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Thursday, June 2, 2016
Claiming A Financial 'Existential Threat' to WND, Farah Begs Readers For Money
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah sent a letter to WND's mailing list on June 1 admitting that WND is in financial trouble and "faces an existential threat." Farah claims he has kept the fact that WND "is in a sizable hole" hidden from the public until now because "I have been afraid to fail."

Naturally, this is all somehow President Obama's fault, not Farah's:

I won't go into all the details for a number of reasons. Some might sound like excuses. Others have to do with the very troubled Obama economy. But I will say this in all honesty: Barack Obama's early years were good for WND – even until three years ago. WND was an important opposition voice. People clung to it. They wanted to hear the truth. And they still do.

But, not enough people listened to that voice, because Obama was returned to office in 2012 and his policies have continued to ravage the very fabric of America's economy. Many businesses, including other media businesses, have also been hurt badly – some of them much bigger than WND. And just think of all the billion-dollar retail businesses that have collapsed in the last few years under Obama. We've dubbed it "The Retail Apocalypse," and that's no exaggeration. It's affecting everyone. 

Farah carefully avoids the core issue: While readers do want to hear the truth from the media, that's not they're getting from WND. This is a website, after all, that went all in on hating Obama -- it was paying off handsomely early in his presidency, as Farah admits -- then went even harder on Obama-hate for the 2012 election by publishing sleaze and lies about the president and refusing to admit its anti-Obama birther crusade was completely discredited.

Live by Obama-hate, die by Obama-hate. Farah is learning that lesson now.

Indeed, the fact that Farah and WND have been so desperate to destroy Obama on a personal level that they stopped caring about journalism or facts is one key reason nobody believes WND. Remember, Farah is weirdly proud of the fact that his website publishes misinformation, and even a press-release mill decided that WND was not "credible" enough to promote.

Perhaps even more shocking is how little WND has done to repair its credibility after its 2012 debacle. It rebranded itself as "the largest Christian website in the world" in an apparent attempt to build itself with that audience, despite the fact that the only segment of Christianity WND genuinely cares about was right-wing homeschooling types. It hired a couple reporters with recent experience in actual journalism (if working for the still-Moonie-associated Washington Times counts as such), but Cheryl Chumley and Douglas Ernst were as prone to slavishly push WND's right-wing editorial agenda as its regulars. (Ernst, meanwhile, quietly left WND in April, judging by the date of his last byline, and has returned to the Washington Times.)

Oh, and as we've proven, the "retail apocalypse" Farah and WND want so badly to blame on Obama has causes that vary for each troubled retailer, none of which WND has been able to trace to any specific Obama policy.

Farah admits two of WND's key revenue sources are way down:

Retail sales have been a major part of WND's revenue stream. We've seen them decline precipitously in recent years. (If you're beginning to get the picture, please consider visiting the WND Superstore, which, for the last two years, quite honestly, hasn't been so super.)

Advertising, another mainstay for big online companies like WND – one of America's top news sites, and in the top 350 of all websites nationwide – has also taken a huge hit in the Obama economy. Like some other media companies, we're down millions from a few years ago. But we've attempted to weather the storm without diminishing in any way the news services and products we offer the public – most of it for free. 

Of course, lack of advertising is due in no small part to WND's lack of credibility, whether Farah wants to admit it or not. And because WND has fewer readers, there are fewer eyeballs to lure to its online store. But the crashing of sales there, even as online retail has been growing immensely overall, strongly suggests that WND's mix of right-wing books and films, biblically based diet plans and prepper supplies (Russian gas masks, anyone?) is out of step with the retail environment. That's WND's fault, not Obama's.

Naturally, Farah's answer to all this is to send him money, in the form of buying from the out-of-touch online store, subscribing to its Whistleblower magazine or just giving WND money directly for apparently nothing in return.

Farah concludes: "We at WND would love to be here for you for many more years to come. But today, I am lifting my hands up, forsaking my pride, and just asking you for help." Yet, strangely, he's apparently not so bereft of pride that he will apologize to his readers and seek repentence for the years of false claims, dishonest reporting and vindictive attacks masquerading as journalism that played no small role in landing him and WND in their current dire situation.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:23 AM EDT
Updated: Thursday, June 2, 2016 5:48 PM EDT
Wednesday, June 1, 2016
MRC Is Mad TV Show Paints Country Music Fans (Not Without Cause) As Homophobic
Topic: Media Research Center

Erik Soderstrom turns in his Media Research Center hate-watching work by complaining in a May 27 post:

As promised during last week’s episode of ABC's Nashville, gay country star Will Lexington finally got his showdown with the show’s conservative caricature, leading straw-woman: Cynthia Davis. And as you probably guessed, Davis wasn’t portrayed kindly in the episode "Maybe You'll Appreciate Me Someday." Instead, the “conservative” talker is portrayed as a bloviating, incompetent homophobe who can’t string a coherent thought together to save her life.

Davis is also a coward, at first refusing to interview the man she lambasted for not making public appearances just one episode ago. She only relents when he stages a concert outside her studio. (Side note: it’s impressive that Will Lexington was able to muster so many fans when Nashville has repeatedly depicted country fans as homophobic bigots who would never listen to a gay artist’s music.)

Soderstrom, however, is only complaining that this is being depicted; he doesn't deny that there's truth behind it. Perhaps because he can't. Perhaps he can tell us the last time he heard Ty Herndon or Billy Gilman on country radio. And another gay country star, Chely Wright, says she's effectively been frozen out of Nashville (and, presumably, off country radio) after coming out.

Soderstrom also seems to be pretending there are no issues whatsoever with gay-related subjects coming up in country songs. In fact, Kasey Musgraves' "Follow Your Arrow" was largely blacklisted from country radio in part for a lyric advising the girls to "kiss the boys" and then to also "kiss the girls if that's what you're into," and ittle Big Town's "Girl Crush" was similarly blacklisted by country radio simply for appearing to be gay (the song is actually about being jealous of an ex-boyfriend’s new love).

So, yeah, the idea that homophobic is rampant in the country music industry and among fans appears to have a pretty solid base in reality. Not that Soderstrom will ever admit that, of course.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:33 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: WND's Trump Fanfiction Writer
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Theodore Roosevelt Malloch manages to liken Donald Trump to God, Jesus and Aristotle -- then claims his fanboyism is "moderate and reasoned." Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 8:58 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, June 1, 2016 2:33 PM EDT
Tuesday, May 31, 2016
AIM's Kincaid Joins Right-Wing Game of Abusing Vince Foster's Corpse Again
Topic: Accuracy in Media

WorldNetDaily isn't the only ConWeb component overjoyed at Donald Trump bringing up Vincent Foster conspiracy theories to attempt to smear Hillary. Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid is just as gleeful:

Donald J. Trump has brought up the case of the mysterious death of former Clinton aide Vincent Foster, calling it “fishy.” Trump is right. Foster is the man who knew too much. He had knowledge of various Clinton scandals, including Travelgate, the Waco tragedy, and possibly some illegal activities involving national security. His body was found in a Virginia park on July 20, 1993, and the media accepted the verdict of suicide.

But as AIM founder and late chairman Reed Irvine and I reported on the case, there were so many anomalies that the Special Division of the Court of Appeals ordered an appendix added to Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr’s report on the death of Vincent Foster. The appendix exposed serious flaws in the report that cast strong doubt on the suicide finding.

[...]

Yes, something was, and is, very fishy in the case of the death of Vincent Foster. Media attacks on Trump are a diversion from the media’s documented unwillingness to thoroughly investigate the case. Irvine said at the time, “The cover-up is so transparent to those familiar with the facts that it is maddening to see those responsible make America look like a nation of dolts. Not that we haven’t tried to make the truth known, but the brilliant men and women who decide what’s fit to print and to air in the traditional media need to have their closed minds pried open.”

Irvine’s comments are even more appropriate now.

Like WND, Kincaid also cites former Starr investigator Miguel Rodriguez (and makes sure not to mention that he's apparently transgender now) and gives a special shout-out to fellow conspiracy-monger Hugh Turley "for assisting with this article." Which tells you all you need to know about Kincaid's prejudices.

Meanwhile, Foster's sister wrote a Washington Post op-ed who denounced "irresponsinble" and "cruel" people like Trump (and Kincaid) who cravenly use her brother's death for "political advantage." Both Kincaid and AIM have ignored her thus far,depriving us of an opportunity to see them deny their cruelty and cravenness.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:04 PM EDT
WND's Kupelian Admits He's Evil, Won't Admit He's Angry
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Paul Bremmer writes in a May 26 WorldNetDailiy article:

Now that the 2016 presidential race appears to be a contest between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, some people have said Christians should stay home on Election Day to avoid voting for the lesser of two evils.

Award-winning journalist and WND Managing Editor David Kupelian is fed up with people telling him they refuse to vote for “the lesser of two evils.”

“We’re all evil, guys,” Kupelian said during a recent appearance on American Family Radio’s “Today’s Issues.” “Sin is evil. Every president who’s ever lived, including George Washington and Ronald Reagan, has had some evil, some sin in them. Knock it off with ‘the lesser of two evils.’ The lesser of two evils is the greater good.”

Finally! Kupelian tells the truth about himself!

Well, not quite, of course; Kupelian is simply rehashing his morally bankrupt rationalizations to vote for Trump in order to perpetuate his (and WND's) image of Hillary Clinton as, appareantly, Cthulhu in the flesh.

But Kupelian has always been someone who believes the ends justify the means. He's not above ginning up a controversy to promote his own book, spreading lies about people he disagrees with, or dishonestly portraying any argument that disagrees with his far-right worldview.

Indeed, much of the rest of that interview involves Kupelian repeating attacks on many of his favorite targets: liberals, antidepressants, colleges.

Which makes it funny that the next day, the very angry Kupelian -- in a column originally "featured by the Washington Times in its “Wilberforce Weekend” special supplement sponsored by the Colson Center for Christian Worldview" -- is telling us to rise above anger:

In considering the Wilberforce Weekend themes of “promoting good, resisting evil and restoring brokenness,” one big thing comes to mind that’s essential to accomplishing all three: giving up anger.

There’s no need to itemize everything wrong with being mad, resentful, hostile, judgmental, impatient, irritated, fuming and brooding. It’s no coincidence the word “mad” can mean both angry and insane – since becoming very angry can amount to a sort of temporary insanity, wherein we think, speak and act very differently than when we’re calm and centered.

Our anger hurts our children, breaks up families, poisons relationships, undermines businesses and wrecks our health. Truly, a great deal of evil enters this world through the portal of angry minds.

Kupelian doesn't admit that "mad, resentful, hostile, judgmental, impatient, irritated, fuming and brooding" is the essence of coverage of Clinton and President Obama at WND, the website he's the managing editor of. But you don't need to look any farther than partner-in-crime Joseph Farah's May 25 column expressing his immature glee that Obama will soon be leaving office:

I’m an eternal optimist, but, let’s face it, there’s not a lot of good news out there these days.

I encourage my editors to search for it. I would like to bring everyone at least one positive story every day so that we can all have a reason to smile.

But some days, it’s really tough.

Today is not one of those.

I’ve got some good news, if you haven’t already considered it.

Barack Obama will no longer be president of the United States in less than eight months.

[...]

This column meant to bring some cheer to your life today, yet, with Obama still around, even the silver linings come with dark clouds – sometimes mushroom clouds.

Anyway, for what it’s worth, the countdown to ecstasy has begun.

In 240 days, it will be “No more Obama, no more Michelle, no more transgendered bathrooms, except maybe in hell.”

Cheer up. The end is near.

So giddy is Farah, in fact, that he has apparently forgotten that a year ago he spent a lot of time speculating that Obama wouldn't leave the White House come 2017.

But never mind -- Farah must continue to act childish about this. His column two days later began: "I don’t know about you, but I can’t keep my mind off the post-Obama era. Every time I hear news about life after Jan. 20, 2017, I feel a tingle up my leg." He then perpetuates the old Obama-is-a-Muslim smear by noting that the Washington home Obama reportedly plans to live in after leaving office (which, again, Farah was casting doubt on just a year ago) is "only a block away – walking distance! – from the Islamic Center of Washington."

But then, Kupelian has never taken any of the advice he dishes out to others. Why would he start now?


Posted by Terry K. at 12:27 AM EDT
Monday, May 30, 2016
MRC's Double Standard on Donations Influencing Reporting
Topic: Media Research Center

Tim Graham and Brent Bozell complain in their May 25 column about National Public Radio accepting money from "large left-wing funders" and purportedly influence reporting, in particular attacking the Ploughshares Fund for funding national security coverage on NPR, including reports on the U.S.-Iran nuclear negotiations. "There is no transparency," Graham and Bozell rant (though they do immediately cite a example of the transparency they claim doesn't exist).

This might be a devastating accusation if the organization Bozell and Graham run didn't engage in the exact same behavior they're railing against.

We'vbe documented how the Media Research Center has received millions in donations from oil and fossil-fuel interests -- to the point that MRC vice president Dan Gainor also holds the endowed-chair title of T. Boone Pickens Fellow -- and how, coincidentially,  the MRC's "news" division, CNSNEws.com, offers favorable, uncritical coverage of the oil and gas industry.

CNS' oil and gas sycophancy -- presumably funded by those MRC donations -- has continued apace, most recently with CNS publishing an armada of op-eds defending a right-wing think tank from a subpoena demanding documents showing how it worked with ExxonMobil to suppress evidence that climate change is driven by fossil fuels and undermine the scientific concensus that reached that conclusion.

And that's just the most obvious connection. Who knows what other biased CNS reporting is bought and paid for by right-wing donors? We don't, because Bozell and the MRC have disclosed absolutely nothing about it.

So Bozell and Graham want full transparency of donations from outside groups that could influence reporting? You first, guys. Either that, or change CNS' name to Cybercast Propaganda Service.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:42 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, May 30, 2016 12:58 PM EDT
Obama's Transgender Appointee Makes WND's Head Explode
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's abject hatred for all things Obama and transgender are pretty obvious. Put the two together, and even that hatred goes up a few notches.

Thus, Obama's appointment of transgender woman Barbara Satin to the president’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships tripped that trigger. A "news" article on the appointment by WND lackey Bob Unruh couldn't even make out of the second paragraph before quoting a screed by an obscure right-wing blogger decdlaring that Satin is "mentally sick." Unruh somehow neglects to mention that the writer of said screed also referred to Obama as "Barack Hussein Obama Soetoro Sobarkah," so you know his credibility is completely unassailable.

Unruh's article  is oddly accompanied by a completely unrelated photo of a smiling, if not smug-looking, Obama -- an obvious and dishonest attempt to convey WND's view that his appointment of Satin is a screw-you to WND readers:

Judging by the 1,400-plus comments accompanying the article, WND's message was received as intended.

Lest anyone think WND's hatefest doesn't come straight from the top, WND editor Joseph Farah followed up with a column continuing the mindless hate:

It gets wackier and wackier.

Barack Obama last week named a transgender man named Barbara Satin to be a member of his Advisory Council on Faith-Based Neighborhood Partnerships – another obvious poke in the eye at America’s Bible-believing community.

I call him Obama’s “Satin Doll,” but, of course, I don’t know if “Barbara” pronounces his name that way. I will leave it to your imagination on the alternative.

You can hardly keep up with the White House freak show in Obama’s closing days.

[...]

Satin, by the way, never went under the knife, so to speak. He’s still got all his male parts. He admits being attracted to women, was married and fathered three children. So this is an example of the kind of person who is free to use the same public bathroom at Target as your daughter. Keep that in mind.

This action, of course, follows Obama’s stunning and tyrannical decision to order public schools throughout America to allow transgender students to use the restrooms of their choice – threatening to withhold federal aid to any school district that balks.

What is Obama going to do next to top this?

Is Michelle going to come out of the closet as a transsexual?

Yesa, Farah apparently believes Michelle Obama is transsexual, like Alex Jones (who also thinks Joan Rivers was murdered in order to keep it secret), on whose even more conspiracy-obsessed show Farah is a (perhaps not-so) surprisingly frequent guest.

And Farah wonders why his website has no credibility.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:52 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 31, 2016 8:52 AM EDT
Sunday, May 29, 2016
CNS Dishonestly Perpetuates False Obama 'Apology' Meme
Topic: CNSNews.com

The idea that President Obama regularly apologizes for America while overseas has long been right-wing dogma, despite the fact that it never actually happened. The Media Research Center particularly loves this.

So, leave it to MRC "news" division CNSNews.com to perpetuate the bogus meme with a May 25 article by Patrick Goodenough, under the headline "Obama’s Japan Visit Starts With Apology–Although Not For Hiroshima."

What a fundmentally dishonest headline. CNS and Goodenough surely know that at no point did Obama ever claim he would offer an apology to Japan while visiting the site of the U.S nuclear attack on Hiroshima during his visit to Japan (and he did not). But it's clear that pandiering to right-wingers is more important to CNS than reporting facts -- a disturbing attitude for a self-proclaimed "news" operation.

Goodenough's actual article isn't much better, as he too is eager to amplify a false right-wing meme:

President Obama has said he will not offer an apology when visiting Hiroshima this week, but his trip to Japan began on an awkward note and expressions of regret, after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe opened a press appearance by sternly lecturing him over a murder allegedly perpetrated by a former U.S. Marine on Okinawa.

[...]

In his response Obama briefly addressed the Okinawa case, but reprised his remarks by stressing the importance of a bilateral alliance which he said has “helped to fortify peace and security throughout the region.”

He then said he had expressed to the prime minister his “sincerest condolences and deepest regrets” over the incident – the killing of a 20-year-old Japanese woman on the island.

Obama gave assurances that the U.S. would continue to cooperate with the investigation and ensure justice is done under Japan’s legal system.

Note that nowhere in Goodenough's reporting of Obama's remarks is any mention of the apology the article's headline claims and his own introduction suggests. Condolences and regrets over a crime are not apologies.

Goodenough caps off the article by quoting a writer from the right-wing Heritage Foundation (whose ideology he does not disclose) complaining that "Obama’s trip will appear to affirm the oft-expressed Japanese view of itself as victim due to its unique status as the only country to have suffered an atomic attack." Goodenough made no apparent attempt to seek out an alternative, non-conservative viewpoint.

Goodenough is capable of fair reporting when he wants to be, but in recent months he's taken the lazy way out by being content to put right-wing memes over facts, such as he work on Syrian refugees and anti-U.S. propaganda in Iran.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:23 PM EDT
Saturday, May 28, 2016
Hillary Derangement Syndrome, Supersize WND Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Look at Hillary.

She is seen as dishonest. She is not likable. She has no accomplishments – in or out of politics – to cite. She’s not even scoring high among women.

The Trump versus Hillary matchup will be a very tough campaign. Who do you think is better positioned to slug it out? Has Hillary demonstrated an ability to win a national campaign? In 2008, she had everything going for her. The entire Democratic establishment was behind her then, too. But she couldn’t beat a new face with bigger promises. This year, she has struggled against Bernie Sanders, heretofore seen as a fringe old face.

-- Joseph Farah, March 27 WorldNetDaily column

With her eyes bulging wildly, grotesque contorted facial expressions, and a cackle Margaret Hamilton (the Wicked Witch of the West in “The Wizard of Oz”) would envy, Hillary Clinton attacked Donald Trump, saying that being president “shouldn’t be about delivering insults but about delivering results.”

Delivering results juxtaposed to delivering insults is something in which Hillary is well versed.

-- Mychal Massie, March 28 WND column

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton is on her way to the Democratic presidential nomination, and no one has laid a glove on her yet. The Republicans are too busy fighting each other – all of them, establishment and non-establishment alike.

This is not good.

Tell me one policy difference between Lucifer and Hillary Clinton.

-- Joseph Farah, May 6 WND column

I’ve known women who have been drunks, drug addicts, liars and worse. I’ve known a woman who was herself a complete train wreck and intentionally turned her child into the same so she could have company. I’ve known women who have thought themselves to be clever when in fact their cleverness was consistent with an empty soup can. I’ve ministered to women who were in prison for murder.

But I’ve never known a woman as treacherous, calculating and outright evil as Hillary Clinton.

-- Mychal Massie, May 16 WND column

At this point, Democrats had better hope the FBI does its job of purging Hillary Clinton before it’s too late, because the party bosses haven’t yet shown the courage. She should not be allowed anywhere near the Oval Office again.

-- David Limbaugh, May 26 WND column

The Hillary campaign and its labyrinthian tentacles must be really concerned about me.

Why do I say that?

Because its surrogates in the media – namely the George Soros-backed Media Matters, the Daily Beast and the chattering class that follows such outlets – are busy weaving conspiracy theories about me and Donald Trump while labeling me as … a conspiracy theorist.

You know how that Saul Alinsky tactic works – accuse others of what you do.

-- Joseph Farah, May 26 WND column


Posted by Terry K. at 12:40 AM EDT
Friday, May 27, 2016
Jeffrey Lord Flunks School on Cause of 2008 Financial Crisis
Topic: NewsBusters

The Media Research Center's Nicholas Fondacaro channels the ghost of Noel Sheppard in a May 25 post headlined "Jeffrey Lord Schools Former Philly Mayor on Origin of Housing Collapse":

NewsBusters contributor Jeffrey Lord laid out the facts about the origin of the housing market collapse of 2008, on CNN’s America’s Choice 2016 primary coverage Tuesday night. “You've got people out there saying that the Clinton housing policy helped cause the housing crisis in the first place,” Lord stated, after being asked if it was smart for Hillary Clinton to attack Donald Trump for his comments about the bubble poping. Former Philadelphia Mayor, Michael Nutter had a bone to pick with Lord over his facts.

Nutter wanted to blame the collapse, not on bad government policy, but solely on Republican President George W. Bush:

[...]

Lord shot back, “It was set in motion in the 1990s.” Nutter couldn’t seem to keep up with Lord’s line of reasoning. He instead chose to argue that the right was going to try to blame “every bad thing” on Hillary.

“Their policy was to force the government to give mortgages to people who couldn't afford to pay them back and it caused the economy to collapse,” Lord continued, not letting up. “That was 20 years ago,” Nutter responded again, “At that time, George Bush was president of the United States of America when this was all going on.” Lord shot back yet again by reiterating that the policy that forced the banks to give loans to people was signed by then President Bill Clinton.

We wouldn't want to go to any school where Lord is teaching, because it's simply not true that Clinton administration policies were the sole cause of the financial crisis, as he is apparently claiming.

It's unclear which particular Clinton policies Lord is blaming, but  two have been targeted by other right-wing critics eager to shift blame away from Republicans: the 1995 Community Reinvestment Act, and the 1995 National Homeownership Strategy initiative.

Regarding the former, the Richmond Federal Reserve Bank points out that the 1995 CRA "came more than a decade before most of the financial crisis seeds were sown," adding: "There have been no substantive changes to CRA regulations since the mid-1990s to cause a major change in LMI lending trends, yet the subprime crisis is rooted mainly in mortgages extended between 2004 and 2007. That implies other factors caused the more recent boom in subprime lending and deterioration of lending standards."

The latter, it could be argued, may have been a contributing factor, though -- as with the CRA -- its major effects were seen well before the financial crisis occured. The Richmond Fed states that the strategy was part of a series of policies  that "may have conveyed ongoing government support of the housing market and reduced the propensity of lenders, markets, and regulators to question loosened lending standards and investment in housing."

It's absurd to blame a single policy adjustment 20 years ago for a financial crisis -- the economy's too complex for that, and there's plenty of blame to go around (which Lord definitely doesn't want to admit). Indeed, Time magazine lists 25 people who could share blame for the financial crisis. Clinton is on there, but so is President George W. Bush along with several bankers and subprime mortgage lenders.

Is the "school" Lord is running here affiliated with Corinthian Colleges or something? Count us out.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:21 PM EDT
WND Overjoyed to Relive Vince Foster Conspiracy Theories
Topic: WorldNetDaily

When Donald Trump advanced the idea that the Clintons murdered Vince Foster 20-plus years ago, WorldNetDaily must have been positively giddy. After all, the Hillary-hating, conspiracy-obsessed WND has been gearing up for this moment for months.

And WND was unsurprisingly quick to pounce on the reference. A May 24 article by Jerome Corsi denies that its Foster story is a "right-wing conspiracy theory" and rehashes its earlier claim from a former Starr investigator Miguel Rodriguez "outlining evidence of his charge that the case was fixed." Needless to say, Corsi doesn't mention -- lest the transgender-hating WND feel its current conspiracy theory is undermined -- that Rodriguez is rumored to now be a transgender woman named Michelle. 

A companion WND article by Leo Hohmann does more rehashing, asserting that "Hillary Clinton’s name pops up often in official documents of the Starr Report released by the National Archives, many of them obtained by WND but never reported on by the media." Much of Hohmann's information appears to come from Hugh Turley, a conspiracist who is featured on a website proclaiming him, along with other conspiracists -- who are cited in Corsi's article -- as "the leading experts on the death of Vincent Foster."

We've wondered this before, and we have to wonder again: Is WND advising Trump behind the scenes on Clinton conspiracy theories? Because it sure seems like it. If it's true, we can certainly understand why the Trump campaign wouldn't want to publicly admit it, because of WND's utter lack of credibility.

Additionally, as of this writing, there's no mention at WND of a Washington Post op-ed written by Foster's sister, who denounced people like Trump who cravenly use her brother's death for "political advantage." Of course, for it to do so WND would have to admit having a conscience and a sense of morality and sensitivity, and Joseph Farah and Co. simply hate Hillary Clinton too much not to cynically throw Vince Foster's corpse around one more time.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:08 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, May 27, 2016 12:21 AM EDT
Thursday, May 26, 2016
NewsBusters' Jeffrey Lord Flunks School on Cause of 2008
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Nicholas Fondacaro channels the ghost of Noel Sheppard in a May 25 post headlined "Jeffrey Lord Schools Former Philly Mayor on Origin of Housing Collapse":

NewsBusters contributor Jeffrey Lord laid out the facts about the origin of the housing market collapse of 2008, on CNN’s America’s Choice 2016 primary coverage Tuesday night. “You've got people out there saying that the Clinton housing policy helped cause the housing crisis in the first place,” Lord stated, after being asked if it was smart for Hillary Clinton to attack Donald Trump for his comments about the bubble poping. Former Philadelphia Mayor, Michael Nutter had a bone to pick with Lord over his facts.

Nutter wanted to blame the collapse, not on bad government policy, but solely on Republican President George W. Bush:

[...]

Lord shot back, “It was set in motion in the 1990s.” Nutter couldn’t seem to keep up with Lord’s line of reasoning. He instead chose to argue that the right was going to try to blame “every bad thing” on Hillary.

“Their policy was to force the government to give mortgages to people who couldn't afford to pay them back and it caused the economy to collapse,” Lord continued, not letting up. “That was 20 years ago,” Nutter responded again, “At that time, George Bush was president of the United States of America when this was all going on.” Lord shot back yet again by reiterating that the policy that forced the banks to give loans to people was signed by then President Bill Clinton.

We wouldn't want to go to any school where Lord is teaching, because it's simply not true that Clinton administration policies were the sole cause of the financial crisis, as he is apparently claiming.

It's unclear which particular Clinton policies Lord is blaming, but  two have been targeted by other right-wing critics eager to shift blame away from Republicans: the 1995 Community Reinvestment Act, and the 1995 National Homeownership Strategy initiative.

Regarding the former, the Richmond Federal Reserve Bank points out that the 1995 CRA "came more than a decade before most of the financial crisis seeds were sown," adding: "There have been no substantive changes to CRA regulations since the mid-1990s to cause a major change in LMI lending trends, yet the subprime crisis is rooted mainly in mortgages extended between 2004 and 2007. That implies other factors caused the more recent boom in subprime lending and deterioration of lending standards."

The latter, it could be argued, may have been a contributing factor, though -- as with the CRA -- its major effects were seen well before the financial crisis occured. The Richmond Fed states that the strategy was part of a series of policies  that "may have conveyed ongoing government support of the housing market and reduced the propensity of lenders, markets, and regulators to question loosened lending standards and investment in housing."

It's absurd to blame a single policy adjustment 20 years ago for a financial crisis -- the economy's too complex for that, and there's plenty of blame to go around (which Lord definitely doesn't want to admit). Indeed, Time magazine lists 25 people who could share blame for the financial crisis. Clinton is on there, but so is President George W. Bush along with several bankers and subprime mortgage lenders.

Is the "school" Lord is running here affiliated with Corinthian Colleges or something? Count us out.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:52 PM EDT
A 'Food Desert' Fail At CNS
Topic: CNSNews.com

In a May 19 CNSNews.com article, Melanie Hunter highlights a comment by first lady Michelle Obama that "some U.S. communities are 'play deserts,' because they don’t have sufficient opportunities for kids to participate in sports and other outdoor activities, compared to wealthy communities." Hunter then adds: "As CNSNews.com previously reported, the Obama administration coined the phrase 'food deserts' to describe an urban area where a significant share of the population lives more than one mile from a grocery store."

Hunter has played into a double fail. First, the CNS article to which she links --  a 2012 article by Penny Starr -- at no point claims that the Obama administration "coined" the "food desert" term.

Second, the phrase does very much predate the Obama administration. If Wikipedia is to be believed, the "food desert" term was first documented in a 1999 report by the Nutrition Task Force Low Income Project Team of the United Kingdom Department of Health. It can also be found in a 2008 essay in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

We know CNS is always in a rush to smear the Obamas any way they can, but Hunter's complete lack of basic research here is embarrassing, even for CNS.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:17 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: Journalistic Crimes of the WND Author
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Alex Newman smears teachers as criminals in his WorldNetDaily-published book. He's also written "news" articles for WND filled with falsehoods and deceptions. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 8:54 AM EDT
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
MRC Again Complains Historic Event Described As 'Historic'
Topic: Media Research Center

One key component of the Media Research Center's "media research" is to insist that it's "liberal bias" not to despise something the way it does, which manifests itself in whining that a historic event is described as "historic."

The MRC's Matthew Balan does the honors this time in a May 13 post, under the headline "NBC Hypes 'Historic' Obama Admin. Move on Transgender Students":

The Big Three networks' evening newscasts on Friday devoted full reports to the Obama administration's controversial letter to every public school district in the nation directing them to allow transgender students to use bathroom and locker rooms according to their chosen sexual identity. However, NBC Nightly News's segment on the issue touted the "Obama administration's historic new directive to the nation's public schools," and revisited a Massachusetts girl who now lives as a boy. Kate Snow touted how the child's mother says the federal government's move is "protection for him at school — and validation that his rights matter." [video below]

Substitute anchor Thomas Roberts (who has a record of acting as a left-wing LGBT activist) teased Snow's report by hyping that "the Obama administration sends a sweeping message to schools across the country: let transgender kids use the bathroom of their choice, or else." Just before using the "historic" term about the controversy, Roberts underlined that "pushback is coming fast and furious" against the policy move.

Yes, once again the MRC is mad that something historic was described as "historic." "Media criticism," folks!


Posted by Terry K. at 4:53 PM EDT

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