ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

ConWebWatch: home | archive/search | about | primer | shop

Monday, August 1, 2016
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC vs. The Truth
Topic: Media Research Center
Because Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is an inveterate liar, the Media Research Center must defend him by attacking fact-checkers. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 9:42 PM EDT
Newsmax's 'Ben-Hur' Fail
Topic: Newsmax

The fail starts early in Robert V. Carl's July 29 Newsmax article on the upcoming remake of "Ben-Hur":

The first time "Ben-Hur" hit the big screen, the Cold War was raging and the Civil Rights movement was in full swing. The film's themes of faith, social upheaval, and redemption resonated powerfully with the audiences of the day, who jammed into theaters to watch it.

No, the 1959 film was not "the first time 'Ben-Hur' hit the big screen." It was first filmed in 1907 (but just the chariot race), and it got a more elaborate silent production in 1925.

But facts aren't the point of Carl's article -- spin is. Much of his article is devoted to how "Distributors Paramount and MGM have been screening the movie for influential Christian leaders" to avoid the plight of "recent big-budget biblical films that took so much liberty with the source material that they failed to attract the faith-based audience they sought."

But the real purpose of Carl's article is unspoken: to respond to the negative buzz surrounding the film.

The Hollywood Reporter states that "Early tracking suggests Ben-Hur will open in the $14 million to $15 million range over the Aug. 19-21 weekend, a sobering start for the faith-centric ancient epic, which reportedly cost just under $100 million to produce," adding that the film's projected opening date has slid from February. And even the conservative PJ Media notes that "the director, Timur Bekmambetov, is known for what are more or less flops: Wanted (2008) and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2012)."

It's an interesting bit of Hollywood spinning reminiscent of another Newsmax writer, James Hirsen, who consistently championed the increasingly erratic and vile Mel Gibson without disclosing his insider relationship with the actor or his heading a foundation that worked to advance the ultraconservative Catholic faith of Gibson's father.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:02 PM EDT
WND's Coverage of Trump's Remarks on Khan Censors the Controversy
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Is Donald Trump one of the contributors to WorldNetDaily's plea for cash to stave off its existential financial crisis? If he isn't, he should be.

The Trump campaign's PR flacks couldn't have written a better "news" article spinning away the firestorm of controversy over Trump's attacking a Muslim couple whose son died in the Iraq war for committing the offense of criticizing him at the Democratic National Convention than the unnamed WND writer who managed to address the controversy by ignoring it completely in his or her July 30 article:

Donald Trump wants to set the record straight about his interview with ABC News “This Week” in which he has been accused of diminishing the sacrifice of Humayun Khan, a Muslim U.S. soldier killed in Iraq, with others.

Trump Saturday night called Khan “a hero,” urged vigilance in defeating radical Islamic terrorism and attacked Hillary, again, for destabilizing the Middle East with her policies as secretary of state.

At the Democratic convention, Khan’s father, Khizr Khan, had leveled criticism at Trump in support of Clinton for president.

“Captain Humayun Khan was a hero to our country and we should honor all who have made the ultimate sacrifice to keep our country safe,” Trump said in his statement. “The real problems here are the radical Islamic terrorists who killed him, and the efforts of these radicals to enter our country to do us further harm. Given the state of the world today, we have to know everything about those looking to enter our country, and given the state of chaos in some of these countries, that is impossible. While I feel deeply for the loss of his son, Mr. Khan who has never met me, has no right to stand in front of millions of people and claim I have never read the Constitution, (which is false) and say many other inaccurate things. If I become president, I will make America safe again.”

Trump continued: “Further, Hillary Clinton should be held accountable for her central role in destabilizing the Middle East. She voted to send the United States to war against Iraq, helped lead the disastrous withdrawal of American troops years later that created the vacuum allowing the rise of ISIS, and has never met a regime change she didn’t like (which have all been disasters) – not to mention her invasion of Libya and her abandonment of American personnel in Benghazi. The loss of these lives in Libya is directly traceable to Clinton, but their families’ testimonials were rejected by the media. Clinton’s actions have been reckless and have directly led to the loss of American lives. And her extreme immigration policies, as also laid out by American victims in Cleveland, will cause the preventable deaths of countless more – while putting all residents, from all places, at greater risk of terrorism. As Bernie Sanders said on numerous occasions, Hillary Clinton suffers from ‘bad judgement.’ She is not qualified to serve as commander in chief.”

Below is the full, unedited transcript of Trump’s interview with George Stephanopoulos On “This Week.”

It's nothing more than a mild rewrite of Trump's own press release, which also includes the interview transcript.

WND doesn't seem to understand that stenography -- which is what reproducing a transcript is, especially when Trump is not disputing the accuracy of any of the things it was reported he said -- is not journalism. Nor is simply rewriting someone's press release to put it in inverted pyramid form while retaining the Trump campaign's dishonest spin.

Trump would normally have to pay a news outlet under the table (as it's alleged he has with Breitbart) to get that kind of fawning, uncritical coverage. Joseph Farah and WND could certainly use the cash right now, and we doubt Farah is above accepting money for favorable coverage.

In cash-strapped WND, Trump can buy himself an entire "news" outlet on the cheap -- if he hasn't already.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:16 AM EDT
Sunday, July 31, 2016
AIM's Kincaid Repeats Discredited Falsehoods About Margaret Sanger
Topic: Accuracy in Media

Accuracy in Media's resident gay-obsessed, factually challenged Obama-hater Cliff Kincaid takes to AIM's sister site Accuracy in Academia to praise Dinesh D'Souza's Hillary-bashing film "Hillary's America," which also purports to detail the history of the Democratic Party. If Kincaid is any guide, the film is an ahistorical mess, playing on the fallacy that the Democratic Party of a century ago is exactly the same as the party today.

Kincaid writes of the film:

In one reenactment, Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, is shown speaking to a women’s auxiliary of the Ku Klux Klan. That’s followed by excerpts of a modern-day Hillary speech expressing her admiration for Sanger.

Liberals have tried to play down Sanger’s involvement with the KKK, saying she spoke to a variety of different groups. But Sanger’s own book, The Pivot of Civilization, included references to eliminating “human weeds” and sterilizing “inferior” races.

About Kincaid's first claim: Yes, Sanger spoke to a KKK women's auxiliary. But as we've noted, fact-checkers have pointed out that the KKK auxiliary was not the KKK itself, Sanger was not a KKK supporter, and Sanger pointed out in her autobiography that while she would speak on the issue of birth control to preetty much anyone who would have her, her KKK auxiliary speech was a surreal experience.

About Kincaid's second claim: As we've also documented, the term "human weeds" appears nowhere in "The Pivot of Civilization," and Sanger never called for "terilizing 'inferior' races."

If Kincaid is getting his information about Sanger from D'Souza's film, that kinda discredits the whole film, doesn't it? Not to mention further putting the lie to AIM's insistence that it cares about accuracy in media (or academia).

Posted by Terry K. at 10:14 PM EDT
WND Buries Real Motive of German Gunman, Instead Plays Up Unverified 'Allahu Akbar' Angle
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's unbylined July 22 article on a mass shooting in Munich begins the way you'd expect it to: with a headline screaming "'Allahu Akbar' gunman slaughters children in Munich" and a lead paragraph stating "A gunman shouting “Allahu Akbar” burst out of a bathroom at a McDonald’s restaurant and opened fire on children before rampaging through a nearby shopping mall."

But if you read the article further, it's clear that the “Allahu Akbar” claim has not been substantiated -- WND cites only a single witness making the claim.

And it's not until the 30th paragraph of the unbylined article that what appears to be shooter Ali David Sonboly's real motive gets mentioned:

Sonboly’s apparent interest in mass shootings may possibly explain his choice of July 22 to carry out the attack.

The Mail noted the Munich shopping center shooting happened exactly five years after “far-right activist Anders Breivik” shot and killed dozens of people on a Norwegian island.

It was July 22, 2011, when Breivik exploded a car bomb in Oslo that killed eight people. He then drove to the island of Utoya where he gunned down 69 people, mostly teenagers, at a youth summer camp.

The scare quotes WND put around Breivik's description are kinda cute, considering that Breivik's manifesto followed WND's anti-Muslim, anti-multiculturalism and anti-feminist agenda so closely that he cited WND six times in it. WND has never told its readers about that, by the way.

Since then, it's been revealed that the Iranian-German Sonboly considered himself "Aryan," was proud that he shared his birthday with Adolf Hitler, hated Turks and Arabas and that all of his victims were immigrants. WND hasn't reported that yet -- perhaps because, as with Breivik, Sonboly's political views are basically those of WND taken to a murdrerous level.

Despite the fact that WND has never offered any evidence that the "allahu akbar" claim has been corroborated, WND repeated it in a July 29 article asserting that Sonboly "reportedly yelled the Islamic battle cry 'allahu akbar' while shooting." And again, that came before WND's admission that "authorities believe Sonboly was acting along [sic] and was simply obsessed with mass shootings."

Posted by Terry K. at 9:14 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, July 31, 2016 9:16 PM EDT
Saturday, July 30, 2016
CNS' Reaction to Hillary's Historic Nomination: Benghazi!
Topic: reacted to the historic news of Hillary Clinton being the first female major-party presidential nominee in its usual fashion: with partisan sniping instead of the fair and balanced journalism a real news operation is supposed to engage in.

The news of Democratic National Convention delegates affirming the nomination was mostly ignored by CNS, which ran only an Associated Press article and devoted no original coverage to it.

CNS did devote some original coverage to Clinton's acceptance speech, but in its own bizarre stenographical way. Two articles focused extremely narrowly on two statements she made: "Hillary Clinton: 'I'm Not Here to Take Away Your Guns'" and  "Clinton on Illegal Immigrants: 'Inhumane to Kick Them Out'." That's lazy reporting at its finest.

The day after the convention, though, CNS issued its mostly politically driven -- and, thus, journalistically suspect -- reaction: a story by Rachel Hoover describing how "In their 'Additional Views' supplement to the House Select Committee on Benghazi report, Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and Mike Pompeo (R-Kansas) conclude that 'the administration misled the public about the Benghazi attack,' which occurred on Sept. 11, 2012."

If you'll recall, the House Benghazi report came out a month ago. A month ago. In other words, there is no news value to Hoover's article -- it's a month-old story that CNS could have easily done at the time but apparently chose not to in order to play a political game.

Additionally, the fact that Jordan's and Pompeo's views are relegated to a supplement and not included in the report proper tells us that they were rejected by the Republican majority and should carry less weight. Indeed, the Jordan-Pompeo supplement appears to rely heavily on opinion, not fact, for its conclusions, such as its assertion that the Obama White House "misled the American people for political gain" immediately after the attack.

But Hoover also violates the dicate of her boss, Media Research Center chief Brent Bozell, who says that "The first rule of journalism is that if you don’t have two independent sources, you don’t have a news story." Hoover quotes only the Jordan-Pompeo supplement -- which is anything but "independent" -- and nobody else.

CNS hasn't figured out that stenography is not journalism, and uncritically repeating partisan attacks isn't either, and not even Bozell's own guidance is making a difference.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:05 AM EDT
Obama Derangement Syndrome Watch, Supersize WorldNetDaily Edition
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Barack Obama’s allegiance to Islam appears to trump everything else he supposedly values. The killer Mateen shot up a homosexual club on “Latin Night,” but even the horrific deaths of blacks, Latinos and homosexuals is not enough for Obama to call out Islamists.


In the last seven years, Obama has put our country on the brink of financial ruin. He’s divided the races like no other president in history. He has made the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) agenda his most important domestic issue – equating it to civil rights for blacks. This past week Obama announced he was designating the area around the Stonewall Inn in New York City as the country’s first national monument to LGBT rights.

Obama has done his best to undermine the greatest fighting force in the world by using it as his personal social experiment laboratory and lifting the “don’t ask don’t tell” policy. He also lifted the ban on women in combat, despite the fact that some 92.5 percent of women in the military do not want to be assigned to combat units.

While he’s been preoccupied with covering up for Islam and advancing the homosexual agenda, the black-on-black murder rate in Chicago (his hometown) shot through the roof. On Father’s Day weekend alone, there were 54 shootings and 12 murders! Yet we’ve heard nothing from Obama, Loretta Lynch, or Democrats in Congress about this bloodshed.

-- Jesse Lee Peterson, June 26 WorldNetDaily column

I’m not going to suggest that some months ago, Obama got on his infamous phone and told a minion to cultivate a cell of riled-up black activists, get them armed and insert them into the protest that would be ready to go on the next occasion that the police shooting of a black individual found its way into the national news cycle.

But for all practical purposes, it might as well have gone down in precisely that fashion.

-- Erik Rush, July 13 WND column

The United States, Europe and the rest of the world is in violent upheaval. At home, fraudulently elected illegitimate President Barack Hussein Obama, along with with his black-Muslim friends like so-called Rev. Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam, and Black Lives Matter allies, have finally succeeded in igniting a race war.

To add insult to very serious injury, President Obama refuses to use his powers as the commander in chief to destroy ISIS and other Muslim terrorists in a decisive way. The reason is obvious, and it’s time for people to just start saying it: The “Muslim King” does not want to go hard against his Islamic brothers and frankly, in my view, sympathizes with their quest to have allah reign supreme to further a worldwide caliphate.


So, I pose this question: How can the Muslim King be legally removed from office before he does even more irreparable damage in the next six months of his presidency? What would our Founding Fathers have done under these dire circumstances? I do not think that We the People can just sit back and hope for the best, particularly in light of the heinous terrorist attacks of the last weeks, the latest in Nice, France, and the race war Obama and his friends have caused to explode in Dallas and around the nation. Our lives and the lives of our loved ones are in mortal danger!

-- Larry Klayman, July 15 WND column

The man who is the American president, Barack Hussein Obama, jumped in quickly to decry the innocent victims but he continues to refuse to specify who the terrorists are and as always, he never, never makes any link between the terrorists and their Islamist religious beliefs.

He never uses the terms Islamist or Muslims, even when there is irrefutable proof that people of those believe are behind attacks of this kind – not only in France, but worldwide.

I don’t believe for a minute that Barack Obama is a stupid man, but I do believe that he is blinded by his beliefs founded in Islam. He was brought up in and around that faith, and he remains a believer, regardless of what he says he is now.

It is incomprehensible that a man who professes to be a “Christian” can constantly and consistently do things, say things and take actions that directly and negatively affect Christians and Christianity, in this country and worldwide, and yet never do or say anything that might even be slightly negative against Islam.

Given the atrocities perpetrated by Islamists across the world, the gruesome attacks and killings that we see more and more, it makes no sense that the leader of a world nation, a presumably well-educated man, can see all this and yet not have the courage to state unequivocally who is responsible.

Is he blind? Stupid? Stubborn? A liar? A traitor? Or is he really a Muslim bound to support that belief regardless?

Clearly, he’s not acting as a Christian, as an American, as a patriot.

Nor is he acting as an American president should according to his oath of office.

It’s also clear that what he is doing, or rather not doing, is hurting our country and the free world and putting every one of us in mortal danger.

-- Barbara Simpson, July 17 WND column

Whites thought electing a black president was going to make things better between the races, but Obama has turned that dream into a nightmare.

Shock is a temptation to hate, and hate is evil. Hate makes one subject to evil and paralyzes people in fear. This hate has rendered people helpless and ineffective in their efforts to stop Obama’s wicked agenda.


Despite the political season, the real battle is not political – it’s a battle of good versus evil. If Americans were to truly wake up to this reality, Barack Obama’s evil power over our nation would collapse in that instant.

-- Jesse Lee Peterson, July 17 WND column

I give both political and business speeches all over America, and all over the world. I know a great speech when I see and hear one. Obama’s speech last night at the DNC was masterful. It was one of the greatest political speeches I’ve ever heard.

There was one problem: It was 100 percent fiction, fraud and fantasy.

If it were given by any CEO in America at a shareholders meeting, or a press conference in front of the media, that CEO would face life in prison for fraud and misrepresentation.

Any screenwriter in Hollywood could have made it up out of thin air and won an Academy Award.

It could have been a speech written by Bernie Madoff.

It could have been written by Lucifer himself, to be delivered by the anti-Christ.


Obama himself is the psychopath, sociopath and ego-maniac who rules as a tyrant, by issuing executive orders, ignoring the U.S. Constitution and the rule of law, and making believe Congress doesn’t exist. Every word directed at Trump described Obama, Obama’s last eight years of rule and Obama’s voters.

Lucifer himself would be proud.

-- Wayne Allyn Root, July 28 WND column

Posted by Terry K. at 12:59 AM EDT
Friday, July 29, 2016
What LGBT Stuff Is The MRC Freaking Out About This Month?
Topic: Media Research Center

There's too much anti-LGBT ranting at the Media Research Center to catch it all individually. So once again, we'll summarize the lowlights of the gay stuff the MRC freaked out about over the past month.

First up, NewsBusters coward "Bruce Bookter" mocked transgender athlete Chris Mosier after he appeared in ESPN's Body Issue for saying that he's finally comfortable in his own skin: "It must have been truly awful for Mosier. You know, forced to occupy the same body that was apparently good enough to become one of the greatest athletes in the entire world. The horror."

"Bookter" took even more offense to Mosier saying that, as a member of Team USA as a duathlete, "I sort of feel like I'm representing the good parts of the country":

Take that North Carolina! Isn’t it amazing that the same people who champion individuality, and don’t want to be judged, can seamlessly “transition” out of that façade and turn into social engineering overseers? Also, completely horrifying is the idea that Mosier sees the role on Team USA, not as representing the country  and all people in it, but instead sees the role as a social and cultural model for an America as it should be.


So the liberals and their friends in the Rainbow Jihad can now take their place among such wholesome, family friendly institutions as Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia. Those who have used their Olympians, not merely as athletes, but as propaganda symbols for the way they think society should be.

So gays are waging "jihad" and are just like Nazis and commies? No wonder "Bookter" hides behind a fake name -- if we wrote such a thing, we'd be just as embarrassed to put our real name to it.

Tim Graham, meanwhile, is upset that a op-ed writer and "gay activist" Nico Lang correctly identified the anti-transgender American College of Pediatricians as a "right-wing advocacy group" for dismissing gender reassignment surgery as gender mutiliation -- and, while he's at it, the American Psychological Association for no longer considering being transgender as a mental illness:

So, according to Lang, science has progressed to the point where getting one’s penis or breasts removed is not “genital mutilation.” It’s a lifestyle choice? Who is stating a plain fact, and who is trying to empty words of their meaning?

The ACP is a “right-wing advocacy group,” but when the American Psychological Association (APA) bends to a left-wing lobbying campaign to proclaim political correctness about transgenders, that’s “science” progressing, not politics. Conservatism is a threat to “public health” – if you define “health care” as genital mutilation.


Lang is delighted that the APA has abandoned the term “gender identity disorder,” with simple “gender dysphoria” – and that term only applies to people who have a “temporary mental state” of upset about their er, fluidity. Being transgender is exactly the same as being left-handed.

Maggie McKneely has a finely honed freakout after learning that the Nickelodeon cartoon "The Loud House" will include a same-sex couple, declaring it to be part of an "agenda" to "indoctrinate children":

Variety excitedly wrote that the episode “makes no hoopla over the appearance of the married gay couple” and it’s “definitely not treated like a big deal.” Well, isn’t that the point? To make kids believe that it’s perfectly normal for their friends to have two dads? The Misters McBride, voiced by comedians Wayne Brady and Michael McDonald, are painted as being just like any set of heterosexual parents – overprotective, goofy, and loving. They’re even health conscious, telling their son to avoid nuts, gluten, and sugar. See, kids? These guys are just like your parents.

This isn’t the first time Nickelodeon has pushed an agenda on its young, impressionable audience. Since 2009, Nick has been running “The Big Green Help” multimedia campaign, which is aimed at encouraging kids to join the cult of lefty environmentalism.

Although there are other animated shows trying to indoctrinate children, none has the viewership size of The Loud House, or the major platform that is Nickelodeon.

And Karen Townsend has another TV-related freakout, this time because the show "Dead of Summer" has a transgender character whom Townsend claims was inserted "so that the show’s creator can promote his pet social cause – a friend is dealing with the issue. So, in true leftist form, we must ALL be made to deal with it." She whines aboutthe David Bowie Song "Modern Love' playing a role in the episode: "owie is prominent because, as every anguished teen from the 80’s knew, he was a source of courage for his free spirit way of living and pushing the boundaries of sexual liberation. Very appropriate for a show that is promoting LGBT lifestyles to teens in the 2010's."

Because, apparently, the only possible reason to ever put a gay person in a TV show is to "promote" an "agenda."

Posted by Terry K. at 4:10 PM EDT
WND Takes DNC's Birther Bait Again
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Art Moore begins his July 27 WorldNetDaily article by stating, "It appears the Obama family just can’t get birth certificates out of their heads." Actually, it's WND who has that problem.

For the second time this week, WND took the bait on a oblique reference to birthers by a member of the Obama family at the Democratic National Convention in order to rehash its discredited "eligibility" conspiracy theories. And Moore goes full-bore on it:

Dozens of lawsuits were filed over that issue before and after Obama’s election in 2008, and, after pressure from Donald Trump and others, the White House ultimately released a document he said was his Hawaiian birth certificate.

The only law-enforcement investigation of the issue, conducted by Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, concluded the document is likely a forgery.

Ironically, it was Hillary Clinton who began the whole “birther” controversy by questioning Obama’s eligibility during the hotly contested 2008 Democratic race against Obama.

It’s not just Obama’s birth certificate that’s in doubt, but he also mysteriously has a Connecticut-based Social Security Number, despite the fact neither he nor his parents ever lived in the Constitution State.

As we've noted, that "only law-enforcement investigation of the issue" was a corrupt sham, with Arpaio's "cold case posse" populated with the like of biurther conspiracists like WND's own Jerome Corsi.

And, no, Hillary Clinton did not "begin the whole “birther” controversy by questioning Obama’s eligibility." As CNN and others have documented, the 2008 Clinton campaign did not pursue the issue, though diehard supporters filed the first lawsuits on the issue. The one organization that pursued the birther issue to ludicrous extents and beyond was the definitely-not-supported-by-Hillary WND -- which, of course, Kovacs fails to mention.

As for Obama's supposedly fraudulent Social Security number, the most logical explanation is that Obama’s return address was mistyped, the initial “9” typed as a “0” which would turn a Hawaiian zip code into one from Connecticut.

For an organization that (currently) insists the birther issue ended in "late 2011," WND sure likes to keep talking about it -- and taking the bait when Democrats bring it up.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:01 PM EDT
CNS Buries News of Trump Inviting Russia To Hack Hillary's Emails

You'd think a presidential candidate inviting a foreign power to hack the email accounts of Americans would be big news at, which purports to care a lot about national security.

But that candidate is Republican Donald Trump, so it wasn't.

CNS' initial article on the press conference in which Trump said he wished for Russia to hack Hillary Clinton's email, by Melanie Hunter, failed to even mention that he said it. Hunter began her article instead with Trump's statement that "he never met Russian President Vladimir Putin but as president, he would rather be 'friendly' with Russia so both countries 'can go and knock out ISIS together' along with other allies."

Hunter was in stenography mode, as most CNS reporters are when writing about Trump, and therefore she couldn't be bothered to note that Trump previously claimed he has spoken "directly and indirectly" with Putin.

Patrick Goodenough featured Trump's press conference in an article the next day -- but didn't mention the hacking invitation. Instead, he touted how "One day after Republican Donald Trump warned that China and Russia 'have never been closer,' China's military announced on Thursday it will hold joint exercises with Russian forces in the South China Sea."

Goodenough wrote an accompanying article that showed him in full spin mode, claiing that "The Russian government may soon release texts of emails hacked from Hillary Clinton’s private server during her time as secretary of state, a respected geopolitical affairs publication reported last month, citing Western intelligence sources." It wasn't until the 13th paragraph of his article that he noted Trump's invitation to Russia to hack Hillary's email, then immediately noted Trump ally Newt Gingrich's baseless assertion that Trump was making a "joke."

It wasn't until a full day later that CNS gave the hacking invitation a bit more prominence, in an article by Susan Jones -- but she, like Goodenough, spun Trump's words in a way to bury the whole treasonous aspect of it:

 "It's just a total deflection, this whole thing with Russia," Donald Trump told a news conference on Wednesday.

"In fact, I saw her (Hillary Clinton's) campaign manager -- I don't know his title, Mook. I saw him on television and they asked him about Russia and the (DNC) hacking. By the way, they hacked -- they probably have her 33,000 e-mails. I hope they do. They probably have her 33,000 e-mails that she lost and deleted because you'd see some beauties there."

Trump repeated several times that it may not be Russia who hacked the DNC: "Nobody even knows this, it's probably China, or it could be somebody sitting in his bed. But it shows how weak we are, it shows how disrespected we are."

After telling the news conference that Russia -- or somebody -- probably already has Hillary Clinton's deleted emails, a reporter later returned to the subject, asking Trump why he doesn't tell Russian President Vladimir Puting to stop interfering with the U.S. presidential campaign.

"I have nothing to do with Putin. I've never spoken to him. I don't know anything about him other than he will respect me. He doesn't respect our president.

"And if it is Russia -- which it's probably not, nobody knows who it is -- but if it is Russia, it's really bad for a different reason, because it shows how little respect they have for our country, when they would hack into a major party and get everything.

"But it would be interesting to see -- I will tell you this. Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press. Let's see if that happens. That'll be next."

A short time later, Trump repeated that nobody knows if the Russians were the ones who hacked into the DNC: "You know (what) the sad thing is? That with the technology and the genius we have in this country, not in government unfortunately, but with the genius we have in government, we don't even know who took the Democratic National Committee e-mails. We don't even know who it is."

Trump also said it's not about the hackers anyway: "It was about the things that were said in those emails. They were terrible things, talking about Jewish, talking about race, talking about atheist, trying to pin labels on people -- what was said was a disgrace, and it was Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and believe me, as sure as you're sitting there, Hillary Clinton knew about it. She knew everything."

Not only did Jones failed to mention the bipartisan criticism of Trump's remarks, she referred to something she called the "Democrat National Convention."That's not a mistake -- right-wingers have maliciously switched "Democratic" for "Democrat" for years.

Jones' commitment to partisan posturing over something as basic as getting names correct tells us what a hack she is -- and the lack of journalistic seriousness of her employer. 

UPDATE: A July 29 article by Goodenough on Joe Biden referring to Russian premier Vladimir Putin as a "dictator" waits until the very end to note Trump's hacking invitation to Russia, but then added, "Trump later characterized the comments as sarcasm."

This means that CNS has yet to make Trump's hacking invitation the primary focus of any article. And this is a "news" operation?

Posted by Terry K. at 12:15 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, July 29, 2016 8:54 AM EDT
Thursday, July 28, 2016
Newsmax Highlights Negative News About Company It's Feuding With
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax is currently embroiled in a dispute with Dish Network for the past couple months over the terms under which Dish carries Newsmax TV, which has meant that Dish has pulled the channel off its system for now.

That seems like the proper light in which to view Newsmax highlighting a July 22 Bloomberg article -- under the headline "Dish Network Loses Record-Setting 281,000 Subscribers" -- noting that Dish Network "lost a record number of TV subscribers in the second quarter as programming blackouts and price increases drove customers to seek cheaper online alternatives."

Newsmax failed to add a note to the article that it's in a dispute with Dish, which would seem to be a relevant disclosure.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:43 PM EDT
Dear CNS: Obama is Right, World Is Less Violent Than Ever

On July 21, published an unbylined article headlined "Obama: ‘The World Has Never Been Less Violent’." It's another bit of lazy stenography, cribbing from a speech in which Obama said that “we are living in the most peaceful” era in human history and that “the world has never been less violent.”

The powers that be at CNS are apparently going to trot that article out every time there's a terrorist attack or some other form of mass violence. CNS put it back on the front page earlier this week following terrorist attacks in Europe and adding "FLASHBACK" to the headline, though the "flashback" was to about one week ago.

But CNS won't tell its readers that Obama is pretty much correct. The World Economic Forum reports:

Last year may be remembered for barrel bombs, beheadings and the Bataclan massacre, but according to a Harvard psychologist, a remarkable long term downward trend in violence is continuing.

Wars are far less common and deadly than in the recent past, terrorism is rare, and the European refugee crisis is nothing new, said Steven Pinker, a bestselling science author.

“The news is a systematically misleading way to understand the world,” he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in an interview.

In the past five years alone, conflicts have ended in Chad, Peru, Iran, India, Sri Lanka and Angola, and if peace talks currently underway in Colombia are a success, war will have vanished from the Western hemisphere, he said.

In his 2011 book “The Better Angels of Our Nature,” Pinker called the decline in violence “the most significant and least appreciated development in the history of our species”.

Compared to most of the postwar period, 2015 has been relatively peaceful, and dramatically so compared with earlier centuries. However, there has been a small uptick in violent deaths around the world over the past couple of years.

Pinker expanded on his view of the downward trend in world violence in an article at Slate:

The world is not falling apart. The kinds of violence to which most people are vulnerable—homicide, rape, battering, child abuse—have been in steady decline in most of the world. Autocracy is giving way to democracy. Wars between states—by far the most destructive of all conflicts—are all but obsolete. The increase in the number and deadliness of civil wars since 2010 is circumscribed, puny in comparison with the decline that preceded it, and unlikely to escalate.


Too much of our impression of the world comes from a misleading formula of journalistic narration. Reporters give lavish coverage to gun bursts, explosions, and viral videos, oblivious to how representative they are and apparently innocent of the fact that many were contrived as journalist bait. Then come sound bites from “experts” with vested interests in maximizing the impression of mayhem: generals, politicians, security officials, moral activists. The talking heads on cable news filibuster about the event, desperately hoping to avoid dead air. Newspaper columnists instruct their readers on what emotions to feel.

There is a better way to understand the world. Commentators can brush up their history—not by rummaging through Bartlett’s for a quote from Clausewitz, but by recounting the events of the recent past that put the events of the present in an intelligible context. And they could consult the analyses of quantitative datasets on violence that are now just a few clicks away.

CNS would never do that -- it's so much easier to push its right-wing agenda with misleading information.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:48 AM EDT
WND's Farah Tries to Nick A Little Credit For 'Left Behind' Books
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah has a weird habit of making grandiose and dubious (and evidence-free) claims about his past -- for instance, that he marched with Martin Luther King and he was "literally working shoulder to shoulder" with Bill Ayers and Tom Hayden in his left-winger days.

In his  July 26 WND column eulogizing right-wing author and activst Tim LaHaye, Farah writes this:

Here’s one of my favorite personal recollections.

In a former life, I made a living collaborating on books with others – including people like Rush Limbaugh, Hal Lindsey, Greg Laurie and many others.

Tim and I had discussed doing book projects together, but we never did.

One day in 1994, I believe, I called Tim with an idea for a project that had been in the back of my mind of more than 15 years. I had discussed it with other partners over the years, but it just kept getting put off in favor of other book projects.

The idea was a book called “Left Behind.”

As I was explaining it to him on the phone, he interjected, “Joseph, you’re not going to believe this, but I just signed a collaboration agreement and a publishing contract for that very title.”

The rest is history, as they say.

The book and its many sequels went on to sell tens of millions of copies and remain on the New York Times bestsellers list for over 300 weeks.

I had waited too long to make the call.

That's a weird little attempt to steal a little glory from LaHaye upon his death. Note that Farah is somewhat vague about what exactly he's stealing credit for -- he's definitely claiming having come up with the title "Left Behind," and he's sort of suggesting he may have thought of a similar plot.

Then again, Farah's fighting against the imminent failure of the business model behind WND, so someone else's financial success probably looks quite appealing.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:50 AM EDT
Wednesday, July 27, 2016
MRC Bashes Pretty Much Anyone Who Praised Michelle Obama's DNC Speech
Topic: Media Research Center

The idea that Michelle Obama's universally loved speech at the Democratic National Convention must not be praised apparently wasn't limited to -- it was apparently a companywide edict at the Media Research Center.

Post after post at the MRC attacked people in the media for committing the offense of saying nice things about Obama's speech, apparently believe that it is "liberal bias" to admit that her speech went over well.

Curtis Houck complained that the TV networks "gush[ed] over her “artfully painted” address featuring “trademark...grace” in attacking Donald Trump." Houck despised Obama's reference to the fact that the White House was built by slaves, denigrating the comment by sneering parenthetically that the White House "was gutted and renovated by multiple times post-slavery." Nicholas Fondacaro similarly called out people on CNN for praising the speech.

Semi-resident MRC New York Times-basher Clay Waters (who still gets to do so there, but not as the full-time employee he used to be) predictably bashed the Times' coverage of her speech, huffing that "The reporters misleadingly sold Michelle Obama’s First Lady persona as studiously nonpolitical."

Samantha Cohen was in full rant mode, grumbling that on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," "panelist after panelist took turns gushing over Michelle Obama." Cohen attacked co-host Mika Brzezinski for her "chilling remarks" that Obama's speech was "real" and "personal," unlike the "whitewash" she heard at the Republican convention. Cohen howled:

Shallow Brzezinski must have been brainwashed by Michelle Obama last night, because one of the most moving speeches at the RNC in Cleveland was delivered by Patricia Smith, the mother of Sean Smith, who was killed in the 2012 Benghazi attacks. That speech wasn’t real? That speech wasn’t personal? 

What may have been even more chilling than Brzezinski’s ignorance was co-host Joe Scarborough’s leap in likening Michelle Obama’s speech to Ronald Reagan.

Somebody should explain to Cohen the difference between "media research" and a mean-spirited personal attack. Or does the MRC not see a difference between the two anymore?

Posted by Terry K. at 2:58 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, July 27, 2016 6:56 PM EDT
CNS Reporter Weirdly Attacks Michelle Obama's Speech
Topic: reporter Susan Jones has a nasty habit of injecting editorial comment into her supposedly fair and balanced "news" articles -- you know, the exact same thing her employer, the Media Research Center, loves to accuse the "liberal media" of doing. She's so biased, apparently, that she cannot admit the near-universal bipartisan consensus that Michelle Obama gave a very good speech on the first night of the Democratic National Convention.

Jones had to find a way -- presumably under orders from editors Terry Jeffrey and Michael W. Chapman -- to denigrate the speech in her article on it, which seems to explain her very odd opening paragraph:

Children who need protection. Bullies and "hateful language from public figures." A White House built by slaves. Black SUVS and big men with guns. Little faces pressed up against the window. And at the end of First lady Michelle Obama's speech, an admission that "right now, this is the greatest country on earth."

Huh? What does that even mean? Is Jones so desperate to avoid saying anything nice about Obama's speech that she emulated a word cloud to open her article on it?

Much of Jones' article did find her in stenography mode summarizing the speech, but she couldn't resist getting one more dig in, adding at the end: "On the campaign trail in 2008, Michelle Obama made waves when she said, 'For the first time in my adult life, I am really proud of my country because it feels like hope is finally making a comeback.'"

This negative spin contrasts with Jones' effort to put a happy face on Ted Cruz's speech at the Republican National Convention, insisting that Cruz's "powerful speech" was "well-received until the very end, when it became clear he would not endorse Donald Trump."

Posted by Terry K. at 11:49 AM EDT

Newer | Latest | Older

Bookmark and Share

Get the WorldNetDaily Lies sticker!

Find more neat stuff at the ConWebWatch store!

Buy through this Amazon link and support ConWebWatch!

Support This Site

« August 2016 »
1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31

Bloggers' Rights at EFF
Support Bloggers' Rights!

News Media Blog Network

Add to Google