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Friday, November 7, 2014
CNS Returns To Fearmongering That You Can Catch Ebola On A Bus

You might remember that last month, a CNSNews reporter fearmongered that, despite what President Obama said, you can too catch Ebola on a bus -- followed by CNS editor in chief Terry Jeffrey mocking the Obama administration for overreacting to a sick passenger on a bus out of fear the passenger might have Ebola.

Well, the flip-flop has flipped back. From a Nov. 3 CNS article by Melanie Hunter:

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who is also a medical doctor, told CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday that President Barack Obama's biggest mistake was saying you can't catch Ebola on a bus.

"I think the president's biggest mistake was like saying, oh, it's no big deal, you can't catch it if you're sitting on a bus with somebody," said Paul.


"Well, apparently, you can be intensive care unit gloved, gowned and masked and still get it. It's very contagious when someone is sick. So, I think it was a mistake for him to say, oh, it's not big deal. You can be riding on a bus. And we're not going to stop any travel," Paul said.

"American public sees people getting it who are fully masked and gowned and saying, my goodness, I don't think anybody should be riding on a bus or coming from Liberia to visit their aunt or uncle and when they could be contagious. So, I think a temporary stop of travel for elective travel, if you're coming to visit your relatives, couldn't that wait for a few months?" he asked.

Hunter is also overstating Paul's medical credentials. He is an non-certified ophthalmologist, which technically makes him a "medical doctor" but specializes in eye problems, not viral issues like Ebola.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:54 PM EST
WND Blames "Gun Grabbers" For Non-Gun-Grabbing
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A Nov. 5 WorldNetDaily article by Leo Hohmann carries the headline "Billionaire gun grabbers get their way."

But if you read the article, there's no "gun grabbing" actually happening. It's about the passage of a Washington state law mandating stricter background checks for firearms purchases. 

That's not "gun grabbing" -- it's keeping people who shouldn't have guns from getting them.

Nevertheless, Hohmann whines that "Five billionaires – Michael Bloomberg, Bill Gates, Paul Allen, Steve Ballmer and Nick Hanauer – poured a total of more than $5 million into the promotion of expanded background checks in Washington state."Hohmann also baselessly asserts that these billionaires "paid for ads featuring emotional pleas by survivors of mass shootings that would not have been stopped by a background check."

In the grand WND tradition of biased reporting, Hohmann can't be bothered to interview any supporters of the law but freely quoted its opponents.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:27 PM EST
Thursday, November 6, 2014
MRC Mum on Holes In Attkisson's Claim Of Computer Hacking
Topic: NewsBusters

A Nov. 6 NewsBusters post by Melissa Mullins touts a Hollywood Reporter interview in which former CBS correspondent Sharyl Attkisson discusses the alleged hacking of her computer, and how a "legal and forensics team" supposedly found evidence of “highly sophisticated remote intrusions into my personal and work computers by someone using software proprietary to a government agency…either to the DIA, CIA, FBI or NSA over a period of time.”

Mullins doesn't mention, however, that significant doubts have been raised about Attkisson's claim.

After Attkisson posted an online purporting to show her computer being hacked in real time, Media Matters consulted computer experts who said the apparent culprit was a stuck backspace key.

Attkisson has also changed her story on the alleged hacking. She originally claimed that an anonymous source had given her the identity of the person who had hacked into her computer, but in a later interview, Attkisson said she didn't know who the hacker may have been, but "I just know that there's some government tie."

Mullins doesn't mention she was asked about the video of the supposed hacking video during the Hollywood Reporter interview. Despite originally presenting the video as evidence of hacking, she backed off it in the interview, dismissing her own video as "a video anecdote, something that happened along the way. It has nothing to do with the forensic evidence and the analysis. It’s just something interesting, a punctuation mark of things that were happening."

Mullins also uncritically repeats Attkisson's claim that she's not biased, which ignores the fact that she has worked exclusively for conservative outlets -- and has been championed by conservative groups like the MRC -- since leaving CBS. If she didn't have a right-wing bias, wouild that be happening?

Posted by Terry K. at 7:08 PM EST
Newsmax Falsely Portrays Pat Caddell As A Democrat
Topic: Newsmax

A Nov. 5 Newsmax article by Greg Richter introduces Pat Caddell as a "Democratic pollster" who's denouncing Harry Reid. But he's not a Democrat -- or at least he hasn't been in decades.

Caddell hasn't done anything for Democrats in years -- as we've pointed out, he's frequently seen on right-leaning Fox News where, as Salon's Alex Pareene notes, "he’ll reliably repeat every idiotic right-wing talking point that comes down the pike." Caddell also served as a consultant on an anti-Obama film made by right-wing group Citizens United. 

It seems that Newsmax has fallen into the Fox News pattern of presenting Caddell as a "Democrat" even though they know he will reliably bash Democrats at every opportunity. That's dishonest journalism, and Richter and Newsmax should know better.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:42 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE -- Out There, Exhibit 61: It Ain't Over Until The MRC Demagogues
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center is determined to brand the controversial opera "The Death of Klinghoffer" as anti-Semitic, despite no MRC employee apparently having ever viewed it before issuing that judgment. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:08 PM EST
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
MRC Tries To Obscure Lack of Voter Fraud
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Kristine Marsh doesn't like that "The Daily Show's" Jon Stewart pointed out the general lack of voter fraud taht supposedly justifies the imposition of voter ID laws, so she devoted a Nov. 3 article to complaining about it.

Marsh complained that "Stewart cited a misleading statistic that found only two cases of actual voter fraud in the course of the last ten years." In fact, Marsh is the one who's misleading.

The segment in question -- which Marsh curiously doesn't include in the video clip accompanying her article -- actually states there were two cases of actual voter fraud in the course of the last ten years in Texas.

PolitiFact backs this up by stating that between 2002 and 2012, only two election fraud cases in Texas involving "voter impersonation" -- the kind of voter fraud ID laws are supposed to stop -- resulted in convictions.

Marsh then tries to obscure Stewart's  command of the facts by again screaming that he's being "misleading":

Though Stewart cites “nonexistent fraud” his facts are misleading. Stewart doesn’t mention the Democrats counting known dead people in their polling counts, nor the huge problem of illegal immigrants voting with easy access to photo i.d.s. Clearly the number of illegal immigrants voting is higher than Stewart’s cited “two known cases.”

Of course, voting by illegal immigrants and dead people is already legal, so voter ID laws would do nothing to stop it. And how, exactly, would a voter ID law stop an illegal immigrant who has"easy access to photo i.d.s"? Marsh doesn't explain.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:48 PM EST
WND Promotes Russian Propaganda
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily hates President Obama more than it loves America. How else to explain its willingness to serve as propagandists for Russia?

In a Nov. 3 WND article, Joe Kovacs excitedly writes:

While many artists in Moscow appear to fawn over Russian President Vladimir Putin in a brand-new exhibit, apparently they don’t have the same affection for U.S. President Barack Obama.

The political gallery titled “No Filters” opened Friday in Moscow, featuring the work of some 100 cartoonists.

Most of the caricatures depict Putin in a positive light, as a strong, savvy, global chess master, while Obama appears to be a dishonest, political midget who is weak, tuckered out and even harms the environment.

One striking image titled “Targeted Sanctions” shows Putin as a father figure holding Barack Obama, who has the body of a boy, over his knee to deliver a spanking. The caricature pokes fun at America’s economic strategy against Russia’s war in Ukraine.

Another takes the “Star Wars” route, featuring Putin as a virile Luke Skywalker and Obama as Darth Vader. Putin points to Obama’s light saber to let him know it has gone limp.

Like any good propagandist, Kovacs hides the true nature of this exhibit. The Guardian reports that the exhibit was put on by the youth wing of Putin's party -- in other words, pure political propaganda designed to lionize Putin and mock Putin's enemies.

Kovacs once stated he joined WND in order to report "the real news, the news that matters." Apparently, Kovacs' idea of "real news" is to serve as a propagandist for Putin.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:08 PM EST
Tuesday, November 4, 2014
CNS Buries Right-Wing Bishop's Dismissal From Vatican Job

In his Oct. 30 column, Terry Jeffrey makes sure we know that Cardinal Raymond Burke "is the Prefect of the Sacred Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the highest court of the Catholic Church." Jeffrey ,of course, was featuring Burke's right-wing positions on gay marriage and attacks on Pope Francis for attempting to moderate the Catholic Church's stance on the subject. Oddly, Jeffrey feels the need to inform us how utterly softball the questions he tossed at Burke were:

I asked: "Given that it was Jesus Christ Himself who taught us what marriage is, can any priest or bishop overrule or change what Jesus declared about marriage?"

"No, absolutely not," said Cardinal Burke. "The priests and bishops are called to be faithful to the truth. Our office is to teach this truth and to assist the faithful to live it, but we can never — even under some supposed pastoral approach — either alter or deny the truth about marriage."

I asked: "Can the pope himself change the nature of marriage given what Christ said?"

"No, it's not within his power," said Cardinal Burke, "and this is very clear in the teaching of the church, that if a marriage has been validly celebrated and consummated it cannot be separated. It cannot be ended by anything except death itself."

Jeffrey followed up that day with an article containing a transcript of the interview with Burke in which he informs us again that Burke is "Prefect for the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the Supreme Court of the Catholic Church."

Just one little problem: Burke doesn't hold that position anymore. Earlier in October, Pope Francis removed Burke from his position as prefect and reassigned him to be patron of the sovereign military order of Malta.

Strangely, even though this event occurred a week before Jeffrey's interview with Burke, at no point did Jeffrey ask him about it. He was too busy serving Burke softballs that let the cardinal attack the idea of gay marriage.

Even more strangely, CNS didn't seem to think the demotion of Jeffrey's favorite cardinal was very newsworthy. The only mention of it we could find in the CNS archive was in an Oct. 22 article by Michael Chapman featuring a Catholic bishop's remarks on gays, and even then it was buried in the 11th paragraph.

You'd think a staunch Catholic like Jeffrey would want to keep his readers on top of important news like that. Apparently not.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:30 PM EST
WND Columnist: Feminists Are Just Like The KKK
Topic: WorldNetDaily

For decades we have wrestled with feminism. Too many men and women still say they are feminists on the assumption feminism seeks equality – a prevarication drilled into our heads by feminists for 50 years.

When you watch the feet and ignore the lips, the primary political and social goals of feminism are obvious. The core feminist agenda all along has been the destruction of marriage, the persecution of men, the killing of unborn children, gratuitous self-victimization and entitling a massive welfare state.

This column is not sensationalist click-bait. It is a brief tour through a real part of American history. What you read here is historical fact. The root ideologies and slogans of feminism as we know it today were drafted by members of the Women’s Ku Klux Klan (WKKK) beginning in the 1880s. This is documented by Kathleen L. Blee in her book “Women of the Klan.”


The WKKK established many memes and institutions still central to contemporary feminism. Motherhood was drudgery. The YWCA was established to offload child care. Abortion of black babies was urged in cohort with Margaret Sanger.

Women exercised sexual power fluently. The movie “Rosewood” documents a white woman claiming rape by a black man to cover up for an affair she was having, resulting in a massacre of blacks in the town of Rosewood, Florida. The KKK was also America’s first child-support collection agency and a prototype for our one-eyed Title IV-D system.


The KKK collapsed about the same time radical feminism rose to prominence because feminists re-pointed their agenda at all men, not just black men. They demanded equality, destruction of “the Patriarchy,” evisceration of religion and special protections for “liberated” women.

The only difference between racism and contemporary sexism is the target of social and economic repression. Racism focused on black males, but feminism targets all males.

Racism did not truly end with the rise of feminism. Black males bear the brunt of feminist policy. When boys do not grow up expecting to be fathers and husbands, how can black Americans succeed? Black males, as a group, are the most likely to end up in prison or dead at an early age. The ejection of black men from the own communities is the primary reason they are so easy to recruit into radical masculist Muslim activism.

-- David R. Usher, Oct. 31 WorldNetDaily column

Posted by Terry K. at 11:22 AM EST
Monday, November 3, 2014
Newsmax's Gizzi Smears Kansas Senate Candidate
Topic: Newsmax

John Gizzi writes in a Nov. 3 Newsmax column:

With less than 24 hours to go before Kansans decides what is inarguably one of the most intriguing U.S. Senate races of 2014, signs are growing strong that independent hopeful Greg Orman is fast running out of steam in his effort to unseat Republican Sen. Pat Roberts.

Whether it's his last-minute remark suggesting Kansas's much-loved Bob Dole was a "clown" or Republicans rallying over fear that the insurgent candidate will vote with Democrats to organize the Senate if elected, millionaire businessman Orman could well go the way of the last major independent candidate in the Sunflower State: Dr. John Brinkley, famed for transplanting the sex glands of goats into males, who came in a strong third in a nationally watched three-way race for governor in 1932.

Aside from Gizzi's desperate smear of Orman by likening him to a charlatan doctor, he misinterpreted what Orman said. From the Washington Post:

Independent Kansas Senate candidate Greg Orman sent a 256-word e-mail to former Senate majority leader Bob Dole last Friday, denying that he referred to the Republican luminary as a “clown” last week.

“I want to assure you that this is not true and is not my opinion of you in any way, shape or form,” Orman wrote. “My reference to a ‘clown car’ was commenting on the near-endless number of political supporters of Senator [Pat] Roberts who have piled out of Washington to support him, none of whom I think are clowns. I certainly wasn't calling you - or any of the others supporting Senator Roberts - a ‘clown.’”

Speaking earlier last Friday, Orman derided the stream of GOP surrogates who have come to Kansas to boost Sen. Pat Roberts (R), a three-term incumbent. Political visitors have included Mitt Romney, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.). “It sort of seems like a Washington establishment clown car to me. Every day a new person comes out of that car,” Orman said.

Despite misleading his readers about the nature of Orman's remarks, Gizzi insists that "Most observers agree that Orman was badly hurt last week by his quip," though he doesn't name any of those "observers."

It's not until the final paragraph of his column that Gizzi concedes one major difference between the two-way race between Roberts and Orman and the 1932 governor's race that involved Brinkley:

Orman is not in a three-way contest as Brinkley was 82 years ago, and in many ways he is the de facto Democratic nominee. But Orman's fate may well be the same as the "goat gland doctor" in the closing days of the 2014 race.

Gizzi references goat glands or goat testicles four times in his column, driving home his desperate smear.

Posted by Terry K. at 7:44 PM EST
WND Giving Away Ebola E-Book From Head of Discredited Medical Group
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We wondered why WorldNetDaily wasn't publishing or promoting Jerome Corsi's new Ebola e-book, even though he's a WND employee. Turns out WND is doing its own Ebola e-book by a similarly discredited source.

An Oct. 31 WND article touts:

Throughout the current Ebola crisis, Americans have endured a constant stream of smug, evasive and misleading assurances from both Barack Obama and the CDC that they were totally on top of the Ebola threat – when the truth has been quite the opposite.

Understandably, Americans are anxious, concerned and often don’t know what to believe. Into this breach steps Jane Orient, M.D., executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons and also head of Doctors for Disaster Preparedness, with a brand new e-book, published by WND Books, titled “The Truth About Ebola: Protect Yourself and Your Family.” It authoritatively answers every practical question – and then some – you may have regarding Ebola, all without even a smidgeon of the political correctness infecting the government’s statements, reassurances and policies.

Orient, of course, is the head of the fringe right-wing Association of American Physicians and Surgeons , which opposes mandatory vaccination and promotes all kinds of conspiracy theories.

As we've documented, Orient has pushed the discredited idea that Ebola is airborne, citing a study that doesn't prove what she claims it does. Orient has also falsely fearmongered that Ebola is coming into the U.S. over the Southern border.

The fact that WND is giving away Orient's e-book (plus updates "every month for the next five months") demonstrates the real value of Orient's information. It's ultimately just an email-harvesting scheme to build up WND's mailing list.

But, hey, if you're a fringe right-winger like Orient who wants to engage in some counterfactual fearmongering for fun and profit, WND is the place for her.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:00 PM EST
Updated: Monday, November 3, 2014 2:01 PM EST
Sunday, November 2, 2014
CNS Can't Stop Obsessing Over Afghan Body Counts
Topic: has long been obsessed with pinning U.S. casualties in Afghanistan while not doing the same for U.S. casualties in Iraq under President Bush.

This bias happens again in an Oct. 29 CNS article by Ali Meyer informing us that "'s database on casualties shows that 418 Marines have given their lives in the conflict and that 92% of those casualties, 385 deaths, have occurred since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009."

Meyer doesn't mention how many Marine casualties in Iraq occurred under Bush -- indeed, the words "Iraq" and "Bush" appear nowhere in her article. 

CNS has never explained why its "database on casualties" omits Iraq, even though they are part of the same conflict.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:29 PM EST
NewsBusters Upset That Pundit Would Question Florida Gov.'s Morality, Forgets About Welfare Fraud
Topic: NewsBusters

In an Oct. 28 NewsBusters post, Mark Finkelstein is shocked -- shocked! -- that anyone would suggest that Florida Gov. Rick Scott is anything but morally upright:

If on national TV you pass along from a "friend" an extremely damning charge about someone's morality, do you have an obligation to identify that "friend" or provide some sort of substantiation for the charge?  Nicolle Wallace apparently doesn't think so.

On today's Morning Joe, speaking of Rick Scott and Charlie Crist, Wallace blithely passed along the charge from an unnamed "friend" from Tallahassee that "these are two guys who are the least tethered to any sort of moral compass that have ever run against each other."

Wallace provided nothing in support of the harsh assessment.  But she made it in the context of a discussion of a new ad by Scott attacking Crist for taking big campaign contributions from strip club owners.  At the center of the ad was a clip from a TV interview in which Crist said he would not return the contributions.

Actually, evidence of Scott's apparent moral turpitude is easy to find, if Finkelstein had bothered to look. Scott was the head of a for-profit hospital corporation when it was fined $1.7 billion for welfare fraud.

It's been called "the largest ripoff of taxpayers in the history of Medicare and Medicaid." Not by any liberal -- by right-wing outlet Newsmax, before it flushed any suggestion of corruption by Scott down the memory hole.

The welfare fraud committed under Scott's watch is common enough knowledge that it's not necessary for Wallace to outline it. Finkelstein, it seems, would rather feign ignorance.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:45 PM EDT
Saturday, November 1, 2014
CNS' Starr Misinforms, Thinks Non-Discrimination Law Is Only About Restrooms

As befits a highly biased reporter who would lose her job if the Media Research Center applied the Bernard Goldberg standard =of publicly firing biased reporters it wants the "liberal media" to follow,'s Penny Starr sees only one side of non-discrimination ordinances: the side that opposes them.

That means she's going to describe such laws to make them look bad and creepy. Indeed, in an Oct. 23 CNS article in which she features the homophobic rantings of former WorldNetDaily columnist and Houston pastor Dave Welch, she describes the non-discrimination law only as "allow[ing] transgender individuals to use any public restroom."

As we noted when WorldNetDaily's Bob Unruh did the same thing, that's a framing promulgated by opponents of such non-discrimination ordinances. In reality, the ordinance merely prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity and says nothing about restrooms.

In repeating such a deliberately misleading interpretation of the non-discrimination ordinance, Starr ignores the overwhelming evidence that there have been no sexual assaults or any other crimes in connection with this accommodation to gender identity.

But Starr is committed to this particular piece of disinformation. In an Oct. 28 CNS article featuring pastor Bill Owens -- a homophobe like Welch -- Starr again describes the Houston non-discrimination law as "a city ordinance that allows transgender people to use any public restroom."

As long as Starr feels secure in her job, she will continue to misinform her readers.

UPDATE: Starr's Oct. 29 CNS article also claimed the non-discrimination ordinance was about "allow[ing] transgender people to use any public bathroom regardless of gender."

Posted by Terry K. at 8:35 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, November 2, 2014 4:34 PM EDT
Friday, October 31, 2014
Why Should Anyone Care What Tony LoBianco Thinks About Opera?

An Oct. 29 article by Lauretta Brown is devoted to recounting an interview CNS editor in chief Terry Jeffrey conducted with actor Tony Lo Bianco about the controversial opera "The Death of Klinghoffer."

Lo Bianco has no demonstrated expertise about opera or Middle Eastern issues, so it's unclear why Jeffrey chose to interview him at length about this. Jeffrey never explains why Lo Bianco's opinion is so important.

Lo Bianco also gave no indication that he has ever viewed the opera in question, so he probably doesn't know what he's talking about.

Jeffrey, on the other hand, did admit he has never seen the opera, which didn't keep him from misrepresenting its contents, asserting that the opera is "glorifying" the Palestinian terrorists' killing of Klinghoffer, or from complaining that he can't comprehend how a work of art can allow a bad guy to justify his motives.

In fact, motivation is a driving force of literature and theatrical works, including opera, and villains can have motives just as protagonists do. And experts who, unlike Jeffrey and LoBianco, have actually seen the opera agree that it does not romanticize terror. To claim that giving voice to a villain's motives equals a creator's approval of those motives is just another form of the Depiction-Equals-Approval Fallacy.

The MRC has devoted a lot of time recently to bashing this opera that they have never -- and will never -- see for themselves.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:43 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, October 31, 2014 10:00 PM EDT

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