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Thursday, November 6, 2008
NewsBusters Flip-Flops on Tough Questions
Topic: NewsBusters

It was just a week or so ago that NewsBusters was ridiculing Democrats for going into "full panic mode" over a "grilling" of Joe Biden by an Orlando anchorwoman. 

Apparently, it doesn't work the other way. From a Nov. 5 NewsBusters post by P.J. Gladnick:

Sheesh! Talking about rolling around in the dirt! CNN's Rick Sanchez was arguing taxes with Joe the Plumber (Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher) yesterday and somehow couldn't figure out the concept of "principles." Ironically, Sanchez then showed just how unprincipled he is by rolling around in the mud and digging up recycled "dirt" on Joe. Here is the transcript of the video so you can see for yourself just how low Sanchez went in an attempt to smear Joe the Plumber.

Gladnick later adds: "WARNING! WARNING! Stand by for a sleaze attack by Rick Sanchez." That "sleaze attack": noting that Wurzelbacher owes back taxes.

Funny, we thought NewsBusters liked it when anchors asked tough questions of political figures. Guess not; Gladnick concludes: "It looks like Rick Sanchez will air your dirty laundry if he finds he is losing an argument."

P.S. The headline on Gladnick's item is "Rick Sanchez Gets Dirty With Joe the Plumber." Does Gladnick know what he/she is implying by putting "dirty" and "Sanchez" in close proximity in the headline?


Posted by Terry K. at 3:17 PM EST
Raezler Still Complaining That Media Told Truth About Palin
Topic: NewsBusters

Before the election, as we noted, the MRC's Culture & Media Institute released a report complaining about news coverage of Sarah Palin focused too much on the (very much true) facts that Palin didn't display a whole heck of a lot of knowledge during interviews, that some conservatives declined to support her, and that she served as the McCain campaign's attack dog.

Report co-author Colleen Raezler is still pushing her faulty meme in a Nov. 5 NewsBusters post, complaining that an NBC report "virtually recapitulated CMI's study in a single news segment." Raezler again lamented that Palin is being portrayed as "unqualified and unintelligent" even as evidence piles up to support the claim.

Any chance Raezler will ever concede that the things she's complaining about are basically true and that what she's really complaining about is that the media didn't slavishly repeat McCain campaign spin? Somehow we doubt it. 

UPDATE: A Nov. 6 post by Matthew Sheffield is quite happy to report that Palin "seems to have gone out of her way to attack the press," uncritically repeating her lament that there's a lack of "fairness and objectivity in the reporting."


Posted by Terry K. at 11:48 AM EST
Updated: Thursday, November 6, 2008 1:34 PM EST
Brennan Falsely Claims Earth Is Cooling
Topic: Newsmax

In his Nov. 5 Newsmax column, Phil Brennan asserts: "The Earth is not warming. The 28-year period of warming between 1970 and 1998 stopped dead in its tracks, and the climate has been cooling ever since. That's a fact, but the global warmiacs ignore facts because they sometimes tend to be inconvenient."

Actually, Brennan's the person ignoring the facts. As we've previously detailed, researchers have found that the Earth, in fact, got warmer over the past decade, not cooler.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:27 AM EST
NewsBusters Downplaying Obama Mandate
Topic: NewsBusters

NewsBusters is joining Newsmax in downplaying the idea of Barack Obama having a mandate to do anything.

A Nov. 4 post by Jeff Poor repeats CNBC's Larry Kudlow's warning that "Obama shouldn't misinterpret the election results to unleash an attack on vital parts of the economy," adding, "Kudlow explained to viewers that some of Obama's strength on Election Day came in traditionally red states by very close margins - meaning Obama voters wanted change, but not radical liberal policies."

And a Nov. 4 post by Matthew Sheffield tout how, on CNN, "Bill Bennett was the lone voice trying to say that an Obama presidency is not a mandate for radical liberalism," going on to complain how after recent presidential election victories by George W. Bush, "one of the most common liberal media refrains was how Republicans shouldn't read too much into their victories."

But as we detailed in 2004, the ConWeb insisted Bush had a solid mandate, even though he defeated John Kerry by only half the margin that Obama defeated John McCain. By that measure, Obama has much more of a mandate than Bush did.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:04 AM EST
Obama Derangement Syndrome, Bitter Post-Election Division
Topic: WorldNetDaily

The sense of betrayal I feel at this time from my fellow citizens is beyond comprehension, let alone description. I had assumed not more than 35 percent of our fellow citizens would vote for an eloquent socialist gasbag with an empty resume, a carefully sanitized past and a massive wealth redistribution plan.

[...]

"Equally important was 'Gleichschaltung' from below: militant behavior on the part of the National Socialist Student League, which organized early and soon came to dominate or replace traditional student groups and formed an arrogant subculture with intense camaraderie and more than a tinge of violence. Its members broke up lectures that displeased them, and understood their task as opposing all teaching that was not rooted in National Socialist doctrine. When the Education Ministry found it necessary to tone down the students, it passed the mantle of Gleichschaltung from below to the Nazi League of University Instructors, whose leader understood his organization to be 'the appointed trustee of the National Socialist Party at the universities to see that universities and scholarship are not only painted brown (the Nazi color) but really made over to fit the pattern of National Socialism.'"

– "The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide," by Robert Jay Lifton, Basic Books, p38, 1986.

Let there be no doubt where the road we have embarked upon finally ends.

-- Craige McMillan, Nov. 6 WorldNetDaily column

Altogether, this means we are fooling ourselves if we think the United States is still a Christian nation. Its people just elected a barbarian as president[.]

-- Jill Stanek, Nov. 6 WorldNetDaily column

President-elect Obama has already proven himself to be one of the greatest purveyors of male bovine fecal matter in human history, and a greater liar than George W. Bush was ever painted. The blame for future failures will be passed along to previous administrations. This will be reinforced by media propaganda and mutely consumed by the shambling masses to be regurgitated at appropriate times.

If we're lucky, the zeitgeist remains such that Obama will not be able to act as the Marxist he is while serving as president.

-- Erik Rush, Nov. 6 WorldNetDaily column


Posted by Terry K. at 1:29 AM EST
Updated: Thursday, November 6, 2008 1:29 AM EST
Newsmax Downplays Obama, Dem Mandate
Topic: Newsmax

When President Bush won re-election in 2004 with a bare majority of 51 percent of the vote, the ConWeb did its best to portray it as a mandate. The leader was Newsmax, which stated: "The major media are very angry George Bush won the presidency by a significant margin. America is not divided. The race was not even close. The verdict of the people is clear: Americans today support President Bush and the values he stands for." Newsmax's Christopher Ruddy followed up by asserting that "the American people voted decisively to re-elect President Bush."

But with Barack Obama's victory margin over John McCain being twice as large as Bush's over John Kerry in 2004, what is Newsmax doing? Playing down the idea he has any sort of mandate.

Lowell Ponte tried some pre-emptive mandate-squashing in a Nov. 3 Newsmax article:

Because voting is not compulsory, approximately one-third of eligible voters — who meet the age, citizenship, and other legal requirements — never even register.

Of the remaining two-thirds, on a typical national Election Day only half of us — perhaps a bit more this year — who have registered bother to vote.

And of this one-third of eligible voters casting ballots, only about half will vote for the winner.

This means that the winner will win only about one-sixth of the potential ballots of eligible voters, and no matter how you slice this, it is hard for the winner to call his less-than-17 percent of eligible votes a mandate.

But in Barack Obama's case, his victory will carry even less of a mandate than this.

How so? Ponte cited a 2004 statement by Newsweek's Evan Thomas that media bias is "worth maybe 15 points" to the Democrats, which "could give Mr. Obama 15 more points on election day that he would never have won had the media been fair." Ponte continued:

Over the years ACORN and its front groups claim to have added 4 million people to the voter rolls in America. When Virginia authorities investigated a random sample of ACORN registrations, they found that 83 percent of them were fraudulent or otherwise had potentially disqualifying problems.

Multiply the 4 million names ACORN registered by 83 percent — and, voila, we get approximately 3.3 million potentially fraudulent votes that might be cast for Barack Obama.

That claim comes from an similar one Ponte made in an Oct. 6 Newsmax article: "In 2005, Virginia authorities sampled Project Vote registrations and rejected 83 percent of them for containing false or questionable information." Ponte offers no evidence to back up this claim or the source from where he plucked it. A quick Google search uncovered no independent source making the same claim.

Nevertheless, Ponte deducted 3.3 million votes, or 2.75 percent, from Obama's vote total and concluded:

Barack Obama, in other words, if this were an honest election, would win approximately 1 out of every 9 eligible voters.

Yes, the media will call it a mandate. Their ethical dishonesty is electing Mr. Obama.

And Ponte's ethical dishonesty is offering statistics that can't be verified, as well as general Democrat Derangement Syndrome.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 AM EST
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Aaron Klein Just Can't Quit Ahmed Yousef
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Despite the failure of his previous attempts to smear Barack Obama by promoting apparent endorsements of Obama (and Joe Biden) by a Hamas official, Aaron Klein goes back to the Ahmed Yousef well one more time, using a Nov. 5 WorldNetDaily article to quote Yousef, "Hamas' chief political adviser in the Gaza Strip," as saying that Hamas "is drafting a letter of congratulation to be sent tomorrow directly to Obama."

As before, Klein buries the fact that Obama has condemned Hamas as a terrorist group far down in the article.

It appears that Klein is using Yousef like an automaton, playing that particular key on his mighty Wurlitzer whenever he feels the need to link Obama to terrorism. Is Yousef aware he's being cynically used by Klein?

And thus, Klein's hatred of Obama will continue to burn brightly for the next four to eight years, even though his (and WND's) brand of fact-free smears masquerading as "reporting" has been repudiated by Obama's win.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:51 PM EST
Updated: Wednesday, November 5, 2008 2:54 PM EST
Smerconish Gets Heathered
Topic: NewsBusters

Along with Tim Graham, P.J. Gladnick has a key component of NewsBusters' Heathers crew, ostracizing anyone not sufficiently, slavishly dedicated to the right-wing agenda. The latest victim is Philadelphia radio host Michael Smerconish.

In a Nov. 4 post, Gladnick gets all snippy about "conservative" (the scare quotes are Gladnick's) Smerconish's endorsement of Barack Obama, channeling right-wing blogger Brian Maloney's baseless assertion that Smerconish did so only to please his corporate bosses and to gain greater exposure in the form of his show expanding to Washington, D.C.

Gladnick called Smerconish's endorsement "self-serving" and "career-enhancing," adding ominously, "It's all part of the Faustian bargain. Selling your soul comes with a huge price tag as Smerconish will find out."

And Smerconish won't get to hang out at the mall with Gladnick anymore, either.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:16 AM EST
Obama Derangement Syndrome, Bitter Post-Election Division
Topic: WorldNetDaily

During the Cold War, the communists always claimed that we were foolish to worry about them trying to conquer us militarily. They said there was no need for that because they had the intent and the patience to take us over through an internal revolution. The conquest of America was not to be accomplished with bullets but with ballots.

We should have listened. But we didn't, and soon the most powerful political office in the world will be handed over to an avowed socialist. This morning, in some fetid corner of hell, Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin and Joe Stalin are toasting each other.

-- Mark Crutcher, Nov. 5 WorldNetDaily column


Posted by Terry K. at 1:42 AM EST
Morris Tries to Spin Obama, Dem Landslide
Topic: Newsmax

Dick Morris attempted a bit of quasi-liveblogging of the election at Newsmax. He was trying to spin away Republican losses and the Obama landslide, which got more strained as the night went on:

8:09 p.m.: "If you look at Virginia and Kentucky, it looks like a narrow McCain victory. If you look at Florida and Indiana, it looks like a big Obama win. All four states have less than a quarter of the vote in, so we can't jump to conclusions. ... On Senate races, Sue Collins' win in Maine is important. That indicates perhaps that the Dems won't reach 60 votes."

8:41 p.m.: "With McCain doing better than expected in Kentucky and Virginia, and perhaps in Georgia, it looks good for him. But Florida is the fly in the ointment."

8:52 p.m.: "One thing is clear at this point: The polls were wrong!!! Obama may still win, but he is not winning by the margins the polls predicted. In state after state, it is obvious that McCain is doing better than predicted. ... Until we see how McCain does in North Carolina and Florida (he has to win both to win the election), we cannot see how the race will go nationally. But it is clear that this is no blowout as the polls had predicted."

8:58 p.m.: "Fox News and Newsmax report that exit polls are 5 points to 10 points more pro Obama than the actual vote. This election could be very, very close."

9:25 p.m.: "It would appear that Obama is going to win, although not by the margins that had been predicted."

9:37 p.m.: "So at this point my guess would be, just projecting out, that you will obviously have a Democratic gain in the Senate. They also picked up Virginia. But I do believe it’s not going to be a 60-vote Senate. I think it will be a 56- to 58-vote Senate. That of course means you are going to have a strong Democratic majority and Republicans will have a hard time mounting a filibuster, but you can’t actually count it out. I think the Democratic gains in the Senate are less than their optimists had predicted."

 


Posted by Terry K. at 12:01 AM EST
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
WND Still Can't Let Go of Obama Birth Certificate Myth
Topic: WorldNetDaily
A Nov. 4 WorldNetDaily article is yet another in the series of articles on Philip Berg's lawsuit claiming Barack obama's birth certificate is fake without mentioning the fact that WND previously reported that Berg's lawsuit "relies on discredited claims" and that "A separate WND investigation into Obama's birth certificate utilizing forgery experts also found the document to be authentic."

Posted by Terry K. at 8:05 PM EST
WND Omits Other Side In Alleged Black Panther 'Intimidation'
Topic: NewsBusters

A Nov. 4 WorldNetDaily article by Chelsea Schilling howled: "Armed Black Panthers blocked a doorway to a polling location and intimidated voters in Philadelphia, Pa., according to Republican poll observers." Schilling told only the point of view of those "Republican poll observers" as reported by Fox News, baselessly asserted that "one of many cases of intimidation against people who do not support Obama at Philadelphia polling sites," and made no attempt to tell the other side of the story.

By contrast, TPM's Greg Sargent reports:

Fox News and other conservatives on the Web are pushing hard on the story that two black panthers may be intimidating voters at a polling place in north Philadelphia.

But an Obama campaign volunteer who's been on the scene since 6:30 AM this morning tells me in a phone interview that there's been absolutely no intimidation of voters at all today. And a Pennsylvania spokesperson for Obama said the two men aren't in any way affiliated with the campaign.

Fox News' story is right here. It says one of two black panthers on the scene was "allegedly blocking the door," says another was "holding a nightstick." and adds that "the concern was that they were intimidating people who were trying to go inside to vote."

But Jacqueline Dischell, the Obama volunteer, tells me by phone that that's false.

[...]

There was no fight, nothing," she says.

Fox News arrived on the scene at around that time and started interviewing people near the entrance. The building manager asked the Fox reporter to leave, she says, and he moved further from the entrance.

That's where things now stand. "There has been no fighting, no voter intimidation at all," she said.

Why are Schilling and WND afraid to tell their readers the full story? 

UPDATE: Newsmax is afraid too: A Nov. 4 article by David Alliot also fails to tell the full story, taking the lazy way out by similarly limiting himself to regurgitating Fox News' version of events. 


Posted by Terry K. at 5:47 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, November 4, 2008 5:52 PM EST
The Slant Count
Topic: WorldNetDaily

As we did in 2004, it's time for the Slant Count -- the tally of WorldNetDaily's Election Day bias, in which we count the total number of anti-Obama or -Democrat and pro-McCain or -Republican articles on the website today.

WND news page: 14

WND commentary page: 9


Posted by Terry K. at 5:23 PM EST
Kessler Whines That His Obama-Wright Smears Didn't Get Saturation Coverage
Topic: Newsmax

Ronald Kessler uses his Nov. 3 Newsmax column to complain that the media was "ignoring their obligation to report the news" by not giving what he considered to be sufficient attention to Barack Obama's relationship with Rev. Jeremiah Wright:

I began writing stories about the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s mentor and former pastor, Jan. 7 with “Barack Obama’s Racist Church.”

[...]

During the next two and a half months, I wrote more than half a dozen stories disclosing new information about Obama and Wright. 

[...]

Meanwhile, I sent the Newsmax stories to dozens of people I know in the print and broadcast media. In contrast to their interest in Joe the plumber’s background, no media outlet would touch the Wright stories. 

Unmentioned by Kessler: He has long ago squandered any journalistic credibility he might have had through his biased (and occasionally creepy) opining for a blatantly partisan "news" outlet, and his entreaties to other news organizations were rightly ignored as the partisan motivations of a political activist.

Kessler concludes: "The media’s continuing coverup of Obama’s associations with radical hate-mongers like Wright is a shameful chapter in the history of American journalism." If he's so concerned about such associations, why doesn't he expose and denounce his own -- and his employer's -- associations with unrepentant domestic terrorist G. Gordon Liddy?


Posted by Terry K. at 10:01 AM EST
NewsBusters Misleads on Troopergate Probe
Topic: NewsBusters

A Nov. 3 NewsBusters post by Terry Trippany promoted an Alaska Personnel Board investigation of Sarah Palin's actions in Troopergate, which cleared Palin of wrongdoing. "The report provides vindication for Sarah Palin who had claimed that Branchflower's investigation had been motivated by partisan politics," Trippany writes.

But Trippany fails to note that the probe was not as "independent" as Trippany portrays it. As TPM points out:

Of course, this was an investigation that Palin herself initiated, by filing an ethics complaint against herself. The three members of the Personnel Board are appointed by Palin, and she cooperated with the investigation.

By contrast, the only independent investigation into the matter -- which was conducted by the state legislature and with which Palin did not cooperate -- found that Palin had violated state ethics laws by pressuring subordinates to fire Mike Wooten, a trooper with whom she was embroiled in a family dispute.

TPM also points out that the new report claims that the original report misconstrued the available evidence and did not consider or obtain all of the material evidence that is required to properly reach findings. One key reason that the original investigation could not "obtain all of the material evidence" was that Palin refused to cooperate with it.


Posted by Terry K. at 8:38 AM EST

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