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Wednesday, April 19, 2006
Misleading Headline Alert
Topic: Newsmax
An April 19 Associated Press article, as posted on NewsMax, has the headline, "Tom DeLay Conspiracy Charge Tossed Out." That's misleading; as the article itself states, what actually happened was that an appeals court upheld the dismissal of a conspiracy charge against Tom DeLay back in December. The other two charges against DeLay -- a money-laundering charge and another conspiracy charge -- still stand, as they have since they were filed.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:25 AM EDT
New Article: The Masters of WorldNetDaily
Topic: WorldNetDaily
What are the links between WND and an evangelist and radio mogul who has been accused of being a cult leader? Read more.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:31 AM EDT
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
WND Embraces Dubious Clinton Quote Book
Topic: WorldNetDaily
In recent weeks, WorldNetDaily has been heavily plugging a new book of Hillary Clinton quotes, titled "I've Always Been a Yankees Fan," which it sells in its store. The book's title claim, as described in a March 16 WND article:

How about the her claim, while running for the U.S. Senate in New York, about being a lifelong Yankees fan. Only problem – she grew up in Chicago rooting for the Cubs.

That's false; she's a fan of both the Yankees and the Cubs. As Media Matters points out, Clinton's Yankee fandom has been long documented.

WND also claims that the quotes are taken from "extensive, attributed sources." But Media Matters notes that chief among those "extensive, attributed sources" are numerous anti-Clinton tomes whose veracity is dubious at best and can be counted on to have a hostile, biased (and, therefore, possibly inaccurate) take on anything Clinton says. The book's introduction was supplied by professional Clinton-basher Dick Morris, which is another clue to the book's intent.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:36 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, April 18, 2006 6:49 PM EDT
NewsMax Smears Zinni
Topic: Newsmax
NewsMax defends the Bush administration by attacking its critics in an April 18 article:

Former CENTCOM Commander, Gen. Anthony Zinni - who has called for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to resign because of his alleged incompetence in running the Iraq war - admitted six years ago that he made the disastrous decision to have the U.S.S. Cole use the port of Aden, Yemen for refueling, where the ship was blown up by al Qaeda terrorists.

Worse still, at least one report indicates that Gen. Zinni may have played a role in an August 1998 leak that tipped off Osama bin Laden to an impending U.S. cruise missile attack - allowing the top terrorist to escape.

NewsMax makes no attempt in the article to respond to Zinni's criticism of Rumsfeld.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:10 PM EDT
Re: Vaporizing Defenses
Topic: WorldNetDaily
In an April 18 WorldNetDaily column, Rebecca Hagelin weighs in on the controversy over an Ohio research librarian, Scott Savage, allegedly being investigated for sexual harassment for recommending that David Kupelian's "The Marketing of Evil" and three other right-wing books for a student reading list. In response to one professor's claim that Kupelian's claim that "'the widely revered father of the "sexual revolution" has been irrefutably exposed as a full-fledged sexual psychopath who encouraged pedophilia.'" is "a factually untrue characterization of Dr. Kinsey and his work on every point," Reisman writes:

Excuse me, professor, but Judith Reisman, a Ph.D. researcher and world-renowned Kinsey expert, absolutely vaporizes your laughable defense of the mad sex scientist in her pioneering book "Kinsey: Crimes and Consequences."

(I'm suddenly reminded of Prince of Space repeatedly declaring, "Your weapons have no effect on me!")

However, as Poppy Dixon writes in a critique of Reisman's research:

The online-only Journal of Human Sexuality, sponsored by Leadership U (a spinoff of Campus Crusade for Christ), has published Reisman's essay, Kinsey and the Homosexual Revolution. The essay is comprised of 31 complex and leading questions, questions designed to prejudice the reader, questions like "...what if all of Kinsey's work was fraudulent, or worse?", and "...could not some American scientists teach pederasts and pedophiles techniques for sexually abusing children for 'science'?", and "Was Kinsey himself a closet homosexual, pedophile or pederast?"

The answer to these questions is "no," which is why they're posed as questions and not as statements. Though Dr. Reisman includes tables and footnotes, she offers no proof or support for the innuendo she directs at Kinsey. In fact, her "research methods" could call her own background into question.

The Kinsey Institute has also responded to Reisman's allegations.

Max Blumenthal has more on Reisman's obsession with Kinsey.

Hagelin might want to investigate Reisman's research methods before she continues to endorse her conservatively correct "findings."

UPDATE: Added link to Poppy Dixon critique.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:23 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, May 8, 2006 11:00 PM EDT
NewsBusters Condones Death Threats?
Topic: NewsBusters
An April 18 NewsBusters post by Noel Sheppard claims that MSNBC's Keith Olbermann "wrongly" named Michelle Malkin the winner of his daily "Worst Person in the World" segment for posting the names and phone numbers of University of California-Santa Cruz students who protested military recruiters on campus. Sheppard claimed that "What Keith conveniently failed to inform his viewers was that these phone numbers were actually part of a press release by the organization responsible for the protest," adding that "these names and phone numbers are still available at a number of left-wing websites."

While Sheppard fulminates about "the atrocious e-mail messages and threats that Malkin herself has been receiving all day for posting this previously made public information at her website," Sheppard does not condemn the death threats issued against the students as a result of Malkin posting the students' addresses.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:04 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, April 24, 2006 2:21 PM EDT
Monday, April 17, 2006
The Daily Les, 4/17
Topic: The Daily Les
Les Kinsolving once again brings his creepy obsession with non-heterosexual sex into the White House briefing room. Today's question:

KINSOLVING: Since this morning's annual White House Easter Egg Roll welcomed everybody, including those wearing rainbow leis promoting their sexual orientation, will next year's event include all sexual orientations, including those wearing arm bands proclaiming that pain is pleasure, or not?

Posted by Terry K. at 10:33 PM EDT
Softball Interview Watch
Topic: Newsmax
In an April 17 NewsMax article, Dave Eberhart does a delightfully softball interview with Jack Kemp. How softball is it? This is the first question: "Sir, you are a man of many accomplishments. What's the source of your energy and inspiration?"

Posted by Terry K. at 9:23 PM EDT
CNS Champions Disgraced Hansen-Bashing Ex-NASA Spokesman
Topic: CNSNews.com
George Deutsch is back, and this time he's leaking documents.

An April 17 CNSNews.com article by Marc Morano plays enabler to the former NASA spokesman's crusade against NASA scientist James Hansen. "Deutsch provided Cybercast News Service with agency internal documents and e-mails detailing the frustration among NASA public affairs officials over Hansen's refusal to follow protocol when it came to granting media interviews," Morano reported. Nowhere in the article does Morano explain under what authority an ex-NASA employee has to release internal NASA documents for the sole purpose of attacking a current NASA employee.

Deutsch resigned his job in February after it was revealed that he did not graduate from college as he had claimed on his resume. As he did in a March interview, Morano gives Deutsch another opportunity to explain that away: "I had more credits than are required to graduate, but I needed one math class," Deutsch said.

Unsurprisingly, it's a one-sided attack, filled mostly with Deutsch's Hansen-bashing. Morano claims at the end of the article that "several phone calls to Hansen's office seeking comment were not returned."

P.S.: Morano unquestioningly reported Deutsch's claim regarding his instistence while at NASA that the word "theory" be attached to "big bang": "Deutsch said he was simply making recommendations to comply with Associated Press style." That's false; as Deutsch himself wrote in a memo, it was about a lot more than style. As the New York Times reported:

The Big Bang is "not proven fact; it is opinion," Mr. Deutsch wrote, adding, "It is not NASA's place, nor should it be to make a declaration such as this about the existence of the universe that discounts intelligent design by a creator."

It [Deutsch's memo] continued: "This is more than a science issue, it is a religious issue. And I would hate to think that young people would only be getting one-half of this debate from NASA. That would mean we had failed to properly educate the very people who rely on us for factual information the most."

Posted by Terry K. at 3:21 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, April 17, 2006 4:13 PM EDT
CNS Peddles False GOP Immigration Spin
Topic: CNSNews.com
An April 12 CNSNews.com article by Susan Jones passed along a statement from House Speaker Dennis Hastert and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist attacking Senate Democrats, "making it clear that it was Democrats who insisted on making unlawful presence in the United States a felony rather than a misdemeanor." But neither the statement nor CNS' attempt at a "clarification" tells the truth about the issue.

To Hastert and Frist's statement that "there were 191 House Democrats who voted to oppose House Republican efforts to reduce the crime of unlawful presence in the United States from a felony to a misdemeanor. Instead, they voted to make felons out of all of those who remain in our country illegally," Jones added only, parenthetically, "Some conservative Republicans also favored making unlawful presence a felony."

A "clarification" later added to the article states that "a majority of House Republicans wanted to elevate the violation to a misdemeanor; but Democrats proposed making it a felony -- to undermine the entire bill by making it appear too harsh, according its sponsor, Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.)."

That's false. Sensenbrenner himself put the felony provision in the bill at the beginning, and it was passed by the House in December in that form with only 36 Democrats supporting the bill. Thus, it is Republicans who are flip-flopping on the issue after negative public reaction and trying to reduce it to a misdeameanor; Democrats oppose criminalizing it at all (it's currently a civil violation), plus they're not terribly motivated to help save the Republicans' bacon.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:08 AM EDT
Sunday, April 16, 2006
Neil Young, Has-Been
Topic: Newsmax
Who thinks Neil Young is a has-been musician who hasn't had a hit in 30 years? Why, NewsMax, of course.

In an April 15 article on Young's upcoming album, which features the "somewhat less than creatively" titled "Impeach the President," NewsMax claims: "Some say Young, who hasn't had a major hit since his 1972 chart-topper, 'Heart of Gold,' is looking to revive his career by bashing Bush." No word on whether the "some" who say that exist outside of NewsMax's offices.

Depicting Neil Young as desperate for a hit single appears to be the biggest ConWeb musical misinterpretation since Accuracy in Media declared Rufus Wainwright a "mainstream" artist.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:24 AM EDT
Disclosure!
Topic: WorldNetDaily
In a turnabout from its longtime lack of disclosure of its personal and business interests in the people it covers, an April 16 WorldNetDaily article on Sen. Tom Coburn properly includes the following sentence: "Coburn is the author of the WND Books title 'Breach of Trust: How Washington Turns Outsiders into Insiders.'”

Good job, WND! At least one employee there seems to have some awareness of journalistic ethics ('cuz it sure isn't Joseph Farah).

Posted by Terry K. at 11:11 AM EDT
Saturday, April 15, 2006
David Kupelian, Victim
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily's David Kupelian gets to play the victim card via the Alliance Defense Fund's latest cause celebre.

According to an April 14 WND article, the ADF has glommed onto the case of a Ohio university reference librarian, Scott Savage, who purportedly faces a investigationfrom the school for suggesting Kupelian's "The Marketing of Evil" and three other right-wing books for a recommending reading list for students. In typical WND fashion, its article ventures little beyond the ADF press release and other ADF-supplied materials -- nobody from the school was contacted to comment for this article. While WND does add a quote from Kupelian on the controversy, he fails to address a major criticism of his book as described in the article -- that his description of sex researcher Alfred Kinsey as a "full-fledged sexual psychopath who encouraged pedophilia" is a "factually untrue characterization of Dr. Kinsey and his work." Remember, Kupelian has made a big deal out of claiming that "to date, no one has actually identified a single factual error" (italics his) in his book.

The article also calls "The Marketing of Evil" a "best seller" but offers no evidence to support it; we don't recall seeing it on any best-seller lists, nor do we recall WND promoting such "best seller" status other than at WND's own store -- hardly an accurate indicator of such a status.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:23 PM EDT
Friday, April 14, 2006
Quote of the Day
Topic: CNSNews.com
With the unprotected, sieve-like U.S.-Mexican border in play for all those willing to cross, it is a certainty that al Qaeda terrorists have crossed along with the massive Mexican incursion.

It is just as certain that a 100,000-person marching mob will have at least one al Qaeda terrorist marching in lock-step and ready to light the fuse that will ignite the mob to burn the city, causing far greater property damage and repercussions than 9/11.

-- Ralph Hostetter, CNSNews.com, April 7

Posted by Terry K. at 2:31 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, April 14, 2006 3:49 PM EDT
Undisclosed Logrolling Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily
An April 14 WorldNetDaily article by Aaron Klein repeats "popular radio host" Rusty Humphries' views on the planned Israeli withdrawal from much of the West Bank. Nowhere in the article does Klein disclose that he has been a frequent guest on Humphries' show and has conducted joint interviews with him. WND editor Joseph Farah has also served as a guest host of Humphries' show.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:12 PM EDT

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