MRC Continues Attacking TikTok While Also Whining It's A Victim Of Its 'Censorship' Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center has a complicated relationship with TikTok -- continually complaining it's being "censored" (read: it repeatedly failed to comply with a private company's terms of service) while also attacking TikTok for its alleged affiliation with the "Chinese Communist Party" -- attacks that were secretly fed to it by TikTok competitor Facebook, something the MRC has yet to fess up to. The attacks -- and the victimhood -- have continued since the last time we checked in.
A July 21 post by Catherine Salgado hyped a poll claiming that "More than half of Americans want app stores to remove TikTok following revelations that Chinese employees can directly access U.S. user data." Hyping that China is a threat through TikTok is a keypart of Facebook's attack line, which it laundered through a right-wing consulting firm called Targeted Victory. Salgado followed that with a July 27 post promoting right-wing podcaster (and benificiary of previous MRC defenses) JoeRogan ranting that doing anything on TikTok "ends with China having all of your data."
Then it was victimhood time, and it took both Joseph Vazquez and Gabriela Pariseau to fully complain about it in an Aug. 1 post:
The Chinese Communist Party-tied TikTok reached the climax of its lengthy battle with the Media Research Center’s video division by entirely axing it from the platform without notice.
An MRCTV staff member opened the TikTok App to find that the account was “banned” — again — but not before the platform removed five more videos.
TikTok’s latest censor blitz came just three weeks after the platform permanently banned MRCTV on May 26. TikTok reduced the initial sentence from a permanent ban to a weeklong suspension, but one week after the suspension ended, the Chinese-Communist Party-tied platform removed MRCTV. Between Aug. 25, 2021 and June 15, 2022, TikTok censored MRCTV a total of 45 times. Forty-two of those cases were in 2022 alone. When the platform banned MRCTV the second time, the account had amassed over 79,000 followers.
The platform most recently restricted MRCTV from posting any new content and didn’t respond to MRC’s eight attempts to appeal or request comment. Instead of answering MRC’s inquiries, TikTok just decided to nuke the account.
Apparently, getting caught violating TikTok's terms of service 45 times and repeating using the MRC platforms to attack TikTok wasn't sufficient justification. No proviate business is oblifgated to serve every single customer, especially after they repeatedly violate the rules and loudly complain about it. Interestingly, Vazquez and Pariseau did not explain why the MRC is entitled to abuse upon the private property of others and just simply go elsewhere that they're not "censored"; instead, they whined that "TikTok is apparently easily triggered by conservative content that doesn’t serve the propaganda of its communist overlords." They provideno evidence for their accusation that TikTok's "communist overlords" specifically demanded that MRCTV be platformed -- that just a figment of their lively, partisan imagination.
They did cite a couple videos that were posted at MRCTV's TikTok account before it was suspended. One was of Brittany Hughes spewing at drag queens, and another was of Nick Kangadis creepily "talking about straight pride and his favorite things about being a straight white male.
Despite having repeatedly been shown that TikTok doesn't want policy-breakers around, the MRC continued to harass TikTok (with still no mention of getting fed attack lines by Facebook. An Aug. 15 post by Jeffrey Clark promoted a Forbes report that "Over 300 employees at TikTok and its parent company, ByteDance, previously worked for Communist Chinese state media publications"; surprisingly, Clark obtained comment from TikTok's owner, ByteDance, which denied it. This being the MRC, Clark went on to claim "that statement appears to contradict a search by MRC Business that uncovered at least seven individuals on LinkedIn that claim to be current employees of ByteDance or TikTok while also claiming to have previously worked at Chinese state media outlets or companies."
The next day, Vazquez melted down -- complete with lots of scare quotes and uses "so-called" -- over the New York Times highlighting election misinformation on TikTok:
The New York Times is having another meltdown over so-called “election misinformation” on social media and trying to pressure Big Tech companies to up their already bloated censorship operations.
Times technology reporter Tiffany Hsu screeched in an Aug. 14 story< headlined: “On TikTok, Election Misinformation Thrives Ahead of Midterms.” Hsu mourned that the Chinese Communist Party-tied platform’s “poor track record during recent voting abroad does not bode well for elections in the U.S., researchers said.” In fact, fretted Hsu, TikTok is supposedly “shaping up to be a primary incubator of baseless and misleading information, in many ways as problematic as Facebook and Twitter, say researchers who track online falsehoods.”
Who in the world crowned the propaganda-spewing Times the Arbiter of Truth?
Who crowned Vazquez the arbiter of what is and is not misinformation? He didn't say.
The MRC is really angry that TikTok wants to stop election misinformation -- as if they feel threatened by fact-checkers even though their account has been suspended -- because Salgado ranted further about it in an Aug. 17 post:
Foreign interference in U.S. elections? Chinese Communist Party-linked TikTok launched an in-app Elections Center in the lead-up to the 2022 U.S. midterm elections.
On Aug. 17, TikTok released a statement detailing, “Our commitment to election integrity.” TikTok described its new Elections Center, with “authoritative” resources in 45 languages, including live election reports and information about “who and what” is on the ballot provided by Ballotpedia. TikTok will also label content across its platform related to the midterm elections, allowing users “to click through” to the Elections Center.
This comes as the U.S. House of Representatives’ Chief Administrative Officer Catherine Szpindor just issued a “cyber advisory” on TikTok, labeling the app “high-risk” because of China’s access to personal data on it.
TikTok, which is owned by Chinese Communist Party (CCP)-tied ByteDance, also stated it would ban so-called “election misinformation, harassment - including that directed towards election workers - hateful behavior, and violent extremism.”
Only at the MRC would fact-checking and trying to stop harassment and violence against election workers be considered "foreign interference."
It appears that Joseph Farah is falling for his own website's propaganda against COVID vaccines. He ranted in his July 22 column:
Joe Biden promised Americans that if they got vaccinated they could not and would not get COVID-19.
Another promise broken.
In fact, to prove it was a lie, after Biden received four shots, he contracted the virus, experiencing symptoms and being isolated from his staff.
To prove he's a serial liar, Biden answered a question about his latest plans to address a rise in the disease. "Getting vaccinated," he insisted.
He's not the only one sticking to the script.
Biden's top coronavirus adviser, Dr. Anthony Fauci – who tested positive for COVID-19 last month after being quadruple vaccinated – acknowledged in a recent interview that the COVID vaccines "don't protect overly well" from infection. But he maintained they still have value.
He appears to be unable to comprehend the fact that the Omicron variant is more contagious than previous variants and it evades protection from the current vaccine -- though the vaccines do continue to offer protection against serious illness and death, as evidenced by the fact that neither Biden nor Fauci fell seriously ill. Still he continued:
But an analysis of Pfizer and Moderna COVID vaccine trials found the mRNA shots are more likely to land a recipient in the hospital than to provide protection from a severe adverse event. The findings were similar to those of a recent pre-print analysis that found "no evidence of a reduction in overall mortality in the mRNA vaccine trials." And a new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that two doses of the mRNA vaccines increased the risk of COVID-19 infection during the omicron wave.
That's what the DATA shows.
Wrong. As we documented, WND and other anti-vaxxers misinterpreted that study, which actually said the (slightly) higher risk of hospitalization was only for those who had received only the initial two-shot vaccination, but it was lower for those who had gotten fully vaccinated with boosters and lowest for those who had been previously infected and were fully vaccinated.
Remember what Biden said when mandating the shots? He warned last December of "a winter of severe illness and death for the unvaccinated." And he scolded the COVID vaccine skeptics by repeatedly declaring the nation is experiencing a "pandemic of the unvaccinated."
Dr. Peter McCullough, a prominent cardiologist, epidemiologist and critic of the COVID vaccines, wondered Thursday how Biden will walk back that statement.
No walkback is necessary: unvaccinated people made up a notable majority of COVID deaths during last winter's surge. Farah concluded:
However the consensus among physicians and scientists has been that, regardless of vaccination status, the current BA.4 and BA.5 omicron subvariants, while very contagious, present with mild symptoms in most people.
I'm glad I never yielded to "experts" by taking the "vaccine," if you could call it that.
In fact, hundreds of Americans are continuing to die every day from COVID, and omicron is the strain they're dying from -- and the unvaccinated are still the primary victims. It's sad to see someone who is still recovering from a series of strokes treat his own life so cavilerly in an attempt to prove a political point.
The Anti-Context MRC Demands That Cruz Be Put In Context Topic: Media Research Center
You know how the Media Research Center continually complains that fact-checkers call out their fellow right-wingers for taking non-conservatives out of context, while also demanding that conservatives always be quoted in full context? Well, the latter happened again. Aidan Moorehouse did the complaining in a July 18 post:
This weekend, Texas Senator Ted Cruz said (unsurprisingly) that he thought Obergefell v. Hodges — the 2015 Supreme Court decision that legalized same-sex marriage nationwide — was wrongly decided. Predictably, the panel of CNN’s New Day on Monday morning took Cruz’s remarks out of context to bash the Texas Senator and the “right extreme of the base” that is still opposed to gay marriage in today’s enlightened America.
CNN’s Kaitlan Collins, filling in for New Day co-host Brianna Keilar, set the stage for the panel by playing two clips of Cruz from his show The Cloakroom:
Obergefell, like Roe v. Wade, ignored two centuries of our nation's history. Marriage was always an issue that was left to the states. [SCREEN WIPE] InObergefell, the Court said, no, we know better than you guys do and now every state must — uh, must sanction and — and permit gay marriage. Uh — I think that decision was clearly wrong when it was decided. Um — it was the Court overreaching.
But a much longer six-minute clip of the episode posted on Twitter by Cruz’s special advisor for communications Steve Guest provided the much-needed context for what the Senator said:
Dobbs, what the Supreme Court said is Roe is different because it’s the only one of the cases that involves the taking of a human life and that’s qualitatively different. I agree with that proposition...To be honest, I don’t think this Court has any appetite for overturning any of these decisions. I think Justice Thomas was being a purist in terms of what the Constitution means, but I don’t think they’re — there are other Justices — uh, interested in going down that road.
Thus, the following reactions are based on an inaccurate picture of what Cruz actually said.
Actually, there's no reason not to assume that Cruz wants to overturn Obergefell if he thought there was even a slight chance it could be possible -- which is something that Clarence Thomas indisputably opened the door to when he wrote in his concurring opinion that Obergefell should be overturned like Roe was. It's also indisputable that, despite Moorehouse's suggestion to the contrary, the Republican base is anti-LGBT and Cruz did indeed pander to them with his anti-Obergefell rhetoric. Still, Moorehouse whined:
There’s a lot wrong with this panel. The smugness, the faux-outrage at a conservative Christian holding conservative Christian views, the Loving v. Virginia non sequitur. But the cardinal sin of this panel is that it completely mischaracterizes what Cruz actually said.
But of course you can’t let those pesky facts get in the way of a good story, can you CNN?
Moorehouse didn't mention that his employer exists in large part to crank out faux outrage that non-conservatives hold non-conservative views.
NEW ARTICLE: More Fossil-Fueled Bias From CNS Topic: CNSNews.com
As befits a "news" organization whose parent has accepted money from fossil fuel interests, CNSNews.com has repeatedly run to the defense of the oil and gas industry over federal leases and against accusations that they're profiting off of gas price hikes. Read more >>
MRC Loved Bashing (And Insulting) Stelter For Daring To Criticize Right-Wing Media Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center is glad that CNN canceled Brian Stelter's show "Reliable Sources" -- in large part because he regularly criticized the right-wing media bubble the MRC resides in. That required the MRC to play a lot of whataboutism to distract from said criticism; so apprently personal was that criticism that it felt it needed to be more hostile to Stelter than to most of its delcared enemies. Let's review some of those anti-Stelter rantings from the past several months, shall we?
In a June 2021 post, headlined "C-SPAN vs. Stelter: Enjoy the Verbal Beating the CNN Host Endured," Scott Whitlock cheered how "callers hammered the partisan hackery over at CNN" and posted "video of Stelter sitting through that call." While the show also appeared then-MRC research director Rich Noyes, Whitlock pointed out that they were not on at the same time -- not surprising, given that it's MRC policy to never share an media appearance with a critic of right-wing media.
Also that month, Nicholas Fondacaro guest-hosted Tim Graham's podcast, where he complained that Stelter -- whom he hatefully called "Mr. Potato Head" -- accurately pointed out that right-wing critics like him were not "good-faith actors." But he only had whataboutism to offer in return: "But meanwhile, he’s the guy who, in 2017, was among the first to start pushing claims that President Trump was mentally compromised and a danger to himself and others. He also allowed a guest to claim Trump had killed more people than Hitler, Stalin, and Mao combined."
A November 2021 column by Tim Graham complained that Stelter described how the right-wing media machine works; instead of correcting him, Graham served up only whataboutism:
To process Democrats losing the governor’s race in Virginia, Stelter quoted from leftist Washington Post blogger Greg Sargent that while Republican Glenn Youngkin campaigned on a softer rhetoric in opposing critical race theory in the schools, he capitalized on right-wing media driving a much more “visceral and hallucinogenic” version of this argument directly to the base. They apparently were hallucinating with “daily propaganda coming from the likes of Laura Ingraham.”
The argument here is that Republican candidates can sound more reasonable because they have a media "machine" that provides all the hardcore base-stoking rhetoric. Stelter said it “makes a lot of sense” to think of Fox and Newsmax as “base turnout operations.” As usual, Stelter pretends that CNN’s hardcore base-stoking rhetoric from Jim Acosta & Co. doesn’t allow the Democrats to run milder campaigns.
Stelter complained about all the “propaganda and grifting” from the right about local school-board issues in Loudoun County, Virginia. He claimed there were more than 400 references to the county on Fox News in 2021. But he never mentioned the sexual assaults in high schools there as an issue. Was that “grifting” to mention? This misses the fact that the left makes national news out of local crimes and controversies all the time. See George Floyd in Minneapolis, or Michael Brown in Ferguson.
The whataboutism continued even after Graham noted that Stelter snarked about being criticized by Graham's employer:
Stelter sensed danger from conservatives: “Hold on. My friends at NewsBusters are going to listen to this and they’re going to say you’re saying that conservatives are dumb. This needs to be simple.”
[Author Brian] Rosenwald claimed he wasn’t saying they were dumb, but they need radio to be “kind of like a soap opera,” because “nuance is boring.” He claimed he’s talked to Republicans who said “when we talk about the debt ceiling, or the filibuster makes us compromise, that’s boring, that’s nuance, that’s process. People don’t want to hear about that. They want to hear something big, bold, exciting, dramatic.”
Then these two Brians turned to the arrogant theory that liberals have nothing like Fox News or conservative talk radio on their side. They talked about how liberals listen to NPR’sMorning Edition instead of Sean Hannity or Mark Levin, as if that show isn’t one-sided propaganda. Oh, but that taxpayer-funded bubble sounds so calm and urbane!
This again completely misses that CNN and MSNBC are the obvious equivalent to Fox News, that they are talk television more than “news channels.” Rosenwald actually discussed how liberals could really use a billionaire like Rupert Murdoch to found something like Fox, because there’s a “huge imbalance in politics and in political media.”
Because Graham is so invested in his own whataboutism, he doesn't date point out that its arguments can be reflected back right on him: If CNN and MSNBC "are the obvious equivalent to Fox News," he should be criticizing Fox News' bias as much as he attacks those at the other channels.
In an April 7 post, Fondacaro cheered a right-wing student who repeated right-wing narratives attacking CNN and defending Fox News at Stelter during a University of Chicago panel:
That airing of the laundry was followed up with two hard-hitting questions. “With mainstream corporate journalists becoming little more than apologists and cheerleaders for the regime, is it time to finally declare that the canon of journalistic ethics is dead or no longer operative,” he asked in his first.
And in his second question, [Christopher] Phillips made the astute observation that “[a]ll of the mistakes of the mainstream media, and CNN in particular, seem to magically all go in one direction.” And that brought him to wonder: “Are we expected to believe that this is all just some sort of random coincidence or is there something else behind it?”
Stelter was clearly uncomfortable and quipped that it’s “too bad” he couldn’t answer the questions because “it’s time for lunch.” And he didn’t want to get into a discussion about CNN’s lies on camera, telling Phillips, “I’ll come over and talk in more detail after this.”
Of course, in his bloviating that followed, Stelter didn’t actually answer any of Phillips’ questions. He initially scoffed, suggesting the student was “describing a different channel than the one that I watch.” And he dismissed the facts of CNN’s flamboyant bias as just “a popular right-wing narrative about CNN.”
And taking issue with Phillips referring to the Biden administration as “the regime,” Stelter tried to suggest he wasn’t out to help the White House or the left because “The last time I spoke with a Biden aide, we yelled at each other.”
Sometimes allies argue.
Of course, Fondacaro gets paid well to push that "popular right-wing narrative about CNN."
Fox News' Tucker Carlson had the Stelter-bashing student on TV a few days later, and Graham fawningly wrote about how the student had "no apology, no remorse whatsoever" over regurgitating those partisan talking points. Kevin Tober cheered that Fox News' Sean Hannity "mocked CNN’s Brian Stelter for his complete dodge to a freshman college student’s question about CNN’s bias," declaring that the student "was a thousand percent right on every issue fake news CNN got wrong" and going to mock Stelter's looks by calling him "Humpty Dumpty." And few days after that, Graham devoted his podcast to gushing that the student is "now the toast of all conservative media for throwing a rip-roaring hardball question at Brian Stelter at the recent so-called 'disinformation' conference at the University of Chicago."
When Stelter contradicted the MRC's pet narrative that conservatives and only conservatives are being "censored" by "big tech," Graham ranted in an April 18 post:
Brian Stelter played dumb again on his Sunday show Reliable Sources, asking if Twitter was biased against conservatives, which is like asking if CNN is biased against conservatives.
There was zero mention of Twitter’s complete shutdown of the New York Post bombshells on Hunter Biden’s laptop contents in the closing weeks of the 2020 campaign, which has now been verified by the liberal media elite. There was zero mention of the Wuhan lab-leak theory going from cuckoo conspiracy theory to respectable conspiracy theory.
But a "respectable conspiracy theory" is still a conspiracy theory, is it not, Tim? And, of course, Graham leaves out the inconvenient fact that the right-wingers who first pushed the Hunter Biden laptop story made no effort to provide any independent verification of it that would have made it look less like Russian disinformation or a partisan hit job.
Graham then ranted that Stelter called out the right-wing victimhood narrative: "Stelter then raised the idea that complaints of conservative censorship are 'core to the GOP's identity.' He doesn't seem to realize conservatives would rather NOT have this 'identity.' Would he suggest Black Lives Matter has a complaint "narrative" that's core to their identity?"
Fondacaro spent a May 2 post ranting that Stelter called out right-wing distortions of a proposed government Disinformation Governance Board, which he insisted on falsely calling a "Ministry of Truth" despite the fact that his employer bashed people who called a new Florida law the "don't say gay bill" instead of its actual name:
Over the weekend, the Biden administration rolled out his Ministry of Truth under the Department of Homeland Security called the Disinformation Governance Board. This clearly Orwellian (1984) machination has rightly been the subject of scrutiny, but on Sunday’s Reliable Sources, CNN host and chief media apologist Brian Stelter suggested the real problem was the “right-wing uproar” and how they’re getting angry at something that they don’t have a clue about.
Now, imagine if former President Trump created a Ministry of Truth and installed a sycophant to run it. Stelter wouldn’t be downplaying it as a “basic government bureaucracy.” He’d be pulling out what’s left of his hair and calling it a threat to reality.
Of course, Trump did (and does) have a "ministry of truth" -- it's called Fox News. And, yes, the MRC lashed out at Stelter for criticizing them too.
CNS' Summer Interns Put Right-Wing Talking Points Ahead of Journalism Topic: CNSNews.com
We've shown how CNS' summer interns have been engaging in fake news and partisan right-wingtalking points rather than the journalism they are ostensibly supposed to be doing at a "news" organization. But those examples were far from the only times when CNS interns were more interested in pushing a narrative instead of reporting news, particiularly on hot-button right-wing cultural issues.
Lucy Collins -- who botched an attempt to downplay gun violence by comparing it to abortion and touted notorious homophobe Matt Walsh's anti-transgender film -- went the anti-trans route again in a July 14 article:
During an online symposium for college students about gender identity, two de-transitioned women – females who had transitioned to males and then back -- shared their stories and said their doctors and families failed them in not recognizing that conditions like autism and ADHD were the actual cause of their gender dysphoria.
“I look back on it and think ‘how could you possibly have missed this?’” said one woman, Michelle Alleva. “This is something that would have been -- that's so crucial to the decision that I was making to transition, and it was never offered to me.”
Laura Becker said, “It's a disgrace to scientific medicine, nuanced psychological analysis, and human compassion to remove the breasts of an autistic 20-year-old girl because she hated herself and didn't know what she was doing in the midst of a traumatic crisis.”
Both Becker and Alleva had undergone medical treatment to transition to “males,” but now have gone back to females. The symposium was sponsored by Genspect, an organization that advocates for a better model of transgender care than the current “affirmative” approach.
Genspect moderator Stella O’Malley said, “The low stats that are quoted there, they're flawed. For example, a very often quoted one is 1% have de-transitioned. We've all heard that stat. But anybody who really knows the research knows that it is a very flawed stat as 36% of the people left the treatment at the center. So, it's all this lost follow-up and then 75% aren't contacting [the center after treatment].”
Collins' benign description of Genspect hides the fact that it is, in fact, an anti-transgender group, and that O'Malley is on tape as opposing any form of gender-affirming care. Collins also made sure not to let any opposing view that's not as hostile to transgenders and treatment of them into her article.
Janey Olohan served up anti-abortion talking points in a July 25 article:
The Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America organization denounced the Democrats’ “Right to Contraception Act,” stating that the legislation should be called the “Payouts for Planned Parenthood Act.”
“Far from being a bill that simply allows for access to contraception, this bill seeks to bail out the abortion industry, trample conscience rights, and require uninhibited access to dangerous chemical abortion drugs,” said the organization.
The legislation would provide “federal funding for abortion providers who also happen to provide contraceptives,” said SBA Pro-Life America. “Despite the fact that even under the Trump administration, domestic family planning [including contraception] was federally funded at nearly $1.8 billion in FY 2020, this bill seeks to guarantee funding to abortion providers by barring federal and state governments from redirecting contraception funding to life-affirming health care providers.”
The pro-family group also noted that the Right to Contraception Act provides a very broad definition of “contraceptive,” which means it potentially could “mandate access to abortion drugs,” such as mifepristone and misoprostol.
Olohan did not explain what forms of contraception Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America would actually approve, which is particularly relevant with the overturning of Roe v. Wade. That's a missed reporting opportunity. While Olohan did not permit anyone to respond to the anti-abortion group's assertions -- while also embedding links in bold type to supporrting talking points -- she did include a couple of paragraphs from a Democratic congresswoman in support of the bill, though the relevant supporting link was in regular type, not boldface.
Olohan served up more talking points for the anti-abortion movement in an Aug. 3 article:
A medical analysis from the Charlotte Lozier Institute released in July revealed that every state with pro-life laws allows necessary medical treatments for women, permitting any procedure that would save a woman’s life.
Despite the ever-increasing outcry that pro-life laws prevent women from receiving the care they need, this Charlotte Lozier Institute medical analysis reveals that each of the 23 states with strong pro-life laws allows treatment for miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, and any life-threatening conditions.
The Lozier Institute clearly laid out that “every state pro-life law includes clear exceptions allowing medical treatment to save the life of the mother, and permits treatment for marriage and ectopic pregnancy, which can cause life-threatening complications. Several states provide further clarity by specifically excluding treatment for miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy from their definition of abortion.”
Olohan failed to cite specific recent cases in which anti-abortion laws were indeed quite fuzzy -- particularly the case in which a 10-year-old rape victim was forced to go to Indiana to have an abortoin because state law does not include exceptions for rape and incest. AS in her previous article, Olohan did not let anyone specifically respond to the claims by the Lozier Institute -- which she did not identify as the anti-abortion organization it it -- waited untiil the final few paragraphs to note criticism of anti-abortion laws by Planned Parenthood, which actually did allude to the Ohio case.
Olohan also did some Fox News stenography on an economic issue in another Aug. 3 article:
The reconciliation bill crafted by Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and supported by the Biden administration will raise electricity and gas prices, hike taxes, and kill about 218,000 blue-collar jobs in 2023, said Marc Lotter, the chief communications officer of the America First Policy Institute.
On Fox News @Night, Aug. 1, Lotter said, “The National Association of Manufacturers says this bill will cost 218,000 blue-collar workers their jobs next year. Your electric and heating bills are going up, your gas is going to go up by $25 billion as a tax increase for oil companies that's going to get passed along at the pumps.”
In a press release, Jay Timmons, president and CEO of the National association of Manufacturers said, “This proposal is nothing more than a repackaging of the same bad ideas with a new name slapped on it. It is especially harmful because it will undermine manufacturers’ competitiveness at a time when the industry is reeling from supply chain disruptions and record inflation.”
“Manufacturers kept our promises after the 2017 tax reforms, hiring more workers, investing in our communities and raising wages and benefits,” said Timmons. “Raising taxes now will hurt manufacturers’ ability to keep delivering for our people and mean fewer opportunities for Americans already worried about their financial future.”
You will not be surprised to learn that Olohan made no effort to fact-check any of this, nor did she identify the America First Policy Institute as a right-wing organization. In fact, it appears that the NAM's claim that the 2017 tax bill -- which reduced corporate tax rates -- allowed manufacturers to be "hiring more workers, investing in our communities and raising wages and benefits" is not true at all; Industry Week reported that most companies used the newfound money to buy back stock instead of investing in operations or paying workers more.
MRC's Graham Whines Yet Again That Right-Wing 'Satire' Got Fact-Checked (Because People Think It's Real) Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center in general, and Tim Graham in particular, love to complain that right-wing "satire" gets fact-checked -- but they usually leave out the part where people treating the "satire" as reality are the reason it gets fact-checked. Graham did it again in a June 24 column:
On June 18, someone captured video of President Biden riding a bike on vacation in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. When he came to a stop, he caught his foot in the pedal and fell to the pavement. Without it being on tape, no one would have cared much.
On social media, conservatives quickly brought up how Trump was ridiculed for walking gingerly down a ramp at the West Point commencement in 2020. The liberal media – stoked by Trump-loathing social-media accounts – spread it far and wide.
Spencer Brown at Townhall pointed out the Biden campaign even made an ad championing Biden’s vigor, that he runs up ramps while Trump tiptoed down one. CNN’s Chris Cillizza wrote a silly piece headlined “Why the Donald Trump-West Point ramp story actually matters.”
But what stood out on the Biden bike bumble was the “fact checkers.” An AP Fact Check quickly proclaimed: “Despite a fabricated screenshot circulating online, The Atlantic hasn't published an article with a headline describing President Joe Biden's bike fall as ‘heroism.”
The fake headline was “The Heroism of Biden’s Bike Fall: The President gracefully illustrated an important lesson for all Americans—when we fall, we must get back up.” Radio host Jason Rantz tweeted “AP is fact checking a satire of The Atlantic because they think people would believe it really came from that publication — which is telling.”
Reuters also fact-checked it. The typography is exactly the same as the magazine’s, so it would be easy for Biden critics to share and enjoy it.
Again, Graham leaves out the fact that the fake Atlantic headline was fact-checked because people were treating it as real. The Reuters fact-check noted that "One user shared the screenshot on Twitter and said: 'Are you kidding me??'" and that "Another said: 'In 2022 this masquerades as journalism'." The AP fact-check similarly stated: "While some social media users realized that the headline is fake, others appeared to view it as authentic. One Twitter user who shared the image wrote on Saturday, 'Are you kidding me??'"
Rather than offer up examples of liberal-leaning social media memes that were mistaken for reality and thus required a fact-check, Graham whined that the current right-wing star, Ron DeSantis, was mocked by an obvious satirist:
The “fact checkers” lunge to clear up these satires around Biden. But not for, say, Ron DeSantis.
Sister Toldjah at RedState noted that satirist Stephen Colbert badly mangled a DeSantis press conference from January 31, 2022. The CBS late-night host implied DeSantis refused to condemn a gaggle of “about 20" neo-Nazis quacking in Orlando. Colbert cited an Orlando Sentinel story, but just the words “Gov. Ron DeSantis remained silent.” The actual sentence said he was silent "until Monday afternoon when he responded to a question about the rallies with a tirade against his political enemies.”
Colbert then showed a 12-second video clip of this presser where the governor said he wouldn’t be smeared by Democrats. He insisted DeSantis didn’t have the courage to condemn the neo-Nazis. Again, the Orlando newspaper quoted DeSantis calling them “some jackasses doing this on the street” and said they’d be held accountable by law enforcement.
DeSantis went on to boast of having signed “the strongest antisemitism bill in the country” and denounced the Democrats for welcoming antisemites like Rep. Ilhan Omar.
But there were no fact checks: no AP, no Reuters, no Snopes, and no PolitiFact. Twitter had nothing to underline. Satirists on the Left have a free pass to smear DeSantis as a cowardly lion on neo-Nazis. The game is rigged.
As we documented when the MRC first complained about it, this summary leaves out important details -- it took DeSantis two days to issue a response to the neo-Nazis "quacking in Orlando" and only then when he was cornered on the issue. His then-press secretary, Christina Pushaw, issued a tweet (since deleted) falsely suggesting the Nazis were actually Democrats in disguise.
Graham's whining about how "the game is rigged" is particularly dumb since he gave no examples of it. To the extent that there is a "game" -- and Graham, as a right-wing political operative, thinks everything that doesn't support right-wing narratives is a "game" -- is about telling the truth, and conservatives not getting away with lying to people or misleading them somehow means it's "rigged." If Graham wants a less rigged "game," he should hold his own side as accountable as he holds the "liberal media."
When the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled that ballot drop boxes in the state were somehow illegal, Talking Points Memo highlighted how "it didn’t take long for right wing election lie evangelists to declare the decision proof of a fraudulent 2020 vote, and even to demand again that the election results be overturned." One of those rushing to do precisely that was Joseph Farah, who wrote in his July 11 WorldNetDaily column under the headline "Big victory for Trump at Wisconsin Supreme Court":
Wisconsin's Supreme Court ruled Friday that absentee ballot drop boxes may be placed only in election offices and that no one other than the voter can return a ballot in person.
It was the biggest development yet in addressing what Donald Trump and millions of others have called the "Big Steal" of the 2020 election.
Republicans who control the Wisconsin Legislature have also tried to enact laws limiting the use of absentee ballots, but [Gov. Tony] Evers has vetoed them.
The court's 4-3 ruling also has critical implications for the 2024 presidential race, in which Wisconsin will again be among a handful of battleground states. But Trump is trying to do more – hoping to win a series of rulings in key states that invalidates the 2020 election and saves the nation from two more years of Joe Biden.
Absentee voting exploded during the "plandemic" in 2020, with more than 40% of all voters casting mail ballots, a record high. At least 500 drop boxes were set up in more than 430 communities for the election that year, including more than a dozen each in Madison and Milwaukee — Wisconsin's two most heavily Democratic cities.
The movie "2000 Mules" exposed this charade that it said had deprived Trump of victory.
Trump called on Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos on Saturday to overturn the 2020 presidential election results in the swing state after Friday's rulng.
But as Talking Points Memo pointed out, there's no credible evidence that ballot drop boxes are in any way linked to fraudulent voting, and "2000 Mules" gets more discredited every day, despite WND's enthusiastic promotion of it.
Much of Farah's column seems to be copid-and-pasted from other sources, which is why parts of it sound surprisingly less-than-biased.
MRC's Jean-Pierre-Bashing, Doocy-Fluffing Watch Topic: Media Research Center
Perhaps sensing he wasn't going to have the opportunity to do much in the near future, Curtis Houck worked as much Doocy-fluffing as he could in his writeup of the Aug. 9 White House press briefing, touting his right-wing narrative-pushing over the "FBI raid" at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago compound:
With President Biden having spent Monday in flood-stricken Kentucky and departing Wednesday for vacation in South Carolina, Tuesday marked perhaps the week's only White House briefing, so reporters got in their takes about the FBI raid of former President Trump's Florida home. Of course, Fox's Peter Doocy did battle with Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on the raid and whether the White House would do anything to pushback arguments that they've weaponized law enforcement against opponents.
Doocy led off with a round-about way of asking about the raid: “Do you consider Donald Trump to be a political rival of President Biden?” When Jean-Pierre insisted she wouldn't “speak to that from here,” he countered with the fact that Biden “talks about Trump all time.” Incredibly, she disputed it: “Ehhh, I don't talk about Trump all the time.”
Despite a series of audible scoffs, Doocy noted a few recent examples, starting with one of the administrations catchphrases for the GOP: “Ultra-MAGA, you guys were criticizing his handling of COVID last week. You've mentioned his January 6 response a couple days ago. So, can you say, based on all that--I didn't say anything about Mar-a-Lago."
Doocy tried again, but Jean-Pierre ducked, leaving the Fox reporter with another approach in citing Biden's own declaration against him that he'd “be very fortunate if I had [Trump] running against me” in 2024. Jean-Pierre tried to interjected that she wasn't “going to comment on” the raid despite Doocy's insistence that “it's just a quote from the President”
The MRC couldn't kick around Jean-Pierre at the podium the rest of that week, so it kicked her around when she made TV appearances elsewhere (an MRC staple).Alex Christy complained an Aug. 12 post:
Stephen Colbert welcomed White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre onto his Thursday CBS show where he lobbed several softballs her way including wondering how is the White House mending the relationship with the press and wondering how Joe Biden has been so successful.
Regretting how the previous administration treated the press, Colbert declared, “So, when—when—when-- y'all, you know, came into office 18 months ago, one of the things, the goals stated was, to kind of, repair the relationship between that press office and the press.”
Being a good press secretary, Jean-Pierre gave all credit to Biden, but gas prices are still high, inflation is still bad, and the climate bill—called the Inflation Reduction Act—won’t reduce inflation. No wonder the White House has an easier relationship with the media than its predecessor.
Christy made sure not to mention all the softballs Houck and his boss, Tim Graham, tossed to former Trump press secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Graham's podcast earlier this year.
Aidan Moorehouse cheered that Jean-Pierre was asked challenging questions in a CNN appearance, under the sneering headline "You Love To See It":
In an unexpected but not unwelcome act of journalism on Friday morning, CNN anchor and New Day co-host Brianna Keilar pushed back on White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre’s misleading answers about the Inflation Reduction Act.
Keilar began with the simple question of whether or not the White House is confident all Democrats in the House will vote for the bill. Jean-Pierre said “we are confident” about Pelosi’s ability to whip her caucus to vote for the bill, but not before misspeaking and calling the Inflation Reduction Act a “really critical, important anti-inflammation bill out of the Senate.”
It isn’t often that CNN hosts push back hard against Democratic talking points, so NewsBusters likes to highlight it when they do. Kudos to Keilar for a tough but not obnoxiously aggressive interview.
The MRC never likes it when Republicans are asked challenging questions.
Kevin Tober cheered even more pushback (even if it wasn't to full Doocy-level hostility) in an Aug. 14 post:
On Sunday’s edition of ABC’s This Week, viewers witnessed a random act of journalism from co-anchor Jonathan Karl who challenged White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on why the recently passed legislation referred to as the Inflation Reduction Act should be called that since according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, the legislation will have a negligible effect on inflation at best. Karl even suggested the name sounded Orwellian.
Before getting to that question, Karl started out by sucking up to the Biden administration and their economic record. He bemoaned how “just 37 percent of Americans approve of President Biden's handling of the economy” and “70 percent say they felt the economy was getting worse.”
“We have since learned that inflation actually abated in July,” Karl proclaimed. “Why is it that if things are getting better, so many Americans are unhappy with President Biden’s handling of it?”
Jean-Pierre repeated the Biden administration’s claim that there was “zero percent of inflation” last month and credited the Inflation Reduction Act for working “to lower costs for Americans.”
While Karl did ask the right question, he’s too late. The time to challenge the Biden administration about the Orwellian named “Inflation Reduction Act” would’ve been before it was passed by Congress and signed into law, not after.
To the MRC, though, any question designed to attack and denigrate a member of a Democratic administration is the "right" question.
CNS Wants You To Know Monkeypox Is A Gay Disease Topic: CNSNews.com
As with its homophobic columnist Bill Donohue, the similarly homophobic "news" side of CNSNews.com was quick to blame gay people for the spread of monkeypox. In a June 24 article, Patrick Goodenough initially focused on efforts to rename monkeypox over possible racist connotations in a June 24 article, then made sure to hype the gay angle:
While the scientists focused in their article on the associations with Africa, the WHO has also raised concerned about another “stigmatization” concerns, arising from the fact that most of the cases reported in the “newly-affected” countries are in “men who have sex with men.”
Goodenough hammered the narrative home in a July 24 article:
As he declared monkeypox to be a “public health emergency of international concern,” World Health Organization (WHO) director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted on Saturday that the viral disease, now recorded in more than 70 countries, is currently “concentrated among men who have sex with men, especially those with multiple sexual partners.”
“That means that this is an outbreak that can be stopped with the right strategies in the right groups,” Tedros said during a briefing in Geneva.
Data collated by the U.K. Health Security Agency show not only that most of those infected in that country are men who have sex with men, but that in almost one-third of cases multiple sexual partners have also been recorded.
Of 699 cases with information available in Britain, 97 percent (681 out of the 699) are in what the calls “gay, bisexual, and men who have sex with men (GBMSM).”
In 31 percent of the cases for which information was known, the individuals concerned reported having had “10 or more sexual partners in the last 3 months.”
A study in the New England Journal of Medicine, covering 528 monkeypox infections in 16 countries between April and June, found that 98 percent of those infected were “gay or bisexual men.”
The article's rubbed in further, stating: "Monkeypox Named a Global Emergency; WHO Cites ‘Multiple [Gay] Sexual Partners’ As Risk Factor." In fact, WHO did not use the word "gay"; CNS inserted it, presumably to make gay people appear more evil.
Susan Jones complained that gay descriptors weren't used enough by the White House in discussing monkeypox in an Aug. 12 article:
The word 'gay' was mentioned just once Tuesday in a press briefing by the White House Monkeypox Response Team and public health officials, but the fact remains, the disease so far affects mostly homosexual men.
While the Biden administration avoids mention of men having sex with men, WHO does not:
"Although I am declaring a public health emergency of international concern, for the moment this is an outbreak that is concentrated among men who have sex with men, especially those with multiple sexual partners," WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on July 23.
Jones pushed the narrative as well in an Aug. 19 article, headlined "CDC Director: 98 Percent of Monkeypox Cases Are Occurring in Men":
Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra on Thursday repeated something he's said before: "It's important that we all take monkeypox seriously, and it’s critical that we do all we can to keep this dangerous virus from spreading."
Becerra told a video conference that more than 60 jurisdictions have reported approximately 13,500 cases of monkeypox across the country," but given the demographics, most Americans are not at risk.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky told the same news conference, "As of August 17th, over 39,000 cases have been detected globally in 94 countries. Here in the United States, there have been over 13,500 cases of monkeypox identified across 49 states, as well as Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico.
"Monkeypox case data reported to CDC show that 98 percent of cases are occurring in men," she said.
After noting that the CDC "will publish 'a toolkit for health departments to assist with planning of these large events,' which are intended to attract people most at risk for monkeypox," she made sure to add that "According to a White House fact sheet, the "large events" envisioned by CDC must attract "gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men."
WND's Ollie North: Military Enlistments Down Because Young Americans Are Brainwashed 'Fat, Drugged-Up Criminals' Topic: WorldNetDaily
The Pentagon, White House and Congress concede there are now recruiting and retention shortfalls in all branches of our military. For example, the Army acknowledges an "alarming" reduction in enlistments between 21,000 and 28,000. Projections for 2023 are even worse.
Lt. Gen. Thomas Spoehr of the Heritage Foundation claims signing up new recruits has not been this difficult since the end of the Vietnam War. He questions whether our all-volunteer military can remain viable.
The problem of enlistment and retention shortfalls is getting worse because "leaders" in the White House, Congress and Pentagon refuse to acknowledge the cause of the problem. They claim current sharp declines in enlistments and retention in all branches of our military are because of a bustling post-COVID economy in which young people can easily find well-paying civilian jobs. This is simply not the root cause of the shortfall in reenlistments and new military accessions.
The pool of candidates for military service is not declining because of well-paying civilian jobs. Rather, it is waning because too many young Americans are fat, drugged-up criminals who were raised in a woke environment where helicopter parents and pandering teachers gave them everything they wanted, neglecting what they needed most: responsibility, accountability and self-discipline.
The reason so few qualified young people in the eligibility pool choose to serve has less to do with civilian job availability than with the 12 years of anti-America Marxist indoctrination they received in public schools. Why would anyone taught since kindergarten to hate America want to serve in our military? Why would anyone who idolizes professional athletes for kneeling during our national anthem want to serve in a military uniform?
Why would combat veterans reenlist when forced to accept a steady diet of politically correct tripe that runs counter to their personal values on transgenderism, critical race theory and the LGBTQ agenda?
Who wants to serve under a feckless commander in chief like Biden who abandoned American troops and allies on the battlefield in Afghanistan? Finally, who wants to serve under a president who, at a time when all branches are struggling to meet enlistment and retention goals, is dumb enough to terminate tens of thousands of military personnel for failing to take a vaccination they don't want?
Our armed forces exist to deter war and win if we have to fight. Joe Biden's domestic and foreign policies are making both missions impossible.
-- Oliver North and David Goetsch, Aug. 1 WorldNetDaily column
NEW ARTICLE -- A Shared Love Of Hating Others, Part 2: The Chappelle Show Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center went from hating comedian Dave Chappelle to loving his transphobic "humor." Plus: How has the MRC continued to show transphobic love to Ricky Gervais and J.K. Rowling? Read more >>
WND's Farah Just Can't Stop Pushing Obama Birtherism Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah continues his revisionist history of Obama birtherism in his Aug. 3 column," which came out to mark Barack Obama's "purported birthday":
Donald Trump was hardly the first "birther." Neither was I. Nor was my colleague Jerome Corsi. And neither was Hillary Clinton.
That honor belongs to one person and one person alone – Barack Obama.
We all followed suit, but were not the first to raise it.
Obama went to extreme lengths to conceal his past. And, indeed, if he was born in the U.S. and was eligible to serve as president, he certainly did his best to create the mystery that led to the question being asked.
Farah went on to claim that Obama "billed himself as having been born in Kenya," citing only a blurb by a former book agent; in fact, the agent who edited the blurb said it was a fact-check error, and there's no evidence Obama himself ever signed off on that description.
But, of course, Farah quickly moved to rehashing old conspiracy theories:
His fans in the media will look back on their hero with feelings of nostalgia. Watch for it. There may be "birther" recaps written about me. I, after all, published the bestselling book "Where's the Birth Certificate," by Corsi.
I won't go into the voluminous amount of evidence of a cover-up, or all the valid reasons for questioning not only where Obama was born, but whether he had even retained citizenship when he and his mother left the country to move to Indonesia and enroll him in a Muslim school there over the objections of U.S. immigration officials concerned, at the time, about his citizenship status.
I won't go into his missing college records, which might shed light on whether Obama had claimed to be a foreign student, as many at Columbia assumed.
I won't go into the fact that his supposed "birth hospital" in Hawaii steadfastly refused to acknowledge publicly that simple fact for years, inexplicably.
Would that not be reason enough to investigate his background? But there's more.
The governor of Hawaii at the time, Neil Abercrombie, searched for the birth certificate and said he could not find it.
None of which prove Obama wasn't born in the U.S., but instead prove that he has privacy rights. Still Farah went on:
Then Obama refused to release his long form birth certificate throughout his entire first term in office, despite the controversies he had ignited years earlier.
The question of eligibility was real. His father was a native of Kenya and his mother was an under-age 17-year-old who might not be have been able to confer citizenship to her son.
A birth certificate was eventually released for two reasons:
WND Books published "Where's the Birth Certificate?" by Jerome Corsi – and it went to No. 1 on Amazon. And, secondly, Obama's favorite fix-it law firm, Perkins Coie, was dispatch to Hawaii to finally "find" it, or so they say. Perkins Coie is the Democratic law firm that boasts "sharing" space with the FBI. Isn't that cozy?
I will add that the document has never been authenticated as genuine.
The "long form" birth certificate contained nothing that wasn't in the certificate Obama released. And it has been authenticated -- WND chose, rather than to accept it, concocted a false conspiracy theory that the PDF of the certificate that the Obama White House released was manufactured.Farah concluded:
Personally, I thought it was important to establish that Obama met the minimal constitutional litmus test for eligibility. For that I was vilified, called a racist, lampooned, besmirched, called a conspiracy theorist and worse.
It's worth recalling that in the 2008 election, the only "birther" issue to be raised by any media was the question of John McCain's eligibility. That one was driven home by the New York Times and had to be settled by a U.S. Senate investigation and unanimous vote that he was. McCain needed to turn over his birth certificate – because he was born in Panama. His parents were stationed there in the war. Obama never needed to show his birth certificate.
And that's the real story of who the first "birther" really was. It was Barack Hussein Obama.
MRC's Lord Defends OAN From Latest Platform Loss -- But Censors The Channel's Lies Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center normally vociferously defends its fellow right-wing media outlets against any and allc riticism from non-right-wing quarters, it has mostly tepid about defending One America News. It didn't have much to say when DirecTV dropped OAN from its TV offerings beyond a couple posts and a column by Jeffrey Lord -- all of which ignored the fact that OAN has a notorious history of airing false and misleadoing claims, and that it's currently being sued by election-tech firms Dominion and Smartmatic for helping Donald Trumo's Big Lie by falsely accusing them of engaging in election fraud. When Verizon -- OAN's last remaining distributor -- decided to drop OAN, Lord returned with a July 23 column ranting that Verizon was "leftist" and "woke" for engaging in a business decision and somehow blaming it on the company encouraging diversity in its workforce:
Verizon, now completely in the woke tank, has moved to silence the conservative One America News Network (OAN). Here’s a sample headline from CNET:
Verizon Becomes Last Big TV Provider to Drop Right-Wing Channel One America News
OAN was criticized for spouting misinformation about COVID and the 2020 election. But Verizon says it's dropping OAN for “economics.”
"Verizon says it's dropping OAN for ‘economics.’”
Right. If you believe that I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. This is, after all, the self-same Verizon that was headlined in The Blaze as follows not quite a year ago:
Verizon pushes leftist, anti-American agenda in social justice training for employees: Report
Breitbart has exactly captured what this is really all about.
Make no mistake. This shutdown of One America News by Verizon is part and parcel of the American Left’s determination to use Big Tech to shut down not just conservative media but conservatives in general - and there is nothing new about it. ( AT&T’s Direct TV has also dropped OAN.)
That passing reference to "misinformation" at OAN is Lord's only reference to the elephant in the room. He went on to rant about "CNN pushing the Trump-Russia collusion hoax," which wasn't a hoax at all, and did not entail pushing the kind of lies OAN spread about Dominion and Smartmatic. He apparently doesn't believe that OAN should face any real-life consequences for spreading lies.
Non-farm payrolls added a whopping 528,000 in July, more than double the estimate of 250,000; and the unemployment rate edged down to 3.5 percent in July from 3.6 percent in June.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that job growth was widespread, led by gains in leisure and hospitality, professional and business services, and health care. "Both total nonfarm employment and the unemployment rate have returned to their February 2020 pre-pandemic levels," BLS noted.
You wouldn't know any of that from the headline of the story, however,. which cherry-picked all the less positive numbers and crammed them in:"62.1%: Labor Force Participation Falls in July, As 239,000 More Americans Drop Out of Labor Force." Jones didn't mention any of that stuff until the thhird paragraph:
But on the downside, the number of Americans not in the labor force -- no job and not looking for one -- climbed above the 100,000,000 mark again, settling at 100,051,000 in July. That's a 239,000 increase from June; and it follows an increase of 510,000 from May to June, when the number rose to 99,812,000.
The “not in the labor force” category includes retired persons, students, those taking care of children or other family members, and others who are neither working nor seeking work.
People who don't have a job and aren't looking for one put downward pressure on the important labor force participation rate, which dropped a tenth of a point to 62.1 percent in July.
One might call the headline on Jones' story false advertising. And even after conceding that the job numbers hit pre-pandemic levels, Jones still searched for a way to credit Ddonald Trump for having an even better economy pre-pandemic:
The participation rate was 61.4 percent when Joe Biden took office as the pandemic raged. Today's number, 62.1 percent, is still below the Trump-era high of 63.4 percent in February 2020, just before COVID shut things down.
After rising for more than three decades, the overall labor force participation rate peaked in early 2000 at 67.3 percent and subsequently trended down. In recent years, baby-boom retirements have contributed to the decline in the overall participation rate.
Instead of hisusual sidebar on government jobs, editor Terry Jeffrey wrote one on manufacturing jobs, admitting that they "increased by 30,000 in the month of July" and is "is now above what it was in the months immediately preceding that start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020." It must have painful for the Trump-loving Jeffrey to admit that.