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Friday, June 26, 2009
CNS Avoids Ideological Label for Medical Group

A June 26 article by Pete Winn is entirely devoted to the ranting of "Dr. David McKalip of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons," who claims that a public option in health care reform -- which Winn describes as "a mandatory government insurance option" -- will cause doctors to "simply start migrating out of medicine." At no point does Winn identify the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons as a right-wing group with extreme and controversial positions on medicine.

As we've detailed, AAPS has promoted dubious links between abortion and breast cancer, bashed the idea of peer review, and even took the side of a doctor sentenced to prison for sparking an epidemic of drug abuse by prescribing patients literally thousands of painkillers a day. The AAPS even opposes Medicaid.

The AAPS' journal, which claims to have peer review, published an anti-immigrant screed by Madeleine Pelner Cosman falsely claiming that leprosy cases have dramatically increased due to immigration.

McKalip himself has opposed a Florida rule requiring hospitals to report how surgeons use antibiotics to prevent infections, complaining that it's a moved toward "socialized medicine."

UPDATE: Media Matters has more.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:25 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, June 26, 2009 7:45 PM EDT
Newsmax Headline Watch
Topic: Newsmax

A June 25 Newsmax article carries the headline, "Hoyer Blames Reagan for D.C. Metrorail Crash." But Steny Hoyer, the House majority leader, did no such thing.

As the article itself details -- cribbed from a article reporting Hoyer's comments -- Hoyer merely stated that President Reagan opposed funding for mass transit during the 1980s, which Congress circumvented. CNS never claimed that Hoyer "blames" Reagan for the recent Metrorail crash.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:34 PM EDT
Unclear On the Concept
Topic: NewsBusters

Sarah Knoploh reacts in a June 25 NewsBusters post to the news that Rosie O'Donnell will launch a new show on satellite radio: "Given her history of making outlandish statements it’s quite hard to believe anyone gave O’Donnell a talk show."

Funny, we thought that a history of outlandish statements was precisely why someone gets a talk show. If that's now a disqualifying factor, will Knoploh advocate shutting down the likes of Rush Limbaugh and Michael Savage?

Posted by Terry K. at 9:28 AM EDT
Examiner 'Corrects' Something That Wasn't False
Topic: Washington Examiner

Via the Fired Up Missouri blog (via Media Matters), we learn that the Washington Examiner did a little scrubbing to an article on Mark Sanford's little marital scandal. In quoting Missouri congressman Roy Blunt opining on the Sanford affair, the Examiner originally noted that Blunt "is no stranger to scandal, having gone through an affair, a public divorce and remarriage under the scrutiny of the press." The Examiner later quietly expunged the reference to a Blunt "affair." When folks asked why, Examiner online community manager Charlie Spiering responded on Twitter: "its called a correction."

But Blunt's affair with the woman he married just six months after jettisoning the previous one is demonstrably true, so removing a reference to it is not "correcting" anything.

Just another example of the right-wing tilt emanating from the Examiner.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:09 AM EDT
NewsBusters' Double Standard on Political Scandals
Topic: NewsBusters

A June 25 NewsBusters post by Dave Pierre bashes the Los Angeles Times for reporting on Republican Mark Sanford's extramarital adventures when last year, a Times editor "forcefully instructed the staff not to report" on allegations of an affair involving Democrat John Edwards "until further notified." Pierre linked to a July 2008 NewsBusters post he wrote on the subject -- a post, as we noted at the time, made when the Edwards affair story was being pushed only by the National Enquirer ... and right-wing blogs like NewsBusters who don't treat the Enquirer with the same reverence when it reports on salacious stories involving Republicans.

By comparison, the Times was reporting on confirmation of Sanford's affair by Sanford himself -- a little more direct source than the type of people usually interviewed by the Enquirer.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:18 AM EDT
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Will WND Be A Party to Savage's Threat Against Media Matters?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

So Michael Savage has vowed to post "full pictures and other pertinent information about" Media Matters employees on his website. That presumably includes us as well, being that we work there and everything.

It's pertinent to note that, as we first reported last year, Savage's website is hosted by WorldNetDaily -- which means if Savage follows through on his attempt at intimidation, WND will be a party to it and, thus, partially liable for any actions that result from it. Will WND allow Savage to use its servers to dish out such threats and intimidation?

Given how much WND editor Joseph Farah hates us for simply telling the truth about him and WND, we've have to guess yes.

UPDATE: Savage appears to have backed off his threat, now claiming he will only post publicly available information.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:08 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, June 25, 2009 10:01 PM EDT
NewsBusters Offended That Obama Answered Questions He Was Asked
Topic: NewsBusters

A June 25 NewsBusters post by Jeff Poor expresses annoyance that the majority of the time in an ABC special dedicated to asking President Obama questions about health care reform was used ... by Obama answering those questions. Poor even supplies a handy pie chart of the time breakdown:


Poor claims that Obama was "vaguely answering or not answering the questions asked of him" and that ABC "allowed him to dominate the program with long-winded and vague answers," but he provides no evidence that any of Obama's answers were "vague."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:48 PM EDT
Corsi Still Lying About Obama
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Jerome Corsi just can't stop telling lies about Obama.

Ina June 25 WorldNetDaily column, Corsi repeats an old claim that "Obama, with a donation of nearly $1 million, and a son of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi were among the biggest contributors to Odinga's 2007 presidential campaign, according to an internal document obtained by WND in Kenya." But as we've previously detailed, the document "obtained by WND in Kenya" is almost assuredly not original; it appears to be a recreation of a document cited by PolitiFact in debunking the claim of Obama fundraising for Odinga several months before Corsi's trip to Kenya. Corsi has never responded to PolitiFact's debunking, let alone offer any evidence to cast doubt on it.

Corsi also stated that "when then-Sen. Obama visited Kenya in 2006, the administration of President [Mwai] Kibaki objected that [Raila] Odinga was using Obama's visit to win votes. Obama's repeated public appearances with Odinga and the senator's almost daily criticism of the Kigaki [sic] government added to the administration's objections." But Corsi leaves out certain inconvenient facts:

  • Contrary to Corsi's claim of "Obama's repeated public appearances with Odinga," the Huffington Post reported that the only joint appearance by the two reported by Corsi in his Obama-bashing book of last year was an Obama speech in which Odinga was standing nearby.
  • While Obama did criticize the Kibaki government, he had a legitimate reason for doing so. According to The Hill: "Obama all-out criticized the Kibaki government for corruption. Chicago TV crews complained that they had to pay bribes at the Nairobi airport to get their equipment into the country. Obama took their complaint to Kibaki, who ordered a 'refund,' sending envelopes stuffed with dollars and Kenyan shillings back to the crews." Does Corsi think Obama should have stayed silent about such blatant corruption? The Huffington Post noted that "Corsi seems to be arguing that there's no corruption in Kenya, and the shakedown fees reported by a local Chicago news team to enter Kenya were simply a miscommunication."

Given WND's eagerness to smear and lie about Obama, it's no surprise that Corsi is being a loyal employee by joining in the action.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:28 AM EDT
CNS Repeats Bogus Poll Breakdown Claim

A June 24 article by Christopher Neefus uncritically quotes Republican pollster Kellyanne Conway (whom Neefus fails to identify as a Republican pollster, something CNS has failed to do in the past) criticizing a New York Times/CBS News poll finding a little too much support for a public health insurance option than right-wing organizations would like to see, claiming that the poll's breakdown of 48 percent of respondents who said had voted for Barack Obama, versus 25 percent for McCain, means that, in Neefus' words, "Had those results been reflected in the November presidential election, Obama would have garnered 66 percent of the vote to McCain’s 34 percent." Conway is quoted as adding, "Was the vote 66-34? You tell me."

In fact, as we've already pointed out when CNS sister organization NewsBusters made the same bogus claim, this ignores the 27 percent of respondents who said they didn't vote, said they voted for someone else, or refused to say for whom they voted -- which means that the breakdown cannot be 66-34.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:06 AM EDT
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

I am convinced the more I observe our president that Obama and his fascist legions are actually pleased with the mounting chaos destabilizing the civilized world. The simmering revolution in Iran is just the most recent incarnation. It's all Chaos Theory, baby! – and the more chaos the better, because it gives Obama the pretext to "do something" to "fix" the problems. In the meantime, Obama's remedies only exacerbate existential domestic and geopolitical problems, which only starts the Chaos Theory cycle anew.

-- Ellis Washington, June 24 WorldNetDaily column.

Bonus points to Washington for the reference to "conservative intellectual Ann Coulter."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:15 AM EDT
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Molotov's Anti-Gay Rant
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Factually challenged slur-tosser Molotov Mitchell runs through a host of negative gay stereotypes and misleading claims in his June 24 WorldNetDaily video.

Mitchell wears a "Homosexuals Are So Gay" T-shirt through the video, which he delcares is "hate crimes compatible." He then rants about homosexuals stealing the word "gay":

Originally, the word "gay" meant happy or joyful. So naturally, liberals hated it. Homosexuals took the word and redefined it so that it would mean homosexual intercourse. I guess they were trying to get people to associate that with flying a kite or something. Now, when somebody says, "The movie was totally gay," they don't mean that it was happy or homosexual -- they mean it was lame.

Mitchell thus takes the side of former Washington Times managing editor (and white supremacist) Francis Coombs, who claimed that the Times' former ban on "gay" was based on "preservation of the language."

Mitchell then claims: Look, if you want to understand the gay community, heart and soul, don't watch 'Will and Grace'; Go to a gay parade. And don't bring the kids." If that's true, then it can be reasonably argued in response that if you want to understand the birther movement, heart and soul, don't read WorldNetDaily (or watch Molotov Mitchell); check out James von Brunn. And don't bring the kids.

Mitchell concludes, amid on-screen text stating, "Has gay culture earned our respect?": "People have to earn respect, no matter who they are. And breaking the records for drug abuse, infidelity and suicide won't make you popular. Getting the government to punish people who don't like you doesn't help either. The people I respect are the ones who left the gay lifestyle. By leaving that demographic, you may not be protected by hate-crimes legislation, but your life expectancy just jumped by 20 years."

Mitchell sourced the life expectancy claim to the International Journal of Epidemiology, but it's outdated. The study was published in 1997 and examined data "obtained for a large Canadian urban centre from 1987 to 1992," and the life expetcancy differential was specifically attributed to losses "due to HIV/AIDS." But the first antiretroviral drung to treat HIV was introduced only in 1987 and was only partly effective and thus can be argued to have nosignificant effect on mortality rates during the time period of the study. It was not until the mid-1990s -- well outside the window of the study -- that more effective treatments became available.

In other words, Mitchell is trying to convince you that data from 20 years ago can support a claim made today. He's wrong.

Mitchell also scattered negative stereotypical images of gays throughout his video:

Again, by Mitchell's own logic, we can claim that he and James von Brunn are exactly the same. Or he and Scott Roeder.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:56 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, June 24, 2009 1:58 PM EDT
Graham: Focus on Sanford's Disappearance A Media Conspiracy
Topic: NewsBusters

A June 24 NewsBusters post by Tim Graham complained that a Washington Post article on the mysterious disappearance of South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford "insist[ed] that Sanford was a laughingstock, a man who went missing because he was strange and unpopular for resisting the appeal of the Obama 'stimulus.'" Graham added: "It’s quite transparent that the Washington Post would like nothing better than to turn the potential Republican field against Obama in 2012 into a pack of laughingstocks and insure that their hero faces only nominal opposition in his bid for re-election."

Really? Does Graham really think that any media criticism of Sanford is part of a conspiracy to dash Sanford's presidential aspirations? Does he not think that a sitting governor who disappears for days without letting anyone know where he went (Argentina?) should be criticized for his actions?Does Graham really think that the media is following the same template as the 1972 Nixon campaign in creating a preferred opponent for Obama, even though the 2012 election is well over three years away? Is Graham really that paranoid?

Would Graham still feel the same way were Sanford not a Republican? We suspect not. Therefore, Graham's complaints can be dismissed as partisan bias and paranoia.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:03 AM EDT
Does WND Have Guts to Tell the Truth About Walpin?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In a June 22 WorldNetDaily article, headlined "Does Congress have guts to investigate 'Walpingate'?" Drew Zahn highlights more claims by fired AmeriCorps inspector general Gerald Walpin, most taken from a June 22 article. But like CNS, Zahn neglects to mention one key piece of evidence that contradicts Walpin's accusations: a letter by acting U.S. Attorney Lawrence Brown that accused Walpin of withholding exculpatory evidence from in in an investigation of a recipient of AmeriCorps funding , that Walpin made pronouncements to the media before discussing them with the attorney's office, and that Walpin's "actions were hindering our investigation and handling of this matter."

We already know that WND lacks the guts to tell its readers the truth about Orly Taitz. It seems that WND is also incapable of telling the truth about Walpin as well.

In other Walpin-related news, a June 23 NewsBusters post by Mark Finkelstein complained that CBS' Harry Smith, during an interview of Obama, didn't ask about "PBO's firing of the inspector general who was too diligent in his duty of discovering corruption in AmeriCorps, PBO's pet project."Apparently, Finkelstein believes that withholding evidence from prosecutors and grandstanding before the media is the same thing as being "too diligent in his duty." Needless to say, Finkelstein doesn't mention Brown's letter either.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:05 AM EDT
New Article: The Bernard Kerik Rehabilitation Project
Topic: Newsmax
Newsmax is putting a lot of effort into rebuilding the disgraced former New York police chief into a credible spokesman on terrorism issues and whitewashing the corruption charges he still faces.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:23 AM EDT
CNS Complains About Obama's Golf Outings

CNS does seem to be looking for any excuse to attack President Obama these days (as Terry Jeffrey's eaterness to take Obama out of context illustrates all too well). A June 22 CNS article by Penny Starr complains:

Despite ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, ongoing violence in Iran, and an economy that Obama has described as the worst since the Great Depression, the president has golfed multiple times in the past several weeks--on April 26, May 16, May 25, May 31, June 7, June 9, June 14 and June 21.

Obama’s golf outings have generated favorable reports from the media, in contrast to his predecessor, George W. Bush. 

So when can we expect CNS to follow  the right-wing blogs in complaining that Obama took his daughters for ice cream during a time of international turmoil?

Posted by Terry K. at 9:06 AM EDT

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