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Friday, February 3, 2012
Pelosi to CNS: 'Is This A Speech, Or Do We Have A Question In Disguise As A Speech?'

Nancy Pelosi appears to have pegged for what it is: a right-wing talking-points factory posing as a "news" organization. Even more amazingly, CNS is apparently so unashamed of this that it will flaunt that bias.

From a Feb. 2 CNS article by Thomas Cloud:

At her Wednesday press briefing, asked Pelosi: “The administration has issued a regulation that will require all health-care plans to cover sterilization and all FDA-approved contraceptives, including those that induce abortions. This would force Catholic individuals and institutions to act against their consciences. All across the nation, Catholic bishops are saying:--

Pelosi responded: "Is this a speech, or do we have a question in disguise as a speech?" continued: “‘We cannot--we will not—comply with this law.’ Catholic bishops are saying they will not comply with this law. Will you stand with your fellow Catholics in resisting this law or will you stick by the administration?”

Note that Cloud didn't challenge Pelosi's description of his question.

Of course, CNS has a long history of speechifying in the form of gotcha questions designed solely to trip up its political enemies in the hopes of getting a little right-wing catnip out of the deal in the form of a YouTube video.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:50 PM EST
Aaron Klein Anonymous Source Watch
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Here's the latest in the anonymous sources Aaron Klein hides behind in his WorldNetDaily articles:

A Jan. 24 article claims that "Iran has been working around the leadership of Hamas to form independent Hamas militias capable of carrying out coordinated attacks against Israel, according to sources in Hamas." Klein does not explain why Hamas would speak to him, given his fealty toward extremist anti-Palestinian rabbi Meir Kahane.

A Jan. 26 article credits "informed Egyptian security officials" to claim that "To pressure the U.S., Syrian President Bashar Assad has reopened his country’s borders with Iraq, allowing more jihadists to get into and out of Iraq." As we've documented, Klein started crediting anonymous Egyptian "officials" in order to prop up the dying regime of Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak.

Klein cited even more "Egyptian security officials" in a Jan. 30 article on a "secret meeting" by the Muslim Brotherhood "to coordinate the Islamic group’s rise to power in countries throughout the Middle East and North Africa." Klein also offers up a bizarre defense of the brutal crackdown by the Assad regime in Syria, suggesting thatit's justified because Bashar Assad "faces an insurgency that is reportedly being coordinated in part by Muslim Brotherhood-allied groups." Klein did the same thing in defending Mubarak.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:22 PM EST
MRC Doesn't Mention One Of Komen's 'Bullies' Was The MRC
Topic: Media Research Center

In a Feb. 2 Media Research item, Matt Hadro complains that CNN reported Planned Parenthood's complaint that the Susan G. Komen Foundation was the target of "bullying by the right," which resulted in the foundation cutting off funding to Planned Parenthood for breast cancer screenings.

Hadro, however, failed to disclose that the MRC is one of those "bullies."

A  July 2005 MRC "Flash" newsletter touted how its "news" division exposed how the Komen Foundation is using "money purportedly raised for breast cancer research" to support Planned Parenthood's "leftist, anti-life goals":

CNS investigative reporter Randy Hall also examined the fraud of fungibility when he looked at the records of the noble-sounding Susan G. Komen Foundation’s Race for the Cure. The organization’s nationwide series of 5 kilometer runs/fitness walks, named in honor of Komen, a breast cancer victim, are supposed to raise money for breast cancer research. So far, so good.

However, as Hall reported on Feb. 22 and then in a followup report on April 18, the Komen Foundation diverted $475,000 of the money it raised in 2003 to Planned Parenthood clinics around the country.

Planned Parenthood is the number one provider of abortions in America, but Rebecca Gibson, a spokesperson for the Komen Foundation, told Randy that the foundation and its affiliates “do not provide any funding for abortions or for any activities outside the scope of our mission.”

That may be technically true, but we couldn’t help wonder what the participants in the Race for the Cure events would have said had they learned that the organization they thought was raising money solely for breast cancer research was instead giving part of it away to Planned Parenthood clinics and making it financially easier for abortions to be performed.

In other words: CNS has no proof of fungibility of funding, only politically motivated speculation.

In April 2009, CNS published a column by anti-abortion activist Judie Brown attacking Komen for its links to Planned Parenthood: "In the case of Komen and its alliances with Planned Parenthood, given my non-degree in moral theology, I say no to Komen, no to collaboration with Planned Parenthood on any level – just plain no!"

In an August 2011 CNS column, Brown praised a Catholic bishop for making the "courageous stand" of barring his diocese's schools and parishes from fund-raising for the Komen foundation because "Komen has partnered with Planned Parenthood in the past." Brown added that the bishop's action "is exactly what is needed to help untangle the evil web that is woven in today’s atmosphere of tolerance for, and acceptance of, evil."

CNS also highlighted a Dec. 15 Associated Press article noting that the Southern Baptist Convention's publishing division, LifeWay, is recalling pink Bibles in which a portion of the purchase price went to the Komen foundation, "saying some of the money raised through their sale was being given to Planned Parenthood."

Needless to say, CNS was thrilled about Komen cutting off Planned Parenthood. After the announcement, it published an article detailing how "Pro-life groups are commending the 'brave decision' of the Susan G. Komen Foundation to cut off funding for Planned Parenthood."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:00 PM EST
Updated: Friday, February 3, 2012 1:18 PM EST
Mychal Massie Spews Lies About Michelle Obama
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily columnist Mychal Massie utterly despises Michelle Obama to the point of near-rage -- the nicest thing he call her, it seems, is "Buttzilla." So it's unsurprising he'd blatantly lie about her too.

Massie writes in his Jan. 30 WND column:

Think about the message it would send if Michelle Obama surrendered her $15,000-per-day makeup person, her $11,000 hoop earrings, $2,000 skirts, multi-thousand dollar sun skirts and dresses, $40,000 bracelets and Roger Vivier shoes (maker of the most expensive shoes in the world). Think of the message she would send if she practiced the same temperance she preaches when it comes to her extravagant dinners, lavish multi-million dollar vacations, and the presidential jet for herself and her friends, as well as the family dog. Would the public think less of her if she were to forego $50,000 Madison Ave. spending sprees for undergarments just for her?

In fact, it appears the claim Obama spent $50,000 on lingerie is completely false -- nobody has presented any evidence whatsoever to back it up, and the White House strongly denies it.

The other claims Massie hatefully spews about Obama have been taken out of context. The "$40,000 bracelets" were borrowed, the "$11,000 hoop earrings" Obama wore on election night in 2008 paled in comparison to the $300,000 ensemble -- including a pair of $280,000 earrings -- Cindy McCain was wearing at the Republican National Convention, and nobody has claimed that makeup artist Derrick Rutledge charges Obama $15,000 a day (only that that's what he has charged in the past).

But Massie really doesn't care about the truth, does he? He has a first lady to maliciously smear, after all.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:39 AM EST
Thursday, February 2, 2012
Another CNS Commenter Asks If It's OK To Wish For Obama To Get AIDS

A death threat against President Obama is not the only odious comment has allowed to fester on its website today.

In the comment thread on a Feb. 1 CNS article by Patrick Goodenough on how a State Department used the term “human rights for LGBT people” instead of "gay rights," there can be found amid the usual hateful right-wing gay-bashing this gramatically challenged comment by someone calling themselves "CUREHOMOSEXUALS": "Is it OK to wish that -obama- get's AID/VIRUS and suffers like the rest of the gay animals."

As you can see from the timestamp, that comment has remained posted for nearly an entire day as of this writing. Nobody at CNS is apparently bothered by this sentiment.

When you pander to the Obama-haters -- as CNS is clearly doing under editor in chief Terry Jeffrey -- these are the kind of commenters you attract.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:41 PM EST
Bozell, MRC Do Not Find Colbert Amusing
Topic: Media Research Center

Brent Bozell and his Media Research Center are not amused by Stephen Colbert.
In his January 20 column, the Media Research Center chief railed against Colbert’s "egotistical stunts to promote his own Nielsen ratings," in particular the Colbert Super PAC, which Bozell claimed is presented as "exposing the glaring loopholes in federal (under) regulation of campaign ads” but is really about “Comedy Central hacks” Colbert and Jon Stewart favoring "a government crackdown on negative political speech." Perhaps Bozell is feeling a little vulnerable on that point, having recently likened President Obama to a "skinny ghetto crackhead."

Bozell then denounced how other TV outlets are praising Colbert for his satire, huffing: “Colbert, the critic of political viciousness himself, declared on his show, ‘Sarah Palin is a (bleeping) retard.’ " 
But Bozell is taking that statement -- from a February 2010 episode of "The Colbert Report" -- out of context. Colbert had pointed out that Palin had demanded the resignation of then-White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel for using the term “[bleeping] retards,” but wouldn’t criticize Rush Limbaugh for saying “retard” because he was “using satire.” Colbert then declared that Palin said “it is OK to call someone a retard if, like Rush, you clearly don’t mean it. Which is why we should all come to her defense and say, Sarah Palin is a [bleeping] retard.” Colbert added, “You see? It’s satire.”
Bozell certainly seems to have a tin ear for satire. Then again, the MRC has a record of taking things out of context.

Most notoriously, as we've detailed, the MRC published an ellipsis-laden quote taken from a book by then-New York Times editorial page editor Howell Raines that it claimed denigrated Reagan. The space covered in one ellipsis was 28 pages, falsely portraying a statement that Reagan "couldn’t tie his shoelaces if his life depended on it" -- in which Raines was actually quoting someone referencing Reagan’s inability to tie a fly-fishing fly -- as a personal attack on Reagan’s intelligence by Raines. Eight years after first publishing the misleading excerpt -- during which time it was repeated by such right-wing pundits as Bernard Goldberg – the MRC finally issued a "clarification."

And there's also the MRC's repeated misportrayal of of a Boston Globe writer's criticism of Ted Kennedy as praise by omitting the context in which the criticism appeared.

Then, in a Jan. 29 NewsBusters post, Tim Graham approvingly quoted a National Review writer sniffing that Colbert's satiric exposure of the real nature of lax post-Citizens United election financing regulations through his super PAC "geriatric" in tone and actually funny, just "NPR funny."

That seems like projection, especially coming from the folks who produce the painfully unfunny "NewsBusted" video

Posted by Terry K. at 5:57 PM EST
CNS Commenter: 'Obama Needs To Be Killed'

A Feb. 1 column by Ken Blackwell attacking "the Obama administration’s ongoing hostility to people of faith, especially Christians" has this comment attached to it:

It's been up for an hour. They're not big on comment-monitoring at CNS, apparently.

And Mr. Kent (if that's who the author is) is about to get a visit from the Secret Service.

UPDATE: The comment has been deleted.

UPDATE 2: That's not all: Another CNS commenter asks if it's OK to wish for Obama to get AIDS.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:19 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, February 2, 2012 6:43 PM EST
NewsBusters Thinks Obama Wanting To Help Man Find A Job Is A 'Gaffe'
Topic: NewsBusters

We've detailed how NewsBusters insists on putting the words of conservatives in their proper context, but if you insist on putting, say, President Obama's words in context, you're simply making excuses for the guy.

NewsBusters keeps up that double standard in a Jan. 30 post by Kyle Drennen that pretty blatantly takes Obama out of context. Under the headline "Not Very 'Interesting': ABC and CBS Morning Shows Ignore Obama Gaffe," Drennen writes:

While NBC correspondent Peter Alexander noted on Tuesday's Today how "Republicans are jumping on the president's choice of words" in telling a woman her husband's long-term unemployment was "interesting" to him, neither ABC's Good Morning America nor CBS's This Morning bothered to highlight Obama's aloof flub.


Why isn't [CBS' Bob] Schieffer's mind boggled when President Obama seems puzzled by the plight of average Americans?

In fact, Obama said no such thing. Obama said that it was "interesting" that a questioner's husband could not find a job after three years of being unemployed because he was described as a high-tech engineer whose skills are in demand. Here's the full transcript of the exchange:

QUESTIONER: Hi, Mr. President. My husband has an engineering degree with over 10 years of experience, and he was laid off over three years ago and has yet to find a permanent job in his field. My question to you is: Why does the government continue to issue and extend H-1B visas when there are tons of Americans just like my husband with no job?

OBAMA: Well, Jennifer, I don't know your husband's specialty, but I can tell you that there's a huge demand around the country for engineers. Now, obviously, there are different kinds of engineers. So a civil engineer, for example, right now may not be getting as much work because we're not building our infrastructure as much as we should, which is part of the reason why in the State of the Union I said let's put folks to work -- not just construction workers but also engineers and architects, rebuilding our schools and our roads and our bridges and so on. Where you're seeing a lot of specialized demand is in engineering that's related to the high-tech industries. And now, what industry tells me is that they don't have enough highly skilled engineers. If your husband's in that field, then we should get his resume and I'll forward it to some of these companies that are telling me they can't find enough engineers in this field. So it's going to vary, but as a basic matter, there's a huge demand for engineers around the country right now.

QUESTIONER: I understand that. But how -- I mean, given the list that you're getting, I mean, we're not getting that. You said in the State of the Union address for business leaders to ask themselves what can they do to bring jobs back to America. But why do you think that thet H-1B program is so popular with the corporations?

OBAMA: Jennifer, can I ask you what kind of engineer your husband is?

QUESTIONER: He's a semiconductor engineer.

OBAMA:  See, it is interesting to me -- and I meant what I said. If you send me your husband's resume, I'd be interested in finding out exactly what's happening right there, because the word we're getting is that somebody in that kind of high-tech field, that kind of engineer, should be able to find something right away. And the H-1B should be reserved only for those companies who say they cannot find somebody in that particular field. So that wouldn't necessarily apply if in fact there are a lot of highly skilled American engineers in that position. I'd be interested -- I will follow up on this, because I'm interested in finding out, and maybe we can get some information as to why your husband has been having trouble getting placed. We want to encourage more American engineers to be placed, and that's part of the reason why it's so important to us to boost American manufacturing.

Only at NewsBusters and its parent Media Research Center would offering to help someone find a job be considered a "gaffe" and a "flub."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:11 PM EST
Newsmax Dials Back Gingrich-Fluffing After Florida Blowout
Topic: Newsmax

Days of Gingrich-fluffing by Newsmax before the Republican presidential primary in Newsmax's home state of Florida (and even more before the Iowa primary) got Gingrich a 15-point loss. This seems to have motivated Newsmax not to put all its eggs in one presidential basket.

Oh, sure, there are the post-election articles designed to prop up Gingrich in the wake of the loss, such as quoting "political guru" Larry Sabato as climing that Florida was not a "game-ender" for Gingrich’s presidential hopes. There was also the requisite Romney-bashing, such as pointing out that Romney's votes "cost more than three times that of his nearest rival, Newt Gingrich."

But there was also an article coming to Romney's defense. A Feb. 1 article declared that "Sources in the mainstream media were quick to jump on Mitt Romney for saying he doesn’t care about the very poor — without placing the remark in context." But the article did not name any actual "sources in the mainstream" who were taking Romney's words out of the context -- only that it is likely to be taken out of context by Romney's critics.

Also, Romney-fluffer extraordinare Ronald Kessler was let out of his cage to fluff away once more. In a column posted the morning after Romney's Florida win, Kessler proclaimed that there is "no better example" of Romney serving as a "turnaround artist" than when he "turned a failure into a success with the 2002 Winter Olympics" by turning "budget deficit of $379 million" to "a surplus of $56 million."

Unmentioned by Kessler: That surplus was due in no small part to federal subsidies. The Salt Lake City Olympics received $342 million in federal money, more than was given to the 1996 summer Olympics in Atlanta.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:52 AM EST
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
NEW ARTICLE: WorldNetDaily's Plagiarism Problem
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WND has been stealing the content of others for years, but the theft has seriously ramped up in the past couple of months. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 9:38 PM EST
MRC Still Insists Gingrich Has Been 'Completely Vindicated'
Topic: Media Research Center

In a Jan. 30 Media Research Center item, Kyle Drennen asserts that NBC's Matt Lauer "failed to correct the record with the fact that in 1999 the Internal Revenue Service completely vindicated Gingrich" on charges of using nonprofit money to promote a partisan agenda.

But as we've detailed, this argument conflicts with earlier claims by the MRC that a lack of charges being filed against someone does not equal complete vindication -- well, at least when that person's last name is Clinton.

The issue in the Gingrich IRS case was whether a college course Gingrich organized through the political group he controlled, GOPAC, used nonprofit funds to promote a partisan agenda, which is illegal. (The House Ethics Committee investigation looked at the same issue but focused on Gingrich personally, and that investigation resulted in Gingrich paying a $300,000 fine.) As Susie Madrak of Crooks & Liars points out,  the IRS revoked the tax exemption of an organization that worked with GOPAC because its funds were clearly being used for partisan purposes -- then, a few years later, under the Bush administration, reversed itself after lobbying from a GOPAC official.

Will Drennen mention that aspect of the case to his readers? Probably not.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:34 PM EST
WND Peddles Alinsky Falsehoods
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Michael Carl may be a "veteran journalist" with "two master's degrees," according to his WorldNetDaily bio, but that certainly doesn't keep him from getting basic facts wrong.

In a Jan. 31 WND article claiming that Mitt Romney "may have been influenced" by the "radical" Saul Alinsky, Carl uncritically repeats a claim that Alinsky was a "neo-Marxist," later adding that Alinsky had a "Marxist vision." In fact, Alinsky was not an ideologue, stating that "I could never accept any rigid dogma or ideology, whether it's Christianity or Marxism."

Carl also falsely states that "Alinsky dedicated his book 'Rules for Radicals' to the devil." In fact, Alinsky dedicated the book to his wife, Irene; it's only after that dedication and a page of "personal acknowledgements" that a subsequent page appears containing quotes from Rabbi Hillel and Thomas Paine, as well as another quote attributed to Alinsky in which he provides "an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins -- or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom -- Lucifer."

Posted by Terry K. at 11:57 AM EST
CNS Publishes Gaffney's Hypocritical Defense of Boykin
Topic: published a Jan. 30 article by Frank Gaffney defending retired military official Jerry Boykin against efforts to remove him from prayer meetings in Ocean City, Maryland (not successful) and West Point (successful) due to his extreme anti-Muslim views. Gaffney complained that the "threat" is that Boykin "might be allowed to exercise his constitutionally guaranteed right to free speech."

But as Right Wing Watch points out, no one is questioning Boykin’s right to say whatever he wants to say about Muslims -- just where he says it. Further, Gaffney has engaged in the same sort of behavior he deplores when it's used against Boykin. From Right Wing Watch:

If Gaffney really believes that groups protesting Boykin’s appearance at West Point are actually stripping Boykin of his right to free speech, then Gaffney is a serial opponent of the First Amendment under his standard.

Last year, Gaffney demanded that the American Conservative Union disinvite Suhail Kahn of Muslims for America from the Conservative Political Action Conference. He also called on CPAC to give the boot to Grover Norquist, who has done advocacy work in the past with Muslim-Americans including Kahn, labeling both of them threats to the conservative movement and supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood. Moreover, Liberty Counsel’s Awakening 2011 conference, Gaffney condemned the conference for allowing Norquist to speak there and said that he made it his “personal burden for the past twelve years” to warn conservatives against joining with Norquist, saying, “I must tell you I think this is time to bring it to a stop”:


Therefore, if Gaffney thinks that asking a conference to disinvite a person from speaking at a conference is an attack on the “constitutionally guaranteed right to free speech,” then Gaffney himself has been one of the biggest opponents of the freedom of speech.

CNS won't be mentioning any of this, of course.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:04 AM EST
Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Election Day At Newtmax
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax spent the day of the Florida primary doing -- what else? -- more blatant promotion of Newt Gingrich and hatred of Mitt Romney.

There's the usual pro-Newt puffery:

On top of that, David Patten hunts down "prominent Ronald Reagan expert" Paul Kengor to claim that Gingrich "is only the third GOP presidential candidate since the Barry Goldwater era who truly understands conservatism."

There's even an Associated Press article mixed in with the headline "Experts Say Gingrich Moon Base Dreams Not Lunacy,"as well as a link to an Irish newspaper's story about "Newt's Confidante: Gay Gaines."

On the Romney-bashing front, there are things like "Head of Senate Military Panel Says Romney Clueless" and "NBC Poll: Romney Losing Independents After Fla." Paul Scicchitano declares in another article: "It’s official. Former Gov. Mitt Romney has edged out former House Speaker Newt Gingrich in a contest of who ran the most negative campaign in a record year for negativity in Florida."

Newsmax also links to a Los Angeles Times article under the tease "Cuban-Americans Have Grave Doubts About Romney." The word "grave" appears nowhere in the Times article.

Newsmax columnists did their part for their employer's pro-Gingrich agenda:

  • Chris Friend criticized Romney for bashing  Gingrich's plan to establish a manned base on the moon: "Is that the kind of leadership America needs? Think big, and you’re out the door?"
  • Michael Reagan asserted that "Newt fights. Real Republicans need fighters, not mealy-mouthed compromisers who shrink away from any form of combat."

Meanwhile, Newsmax's longtime champion of Romney, Ronald Kessler, has not written anything about Romney since Jan. 13. Has he been barred from doing so, or is he still pining away for a Donald Trump candidacy?

Posted by Terry K. at 8:08 PM EST
Updated: Wednesday, February 8, 2012 7:51 PM EST
WND's Vox Day Litters Germany-Bashing With Nazi References
Topic: WorldNetDaily

See if you can catch all the Nazi references Vox Day has dumped into his Jan. 29 WorldNetDaily column:

Last week, Germany launched its most aggressive attack on another country since Operation Barbarossa in 1941. Der Spiegel led with a headline titled “Griechenland soll Kontrolle über Haushalt abgeben,” which has been misleadingly translated into English as “Germany proposes Greece relinquish some fiscal powers.” A more accurate translation would be: “Greece shall give up control over its budget.”

Strangely, the countries, which historically opposed German attempts to conquer small European nations, France and the United Kingdom, are generally supporting this 21st century revival of Germany’s policy of Anschluss. The demand for Lebensraum is financial this time rather than physical, but the basic concept remains the same.


Seen in this light, the German demand for the financial annexation of Greece appears as not only absurd and provocative, but intentionally absurd and provocative. 


In Europe and in the United States alike, the heyday of the banks is rapidly coming to a close. The looming revolution is not a battle between capitalism and socialism, or a class war between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, but between the corrupt bank-government axis and the alliance of pretty much everyone else. 

Day also describes German chancellor Angela Merkel as "Bundeskanzlerin," which, it turns out, is not a Nazi reference; it just sounds like one.

UPDATE: For the benefit of the readers of Vox's blog: The Nazi-esque reference in the final paragraph is to the "bank-government axis," not the bourgeoisie/proletariat stuff.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:45 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, February 16, 2012 1:53 PM EST

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