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Sunday, October 3, 2010
WND Columnist Defends the Confederacy
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A few years back, Newsmax was serving as the (occasional) defender of the great lost cause of the Confederacy. Has that baton now passed to WorldNetDaily?

A Sept. 30 WND column by Franklin Raff gives it a shot by defending the honor not only of the Confederate battle flag but the Ole Miss antebellum mascot Colonel Reb as legitimate symbols as "sacred and most benign symbols of Southern heritage" that are being abandoned by Southerners who "admit a deeper commitment to ignore and let others define, their past."

Raff feels he needs to gloss over the whole slavery thing:

All Americans understand that scores of Union soldiers fought proudly and honorably "to free the slaves," but now Southerners seem to have started to believe, en masse, that their Confederate ancestors raised their battle flag "to defend the institution of slavery." In fact only a miniscule percentage – I have seen estimates lower than 2 percent – of Confederate soldiers were members of slave-owning families, lived or worked on plantations, or were otherwise part of the "antebellum" life painted by Hollywood. Anyone who knows their history knows exactly what most Confederate officers would have told you in the field: "We have no desire for conquest and, as clearly stated by our political leaders, every wish for national reconciliation. The Confederate battle flag represents the fighting spirit of the citizens of these states who are proudly and patriotically rebelling against a central government which has become tyrannical."

Raff complains further how Southerners are running away from their own heritage:

The long, arduous road toward national reconciliation and equal rights need never have included cultural annihilation: historical, symbolic or otherwise. Yet that is what Southerners face today, and it is their own fault.

By failing to educate their children, or by allowing others to mis-educate their children, and as evidenced by their willingness to repeatedly allow the definition of their cultural symbols – from the Confederate battle flag down to a bow-tied, fancified Southern colonel in a funny suit – as symbols of "hate," they are ultimately, finally, characterizing their forebears – soldiers, yes, along with doctors, lawyers, philosophers, scientists, and farmers, free blacks (including slave-owners), businessmen and politicians (many of whom were abolitionists) – universally, as the simple, hateful hicks federal propagandists once made them out to be.

Raff concludes by claiming the ancestors of modern-day Southerners will confront them and whine much like he is about how they have "willingly disgraced not just this cause – which might have been understandable given the terrible complexity of the time – but you have also disgraced almost every vestige of our memory, corrupting even the flags on our graves."

Raff's end-of-column tagline curiously describes him only as "a Virginian" who "lives in Mount Vernon, Va., and Jerusalem, Israel." In fact, Raff is the producer of convicted felon and domestic terrorist G. Gordon Liddy's radio show (where WND editor Joseph Farah occasionally serves as a guest host) and runs a radio marketing and production operation.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:16 PM EDT
CMI Now Upset That TV Shows Contain Gay Characters
Topic: Media Research Center

The MRC's Culture & Media Institute is seriously offended by the mere existence of gay characters in fiction.

Earlier this week, we noted how CMI was annoyed that books contained gay characters. This was followed up with a Sept. 29 article by Krista West making the same complaint about television, apparently disturbed by GLAAD's noting that a mere 3.9 percent of characters on scripted TV shows are gay.

That's apparently 3.9 percent too many for West, who immediately howled about the "gay agenda" and portray that paltry number of gay characters as an attempt by Hollywood to "force widespread homosexual acceptance." West added, "It sounds more like the pro-gay voice in Hollywood is simply getting louder."

It sounds like the anti-gay voice of the MRC is trying to get louder as well.

UPDATE: WorldNetDaily also reports on this, and reporter Brian Fitzpatrick quotes only anti-gay activists in response. Fitzpatrick qutoes Robert Knight saying that if "a Martian sat down and watched TV for a week during this new season, he would conclude that ... a large segment of the population is homosexual," which runs counter to the paltry 3.9 percent of characters that are.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:30 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, October 3, 2010 3:15 PM EDT
Saturday, October 2, 2010
WND's Mercer Nostalgic for Racist Immigration Policy
Topic: WorldNetDaily

In her Oct. 1 WorldNetDaily column, Ilana Mercer waxes nostalgic for the days when only white Europeans were allowed to immigrate to the United States:

What Americans ought to be discussing, and are not, is mass immigration (which subsumes illegal immigration) and, in particular, the radical transforming of America through state-engineered immigration policies.

Since the 1965 amendments to the Immigration and Nationality Act took effect – with no real debate or voter participation – immigration to the U.S. has been predicated on a multicultural, egalitarian quota system. The result of this system in practice has been an emphasis on mass importation of people from the Third World. Family reunification supersedes America's economic or cultural interests.

At the time, Congress was more circumspect about the pitfalls of this plan than it is today. Members of the Senate openly conceded in their debates that America had a distinct and undeniable identity, which previous immigration – being mostly from the traditional northern and western European sources – had not altered. The representatives promised (falsely) that the radical new amendments would generally preserve the country's historical and cultural complexion.

So eager was one senator to pass the act – which was to herald the age of mass, indiscriminate immigration – that he vowed: "[O]ur cities will not be flooded with millions of immigrants annually … under the proposed bill, the present level of immigration [will remain] substantially the same," and "the ethnic mix of this country will not be upset." These pre-PC assurances came not from a "nativist" or a member of the Know-Nothing Party, but from no other than then-Immigration Subcommittee Chairman Edward Kennedy.

This was all before it became taboo to discuss openly, as the late senator did on that occasion, the reshaping of America by means of central planning. (Such discussion is now regularly squelched with accusations of racism or via totemic, robotic incantations of "We are a multicultural nation of immigrants.")

In 1965, when Edward Kennedy was promoting his "vision" for America, he candidly acknowledged that (for better or for worse) the country had not always been a mess of multicultural pottage, and that an adventurous immigration policy had the potential to render the place unrecognizable.

The 1965 act has produced a torrential influx of immigrants. Every qualified immigrant holds an entry ticket for his extended family. 

Mercer doesn't acknowledge that the immigration policy before 1965 was largely driven by racism and eugenics.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:56 AM EDT
Ronald Kessler Logrolling Watch
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax's Ronald Kessler has devoted yet another column to the musings of American Conservative Union chief David Keene.

And why wouldn't he? At the ACU-operated CPAC earlier this year, Keene gave Kessler the inaugural Robert Novak Journalist of the Year Award.

It's a perfect bit of logrolling that Kessler sees no need to disclose to his readers.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:57 AM EDT
Friday, October 1, 2010
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Less than two years into Barack Obama's presidency, America is on fire.

In November 2008, more than half of American voters were hypnotized by this mysterious, messianic figure on whom they pinned all their hopes and dreams. But since then, many have gradually realized their shining savior was really an incompetent, deceptive, pathologically narcissistic man entranced by an evil ideology that has left a trail of unprecedented misery and death for 100 years.

"Change" has indeed come to America, but not the kind most people had "hoped" for.

Moreover, as the stunning October issue of Whistleblower magazine – titled "FUTURE SHOCK" – proves beyond doubt, things are about to become immeasurably worse if Obama's maniacal leftist juggernaut isn't immediately halted and reversed.

-- Sept. 30 WorldNetDaily promotion for latest edition of WND's Whistleblower magazine.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:43 PM EDT
CNS Baselessly Claims Murdoch 'Supports Amnesty'

A Sept. 30 article by Edwin Mora asserts that News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch "supports amnesty for 'law abiding' illegal immigrants." But Mora never quotes Murdoch using the word "amnesty."

In fact, Murdoch said he supports "a path to citizenship for responsible, law-abiding immigrants" that includes "requiring unauthorized immigrants to register, undergo a security check, pay taxes and learn English." That, by definition, is not "amnesty," which CNS has previously defined as a term used only by "critics" and "opponents" of comprehensive immigration reform. 

Because CNS is itself an opponent of immigration reform, it is falsely conflating any proposed reform with "amnesty."

UPDATE: The false claim spreads elsewhere in the MRC empire, as NewsBusters' Lachlan Markay claims that Murdoch testified "in support of amnesty for illegal immigrants."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:49 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, October 1, 2010 1:36 PM EDT
NewsBusters' Baseless Polling Bias Claim
Topic: NewsBusters

A Sept. 30 NewsBusters post by Lachlan Markay highlights a Weekly Standard item claiming that a Time/CNN poll on the California Senate race showing Democrat Barbara Boxer with a large lead over Republican Carly Fiorina oversampled Democrats. The Weekly Standard recalculated the numbers through "turnout numbers from the past three election cycles" to reach that conclusion. The Standard concluded: "The only way to get a nine-point Democratic lead is to sample a more Democratic electorate than even 2008."

Neither Markay nor the Standard seem to have contemplated the possibility that the percentage of Democrats in California has been increasing. As the Public Policy Institute of California notes, the percentage of Democrats in the California electorate has increase by three points since 2006, and the percentage of Republicans has decreased by 3.5 points.

The MRC has long quibbled over purported poll bias through oversampling of Democrats, even when the electorate being sample includes more Democrats.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:48 AM EDT
The Horowitz Cult of Personality Strikes Again
Topic: Horowitz

As yet another reminder that NewsReal is, at its core, designed to cultivate and maintain a cult of personality around David Horowitz, we bring you a Sept. 20 post by Donald Douglas, who gets into a comment-thread slapfight with a blogger who committed the impeachable offense of criticizing Horowitz.

After the blogger also took issue with Douglas' use of the “the freakish nihilism of the radical left” in praising one of Horowitz's books, Douglas responded:

Two things of interest right away: (1) The complete dismissal of David Horowitz’s ideals as sheer lunacy, and (2) the rejection of my use of the phrase “freakish nihilism” to describe the ideological agenda of the left. There’s a word for this: Anti-intellectualism. And that stance marinates in a devilish sauce of hard left-wing hubris and deceit. It’s further soaked in hatred, for to hate one’s enemies is to categorize them as beyond the pale of reason and civilization.

Perhaps there’s some psychology at work for Brendan. Someone as esteemed as David Horowitz, who lived through — in direct participation — all the cultural revolts of the last couple of generations, is ridiculed as a crazed milk crate screamer? Brendan certainly thinks he’s got it all figured out. But I doubt he’s actually read the book in question, Horowitz’s The Politics of Bad Faith.

After the blogger responds back that Douglas' sole argument this far is "Let’s talk about David Horowitz and how great he is!" Douglas takes further umbrage:

And so, David Horowitz, and myself, apparently, are out standing on a corner, on milk boxes, raving like alleged lunatics? This is what Brendan calls debate. As I said, concepts are in play here. Ideas have consequences. Why is it that Democrats utter nary a peep when declared Stalinist ideologues wind up gaining access to the top levels of the Obama administration? These same folks, including many Democrats in Congress — including dozens who have open affiliations with the Democratic Socialist Party of America — call for and implement a Castro-style healthcare regime in the U.S. Of course, these people blow off the mass murder and desolation of the such communist thugs.

The blogger then complains that Douglas has no interest in anything other than "howling how everything Left is irredeemably evil," Douglas goes off on a logic-free tangent:

What you see here is the notion that leftist ideology is UNCHALLENGEABLE. There’s nothing that can penetrate the hard-shell of neo-communist ideology. Anyone with a different idea is literally a “Flat Earther.”

Truly amazing. Meanwhile, these people and their grand schemes for a nationalization of the U.S. health delivery system under ObamaCare socialism are running for the hills. It’s not working. Costs are not going down. Firms are responding by not hiring, precisely at the same time that unemployment keeps rising. It’s statism that’s failing, and the idea that state planning — THE CENTRAL COMPONENT OF ALL SOCIALIST IDEOLOGY — is proving just one more disaster rammed down American throats by the mandarins of the Democrat-Socialist Party in Washington.

I don’t know how old Brendan is. He is idealistic. Perhaps the real world will intrude sometime in his life, and he’ll learn to appreciate an actual argument for what it is an not the twisting evasion of some wingnut hokus pokus.

Douglas concludes by quoting the Scriptures -- er, David Horowitz. Just like a True Believer.

(h/t Wonkette)

Posted by Terry K. at 11:10 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, October 1, 2010 11:51 AM EDT
WND Scaremongers About Gardasil
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A Sept. 28 WorldNetDaily article by Bob Unruh uncriticially repeats claims by right-wing group Judicial Watch regarding deaths purportedly linked to the vaccine Gardasil, which aims to guard against a form of cervical cancer.

Unruh failed to report that, according to the Centers for Disease Control, no direct link has ever been established between Gardasil and patient deaths:

As of May 31, 2010, there have been 53 U.S. reports of death among females who have received Gardasil. Twenty nine of these reports have been confirmed and 24 remain unconfirmed due to no identifiable patient information in the report such as a name and contact information to confirm the report. Confirmed reports are those that scientists have followed up on and have verified the claim. In the 29 reports confirmed, there was no unusual pattern or clustering to the deaths that would suggest that they were caused by the vaccine.

Since he's slavishly cribbing from a Judicial Watch press release, Unruh also fails to offer any context to the purported death link. One study claims that serious adverse events linked to Gardasil occur at a rate of 3.4 per 100,000 doses; by contrast, gastrointestinal bleeding in children taking ibuprofen occurs at a rate of 17 per 100,000 doses.

Unruh also branches out into WND's usual anti-vaccination scaremongering by citing groups that "have come out publicly against mandatory vaccination."

Posted by Terry K. at 2:29 AM EDT
Thursday, September 30, 2010
CNS' Latest Gotcha Interview of Holdren Fizzles

A couple weeks back,'s Nicholas Ballasy played gotcha with right-wing target John Holdren, plucking a line from a book he wrote 30 years ago and asking him to comment on it. Ballasy apparently thought that went so well he gave it another shot. Unfortunately for Ballasy and his right-wing agenda, Holdren didn't feel like indulging him. From Ballasy's Sept. 30 CNS article:

John P. Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, said “have a nice day” and otherwise declined to comment on Tuesday when asked about a statement he made that worldwide redistribution of wealth is “absolutely essential” in order to provide all human beings with a decent life.

“Redistribution of wealth both within and among nations is absolutely essential, if a decent life is to be provided for every human being,” Holdren wrote along with Paul and Anne Ehrlich in the final chapter of Human Ecology, a book the three co-authored in 1973. Paul Ehrlich is also author of the famous 1968 bestseller, The Population Bomb. Holdren, President Obama’s top science adviser, advises the administration on issues that include health care and climate change. approached Holdren to ask him about his statement on redistributing wealth after he gave a speech on “Science, Technology, and Sustainable Economic Growth” at the Woodrow Wilson Center in the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C.

When started asking Holdren about the statement, he said, “I’m not talking to you. Bye bye. Have a nice day.” said: “You said in your book Human Ecology, quote, ‘Redistribution of wealth both within and among nations is absolutely essential, if a decent life is to be provided for every human being.’”

“I hope you have a really nice day,” Holdren said as he boarded an elevator, declining further comment.

Ballasy is clearly so unashamed to be a right-wing activist pretending to be a journalist that he seems to think he's not the one who looks bad when his target won't take his bait -- so much so that he devotes an entire story to his failure.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:26 PM EDT
MRC Pretends It Didn't Support O'Keefe's Previous Stunts
Topic: Media Research Center

When news broke of right-wing activist James O'Keefe's weird, creepy attempted stunt against CNN, the Media Research Center's Brent Bozell was unsually quick to denounce it:

"The MRC unequivocally denounces James O’Keefe for his attempted assault on CNN. It isn't just childish and immature; it's ugly, dishonest and filthy. There is no place in the conservative movement for this type of behavior and that’s exactly what I warned about in a commentary piece I submitted to just two days ago. 'Could the Citizen Journalist abuse the public trust?' I wrote in this piece that should run in the next few days. 'Hypothetically, of course. Conservatives must all guard against this. Let there be scrutiny, by all means.' And I repeat: there must be scrutiny."

"Bottom line: We want nothing to do with O'Keefe or his dirty antics."

What Bozell didn't do is mention the MRC's support of O'Keefe's previous antics.

NewsBusters touted the impact of O'Keefe's undercover ACORN stunt -- Lachlan Markay proudly declared it a "case study in combating media liberalism" -- and even rushed to his defense following his arrest inside Sen. Mary Landrieu's office preparing for another stunt.

As recently as June, MRC news analyst Scott Whitlock was upset that ABC's George Stephanopoulos was confronting O'Keefe with indisputable facts like that he's an activist and not a journalist, and his ACORN undercover stunt uncovered no illegal activity.

Will the MRC and its writers address their previous support of O'Keefe and his stunts? Somehow we suspect not.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:11 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, September 30, 2010 3:13 PM EDT
CNS' Obama Word Obsession

Not only is obsessed with counting President Obama's words, it obsesses over single words Obama says or doesn't say.

A Sept. 27 CNS article by Terry Jeffrey asserts: "Just seven days after he sparked controversy by omitting the word 'Creator' when he closely paraphrased the passage from the Declaration of Independence that says all men 'are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights,' President Barack Obama again omitted the Creator when speaking about the 'inalienable rights' that 'everybody is endowed with.'" Of course, Obama didn't "spark the controversy"; right-wing websites sparked it. And Jeffrey doesn't note that conservatives have omitted it as well.

Jeffrey followed up with a Sept. 29 article that got even more picky:

President Barack Obama referred to illegal aliens in the United States as “us” on Tuesday while renewing his call for giving them a “pathway to citizenship”—an amnesty--and castigating opponents of such an amnesty as demagogues.

Jeffrey doesn't explain why "illegal aliens" are not "us" -- presumably, he think they are a "them." If he can't explain the difference, there isn't one.

Further, as we've detailed, Obama's proposed "pathway to citizenship" is not "an amnesty," and Jeffrey doesn't explain why Obama's pathway conditions of paying fines and back taxes, learning English and not having a criminal record constitute "amnesty." CNS has previously claimed that "amnesty" is a term used by "critics" and "opponents" of comprehensive immigration reform.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:20 AM EDT
CNS' Jeffrey: Abolish Public Schools

President Barack Obama said on NBC on Monday he would like American children to spend more time in public schools. Here is a better idea: American children should spend no time in public schools.

County by county, state by state, Americans should begin functionally abolishing government-run schools and replacing them with a free market in schools. On the federal level, Congress should kill the Department of Education by choking off its funding. The department was not constitutional in the first place.


Every community in America should give all parents a voucher equal to what it now pays per-pupil for its public schools, allowing those parents to use those vouchers at any school they choose. Let the market decide if government-run schools survive.

-- Terry Jeffrey, Sept. 29 column

Posted by Terry K. at 2:41 AM EDT
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
New Article: A Laughable 'Case For Impeachment'
Topic: Western Journalism Center
WorldNetDaily and the Western Journalism Center team up to publish an error-ridden, lie-filled anti-Obama screed. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 3:06 PM EDT
MRC's Noyes Inadvertently Undermines Anti-CNN Narrative
Topic: Media Research Center

A Sept. 28 Media Research Center item (and NewsBusters item) by Rich Noyes depicts Eliot Spitzer's presence as a co-host of a new CNN show as "CNN’s effort to rehabilitate this scandal-scarred liberal," and he "pulled together quotes from CNN’s coverage of Spitzer’s scandal back in March 2008. MRC video editor Bob Parks turned the clips we found into a polished video presentation documenting how the infamous “Client #9” was mocked and derided by the anchors and correspondents who are now his colleagues."

As Media Matters pointed out when Fox News' Bret Baier repeated the clips pulled by Noyes, this shows that "CNN seems to have an atmosphere where criticisms can be made of politicians from both sides of the aisle." That seems to be the opposite of what Noyes intended, and it runs counter to the MRC's entire narrative that CNN is unrepentantly liberal.

Further, Media Matters goes on to note that one would have a hard time assembling a similar montage of criticism by Fox News personalities of the Republican presidential candidates-in-waiting on the Fox News payroll.

Here's an idea for Noyes: Try running that same clip search on Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, and/or Rick Santorum to find Fox News personalities criticizing them in any given one-week period (the same length of time from which the CNN Spitzer-bashing comments were pulled). We'd be shocked if he could find the same number of critical comments. Which is why we don't expect Noyes to do it.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:42 PM EDT

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