to vote in the state, but she did not think the revelation about Cetin indicated there was a need for worry.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:31 AM EDT
Friday, September 30, 2016
AIM's Kincaid Mad New Black History Museum Won't Push His Far-Right Agenda
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Cliff Kincaid of Accuracy in Media is so mad about the new National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. that he devotes not one but two columns to complaining about what it won't cover -- which, coincidentally, hews closely to his own (and AIM's) far-right, commie-obsessed agenda.

Kincaid does concede that "many exhibits" at the museum "will be worthwhile," but adds, "In the spirit of truth and transparency, we offer examples of exhibits that we have reason to believe, based on advance publicity, will not be available to those visiting the museum."

In arguing that "The Democratic Party’s history of slavery" should be an exhibit, Kincaid trots out Dinesh D'Souza's terrible, factually challenged film on the Democrats, references Hillary Clinton's praise of Robert Byrd while censoring the fact that Byrd renounced his KKK ties decades before his death, and lamenting that "no Republican presidential candidate has gotten more than 15 percent of the black vote since 1965" while censoring the fact that the racists who refused to change with the times after the Democrats fully embraced civil rights in the 1960s quit the party and became Republican.

In other words, Kincaid wants the museum to promote a false claim: that the Democratic Party of the 1860s is exactly the same as the Democratic Party of today.

The rest of Kincaid's list -- again, so long it takes two columns for him to explain -- is similarly dubious, pedantic and even more commie-obsessed. Among them:

  • The Communist mentor of the first black President. 
  • Martin Luther King Jr.’s womanizing, plagiarism, and communist advisers. 
  • Paul Robeson: a black dupe of reds.
  • Why Richard Wright broke with the Communist Party.
  • The NAACP once opposed communism.
  • White people were also slaves.
  • Slaves helped burn down and build the White House.
  • Blacks Are Worse Off Under Obama. 
  • Blacks in America have had a much better life in America than Africa.
  • Abortion is black genocide.

Kincaid's obsession withblacks who embraced communism in thte middle part of the last century ignores the political reality of the time: Unlike much of America, the Communist Party (in theory, at least) believed in black equality, and anti-communism started out in part as a way to suppress blacks. Indeed, communism helped push the rest of the country toward full civil rights for blacks. Is Kincaid so anti-communist that he won't give the commies credit for that?

In short, Kincaid's rants are said like a right-winger who sees blacks not as people but as a political talking point to be deployed and exploited to his own (and AIM's, since it willingly pays Kincaid to write this stuff) partisan purposes.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:36 PM EDT
MRC Falsely Claims GOP Didn't Speak to White Supremacist Group
Topic: Media Research Center

Media Research Center researcher Brad Wilmouth has turned into quite the Donald Trump toady. We just caught him through the conservative Cato Institute under the bus to protect Trump.

In a Sept. 21 post, Wilmouth is offended that CNN guest and college professor Jason Johnson asserted that Trump "continually associates himself with terrorist organizations like the Klan," complaining that "Johnson has a history of making incendiary accusations of racism." Johnson's claim about a Trump-KKK link was overstated but not without basis, so Wilmouth has something of a point.

But Wilmouth tried to go further, asserting that in a TV appearance earlier in the hear, Johnson "repeated a discredited claim that Louisiana Republican Rep. Steve Scalise spoke to a white supremacist group in Louisiana in 2002." Wilmouth links to one of his own posts on the subject from February that offers this defense for Scalise:

The story about Rep. Scalise speaking to a racist group originated in December 2014 with a liberal blogger who claimed that the Louisiana Republican spoke at a convention for the European-American Unity and Rights Organization -- founded by white supremacist and former KKK leader David Duke -- in the congressman's home state in 2002.

Even though the man who booked hotel space for the convention, Kenny Knight, has claimed the event Rep. Scalise spoke to was a separate event for his local community group which he held in the same hotel to take advantage of the available space, while a flyer for the convention shows no sign that Scalise was one of the scheduled speakers, the CNN guest still tried to use the story to connect Republicans to the KKK.

Wilmouth seems to have missed the fact that more than a year earlier, Scalise issued an apology for speaking to Duke's organization.

So Johnson's claim is not "discredited," and Wilmouth's defense of Scalise is dishonest and ignores the relevant fact that Scalise apologized for it, and he repeats his false defense in order to dishonestly bash a Trump critic.

That's "media research" these days at the MRC.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:10 PM EDT
WND Is Just Asking: 'Was Hillary Wired for Trump Debate?'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

As part of its anti-Hillary jihad, WorldNetDaily will publish anything and everything that makes Hillary Clinton look bad, as long as it's not explicitly libelous (and even then, WND will seriously consider running it anyway because that's how much Joseph Farah and Co. hate Hillary).

Slinging every bit of anti-Hillary trash it can get its grubby little hands on would seem to be the explanation behind this post-debate article by Bob Unruh:

Images have emerged following Monday night’s 2016 presidential debate between Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton and GOP nominee Donald Trump that are fueling widespread speculation online that Clinton may have been wired for the event.

And some say she may have been wearing a battery pack, an earpiece, a microphone and a wire.

Charisma News cited a Reuters image that it said appeared to reveal a flesh-colored earpiece in her left ear.


“What does she have in her ear? There are three possibilities: A hearing aid – loss of hearing or dulled hearing is not uncommon for people of Clinton’s age, particularly for those who have suffered a traumatic head injury, like a concussion. Many different companies market hearing aids that are meant to be concealed.”

The second possibility, some say, is an “inductive earpiece.”

“Stage actors often use these to help with cues and missed lines during performances. They are meant to be concealed, and with Bluetooth technology, those speaking to Clinton through it wouldn’t even have to be in the same city.”


Charisma News also speculated that Clinton could have been wearing “an anti-seizure device.”

“Sound can trigger certain forms of seizures. A German-engineered device called the Epitect fits inside the ear and can detect and warn of an impending seizure, but more closely resembles a more traditional hearing aid with a component that hangs behind the ear.”

“None of these paint a particularly good picture for the Democratic presidential nominee,” the report said. “Either she has an as-yet undisclosed health condition, ranging from mild to severe, or she’s been cheating …”

The whole article is like this, with Unruh simply regurgitating speculative trash. No wonder WND is in severe financial trouble.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:00 AM EDT
Thursday, September 29, 2016
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC's War on Jorge Ramos
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center wants the Univision anchorman to lose his job for committing the offense of being critical of Donald Trump. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 8:34 PM EDT
WND Tries To Smear Ex-Miss Universe In Retaliation for Criticizing Trump
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily loves to lament how the women who accused Bill Clinton of various sexual improprieties have been "disparaged" and the victims of "misogyny" by Clinton surrogates.

But when it comes to a woman who accuses Donald Trump of sexist behavior, the misogynists at WND are happy to disparage and smear.

After the Sept. 26 presidential debate, in which Hillary Clinton highlighted Donald Trump's record of sexism by noting he had denigrated beauty pageant contestant Alicia Machado as "Miss Piggy," WND went into Trump-surrogate mode, resulting in an article by Bob Unruh in which he recounts old claims that Machado was accused of driving her boyfriend from the scene of a crime and of threatening a judge. But Unruh never mentions that, as the Daily Beast has noted, no charges were ever filed against Machado in relation to those incidents.

WND followed up this attack with an anoymously written article that goes heavy on the Trump-style sexism --  the headline simply calls her "Miss Piggy" instead of her real name. This one claimed that Machado "had sex on live TV with another contestant on a Spanish show modeled after the CBS reality-TV series 'Big Brother.'" WND goes into lurid detail:

In a now infamous episode of “La Granja,” the former “Miss Universe” romped beneath the sheets with Spanish TV host Fernando Acaso, according to U.K. newspaper The Sun.

“La Granja” means “The Farm” in Spanish.

The broadcast showed Acaso lying on top of her, with Machado whispering in about his sexual prowess. The Playboy model is also seen parading around topless.

Machado parades around topless in the reality-TV show “La Granja.”

Machado also wrote down her thoughts about her sex partner, which were later read aloud by the show’s host.

“Really, that guy is cute, he loves me, he understands me, he accepts me, he protects me, he supports me, he respects me,” read her testimonial.

“He treats me like a goddess, he [bleeps] me like a [bleep]!”

In addition to dismissing Machado as a "Playboy model," WND's article is topped with a picture of Machado holding up a copy of her centerfold in Playboy magazine, which is funny because WND seems to have forgotten that Trump not only did an interview with Playboy and appeared on a Playboy cover but also reportedly tried to get Playboy to do a "Girls of Trump" nude photo shoot.

The anonymous writer asserted that these never-proven allegations about Machado's private life and her appearance on a reality show "cast doubt on whether her claims about Trump should be believed." Actually, no it doesn't, since WND at no point cites Trump deny saying those things to her.

WND is trying to smear a critic of Trump, pure and simple.

Remember this sexist, lurid coverage of Machado the next time WND complains that Bill Clinton's accusers are being unfairly criticized.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:56 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, September 29, 2016 6:38 PM EDT
MRC Throws Right-Wing Think Tank Under the Bus to Defend Trump
Topic: Media Research Center

How important is it to the Media Research Center that Donald Trump get elected president? It's even throwing its fellow conservatives under the bus.

In a Sept. 20 post, the MRC's Brad Wilmouth wrote about the tweet by Donald Trump Jr. in which he "analogized accepting Syrian refugees, some of whom might be terrorist infiltrators, to eating from a bowl of Skittles in which a few pieces of the candy are poisoned." After first complaining that CNN's Chris Cuomo called Trump Jr. for dehumanizing refugees by using the analogy, Wilmouth then attacked the conservative Cato Institute, which coincidentally the week before released data pointing out that  the actual chance of American being killed in a terrorist attack perpetrated by a refugee is one in 3.64 billion per year. Wilmouth was having none of that factual undermining of Trump's anti-immigration agenda, insistsing that Cato used the wrong data:

Although it is true that Trump Jr.'s bowl full of Skittles analogy greatly inflates the numbers on what proportion of refugees are likely to be terrorist infiltrators, the CATO Institute numbers cited by Bump are themselves very misleading in trying to make the likelihood of violent problems seem very tiny.

Instead of trying to estimate how many acts of mass violence in public places might be perpetrated by a small number of terrorist infiltrators, the study focused on the odds that an individual person would die from being killed by a refugee, finding the chances to be less than one out of three billion.


The CATO study -- which examines refugees who entered the country between 1975 and 2015 -- found 20 refugees out of more than three million who turned out to be terrorists. The study did not address whether refugees from a particular region like Syria where the U.S. is in an active war with an enemy that is known for utilizing terrorist attacks in public places night manage to be infiltrated by a larger number of a more determined enemy, with the study leaning on refugees from the past who no doubt came from various regions.

The study also did not address the blatant difference between terrorists killing 10 or 50 or 100 people in a public place, drawing attention and having impact beyond those directly involved, versus the same number of people being killed spread out one a day in completely separate individual crime incidents. Terrorist attacks in public places deserve their own category of analysis because their impact is so much greater.

In other words, Wilmouth wants the data massaged to make the threat from refugees look bigger, even if it's not as big as Trump Jr.'s fraudulent Skittles analogy claims.

Wilmouth didn't mention that Alex Nowrasteh, the author of the Cato paper, explained the reasoning behind his study:

First, last weekend’s terrorists didn’t kill anyone in their attacks. During the time period I studied, 74 percent of all foreign-born terrorists did not murder anyone. We should be grateful that they are so incompetent.

Second, [Minnesota mall shooter Dahir] Adan was a two-year old child when he immigrated with his parents, long before he could harbor the desire to become a terrorist. That’s similar to the case of Shain Duka, Britan Duka and Eljvir Duka, all ethnic Albanians from Macedonia who illegally crossed the Mexican border as young children with their parents in 1984.

The Dukas were three of ten illegal immigrant terrorists in my report and the only three to have crossed the border with Mexico illegally. They were the three conspirators in the planned Fort Dix plot that was foiled by the FBI in 2007. Like Adan and possibly Rahami, they became terrorists at some point after immigrating here and nobody was killed in their failed attacks.


The U.S. government should devote resources to screening immigrants for the purpose of excluding terrorists. Foreign-born terrorists could become deadlier in the future but we should plan for the world we have and react to challenges when they arise rather than exaggerate hazards—especially when such exaggeration comes at a huge cost. The terrorist attacks in New York and Minnesota, which mercifully resulted in no deaths, fit the pattern of incompetent foreign-born lone wolves. Hopefully, Cato’s new report will put the danger from foreign-born terrorism into perspective in the wake of these two failed attacks.

Nowrasteh adds: "Foreign-born terrorists could become deadlier in the future but we should plan for the world we have and react to challenges when they arise rather than exaggerate hazards—especially when such exaggeration comes at a huge cost." But exaggerating hazards is Job 1 at the MRC, especially when the goal is getting Trump elected president -- and it will throw former allies like Cato under the bus to do it.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:44 AM EDT
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
WND's Lame Attack on Hillary Over Lead In Water
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's Garth Kant serves up this lame attempt to attack Hillary Clinton in a Sept. 25 article:

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton is making the recent water debacle in Flint, Mich., a big part of her campaign, yet, the expert who sounded the alert on that problem told Congress that Washington, D.C., had a lead problem “20 to 30 times worse” when she was in the Senate.

And there is little evidence she did anything about it.

But there is evidence she has been aware of the ongoing water problem in the nation’s capital.

An email exposed by Wikileaks and forwarded by Clinton’s top aide, Huma Abedin, on Dec. 12, 2012, warned: “Water in DC is NOT/NOT Potable.”

Washington’s own contaminated water crisis peaked in 2004, during the middle of Clinton’s tenure in the Senate, but the problem continues to this day.

Clinton served in the Senate from January 3, 2001, to January 21, 2009. She essentially lived in Washington from 1993 to 2013, as first lady, senator and secretary of state.

By contrast, Kant offers little evidence to back up his claim that anyone  -- not just Clinton -- knew at the time that the District of Columbia's lead issue was as severe as is being currently claimed by Marc Edwards, who is best known for sounding the alarm on the Flint water crisis. Edwards testified before a House committee in March

Kant also offers no evidence whatsoever that any major Republican politician in power at that time -- remember, the White House and both houses of Congress were controlled by Republicans in 2004 --  did anything about the D.C. water crisis at the time.

Will Kant call out those Republicans who ignored the D.C. water crisis the way he's going after Hillary? Of course not -- Kant doesn't actually care about lead in the water, he cares only abouty making a hypocritical partisan attack.

Indeed, toward the end of his article Kant downplays the whole situation in Flint, noting that "2014 data from the Center for Disease Control shows there are 288 counties in the country that have higher rates of lead poisoning than Flint." And he mocks Clinton's campaign promise to completely remove lead from water, soil and paint as "not realistic" because it would cost too much.

Kant's article should be seen as what it is: an empty piece of propaganda designed to fulfill his marching orders in WND's Hillary jihad.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:04 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, September 28, 2016 10:11 PM EDT
MRC's Ref-Working Failed on Lester Holt, So It Declares War On Him
Topic: Media Research Center

We documented how the Media Research Center was in full working-the-refs mode on Lester Holt, moderator of the first presidential debate, trying to brand him as a liberal even though he's a registered Republican and was reportedly chosen as a moderator to appease Donald Trump.

Well, the debate has come and gone, and Trump lost, as many conservatives are even admitting. So, according to MRC logic, that means Trump lost because Holt used his purported liberal-bias mojo on Trump.

Thus, having seen its ref-working efforts fail on Holt, the MRC declared war on him.

Brad Wilmouth was mad that Holt "repeatedly challenged Donald Trump ... but refrained from going after Hillary Clinton in the same aggressive manner. He also complained that others engaged in the same ref-working behavior the MRC did, though with supposedly better results: "Prior to the debate, the Clinton campaign repeatedly worked the refs to get tougher questions for Trump. In the case of Lester Holt, the strategy worked." Geoffrey Dickens served up "questions [Holt] could have asked Clinton, if he had any interest in being fair and balanced" and complained that Holt "repeatedly cross-examined and fact-checked GOP nominee Donald Trump" (no mention of how Trump made so many more false claims during the debate than Clinton did). Curtis Houck complained that during the debate Clinton "implored her friends in the liberal media and especially 'the fact-checkers' to 'get to work' on Trump (again, no mention of how badly Trump needs to be fact-checked, but then, the MRC has also declared war on facts to protect Trump).

But it was MRC chief Brent Bozell who was Trump's chief surrogate on the Holt-bashing front.

Immediately after the debate, Bozell issued a statement whining that "Holt continually challenged, fact-checked, and interrupted Trump and not once challenged Hillary," therefore "Lester Holt failed in his role as a moderator. Period."

Bozell then trotted over to friendly Fox Business to rehash his whining, adding that he doesn't understand why Republicans are "choosing these people, it happens almost every day debate. They behave like Lester Holt behaved tonight and then they’re shocked. They’re absolutely shocked that a left-wing journalist behaved like a left-wing journalist." Again, no mention of the fact that Holt is a registered Republican or was reportedly chosen as a sop to Trump. Bozell then played Trump campaign adviser: "I think that, if I were Donald Trump — if I were advising Donald Trump, don’t come out — don’t come out as a spoiled sport, but do make hay over this one. Do raise hell about this. If they can work the refs, so should he and I think he should start working the refs and he should start making an issue about this, how one-sided these debates are and it will work in his favor. At least, it might make them do a good job."

Bozell then issued another statement lamenting that Trump was challenged on his lies by Holt and declaring that "Holt did the bidding of his colleagues in the media, revealing himself to be nothing more than a pawn of Hillary’s campaign."

Bozell later ran over to Fox News to do another friendly, this time with Megyn Kelly. Unsual for him, it wasn't a solo appearance; Bozell appeared with "liberal former congressional candidate and ex-MSNBC host Krystal Ball," whom he basically ignored. Bozell was in full froth: "[W]here’s the fact-checking? Where's the follow-up? There was a follow-up to everything Donald Trump said. Where was the follow-up on this? She didn’t — what was more important, Megyn, birther issues or Benghazi medical records of the Clinton Foundation. There's so many — the e-mails. What's so important? How could he not have asked these questions?"

The anonymous author of the NewsBusters piece accompanying this clip huffed that Ball was "pathetically arguing that 'one candidate lies disproportionately more than the other candidate [so] of course you're going to have more pushback'" -- not conceding that Trump telling more falsehoods during the debate is as "irrefutable" as Bozell asserts Holt's lack of pushback on Clinton was.

But Holt was Trump's guy. And Chris Wallace, who will moderate the Oct. 19 debate, is Bozell's guy, having said he's the kind of guy Republicans should demand as a debate moderator. Plus, he's also on record as saying he doesn't think it's his responsiblity to fact-check candidates during a debate -- which makes him not only Bozell's guy but Trump's guy as well.

UPDATE: Bozell still isn't done. In his column with Tim Graham, he rants that "Holt's performance was a partisan disgrace" and touted a poll saying that "46 percent of Americans believe most moderators will tilt the debates in favor of Clinton," adding, "Holt confirmed the wisdom of the American people."

Bozell and Graham added that "It became obvious that Holt internalized all the howls of outrage from the liberal media against Matt Lauer for being even-handed with the candidates at the commander-in-chief forum earlier in the month." That would be the same Matt Lauer the MRC was mocking as a lightweight before that forum by posting photos of him in women's clothing (known to the rest of us as Halloween cosplay). But because Lauer did the MRC's duty by being harder on Trump than Clinton, Bozell should be crowing about how his working-the-refs campaign worked on Lauer.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:39 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, September 28, 2016 7:00 PM EDT
WND -- Which Educated Trump on Birtherism -- Buries Debate's Birther Discussion
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily, if it's known for anything outside far-right circles, is perhaps best known for being the leading champion of the birther movement. It helped Donald Trump behind the scenes in his pushing the birther issue in 2011 (and likely beyond).

But now, WND doesn't want to own its birther legacy -- perhaps because Joseph Farah and crew know that it's no longer defensible. And it certainly doesn't want to talk about its indisputable birther ties with Trump.

WND's coverage of the first debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton -- in which Trump's birtherism came up -- is an example of WND fleeing from the legacy it owns. WND's main story on the debate, by Chelsea Schilling and Garth Kant, waits until the 57th paragraph to bring up the birther discussion, and even then it's a straight rendering of it:

Clinton blasted Trump for the “racist” concerns he had about President Obama’s birth certificate.

But Trump said, “I was the one who got him to produce the birth certificate.”

He said the question was originally raised by Clinton’s own staffers and associates, including Sydney Blumenthal. He said Clinton was unsuccessful in getting a resolution.

Trump said he “did a great job and great service for the country” and didn’t need to explain any longer because he wanted to get on with fighting ISIS.

Clinton blasted: “Just listen to what you heard. He tried to put the whole racist, birther lie to bed. But it can’t be dismissed that easily. He has started his campaign activity based on this racist lie that our first black president was not an American citizen. There was absolutely no evidence for it, but he persisted. He persisted year after year, because some of his supporters, people that he was trying to bring into his fold, apparently believed it or wanted to believe it. …

“He has a long record of engaging in racist behavior. And the birther lie was a very hurtful one. You know, Barack Obama is a man of great dignity. And I could tell how much it bothered him and annoyed him that this was being touted and used against him.

“But I like to remember what Michelle Obama said in her amazing speech at our Democratic National Convention: When they go low, we go high. And Barack Obama went high, despite Donald Trump’s best efforts to bring him down.”

Schilling and Kant weirdly don't contest Clinton's assertion that birtherism -- again, the main focus of WND for much of the past eight years -- is racist. Then again, nor do they disclose that WND was advising Trump behind the scenes on how to be a birther.

Their boss, Joseph Farah -- who was among the WND staffers who personally advised Trump on birther conspiracies -- followed up with a column painfully conceding that Clinton won the debate ... but no mention whatsoever of the debate's birther discussion.

Then, WND's Jerome Corsi -- another staffer who personally advised Trump on birther stuff -- spent an article spinning hard for Trump, uncritically touting anonymous "staff members and insiders who spoke to WND" insisting that Trump "successfully executed a plan to hold back on aggressive attacks on opponent Hillary Clinton, focusing, instead, on projecting a presidential bearing." Corsi's only mention of the debate's birther discussion came almost as an aside: "Moreover, Trump noted, Clinton’s presidential campaign in 2008 started the birther controversy by releasing to media an anonymous letter alleging Obama was not born in Hawaii, as well as the first photos of Obama in Kenya wearing traditional Muslim garb."

Corsi got the first part wrong; the UK Telegraph article to which he links to back up his claim that  Clinton "started the birther controversy" in 2008 specifically states -- in the very first paragraph -- that "perennial local candidate and litigant" Andy Martin was pushing proto-birther claims in 2004. Nor does the Telegraph article state that the Clinton campaign released the "anonymous letter alleging Obama was not born in Hawaii" -- it states the letter was "circulated by supporters of Mrs Clinton," not the campaign.

It's also strange that Corsi is also complaining about the Clinton campaign releasing the photo of "Obama in Kenya wearing traditional Muslim garb" (again, the article to which Corsi links notes that the Clinton campaign denied distributing the photo), given that WND has used that photo over the years to illustrate its anti-Obama "journalism" -- Corsi himself declared in 2008 that the photo "raised questions about Obama’s links to Kenya, which has Muslim neighbors on several fronts, and was home to Obama’s father." And as recently as July, WND was touting how "Bill O’Reilly shared photos of Barack Obama in traditional Islamic dress on his program."

Like his WND cohorts, Corsi doesn't disclose the critical role he played in helping Trump push birtherism.

The shocker here is that it appears WND has a sense of shame after all. Too bad it didn't have this eight years ago -- too bad for both us and the future of WND.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:02 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, September 30, 2016 12:38 AM EDT
Tuesday, September 27, 2016
Blatant Headline (And Reporting) Bias at CNS

As we've noted, is effectively the Media Research Center in inverted-pyramid "news" form.CNS helpfully provided a blatant example of its right-wing bias by playing these two headlines side by side for easy screencapping:

The bias extends to the articles themselves. Susan Jones begins her biased article on Clinton this way:

At Monday night's presidential debate, Democrat Hillary Clinton embraced climate change as the crux of her job-creation plan.

"Take clean energy," she said. "Some country is going to be the clean-energy superpower of the 21st century. Donald thinks that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese. I think it's real."

"I think the science is real," Clinton repeated. "And I think it's important that we grip this and deal with it, both at home and abroad. And here's what we can do. We can deploy a half a billion more solar panels. We can have enough clean energy to power every home. We can build a new modern electric grid. That's a lot of jobs; that's a lot of new economic activity.

In fact, according to the clip accompanying Jones article, at no point did Clinton claim that climate change was "the crux of her job-creation plan" -- it was an example she cited from her overall economic plan as a response to one question. Later on, Jones does concede that Clinton also said her economic plan includes "jobs in infrastructure, in advanced manufacturing, innovation and technology, clean, renewable energy, and small business, because most of the new jobs will come from small business."

Jones also wrote the article on Trump. But in contrast to her Clinton-focused article -- in which she devotes eight of her article's 18 paragraphs to Trump countering Clinton's claims -- only three of this article's 16 paragraphs quote Clinton countering Trump's claims.

Isn't this the kind of media bias the MRC was founded to fight when it comes from the "liberal media"? Apparently, there's no swuch thing as right-wing media bias, which gives people like Jones free rein to

Posted by Terry K. at 11:04 PM EDT
MRC Latino Comes To The Defense of White People
Topic: Media Research Center

How much does the Media Research Center hate Univision anchor Jorge Ramos (beyond trying to get him fired)? Its Latino division is defending the honor of white people after Ramos criticized Donald Trump.

MRC Latino's Edgard Portela does just that in a Sept. 24 post:

There’s a new aspect of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump that Univision anchor Jorge Ramos finds deplorable.

In an opinion column lamenting Trump’s recent meeting with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, Ramos now faults Trump for wanting “to isolate the United States from the world and preserve its Anglo-Saxon tradition.”

Crass generalizations by Ramos aside, let’s pause to realize this is coming from a man that finds it perfectly fitting to celebrate Hispanic heritage month in the United States, but preserving (much less celebrating) the country’s central, founding Anglo heritage is somehow unacceptable? Go figure.

It should be noted that in the English version of the column, Ramos substitutes the precise reference to Trump’s support of the United States’ “Anglo-Saxon heritage” and instead uses the phrase “European heritage.” 

So it is that in the weird world of Jorge Ramos, there’s apparently something inherently wrong with wanting to preserve anything that the tens of millions of immigrants of European extraction who immigrated to the United States have contributed to making the country what it is today.

What about Mexico and the rest of Latin America’s European heritage? Is Ramos equally self-hating about that? After all, the reason Ramos is even on the scene in the first place and speaks Spanish is because a certain European country ruled Mexico for more than 250 years, right?

Has Portela been hanging out a bit too much on white-nationalist websites lately? Because his post sure reads that way -- as if the only worthwhile contributions to the country came from European (and, more specifically, Anglo-Saxon, or northern European) immigrants. Anglo-Saxon identity is a key part of white nationalism, which Trump's campaign has brought to the forefront.

How bizarre is it that a Latino conservative is defending white people? It's been that kind of election.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:03 PM EDT

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