Lachlan Markay asserts in a May 12 NewsBusters post: "In the latest example of a pattern of opacity, the White House has cut off the press's access to Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. Kagan has extensive ties to journalists, which only serves as a testament to this administration's determination to control the message on its major initiatives, including Kagan's nomination."
ONe of the examples Markay cites of this supposed insulating of Kagan from the media is the Washington Examiner's Julie Mason's criticism of a video of Kagan released by the White House. Markay highlighted Mason's claim that the video "doesn't count toward the administration's 'accountability' totals," and that "It's just another campaign commercial, masquerading as openness."
But Markay ignored what Mason also wrote in that same article criticizing the video:
It's standard practice around the White House (going back administrations) for any big nominee pending confirmation to stay away from interviews and unscripted public utterances until the voting is over. It keeps things tidy and minimizes variables. No biggie.
Further, as Media matters noted, a CBS News article on how the video "rile[d] reporters" stated: "Still, it's worth noting that it seems to be unprecedented for the nominee to be heard from at all before the confirmation hearings, other than in the initial introduction and in brief photo ops with senators."
In other words, there's no evidence the Obama White House is doing anything different with Kagan than what previous White Houses have done with their Supreme Court nominees. That seems like an important fact Markay should have mentioned.
Newsmax Proud Palin Repeated Its Lie Topic: Newsmax
A May 12 Newsmax article by Jim Meyers proclaims that "Sarah Palin cites Newsmax on her Facebook page for its article reporting that the Obama administration is targeting the military for pay reductions."
As we detailed, there are no "pay reductions" occurring; the Obama administration has proposed giving smaller raises.
Meyers adds that "Palin is a fan of Newsmax" -- which would seem to explain a few things about Palin.
New Article: Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Do Gay-Bash Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily is not happy about President Obama's plan to overturn the ban on gays in the military, which translates into a lot of gay-bashing by its columnists. Read more >>
Porter Curiously Denies She's A Dominionist Topic: WorldNetDaily
Janet Porter uses her May 11 WorldNetDaily column to respond to critics of her (sparsely attended) May Day prayer rally, curiously claiming that she's not a Dominionist:
Then there's the accusation that some who were there believe in "dominion theology," which, I'm told, wants a theocracy to rule the world. Not what I believe; not even close. We who attended May Day just want to obey God in every area of influence and use our freedom to spread the Gospel. If you do an Internet search on D. James Kennedy, Jerry Falwell, or Charles Stanley with Dominionism, you'll see the same type of accusations were repeatedly made against them, too.
But as Right Wing Watch points out: "If Porter doesn't want to be portrayed as a dominionist, maybe she should stop organizing events based entirely upon dominion theology and stop issuing dominionist prayers seeking control over the media and declaring that her goal is "to take dominion in every area" and 'occupy until Jesus comes.'"
Aaron Klein's Sloppy Smear of Kagan Topic: WorldNetDaily
As we've already seen, WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein is no longer keeping up the pretense of being fair to Elena Kagan -- he's clearly out to smear and destroy her any way he can. Now he's just throwing the smears out so sloppily, they've become laughable to anyone knowledgable about the facts (which, unfortunately, is not WND's target audience).
President Obama's nominee for the Supreme Court, Elena Kagan, helped shield Saudi Arabia from lawsuits filed by families of 9/11 victims seeking to target countries and leaders who helped finance al-Qaida.
"I'm very concerned about her views on executive power and her views with respect to the separation of power," Stephen A. Cozen, the lead attorney in the case for 9/11 victims, told WND.
"I believe she must be asked questions about whether or not citizens who are attacked inside the U.S. have the right to file suits domestically against terrorism financiers," said Cozen, the founder and chairman of Cozen O'Connor, a Philadelphia-based law firm with 24 offices throughout the country.
Cozen recounted to WND an April 2009 meeting he held with Kagen to present the case for his clients – thousands of family members and others affected by the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks who sought damages from the Saudi kingdom, Saudi high commissioners and the country's rulers.
Kagan's friend-of-the-court brief argued Cozen's case would interfere with U.S. foreign policy. She urged the Supreme Court not to hear the case.
n her brief, Kagan acknowledged inconsistencies with the lower court rulings and even conceded there were legitimate questions about whether the Immunities Act should apply in Cozen's case for the 9/11 victims.
Still, she sided with the Saudis, who had presented their case directly to Kagen that the terror victims lawsuit was harming U.S.-Saudi relations.
The Supreme Court sided with Kagen and refused to here the case.
Aside from the numerous grammatical errors -- "here the case"? -- and misspellings of Kagan's name Klein is hiding the truth about Kagan's brief.
First, Klein doesn't bother to explain the origin of Kagan's brief. When Cozen appealed his case to the Supreme Court after it had been dismissed by a federal appeals court -- which pointed out that U.S. law bars such lawsuits unless the State Department has found that a government provided material support for terrorist groups, which the government has not done regarding Saudi Arabia -- the Supreme Court in February 2009 asked the U.S. Solicitor General's office to weigh in on the case. The amicus brief that was filed was done so by the Solicitor General's office, not by Kagan herself, as Klein falsely suggests.
Second, while Klein claims that Kagan "sided with the Saudis, who had presented their case directly to Kagen that the terror victims lawsuit was harming U.S.-Saudi relations," he also couldn't be bother to explain the details of her argument (nor could he be bothered to provide a link to the brief). The Philadelphia Inquirer did the work that Klein won't:
Kagan, in a 22-page amicus brief filed yesterday with the Supreme Court, said U.S. law generally barred lawsuits against foreign governments for supporting terrorism unless they met narrowly tailored exceptions.
Kagan said none of those exceptions applied, and she advised the court not to hear the case.
In her brief, Kagan said the U.S. Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, which governs lawsuits by American citizens against foreign governments, permits such lawsuits only if the U.S. State Department has issued a finding that the foreign government is a terrorism supporter, or if the government has been directly involved in a terrorism act within the United States.
It noted that the State Department has issued no such finding regarding Saudi Arabia and concluded Saudi government financial support for radical Islamist charities was too far removed from the 9/11 attacks themselves to cause the Saudi government to be liable.
Klein offers no evidence that her arguments deviated in any way from established law. Klein also offers no evidence that Kagan's deliberate goal in her brief is to "shield Saudi Arabia from lawsuits."
The Supreme Court ultimately decided not to hear Cozen's appeal.
This is a sloppy, lazy effort by Klein whose only apparent purpose is to smear, not to enlighten -- kinda like his attack book on Barack Obama.
CNS' Jeffrey Aims to Portray Kagan As Censor Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com editor-in-chief Terry Jeffrey is determined to portray Elena Kagan as a censor for arguing the government's side in the Citizens United case before the Supreme Court.
A May 10 article by Jeffrey originally carried the misleading headline "Elena Kagan: Government Can Ban Political Pamphlets" (since changed to the less snappy "Chief Justice Roberts: Kagan Asked Court to 'Embrace Theory of First Amendment That Would Allow Censorship Not Only of Radio and Television Broadcasts, But Pamphlets and Posters'"). Jeffrey recounted government arguments before the Supreme Court in the Citizens United case, which sought to overturn restrictions on political spending by corporations. The Court ultimately ruled in favor of overturning the restrictions.
This was followed by a May 12 column by Jeffrey rehashing the case and concluding: "Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee need to force Kagan to make extensive use of her faculty of speech in explaining why she believes government can shut people up."
But Jeffrey is assuming that Kagan's personal views on "censorship" are the same ones she argued for on the govermnent's behalf in the Citizens United case -- something for which he has provided no evidence.
When Kagan made her arguments in the Citizens United case, she was an employee of federal government making the federal government's arguments. In other words, she was doing her job. As SCOTUSblog's Tom Goldstein points out:
Some critics (and supporters) attribute to Kagan views on certain legal issues based on positions she took as Solicitor General. That criticism (and praise) is misguided. The Solicitor General acts as the attorney for the United States and therefore asserts the position of the government, without regard to whether she personally shares the same view. For Kagan not to have zealously pursued the interests of the United States in each case would have been an abdication of her duties. There are only a few exceptions – rare throughout our history – in which the Solicitor General concludes that the government’s position has no reasonable basis and therefore refuses to assert it; Kagan has not participated in such an extreme case.
Further, since she was arguing to uphold existing law as approved by Congress -- not impose new restrictions on political speech -- the point of view she was arguing is hardly out of the mainstream, as Jeffrey wants you to believe.
Jeffrey is basing his attack on Kagan on an assumption that he has no evidence to support.
UPDATE: Newsmax's Dan Weil took Jeffrey's initial article as inspiration for his own misleading attack on Kagan, headlined "Kagan Argued to Ban Political Pamphlets." Like Jeffrey, Weil baselessly suggests the views Kagan argued are her personal views.
WND's Big Gay Double Standard Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily employees hate gay people, so it's no surprise that WND would eagerly spread rumors that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan is gay.
So we have a May 10 article by Art Moore slavering over "the question many privately are posing about" Kagan and repeating all the rumors.
Meanwhile, WND is reluctant to report on homosexuality when it can't be used as a cudgel against its political enemies. It has yet to report on George Rekers, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) board member forced to resign from the group after it was revealed that he traveled with a gay escort.
Sheppard Defends Limbaugh, Ignores His Falsehood Topic: NewsBusters
Noel Sheppard used a May 8 NewsBusters post to take offense at Bill Maher for saying mean things about Rush Limbaugh. Regarding Maher's claim that Limbaugh "said on his show this week that, that the Times Square bomber had an Obama bumper sticker on his car," Sheppard provided a transcript of Limbaugh's statement, then harrumphed:
As evidenced by the transcript, Limbaugh WONDERED if there was an Obama bumper sticker on the SUV and said someone would "MAYBE SEE" an "Obama 2012."
Wondering and saying "maybe" is far different than claiming something occurred, although clearly that's NOT a distinction the typically inflammatory Maher would likely understand.
That Limbaugh transcript supplied by Sheppard, however, began with the statement, "Guess what? Faisal Shahzad is a registered Democrat." Which is a lie.
It seems Sheppard thinks Limbaugh is above fact-checking -- a strange position for someone who works for a group whose purported job is to check facts.
Bozell's Evidence Kagan Is Liberal: College Drinking Over Dem Loss Topic: Media Research Center
Brent Bozell uses his latest column to complain that "media liberals" are being coy about Elena Kagan's political leanings, even though she's obviously a liberal. Bozell then unveils his indisputable evidence:
As with Sotomayor & Co., media liberals greeted Kagan’s record as a great mystery, and because of that, no one should “pigeonhole” this woman as a liberal. But there it was in black and white in a sympathetic New York Times profile. She spent the summer of 1980 working to elect a left-wing Democrat, Elizabeth Holtzman, to the Senate. “On Election Night, she drowned her sorrow in vodka and tonic as Ronald Reagan took the White House and Ms. Holtzman lost to ‘an ultraconservative machine politician,’ she wrote, named Alfonse D'Amato.”
Maybe she’s not a liberal. If she thinks Al D’Amato is an “ultraconservative,” then she might just be a radical leftist.
That's right -- Bozell had to go all the way back to 1980, when Kagan was a college student, to find evidence that she's a liberal ... 30 years later.
That's the thin gruel Bozell and friends will try to stretch into repeated attacks on Kagan over the next few months. It's gonna be a long summer.
Unruh's One-Sided Attack on Kagan Topic: WorldNetDaily
Bob Unruh's May 10 WorldNetDaily article on Elena Kagan's Supreme Court nomination is a highly biased affair, quoting only right-wing groups critical of Kagan and making no apparent effort to talk to anyone for a response. (Biased reporting is Unruh's stock-in-trade at WND.) As a result several false claims stand uncorrected by Unruh.
For instance, Unruh writes that "Kagan had tossed military recruiters from the Harvard Law School campus because of the military's 'discrimination' against homosexuals because they were not allowed to openly portray their chosen lifestyle in the ranks." Unruh also claimed that Kagan's "bold criticism" of the military'sDon't Ask, Don't Tell policy included "included throwing military recruiters off campus," and quoted the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins as saying Kagan is "marked by kicking the military off campus during the height of the Iraq War." Unruh further quoted Perkins claiming that Kagan has "hostility to the U.S. military" and a similar attack from the right-wing Center for Military Preparedness claiming Kagan has expressed "deliberate hostility" toward the military.
Unruh also uncricially repeats a claim from Jewish World Review that Kagan "treated two liberal law professors with kid gloves when they were busted for plagiarism." In fact, Harvard investigated the allegations and found no deliberate wrongdoing, and there is no evidence that the findings were motivated by politics.
Further, Unruh quotes several critics calling Kagan "pro-abortion" while offering no evidence to support the claim. In fact, she supported a late-term abortion ban in the 1990s.
A May 10 Newsmax article by David Patten uncritically repeats the maliciously false claim by Young America's Foundation that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan "trampled on the rights" of students during her tenure as the dean of Harvard Law School, and "segregated" students who sought to meet with military recruiters to hear about possible careers in the U.S. armed services.
Patten made no apparent effort to investigate YAF's claims. If he had, he would have found that YAF's attack is untrue.
First, students had access to military recruiters during Kagan's entire tenure as dean. Kagan prohibited military recruiters from using Harvard Law School's Office of Career Services for only one semester, spring 2005. During that semester, students could meet with military recruiters at the Harvard Law School Veterans Association office.
Second, Kagan consistently followed the law. The semester military recruiters were banned from using the OCS office followed a federal appeals court ruling that declared the Solomon Amendment -- which denied federal funding to schools that prohibited military recruiters on campus -- unconstitutional.
Third, military recruitment at Harvard Law School did not drop as a result of Kagan's behavior. Indeed, the number of graduates who entered the military from each of the classes that would have been affected by the single semester military recruiters were prohibited from using the OCS office was equal to or greater than the number who entered the military from any of Harvard's previous five classes.
YAF is spreading a malicious lie, and Patten allowed YAP to do it. That makes Patten a propagandist, not a journalist.
Vox Day On Reclaiming 'Traditional White Anglo-Saxon Protestant Culture' Topic: WorldNetDaily
If Americans can find the courage to consciously reject the myth of the melting pot and expel the Mexicans from the American Southwest, the Arabs from Detroit and the Somalis from Minneapolis, they can reclaim their traditional white Anglo-Saxon Protestant culture. This is highly improbable because so many descendants of that culture have rejected it in favor of the vibrancy of diversity while those who haven't are far too frightened of criticism and social rejection to even articulate their thoughts.
Klein Now Misleading About What He Wrote In His Book Topic: WorldNetDaily
Appearing on the May 10 edition of Fox Business Network's "Happy Hour," WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein said:
And by the way, in the book, I show Obama in the 1990s was a member of the New Party, which was a socialist party that sought to infiltrate the Democrat Party to push it so far leftwards that it ultimately turns into a socialist party. I found newspaper evidence and personally interviewed the founder of the New Party, Marxist Carl Davidson, who recounted to me in the book Obama’s membership and participation with this socialist party.
That's not true at all. As we detailed, Klein quotes Davidson saying quite the opposite to claiming that Obama was a New Party member -- Davidson said that Obama never signed the party contract Klein described as "stipulating [candidates] would have a 'visible and active membership' with the party." Klein also quoted Davidson saying that "Obama was never a man of the left, either in his view or in being a member of an actual socialist organization" -- which, by Klein's own definition, excludes the New Party.
Klein misled in his book; now he's misleading about what he wrote in his book.
Jim Kouri's Ever-Shifting Immigrant-Bashing Topic: WorldNetDaily
Jim Kouri claimed in a May 4 Accuracy in Media column:
On April 7, 2007, the U.S. Justice Department issued a report on criminal aliens that were incarcerated in federal and state prisons and local jails.
In the population study of 55,322 illegal aliens, researchers found that they were arrested at least a total of 459,614 times, averaging about 8 arrests per illegal alien. Nearly all had more than one arrest. Thirty-eight percent (about 21,000) had between two and five arrests, 32 percent (about 18,000) had between six and 10 arrests, and 26 percent (about 15,000) had 11 or more arrests. Most of the arrests occurred after 1990.
Sound familiar? Kouri made almost the exact same claim in a column published in ... 2005:
On April 7, 2005, the US Justice Department issued a report on criminal aliens that were incarcerated in federal and state prisons and local jails. The report contained information on the number of criminal aliens incarcerated, their country of citizenship or country of birth, and the cost to incarcerate them. Congress also requested that the Government Accounting Office provide information on the criminal history of aliens incarcerated in federal and state prisons or local jails who had entered the country illegally.
In the population study of a sampling of 55,322 illegal aliens, researchers found that they were arrested at least a total of 459,614 times, averaging about 8 arrests per illegal alien. Nearly all had more than 1 arrest. Thirty-eight percent (about 21,000) had between 2 and 5 arrests, 32 percent (about 18,000) had between 6 and 10 arrests, and 26 percent (about 15,000) had 11 or more arrests.
It's highly unlikely that two government studies released exactly two years apart would repeat exactly the same numbers. And, of course, that didn't happen.
It turns out that neither date Kouri supplied is correct, nor is the issuing agency he cites. Kouri's numbers come from a May 9, 2005 report from the Governmental Accountability Office, issued by request from a group of House Republicans including the notoriously anti-immigrant Steve King.
While the numbers Kouri cites are correct as far as they go, though out of context -- it does stand to reason that illegal immigrants spending time in jail are there because they committed numerous crimes -- he misleads by portraying them as representative of the criminality of all illegal immigrants. Indeed, the report includes the disclaimer that "our analysis is not designed to infer conclusions about the arrest history of other illegal aliens not in our study population who entered the country illegally and have been arrested."
Of course, Kouri does exactly that, baselessly asserting an "escalation in alien crime" and claiming that "Handling the myriad problems associated with alien crimes is often beyond the capabilities of local police departments."
But if Kouri is so lazy as to invent new release dates for the report he's using for evidence, why listen to anything else he has to say?
(We've previously caught Kouri in a flare-up of Obama Derangment Syndrome and defending the murderous Branch Davidians.)
WND hasn't told these things to its readers, so it's no surprise that Farah is so ignorant.
Perhap's he's too busy trying to make a buck off the nomination. Farah has also launched yet another of those junk mail-blasting schemes that he's so fond of, which "allows any American citizen to generate 100 individually addressed letters to every U.S. senator, each including the name of the sender and all delivered by Fed Ex for the low price of just $24.95."
IT seems Farah is so preoccupied with counting his money that he can't be bothered to tell the truth.