WND Lies About Its Birther Coverage -- Again Topic: WorldNetDaily
In attempting to yet again portray Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie as having a "radical history that ties him to a U.S.-based socialist organization with deep connections to President Obama," WorldNetDaily's Aaron Kleintries to once again whitewashhis employer's shoddy history of birther-related reporting.
In complaining about a statement from Abercrombie's campaign that he was being attacked by "conspiracy theorists ... who continually claim that President Obama was not born in the U.S.," Klein retorts in a Dec. 29 WND article: "WND has never reported Obama was born outside the U.S. Instead, WND has reported Obama has not released documentary evidence conclusively proving his place of birth."
Klein would like you to forget that his employer did, in fact, portray Obama as "not born in the U.S." Remember the "kenyan birth certificate" that WND made no effort whatsoever to verify before publishing, thus treating it as authentic? We do. We also remember the backflips Farah and crew performed to pretend that its sleazy, lazy journalism was somehow noble and responsible.
This is part of the revisionism that WND engages in to cover up its lack of regard for the facts. Farah himself has also previously claimed that "I am not making accusations about where Obama was born" when he and his website have done exactly that.
AIM's Kincaid Knows Nothing About Business Topic: Accuracy in Media
Cliff Kincaid's Dec. 23 Accuracy in Media column carries the headline "Liberal Post Sued for Racial Discrimination." Of course, that's not what happened.
Kincaid does go on to note the actual truth -- that Kaplan Higher Education, a unit of the Washington Post Co., was sued for discrimination, not the Washington Post newspaper. Still, Kincaid can't really seem to figure out the difference between the Washington Post newspaper and the Washington Post Co., a corporate entity that operates many units, only one of which is the Post; he writes later in his column that "the EEOC has sued the Post."
That's just sloppy, if not willfully ignorant, writing. It sure as heck isn't "accuracy in media."
CNSNews.com and WorldNetDaily both published Buchanan's column. They apparently have no problem with Buchanan's racist leanings, just as they had no problem with Buchanan expressed the view that there were too many Jews on the Supreme Court.
Interesting that WND and CNS parent the Media Research Center have no problem with this, yet freak out over gays.
I wouldn't want to be seen naked by a homosexual male. I wouldn't mind in the slightest being seen naked by a straight man OR - gripping mood music would fit nicely here - by a male whose sexual proclivities were unknown, hence presumed to be heterosexual.
This is nothing less than the proclamation of a new civil right - the right not to have your body enjoyed erotically against your will. More accurately, that's far from a new civil right. It's a right we've always had but never had the need to invoke and defend until the government overthrew "don't ask, don't tell." Women, in particular, have always held that right dear, and men have helped them preserve it. ("Officer. That man in annoying me!" "OK, buddy. Move along!") The only thing that's new is the prospect of men and women in the service now openly preferring intimacy with members of their same sex.
Don't forget; it was an official of the Nazi German Embassy in Copenhagen who tipped off the Danish Underground that they were about to round up the Jews and deport them to concentration camps. That particular "Nazi" saved 6,000 Jewish lives. Some American civilians paid their own way to the Philippines in 1946 to testify on behalf of a Japanese prison camp commander who was uncharacteristically kind to his prisoners.
I'm simply saying there was a good German here and a good Japanese there. I'm not saying the wartime Germans and Japanese were a good ol' bunch of boys. And, no, dummy; I'm not comparing gays to Nazis or imperial Japanese. I'm simply saying President Obama cherry-picked a story of an effective and beloved military commander who happened to be homosexual. And, no, this is not an anti-gay screed. This may be the most pro-gay piece you've read lately. I literally fear instances of straight GIs losing it and actually murdering their gay comrades-in-arms. And I feared that long before any present debate or legislation about gays in the military.
I recall shower time during basic training at Fort Dix, N.J. It was like watering cattle down before shipping them out of Omaha in boxcars. At least a dozen shower nozzles and a hundred naked men screaming, cussing, carrying on and even washing. I remember thinking, "I would rather take a shower like this with a hundred gay men who I didn't know were gay than with 99 straight men and one known homosexual."
Go ahead and laugh, denounce, demean, berate, snarl, spit and threaten. I remain the world's foremost authority on whom I'd like to take a shower with.
Graham Just Can't Stop Obsessing Over Gay Art He Hates Topic: NewsBusters
Tim Graham headlined his Dec. 26 NewsBusters post "WaPo Still Railing Against 'Doubly Sacrilegious' Removal of Ants-on-Christ Video," and it begins: "It was two days before Christmas, and some Washingtonians were still complaining that images mocking Jesus had been removed from the National Portrait Gallery."
Graham, if you'll recall, has demonstrated an inability to stop obsessing over George Allen's notorious "macaca incident." He and the MRC were still complaining about it four years after the fact.
If the Post is "railing against" the removal of a single video -- a mere 11 seconds of which was the "ants-on-Christ" stuff -- from a Smithsonian exhibition on gay portraiture, Graham could choose to ignore it. But he does not; he takes the bait every time. So, of course, he uses the opportunity to once again rant about how much he hates gays:
"Openness" does not mean debate. It means that the capital must be open for the Gay Agenda to sprawl across the museum and for no one to dare to question it, even as it assaults ancient religions.
Well, one "ancient religion." We suspect that Graham would not be so concerned if the exhibit had a video of ants crawling over, say, Osiris. Of course, Graham makes no mention of the artist's intent of the video clip as a metaphor for suffering, not to insult Christianity.
And yes, Graham capitalized "Gay Agenda." Why? Who knows? It's certainly not a formal name, though gay-bashers like Graham appear to think otherwise.
Remember Joseph Farah's Dec. 17 WorldNetDaily column, in which he called for mass defections from the military over the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell? Media Matters' Joe Strupp got reaction to it from various observers on the issue. "Irresponsible" is one of the kinder reactions.
A seminal work in the effort to portray the mainstream media as having a liberal bias is Edith Efron's "The News Twisters." But Efron never read WorldNetDaily.
A prime example of WND's news-twisting is a Dec. 26 article by Eugene J. Koprowski on President Obama's endorsement of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People. It carries the headline, "Obama to give Manhattan back to Native Americans?" Koprowski's opening paragraph reads:
President Obama is voicing support for a U.N. resolution that could accomplish something as radical as relinquishing some U.S. sovereignty and opening a path for the return of ancient tribal lands to American Indians, including even parts of Manhattan.
The answer to the headline's question, in a word, is no. Koprowski fails to report the single piece of evidence that discredits the claim he makes in his opening paragraph: U.N. declarations are not legally binding. Koprowski also doesn't mention that the U.S. is the last country on the planet to endorse the declaration.
Koprowski offers no actual evidence whatsoever to support his claim, instead engaging in rampant speculation apparently inspired by something somebody said 30 years ago. Koprowski makes another baseless claim: that "Obama's interest is personal" becaues "he was officially adopted by the Crow Nation, an Indian tribe in Montana, and he was given an Indian name."
This is yet another empty WND article designed for the sole purpose of attacking Obama in contravention of the facts. That, of course, didn't keep WND editor Joseph Farah from writing a sneering column asserting he has a claim on Manhattan, based on the non-story he published -- even down to repeating the "Indian name" story word for word.
WND, as it has always done, is telling bald-faced lies to its readers. Is it any wonder that nobody takes it seriously?
CNS' Starr Misleads on Planned Parenthood, Abortion Topic: CNSNews.com
Penny Starr -- hater of abortion and Planned Parenthood -- begins her Dec. 23 CNSNews.com article, headlined "Planned Parenthood's Federal Funding Rose to $363.2 Million in FY 2008-2009, Aborted 324,008 Unborn Children in 2008," like this:
Planned Parenthood received $363.2 million in government grants and contracts during its 2008-2009 fiscal year, according to the organization's annual report. That was up from $349.6 million in FY2007-08.
According to a fact sheet on Planne Parenthood's Web site, the organization performed 324,008 abortions in calendar year 2008. That was up from 305,310 in 2007 and 289,750 in 2006.
It's not until the fifth paragraph that Starr gets around to noting that the two are mutually exclusive: "The funding is for reproductive health care services, including family planning, and cannot be directly spent on actual abortion procedures except in cases of rape, incest or to preserve the life of the mother."
That's otherwise known as the Hyde Amendment, whose name Starr curiously fails to mention.
Still, the false implication that Planned Parenthood uses federal money for abortions remains is Starr's article -- certainly the commenters on the article are under that impression.
NewsBusters Leans on Discredited Media Bias Study Topic: NewsBusters
The Media Research Center's idea of good research is any work that confirms its anti-"liberal media" worldview (as its own shoddy research demonstrates).
Mark Finkelstein, in the midst of using a Dec. 24 NewsBusters post to insult the New York Times' Paul Krugman over his description fo a "well-developed right-wing media infrastructure" to "rapidly disseminate bogus analysis to a wide audience" and that there is "nothing comparable on the left" (he bashes the Times as the "Humbug Express" and that "cider bowl at the New York Times Christmas party" was "spiked with some wacky wassail weed, and that Paul Krugman drank deep—very deep—from it"), drops this bit of logic:
On the port side, we'd start of course with none other than Krugman's own home base of the New York Times. Include every other major newspaper with the exception of the Wall Street Journal [and even there its non-opinion pages point left].
Finkelstein's evidence that the Journal's news pages "point left" is a 2005 study by Timothy Groseclose and Jeffrey Milyo. Finkelstein doesn't mention, however, that the Groseclose-Milyo uses some highly questionable reasoning that skews its results.
As Media Matters pointed out at the time, Groseclose and Milyo's bizarre methodology was to examine the floor speeches of selected members to Congress to see which think tanks were referenced, then analyzed whether news coverage of the speeches mentioned the think tanks. If a news organization quoted a think tank mentioned by conservative members of Congress, then it was said to have a conservative "bias." Needless to say, this generates some strange results, including that the ACLU was categorized as conservative.
Groseclose and Milyo have previously received funding from right-wing think tanks like the Hoover Institution, the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute. Further, their study is replete with citations from right-wing sources like the MRC and Accuracy in Media and virtually none from scholarly research on media studies.
But Finkelstein is too enamored of the fact that the Groseclose-Milyo study confirms his own biases to do any substantive analysis of the results. He continues:
Add in the three broadcast networks, MSNBC, CNN, PBS, NPR, academia, Hollywood, most major foundations, and countless liberal blogs—and you have a mighty media infrastructure indeed.
And on the right? Fox News, talk radio, and some websites. Pretty puny in comparison.
He offers no evidence to back any of this up -- if he asserts it, it must be true. He concludes: "To allay his startling symptoms, we'd prescribe for Paul a dose of reading NewsBusters for a week. Call us after New Years if the illusions of a lack of left-wing media haven't subsided."
Yes, he seems to think cherry-picked quotes devoid of context are always evidence. It seems Finkelstein has taken the shoddy research methods of his employer to heart.
Obama (And Lady Gaga) Derangement Syndrome Watch Topic: CNSNews.com
During the 2008 election campaign, Barack Obama repeatedly informed the American people that he would call on the country's best minds to advise him. "You know," he told an audience back in May 2008, "my attitude is that whoever is the best person for the job is the person I want."
Too bad he thinks the best person for the job of secretary of defense is a bisexual, drug-addled talentless Auto-Tune creation with a relentlessly annoying fan base -- full of faux-profound morons who think that fashioning one's hair into a telephone qualifies as high art.
That's right -- Lady Gaga is the de facto secretary of defense.
This week, when the Democratic Senate trashed the Clinton-era "don't ask, don't tell" law designed to prevent homosexual activity and the breakdown of unit cohesion within military ranks, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) shuffled off to his Twitter account to send a note to the sponsor of the legislation: the aforementioned Gaga. "@ladygaga We did it!" Reid tweeted to Gaga, as though Gaga were a senator who had voted on the policy. "#DADT is a thing of the past."
Ms. Gaga -- a noxiously androgynous combination of Madonna, HAL 9000 and the worst of Salvador Dali -- had made it her personal mission to stump for the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell." On Sept. 20, 2010, Gaga made a speech in Maine replete with idiotic misconstructions of the Constitution and vicious slander about our troops (she compared them to the murderers of Matthew Shepard). Worst, she offered not a single argument as to how the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" would help the military.
In essence, her position was this: she likes homosexuals -- as she should, since she makes her living off of them. All those who feel uncomfortable about showering with homosexuals, being hit on by homosexuals or serving alongside gay couples, who will obviously defend each other before their comrades, are mean and nasty and brutish. Therefore, the military should throw out all of the soldiers who have such legitimate concerns (including 58 percent of front-line troops) in favor of the approximately 0.000188 percent of soldiers who have been discharged for homosexual behavior and/or self-identification.
If this seems like a troubling argument to you, you're sane. If it seems like a strong argument, you're Harry Reid.
-- Ben Shapiro, Dec. 23 syndicated column, published at CNSNews.com
MRC's Hypocritical Awards Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center has released this year's verison of its "awards for the year's worst reporting," and as in years past, it's a little lame. This year, though, brings the added whiff of hypocrisy.
This year's "quote of the year" is Chris Matthewsfor saying that "I get the same thrill up my leg, all over me, every time" from listening to President Obama talk about his background. Meanwhile, sycophantic remarks about a conservative, even when it's said by someone the MRC despises, get a pass. At the same time the MRC was releasing its award list, didn't even see fit to clip Joe Scarborough -- whom the MRC regularly Heathers for being insufficiently obsequient to right-wing talking points -- proclaiming that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie "reduces me to a 14-year-old girl at a Beatles concert."
Is that really somehow less worthy of mention than Matthews' statement? (Who, by the way, was not "reporting" when he made that statement, thus disqualifying it by the MRC's own standards.)
The MRC also gave a "No Wonder It Sold For $1 Award" for "Newsweek's priceless bias." Unmentioned by the MRC: Oneof its favorite publications, the Washington Times, also sold for $1. And not just to anyone -- back to its founder and cult leader Rev. Sun Myung Moon. And the Times' bias far outstrips that of Newsweek.
Attacking liberals for doing things it ignores when conservatives do them? Who expects anything else from the MRC?
WND Ramps Up Anti-Gay Hysteria Over DADT Repeal Topic: WorldNetDaily
How is WorldNetDaily marking Christmas? By ratcheting up anti-gay sentiment over the repeal of the military's Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy.
The headline on a Dec. 24 WND article by Brian Fitzpatrick blares: "Fury over 'gay' ban repeal." But Brian Fitzp[atrick cites nobody but people who have "written WND to express their fury about the repeal of the military's ban on open homosexuality," so it's hardly a representative sample of the American public. Of course, Fitbzpatrick names none of the people being quoted, so any information is impossible to independently verify.
WND loves that anonymous rage -- there's a companion article by Fitzpatrick about an "Army lieutenant colonel ... whose identity was being protected" who "has asked to be relieved of command rather than order his troops to go through pro-homosexual indoctrination" -- even though its embrace here runs counter to WND editor Joseph Farah's declaration that anonymous quotes are "usually quotes made up out of whole cloth to help make the story read better." Nevertheless, WND wants to keep it going; Fitzpatrick writes, "We encourage readers, especially those on active duty, to let us know what you think about allowing open homosexuality in the military and how you plan to respond to the new policy."
And what better way to feed anonymous rage than the non-stop gay-bashing attacks on WND's commentary page? There's been a pile of them so far, and the hate continues:
Joseph Farah screeched, "There would be no prohibitions against sex between two or more men. And there would be no prohibitions against sex between two or more women. At least I have not detected any concerns about group sex." He added: "Are Congress and the U.S. military also ready to embrace transexualism and transvestism? If not, on what basis does it make a distinction? ... How will and should military recruiters respond the day – and it's coming – a man tries to enlist while wearing a dress?"
Alan Keyes accused Ron Paul of endorsing "coercion of conscience" by voting for DADT repeal, declaring him to be among "fellow travelers in the movement intended to redefine the doctrine of rights in a way that promotes the pernicious notion that they are invented by government rather than authorized by the Creator God."
James B. DeYoung, author of a WND-published book attacking another book -- the Christian novel "The Shack" -- went on an opportunistic, self-serving side trip, bashing the book anew because it "and the gay-rights movement have a common attitude toward the institution of marriage," and that the "strong current of anti-institutionalism coursing through the novel" reflects that of the "militant gay-rights subculture" that endeavored to "gun down the 'don't ask, don't tell' policy in the armed forces."
Star Parker wrote: "I cannot think of anything more dangerous to our national security and the ongoing strength of our nation than the collapse of our sense that there are objective rights and wrongs."
And that's how WorldNetDaily is celebrating Christmas.
MRC's Silly 'Christmas Whithout Christ' Study Topic: Media Research Center
Yes, the Media Research Center's Culture & Media Institute spent many, many man-hours to compile this study finding:
2,000 years ago, there was no room for Mary and Joseph at the inn in Bethlehem. Fittingly enough, in the past two years, there was no room for their baby at the network evening news shows. Every year, millions of Americans celebrate the most important Christian holiday by reflecting upon the significance of the birth of Christ. Families attend church, count blessings and exchange gifts, and yet the evening news broadcasts for ABC, CBS and NBC almost completely ignored these religious traditions by leaving Christ and God out of Christmas.
Two years of Christmas coverage on three networks produced a scant 1.3 percent of stories mentioning the deity. The true message of Christmas, the miraculous birth of Jesus Christ, has simply been ignored by the mainstream media.
The big three networks ran 527 stories about Christmas in their nightly news broadcasts, but a mere seven of those stories mentioned God or the birth of Jesus Christ. ABC's "World News," "CBS Evening News," and "NBC Nightly News" all thoroughly covered Christmas, but 98.7 percent of the Christmas references highlighted the holiday's impact on the economy, weather, travel, retail sales, the passage of the Senate health care bill and its other less religious connotations.
Of course, Christmas is a secular holiday as well as a religious one, something that seems to have escaped the normally eagle-eyed MRC researchers. Instead, CMI's Erin Brown seems to think this secular aspect is a media conspiracy to avoid talking about religion:
Falling as it does at the end of the calendar year when businesses and governments scramble to show a profit or claim accomplishments, and given the demand it creates for often chancy travel during winter, Christmas offers plenty of excuses the media to talk about anything but its religious dimension.
It is no secret that Christmas gift sales and their impact on the U.S. economy, garners huge press coverage every December. But when the focus on the holiday's impact on retailers becomes all that Christmas is good for, the original message of Christ's birth is completely lost.
Brown goes on to make irrelevant comparisons:
On the Aug. 14, 2010, broadcast of the "CBS Evening News," Jeff Glor dedicated 327 words to the possible addition of table tennis to the Olympics in 2012. That's more words devoted to ping pong than were devoted to God during all of the Christmas coverage in two years of broadcasts.
Plainly, to the networks, Christmas means travel delays and spikes in sales for retailers hoping to see profits in the black. Christmas means arbitrary congressional deadlines and general placeholders for timelines. Christmas means that a sexy Santa can get away with toeing that naughty line in order to attract buyers to his store.
On ABC, CBS and NBC, Christmas means everything except the birth of Christ.
Finally, Brown serves up her recommendation to jam religion into everything Christmas-related:
The Culture and Media Institute recommends that ABC, CBS and NBC not show bias against Christians by glossing over one of their most important holidays. If there are more than 300 million Americans, and 80 percent claim to be Christians, than the networks are slighting an important holiday for more than 24 million people.
CMI recommends that the networks:
Recognize the lack recognition given to Christ during the Christmas season.
Include more discussion about the birth of Christ and what it means to 80 percent of Americans.
Interview Christians, Catholics, pastors, church leaders, authors, musicians and others who celebrate the Christmas every year by remembering its true meaning.
This study, like so many MRC studies, focuses only on the broadcast networks. There's no mention of conservative Fox News, whose Christmas coverage would likely reflect that of the networks.
When Will NewsBusters Apologize to Nina Totenberg? Topic: NewsBusters
On Dec. 20, Brent Baker wrote a NewsBusters post attacking NPR's Nine Totenberg for saying on a TV show, "I was at – forgive the expression – a Christmas party at the Department of Justice." Baker declared that she was "seemingly embarrassed to invoke any religious terminology for Christmas," adding: "She didn’t say what she’d prefer for parties this time of the year to be named. 'Winter solstice party'? Just plain old 'holiday party'? Or a 'seasonal gathering'?"
There's much more to this story that Baker didn't report. The Washington Post, unlike Baker, actually sought an explanation from Totenberg for the remark, noting that "Conservative bloggers jumped all over Totenberg, accusing her of a liberal, politically-correct agenda." It turns out she wasn't dissing Christianity at all:
Then we reached Totenberg herself during her "Christmas vacation" (her term) in Jamaica. Turns out her critics got it completely wrong: She was, she says, defending Christmas. The DOJ celebration was officially dubbed a "holiday" party, and she was gently mocking that generic designation. "I think that's kind of silly because it's obviously a Christmas party," she told us. "I was tweaking the Department of Justice. It was a touch of irony at the expense of the Justice department, not at the expense of Christmas."
As for the bloggers who were so quick to judge -- without bothering to ask her what she meant: "Jeesh, these folks need a life -- and perhaps a touch of the Christmas spirit, as well."
The Post story has been out for more than a day. MRC employee Kevin Eder even linked to it in a Twitter post, if only to highlight that it "links to at least three MRC websites," so they must be aware of it. Yet Baker nor anyone else at NewsBusters or the MRC has seen fit to acknowledge its contents, let alone apologize to Totenberg for blowing her comment out of proportion without bothering to find out the story behind it.
It's time for Baker to exhibit a little Christmas spirit and admit his error.
UPDATE: Baker, it appears, is not in an apologizing mood. In a new NewsBusters post, he highlights how Fox News promoted his earlier attack, and only then did he acknowledge the Post's reporting. He sneered that the Post "lamely" noted how much Totenberg loves Christmas.
Self-promotion before a very weak tacit acknowledgement that he was wrong -- nice Christmas spirit you have there, Brent.