CNS Reporter Obsessed With Bashing 'Liberal Media' In Supposed 'News' Articles Topic: CNSNews.com
Susan Jones is one of CNSNews.com's Trump stenographers, but she likes to add her own commentary to her "news" reports. She's particularly vocal in sniping at the "liberal media" attacking Trump, something she does on a regular basis -- presumably in an attempt to further the anti-media narrative of CNS' owner, the Media Research Center. In 2019 alone, we've found several examples of this.
On Jan. 8, Jones wrote: "The concern about potential terrorists crossing into the United States from Mexico is nothing new, although Democrats and liberal media outlets were downplaying the Trump administration's concern ahead of Trump's planned address to the nation Tuesday night."
Jones wrote on Jan. 15: "As expected, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) stripped Rep. Steve King, one of the most conservative Members of Congress, from his committee assignments on Monday for "defending racism," as one liberal media outlet described it." Jones further complained that "other Republicans in Congress, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), denounced King’s 'racism,' and liberal media outlets piled on."
In a Jan. 25 article advancing the conspiracy theory that special counsel Robert Mueller tipped off CNN to the arrest of Roger Stone -- part of CNS' creeping WorldNetDaily-ization -- Jones complained: "But some suspect that Mueller's office or someone in the FBI or even the grand jury tipped off CNN, a liberal media outlet that Trump has blasted as "fake news."
Jones huffed in an April 19 article: "Various liberal media outlets have seized on the President's "I'm f****d" remark to make it appear that he knew he had something to hide. A full reading of the paragraph suggests otherwise."
Jones sniped on May 3: "Attorney General William Barr has promised to look into 'spying' on the Trump campaign, a topic that is rarely mentioned in the liberal media, until now, apparently, when Barr and the Justice Department inspector general are looking into it."
Jones proclaimed in a May 7 article: "President Donald Trump is enjoying some of the highest poll numbers of his presidency – 46 percent in a new Gallup poll -- despite the constant liberal media attacks and the continuing congressional investigations."
Another example is a May 8 article, complaining that a New York Times report on how Trump's businesses lost hundreds of millions of dollars in the 1980s and 1990s "allowed liberal media outlets to mock Trump as a bad businessman, a con artist, and a huckster who bluffed his way into the White House the same way he built a (supposedly) illusory real estate empire." (Jones also uncfritically repeated Trump'stweeted claim that the Times story is a "highly inaccurate Fake News hit job!" but doesn't point out that Trump provided no evidence to back up the claim.)
There are also numerous examples from earlier in Jones' CNS tenure, most of which are in defense of Trump:
As liberal media brand Trump as a "racist" for wanting to keep illegal aliens out of the country, it appears that some on the left are growing more worried that Trump's main campaign issue is resonating with voters. -- Nov. 1, 2018
As the caravans move north, liberal media outlets continue to bash Trump for using what they call scare tactics ahead of the election. -- Oct. 31, 2018
Liberal media outlets said Trump has no proof [that "criminals and Middle Eastern terrorists are in refugee caravans] and is therefore lying about dangerous people heading north. -- Oct. 23, 2018
Meanwhile, liberal media outlets are full of the "lose-lose" scenario for committee Republicans -- all white men -- faced with an alleged sexual assault victim in the "#MeToo" era, just weeks before the midterm election. -- Sept. 19, 2018
The president complained that liberal media outlets didn't give him enough credit for Friday's "incredible" employment numbers: -- Aug. 6, 2018
Pushing back against the liberal media on Thursday, President Donald Trump declared them to be "the real enemy of the people." -- July 19, 2018
Giving liberal media outlets just what they were waiting for, President Trump weighed in on the Roseanne Barr racial/insult controversy shortly before noon on Wednesday, tweeting: -- May 30, 2018
President Trump is once again venting his outrage over reports in liberal newspapers that the Trump-Russia probe began secretly in 2016 when the FBI sent an informant/informants to make contact with low-level Trump campaign advisers. -- May 23, 2018
Making the rounds of liberal cable channels Friday morning, Stormy Daniels' attorney Michael Avenatti said he was not there to hype an upcoming "60 Minutes" interview with the porn star -- even as he hyped the upcoming interview. -- March 16, 2018
Great fury and indignation from liberal media outlets on this Friday, not over another (brief) government shutdown and a bill that will produce escalating deficits and debt, but over the White House hiring -- and now firing -- a high-ranking official whose two ex-wives accuse him of domestic abuse. -- Feb. 9, 2018
President Trump on Thursday tweeted about record highs in the stock market and the Republican tax reform bill -- two subjects that liberal media outlets are not focusing on. -- Nov. 30, 2017
Instead, as CNSNews.com reported, liberal cable outlets spent much of their time on Thursday questioning Trump's mental state and his fitness for office in light of the North Korean nuclear threat. -- Nov. 30, 2017
The comments also drew a scathing response on liberal cable stations, to which Trump later replied by tweet: "The Fake News is going all out in order to demean and denigrate! Such hatred!" -- Oct. 12, 2017
For more than a week, liberal media outlets and Trump's many critics have blasted him for appearing to equate white supremacists and neo-Nazis with anti-racist protesters, some of whom are also violent, the president said last Tuesday.-- Aug. 22, 2017
Piers Morgan, formerly employed by CNN and now editor-at-large for The Daily Mail, says President Donald Trump has good reason to distrust liberal media outlets such as CNN and the New York Times, which are "utterly determined to bring the Trump presidency crashing down." -- Feb. 7, 2017
Jones' obsession with callling out "liberal media" predates the Trump era; she huffed in a 2013 article that "Rep. Peter King, a New York Republican, has become a favorite of liberal media outlets for his harsh criticism of his own party."
By contrast, we can recall no example of Jones admitting that CNS is a "conservative media outlet."
MRC Misrepresents Study To Push Right-Wing Victimization Narrative Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Corinne Weaver complains in a May 13 post:
Google’s methods of curating news involves infusing a heavy dose of liberal ideology. That’s not just the opinion of conservatives, it’s the opinion of a top journalism publication.
A study done by theColumbia Journalism Review, released on May 10, stated that out of the top 20 search results in Google’s “Top Stories,” the search engine relied on CNN more than any other news site. Furthermore, the top 20 news sites that made it to Google’s “Top Stories” had only one outlet that didn’t lean left, Fox News.
Aside from Fox News, Google didn’t feature prominently any other news site that doesn’t lean left. “Our data shows that 62.4 percent of article impressions were from sources rated by that research as left-leaning, whereas 11.3 percent were from sources rated as right-leaning,” explained CJR. That’s more than a 5-to-1 ratio.
Weaver's shallow reading of the study is designed to support the MRC's dubiousinsistence that Google and social media discriminate against conservatives. But the truth is a bit different than that narrative.
As one of the researchers explained, the ideological labels on news sources were borrowed from another study published in Science magazine, and they "don’t measure the slant of the media outlet per se, but rather reflect the self-reported political affiliation of Facebook users sharing content from those sources."
Weaver's claim that CNN and every other news outlet on CJR's list that isn't Fox News peddles "a heavy dose of liberal ideology" is ridiculous on its face, not to mention lazy, kneejerk right-wing ideology. She would never concede that there's such a thing as straight reporting, let alone that Fox News peddles "conservative ideology" -- heck, she never even straight-out admitted that Fox News is a "right-leaning" outlet.
Nevertheless, Weaver claimed this was bias because "on TV, vastly more people watch Fox News over CNN" -- apparently not understanding the difference between TV and online content. She further huffed that "CJR came to the laughable conclusion that “simply more news was produced on the left” than the right." She omitted the fact that CJR backed up that latter assertion, citing the GDELT database of news articles, where there are "2.2 times as many articles from left-leaning sources as right-leaning sources."
The fact that Weaver's claims are little more than an attempt to perpetuate a narrative is underscored by how how other ConWeb outlets pushed the exact same talking point. A WorldNetDaily article on the study carries the misleading headline "Google's 'Top Stories' shows obvious left-wing bias, audit reveals."
UPDATE: The narrative continued at Fox News, where the MRC's Dan Gainor -- who, weirdly, does not get published at the MRC's main content sites despite being an executive there -- ranted that the study demonstrated "how Google News is biased wildly toward liberal outlets." Gainor even repeated some of the same talking points as Weaver; for instance, he similarly didn't understdand the difference between TV and online: "CNN tallied 10.9 percent of the total. Fox mustered 3 percent, finishing far below its cable news competitor. You know, the outlet that Fox News regularly trounces in the ratings."
And the MRC's "news" division, CNSNews.com, which published a May 14 column by Jeff Charles claiming that the study proves that Google "favors progressive sites" and that "it is likely that the company will become more brazen in its campaign to magnify progressive views while minimizing conservative ideas."
NEW ARTICLE: Down the Conspiracy Drain Topic: WorldNetDaily
Even as leader Joseph Farah is incapacitated by a stroke and its corporate mismanagement is made public, WorldNetDaily still insists on promoting conspiracy theories even though doing so is one of the things that is driving it out of business. Read more >>
AIM Tries To Dismiss Prosecutors' Letter As Having 'Far-Left' Motivation Topic: Accuracy in Media
Brian McNicoll huffs in a May 14 Accuracy in Media post: "Protect Democracy, a far-left activist group, found more than 450 former federal prosecutors and political types to sign a letter that said they would have charged President Donald Trump with obstruction of justice based on actions described in the Mueller report." But McNicoll provides no evidence that Protect Democracy is a "far-left" group.
Protect Democracy states that its mission is "to prevent our democracy from declining into a more authoritarian form of government. We do this by holding the President and the Executive Branch accountable to the laws and longstanding practices that have protected our democracy through both Democratic and Republican administrations." It was founded by "a group of former White House and Administration lawyers and experienced constitutional litigators, all with a deep understanding of how the federal government works." We're not seeing the "far-left" connotation that McNicoll does.
McNicoll also tries to dismiss the signatories as"anti-Trump," also without evidence (unless you assume, as McNicoll apparently does, that taking a legal stance that does not favor Trump equals being "anti-Trump"). The Washington Post article to which McNicoll links notes the bipartisan nature of the signatories:
Among the high-profile signers are Bill Weld, a former U.S. attorney and Justice Department official in the Reagan administration who is running against Trump for the Republican presidential nomination; Donald Ayer, a former deputy attorney general in the George H.W. Bush administration; John S. Martin, a former U.S. attorney and federal judge appointed to his posts by Republican presidents; Paul Rosenzweig, who served as senior counsel to independent counsel Kenneth W. Starr; and Jeffrey Harris, who worked as the principal assistant to Rudolph W. Giuliani when he was at the Justice Department in the Reagan administration.
McNicoll also claimed "political types" signed the petition; in fact, the statement says the signatories "served under both Republican and Democratic administrations at different levels of the federal system: as line attorneys, supervisors, special prosecutors, United States Attorneys, and senior officials at the Department of Justice."
It seems McNicoll is so blinded by his love for all things Trump that he assumes the worst motivation of anyone who dares to criticize him.
MRC Defends Meghan McCain From Seth Meyers, Censors Her Husband's Homophobic Attack Topic: Media Research Center
We've seen how the Media Research Center will do damage control for conservative figures by hiding inconvenient facts.
Kristine Marsh touted in a May 8 post that "The View co-host Meghan McCain had a tense exchange with Late Night host Seth Meyers Tuesday night, after the liberal host repeatedly berated McCain for criticizing Democrat Rep. Ilhan Omar. As Meyers couldn’t get McCain to admit she had said anything wrong, she turned the tables on the host by calling out his liberal bias. She was joined the same day by the MRC's Dan Gainor writing at Fox News (weirdly, he's not allowed to post much of anything at the websites run by his employer), who gushed that McCain "deserves an award as the conservative most willing to fight with Hollywood liberals on their home turf" and complaining that "Meyers has a history of taking the left’s side of almost every debate."
Tim Graham and Brent Bozell weighed in as well, whining that McCain was "getting thrown under the bus" for saying "conservative things on television," claiming that Meyers was "shaming" her for criticizing Rep. Ilhan Omar.
But none of these MRC writers mentioned what happened after the interview, even though it's very much a part of the story. McCain's husband, Ben Domenech -- the noted plagiarist who is now publisher of the right-wing opinion operation The Federalist -- went into a homophobic rage on Twitter, calling Meyers a n"untalented piece of shit who only has his job because he regularly gargled Lorne Michaels’ balls," as well as "an awful person" and a "monumental asshole" and "proof that white men get ahead despite their obvious lack of talent ... a perfect definition of a cuck."
Called out on his rant, Domenech tepidly ofered a non-apology apology, claiming that "I'm sorry to anyone I offended."
The MRC's silence is doubly ironic because Graham and Bozell attacked Meyers for asking people to be careful about their language with a fit of whataboutism: "Does Meyers really think he and his fellow late-night lecturers are careful about their language? Stephen Colbert calling Trump Russian President Vladimir Putin's 'c—k holster'? Samantha Bee calling the president's daughter a 'feckless c—t'? Is that 'careful'?"
If the MRC gang could find nothing wrong with Domenech's vulgar rant, they're utterly hypocritical in taking it out on Meyers and other late-night hosts.
WND's Klayman Plays The Egotistical Contrarian Card Topic: WorldNetDaily
Larry Klayman began his May 17 WorldNetDaily column bragging about just how awesome he is, at one point stating without irony, "Without 'beating my chest' to the extreme, there is no other lawyer in the nation who will gore the ox of any and all parties who violate the law." (Narrator: He's totally beating his chest, and he's bad at his job.)
This is a prelude to promoting his latest dubious legal action:
So it is that the left, which uniformly only promotes its own agendas, is not willing to give me credit for taking up the worthy cause of a woman, Laura Luhn, who tells of being sexually abused and terrorized by the former CEO of Fox News, one Roger Ailes. Nor can many “Kool-Aid drinkers” on the right fully comprehend why I have felt duty-bound to sue the current CEO of Fox News and Fox News itself. But again, I must do what I have to do without regard to appearances. I believe that the Father and his Son have given me this calling.
We referenced this lawsuit back in January, when WND promoted it by calling Luhn a "news gal." But as an actual news operation reported at the time, Klayman is not suing Fox News or Ailes' estate over Ailes' alleged behavior (she was awarded a $3.15 million severance deal when she left after promising to adhere to a nondisclosure agreement); he's threatening Showtime with the lawsuit as leverage in trying to get Showtime to hire Luhn as a consultant on a miniseries about Ailes to make sure she's portrayed the way she demands.
That apparently didn't happen. So -- a few days after the trailer for the miniseris dropped -- Klayman did another act of contrarianism and sent Luhn to appear on a liberal talk show:
Last Thursday, Laurie thus felt compelled to accept an invitation by the leftist YouTube network, The Young Turks (TYT), to explain why she had commissioned me to sue Showtime, Blumhouse, Sherman, as well as Fox News. During the show, which will be up on the TYT YouTube channel this weekend, she called for a boycott of the miniseries – calling Sherman’s writings fictional “garbage.” She also explained the comparative treachery of Fox News’ CEO.
I urge all of you to watch this TYT interview, as it demonstrates that unlawful and unethical behavior knows no political or ideological bounds. It occurs on both the left and the right, and when it harms an innocent woman like Laurie, it must be dealt with forcefully.
Showtime, Blumhouse, Sherman and the current head of Fox News, Suzanne Scott, are indeed birds of a feather, and if my client and I get our way in court, these defendants will all pay dearly before a jury of their peers.
To sum up: There are apparently no viable lawsuits going on, despite Klayman's claim of them; if there were, Luhn and Klayman would not be calling for a much more tepid action through a boycott of the series.
And if Luhn is serious about her case, she should have picked a lawyer who cares more about proper legal procedures and less about his ego.
MRC Unhappy With Possible Comeback of Brian Williams Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center -- where name-calling is more important than "media research" -- loves to tag MSNBC's Brian Williams as "Lyin' Brian" for exaggerations he told about his work as a journalist that cost him his job as NBC Nightly News anchor. But that was four years ago, and the MRC is still mad that Williams is still around, did his penance, and may be making a comeback.
An April 18 post by Scott Whitlock is typical MRC Williams-bashing couched in whataboutism: "Disgraced former NBC anchor Brian Williams on Thursday morning compared the Attorney General to a former Iraqi propaganda minister. Williams, who falsely claimed he was shot down over Iraq in 2003, slimed Bill Barr as just like Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf, better known as Baghdad Bob. " Whitlock also sneered: "Again, just to be clear, Brian Williams is calling out someone else for falsehoods and questionable character."
On April 24, Tim Graham whined about a report that Williams might be making a "big comeback." First, he tried to denigrate Williams' ratings victory on MSNBC over CNN and Fox News: "he anchored live Mueller Report coverage with Nicolle Wallace and beat CNN (as if that's much of an achievement), but not Fox. The disgraced NBC anchor wins his 11 pm time slot, but that might be in part because Fox News viewers have retired for the evening."
Graham then huffed: "This only reminds people who don't love NBC/MSNBC that it's pretty funny if they would demand the fullest possible disclosure of the Mueller Report, since NBC never released any shred of a report of its investigation into the Williams fabrications....and never released any shred of a report on Lauer's sexual predations, either. Those probes 'died in darkness.'"
Nicholas Fondacaro joined the name-calling bandwagon in a May 1 post, grousing that "serial liar Brian Williams took to MSNBC Live and was infatuated with the radical California Senator Kamala Harris (D) and how she had 'drew blood' from" Aggorney General William Barr. Fondacaro seems to have forgotten that his boss was a serial liar twice a week by putting his name on a column he didn't write.
The next day, Kyle Drennen got mad that MSNBC interrupted its live coverage of Barr's Senate testimony: "The one thing all those moments had in common was that Republican lawmakers were the ones talking when anchor Brian Williams chose to cut them off to 'correct the record.'" In a separate post on the subject, Drennen ranted: "The unmitigated gall for Williams, who notoriously lied about his experience reporting on the Iraq war, to pretend to be the arbiter of anyone else’s credibility is truly amazing."
Graham returned on May 14 to express horror that Williams really is making a comeback: "NBC surprised TV writers on Monday by putting disgraced NBC anchor Brian Williams into their 'upfront' event for advertisers to stand with his successor Lester Holt, as well as Chuck Todd, Savannah Guthrie, Rachel Maddow, and others." Meanwhile, unlike Williams, Bozell never issued a public apology -- let alone face any consequences we're aware of -- for falsely presenting Graham's work as his own.
MRC's Philbin Is Mad Right-Wing Double Standard Called Out on Massacre Motivation Topic: Media Research Center
Matt Philbin -- apparently weary of complaining about coverage of massacred Muslims -- began his May 2 Media Research Center post complaining that "To be a Washington Post staffer is to simultaneously believe that a) when teenager shoots up a school, it’s about guns; b) when a jihadi shoots up a church, it’s not about religion; and c) when a Christian shoots up a synagogue it’s ... about religion." The rest of his post is spent complaining that right-wing double standards on religiously motivated massacres got called out. He huffed:
John Earnst, the alleged murderer, posted a manifesto in which he “spewed not only invective against Jews and racial minorities but also cogent Christian theology he heard in the pews” of his Orthodox Presbyterian Church. In Zauzmer’s summation, Earnst believed “Jewish people, guilty in his view of faults ranging from killing Jesus to controlling the media, deserved to die. That his intention to kill Jews would glorify God.” He also explained something about his Calvinist beliefs in salvation.
Are the two related? [Post reporter Julie] Zauzmer and some liberal Christians want it to be.
Philbin then complained that one evangelical pastor interviewed by Zauzmar Christians should rush to condemn the synagogue shooter the way moderate Muslims are demanded to every time "somebody claiming they’re motivated by their Islamic faith" commits an act of terror:
That’s very brave of him. I bet he felt a thrill of defiance when he slapped the “COEXIST” sticker on his Prius and drove around Ft. Meyers. But white nationalists are like the Illinois Nazis; everybody hates them. Woolf is a virtue signaller, and the point of Zauzmer’s piece is to slime the POC, which was “founded to counter liberalism in mainline Presbyterianism.”
Zauzmer addressed some of the theological questions surrounding evangelical views of the Jews. (Unlike some other evangelicals, OPC believes in “replacement theology” so Jews and Israel aren't important to them. If it seems to you like a big leap from “The Jews are no longer God’s chosen people” to “go gun ‘em down,” it is.) But they were at best window-dressing on a hit piece.
Earnst wouldn’t be the first psychopath to twist religious beliefs into a justification for murder. Nor would he be the first to cynically hide behind them. We don’t know which is the case. Could there be some dark corner of OPC theology that encourages Jew-hatred and other bigotry? Maybe. Maybe they have “Zap a Zionist” airgun game at the church picnic or an “Adopt an Aryan” ecumenical outreach program. But there’s no evidence of it.
The fact is, OPC preachers don’t exhort their flocks to kill Jews and infidels or drive Israelis into the sea. Until the OPC-related body count reaches 0.1% of militant Islam’s, Zauzmer’s article will remain a smear.
Of course, moderate Islam doesn't do that either, yet Philbin expects such adherents to denounce every single act of violence claimed to have been committed in the name of "militant Islam." Just like Philbin and his employer won't admit that militant anti-abortion rhetoric is not so far removed from the anti-abortion movement and occasionally inspires people to do things like murder abortion doctors.
MRC Mad At Media For Reporting The Obvious About WH Visit By Red Sox Topic: Media Research Center
The mysterious Jay Maxson falls into the usual Media Research Center trap of complaining that the media reports facts, in a May 10 post insisting that the obvious truth is just a liberal media "narrative":
President Donald Trump divided the 2018 World Series champion Boston Red Sox along racial lines. That's a recurring narrative of media reports on today's visit by the baseball champs to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Some in the press mocked the visit as mostly made up of the “white sox.”
Maxson then recounted news stories that, indeed, proved that was the case -- the Red Sox contigent visiting the White House was effectively all-white, while nearly all non-white players, including manager Alex Cora, declined to attend, at last some of whom cited Trump's divisive statements and policies as the reason.
After the recounting, Maxson then huffed, "Notice any pattern here?" Yes, we do, Jay: There's a pattern of the media reporting what it actually sees instead of following the right-wing narrative of pretending something in plain sight doesn't actually exist.
Maxson seems to know the point he/she is trying to make is rather lame, since so little is done to defend it; the only counter offered is a statement from one of those supposedly biased articleshe cites taht "The Red Sox repeatedly denied that there was any sort of racial divide caused by the White House visit."
Maxson also whined: "Critical media also chastised the Trump White House for a tweet referring to the 'Red Socks' and a reference to the 2018 "World Cup Series Champions." Yes, it's only a "critical media" that would point out such an embarrassing error.
Yet Maxson wasn't done, further whining that USA Today "ridiculed the president for the Red Socks and World Series Cup comments and posted 18 negative tweets about those errors." As if Maxson wouldn't engage in such "ridicule" had a Democratic White House done the same thing.
CNS Flip-Flops on the Logan Act Topic: CNSNews.com
Managing editor Michael W. Chapman intones in a May 10 CNS article:
Speaking with reporters on Thursday, President Donald Trump said that former Secretary of State John Kerry had "violated" the Logan Act by frequently communicating with Iran's government since leaving office in 2017, and he "should be prosecuted on that."
The Logan Act, enacted in 1799, states that private citizens not authorized to do so are not permitted to communicate or negotiate with foreign governments that are in a dispute with the United States. Iran is in a dispute with the United States over its nuclear program and the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which was partly negotiated by Secretary of State John Kerry and which President Trump repudiated in 2018.
“What I would like to see with Iran, I’d like to see them call me," President Trump told reporters on Thursday. "You know, John Kerry speaks to them a lot. John Kerry tells them not to call. That's a violation of the Logan Act. And, frankly, he should be prosecuted on that."
"But my people don't want to do anything that's -- only the Democrats do that kind of stuff, you know," said Trump. "If it were the opposite way, they’d prosecute him under the Logan Act. But John Kerry violated the Logan Act."
"He's talking to Iran and has been, has many meetings and many phone calls, and he's telling them what to do," said the president. "That's a total violation of the Logan Act."
Patrick Goodenough repeated Trump's accusation in a May 13 article about Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, linking to Chapman's article and writing: "Asked whether Kerry should potentially be prosecuted under the Logan Act – as President Trump suggested last week – Pompeo said he would 'leave to the Department of Justice to make decisions about prosecutions.'"
This isn't the first time CNS has promoted such attacks on Kerry. Last October, a stenography piece on Mark Levin's interview with Newt Gingrich quoted Gingrich as saying that Kerry "was never really the American Secretary of State. He was a world Secretary of State, doing good things on behalf of the world. And which is why I don't think you can charge him with the Logan Act because you'd have to be an American in order to be charged with the Logan Act, and Kerry is not psychologically an American." And in a January 2018 column, Allen West argued that Kerry "may very well be in violation of the Logan Act, a punishable felony offense."
But none of these CNS writers mentioned that this "news" organizaiton felt much differently about the Logan Act not that long ago -- when a Trump ally was accused of violating it.
When Michael Flynn -- Trump campaign official who was briefly Trump's national security adviser -- was charged with lying to the FBI regarding his contacts with Russian officials, CNS promoted writers who not only attacked thte idea that Flynn might have violated the Logan Act, they attacked the Logan Act itself.
A February 2017 column by Cully Stimson and Hans von Spakovsky defending Flynn pooh-poohed the very existence of the Logan Act:
No one has ever been prosecuted under that act (18 U.S.C. §953), which has been roundly (and rightly) criticized by distinguished legal scholars from the left and the right as a content-based restriction on First Amendment rights under the U.S. Constitution.
Keep in mind that this law was passed just a year after the Alien and Sedition Acts.
The Sedition Act of 1798 is probably one of the worst violations of the First Amendment ever passed by Congress. The Logan Act follows pretty closely behind the Sedition Act in its basic abrogation of First Amendment rights and has never been used against the many Americans who may have technically violated it.
Von Spakovsky repeated his attack on the Logan Act in a May 2018 column: "Many are questioning the legitimacy of the FBI’s questioning Flynn, since the questioning was apparently based on a potential violation of the Logan Act, which makes it a crime for unauthorized people to negotiate on behalf of the United States with foreign governments. No one has been successfully prosecuted under the Logan Act since it was passed in 1799. Many scholars believe it is unconstitutional."
And in a December 2018 "news" article, Susan Jones rehashed Fox News host Laura Ingraham's defense of Flynn: "That was a leak of a phone call on American citizen that he had every right to make. It wasn't just that he was a national security advisor. Any American has the ability to talk to any ambassador that they want. They used a law from the 1700s, the Logan Act, that had never been used."
CNS has published no attacks on the Logan Act since Trump's remarks about Kerry.
Acosta Derangement Syndrome Watch, MRC Edition Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's near-pathological hatred of all things Jim Acosta hasn't exactly abated. An April 17 post by Corinne Weaver ranted that Acosta was to win an award:
CNN’s most obnoxious White House correspondent is about to get rewarded again from his peers for his unprofessional behavior. According to a press release on April 12, the New York Press Club will give Jim Acosta their “Truth to Power” journalism award.
The Wrap reported that the award honors “an individual whose body of work challenges the power establishment and/or defends journalists.” The establishment being, the Trump administration of course.
“We are proud to honor a man such as Jim Acosta, who has proven himself throughout his storied, decades-long career to be a journalist of the utmost integrity, ” Jane Tillman Irving, president of the Press Club, said in the release. “For his unwavering commitment to fact and journalism, we are pleased to add to Jim’s many accolades with the Gabe Pressman ‘Truth to Power’ award.”
Facts and journalism? How about bbullying, over-inflated ego, and petty meltdowns? That seems more like what Acosta is known for than being a “truth teller.” Just about every chance he gets in the press briefings, he tries to hog the spotlight and frequently misconstrues situations for his benefit.
His combativeness and rough handling of a White House intern during one such briefing last November even got his White House press credentials temporarily revoked.
It seems bad behavior is a badge of honor to the left-wing media.
And it seems unprofessional name-calling is a badge of honor at the MRC.
All set with his hair sloshed to one side (presumably by the wind), CNN chief White House correspondent and carnival barking extraordinary Jim Acosta reported on Wednesday’s Situation Room ahead of a Trump rally that the President has plunged America “toward a constitutional crisis” while solidifying a reputation as a con-man, turning “the art of the deal...into the art of the conceal.”
Clearly locked and loaded (while feeling quite proud of himself), Acosta parroted House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) in telling viewers that “President Trump appears to be heading toward a constitutional crisis with House Democrats as he continues to hide the Mueller report as well as his tax returns from lawmakers.”
After recapping the Trump controversies concerning the Mueller report, whether Don McGahn should testify before Congress, and the President’s tax returns, Acosta ruled as if he weren’t alive in 2015, 2016, or even three decades ago: “Mr. Trump's steep losses in real estate call also into question his main pitch to voters in 2016, that he was a business genius.”
In the next hour, Acosta reiterated his nonsense about “a constitutional crisis” and “the art of the conceal.”How cute.
Houck clearly feels quite proud of himself, thinking in his own mind how cute all those sick burns of Acosta are. Of course, in reality, he just comes off as a right-wing hater.
WND Thinks Larry Klayman And 'Serious Lawsuit' Are Synonymous Topic: WorldNetDaily
If you have to try and sell the idea that someone's lawsuit is serious, it probably isn't.
A May 13 WND article carries the headline Ilhan Omar in U.S. illegally? Serious lawsuit seeks answer." But it soon becomes clear that there is a serious question about just how "serious" the effort is:
Former Justice Department prosecutor and Freedom Watch founder Larry Klayman, who previously petitioned the Department of Homeland Security and the House of Representatives to investigate Rep. Ihlan Omar, D-Minn., to determine her eligibility for naturalization, now has gone to court.
The Muslim freshman lawmaker has drawn rebuke from her own party leaders for anti-Semitic tweets while in office. And before she was elected, she tweeted, “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel.”
Klayman in March petitioned DHS and the House for an investigation of Omar on several grounds.
Now he’s filing a complaint with U.S. District Court in Washington seeking a court order that would require DHS to investigate.
He alleges Omar committed “marriage fraud,” which, according to the Immigration Marriage Fraud Amendments Act of 1986, is punishable by five years in prison for any person “who knowingly enters into a marriage for the purpose of evading any provision of the immigration laws.”
As befits both Klayman and WND, things do go into the conspiratorial weeds pretty quickly. Klayman claims that the "marraige fraud" comes from the never proven claim that Omar married her brother, a never-proven claim WND haspushed before.
There's another conspiracy theory thrown into the mix: that Omar also somehow committed fraud by misrepresenting herself because at the time the Somali refugee was granted asylum, she was in "the resort city of Mombasa, Kenya, famous for its magnificent beaches on the Indian Ocean, and a magnet for wealthy tourists from Europe and around the world," purportedly meaning that "she was not living in a dangerous environment that would qualify her for entry into the U.S." In fact, Omar was in a refugee camp near Mombasa, not freely living in the city -- a disease-ridden place that is the complete opposite of Klayman's fanciful description.
This is the "serious lawsuit" Klayman and WND think we're supposed to take seriously? Really?
CNS' Jeffrey Still Reluctant To Blame Trump, GOP For Federal Budget Issues Topic: CNSNews.com
We've documented how CNSNews.com editor in chief has largely refused to single out President Trump and his Republican-controlled Congress to blame for rising federal deficits, though he had no problem blaming Democrats for it when President Obama was in office. Well, Jeffrey has done it again in a May 11 article:
The federal government spent $2,573,708,000,000 in the first seven months of fiscal 2019 (October through April), setting an all-time record for real federal spending in the first seven months of a fiscal year, according to data published in the Monthly Treasury Statements.
Prior to this fiscal year, the most that the federal government had ever spent in the first seven months of a fiscal year was in fiscal 2011, when it spent $2,476,257,690,000 in constant April 2019 dollars (adjusted using the Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation calculator).
As before, the words "Trump" and "Republican" appear nowhere in his article. But Jeffrey tries to implicitly spread the blame around by including a photo of Trump and House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, even though neither she nor Democrats are mentioned in his article either.
Jeffrey's article concludes with a tag stating that "The business and economic reporting of CNSNews.com is funded in part with a gift made in memory of Dr. Keith C. Wold." Do Wold's heirs know his gift is funding such dishonest reporting?
MRC Can't Quite Admit That Far-Right Figures Are Far-Right Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Alexander Hall wrote in a May 3 post:
Instagram and its parent company Facebook have purged several what it called “extremist” figures ranging from controversial Jewish activist Laura Loomer to anti-Semitic hate preacher Rev. Louis Farrakhan.
In the latest round of tech bans, Facebook and Instagram have deplatformed conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, Infowars, Milo Yiannopoulos, Paul Joseph Watson, Loomer and Farrakhan. According to The Atlantic, the ban on Infowars is the strictest, in that they will remove “any content containing Infowars videos, radio segments, or articles (unless the post is explicitly condemning the content).” In addition, any groups set up to share Infowars content on Facebook or Instagram will also be removed[.]
The headline of Hall's item reads "Facebook Purges ‘Dangerous’ Farrakhan, Controversial Activists." But as the item's URL indicates, it originally carried the headline "Facebook Purges ‘Dangerous’ Farrakhan, Far-Right Figures." The item otherwise applies no ideological labels on the non-Farrakhan figures, despite the fact they are indeed on the far right.
Hall goesa on to add that "Loomer was one of the early examples of big tech deplatforming and depersoning on multiple platforms." We'vedocumented how the MRC has downplayed how extreme and rabidly Islamophobic Loomer is in order to portray her as a victim of social media "censorship" against conservatives. Hall goes on to repeat Loomer's lament that "I am banned by Uber an [sic] Lyft" without mentioning that it's because she went on an Islamophobic rant complaining that the ride-sharing services employ Muslim drivers.
Similarly, the MRC has tried to mainstream Jones' Infowars (of which Watson is a part) by ridiculously claiming it's no different than CNN -- all the better to shoehorn it into that victimhood narrative.
CNS Complains About Barr Contempt Citation -- But Cheered GOP Contempt Vote Against Holder Topic: CNSNews.com
When the Democratic-led House was considering issuing a contempt citation against Attorney General William Barr for refusal to make the full unredacted Mueller report available to members of Congress, the pro-Trump stenographers CNSNews.com were quick to object:
Susan Jones highlighted how one Republican congressman called the contempt citation a "public show" to "discredit" Barr.
Michael Morris dutifully transcribed right-wing radio host Mark Levin ranting that Barr was being held in contempt for "following the law."
Jones returned to tout former Republican Attorney General Michael Mukasey claiming that Democrats are crossing a legal line, "because the point of this is not to find out facts."
Another Jones article lamented that the House Judiciary Committee "will vote along party lines to recommend that Attorney General William Barr be held in contempt of Congress."
By contrast, in 2012 when then-Attorney General Eric Holder faced a contempt vote for alleged failure to release enough documents to the Republican-controlled House regarding the Fast and Furious controversy, CNS cheered it all the way. CNS cheered it on as early as February 2012, then cranked up the coverage with a decided anti-Holder bias, even in the articles that don't show one in the headline, when the vote arrived a few months later: