MRC's Defense of Fiorina Enters the 'Fake But Accurate' Phase Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center did not approve when the memos promoted by CBS as discussing George W. Bush's military service were described as "fake but accurate" and invoked the term repeatedly ever since.
Oddly, the MRC has been reduced to making a "fake but accurate" defense of Carly Fiorina's description of secretly recorded, dishonestly edited right-wing videos of Planned Parenthood.
Even though it's abundantly clear that the Center for Medical Reform doctored its Planned Parenthood footage by inserting video from elsewhere to spice it up, the MRC justwon't admit it.
This is taken to new lengths in a Sept. 30 NewsBusters post by Erin Aitcheson, who responds to claims that Fiorina is lying about the Planned Parenthood videos by huffing: "Except she’s not lying. The video she described exists. If differs from the CMP-shot hidden camera footage, but it exists and Fiorina saw it. She has stood unwavering behind her statements."
Actually, if Fiorina is describing the video that "differs" as being shot by CMP inside a Planned Parenthood clinic -- and it appears she is -- she's lying. And CMP is being dishonest by presenting that footage as such. The fact Fiorina may have seen something she is currently lying about and "has stood unwavering behind her statements" doesn't make it any less of a lie, as Aitcheson seems to be suggesting. Indeed, the amount of "unwavering" Fiorina has expended in defending her lie is utterly irrelevant to its veracity.
Aitcheson is simply privileging Fiorina's lie. She (and the MRC) wouldn't do such a thing if it was a Democratic presidential candidate making a similar statement about an undercover liberal sting operation that included outside footage.
Except she’s not lying. The video she described exists. If differs from the CMP-shot hidden camera footage, but it exists and Fiorina saw it. She has stood unwavering behind her statements. - See more at: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/culture/erin-aitcheson/2015/09/30/washington-post-calls-fiorina-anti-abortion-champion-wont#sthash.ftPhZ6Uw.dpuf
Except she’s not lying. The video she described exists. If differs from the CMP-shot hidden camera footage, but it exists and Fiorina saw it. She has stood unwavering behind her statements. - See more at: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/culture/erin-aitcheson/2015/09/30/washington-post-calls-fiorina-anti-abortion-champion-wont#sthash.ftPhZ6Uw.dpuf
WND Columnist Defends Right-Wing Artist Who Fantasizes About Obama's Assassination Topic: WorldNetDaily
Marisa Martin -- the pseudonymous WorldNetDaily columnist who hides behind a fake name so she doesn't have to take responsibility for her fringe views -- shows why she's a fake-name believer in her Sept. 25 column, in which she praises right-wing "street artist" SABO, who for some reason has linked up with Ted Cruz to the point where he has his own page in the Cruz campaign store:
SABO comes up swinging in response to juvenile media attacks on conservatives. Thus “Ted Cruz, Vampire Slayer” was born. SABO details his inspiration. “In response to the True Blood (HPO) episode that decided to call Republican women ‘Republicunts’ during what they portrayed to be a Ted Cruz rally, I decided to create this STREET poster,” he notes.
SABO was recently smeared by two “writers” from the Texas Tribune. Aman Batheja and Patrick Svitek found the artist guilty of controversial [conservative] statements, which are not tolerated in fluff media.
It isn’t hard to find something offensive by SABO, as he disdains diplomacy. Yet the Texas Tribune accused him of “rooting for the assassination of President Barack Obama, cheering on the beheading of journalists by ISIS and using racial epithets.” When taken into context and considering sarcasm (which apparently are no longer taught in journalism classes), SABO said nothing of the sort.
That didn’t stop FBI agents from knocking on his door about this musing: “Imagine if every Secret Service agent just up and left their jobs tomorrow, that would be brave. Taking a bullet for a turd is just stupid.”
Crude, vulgar and tasteless, but not a threat by any means. Being appalled by the idea of “taking a bullet” for the president is part of their job description. If it were a “threat,” every anti-war protester and pacifist opposed to “taking bullets” for the nation would be under investigation as well.
Interestingly, Martin fails to present the supposedly sarcastic context in which she demands they be properly viewed. As the Hollywood Reporter noted, Sabo had prepared for his encounter with the Secret Service by plastering his apartment walls with posters bearing the name "Oswald." He (like Martin, he hides behind a fake name) tweeted regarding Obama's visit at a fundraiser (apparently he's capable of only tweeting in all-caps): "IT REALLY WOULD BE A CRYING SHAME IF SOMEONE CALLED TO REPORT A MAN WITH A RIFLE IN THE AREA ON THIS NIGHT."He has also tweeted: "DEAR GOD! I PRAY YOU MAKE ZOMBIES REAL AND THE FIRST ONE I HOPE REANIMATES IS OSWALD. :) - THANK YOU GOD."
Yes, Marisa, please explain the context that would make Sabo's tweets something other than the creepy threats they are. And we doubt Martin would give the same artistic license to a left-wing artist who tweeted the same things about a Republican president.
Instead, Martin hides comfortably behind her fake name, spouting questionable views and defending assassination obsessives.
Hilariously, Sabo is quoted as saying in that Texas Tribune article (after the Cruz campaign declined to comment about Sabo's assassination threats) that he stands by every threat and that "I'd appreciate it if you didn't try hanging my statements around his neck." Don't expect, again, to see someone like Martin or Sabo granting the same privilege to a similarly provocative left-wing artist similarly tied to a Democratic presidential candidate.
Indeed, after lavishing praise on Sabo, Martin spends much of the rest of her column dismissing left-wing street art, huffing, "It’s a politicized media assault on the sanity of Americans who can’t escape (short of living in sod huts until the indignation has passed)."
P.S. Fantasizing Obama's assassination is not even a new thing at WND; Molotov Mitchell was extremely enthused that in a recent movie, Obama's head ""pop[s] like a pinata to the triumphant sounds of 'Ode to Joy,'" expressing his own sick joy that he got to watch " a real-life dictator's head blow up."
Rosa Parks Derangement Syndrome Topic: WorldNetDaily
I for one have been well aware of Rosa Parks’ dubious association with Planned Parenthood, which is exactly why I have made it a point not to sing her praises over the years like so many others have.
If liberals cared one iota about the quality of life of blacks who thoughtlessly praise Rosa Parks, they would point to the fact that Rosa Parks as an active NAACP board member fought for fairness at a time when fairness was defined by the “for whites only signs” of white Democrats. They would tell the truth that Parks and many other blacks had been deceived into willfully advocating for and participating in the extermination of black people.
But for that to happen liberals would have to be honest and truthful – something that as a collective is alien to them on every quantifiable level.
The liberal organizations that applauded the trap Cruz and Rubio fell into are by their actions the modern-day equivalents of Adolf Hitler. The difference is that Hitler’s active extermination of Jews led to his demise and Germany’s defeat.
MRC's Gainor Attacks Amazon CEO, Can't Grasp Basic Financial Concepts Topic: Media Research Center
Media Research Center VP of business Dan Gainor -- a right-wing apparatchik who once attacked the Muppets for not being sufficiently conservative -- is back, and this time his target is Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post.
In a Sept. 30 NewsBusters post, Gainor rants about the Post publishing articles about income inequality, then attacks Bezos:
According to the Sept. 29, Daily Mail: “But it was Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos who has emerged as the biggest overall gainer, adding a whopping $16.5 billion to his war chest in a single year after his company posted a quarterly profit in July.”
Whopping indeed. Bezos made 899,521 times the median household income in the United States -- $52,250. Were Bezos a nation, the $16.5 billion would give him a GDP rank of 150, just below Kosovo and above 81 nations including Guinea and Iceland.
It seems that Gainor doesn't understand a very basic financial principle, the difference between income and net worth.
As Forbes points out, that $16.5 billion was created by a increase in the value of his stock in Amazon; he owns 18 percent of the company. Even a first-year business student can tell you that unless Bezos cashes in that stock -- which he hasn't -- the rise in its value is not considered income. That makes Gainor's rant that Bezos "made 899,521 times the median household income in the United States" look foolish.
Gainor doesn't mention what Bezos actually makes as Amazon CEO -- probably because it would make him look even more foolish.
Bloomberg reported that in 2013 Bezos' Amazon salary was ... $81,840. No, really. And he asked the company not to pay him any more than that. He does, however, receive $1.6 million in compensation to cover security arrangements.
We're pretty sure that even Gainor makes more in salary than Bezos does -- indeed, Gainor made more than $122,000 in 2010, a figure we can only assume has increased since then. Given that he can't grasp basic financial concepts despite being the head of the MRC's operation targeting business news, he seems overcompensated.
Mission Accomplished: MRC's Bozell Relishes That Media Lacks Credibility Topic: Media Research Center
In his recent interview with Rush Limbaugh, Media Research Center chief Brent Bozell admitted that the mission of the MRC is to destroy the media's credibility: "It’s not how liberal the media are. The question is: How much are they believed, how much are they trusted? You’re never going to stop the press from being left-wing. You can’t do a thing to stop that. But what you can do is expose their lack of credibility. You have to do it every single day. That’s what motivates me, because it works."
Well, mission accomplished: a new Gallup poll states that the public's trust in the mass media has reached an historic low.
Needless to say, the MRC couldn't be more thrilled -- after all, this is the result Bozell and Co. has spent millions of dollars a year over the past nearly 30 years trying to accomplish.
"ALL TIME LOW," screamed the headline on a Sept. 29 CNSNews.com article by Terry Jeffrey reporting the results. (That's how important this poll result is to the MRC: the editor-in-chief at CNS wrote the article.) Jeffrey was particularly tickled by the finding that "an all-time low of 7 percent of Americans say that they have a great deal of trust and confidence in the media."
Bozell takes similar joy in the Gallup poll in his (and Tim Graham's) Sept. 30 column, crowing, "One quarter of the population has no trust in the press. Nada. Nothing. Zero. Zip." Of course, Bozell didn't mention that this is the result he and his fellow right-wing activists have bought.
Bozell and Graham then engage in a personal attack against a Washington Post reporter who defended the media, insulting him as "one of those self-impressed Watergate babies" and a "snooty elite." They rant that the "spiel" the reporter is selling that the media is not organized enough to ram a liberal agenda "is not selling," again staying silent about how much they've spent to sell their own spiel.
But Bozell's project to destroy the media has a fatal flaw: He has not put up anything to replace it. If he really cared about media bias as an issue, he would have created a news organization that truly plays it straight, with none of the bias -- liberal or conservative -- he claims spoils the news.
Instead, Bozell's CNSNews.com isevenmorebiased than he has ever accused the "liberal media" of being -- and has even less credibility as a "news" organization, given that people can't tell the difference between CNS reporters and right-wing protesters.
Bozell could have fixed this alleged problem. Instead, he made it worse. And because he cares more about ideology than the media, he can't see past his glee that the media's credibility is being destroyed to figure out that his own media's credibility has been destroyed as well.
In other words, he's burning down his own house. Maybe he should dial back that appetite for destruction a little bit.
CNS Gotcha-Question Hurler Insists He's A 'Credentialed Member of the Press' Topic: CNSNews.com
Meet Sam Dorman. He works for CNSNews.com. It's unclear exactly what he does -- he's not on the CNS staff list, and his archive page lacks a bio. We are guessing he's a reporter of some kind, but we're not sure.
Anyway, Dorman has been runningaroundD.C. to various members of Congress this week to hurl a single gotcha question at them: “Is an unborn baby with a human heart and a human liver a human being?”
Of course, if all you're doing is running around asking important people a single gotcha question with the sole purpose of advancing a political cause, you're not really a reporter -- you're an activist. Given that Dorman has mostly been going targeting Democratic congressmembers with his gotcha question, one could also say he's making a political statement by doing so. Acting as a protester, if you will.
When the Washington Post did an article on Dorman hurling his gotcha question at House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, the reporter, Kelsey Snell, referred to Dorman as an "anti-abortion protester."Snell didn't identify Dorman by name, noting that "It was unclear who the questioner was and for which news organization they worked."
For some reason, Dorman got all huffy about this. He tweeted at Snell: "I am not an anti abortion 'protestor'. I am a credentialed member of the press. Please correct your story."
But one does not have to have "credentials" to act as a journalist in America; he may be referring to what it takes to get into Pelosi's press conference, but the fact he has them means the standards are low enough that his insistence that he has them is a laughable attempt to pull rank.
And, again, if you're just asking a single gotcha question to your ideological enemies, you are, in fact, a protester, not a reporter.
Another curious thing about Dorman" His Twitter account fails to identify his real name (it lists only @blah2k as the handle and "freedorman" as the name) or his employer; there' no description of the use at all. Thus, Dorman's tweet to Snell was a complete failure because she has no idea who's tweeting her.
Further, it appears from Snell's description of the Pelosi encounter and from the accompanying video that Dorman never announced who he was or who he was with before hurling his gotcha question at Pelosi. For a self-proclaimed "credential member of the press," Dorman sure doesn't want many people to know about it -- or maybe he just wants it known when he gets caught acting more like an ideological protester than a journalist.
Wait, wasn't it just yesterday that Dorman's boss, Media Research Center chief Brent Bozell, was ranting about media transparency? Yes, he was.
Bozell might have a little credibility on the issue if his own so-called reporters weren't so determined to hide their identities in public.
UPDATE: It took two MRC staffers -- Kristine Marsh and Katie Yoder -- to write about this for NewsBusters. They insist that Dorman is a "journalist" and a "reporter" despite him offering no proof of it, and they ignore the fact that Dorman apparently never identified himself before hurling his gotcha question at Pelosi. They also tout his tweet to Snell despite the fact there's nothing at Dorman's Twitter account that would identify him as Dorman or as a CNS employee.
The hypocrisy meter is going off the charts at CNN, ABC, NBC and CBS. In their reporting about the Planned Parenthood videos, they refer to them as 'edited' or 'heavily edited.' Well guess what? Each and every day these same TV news outlets edit and heavily edit their own news segments -- including their stories about the Planned Parenthood videos. Hours upon hours of footage is collected for every two to three minute segment they air, and the overwhelming amount of that footage hits the cutting room floor, never to see the light of day.
What are these networks not showing the American people? What are they cutting? Don't the American people have a right to see it? The difference between these networks and the Center for Medical Progress is that CMP is far more honest and transparent in disclosing the full footage and posting it online. These "news" networks have a responsibility to do the same.
Today, I am calling on CNN, ABC, NBC and CBS to make public all the footage they collect for all of the news segments they produce, just as the Center for Medical Progress has done. Until they do, they have no right to question CMP's professionalism.
So Bozell -- who spent 15-plus years hiding from his readers the fact that he didn't write his own syndicated column, and still hasn't publicly apologized for his laziness and deceit a year and a half after the charade was exposed, let alone given the guy who actually wrote them, Tim Graham, retroactive credit for his work -- is demanding that others in the media be transparent? It is to laugh.
* We stole "His Eternal Huffiness" from Arkansas columnist John Brummett, who used the term to describe Mike Huckabee during his tenure as governor, which tells you how much Huckabee has moderated (somewhat) his persona for his TV gigs and presidential run.
A few weeks back, we wrote an item for the Huffington Post summarizing the dishonest attacks on Margaret Sanger pushed by right-wing professor Paul Kengor at places like WorldNetDaily. Kengor responded in a column at the American Spectator, which was reprinted at CNSNews.com.
We've taken to HuffPo to show why Kengor is still dishonest, at least up to the point where he finally admits Sanger wasn't a rabid racist who wanted to kill blacks.
Posted by Terry K.
at 10:04 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 10:08 PM EDT
MRC Still Won't Admit Fiorina's Misleading About Planned Parenthood Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center, in contradiction of its self-proclaimed mission to get the media to "Tell the Truth!", has been enabling Carly Fiorina's misleading claims about the contents of a series of secretly filmed, dishonestly edited anti-Planned Parenthood videos.
Curtis Houck is the latest Fiorina apologist. In a Sept. 27 NewsBusters post, he complains about Fiorina being called for her dishonesty by NBC's Kristen Welker, who pointed out that fact-checkers (which Houck will only refer to in scare quotes) have discredited her claim to have seen a certain bit of footage in the videos. Houck huffed in response: "While Welker and 'fact checkers' may say that they multiple videos released by the Center for Medical Progress, it’s fair to say that astute conservatives such as The Federalist’s Mollie Hemmingway [sic] would beg to differ with their assessments."
As we've pointed out, Hemingway does not actually back up Fiorina's specific claim. In her Federalist post to which Houck is referring, she can't identify merely says that Fiorina "is likely referring to the entirety of the 10 videos."
Houck gets further incensed in a Sept. 29 post, upset that Fiorina's campaign manager is being taken to task by CNN's John Berman for her candidate's dishonesty. Berman notes that even Fox News has noted the dishonesty, and that the doctored clip in question "shows someone describing the scene. You hear someone describing the scene and then see file video which doesn't show what Carly Fiorina says it shows." The campaign manager, meahwhile, is in full kill-the-messenger mode, asserting that "the non-partisan fact checkers aren't as non-partisan as you pretending that they are."
All Houck offers in response is this: "For further reading on this matter about whether these unnamed “non-partisan fact checkers” are right, check out this fine piece compiled by the staff of The Federalist."
But that Federalist post conceded that the video was, in fact, doctored by the insertion of an outside video and is "obviously not the same baby as the one [the Planned Parenthood staffer in question] harvested the brain of."
The Federalist, however, then invokes the fake-but-accurate defense the MRC loathed when Dan Rather invoked it, claiming the doctored footage "helps viewers to understand what a 19-week old baby looks like when hearing the testimony of an ex-employee who harvested brains from babies of the same age. Illustrating stories with appropriate images is a common journalistic technique, one used by all media outlets."
Given that neither Hemingway nor The Federalist dispute or contradict the fact that the "Center for Medical Reform" used doctored footage in their videos -- and are apparently the best the anti-abortion forces have in defending Fiorina -- perhaps Houck shouldn't have cited them at all.
How do you think the MRC will react to Coulter bashing Catholics? That's right: stone silence.
During Pope Francis' visit to America last week, Coulter tweeted that the Catholic Church was "largely built by pedophiles," and claimed that the pope's criticism of economic inequality is "why our founders (not "immigrants"!) distrusted Catholics & wouldn't make them citizens."
You'd think that NewsBusters blogger Dave Pierre, who reflextively defends the church against any mention of its sex scandals, would have something to say. But he, along with the rest of the MRC, are keeping their mouths zipped.
By contrast, Bill Donohue of the Catholic League -- on whose board of advisers MRC chief Brent Bozell sits -- approached the issue in his usual way:
What do Ann Coulter and the Westboro Baptist Church have in common? Both are obscene anti-Catholics. Indeed, they are the worst of Pope Francis' vile critics to emerge during his visit to the United States.
Coulter tweeted last week that the Catholic Church was "largely built by pedophiles." This is the kind of comment we might expect from the likes of Bill Maher.
No wonder these two bigots are best of friends. Coulter also tweeted, "I'm an American and this is why our founders (not ‘immigrants') distrusted Catholics and wouldn't make them citizens."
If she doesn't already belong to the Klan, they would love to have her.
Donohue is a NewsBusters blogger, but you won't find the above commentary there (we found it at Newsmax). That language is apparently too strong for the MRC.
Heck, any criticism at all of Coulter is too strong for the MRC. Call them the Coulter Cowards.
WND's Farah Sends Memo To Trump To Dump Coulter, Didn't CC Himself Topic: WorldNetDaily
Joseph Farah is on another Ann Coulter-bashing tear, devoting his Sept. 28 WorldNetDaily column to criticizing Coulter for her latest provocation, a "vicious slur against Catholics – one that was not only bigoted, but wholly inaccurate historically," writing regarding Pope Francis' views on climate change that "“I’m an American and this is why our founders (not “immigrants”!) distrusted Catholics & wouldn’t make them citizens.”
Farah retorted: "It’s not only anti-Catholic, it’s anti-founders. It’s absolute nonsense that America’s founders wouldn’t allow Catholics to be citizens. In fact, an entire American colony, later an original state, Maryland, was founded, as a Catholic refuge."
But Farah is not telling the whole story. Maryland may have been founded as a "Catholic refuge," but it ceased being that relatively quickly. The first colonial-era settlement in Maryland, St. Mary's City, was established in 1633, but by the 1690s the English Crown had taken over the colony and laws were passed banning Catholics from voting and worshiping in public.
Maryland had possessed the most anti-Catholic laws in the colonies prior to the War for Independence. Catholics could not worship publicly, and children could even, by law, be removed permanently from their parents and sent to live with Protestant families in England should the Catholic parents attempt to educate their children in a “Catholic fashion.”
Maryland had not been the only place harboring anti-Catholic feelings in the colonies. Indeed, every colony had some form of anti-Catholic law, except for Pennsylvania. The farther north one journeyed, the stronger the anti-Catholicism became. As early as the 1640s, for example, the New England colonies had passed a law that a man could enter a congregation only if armed with his weapon and firearm, in case of a Catholic or Indian attack. Along the same lines, men exited Sunday service in scouting formation, securing the area for the defense of the women and children. When New England militia went into battle during the War for Independence, their war cry was “No king, no popery!” As General John Sullivan of the Continental Army had claimed, the Quebec Act, which gave rights to Canadian Catholics, was the “most dangerous to American Liberties among the whole train.” Should the Catholics gain power, he continued, “no God may as well exist in the universe.”
While the Founding Fathers may have been more tolerant of Catholics than their colonial forebears, the fact remains that the Declaration of Independence contains the signature of only one Catholic, Charles Carroll. So Coulter is not historically inaccurate as she is dickish.
But Farah's column is headlined "Memo to Trump: Dump Coulter." And Farah unloads once again, asserting that "Coulter will do anything and say anything for attention," she "badly needs an editor – and a keeper," and "is making the case for herself as a WASP bigot" who has demonstrated "raw bigotry and stupidity." He asks, "Has she run out of material? Does she know how to make a point without defamation and cruelty?" (Never mind that Coulter's sense of defamation and cruelty was a selling point at WND.) He then states:
If I were my buddy David Limbaugh, the person she tweeted directly to as well as the general public, I’d be angry. Limbaugh has been close to Coulter for a long time. I would tell Coulter if she plans on tweeting any more bigoted comments, leave me out of it, thank you. I don’t want that stink on me.
And, if I were Donald Trump, running for the presidency and using Coulter as an opening act at some of his campaign appearances, I would say goodbye to the increasingly thoughtless, conscienceless, shrill, mean, self-righteous, angry and bombastic Coulter.
But Farah himself is not taking any of his own advice. Nowhere in his column does he explain why the "increasingly thoughtless, conscienceless, shrill, mean, self-righteous, angry and bombastic Coulter" who Donald Trump and David Limbaugh should disavow is still worthy of a place as a WND columnist.
We've detailed how Farah keeps making the case that Coulter doesn't deserve a public forum, yet he remains stubbornly insistent on providing one to her, if only because she drives traffic to the WND website.
Farah is perfectly comfortable telling other people what to do, but he won't take his own advice, lest his website lose readers. That's how cynical and desperate he is.
MRC Takes 3,500 Words To Say PFAW Is Liberal (Then Distorts Facts About It) Topic: Media Research Center
Alatheia Larsen, a researcher for the Media Research Center's MRC Business division, spent a good long time to work up her outrage at Norman Lear describing herself as a "bleeding heart conservative," and it exploded a full six weeks after Lear made the statement in the form of a 3,500-word Sept. 23 NewsBusters post dedicated to proving once and for all that Lear’s "pet organization," People For the American Way, and its Right Wing Watch division, is liberal -- as if that was ever in doubt.
For all the time Larsen had to work on this, however, you'd think she'd have done a better job of getting her facts straight.
For example, she ranted:
In April 2015, RWW falsely accused Walker of saying that “ultrasounds should be mandatory since they’re ‘a cool thing.’” Media outlets including Politico, Salon, Huffington Post, The Washington Post and Mother Jones picked up the story without first researching to see if RWW was telling the truth.
Walker had not said, what RWW claimed. While discussing ultrasound legislation, Walker had shared an anecdote about how “cool” it was to still have the ultrasound pictures of his now adult sons. RWW brutally twisted his words without acknowledging the distortion.
In fact, that is a fair interpretation of what Walker said, given that in the contenxt of the interview, he was using that anecdote to justify the forced-ultrasound bill he signed into law.
Larsen falsely suggested that Right Wing Watch didn't provide the full context of Walker's words by touting how "The Daily Caller supplied Walker’s actual quote." In fact, that full quote is in the Right Wing Watch item Larsen is attacking.
RWW also attacked HGTV’s Flip it Forward stars David and Jason Benham for being pro-life and defending traditional marriage, both things the group opposes. In April 2014, RWW called the Benham twins “anti-gay, anti-choice extremist[s].”
The media also bought that made-up scandal. The day after RWW first published its hit piece, HGTV canceled the Benham’s show. ABC and CNN then ran multiple reports repeating the accusations leveled at the Benhams.
Larsen makes sure not to repeat the statements attributed to the Benhams that Right Wing Watch uncovered -- like smearing homosexuality is "demonic" and ranting outside abortion clinics that they are the "altars of Moloch" -- all the better to pretend they're really not extremists. Larsen never explains how these views are not "extremist," but instead grumbles that the Benhams were "forced to defend themselves."
Larsen then sent after PFAW:
Lear often brags about his organization’s hand in keeping Bork, a Reagan Supreme Court nominee, from being appointed in 1987. PFAW spread numerous lies about Bork’s record. The charges included labeling him racist and accusing him of supporting poll taxes. The damage was done: Bork withdrew. PFAW’s attacks were so relentless and effective, that “Borking” became an official term for using baseless personal attacks to effectively keep someone out of a public office.
Larsen's source for this claim is an article by conservative columnist Mona Charen who, like Larsen, doesn't back up her claim.
There is a factual basis for much of what was said about Bork. He did, in fact, effectively support a poll tax through his opposition to the overturning of one in 1966; he expressed his opposition to the overturning of one poll tax because he claimed its use was not racially discriminatory and because he believed the Equal Protection Clause did not cover economic discrimination.
And as CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin points out: "It was said, in later years, that Bork was 'borked,' which came to mean treated unfairly in the confirmation process. This is not so. Bork was 'borked' simply by being confronted with his own views—which would have undone many of the great constitutional landmarks in recent American history.
Larsen is simply angry that PFAW is effective at highlighting right-wing extremism, which she reframes as "tearing down America’s conservatives." But her tirade is short on facts and long on highly subjective outrage.
CNS Asserts O'Malley Wants To 'Kill Babies' Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com loves to put biased and misleading headlines on articles, but it's reached a new low in a Sept. 28 article by Melanie Hunter, in which she summarized an interview with Democratic presidential candidate Martin O'Malley, in which he expressed his opposition to the death penalty and explains why he's pro-choice.
Here's how CNS headlined Hunter's article: "Martin O'Malley: Kill Babies Not Murderers." No, really.
At no point in Hunter's article does she quote O'Malley saying he wants to "kill babies." How did CNS find a frothing O'Malley screaming "KILL BABIES!" out of a sit-down Sunday morning interview?
We have no idea. It's just making up stuff -- not a good image for a place calling itself a "news" website.
WND's Farah Forgives Coulter's Anti-Semitic Tirade, Will Keep Running Her Column Until She Stops Bringing Traffic To WND Topic: WorldNetDaily
Looks we got somebody's attention. A few days after we raised the issue, Joseph Farah devoted his Sept. 24 WorldNetDaily column to whether Ann Coulter's "f---ing Jews" tirade will cause him to stop publishing her column.
His answer? It won't. His reason? Christian forgiveness, or something.
Farah states that since Coulter's remarks, he has "been inundated with requests and demands to exercise my authority as founder, chief executive officer and editor of WND.com to dump Coulter as a commentator" -- making sure not to mention us, of course.
He then explains: "If I believed she was truly an anti-Semite, that would be a different story. Then I would bounce her so fast it would make her blond hair flip. But I don’t think she is." He adds, "I would hope and trust the editors of WND’s commentary section would never allow her to make such an insensitive and inflammatory remark like that in our publication. I certainly would not condone it."
But WND has, in fact, published anti-Jewish commentary on its pages. In 2010, WND published a commentary by Pat Buchanan complaining there were too many Jews on the Supreme Court. And in 2012, WND columnist Burt Prelutsky argued that the so-called "war on Christmas" is a conspiracy pushed by "Jewish judges, Jewish journalists and the largely Jewish funded ACLU." So let's not pretend that the editors of WND’s commentary section have any particular sensitivity on the subject.
Farah then recounted the tit-for-tat between him and Coulter over Coulter's speaking to a group of gay conservatives and Farah dropping her as a speaker for his far-right political conference over it."People assumed I would dump Coulter’s column then," he write. "I did not. Why? I forgave her. That’s what Christians do." He suggests he's done the same for Coulter here, but he doesn't explicity say so.
Then, Farah turns the whole brouhaha into self-aggrandization, as he's prone to do:
There’s another reason I didn’t drop Coulter (and, no, it has nothing to do with traffic she brings WND).
This is the part very few people get: I actually believe in providing the broadest forum of stimulating commentary to be found in the English language. That’s what we do at WND, in addition to using our news section to uncover fraud, waste, abuse and corruption in government and other powerful institutions with WND’s team of enterprising, investigative and truly independent journalists.
Think about that.
Where else but WND do you find commentary from the far left to the far right and plenty in the middle?
It’s unheard of at any other news organization today.
It’s a value I learned a long time ago as a newspaperman. But it no longer exists today in the New Media or the Old Media. WND stands alone in presenting both sides! Think of it.
Name one other news organization that strives to do this. Believe me, you won’t find one.
This is all utter horsepuckey. As we've repeatedlyhighlighted, exactly two of WND's three dozen or so regular columnists are explicitly liberal -- Bill Press and Ellen Ratner, whose presence at WND is merely window-dressing for Farah to claim he has a full spectrum of columnists -- while nearly all of the rest are on the conservative/libertarian end of the spectrum. We can't think of a single WND columnist who is a centrist, despite Farah's claim that he has "plenty in the middle."
Farah's claim that "WND stands alone in presenting both sides" is a baldfaced lie as well. "Name one other news organization that strives to do this," he says? Sure! To start with, the Washington Post, whose opinion pages include conservatives like George Will, Charles Krauthammer, Kathleen Parker, Jennifer Rubin and Michel Gerson as well as liberals like E.J. Dionne, Greg Sargent and Colbert King.
There's also a little publication called the New York Times, which includes right-leaning columnists such as David Brooks and Ross Douthat.
In fact, most daily newspapers in the U.S. attempt to present a spectrum of opinions on its commentary pages. For Farah to claim WND is literally the only publication publishing a diverse spectrum of opinion is not only false and ahistorical, it allows him to deny the fact that both WND's commentary and supposed straight-news pages are heavily skewed to the right.
And while we can't prove Farah's claim that the "traffic she brings WND" played no consideration into WND's decision to keep Coulter is a lie, we're pretty sure it is. After all , it was just last year that Farah was bragging how "her column still runs in WND every week, the place more people read it than anywhere else."
Interestingly, nowhere in Farah's column does he explain why he is keeping Coulter as a columnist on the basis of the quality of the content she provides. There's not even an attempt to blather about her providing a unique point of view or a track record of being intellectually provocative and writing a series of best-selling books.
Instead, he repeatedly and personally slags her at every opportunity, at one point stating, "Coulter is brash. She is angry. She is reckless. She’s badly in need of some accountability in her life. I hope she finds it along with some peace." The nicest thing he says about her is the backhanded compliment that he doesn't believe she's anti-Semitic.
It's clear Farah doesn't respect Coulter as a person or for the quality of her opinions, which again points us to the inescapable conclusionthat the only reason WND is keeping Coulter is for the traffic she brings to the website. Which, thus, makes Farah's argument that he's forgiven her anti-Semitic tirade sound more than a little hollow.
Farah would probably be the first to argue that Christian forgiveness shouldn't turn one into a doormat, but a doormat is exactly what Farah looks like here. He's constantly forgiving Coulter's transgressions, even when she's personally attacking him. By taking her abuse, he looks weak.
It's almost as if Coulter is trying to see how offensive she can be before Farah will drop her column at WND. It's clear that this will continue until her WND traffic numbers drop -- and not before then.