MRC Psaki-Bashing, Doocy-Fluffing Watch Topic: Media Research Center
Curtis Houck was a Doocy-gasm mood for his summary of the Oct. 18 White House press briefing with a round of mask gotcha:
On Monday’s Psaki Show, Fox News’s Peter Doocy returned to the Briefing Room (after colleague Jacqui Heinrich took a turn last week) and, as usual, he didn’t make it easy on Press Secretary Jen Psaki as they went toe-to-toe over President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden walking maskless in a Washington D.C. restaurant despite a citywide mandate and the President’s hypocrisy in calling for prosecution of those who defy January 6-related subpoenas.
As always, Doocy immediately cut to the chase with a short but biting question “There is mask requirement inside D.C. restaurants, yet President Biden and the First Lady were not wearing masks while walking around a D.C. restaurant on Saturday. Why?”
Psaki brushed it off as images from when they were “walking out of a restaurant after they had eaten, masks in hand where they had not yet put them back on yet, so I would say, of course, there are moments when we all don't put mask back on as quickly as we should.”
She added that people shouldn’t “lose the forest through the trees here” when the real focus should be on both vaccinating people and instituting mass vaccine mandates.
Given the level of mask hypocrisy over the past year and a half, Doocy wasn’t having it:
Needless to say, Doocy (and Houck) would never have treated Kayleigh McEnany the same way or played a similar gotcha game with Donald Trump, and Houck would never concede that a hated "liberal media" reporter "wasn't having it" regarding anything McEnany ever said. But Houck devoted his entire post to fawning over Doocy, going on to gush over his badgering Psaki aboutthe idea of prosecutingTrump administration officials and various hangers-on who are defying subpoenas from the congressional committee invesigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
On Oct. 19, Houck cheered that Doocy was pushing more right-wing talking points:
On Tuesday, it was a spicy day inside the White House Briefing Room as Fox’s Peter Doocy brought the heat against Press Secretary Jen Psaki on coronavirus vaccine mandates, flights for illegal immigrants, and the Treasury Department monitoring our bank accounts. And as we’ve seen plenty of times, Doocy received help as other reporters tackling Biden’s influence on the Justice Department, his Build Back Better plan, and the supply chain crisis.
Doocy started with new reporting from the New York Post that government flights of illegal immigrants were landing in places like Westchester County, New York in the dead of night: “Why is the administration flying thousands of migrants from the border to Florida and New York in the middle of the night?”
Psaki went the condescending route, quipping that she’s “not sure that it's in the middle of the night, but let me tell you what's happening here.”
Did Houck ever criticize McEnany for being "condescending"? Not that we recall -- heck, he probably loved her condescension.
Houck quicky added at the end: "At the back end of the briefing, the penultimate exchange featured Newsmax’s Emerald Robinson talking about Buttigieg’s unannounced paternity leave, but instead of engaging, Psaki made clear that she, at best, loathes her. But as a less biased reporter pointed out, the reason Psaki didn't "engage" with Robinson was that she continued to shout questions after her allotted time had ended while Psaki moved on to another reporter. And, really, Robinson has amply earned the contempt of people by spewing COVID conspiracy theories, which means she has never earned the respect Houck demands she receive simply for being a right-wing reporter.
For the Oct. 21 hearing, Houck had a different target in deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, but was having the same old Doocy-gasms over his slavish recitation of right-0wing talking points -- mixed in with praise for Doocy's wife, also a biased Fox News reporter, which sounds a bit awkward:
With The Psaki Show off on Thursday, White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary and former MSNBCer Karine Jean-Pierre filled in, but it wasn’t an easy day as she faced incoming fire from not only Fox’s Peter Doocy, but Doocy’s other half in wife Hillary Vaughn of the Fox Business Network as the two brought the heat with hardballs on inflation, the supply chain crisis, and our country’s overall economic malaise.
Doocy began with immigration and wanted to know whether it’s that “the year Joe Biden was sworn in as President promising more a humane immigration system is the same year that an all-time record 1.7 million migrants have been detained at the southern border.”
Houck gave Doocy and Vaughn more cookies for spouting right-wing narratives in the Oct. 22 briefing:
After a day off and a guest appearance by Principal Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, The Psaki Show was back with a new episode on Friday and, for the second day in a row, the Fox News Channel’s Peter Doocy and wife Hillary Vaughn of the Fox Business Network applied the heat to the Briefing Room podium.
Other reporters asked insightful questions about Biden’s poll numbers, the DHS investigation into the fake whips story, gas prices, press access, but it was Doocy who battled Psaki over vaccine mandates and President Biden not having visited the U.S. southern border while Vaughn focused on the economic pinch Americans have found themselves in ahead of the holiday season.
Most of Doocy’s time focused on immigration, but he led off with news that “[t]he leader of the union representing FedEx, UPS, and DHL is saying that supply chain problems are going to get worse with labor shortages right before the holidays unless the President postpones the requirement to get vaccinated by December 8.”
With that said, Doocy wanted to know: “[W]hat is more important to this President: The vaccine mandates or fixing the supply chain as fast as possible?”
Psaki deflected, arguing that’s “not actually what we've seen at companies that have implemented these vaccine requirements” and instead the labor market would be in worse shape if the Covid vaccine wasn’t mandated.
Houck did cheer other right-wing messaging as well: "In two other notable moments, the New York Post's Steven Nelson called out the White House's ongoing curtailing of press access for Biden events in the East Room and the Daily Caller's Shelby Talcott inquired about the Department of Homeland Security investigation into the (fake) whips story that's now a month late." Cookies all around for staying on message!
WND's Brown Wimps Out, Defends Anti-Vaxx Misinformers In The Name Of 'Freedom Of Speech' Topic: WorldNetDaily
Michael Brown did his best to sound ominous in his Sept. 29 WorldNetDaily column:
The Sept. 29 lead headline on DrudgeReport was even more apocalyptic and alarming than normal, featuring a giant YouTube logo, front and center, covered by a red "cancel" circle. The headline declared, "YOUTUBE BANS ALL 'ANTI-VAX' CONTENT.'"
Secondary headlines also sounded ominous tones: "Sydney warns unvaccinated face total social isolation IDEFINITELY when lockdown ends …"; "UNITED AIRLINES firing employees who refuse shot"; "Biden Order Mandate Enforcement With Up To $700,000 Fine …" – and more.
Are things really as bad as they seem? In a word, yes.
At this point, Brown had the opportunity to tone things down and stand with reality against anti-vaxxers and partisan alarmists who want to maliciously frame public health measures as issues of freedom. But he turned wishy-washy in explaining his own position on COVId vaccines:
But let me say at the outset that I am not an anti-vaxxer myself. My official, oft-stated, public position on the COVID vaccines is this: Do the research, pray for wisdom, and make an informed decision. As for my personal choices, I'm keeping those personal, since I do not have the health expertise to influence others in either direction.
If he's not an anti-vaxxer, why is he afraid to admit wether or not he has gotten the vaccine? Because he's virtue-signaling -- he apparently believes he has a significant number of anti-vaxxers in his target audience, and he doesn't want to offend anyone, which is why he took the "do the research" copout (which is an anti-vaxxer trope).
So, unsurprisingly, he goes on to frame anti-vaxxer misinformation and disinformation as just another viewpoint that deserves ewual treatment:
The rationale behind the decision is this: "Misinformation researchers have for years said the popularity of anti-vaccine content on YouTube was contributing to growing skepticism of lifesaving vaccines in the United States and around the world. Vaccination rates have slowed and about 56 percent of the U.S. population has had two shots, compared with 71 percent in Canada and 67 percent in the United Kingdom."
But what if it is not just misinformation? What if there are genuine scientific concerns? What if there is a growing body of anecdotal evidence supporting those concerns? And, in any case, who decides what is and is not "misinformation"? More importantly, who decides which "misinformation" is permitted and which is forbidden?
Should a video with blatant misinformation about the Bible be permitted on YouTube, even if it will lead many people astray spiritually? (The answer is yes, it should be permitted.)
What about a video with misleading information about UFOs? Should that be permitted? (Again, the answer is yes.)
But if you have genuine, well-researched, carefully considered issues with vaccines in general, not to mention COVID vaccines in particular, your content will be banned on YouTube.
This really is ominous.
That's a bizarre argument. "Misinformation" about the Bible or UFOs doesn't kill people -- but misinformation about vaccines does.
He then hearkened back to a 2018 commentary defending misinformer and liar Alex Jones to argue that nobody should ever face accountability for spreading lils and misinformation, then concluding with the mention of one more right-wing martyr:
In the past, a major newspaper like USA Today may have had 2-3 million subscribers, while, to this day, major network news shows may draw 5-7 million viewers per network. In contrast, YouTube currently has 2.29 billion users, meaning that when YouTube bans you, it really hurts.
Add to this the fact that we began this year with Twitter banning the most powerful man on the planet from its platform – the sitting president of the United States – and you realize that things are quickly spiraling out of control.
Let us, then, push back with wisdom, with truth, with courage, with strategic action and – for people of faith – with prayer.
Seems like Brown ought to be praying for the courage to call out those who spread misinformation -- and the courage to tell people whether or not he's vaccinated.
MRC Invents Conspiracy Over Fox News Drone Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Nicholas Fondacaro was quick to go conspiratorial in a Sept. 16 post:
In an apparent attempt to cover up the border crisis, the Biden administration has shut down Fox News’s ability to fly their drone over the U.S.-Mexico border to report on the border crisis, which swelled in August and again in the last 24-hours.
On Thursday’s Special Report, national correspondent Bill Melugin showed the over 9,000-person crowd of illegals under the international bridge. But on Tucker Carlson Tonight, two hours later, he was forced to report that the FAA had issued a temporary flight restrictionor TFR over the entire area.
While on with Carlson, he broke the news that the FAA was shutting them down. “What does that mean? It means our drone can no longer fly and show those images,” he said. “It is a two-week TFR, and according to the FAA, it is for special security reasons. We’ve reached out to the FAA to get a little clarification on what the heck that means.”
Noting that the “timing on this, the location, a little bit curious,” Melugin explained that they’ve been there almost “seven months now” and there’s “never been an issue” with them flying the drone. “All of a sudden, the last 24-hours, we start showing images at this bridge and a TFR goes up, we can no longer fly. When we can update from the FAA we will be sure to let you know.”
Because he is a dishonest right-wing hack who is effectively moonlights as a Fox News PR person, Fondacaro offered no actual evidence that the ban was designed to specifically retaliate against Fox News. He waited until nearly the end of his piece before mentioning that the FAA had responded to all the right-wing conspiracy-mongering by issuing a statement that everyone's drones -- not just those from Fox News -- were grounded because they were interfering with law enforcement and that the "media is able to call the FAA to make requests to operate in the area." Fondacaro sneered in response: "Now, given that the FAA says that the media can make a request for flight clearance, we have to wait and see if Fox News gets granted that access."
Because the entirety of the MRC is effectively the PR division of Fox News, Tim Graham devoted his Sept. 17 podcast to trying to advance the nonexistent conspiracy theory, summarized in the post promoting it as "Team Biden trying to shut down the Fox News camera exposing their maladministration of the border." Graham went on to rant: "It is one of those things where you say, hmmm, I think we can all imagine if we flip the script on this how this would be handled," playing imaginary whataboutism speculating how a Trump administration would be treated had it done something similar.
The funny thing is that Fox News followed pricedure, applied for flight clearance and was granted it the same day Graham went on a tirade about it. And the MRC never mentioned it again -- so it's yet another situation where the MRC hyped something that turned out not to have thepartisan legs it hoped so it just went silent without bothering to tell readers that the situation essentially resolved itself.
CNSNews.com absolutely loves it when Russian president Vladimir Putin trashes the United States in general and President Biden in particular, so it's loath to publish much criticism of Putin, even though he's very much an anti-democratic authoritarian leader who acts like a dictator -- normally something CNS would be opposed to if said leader was less right-wing. So it was unusual when Patrick Goodenough devoted a Sept. 24 article to Putin's biggest critic, Alexey Navalny. But the focus of the article wasn't his criticism of Putin -- it was on tech companies who bowed to Putin's demands to withdraw voting-aid apps:
Angered by U.S. tech giants’ decision to remove a voting app promoting opposition candidates in last weekend’s Russian parliamentary elections, imprisoned Kremlin critic Alexey Navalny has accused them of turning into Vladimir Putin’s “accomplices.”
In a series of searing tweets, Navalny slammed Google and Apple for complying with Kremlin dictates, saying that in doing so Big Tech was acknowledging “the right of an authoritarian thief to subjugate the Internet, turning it into an instrument for seizure of power.”
“It’s one thing when the Internet monopolists are ruled by cute freedom-loving nerds with solid life principles,” he said. “It is completely different when the people in charge of them are both cowardly and greedy.”
“One of the modern challenges is that false prophets now come to us not in sheep’s clothing, but in hoodies and stretched jeans,” Navalny wrote. “Standing in front of the huge screens, they tell us about ‘making the world a better place,’ but on the inside they are liars and hypocrites.”
That's more in line with the war CNS' parent, the Media Research Center, has been waging against "Big Tech."
However, Goodenough waited until the last few paragraphs of his 18-paragraph article to note"widespread allegations from opposition parties of vote-rigging and fraud" and that "The Washington-based democracy watchdog Freedom House, which grades countries each year on political rights and civil liberties, ranks Russia under the Putin regime as 'not free'" -- though, weirdly, Goodenough did not mention Putin's name in making those claims even though he's the person behind all that. Wouldn't want to upset the boss, after all.
This came after a Sept. 19 article by Goodenough in which he highlighted criticism of Apple and Google by "Russian opposition activists" in which Putin's name doesn't appear at all.
As we documented, CNS ran to Putin's defense after Biden called him a "killer" over his treatment of Navalny and other opposition figures., happily printing Putin's attacks on Biden in response to the claim.
Though It Embraced His Milley Story, MRC Still Hates Bob Woodward Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center pounced on the revelation -- as reported in the new book by Bob Woodward -- that Joint Chiefs of Staff head Gen. Mark Milley secretly contacted Chinese officials to assure them that the U.S. wouldn't attack because of Donald Trump's increasingly unstable mental state after losing the 2020 election, but that doesn't mean the MRC has taking a liking to Woodward. It had a meltdown over Woodward's last book for making Trump look bad -- even though the book was based on interviews Woodward did with Trump -- and it even whined that the media covered Woodward's revelations more than a Nobel Peace Prize nomination Trump got.
In his Sept. 15 podcast, MRC executive Tim Graham ranted against the book and even took some needlessly personal shots at Woodward's co-author, Robert Costa: "Oh, how CNN loved this book's debut. They are just wallowing in it like it's Christmas morning and Woodward was Santa Claus. I guess this would make Robert Costa Buddy the Elf." The MRC likes to portray Costa as "liberal" even though he first gained journalistic notoriety at the conservative National Review.
Graham dismissed the Milley story as an "alleged scoop" -- even though the MRC was not treating as "alleged" -- insisting that it was not "likely" or "remotely plausible" that Trump was unstable because Trump didn't launch any wars and declaring that "this is just the kind of story that our so-called news media just adores, this cartoon of the president as a completely unhinged, dangerous person." Apparently, Graham was not observing the Trump presidency in the previous four years. He went on to lament that "books like these are trying to make Trump more radioactive than he already is for 2024." Funny, we've never read anywhere at the MRC that Trump is "radioactive."
Graham then ranted that Woodward's book is the third book critical of Trump to come out this year because the Post is a "Democratic rag!"
Graham used his Sept. 17 column to further complain:
Liberal outlets often try to ignore conservative journalism, refusing to recognize facts and substance that they fear are damaging to the Democrats. The closer the election gets, the more hypersensitive their censoring instincts become. They repeated Democrat claims of “Russian misinformation” and moved on.
This never happens to Bob Woodward, the “legend” of The Washington Post. He is, to liberals, the gold standard of information. He never commits misinformation. Nothing ever needs to be substantiated. No source ever needs to be identified. No “reconstructed conversation” is ever doubted. The Bible is treated less reverently than Woodward’s latest gospel.
The alleged scripture this time around is that Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was so frightened by what President Trump might do in late 2020 and January 2021 that he had conversations with a general in China, advising him that if there was going to be some crazy nuclear attack from Trump, he would give the communists a heads-up.
Conservatives were immediately up in arms at the treasonous sound of this. But the first question should be: Can Woodward be trusted?
Graham didn't mention that neither he nor his MRC co-workers apparently asked that question in its using Woodward's book to brand Milley a traitor.
Graham went on to rant that "Sometimes, Woodward’s hot scoops crumble under scrutiny" -- but he had to go to a book Woodward wrote more than 30 years ago to find an example. He also cited this old book in his podcast as well.
When Woodward and Costa did media appearances to promote their book, the MRC's attack mode continued. Writing about an appearance from them on ABC, Kristine Marsh huffed on Sept. 20 that the host "eagerly accepted Woodward and Costa's pathetic, partisan defense that Joint Chief of Staff General Mark Milley was justified in tipping off China, because Trump was just that dangerous," insisting that "making serious and unsubstantiated claims about the president being crazy doesn’t even warrant pushback at ABC, it's become routine for the media." She went on to whine that "The media has a history of trumpeting anonymously sourced, salacious claims against President Trump, particularly by Woodward," linking to Graham's podcast.
Kyle Drennen invented a motive for Woodward writing the book in a Sept. 22 post:
On CBS’s Late Show Tuesday night, left-wing “comedian” Stephen Colbert eagerly welcomed on The Washington Post’s Bob Woodward on Robert Costa to hawk their new anti-Trump book designed to distract from the massive failures of current President Joe Biden. Accepting all of the wild claims in the book as gospel, Colbert declared that he had to take breaks from reading it in order to “quietly weep” for the country.
Drennen offered no evidence to support his claim that the book was "designed to distract" from Biden -- books are typically months if not years in the making, after all. That appears to be a figment of Drennen's imagination and, as such, has no business in anything claiming to be "media research."
Newsmax's White House Reporter Busted For Spewing Another COVID Conspiracy Theory Topic: Newsmax
Last year, we caught Newsmax TV White House correspondent Emerald Robinson -- whose scant resume before joining Newsmax as dominated by work at the even-further-right One American News Network -- spouting coronavirus conspiracy theories on Twitter, for which she apparently faced no discipline. Now, she's gotten busted for pushing a conspiracy about COViD vaccines. Tell us all about it, Washington Post media writer Erik Wemple:
Right-wing media outlet Newsmax had no choice on Tuesday but to issue two statements. One came from Elliot Jacobson, Newsmax’s executive vice president and chief content officer:
Newsmax is a strong proponent that Covid 19 vaccines are overarchingly safe and effective. while at the same time raising concerns that mandates infringe on personal liberty and privacy. We have seen no evidence to suggest LUCIFERASE or LUCIFERIN are present in any vaccines or that they are used as any sort bioluminescent marker.
And here’s the other, from parent company Newsmax Media:
Newsmax strongly believes and has reported that the Covid 19 vaccines are safe and effective. We do not believe the vaccines contain any toxic materials or tracking markers, and such false claims have never been reported on Newsmax. The many medical experts appearing on Newsmax have supported the use of the vaccine.
What on earth could have prompted these bizarre statements? A tweet from Emerald Robinson, Newsmax’s White House correspondent:
And that statement was: "Dear Christians: the vaccines contain a bioluminescent marker called LUCIFERASE so you can be tracked. Read the last book of the New Testament to see how this ends."
In fact, the vaccines do not contain luciferase (though it was used in some vaccine trials because it is an enzyme that can produce light and helped to analyze how the vaccines work, working in a similar way to what make fireflies glow). Wemple added: "Which is to say, the two-thirds of Americans who’ve taken at least one vaccine dose needn’t worry about acquiring a subcutaneous glow."
Wemple added that Robinson has been placed on a tepid kind of quasi-suspension, according to a Newsmax statement: “Newsmax is currently reviewing the posts and during that period Ms. Robinson will not be on air but continue with duties for the network.”
Having a vocal anti-vaxxer as your White House correspondent is not the way a "news" organization builds credibility -- and neither does having to make public statements distancing yourself from those anti-vaxxer sentiments. Newsmax doesn't seem to have figured that out yet.
NEW ARTICLE: MRC, Fact-Check Thyself Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center keeps getting busted by fact-checkers for the less-than-truthful memes it tries to spread -- and it can't stop whining about it. Read more >>
CNS Attacks Pelosi For Pointing Out That She's A Catholic Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews' holy war on Nancy Pelosi has focused on hating her for being insufficiently Catholic (as judged by the uber-Catholics who run CNS) and being a stenographer for the archbishop of San Francisco's political attacks on her. It also takes offense when Pelosi describes herself in public as a Catholic -- it doesn't outright attack her for it, but the fact that CNS publishes an article seemingly every time she does so is evidence enough -- that and the fact that all thjese articles are written anonymously, credited only to "CNSNews.com Staff." Apparently, no CNS reporter wants theirname associated with these petty attacks.
A July 22 article carried the weirdly teasing headline "Pelosi on Funding Abortion: ‘As a Devout Catholic and Mother of Five in Six Years, I Feel That God…’":
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) said at her press briefing today that funding abortion with federal tax dollars is a matter of “fairness and justice” and cited her faith as a “devout Catholic” to explain why.
“As a devout Catholic and mother of five in six years, I feel that God blessed my husband and me with our beautiful family–five children in six years, almost to the day. But it's not up to me to dictate that that's what other people should do. And it's an issue of fairness and justice for poor women in our country.”
A Sept. 23 article whined that Pelosi "said at her weekly press briefing on Thursday that she is Catholic and comes “from a pro-life family,” but that her family is “different in their view of a woman’s right to choose than I am.” The anonymous writer made sure to include a statement from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops declaring it "especially shameful that any self-professed Catholic would be implicated in such an evil, let alone advocate for it."
Pelosi faced another anonymous complaint in a Sept. 24 article:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) gave a speech on the House floor today talking about her status as a “Catholic mother” before the chamber voted to approve the Women’s Health Protection Act—which guarantees a nation-wide right to abortion on demand.
“I come to this as a Catholic mother of five in six years and one week and with the joy that all that meant to us,” said Pelosi.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) said at her press briefing on Thursday that she and Sen. Joe Manchin (D.-W.V.) are “Italian Americans” and “Catholics” who “have shared values.”
The day before that Manchin himself had put out a statement saying he could not support the $3.5 spending bill that Pelosi is trying to push through the House.
One writer who was willing to put his name on his Pelosi-hate was CNS' favorite dishonest Catholic, Bill Donohue, who spent a July 22 column complaining that Pelosi called herself a "devout Catholic":
The Cambridge English Dictionary defines "devout" as meaning "believing strongly in a religion and obeying all its rules or principles." Pelosi does not obey the teachings of the Catholic Church on many key public policy issues.
Her enthusiasm for abortion is off-the-charts. She opposes laws that ban the killing of babies who are 80 percent born (partial-birth abortion) and she even won Planned Parenthood's highest award in 2014. In 2008, she stunned Tom Brokaw on "Meet the Press" when she falsely claimed that the Catholic Church has not taken a position on when life begins; the bishops unloaded on her for lying. That is not how "devout Catholics" act.
Pelosi not only rejects the Church's teaching on marriage; she lied in 2015 when she that her support for same-sex marriage is "consistent" with Catholic teaching. In 2020, she declared war on Catholic schools when she sought to rescind funding for Catholic schools that were granted money by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. That is not how "devout Catholics" act.
Pelosi also lied when she said she does not want to "dictate" to others what they should do. Last September, she sought to dictate to San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone what to do about Mass attendance during the pandemic. To be exact, she lectured him for opposing the mayor's rule that only one person at a time was allowed inside churches to pray. That is not how "devout Catholics" act.
Non-Catholics, never mind Catholics, know Pelosi is lying about her Catholic status. So does she.
Donohue did not exlain who gave him the authority to judge the religious faith of other people.
The Flip-Flop Continues: MRC Still Touting Low Biden Polls After Trashing Low Trump Polls Topic: Media Research Center
We've documented how the Media Research Center has abruptly decided to promote and trust polls showing President Biden not doing well in them after years of bashing polls showing Donald Trump not doing well as untrustworthy and even manufactured. The MRC hasn't stopped hypocritically hyping those bad Biden polls, proclaiming they demonstrate the imminent end of the Trump presidency. Nicholas Fondacaro huffed in a Sept. 22 post:
Just eight months into his presidency and American people have already had enough of Joe Biden, according to multiple national and state polls from around the country. The President was underwater practically everywhere but the CBS Evening News was the only broadcast network that found it newsworthy during their Wednesday newscasts as also highlighted how Biden was struggling to pass his expensive legislative agenda.
Instead of talking about Biden’s terrible poll numbers, ABC’s World News Tonighttalked about the weather. Meanwhile, NBC Nightly News talked with Al Gore and gushed about how accurate his climate change movie supposedly was and joked that a local lottery winner wasn’t a member of their studio crew.
Scott Whitlock complained on Sept. 29 that a news report didn't make a poll look sufficiently bad:
The Biden presidency continues to crumble and media outlets are doing their best to hide the collapse. ABC commissioned a poll on the Democrat’s job performance, but only allowed a scant 87 seconds to the terrible results on Wednesday. And while the bad news was plentiful in the survey, Good Morning America’s George Stephanopoulos and Terry Moran only picked out one part of the woeful results.
Stephanopoulos brought up Afghanistan and noted that the botched withdrawal has “taken a toll on the President’s numbers.” Moran agreed: “Our most recent ABC News poll shows that 61 percent of the American people disapprove of his handling of Afghanistan, only 38 percent approve. Those numbers are down with Democrats and independents, of course, Republicans as well.”
Kyle Drennen served up a similar tone in a Oct. 7 post:
On Thursday, ABC’s Good Morning America completely censored a new Quinnipiac poll showing President Biden’s approval rating had plummeted to 38%. NBC’s Today show and CBS Mornings did manage to cover the bad news for the Democrat, but only offered seconds of air time each.
“Democrats hoping to pass the massive spending plan by the end of October, with President Biden in need of a boost now,” correspondent Garrett Haake noted on NBC, before explaining: “A new poll showing his approval rating dropping to 38%, the lowest level of his presidency yet.” Those remarks only came to 12 seconds.
These terrible ratings across the board for Biden should be discussed and analyzed by journalists, along with reporting on the reasons for his surge in unpopularity. Instead, the broadcast networks are barely whispering the news (if mentioning it all), perhaps hoping viewers won’t notice.
We don't recall anyone at athe MRC saying that Trump's continuously low approval ratings "should be discussed and analyzed by journalists." We believe they were opposed to that very idea.
On Wednesday, Quinnipiac put out a brand new survey that revealed that President Biden had grown even more unpopular as issues that used to hold him up crumbled beneath his feet. But instead of telling their viewers of Biden’s unpopularity, as they would with former President Trump, the broadcast networks’ largely ignored them. Two of the networks dropped their coverage Thursday evening after mentioning it in passing that morning.
Tim Graham dutifully regurgitated all of this in his Oct. 8 podcast, while Whitlock boosted the narrative anew in an Oct. 20 post:
The Joe Biden presidency is collapsing and the networks don’t want you to know about it. Two just-released polls have found the Democrat at record lows. But between the evening newscasts on Tuesday and the morning shows on Wednesday, offered zero coverage of the very bad news for Biden.
According to Quinnipiac, the President sits at 40 percent approval. It’s even worse for the Grinnell College poll, showing Biden at just 37 percent approval and 50 percent disapproval. Both are respected polling companies and included in the Real Clear Politics Average of polls. (The new numbers can be found here.)
Again, you wouldn’t know that if you watched ABC, CBS or NBC.
The MRC didn't think Quinnipiac was a "respected" pollster when it attacked a 2019 poll showing five prospective Democrats ahead of Trump for the 2020 election; Fondacaro whined that it was "about a year and a half away from the 2020 general election and months away from the first Democratic primaries, meaning these polls have little predictive validity.
Whilock then used an Oct. 26 post to serve up a meaningless comparison:
The last three months have been nightmarish for Joe Biden’s presidency. In August, his popularity started to plummet, dropping precipitously so that, by late October, some polls had him dipping into the high 30s as Afghanistan, inflation and an inability to accomplish his domestic agenda have altered a once popular president’s fortunes. But in comparison to Donald Trump, ABC, CBS and NBC had almost double the number of mentions of bad polling for the Republican.
MRC analysts looked at the morning and evening broadcast news programs from August 1, 2021 to October 25, 2021 for Biden vs. August 1, 2017 to October 25 2017 for Trump. While ABC, CBS and NBC mentioned Donald Trump’s unpopularity 37 times, they only noted the rapidly dropping numbers for Biden 19 times.
This despite the fact that Biden’s fall is, by far, the bigger news story of the two. In January of 2017, Trump started as an unpopular President, averaging around 44 percent, according to Real Clear Politics. His numbers largely stayed that way for four years. In January of 2021, Biden began as a popular President, beginning with a 55 percent popularity rating. By near the end of October, his average fell to just 42 percent.
The Biden presidency is cratering, but network journalists are still in denial, pretending that everything is okay. As the Democrat edges ever closer to constantly being in the 30s, perhaps reality will force ABC, CBS and NBC to stop protecting Biden and start informing the public.
We don't recall Whitlock or anyone else at the MRC insiting that Trump's consistently low numbers meant that his presidency was "cratering."
Remember: After the 2020 presidential election, Graham ranted that pollsters "are damaging the legitimacy of our democracy, not helping it,' further declaring that election polls were "obviously rigged" and insisting that "It’s hard not to see intentional rigging, not some kind of accidental bias." But the polls suddenly have become accurate now that the show Biden underwater.
The MRC's sudden flip-flop on polls demonstrates who's doing the actual rigging here.
AIM Is Proud Of Its Narrative Being Promoted On Fringe-Right Website Topic: Accuracy in Media
An Oct. 5 Accuracy in Media item -- under the headline "AIM’s fight against the media bailout is featured in the World Tribune" -- is pretty much what it says it is, a teaser of an article at said website that, in turn, is a rehash of a commentary at the right-wing Daily Signal by AIM president Adam Guillette about how AiM is attacking a proposed provision in the Build Back Better that would include a "$1.3 billion bailout for media organizations." According to Guillette, the bailout is "a way to turn every news outlet in America into a version of NPR." He offered no evidence to back this up that the World Tribune thought was noteworthy; perhaps that's because he offered none in is Daily Signal piece beyond ranting things like "Any pretense of objectivity would be destroyed once the media is on the federal payroll," further ranting that "many local newspapers took advantage of" money from the Payroll Protection Program and asserting that "Bad businesses should be allowed to fail."
Guilllette didn't mention that AIM also took PPP money -- $72,368 that AIM does not have to pay back to the government, thus making it free money. So if Guillette really believes "bad businesses should be allowed to fail," does he agree that AIM should have been allowed to fail since it felt the need to take government largesse? Does he believe that AIM's credibility was damaged (even further than it already has been, anyway) beause it accepted government money?
It's also weird that AiM woul so aggressively promote a rewrite of something at the World Tribune, because it's not exactly known for for journalistic excellence. Media Bias/Fact Check has rated World Tribune "questionable" because of its "far-right bias (propaganda), and poor sourcing, and misleading science, as well as a lack of ownership transparency." The website was founded as something of a hobby for a former editor for the right-wing Washington Times.
Is a shoddy, hyper-biased website like World Tribune the kind of media world AiM would rather see? It would seem so.
CNS' Loopy Rabbi: Soros Is A Jew You're Allowed To Hate Topic: CNSNews.com
Loopy far-right rabbi Aryeh Spero was at it again, using an Oct. 22 CNS column to give conservatives a get-out-of-anti-Semitism-free card to explain why George Soros is a Jew right-wingers are allowed to hate:
The charge by Terry McAuliffe’s supporters that his opponent, Glenn Youngkin, is anti-Semitic because he criticized George Soros is preposterous.
No person is beyond criticism simply because he is a member of a minority community. Mr. Soros actively and openly engages in politics and in influencing state and local governments and is, therefore, a legitimate object of criticism, especially concerning the left-wing policies he’s tried to force on America through his massive underwritings. Thus, this accusation is just another dishonest attempt to win an election by playing the "anti-Semitism card." It is specious chutzpah.
Furthermore, those who point to Soros do so not because he is Jewish but because he is Soros, Soros being the most high- profile and effective opponent today of American traditional values. As is well-documented, he is by far the primary funder of radical leftist candidates and groups vowing to transform America into a transnational entity. Most people don’t even know the ethnic background of George Soros.
Most ironic and disingenuous is casting Mr. Soros as a symbol of Jewish peoplehood when, in fact, Mr. Soros has spent a lifetime working against Israel’s defense and Jewish survival and needs. He has been proud of his disassociation from the Jewish community. To make him into a Jewish martyr is ludicrous inasmuch as he has spent a lifetime distancing himself from anything identifiably Jewish.
WND Still Defending Ivermectin, This Time Against Anti-COVID Drug That Actually Works Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily just can't stopdefending the dubious drug ivermectin, no matter how dishonestly. So when a new antiviral treatment was introduced, Art Moore was first in line to compare it unfavorably to ivermectin in an Oct. 1 article:
The announcement Friday by Merck that it plans to apply for emergency approval of a new experimental oral antiviral treatment for COVID-19 is of particular interest to many physicians who have been hindered or completely blocked from treating their COVID patients off-label with an FDA-approved drug that already is produced by the pharmaceutical giant.
Merck is the producer of ivermectin, which has been shown to be effective in an least 65 controlled studies and 32 randomized controlled trials to fight COVID-19 as a preventative and early- and late-stage treatment. Studies have demonstrated its ability to inhibit the replication of SARS-CoV-2 as well as its strong anti-inflammatory properties.
Yet, as Rep. Louie Gohmert pointed out in a commentary this week, the "government alphabet agencies, the medical industrial complex, and their willing accomplices in the media" have made ivermectin "the latest naughty word which will get you censored on social media and mocked and belittled by late-night 'comedians.'"
Gohmert noted Merck itself has discouraged using ivermectin to treat COVID-19. The Texas lawmaker spotlighted the fact that the cheap and effective ivermectin would directly compete with the new drug it is developing, called molnupiravir. Unlike ivermectin, molnupirvar would be patented, the congressman pointed out, creating the potential "to rake in billions of dollars."
"In short, there is no humane, logical reason why it should not be widely used to fight against the China Virus should a patient and doctor decide it is appropriate to try in that patient’s case," Gohmert said.
The congressman said "the evil, deadly, coordinated globalist attacks we are currently witnessing on ivermectin will go down in history as a vicious crime against humanity; a grievous public health policy error that can only be explained by following the money."
Moore is misleading here: Since ivermectin has long been an off-patent drug, there are numerous manufacturers of it; Merck does make a version of the drug designed to treat parasitic infections, which COViD is not.
COVID misleader Joel Hirschhorn used his Oct. 4 column to falsely claim that molnupiravir is actually a copy of ivermectin:
The unrelenting opposition to using ivermectin to treat and prevent COVID-19 is stronger than ever. This has resulted from a gigantic increase in demand for IVM by much of the public. Despite big media tirades against the medication, the truth about its effectiveness (together with failure of COVID vaccines) has reached the public through many articles on alternative news websites and truth-tellers on countless podcasts. Ivermectin's success has forced Big Pharma to create expensive copies of it.
Merck, a maker of IVM, is getting much positive press coverage for its forthcoming prescription oral antiviral (molnupiravir). It is designed to replace IVM, since they cannot make big money from ivermectin. The FDA will soon give molnupiravir emergency use authorization because of the emerging clarity that COVID vaccines do NOT work effectively or safely.
Clearly, Merck, Pfizer and other vaccine makers are developing their own oral antivirals to directly compete with the cheap and effective IVM. These antivirals, unlike cheap generic IVM, would be patented so expensive pills could be sold worldwide. They will find some ingenious ways to copy IVM but make enough changes to get patents.
Another anti-parasitic medication, ivermectin, has 20 possible mechanisms of action against the SARS-CoV-2 virus, including interrupting viral entry into cells and anti-inflammatory action. Significantly, ivermectin is a protease inhibitor, that is, a substance that blocks proteins that allow viruses to reproduce themselves.
Is it a coincidence that Pfizer's new anti- COVID pill, PF-07321332 is also a protease inhibitor? Notably, Pfizer's drug would have to be given early after the onset COVID symptoms. This is also the recommendation for hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin – a recommendation many studies ignored when dismissing the value of these anti-parasitic medications.
Is it a coincidence that Merck, who distributes ivermectin, is seeking fast-track approval for molnupiravir, an antiviral agent to treat COVID-19? How convenient that the U.S. government will purchase $1.2 billion worth of the yet-to-be-approved drug. And how predictable that vaccine maker Moderna's stock fell 11% after the announcement. Vaccines are yesterday's cash cow. Is it a coincidence that ivermectin costs no more than $100 dollars per treatment course and molnupirivir costs $700 per 10-day course of treatment?
Actually, it's irrelevant that ivermectin and the Pfizer drug are protease inhibitors, and the two drugs, again, have completely different formulations.
But WND has totally bought into the ivermectin propaganda, and like any good propagandist, an enemy is needed so it can be demonized. And so it has one, in the form of an apparently more effective drug.
MRC Still Demanding That Local Crime Get National Coverage To Help GOP Candidate Topic: Media Research Center
We've established that the Media Research Center has been aggressively hyping the alleged sexual assault of a student in a school in Loudoun County, Va., in order to forward right-wing transphobia narrativfes (since the alleged assailant was "a boy in a skirt") and to advance the candidacy of Republican Virginia governor candidate Glenn Youngkin. As the election grew closer, the MRC ramped up the manufactured outrage. Kristine Marsh ranted in an Oct. 24 post that, among other things, complained that Youngkin was being called out for "seizing on" the assault and managed to work in the hoary old bogeyman of George Soros:
Sunday night MSNBC went all out smearing parents in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Loudoun County as domestic terrorists. On Alicia Menendez’s American Voices, the MSNBC host and her far-left guest cruelly painted parents standing up to school boards, including a father whose daughter was allegedly raped by a transgender student on campus because of the schools' liberal policies, as radical rioters who were like the January 6 “insurrectionists.”
She then introduced her guest, Soros-funded Loudoun County prosecutor Buta Biberaj, who sought jail time for a dad who erupted at a Loudoun County Public Schools board meeting in June over his daughter's alleged rape by a transgender student that the school lied about and covered up. In MSNBC’s twisted logic, the liberal prosecutor was the real victim of this story:
Biberaj pinned blame on the Sheriff's office. Like MSNBC, she lacked any sympathy for the actual victimized student or her father.
First: Marsh's wild accusation of a "cover-up" rests on a Fox News story by Sam Dorman -- whom we caught hurling biased gotcha questions in his stint as a CNSNews.com intern, so he's hardly an objective source -- highlighting an email from the school district superintendent to the school board alerting them to the incident; the school board told Fox that the email lacked specific details and the board did not receive further updates on the incident. Some "cover-up," eh?
Second: Does Marsh or anyone else at the MRC care about the "victimized student" beyond her usefulness as a partisan political tool? Unlikely.
Nicholas Fondacaro cranked out another one of those "the non-right-wing media isn't reporting stories that advance the right-wing agenda" articles in an Oct. 25 item -- and, of course, praising his favorite biased outlets for exploiting it:
In Virginia on Monday, the Smith family announced the Loudoun County Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court had found the “gender-fluid” boy who raped their daughter in a girl’s bathroom guilty. With the second alleged rape making its way through the legal system, the liberal broadcast networks continued their total blackout of the story, including the cover-up by the liberal school board. And before the news broke, the Associated Press tried to cast doubt on the validity of the case.
Instead of reporting on the case many radical leftists claimed wasn’t real (including Barack Obama), ABC’s World News Tonight, CBS Evening News, and NBC Nightly News all hyped how Washington Democrats were possibly close to a deal on President Biden’s massive spending agenda. They also put Facebook under more scrutiny, and NBC went off on the military coup in Sudan.
Of course, The Daily Wire, the outlet that initially broke the cover-up story, was all over the new developments.
Fox News Channel, was also the only major TV network to give airtime to the ruling.
Fondacaro -- who lies aboutmany things -- is lying about Obama. He didn't say the incident itself "wasn't real"; according to the right-wing tweet to which he linked, Obama called out "these phony trumped-up culture wars, this fake outrage, the right-wing media's pedals to juice their ratings" surrounding the Virginia election -- which is true, seeing as how Fondacaro and his buddies are paid to do just that.
Fondacaro also falsely accused the Associated Press of suggesting that the assault claim was false because a story called it a "murky case." In fact, it's a murky case because juvenile records are typically sealed and not made public, and the only statements that have been made public about it have come from the father of the alleged victim -- hardly an objective source.
Fondacaro followed up the next day with another story demanding national coverage of a local issue:
The Loudoun County “gender-fluid” rape story was a raging fire the liberal media were desperately pretending wasn’t happening as their candidate for governor Terry McAuliffe (D) was floundering. But on Tuesday, county high school students staged a walkout to protest the liberal school board that tried to cover up the attacks. The walkout and a guilty ruling against the attacker went unmentioned by the broadcast networks.
While the liberal broadcast networks were trying to keep the damaging story under wraps, Fox News Channel Special Report anchor Bret Baier dove right into it.
Fondacaro failed in his job as a researcher by refusinbg to tell readers about Fox News' political slant -- if he can tag other networks as "liberal," there's no reason for him not to identify Fox News as "conservative" -- or explaining the channel's motivation in pushing the story in trying to get Youngkin elected.
A couple hours later, Fondacaro was ranting about an even more obscure story the "liberal" networks weren't reporting on:
As NewsBusters has been reporting in recent days, the broadcast networks were going all-in on trying to keep Democrat Terry McAuliffe’s dwindling chances to win the gubernatorial in Virginia alive. But while they take McAuliffe’s side against Republican Glenn Youngkin, they were leaving him completely unvetted. Luckily we had The Daily Wire to investigate the Democrat’s ties to a law firm that fights against rape victims and with which he has taken a paycheck as recently as this election year.
By ignoring McAuliffe’s ties to this firm, the networks were flaunting just how politically driven they were. Because if he was a Republican, they would be all over it. But they want to keep the Virginia governor's mansion in Democratic hands.
Fondacaro did not describe the Daily Wire as "going all-in on trying to keep Republican Glenn Youngkin's chances to win the gubernatorial in Virginia alive." Perhaps he sould explain the justification for that biased, dishonest writing someday. And while he's at it, he should also explain why he's flaunting just how politically driven he is by wanting to put the Virginia governor's mansion in Democratic hands -- blatant electioneering that may very well be a violation of the MRC's nonprofit tax status.
On Oct. 27, Fondacaro was screeching about how others have pointed out how Republicans (like himself) are politically exploiting a crime:
The liberal TV news blackout of the “gender-fluid” rapes in Loudoun County, Virginia was finally broken Wednesday evening by NBC Nightly News and correspondent Catie Beck. But it was anything but fair as the network took to suggesting the cases and the school district were being exploited by parents as well as the state and national Republican Party as they looked for an upset in the tight race for governor and beyond.
ABC, CBS, CNN, and MSNBC were still holding strong to the blackout. NBC didn't give an explanation to why it took them so long to mention the rapes despite discussing the Virginia election on Sunday and Tuesday.
Fondacaro still has yet to explain why a local crime must be treated as a national story outside of the fact that drawing attention to it might help his preferred candidate get elected. But he's a right-wing hack, not a legitimate "media researcher."
Newsmax Concerned Fox News Has Stopped Being Right-Wing Shills Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax has grown concerned that Fox News seems to not be as interested in being full-time right-wing shills. A Sept. 24 article by Eric Mack complained:
Rudy Giuliani has been banned from appearing on Fox News for several months, and only learned of the "from the top" order on the eve of the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Son Andrew Giuliani, a New York gubernatorial candidate, has also been banned.
And former NYPD Commsissioner Bernie Kerik, a close adviser to Giuliani, is rarely booked on Fox News, Politico Playbook reports.
Rudy Giuliani and Kerik were prominent New York City leaders on 9/11 as mayor and NYPD commissioner.
Mack didn't mention that Kerik is a closefriend of Newsmax -- its Humanix division even published a novel by him -- and that the reason he's no longer a "prominent New York City leader" is because he got busted for corruption, which earned him a prison sentence. Mack then tried to make his employer look good by comparison:
Fox began distancing itself from Giuliani shortly after Trump left office and in the wake of Dominion Voting Systems’ lawsuit against the network. The suit cited Giuliani’s appearances and statements made on Fox in its $1.6 billion defamation case.
Newsmax was also sued by Dominion over its election coverage, but the network continues to have Giuliani, his son, and Kerik on as guests.
Actually, that's not a good look -- but that's the crowd Newsmax is playing to.
Mack also claimed that "A source close to Giuliani tells Newsmax that the former mayor and his circle view their banishment from Fox as part of the network’s strategy to reduce and restrict Trump’s influence in the Republican party." One has to wonder if that's Kerik as well.
Mack tried to generate outrage over another Fox News move in an Oct. 8 article:
The orchestrator of Fox News' early call of Arizona in the last presidential election is coming back to run the network’s decision desk for the 2022 midterms and 2024 elections.
Fox News CEO Suzanne Scott told The Hollywood Reporter that Decision Desk Director Arnon Mishkin will be rehired to be in charge of upcoming election coverage.
Fox stirred outrage from its viewers when it called Arizona just minutes after polls closed on election night 2020, while still failing to call Florida for then-President Donald Trump, even though voting had closed almost two hours earlier.
Mishkin, a longtime Democrat operative who backed Hillary Clinton in 2016 and donated to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, quickly drew the ire of the Trump campaign for his Arizona decision.
What Mack doesn't do, however, is admit that Fox News' election night call on Arizona was correct and has been repeatedly proven so. Instead, he whined that the channel was trying to distance itself from Trump and conservatives, even citing the notoriously wrong Dick Morris as proof:
Political experts such as Dick Morris said Fox’s early call for Arizona was an attempt to squelch the view Trump could still win if recounts in states like Wisconsin and Georgia were successful.
Trump has long pointed to Fox News' Arizona call for Biden as a watershed moment on election night.
Mishkin’s re-hiring appears to fit Fox’s new approach to distance itself from its more conservative base.
While Fox has kept its conservative, highly-rated show hosts like Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity, pro-Trump hosts like Lou Dobbs and Trish Regan were given the boot after the election, while news coverage remains led by moderates like anchor Chris Wallace.
Fox News has also sought to keep in the good graces of the Biden administration, with the network’s chief Washington lobbyist, Danny O’Brien, having served previously as Biden’s Senate chief of staff.
Biden publicly acknowledged that his controversial mandatory employee vaccination program is modeled on one Fox News implemented for its staff.
This is all performative, of course. Newsmax is a direct competitor of Fox News, and it stands to gain views if it can portray Fox News as not right-wing enough -- a space that Newsmax has been staking out. Needless to say, Mack didn't disclose that ulterior motive to his readers.
WND's Cashill Demands An LGBT-Hating Chic-fil-A In His Local Airport Topic: WorldNetDaily
In 2023, after 10 years of broken promises and backroom deals, Kansas City International (KCI) will open a spanking new terminal that few air travelers really wanted.
To get the deal done, airport boosters made all sorts of unseemly concessions to businesses claiming to be women and minority-owned. As happens everywhere, these deals added considerable cost to the final product, but zero value.
Last week, a third partner in the cartel of the "marginalized" that runs America – the LGBTQs – weighed in and proved that its wheels can squeak as loudly as those of its intersectional partners.
Not at all fluent in Newspeak, these well-meaning souls offended the sensibilities of the most sensitive partner in the rainbow coalition by adding Chick-fil-A to the list of the new terminal's eateries.
Commercially, Chick-fil-A made perfect sense. As documented by the American Customer Satisfaction Index, Chick-fil-A has been the nation's best-loved fast food operation for the last seven years running.
Then, too, KCI serves the citizens of two seriously red states – Kansas and Missouri. Each backed Donald Trump by margins of at least 15 points. Then, too, those who fly regularly lean more to the right than those who don't.
Ironically, the only time Chick-fil-A ruffled conservative feathers was when its foundation tried to appease LGBT activists by backing away from helping Christian groups and shifting its focus to the more benign "education, homelessness and hunger."
If conservatives have forgiven Chick-fil-A its wobbliness, progressives forgive nothing. Among the many woke paradoxes is their seeming aversion to "judgmentalism" given that judging others is what they live for.
"For the past six to eight months we've been putting out these inclusivity talking points, about having the most progressive airport in the country, and now we're throwing Chick-fil-A in there," said Justin Short, a spokesman for the local LGBTQ Commission. "You know you can't do both."
Most disturbing about the exclusion of Chick-fil-A is how promptly and passively the civic leaders of this region accepted the dictates of a few LGBTQ activists. Save for Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley and a local Christian newspaper, no one appears to have pushed back.
In Stalin's Soviet Union or Hitler's Germany, ordinary people had reason to stay silent as they watched their fellow citizens endure a series of exclusions until their final, terminal exclusion.
Fear of prison and death can silence almost anyone. Fear of Twitter outrage ought not.