Finland Derangement Syndrome At The MRC Topic: Media Research Center
Apparently, it's "liberal bias" to report facts about health care in Finland. That's the impression we get from Scott Whitlock's March 5 Media Research Center post:
CBS This Morning journalists on Tuesday spent an entire segment hyping the glories of Finland and the country's free stuff, chiding the United States for falling behind. With very little discussion on the nation's high taxes, foreign correspondent Holly Williams and the show’s hosts praised the country’s paid maternity leave, hospital care and even supposedly free nannies.
Reporting from Finland, Williams praised: “In Finland, you're guaranteed around four months paid maternity leave by law. And parents can split another six months paid parental leave.”
Without offering much context, co-host Bianna Golodryga cheered the idea of dumping your kids in parks and handing them over to free nannies: “When I was there last summer, our tour guide told us women and families could just drop their kids off in the local park and they have paid nannies there where the kids go to work.”
Whitlock went on to lecture that "Finland has 5.5 million people. The United States has 325 million. No one seemed to think about the practicality of how transferring such massive entitlements to America would work." He went on to huff: "The issue of taxes seemed of little concern to the CBS journalists. Finland’s personal income tax rate in Finland stands at 51.60 percent, according to Trading Economics. The sales tax is 24 percent."
In fact, according to the edited video clip that accompanies Whitlock's post, it was noted that taxes are higher in Finland than in the U.S.
Whitlock concluded by huffing that "Journalists love to fawn over Finland" -- but he was able to cite only two examples of it, one from 2005 and the other from 1997. Three stories in 20-plus years is barely like, let alone love.
WND Tries To Baselessly Blame TB Cases On Illegal Immigrants Topic: WorldNetDaily
The first three paragraphs of an anonymously written March 6 WorldNetDaily article focused on how "More than 200 Georgia high school students were tested for tuberculosis after a student was diagnosed with the disease, the third case in the state in two weeks." That was a rewrite of a story from a Georgia TV station, which made no mention of the legal status of anyone involved.
Yet the rest of the WND article was spent on fearmongering about filthy, disease-ridden illegal immigrants, such as touting a former congressman's claim that "minors from Central America were importing infectious diseases considered to be largely eradicated in the United States."
WND even touted the ex-congressman claiming that "many of the migrants lacked basic vaccinations such as those to prevent chicken pox or measles" -- even though WND has been giving space recently to anti-vaccine activists.
This is a misleading story, implying a link between the Georgia TB cases that it can't prove exists by repeating irrelevant fearmongering. Of course, WND has a history of fearmongering about disease-ridden immigrants.
CNS Serves As Candace Owens' Stenographer, Censors Her Controversies Topic: CNSNews.com
During the right-wing CPAC convention earlier this month, CNS went into stenography mode on several speakers -- for instance, devoting threeentirearticles to Vice President Mike Pence's speech alone. And Melanie Arter was locked into total stenography for a lengthy March 5 article:
Candace Owens, director of communications at Turning Point USA and founder of the Blexit movement encouraging blacks to exit the Democratic Party, said Friday that she doesn’t want a Green New Deal, she wants a Black New Deal.
“I say I don’t want a Green new Deal. I want a black new deal. And the good news, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, is that that actually can be free. It doesn’t cost $93 trillion,” Owens said in a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC).
Nowhere in her lengthy article did Arter mention a little controversy from just a month earlier in which Owens responded to a question about pushing nationalism in the U.S. when it didn't end so well in Nazi Germany by responding: "If Hitler just wanted to make Germany great and have things run well — OK, fine. The problem is he had dreams outside of Germany. He wanted to globalize. He wanted everybody to be German." After getting backlash for her failure to understand Nazi Germany, Owens blamed "leftist journalists" for unearthing the remarks and conceded that, yes, Hitler was bad.
Arter went on to uncritically repeat a dubious talking point from Owens:
She said she questioned how the left loved Donald Trump before he announced his candidacy for president and then hated him 24 hours later.
“I questioned at the time, is it really possible that a man that was loved by the media, Donald J. Trump – they loved him – loved by black America – every hip hop song that I listened to growing up, they wanted to be like Trump. Beyonce and Jay Z were sipping poolside at Mar-a-Lago. He was the dream. Obama said that the American dream was to be like Trump,” Owens said.
“Was it really possible that within 24 hours of declaring his candidacy for the White House, he became a racist, bigoted, homophobic, sexist rapist at one point, right? Was that really possible, and I said of course, no that’s it’s possible. There’s absolutely no way that’s possible,” she said.
As we've noted, there was plenty of evidence of Trump behaving in a racist manner long before he was president.
Arter also uncritically repeated Owen's claim that she "questioned how the Democratic Party, which 'instituted slavery, Jim Crow laws, racial terrorism in the KKK,' had the black vote,"which ignores that the answer is not that difficult to find -- driven in large part by Democratic support for civil rights laws in the 1960s and Republican opposition to same -- had Owens and Arter bothered to look.
And as for Arter definitively describing Owens as "founder of the Blexit movement," that's not exactly true either. The actual founder claims that Owens co-opted her movement and has threatened to sue Owens over it.
MRC Hides Attorney's Experience to Dismiss Him As A Mere TV Personality Topic: Media Research Center
In March 2018, the Media Research Center complained that some in the media were "haughtily dismissed" the idea of President Trump naming Larry Kudlow as an economic adviser, "discarding" him "as simply a 'TV personality' who encourages the President’s 'TV feedback loop."and ignoring the fact that Kudlow worked in the Reagan administration (not mentioning that allegedly relevant experience was 30 years ago, and he was a TV personality for much longer than he was a Reagan employee). It also dismissed concerns about Kudlow's long record of bad economic predictions by playing whataboutism and complaining about Paul Krugman.
Now, the MRC is giving someone else the Kudlow treatment it purportedly hated. Bill D'Agostino grumbled in a March 6 post:
Former MSNBC contributor Daniel Goldman, who was recently hired as director of investigations for the House Intelligence Committee, has quite a track record of spewing anti-Trump Democratic talking points on cable television. Over the past few months alone, Goldman has used his television platform to tell viewers “that the President has committed a felony in order to obtain the office of the presidency,” and that the very act of opposing President Trump puts him on “the right side of history.”
Interestingly, MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace made no mention of Goldman’s professional relationship with her network when she announced the appointment on Tuesday’s Deadline: White House. CNN’s first report about the development that same evening also skipped this latest turn of the revolving door between the Democratic Party and establishment news media.
Goldman once claimed during an interview on Fox News that he was “not at all partisan.” However, MRC analysts examined Goldman’s appearances on cable news to evaluate that claim and discovered he has spent the past year using his media platform to lobby for the idea that the President is decidedly guilty.
D'Agostino is so determined to dismiss Goldman as nothing but a partisan TV personality that he didn't mention Goldman's direct experience working 10 years as a federal prosecutor for the Southern District of New York, where he specialized in prosecuting Russian organized crime networks -- which, again, is much longer than Kudlow worked for Reagan. Instead, D'Agostino obliquely referred to Goldman's "legal bona fides" while never mentioning what they are or explain how they're directly applicable to his new job.
CNS Dips A Toe In The Anti-Vaxxer Pool Topic: CNSNews.com
We've documented how CNSNews.com has been drifting toward WorldNetDaily territory, in both editorial bias and embrace of conspiracy theories. CNS is now trying on another WND conspiracy theory: anti-vaccine activism.
CNS published a March 6 column by right-winger Michelle Malkin in which she ranted about how "Capitol Hill and Silicon Valley have locked their sights on the next targets of a frightening free speech-squelching purge: independent citizens who dare to raise questions online about the safety and efficacy of vaccines," blaming "pharmaceutical big business" for being behind "politicians and government bureaucrats [who] are now hell-bent on deplatforming any and all dissenters who challenge mandatory vaccine regimens."
Malkin, though, doesn't quite have the conviction of her beliefs, conceding: "I'm vaccinated. My children are up to date. There's no dispute that vaccines have saved untold lives" -- which sort of undercuts the whole point of ranting against vaccines. She also admits there's "junk science on the 'anti-vaccine' side," but also complains that the film "Vaxxed" -- made by the defrocked doctor who pushed the discredited claim that vaccines cause autism -- was pulled from some streaming outlets.
Malkin then tries to play gotcha:
As for efficacy, consider this new data: A recent whooping cough outbreak at the private Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles last week resulted in 30 students contracting the illness, all of whom were vaccinated. Of 18 unvaccinated students, none caught the disease. Will pointing this out on my Facebook and Twitter accounts bring down the Silicon Valley ban hammer?
Malkin is pretending not to know that it's common knowledge that the whooping cough vaccine, part of the Tdap vaccine series, loses efficacy over time and requires a booster shot at age 11 or 12. The fact that none of the unvaccinated students didn't get whooping cough can likely be chalked up to coincidence rather than any magical non-vaccination power.
The next day, managing editor Michael W. Chapman gave Republican Rep. Rand Paul a platform to rant against mandating vaccinations without presenting an opposing view. But Chapman also let Paul undercut his own argument: "I'm not here to say don't vaccinate your kids. ... I vaccinated myself. I vaccinated my kids."
Chapman also let Paul huff that ""Despite the government admitting to and paying $4 billion for vaccine injuries, no informed consent is used or required when you vaccinate your child. This may be the only medical procedure in today's medical world where an informed consent is not required." Chapman didn't report the actual numbers of people involved: According to the federal government, that $4 billion involves just 6,430 cases judged to meet standards for compensation, out of the millions upon millions of people who have been vaccinated during that time. The government adds:
According to the CDC, from 2006 to 2017 over 3.4 billion doses of covered vaccines were distributed in the U.S. For petitions filed in this time period, 6,197 petitions were adjudicated by the Court, and of those 4,250 were compensated. This means for every 1 million doses of vaccine that were distributed, 1 individual was compensated.
Sounds like vaccines are quite safe. But Chapman couldn't be bothered to tell the full story.
WND Columnist Peddles Myth Behind Anti-Abortion Movie Topic: WorldNetDaily
The ConWeb is quite happy about the upcoming anti-abortion film "Unplanned," which claims to tell the story of Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood employee who became an anti-abortion zealot. Among the ConWeb folks enthused about the film is WorldNetDaily columnist Michael Brown, who warned in his Feb. 25 column: "Expect character assassination of those involved in the movie (not to mention of Johnson herself)." Brown then repeated some blogger's retelling of Johnson's story:
She “worked at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Bryan, Texas, until 2009 when she left the organization after assisting in an ultrasound-guided abortion of a 13-week-old unborn baby. Johnson was Planned Parenthood’s youngest director of a clinic in the nation.
“She helped over 22,000 women have abortions during her time at the clinic. Planned Parenthood named Johnson as the employee of the year in 2008. She worked at the abortion provider for eight years before leaving the group. Johnson also had a medication abortion before she became pro-life.”
So, seeing the reality of what abortion did to a child in the womb changed the heart of this zealous Planned Parenthood employee. And now, the movie “Unplanned” is positioned to change the hearts of millions of potential viewers.
Just one thing: that creation myth isn't quite true. As an actual news outlet reported, Planned Parenthood stated that there were no ultrasound-guided abortions on the day that Johnson claims, Johnson did not assist on any abortion that day, and the only abortion patient that day who comes closest to the person described in Johnson's story was too early in her pregnancy to require the use of ultrasound. (Johnson stands by her version of the story and suggested Planned Parenthood doctored records to make her look bad.)
Brown then complained that it was "outrageous" that the film got an R rating due to its graphic abortion footage. But he didn't criticize the filmmakers for refusing to make the needed edits to make the film more accessible or question why making the procedure look as gory as possible was the only possible artistic decision.
Acosta Derangement Syndrome Watch, MRC Edition Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center is not satisfied with merely criticizing CNN's Jim Acosta (though it absolutely loves doing that); the MRC feels it must dunk on Acosta at every opportunity, and doubly so if he gets something not quite right.
For chief MRC Acosta-hater Curtis Houck, it wasn't enough for him to try and correct Acosta for something he thinks the reporter got wrong. He went into full insult mode in a Feb. 28 post, ranting that "carnival barker" Acosta "appeared in need of a safe space following President Trump’s Hanoi press conference" because he noted that Trump gave relatively little attention to American reporters. Houck went on to huff:
Now, here’s the facts. Along with New York Times national security correspondent David Sanger, here were at least six members of the White House press corps from American outlets that were called on: Major Garrett (CBS), Jonathan Karl (ABC), David Nakamura (The Washington Post), Ayesha Rascoe (NPR), John Roberts (Fox News), and Margaret Talev (Bloomberg).
To quote CNN’s snarky motto: Facts First!
But Houck did not provide the total number of journalists Trump called on at the press conference, meaning he offers no context as to whether or not six American journalists is or is not a sufficient number relevant to the number of foreign journalists -- and, to Acosta's point, the number of foreign journalists working for state-run outlets in authoritarian countries like Russia and China -- that were called on.
Nevertheless, by the next day, the MRC's Tim Graham declared that Acosta's not-quite-proven-wrong statement was a "flat-out lie" -- apparently, Graham can read Acosta's mind now -- citing Houck's post to claim "Acosta was 'Pants on Fire' when he complained the White House press corps was ignored" (which was not what Acosta said). Graham went on to cheer right-wing Fox News host Laura Ingraham for taking shots at Acosta.
Houck, by the way, wasn't done insulting Acosta. The same day as the above rant, he unleashed another one complaining about "another long-winded, gloat-filled diatribe against the President" from Acosta and that "Acosta couldn’t help but make a juvenile slap toward the President." Well, Houck knows all about making juvenile slaps, doesn't he?
Houck expressed his Acosta derangement once more in a March 11 post (under the leaden snark of a "Dear Diary" headline):
After what must have been an insanely painful 42 days for the White House press corps, Monday afternoon featured a White House press briefing and, needless to say, carnival barker, CNN chief White House correspondent, and infamous newsman Jim Acosta made sure to make this briefing count.
Acosta used his allotted two minutes as best he could, tussling with Press Secretary Sarah Sanders over the Democratic Party’s issues with Jewish people and the President’s rhetoric as a source of what ills America.
Afterward, on CNN Newsroom, Acosta uncorked another long-winded, uninterrupted lecture about his dismay for what comes out of the White House.
It's telling that Houck is more concerned that Houck is allowed to say anything at a White House press conference than the fact that the Trump administration went 42 days without holding one.
Pro-White WND Columnist Frets Over 'Anti-White Politics' Topic: WorldNetDaily
As befits a writer who pines a little too hard for the days of apartheid, WorldNetDaily columnist Ilana Mercer is worried about the hardships white people face. She worries again in her Feb. 28 column:
Every time a manifestly racist, anti-white event goes down, which is frequently, conservative media call it “identity politics.” “The left is playing identity politics.”
Whatever is convulsing the country, it’s not identity politics. For, blacks are not being pitted against Hispanics. Hispanics are not being sicced on Asians, and Ameri-Indians aren’t being urged to attack the groups just mentioned. Rather, they’re all piling on honky. Hence, anti-white politics or animus.
The ire of the multicultural multitudes is directed exclusively at whites and their putative privilege. Anti-whitism is becoming endemic and systemic.
Mercer then complained about the Jussie Smollett hoax, grumbling: "'Trump supporters' is indeed a proxy for 'white persons.' The conflation of 'white' and 'Trump supporter' was made, for one, by an anti-white, anti-Trump, professional agitator." She added: "Some conservatives remarked that the Smollett affair occurred against the backdrop of Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS). Is TDS not a proxy for the white-hot hatred of whites?"
Mercer then ranted about, as near as we can tell, lessons on multiculturalism in schools: "As if public education were not sufficiently corrupt, 'educators' now contract out to an educational black op. These tax-paid mercenaries come to schools as social levelers to put your kids through an indoctrination boot camp. However, it’s not egalitarianism the schools are increasingly teaching, but anti-whitism."
This is apparently based on an article at FrontPageMag by Matthew Vadum (rememberhim?) about a lawsuit by parents objecting to a curriculum created a group called Just Communities Central Coast and used in a California school district. Just Communities has said the curriculum examples cited in the lawsuit are altered or taken out of context, which seems like a relevant thing to mention.
When President Obama was in office, CNSNews.com's editorialmission was to spin employment numbers by focusing on irrelevant metrics like labor force participation rate while downplaying how millions of jobs were created, with the goal of making Obama look as bad as possible. Under President Trump, it's the opposite: CNS gushes over Trump no matter how dubious the employment news.
So it is with February's employment numbers. Only 20,000 jobs were created, which is a dismal number. Susan Jones' main story did acknowledge that in her opening paragraph, then spins it away:
The economy added a meager 20,000 jobs in February, well below the 180,000 that analysts were expecting, and among the lowest job-creation numbers of the Trump administration.
But the number of employed Americans grew by 255,000 in February to a record 156,949,000, the 18th record-breaker of the Trump era.
The unemployment rate dropped to 3.8 percent from last month's 4.0 percent, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday.
And the labor force participation rate stayed at last month's 63.2 percent, also a Trump-era high.
Needless to say, CNS didn't put that bad job-creation number in the headline, though it would have unquestionably done so if the president was a Democrat. Instead, the headline blared: "156,949,000: Number of Employed Americans Sets 18th Record of Trump Era."
WND's Farah Can't Stop Gushing Over Trump's Every Word Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah's continuedgushing over President Trump is approaching cult-like proportions. Farah spent his Feb. 22 column slobbering over Trump's speech attacking socialism:
Do you know how long it’s been since an American president gave a sweeping, inspirational talk on the oppressive death cult of socialism?
I know for sure it hasn’t been delivered since 1989, when Ronald Reagan left office.
I heard hope. I heard clarity. I heard courage. And I heard chants of USA! USA! USAI
I heard a new day was coming for Venezuela – and I believe it.
heard “socialism is dying, and liberty, prosperity and democracy are being reborn” … and I believe it.
I heard Trump say: “We are profoundly grateful to every dissident, every exile, every political prisoner and everyone who bears witness to the horrors of socialism and communism, and who has bravely spoken out against them.” And I embrace that.
I heard Trump explain just what tyrannical socialism does every time it takes power – “nationalized private industries … took over private businesses … engaged in massive wealth confiscation, shut down free markets, suppressed free speech … set up a relentless propaganda machine, rigged elections, used the government to persecute their political opponents and destroyed the impartial rule of law.” And I said Amen! Preach it, brother!
I heard enthusiasm and unity and optimism and confidence.
Why haven’t I heard words like that from an American president since 1989?
And then I hear people ask: “Why don’t the young people understand what socialism is really about – death, suffering, oppression, tyranny?”
Maybe they’re simply expressing that they have heard for too long from their college professors and their national “leaders.”
Thank God for Trump!
Speaking of God, Farah's column four days later pushed the idea (as WND has before) that Trump's election was divinely ordained:
A Fox News poll taken just before the second anniversary of President Donald Trump’s January 2017 inauguration showed 25 percent of Americans polled believe God wanted Trump elected.
I know I did.
I know I did some serious praying in 2016.
But I’m not really sure it’s even the right question.
If God had wanted Trump elected, there is no doubt in my mind that it would be so. But God is the sovereign ruler of the universe, the Creator, the One without whom all material things would cease to exist. Nothing happens in the world that God doesn’t at least allow to happen.
I think many people believe there was something supernatural about the 2016 election because “the world” said it could never happen. All the experts were wrong. How could that be?
It’s times like that you can expect God to act. When it happens, it doesn’t mean we’re entering Eden again. It’s doesn’t mean the Kingdom of God is here. It doesn’t mean Jesus is about to return.
There is only one time you will get to choose the Perfect Leader. That’s when you decide who will be the Lord of your life – and you choose Jesus-Yeshua, the Son of God, the King of kings, the Lord of lords.
As WND has before, Farah fails to entertain the possibility that God ordained Trump as a warning instead of a deliverance.
NewsBusters Blogger Insists Clinton's Link to Epstein Is More Important Than Trump's Topic: NewsBusters
Mark Finkelstein whines in a Feb. 22 MRC NewsBusters post:
Court documents show that Bill Clinton took at least 26 trips on convicted sex-offender Jeffrey Epstein's notorious "Lolita Express" party plane. There's no indication that Donald Trump ever did. But in a segment on Epstein on her MSNBC show today, Joy Reid managed to refer to President Trump six times, accompanied by extended photo displays of Trump in Epstein's company.
Number of times Reid mentioned Lolita Express frequent flyer Clinton? A New York bagel, of course.
It's almost cute how Finkelstein is pretending that Trump has no links whatsoever to Epstein. As we've documented, Trump has flown at least once on the "Lolita Express," Epstein hung out at Trump's Mar-a-Lago club, and one of Epstein's sex trafficking victiitems was recruited while working as a 15-year-old towel girl at Mar-a-Lago. Additionally, the attorney who cut the deal that let Epstein get off with a relative slap on the wrist, Alexander Acosta, is Trump's labor secretary.
(There's also the fact that Trump is currently the president while Clinton has not been for quite some time.)
Additionally, the video montage Finkelstein supplies is a bit on the curious side. Two of the instances are of Reid edited to say only "Donald Trump" without context, which tells us that Finkelstein is trying to hide something. One reference noted the fact that Trump ws a friend of Epstein, another noted the link to Acosta, and a fifth noted Trump's previous praise of Epstein.
This is the first time Finkelstein has tried an Epstein deflection; in 2016, he wanted to talk about Clinton's connection to Epstein instead of former Republican congressman Dennis Hastert's admission to molesting children.
WND Teams With Fringe Medical Group To Push Anti-Vaccine Fearmongering Topic: WorldNetDaily
When the current measles outbreak began, WorldNetDaily didn't have much to say; it copy-and-pasted articles stolen from elsewhere about one apology for an outbreak and calls to reduce exemptions from vaccinations. But WND is a longtimeanti-vaxxer, and those tendencies have been rekindling in recent months, so it couldn't stop conspiracy-mongering for long.
Every time there is a measles outbreak somewhere there is an outcry to restrict vaccine exemptions, to protect the public – and, just coincidentally, vaccine manufacturers.
Measles is extremely contagious, and with today’s air travel, a patient incubating measles but not yet sick can arrive any time and cough virus particles all over Disneyland. Most patients recover fully, with robust lifelong immunity. But some get serious complications or die. Measles is two to four times worse than in pre-vaccination days because it affects more adults and infants. Mothers with only waning vaccine-induced immunity cannot give their babies the antibodies that once protected infants of naturally immunized mothers during their most vulnerable period.
That link goes to an abstract of an article in a medical journal that doesn't quite say what she thinks it says. The full article states that the fact that diseases are more severe in the unvaccinated "might be a potent tool to motivate hesitant parents to vaccinate their children," but that clinicians "do not engage parents in extensive discussions about many clinical services, including vaccination."
Instead, Orient complained that outbreaks cause people to dismiss anti-vaxxers like her:
Worries are attributed to “antivax quacks,” and the omniscient Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook is reportedly going to protect the public by suppressing information he judges to be “not credible.” Public health people prevented the screening of the 2016 movie “Vaxxed: from Coverup to Catastrophe” in Phoenix. The film shows children with devastating neurologic damage and parents telling how their once-normal child changed dramatically just after getting a vaccine. But these are mere anecdotes; there is “overwhelming evidence” of safety, the experts assure us.
"Vaxxed" is the film made by Andrew Wakefield, a now-defrocked doctor who wrote an infamous study claming a link between vaccines and autism that has since been discredited.
Orient then dismisses the threat, assuring us that "measles probably can't be eradicated" and that "the last measles death in the U.S. occured in 2015."
That was followed by a March 6 article touting how the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons -- the fringe-right organization that Orient heads -- fearmongering about the alleged "government-imposed risks" from manating that children be vaccinated.
We're guessing that WND is not going to report to its readers that an unvaccinated boy almost died of tetanus and racked up an $800,000 hospital bill trying to stay alive.
MRC Suddenly Loves Jorge Ramos After His Detention In Venezuela Topic: Media Research Center
We've noted how the Media Research Center's MRC Latino division seems to have been formed just to attack Hispanic journalist Jorge Ramos -- to the point of demanding that he resign. But now Ramos has played into the MRC's right-wing agenda, and suddenly its criticism of him has subsided.
Last month, Ramos' news crew was detained overnight in Venezuela by the government of Nicolas Maduro -- whom the MRC wants to make sure you know is a socialist, and that socialism alone is responsible for Venezuela's current state of collapse (though that's not actually true) -- and Ramos has denounced his detention as a act of repression and a violation of international law.
So, of course, the MRC's first reaction to this was to ... defend President Trump?
Yep. An anonymously written Feb. 26 piece, credited only to "MRC Latino Staff" and carrying the headline "Venezuela Is Not Iowa," touted how Ramos feeling actual repression means that Trump's kicking ramos out of a news conference is utterly benign by comparison:
Maduro literally held Ramos and crew; and seized their equipment while inflicting psychological torture on the Univision News crew - all for the sin of asking uncomfortable questions. To suggest that this is somehow similar to Trump’s ejection of Ramos of the press conference forvbreaking protocol and heckling, only to bring him back minutes later and take his questions, minimizes the gravity of what actually happened in Caracas and threatens to erode whatever goodwill Ramos rightly deserves for having endured such an outrageous act of journalistic repression.
The only proper takeaway from this incident is that these actions are the last gasps of a dying regime that struggles to hold power by any means necessary against the will of a people that yearn to be free after two decades of misery, starvation, and death. Anything else is just noise and nonsense.
(Of course, as we noted, the MRC had no problem when the reporter engaing in heckling and breaking protocol is a conservative and the president is named Obama.)
The same day, Curtis Houck touted an appearance by Ramos on Sean Hannity's Fox News show "to discuss his brief detainment in Venezuela by the murderous Nicolas Maduro regime." In a similar Trump-protecting moment, Houck particularly gushed over "perhaps the most profound thing he said ... which was the fact that, despite his dislike of President Donald Trump, assaults on press freedoms like what took place in Venezuela don’t happen in America."
The minute Ramos says anything even remotely critical of Trump again, though, look for the MRC to once again demand his head on a platter.
CNS Tries to Link Defrocked Cardinal To Democrats, Censors His Link To GOP Topic: CNSNews.com
Religion is politics at CNSNews.com -- and it proved that yet again by trying to tie a Catholic cardinal defrocked over sexual abuse of children to Democratic politicians.
An anonymously written Feb. 25 article worked hard to do just that:
Former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who was defrocked by the Catholic Church on Jan. 11 for abusing minors and the Sacrament of Confession, presided over the Aug. 29, 2009 burial service for Sen. Ted Kennedy at Arlington National Cemetery.
The burial, which took place at sunset, was televised and preserved on video by CSPAN. McCarrick, at the time, was the retired archbishop of Washington, D.C.
The video shows Vice President Joe Biden chatting amiably with McCarrick before the burial.
The anonymous writer also made sure to rehash an old Kennedy scandal: "On the night of July 18, 1969, after leaving a party on Chappaquiddick Island along with 28-year-old Mary Jo Kopechne (who had been a staffer on Robert F. Kennedy’s 1968 presidential campaign), Kennedy drove off a bridge into a channel of water. Kopechne drowned."
(But we thought the MRC hated when the media brought up unfortunate stories about dead people's pasts.)
The next day, CNS editor in chief Terry Jeffrey tried to hang McCarrick around the neck of another Democratic politician:
On Jan. 6, 2009, the day that Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) was re-elected to serve as speaker of the House for the 111th Congress, then-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick said the opening prayer for the House of Representatives and Pelosi said he had honored the House by doing so.
She then called all the children in the chamber that day to join her at the podium as she took the oath of office and said: “I want to thank the children for joining me at the podium so that, as we called the House to order earlier today, it will be clear that the House will be called to order for all of America’s children."
At the opening of that day’s session, McCarrick, who was then the archbishop emeritus of Washington, D.C., was introduced at the podium at the front of the chamber to say the traditional prayer. This was the first meeting of the 111th Congress, which had been elected in November 2008, with majorities in both chambers going to the Democrats. In that same election, Barack Obama was elected president.
But CNS doesn't want to tell you that McCarrick was very much a bipartisan cardinal. The Washington Post reported that McCarrick curried favor on both sides of the political aisle -- reading at a memorial service for Ronald Reagan and earning praise from President George W. Bush -- and that he "basked in the glow of being a crossover figure who presented himself as the righteous person whom politicians sought when they faced their own theological questions of right and wrong." The Post also points out -- where CNS failed to -- that nobody knew about McCarrick's proclivities.
But then, nobody reads CNS for fairness and balance in reporting.
MRC Thinks Twitter Conspired To Bury Jussie Smollett Story With John Wayne Interview Topic: Media Research Center
The tech monitors at the Media Research Center are unfortunately prone to such things as pretending that social media platforms that promote hate and white supremacism are merely engaging in "free speech" and portraying fringe activists as mainstream conservatives. Now they're going the conspiracy-theory route.
In a Feb. 19 post, Alexander Hall appears to be blaming Twitter itself for allegedly redirecting attention from the Jussie Smollett story to a resurfaced interview that John Wayne did with Playboy in 1971, under the headline "Twitter Diverts Attention from Smollett to Old John Wayne Interview":
Things aren’t going so well at the moment in the culture wars? You went all in on a hate crime that turned out to be a hoax? Your dignified Indian elder Marine veteran wasn’t much of a veteran and the Covington kids did nothing to him? How about the minstrel show in the Virginia Capital?
Take heart, progressives. You can dig up an American icon and knock him down cost-free and with no risk he’ll defend himself!
Jussie Smollett’s story may have been fiction, but John Wayne was real and he was conservative. Therefore, he can be vilified. It doesn’t matter that the Duke rode off into the sunset in 1979 -- why not pour a bit of your perpetual outrage in the Wayback Machine and head over to Twitter for some gasping about....a 48 year old interview with the star.
Desperate for something to distract from Smollett, lefties found a new target: John Wayne. Specifically a 1971 interview Wayne did withPlayboy.
The only evidence Hall offers of Twitter's alleged corporate hand in creating the distraction was a notation that a tweet -- made by a "non-verified user," Hall wants us to know -- about the interview that had already been gaining attention "was elevated two days after it began as a trending Twitter Moment."
Curiously, Hall failed to note anywhere in his post exactly why the Wayne interview was getting so much attention -- he does not quote from it at all. Fortunately for us, an actual news outlet was on the case:
In the 1971 interview, Wayne railed against “perverted films,” giving the interviewer, Richard Warren Lewis, two examples when asked: “Easy Rider” and “Midnight Cowboy.”
The actor described the characters in the latter film with a homophobic slur, then went on to extol the virtues of sexual intercourse between men and women.
“I believe in white supremacy,” he said, and spoke harshly about African Americans, saying, “We can’t all of a sudden get down on our knees and turn everything over to the leadership of the blacks.”
“I don’t believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people,” he said.
But to Hall, this wasn't newsworthy; he was mad that accurately quoting Wayne was designed to "disparage this American icon."
Meanwhile, a few days later, Hall's MRC co-worker Curtis Houck was complaining that the media wasn't reporting enough on "any of the scandals surrounding the three Democrats who sit atop Virginia's government," two of which involved racially charged blackface incidents, despite there being nothing to report on. Depends on whose arguably racist views are being focused on, apparently.