Tim Graham's Double Standard On October Surprises Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Tim Graham spent his Dec. 11 column whining that the right-wing hit job on Hunter Biden -- which the MRC has gleefully embraced -- was dismissed outside the right-wing media bubble as nothing more than a dirt-digging expedition:
Hunter Biden only survives "difficult challenges" and "emerges stronger" through the energetic strangling of his lobbying scandals by the mainstream media.
Add the spin in The New York Times' front-page headline the Sunday before Election Day: "Foiled Once, Giuliani's Team Peddles More Dirt." There were three photographs in the story: one of President Donald Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani, one of former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, and one of Chinese billionaire Guo Wengui. The story focused much more on their machinations than on Hunter's.
One could just as easily demonize the daily output of The Times in a similar way by referencing The Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger in a headline: "Foiled in 2016, Sulzberger's Team Peddles More Dirt on the Trumps."
Our media elite pretend that they're all for the free and democratic exchange of information, and for holding powerful people accountable. But the suppressed Hunter Biden scandal story underlines that they have been shaming anti-Democratic narratives by engaging in character assassination of the conservative media.
This is all projection, of course -- what he's accusing the "liberal media" of doing on Hunter Biden is exactly what the MRC did for Donald Trump during the 2016 campaign.
While Graham complained that the Times pointed out how strategists close to Trump conspired with the New York Post to push the Hunter Biden story, things were much different when a tape of Trump disparaging women was released during the 2016 election. Graham's boss, Brent Bozell, rushed to Trump's defense by attacking NBC (which produced "Access Hollywood," the show where Trump made the off-the-record remarks) for allegedly sitting on the Trump tape and that "the timing was deliberate" for its release.
Graham himself worked to dismiss the story, complaining about "the ongoing obsession with women charging Donald Trump with sexual harassment." Graham and Bozell huffed in a column, "They say it was a recent discovery. No media October Surprise there, no siree," then changed the subject to the womanizing of Bill Clinton, who was not running in 2016.Graham also complained: "NBC and other liberal networks are politically savvy enough to know cynics will not believe you when you claim you suddenly discovered something touted as a political silver bullet with just a few weeks to go in the campaign. But that’s what they’re claiming."
Bozell later ranted, "What NBC has done is a direct threat to the democratic process and evidence of what conservatives have been saying all along. A network that purports to hold itself up as an objective news source while at the same time attempts to fix an election has lost all credibility. NBC must take responsibility, apologize to Donald Trump, and fire whoever was behind the strategic release of this tape."
Graham has never complained about the manufacted October-surprise aspect of the Hunter Biden, despite the fact that it had been floating around right-wing circles for over a year before the Post agreed to publish it. Graham and Bozell will not be calling for the New York Post to take responsibility, apologize to the Bidens and fire whoever was involved in the reporting of the story (though the lead reporter was embararassed enough by the story that he wouldn't put his byline on it).
Graham is nothing but a rank hypocrite. He will always give right-wing media a pass on things he attacks the "liberal media" for doing.
CNS Heathers Fox's Wallace Over "President-Elect" Term, Mask-Wearing Topic: CNSNews.com
Fox News host Chris Wallace has been a target of Heathering by the Media Research Center over the past year for lacking total obsequience to President Trump. Now the MRC's "news" division, CNSNews.com, has gotten in on it. Patrick Goodenough complained in a Dec. 6 article:
Fox News anchor Chris Wallace took issue with Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar during an interview Sunday for referring to “Vice President Joe Biden,” making the point three times that he should use the term “president-elect.”
Wallace also took the opportunity to criticize President Trump for an early lack of enthusiasm about mask wearing.
“If President Trump had worn a mask then and urged everyone to wear a mask then, back in April, the way Joe Biden is right now, wouldn’t we be in much better shape?” he asked.
Goodenough was quick to make an excuse for the latter -- "The World Health Organization (WHO) itself advised against mass mask wearing until June" -- but after complaining that Wallace "chided" Azar "for the third time" over the "president-elect" statement, he seemed to suggest Wallace wasn't totally wrong on the historyof the term:
Biden is the projected president-elect until the U.S. Congress on January 6 formally counts the electoral votes cast by the electoral college on the Monday after the second Wednesday in December – Dec. 14 in 2020.
The term “president-elect” has traditionally been used, informally, much earlier in the process. Trump changed his Twitter bio to “president elect” on November 9, 2016 – a day after the election – after media projected his electoral college victory.
Biden changed the beginning portion of his Twitter bio from “Senator, Vice President, 2020 candidate for President of the United States” to “President-elect” on November 7, on the day when CNN, followed by other outlets, projected that he would win Pennsylvania, and with it the presidency. Compared to the significant legal disputes in 2020, there were relatively minor disputes and recall counts in 2016.
Goodenough then went after Wallace for allegedly misleading about mask-wearing after he aired clips noting Trump's early callousness toward the practice, going on to nit-pick: "The two clips aired by Wallace gave the misleading impression that CDC Director Robert Redfield had announced the new mask wearing advice on April 3, with Trump then reacting to it. In fact, it was Trump who made the announcement, at a briefing of the White House coronavirus taskforce. The comment from Redfield in the clip played by Wallace, came an hour and two minutes later."
Goodenough then defended Trump's failure to wear a mask by citing evolving WHO guidance:
While critics stress the need to “follow the science” on mask wearing, the WHO itself advised against the general practice until June, arguing that it would encourage a false sense of security and deprive health staff treating COVID-19 patients of badly needed personal protective equipment.
Medical advice around the world on dealing with the novel coronavirus was evolving over time, as experts learned more about how the respiratory pathogen spread. Trump and his supporters are frequently accused of politicizing mask wearing; in fairness, people on both sides have done so.
Only on June 5 did WHO start advising – “in light of evolving evidence” – that people should be encouraged to wear masks “where there is widespread transmission and physical distancing is difficult, such as on public transport, in shops or in other confined or crowded environments.”
And even then, the global health agency noted, “At the present time, the widespread use of masks by healthy people in the community setting is not yet supported by high quality or direct scientific evidence and there are potential benefits and harms to consider.”
At the end of his article, Goodenough linked to an October article which he nit-picked Biden for saying he was wearing masks "from March on" when experts and "the science" advised it, huffing that "In fact public health authorities in the U.S. only issued guidance recommending mask wearing in public on April 3, and the World Health Organization (WHO) held off on doing so until early June" and following that with a lengthy "timeline of the evolving public health advice on mask wearing."
Just accept it. Hillary Clinton and her daughter are never going away. In fact, Clinton-produced home entertainment is coming to a TV near you, courtesy of Apple.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, both Hillary and her daughter Chelsea are turning their latest book into an upcoming Apple TV+ docu-series. We guess the mother-daughter duo saw the bonkers cash that the Obama family earned in their Netflix deal and wanted a taste.
The Book of Gutsy Women, the non-fiction work co-authored by the Clinton ladies which tells the individual stories of the influential and trailblazing women in history, received a “straight-to-series” order from the billion dollar tech company’s streaming service. Not only is their book getting the Hollywood treatment, but both Chelsea and Hillary are set to host and executive produce the series.
Written in 2019, Gutsy Women includes stories of such powerful feminists like Harriet Tubman and Greta Thunberg. Though THR hasn’t confirmed which famous ladies profiled in the book will be featured in the series, the fact that we may get to see the tantrum-prone, eco nut Swedish child number among the company of actual heroes like Tubman is pretty vapid and depressing, and shows how seriously Rodham takes women’s issues. About as seriously as she takes Bill Clinton’s assault victims.
Of course -- and we apologize for reminding you -- Hillary Rodham is no stranger to the documentary world. Earlier this year, Hulu, a Disney-owned company, produced an eponymous docu-series on the failed 2016 presidential candidate’s life, which Newsbusters Executive Editor Tim Graham described as feeling like the “same Clinton-campaign claptrap from 1992, with the same childhood and college pals, and the same gush about how brilliant and promising she always was.”
In that supposed review in March, Graham also pulled the old MRC trick of noting Republicans who refused to take part in the making of the series, followed by criticism of the series for not having enough Hillary-bashing Republicans in it. Graham went on to assert that the program was "four hours of whining and victimhood," even though whining and victimhood is the MRC's editorial model.
Hays concluded by whining that "you might never escape the Obama/Clinton propaganda matrix now that they’re cutting deals with entertainment programming." That would obviously conflict with the right-wing propaganda matrix Hays and the MRC are pushing.
WND Columnist Botches Economic History Topic: WorldNetDaily
Brent Smith wrote in his Dec. 4 WorldNetDaily column:
First, you may be thinking, what do I mean a third depression? So let me rephrase it. We have had only one depression that we all know of, the Great Depression, which lasted from 1929 through the late 1930s. I'll discuss the other one later.
I fear that if all goes the way it could, with Biden as president and the Democrats taking the Senate, we will likely experience a third. And this one may be our worst.
I'm sure we've heard how the great President Franklin Roosevelt (he was a bad dude) ushered us out of the Great Depression by developing all those wonderful programs and spending all that money (we call it stimulus today).
But everything most have heard of FDR was a load of crap. It was Roosevelt's policies that pushed us from a depression into a Great Depression, not the other way around, but I digress.
Well, that's incredibly counterfactual. The Great Depression was at its worst at the time Roosevelt took office; while there was a recession in 1937-38, it was not as severe as conditions were in 1933, and it waslargely the result of FDR giving in to Republicans and shutting down economy-boosting federal aid before the economy could adequately sustain itself.
But Smith wasn't done misinforming on economic history:
Surprise! There was another, but because progressives write the history books, you may know little, if anything about it. It was the depression of 1920.
In 1920, thanks to the policies of the other progressive president, Woodrow Wilson, America's unemployment rate skyrocketed to 20%. Gross National Product had declined by 17%. It was a disaster.
What America did in 1920 was to elect fiscally responsible adults, who took the reins in March of 1921 and made the hard decisions that most politicians would never have the courage to do.
The newly elected Warren G. Harding-Calvin Coolidge administration cut the federal government’s budget almost in half within two years.
Taxes were cut for everyone. Even the Federal Reserve was remarkably restrained as it sat on its hands and, thankfully, did almost nothing.
And things were truly awful, but for only about a year.
But rather than whine and cry as many do today, Americans did what Americans do, or at least used to do. They took their medicine, endured the economic hardship, and just six months later, by August 1921, the unemployment rate had dropped from 20% to 6.7%.
Harding died suddenly in 1923, and his vice president, the Great Calvin Coolidge, continued the programs. By the end of that year, the unemployment rate was down to 2.4%, an 88% drop.
Actually, that depression was mainly driven by the end of World War I and the Spanish flu pandemic, as well as bad Federal Reserve monetary policy. Further, as that Wikipedia article on the depression from whcih Smith apparently cribbed his claims noted, there are two sets of unemployment figures for those years -- numbers for the 1920s were not collected the same way they are today -- and Smith close the more dramatic of the two, the Lebergott numbers; one researcher argued that "Lebergott's labor force numbers are too high in recessions and too low in booms." A second set, the Romer numbers, stated that unemployment peaked at 8.7 percent in 1921 and decreased to 4.8 percent in 1923 -- which don't illustrate Smith's column quite as dramatically. That federal budget cut was almost entirely driven by the end of World War I; outside that, the federal budget continued to grow under Harding and Coolidge.
Of course, Smith wouldn't be a WND columnist in good standing if he didn't fail basic research.
CNS Attacks Buttigieg After Biden Nominates Him As Transportation Secretary Topic: CNSNews.com
When Pete Buttigieg ran for president earlier this year, CNSNews.com regularly attacked him with an emphasis on gay-bashing. Now that President-elect Joe Biden intends to nominate Buttigieg as his transportation secretary, CNS went on the attack again -- and, again, with a side of gay-bashing.
CNS bizarrely felt the need to flood the zone regarding Buttigieg's nomination, with a whopping five articles in two days:
The first, anonymously written article first quoted Nancy Pelosi calling the nomination historic, then making sure to add, "Buttigieg, a homosexual, is married to Chasten Buttigieg." The article is irrelevantly illustrated by picture of Buttigieg kissing Chasten.
The second, by Susan Jones, made a point of noting that Buttigieg has "no particular credentials in the transportation industry" and portrayed Buttigieg stating that "I proposed to my husband Chasten in an airport terminal" as his claim to transportation expertise. The article also included a picture of Buttigieg and his spouse, which it at least somewhat germane to the article's content.
The third, also by Jones, dismissed Biden's call for a "railroad revolution" during his Buttigieg announcementas a "back-to-the-future comment" and once again claimed that Buttigieg "didn't have any solid transportation credentials to highlight."
The fourth, by Craig Bannister, omitted Buttigieg's first name while scaremongering that "The man apparent President-Elect Joe Biden wants to head up the Department of Transportation has repeatedly called for a tax on carbon, which would result in an increase in the cost of gasoline at the fuel pump. And, carbon is just one of the things Buttigieg has said he wants to tax."
The fifth, by managing editor Michael W. Chapman, combines his usual gay-bashing with implicit criticism of a liberal Catholic priest who praised Buttigieg's nomination:
Although former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg is a practicing homosexual "married" to another man, influential Catholic priest Rev. James Martin, SJ, praised him and congratulated President-elect Joe Biden for picking the "openly gay" Buttigieg to be the next Secretary of Transportation.
Engaging in homosexual practices and being in a same-sex "marriage" are contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church. Promoting or supporting such actions are also contrary to church teachings.
As reported by LifeSiteNews, Fr. Martin "suggested in November that religious liberty claims by Catholic adoption agencies who refused to place children with homosexual couples was 'a cover for homophobia.'"
The article isillustrated with a shot of a Time magazine cover featuring Buttigieg with his spouse.
Four days later, on Dec. 21, Jones did an article about a Fox News appearance by Buttigieg, making sure to assert once again that "as a former mayor, Buttigieg has no particular experience in transportation or infrastructure."
CNS wasn't done going after Buttigieg after the initial announcement, though. An anonmously written Dec. 29 article was devoted to noting that "sent out a tweet on December 26, wishing people a 'joyful and meaningful Kwanzaa,'" for the sole apparent purpose of using a picture of Buttigieg hugging his spouse. The anonymous writer did not elaborate on the purpose of using that irrelevant picture with this article.
MRC's Graham Chortles Over NY Times Goof, Censors Goofs At Fox News Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Tim Graham gloated in a Dec. 18 post:
The New York Times has a massive egg on its face as a prize-winning audio series has collapsed under a weight of falsehoods. David Rutz of Fox News reported their 12-part series “Caliphate” heavily relied on a serial fabulist who claimed to have been a member of the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist organization. Reporter Rukmini Callimachi drew a Pulitzer Prize finalist citation and brought the newspaper its first Peabody audio award.
This whole fiasco is an embarrassment for a paper whose motto is "The truth is more important now than ever."
Meanwhile, Graham -- and the rest of the MRC -- has censored controversies regarding its favorite TV channel, Fox News from just the past month or so.
In late November, it was announced that Fox News had settled a lawsuit filed by the family of Seth Rich -- which reportedly involves paying the Rich family a seven-figure settlement -- over a false story it published on its website pushing the conspiracy theory that Rich, a Democratic staffer who was murdered in 2016, was killed because he leaked Democratic emails to WikiLeaks. The MRC barely mentioned the lawsuit at all, spending more time complaining that Fox News was being held accountable for pushing Seth Rich conspiracy theories.
In November 2017, Curtis Houck whined, "When some on the right pushed the Seth Rich conspiracy theories, numerous voices unfairly attacked conservative media writ large." But he ignored the fact that the largest conservative media outlet -- Fox News -- was doing exactly that, and the MRC didn't exactly distance itself from that, let alone criticize Fox News for doing so. Similarly, Alex Christy complained in a March 2019 post that MSNBC's Joe Scarborough "would not admit that one can be criticize both Seth Rich conspiracy peddlers and Russia-gate hustlers" -- but Christy didn't admit that his employer wasn't that organization.
Also getting censored at the MRC was any mention of Fox News' abrupt walkback of the election-fraud conspiracy theories it had peddled for more than a month that focused on electronic voting systems from Dominion and Smartmatic, prompted by a lawsuit threat from Smartmatic. This was followed by a similar lawsuit threat from Dominion.
Being loyal Trump sycophants, the MRC had no problem with nudging those bogus conspiracy theories forward:
On Nov. 16, Alexander Hall complained that Trump was "censored" on Twitter for "sharing a clip discussing how Dominion voting machines could be hacked."
He complained again three days later that a Twitter user hiding behind a fake name for "censored" for tweeting a video on how "Detroit Dominion IT worker describes exactly how poll workers inflated Biden vote tallies."
On Nov. 21, Jeffrey Lord suggested that the fact that Dominion had "lawyered up" and backed out of a biased hearing on purported election fraud in Pennsylvania was evidence of nefarious doings by the company.
On Nov. 23, Kayla Sargent uncritically repeated Trump-adjacent lawyer Sidney Powell's claim that the election was "stolen by massive fraud through Dominion and Smartmatic" while complaining that Twitter briefly suspended her account.
The MRC wasn't exactly a profile in courage in going along with bogus conspiracies -- and doubly so in censoring those who pointed out the bogusness. Of course, there's likely a good reason Graham didn't want to note that Fox News has been caught doing the same things he was lashing out at the Times for doing: Reporting the full truth might mean that MRC talking heads never appear on their favorite news channel again.
CNS Editor's Tortured Analogy To Attack Forgiving College Tuition Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com editor in chief Terry Jeffrey began his Dec. 9 column in a weird way that still conforms to his right-wing politics:
Jim and Jill were born a little more than a year apart to the same unmarried mother in Southern California.
Jim was adopted by a working-class family in the San Fernando Valley, where the father made his living as an auto mechanic and the mother as a maid.
Jill was adopted by an upper-middle-class family in Pasadena, where the father was a lawyer and the mother stayed home.
Yes, the "unmarried mother" gave her children up for adoption. This is the last we hear of the birth mother from Jeffrey, so we don't know if he has any other humiliation or punishment for her for giving birth to children outside of marriage.
To briefly summarize where he's going with this: Jim grew up and followed his adoptive father as an auto mechanic, while Jill was a good enough student to get admitted to Harvard but not good enough to earn a scholarship, but went anyway even though she could have saved money by going to a state school. She took out student loans for that and law school, while Jim was just scraping by.
We're now to the point of the story where Jeffrey intones, "Then Joe Biden was elected president." And this turns into a rant against reducing student loan debt. And here's where Jeffrey's tortured analogy goes south:
So, federal student loans caused money to flow as follows: Jim worked as an auto mechanic and, along with millions of other hardworking non-college-educated Americans, paid federal taxes. The federal government took some of that money and sent it to Harvard and other colleges in the form of student loans. The government attributed these loans to people like Jill — the sister Jim did not know — as payment for their tuition.
The first winner in this exchange: Harvard.
The second winner: Jill, who got a Harvard degree — albeit while running up $24,000 in debt.
Can a college graduate — whose median household income is $51,456 more than a high school graduate's — afford to pay off $24,000 (or even $50,000) in student loans?
Or should an auto mechanic pay taxes — and interest on an increased federal debt — so Joe Biden can forgive a Harvard graduate's student loans?
But Jeffrey offers no evidence that forgiving student debt would increase the taxes of his hypothetical auto mechanic. In fact, it has no immediate effect on the national debt, and would merely add on to the debt down the road.
Zumwalt began his Dec. 9 column by gushing over bonkers Trump-adjacent lawyer Sidney Powell, then moved on to conspiracy-mongering:
To tease the public about the mountain of evidence she had accumulated on voting fraud occurring in the 2020 presidential election, attorney Sydney Powell said she would "release the Kraken." The reference was to a 2006 sci-fi movie about a giant squid. Just like the movie's monster, Powell's Kraken had many tentacles leading to numerous claims of fraud.
As she and others seek court access to slay the beast, two points of interest arise. First, do the evidentiary tentacles of voting fraud lead back to a central source? And, second, does the best chance to slay the Kraken lie, not in attacking it directly, but employing an indirect attack that avoids the voter fraud issue?
Clearly, however, the biggest factor that effectively worked to steal the election – if proven – can be linked to the company providing the voting machines. It has been alleged that a post-election forensic examination of one of those machines in Ware County, Georgia, had intriguing results. When an equal number of Trump votes and Biden votes were inserted into it, the machine's tabulator converted 26% of the former to the latter. This raises concerns on a national level as the voting machines served 40% of voters in 28 states.
Tha "company providing the voting machines" is, of course, Dominion -- we're not sure when Dominion achieved he-who-must-not-be-named status for Zumwalt -- and Zumwalt's claim is, of course, false. There was a small tabulation error that was corrected during a hand recount.
Zumwalt served up more conspiracy-mongering in his Dec. 16 column:
A large number of voters, both Republican (77%) and Democrat (30%), believe fraud occurred. Evidence includes ballots emptied from suitcases hidden under a table at a voting station and counted after the departure of monitors who were told counting had stopped for the night; a truck driver transporting thousands of Biden ballots from New York to Pennsylvania; the same Biden ballots repeatedly being run through the tabulation machine; voting machine post-election testing revealing running equal numbers of Trump and Biden ballots generating a 3% Biden advantage; etc.
The suitcase thing is bogus. The truck driver who claims to have transported the ballots from New York to Pennsylvania, Jesse Morgan, is an amateur ghost hunter with a criminal record and history of drug use who (surprise) has no proof of what he claims. The "Biden ballots repeatedly being run through the tabulation machine" is linked to the bogus suitcase thing. The "voting machine post-election testing" wasn't about voting machines at all but tabulation machines, and it's about claims made by Arizona Republicans that they refused to provide the evidence for when asked.
Zumwalt then called for a "nuclear option" to be activated:
As Trump declared, our election system is under a "coordinated assault and siege." It is a diabolical and stealthy effort to undermine democracy. It is an extreme threat demanding an extreme solution – and the Insurrection Act has been proposed as providing the vehicle for doing so. The military's seizure of all election fraud evidence in contested states is a nuclear option needed to determine what occurred. Perhaps offering immunity to the fraud "foot soldiers" above would be a good start.
In his Dec. 21 column, Zumwalt invoked "a firsthand account by a most reliable source, Patrick Byrne, billionaire founder of the Internet furniture retailer Overstock.com." Byrne is actually a disgraced CEO who was forced out of Overstock after he started spinning tales of Deep State conspiracies and claiming he had an affair with a Russian agent at the behest of "men in black" federal agents. So, not reliable.
Zumwalt approvingly cited Byrne's claims that the fact that Barack Obama chose to live in Washington, D.C., after his presidency meant he was "well positioned geographically to establish a shadow government" and that "the Obamas worked with other Democrats to destroy Trump's presidency to preserve Obama's legacy." Asserting that Byrne's reputation as a successful businessman give credibility to what he says," Zumwalt repeated what Byrne said: that he facilitated a $20 million bribe from Turkey to Hillary Clinton and that "FBI agents then shared Obama's plan to manipulate Hillary" with Byrne. Which led to this wild conclusion by Zumwalt:
Connecting the dots tells us Obama remained in Washington's "swamp" to play the role of a puppeteer. He counted on holding the strings of power for what he believed would be an additional 16-year run, courtesy of Hillary and Michelle – with Hillary a willing puppet due to the bribery charges hanging over her head. In view of Trump's election spoiling Obama's Plan A, does Obama's Plan B now involve using the 25th Amendment to remove Biden from office to get his preferred candidate, Kamala Harris, in? And, as far as Hillary's bribery not coming to light before Byrne's tell-all interview, one assumes a Deep State still influenced by Obama kept it buried. Meanwhile, Biden may unknowingly be serving as a puppet in all this – one controlled by master puppeteer Barack Obama.
WND has so far decided to stick by Zumwalt. Is that really a wise thing to do given its shaky finances that would likely not withstand a legal assault by the people Zumwalt has apparently libeled?
Labels Are Censorship: MRC Goes Into Doublespeak Mode On Its Twitter 'Censorship' Accusations Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's regularwhining that Twitter is "censoring" Trump by enforcing its rules of service against false and misleading has become a weekly feature, documenting the number of times Trump has been "censored" while Joe Biden never has been (because he follows the rules).
Corinne Weaver actually got the terminology right in a Dec. 7 post complaining that "Twitter’s war with President Donald Trump and the Trump campaign has claimed at least 100 more casualties in the form of labeled tweets." That's right -- they were labeled, not "censored." But Weaver returned to the MRC-preferred (and misleading) narrative in the very next paragraph by making liberal use of the C-word: "Trump and his campaign have been censored by Twitter at least 436 times. Meanwhile, former Vice President Joe Biden and his campaign have been censored 0 times." Then she tried to spin things saying that "label" and "censor" are exactly the same thing: "Labels indicate censorship because even Twitter has admitted that the company 'de-amplified' labeled tweets." Weaver did not explain why anyone has the unfettered right to demand that Twitter fully "amplilfy" their tweets.
Weaver then complained that Twitter expanding its terms of service to cover hateful conduct means more "censorship": "Expect even more censorship to come, if the new update to Twitter’s 'hateful conduct' policy is enforced. 'Today, we’re expanding our hateful conduct policy to address language that dehumanizes people on the basis of race, ethnicity, or national origin,' the official Twitter Safety account declared in a Dec. 2 thread." Again, Weaver did not explain why a private company must give hateful people an undisputed platform.
Weaver huffed in a Dec. 14 post: "Twitter’s relentless censorship siege continues against President Donald Trump and his campaign. The site restricted video clips from prominent conservatives, Fox News, Fox Business, and at least one congressman." The Trump, have not been censored at all." Notice that Weaver refused to call Biden "president-elect."
Weaver went on to complain that Twitter flagged posts for missing context and once again tried to redefine words: "But don’t be fooled by the mild-mannered term 'context,' which Twitter likes to use as the reason for the labels. Labels indicate censorship. Even the platform has admitted that the company 'de-amplified' labeled tweets."
Heather Moon took over the honors in a Dec. 21 post, where she mournfully declared that the Trump "censored, suppressed, and limited" count had reached 543 and similarly referred to Biden only as "former Vice President," not "president-elect" (and didn't explain that the reason Biden hasn't been "censored" is because he hasn't violated Twitter's terms of service, unlike Trump). She did, however, ramp up the doublespeak: "While the use of a warning label may seem innocuous, labels are a form of censorship. Twitter itself has admitted that it 'de-amplified' labeled tweets." Moon further complained:
Peter Navarro, director of the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy and a presidential advisor, released a 36-page report alleging election fraud that was “more than sufficient” to flip the election. Twitter labeled a tweet to a story about Navarro’s report and a video clip of a Fox News segment in which Navarro discussed his conclusions. The platform labeled both tweets with a statement that said, “This claim about election fraud is disputed.”
An Antrim County, Michigan judge ordered the release of an audit report conducted on the Dominion Voting Systems machines in that county. Twitter labeled both Trump’s tweet about the judge’s order and his tweet that linked to the report itself as disputed claims about election fraud. Twitter also found a story about a video from the same county allegedly showing the Michigan Secretary of State telling volunteers to count “multiple ballots with the very same signature” to be a disputed claim.
Moon censored the fact that Navarro's report is filled with false and unproven claims, and the Dominion "forensic audit" report, according to Dominion, made accusations about vote-changing that are "techologically impossible," while Michigan state officials said the audit is "critically flawed, filled with dramatic conclusions without any evidence to support them."
Moon returned for the Dec. 28 body count, which had increased to 583. Again, she referred to Biden only as "former Vice President," not "president-elect," and wouldn't admit that Biden had not violated Twitter's terms of service, unlike Trump. She also served up complaints of the types of content being flagged, such as: "A clip discussing a video purporting to show a poll worker in Georgia scanning a stack of ballots multiple times was labeled as having disputed claims about election fraud." Moon censored the fact that the video did not, in fact, show this.
Moon also repoeated her doublespeak that "While the use of a warning label may seem innocuous, labels are a form of censorship. Twitter itself has admitted that it 'de-amplified' labeled tweets."
Swamp Creature: WND's Kupelian Again Hypocritically Lashes Out At Non-Right-Wing Media Topic: WorldNetDaily
Aside from being tasked to help keep WorldNetDaily alive through its ongoing financial crisis, David Kupelian's stock in trade these days is to pretend that WND always tells the truth and has never published misinformation or falsehoods while attacking other media outlets for doing those very things. So much so, in fact, that a recent edition of WND's sparsely read Whistleblower magazine is themed "Guardians of the Swamp," when it claims the "total corruption of what was once a vibrant news establishment is powerfully and insightfully explored." As if WND has ever been associated with being insightful.
The centerpiece of that issue was a rage-filled essay by Kupelian, published at WND proper on Dec. 8. He repeated a lot of right-wing media tropes:
Joe Biden "not only is obviously disintegrating mentally, is wrong on virtually every issue, and lies continually, but also, as recent but largely suppressed evidence proves, is one of the most spectacularly corrupt politicians in modern American history.
Kamala Harris is "one of the most thoroughly unlikable, abrasive, condescending, greedy, grasping, shallow and insincere candidates in a generation."
Trump, "the sitting president of the United States, who rescued the nation’s economy and destroyed ISIS, has since early 2016 been repeatedly compared by major U.S. news organizations to genocidal monster Adolf Hitler." Kupelian seems to have forgotten that his organization repeatedly compared President Obama to Hitler and other Nazis.
And there was also this:
Think of it: Hillary Clinton literally fomented a four-year attempted coup d’etat against Donald Trump, to whom she had lost the 2016 election, seriously interfering with and undermining his presidency. Why? To divert FBI and DOJ attention away from her own criminal wrongdoing – illegally deleting 33,000 emails after they were subpoenaed, a serious felony for which anyone else would be prosecuted and imprisoned. Yet the media, after front-paging the Trump-Russia collusion story virtually every day for years, simply moved on once their big story was proven to be the greatest political hoax in U.S. history. No apologies – none.
Kupelian went on to compalain that "MSNBC’s top brass determined it would make more money if it served the far left," while failing to admit that Fox News' top brass determined it would make more money if it served the far right. He then delved into coronavirus conspiracy-mongering, claiming that major media's alleged links to China are why "Credible reports from courageous Chinese virologists and other experts with intimate knowledge of the origins of the 2 (SARS-CoV-2) virus, who claim China intentionally created the virus in a lab, are ignored or dismissed as insane 'conspiracy theories' and banned from social media platforms in the U.S." Perhaps that's because those reports are not, in fact, credible and actual scientists who have looked into it found no evidence COVID-19 was a lab creation.
Kupelian then lectured:
One final factor that makes all these various elements come together to create a biased, blind, amoral, dishonest, but yet strangely self-righteous press: Hate.
Members of the establishment media tend to revile Donald Trump for being a genuine outsider who dared to invade their beloved realm – known as “the swamp” to outsiders – and for his promise to “drain” it of the monumental corruption, self-dealing and privilege that comprise life within the swamp. The media also hate him for championing a strongly conservative-Christian agenda – for example, appointing conservative Supreme Court justices who threaten their beloved abortion-on-demand culture. And of course, they detest Trump for publicly and continually exposing them for exactly what they are.
Hate is much more than it seems. It’s a transformative emotion that almost magically enables people to be horrendously wrong, yet to feel they are right – even supremely righteous and virtuous (for example, the mobs burning down America’s cities). In that “altered state,” down appears to be up, immoral seems moral and, most basically, evil masquerades as good.
Biased, blind, amoral, dishonest, but yet strangely self-righteous and, above all, hateful? Kupelian is projecting once again, for he and WND are guilty of all of those things. And Kupelian has masqueraded as a "good" journalist when he was sucking up to Trump, a profoundly amoral man, lying to people about Trump's nature to push a political agenda.
As much has he likes to complain about the media being "guardians of the swamp," Kupelian is a swamp creature too -- a guardian of Trump's swamp as well as the journalistic train wreck WND has become.
NEW ARTICLE: Financial Non-Accountability At CNS, Part 2 Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com editor Terry Jeffrey spent the rest of 2019 the way he spent the previous months: complaining about the federal deficit while laboring to avoid putting blame on the Republican president and Senate that were largely responsible for it. Read more >>
Matt Philbin lost it when the pro-breastfeeding La Leche League expressed supporting a tweet for "chestfeeding" as part of a declaration of inclusiveness, sneering that it was "an attempt to get out ahead of the trans bullies," going on to whine that the organization "blocked your humble author" on Twitter before he could link to the tweet.
Boise, Idaho, you can kiss your inclusion in March Madness next spring good-bye. The NCAA prefers a different version of inclusion for its host sites, one that doesn't ban males from participating in female sports like Idaho does. College sports fans, trans inclusion is rolling down the tracks and little can stop it.
SB Nation Outsports reports that the NCAALGBT hasn't yet rescinded its agreement for NCAA Tournament games in Boise, but the sport's governing association is in the tank for transgenders.
NCAA postseason sports sites will only be awarded to states with the LGBT seal of approval. You may also see some very masculine dudes on college women's basketball teams in the near future. As well as some token females on the benches of men's basketball teams at Duke, Villanova and other affirming academic institutions.
Idaho is one of the few states with the guts to stand up to the unholy alliance of the NCAALGBT juggernaut, but it may get shot down in the courts.
As if social justice activism hasn't ruined people's enjoyment of sports enough, it's just a matter of when college sports become more defined by the letters NCAALGBT than by biological gender and notions of fairness.
Purporting to review the HBO film "Transhood," about transgender children, Elise Ehrhard declared that parents who allow their children to explore their gender identity are engaging in "child abuse," and added this sneering description of a transgender teen:
Fifteen-year-old "Leena" is a boy who thinks he looks and sounds like a girl because he takes hormones, cakes on make-up and dresses in feminine clothes. He decided he was a girl at age 7 after his parents' divorce. Like many male-to-female transgenders, his make-up, mannerisms and looks are so "perfect" and cliched in their hyper-femininity that it is painful to watch as a real woman. His voice is clearly the voice of a transgender individual rather than a biological woman. At the end of the documentary, Leena gets castration surgery.
This was followed by a post from Gabriel Hays cheering on right-wing attacks of HBO over the film.
Alexander Hall cried censorship when YouTube deleted two anti-trans episodes of right-wing activist Candace Owens' show for violating its anti-hate policy; Hall framed the shows as "defending traditional gender differences" and was very light on the full content on those shows. He then defended one author who wrote an anti-trans book titled "Irreversible Damage," insistring that it "is not a scathing condemnation of transgender individuals, but rather a discussion about the lifelong effects of serious medical interventions that she says are occurring 'too fast with too little oversight.'"
Lindsay Kornick took the job of writing derisively about actor Ellen Page's announcement that she is transgender and now known as Elliot Page:
In non-Corona or election-related news, actress Ellen Page has officially come out as a queer trans person. Somehow, this still isn’t the most bizarre thing Page has ever said.
On December 1, Page took to Twitter to post a letter regarding this “coming out” as it were. The letter opens with the actor stating that “I am trans, my pronouns are he/they and my name is Elliot.” How one can be both “he” and “they” is confusing enough, but the message continues. “He” spends a paragraph thanking and praising the trans community for their courage, generosity, and “ceaselessly working to make this world a more inclusive and compassionate place.” I assume that means an “inclusive and compassionate place” unless you disagree with them.
Of course, this wouldn’t be an Ellen Page screed, or rather an Elliot Page screed, if there wasn’t more political posturing.
Kornick returned to complain about the TV show "Big Sky" for having a transgender character who says she knew she was transgender when she was quite young:
Most four-year-olds can barely tell you what street they live on, but Jerrie could apparently tell people s/he was a girl. Even worse, at fourteen, s/he was ready to really become a girl despite being born a boy. Considering a majority of children experiencing gender dysphoria grow out of it by puberty, this is probably the opposite message this show should send to people. That’s not to mention the fact that Jerrie’s definition of being a girl is liking dresses and dolls. Just last month, we were forced to claim Harry Styles could still be manly while wearing a dress, and yet Jerrie must be a girl if s/he liked them as a kid. And that says nothing of all the tomboy girls of the world.
Ehrhard came back to grumble about the "woke gender agenda" of the "Save By the Bell" reboot, what with its "contemporary left-wing obsessions with LGBTQIA (particularly trans), race, and radical feminism," with a particular focus on a transgender character named Jamie: "Lexi has a crush on the straight male football player, Jamie. Lexi and Jamie reveal their attraction for each other and kiss at the end of the series. The viewer is supposed to pretend this is a male-female kiss. Actually, it is a homosexual relationship between two biological males, one of whom is taking hormones, dressing up in girl's clothes and 'acting' female. Lexie will never have the chromosomes or biological parts of a woman no matter what surgeons do. It is an insult to biological woman to pretend otherwise."
Likewise, Karen Townsend was quite upset that Netflix's "raunchy animated series" "Big Mouth" introduced a transgender character: "It’s too bad but these days, a transgender character is the new requirement in television and online series. Every series must have a trans character to be sufficiently woke, even a show about middle school kids."
Sergie Daez's head exploded while contemplating the idea of a transgender male is competing on "RuPaul's Drag Race":
One reason why right-wingers don’t like the wokes is because they make simple things extremely confusing. For instance, take gender. One is either male or female. But the wokes, with their infernal LGBTQ agenda, wanted to shake that simple formula up. Now the world has transgenderism, with transgender people being born as males, but later decide that they should actually be females, and vice versa. The premise is confusing (particularly for the sense of sight), but that’s nothing compared to a person called Gottmik. Prepare to be mind-boggled.
According to thewrap.com, makeup artist Gottmik (pictured) became the first ever transgender male drag queen on the show RuPaul’s Drag Race. Gottmik stated that “he” is “a trans man who is changing the face of drag.”
That’s not the only thing he changed. To make it entirely clear, since Gottmik is a trans man, “he” was born a woman, but now he's a man dressing up as a woman in drag.
If you find this hard to understand, don’t reproach yourself.
It’s guaranteed that Gottmik will win the hearts of all left-wingers while obliterating the minds of all right-wingers.
Newsmax's Ruddy Gushes Over Trump, Defends His Refusal To Admit Reality Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy began his Dec. 20 column with some serious sucking up to his friend, President Trump:
Donald Trump's late father Fred loved quoting a poem by Edgar Guest, one he kept framed on his desk.
It read, in part, "Success is failure turned inside out – The silver tint of the clouds of doubt, You can never tell how close you are, It may be near when it seems so far; So stick to the fight when you're hardest hit – It's when things seem worst that you must not quit."
For Fred's son, the key to winning was always about never quitting, even to the bitter end.
It's no surprise then that our President is fighting to that very last moment.
His vote challenge has been reasonable after an unusually close race in six states where he differed with Joe Biden by 1% of the vote or less.
A Newsmax poll conducted by McLaughlin & Associates found that 67% of Americans agreed it was fair for the President to seek a recount and challenge in those states.
Ruddy didn't mention that McLaughlin worked as the pollster for Trump's re-election campaign, so its objectivity and accuracy can be reasonably questioned.
Ruddy then defended his outlet's treatment of the election results: "Despite some media claims and even a skit on Saturday Night Live, Newsmax has never denied the official results. We called all contested states for Biden and described him as President-elect as of December 14th, when the Electoral College voted him so." Then, it was time to defend Trump's doomed efforts to overturn the election, with a side shot a one of his right-wing media competitors:
However, the major decision, including one made by Fox News, to crown Biden President-elect before the contested results were final, smacks of bias.
All major media stood down in making a call when Al Gore made his vote challenge in 2000. Why did Trump not have the same courtesy?
Trump has been a victim of media malpractice from the start.
A key factor why Biden took the battleground states with razor-thin margins was due to the media's suppression polls. These polls showed Biden winning in a landslide, dampening donor and voter support for Trump.
The Fox News Poll was particularly harmful, whose final polls had Biden winning by 10 points (he won the popular vote by 4.)
Ruddy then pontificated: "So where does Trump go from here? Well, the answer is upward." He further pontificated:
After his presidency, Trump will also become an unequalled global political and media force.
Trump will be surprised how much influence he has as a former President, without the limitations placed on being the actual President.
My late friend Ed Koch was seriously depressed after leaving New York's mayoralty. He later admitted to me that he became more influential outside of office as a media and political powerhouse.
Trump will do the same, but much more.
John Fund's recent column on Trump's successful presidency quotes David Shribman, a historian at Carnegie Mellon University, who thinks Trump will be "remembered in history as the most consequential president in three-quarters of a century and the most significant one-term president in nearly 175 years."
It's a good judgement for Fred Trump's son, a winner in every sense of the word.
Ruddy made no mention of the biggest immediate challenge his own operation faces: libel and defamation lawsuits. The day before Ruddy's column was posted, Newsmax walked back its attacks on Dominion Voting Systems and Smartmatic, two companies Newsmax has accused -- falsely, it appears -- of manipulating votes to make sure Trump lost. Perhaps that's where his focus should be now instead of on Trump-fluffing.
What Else Did WND's Zumwalt Get Wrong In His Libelous Column? Topic: WorldNetDaily
We've already documented how WorldNetDaily columnist James Zumwalt may have drawn a lawsuit to himself and WND through a Dec. 2 column in which he repeated unsubstantiated, defamatory claims about Dominion Voting Systems offical Eric Coomer, who has sued numerous right-wing media outlets and personalities -- including Joe Oltmann, whose claims about Coomer Zumwalt uncritically repeated. But let's take a closer look at that column to see what other questionable claims he made. Like this one:
Other circumstantial evidence will follow from the testimony of a U.S. Navy veteran and data scientist in Pennsylvania.
"I personally observed USB cards being uploaded to voting machines by the voting machine warehouse supervisor on multiple occasions," he said. "This person is not being observed, he's not a part of the process that I can see, and he is walking in with baggies of USBs."
That allegation came from a poll watcher named Greg Stenstrom, and his claims quickly spread across right-wing media. We'll let FactCheck take it from here:
Stenstrom did not provide any evidence that the cards were used to upload fraudulent votes or that Biden benefited from this purportedly illegal upload.
Delaware County officials explained to us that the vCards are used to transfer data from the paper-ballot scanning machines at each precinct to the central vote tabulating system. Uploading data from the vCards is part of the regular process for tallying votes — there’s nothing untoward about it. Other parts of his claim are also false, they said.
“The allegation that someone from the voting machine warehouse uploaded anything from any vCards is utterly false,” Adrienne Marofsky, the county’s spokeswoman, told us by email.
Nobody from the warehouse is trained to use the software that uploads the data from the vCards, she said. That job is done by staff in the bureau of elections department or the information technology liaison.
“This is not a system designed for mass use and it is not intuitive such that a new user with no training on the system could manage to navigate their way through it,” she wrote, noting that it’s possible Stenstrom might have mistaken the IT liaison for a warehouse worker.
Zumwalt also wrote: "Biden's support base should have mirrored Hillary Clinton's in 2016, but he underperformed in every major metro area around the country, except in Democratic-controlled cities where fraud allegedly was rampant." Not true -- even the conservative National Review found that Biden actually overperformed compared to Clinton in 31 out of 36 urban counties.
Zumwalt then wrote:
And on election night, as Trump led in all battleground states, five (Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Nevada) stopped counting votes for some inexplicable reason, simultaneously. During the next three hours, no votes were counted. When the count continued, Biden shockingly had overcome significant Trump leads in the five states, which all have Democratic governors.
The posts start with the claim that these five states took a three-hour shutdown in which they “found enough votes for Biden to catch Trump.” There is no evidence to show that any of these states took a three-hour break from counting votes.
Wisconsin did not stop counting on election night. In an elections update video posted on YouTube by PBS NewsHour (here), Meagan Wolfe, administrator of the Wisconsin Elections Commission, can be heard saying at the 1:18 minute mark: “Our municipal and county clerks have worked tirelessly throughout the night to make sure that every valid ballot has been counted and reported accurately.”
Michigan did not stop counting ballots. Politifact reported that Tracy Wimmer, director of media relations for the Michigan Secretary of State, said: "At no point has the counting process stopped since it began at 7 a.m. yesterday morning (Nov. 3), which was when, per Michigan election law, it could begin.” (here)
Misunderstandings over tally updates stopping temporarily on election night in Philadelphia are explained in a Reuters Fact Check (here).
North Carolina did stop counting votes on election night, but it was not due to voter fraud. Local television station WSOC-TV reported that Karen Brinson Bell, executive director of the state elections board, said: “North Carolina stopped counting votes on election night because there were no more votes to count that night” and added: “With very few exceptions, North Carolina’s election results will not change until November 12 or 13, when all mail-in ballots are received and counted by each county.” (here)
The Nevada Secretary of State released a statement explaining that the state did not stop counting ballots and that the “counting of ballots is ongoing and will continue until every cast ballot is counted.” (here)
Zumwalt even claimed that "Among other evidence that recently has come to light is SEC filings that reveal the firm owning Dominion received $400 million from a Swiss bank with close links to the Chinese government less than a month before the election." Dominion CEO John Poulos testified at a hearing in Michigan that the claim is "bizarre and completely unfounded."
Zumwalt asserted that "Yet more circumstantial evidence is the involvement, with Dominion and other players, of two anti-Trump billionaires, George Soros and Bill Gates," citing a fringe-right blog as evidence. One of the claims Newsmax issued under threat of lawsuit in a statement posted on its website and read on Newsmax TV is that Dominion has no "relationship with George Soros." The blog's sole evidence of a Gates tie is a 2015 tweet from Smartmatic -- which is a separate company that has no relationship with Dominion -- featuring a picture of Gates touring the company with Smartmatic's CEO.
Zumwalt's history of factual accuracy has always been dubious. Now that he's repeated false claims that are drawing lawsuits in a column filled with numerous other false claims, both Zumwalt and WND would be best advisted to lawyer up real soon.
The MRC's Autumn Of Swooning Over McEnany Topic: Media Research Center
We documented how the Media Research Center -- led by chief fanboy Curtis Houck -- spent the summer swooning over the alleged awesomeness of White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany's supposedly sick burns of the media for not being total suck-ups to President Trump. Well, Houck has continued to fanboy all over himself every time McEnany does a press briefing. here's a few headlines to how the swooning has gone since the last time we checked in in the run-up to the election, with more sycophantic odes to her petulant "mic drop" moments:
Houck presumably would have liked to gush over McEnany more, but that last post, on Oct. 1, was the last press conference she held before the election. He had to contain himself until Nov. 20, when his fanboying made up for lost time:
On Friday, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany held a formal press briefing for the first time in almost two months and, as expected, she didn’t disappoint by opening with a timeline on coronavirus vaccines the liberal media so desperately worked to undermine and ended by smacking down the hurt feelings of liberal reporters like CNN’s Kaitlan Collins after they weren’t called on.
Houck touted her "closing statement," and added: "To be clear, McEnany’s opening statements shouldn’t be undersold either and Friday’s consisted of a thorough timeline in the federal government’s push to find coronavirus vaccine."
Houck had to wait a few more weeks for his next opportunity to gush (and McEnany's next briefing), which he did on Dec. 15, under the headline "Absolutely Fire":
On Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany opened and closed the press briefing by savaging the liberal media for their behavior regarding on their hopes that a coronairus vaccine wouldn’t be available in 2020, their purposeful refusal to cover a Chinese spy cozying up to Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-CA), and waiting until after the presidential election to both cover and give credence to probes of Hunter Biden’s corrupt business dealings.
McEnany first addressed the liberal media’s wishes failing to come to fruition due to the overwhelming success of the Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed initiative.
Surprisingly, the briefing proceeded without any real fanfare or fireworks in the Q&A portion with reporters behaving themselves and choosing not to go down the route colleagues like Jim Acosta, Peter Alexander, Brian Karem, Paula Reid, or April Ryan would normally go down. For the sake of the country, McEnany chose not to call on Acosta.
The only "Absolutely Fire" we're seeing may be Houck's apparent crush on McEnany -- and his burning hate for Acosta and every other CNN employee.
Houck is clearly going to have a hole in his heart when McEnany leaves the White House.
UPDATE: Houck capped off his year of gushing with a Dec. 28 roundup post sycophantically headlined "Tour de Force: Here Are the Top Ten Kayleigh McEnany Smackdowns of 2020." Houck gushed further in a tweet: "Kayleigh was masterful as @PressSec. In terms of personnel, she was one of President Trump's best hires. And even though her first briefing came in May, it was still a tough time narrowing down to ten. If the press had to face Kayleigh for four years, there'd be no one left."
That earned Houck praise from his idol, who retweeted the item with the message, "You are great! Thanks." Houck will probably sleep tonight with his arms around a printed version of that tweet.