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Monday, September 9, 2019
Newsmax Columnist Tries To Claim Ben Franklin Endorses Trump
Topic: Newsmax

Stephen B. Presser's Aug. 27 Newsmax column carries the goofy headline "Ben Franklin Would Be All In for Trump 2020." He never quite gets around to making that case, though.

Much of Presser's column is devoted to riffing on Franklin's comment "A republic, if you can keep it" by claiming that republics are better than democracies and, by implication, that the Republican Party is better than the Democratic Party. He then rather abruptly shifts into partisan mode for a tired political argument:

In the Barack H. Obama administration, in a manner that departed from the rule of law, an effort was implemented to concentrate much more power in the federal government.

In that administration, a far-from-disinterested bureaucracy (especially in the Department of Justice (DOJ) and our intelligence agencies) came close, as we are now coming to understand, to deciding to shred the constitutional scheme of presidential selection, to promote a favored candidate (Mrs. Clinton) and, eventually to seek to depose a duly-elected chief executive (Donald Trump).

President Trump, and his administration now understand this, and he and they are determined to continue his ongoing effort to reverse the flow of power to the bureaucracy, or as they call it reining in "the deep state" or "the swamp."

The Democrats, whose candidates have their own plans for increasing taxes, restricting private property, implementing some form of socialism, and redistributing resources to meet the selfish needs of their core constituencies, fail to understand that their program would fatally undermine the Framers’ design.

Republicans in 2020 are, in the President’s new campaign slogan seeking "to keep America great," simply striving to preserve small "r" republican government itself.

Of course, there's little proof outside right-wing fever swamps that the Obama administration used the federal bureaucracy to stop Trump (Presser writes not only as if it existed and also that it succeeded), while there's growing evidence that Trump cares less about maintaining a republican form of government and more evidence that he's using the levers of goverment to enrich himself. And Republicans care less about republican government than about getting a corrupt man re-elected.

Presser won't tell you any of that, of course. In addition to the cumbersonmne title of "Raoul Berger Professor of Legal History Emeritus at Northwestern’s Pritzker School of Law," he was also a "Visiting Scholar in Conservative Thought and Policy at the University of Colorado's Boulder Campus," whatever that is.

Presser can't make the case that Trump is a conservative or a small-government republican, so he will trot out the usual right-wing attacks against Democrats.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:35 PM EDT
MRC Defends Google-Hating Researcher And His Dubious Work
Topic: Media Research Center

Robert Epstein is the Media Research Center's favorite Google-hating researcher. His claim to be a Hillary Clinton supporter gives him cover to be a conserative darling pushing claims that Google is biased against conservatives -- which conveniently fits in with the MRC's anti-media agenda.

A September 2018 post by Corinne Weaver touting the anti-Google film "Creepy Line" noted how Epstein supplied the film's title: “Google crosses the creepy line every day. ... Google can shift the voting preferences of undecided voters by up to 80 percent in some demographic groups just by altering the order in which search results are shown."

A couple days later, Weaver cited how Epstein "told the Media Research Center that Google was building personal profiles of users mainly through Gmail" and that "conservatives have 'special reasons to be concerned' based on the leaked emails and videos from Google concerning the 2016 election." Weaver added that "Epstein clarified that he was not a conservative."

A few days after that, Weaver got another "exclusive statement" from Epstein dismissing a Stanford University study highlighting the large number of conservative websites that push fake news, echoing Weaver's suggestion that Stanford has a pro-Google bias because Google's founders were Stanford graduates and have donated money to the school, though neither offered any specific evidence that this particular study was influenced by Google money. Weaver even pushed an article Epstein did for the pro-Trump Epoch Times that purported to explain "10 ways that Google and Facebook could affect the midterm elections.

In a November post, Weaver intoned: "The scariest thing about Google Search is the algorithms and changes that users don’t see. Dr. Robert Epstein of AIRBT (sic: the American Instistute for Behavioral Research and Technology, of which Epstein is the apparent sole staff member) has spent years studying Google and the algorithms behind it." In a July 11 post, Alexander Hall gushed that the "prolific American psychologist, journalist, and author" Epstein "will soon unleash a report that he claims will bring down Google." And an Aug. 20 item reprinted MRC chief Brent Bozell's letter to Google, signed by other "conservative leaders," citing Epstein's claims of "pro-liberal bias" in a demand that Google "explain reports and allegations that the search engine is attempting to block conservative sites and exclude voices that don’t fit the liberal narrative."

But the MRC has a conservative narrative to push, and Epstein is a big part of that. So when Hillary Clinton and other media outlets pointed out the flaws in Epstein's research, the MRC rushed to his defense.

In an Aug. 21 post, Weaver claimed that Epstein was "smeared" by Clinton and CNN over his finding that "Google had helped influence 2.6 million votes in favor of Hillary Clinton in 2016," gushing that Epstein "responded with his first ever 'twitter storm,' in essence factually disarming Clinton’s comment."

Well, not so much. Clinton had claimed that Epstein's research "was based on 21 undecided voters," which is effectively true. Epstein's paper -- which examined whether Google search results could influence the voting preference of undecided voters in the 2016 presidential election -- says that his research was based on the work of 95 people, 21 of whom were undecided, meaning that his conclusions were, in fact, based on how those 21 undecided voters reacted. In that tweetstorm, Epstein objected by citing the "3,207 election-related searches & the 98,044 web pages linked to those searches," which he claimed showed "substantial pro-Hillary bias."

But as the Washington Post pointed out, the paper doesn't explain how it determined whether a given website exhibited "pro-Hillary bias" -- which makes us wonder if it's using methodology from groups like AllSides that push the right-wing narrative that mainstream media outlets, which typically populate news searches, are reflexively "liberal" -- nor did it describe how those "election-related searches" were conducted. Epstein also apparently threw out results that were unbiased based on a conspiracy theory that "perhaps Google identified our confidants through its gmail system and targeted them to receive unbiased results."

Weaver also bashed a CNN article debunking Epstein's study, complaining that it "cited the opinions of two academics who disagreed with Epstein," then huffed: "The issue is that in the world of academic studies, one can always find two academics to either agree or disagree with you. That’s not a litmus test for accuracy or truth."

Of course, Weaver did not mention the nature of those academics' objections. One noted that even if such search bias did exist, "Epstein has failed to establish that any such biases have had anywhere near the magnitude of impact on American presidential voting that Epstein suggests," while the second pointed out that the study "did not take into account how much a voter might care about a particular subject" or "how people's voting preferences might have been affected by other technological platforms, such as Facebook, which he said was 'quite clearly gamed by third parties' in 2016."

Weaver further repeated Epstein's defense of himself:

Epstein also defended the integrity of his work, which Clinton dismissively referred to as a “debunked study.” He asked, “If my work has been "debunked," why was it included in a volume just published by #Oxford U.? Why have I been invited to speak about it at prestigious venues worldwide: #Stanford U., #Yale Law School (where both you & Bill went), even our #Senate.”

Weaver would never admit that getting published in a prestigious journal is no guarantee of credibility, as The Lancet learned when it published since-discredited research on vaccines and autism. But Epstein has his own issues in that department as well. Slate reported that Epstein supplied seven pages of citations to support his congressional testimony in July in which he rehashed the above study, "but all of them are papers or op-eds he wrote or co-wrote himself" and only one of those products was peer-reviewed, though "even that study didn't demonstrate that this has actually happened."

Yes, there are obvious problems with Epstein's research. But because his work advances the MRC's narrative, it won't tell you about them.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:00 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, September 9, 2019 4:17 PM EDT
Birther Revisionism: WND Still Blaming Hillary, Censoring WND's Key Role
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Joe Kovacs used a July 31 WorldNetDaily article to highlight a claim by Ttrump surrogates Diamond and Silk that Hillary Clinton might have been racist for her "involvement in the hunt for Barack Obama's true birthplace." Kovacs added:

It was operatives for Mrs. Clinton who sparked the entire controversy over Obama's natural-born citizenship during the 2008 campaign when Clinton was in a tight contest for the Democratic presidential nomination. Obama was able to fend off Hillary and eventually win the presidency, but his status of a being a natural-born citizen as the U.S. Constitution requires dogged his years in office, with Trump himself getting into the fray, urging the release of Obama's real birth certificate.

Yeah, no. PolitiFact documented that while a 2007 Clinton campaign memo pushed the idea of thing after Obama's "lack of American roots," it was never acted upon. Disgruntled Hillary supporters -- not campaign "operatives" -- embraced birther claims after she suspended her campaign, but the campaign itself never pushed it.

In other words, Kovacs is lying. He's also lying by omission as well, curiously failing to mention what was the defining story of his employer's and its signature issue from 2008 to 2016: pushing birther conspiracy theories.

Kovacs also did not mention that not only did WND work behind the scenes with Trump to push those conspiracy theories,  it responded to the release of Obama's "real birth certificate" by concocting another conspiracy theory, that it was fake as well. 

Then again, Kovacs doesn't want to admit the natural conclusion to Diamond and Silk's claim: If Hillary is racist for having a preliminary discussion about Obama's origins, then WND is absolutely racist for pursuing birther conspiracy theories so aggressively and maliciously, as if the birth certificate was Obama's Vince Foster.

It's as if Kovacs and WND don't want to take responsibility for what they publish, or something.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:12 AM EDT
Sunday, September 8, 2019
Flashback: When The MRC Loved Joe Walsh
Topic: Media Research Center

Nicholas Fondacaro devoted an Aug. 25 post to complaining that media outlets were giving a "platform to Trump’s Republican challengers," particularly Joe Walsh. (No complaint, however, about how the MRC's "news" division,, was giving a platform to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's challengers.) Fondacaro huffed that Walsh is a "never-Trump Republican" and that while ABC host and "Clinton lackey" George Stephanopoulos did highlight some of Walsh's controversial tweets, "they omitted ones far worse," adding, "If Trump had tweeted that, the media would rightfully be all over him."

You know who else couldn't care less about those controversial Walsh tweets? Fondacaro and the MRC -- at least until he became a never-Trump Republican. In fact, the MRC absolutely loved Walsh when he was being provocative as a "Tea Party congressman."

Let's take a look back:

  • In a February 2011 post, Scott Whitlock defended Walsh against an MSNBC anchor who was "attacking a conservative Congressman for advocating severe spending cuts."
  • In April 2011, Matthew Balan complained that an NPR host labeled Walsh as "intransigent" for not wanting to compromise with Democrats on Tea Party priorities.
  • That same month, Alex Fitzsimmons cheered when Walsh, during an MSNBC appearance, attacked the anchor "on why he and his colleagues are such Obama sycophants, pointing to the media's unwillingness to criticize the Democratic president for ignoring entitlement reform in his initial budget blueprint.
  • Noel Sheppard similarly gushed that "Walsh made a fabulous point about how the press gave Obama a pass this week with his budget redo as they were mercilessly attacking Congressman Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.)."
  • In May 2011, Eric Scheiner did some PR work for the then-congressman, noting that "Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) has made a video to go along with a letter to President Obama, in which Walsh expresses his concern over the president’s recent comments on immigration."
  • In July 2011, Matt Hadro touted how Walsh "twice called out the media for protecting President Obama on Thursday night's In the Arena, and told host Eliot Spitzer to his face that 'you're doing a much better job of making [Obama's] case than he did.'"
  • Scott Whitlock followed with more gushing: "Republican Congressman Joe Walsh didn't put up with Chris Matthews' 'bullying' on Tuesday, mocking the liberal MSNBC anchor for his effusive praise of Barack Obama. Over the host's frequent interruptions, the Illinois Representative taunted, 'Hey, Chris, your President, who sends a tingle up your leg-'"
  • In August, Hadro whined that "CNN's Don Lemon gave softball interviews to three Democrat congressmen who voted against the [debt ceiling compromise] bill, while scrutinizing Tea Party Congressman Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) for his opposition."
  • In September 2011, Whitlock wrote a post headlined "Rep. Joe Walsh Educates Martin Bashir: 'Your Profession Did Not Vet' Obama."
  • In October 2011, Clay Waters complained that the New York Times did a "hit piece" on Walsh's finances, noting that he owed "more than $100,000 in child support," which seemed to contradict his message of fiscal responsibility.
  • In September 2012, Sheppard cheered even louder when Walsh said in a speech that "free contraception advocate Sandra Fluke" needs to "get a job." (MRC writers similarly slimed Fluke, and none have apologized.)

How much did the MRC love Walsh? He even got a sit-down with MRC chief Brent Bozell,  who loved Walsh's narrative-advancing claim that the media "are so vested" in Obama "not being a failure." This video was cross-posted at the MRC's "news" division,

The MRC even went all-in in defending Walsh against the deadbeat-dad charge. A February 2013 post by Matthew Sheffield complained about another newspaper "hit piece"  on the subject that "did not give him a chance to respond to the allegation before it ran with the piece." Sheffield added, "The story is completely false, according to Walsh but the paper printed it anyway."

What has changed between then and now? Walsh violated the new conservative omerta: No Republican is allowed to criticize Trump. Fondacaro should perhaps have told that to his readers to explain the MRC's flip-flop on Walsh.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:45 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, September 8, 2019 9:08 PM EDT
CNS Also Loves The Lazy 'Meathead' Insult of Rob Reiner

We've documented how the Media Research Center insists on identifying Rob Reiner as "Meathead" -- an acting role he hasn't played in more than 40 years and despite the fact he has become a director and producer of numerous successful and critically acclaimed movies since -- as a cheap, lazy insult whenever he expresses an opinion it doesn't like.

It turns out the MRC's "news" division,, embraces that lazy insult as well. An anonymously written Aug. 19 CNS article -- a "news "article, not a blog post -- carries the headline "Rob Reiner (AKA ‘Meathead’): ‘The President of the United States is a Lying Racist Criminal’" and tells us in the lead paragrah that "Actor and director Rob Reiner, who played ‘Meathead’ in the 1970s television program 'All in the Family'" said this.

The article also added that "Reiner frequently issues Tweets attacking Trump," but it did not explain why this particular tweet was somehow more newsworthy than the others. At no point does the anonymous CNS writer dispute Reiner's characterization of Trump, just complain that it was said.

The article is bizarrely illustrated with an 11-year-old photo of Reiner pictured with Hillary Clinton. Didn't Getty Images -- from which CNS pulled that photo -- have any more recent photos of Reiner that would be more timely and relevant? Or is CNS giving up on the pretense that it's different from its MRC parent and is now pushing the same partisan political attacks?

The question has to be asked: Is there any difference between CNS and the MRC anymore, other than the format in which the information is presented?

Posted by Terry K. at 11:22 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, September 8, 2019 11:35 AM EDT
Saturday, September 7, 2019
Tim Graham's False Choice
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Tim Graham devoted a July 25 post to complaining that CNN's Brian Stelter pointing out President Trump's lengthy record of lies and falsehoods -- and that conservatives simply accept and rationalize away those falsehoods -- is "implying something ideological, not something journalistic." Graham then huffed:

Donald Trump has a casual relationship with the truth. He can keep "fact checkers" very busy. But Stelter doesn't seem to realize that if you support free markets and/or orthodox religious values against the Libertine Left and/or a strong defense and border control, you have one choice in the coming election. They're not going to be persuaded to #Resist by CNN hosts who offer supportive segments to socialists on "Is the Media Fair to Socialism?"

But Graham and his fellow ideologues know they the do not have "one choice." If Trump's lies truly bothered him, he could support another Republican. (The fact that they don't is exemplified by Graham's refusing to say "lie" or "falsehood," eupemistically describing  Trump as merely having "a casual relationship with the truth.") There are other Republicans who lie less and still are sympatico with Graham ideologically. Does Graham really think Trump has core beliefs that mesh with his and is not simply glomming on to the conservative agendas as a way to hold power and generate support?

Graham is actually proving Stelter right -- Graham worships anyone with the power to push his agenda, and thus, he worships Trump because he currently has that power. Graham doesn't care that Trump doesn't actually believe what he's pushing; the agenda is all that matters, not the character of the person pushing it (despite that exposing how hollow the MRC's concern over character in politicians was during the Clinton years). He won't take the chance of choosing a Trump challenger with more personal integrity and ideological credibility because he's so devoted to the cause that it doesn't matter how compromised the person is who's pushing it.

Graham concluded by whining: "Clearly, Stelter is a very activist voice in the Sees a Liar Tribe, pushing the liberal media to be more opinionated. They have to say 'liar' and 'racist' and 'authoritarian.' That's CNN, constantly providing a free messaging service for the #Resistance." Graham, meanwhile, can't say those words; to do so would admit that he cares only about power, not integrity.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:43 AM EDT
WND's Massie Again Maliciously Portrays Kamala Harris As A Slut
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Right-wing commentator Tomi Lahren had to apologize for claiming that Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris slept her way to the top when even Fox News personalities called her out on the malicious smear. Michael Massie is not about to.

Massie has previously effectively called Harris a slut, even though it's not true. He took another malicious stab at it in his Aug. 26 WorldNetDaily column in the middle of an unhinged tirade against female congresswomen he doesn't like:

The current crop of psycho-socialist and communist-Islamist women taking over the Democratic Party are a pathetic gaggle of liars, harridans and crazies. Elizabeth Warren, who is less American Indian than she is donkey, defrauded taxpayers and other qualified employment candidates by claiming she was Cherokee Indian. 

Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib are festering miasmas of diseased dogma, hatred for America and visceral anti-Semitism. Omar is more immoral than Kamala Harris who slept her way up the political ladder by making herself sexually available to those (read anyone) able and willing to help her political ambitions.

Massie offers no evidence Harris made herself "sexually available" to "anyone." If he can't back this up, he might want to have a chat with an attorney if he wants to avoid being sued for libel.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:15 AM EDT
Friday, September 6, 2019
Tim Graham's Shocker: Public Radio Hosts Make ... Average Salaries
Topic: Media Research Center

Public radio-hating Tim Graham was apoplectic in an Aug. 20 post:

On Tuesday morning, syndicated talk-radio host Chris Plante mocked "National Panhandler Radio" for having some seriously high salaries for a taxpayer-subsidized network that begs for listener donations in pledge drives. Plante cited tweets by Washington Post media reporter Paul Farhi from the latest IRS 990 form for nonprofits revealing the high salaries of NPR stars. 

Plante marveled first at Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon, who is a one-day-a-week anchor and yet made $479,578. Farhi reported this was a 16 percent pay increase. Plante underlined "That is more than the President of the United States" for one day's work, and insisted he would love to get a job with that much pay for that little on-air time.


Farhi also noted Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep's salary is $509,680 (a 10.5 percent raise); and (now-retired) All Things Considered host Robert Siegel made $455,109 (up 5 percent).

The IRS form also reveals another Saturday NPR host -- Peter Sagal, hosting a game show called Wait! Wait! Don't Tell Me -- earning $394,091. That's making a president-level salary for uncorking nasty jokes like a fake book interview smearing George W. Bush as a drunk and Dick Cheney being the Grim Reaper.

Former Morning Edition anchor (now Special Correspondent) Melissa Block was listed at $323,836.

What's missing here, of course, is context -- Graham would rather have you believe that NPR hosts are overpaid without being challenged on it. But in fact, those salaries are very much in line what similar hosts make in the private sector, and typically, to attract talent, public broadcasting arguably must pay salaries commensurate with the private sector.

A 2015 survey showed that morning-show radio hosts can make as much as $400,000 a year depending on the market, and a nationally syndicated radio host can rake in as much as $ 1 million a year. Meanwhile, a 2018 survey showed the highest-paid national radio hosts making millions. For instance, Graham's idol, Rush Limbaugh, makes a reported $77 million a year.

Puts those NPR salaries in perspective, don't they? Not that Graham will ever concede that, of course.

Further, Plante and Graham's mocking of Simon for purportedly working only one day a week for that salary ignores the fact that there are hours of show prep involved to make that show. There's also the fact that Simon has hosted the show almost continuously since 1985 and has presumably earned a raise or two.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:20 PM EDT
WND Also Hid Google Whistleblowers' Far-Right Ties
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We've documented how the Media Research Center promoted claims by two former Google employees about alleged bias, while censoring their far-right politics. Well, WND did the same thing.

An Aug. 1 article by Art Moore featured how ex-Google employee Kevin Cernekee "is speaking up about the tech giant's treatment of employees with conservative political views, disclosing he was put on a company "blacklist" before being terminated." Those claims were repeated in an Aug. 8 article. WND also republished an Aug. 3 PJ Media article also rehashing Cernekee's claims.

But as Gizmodo documented<, Cernekee used internal Google message boards to promote a far-right crowdfunding platform that has defended the likes of neo-Nazi Richard Spencer and neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer. He also argued that documented neo-Nazi groups merely "reject racial supremacy." A former Google co-worker of Cernekee's criticized his "questionable viewpoints and questionable tactics" and said that his denials of being an extremist ring hollow.

WND mentioned nothing about that.

The same applied to Zachary Vorhies. An Aug. 14 article touted how "former Google insider" Vorhies had documents that purportedly provided "proof that Google has been manipulating the algorithms. This was followed by an Aug. 20 article on "conservative leaders" (including WND managing editor David Kupelian) demanding the Google "demanding that he explain the company's censorship of conservatives" based on Vorhies' alleged documents. The same day, WND published a column by Michelle Malkin hyping that "former Google software engineer Zachary Vorhies exposed how (online since 1999) was placed on a news blacklist banning my content from appearing on newsfeeds accessed through Android Google products."

But the Daily Beast reported that Vorhies "is an avid promoter of anti-Semitic accusations that banks, the media, and the United States government are controlled by “Zionists.” He’s also pushed conspiracy theories like QAnon, Pizzagate, and the discredited claim that vaccines cause autism." He has also accused "Zionists" of killing Andrew Breitbart and Israel of plotting the 9/11 attacks.

WND said nothing about that either.

Hiding important facts is not helping WND's ambition to be taken seriously as a news operation.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:31 AM EDT
Thursday, September 5, 2019
MRC Defends Right-Wing 'Disinformation Mill' -- Whose Owner Signs MRC Petitions
Topic: Media Research Center

Corinne Weaver's Aug. 22 Media Research Center item is a defense of Western Journal, a right-wing clickbait site run by longtime right-wing activist Floyd Brown and his son, from a New York Times profile of it that describes how it's a "disinformation mill" that churns out stories that tend to be "sensationalized, misleading or entirely made-up." But Weaver doesn't see anything wrong with Brown's operation -- suggesting it peddles nothing more than mainstream conservatism -- just with the "hit piece" the Times wrote about it:

The New York Times wants readers to believe that to be right wing is to be evil. 

In a scathing hit piece written about the conservative outlet Western Journal, Nicholas Confessore and Justin Bank smeared the website as a “potent online disinformation mill.” While the executive editor, Shaun Hair, admits openly that the content on the site is written from a conservative point of view, the Times sins it as “sensationalized, misleading, or entirely made-up.”


Hilariously, the very partisan Times criticized Western Journal for “using misleading headlines and sensationalized stories to attract partisans.” One of the criticized pieces was about the “so-called War on Christmans.” The site supposedly “profited from their anger.” There was no mention of how the Times pushed the Russian conspiracy for more than two years. 

The authors of the piece compared the Western Journal to President Donald Trump, saying that like Trump, it is battling Big Tech due to censorship. Whereas most liberal hit pieces decry conservative censorship as a conspiracy, this piece actually admitted that Google News blacklisted the Western Journal, as did Apple News.


Even worse, some of the people who wrote for the Western Journal didn’t use their real names! Perhaps not wanting the Times to do to them what it was doing to their publisher.

The entire point of the piece seemed aimed at justifying why Google and Apple blacklisted the site. It also claimed that Facebook down-ranked the site on its platform because of the false material.

Weaver offers no evidence that anything in the Times article is misleading or false, or even that the Western Journal didn't deserved to be downranked. It's unclear why this item even exists. 

Unless... it was done as a favor to Floyd Brown.

You see, Brown has been a signatory to several letters from "conservative leaders" over the past year or so promoting the MRC's causes du jour, usually regarding its bogus war on social media for purported bias against conservatives -- see here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here. The MRC has also quoted Brown issuinga  statement in support of a similar MRC-approved cause.

One can theorize that Brown would like to stop being thought about as a purveyor of fringe, false right-wing clickbait and would prefer that he be thought of as a mainstream conservative activist. What better way to do that than to ingratiate himself with solidly conservative folks like Brent Bozell and thet MRC? Interestingly, Bozell himself is tacking rightward, joining Brown and other far-right-wingers in signing an amicus brief supporting convicted felon Steve Stockman in his conspiracy theory that he was wrongfully convicted.

In that light, Weaver's piece can very well be seen as Bozell welcoming Brown to the mainstream conservative club.

P.S.: The Times article didn't note this, but the Western Journal is a direct descendant of the Western Journalism Center, founded by Joseph Farah in the early 1990s mostly as a vehicle to attack President Clinton, and from which WorldNetDaily sprang in 1998. One of the Brown-led WJC's earliest efforts after he took over in 2008-ish was a laughable "Case for Impeachment" of President Obama that was filled with factual errors and outright lies, not to mention pushed birther conspiracy theories.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:16 PM EDT
WND's Peterson Loves Men, Hates Women
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Last month, July, was our second annual White History Month. Whites are the most hated species on earth – for no reason. White men founded this country and made it great, but for some reason allowed so-called "people of color" to come in and malign them. Whites have refused to stand up, but have become cowardly and angry, giving in or fighting back in the wrong way. I want to see white men stand up and make America great again. President Trump represents a hopeful sign of an awakening among whites (and men), finally fighting back against the smears.

But second to white people, men are under attack. Like white people, men are beaten down, mistreated, lied about and "bullied." And now they're weak and afraid – sometimes assisting in their own destruction! Men are surrendering their countries, families and role as leaders to women! For this reason, last year I declared August Men's History Month. We desperately need to rebuild men, so they can rebuild their families and restore sanity and real justice (not "social justice").

President Trump, an honest man and alpha male, exposed the vicious hatred of men by the children of the lie. RINO Republicans, Democrats, leftist media and most Never Trumpers kiss up to evil liberal women while attacking good conservative men. Just as the Obama-supported #BlackLivesMatter movement pushed defamation of whites and police, so the #MeToo movement used dishonest, unforgiving, suggestible women to slander men. The dirty Women's March, organized by abortion giant Planned Parenthood and other far-left radicals, was a filthy attack on President Trump, men and unborn children.

Since growing up in the Jim Crow South, then moving to liberal Los Angeles at 18, I've seen men decline and become like women. Men were once logical, respected and fearless – like President Trump. Today, men are weak beta males, emotional, disrespected, afraid of women and controlled by their wives, if they ever even marry.

-- Jesse Lee Peterson, Aug. 18 WorldNetDaily column

Never has the Democratic Party been more obviously the female party than today. One liberal T-shirt reads, "The future is female." Democrats pretend to be for women – boasting several female presidential candidates and 89 female congressmen. But President Donald Trump, by being a man, has caused Democrats to expose themselves as white-hating, man-hating, God-hating members of the children of the lie. Weak beta males and females hate the president. Real men and logical women support Trump.

Consider the dirty Women's March for abortion, lying #MeToo movement against men, communist Antifa terrorists, fake news media, and America-hating, Israel-hating Democrat women of color. These people do not stand for freedom, truth or justice. They support mothers killing their babies up to the ninth month, even after birth, while the fathers have no "reproductive rights." They falsely accuse men and expect everyone to "believe women" who lie. They promote mental and spiritual illness like freakish transgender monsters reading to children in public libraries, and push so-called same-sex marriage, saying, "Love is love." But really they stand for hate.

If real men were in charge, if fathers were present and strong, not absent or weak beta males, this madness would not be happening. There is a natural order to life, created by God, that works when you follow it. That order is God in Christ, Christ in man, man over woman, and women over children. Just as men need Christ, so women need men to lead them and help them overcome emotions. Fathers protect children from the anger and emotions of the mothers, and lead by example. Men and women who love their fathers are clear-thinking and at peace.


Liberals "celebrated" black women in 2017 after Democrat Doug Jones defeated Alabama Judge Roy Moore in a U.S. Senate race. The children of the lie smeared Roy Moore, a straight white man, as a "racist" and "pedophile" because of his strong Christian pro-family values. Doug Jones, who has a homosexual son, supports everything destructive to black Americans: Abortion, illegal aliens, the fake idea of "racism," and radical "LGBT" crap. Ninety-eight percent of black females voted Democrat – not a sign of wisdom, but of mass-brainwashing. Of course the white liberal media and Hollywood praised the black women.

-- Jesse Lee Peterson, Sept. 1 WND column

(Peterson has always had issues with women.)

Posted by Terry K. at 2:29 PM EDT
CNS' Jeffrey Promotes Misleading Non-Citizen Arrest Numbers

CNS editor in chief Terry Jeffrey intoned in an Aug. 22 article:

Approximately 64 percent of the arrests that the federal government made in fiscal 2018 were of non-U.S. citizens, according to a report released today by the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Statistics.

That represents a dramatic change from just two decades ago, when approximately 63 percent of federal arrests were of citizens and only approximately 37 percent were of non-citizens.

According to the data for fiscal years 1998 through 2018 that the BJS released today, federal arrests of non-U.S. citizen first surpassed federal arrests of citizens in fiscal 2008.

What Jeffrey refused to explicitly report about the increase: it's being driven by the Trump administration’s crackdown on undocumented immigration, not by any notable increase in violent crime. Jeffrey is misleading his readers by touting these inflated numbers.

Jeffrey waited until the fifth paragraph of his article to mention this, then tried to spin it: "Although immigration and immigration-related offenses accounted for the vast majority of non-U.S. citizen arrests, non-citizens were also over-represented among those arrested for non-immigration offenses, according to the report." That spin of attempting to portray non-citizens as violent criminals continued:

“The five crime types for which non-U.S. citizens were most likely to be prosecuted in U.S. district court in 2018 were illegal reentry (72 percent of prosecutions), drugs (13 percent of prosecutions), fraud (4.5 percent), alien smuggling (4 percent), and misuse of visas (2 percent).”

“Non-U.S. citizens, who make up 7 percent of the U.S. population (per the U.S. Census Bureau for 2017), accounted for 15 percent of prosecutions in U.S. district court for non-immigration crimes in 2018,” said the report.

“In 2018,” it said, “non-U.S. citizens accounted for 24 percent of all federal drug arrests and 25 percent of all federal property arrests, including 28 percent of all federal fraud arrests,” said the report.

But as the Cato Institute's Alex Nowrasteh -- who conducted a study finding that non-citizens in the U.S. commit crimes at lower rates than citizens, a finding CNS' owner the Media Research Center tried and failed to discredit -- pointed out, those numbers are straight from the Justice Department and features "the most dramatic statistics displayed without context, nuance, or explanation — not a serious data analysis."

Jeffrey is putting pro-Trump sycophancy ahead of honestly reporting the facts. As CNS does.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:54 AM EDT
Wednesday, September 4, 2019
NEW ARTICLE -- MRC on Massacres, Part 2: Freakout Mode
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center felt the need to blame Dr. Seuss for the Dayton massacre, amid other odd rants and misfires -- plus a pre-massacre post that didn't age well. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:37 PM EDT
WND's Farah Briefly Returns -- And Is More Pro-Trump Than Ever
Topic: WorldNetDaily

For the first time since March, when he went silent after suffering a stroke, WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah has penned an original column. And to show that some things haven't changed because of his condition, Farah devoted his Aug. 21 column not only to fawning over President Trump -- recall that we had named Farah Trump's biggest fanboy in the ConWeb, no mean feat given the sheer amount of Trump sycophants working in that space -- but gushing over one of Trump's goofier ideas: buying Greenland. No, really:

Donald Trump thinks big.

You haven't heard the last of this. Mark my words.

Greenland is the world's largest island, not counting the continent of Australia. It is strategically situated near the North Pole. It has only 57,000 people regularly living on it. And it could be so much more.

First of all, there is the real estate.

You may have noticed the world is filling up. This country is a lot like Alaska. Its natural beauty would be a showplace, the envy of many others.

It's not for everybody. But for strategic foreign investors, who know a good thing when they see one – to prospect for a second gold rush, natural gas beds, diamonds, lead and zinc – it's all in Greenland.

How about beating the Chinese to the punch?

Donald Trump thinks big.

He was just asking how much. And don't think you've heard the end of this story. He's in it for the long haul.


Donald Trump is a visionary – whether or not his "Greenland Gambit" ever makes it.

He remembered the Louisiana Purchase. He recalls America's purchase of Alaska, which at the time was called "Seward's Folly."

If Trump makes history one day with the Greenland Gambit, he's a genius – even more of a leader than we already thought.

Either Farah's back to normal -- though he hasn't written a column since -- or he needs a little more recuperation time.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:22 AM EDT
Tuesday, September 3, 2019
MRC Is Mad Facebook Won't Validate Its Anti-Facebook Narrative
Topic: Media Research Center

In July, Media Research Center chief Brent Bozell issued a statement attacking Facebook for "allowing the ACLU and 90 left-wing organizations to dictate nearly every aspect of Facebook’s policies." The headline: "Facebook Shouldn’t Cave to Demands of Left-Wing Mob." Of course, Bozell would rather that Facebook cave to his right-wing mob, which has been flogging the narrative that Facebook is uniquely discriminating against conservatives, even as that narrative is continually undermined by the facts.

One of those caves to Bozell was that Facebook hired former Republican Sen. Jon Kyl to conduct an "audit" of whether the company is biased against conservatives, in which more than 130 conservatives were interviewed. An interim report issued Aug. 20 noted consrevative complaints about Facebook and conceded the company has work to do to gain their trust, but it did not document any conservative bias.

Naturally, that failure to bolster the right-wing narrative enraged the MRC. Corinne Weaver complained about the report's "non-endorsement of conservative complaints" and that "very few of conservatives’ actual concerns were voiced in the audit," adding that "the wording of some of the concerns was made to look as if conservatives believed things that were not true."

Bozell ranted that the report "refuses to publicly acknowledge that conservatives have been disproportionately affected by their content policies" -- though, again, he offers no evidence that's actually the case. Bozell further ranted about the failure to support his narrative: "We have waited over a year for Facebook to properly address the long list of issues raised by the conservative movement, but have received nothing of substance in return." So his mob will ramp things up: "We are set to meet with a group of distinguished attorneys to discuss issues relating to Big Tech's standing under section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, along with other possible responses, including anti-trust proposals."

This was followed by a letter from Bozell's Free Speech Alliance huffing that Kyl "shockingly left us with a hollow report devoid of substantive policy proposals" and adding: "No conservative leader or organization should accept this as a legitimate response to the undeniable issues we have raised." The letter's signatories include fringe right-wing figures as WorldNetDaily's David Kupelian, Floyd Brown of the Western Journal (an orgagnization founded by WND's Joseph Farah) and anti-Muslim activist Brigitte Gabriel (whom Bozell inexplicably graces with the "Lady" title).

When Kyl responded to the criticism coming from the likes of the MRC, Weaver went on the attack again, grousing that "The report was full of the same kind of language that made conservatives lose trust in Facebook. It treated the blatant censorship of conservatives on Facebook as a myth, without addressing any of the issues. " Che was particularly incensed that Kyl stated that "censorship of conservatives is a 'belief,' as opposed to a fact. He said that people who complained about Facebook 'felt that they were discriminated against.'" Weaver highlighted that "76 percent of conservatives already don’t trust Facebook" without noting the time and money spent by the MRC and other right-wing organizations to further that impression -- indeed, that particular finding came from a poll bought and paid for by the MRC.

Bozell repeated that poll finding in an Aug. 28 column for Fox News, dishonestly attributing it only to "one national survey." He went on to rant that the Kyl report "cleansed of the evidence and downplayed their criticisms. It didn’t even acknowledge conservative complaints as legitimate." But the narrative is more important to Bozell than the facts:

The report focused on the word “believe.” Kyl used it nine separate times. We are told, “many conservatives lost trust in Facebook, believing it discriminated against them.” It wasn’t many, it’s most; they don’t just believe, they know.

Where the far-left audit proposed two pages of “recommendations,” the Kyl report contained no such section. The conservative report delivered a wobbly-kneed discussion of “perceived bias,” while the left demanded, and received, change.


Facebook is now backpedaling and insisting Kyl’s report was only a first draft. Fair enough. Then Facebook must do what one does with a sloppy, incomplete first draft: Throw it away and start anew.

Bozell also cited anecdotal examples of what he framed as anti-conservative bias. But liberals can do that too; the liberal website Wonkette has pointed out how Facebook is refusing to let its subscribers see its posts by claiming it violated a policy against "clickbait." Funny how Bozell and Co. are not terribly up in arms about that -- particularly since it undermines their victimization narrative.

Meanwhile, the MRC is attacking Facebook on other fronts. Alexander Hall bashed Facebook's plans to reintroduce a curated news feed because an algorithm-driven feed run by journalists (and you know how much the MRC hates journalists) might exclude conservative-friendly items. Hall even tried to co-opt a liberal argument that an algorithm can be programmed for bias, albeit with a not-terribly-helpful example: "If a programmer trains an algorithm to filter out an opinion as extreme or hateful for example, a critical story could be made to never see the light of day."

Weaver returned to criticize Facebook for failing to make some data sets available to researchers -- laughably ironic because the MRC consistently refuses to make public the full data that backs up its so-called studies claiming "liberal media bias."

The narrative must be preserved, after all. Facts are secondary.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:49 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, September 3, 2019 6:50 PM EDT

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