ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

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

Tuesday, May 22, 2018
CNS Reporters In Sync On Pushing Pro-Trump Talking Points
Topic: is never so slavishly pro-Trump as when it's clearly following orders from on high -- Terry Jeffrey? Brent Bozell? Sarah Huckabee Sanders? -- to push the Trump White House talking point du jour. For example, we caught them last month in one blatant example, in which it generated two entire agenda-driven articles about a single question during the Mike Pompeo confirmation hearing.

It does the same double-team talking-point drilling again. A May 9 article on Gina Haspel's confirmation hearing for CIA director dutifully repeats a conservative Republican senator's talking point:

During CIA nominee Gina Haspel’s confirmation hearing Wednesday, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) took issue with Sen. Mark Warner’s (D-Va.) assertion that the attorney general’s legal approval of the CIA’s interrogation program was a “get out of jail free card” for Haspel.

Cotton also wondered how many votes Haspel would receive if she were nominated by former President Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton if she had won the election.

“In fact, if you had been nominated by President Obama or if Hillary Clinton had won and nominated you to be CIA director, how many votes do you think you would have gotten to be confirmed as CIA director? You don’t have to answer,” Cotton said.

The next day, Susan Jones penned an article that pushed the same basic talking point from another angle, under the headline "Republican Senator: Democrats Hate Haspel Because Trump Nominated Her":

Sen. Jim Risch, an Idaho Republican, was asked by CNN if he could understand Democrats' concerns about interrogation methods used in the past that are now illegal:

"Well, sure," Risch said. "They hate anything that Donald Trump does in this town."

"The people in this town, many of them hate Trump so bad that no matter who he nominates, they're going to raise anything they can. You just hit the nail on the head, and that is that the interrogation had nothing to do with her. They're trying to get her to answer for this one. She was not involved in that," Risch said.

Well done, ladies. You have done the Trump White House a great service. The cause of journalism, however? Not so much.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:37 PM EDT
Klayman Goes Back Yet Again To The Clinton Conspiracy Well
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Last year, Larry Klayman thanked WorldNetDaily for letting him indulge his many, many conspiracy theories on its website over the years, particularly those involving the Clintons. (He didn't call them that, of course.) He's at it again in his May 11 WND column, complaining that Fox News won't indulge said conspiracy theories and giving him an opportunity to rehash them yet again:

The problem with much of the conservative media, including Fox News, is that the information spewed forth each night is massaged or censored to be politically correct and not to ruffle too many feathers. Unfortunately, the time for niceties has long since passed, as if it were ever a genuine consideration. This explains the popularity – no matter what the rabid leftist media thinks – of our President Donald Trump. The Donald, much like yours truly, does not hold back! Which president in modern American history would call judges who deserve it biased and dishonest, “rip a new one” for the corrupt Justice Department, its Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Central Intelligence Agency for its Deep State uncontrolled spying, not just on the commander in chief but also millions of Americans. Certainly not Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Hussein Obama, all part of the D.C. swamp!

Let me give you just a few examples, among many others, of what I am talking about. 

Back during the early days of Fox News, during the Clinton administration, it was verboten to talk on air about the likely cause of the death of White House Deputy Counsel Vince Foster, someone who was very close the first lady Hillary Clinton. Foster was in effect Hillary’s right-hand man and her former partner at the Rose Law Firm in Little Rock, Arkansas. It was rumored that Vince was also Hillary’s “main squeeze” during a time when she had not totally turned her attention to the feminine gender, such as with her apparent “significant other,” Huma Abedin.

Again, this is unvarnished politically incorrect speech I am writing! Hillary’s relationship with Abedin is not just idle gossip; it explains much of what went on at the Obama State Department with all its coordinated lies and obstruction, including the tragedy at Benghazi and the resulting cover-up. The then-secretary of state and her top assistant and “loyal” significant other covered for each other. But now back to Vince Foster.

Foster met his end at Fort Marcy Park, and many thought, including the courageous CEOs Joseph Farah of WND and Christopher Ruddy of Newsmax, both my friends and colleagues, that his death was no accident. Nor was it believed to be a suicide. How Foster died was important to explain many of the Clinton scandals, including IRS-gate, Filegate and Travelgate, including the hard fact that scores of material witnesses died during the Clinton years. According to testimony in oral depositions I took of Linda Tripp and others, they believed that Foster was the one mildly ethical person in the Clinton White House. Yet, he was also the person who, given his rumored affair with Hillary, also covered for her, much like Abedin today. He thus knew where all of the bodies were buried, figuratively and perhaps actually.

And, for good measure, he rehashed a couple Obama conspiracy theories:

The same logic applies to our former “Muslim in chief,” Barack Hussein Obama. That this president was half Muslim, and fully Muslim under Shariah law, among tens of other indicia of his Islamic loyalties, helps explain his antipathy toward Jews and Israel, much less Christians, and many other pro-Islamic acts as president, including his now Trump-trashed Iranian nuclear deal. Again, Fox News barred its broadcasters from ever mentioning Obama’s Muslim roots.

And, then there was the legitimate issue of Obama’s place of birth and fraudulent birth certificate, discussion of which was also largely banned at Fox News.

Notice that he never bothers to offer any legitimate proof that any of this is true. All that matters to him is pushing the conspiracies to keep his dwindling readership riled up.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:58 PM EDT
MR Latino Piece Tries Pushes Bogus Attack on Calif. Bill to Ban Conversion Therapy
Topic: Media Research Center

We've already noted how WorldNetDaily is distorting the facts around AB 2943, the proposed California bill that would ban effectively ban anti-gay conversion therapy in the state. Nnow, the Media Research Center has joined the party with a May 8 MRC Latino piece by Morela Scull, which repeats only anti-gay sources in attacking the bill. For instance, the gay-bashers at the Alliance Defending Freedom:

In an interview with the MRC, attorney Matt Sharp from the Alliance Defending Freedom explained that “AB 2943 infringes upon the First Amendment right of counselors, religious organizations and so many others to speak freely on the ability of people to find hope and to explore all options as it relates to their sexual orientation and gender identity. This bill, if passed, would restrict that freedom of speech, telling people that certain viewpoints like the idea that people can change is now off limits and declared fraudulent in the state of California.”

Sharp added that “the idea that people can change and find true joy in embracing and living out their faith is at the heart of many religions. California should not be telling people that such faith is fraudulent”.

Actually, what's fraudulent is conversion therapy -- which is the whole issue. You generally don't have the right n America to peddle fraudulent things. Sharp is not quoted as explaining how a fraudulent process furthers the "true joy" of religion, and Scull offers no evidence to bolster the implication she's peddling that conversion therapy is safe and effective.

Scull also plays the First Amendment card, quoting someone named "René Scull, from the free-market champion Atlas Network" (Morela Scull does not disclose what her connection is, if any, to this person with whom she shares a last name, though she really should have), asserting that “it is absurd to try to interfere with the commercialization of goods related with ideological postures or postures against social attitudes because the First Amendment guarantees freedom of speech. Violating the rules of the market converts these measures that are trying to be implemented in something not only illegal, but also interferes with a healthy process of supply and demand.”

Again, this misses the point. Conversion therapy has been largely proven to be ineffective and even damaging to clients. There is no First Amendment right to provide an ineffective and damaging service, regardless of the processes of supply and demand. It's also not a restriction on religious liberty to stop a fraudulent practice.

Scull concluded by huffing: "The ramifications of the legislation go far beyond considerations about being heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual or transgender; or about being a Christian or an atheist: it is mainly about the prohibition of freedom." No, it's pretty much limited to the former; people like Scull and the people she quotes don't believe being "homosexual, bisexual or transgender" deserves any consideration and that it should be stamped out. And that's where the real rights issue resides.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:30 AM EDT
Monday, May 21, 2018
WND Columnist Portrays Ex-Gays As A 'Rejected Minority'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

You may remember WorldNetDaily columnist Michael Brown is an anti-gay, anti-transgender activist who pretends to have compassion for them while simultaneously mocking them. Well, he's at it again in his May 7 column, portraying self-proclaimed ex-gays as "the smallest, most rejected minority in our country":

Their numbers are very small, since they came out of a small community to start with. And it is only a small percentage of that small group who make a break with the rest of the LGBT community.

Most of them make that break because of their religious faith, often newly found. Others make the break simply because they no longer want to identify as gay or bi or trans. But for making that break, they pay a steep price.

They are mocked and maligned and bullied by the community they once called home.

They are told they do not exist. They are assured they will fail. Their motives are questioned. They are called liars and mercenaries. They are even mocked for being so small in number (even if they number in the thousands or tens of thousands, that represents the tiniest slice of the population).

All this simply because they want to lead a new life, because they do not embrace their same-sex attractions (or their gender confusion.)

Shouldn’t they be applauded for their courage? Shouldn’t they be lauded for doing what they feel is right?

Really now, what can possibly be wrong with a man wanting to be married to a woman, having natural children of his own? Why on earth should he be penalized for that?

What can possibly be wrong with a woman wanting to be at home in her own body? Why on earth should she be criticized for that?

And why is it that we put ex-gays and ex-trans individuals under such intense pressure? If they have one slip-up, they’re called phonies. If they still struggle with attractions or gender confusion, they are told they haven’t changed. But why?

Brown then demonstrates how little he understands about sexuality by likening being gay to alcoholism and addiction to pornography: "There are plenty of former alcoholics who fell off the wagon for a season, only to get back on track. Do we ridicule them, or empathize with them and show them compassion? Many of them identify as recovering alcoholics. Why can’t someone identify as a recovering homosexual?

Brown then goes on to reveal his real reason for embracing ex-gays -- because they show that sexual preferences aren't immutable: "That’s why those who say, 'I used to be gay, but I’m free today' must be maligned. Their existence must be denied. Their ultimate failure must be assured. If change is possible – again, through divine intervention or through counseling or both – then the whole push for 'LGBT rights' can be questioned."

Which, of course, is the fallacy in Brown's activism -- he seems to not understand that people have the right to be who they are sexually. His implication is that if you can stop being gay, then you must stop being gay. He offers no evidence to support his claim that people who are gay are somehow not "free."

Brown laments that "the great majority of those who came out of homosexual practice and transgender identification simply want to live their lives," but he doesn't understand that the LGBT community want to do the same thing. He cares only that his version of Christianity gets imposed on everyone whether or not it violates their rights to live as they desire.

He concludes by doing more false likening of "homosexual behavior" -- a term that denies the existence of sexual orientation -- this time to lying, adultery and theft. That tells you how little regard he really has for people who live differently from him.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:19 PM EDT
CNS Managing Editor's Michael Moore Derangement Syndrome

A May 7 blog post by managing editor Michael W. Chapman is a massive tirade against filmmaker Michael Moore for marking the 200th birthday of Karl Marx. Chapman starts out this way:

Documentary filmmaker and left-wing activist Michael Moore, who has an estimated net worth of $50 million, effusively praised Karl Marx, the intellectual founder of Marxist Communism, a brutal idology that killed an estimated 100 million people worldwide in the 20th century, and whose Soviet leaders -- Lenin and Stalin -- inspired the German National Socialist Adolf Hitler.  

May 5 was the 200th birthday of Karl Marx (1818-1883), a constantly debt-ridden economist and revolutionary who is best known for his pamphlet, the Communist Manifesto

On May 5, Michael Moore tweeted, "Happy 200th Birthday Karl Marx! You believed that everyone should have a seat at the table & that the greed of the rich would eventually bring us all down."

"You believed that everyone deserves a slice of the pie," said Moore. "You knew that the super wealthy were out to grab whatever they could."

That same day, Moore also tweeted, "Though the rich have sought to distort him or even use him, time has shown that, in the end, Marx was actually mostly right & that the aristocrats, the slave owners, the bankers and Goldman Sachs were wrong... 'Happy Birthday, Karl Marx. You Were Right!"

Given Marx's teaching, clearly explained in the Communist Manifesto, and his legacy, Moore might as well have sent birthday wishes to Hitler, or Stalin or Mao or Pol Pot. 

Chapman never actually gets around to responding to what Moore wrote about Marx -- or anything Marx wrote in the Communist Manifesto, for that matter.He did, however, cling to his less-than-historical claim that communism and Nazism were one in the same because, um, Hitler and Stalin signed a nonagression pact:

Their allegiance to Marxist ideology was proven when Stalin allied with Hitler in 1939 and invaded Poland -- the leftist intellectuals had no complaints. During the 1930s, the Soviets graciously allowed Nazi troops to drill and practice war games on Soviet land. 

Chapman conveniently ignores the fact that Hitler was an anti-communist who expelled communists and Marxists from the German government when he gained power in 1933, having portrayed the Nazi Party as the only hope against a communist takeover of Germany. Chapman also forgets that Germany broke the alliance in 1941 by invading the Soviet-held portion of Poland and other areas under Soviet control under the pact.

But Chapman is mostly interested in right-wing, self-righteous  ranting against Moore for noting that Marx had a point:

It's not surprising that the multi-millionaire leftist Michael Moore supports Karl Marx, a man whose ideas led to the slaughter of 100 million people. In the 19th century and most of the 20th century it was the so-called "intellectuals" and leftist "artists" in the West who promoted Marx.


Like the Communist apologists of the past, Michael Moore is nothing more than a propagadist for Karl Marx, a man whose violent ideas sowed the fields of China, Russia, and Eastern Europe with blood. 

Moore's sentiments are repulsive and dangerous. He should be condemned for praising a man who is the moral and ideological equivalent of Adolf Hitler.

Mmore repulsive and dangerous than Chapman's disregard of facts in spewing his rabid case of Michael Moore Derangement Syndrome?

Posted by Terry K. at 2:08 PM EDT
Massie's Whataboutism Turns Into Historical Revisionism
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Mychal Massie's May 14 WorldNetDaily column is one long tirade of whataboutism -- and revisionist history -- an attempt to deflect from President Trump's history of lies and deceit by highlighting "what the pretenders before him did." For instance:

George W. Bush let two border agents rot in prison in defiance of a national chorus, my voice included, calling for justice for two brave public servants. Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean were sentenced to 11- and 12-year prison sentences, respectively. They shot – not killed, mind you – a Mexican illegal-alien dope smuggler who was apprehended as he attempted to smuggle several hundred pounds of marijuana across the border. The illegal-alien dope smuggler, named Osvaldo Aldrete Davila, was shot in the buttocks, i.e., butt, behind, arse, as he attempted to flee the agents.

The illegal-alien dope smuggler was granted a temporary conditional visitor’s visa in exchange for testifying against the brave border agents. The agents were fired and imprisoned Jan. 17, 2007. Ramos and Compean were found guilty of not being forthcoming regarding what had taken place at the time the illegal Mexican dope smuggler was wounded in his behind. He was wounded because he tried to escape.

Ramos and Compean were pilloried by a rogue judicial system, after being placed in a situation in which they understood that the Bush administration was trying to force amnesty for illegal aliens and open borders upon American citizenry. Thus the reason they made the decision to file a false report in attempt to cover up exactly what had happened.

Despite four years of united outcries from all quarters of America, including both sides of the political aisle, starting in 2005, Bush let the agents be persecuted and imprisoned, waiting until his last day in office to commute their sentences. This, despite the fact that Richard Skinner, Department of Homeland Security inspector general, later admitted and “apologized” that he had knowingly misled Congress per what factually happened.

Massie conveniently ignores the part where Ramos and Compean covered up their involvement by picking up their shell casings and failing to file an incident report, as well as the fact that pursuing fleeing suspects violated Border Patrol policy.

Massie also huffed: "Obama allowed a U.S. Marine veteran who had served honorably in Afghanistan to languish in a Mexican prison for nearly one year – during which time he was assaulted and held in solitary confinement. His crime was becoming directionally confused and unwittingly crossing the Mexican border with a firearm."

This is a reference to a Marine named Andrew Tahmooressi; as we noted the last time Massie referenced this case, even Tahmooressi's own lawyer belileved that diplomacy would have no effect on his case. After his release from Mexico, Tahmooressi later served a short prison term in Indiana for drug possession

Massie highlighted that "Donald J. Trump, citizen, wrote a personal check to help Sgt. Tahmooressi and family." He didn't mention that Trump's tweets about the case may have made it more difficult to get Tahmooressi freed.

Massie also indulged in his usual Clinton derangement, ranting that "Bill Clinton raped, battered and molested women, while Hillary sheltered him and personally denigrated his victims."

Massie concluded his column by declaring: "I am proud of President Trump. I wish the Constitution allowed him to serve several terms. If that were possible it might delay the impending doom that awaits the world and America when the Lord returns for His own."

Posted by Terry K. at 12:51 AM EDT
Sunday, May 20, 2018
MRC's Double Standard on TV Hosts' Alleged Conflicts of Interest
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center likes to take potshots at NBC "Meet The Press" host Chuck Todd's wife works as a Democratic communications strategist and once donated to Tim Kaine, at the time the governor of Virginia. The MRC recently brought it up again in an attempt to deflect from Fox News' Sean Hannity defending Trump lawyer Michael Cohen on TV without disclosing he's a Cohen client.

Clay Waters complained that the New York Times "shamelessly quoted NBC News political director and Meet the Press host Chuck Todd, excoriating Fox News’ ethical standards, without mentioning Todd’s own lack of disclosure." Jeffrey Lord also highlighted Todd's "conflict" as scrutiny into Hannity intensified.

But the MRC was much more defensive when it came to a Todd-like conflict involving another Fox News host.

A 2009 NewsBusters post by Noel Sheppard hyped how "Greta Van Susteren is clearly sick and tired of people accusing her of advising Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin." But he never bothered to explain the source of the accusation, as outlined by the Politico article to which he linked: Van Susteren's husband, John Coale, was among Palin's political advisers; the Washington Post further described Coale as among the "protecters of the Palin brand." The Huffington Post noted that "Van Susteren has enjoyed unparalleled access to Palin and her family, conducting several interviews from Alaska — most recently with new mom Bristol Palin," though Van Susteren insisted her husband's link to Palin was not responsible for that.

Two months later, Sheppard complained that "Politico on Saturday accused Greta Van Susteren of being Todd Palin's 'host AND handler' at a pre-White House Correspondents' dinner brunch, and the Fox News host is none too pleased. Sheppard gave Van Susteren space to point out that Palin was a guest of hers at a "social brunch" and intervened when another reporter tried to interview him by pointing out the brunch was off the record. Sounds more than a little like a handler's job, doesn't it?

The capper? In 2010 and 2011, Sheppard touted Palin appearances on Van Susteren's show without mentioning her familial links to Palin. And in 2013, NewsBusters' Randy Hall devoted a post to Van Susteren gushing over Palin's return to Fox News after a yearlong absence -- without any mention whatsoever that her husband served as a Palin adviser or that Van Susteren herself played media handler for Palin's husband.

It appears that, as far as the MRC is concerned, these sorts of conflicts of interests are conflicts at all when you work for a conservative "news" organization.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:58 PM EDT
Newsmax Columnist Gushes All Over Melania Trump
Topic: Newsmax

If Doug Wead was ever an objective reporter on the presidency, he stopped being so some time ago, what with his pro-Trump insta-book after the 2016 election and his bizarre conspiracy theory that there's a secret list of Bill Clinton's sexual assault victims.

Wead's pro-Trump sycophancy reaches new heights in a May 8 Newsmax tribute to Melania Trump about which the term "embarrassingly fawning" fails to do it justice:

We may be witnessing the unfolding story of one of America’s greatest first ladies, Melania Trump. And on this upcoming Mother’s Day, May 13, an example of a dedicated mother who puts her child ahead of other justifiably demanding, distractions.

Melania has been first lady for almost two years now. She continues to quietly and gracefully move through her public duties as wife of the president. While political storms rage all around her, she keeps her head held high, with poise, beauty, and a humble grace.

Her dignified performance is made all the more powerful when contrasted by a shrill and hysterical, corporate media, still angry that their chosen candidate lost the 2016 presidential election. Every negative thing her husband says and does is amplified while his remarkable economic and foreign policy record is ignored.


In history, Slovenians won their revenge by quietly succeeding, not through violent domination of their opponents.

This seems to be the first lady’s style. She maintains a dignity that makes her all the more mysterious when her critics rage. Sometimes she wins just by being still. And in some cases she is succeeding through her fashion sense, which is stunning, no easy thing.

So today, the media is in a frenzy about borrowed words from an old FTC document, as if it were sacred script that cannot be re-used. Tomorrow it will be something else.

Meanwhile, Melania, our beautiful, graceful first lady, whose life will one day cover entire bookshelves in libraries, can knock around the private quarters of the White House today, with a T-Shirt emblazoned with her wonderful new slogan for America’s youth, words that represent New York City meets Ljubljana — "Be best."

Apparently, Wead thinks he's "being best" when he slides into full Trump-fluffing mode.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:33 AM EDT
Saturday, May 19, 2018
What LGBT Stuff Is The MRC Freaking Out About Now?
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center keeps freaking out about LGBT stuff, so we have no choice but to document those freakouts.

Gabriel Hays complains that Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos is using his publication to push an "LGBT agenda" by its publishing a story about how communities in the hunt for Bezos-run Amazon's second headquarters should show consideration of the "rights for and acceptance of gay and transgender people." Hays doesn't explain how treating all people the same is an "agenda."

Dawn Slusher is unhappy about gay and transgender storylines in the "ultra-liberal" TV show "Rise," lamenting that "Catholic student Simon (Ted Sutherland) appears to finally give in to his feelings for his male castmate in the school’s controversial play." Slusher later whined: "Too bad we can't see all the tears from conservative viewers, if there are any watching. This will, God willing, get canceled."

Slusher continued her hate-watching of "Rise," huffing that a later episode "heavily implied that Catholic father Robert, who opposes the controversial school play and his son's role as a gay character, is really just “afraid” of the play because Robert is secretly gay himself."

Jay Maxson attacks a writer who calls for more openly gay pro athletes, complaining that the writer is "really psyched about two homosexual college football players" and thus believes that "the sexual confusion of high school and college athletes is encouraging."

Hays showed up once again to bash actor Jim Parsons:

Jim Parsons, the nerdy face of CBS’ Big Bang Theory desperately wants Hollywood to ratchet up the gay propaganda, and demands that audiences digest every bit of LGBT representation thrown their way. Even though it seems like every media production these days has that token gay or sexually ambiguous character -- far more than real-life representation -- we need to see way more, damn it!

When Parsons said he wanted to be "sick of too many gay rom-coms," Hays sneered, "We beat you to that, Jim."

Maxson adds a freakout over a news outlet merely covering something LGBT-related -- in this case, Yahoo News reporting on an LGBT summit hosted by the Minnesota Vikings. Maxson raged at former Vikings player Chris Kluwe for hosting the event, snidely dismissing him as a "has-been former punter" and "a nobody punter for the Vikes until he gained notoriety for his same-sex marriage activism," then ranted that the Vikings are "kissing up to Kluwe and his LGBTQ friends."

Finally, Slusher returns one more time to gleefully dance on the grave of "Rise" following its cancellation. She rehashed all the plot points she hate-watched, then concluded by sneering, "I, for one, have a big smile on my face knowing this liberal garbage is over for good, never to 'rise' again." Apparently, hate is more important than professional writing when you hate-watch something for the MRC.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:13 AM EDT
WND's Cashill Defends George Zimmerman -- Again
Topic: WorldNetDaily

So far this year, WorldNetDaily columnist Jack Cashill has come to the defense of a convicted felon who falsely claimed he had sex with Barack Obama, a credibly accused terrorism suspect (who has since been convicted of plotting to bomb an apartment complex housing Somali refugees) and the Missouri governor accused of trying to blackmail his mistress. Why wouldn't he run to the defense of George Zimmerman once again?

You might remember that Cashill wrote a WND-published book trying to portray Zimmerman as a civil-rights martyr and the teenager he killed, Trayvon Martin, as a scary black thug. Now Zimmerman has gotten himself in trouble again -- this time for stalking, threatening and harassing a private investigator working on a documentary about Martin. Cue Cashill to initiate the whitewash treatment, which he does in his May 9 WND column.

But first, Cashill rehashes the narrative he's so invested in: Martin was "an aspiring MMA fighter" who "was high at the time he attacked Zimmerman," while Zimmerman was, yes, "a civil rights activist."

Cashill then uncritically served up Zimmerman's defense for his stalking and threats:  He was a victim of "entrapment," the investigator had contacted relatives using "a variety of subterfuges to circumvent security," andZimmerman "decided to turn the tables on Warren and harass him back."

Needless to say, Cashill and Zimmerman offer no proof of any of this.

Maybe Cashill should spend less time defending the indefensible and more time trying to figure out why nobody takes him seriously.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:26 AM EDT
Friday, May 18, 2018
NewsBusters Blogger Whines That MSNBC Won't Promote Fox News
Topic: NewsBusters

Randy Hall whines in a May 9 NewsBusters post:

While observing World Press Freedom Day on May 3, MSNBC aired an advertisement encouraging viewers to watch not just that liberal channel, but also follow more than 25 other left-leaning sources and newspapers while not mentioning Fox, the most-watched news network on cable TV.


On the print side, it included newspapers as The GuardianFinancial Times, USA Today, The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Sun-Times, Baltimore Sun, Philadelphia Enquirer, Florida's Sun Sentinel, The Daily Press (Newport News, VA), the Sun (Naperville, Illinois), and the New York Daily News.

Also mentioned were BBC News, the global Inter Press Service and magazines like New York Magazine, The New Yorker,  and The Atlantic.

The closest the advertisement to conservative outlets were the Wall Street Journal and National Review.

But Hall never proves that any -- let alone all -- of these outlets are "left-leaning." Apparently, he's just parroting the MRC's propganda that any media outlet that's not as far to the right as Fox News is "liberal." And his suggestion that the Wall Street Journal (owned by Fox News' Rupert Murdoch) and National Review are merely close to conservative and not actually conservative is ridiculous.

Hall spends the rest of his post complaining that the MSNBC ad didn't offer Fox News as an option. But he didn't note whether Fox News ran a similar ad to mark World Press Freedom Day -- probably because if it had, it almost certainly wouldn't have told people to watch MSNBC. Does Hall really think otherwise?

Posted by Terry K. at 1:44 PM EDT
WND Promotes Dinesh D'Souza's Fake News
Topic: WorldNetDaily

An anonymous WorldNetDaily writer does a fine job of stenography in a May 7 article:

Conservative filmmaker and author Dinesh D’Souza is calling revelations that comedian Rosie O’Donnell made repeated, “oversized” donations to Democrats – using five addresses and four different names –”an egregious violation.”

In 2014, D’Souza was fined $30,000 and forced to serve five years probation and eight months in a confinement center after he gave $20,000 to Wendy Long’s run for the U.S. Senate. In a tweet Monday, D’Souza suggested there’s a double standard in how his case was handled in comparison to O’Donnell’s.

He tweeted: “Justice isn’t merely about whether you broke the law – it is also about whether others similarly situated receive the same penalty #Rosie.”

A New York Post investigation revealed Saturday that O’Donnell made large donations that exceeded legal limits to at least five Democratic Party candidates.


But D’Souza said the facts indicate O’Donnell knew she was breaking the law.

“It seems clear, from what we know, that Rosie broke the law and she broke the law five times,” D’Souza told Fox News.

“What makes it particularly sneaky on her part is that she used four different names and five different addresses,” he said. “It seems clear that she knew what she was doing and she tried to cover her tracks.”

D’Souza continued, “You exceed the campaign finance limit, and the law is the law whether you actually know it or not.”

In fact, D'Souza was pushing fake news -- so much so that other conservative outlets came to O'Donnell's defense. Becket Adams of the conservative Washington Examiner points out that O'Donnell's donations were effectively made under the same name, adding:

If her aim was to avoid detection, having her occupation (“comic”) and employer (“Showtime”) included on the receipts seems like an odd choice. And let’s not lose sight of the fact that her name is on every single filing (how do you think the Post and the Washington Examiner found them?). Lastly, it’s probably worth mentioning that it is common for the recipient of a campaign donation to fill out the necessary FEC forms.

Put more plainly, it's more likely that O’Donnell was careless rather than nefarious. She's also probably in the clear, especially considering that excessive contributions are routine, non-felonious issue for the FEC. They are so routine, in fact, that there’s a page on the agency’s website dedicated to this specific issue.

Adams then reminds us of what, exactly, D'Souza did and why he's full of crap:

Now, let’s compare all of this to D’Souza, who is playing the victim angle hard this week.

D’Souza pleaded guilty in May 2014 to using straw donors to funnel an estimated $20,000 to a New York Senate candidate. He enlisted the aid of two acquaintances, a friend and a woman with whom he was romantically involved, to carry out the illegal donations. D’Souza promised that he would reimburse them later. This is all illegal, which is why he was sentenced to serve eight months in “community confinement.”


There’s a significant difference between over-contributing, which is a routine matter, and using straw donors, the latter of which is a felony. D’Souza is guilty of the latter. There’s no real comparison between his $20,000 felony and O’Donnell giving a combined $5,400 in over-the-limit contributions to five candidates. D’Souza used personal acquaintances as donor mules, and now he’s playing the victim. 

No thank you.

WND could have easily fact-checked D'Souza; it chose not to. Thus, WND is once again publishing fake news -- one of the things that contribued to its near-death experience earlier this year, even if Joseph Farah won't admit it.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:41 AM EDT
CNS Doesn't Mention Oliver North's Iran-Contra Scandal

If you were a news outlet writing a story on someone, wouldn't you mention the thing for which that person is most famous?

If you were a real news outlet, yes. But we're taking about here, which is in thrall to right-wing ideology and associated activist groups like the National Rifle Association.

Thus, the May 7 article by managing editor Michael W. Chapman on Oliver North being named NRA president describes him as a "decorated veteran, best selling author, and former National Security Council member" and gushing quotes from NRA official Wayne LaPierre -- but no mention whatsoever of the one thingthat catapulted him to fame -- his involvement in the Iran-contra scandal.

Chapman shoved down the memory hole the fact that North is only technically not a convicted felon, with his convictions on destroying documents, obstructing Congress and taking a bribe dismissed only because of having been granted immunity for his congressional testimony.

A follow-up story by Susan Jones the next day touted a North appearance on "Fox & Friends" (of course) in which he said various pro-NRA things. Jones similarly failed to mention North's role in the Iran-contra scandal.

Again, this is CNS, where it's all about the ideology, not about the journalism.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:58 AM EDT
Thursday, May 17, 2018
WND's Fake Democrat Laments the Decline of 'Real Men'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We've identified WorldNetDaily columnist Bob Just as a "WND Democrat" who claims to be a member of the Democratic Party yet does nothing but bash the party he supposedly belongs to. He does a little bit more of that in his May 2 column.

Headlined "Guns and guts: Why effete media fear real men," Just seems to be trying to latch onto the big damn manly trend WND columnists have been pushing recently. He throws in meaningless and gratuitious shots at "the leftists who control my party" and "my increasingly un-American Democratic Party." But it's mostly about complaining that boys aren't taught to be men -- well, Just's idea of a man, though he looks a little effete himself:

Sadly, teaching masculinity to boys is increasingly rare – unless you are on the football team. Most all-male schools like the one I attended (founded in 1709) are a thing of the past. Yet, they once provided a great service by showing boys “what it means to be a man.”

And don’t think the old code of “women and children first” is relegated to the days of the Titanic. That ethic will never leave us. Who of us would have accepted the James Cameron 1997 “Titanic” if he showed Leonardo DiCaprio allowing Kate Winslet to drown so his character might live on to tell their love story?

But does this means that women who accept the sacrifice of men are cowards or wimps? Of course not! It means they respect men. You can be sure the women of the real Titanic would have gladly also drowned if it meant protecting their children.

This is “the code” – the traditional understanding of duty and responsibility. It’s as deeply connected to the gun issue and our freedom as it is to our personhood. And it will always be such in America if this nation is to survive. Effete cultures have no future.

He goes on to bizarrely complain that boys were hiding along with the girls as the Columbine killers were shooting at them: "Didn’t anyone teach those boys what it means to be a man? Didn’t anyone teach them to take responsibility in a moment like that?" He doesn't mention that any boy who did that would likely have been murdered too.

Would a real man prtend to be a member of a political party that stands for everything he despises? Yet that's what Just is doing.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:41 PM EDT
The Worst Hot Take Ever on Michelle Wolf, Courtesy of the MRC
Topic: Media Research Center

Needless to say, the Media Research Center was incensed by Michelle Wolf's comedy routine at the White House Press Association Dinner, cranking out post after outraged post about it. But it was even more incensed at the the idea forwarded by some commentators that Wolf's provocative language was no different than that of President Trump -- which led to a ridiculous hot take that didn't even make it to the MRC.

The MRC works with conservative, Trump-fluffing Washington Examiner writer Paul Bedard to produce a weekly "Mainstream Media Scream" that gives Bedard a way to fill space and a way for the MRC to promote its latest "liberal media" outrage. For the one about Wolf, Bedard highlighted those likening Wolf's language to Trump, then quoted the MRC's Brent Baker retorting: "When has Trump ever disparaged someone’s physical appearance in front of them? Wolf displayed a new low for public discourse, yet after three years of decrying Trump’s caustic comments, these journalists rationalize bad behavior by their profession’s chosen dinner entertainer by reflexively lashing out at Trump instead of holding accountable those who chose Wolf. That illustrates so well why Trump supporters have such disdain for journalists."

Yes, Baker is actually suggesting that Trump is better than Wolf because he doesn't insult people to their faces (that we know of, anyway, though Kirstjen Nielsen might beg to differ).

When you're resorting to that level of sycophancy and whataboutism to try to make Trump look good, you know the MRC are made Trump men.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:00 PM 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

« May 2018 »
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