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Tuesday, January 11, 2022
MRC Double Standard On Traumatic Testimony
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center got mad that Kyle Rittenhouse's crying at his trial for killing two people was mocked:

  • Curtis Houck huffed in a Nov. 10 post that MSNBC's Joy Reid was being "ghoulish" by claim that Rittenhouse was "currying favor with a nearly all-white jury by crying" and that hhe "worked with his legal team to perform in a way that would 'disrupt his image as a trigger happy vigilante who went on a shooting spree.'" Houck went on gush that the performance showed that "Rittenhouse excelled on the jury stand."
  • Another Nov. 10 post, by Nicholas FOndacaro, complained that a  CNN guest "mocked him for breaking down and crying on the stand."
  • On Nov. 11, Kristine Marsh huffed that the co-hosts of "The View" "cruelly mocked Kyle Rittenhouse’s tearful testimony that he acted in self-defense, with Behar scoffing it was the 'worst acting' she’d ever seen and Ana Navarro sneering the teen would eventually run as a Republican Congressman if he escaped jail."
  • Tim Graham devoted his Nov. 19 column to defending Rittenhouse against Reid: "Rittenhouse scrunched up his face and lost his composure when describing how he shot and killed two men. And if he hadn’t cried? Then he’d be trashed by Reid as a sociopath." He then played whataboutism: "No one’s going to find Joy Reid mocking a 'Karen-out' when Hillary Clinton teared up on the campaign trail in 2008, or when she teared up in a Benghazi hearing in 2013. The networks touted that as a masterful performance."Graham omitted the fact that Clinton wasn't running around shooting and killing people. He concluded by grousing: "The common thread is the Left’s cynical accusation that these incidents of white-male crying or choking up on television were insincerely staged for personal gain or political effect."

Similiarly, in a Dec. 20 post, Mark Finkelstein complained that MSNBC commentator Elie Mystal commented on the case of Kim Potter, a police officer on trial for killing a suspect with her gun when she claimed to have been reaching for her taser, and "rejected Potter's tears as phony during her testimony," complaining further thaot host Tiffany Cross "seconded Mystal's accusation that Potter was faking her tears."

As Graham hinted at, what you never see at the MRC is any sympathy for a non-conservative caught crying over a traumatic event. Last February, the MRC melted down over Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez talking about how the Jan. 6 Capitol riot a few weeks earlier affeced her, getting particularly worked up over an Instagram video she made emotionally describing the events of that day. As part of that meltdown, MRC writer Alexa Moutevelis dismissed AOC's video a "performance", then tried to fact-check it and baselessly suggested she was lying about a reference to a earlier sexual assault against her.

So, the MRC will fully invest in your trauma only as long as your politics align with theirs and it advances their right-wing agenda.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:24 PM EST
Chuck Norris Shamelessly Promotes His Own Charity In WND Column
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Chuck Norris is pretty shameless about abusing his WorldNetDaily column for self-promotion; we've caught him three times turning his column into an ad for the gold-selling company he's a spokesman for. Norris did something similar in his Nov. 29 column, which started as a lament over someone sent to prison for stealing from the children's charity he ran, which morphed into a pormotion of the children's charity he runs:

Americans spent roughly $10 billion on Black Friday. They will spend even more on Cyber Monday. I'm so glad that someone started "Giving Tuesday," an annual observance this week and global movement that reimagines a world built upon shared humanity and generosity.

A while ago my wife, Gena, and I did a WND interview for our KICKSTART KIDS Foundation (KSK at KickStartKids.org), which teaches character through karate in Texas Middle Schools. I think you will find what we share interesting and maybe even worthy of your "Giving Tuesday" or holiday donations.

The WND interview of unknown origin started with an especially mushy softball: "Everyone knows you (Chuck) from your martial arts, film and television careers. But you and your wife Gena's hearts and mission really centers around your foundation, Kickstart Kids, doesn't it?"

Norris' direct plea for money came at the end:

We would be honored to have some new partners join us this "Giving Tuesday" or Christmas season by donating online to KICKSTART KIDS here. Tell them Chuck & Gena sent you!

Merry Christmas, America! And may God bless all of our efforts and donations to help humanity and our future generations on this Giving Tuesday and beyond!

Like we said: utterly shameless.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:16 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, January 11, 2022 7:21 PM EST
Newsmax Takes Potshots At Chris Wallace After Leaving Fox News
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax has been taking lots of potshots at Fox News of late, and the departure of longtime host Chris Wallace from the channel was an occasion for more of them. The initial Dec. 12 article on Wallace's departure was cobbled together from wire sources, but it appears Newsmax added a little right-wing grousing:

Wallace was the first Fox News personality to moderate a presidential debate, doing it in 2016 and 2020. The debate he moderated last year drew much scorn from conservatives as Wallace frequently cut off then-President Donald Trump as he interrupted Democratic challenger Joe Biden to contest a point.

Trump at one point objected to a Wallace question on healthcare policy, saying, "I guess I'm debating you not him (Biden). But that's okay. I'm not surprised."

After that, an article the same day by Eric Mack cranked up the hate for his failure to be a complete right-wing shill:

The hashtag #goodriddance was among the top trends Sunday on Twitter as anti-Trump host Chris Wallace announced he is leaving "Fox News Sunday" for CNN's streaming service.

"He'll be controlled by the radical left," then-President Donald Trump said about the prospect of facing Wallace as moderator in the one and only 2020 presidential debate. "They control him."

Former Trump adviser Steve Cortes tweeted his testy exchange with Wallace after that debate, where Wallace was blasted for "haranguing" Trump and "his incredibly biased performance as debate moderator."

[...]

Among those appearing in the Twitter stream hailing Wallace's departure was Act for America founder Brigitte Gabriel, who tweeted: "Good riddance to Fake News Chris Wallace!"

Conservative podcast host Todd Starnes mocked Wallace being "thrilled" to join the "lowest-rated cable news network."

Among Wallace's many defenses of Biden was a false claim the candidate did not support a defunding of police, despite wide reporting to the contrary.

Mack didn't mention that Cortes was a Newsmax TV host until he lost his job in a snit over corporate vaccine mandates.

Mack served up another sidebar about how Donald Trump "called his shot this past June on anti-Trump host Chris Wallace leaving Fox News," complaining that "His ratings are terrible, he's 'almost' radical left, he was acknowledged to have failed badly as a presidential debate moderator (except for Biden who he totally protected!), and so much else."

Dick Morris cranked out a Dec. 13 column in which he too whined that Wallace didn't give Trump a pass during that debate:

But the moderator was following the "Chris Wallace Rule," ignore the facts in favor of a liberal bias.

And, when it came time to discuss the shenanigans that would later mar the 2020 vote counting, Wallace totally dismissed the looming danger of a disputed election.

The Fox News anchor blithely assured the national audience, "the biggest problem, in fact, over the years, with mail-in voting has not been fraud, historically. It has been that sizable number, sometimes hundreds of thousands of ballots, are thrown out because they have not been properly filled out or there is some other irregularity they just see through that deadline."

And even before the debate, Wallace tried to dismiss the charge that Biden wanted to defund the police.

When Trump told Wallace in an interview that Biden "wants to defund the police," Chris sprang to the vice president’s defense saying, "Sir, he does not."

Wait a minute, is this guy a journalist or press spokesman for the Biden campaign?

Morris concluded:

This debate should be known throughout modern history as one in which a very biased journalist from Fox News delivered an election defeat to a sitting U.S. president.

Instead the left and the establishment will lionize Wallace for his bias, as we are seeing with his reward of a big, plum job at CNN.

Former President Nixon put it best when he said 'history is written by liberals."

It really is Chris.

Morris heartily embraced Trump's bogus election conspiracies, so he would defend Trump against Wallace.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:47 AM EST
CNS Hints At Conspiracy Around Naming Of Omicron Variant
Topic: CNSNews.com

WorldNetDaily's Joseph Farah wasn't the only ConWeb denizen who went conspiratorial over the naming of the omicron variant of COVID. CNSNews.com's Patrick Goodenough didn't explicitly push the conspiracy theory in his Nov. 28 article, but he sure tried to hint at it:

From the moment the World Health Organization last May announced its decision to name new variants of the virus causing COVID-19 after letters of the Greek alphabet, it was only a matter of time until the sequence reached the letter spelled “Xi.” But when it did, the U.N. agency balked.

On Friday the WHO announced it was using the name “omicron” for the newly-identified variant first reported by South African health authorities two days earlier, after a WHO technical advisory group recommended that it be designated a “variant of concern” and governments rushed to issue bans on travelers from southern Africa.

Explaining the naming decision, the WHO said, “Xi was not used because it is a common surname and WHO best practices for naming new diseases (developed in conjunction with FAO [Food and Agriculture Organization] and OIE [Organization for Animal Health] back in 2015) suggest avoiding ‘causing offence to any cultural, social, national, regional, professional or ethnic groups.’”

Xi (pronounced “kzai”) is the 14th letter of the Greek alphabet. Xi (usually pronounced “shee”) is a surname in China, although not among the 20 most common Chinese surnames (which range from Wang in first place, used by more than 101 million people, and Luo in 20th place, used by some 14 million people.)

Xi is also the rendering in English of the surname of the Chinese president. The WHO has fended off accusations since early last year that it has gone out of its way to avoid upsetting the leadership of the country where the coronavirus first emerged in late 2019.

[...]

Contrary to some reporting and social media discussion, this is the first time the WHO has skipped letters when naming variants in this pandemic. Although they were much lower profile than the widespread delta variant, other “variants of concern” or “variants of interest,” subsequently downgraded to “variants being monitored<,” were named for intervening letters lambda, gamma, kappa etc.

Goodenough went on to grouse:

Critics had earlier pointed to a perceived double standard, noting that while references to China and Wuhan were deemed to be offensive and even “racist,” media and other sources had commonly referred to strains first detected in other countries as the “U.K.” or “South African” or “Indian” variant.

But the only critic Goodenough cited was a months-old tweet from Ari Fleischer, a right-wing political activist who is anything but objective. He didn't mention the comments on that post where people insisting on calling COVID-19 the "China virus" or "Wu-flu" or "kung flu" did, in fact, have derogatory or even racist intent, something that can't really be said for the other country references. (Never mind the fact that COVID is not the flu.)


Posted by Terry K. at 12:55 AM EST
Monday, January 10, 2022
MRC Keeps Melting Down Over Facebook Whistleblower It Doesn't Like
Topic: Media Research Center

We've documented how the Media Research Center attacked Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen for not being the right-wing kind of whistleblower it prefers. The attacks continued in ways both subtle and overt.

An Oct. 13 post by Autun Johnson and an Oct. 14 post by Catherine Salgado both put "whistleblower" in scare quotes when refering to Haugen; Johnson kept up the scare quotes in complaining that Haugen "called for more government regulation to censor 'misinformation,'" while Salgado huffed that "Haugen has multiple ties to leftist individuals and causes."

Joseph Vazquez went full fearmonger on Haugen in an Oct. 22 post that added his hatred of rich liberals into the mix:

One of the most notorious liberal billionaire mega-donors in the United States is reportedly aiding Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen, who advocated for more Big Tech censorship.

Pierre Omidyar — the founder of eBay — is using his philanthropic organization Luminate to handle “Haugen’s press and government relations in Europe,” according to Politico. In addition, Omidyar’s foundation “last year gave $150,000 to Whistleblower Aid, the nonprofit organization that is providing Haugen’s legal representation and advice.”

Recent reporting revealed that Haugen donated to multiple leftist groups and was a member of the team that censored the Hunter Biden laptop story while at Facebook, according to The Post Millennial. Haugen reportedly also has a history of donating to far-left Democrats like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY). She is being represented by the “same lawyers as the anonymous Ukraine ‘whistleblower’ whose allegations led to Donald Trump’s impeachment,” according to The Daily Wire.

Haugen’s ties to Omidyar should concern every American who’s wary of the left controlling the content that flows on Big Tech platforms. The causes include those that want to censor conservatives.

The next day, Johnson returned to surprisingly portray Haugen somewhat positively (and, even more surprisingly, didn't put "whistleblower" in scare quotes again or mention her alleged liberal ties) in an apparent attempt to make Facebook the real bad guy:

Employees and pundits have accused Facebook of prioritizing profit over safety. The platform has been criticized for allowing so-called “misinformation” over the COVID-19 pandemic to remain online. Some want the platform to do more to regulate content online.

Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen argued government intervention is the answer.

“No one at Facebook is malevolent,” Haugen said. “But the incentives are misaligned, right? Like, Facebook makes more money when you consume more content. People enjoy engaging with things that elicit an emotional reaction. And the more anger that they get exposed to, the more they interact and the more they consume.”

"Misinformation, angry content, is enticing to people and keeps them on the platform," she said.

Johnson also uncritically portrayed Haugen's accusations in an Oct. 26 post that also similarly attacked Facebook.

Salgado, however, was still in scare-quote attack mode, whining in a Nov. 1 post that a proposed British "online safety" law "reportedly follows the suggestions of Facebook 'whistleblower' Frances Haugen. Haugen lauded the bill’s approach as 'world-leading,' according to Olson on Bloomberg Opinion. Haugen was discovered to be a leftist activist with ties to prominent Democrats. Haugen also has openly advocated for increased social media censorship." Salgado similarly attacked Haugen over the UK law in posts on Nov. 3 and Nov. 9. There was more:

  • Salgado complained in a Nov. 11 post that "Social media algorithms and online free speech have been a major political issue ever since leftist activist turned Facebook 'whistleblower' Frances Haugen began her revelations."
  • A post the same day by Johnson avoided the scare quotes but complained that Haugen "has been an advocate for more regulation and censorship online." Johnson, however, returned the scare quotes to "whistleblower" in a Nov. 14 post.
  • Salgado grumbled on Nov. 19 that "Democrat U.S. senators and leftist activist turned Facebook 'whistleblower' Frances Haugen have also called for more aggressive censorship of alleged 'misinformation' online recently."

Salgado fully melted down in a Nov. 24 post when Haugen made the cover of Time magazine:

TIME magazine may need to take some time off after defending a censorship advocate. Leftist activist turned Facebook “whistleblower” Frances Haugen has become internationally famous for allegedly taking on Big Tech, and calling for more censorship and oppressive government regulation along the way.

TIME magazine tweeted an image of its new issue cover on Monday, depicting Frances Haugen. The title read, “The Making of A Whistleblower: What Drove Frances Haugen to Sound the Alarm About Facebook–And What Happens Next.” TIME promoted Haugen as a “wunderkind,” and noted how she considered herself an educator rather than an activist, eager to inspire young people to “push back against” harms caused by social media.

The “whistleblower” told TIME she joined Facebook specifically to work on “misinformation,” because she “lost” a friend to “online misinformation” leading up to the 2016 presidential election. Haugen said Facebook should “intervene sooner,” indicating that the platform should stifle alleged “misinformation” before it even reaches an audience. Haugen said “the idea that George Soros runs the world economy” was among the “conspiracy theories” her friend believed at the time. It is interesting to note that George Soros said in 2019 he is trying to “bend” the “arc of history.” 

TIME gushed praise for  “Haugen’s atypical personality, glittering academic background, strong moral convictions, robust support networks and self-confidence.” What the magazine did not emphasize was Haugen’s questionable past and present connections and censorship push. The long article also buried Haugen’s questionable ties to leftist billionaire eBay founder Pierre Omidyar.

Likening anyone to right-wing bogeyman Soros is apparently the biggest insult that Salgado can come up with -- never mind that Martin Luther King Jr. also said something similar.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:59 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, January 16, 2022 6:56 PM EST
CNS-Mark Levin Stenography Watch, Lack-Thereof Edition
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com closed out its already lackluster year of Mark Levin stenography with a surprising whimper. Here's what CNS did in the final two months of 2021:

That's it -- just four articles, making for a total of just 52 articles for 2021, less than half of the average for previous years. That last article appeared on Nov. 12 -- and none have appeared since, meaning that CNS has gonenearly two months as of this writing without a piece of Levin stenography.

What happened? Did Levin's check to the MRC not clear? CNS didn't even publish the softball intervew Levin did with Media Research Center (and CNS) chief Brent Bozell to promote his new book, which did appear over at the MRC's NewsBusters site. CNS' fall intern -- who did many of the Levin stenography posts over the past few months -- was on the job until early December, meaning that her absence doesn't explain the lack of Levin posts. That Nov. post was considered a "news" article and written by "news" reporter Susan Jones.

And because CNS only does Levin stenography, there was no mention of the fact that Levin pre-emptively -- and falsely -- declared that Democrat Terry McAuliffe was trying to steal the election for VIrginia governor. After all, CNS will never hold Levin accountable for anything.

What will 2022 bring on the Levin stenography front? Will Levin send some cash CNS' way to goose that promotional engine into life again? We shall see.

UPDATE: Someone must have been reading our minds -- while we were writing this post, a Levin stenography item appeared at CNS. Thus endeth the longest time we can remember CNS devoid of Levin stenography.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:50 PM EST
Updated: Monday, January 10, 2022 5:12 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: Melting Down Over Climate Criticism
Topic: Media Research Center
Because the Media Research Center can't handle criticism, it predictably lashed out at a group that exposed how it spread misinformation about climate change. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 1:45 PM EST
Orient's Vaccine Misinfo Still Has A Platform At WND
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Jane Orient of the fringe-right Association of American Physicians and Surgeons has been peddling misinformation about coronavirus and its vaccines at WorldNetDaily since the pandemic began, and she shows no signs of slowing down. She called on a couple of her fellow misinformers to help her fearmon ger about vaccinating children in her Nov. 24 WND column:

In the 0–14 age group, mortality is below average now. What will happen when we rush the youngsters to vaccination centers?

Nothing would be worse at Christmas than having your child die or be in the hospital with heart failure. Are such events extremely rare or "usually mild," as the FDA and public health authorities proclaim? The world's most published cardiologist, Peter A. McCullough, M.D., says myocarditis is "neither rare nor mild."

Truly serious data was presented at the VRBPAC meeting where one-third strength Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine was authorized for children age 5–11, with no negative votes.

High-tech engineer Steve Kirsch estimated that in the U.S. COVID-19 vaccines would kill 150,000 and save about 10,000 lives. Citing risk-benefit expert Dr. Toby Rogers, Kirsch estimated that the Pfizer product would kill 117 children for each life saved. One cardiologist reported seeing 100 times more myocarditis since the vaccine rollout.

If your child gets an inflamed heart for Christmas, he might recover, but won't be able to ride his new bicycle or run and play for three to six months.

McCullough is a prominent misinformation, as is Kirsch. She kept up the fearmongering:

Despite the unknowns, the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics and others promote widespread jabs, even without parental consent or knowledge. Parents unaware of the jab are not likely to recognize the significance of mild chest discomfort.

Your family doctor may advise, or insist, that you and your children be "fully" jabbed. Could it be that, like the Grinch, many doctors' hearts are two sizes too small? Could it be their misplaced faith in government, Big Pharma, academics and organized medicine? Distrust of their own judgment or opinions of those outside of medicine, like Steve Kirsch, who are not subject to delicensure or cancellation? Fear of loss of their career?

In her Dec. 13 column, Orient complained that doctors were getting reported to state medical licensing boards for spreading misinformation:

"Harmful misinformation" appears to mean anything that contradicts or asks questions or raises doubt about the dogma that "vaccines are safe and effective," or suggests a treatment not endorsed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Institutes of Health (NIH), and their corporate sponsors.

One source of the allegedly "harmful misinformation" is a database created and maintained by the CDC, the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). Anybody can enter a suspected vaccine adverse reaction, and the public can access it. So, "it can be abused by people trying to sow fear," write Shayla Love and Anna Merlan in VICE News. One person filed a fraudulent report, promptly removed, claiming that an influenza vaccination had turned him into the "Incredible Hulk."

Orient did concede that "correlation doesn't prove causality" regarding VAERS, but she wouldn't admit that unscrupulous anti-vaxxers have been caught cherry-picking VAERS data to fearmonger about COVID vaccines. She went on to whine that her favorite dubious COVID medications could be cause for getting reported:

Also viewed as "misinformation" is the opinion of physicians and researchers that hydroxychloroquine, ivermectin and other "repurposed" drugs are beneficial in COVID-19, as shown in more than 1,000 studies. Reports of dying patients who recovered when hospitals were legally forced to step aside and allow off-protocol treatment are ignored.

The safe option for doctors is to promote the jab or keep silent, and not to suggest anything different from what Anthony Fauci approves. By silencing doctors who are ethical professionals, one opens the gates for the reckless charlatans.

Her source for the claim thst such medications have been proven beneficial "in more than 1,000 studies" is an anonymous website that may or may not be operated by Orient's AAPS.

Orient used her Dec. 29 column to attack the testing process of the COVID vaccines:

Ideally, there should be a 50:50 allocation of treated and control subjects. If only 30% of subjects are in the control group, the study loses significant power. If only 10% are in the control group, the power of the study is only 40 to 60%, writes Mark H. White, II, Ph.D. At the moment, about 30% of Americans have not taken the COVID vaccine. And government keeps trying to reduce that percentage to as close to zero as possible.

There was a 50:50 allocation in the preauthorization studies of the COVID vaccines. But the blinding has been broken, and those who received placebo are now eligible to receive active vaccine. Thus, there is virtually NO control group for potential late adverse consequences.

[...]

The NIH is again following the model of therapeutic nihilism for COVID, suppressing promising treatments on the basis that hundreds of favorable published studies including some RCTs are inadequate.

Vaccines, however, are exempt from the demand for scientific rigor. The Biden administration is calling for all Americans to get vaccinated and boosted, and has pledged to donate 500 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech product to low and lower-middle-income countries and the African Union.

The worldwide, coercive mass vaccination campaign is not a scientific experiment. In addition to a control group, ethical research would require voluntary informed consent, free medical care of subjects who experienced complications, provision to stop the experiment if it were doing harm and an Institutional Review Board.

So, where is the science, and where is the anti-science?

It seems Orient is the anti-science one here, who would allow a pandemic to continue unabated and deprive people of a proven and effective vaccine -- not because she really believes it needs further testing, but because delaying it feeds her anti-vaxxer agenda.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:26 AM EST
Updated: Monday, January 10, 2022 8:18 PM EST
Sunday, January 9, 2022
The MRC's Year In Hurling Personal Insults At Joy Reid
Topic: Media Research Center

One of the Media Research Center's year-end articles was a Dec. 28 rant by Curtis Houck against MSNBC host Joy Reid for saying things he didn't agree with:

With a full year under her belt hosting MSNBC’s The ReidOut, far-left pundit and generally awful human being Joy Reid made her presence felt with a night-after-night hatefest against conservatives, Republicans, and anyone who stands in her way, painting them as enemies of the people. All in all, Reid ran a show with rhetoric bordering on incitement.

[...]

NewsBusters was there to cover it all as we had over 120 posts to The ReidOut's tag with comments from Reid and guests ranging from the baffling to deranged to mind-numbing, to unstable.

Yes, Houck wrote most of those 120 attacks, showing that he hates Reid at least as much as he loves Peter Doocy. How much? He seemed desperate to find a new way to insult Reid in each post by working her name into a headline epithet.

If one has to resort so quickly to personal insults, it usually means there is no substance to the attacks being made. Houck has amply proven that with his eagerness to slur Reid in any way he can.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:34 PM EST
Updated: Sunday, January 9, 2022 9:34 PM EST
CNS' Right-Wing Priest Spreads More Anti-Vaxxer Attitudes, Won't Admit Trump Isn't King
Topic: CNSNews.com

We've documented how CNSNews.com columnist Michael P. Orsi insists on acting like a right-wing activist instead of the Catholic priest he's supposed to be. That attitude continued in his Oct. 27 column, which began by complaining about a statue of Thomas Jefferson being removed from New York's City Hall, then quickly advanced to bizarrely likening vaccine mandates to abortion:

There’s an unfortunate tendency to judge the acts and standards of previous generations from the perspective of our own time. But on what basis do we assume that our current standards qualify us to call out previous wrongs?

Ours is a time when abortion is accepted, indeed advocated and encouraged. The proposed 2,500-page, so-called “infrastructure” bill even requires that abortions be paid for by public funds.

In addition, just now we face the prospect of vaccine mandates that would force us to inject unproven chemical formulations into our bodies against our will.

Do such situations not reflect a kind of slaveholding mentality?

All of this is part of the darkness that’s befallen our time, a darkness that includes a strong element of deception.

Vaccine mandates are like slavery too? Wow.

Orsi's anti-vaxxer attitudes continued in his Nov. 9 column: "What we’ve always assumed to be basic rights have been seriously eroded. The issue of vaccine mandates is only the most visible area in which the assault on personal autonomy is taking place. At any time we could be called upon to defend ourselves, our families, or our beliefs." Orsi then whined about the alleged moral dilemma of patronizing "LGBT-friendly" restaurants:

In our socially-networked age, when your every move is observed and can be posted online, did he wish people to question why he would frequent restaurants known as LGBT-friendly? More importantly, what right did his employer have to insist he patronize establishments that make it a point to publicly endorse sexual identities and behaviors to which he objects?

This was a serious intrusion upon his personal reputation and sense of morality.

This, unsurprisingly, turned into yet another attack on the idea of a bisexual Superman:

One small, recent incident got my dander up. Our local newspaper gave significant play to a national release about what some people probably consider an issue of great “progressive” importance: DC Comics has introduced a new story line that has the son of Clark Kent (AKA Superman) coming out as bisexual.

Displaying a rainbow banner with the declaration “DC Pride,” the new comic book series has 17-year-old Jon Kent in a “relationship” with a young (male) reporter. The two have determined to carry on a fight for global social justice.

I realize that, by current pop-culture standards, a bisexual Superman is nothing special. Indeed, the idea is as stupid as requiring that insurance clients be entertained at LGBT-friendly restaurants.

But the moral assumption by which such a concept is given national publicity shows how far we’ve moved beyond Christian virtue. Besides that, it’s an assault on the children who will read about such tripe and then buy the comic books.

Will the Church raise objections? Will individual believers write in to their local news outlets that ran this story? Is there anything we feel compelled, as a community, to say about such harmful nonsense?

Orsi spread more anti-vaxxerism in his Nov. 22 column:

All this is of a piece with the mandates being imposed on hospitals, doctors, and health workers over vaccination. Institutions that had provided services for two years during the pandemic are now being threatened with loss of Medicare payments if they don’t force their critical personnel to accept inoculation with substances whose effectiveness is highly questionable, and whose dangers are becoming increasingly obvious. Personal religious exemptions are being curtailed.

This assault on individual autonomy is a moral wrong. It’s an attack on religious freedom. And that is the truth.

Orsi also went on a rant against HHS secretary Xavier Becerra because he "had argued before the United States Court of Appeals that the Little Sisters of the Poor should be required to provide birth control-related insurance coverage to its lay employees under the Affordable Care Act." As we've noted, Becerra didn't sue the Little Sisters of the Poor; the order filed to intervene in a lawsuit Becerra had filed against the Trump administration over contraceptive coverage.

Orsi concluded his column by huffing, "Jesus is the king — not Joe Biden, not Xavier Becerra — and there is no truth but the Lord." Note that Orsi refused to concede that Donald Trump is not the king, an omission in line with his right-wing activism.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:57 PM EST
Saturday, January 8, 2022
MRC Botches Facts In Bogus Attack On Major League Baseball
Topic: Media Research Center

Let's pick apart the factual errors and misrepresentations in this Oct. 1 Media Research Center post by Jay Maxson, shall we?

The proliferation of American professional sports leagues sucking up to communist China continued this week. Major League Baseball is closing the Miken Sports plant in Caledonia, Minnesota, and moving operations to China. On Wednesday, Republican congressmen responded by aiming a legislative beanball at MLB’s head.

Miken Sports employs more than 1,000 Americans (more than a third of Caledonia’s population) who produce bats, helmets, gloves, bags and apparel, earning $11 million in revenue. Now the town is losing most of its jobs to cheap labor in China, a country with a notorious reputation for slave labor and oppressing its citizens’ freedom.

Based on an article from an actual news organization, we learn:

  • Major League Baseball does not own Miken Sports, nor did it make the decision to close it. Miken is owned by sporting goods giant Rawlings, in which MLB has an ownership interest of less than 20 percent and has no say in day-to-day business.
  • The Caledonia plant does not employ 1,000 people. Before the pandemic, it employed 150 people, a number that had decreased to 80 by mid-2021.
  • The batting helmets that the plant produced for MLB will continue to be made in the U.S., in a plant in Missouri. Production of bats made for softball -- not an MLB sport -- will be moving to China.

But the truth doesn't matter to Maxson -- this article has been up three months and has never been corrected. What matters is the political attack, and he (or she) concluded:

Caledonia is just 160 miles away from the field of dreams in Iowa, but unlike that feel-good town of Dyersville, Iowa, it’s fielding unemployment nightmares.

Thanks, MLB, for throwing the town of Caledonia out at the plate, and thanks for hitting a foul ball at the expense of American jobs. Job horribly done.

Maxson did an even more horrible job of putting a political narrative ahead of the facts -- which harms the MRC's credibility.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:23 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, January 8, 2022 10:26 AM EST
WND's Farah Wants His Fellow Right-Wingers To 'Occupy D.C.'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Back in September, WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah started floating the idea of an "OCCUPY D.C." movement to fight back against President Biden with the goal of "peacefully occupying Washington. You can go anywhere you want, as long as it's legal. Don't go near the Capitol, though, until it is liberated." He gushed at the potential: "Do you think we can get a million people a day to win our freedom back? I think it's possible." A week later, Farah was cheering the rally for arrested Jan. 6 insurrectionists as a dress rehearsal for his plan, showing how "several hundred peaceful protesters gathered near the Capitol" could work. (Actually, as we noted, there were a couple hundred protesters at most.) He went on to enthuse: "Think of it! An OCCUPY D.C. movement by the deplorables! It's rich. Do you remember Occupy Wall Street? This should be the polar opposite."

Farah set his original deadline to start this so-called occupation on Nov. 8, but that clearly didn't happen. So he spent his Nov. 10 column trying to get readers exceited at the idea of it again, which might have worked had he not lied in the process:

I know. You're busy people. You work hard. There's little time for protests, demonstrations and rallies. But (do I need to remind you?), we're close to losing our heritage of freedom in America. And nowhere does this threat emanate more dangerously than from Washington – the belly of the beast, so to speak.

It's where the most momentous protests, demonstrations and rallies have taken place. Two quickly come to mind for me – Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech and the Jan. 6 rally for President Donald Trump, attended by somewhere near 1 million people earlier this year.

Speaking of Jan. 6, there are at least 100 people, maybe more, in solitary confinement still and far more detained and awaiting trial for drummed up on charges involving the fracas at the Capitol. Tucker Carlson's preeminent series called "Patriot Purge," available now on Fox Nation, delves into the cases of these so-called "insurrectionists."

Do we want the truth about that Jan. 6 rally, where hundreds of thousands peacefully gathered, to be remembered like King's speech? Or do we want it to be remembered like Nancy Pelosi and Liz Cheney would like to?

It's up to you. The Jan. 6 defendants are mostly in jail in Washington – in harsh conditions. They are political prisoners in every sense of the phrase.

In fact, the crowd at the Trump rally was not  "somewhere near 1 million people" -- it was closer to 10,000 and maybe as many as 80,000. And there are not "at least 100" people arrested for their actions on Jan. 6 in solitary confinement -- the vast majority are not in custody while awaiting trial. The approximately 40 people imprisoned in the D.C. jail have an entire wing to themselves and have 5 1/2 hours a day to roam outside their cell. They're treated no worse then other jail inmates, which we don't recall Farah ever complaining about when the jail population didn't involve far-right white insurrectionists.

Farah rehashed parts of his earlier columns on the alleged movement, concluding:

But what I'm hoping to hear in Washington every day for the next year is the chant "Let's Go Brandon."

Can you dig it?

Shout it real loud – so it echoes around in Joe Biden's non-cognitive brain and through the Washington Correctional Facility that holds Jan. 6 political prisoners.

The insurrectionists are not "political prisoners" -- but does anyone expect Farah to tell the truth?


Posted by Terry K. at 1:41 AM EST
Friday, January 7, 2022
MRC Psaki-Bashing, Doocy-Fluffing Watch, Year-End Laziness Edition
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Curtis Houck finished out 2021 with increasingly sporadic renditions of the Jen Psaki-bashing, Peter Doocy-fluffing antics he has been paid to do all year. After nearly a week's break, Houck returned for the Dec. 13 briefing with more of the same gushing over Doocy for pushing right-wing narratives:

On Monday’s abbreviated edition of The Psaki Show, Fox’s Peter Doocy came prepared (as always) with tough questions many of his colleagues refuse to ask, focusing this day on issues pertaining to the cost of the Biden administration’s Build Back Better (BBB) boondoggle, whether Vice President Harris is still in charge of combatting illegal immigration, and the role of liberal prosecutors contributing to rising crime.

Doocy led with BBB and whether President Biden would support the bill’s host of new social programs being “made permanent” despite the fact that, as per a new score from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) in which “they assume that social programs are going to be made permanent and, in that case, it would add almost $3 trillion.”

Psaki roundly dismissed it, repeatedly calling it “a fake CBO score” since it’s “not based on the actual bill” led by an ask of the CBO by Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) (whom Psaki first referred to as a woman in a Freudian slip).

[...]

Closing with the terrifying issue of rising crime and smash-and-grab robberies, Doocy posed to Psaki a basic question: “Do you think it’s possible that big cities are dealing with these smash and grab robberies right now, an increase in criminal activity because some prosecutors are too soft on crime?”

Psaki said she wouldn’t “attribute the reasoning from here,” but she did the opposite as, before talking about the White House’s focus on “ensuring local police departments and cops have the funding they need,” she blamed the coronavirus as “we have seen an increase of crime over the course of the pandemic.”

Doocy followed up by blowing holes in this argument: “[W]hat good does it do if you’re going to give police departments extra money if they arrest bad guys and they bring them to jail and then they’re not prosecuted. They’re just right back out on the streets.”

After she doubled down on her previous answer, Doocy questioned whether Biden believes it’s “good governing” for those running New York City to have cases like “pickpocket[er] with more than 30 arrests” and the suspect in the burning of the $500,000 Fox Christmas tree both being allowed “back out on the streets.”

Psaki wanted nothing to do with this, stating she already had “spoke to the President’s concerns about retail theft.”

The Doocy-gasms continued for Houck for the Dec. 14 briefing

Hours before Press Secretary Jen Psaki’s lame attempt at humor, Tuesday’s White House press briefing similarly featured moments of stupidity as liberal journalists hit Psaki from the left on gun control, January 6, cutting back holiday parties due to Covid, and, worst of all, the dark red voting tendencies of Kentuckians who lost their homes in violent tornadoes. However, it wasn’t all lost as Fox’s Peter Doocy brought the heat on Afghanistan and crime.

Doocy didn’t waste time in cutting to the chase after being called on: “Why is it that there are still Americans stranded in Afghanistan?”

Psaki insisted the U.S. has kept its promise to “help” any American “get out” seeing as how, since the country’s collapse, “we've directly assisted 479 American citizens” and “450 lawful permanent residents and SIV holders and SIV applicants” in “depart[ing] Afghanistan.”

Doocy pushed back, repeatedly noting that “479 left behind is a lot higher than the 100 to 200 that President Biden was talking about at the end of August.”

[...]

With his remaining time, Doocy went back to what she’s said about rising crime having come during “the pandemic” via “a range of reasons.” “Would you consider one of the reasons in the range prosecutors who are cutting people who are accused of many criminal offenses loose too quickly,” he asked.

Psaki demurred, arguing she wasn’t going to analyze the reasoning other than tie it to the pandemic.

Doocy’s final line of questioning stemmed from “reports that these smash and grab robberies are being organized on social media platforms” and whether “the administration is doing anything about that.”

After praising other right-wing reporters, Houck whined that a non-right-winger asked a question: "At the other end of the spectrum of insightfulness, Bloomberg’s Nancy Cook inquired about any plans for the White House “to commemorate January 6” (because everything has to be about January 6 for the media)."

Houck didn't check in again until the Dec. 23 briefing, which he started by insisting that his repeated references to "The Psaki Show" during the year weren't derogatory (after all, we don't recall him dismissing any of Kayleigh McEnany's press briefings as a "show" despite having shown much more affection for her than he has ever demonstrated toward Psaki):

Affectionately referred to here as The Psaki Show, Thursday featured 2021’s final White House press briefing and it served as solid encapsulation of the year as Fox’s Peter Doocy tangled with Press Secretary Jen Psaki on a variety of issues (with Covid and crime on Thursday’s docket) mixed in with other reporter questions that ranged from solid to inoffensive to boring to hitting from the left.

Doocy began by wishing Psaki a “Merry Christmas” and then got right to the questions: “So, why is the President saying about this new variant, ‘nobody saw it coming, nobody in the world’ if that's not true?”

Instead of trying to clean up what Biden said, Psaki largely doubled down by saying “how transmissible they would be,” or “what they would look like,” so they’ve spent this year “preparing for a range of contingencies.”

Drilling down on the questionable nature of that last part, Doocy wanted to know “why” has the administration “propos[ed] 500 million tests next month if you haven't even signed a contract to buy the tests.”

Psaki went on for a little while and insisted there’s “no concern about the contract being finalized” since “[w]e just announced” the ramp-up “two days ago,” so Doocy made sure to follow-up:

[...]

Before calling it a year on his end, Doocy asked two questions about crime in light of Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon (D-PA) being carjacked on Wednesday in south Philadelphia[.]

And with that, Houck also called it a year as well on his biased hackery. He did, however, serve up one last bit of obsequiousness in a Dec. 30 post recounting "Peter’s Top Briefing Room Tangles With Jen Psaki in 2021." That branding, though, clashes with his insistence that Doocy was "respectfully challenging an administration," unlike what enemy of the MRC Jim Acosta purportedly did during the Trump years. Houck then praised other right-wing reporters for asking "cordial yet probing questions" while refusing to admit their right-wing bias.

Needless to say, Houck didn't mention that time he stealth-edited one of his briefing articles to cover up the fact that Doocy pushed a false story at Psaki.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:55 PM EST
Updated: Friday, January 7, 2022 7:56 PM EST
Big Bird Vaccine Derangement Syndrome
Topic: WorldNetDaily

They are coming for the 5 to 11-year-olds.

That should be the realization of any critical thinker – with the FDA expanding its Emergency Use Authorization approval of the Pfizer "BioNTech" vaccine for children 5 to 11 years old and the unleashing of propaganda clearly aimed at those children – as well as the parents of that age group.

If the past is any predictor of the future, this "vaccine and mandate creep" is headed in the direction of the children – and the children are worth fighting for.

Over the weekend, Big Bird – a giant yellow puppet for the Public Broadcasting Station – came out to publicly push and propagandize for the vaccine.

"I got the COVID-19 vaccine today! My wing is feeling a little sore, but it'll give my body an extra protective boost that keeps me and others healthy," the puppet said. "Ms @EricaRHill (CNN) even said I've been getting vaccines since I was a little bird. I had no idea!"

It wasn't just the bird – Elmo, too, got into the cringe-worthy act – tweeting, it must be presumed, to parents as much as children: "Elmo was so happy to talk to @DrsanjayGupta (CNN) at the town hall today! Elmo learned that Elmo's friends can get the COVID-19 vaccine now, and soon Elmo can too!"

[...]

There are hills worth dying on – getting canceled over, losing your job or a potential client over or even offending a family member or a close friend.

The medical freedom of individuals– or children who are of little to NO risk from a disease– and the right of the parents to have a say so in the decision-making process when it comes to their child's health – is that hill. Now and, even more importantly, for the future.

[...]

From the president, to the media, to actors and actresses and now characters on "Sesame Street" – these people are vaccine salesmen and paid spokespeople. You and your child should have the right to refuse what they are selling.

This is not a strictly partisan issue. Between the timing and the nature of Operation Warp Speed, you can easily argue that the vaccines Biden sells now are indeed "The Trump Vaccines."

[...]

The hatchet aimed at individual freedom and bodily autonomy is in the air – it has already struck several blows.

The time to parry it is now – before it is too late.

-- Matt Keener, Nov. 10 WorldNetDaily column


Posted by Terry K. at 5:05 PM EST
MRC Sports Blogger Lashes Out At Magic Johnson For Not Dying Of AIDS
Topic: Media Research Center

Media Research Center sports blogger Jay Maxson let his (or her) hate rage in a Nov. 8 post lashing out at basketball legend Magic Johnson. Maxson started out relatively nice at first:

Sunday was the 30th anniversary of Magic Johnson’s shocking announcement that he had HIV and was retiring from pro basketball. With NBA Commissioner David Stern and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar by his side, Johnson immediately volunteered to become a spokesperson and poster child for the virus.

Then and now, he was hailed as a sympathetic figure. In 1991, Sports Illustrated quoted him saying he had been merely “accommodating needy women”. Now SI praises him for “still doing lifesaving work.”

By the middle of the post, Maxson huffed that after Johnson's diagnosis, "the sex-addicted former athlete with HIV reaped adulation," going on to rage:

Johnson said Sunday that God has blessed him by keeping him alive. We will never know the fate of his many sex partners. Have any of them died of HIV? Did he ever apologize or tell any of them of his disease? Ethics and morality are seriously lacking from this ongoing story.

The fawning media and medical fanboys and girls ignore how Johnson got to this place. There is no talk of the married man’s faithlessness and his lack of discipline and restraint. Most importantly, there is absolutely NO consideration for the multitudes of women he may have infected with HIV. In comparison, another former athlete who took the high road sexually, Tim Tebow, is mocked and scorned.

In 1991, The Sporting News reported that Johnson’s closest friends said he frequently disclosed details about the “freaks” he had sex with across the nation.

Maxson concluded by suggesting that he (or she) fervently wished that Johnson had been fully punished for his behavior by dying of AIDS: "In a bygone era, Lou Gehrig contracted a fatal disease through no fault of his own. Magic Johnson lived the life of a stray dog and reaped what he sowed. Unfortunately, the media has a blind spot with Johnson and refuses to tell the full story."

By contrast, Maxson was totally cool with Aaron Rodgers lying about his COVID vaccination status and engangering the health of his teammates.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:07 PM EST

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