Topic: The ConWeb
For a little non-ConWeb-related reading, we have a column up at Media Matters reviewing Matthew Continetti's book "The Persecution of Sarah Palin."
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
WND Now Merely Misleading About Jennings
WorldNetDaily has a history of lying about Kevin Jennings, so it looks like progress when WND merely misleads about him.
Bob Unruh does the latter in a Dec. 14 WND article, highlighting a claim that a "teacher who attended a 2000 sex seminar in Massachusetts at which public school students were taught deviant techniques such as 'fisting'" now claims that "the project was the idea and product of the man who now serves President Obama as chief of the Department of Education's Office of Safe Schools."
What Unruh (following in the footsteps of Gateway Pundit, which first reported the claim) doesn't mention: The teacher has no actual evidence that Jennings knew of the specific content of the workshop in question.
Unruh also fails to mention that when Jennings was made aware of the workshop's contents after the fact, he criticized it.
Further, Unruh highlights claims made by the anti-gay group MassResistance without noting that the Southern Poverty Law Center considers it to be a hate group.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
WND Columnists Unhappy That Lesbian Elected Houston Mayor
It's not a surprise given its far-right, anti-gay agenda, but WorldNetDaily's columnists are not taking the news that a lesbian was elected mayor of Houston very well.
And to make it an anti-gay trifecta, Les Kinsolving weighs in (though not on the mayor):
Corsi's Greatest-Hits Conspiracy Column
When you're devoting your column to endlessly restating your argument, you've failed as a columnist.
That's pretty much what Jerome Corsi does in his Dec. 14 WorldNetDaily column:
Beyond the needless repetition, Corsi's column is little more than a greatest-hits of Obama conspiracy-mongering, punching all the usual tickets -- ACORN, Cloward-Piven, even George Soros.
And it would be Corsi if he weren't getting facts wrong; he claims that Project Vote, which Obama worked for in 1992, was "an ACORN effort to register voters nationally." In fact, as we've repeatedly detailed, Project Vote was not affiliated with ACORN in 1992.
Is Newsmax Bothered By Geller's Hateful Obama Smears?
While Pamela Geller has mostly behaved in her Newsmax column, she's gone wild on her own Atlas Shrugs blog, viciously and falsely smearing Obama as a Nazi and anti-Semite:
From a Dec. 11 post:
From a Dec. 14 post:
After its experience with John L. Perry calling for a military coup against Obama and Pat Boone calling for a "tenting" of the White House, is Geller really the kind of columnist Newsmax wants to have? Or is Newsmax willing to allow Geller to be as disgusting and hateful as she wants on her blog as long as she tones it down for her column?
WND Still Lying About Hate-Crimes Law
A Dec. 13 WorldNetDaily article by Bob Unruh is devoted to baselessly accusing the recently signed expansion of federal hate-crimes law to gays of resulting in "witch hunt[s]" and "the Spanish Inquisition." We know it's baseless because Unruh quotes Canadians -- who are apparenly unfamiliar with the actual details of the U.S. law -- making this accusation.
Of course, Unruh himself gets the law wrong too, falsely claiming that it "cracks down on any acts that could be linked to criticism of homosexuality or even the 'perception' of homosexuality." In fact, the bill does nothing of the sort, focusing on "speech, conduct or activities consisting of planning for, conspiring to commit, or committing an act of violence." It specifically states that "Nothing in this Act shall be construed to prohibit any constitutionally protected speech, expressive conduct or activities (regardless of whether compelled by, or central to, a system of religious belief), including the exercise of religion protected by the First Amendment and peaceful picketing or demonstration" -- a clause Unruh and his WND coworkers have repeatedly failed to report to their readers.
Unruh quotes numerous critics of the law but no supporters. WND editor Joseph Farah as expressed his support for "getting other points of view," "interviewing those with whom you disagree," and "representing honestly the opinions of others," but this edict may apply only to reporters who write about WND, not to those who work for it.
Monday, December 14, 2009
CNS Columnist Plays the Nazi Card
Parks even headlined his column "COP15's Final Solution."
AIM Columnist Defends Tobacco Industry, Ignores That Whole Killing-People Thing
Topic: Accuracy in Media
Not only is Accuracy in Media libeling Obama administration officials, it's trying to whitewash the tobacco industry.
A Dec. 9 AIM column by John W. Howard, in trying to warn that the federal government is after you cites previous examples of government interference:
Howard never gets around to explicitly stating just what that "shortcoming" of tobacco is: it kills people.
Howard does aver that the tobacco industry is "a business that traffics in death, as the left's caricature would have it," albeit only to bash fellow businessmen for letting that unpleasant death stuff stand in the way of defending tobacco.
Questions 'From the Right'? Not At NewsBusters
The boys at NewsBusters regularly get upset when an interviewer questions someone "from the left" -- that is, forwards supposedly liberal talking points in his or her questions. But what happens when a questioner asks questions from the right?
Pish-posh -- it seems that, according to NewsBusters and its Media Research Center parent, there is no such thing.
A Dec. 12 NewsBusters post by Jeff Poor highlights how Fox News hosts Neil Cavuto and Gregg Jarrett badgered two Republican congessmen about why they didn't do anything about supposedly excessive earmarks in the budget bill pass over the weekend. Did Poor criticize Cavuto and Jarrett for hitting the congressmen "from the right"?
Of course not. He claimed it debunks one of "the favorite talking points that often comes from Fox News detractors" that the channel "is somehow an organ of the Republican Party."
Poor's suggestion that questioning Republican congressman from the right disproves the fact that Fox News is a Republican shill is laughable -- in fact, it only reinforces the impression. After all, Anita Dunn said that Fox News was "a wing of the Republican Party," not the entire party.
And what wing would that be? The movement conservative wing -- the same wing that NewsBusters and the MRC embraces. Maybe that's why Poor and his colleagues don't recognize questions "from the right" when they see 'em.
New Article: (Gross In)accuracy in Media
Topic: Accuracy in Media
Accuracy in Media had no choice but to retract and apologize for a blog post that made false -- and arguably libelous -- claims about Obama administration official Kevin Jennings. Read more >>
WND's Klein Still Attacking J Street
Aaron Klein continued his attacks on the group J Street with a Dec. 12 WorldNetDaily article summarizing criticism of the group by Michael Oren, Israeli ambassador to the United Nations, as published in a Forward article.
As before, Klein makes no apparent effort to obtain a response from J Street (indeed, nowhere in his attacks is there evidence that he has ever interviewed anyone from J Street). And again, Klein falsely portrays J Street's support for talks between Israel and Hamas as evidence that J Street is "anti-Israel." On the other hand, Klein somehow managed to refrain from asserting that J Street is "pro-Hamas," as he has previously done.
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Defining Bias Down At The MRC
Topic: Media Research Center
Brent Baker wants you to be as critical of George Stephanopoulos becoming a co-host of "Good Morning America" as others were of Republican Rep. Susan Molinari becoming a co-host of a Saturday morning talk show on CBS several years ago. Which can only mean that Baker is wrong about it.
In a Dec. 9 MRC item, Baker writes: "Here’s one yardstick for measuring the media’s response: Back in 1997, CBS announced that ex-GOP Representative Susan Molinari (pictured at right) would take over as co-host of Saturday Morning. Journalists quickly howled at the breaching of the sacred 'barricade that is supposed to exist in journalism between the political people and the officials on the one hand, and the reporters on the other.' NPR’s Mara Liasson said it was 'disturbing' of CBS to hire a Republican; Nina Totenberg exclaimed: 'This really makes me want to puke.'"
A search through the MRC provided no evidence that it has ever provided the full context in which those comments -- particularly the one attributed to Totenberg -- were made, so it's impossible to tell what Totenberg and Liasson meant by what they said.
Baker goes on to complain that ABC "has aided in the transformation of Stephanopoulos from political spinmeister into supposedly neutral journalist over the years, allowing him to fill in as anchor of World News as well as on Good Morning America." But his likening of Molinari's transition from politics to TV to that of Stephanopoulos' is faulty.
Molinari literally quit her job as a member of Congress to take the CBS job just six months after winning re-election; Stephanopoulos was an adviser to President Clinton, an unelected post, when he left the White House to join ABC in late 1996 -- as an analyst and correspondent, not a host. He did not begin hosting "This Week" until 2002, and he was not named chief Washington correspondent until 2005 -- after he had proved himself as a correspondent and analyst.
Stephanopoulos had been with ABC for more than 12 years when he was named "GMA" host; Molinari came to her CBS job straight from Congress, and her hosting gig ended after less than a year.
Baker goes on to complain that that "concept that Stephanopoulos has been 'completely non-partisan' is laughable," directing readers to "the Media Research Center’s freshly-updated 'Profile in Bias'" on him. But it actually says more about the MRC's bias than Stephanopoulos'; as it tends to do, the MRC tries to pass off examples of Stephanopoulos saying nice things about Democrats or otherwise not following the MRC's hard-right script as "bias."
One example of "bias" presented is that Stephanopoulos declared that Barack Obama and Joe Biden won their respective debates against Republican candidates during the 2008 campaign. But as we detailed, Stephanopoulos' opinion reflected that of the American public as indicated by post-debate polling, in which a plurality or majority also declared Obama and Biden the winners.
Agreeing with the views of the American public is "bias"? Baker wants you to think it is -- which tells you all you need to know about the Media Research Center's "research."
WND Columnist Smears Barney Frank
Burt Prelutsky srites in his Dec. 11 WorldNetDaily column:
WND, which books Prelutsky's speaking appearances, must be so proud.
UPDATE: The version of Prelutsky's column at Andrew Breitbart's Big Government website omits the final paragraph cited above. We'd note that it's interesting WND similarly didn't find Prelutsky's anti-gay smear offensive to delete it, but then, being anti-gay is what WND does.
Aaron Klein Anonymous Source Watch
A Dec. 10 WorldNetDaily article keeps up Aaron Klein's record of hiding behind anonymous to make unproven claims in order to attack the Obama administration. This time, Klein is citing "a top PA official" and "a source in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office" to claim that the Obama administration is insisting that "most Jewish communities in the strategic West Bank will be evacuated" as part of of a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.
This was followed by a Dec. 11 article citing "a senior PA official" making more claims about what the Obama administration supposedly has done.
In both articles, Klein offers no explanation why he has granted anonymity, nor has he provided evidence that his sources are trustworthy.
As we've detailed, Klein frequently uses anonymous sources as a pretense to attack Obama, making it nearly impossible to fact-check him. Given Klein's clear hatred of Obama and his history of unfair reporting on him, he has not earned the journalistic trust needed to credibly cite anonymous sources.
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Zombie Lies About Obama At WND
Lies simply don't die in the right-wing media -- they keep coming back for more. Yet another example of this is Robert Ringer, who dusts off an oldie-but-goodie to smear President Obama in his Dec. 11 WorldNetDaily column:
And, clearly, Obama had a dysfunctional life growing up -- a white Marxist mother, a black African Muslim father who was a drunk and a philanderer, then, of all things, an Indonesian Muslim stepfather. And, of course, there were the years he spent in a Wahabbi Muslim school in Indonesia (Wahabbi schools being most famous for teaching students hatred of Western countries).
The idea that Obama attended a radical madrassa in Indonesia, of course, was disproved almost as soon as it was first made nearly three years ago. That's right -- three years later, this zombie lie is still roaming the Earth (or, at least, WorldNetDaily, which has problems telling the truth about Obama and his administration).
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