Help, MRC! We've Been Censored! Topic: Media Research Center
Dear Media Research Center:
In your posts on purported attacks on conservatives in social media, you have stated: "If you have been censored, contact us at the Media Research Center contact form to be included in our database, and help us hold Big Tech accountable." I have an addition for your database.
On July 1, we responded to a tweet by NewsBusters blogger Mark Finkelstein promoting his post attacking MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace as "sexist" for calling White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany as a "spokesgal" by pointing out conservative criticism of women that, by Finkelstein's definition, are also sexist -- first, by noting that MRC writer Gabriel Hays called the U.S. women's soccer team "gals" for fighting to increase their salaries and, later, by pointing out that Rush Limbaugh repeatedly smeared Sandra Fluke as a "slut" for talking about birth control.
That last tweet got us in trouble with the powers that be at Twitter, which deemed it offensive and suspended the ConWebWatch account -- even though the tweet was factually accurate and in no way an endorsement of Limbaugh. (By comparison, your organization started an "I Stand With Rush" website to support Limbaugh after his sleazy attack).
We appealed the suspension -- but after more than two weeks of waiting, we heard nothing from Twitter about the appeal, during which our account was suspended and we were unable to post anything to it. Bcause the delay has hurt our mission to report on right-wing media, we have canceled our appeal and deleted the tweet in question in order to regain control of our account.
By your definiton, we were censored for expressing a conservative viewpoint. Can we be on your list?
CNS Won't Fact-Check Trump On His Mail-In Vote Fearmongering Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com fell into pro-Trump stenography mode once again in a June 22 article by Susan Jones:
President Trump is an outspoken critic of vote-by-mail, and the topic merited all caps as he tweeted Monday morning:
RIGGED 2020 ELECTION: MILLIONS OF MAIL-IN BALLOTS WILL BE PRINTED BY FOREIGN COUNTRIES, AND OTHERS. IT WILL BE THE SCANDAL OF OUR TIMES!
Trump was echoing Attorney General William Barr, who told "Sunday Morning Futures" he worries about mail-in ballots opening "the floodgates of potential fraud."
Because CNS doesn't fact-check anything Trump says -- in this case, Jones merely adds a statment from a critic that Trump is trying to suppress the vote to ensure a win and that voting by mail is already permitted in many states -- it was left to an actual news operation to point out why Trump is wrong about mail-in ballots coming from "foreign countries":
Even a fifth-grade class president, though, can probably identify at least one problem with this theory.
The first is precisely that votes are necessarily correlated to voters. Submitting millions of ballots in general means identifying millions of active voters on whose behalf the ballots should be sent. Trump has repeatedly lifted up a Pew Center on the States report from 2012 delineating bloat in America’s voter rolls. People routinely move or die without updating their status with local registrars of voters, meaning that there are theoretical voters who are either living out of state or not living at all. The 2012 report identified 1.8 million dead voters alone.
The irony, of course, is that the focus on these inactive voters has meant that counties have been more active about culling expired registrations. Los Angeles County was sued by the pro-Trump activist group Judicial Watch, leading it to purge 1.5 million presumably inactive voters. That’s 1.5 million fewer voters for a theoretical foreign power to exploit.
Mind you, a foreign power that obtained a full voter file would not necessarily know any better than the county itself which voters were inactive. So you would get a ton of submitted ballots for voters who were themselves already voting — especially given that turnout peaks during a presidential election year. Meaning a ton of duplicate ballots, quickly exposing the attempted fraud.
None of this, though, is the main reason that Trump’s theoretical fraud would not work. The main reason the fraud wouldn’t work is that casting a ballot isn’t as easy as getting one and turning it in. County governments then validate the ballots against existing information — usually matching a signature by hand — before considering it valid.
In other words, not only would this foreign government need to identify nonvoters or get lucky by not duplicating ballots; it would also have to somehow ensure that the ballots it was submitting didn’t include obviously forged signatures.
So if the foreign power obtained those signatures, matched them to voters and mailed them back in, the signatures would then have to be obviously not forged even if they were exact replicas of the originals on file (which, of course, would probably raise eyebrows by itself). For example, they would need to not be obviously printed on the ballot, as opposed to signed by hand. This isn’t as hard to pull off as it might seem, Siegel suggested, but it is still an example of a bar that needs to be surpassed.
Only then do we hit all of the other problems: that the voter is still valid, that he or she has not already voted and so on.
Jones also failed to note that numerous Trump officials -- and Trump himself -- have already voted by mail.
CNS has previously gotten angry that Trump was fact-checked at all on the issue of mail-in voting. After Twitter tagged an earlier Trump tweet falsely attacking mail-in voting with a link to facts on the issue, Craig Bannister huffed in a May 27 article that Twitter has begun posting rebuttals to tweets by President Donald Trump under the direction of a 'Head of Site Integrity' who has, himself, used the social media giant to call Trump officials 'actual Nazis' and 'Joseph Goebbels,' in a move one columnist deems 'a shocking step.'" He huffed further that the rebuttals came from "anti-Trump liberal media like CNN and The Washington Post," but he didn't dispute the accuacy of the rebuttal.
A day later, Bannister touted how Trump issued new tweets "promising that allowing mail-in ballots would result in substantial voter fraud and a rigged election," claiming that the earlier tweet had "link[ed] to liberal media defending mail-in voting" but, again, failing to dispute the factual accuracy of the defense.
UPDATE: CNS also uncritically quoted Attorney General William Barr floating this conspiracy theory with Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo offering no pushback. CNS didn't offer any either in this anonymously authored piece; it was in stenography mode.
MRC President L. Brent Bozell on Monday announced that the Media Research Center would no longer accept money from the AmazonSmile program. Amazon has brushed off conservative concerns about letting an anti-Christian organization like SPLC decide which groups may receive funds. Additionally, Amazon recently tried to censor a book because it didn’t toe the party line on the coronavirus lockdowns.
“Any money from Amazon is tainted, hate-filled money that we want nothing to do with,” said MRC President L. Brent Bozell. “The liberal-loving Jeff Bezos and his hacks at Amazon and Washington Post oppose everything we stand for at the MRC. While we thank supporters who have used the program, we ask that they continue their donations directly, instead of through Amazon’s filter of hate,” added Bozell.
“AmazonSmile uses the hate group SPLC to oversee the Amazon Smile program. To allow Planned Parenthood to receive donations, but not Christian convervative groups like Family Research Council and Alliance Defending Freedom, is completely unacceptable. We will no longer have anything to do with this deeply biased program,” Bozell said. "Amazon is no longer just a retailer. It's a left-wing activist organization with an agenda."
Bozell's description of the the Southern Poverty Law Center as "anti-Christian" and a "hate group" is laughable. Hhis evidence that Amazon "brushed off conservative concerns" linked to a column at Bozell's CNSNews.com by the Heritage Foundation's Kay Coles James complaining that AmazonSmile would no longer fund right-wing groups like the Family Research Council and the Alliance Defending Freedom based on the SPLC's designation of them as hate groups for their virulent opposition to LGBT rights. James insisted that the FRC and ADF are "long-established, venerable organizations" and "mainstream conservative organizations" and framing their anti-LGBT activism as merely "defense of traditional marriage." Rather than address the SPLC's evidence against the groups, James ranted that "The SPLC itself is a completely discredited organization" and denied that that her fellow gay-haters were listed "in a directory alongside real hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis."
In other words, James is declaring that hating gays is a "mainstream conservative" position -- and Bozell is declaring that he's as homophobic as other conservatives, but he didn't explain why favoring LGBT rights is inherently "left-wing." But he clearly opposes those rights to the point that he will refuse donations to his organizations.
Bozell also didn't say how much money the MRC had received through AmazonSmile, or if he will return that money to Amazon. Bozell is apparently hypocritically happy with the money the MRC has already accepted through the program.
Every single thing that's been done to help black people has been done specifically because they're recognized as a Crayola crayon color. Speaking of which, one wonders how long it will be before Crayola discontinues black crayons because they've "woked" to how insensitive having a black crayon is to those people for whom being a crayon color is an identity. But I digress.
Saturday evening I was a guest on a Baltimore, Maryland, talk show where the host failed to grasp the meaning of George Kelly's book on Personal Construct Theory, which argues: "Psychological disorder is any personal construction which is used repeatedly in spite of consistent invalidation, i.e., repeating the same thing failure after failure is a psychological disorder." The problem, however, is the ability this specific psychological disorder provides to make massive amounts of money and to be on the right side of every crayon skin-color issue.
This was the point I made to the host of said program. But like most of his kind, they're willingly blind because it's easier to be same.
The coalminers of West Virginia weren't helped because they were a crayon color. They were helped because they were Americans in dire straits. But so-called blacks have always been identified as a crayon first. The host of the Baltimore talk program I referenced above smugly told me that there was no way America would ever become colorblind.
Everything about crayon color people begins with the prefix black or African. Children from the womb to the grave are inculcated with a construct of inhibitory control that enables them to achieve the lowest common denominator.
It's this variant form of Pavlovian conditioning that encourages and validates hatred, disorder and sub-human behavior. There's no condition known to man that has not been claimed to be disproportionately adverse to the crayon people, except wealth, industry, propriety and civility.
The majority of reasonable and logical minds are at a loss to solve the conundrum of why so many of these people embrace the jaundiced cosmological view that they do. The rationale is quite simple when one understands the behavioral etymology of same.
It's not a Gordian Knot that keeps so many people tied to the plantation of self-limitation and immiseration – it's a pernicious form of an inculcated stenotopic mindset that constrains the person to being a prisoner of his own making. Compounding this satanic pathology are draconian marplots that have successfully advanced a supportive culture that refuses to rebuke the self-defeating Pygmalion of being a crayon color before all else.
It's time to start being concerned about Americans not crayon colors. And contrary to all of those who think they know best, I'm right based both upon historical evidences and, more importantly, because the immutable Word of God says God is not a respecter of persons.
The MRC's Hypocrisy on Copyright Issues And Property Rights Topic: Media Research Center
For a gorup purporting to embrace the conservative idea of private property rights, the Media Research Center sure does have a problem other people enforcing their private property rights. We saw that last November, for example, when P.J. Gladnick mocked singer Taylor Swift for wanting more control over how her music is used by others.
The MRC's big thing of late is whining about how conservatives are being "censored" when right-wing videos are taken down by social media because copyright holders for the images in them pointed out they were being used without permission.
A March 2 post featured an interview the MRC's Dan Gainor conducted with right-wing meme creator Carpe Donktum, who whined that his videos are "taken down for copyright strikes that shouldn’t actually be real, you know, things that aren’t actually copyrighted."
An April 24 post by Corinne Weaver complained that "a video tweeted by Trump that mocked former President Barack Obama’s endorsement of Biden was reportedly deleted by Twitter, according to the Washington Examiner. The reason for the alleged removal was a 'copyright complaint.'"
A June 5 post by Alexander Hall groused that "Twitter “disabled” a video by the Trump reelection campaign, alleging a copyright violation," then gave space to a Trtump campaign spokesman to rant that ""This incident is yet another reminder that Twitter is making up the rules as they go along. From the dubious removal of the hilarious Nickelback video to capricious fact checks and manipulated media labels to questionable claims of copyright, Twitter has repeatedly failed to explain why their rules seem to only apply to the Trump campaign but not to others." Hall did not indicate that he fact-checked the spokesman's claims, though he did acknowledge a report that "Harvard University's Lumen Database, a third-party research group Twitter uses to study cease and desist letters, reviewed the complaint and found it to be valid under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act."
Under an all-caps "CENSORED" headline, Hall used a June 24 post to declare that "Twitter has continued its unabashed attacks on President Donald Trump and his allies by permanently suspending well-known, pro-Trump meme creator Carpe Donktum" after a video he made that Trump retweeted was made "inaccessible in response to 'a report by the copyright owner.'" Hall let Carpe Donktum spread a conspiracy theoryshowing "a grim portrait of the platform’s ideologically driven management,"insisting without substantiation that "I have been banned for being effective" (and not, apparently, for repeated violations of other people's copyrights).
Twitter has censored yet another meme posted by President Donald Trump. The company removed an image tweeted by Trump for allegedly violating its copyright policy.
Twitter has cracked down on Trump’s sincere demands for order, his calls to action, and now even his jokes once again. A meme photo was posted by Trump on June 30 depicting a photo of himself, captioned with the words: “In reality they’re not after me they’re after you” and the phrase, “I’m just in the way.”
Twitter confirmed in an email that the meme photo in question had been removed after a copyright claim. The tweet now just shows a “media not displayed” notice with the caption explaining that “[T]his image has been removed in response to a report from the copyright holder.”
The meme featured a photo taken by Damon Winter for The New York Times, reported CNBC. “‘Per our copyright policy, we respond to valid copyright complaints sent to us by a copyright owner or their authorized representatives,’ a Twitter spokesperson [stated],” according to CNBC. “The New York Times filed the takedown notice, a company’s spokesperson said.”
The MRC does not explain in any of these posts why copyright holders are apperently not allowed to enforce their rights when their intellectual property is used without authorization by conservatives.
This is all hypocritical, of course -- the MRC actually does care about copyright issues when it serves its right-wing agenda. A February post by Weaver gloated that "trillion-dollar company" Google "could be in trouble for copyright infringement, according to a lawsuit from tech company Oracle" over a lawsuit accusing the search giant of having "“copied verbatim 11,000 lines of Java code and then broke Java’s interoperability.”
An anonymously written May 18 CNS article stated, under the headline "Pelosi: ‘Democratic Caucus...I Am Proud to Say is More Than 60% Women, People of Color and LGBTQ Members’":
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) delivered the virtual commencement address for Smith College on Sunday, telling the graduates the that House Democratic Caucus is “more than 60 percent women, people of color an LGBTQ members.”
“I am pleased to convey the congratulations of the Congress of the United States–and to bring special greetings on behalf of the House Democratic Caucus, which I am proud to say is more than 60 percent women, people of color and LGBTQ members,” Pelosi said.
Then in a July 8 article, an anonymous CNS writer repeated Pelosi saying the same basic thing under nearly the same exact headline, "Nancy Pelosi: ‘Our Caucus…is More Than 60 Percent Women, People of Color and LGBTQ’":
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) on Monday joined with Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries (D.-N.Y.) and Caucus Procedures Chair Grace Meng (D.-N.Y.) in issuing a statement about the Democratic Caucus' new “Diversity Rule.”
“House Democrats take great pride in the beautiful diversity of our Caucus, which is more than 60 percent women, people of color and LGBTQ,” said Pelosi, Jeffries and Meng said in the statement.
“One of our Caucus’s top priorities has long been to promote diversity at every level of Congress, so that these halls better reflect the dynamism and vibrancy of the American people whom we are privileged to represent,” they said.
CNS has not explained why this information was so important that it did basically the same story about it in less than two months -- unless it wants to convey to its readers that women, people of color and LGBTQ people are somehow a bad thing to be associated with.
MRC Censored News of Tucker Carlson's Racist Writer -- Even As It Wrote About Carlson Topic: Media Research Center
Last week, the head writer for Tucker Carlson's Fox News show, Blake Neff, was caught making years of racist, homophobic and misogynist posts under a pseudonym on a message board -- not to mention test-driving white nationalist memes that would later appear in sanitized form on Carlson's show. He quickly resigned followed by Carlson pretending to be horrified by Neff's comments, attacking the people who exposed Neff, and quickly exiting to take a "long-planned" vacation for the rest of the week.
You didn't read about any of this at the the Media Research Center's main outlet, NewsBusters -- even while it was touting other things Carson did at the same time.
In a July 11 post -- the day after Neff's offensive writings and subsequent resigation came to light -- Ryan Foley touted how "Tucker Carlson had it right when he described CNN anchors, including Lemon, as 'compliant' people who 'say what they’re told,' 'tell the audience what the moment demands,' and 'never stray from the script.'" Foley didn't note whether Carlson was reading from Neff's script when he said that.
On July 13, Krstine Marsh complained that "the media has renewed their efforts to force high-rating Fox News Channel host Tucker Carlson off the air," grumbing further that hosts on "The View" had "claimed he was a homophobic racist who sends “dog whistles” to Fox News viewers with his commentary." She too made no mention of Neff's exposure and resignation three days earlier.
The same day, Nicholas Fondacaro wrote about how Carlson had as a guest "St. Louis lawyer and home defender Mark McCloskey" and how "Carlson also wanted to look at how the media were abusing them," gushing over how Carlson "astutely" handled the segment.He didn't mention that on that very same show, Carlson addressed the issue of his racist writer and announced his hasty "long-planned" vacation.
We heard nothing at all from Gabriel Hays, who spent last month mocking late-night host Jimmy Kimmel for leaving on a summer vacation after old blackface skits he did resurfaced. You'd think Carlson's disappearing act would be ripe for mocking, especially since abrupt vacations after disturbing revelations are a Fox News staple.
It wasn't until July 14 -- four days afater Neff was exposed and resigned -- until the MRC referenced the controversy ... in a way favorable as possible to Carlson, of course. Marsh portrayed Carlson as a victim of a "left-wing effort to get him taken off the air" and complained that the hosts of "The View" did what her co-worker did to Kimmel a few weeks earlier:
For the second day in a row, The Viewhas gone after Fox News primetime host Tucker Carlson, aiding the left-wing effort to get him taken off the air. Only host Meghan McCain blasted the “cancel culture,” anti-free speech power trip the left is currently engaging in. But her co-hosts vehemently disagreed with her, proudly calling their intolerance for conservatives actually “accountability,” not “canceling.”
After Tucker Carlson addressed his head writer, Blake Neff, resigning after posting offensive comments under a pseudonym online, Carlson announced he would be taking a “long-planned” vacation the rest of the week. The liberal Viewhosts pounced on that announcement, saying his response about the show’s former writer wasn’t enough, before floating conspiracies that this “vacation” was Carlson escaping scrutiny:
Marsh didn't menion that her co-worker Hays was, by the same definition, pursuing a "conspiracy" against Kimmel, nor did she acknowledge that Fox News hosts have a history of abruptly departing for "vacation" in the midst of a controversy.
marsh further complained that co-host Whoopi Goldberg "repeatedly suggested, without evidence, that Carlson was a racist so he should be punished." It's as if Marsh has never watched Carlson's show. From there, it was straight to whataboutism: "Funny how it’s just conservatives who are held 'accountable' while nothing happens to left-wing hosts like Joy Reid for similar situations. [Meghan] McCain actually brought that up, and Whoopi promptly cut her off to go to commercial break."
At no point did Marsh explain the "offensive" remarks that Neff made, nor did she express any criticism of them.
The MRC's effective silence on Carlson and Neff tells us how sympatico they actually are with Carlson's white nationalist-friendly agenda.
NEW ARTICLE: WND's 'Real News' Failure Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian is no Joseph Farah, so his insistence that WND cares about the "truth" rings even more hollow. Has he forgotten that WND has a 20-plus-year track record of spreading misinformation and lies? Read more >>
CNS Still Giving Alveda King Bogus 'Dr.' Title Topic: CNSNews.com
Foryears, CNSNews.com has insisted on gracing anti-abortion activist Alveda King with the "Dr." honorific even though her "doctorate" is an honorary one and not earned. It just can't seem to stop:
A June 5 article by Melanie Arter stated that "Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s niece, Dr. Alveda King, said Friday that the protests in honor of George Floyd, who was killed by police last month during an arrest in Minnesota, have “nothing really to do with skin color” as evidenced, she said, by the arrests of African-American police officers in Atlanta who were charged with using excessive force against two college students."
On June 16, Arter wrote that "Dr. Alveda King, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s niece, told “Fox and Friends” on Monday that the police are looking at black people as perpetrators, not people 'a lot of times.'"
A June 18 article by managing editor Michael W. Chapman stated: "Dr. Alveda King, niece of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., said several years ago that neither her grandfather nor her uncle 'embraced the homosexual agenda.'" for King's quote, Chapman linked to an article by the Catholic News Agency, which also called her "Dr."
Arter returned on June 19 to write that "Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s niece, Dr. Alveda King, told Fox Business’s 'Mornings With Maria Bartiromo' on Friday that it’s a dream come true for her to see Juneteenth acknowledged more broadly, but she hopes there’s a Juneteenth for the unborn."
If CNS wants to be taken seriously as a news organization and not just an amplifier of pro-Trump and right-wing talking points, it needs to act accordingly. Gracing someone with a title they didn't earn because you like their politics doesn't cut it.
ConWeb Cash: MRC, Newsmax Take Federal Coronavirus Relief Money Topic: Media Research Center
Conservatives profess to hate it when the federal government runs up deficits. But they -- and the ConWeb in particular -- apparently have no problem accepting money from the federal government when it suits them. According to Small Business Administration loan data, both the Media Research Center and Newsmax have taken money from the Paycheck Protection Program, set up to help small businesses through the coronavirus pandemic with potentially forgivable loans.
The MRC received between $1 million and $2 million, while Newsmax Media received bwtween $2 million and $5 million; both amounts were approved on April 13. As near as we can tell, neither the MRC nor Newsmax have disclosed this information to their readers. By contrast, one MRC NewsBusters post and an article at the MRC's "news" division, CNSNews.com, attacked Planned Parenthood for accepting PPP money while not disclosing that the MRC has taken the money.
Even more curious, though, is how the MRC described itself in its PPP application, stating that it's in the industry of "Marketing Research and Public Opinion Polling." That's a far cry from the MRC's usual description of itself as "a research and education organization operating under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code" where "contributions are tax-deductible to the maximum extent of the law." It also apparently failed to identify itself as a nonprofit in the application; that is left blank, according to the loan database.
That sounds like a conflict of stated mission. Why does an organization that represents itself to federal officials as a "marketing research and public opinion polling" group need nonprofit status? The MRC might want to explain that one.
(Newsmax Media represented itself as being involved with "Internet Publishing and Broadcasting and Web Search Portals," which is what it does.)
Looks like the MRC has some explaining to do -- not just to its readers about why it violated conservative principles in accepting federal money, but also to federal officials regarding what kind of operation it's really running. The fact that it's operating as a de facto arm of the Trump re-election campaign is not helping that case right now.
WND Touts Anti-Abortion Angle In Coronavirus Vaccine Fearmongering Topic: WorldNetDaily
Fearmongering about a possible coronavirus vaccine is very on-brand for WorldNetDaily. Now it's trying to mix an anti-abortion argument into the fearmongering. An anonymously written June 22 WND article states:
As the Trump administration expresses optimism about the development of a vaccine for the coronvirus, a religious-liberty group is warning that the top vaccines under development are made with "aborted baby cell lines."
The vaccines are not from aborted fetuses but from aborted baby cell lines used by researchers, says Liberty Counsel, which is running a campaign urging members of Congress and governors to oppose a government plan to force vaccinations.
"As an American citizen who loves my country, my Constitution and my right to refuse forced vaccinations, I urge you to end all consideration of mandatory vaccinations," Liberty Counsel says.
Strangely, neither the WND article or the Liberty Counsel report the article is based on offer any proof that this is the case; Liberty Counsel cited only "reports." Nevertheless, WND uncriticallyreported how "Liberty Counsel Chairman Mat Staver is concerned that the top five vaccine research companies are 'using aborted baby cell lines to fuel their research and build their vaccines.'"WND also gave to Liberty Counsel to foward a conspiracy about drugmakers wanting a vaccine to make money:
The Liberty Counsel campaign points out vaccinations are big money for pharmaceutical companies.
Liberty Counsel said vaccines developed using aborted baby cells are easier to research and therefore cheaper to develop, increasing profitability for the pharmaceutical companies and their investors.
"And what better opportunity to make those profits skyrocket than to demand mass vaccination of the entire population … even though COVID-19 is now known to have just a 0.26% death rate, roughly the same as the average annual flu," the group said.
"It is absolutely imperative that we stop this push for mandatory vaccinations before it goes any further. Religious exemptions for vaccinations MUST stand. ALL people must be free to decide for themselves whether to take a vaccine – without the heavy pushing of multi-billion-dollar profiteers abusing our political system to remove those choices."
In fact, that 0.26 percent number -- which came from a report by the Centers for Disease Control, comes from a range of estimates and is subject to change, and the actual death rate is in all likelihood higher.Also, coronavirus is much worse than the flu.
MRC Acts As Trump Campaign Surrogates In Attacking Coverage of Trump's Tulsa Rally Topic: Media Research Center
As a de facto operation of President Trump's re-election campaign, the Media Research Center does not tolerate any criticism of Trump in the media, even when it's for things that warrant criticism -- such as his decision to hold a campaign rally at an indoor arena in Tulsa, Okla., in the middle of a pandemic.
In a Jnue 18 post, Bill D'Agostino played whataboutism:
The news media are up in arms about President Trump’s planned rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, arguing it would be “ extraordinarily dangerous” to hold a large gathering in the midst of a pandemic. However, some of us are old enough to remember when the same outlets were celebrating the Black Lives Matter protests, arguing that they were necessary and worth the risk.
As others have noted, the Black Lives Matter protests are outdoors, where there's less risk of transmission that in the tightly packed indoor arena Trump was hoping for. Further, the BLM protests tend to be loosely organized at best and calling it off for health reasons could be difficult, whereas one person -- Trump -- had the say-so over whether the Tulsa rally took place.
The MRC, however, is so invested in that bogus talking point that Kristine Marsh spent a post whining about "the media’s obsessive harping about the rally being 'unsafe'" and Scott Whitlock declared that CBS anchor Tony Dokoupil was "smug" and "sanctimonious" about pointing out the difference: "Dokoupil replied with this nonsensical retort: 'Protests are outdoor events and they're not organized by something like a major political party or the President of the United States.' Well, as long as protests aren’t officially organized or supported by the President, COVID threats can be ignored?"
Ryan Foley tried to play gotcha with the MRC's least favorite CNN reporter in a June 20 post:
Delivering a report from the White House on Friday’s edition of The Situation Room, CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta scolded White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany for saying that she would not be wearing a mask at President Trump’s campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Ironically, as Acosta criticized McEnany, who described the decision to wear a mask as a “personal choice,” the CNN reporter apparently made the same “personal choice,” as he was not wearing a mask.
Foley seems not to have noticed the difference between standing in front of a camera in Washington, D.C., and being a large political rally in a state where coronavirus cases are on the rise.
As for the rally itself, the MRC did its pro-Trump duty and managed to be outraged both by non-Fox channels not giving Trump a free campaign ad by failing to air the rally live in its entirety, and by the same channels pointing out that rally attendance was very low:
Scott Whitlock complained that an "unhinged" CNN "didn't plan to show the event. Instead, reporters spent two hours gloating over a lower crowd size and questioning Trump’s fitness to serve."
Nicholas Fondacaro whined that ABC was "mocking" how the rally wasn't full and "acted more as an opposition press that was gleefully pouncing on an embarrassing moment." (Isn't gleefully pouncing on embarrassing moments one big reason why the MRC exists?)
Whitlock cranked out a so-called "study" headlined: "During Live Coverage, CNN, MSNBC Censor 97 Percent of Trump’s Rally." Randy Hall, meanwhile, spun: "While many outlets in the 'mainstream media' slammed the Donald Trump rally held Saturday evening in Tulsa, Okla., as attracting fewer people than usual for President Trump’s events, the Fox News Channel set a record of 7.7 million viewers that night."
Duncan Schroeder groused that CNN "taunted President Trump for appearing “defeated” in a video of him after his rally," further mind-reading, "Clearly CNN wanted to make sure viewers associated Trump with "defeat" by repeatedly using the phrasing."
The MRC even found a way to blame China for the low rally attendance after it was revealed that users on TikTok, a social media short-video platform owned by a Chinese company, apparently organized to flood the Trump campaign with requests for tickets to the rally that they had no intention of attending. Fondacaro huffed:
It wasn’t long ago that CNN media reporter Brian Stelter was decrying social media platforms like Facebook who weren’t going full bore against President Trump. But during Sunday’s so-called “ Reliable Sources,” Stelter found a social media platform he loved: the China-owned video platform TikTok. According to Stelter, one TikTok user’s plan to “sabotage” or “prank” the Trump campaign by bombarding their website with fake requests to attend Saturday’s rally was something to marvel.
Alexander Hall similarly whined: "The news media have spent four years screaming about allegations that Russians hacked the 2016 election. Fast forward to 2020 and people are now using the Chinese app TikTok to sabotage President Donald Trump’s election rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma."
Brad Wilmouth, meanwhile, took offense to comparisons of Trump's speech -- coming 99 years after a horrific race riot in Tulsa in which dozens of blacks were killed, as well as having to be rescheduled to avoid conflicting with Juneteenth observances -- with Ronald Reagan's speech in Mississippi during his 1980 campaign that allegedly was "an effort to appeal to Southern white racism." As hehas before, Wilmouth defended Reagan's speech, insisting the county fair he spoke at (the same county were three civil rights workers were murdered in 1964) "was the best place to get exposure to voters from all over Mississippi at a time when the state was more politically competitive" and insisted that "Reagan's use of the term "states' rights" was not a phrase he only uttered near Southern whites when, in fact, he had a documented history of sometimes using the expression in other venues that would have reached plenty of non-Southerners as well."
CNS, MRC Mourn Death of Charlie Daniels Topic: CNSNews.com
Charlie Daniels, CNSNews.com columnist and close personal friend of Brent Bozell -- and, thus, someone the MRC never told to shut up and sing -- died last week.
In a brief death notice recounting a 2017 interview he did with Daniels, CNS editor in chief Terry Jeffrey proclaimed him "great" and recounted an anecdote. A full obit by intern Bailey Duran called Daniels a "patriot" twice in the first two paragraphs -- but it didn't disclose that he was a conservative or that CNS published his column.
Jeffrey devoted his July 8 column to Daniels, gushing that he "was a great musician, a great man and a great example of what makes this nation great," adding: "He should be remembered not only for his contributions to popular music but also as a role model for the American dream." In neither of his articles did Jeffrey disclose that Daniels was a conservative and a CNS columnist.
over at CNS' parent, the Media Research Center, an anonymous post touted how in 2016, "MRC founder and president Brent Bozell presented Charlie with the tenth annual William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence for his passionate writing and advocacy." Unlike anyone at CNS, this post did disclose that Daniels wrote at CNS.
And in what appears to have been his final public appearance, he appeared in the MRC's pro-Trump ad disguised as a conservatrive response to "the mob" featuring more of Bozell's fellow travelers purporting to "stand up to those who would destroy our country’s heritage." The video was released a day after Daniels' death was announced.
MRC Plays New York Whataboutism To Defend Fla.'s GOP Gov Over Coronavirus Surge Topic: Media Research Center
A couple months back, when Florida had relatively low coronavirus infection and death rates, the Media Research Center was a huge fan of Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis. In a May 22 post, for instance, P.J. Gladnick proclaimed that DeSantis "took measures that resulted in a not only a flattening of the coronavirus cases curve but a general decline despite his state having a large elderly population" and touted how he "unleashed on the media for their absurdly unfair coverage as you can see."
In that same post, Gladnick attacked Rebekah Jones, who claimed she was fired as a Florida state employee for refusing to artifically lower coronavirus numbers on a state dashboard website, as "disgruntled" and "discredited" and someone who was "fired for poor performance." He cited a right-wing website parroting the DeSantis administration's claim that Jones was fired for "insubordination" and accusing her of having an "extensive criminal history."
The next day, Alex Christy similarly praised DeSantis, touting how "Florida's coronavirus numbers have done better than expected," then bashed CNN for having Jones on as a guest, echoing the DeSantis camp's assertion that her claims have been "debunked" and the personal attack on her by referencing "her open cyberstalking and cyber sexual harassment cases."
On May 25, Kristine Marsh groused: "It doesn’t seem that the media has learned anything after they completely mangled their predictions that red states like Florida and Georgia would see catastrophic consequences for opening up early. On MSNBC this afternoon, “conservative” analyst Rick Tyler was ready to make more hyperbolic predictions about red states getting “hit hard” by the coronavirus in coming months.
But that's exactly what happened in Florida -- the state is a burgeoning epicenter of coronavirus cases. (Don't expect Marsh to apologize; that's not what the MRC does.) The MRC has gone into defense mode for DeSantis. When a CNN host criticized DeSantis aand pointed out how Florida numbners are growing while New York numbers are decreasing, Duncan Schroeder used a June 25 post to throw some misleading numbers around:
This was a preposterous comparison, as New York has far more coronavirus deaths than Florida. New York has the most COVID deaths of any state at 30,934 deaths, while Florida has 3,172 deaths. Furthermore, New York has had over three times as many total cases as Florida, at 393,257 cases to 100,209 cases. Per a thousand people, New York has had 159 deaths, while Florida has only had 15.
[CNN analyst Juliette] Kayyem’s attack on DeSantis and Trump for wanting to reopen the economy is absurd. How dare they want people to be able to go out, support local businesses, work, and make a living! Would she rather the 46 million Americans who have lost their jobs due to coronavirus remain unemployed?
Michael Dellanno made basically the same argument on June 30:
On Saturday, MSNBC’s AM Joy, host Joy Reid created a platform dedicated to vicious attacks against Florida Governor, Ron DeSantis’s handling of coronavirus, as well as other GOP governors’ reopening approaches. The panelists maliciously went after the Florida governor, even going as far as giving him the nickname, ‘Governor Disastrous,’ all while completely giving a pass on Democratic governors mishandling of the pandemic. ... [N]o state should be compared to New York, not a single state will nearly be as bad as the Democrat run state of New York.
Schroeder attacked "good Democrat" Kayyem once again in a July 7 post for having "spouted venom at Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis,"talking down the entire threat of coronavirus to protect the governor:
If Kayyem wanted to provide actual data about a Republican run state, she could have mentioned that the death rate has declined nationally by 76% over the last 10 weeks. Or that over half the deaths in the majority of states are not related to children but are in nursing homes, which is .6 of America’s total population. She could have mentioned that the overall death rate from COVID is 0.26 percent and that the CDC says that school age children almost never die from COVID or even need to be hospitalized. Or that asymptomatic spread of the virus is very rare.
That fit of number-slinging would seem to make Schroeder a good Trump and DeSantis Republican.
Schroeder complained on July 11 that DeSantis was criticized again, huffing the commentators ignored "the fact that the majority of the leading states in cases and deaths are run by Democrats.
Adam Burnett joined in pushing the New York whataboutism angle in a July 13 post: "While it is true that Florida edges out other states for the most in the country, the death rate per 100k people pales in comparison to the media’s favorite state to praise for coronavirus handling, New York. Florida currently has 19.7 deaths per 100k, New York has 78.4 per 100k. But the media will never call out Democratic New York Governor Andrew Cuomo like they do Governor DeSantis, since reporters are so deep in the tank for the Democratic Party. "
Burnett also lectured: "It must be easy to be part of the left-wing media machine. Aside from writing or talking, all you have to do is cherry pick your information and then blast out a partisan narrative to your audience that exclusively aides [sic] Democrats." He didn't describe how easy it was to be a right-wing "media researcher" who cherry-picks information and then blasts out a partisan narrative to his audience.
CNS Promotes Right-Wing Narrative That Pelosi Is Frail And Senile Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com has been ramping up its biased, negative reporting on Nancy Pelosi in recent months, just in the for the election (remember its failed hit job on her over her statement that she had an "epiphany" about President Trump on Easter). Now it's trying to portray Pelosi as going senile or becoming physically frail.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) at her press briefing on Thursday forgot the name of Rep. Rodney Davis (R.-Ill.), who is the ranking member of the House Administration Committee.
“This, I think, we're moving, uh, we had bipartisan talks for a while,” Pelosi said. “There’d been some, again, everybody expressing opinions for a long while. Mr. Hoyer, Mr. McGovern, Ms. Lofgren, Chair of House Admin, Chair of Rules, Democratic Leader of the House with the Republican Leader of the House and the corresponding chairs, Mr. Cole and Mr. Um … Randy.”
When she said “Mr. Um … Randy,” she looked down and shuffled some papers on the podium in front of her.
Then she turned to someone to her right---who is not seen in the C-SPAN tape of the event.
“Randy something,” it sounds like she mumbles in that direction.
Then an unseen person (on the C-SPAN tape) sitting in front of the podium—where the reporters sit--said: “Davis.”
Pelosi turned in that direction and said: “Hmm?”
Then another person sitting in front of the podium said: “Davis.”
And the first voice that had said it repeated: “Davis.”
Then Pelosi said: “Davis, yeah.”
In fact, Rep. Rodney Davis (R.-lll.)—not Randy Davis--is the ranking member of the House Administration Committee. He has served in Congress since 2013.
Someone put in a lot of time transcribing this video and didn't get credit for it.
One CNS writer not afraid to put his name on his bias is Craig Bannister, who declared in a June 4 article:
House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) appeared to experience a ten-second mental lapse Thursday during an on-camera press conference.
Pelosi was reading from a letter she had sent to President Donald Trump earlier in the day expressing concerns about “the increased militarization” of law enforcement efforts in the Nation’s Capital amid the violent protests and riots ravaging the city.
Pelosi reads from the letter, looks away from it for a moment – then loses her train of thought and stutters, unable to collect her thoughts, until she refocuses on the letter:
Pelosi, who was born on March 26, 1940, is 80 years old.
That was followed on June 9 by another anonmyously written article:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) on Monday took a knee in the U.S. Capitol for 8 minutes and 46 seconds to honor George Floyd and others who “were abused by police brutality.”
But at the end of the kneeling session, as captured by CSPAN’s camera, she had trouble standing up.
She reached out to someone to help her and a woman standing nearby immediately came to her assistance—as did House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D.-Md.).
“It’s better not to have on high heels,” Pelosi said as she was helped to stand.
And on June 26, Bannister threw to its favorite right-wing radio host, Mark Levin, for another article accusing Pelosi of senility:
On Friday, House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (C-Calif.) appeared to forget what President Donald Trump and Republicans did that prompted her to accuse them of being complicit in the “murder” of Minnesotan George Floyd.
While explaining why she wouldn’t retract her claim, Pelosi first forgot what was in the Senate Republicans’ police reform bill that offended her – then, she couldn’t even recall what Trump did to draw her ire, saying, “Then, the president comes out with his – whatever it is, saying, uh, uh”…
“Time for Pelosi to join Biden in a padded room,” conservative commentator Mark Levin tweeted Friday, comparing Pelosi's lapse to those of former Vice President Joe Biden.
Bannister made sure to build his biased narrative by adding that "On June 4, Pelosi suffered an even longer on-camera mental lapse, CNSNews.com reported at the time."