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Tuesday, September 22, 2009
WND's Racist 'Sting,' Starring Kathleen Willey
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily is currently touting an exposé of sorts in which Kathleen Willey -- yes, that Kathleen Willey, who apparently needs the work now that her Clinton-hating business has mostly dried up -- went undercover for WND to work as an employee with a government contractor to process rebate forms for the cash-for-clunkers program. The article's headline calls it a "sting," even though all Willey did was "taking notes on all she observed and experienced for WND."

The undercurrent of WND's "sting," however, is latent racism on the part of both Willey and WND. The article, by Chelsea Schilling, makes sure to note that the contractor that hired Willey and others for the program is "a minority-owned staffing company." Schilling continued:

Willey said she was the only non-minority applicant in the room. While human resources required a strict dress code for the position, she said she was shocked by the clothing and conduct of other candidates who were interviewed:

I was the only one dressed for a job interview. Everyone else had on jeans and T-shirts. Most women wore flip-flops. One woman was barefoot. The women were dressed extremely unprofessionally, in jeans and very revealing tops. A lot of them wore T-shirts that barely covered their stomachs. What I noticed most were the foul mouths of everyone around me.

Perhaps WND could have done better than to hire an admitted liar to conduct a "sting."

Posted by Terry K. at 11:23 AM EDT
MRC's 'Profile of Bias' on Sawyer A Little Thin
Topic: Media Research Center

Shortly after Diane Sawyer was named the new anchor of ABC's World News, the Media Research Center slapped together a "Profile in Bias" of Sawyer, purporting to detail her liberal slant presumably pulled from the MRC archives. In doing so, the MRC stretches things a bit, citing only 35 examples over a 20-year career -- not that many for someone who was on TV either daily ("Good Morning America") or weekly "20/20") throughout much of that time.

By contrast, Media Matters cites 14 examples of what might be called conservative bias by Sawyer just since 2006.

The MRC also presents simple recitation of facts by Sawyer as "bias." For instance, a statement that Yasser Arafat was "treated as a hero, freedom fighter, revolutionary" in parts of the world was classified under "Putting a Soft Focus on World’s Worst Thugs" -- even though the MRC also quotes Sawyer as saying that Israelis saw Arafat as "a bloody terrorist and nothing more."Similarly, Sawyer's noting in 1990 that Vladimir Lenin "retains an almost mystical hold on the Soviet people" was translated by the MRC as a "touting" of Lenin.

Sawyer also ran afoul of the MRC for highlighting the excesses of the Starr Report on President Clinton, pointing out that "I think there were 62 mentions of the word ‘breast,’ 23 of ‘cigar,’ 19 of ‘semen.’ This has been called demented pornography, pornography for Puritans."

At one point, the MRC seems to condone murder: Sawyer's statement that "The abortion debate turns deadly. A doctor known for performing late-term abortions gunned down at church" is prefaced by the headline "50 Million Dead Babies Later...."

As we've detailed, the MRC put together a similarly shoddy "profile in bias" of Katie Couric upon her appointment as CBS Evening News anchor.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:22 AM EDT
Farah Misleads on Obama Ads At WND (Among Other Things)
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joseph Farah's Sept. 21 WorldNetDaily column is a defense of ads for Obama's Fight the Smears website appearing at WND after "dozens of WND readers" expressed their concern and were "accusing me of everything from ineptitude to selling out." But Farah misleads about the nature of the ads -- and other things as well.

As the screen shots Farah included in his column show, the Fight the Smears ads aren't placed directly with WND but through Google AdSense (which we also use), which places ads based on the content of a specific web page. Because WND writes about (and attacks) Obama a lot, the Fight the Smears ads show up a lot as well. WND has merely chosen not to block them from appearing. AdSense's revenue model is based not on placement but on click-throughs. WND makes no money on these ads if its readers -- who, as a whole, are not inclined to support anything that even remotely benefits Obama -- don't click on them.

In other words, it's not as loftily principled as Farah portrays, and it is more about selling out.

There is a lack of principles on Farah's part here -- not for accepting the Obama ads but, rather, for using Google AdSense. As we've pointed out, Farah has repeatedly attacked Google, even calling the company "immoral" and that it "may not be able to discern right from wrong." Why is Farah working with an "immoral" ad partner? How does Farah explain how his "principles" led him to partner with such a company?

In other words, it's totally about selling out.

Farah also claimed that "WND hosted lots of ads for both John McCain and Barack Obama – even though your humble and ever-independent editor and founder wrote a book called 'None of the Above' and was outspoken in his criticism of both candidates."Farah doesn't mention that his own managing editor, David Kupelian, endorsed McCain -- a reflection of WND's overall coverage of the campaign, which tilted heavily in McCain's favor.

Farah goes on to write:

I mentioned last week in this space that WND offers what I believe to be the broadest spectrum of commentary in any news forum anywhere – on the Net or off. Not one person has challenged that characterization. Do you know why? Because it is indisputably true. Name one news source or commentary source on the Net or off that provides space or time to the views of Pat Buchanan, Ann Coulter and Joseph Farah and Bill Press, Nat Hentoff and Ellen Ratner?

Actually, we have challenged it. Out of the three dozen or so regular columnists, only Press and Ratner can be described as liberal; the rest range from conservative to right-wing Christian to libertarian. The presence of Ratner and Press -- who rarely get promoted by WND the way it does its right wing columnists -- appear to be for the sole purpose of Farah claiming that WND offers "the broadest spectrum of commentary." Press and Ratner are outliers; WND's actual "spectrum of commentary" runs from conservative to far-right. It can't actually be described as "broad" when it's so heavily weighted to one side.

Farah also indulges in a little promotion of WND's book division, which he says "revolutionized the publishing industry in this country and opened the doors for best-selling books by Michael Savage and Mark Levin and Glenn Beck." How is publishing books by right-wing authors a revolution of any kind? And didn't Regnery beat WND to that punch by, oh, a decade or two?

Posted by Terry K. at 12:25 AM EDT
Monday, September 21, 2009
Newsmax Doesn't Tell Whole Story of FAIR
Topic: Newsmax

A Sept. 21 Newsmax article by Dave Eberhart touted a speech by Rep. Dana Rohrabacher at the Federation for America Immigration Reform's (FAIR) recent "Hold Their Feet to the Fire" gathering, noting how "Rohrabacher had come to the FAIR gathering to lend his support to that organization’s President, Dan Stein, who was busy himself sounding the clarion call about allowing the Obama administration to push through any reform that features amnesty."

Eberhart failed to note that FAIR was founded by John Tanton, who has made numerous controversial and arguably racist statements about immigrants. Nor did Eberhart mention that AIR received $1.2 million between 1985 and 1994 from the Pioneer Fund, a foundation that supports the work of white supremacists, eugenicists, and others who seek to prove that genetic differences exist between races.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:04 PM EDT
AIM's NY Times Boycott Site Goes Dormant
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Has Accuracy in Media pulled the plug on its New York Times boycott website? has not been updated since early August. Its chief writer, Don Feder, last posted an item at the end of June. A Sept. 16 WorldNetDaily column by Feder did not mention any connection to AIM or the Times boycott in Feder's bio.

That's probably just as well, since Feder made a hash of things. As we've detailed, Feder's work at the Times boycott website was notable more for right-wing screeds filled with misleading claims than anything resembling legitimate, coherent media criticism.

AIM always seemed a bit embarrassed to be associated with Feder's website -- it rarely promoted the site, and never offered a link to it on the AIM front page. Now, AIM seems to be trying to quietly bury it.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:59 AM EDT
Ellis Washington's Radio Host Fluffing Week
Topic: WorldNetDaily

It was Radio Host Fluffing Week in Ellis Washington's WorldNetDaily columns this past week.

Washington's Sept. 16 column was yet another act of literary fellatio on Michael Savage (Washington has now declared himself the "authorized biographer for the conservative intellectual" Savage), touting an invitation by the Cambridge Union Society, "the world's oldest and most prestigious debating society," to speak at the British university. Washington asked: "Would he be allowed to debate the team at Cambridge Union Society alone, or would he be paired up with an assortment of radicals, racists and demagogues?" You mean besides Savage?

And the fellatio began:

Savage will be our voice, our representative in a foreign land, our Prometheus … our gladiator in the arena of ideas who will wage intellectual battle against the socialist barbarians who have prevented him from stepping foot on their land.


Michael, the entire audience of "The Savage Nation" and I beseech thee to go to Cambridge, England. Go to the land of the King James Bible, the land of the Magna Carta, the land of Sir Winston Churchill and present your petition of Due Process, Justice, Liberty, Reason, Freedom and Veritas (truth). Tell our cousins across the pond that PC doesn't mean political correctness, but "perversity correctness," that true freedom of speech means the obligation and willingness to hear those you may passionately disagree with. For to do otherwise makes us all either slave masters or slaves to tyranny.

Washington hiliarously adds: "I don't want to be unduly melodramatic here." But what other reason for existence does Washington have?

Washington gets away from the homoerotic overtones of his creepy fealty to Savage long enough to sing the praises of a different radio host -- Laura Ingraham -- for his Sept. 19 column.

I have been with conservative intellectual Laura Ingraham ever since 2001, when the maiden voyage of "The Laura Ingraham Show" set sail. I am never disappointed when listening to Laura, for she is first a quintessential American. She has a forceful personality and has the intellectual gravitas to delineate her views on a wide variety of subjects (not just politics), without coming off as overbearing or doctrinaire. Indeed, I call Laura the lioness of talk radio.


America! Let us support the yeoman's work of Laura Ingraham. Indeed, this woman is a real conservative, an American patriot, a God-fearing Christian and the adoptive mother to two beautiful children – Maria (from Guatemala) and Dmitri (from Russia).

Please visit her website at and perhaps become a "Laura365" member, or at least sign her "Ten for 10" petition.

Ms. Laura Ingraham, indeed you are the lioness of talk radio. You have that beautiful lion's mane of blond hair and a radiant visage. Roar for the conservative movement, roar for the Constitution, roar against the fascist administration of President Obama, and by all means, Laura … continue to roar for America!

It's good to know that Washington likes girls after all ... we think.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:27 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, September 21, 2009 9:58 AM EDT
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Posted by Terry K. at 1:23 AM EDT
WND Loves Cleon Skousen Too
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Last week, Salon published an interesting profile of Cleon Skousen, who has emerged as the ideological mentor of Glenn Beck. You will not be surprised to learn that WorldNetDaily loves Skousen as well.

WND is currently including as a bonus for subscribing  to its Whistleblower magazine "the book Glenn Beck has been raving about," Skousen's "The 5,000 Year Leap"(also available in the WND store). WND says of the book:

The author explains in clear, concise terms all that came together to create a nation that literally accomplished a 5,000-year leap in progress. Skousen covers in detail what went into the design of the U.S. Constitution, highlighting the original sources for the principles that inspired the United States, and showing how the Founders developed these principles from the studies of Cicero, Locke, Montesquieu, and Adam Smith.

Well, actually, not so much. At Salon, Alexander Zaitchik says of the book:

"Leap," first published in 1981, is a heavily illustrated and factually challenged attempt to explain American history through an unspoken lens of Mormon theology. As such, it is an early entry in the ongoing attempt by the religious right to rewrite history. Fundamentalists want to define the United States as a Christian nation rather than a secular republic, and recast the Founding Fathers as devout Christians guided by the Bible rather than deists inspired by French and English philosophers. "Leap" argues that the U.S. Constitution is a godly document above all else, based on natural law, and owes more to the Old and New Testaments than to the secular and radical spirit of the Enlightenment. It lists 28 fundamental beliefs -- based on the sayings and writings of Moses, Jesus, Cicero, John Locke, Montesquieu and Adam Smith -- that Skousen says have resulted in more God-directed progress than was achieved in the previous 5,000 years of every other civilization combined. The book reads exactly like what it was until Glenn Beck dragged it out of Mormon obscurity: a textbook full of aggressively selective quotations intended for conservative religious schools like Utah's George Wythe University, where it has been part of the core freshman curriculum for decades (and where Beck spoke at this year's annual fundraiser).

Zaitchik goes on to note that "Skousen had authored more than a dozen books and pamphlets on the Red Menace, New World Order conspiracy, Christian child rearing, and Mormon end-times prophecy."

Skousen is also known for another screed, called "The Naked Capitalist," whcih Zaitchik calls "a foundational document of America's NWO conspiracy and survivalist scene" (which makes it somewhat of a surprise that WND doesn't sell it). Indeed, Zaitchik writes that "The Naked Capitalist" is a screed against "the dynastic rich" and "liberal internationalist groups such as the Council on Foreign Relations" (WND sells other works that conspiracy-monger about the CFR too, so its failure to stock this is doubly puzzling).

Then again, Skousen's work does have a bit of bad press surrounding it. A highly respected Brigham Young University history professor named Louis C. Midgley reviewed the book in 1971 and was not kind, pointing out that Skousen's personal position seems to me perilously close to the 'exclusive uniformity' which I see in Nazism and in the Radical Right in this country. In fact, his position has echoes of the original Nazi 25-point plan."

As we all know, only Barack Obama gets likened to Nazis (not to mention the Antichrist) at WND these days.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:27 AM EDT
Sunday, September 20, 2009
CNS Tries to Link Health Care Reform to Illegal Immigrants

We've noted that has latched onto a conspiracy theory tying together the issues of health care reform. As CNS editor in chief Terry Jeffrey has summed up: "Illegal immigrants won’t get federal health insurance benefits under Obama’s plan because they won’t be illegal immigrants anymore, they will be legal immigrants." CNS has pushed that conspiracy over the past week.

A Sept. 16 article by Matt Cover gave away the whole thing in its overly long headline: "[Steny] Hoyer Won't Answer Directly Whether Immigration Reform Would Make Current Illegal Aliens Eligible for Federally Subsidized Health Insurance Under Obamacare." Cover followed up the next day in the same vein, asking other senators "whether people who are currently illegal aliens in the United States would become eligible for health insurance subsidies under the proposed health-care reform plan if they were made into legal residents and put on a pathway to citizenship by an immigration reform bill."

CNS then latched onto what it seems to consider its smoking gun on the non-issue: a statement at the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute that, as summarized in a Sept. 18 article by Nicholas Ballasy, "llegal immigrants would not get government funded health insurance under his health care reform, but said the debate over that plan underscores the need to legalize illegal immigrants so they can get that coverage."

Of course, all of this is nothing more than an attempt by CNS and its fellow conservatives to attack health care reform by hitching it to another issue conservatives despise, comprehensive immigration reform. As we've noted, CNS has repeatedly and baselessly attacked comprehensive immigration reform as "amnesty."

Posted by Terry K. at 10:39 AM EDT
Shocker: NewsBusters Concedes Fox News Ad Is False
Topic: NewsBusters

A Sept. 18 NewsBusters post by Matthew Balan is noteworthy for calling a conservative spade a spade.

Balan writes that "CNN’s Rick Sanchez correctly pointed out that a full-page color ad by the Fox News Channel incorrectly claimed that his network missed the massive September 12 Tea Party rally in Washington, DC," adding that Sanchez "completely discredited the ad’s claim."

The shocking thing here is Balan's deviance from the official Fox News line -- which is, according to Howard Kurtz, that the ad "refers to the other networks' missing the larger story, not failing to cover the demonstration itself -- although the photos suggest that the headline refers to the protest."

Since unmitigated praise for a non-conservative news outlet cannot be allowed to stand at any division of the Media Research Center, Balan makes sure to add that Sanchez "went on to paper over CNN’s own double-standard on covering left-wing protests versus conservative protests." Balan added that "Sanchez also accused Fox News of trying to 'promote' the Tea Parties" -- which Balan doesn't contradict.

Balan asserted that "on March 22, 2003 CNN broadcast 38 separate reports on another anti-Iraq war demonstration," but he offers no count on Fox News' coverage of the 9/12 protests, which included not only numerous reports the day of the protests but organization of the protest by Fox News personnel and heavy promotion of events leading up to the protest -- something that can't be said about CNN's coverage of anti-war protests.

UPDATE: Oh, and the boys of NewsBusters have been silent so far on a video showing a Fox News producer rallying the crowd at the 9/12 protest -- something the "mainstream media" has never been accused of doing at the anti-war protests.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:33 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, September 21, 2009 12:47 AM EDT
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Misleading Newsmax Headline Watch
Topic: Newsmax

A Sept. 18 Newsmax article by Rick Pedraza carries the headline "Biden: Iran Not a Threat." But at no point in Pedraza's article is Vice President Joe Biden quoted as saying that.

The closest thing to that statement is, "I am less concerned — much less concerned — about the Iranian potential. They have no potential at this moment; they have no capacity to launch a missile at the United States of America." But Pedraza also quotes Biden as saying, "I think we are fully capable and secure dealing with any present or future potential Iranian threat. ... The whole purpose of this exercise we are undertaking is to diminish the prospect of the Iranians destabilizing that region in the world."

By oversimplifying a Biden statement and taking it out of context, Newsmax misleads its readers.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:25 AM EDT
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

I was at the D.C. rally, and I can tell you that the voices were not shrill, though some of them were at times loud – as well they should have been. But take a cue from Che Prez, because he comes from the ranks of the enemy – the enemy who invented loud and shrill.

You may not be old enough to remember the antics of the hippies in the '60s, but they mastered the art of loud and shrill to move the country irreversibly to the left. Loud and shrill ended the Vietnam War. Loud and shrill kicked the deadly "green movement" into high gear. Loud and shrill reduced God's role to that of a bench player. And loud and shrill brought Barack Hussein Obama out of the manger and into your wallet.

-- Robert Ringer, Sept. 18 WorldNetDaily column

Posted by Terry K. at 9:59 AM EDT
WND Gets It Wrong on Obama, ACORN
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A Sept. 18 WorldNetDaily article by Chelsea Schilling repeats numerous misleading and false claims about the relationship between President Obama and ACORN.

Schilling wrote that "in 1992, while he was working as a community organizer in Chicago, Obama headed the Chicago operations of Project Vote!, an ACORN effort to register voters nationally. " In fact, as we've detailed and as Obama's Fight the Smears states, Project Vote was not operated by ACORN at the time.Schilling includes a screenshot of the Fight the Smears page containing that statement, but she failed to include it in her article.

Schilling wrote that in 1995 Obama "sued the state of Illinois on behalf of ACORN to implement the federal 'motor voter' law," failing to mention that ACORN's fellow plaintiffs in the case also included the Department of Justice and the League of Women Voters.Further, Obama was not the onlyattorney representing ACORN; indeed, he was not a lead attorney in the case but, rather, an associate.

Schilling claimed that William Ayers "selected Obama to be the first chairman of the board of the Annenberg Challenge." In fact, the New York Times reported that "according to several people involved, Mr. Ayers played no role in Mr. Obama's appointment."

Schilling wrote that "newspaper evidence shows Obama was a member of the New Party, which sought to elect members to public office with the aim of moving the Democratic Party far leftward to ultimately form a new political party with a socialist agenda." In fact, the Aug. 23 WND article by Aaron Klein that Schilling cites for this claim quotes a New Party official as stating that to his knowledge Obama was not a member of the New Party "in any practical way."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:04 AM EDT
Friday, September 18, 2009
NewsBusters Don't Like Them Furriners Tellin' Them What to Do
Topic: NewsBusters

Amy Ridenour complains in a Sept. 17 NewsBusters post that Andrew Sullivan is "not a citizen of the United States," yet he has "been commenting on U.S. domestic policy for the last couple of decades as if he had a citizen's stake in the nation" and "telling us how to arrange our domestic affairs." Sullivan "has been happy to tell Americans how to vote while owing his allegiance to a foreign power," Ridenour writes.

Two words for Amy: Mark Steyn.

County Fair has more.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:36 PM EDT
NewsBusters Touts Another Dubious Poll
Topic: NewsBusters

A Sept. 17 NewsBusters post by Terry Trippany touts a Towers Perrin survey claiming that, in Trippany's words, "a majority of employers surveyed will reduce benefits resulting from the proposed Democrat Health Care Reform bill that is working its way through Congress if it increases costs." But like the similarly anti-reform Investor's Business Daily poll NewsBusters touted earlier in the week, this survey has some problems.

According to the poll's methdology, "The Tower Perrin Health Care Reform Pulse Survey drew responses from 433 HR and benefit executives from a cross section of midsize and large organizations in the U.S. ... The survey was conducted online in July 2009." Online polling is considered by polling experts to be problematic because participants tend to be self-selecting instead of a true cross-section, skewing results.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:26 PM EDT

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