MRC Decries Kavanaugh Threat, Buries History of Anti-Abortion Violence Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center needed something to distract its followers' attention from the house hearings on the Capitol riot, which it tried to insist wasn't news. It found that distraction in the form of a man who planned to shoot Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, following the leak of a draft opinion that would overturn Roe v. Wade, but turned himself in before he even allowed himself to pull the trigger. The MRC went into full screech mode and declared this an "assassination attempt" and "failed ... murder" -- again, despite the fact that nobody was shot by anyone and the man turned himself in before anything even happened -- and ranted that the non-right-wing media wasn't paying enough attention to this:
Speaking of memory-holing, the MRC was certainly not going to mention the inconvenient fact that the anti-abortion movement has a 50-year legacy of violence and murder, as it similarly refused to do when it was fearmongering about violence in the wake of the leaked opinion -- and they got mad when others did. Alex Christy accused CNN of "both side-ism" -- ironically, a favorite MRC tactic -- in bringing it up:
CNN is still stuck on both sides-ism when it comes to reporting on the failed assassination attempt of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. It could even be argued that New Day Weekend went beyond both side-ism on Saturday and used the attempt to highlight violence from the other side.
Against a backdrop of old news footage, Watt continued, now using the occasion to highlight that “Abortion has long fueled fury since the Roe v. Wade decision nearly 50 years ago. Anti-abortion extremists have carried out multiple bombings and murders.”
Reverting back to both sides-ism, Watt added, “Now, the DHS since the leak of that draft opinion that could Roe v. Wade also fears pro-abortion rights extremist violence. So, there is now a high fence around the highest court in the land.”
It is almost impossible to mention that a failed attempt to assassinate a liberal judge would have resulted in so much denunciations of “both sides.” Instead, we would’ve gotten much talk about how the GOP needs to watch its tone.
Actually, the MRC would be complaining that any attempt to assassinate a liberal justice got too much coverage, because liberals don't deserve coverage.But you stick with that narrative, Alex.
WorldNetDaily is a big fan of the anti-vaxxers who run something called the "Global COVID Summit," which exists mainly to put a false patina of legitimacy on fringe doctors who prefer dubious medicines like hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin to vaccines as a way to fight COVID. The fact that documented misinformers like Robert Malone and Peter McCullough are associated with the group is reason enough to dismiss it. But because WND is dedicated to spreadingCOVIDmisinformation, we hear more about the group and get articles like this May 16 piece by misinformer Art Moore:
Decrying "disastrous" COVID-19 public health policies, more than 17,000 physicians and medical scientists from around the world are calling on nations to lift health emergency declarations, restore scientific integrity and address "crimes against humanity."
Among the signatories is Dr. Robert Malone, inventor of the mRNA technology behind the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, who argues that the concerns raised in the declaration go beyond COVID-19, threatening constitutional rights.
The fourth declaration of the Global COVID Summit states that the COVID policies imposed over the past two years "are the culmination of a corrupt medical alliance of pharmaceutical, insurance, and healthcare institutions, along with the financial trusts which control them."
"They have infiltrated our medical system at every level, and are protected and supported by a parallel alliance of big tech, media, academics and government agencies who profited from this orchestrated catastrophe," the signatories declare.
The "corrupt alliance" continues "to advance unscientific claims by censoring data, and intimidating and firing doctors and scientists for simply publishing actual clinical results or treating their patients with proven, life-saving medicine."
That, of course, is all conspiratorial claptrap; the "proven, life-saving medicine" being referred to is hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin, which is neither. The reason why the emergency declaration was extended is because COVID hasn't gone away.
Moore is also helping the summit folks mislead about the number of signatories. The 17,000 number appears to refer only to those who signed the original declaration from the group, which ranted against vaccinating children against COVID, among other right-wing talking points; there's no evidence that the number of signatures have been confirmed or even if the signatories themselves -- which have largely been kept secret -- have been verified to be "physicians and medical scientists." That means the declaration is meaningless and shouldn't be trusted. Further, no evidence is provided that every single one of those people signed this fourth declaration as well.
Alos note that the screenshot Moore selected for this article from the summit shows the alleged doctors all wearing white lab coats, even though no self-respecting doctor wears one outside his own examination area. That's simply performative and an attempt to add gravitas and respectibility to an otherwise disrespectful spectacle. Instead, Moore stuck to the script and claimed that "The 17,000 Global COVID Summit physicians and medical scientists 'represent a much larger, enlightened global medical community who refuse to be compromised, and are united and willing to risk the wrath of the corrupt medical alliance to defend the health of their patients.'"
Moore also attached a video of Malone and others '"discuss[ing] the latest Global COVID Summit declaration" at an unnamed place. Turns out it's on a podcast called "The Highwire," hosted by Del Bigtree, who runs the anti-vaxxer "Informed Consent Action Network" and has a six-figure income from spreading anti-vaxxer conspriacies. Not the way one builds credibility if you're trying to reach people outside your fringe bubble.
Newsmax Joined Right-Wing Narrative Of Pretending Capitol Riot Hearings Aren't News Topic: Newsmax
Like the Media Research Center and its "news" division CNSNews.com, Newsmax labored to pretend that the first prime-time hearing from the House committee looking into the Capitol insurrection would not be newsworthy. The first order of business was to frame the fact that the committee hired a retired TV producer to help organize its coverage as proof the hearing was all style and no substance:
Newsmax then called on the usual right-wing voices to denounce the hearing; for instance, Republican Rep. Andy Biggs declared that the hearing "is a distraction from a disastrous domestic and international policy performance by this president."Columnist Michael Dorstewitz, meanwhile, ranted that the hearing "has nothing to do with fact-finding, and has everything to do with winning elections," huffing: "Democrats are using an arguably illegitimate committee to prevent a former president from reelection, to nationalize all future elections and possibly trash the Electoral College — the final two in violation of the Constitution. And they hired a TV expert to make it sound perfectly reasonable. It all sounds kinda insurrectiony."
On the day of the June 9 hearing, an article by the apparently uniroinically named Charlie McCarthy declared in its headline, "Watch Jan. 6 Hearing Live on Newsmax — Without the Spin!" But as McCarthy went on, it was all too clear there would be copious amount of spin in Newsmax's coverage:
Newsmax host Rob Schmitt will anchor Newsmax's live coverage beginning at 8 p.m. ET, and expected to end about 9:30 p.m.
Analysts are expected to include former acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, Harvard law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz, attorney for former President Trump Alina Habba and attorney Ameer Benno.
In a statement, Newsmax said, "This is an important news event and the reason Newsmax will carry it live, but it will also be important for us to make sure the public is aware of any and all partisan bias that results from the hearing."
Newsmax seems to be unaware of what the word "spin" means. Of course, McCarthy injected his own spin as well:
Reportedly, the purpose of the hearing is to blame then-President Donald Trump for the tragic events that unfolded that day.
The special House panel has defied all precedent, and was created by the majority without the approval or representation of the minority Republican caucus.
Republicans claim the prime-time event is political theater that is timed to influence voters as the November midterm elections approach.
Indeed, Newsmax's on-air coverage was filled with spin, as CNN documented:
Newsmax, Fox's right-wing rival, actually showed most of Cheney's remarks, but cut away for analysis from pro-Trump commentators. The network's banners also promoted Trump's talking points and, at times, Newsmax's own app.
When the video [of the Capitol being attacked] concluded, Newsmax's Rob Schmitt said, "we saw a lot worse in the summer of 2020, spurred on by comments from the other side of the aisle, that burned major cities in this country down. Where's the hearing on that? Well they don't have that hearing, because they don't care about your life, where you live."
Newsmax even gave Trump himself a platform to spin things in another pre-hearing article:
The Jan. 6, 2021, protests "represented the greatest movement in the history of our Country to Make America Great Again," former President Donald Trump said Thursday in a post mocking the House select committee investigating the attacks on the U.S. Capitol as the panel prepares to go public with its findings in prime-time Thursday.
"The 'Unselect Committee' didn't spend one minute studying the reason that people went to Washington, D.C., in massive numbers, far greater than the Fake News Media is willing to report, or that the Unselects are willing to even mention, because January 6th was not simply a protest, it represented the greatest movement in the history of our Country to Make America Great Again," Trump said in a post on his Truth Social platform.
"It was about an Election that was Rigged and Stolen, and a Country that was about to go to HELL..& look at our Country now!"
After the hearing was over, Newsmax cranked up the spin machine. An article by Eric Mack ranted that it was "demonstrably false" that Trump did not condemn the riot, as Cheney said,citing as evidence "a contemporary report on Trump's condemning the attack on the Capitol published by Newsmax on Jan. 6, which was headlined "Trump Urges Peace, Protesters to 'Go Home.'" Mack didn't mention that this video did not get posted until hours after the riot started, making it largely meaningless. Mack didn't mention how this contrasted with Trump's pre-hearing declaration that all this violence was "the greatest movement in the history of our Country to Make America Great Again."
While Newsmax did publish a straightforward Associated Press article on the hearing, it also trotted out the usual gang of pro-Trump right-wingers to denounce it, including a Trump lawyer and the widower of dead insurrectionist Ashi Babbitt:
Newsmax let Trump spin the hearing afterwards as well, with McCarthy uncritically writing how he "blasted the House Jan. 6 select committee for its biased, 'negative' prime-time hearing on Thursday night."
Newsmax also tried to play games over ratings in an anonymously written June 10 article:
CBS, NBC, and ABC, which switched their regular prime-time programming to air the House Select Committee on Jan. 6's first public hearing Thursday evening, saw a huge ratings decline, according to Nielsen figures.
ABC, whose fall schedule normally includes Grey's Anatomy at 8 p.m., took in the largest haul of viewers with 4.8 million, while NBC and CBS carried 3.5 million and 3.3 million, respectively.
The three outlets typically average 18 million collectively during prime time, according to The Federalist.
As we noted when the MRC played this same game, the hearing drew more than 19 million viewers across all channels that aired it.
CNS Columnists Blame Everything But Guns for Gun Massacres Topic: CNSNews.com
We saw how CNSNews.com used its "news" coverage to blame the gun massacre at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, on anything but guns -- and its actual opinion side did the same thing. Bill Donohue kicked off the stream of deflection in his May 26 column:
The ruling class, especially the media, are consumed with race and guns in America, yet the mass shootings in Uvalde, Tex. and Buffalo, like those in Dayton and El Paso in 2019, have little to do with either. It is not as though there aren't some common causes, threads of behavior that link all mass shootings. There are. But the media are looking in all the wrong places, thus providing the wrong diagnosis. This, in turn, ensures the wrong remedies.
There are five major reasons why we have mass shootings: the killer is asocial, he comes from a seriously dysfunctional family, he has mental issues, he is fascinated by violence, and red flags were ignored by almost everyone.
We need to encourage people to come forward and to act on red flags. We also need to get to these young men early on and not pretend that they are simply eccentric. Most of all, we need policies and laws that strengthen the family, paying special attention to the needs of young men.
Woman-hating men's rights activist Edward E. Bartlett devoted his May 30 column to, yes, blaming women for the massacre:
So what has happened in our culture that teenage boys have been marginalized to the point of losing their vision of a better future? When I look at the listing of student clubs at my local high school, I see Young Women in Engineering, Chicas Poderosas (“Powerful Girls”), and several clubs for LGBT students, African-Americans, and Muslims.
But nothing for boys.
Which points to the much broader problem that is referred to as the “Boy Crisis.” This term captures the undeniable fact that males are lagging in virtually every arena of society. In college, for example, 59.5% of students are women, while only 40.5% are men. In health care, the Department of Health and Human Services, where I used to work, sponsors multiple separate offices of women’s health.
And no offices of men’s health.
So why hasn’t anyone sounded the alarm? Much of the problem can be traced to the feminist movement that has spawned a pervasive “female-as-victim” narrative. This narrative neutralizes virtually every attempt to draw attention to the plight of boys and men.
A June 1 column by CNS editor Terry Jeffrey tourted how John Adams talked about "morality, religion and God" in the first presidential address inside the Capitol, adding:
What would John Adams think if he were told about the recent mass murders in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas? Would he think they were manifestations of a gun problem in America or a moral problem?
To pass the American tradition of freedom down to future generations we must also pass down the moral and religious foundations needed to sustain it.
A June 2 column by R. Emmett Tyrrell also wanted to distract from guns:
Possibly some people are going, in light of these shocking events, to conclude that America is confronted with something far more serious even than gun violence. They are right. We are confronted with living in a violent culture. No one ever mentions it, but we are. I seldom watch television. I watch the evening news, and that is about all. But even in watching the evening news, I see trailers for astoundingly coarse shows that are thought to be entertainments. Recently, I saw a man put a revolver to another man's head. After that, I lost interest. Who knows what happened? I saw monstrous vehicles running down pedestrians; I guess they were pedestrians. I saw monstrous monsters. The world of Televisionland is inhabited by the monstrous and the fanciful.
It is hard to believe that ordinary Americans come home from work, turn on the television, and sink in with an evening of mayhem and madness, but apparently, they do. No wonder so many people have so much trouble sleeping. Then there is the rock music, the talk shows, the game shows, and the weather reports. No, I am only joking about the weather reports, but I have no doubts that the day will come when inclement weather will be reported with genuine thunder, pouring rain, lightning across the screen, and tornados on a particularly blusterous day.
These solitary gunmen are the symptom of something far more pervasive than gun violence. The bearers of our culture — you and me and the loudmouthed politicians now denouncing guns — have got to rid our culture of coarseness and violence. It will not happen.
A June 3 column by white nationalist-adjacent Ilana Mercer (also posted at WorldNetDaily) lashed out at schools themselves for promoting "anti-white racism":
The Stupid Party says, "Just arm the teachers." You want to train and arm teachers and faculty staff members to protect your kids? Have you seen what falls under the category "teacher" and faculty? Seen the people who zealously inculcate ungrammatical pronoun illiteracy? Who promote and further entrench systemic anti-white racism and exotic age-inappropriate sexuality? Have you seen these mountains of flesh videoing themselves gyrating obscenely, sexual exhibitionists in flagrante delicto, under whose tutelage “sexual curiosities, once called perversions, flourish”? Give guns to the same "dedicated" pedagogues who took two years off for COVID?
Get your kids the hell out of U.S. schools!
American schools, incidentally, are well capitalized. They have active-shooter training and security protocols in place. What they don't have is decent human capital.
Decades of feminization, emasculation, and preferential hiring account for America’s low-intelligence, self-serving work force. This malevolent matriarchy-in-the-making increasingly lacks the higher-order capacity for altruism and heroism.
Catholic priest-turned-right-wing activist Michael Orsi deflected as well in a June 13 column:
These slaughters always raise the same questions: Why do such tragedies occur? Were there no warning signs which someone might have spotted? How did security procedures fail so miserably?
And they bring forth the same proposed solutions: Provide better mental health services so troubled individuals can receive help. Keep those individuals from getting their hands on guns. Ban guns altogether.
Then, following the principle of never-let-a-crisis-go-to-waste, they bring forth legislation to increase funding of favorite government programs, and expand bureaucratic regulation of our lives.
The questions may or may not be relevant to the problem. The proposed solutions may or may not do any good. But they never quite get to the heart of the matter: evil.
The problem isn’t guns; it’s godlessness.
You think taking away guns will make society less violent, more humane? Good luck with that.
No mention, of course, of the inconvenient fact that the shooter couldn't have killed that many kids in that short of time if he didn't have a gun.
MRC Sports Blogger Lashes Out At Women Playing The Wrong Sport, Having Snacks Named After Them Topic: Media Research Center
Media Research Center sports blogger John Simmons may be hiding his Lia Thomas transphobia behind a concern for women's sports, but that doesn't mean he actually likes women playing sports. Simmons had a meltdown in an April 6 post because the makers of Cracker Jack introduced a "Cracker Jill" variant:
If you've ever gone to a professional baseball game, you'll likely end up buying a package of Cracker Jacks. But the next time you go, you might have to get the woke version of this iconic snack.
To celebrate "the women who break down barriers in sports," Frito-Lay announced they will be donating $200,000 to the Women's Sports Foundation and that the mascot for the caramel-coated popcorn will now be "Cracker Jill," with women cartoon characters from five different ethnicities replacing the big, bad white male on the snack's packaging.
That's strike one for stupidity.
Simmons then oddly invoked his hatred of Thomas to justify his hatred of a delicious snack:
Okay, but can we really celebrate women's sports if we no longer keep strict boundaries between men and women in sports?
After all, Lia Thomas just decided he wanted to be a female and has thrown women's collegiate swimming into chaos. Every time a state passes a bill to keep men from being in women's sports, society erupts in disbelief that someone would have the common sense to maintain a boundary between the genders.
So as it turns out, society at large really does not care about women, and therefore the snack company cannot properly celebrate them.
Sorry Frito-Lay, that's three strikes you're out at the old woke virtue-signaling game.
In a May 2 post, Simmons mocked a woman playing men's baseball under the headline "Some Crying In Baseball?"
Last night was a historic night for the MLB’s partner league, the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB), but for the wrong reasons.
In a game between the Staten Island Ferryhawks and the Gastonia Honey Hunters, Kelsie Whitmore became the first woman to start in an ALPB game, batting ninth for the Ferryhawks and going 0-2 while being hit by a pitch. Whitmore has five prior years of experience pitching for the U.S. women’s baseball team.
Sorry to be the one to rain on the parade, but hopefully we only see men in the MLB as long as it is in existence.
Men should have leagues of their own where they compete against other top male performers, and the same goes for women. If Whitmore is so concerned about competing at the highest level, then she should find the highest level possible for women in this sport.
Blurring the lines between the genders in any sport only leads to confusion and ultimately, nothing beneficial. We have to ask ourselves why we think a woman participating in a male sports league would be a good thing. Is it for the sake of “progress,” which is today’s codeword for breaking down basic perceptions of reality and how to keep a society functioning, or rather because we think that women earn an extra level of value by competing with men? Both of these motives are extremely harmful to society at large, and applauding people like Whitmore for their actions only makes the problem worse.
The analysis and only logical take on these situations might seem repetitive and overused, but it bears repeating because apparently people still need to hear it.
Just like a man to mock women for being too emotional and insisting they can't do a job as well as a man.
Simmons used a May 5 post to dismiss female athletes who have opinions on abortion that don't conform tohis right-wing views as nothing but "lesbians and hardcore feminists" who should be ignored because their sports aren't popular:
The potential overturn of Roe v Wade as a national precedent has predictably drawn countless knee-jerk reactions from left-wing crazies who want to keep the practice of murdering babies going strong.
Some of these radicals are in the sports world in all the places you’d expect to find them: the WNBA, former Olympians … and of course, Billie Jean King.
In no way is it surprising that a league full of lesbians and hardcore feminists would be against anything that goes against “a woman’s right to choose,” and it is even less surprising that the WNBA is making it a priority to use their platform to advocate for voting for politicians that support abortion.
It might be effective too, if more than a handful of people had ever even seen a WNBA game.
Simmons went on to lecture: "It’s not a woman’s right to 'choose' to kill a baby for convenience, it is murder cloaked as 'healthcare.'" If abortion is murder, Simmons should be demanding that women be imprisoned and even executed for having abortions, but he was silent about that logical endpoint.
NEW ARTICLE: Chuck Norris' Cash Grab Topic: WorldNetDaily
The former action star is abusing his WorldNetDaily column to shill for gold and survival-food companies that pay him to be their spokesman -- and WND seems totally cool with it. Read more >>
MRC Keeps Acting As Elon Musk's PR Firm Topic: Media Research Center
Because Elon Musk has started spouting right-wing talking points and is trying to buy Twitter, the Media Research Center has deemed him an expert on everything. Autumn Johnson was mad that President Biden wouldn't take economic advice from Musk in a June 3 post:
President Joe Biden seemingly dismissed Elon Musk’s concerns that the economy was headed for a downturn.
When asked about Musk’s comments, Biden dismissively responded to the Tesla CEO’s economic concerns:
"While Elon Musk is talking about that, Ford is increasing their investment overwhelmingly," Biden said according to Reuters. "Ford is increasing investment and building new electric vehicles. Six thousand new employees, union employees I might add, in the Midwest."
Biden then wished Musk “lots of luck on his trip to the moon."
The comments from the president came after Musk wrote in a company email that he had a “super bad feeling” about the U.S. economy.
Reuters reported that Musk told employees that ten percent of salaried jobs at Tesla would be cut in response to a downturn in the economy.
Speaking of which, Johnson cheered the next day that Musk's Twitter deal "just avoided a lengthy review period" with the federal government declining to do an antitrust review of the deal. She also served as a Musk PR person by hyping Musk's alleged concerns about the number of bot accounts on Twitter. That is apparently going tobe Musk's -- and, thus the MRC's -- narrative as a way for him to weasel out of the deal, as Alexander Hall enthused in a June 6 post:
As Tesla CEO and free speech advocate Elon Musk has fought to acquire Twitter, he demanded the platform reveal how many of its users may be spam or fake accounts. His legal team accused the platform of deliberately hiding information amid Musk’s investigation.
Musk’s attorneys blasted Twitter leadership in a June 6 letter to Twitter Chief Legal Officer Vijaya Gadde. “Twitter has, in fact, refused to provide the information that Mr. Musk has repeatedly requested since May 9, 2022 to facilitate his evaluation of spam and fake accounts on the company’s platform,” says the letter, which was posted on the Securities and Exchange Commission website.
“[Musk] does not believe the company’s lax testing methodologies are adequate so he must conduct his own analysis,” the letter noted “The data he has requested is necessary to do so.” The letter explained that Musk “believes the company is actively resisting and thwarting his information rights (and the company’s corresponding obligations) under the merger agreement.”
Jeffrey Clark gushed even harder over a Musk opinion in another June 6 post:
Tesla CEO Elon Musk warned of “population collapse” in China as a result of tyrannical government policies that devalue human life.
“Most people still think China has a one-child policy,” Musk said in a June 6 tweet. “China had its lowest birthdate ever last year, despite having a three-child policy! At current birth rates, China will lose ~40% of people every generation! Population collapse,” Musk tweeted in response to a article headlined “Could China’s population start falling?”
Clark didn't mention the inconvenient fact that just a few months earlier, the MRC was criticizing Musk for his cozy ties to China, which it memory-holed once he started spouting right-wing talking points and got interested in buying Twitter. There was also no mention of the fact that Musk is so dependent on China for materials used in making Teslas that his purchase of Twitter raises national security questions regarding privacy of user data, since China could use Tesla's dependence on Chinese materials to force Musk to give it information on users who are critical of China.
But who cares about facts when there are right-wing narrataives to advance? Which is why Johnson spent a June 9 post hyping how "A new story suggested on Wednesday that Twitter agreed to provide Elon Musk with raw data concerning the platform’s bot accounts." And a June 17 post by Clark touted Musk's purported commitment to free speech:
Tesla CEO Elon Musk defended free speech online and fielded questions from Twitter employees, according to a leaked video call.
“You can communicate with millions of people on Twitter. That’s just an incredibly important thing,” Musk told Twitter staff during a June 16 all-employee call. “I think it’s essential to have free speech and to be able to communicate freely.”
Twitter Chief Marketing Officer Leslie Berland asked Musk about “content moderation,” a leftist euphemism for censorship, during the call.
“The standard is much more than not offending people,” he added. “The standard is — should be — that [Twitter users] are very entertained and informed.”
But a few hours before Clark's post was made live, Musk demonstrated his real feelings about free speech when he fired SpaceX employees who criticized him. Clark made no mention of that in his post.
Cathierine Salgado hyped another Musk pearl of wisdom in a June 20 post:
“Is TikTok destroying civilization?” Elon Musk tweeted June 17. “Or perhaps social media in general.” Hyperbole? Perhaps, but maybe not considering new revelations about TikTok’s reported data sharing with China.
BuzzFeed News reported the same day as Musk’s tweet that it reviewed tapes of TikTok employees making statements that indicate its parent company, Chinese Communist Party (CCP)-tied ByteDance, accessed non-public U.S. user data from TikTok. “Everything is seen in China,” one member of TikTok’s Trust and Safety department said during a September 2021 meeting, according to BuzzFeed.
As we've noted, the MRC has been parroting attacks on TikTok that were apparently fed to it by Facebook through a Republican consulting firm. Salgado made no mention of that. But then, for the MRC, it's all about helping Musk win, and JosephVazquez literally invoked that in a June 21 post headlined "MUSK WIN":
Twitter’s Board of Directors told the platform's shareholders to accept the world’s richest man’s $44 billion takeover deal, according to a new government filing.
The filing specifically told shareholders that it “unanimously recommends that you vote” for “the adoption of the merger agreement” with Tesla CEO Elon Musk. Musk reportedly “listed the approval of the deal by shareholders as one of several ‘unresolved matters’ related to the Twitter deal” during an interview at the Qatar Economic Forum. The document also stated that the board "unanimously" agreed that "the merger agreement is advisable and the merger and the other transactions contemplated by the merger agreement are fair to, advisable and in the best interests of Twitter and its stockholders; and (2) adopted and approved the merger agreement, the merger and the other transactions contemplated by the merger agreement."
With Musk seeming apparently ready to take over the platform and make crucial changes to its bloated censorship apparatus, it looks as if Silicon Valley oligarchs may have finally lost one of its core vehicles to control online speech just before the 2022 midterm elections.
Vazquez also rehashed the MRC's attacks on social media over the Hunter Biden October surprise before the 2020 election, declaring that "A whopping 45 percent of Biden voters surveyed in a Media Research Center poll weren’t aware of the Hunter Biden scandal in part because Big Tech censored it." Vazquez didn't mnention that this poll was conducted by The Polling Company, a Republican firm founded by Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway, making its independence and reliability highly suspicious.
CNS Pushes Pro-Gun Spin, Deflection After Texas School Massacre Topic: CNSNews.com
Just as it did after the Buffalo massacre, CNSNews.com went into defense mode after the massacre at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. A May 25 article by Susan Jones grumbled about President Biden's remarks following the shooting:
The president blamed the "gun lobby," the reflexive response of people who believe gun bans are the solution. There was no mention of hardening schools with metal detectors or other serious security measures used to prevent mass shootings at airports, government buildings, even museums.
Jones went on to gush that Fox News host Laura Ingraham "made the point that 51 people were shot and killed in Chicago, just in the month of April."By contrast, another article by Jones that day praised Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton for reliably spouting the gun lobby's post-massacre talking points:
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and Texas Lt.-Gov. Dan Patrick told Fox News in separate interviews on Tuesday that one way to minimize school shootings is to "harden the targets."
Paxton said "absolutely" it's possible to arm teachers: "That's something that should be done. They are the ones on the ground. They are right there.
"If we're going to save these kids and stop mass shootings from occurring, we have to have people that are prepared and trained to react appropriately and quickly with urgency, because we just don't have the resources to get law enforcement there quickly. This has to be part of the solution."
Yet another "news" article by Jones that day cited a "bitter screed" by MSNBC host Joe Scarborough calling for increased gun regulation, then tried to reframe the massacre to distract from the fact that the shooter was heavily armed: "The 18-year-old gunman who killed 19 children and two teachers at an Uvalde, Texas elementary school came from a broken home. He reportedly shot and seriously wounded his grandmother, with whom he was living, before acting out the veiled threats he made on social media."
Craig Bannister served as stenographer for an anti-abortion fanatic, writing that "'It’s totally despicable' for Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) to try to justify the mass slaughter of millions of unborn babies by vilifying Second Amendment supporters, pro-life advocate and Live Action Founder Lila Rose said Wednesday." Another Bannister article hyped pro-gun zealot Dana Loesch claiming that "Instead of blaming legal gun owners, Democrats should be looking at the influences that shaped the individual who was personally responsible for the shooting."
Like its Media Research Center parent, CNS lashed out Democratic Texas gubernatorial candidate Beto O'Rourke for channeling anger over the massacre during a press briefing led by his Republican opponent, Gov. Greg Abbott; a May 25 article by Melanie Arter was headlibned "Democrat Beto O’Rourke Interrupts Gov. Abbott’s Press Conference on School Shooting to Make a Political Statement." Of course, CNS has never accused anyone spouting pro-gun talking points of making political statements.
The next day, Arter gave a platform to a Republican senator to uncritically spout more gun lobby talking points:
Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) told Fox Business’ “Mornings with Maria Bartiromo” on Wednesday that it’s “not acceptable” to say that the 18-year-old Uvalde school shooter is going to “wipe out gun ownership across the country” for “responsible gun owners.”
“We all have incredible grief in this. Let me first say thank you to folks in the Border Patrol community and the local law enforcement that responded incredibly rapidly in this situation to be able to engage the challenges of how you deal with a needle in a haystack at this point,” the senator said.
“There are millions and millions of gun owners in America, and to be able to say this one 18-year-old is now going to wipe out gun ownership across the country is absolutely not acceptable for the responsible gun owners that are out there that are trying to identify why this 18-year-old went and buys guns for his 18th birthday, shoots his grandmother, and then goes to elementary school and kills 7-year-olds. He’s irrational and unthinkable in so many ways,” he added.
By contrast, a May 26 article by Jones highlighting Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin's call for a "good faith invitation" to Republicans to discuss gun regulation injected other viewpoints and much editoralizing. Jones sneered that Durbvin "didn't say" that he supports "an 'assault' weapons ban" and added that "the National Rifle Association does oppose the two Democrat bills" regarding gun regulation.
More deflection came in a May 26 article by Craig Bannister touting how "former NFL safety-turned-evangelist" Jack Brewer declared that "a godless upbringing, combined with the influence of media and godless teachers, has left the minds of children – like the Uvalde shooter – confused" and "embracing sin." Contrast that uncritical treatment with his hostile response later that day to Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer pointing out how Republicans refuse to do anything about gun violence:
Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) used the deadly Uvalde, Texas shooting to repeatedly vilify Make-America-Great-Again (“MAGA”) Republicans, in a Senate speech pitching his "Domestic Terrorism Protection Act" on Thursday.
“No amount of bloodshed seems to be enough for MAGA Republicans,” Schumer said, adding that Americans are sick of hearing “the same string of hollow words from the MAGA Republicans that never lead to action.”
“MAGA Republicans don't want to get the results,” Schumer claimed. He smeared MAGA Republicans again while praising Texas Democrat gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke for interrupting a press conference by Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott:
Bannister did not disprove anything Schumer said, making it impossible for him to claim there was any sort of "smear."
Arter returned to stenography mode with a May 26 article parroting a Republican congressman's claim that "The Bipartisan Background Checks Act (HR 8), which Democrats are demanding that the Senate pass, would not have stopped the Uvalde school shooter from purchasing weapons." Another article that day from intern Stephanie Samsel hyped right-wing radio host Mark Levin ranting that an NBA coach was a "moron" and "derelict" for having an opinion about the massacre that didn't agree with his.
CNS also made sure to hype claims that police on the scene did little to stop the shooter while the massacre was going on in another apparent attempt to shift blame away from guns:
Meanwhile, Arter was in stenography mode again. In a May 27 article, she let the mayor of Uvalde play politics by requesting that the government spend money on mental health instead of "sending billions of dollars to countries 'that don’t even like us,'" while being silent on the fact that the previous month, Texas Gov. Abbott cut $211 miliion in funding to the agency that oversees the state's mental health programs. And she wrote what was essentially a press release for the gun lobby in a May 28 article:
National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre addressed the Uvalde school shooting at the group’s national convention in Houston, Texas, on Friday, saying that restricting the rights of law-abiding citizens to own firearms is not the answer to gun violence.
“There are absolutely certain things we can and must do. Where we part ways with the president and those in his party is on the policy question, and what we can and should do to prevent the hate-filled vile monsters who walk among us from committing their evil. Restricting the fundamental human right of law-abiding Americans to defend themselves is not the answer. It never has been,” he said.
“Each year, over 1 million law-abiding men and women use a firearm to save their own lives and the lives of their loved ones. That is over 1 million innocent Americans every year who owe their lives and the lives of their loved ones to their 2nd Amendment rights. Taking away their right to self-defense is not the answer, but there are certain common sense things we can and we must do,” LaPierre said.
“We need to protect our schools, because our children deserve at least and in fact more protection than our banks, stadiums, and government buildings. They are our most treasured and precious resource, and they deserve safety and protection,” he said.
Arter stayed in stenography mode for a May 31 article in which she uncritically transcribed a Republican congresswoman blaming single-parent families for the massacre. A June 2 article by Jenny Olohan promoted Ingraham's baseless conspiracy theory that the shooter's marijuana use caused the massacre. And Bannister gushed that day how "In May, U.S. firearm sales surpassed one million for a record 34th straight month, as Americans sought protection from mass shootings - as well as from politicians pushing for more laws infringing on citizens’ gun rights," apparently obvious to the fact that the right-wing "more guns, less crime" trope has failed.
MRC Plays Victim, Complains It's Being 'Censored' By TikTok Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center is quite good at helping its fellow right-wingers pretend they're victims of "big tech" when they get caught violating the rules set by social-media services, and it's certainly not going to pass up the opportunity to play victim itself.
In January, Brian Bradley whined that "Chinese Communist Party (CCP)-affiliated TikTok censored the pro-free-speech Media Research Center for the third time in three months" because MRCTV's Brittany Hughes "opined on government response measures to the COVID-19 omicron variant." Actually, Hughes ranted against mask mandates, apparently falsely claimin g that COVID "basically gives people a cold." Bradley didn't mention that. We'd link to the video, but YouTube has removed it as well.
In a Feb. 23 podcast, Tierin-Rose Mandelburg grumbled that "the Chinese Communist Party-affiliated TikTok app has been on a censorship crusade against the Media Research Center," again citing the false Hughes video. Gabriela Pariseau had an updated tally for a Feb. 28 post: "TikTok has ramped up its censorship in 2022. The platform, affiliated with the Chinese Communist Party, censored the Media Research Center three times last year and 14 times in the last two months for a total of 17 times."
As you might have noticed, MRC writers are apparently under orders to try and link TikTok to the "Chinese Communist Party" -- but not to mention that TikTok, like any other private company, Chinese or otherwise, has the right to set and enforce terms of service for the usage of its site. It's also worth noting that the MRC has a history of parroting attacks on TikTok that, it turns out, were being secretly promoted by Facebook, which makes its complaints about the service more than a bit disingenuous.
By the time of a May 25 podcast by Mandelburg, it was up to 34 incidents, adding: "TikTok is a Chinese Communist Party-affiliated app where users post short videos about whatever they please — so long as it fits within the leftist narrative.: Mandelburg has no proof of that, of course; it's part of the victim narrative to claim that conservatives who get held accountable for their words are the victim orf political bias and "censorship."
TikTok can’t seem to get rid of MRCTV no matter how hard it tries. The platform permanently banned, and then restored, MRCTV after placing 36 restrictions on the account.
The Chinese Communist Party-affiliated app “permanently banned” MRCTV “due to multiple violations of [its] Community Guidelines,” according to the notice TikTok sent MRCTV Thursday. The platform gave no specific reason for the ban, and when we attempted to “view details” of what happened, the app logged us out of our account. MRCTV appealed, and TikTok dropped the ban down to a seven-day restriction but only after it removed one more video.
TikTok’s shenanigans are nothing new for MRCTV. The platform removed 30 videos, one of which it removed twice, and restricted the account five times, all in 2022.
More examples were provided, incluaind a podcast by Mandelburg in which she ranted that "abortion is murder." Curiously, there was no mention of whether Mandelburg endorses the logical extension of that argument by imprisoning and executing women who have abortions.
Again, Pariseau made no mention of the fact that TikTok, as a private business, has the right to enforce its terms of service, nor did she disclose the fact that the MRC was being fed anti-TikTok narratives by Facebook.
WND's Massie Has (Creepy And Bizarre) Issues With Biden And Pelosi, Among Others Topic: WorldNetDaily
"The eyes are the windows to the soul," is a common saying. Another less common saying about the eyes is: "The eyes are useless when the mind is blind," which brings me to Joe Biden.
When I look at the eyes of Biden, it's like staring into a dark, dead orifice where the most malevolent of evils go unobserved only by the dumb and dumber, which I argue includes those who fancy themselves as progressive eruditionists.
Biden epitomizes the insult associated with calling a person an "empty suit." Biden is a worthless, vile, evil, wicked person who proves the words of Scripture already cited: "But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!"
We have had seriously failed presidents who were abysmally flawed human beings. Here think Jimmy Carter and disgusting excuse for a person Barack Obama. Both of these caricatures of humanity damaged the economy and misled the nation. They were dictionary references to unparalleled failures as leaders. But, Biden surpasses them both.
Biden is blind, and what's left of his mind now exists as a substance consistent with diseased oatmeal in spoiled milk. Historically informed people the world over who are honest know that Biden is nothing more than a mannequin with someone else's hand up the hem of his suit coat massaging what they confuse for his brain.
I said it the moment the news broke about politician Nancy Pelosi being barred from taking Communion at the Catholic churches in her hometown of San Francisco. I said she would immediately weep crocodile tears, pretend to be pious and together with her lapdog media go after the archbishop and the Catholic Church as a whole. I also said there would be no shortage of people supporting her manufactured jeremiads. Once again, I was spot on right. (View my Video Rant: "Pelosi Can't Take Communion: Really?")
Suffice it to say that Pelosi is a lot of things, and nearly all of them being single syllable assignations, but the last thing she is a genius. She's foolish enough to think she is above God.
I'm not sure whether it's her lifetime of having hair dyes absorbed into her brain through the scalp or if the facial contortions caused by tardive dyskinesia or the fact that she is just evil through and through, but this woman is, as they say in the street, "a real trip."
At best Pelosi should be glad that man moved into the period of grace we are in since the coming of Christ and until the return of Christ for His own – because, if we weren't in the age of grace, she would be in line for a good stoning (per verse 2 of the aforementioned passage).
The archbishop of San Francisco is responsible for preservation and faithfulness to the Catholic Church in that area and is specifically appointed to maintain the order, guidance and spiritual compliance to the church. Unlike Pelosi, who lied to get elected and lies to stay in office, the archbishop is called upon to honor and to be obedient to God and the Vatican.
I understand the obedience we're called to as such. That said, Pelosi should choke on her own words. How dare she decry the chief authority in charge of her home area as not having any business imposing his conservative views on her or the nation's tens of millions of Roman Catholics?
There was also New York Times bestselling author (cough-cough), commentator and journalist Judith Miller who was regarded as the victim of a hoax anthrax letter. Imagine that. She wrote an inaccurate series of stories, inaccurate being the politically correct way of saying she lied. Among other rewards for failure was a generous book deal for her memoirs. The list of Times shoddy journalism is legion.
The political equivalent of Sanford and Son's Fred and Aunt Esther, better known as Obama and the Obama woman, in addition to Bill and Hillary Clinton, came into political office without a pot for micturition purposes nor the proverbial window to throw same out. But in the time it took Bill Clinton to beat, rape and molest Paula Jones, Juanita Broaddrick and Kathleen Willey, the Clintons and Obamas amassed massive fortunes that enabled them to purchase multi-million dollar properties around the country and, depending upon whom you talk to, even the world. Nancy Pelosi is the princess daughter of a Baltimore, Marlyand, gangster. So it stands to reason that she would be skilled at extortion and political corruption.
The fact that there is a large group of Americans who find value and esteem in being marketed as this marginalized segregative demographic that borders on being a separate species is beyond appalling.
It is absolute truth that the only thing liberals have done for these people is give them a massive inferiority complex that has asphyxiated common sense and led to the denunciation of modernity.
Take Joe Biden, a vulgar, diaper-wearing, drunkard haunted by accusations of sexual molestation, including strong suggestions of his participating in the sexual molestation of his daughter and granddaughter.
Liberal bipedal ambulatory diseases such as the Biden family are black marks upon the fabric of America. The low expectations their kind have convinced people who value being a crayon color to embrace is worse than the body odor of Hillary Clinton.
MRC's Jean-Pierre-Bashing, Doocy-Fluffing Watch Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's maliciousnarrative of White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre as an incompetent diversity hire has continued as June started. Curtis Houck was in full sycohpantic Doocy-fluffing form in his writeup the June 2 briefing:
For the second day in a row on Thursday, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre struggled to offer even cogent spin for the Biden administration on gun control and their months-long delay in responding to the baby formula crisis. Once again, it was Fox’s Peter Doocy and CBS’s Ed O’Keefe that most agitated Jean-Pierre.
Doocy took on the gun issue and pointed out an inconvenient truth about Biden’s schedule:“If the President thinks that Congress must act immediately to end this epidemic of gun violence, is he going to bring the key players from Capitol Hill to the beach with him tonight?”
Jean-Pierre stumbled for an answer, so Doocy kept up the heat: “Isn't that a big part of candidate Biden’s whole thing that he knows how to get things done in Congress?”
When she replied that it is still part of Biden’s shtick as “he’s beaten the gun lobby before,” Doocy countered: “Then why not invite these lawmakers who haven't beaten the gun lobby and say this is how it's done?”
She ignored that, so Doocy tried to slow things down for her by saying he was granting her the premise that Biden “has a lot of legislative experience.”
Doocy wrapped with another stinging question, which was whether this last-minute gun speech was scheduled “to get people talking about something” besides baby formula and inflation.
Jean-Pierre scoffed, arguing it’s because “people have died in the last couple weeks.”
Apparently needing more time to replenish his haterade, Houck waited until the June 13 briefing to spew more hate at Jean-Pierre -- and, of course, to suck up to Doocy for parroting biased right-wing narratives:
Despite having had almost a week off due to the Summit of the Americas, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre’s performance and preparation showed zero progress during Monday’s briefing as she fumbled and jumbled her way through questions about everything from the attempted assassination of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the baby formula shortage to the economy.
Things grew cringeworthy as Jean-Pierre couldn’t muster a basic question from Fox’s Peter Doocy:“President Biden once bragged about the stock market hitting ‘record after record after record on my watch.’ How about now?” She mumbled about whether Doocy “mean[t] the stock market,”so he further broke it down: “All the gains from President Biden’s time in office have been wiped out.”
Jean-Pierre retreated to prepared answers in her binder, but couldn’t deliver them with any sort of coherence and instead insisted they’re “watching” the stock market “closely” (despite having said >back on May 18 that they don’t) and argued “we know families are concerned about inflation and the stock market” caused by “Putin’s price hike.”
“[T]he American people are well positioned to face these challenges because of the economic historic gains that we have made under this President — under this President in the last 16 months,” she added.
Doocy rephrased the question by making it more personal: “So, as you say that Americans are well positioned to weather this stock market decline, what is the President’s message to somebody who might want to retire but their 401(k) is getting wiped out?”
Jean-Pierre continued playing her game of random word generator by stating what “we get that” Americans are struggling and the administration’s “doing everything that we can to make sure that the economy is working for every — American people.” Oof.
Amid her claims that up the bloated American Rescue Plan “led to...this historic economic boom that we’re seeing with jobs,” Doocy interjected: “Didn’t it also lead to historic inflation?”
Still relying on her notes, Jean-Pierre said it’s “not how we’re seeing the American Rescue Plan.”
Houck gave away the Fox News game in his Doocy-fluffing writeup of the June 16 briefing:
With the spotlight Thursday on a January 6 Committee hearing, the White House press briefing moments prior faded to the background, but it was filled with nonsense as Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre continued to use her binder as a life raft. Despite that, she sounded divorced from reality as Fox’s Peter Doocy repeatedly scored points on domestic oil production and fact-checking President Biden on inflation.
Doocy began on inflation, doing what the press would often claim to be doing with Donald Trump (though it often crossed into political sniping):“Why is the President saying in — in — pardon — why is the President saying that inflation is worse everywhere but here?”
Jean-Pierre insisted it’s “what we have seen across the globe” and that “inflation is a global challenge, as we have said” because of the coronavirus and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
After she claimed the U.S. is doing better than the others in the G-7, Doocy called out the lies by saying he “did look globally” and these claims offered by Biden and his team (which includes Jean-Pierre) are “not true”: “U.S. has worse inflation than Germany, France, Japan, Canada, India, Italy, Saudi Arabia. So, why is he saying that?”
Jean-Pierre doubled down with some nonsensical spin: “[W]hen you talk about inflation, it is a global thing, and it is not just about the United States. This is something that everyone is feeling.”
Following some binder flipping, Jean-Pierre’s notes didn’t make much sense other than it blamed oil refineries for refusing to move production “back to pre-pandemic levels.”
Seeing as how the droning meant little in substance, Doocy asked again: “Why not drill more here in the U.S., though?”
Jean-Pierre insisted “we don't need to do that” because what’s necessary is force oil companies to use “the oil that’s out there” to “refine [it], so that — so that prices — so that capacity can go up and then prices would go down — inherently go down.”
Having shown Doocy knows way more about this than she does, Doocy moved on with another simple question: “I know the President once said that he was going to end fossil fuels. Is that now off the table?”
For the next few minutes, Jean-Pierre’s incoherence was on display thanks to her inability to answer basic questions from NBC’s Peter Alexander, The Wall Street Journal’s Catherine Lucey, and even Matt Viser of The Washington Post about when President Biden last had a test for COVID-19.
So it's all about a biased Doocy "scoring points" against a Democratic White House -- not whether the questions are fair, accurate and unbiased. As far as Houck is concerned, he can use the right-wing narratives Doocy is spreading to further his own malicious anti-Jean-Pierre narrative, and that's good enough for him. Newver mind, of coures, that his beloved Kayleigh McEnany used binder notes the same way he's now attacking Jean-Pierre for using them.
WorldNetDaily COVID misinformer extraordinaire Art Moore is at it again in a June 8 article:
A report that healthy young people are dying suddenly and unexpectedly from a mysterious syndrome has caught the eye of epidemiologists and analysts who have documented an alarming rise in excess deaths they believe is connected to the COVID-19 vaccines.
DailyMail.com reported Wednesday that in Australia, where some 95% of the population has been vaccinated for COVID-19, people under the age of 40 are being urged get their hearts checked because they may be at risk of what is being called Sudden Adult Death Syndrome, or SADS.
t's an "umbrella term to describe unexpected deaths in young people," according to the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, and it occurs in people who are otherwise healthy.
There's a U.S.-based SADS Foundation that has recorded this phenomenon for many years. And it isn't new to Australia.
But the question is why a syndrome that few people have ever heard of is being spotlighted by health officials and why young people are being urged to get a heart exam.
Dr. Peter McCullough, a world renowned cardiologist and a leading critic of the mRNA vaccines, wrote Wednesday on the website America Out Loud that because "so many physicians were duped into the taking one of the COVID-19 vaccines, they are having a hard time coming to terms with the reality that their patients are developing complications that indeed a physician could develop, including well-recognized problems such as myocarditis, blood clots, bleeding, and skin rashes and immune system problems."
"The most worrisome of all complications is death after vaccination," he wrote.
As we've come to expect from WND's COVID coverage, this story is bogus. An Australian fact-checker documented:
Some social media users have claimed “sudden adult death syndrome”, a term describing abrupt death from cardiac arrest where no specific cause can be found, is a “new disease” emerging since the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines.
The claim is false. Sudden cardiac death – also known as sudden arrhythmic death syndrome (SADS) or sudden adult death syndrome – has been documented since the 1800s and the subject of medical research since at least the 1970s. There is no evidence to suggest any link between COVID-19 vaccines and SADS.
As for the Daily Mail story that sparked the claims on social media, “There was some mis-reporting,” Dr. Elizabeth Paratz — who was referenced in the story but wasn’t contacted for comment — told us by email.
Although both the story and the headline claimed that Australia had a “new national register” for tracking SADS, it doesn’t. That project was started in 2019 in the Australian state of Victoria.
There has been no increase in SADS since the COVID-19 vaccines became widely available in 2021, Paratz said.
Furthermore, she said, “There is no signal that any vaccine, including the COVID-19 vaccines, are behind SADS cases.”
Paratz also noted that, although the Daily Mail referred to SADS as “Sudden Adult Death Syndrome,” the “A” actually stands for arrhythmic, not adult.
So: Another fake-news story from a "news" story from an outlet that has published so manyofthem. Is anyone surprised?
President Biden and Democrats favor stricter gun controls when virtually none of the Democrats’ proposals would have stopped any of the mass shooters who have plagued this country in recent years.
Instead, virtually everyone ignores the obvious reason for the dramatic increase in these tragedies: Democrats push legalizing marijuana, which has become three to four times more potent than it was only a few years ago, and according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse leads to psychosis at a rate five times greater than among those who do not smoke pot — not to mention a reported link between marijuana use and schizophrenia, paranoia, and other psychotic disorders.
But marijuana use has been linked to more and more mass shooters, including the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter who killed 17 people; the Aurora movie theater shooter, who killed 12; the Umpqua Community College shooter, who killed nine; the Texas church shooter, who killed 26 people; and the Pulse nightclub shooter, who killed 49 people.
A 2020 U.S. Secret Service study of mass attacks found that nearly half of the perpetrators had a history of substance abuse, including with marijuana and illicit drugs.
Kessler then politicized the issue by blaming Democrats for loosening marijuana laws:
Pushed by Democrats, 18 states plus D.C. have legalized recreational use of marijuana.
Almost universally, Democratic presidential candidates have favored legalizing marijuana at the federal level. Indeed, as Politico has said, "Legalizing pot is the new Democratic litmus test."
Democrats who push stricter gun control measures as a solution to mass shootings are "completely oblivious to what the legalization of marijuana has done and is doing to an entire generation of Americans — with violent consequences," [Fox News host Laura] Ingraham said.
It's sadly indicative of the right-wing media bubble that Kessler thinks Ingraham is a credible source on anything. In fact, there's no proven link between marijuana and violence, and anyone who's claiming there is is confusing correlation and causation. Further, as Media Matters has noted, a lot of people use marijuana, so if there was a direct link, there would be much more violence -- but there isn't.
It seems that Kessler is looking for a way to blame anything but guns for mass shootings.
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC Flip-Flops On Russian Disinformation Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center cheered when Russian propaganda channel RT got shut down (though it hid the fact that its fellow conservatives had shows on it) -- then complained that a search site was flagging Russian disinformation. Read more >>
The MRC's Loud, Lame War On NewsGuard Slogs Along Topic: Media Research Center
It's been a while since we checked in on the Media Research Center's loud andlame war against NewsGuard for committing the offense of documenting how conservative websites are less credible than non-conservative ones. Catherine Salgado nonsensically cheered NewsGuard for proving it wasn't biased -- despite the MRC's narrative to the contrary -- in an April 28 post:
Leftist internet traffic cop NewsGuard surprisingly put the left-wing Daily Beast in the doghouse by knocking its rating down 30.5 points for false reporting.
The service downgraded The Daily Beast in two categories, “Gathers and presents information responsibly” and “Regularly corrects or clarifies errors.” The NewsGuard “nutrition label” for The Daily Beast claims that the site “is often accurate and well-sourced,” but presents several examples deemed exceptions. Now, NewsGuard discredits The Daily Beast ’s reporting on acquitted Kenosha shooter Kyle Rittenhouse, on Florida’s mislabeled “Don’t Say Gay” bill and on the New York Post exposé of Hunter Biden. The ratings firm contacted The Daily Beast regarding the false reporting in April 2022, but had not received a response or seen a correction of the articles on the site, according to the company’s nutrition label for The Daily Beast.
By that standard, the MRC should be downgraded for mislabeling that Florida bill as an "anti-grooming" law. BBut being a greedy right-wing activist, Salgado demanded more:
The Daily Beast’s. MRC Free Speech America previously reported on how multiple leftist outlets that tried to quash the Hunter Biden laptop story still have perfect NewsGuard scores, even after The New York Times verified the story. Even more egregious, NewsGuard co-CEO Steven Brill himself tried to discredit the story, calling it a “hoax.” Does NewsGuard now have to downgrade itself? Outlets including Axios, BuzzFeed News, USA Today and The Washington Post still have 100/100 NewsGuard ratings, despite their inaccurate reporting on the Hunter Biden scandals.
As we pointed out the last time the MRC whined about this, there was plenty of reason to doubt the laptop story given its October surprise nature and the fact that it was advanced by pro-Trump pararisans like Rudy Giuliani in the midst of a heated presidential campaign; further, the New York Post offered no independent corroboration of its story, making it easy to dismiss as a political stunt.
The MRC also continued to try and interfere with NewsGuard's business affairs by hyping attacks it inspired on other companies working with NewsGuard:
An April 22 post by Joseph Vazquez gushed that "Nineteen organizations demanded Congress investigate the Orwellian partnership between leftist website ratings firm NewsGuard and the anti-parent American Federation of Teachers." Vazquez described none of those organizations as conservative -- as that would have given away the partisan nature of this attack -- but he was quite happy to point out that the demand referenced the MRC's previous attacks on NewsGuard.
An April 29 post by Salgado similarly gushed that "Tucker Carlson slammed the Pentagon’s $750,000 contract with leftist ratings firm NewsGuard on his Fox News show," huffing that "NewsGuard is not to be trusted." She also let Carlson rant that "NewsGuard is currently preparing a black list of sites that contradict the national security state’s talking points on Ukraine and Russia" without mentioning the fact that Carlson has effectively been a pro-Russia propagandist.
Salgado parroted yet another attack on the NewsGuard-AFT deal (using MRC talking points, of course) in a June 3 post citing a letter by three right-wing members of Congress condemning the deal, adding that "The letters ended with a list of questions seeking transparency around the AFT-NewsGuard partnership and the two organizations’ business practices."
Vazquez dragged NewsGuard into its war on Washington Post reporter Taylor Lorenz for reporting on right-wingers in a June 8 post complaining that the Post "still enjoys a perfect score by leftist news ratings firm NewsGuard" despite a minor kerfuffle over whether someone was actually sought for comment in a Lorenz story -- again, not about the story's contents regarding how YouTubers covered the Johnny Depp-Amber Heard. Vazquez called Lorenz's article a "smear piece" without identifying what, exactly, the "smear" was.
USA Today recently removed over 20 articles after publication leadership found one of their reporters fabricating sources. Yet ratings firm NewsGuard still gives USA Today a stunning 100/100 score for “credibility,” even after acknowledging the scandal.
NewsGuard’s “nutrition label” for USA Today still gives the outlet a perfect “credibility” score, 100/100. This means that NewsGuard scored USA Today perfectly on categories including “Regularly corrects or clarifies errors,” “Gathers and presents information responsibly,” and “Does not repeatedly publish false content.” This comes even after USA Today became embroiled in a scandal after former reporter Gabriela Miranda fabricated sources.
USA Today removed 23 stories from its site after an audit of Miranda’s work revealed multiple discrepancies. Miranda resigned from her position. NewsGuard, which touts itself as the online “credibility” arbiter, has not adjusted USA Today’s 100-percent score, despite having added the information about the source fabrication scandal to its nutrition label for the outlet.
How does NewsGuard justify maintaining USA Today’s score while openly acknowledging the outlet’s self-identified massive fail?
Perhaps because it identified the problem and corrected the situation while explaining to readers what happened. By contrast, the MRC still has yet to make any sort of public statement about the Brent Bozell ghostwriting scandal or how one of its bloggers used white nationalist links to flesh out his posts.
And that's why the MRC is lashing out at NewsGuard -- because it wants its fellow right-wingers to get away with the same kind of shoddy journalism it practices, and it can't handle being held up to the same standard it demands non-right-wing operations follow.