Media Research Fail! MRC Touted Dubious, Biased Polls To Bash Biden Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center, as a partisan organization, prefers to highlight polls that advance its right-wing narratives. But MRC writer Joseph Vazquez took that to an extreme earlier this year -- ironically, under the headline "Media Fail!" The first came in an Aug. 18 post:
A new poll revealed that American voters are rejecting the false narrative that the spending-obsessed President Joe Biden’s $1.2 trillion infrastructure package has much to do with infrastructure.
Rasmussen Reports released a new survey showing that “[a] majority of voters agree with a Republican senator’s denunciation of the $1.2 trillion infrastructure package” that was passed August 10. The survey of 1,000 U.S. likely voters found that “51% of Likely U.S. Voters agree with Louisiana Sen. John Kennedy’s [R] statement” that the so-called infrastructure bill is not a “real infrastructure” bill. Kennedy’s statement, which the majority of voters surveyed by Rasmussen resonated with, ripped apart the bill as an eco-extremist and leftist wish list: “‘They told us it was a real infrastructure bill. It’s not. Only 23% of the bill is real infrastructure. The rest is Green New Deal and welfare. They told us the bill was paid for. It isn’t. We’re going to have to borrow maybe up to $400 billion to pay for it.’”
Rasmussen’s findings fly right in the face of the liberal media’s ongoing attempts to champion Biden’s infrastructure bill as an economic success story in the making. A majority of Americans aren’t buying it.
It's unclear what Rasmussen defined as "real infrastructure" -- the poll results are hidden behind a paywall -- and Vazquez didn't offer Kennedy's definition of the term. But using Donald Trump's definition of the term, more than 40 percent of the bill is "real infrastructure"; if one adds expanded broadband and electrical grid improvements, the number as high as 80 percent.
Vazquez managed to find another dubious pollster to embrace in an Aug. 27 post:
The liberal media have made it a mission to convince people that businesses need to mandate a COVID-19 vaccination on employees and infringe on freedom. Voters are rejecting the idea.
A newly released poll of 1,080 likely voters revealed that a 42.7 percent plurality of respondents were “more likely” (10%) or “much more likely” (32.7%) to do business with companies “NOT requiring employees [to] be vaccinated.” Even more revealing in the poll by The Trafalgar Group — in partnership with Convention of States Action — was that the percentage of voters who were “much more likely” (32.7%) to do business with companies not requiring a COVID-19 vaccine dominated all other categories. Only 34.3 percent of voters in the poll said they were “less likely” (11.8%) or “much less likely” (22.5%) to do business with companies not requiring a COVID-19 vaccine.
The poll also found that a 43.2 percent plurality of independent voters were “more likely” (8.6%) or “much more likely” (34.6%) to do business with companies that don’t have vaccine mandates.
The results of the poll flew right in the face of the media, many of whom have been playing the part of COVID-19 vaccination tyrants shaming businesses into forcing their employees to get the jab.
As we documented, the MRC's "news" division, CNSNews.com, heavily hyped Trafalgar polling before the 2020 presidential election because they showed Trump winning, and it quoted Trafalgar's chief pollster Robert Cahaly, claiming that Trump would win the 2020 race with an electoral total in the "high 270s." Further, Trafalgar's poll results were purchased by Convention of States Action, a right-wing effort to call for a convention of states to rewrite the Constitution to "limit the power and jurisdiction of the federal government, impose fiscal restraints, and place term limits on federal officials."And it wouldn't be releasing poll results that contradicted with its agenda.
Vazquez touted another poll from that same biased combine in a Sept. 13 article:
American voters are panning the media’s attempts to propagate President Joe Biden’s Orwellian vaccine mandate on businesses across the country.
A new poll of 1,098 likely voters found that a majority (58.6%) “do not believe President Biden has the constitutional authority to force private businesses to require vaccine mandates for employees.” The numbers were reinforced by a majority of Independent voters (68.2%) who rejected Biden’s mandate as constitutionally dubious. The poll by The Trafalgar Group — in partnership with Convention of States Action — revealed that a majority (55.5%) also see the mandate as setting a dangerous precedent that could be abused by future presidents, which included 58 percent of Independent voters surveyed.
In addition, 56.1 percent of respondents support efforts by governors to oppose the nationwide vaccination mandate on private businesses. The results of this poll show that the media’s ongoing barrage of public relations campaigning for Biden’s tyranny is falling flat on its face.
The media should stop barking from their echo-chambers and recognize that the American people aren’t buying their vaccine virtue signaling. Convention of States Action President Mark Meckler was quoted in the press release, saying, “‘The numbers are clear, the American people passionately oppose Biden’s vaccine mandate, and will not tolerate a President elected by the people acting like a dictator or king.’” He continued: “‘They know full well that this precedent will quickly lead to an end to our Republic and the beginning of an oppressive new tyranny.’”
The only echo chamber -- and the only "media fail" -- we're seeing is the one that Vazquez and the MRC are engaged in. Remember, the MRC bought biased polls from Trump's election pollster to try to make its conspiratorial case that the election was stolen from Trump.
It was apparently mandated that since the Media Research Center had a meltdown over Superman being bisexual in a new storyline, someone at its "news" division CNSNews.com had to melt down too. That task fell to Megan Williams, who wrote about it in an Oct. 12 article but focused on purported right-wing backlash:
However, changing America's most beloved heroes has come with its fair share of backlash. The Post Millennial attributed the economic decline of the comic book industry to its attempts to appease the woke culture of the left.
Noting how the comic book industry has been struggling economically since the 1990s, The Post Millennial pointed out that pursuing the values of woke culture has alienated their consumer base.
“The people that buy comics are not woke and never will be. Instead of listening to their consumer base, Marvel was listening to leftist media,” the article reads. “The consumers that buy comics are overwhelmingly white guys in their 30s and 40s.”
The shift of comic book companies to represent the 5.6% of Americans who identify as something other than heterosexual or straight, has made them the most recent victim of the “Get woke, Go broke” mantra, according to The Federalist.
Curiously, Williams refused to identify the partisan right-wing nature of the Post Millennial and the Federalist -- perhaps to hide the fact that the only people making a big deal out of this are right-wingers like herself.
Williams then went on to parrot the Federalist's comparison of the U.S. comic book industry with that of Japan:
The Federalist compared the American comic book companies’ decline to the strength of the Japanese manga industry. The main difference? Japanese manga embraces the traditional values their fans adhere to.
“What gives? Well, first and foremost, the Japanese comic book creators look at their supporters with adoration. In Japan, a culture with a much more conscious sense of respect and hierarchy, if a creator insults anyone or an actor breaks the law, they’re given the boot,” wrote The Federalist.
Attributing Japanese manga success to its reflection of its fans’ values, The Federalist noted how the total sales of the western comics industry amounted to about 10% of the sales for the single most popular Japanese comic book.
But the Japanese manga industry has always been much bigger than the U.S. comics industry -- and manga is now outselling superhero comics in the U.S. It's also worth noting that the best-selling Marvel comic title of this year is ... a Deadpool manga spinoff that's not yet available in the U.S. While the U.S. comics industry is narrowly focused on superheroes, manga has a much more diverse array of subject matter -- including titles targeted at LGBT audiences.
It can also be argued that superhero comics are in trouble not because they've gone "woke" -- it's because they're not woke enough, afraid to lose that sexist-middle-age-white-guy demographic.
It seems that the current trajectory, contrary to the Federalist, is "stay un-woke, go broke." But it seems Williams decided that her education about the comics industry began and ended with uncritically repeating the views of middle-aged right-wingers who are philosophically opposed to being fed anything different -- and certainly not that LGBT people are humans on their level.
NEW ARTICLE -- The MRC's School Wars, Part 2: Exploitation Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center aggressively hyped a story about a sexual assault in a Virginia school to push an anti-transgender agenda and get a Republican elected in the state -- while burying the much more complicated reality behind it. Read more >>
WND Calls On Misinformers To Fearmonger About COVID Vaccines For Children Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's role as a leadingCOVIDmisinformer has unsurprisingly expanded to fearmongering over vaccinating children against COVID. Art Moore served up a prime example in an Oct. 25 article:
As an FDA advisory panel prepares to decide whether or not to recommend the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for young children, Yale epidemiologist Dr. Harvey Risch is advising parents to remove their children from any public school that forces students to get the shots.
Risch said Sunday night in an interview that children with serious chronic conditions "should be considered for vaccination."
"Other than that, if it were my child, I would homeschool them," he told Fox News host Mark Levin.
Risch, if you'll recall, is the guy who made the wildly false claim that the Delta variant of COVID would be "very mild variant, and the cases are going to go up ... whereas at the same time the mortality is flat, near zero."
An Oct. 26 article by Moore on FDA approval of the Pfizer COVID vaccine for children ages 5 to 11 originally carried the headline "Guinea pigs," though someone later thought better of the slander and removed it. Much of the article uncritically repeated concerns about giving the vaccine to children.
Moore followed up with a different doctor in an Oct. 28 article:
As the federal government considers approving Pfizer's COVID-19 shot for children ages 5 to 11, a Harvard University epidemiologist is urging parents not to vaccinate their children.
Dr. Martin Kulldorff, a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and a biostatistician at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, said in an interview with EpochTV that the risks outweigh any benefit.
A Nov. 1 column by Chuck Norris also hyped Kulldorf's fearmongering.
As we've noted, Kulldorf is one of the founders of the anti-vaxx-friendly Great Barrington Declaration, which pushed dangerous "herd immunity" before COVID vaccines were developed,and he touted a dubious Israeli study claiming that "natural immunity" from catching the virus is usuually better than immunity gained from a vaccine.
Moore found yet another doctor for fearmongering purposes in a Nov. 1 article:
Dr. Ben Carson contends the Biden administration's move to vaccinate young children for COVID-19 amounts to a "giant experiment," arguing there is no sufficient data to determine the long-term risks posed by the shots.
"Do we want to put our children at risk, when we know that the risk of the disease to them is relatively small, but we don't know what the future risks are? Why would we do a thing like that? It makes no sense whatsoever," he said Sunday in an interview with Maria Bartiromo on Fox News' "Sunday Morning Futures."
Carson, renowned for his innovative surgeries to save the lives of children, is former director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Children's Center. He served as secretary of Housing and Urban Development in the Trump administration.
Carson was a brain surgeon; he has no demostrated expertise in virology or epidemiology.
Moore used a Nov. 8 article to promote claims from a fringe gathering:
Following the CDC's approval of the Pfizer vaccine for young children, scientists and physicians at a summit in Florida warned against a rush to vaccinate a population with very little chance of severe infection from the coronavirus.
The Florida Summit on Covid in Ocala on Saturday addressed three big questions, reported Mary Beth Pfeiffer for TrialSite News. Do young children need vaccination against COVID? Are the vaccinations safe? Are unvaccinated children a threat to adults?
On each question, the physicians and researchers challenged the federal government's conclusions, pointing to studies and data.
But later that month, several people who attended the conference fell ill with COVID, including one doctor who bragged that ivermectin was keeping him healthy. As the Daily Beast noted, "there remains the question of why he became seriously ill in the first place if ivermectin is the wonder drug the anti-vaccine crowd claims it is, rather than primarily a treatment for parasites and head lice in humans, as well as a horse dewormer." Instead, Moore quoted one attendee who "criticized what he described as a corrupt, Big Pharma-controlled system and government that is blocking options for early treatment with inexpensive 'repurposed' drugs such as ivermectin."
Moore and WND have yet to tell their readers about this development.
Moore's parade of misinformers continued in a Nov. 19 article, repeating that "Dr. Scott Atlas, who served briefly as a pandemic adviser to President Trump, contended Friday there is no reason for people under 30 who have almost no risk of serious illness or death from COVID-19 to be vaccinated." The article also featured a return of Carson, who claimed that parents who opposed giving the COVID vaccine to their children "are thinking individuals," adding, "This is still an experiment, and who wants to risk their kid in an experiment?"
MRC's Purported Prudes Embrace Vulgar 'Let's Go Brandon' Biden Insult Topic: Media Research Center
Mysterious Media Research Center sports blogger Jay Maxson whined about "coarsening the culture" in a Nov. 3 post:
Between social justice protests, sordid Super Bowl halftime “entertainment” and vulgar language, the National Football League just can’t stay out of its own way. Last week’s alternate Monday Night Football broadcast on ESPN2 featured an F-bomb by guest Marshawn Lynch, and co-host Peyton Manning apologized for the off-color language.
Maxson might have been taken seriously if his MRC co-workers hadn't been spending the previous couple of weeks endorsing a euphemism for a vulgar insult if President Biden.
Despite its history of performative prudity when applied to anything non-conservatives do, the MRC has been sliding toward embracing vulgarity. Earlier this year, it cheered right-wing pocaster Joe Rogan calling CNN's Brian Stelter a "motherfucker," mostly for not being a right-wing shill. So when "Let's Go Brandon" briefly became a thing in October after a reporter misheard a crowd at a NASCAR race chanting "Fuck You, Biden," An Oct. 19 post by Gabriel Hays rushed to embrace a song based on the vulgarity:
A rap song titled “Let’s Go Brandon!” has become so popular that it is now trending at number one on Apple Music’s Hip Hop charts.
PopVortex.com’s record of what's trending on Apple Music shows that the song is currently in the number one slot on the streaming giant’s Hip Hop charts and it’s number two in iTunes “top 100 pop songs” chart, only behind Adele’s “Easy On Me.”
For those who haven’t kept up with the many interesting and vital nuances of political humor these days, “Let’s Go Brandon” is not actually a song in support of people named Brandon everywhere, it’s actually a song in protest of President Joe Biden.
Yes. “Let’s Go Brandon” is actually a euphemism for the “F**k Joe Biden,” a phrase which has become a popular crowd chant at college sports games and concerts across the nation.
Thank a fake news journalist for changing it to the more family-friendly and acceptable Let’s Go Brandon.
Yeah it’s pretty cathartic stuff, considering how the Biden administration has abused the country since he got into office. The fact that it’s Apple’s number two overall song means that many people are thinking “Let’s Go Brandon” right now.
Nicholas Fondacaro went the whataboutism route in an Oct. 24 post:
In an amazingly tone-deaf and hypocritical Saturday article for the Washington Post, White House reporter Ashley Parker and reporter Carissa Wolf bemoaned how, across the country, President “Biden’s critics hurl increasingly vulgar taunts.” This, after the paper, spent four years actively promoting such comments against former President Trump. They even took issue with the non-vulgar “Let’s go Brandon” chant gaining in popularity.
A simple search of the Post’s website for the terms “f---” and “Trump” together gets you a list of articles exposing the prevailing feeling at the newspaper toward the former President. Including: “Former Mexican president says he will not pay for Donald Trump’s ‘f—— wall,’” “She put an obscene anti-Trump message on her truck and was arrested. Now she might sue,’” and “YG’s political message is as blunt as can be.”
Despite this history of promoting anti-Trump vulgarity, Parker and Wolf complained about how Biden was in Scranton, Pennsylvania and was “greeted at the corner of Biden Street by a woman holding a handmade ‘F--- Joe Biden’ sign, with an American flag as the vowel in the offending word.”
The message was clear: the Washington Post wanted to be the arbiter of who could use such language against a president and which one was the worthy target.
As if that's not what the MRC wants. Not that Fondacaro will ever admit that, of course.
The snowflakes who claimedto beoutraged that Rep. Rashida Tlaib called form impeaching the "motherfucker" Trump in 2019 actually had the temerity to bash critics of the right-wing embrace of "Let's Go Brandon" as "snowflakes," as Kristine Marsh did in the headline of her Oct. 26 post, hypocritically using Tlaib as an example:
You just have to laugh at CNN’s fake outrage. Where was CNN when a “sitting congress[wo]man” Rashida Tlaib, a Democrat, shouted, “We're gonna impeach the motherf***er!,” in reference to then-President Trump. Oh right, they didn’t care. Actually, CNN tried to dismiss the controversy.
You mean like how the MRC is trying to dismiss the "Let's Go Brandon" controversy?
Meanwhile, the MRC continued to get off on "Let's Go Brandon" set to music:
Autumn Johnson hyped claims that the original "Let's Go Brandon" song was "banned" on YouTube and Instagram.
Tierin-Rose Mandelburg repeated the "censorship" claim in an Oct. 27 post, adding, "It’s a small win for conservatives. Even with censorship, the success of these songs provides a bit of hope."
Hays returned to gush that "four different “Let’s Go Brandon” rap songs are on the top of the iTunes chart," adding; "So, the music scene is being dominated by songs that are a euphemism for “F**k Joe Biden!” How's that for a hint as to how the Biden administration is doing?"
Fondacaro came to the defense of a Southwest Airlines pilot who signed off to passenger by saying "Let's Go Brandon," as heard by an Associated Press reporter on the flight, which he claimed "led to the AP reporter trying to break into the cockpit to confront him and CNN employees on Twitter comparing him to ISIS and baselessly accusing him of being a drug addict, all in an attempt to get him fired.He went on to assert that the story was only about "impotent rage and the story really only angering radical liberals" and fretted about "all the smears and possible libel of the pilot."
Tim Graham discussed the Southwest incident in his Nov. 1 podcast, where he pretended to be bothered by it but it didn't matter because it was "lefties" objecting:
I've mentioned that I don't love the "F the president" slogans. Cloaking it non-swear words is better. Obviously this is a divisive political message, it's not exactly something you expect on an airline flight. ... But the lefties wanted the pilot fired -- fired! -- for this alleged use of "Let's Go Brandon." I think we all know they would adore the pilot sharing their divisive political messages.
It's this whole idea that somebody making a political message as either a quick political mesage or a joke or a little bit of trolling is somehow a violation that you need to call the FAA -- don't you think the FAA would be llike, um, I think we have better things to do than take these calls. And of course, this is -- as Nick Fondacaro noted, this is the network [CNN] at tried to use "spithole" -- yes -- about 2,000 times in about 24 hours because the Democrats said Trump said it in a closed meeting.
Yes, the MRC was outraged about that too, and Graham counted them all. Yet it's totally cool with "Let's Go Brandon."
Dan Gainor -- an MRC employee who is rarely allowed to write at an MRC website -- downplayed the vulgarity in a Nov. 2 article for Fox News:
"Let’s go, Brandon." Hardly, "Give me liberty or give me death." Or even, "Remember the Alamo!"
It’s a simple slogan designed to mock two of the biggest enemies ordinary Americans have — the Biden administration and the liberal media.
The mere mention of Trump drove liberal journalists off the deep end. They ordinarily live in a world where conservative thought is all-but forbidden. Academia, journalism, government and, increasingly, major businesses forbid anything other than leftist doctrine.
"Let’s go, Brandon," was a reminder that there’s more to the world than just their tiny bubble. And all it took to break through were three little words.
"Let’s go, Brandon."
Kristine Marsh hurled the usual whataboutism on CNN in a Nov. 2 post:
CNN has no problem with vulgarities, crude gestures or violent threats directed at Republicans. But they will be outraged over a kid in a MAGA hat smirking or a crude joke being made about Joe Biden.
On New Day this morning, CNN’s lack of self-awareness was obvious as they complained that political discourse in this country had reached “toxic levels” because of the 'Let's Go Brandon' joke. On screen it read, "Juvenile rhetoric: Liberals, conservatives fight over 'Let's Go Brandon' insults." No one seemed to remember “comedian” Kathy Griffin posing with a bloodied, severed head of President Trump, or singer Madonna telling a feminist crowd in Washington D.C. that she wanted to “blow up the White House” right after Trump’s inauguration. But “F-Joe Biden” was a new low in our culture, according to co-hosts John Berman and Brianna Keilar.
CNS Kept Pushing False Right-Wing Narrative About School Board Threats Topic: CNSNews.com
We'vedocumented how CNSNews.com followed in the footsteps of its Media Research Center parent and embraced the false right-wing narrative that school boards and the Department of Justice are seeking to brand as "domestic terrorists" all parents who speak out at school board meetings about right-wing hot-button issues as critical race theory and LGBT rights. Since this was largely done for the purpose of getting Republican Glenn Youngkin elected as Virginia governor, CNS continued plugging that storyline through the Nov. 2 election.
An Oct. 11 article by Megan Williams hyped a right-wing senator pushing the false narrative on the show of CNS' favorite right-wing media presence:
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) slammed the Biden Administration for ignoring the “violent crime surge across our country,” and instead working “to shut down parents from speaking” out about critical race theory on Sunday's "Life, Liberty & Levin."
"This is about using federal law enforcement to try and intimidate parents because these parents are daring to stand up and criticize critical race theory," Hawley said, referencing a letter sent by Attorney General Merrick Garland to the FBI on Monday, Oct. 4.
Melanie Arter gave right-wing drama over the issue prominence in an Oct. 21 article about Attorney General Merrick Garland testifying before Congress:
Attorney General Merrick Garland said Thursday that the DOJ “supports and defends the 1st Amendment rights of parents to complain as vociferously as they wish about the education of their children, about the curriculum taught in their schools.”
During a House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing of the Justice Department, Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio) questioned the attorney general about an Oct. 4 press release addressing “violent threats against school officials and teachers.”
Chabot began by asking Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) for “unanimous consent” to enter into the record “an op-ed that appeared in last week’s Wall Street Journal by the author of the Patriot Act, Mr. Sensensbrenner, former chairman of this committee, entitled ‘The Patriot Act Wasn’t Meant to Target Parents.’”
Another Arter article the same day on that hearing pushed a related distraction in order to attack Garland: "Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.) grilled Attorney General Merrick Garland on Thursday about whether he sought ethics counsel before issuing a memo responding to the National School Board Association’s request for the DOJ to address threats and violence from parents upset about critical race theory being added to school curriculum. During a House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing, Johnson pointed out that Garland’s son-in-law co-founded a company that publishes and sells critical race theory to schools nationwide."
An Oct. 27 article by Susan Jones featured more testimony from Garland at a different hearing, while also making sure to give the false narrative prominence:
Critics of the memo -- including many parents, Republican politicians, and even some local school boards -- say the memo is intended to chill the speech of furious parents who may fear a knock on the door from the FBI after speaking at a school board meeting.
Garland said that his memo makes clear in the first paragraph that "spirited debate on policy matters is protected under our Constitution." That includes criticism of school boards, he said.
Garland refused several times to say whether he considered the "chilling effect" his memorandum would have.
The National School Boards Association has now apologized for some of the language used in its letter to the Biden administration, including characterizing upset parents as potential domestic terrorists.
Jones provided no evidence that these "critics" were correct in assuming that all parents were being targeted simply for speaking out. Nor did she orthe other CNS writers explain why law enforcement is not allowed to be proactive and must wait until violence against a school member acually occurs before taking action against violent threats.
An article that same day by managing editror Michael W. Chapman pushed the false narrative in hyping criticism of the school board that originally sought help from Garland:
Although the National School Boards Association (NSBA) apologized for labeling parents concerned about left-wing curricula as potential domestic terrorists, the Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA) has dropped its membership in the NSBA, asserting that it rejects "the labeling of parents as domestic terrorists."
In an Oct. 25 letter to the executive director and the president of the NSBA, the Ohio association wrote that its "decision to terminate membership and affiliation with the NSBA Association is a direct result of the letter sent by you to President Joe Biden late last month."
Many parents nationwide have attended local school board meetings over the last year to complain -- often loudly -- about COVID restrictions, such as mask wearing, as well as the introduction of sexually explicit books and other materials in the classroom, including the teaching of Critical Race Theory, which posits that the United States is inherently racist and white people (or Europeans) are the enemy.
In fact, an MRC fact-check admitted that the HSBA letter never actually calls all parents "domestic terrorists" merely for speaking out. But because right-wing activists decided that a link was "suggested" -- again, never explicitly stated -- it's a talking point to nitpick the letter and Garland's response. Which is the rationale documented in an Oct. 28 article by Jones:
Attorney General Merrick Garland's Oct. 4 memo states, "There has been a disturbing spike in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff." Yet neither Garland nor his Justice Department looked into the alleged parental threats raised by the National School Boards Association.
Under sharp questioning from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Wednesday, Attorney General Merrick Garland said he didn't know how many incidents were cited in equating angry parents with domestic terrorists.
Nor did he know how many of those incidents might qualify as violent.
Again, neither Jones nor Cruz explained that the narrative is a lie or why law enforcement is not allowed to be proactive.
Ellie Wittman of the right-wing Alliance Defending Freedom repeated the false narrative in an Oct. 29 commentary: "On top of all that, the Department of Justice is essentially treating parents as 'domestic terrorists' by directing the FBI to investigate them in what seems an attempt to intimidate them into silence."
Jones used a Nov. 2 article to uncritically quote Sen. Mitch McConnell claiming that Garland "just wrote an entire memo singling out concerned parents who speak up at their local school board meetings. Arter similarly uncritically quoted Republican Rep. Rob Wittman advancing the false narrative:
“And when they see a letter from the National School Board Association that asks the attorney general of the United States to go after parents who speak out at school board meetings under the Patriot Act and to be treated as terrorists, let me tell you folks, they are deeply concerned about that, and then when the attorney general follows suit and goes to the federal law enforcement agencies and says, by the way, look at these parents and what they’re doing at these school board meetings, what they are practicing their 1st Amendment rights to speak out and to demand that their school systems reflect what’s best for their children,” he said.
Craig Bannister served up his own version of the false narrative in a Dec. 8 article:
Since the National School Board Association (NSBA) sent a letter asking the Justice Department, FBI and Secret Service to treat parents protesting radical school policies as domestic terrorists, 17 state school board associations have left – and stopped funding – the NSBA.
To combat parents’ objections to its policies at school board meetings, the NSBA sent a letter to the DOJ, DHS, FBI and Secret Service asking them to treat parents’ protests “as a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes.”
That portrayal is a lie, and Bannister knows it -- which is why he selectively quoted the letter (and why he did not directly link to a copy of the letter but to an Axios article about the NSBA's loss of funding). In fact, as documented in another Axios article, the letter itself (removed from the NSBA website) listed numerous examples of violence, harassment and intimidation, adding that the "classification of these heinous actions could be the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes."
That sums up the dishonesty with which CNS has treated this issue.
MRC Complains Again That Criticism Of Soros Is Called Anti-Semitic Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's Brad Wilmouth complained in an Oct. 22 post:
On Wednesday morning, there was night a day difference in the way MSNBC and Fox News covered the gubernatorial race in Virginia as Morning Joe bolstered Democratic candidate and ex-Governor Terry McAuliffe as he attacked Republican Glenn Youngkin. Joe Scarborough even went so far as to compare the GOP nominee to an "illiberal tyrant" who is using "anti-Semitism" in his campaign.
After McAuliffe accused Youngkin of having a "tinfoil hat" for invoking wealthy liberal activist George Soros, it was Scarborough who went even further than his Democratic guest in accusing the Virginia Republican of anti-Semitism:
If he's talking about George Soros, that's the sort of anti-Semitism we see in the United States and across the world. That's what -- that's what illiberal tyrants like (Viktor) Orban do in Hungary. They just lie about a Jew -- they pick a Jew out -- George Soros is that Jew -- and so he's -- he's -- he's playing that old anti-Semitic trope as well.
The MRC has previously praised Orban for supporting "free speech" in the form of criticizing "big tech" over purported "censorship" of right-wingers, even though Orban has a history of suppressing free speech by cracking down on dissent of his regime.
The Republicans who formed the Lincoln Project based on their virulent opposition to Donald Trump repeated on Friday the false "very fine" people claim against the former president when the group took responsibility for a bizarre racial stunt at a campaign stop in Charlottesville, Virginia, by Republican gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin.
After suspicion was raised that the campaign of Democratic opponent Terry McAuliffe was behind it, the Lincoln Project took credit for sending five people in white shirts to stand in front of Youngkin's campaign bus holding tiki torches in the style of the 2017 protest in Charlottesville.
In a statement, the Lincoln Project said the demonstration "was our way of reminding Virginians what happened in Charlottesville four years ago, the Republican Party’s embrace of those values, and Glenn Youngkin’s failure to condemn it."
The Lincoln Project pressed Youngkin to denounce Trump for a statement that he did not make.
"We will continue to hold Glenn Youngkin accountable. If he will denounce Trump’s assertion that the Charlottesville rioters possessed ‘very fine’ qualities, we’ll withdraw the tiki torches," the group said. "Until then, we’ll be back."
In fact, during his remarks on Charlottesville four years ago, Trump immediately made it clear he was not referring to "the neo-Nazis and white nationalists" as "fine" people, explicitly declaring "they should be condemned totally."
His reference – as a CNN contributor pointed out in a rebuke to his network colleagues – was to the people on both sides of the issue of whether or not to maintain statues of Robert E. Lee and other Confederate figures.
Big Tech censorship didn’t just repeatedly restrict and finally ban President Donald Trump. Social media companies overwhelmingly censored Republican members of Congress by a rate of 54-to-1 compared to congressional Democrats, according to a new Media Research Center study.
That censorship was aimed at Republicans in both the House and Senate and was especially prevalent in stories about COVID-19 or the 2020 election. Twitter just underscored that point when it censored Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) for a tweet about natural immunity and vaccine mandates. These results were based on analysis by the MRC’s CensorTrack.org database team of the last two congressional delegations.
In his Sept. 21 post, Schemmel wrote that the radio was 53-to-1. He didn't explain how or why that number changed -- heck, he didn't even reference his earlier post at all. Nor did he offer any evidence that the CensorTrack database is in any way comprehensive -- its bias toward conservative "censorship" is obvious, and it's highly unlikely that MRC staff made any concerted effort to compile examples of Democrats being "censored."
Schemmel and Gainor rehashed the earlier post's trick of complaining that conservatives were being "censored" but being deliberately vague about the exact actions and words that prompted "Big Tech" action. For example they wrote "Facebook and Twitter used their censorship mechanisms at least 30 separate times against Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), including five Twitter suspensions and the flagging of at least 24 tweets with some type of warning label" without mention the extremist behavior Greene exhibited that warranted her suspension (and which the MRC spent months hiding in order to bestow victimhood on her).
The duo even copied-and-pasted claims from the earlier post, like this: "Big Tech began labeling virtually everything being posted by former President Trump and his campaign around the 2020 election. Platforms dispensed one of several censorship labels used to challenge and suppress information. The former president was eventually universally deplatformed by Big Tech and is still fighting to return." Again, they remained silent on the nature of the Trump content that was "censored" -- because they know that Trump was spreading lies and conspiracy theories about election fraud, and that "big Tech" companies are private businesses who have the right to run their businesses the way the choose and to enforce terms of service that the "censored" conservatives agreed to abide by when signing up for their services.
We're not really sure why this post even exists. it's a total rehash of Schemmel's Sept. 21 post, adds nothing relevant to the conversation, and it's unclear what Gainor did to earn his co-byline. Since he is a VP at the MRC, maybe Gainor wanted the rehash so he could have something to stick his byline on.
Art Moore wrote in an Oct. 28 WorldNetDaily article:
Like the ACLU famously did in its legal defense of neo-Nazis who wanted to march in a Jewish-majority Chicago suburb 40 years ago, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, on Wednesday in a hearing defended the First Amendment right of a man to invoke a Nazi salute to express his view that school board members were acting like fascists.
In fact, in the Senate oversight hearing, Attorney General Merrick Garland agreed with Cruz that the man's action was constitutionally protected.
Nevertheless, the Daily Beast was among many left-wing outlets that framed the exchange as "Ted Cruz Defends Parents Doing Nazi Salutes at School Board Meetings."
Cruz later tweeted:
Lefty journos are either (1) dishonest or (2) not very bright (or both).
The parent was doing the Nazi salute because he was calling the authoritarian school board Nazis—evil, bad & abusive.
We remember when WND switched from embracingNazi comparisons when Barack Obama was president to deploring them when Donald Trump was president. Heck, WND managing editor David Kupelian is stillcomplaining about Trump-Hitler comparisons, even though all those Obama-Nazi comparisons were published at WND under his watch.
Thanks, WND, for once again demonstrating your utter hypocrisy and lack of journalistic prinicples.
Chocolate bar maker Mars, Inc., is definitely embracing the creepiness of the Halloween season. In their latest Twix ad – which hardly has anything to do with chocolate – the candy company featured a short story about a cross-dressing six-year-old, with the intent to promote more transgenderism and gender-fluid nonsense.
In the ad, which is Halloween-themed enough for the season, a little boy wearing a dress opens the door to welcome his babysitter for the evening. In festive fashion, the boy’s babysitter just so happens to be a witch.
He initially closes the door on her, telling her he doesn’t need a nanny, but as soon as he returns to playing on the living room floor, the witch materializes next to him, insisting that his parents hired her because he needs some supervision.
Considering the boy is wearing a purple dress, our spooky babysitter might be onto something.
Though, as the two-minute-long ad progresses it’s clear that the witch is a cool witch. She’s totally fine with the dress-wearing boy. They’re shown doing arts and crafts together, and they talk about their favorite colors. The witch’s favorite colors are black and “charcoal.”
Wow, that’s funny.
And not one second of this Halloween Twix ad featured a candy bar. It just wants to hammer home the message to other kids that you better affirm gender-fluid kids or you might die.
Hays should perhaps ask himself why what a fictional child wears in a TV ad upsets him so much. Then again, is a serious transphobe, so his abject hatred may better left to a health care professional to sort out for him.
CNS Cheers U.S. Enemy Putin Attacking 'Woke' Culture In U.S. Topic: CNSNews.com
For some reason, CNSNews.com justloves it when Russian leader Vladimir Putin sounds like a right-wing activist in America by embracing the right's anti-Biden, anti-liberal narratives -- despite the fact that he is, you know, an enemy of the United States. That happened again in an Oct. 26 article by Michael W. Chapman, who lovingly transcribed another Putin rant ... with added emphasis where needed:
Russian President Vladimir Putin, a former lieutenant colonel in the KGB, strongly criticized the "woke," social justice warriors in the United States and Europe, arguing that they behave just like the Bolshevik Communists did in the former Soviet Union.
They are ruled by a "dogmatism bordering on absurdity," he asserted, noting that "cancel culture" is nothing more than "reverse discrimination," and teaching children that sexuality is flexible is potentially "a crime against humanity."
In his Oct. 22 speech in Sochi, Russia, before members of the Valdai Discussion Club, Putin addressed some of the major issues affecting the entire world, such as the COVID pandemic, climate change, technological advances, and socio-economic challenges.
When it comes to change, however, Putin said he was surprised at the "social and cultural shocks that are taking place in the United States and Western Europe." He stressed that these changes are none of Russia's business, "we are keeping out of this," but explained that he had seen such disastrous social upheaval before -- in the Soviet Union.
"In a number of Western countries, the debate over men’s and women’s rights has turned into a perfect phantasmagoria. Look, beware of going where the Bolsheviks once planned to go – not only communalizing chickens, but also communalizing women. One more step and you will be there.
"Zealots of these new approaches even go so far as to want to abolish these concepts altogether. Anyone who dares mention that men and women actually exist, which is a biological fact, risk being ostracized. 'Parent number one' and 'parent number two,' 'birthing parent' instead of 'mother,' and 'human milk' replacing 'breastmilk' because it might upset the people who are unsure about their own gender.
"I repeat, this is nothing new; in the 1920s, the so-called Soviet Kulturtraegers also invented some newspeak believing they were creating a new consciousness and changing values that way. And, as I have already said, they made such a mess it still makes one shudder at times. [Emphasis added.]
Chapman didn't mention that the Valdai Discussion Club is little more than a pro-Putin think tank, meaning there's little actual "discussion" going on there.
It makes one shudder that the managing editor of a conservative "news" operation is favorably quoting a foreign dictator best known these days for suppressing dissent in his own country trashing the United States. But then, CNS' parent, the Media Research Center, has no problem embracing right-wing authoritarians if they parrot right-wing narratives.
Epic Fail: MRC Tries To Discredit Study Naming It Among 'Toxic Ten' Climate Misinformers Topic: Media Research Center
We've noted how the Media Research Center freaked out over a report from the Center for Countering Digital Hate that placed it on a list of "Toxic Ten" right-wing operations responsible for much of the Facebook climate-denier content that gets a high amount of interaction -- but it couldn't be bothered to refute any of the claims the study made, let alone supply a link to the study itself so the MRC's readers could judge for themselves. It took nine days after its release for the MRC to actually respond to the report itself, in a Nov. 11 post by Heather Moon and Gabriela Pariseau. Their opening set up the nasty tone of the piece:
The leftist U.K.-based Center for Countering Digital Hate just launched a broadside attack against nine conservative digital outlets with its “Toxic Ten” report. The report aimed to silence entire outlets for writing stories that don’t follow the leftist climate policy narrative.
The hyperbolic report used data out of context to make it appear that users should care about 0.00012 percent of Facebook engagements in the last year. It also equated any discussion of eco-hypocrisy, data manipulation, George Soros or Marxist ideology in relation to climate policy to so-called “disinformation” that must be silenced.
Such pro-censorship behavior would allow no room for legitimate debate over real issues.
As if Moon and Pariseau are interested in legitimate debate. The fact that they too refused to link to the report is further evidence of that. That was followed by even more attcks on the CCDH:
The Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH), partly funded by a group with ties to communist China, had huge success in peddling its previous pro-censorship list. It highlighted what CCDH considered the top sources of so-called “disinformation” about vaccines, dubbed the “ Disinformation Dozen.” Then the organization turned its sights to online news media that occasionally cover the climate policy debate.
The duo are referring to a CCDH report earlier this year on 12 mostly right-wing minformers about COVID vaccines. In a August post attacking Facebook for following CCDH recommendations, Autumn Johnson put "misinformation" in scare quotes, just like Moon and Pariseau are referring to "so-called 'disinformation'"-- part of the MRC's insistence that COVID misinformation is whatever someone thinks it is, not something that can be objectively defined.
Moon and Pariseau recycled old complaint about the CCDH report:
CCDH’s report lacked transparency and used questionable data from a biased source. Further, the method used to find so-called “disinformation” articles was full of prejudices.
The group claimed to analyze 6,983 “climate denial articles” for its study, but declined to provide a specific list of articles included. That’s a huge problem with research transparency. It only included the query that it used to find the articles, which raised multiple concerns.
The query was constructed to look only for articles that mention keywords related to climate change. It then also required the article have one or more keywords from a long list that the authors believe would indicate that it was an article questioning climate change.
As we noted when Moon bashed another study for the same reason, the MRC frequently conducts "studies" that fail to make underlying data public about the subjective judgments it makes about the content being reviewed, so she has little room to complain about that.
One of these was the word “realism,” as though anyone who wishes to debate what is and is not real about climate change is to be silenced. Another example are the words “hypocrite” or “hypocrisy.” Including those words shows that the authors consider any discussion of the excess use of carbon in private jets, large motorcades or enormous mansions by people pushing climate policy should be dismissed, demonetized and shut down.
The duo didn't mention that "climate realism" is actually a euphemism being used by right-wing anti-climate activists to soft-pedal their denialist views. Nor did they explain why attacking someone's alleged hypocrisy on climate issues is relevant to the debate.
They then tried to downplay significance of the report's finding that 69 percent of the Facebook interactions on climate-denial content comes from the "Toxic Ten" webistes:
CCDH does not provide a list of all of the posts evaluated for this study. It only provides a few examples in the report. Given the nature of the study, the logical conclusion is that most are linked posts. Linked posts generate a fraction of the engagement that other posts do.
CCDH is exaggerating the significance of the climate posts in the overall scope of what happens on Facebook in order to peddle its own agenda that is toxic to free speech and open policy debate. Even a leftist reporter explained that its data on engagement with conservative sites and stories is overblown. Both his piece and an article by Western Journal explained that engagement metrics are an indicator of how controversial a post is rather than how many users are actually reading and being influenced by it.
The duo linked to a August post by Moon hyping that "A new Facebook report proved the @FacebooksTop10 daily list of 10 most-engaged link posts each day is wildly misleading, given that posts with the most views got far more engagement than posts on the list." But a month later, Moon was attacking data that comes from Facebook, declaring that reports about "severely flwed" data coming out of Facebok "discredited any study relating to so-called “misinformation,” alleged radicalization or political polarization that used the Facebook information" and that "Every study that used the flawed data should be retracted until a new analysis has been completed."
The duo further insisted that the study'snumbers be placed into context (which is friendly to their CCDH-bashing arguments), again citing Facebook data she has insisted elsewhere is misleading:
CCDH trotted out what it portrayed as a very concerning number: 709,057 total interactions with the so-called “climate denial articles” between Oct. 2020 and Oct. 2021. But numbers without any context are useless.
To put that number into context, Facebook noted analysis of Facebook data by SMPerth, a social media marketing education service in Australia, showed that in a 30-day period, the typical Facebook user likes 11 posts, comments on 5 posts and shares one post, for a total of 17 average monthly engagements.
Performing some basic math with these numbers, we discovered that the 706,057 interactions over a one-year period amounted to approximately 0.00012 percent of the total Facebook interactions over that time, a rather insignificant number. Certainly not a number worth the effort to demonetize and deplatform ten online organizations over.
From there, Moon and Pariseau moved on to citing previous predictions about climate catastrophe allegedly not coming true:
The first words used in the report are, “We are at a climate tipping point.” That is followed up with phrases such as “It is the greatest crisis ever faced by our species.” This language is alarmist by definition. Americans have been warned about being at such a tipping point to the point that it has become tantamount to the story of the boy who cried wolf.
One example among many was an article from 2006 on a climate change-promoting website saying that we have only a 10-year window to act. That window closed five years ago, yet we are still not facing the climate catastrophe predicted if we failed to act. It is nonsensical to claim that calling out truly alarmist and hyperbolic language as such deserves to be demonetized and deplatformed — especially when using hyperbolic language to do it.
The report then goes on to compare so-called climate “disinformation” to “ vaccine and COVID-19 disinformation,” saying that both “obfuscate the truth by overwhelming us with claims and questions designed in bad faith to confuse the debate so action is delayed. ”The authors chose this comparison because of the organization’s previous success with its “Disinformation Dozen” report. However, COVID-19 is a bad comparison for the point the authors tried to make.
The virus data proved “experts” wrong time and time again. Some stories initially labeled conspiracy theories” have borne out to in fact be supportable if not undeniably true, such as the Wuhan lab leak. Comparisons to the climate policy debate favor skeptics rather than the so-called “experts.”
Actually, the "Wuhan lab leak" has not yet proven to be true, in fact, the idea that it originated in a Wuhan food market remains quite viable. Many of the things Moon and Pariseau linked to to claim that people were wrong about things that turned out to be true -- like a Fox News attack piece on Anthony Fauci's purported "contradictions" about the virus -- can be linked to the evolving nature of knowledge about COVID. The duo had to go to far-flung places like a Turkish website and an article by known COVID quack Joseph Mercola, which don't exactly prove their point.
Moon and Pariseau concluded by whining:
CCDH stated in its report that the websites highlighted “are the main producers of content that sows climate change skepticism” pretending there is “more extensive debate than there really is.” This statement relies on the old “97 percent consensus” myth that has been debunked. The fact that the report must dredge up a debunked statement to make its point discredits its own argument.
The duo cited a 2016 Forbes piece written by an instructor at the University of Houston who previously had a career in the oil and gas industry, who claimed that the consensus level is closer to 81 percnet -- but even then, the writer conceded that "support over 80% is strong consensus." Meanwhile, outside the right-wing bubble the MRC resides in, the 97 percent number continues to hold up.
Weirdly, Moon and Pariseau not only did not refute anything the report stated about the MRC -- such as its funding from fossil-fuel interests -- it censored the fact that the MRC was one of the "Toxic Ten." They also didn't mention that another outlet on the list was Russian state media operations like RT and Sputnik News, though they appeared to be trying to write around that by referencing "nine conservative digital outlets" in the lead paragraph.
This is not exactly the takedown of the CCDH report that the MRC thinks it is -- it's more evidence justifying the MRC's place on the CCDH's list.
WND Trashes 'Natural Immunity' Study That Doesn't Conform To Its Anti-Vaxx Agenda Topic: WorldNetDaily
A key component of WorldNetDaily's fake-news campaign against COVID vaccines has been obsessing about "natural immunity" -- the idea that the immunity gained from surviving a bout of coronavirus is superior to that gained from a vaccine. Fort months, WND has been publishing articles and columns touting natural immunity:
Now, in medical reality, there is no significant difference between disease-acquired and vaccine-acquired immunity -- and WND largely ignores the inconvenient fact that to obtain "natural immunity," once must become infected with a disease that has killed more than 700,000 people in the U.S. alone.It's a political hijacking of a medical term by anti-vaxxers like those who run WND; as one observer noted, "The standard vocabulary of medical science thus unwittingly undermines the very public health goals it is meant to serve by implicitly endorsing immunity that doesn’t come from vaccines."
So when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a study showing that vaccinated people have better COVID immunity than those with disease-induced immunity and that those who have recovered from a COVID infection should still get a vaccine, WND rushed into action. COVID misinformer Art Moore wrote in a Nov. 2 article:
Amid more than 100 studies showing the superiority of natural COVID-19 immunity over vaccine-produced immunity, the Centers for Disease Control released the results this week of a study claiming to show the opposite.
But Dr. Martin Kulldorf, who has worked on vaccine epidemiology since joining the Harvard faculty nearly two decades ago, is among many epidemiologists who have quickly pointed out the CDC study's fatal flaws.
In an article for the Brownstone Institute, he compared the CDC research with an Israeli study that found people vaccinated for COVID-19 are 27 times more likely to have a symptomatic COVID infection than those previously infected by the virus.
Kulldorf is one of the founders of the Great Barrington Declaration , a document signed by anti-vaxx-adjacent doctors and other activists that pushed "herd immunity" to COVID -- something most virus experts disagreed with -- and it was so poorly vetted that the declaration includes fake names.
Further, that Israeli study Kulldorf referenced raises questions. First of all, it was published not at a peer-reviewed journal but on a preprint server called MedRxiv, where studies that have not undergone peer review can be published. As a fact-checker pointed out, the numbers Kulldorf pushed were based on small sample sizes and still showed that the risk was still quite small:
For instance, the study’s finding that never-infected vaccinees were at higher risk for COVID-19-related hospitalization than the previously infected non-vaccinees was based on no more than about two dozen hospitalizations in either of the comparisons.
Among a group of more than 32,000 people either previously infected or fully vaccinated between Jan. 1 and Feb. 28, the authors found a 13-fold increased risk for breakthrough infection with the delta variant as opposed to reinfection. The frequency of either event, however, was still very low, as this was based on 238 breakthrough infections, or infections in fully vaccinated individuals, and 19 reinfections among unvaccinated people who had recovered from a previous bout with the virus.
The authors also found a 27-fold increased risk for symptomatic breakthrough infection after full vaccination as opposed to symptomatic reinfection. That was based on 191 infections in vaccinated individuals and eight in previously infected people.
Moore gave space for Kulldorf to attack the CDC study's methodology and portray the Israel study as more "reliable," but omitted the fact that the Israel study has been criticized for selection bias and survivorship bias. Moore made no effort at a fair, balanced and detailed accounting of the CDC study, since his job was to undercut trust in that study because it contradicts WND's anti-vaxx agenda.
NEW ARTICLE -- The MRC's School Wars, Part 1: The Agitator Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center hyped battles over critical race theory and LGBT issues in a Virginia school district so its followers would create chaos -- and it could then hype that chaos. Read more >>