ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

ConWebWatch: home | archive/search | about | primer | shop

Tuesday, January 17, 2006
No Press Release, No WND Article
Topic: WorldNetDaily
So the Dodgeville, Wis., school board is suing Liberty Counsel for forcing it to spend money unnecessarily by challenging the lyrics of a song used in an elementary school holiday play. Why hasn't WorldNetDaily run an article on it?

Because Liberty Counsel hasn't issued a press release on it, and WND apparently doesn't do a thing regarding Liberty Counsel without a press release from them.As we've noted, WND repeated without question LC's false assertions about the Dodgeville case.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:58 PM EST
Getting It Wrong: Google Search Results
Topic: Media Research Center
In a Jan. 17 NewsBusters post, Mithridate Ombud uses some bad math in reference to the movie "Brokeback Mountain":

90 members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association love gay cowboys and transvestites far more than American movie-goers do. Chalk up another 7500 articles.

Ombud fails to note that while the Google News search to which Ombud links returns 7,500-plus links that include the words "brokeback" and "mountain," many of those are duplicates of wire stories, linked to every news organiation that ran it. The total number of articles is, in fact, far less than 7,500.

And despite Ombud's implied (and flawed) assumption that depiction equals endorsement -- that because people are writing about "Brokeback Mountain," they therefore endorse homosexuality -- on the first page of results of Ombud's search is an article on the Utah theater owner's decision to pull the movie from his theater -- a position Ombud presumably supports.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:37 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, January 17, 2006 11:46 AM EST
Just Askin'
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Given that WorldNetDaily once portrayed a staged photo as a legitimate news story, should it really be making a big deal out of the New York Times misidentifying something in a photo?

Posted by Terry K. at 9:29 AM EST
Monday, January 16, 2006
More About Cinnamon Stillwell
Topic: Media Research Center
A few more interesting facts about Cinnamon Stillwell, the NewsBusters writer with a disturbing tendency to whitewash violent Jewish extremists:

-- She writes a biweekly column for, the website of the San Francisco Chronicle.

-- She also writes for the New Media Alliance, a"national coalition" of conservative writers, journalists and grass-roots media outlets. It is operated by Heritage New Media Partners, which appears to be a PR firm geared to spreading the conservative message; one client is the Alliance Defense Fund.

-- She is a contributing editor at ChronWatch, the San Francisco Chronicle-bashing conservative website, which raises conflict-of-interest questions with her gig.

These are three more organizations, along with the Media Research Center, that need to take a look at their association with Stillwell, given her affinity for whitewashing and condoning terrorism.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:49 PM EST
The Hillary-Belafonte Non-Link
Topic: Newsmax
NewsMax is getting desperate in its attempt to hang Harry Belafonte around Hillary Clinton's neck.

A Jan. 16 article goes the guilt-by-association route by claiming that "Hillary's best friend and closest advisor, Susan Thomases, was seated at Belafonte's table" at a recent charity dinner that Hillary also attended. NewsMax also cites the factually challenged Ed Klein as backup for the claim that Thomases is a Hillary confidante.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:09 AM EST
Pick One, Cliff
Topic: Accuracy in Media
Cliff Kincaid needs to make up his mind.

He spends the first part of his Jan. 16 Accuracy in Media column defending Jack Abramoff, claiming that "[t]he attack on Abramoff is motivated by envy and jealousy from Democratic and Republican lobbyists who wanted a piece of the action." Then, he suggests that Democratic Sen. Byron Dorgan was "for sale" because he took money from Abramoff's Indian tribe clients. But if Abramoff did nothing wrong, neither did Dorgan, correct? So what's the big fuss?

Kincaid also misleadingly points out Democrats on the list of politicians who took money from "Abramoff, his clients or associated companies and groups" while not noting that only Republicans took money from Abramoff himself.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:02 AM EST
WND's Klein Silent Again
Topic: WorldNetDaily
In a Jan. 16 article on an alleged plan to "evict Jews from their homes in select area neighborhoods including the biblical city of Hebron," WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein reports that Hebron is "home to the Tomb of the Patriarchs, believed to be the resting place of biblical patriarchs and matriarchs." This would have been a ideal place to interject that in 1994, a Jewish extremist with ties to extremist rabbi Meir Kahane, Baruch Goldstein, massacred 30 Arabs in the Cave of the Patriarchs.

But since we know all about Klein's coziness with Jewish extremists, it is therefore axiomatic that Klein did not, in fact, refer to the Goldstein massacre in his article.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:14 AM EST
Sunday, January 15, 2006
Aaron Klein's Friends, Continued
Topic: WorldNetDaily
While researching our post on Cinnamon Stillwell and the history of the Jewish Defense League, we found an article from the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles detailing another JDL-linked act of violence, the 1985 murder of Arab-American activist Alex Odeh. (Earl Krugel, as part of a plea agreement regarding his sentence on plotting the bombings of a mosque and the field office of a congressman, was apparently supposed to provide authorities with that crime.) A man named Andy Green, a former JDL member, was considered one of the suspects in Odeh's death. From the article:

Green reportedly immigrated to Israel from New York City in 1975, where he met JDL founder Kahane. He then joined a West Bank settlement, and changed his name to Baruch Ben Yosef. In 1983 he moved back to his hometown, where he ran the office for Kach, another group Kahane started.

That presumably is the same Baruch Ben Yosef who pops up in a few WND articles. the first is a September 2001 article by Larry Dub arguing for the release of Israel spy Johnathan Pollard (Ben Yosef is described at the end of the article as a partner with Dub in "a series of suits in the Supreme Court of Israel which resulted in the government of Israel recognizing Jonathan Pollard as a bona fide Israeli agent and in granting him Israeli citizenship"). Two others are penned by Aaron Klein -- a August 2004 article in which he tries to soften the image of Ben Yosef and Mike Guzofsky (aka Yekutel Ben Yaacov) as "extremists," and the July 2005 Ariel Sharon "death curse" article in which "activist attorney" Ben Yosef describes the ceremony.

At no time have Klein or WND indicated that Green/Ben Yosef is a suspect in a murder in the U.S.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:10 PM EST
CNS' Greatest Hits
Let's take a trip down memory lane (and the ConWebWatch archives) and review some of's previous adventures in conservative journalism:

-- CNS changes its name from Conservative News Service to Cybercast News Service.

-- Saturation coverage of man who issued death threats against conservatives, but virtual silence about an anti-abortion extremist who threatened to kill abortion clinic workers.

-- Claiming that pan-religious website Beliefnet "leans strongly toward the feminist, pro-abortion, liberal dogma."

-- Countering any positive about the Clintons with slanted, negative articles.

-- Unbalanced coverage of the abortion issue tilted to the anti-abortion side.

-- Refusal to tell the full truth about Bush appointee Otto Reich.

-- Biased and misleading headlines.

-- Being an early promoter of Swift Boat Veterans for Truth

-- Subjective labeling of advocacy groups; conservative ones are described more positively than liberal ones.

-- Hypocrisy in accusing the "liberal media" of a double standard in reporting controversial statements.

-- Running to the defense of discredited conservative researcher John Lott.

-- Assuming that Democrats act only for political reasons, an assumption it declines to make about Republicans.

-- Regurgitating Republican spin, even when it's false.

-- Printing biased coverage of the Terri Schiavo case.

-- Being a recipient of leaked Democratic memos on judicial nominations, and providing a platform for Manuel Miranda, the ex-Bill Frist staffer linked to their possibly illegal leak, to tell his story unencumbered by balance from the other side. CNS has also forwarded other conservative spin points on Bush's judicial nominees.

-- Reported on a frivolous lawsuit filed against George Soros (over a dog bite, for $6 million) despite publishing a pro-tort reform article a day earlier.

-- Assuming that the cancellation of a conservative columnist in America by one of the more than 500 newspaper he appears in is evidence of a conspiracy.

-- And your garden-variety pro-conservative, anti-liberal slant.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:55 AM EST
Missing the Point
Topic: Media Research Center
In a Jan. 14 NewsBusters post, Tim Graham expresses mostly pleasure with the Washington Post's pickup of the Jack Murtha hit job, but complains that the Post pointed out that CNS' readers are "mainly conservative, and provides material for other Web sites such as GOPUSA." Graham writes: "Would Kurtz say the Post 'averages a million readers, mainly liberals'? Would it go through the list of publications that buy Post articles through the Los Angeles Times-Washington Post News Service of the Washington Post Writers Group for clues as to how liberal the newspaper is?"

Graham misses the point (aside from the fact that he has no evidence beyond his own biased presumption that the Post's subscriber base is "mainly liberals"). Conservative journalism, as practiced by CNS, is fundamentally different from "mainstream journalism," as practiced by the Post. Regardless of the alleged liberal leanings of many journalists, "mainstream journalism" has as its foremost goal to tell facts in a reasonably impartial manner; it does not, in the vast majority of cases, have an explicit goal of promoting liberalism. CNS-style conservative journalism, on the other hand, promotes conservatism as its foremost goal, and facts are typically bent around that goal. Graham cannot deny that.

Nor can he deny the fact that the CNS in Cybercast News Service used to stand for Conservative News Service.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:11 AM EST
Saturday, January 14, 2006
The Republican Operatives at CNS
Murray Waas points out what ConWebWatch readers already knew -- that many staffers, including editor in chief David Thibault and Marc Morano, co-author of the John Murtha hit piece, have long history of Republican and/or conservative activism. To sum up:

-- Thibault is a former senior producer for GOP-TV's Rising Tide, the televised weekly news magazine broadcast by the Republican National Committee" as well as a former press secretary for Republicn Rep. Judd Gregg (now a senator).

-- Morano was a reporter and producer for Rush Limbaugh's mid-90s television show.

Thibault also helped CNS lead the way in falsely smearing Paul Begala.

CNS' previous top editor, Scott Hogenson, took a leave of absence from CNS in 2004 to work for the Republican National Committee; after returning to CNS for a few months, he went back to the RNC for good.

And lest we forget, former CNS reporter Jim Burns -- remembered here for his long history of obscuring the past of Otto Reich -- left CNS to work for a Republican congressman, where he was busted for plagiarizing columns from conservative researchers and putting them under his boss' name.

UPDATE: Just wanted to add the fact, for searching purposes, that and Cybercast News Service are one and the same.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:07 PM EST
Updated: Saturday, January 14, 2006 11:36 PM EST
Aaron Klein, Meet Cinnamon Stillwell
Topic: Media Research Center
A Jan. 13 NewsBusters post by Cinnamon Stillwell criticizing alleged double standards got us to wondering if Stillwell herself has perpetrated the same. What we found was much more interesting -- and disturbing.

A Dec. 6 column on her personal website (reproduced at ChronWatch, The Conservative Voice and J. (a Jewish publication in northern California) runs to the defense of Earl Krugel, a member of the Meir Kahane-founded Jewish Defense League, who was killed in prison while serving a sentence for plotting to bomb a California mosque and a field office of Republican congressman Darrell Issa, who is Lebanese-American.

Why is Stillwell running to Krugel's defense? She believes that Jews "must stand up for other Jews," whatever their behavior. Along the way, she goes the Aaron Klein route of downplaying Krugel's terrorism along with that of Kahane and the Jewish Defense League.

Stillwell suggests that "perhaps the JDL’s reputation as hardcore extremists is off the mark" because "neither [bombing co-conspirator Irv] Rubin nor Krugel had ever been convicted of any violent crimes," adding that "it appears the JDL’s real crime has always been standing up unequivocally for the Jewish people." Not exactly: JDL members have been implicated in numerous violent acts, including beatings, bombings, vandalism and murder.

Stillwell also claimed: "JDL founder Rabbi Meir Kahane’s biggest offense was calling for the forcible removal of all Arabs from Israel and the disputed territories." Again, not exactly: As a JDL founder, Kahane is linked to that group's history of violence. His followers have been inspred to commit other violent acts, such as Baruch Goldstein's massacre of Arabs Hebron's Tomb of the Patriarchs.

Stillwell laments that "if one dares mention the JDL in Jewish company, they are sure to be met with either immediate dismissal or a barrage of animosity and disavowal." That's because they are aware of the JDL's history.

The Media Research Center needs to explain why a person who condones such violence is permitted to write for NewsBusters.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:31 AM EST
Friday, January 13, 2006
False Assertion at NewsBusters
Topic: Media Research Center
Attempts to falsely link Hillary Clinton and Harry Belafonte are continuing at NewsBusters, where a Jan. 13 post by MRC "news analyst" Scott Whitlock, where a headline claims "Belafonte At Hillary Appearance" and later asserts the event in question was a "Belafonte/Clinton event."

This is false. The event was a charity dinner that both Clinton and Belafonte happened to be at.

Pretty sucky "news analysis" there, Scott.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:57 PM EST
CNS Swift-Boats Murtha
A Jan. 13 article by Marc Morano and Randy Hall suggests that Rep. John Murtha didn't earn two Purple Hearts during the Vietnam War.

CNS was among the first conservative groups to publicize the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth -- and to hide the group's political connections and the dubiousness of its members' claims against John Kerry.

UPDATE: Is CNS merely following Bush administration orders as part of its campaign to denounce Murtha? Just askin'.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:15 PM EST
Updated: Friday, January 13, 2006 5:21 PM EST
Disingenuous Statement of the Day
Topic: Accuracy in Media
From a Jan. 12 Accuracy in Media column by Slantie winner Cliff Kincaid:

This column is not meant to be a political attack on leading Democrats on the Judiciary Committee disguised as media criticism.

Oh, yes it is, Cliff; otherwise, it would not be appearing on the AIM website.

What Kincaid claims he actually wants to know is this: "I really want to know why the major media permit these characters [Joe Biden and Ted Kennedy] to launch personal attacks on Alito when their own personal lives are scarred by scandals."

What we really want to know is why Kincaid so aggresively bashes one political billionaire, George Soros, while not disclosing his longtime suckling at the teat of another, Richard Mellon Scaife?

Posted by Terry K. at 12:59 PM EST

Newer | Latest | Older

Bookmark and Share

Get the WorldNetDaily Lies sticker!

Find more neat stuff at the ConWebWatch store!

Buy through this Amazon link and support ConWebWatch!

Support This Site

« January 2006 »
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31

Bloggers' Rights at EFF
Support Bloggers' Rights!

News Media Blog Network

Add to Google