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Saturday, September 5, 2020
Antoher WND Columnist Wants Us To Ignore Trump's Sleaziness
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Michael Brown is not the only WorldNetDaily columnist who wants us to overlook President Trump's blatant amorality and overall sleaziness and re-elect him because he delivers the right-wing goods. Ellen Makkai gives it a shot in her Aug. 11 column, while being more than a little condescending to women who are understandably turned off by his behavior:

But before COVID-19 was loosed on our unsuspecting psyches, many women were already not Trump fans.

"He doesn't look or speak presidential, and his behavior is disgusting," says my neighbor, stating flatly that she hates Trump. For her, like many women, style not substance holds sway.

I pitched Trump's pre-COVID successes to no avail. The economy was roaring. The domestic energy boom gifts us freedom from pugnacious Middle Eastern thugs. The judiciary is packed with constitutionalists, and our foreign policy puts America first. Neither the virus nor his accomplishments shifts her take on The Donald.

Give them Obama, the hollow silver-tongued fox, or the handsomely reserved Romney – but a pugilist? No way. Our paunchy, bare-knuckle political brawler-in-chief turns women off.

My friend can't get beyond Trump's occasional coarse language, his spray tan and flaming orange hairdo. His long-past frat-boy boasting along with his present-day 3 a.m. spit wad tweets don't help either.

In 2018 political analyst Bill Schneider told The Hill, "[Women] don't like him … his attitude. … His signature attitude is defiance; that is what defines him." Perhaps our president reminds those soccer moms of an obstinate toddler during potty training – messy and defiant.

True, Trump defies the status quo. He defied North Korea's perpetual nuclear extortion. He defied NATO's lackadaisical financial ineptitude. He defied the ill-conceived Paris climate accord. He defied a confirmation circus that unjustly attacked his Supreme Court nominee. And he defied the vicious but doomed effort to overturn a validated presidential election.

Trump defied Planned Parenthood's ruse, deceptively labeled "women's health services." But best of all, he defied the anti-Semitic Middle East by redefining Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

Meanwhile, Wall Street sailed merrily into the stratosphere.

Trump critics parrot the negative scripts used by nightly newsreaders. "Misogynistic" is a favorite female gripe, though that sin was dumped years ago. Due diligence isn't in the wheelhouse of these anti-Trump women. Analytics and forgiveness have not been their tutors.

[...]

"He's not nice," is a frequent female response to Trump's muscular patriotism. So, what has past country-club diplomacy earned us? International exploitation of our resources, intellectual property and military might. Unchecked illegal immigration saps our strength.

"I want a pit bull at the gate," is my retort.

The one-100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, giving women the vote, hits Aug. 26. It was a long, arduous campaign by Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and company. Consequently, I'm pained when otherwise intelligent females are won by a clever bumper sticker, well-concocted falsehood, or better hairline.

So I say, Ladies, wise up! Think for yourselves. Don't ingest that which is convincing but unconfirmed. Shun seductive political blather. Cast your vote carefully using fact-based data. And we'll again have an admittedly rambunctious but skilled and dedicated president worthy of your trust.

Makkai doesn't explain why anyone should trust Trump about anything, since a major truth she wants us to ignore is that Trump is a compulsive liar.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:03 AM EDT
Friday, September 4, 2020
MRC Tries To Justify Smearing Kamala Harris As A 'Hoe'
Topic: Media Research Center

Is there any sleazy right-winger the Media Research Center won't defend? Alexander Hall adds to the notoriousness in an Aug. 21 post that starts out as his usual victimization rant:

Big Tech has allowed open season on President Donald Trump for years, but cracks down quickly on criticism of the Democratic presidential ticket.

Conservative media analyst and author Mark Dice announced that “Facebook censored a viral meme I posted last week about Joe Biden and Kamala Harris” in a Facebook post yesterday. He added, “I can't tell you what it was, or I'll get another strike on my page and might get completely banned.” Dice was able to give more detail on his Twitter account, explaining that “Facebook is censoring the #JoeAndTheHo meme” in an August 19 tweet.

Dice’s tweet featured a purported screenshot of his censored post with what looked like a parody campaign sticker reading “JOE AND THE HOE.”

Then, shockingly, Hall tries to justify Dice's slut-shaming:

The criticism of Harris has an origin story. Her past affair with the married San Francisco mayor Willie Brown has come under the spotlight during the campaign. As USA Today summarized, “Former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown addressed his past relationship with Sen. Kamala Harris in a letter to the San Francisco Chronicle.” In it, he “acknowledged giving her appointments that furthered her career.”

Even notoriously liberal Snopes responded to the question, “Did Kamala Harris Have an Extramarital Affair with Willie Brown That Boosted Her Career?”acknowledged that the allegations appeared to be partially true[.]

That's right -- the MRC thinks it's totally cool to smear Harris as having slept her way to the top because she once had an affair with a prominent politician.

The MRC wasn't done claiming victimhood for Dice, though. In a Sept. 2 post, Corinne Weaver whined that Facebook warned Dice about a post defending Trump-supporting teen Kyle Rittenhouse's killing of two people and shooting another during protests in Kenosha, Wis., that began with this bit of drama: The United States holds that an individual charged for a crime is innocent until proven guilty. But Facebook, along with a handful of other tech companies, has decided that it is more capable of casting judgment than the U.S. court system. "


Posted by Terry K. at 2:13 PM EDT
CNS' Chapman Helps Trump Do Some Manhood-Measuring
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com managing editor Michael W. Chapman has long been a pro-Trump sycophant. He ratcheted that up with a strange bit of manhood-measuring in an Aug. 14 "commentary" post:

Although the leftist media are pushing hard for a Joe Biden-Kamala Harris presidential victory, and like to portray liberals in general as being tech-savvy, new media pioneers, the numbers for today, Aug. 14, show that President Donald Trump has 85.1 million followers on Twitter and Joe Biden has 8.3 million followers.

Vice President Mike Pence enjoys a following of 9.3 million people on Twitter. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Biden's vice presidential running mate, has 4.9 million followers. 

President Trump tweets frequently, for better or for worse. It is a tool for him to go around the left-wing editorial gatekeepers of the media, who regularly lie about him, and speak directly to the American people.

Of course, the number of Twitter followers is not much of a measure of anything. Chapman was careful not to mention that former President Barack Obama has even more Twitter followers than Trump, at 120 million. Justin Bieber, Rihanna, Katy Perry and Taylor Swift also have more Twitter followers than Trump.

The only way Chapman could have written a better pro-Trump ad is if  he let the Trump campaign actually write the thing and let Chapman slap his name on it (which, as a pro-Trump sycophant, we wouldn't put past him).

The fact that a managing editor is allowed to write such blatantly biased pieces undermines any idea that CNS has journalism that can be trusted as honest and objective.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:37 AM EDT
Thursday, September 3, 2020
MRC Uses CBS Report To Bash Mail-In Voting, Just Like Trump Wants
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Scott Whitlock found something he thought he could turn into a right-wing talking point in a July 31 post:

This isn’t something you see often on network television. CBS on Sunday did an experiment to determine just how safe mail-in ballots will be in November. CBS Weekend News journalist Tony Dokoupil set up a campaign “headquarters” and mailed 100 “ballots” to himself through the U.S. Post Office. The results were not encouraging. They also refute the dismissive tone of other journalists when covering Donald Trump’s concerns about mail-in voting. 

[...]

Former Arizona election official Tammy Patrick concluded that mail in voting is “setting up the voters with false expectations and you’re setting them up to fail.” 

Yet, journalists constantly mock this idea. On July 26, This Week host George Stephanopoulos lectured White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows: “The President continues to warn that it's gonna be rigged, that his word, by mail-in ballots, even though there's no compelling evidence that mail-in ballots are tied to widespread voter fraud.”

The MRC repeatedly invoked this CBS story, largely to defend President Trump's attacks on mail-in voting:

  • It's more than a little strange to call criticism of mail-in voting "unsubstantiated" just days after CBS conducted its own mail-in voting experiment, and found it lacking! -- Tim Graham, Aug. 1
  • What is there to fact-check? CBS released the results of its mail-in voting experiment last month and their results were an astounding 3% failure rate, and it took over four days for those ballots to arrive. With that failure rate, if 100 million Americans vote by mail across the country, three million of those votes may never be counted. -- Adam Burnett, Aug. 4
  • In a viral news story, CBS tried a mail-in voting experiment, which went very badly. With these concerns, it begs the question as to why the mainstream media is pushing for mail-in voting. -- Duncan Schroeder, Aug. 4 and Aug. 15
  • In a similar stumble into reality, CBS's Tony Dokoupil recently discovered firsthand how mail-in ballots could be a disaster. -- Nicholas Fondacaro, Aug. 4
  • Do the journalists at CBS even watch their own reporting? On Thursday, reporter Weijia Jiang offered a fact check on Donald Trump’s concerns about mail-in voting, saying he has criticized it “without providing evidence.” But you know who did provide evidence? CBS. -- Whitlock, Aug. 6

But as Media Matters pointed out, the CBS segment omitted one important fact: the high rate of delay ballots in the experiment were driven by changes to the U.S. Postal Service that have taken place during Trump's presidency. And the MRC wasn't the only right-wing media operation to exploit it; others seized on the report as an excuse to attack the Postal Service and discorage mail-in voting, both of which are agenda items for Trump's re-election campaign.

It's almost as if the MRC is an arm of the Trump campaign. Doesn't that violate its nonprofit status?


Posted by Terry K. at 2:38 PM EDT
CNS Censors Bad News About Another Official It Touted
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com loves to censor negative information about people it promotes, such as Candace Owens or Marjorie Taylor Greene. Add another one to the list.

Mnaging editor Michael W. Chapman wrote in a July 2 article:

Florida Sheriff Darryl Daniels criticized the liberal media for misrepresenting law enforcement as the "enemy," and pledged that if radical protesters become overwhelming, he will "make special deputies of every lawful gun owner" in the county to ensure the civil order. 

"That's what we're sworn to do, and that's what we're gonna do," he said. "You've been warned."

Chapman then transcribe the entirety of a video Daniels made that "explains his office's approach to the radical protests being perpetrated in the United States in recent times."

That attention to detail from Chapman, however, didn't extend to reporting on the scandal Daniels embroiled himself in. As an actual news outlet reported:

Darryl Daniels, the sheriff of Clay County, Fla., dialed his deputy from the quiet suburban road with an urgent plea for backup: He was being followed by a stalker in a Jeep and appeared to be in “imminent danger."

But Daniels knew exactly who was behind him on that day in May 2019, prosecutors say: It was Cierra Smith, his former employee and mistress of six years, on her way to meet him at their regular spot. Filming the whole thing was his wife, to whom he had recently confessed the affair.

Now, Smith has resigned from her job, Daniels’s wife has filed for divorce, and the sheriff is the one who ended up behind bars. On Thursday, following a year-long investigation, Florida authorities filed four charges against him and booked him into jail.

After that was revealed, the Florida governor removed Daniels from his post, and he lost his bid for re-election.

Yet all this wasn't considered newsworthy to Chapman -- presumably because he presented himself as a Trump-esque law-and-order type and Chapman doesn't want to shatter the illusion.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:41 AM EDT
Wednesday, September 2, 2020
MRC Cheers That Homophobe Can Make Money At YouTube Again
Topic: Media Research Center

Last year, the Media Research Center was eager to portray right-wing "comedian" Steven Crowder as a victim of social media bias when YouTube demonitized his channel over the homophobic slurs he hurled at liberal commentator Carlos Maza, giving him the "it's just a joke" pass it will never give to a comedian who makes a joke about President Trump. Earlier this year, the MRC ramped up the conservative victimhood for Crowder while downplaying his homophobia.

The MRC's Kayla Sargent served up some good news for Crowder in an Aug. 14 post, while still managing to keep his victimhood intact:

It’s a win for free speech. Conservative comedian and political commentator Steven Crowder will once again be allowed to draw ad revenue on his YouTube channel.

YouTube lifted the restrictions against Crowder on August 12, more than a year after he was originally demonetized.

Crowder was originally restricted on the platform in June of 2019 after Vox contributor Carlos Maza accused Crowder of making homophobic and racist statements towards him in a since-removed tweet. 

Maza’s accusations came to light on May 31, 2019, and YouTube promised that they would review Crowder’s flagged videos. On June 4, the platform tweeted a reply to Maza’s initial post, stating, “while we found language that was clearly hurtful, the videos as posted don’t violate our policies.” 

Although YouTube did not take any initial action against Crowder, the pressure from the left and the media only increased, and some in the press called for Crowder’s channel to be “shut down completely.”

Sargent did concede that it was the fact that Crowder took down his homophobic videos, and not "YouTube's good graces," that got him re-monetized.She then warned: "The battle is never over, though. YouTube is still able to demonetize individual videos, and at any point, the platform could change its community guidelines again and restrict or even remove Crowder’s channel at any time."

As is MRC tradition, Sargent was quiet about the homophobic details of Crowder's videos that got him demonetized in the first place, and she left unspoken that the main thing Crowder can do to keep from getting restricted in the future is not be such a homophobe.

Sargent went on to push Crowder's victimhood in later MRC posts. An Aug. 20 post on how a poll found that "73 percent of U.S adults believe that social media companies censor political viewpoints of their users" was an excuse to mention how "Until recently, YouTube had demonetized conservitive comedian and commentator Steven Crowder." That was followed by an Aug. 26 post complaining that "YouTube chose to censor more content on its platform during its second quarter than it had in any previous quarter" similarly referenced how YouTube had "demonitized [Crowder's] channel a year." 

In neither of those posts did Sargent point out that it was Crowder's homophobia that got his channel demonetized.


Posted by Terry K. at 3:04 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: Hoaxsters Push A 'Trayvon Hoax'
Topic: WorldNetDaily
Conspiracy-obsessed WorldNetDaily columnist Jack Cashill joined forces with charlatan filmmaker Joel Gilbert to make a film that once again trashes Trayvon Martin -- but Cashill won't tell you about Gilbert's factually challenged past. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 1:08 PM EDT
Tuesday, September 1, 2020
MRC Can't Stop Exploiting Tara Reade (And Censoring E. Jean Carroll)
Topic: Media Research Center

As we've documented, the Media Research Center doesn't actually care about Tara Reade -- it only cares that her dubious accusation that Joe Biden sexually assaulted her a few decades ago. If the MRC took sexual assault allegations seriously, it would have denigrated E. Jean Carroll for making one against Donald Trump. Nevertheless, the MRC persists in exploiting Reade for its political agenda.

Duncan Schroeder huffed on July 27 that a CNN guest "praised Joe Biden for his to plan to choose a woman as his running mate without mentioning that Biden has been credibly accused of sexual assault," adding that if the guesdt "was not a Democratic shill, he would have mentioned that Joe Biden was credibly accused of sexual assault by Reade. But CNN does not actually care about combating sexism or holding all politicians accountable, it cares about propping up Democratic candidates." Schroeder's post appeared under the ironic headline "Silence is Violence" -- after all, the MRC hasn't mentioned Carroll's credible accusations against Trump since April.

On Aug. 12, the MRC's Scott Whitlock  got an "exclusive interview" with Reade (that it also translated into Spanish), in which she "spoke out about the selection of Kamala Harris as his vice presidential running mate." The MRC apparently did not ask Reade about E. Jean Carroll's accusations against Trump, nor did they ask her about her history of manipulative and deceitful behavior.

The same day, Whitlock whined, "Just how long can HBO stand by the radical HBO host John Oliver?" citing as evidence of his "radical" behavior: "In May, he promised to cover the Tara Reade sexual assault allegations against Joe Biden. He lied." Whitlock threw a massive fit about this in June.

A couple days later, Whitlock complained that an interview of Kamala Harris on MSNBC "censored any mention of the Democrat previously saying she thought Tara Reade, who accused Joe Biden of sexual assault, should be heard."

We should probably mention again that Whitlock and the rest of his MRC buddies have censored any mention of E. Jean Carroll for months.

Perpetual rage-bot Nicholas Fondacaro took things in a weird direction in an Aug. 17 post:

Democratic Party mouthpiece and CBS political correspondent Ed O’Keefe was so nervous about the enthusiasm gap between former Vice President Joe Biden and President Trump, that he spent part of his Monday segment on CBS Evening Newsboasting about Biden (an accused sexual assaulter) paling around with rapper Cardi B, who has admitted to drugging and robbing men (with accusations of rape).

Of course, this happened while the liberal media were ignoring the demands of Biden sexual assault accuser Tara Reade, who wanted the press to grill his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) on whether or not she believed his accusers.

Whitlock returned in an Aug. 25 post to grouse that "Last week during the Democratic National Convention, journalists and media outlets did their best to bury the 1993 sexual assault accusations against Joe Biden," going on to tout how Reade "told Fox News she would be willing to speak at the Republican convention if asked."

Whitlock's obsession with Oliver continued in an Aug. 30 post, in which he whined, "Oliver is the same Democratic hack who promised to cover Tara Reade and then hasn’t. Basically, he’s just a HBO shill for the DNC." And Whitlock is a shill for the Trump campaign.

Once more, let's remember that Whitlock and the MRC hasn't written a thing about E. Jean Carroll since April. That shows you just how empty its obsession with Reade is.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:42 PM EDT
Terry Jeffrey Trump Deficit Blame Avoidance Watch
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com editor in chief just can't stop complaining about the deficit run up under a Republican-controlled Senate and a Republican president -- though he's become slightly more vocal about that fact than he has in the past.

In his July 29 column, Jeffrey actually called out the Trump administration for noting that an administration official touted President Trump's purported "commitment to fiscal responsibility" while noting that the federal debt increased by $1.2 trillion under Trump last year and that deficit spending increased by more than $4 trillion this year driven by Trump-signed coronavirus relief bills. Then, because Trump alone can't be blamed for the deficit even though he's the one who ultimately signs off on it, Jeffrey then attacks House Democrats for wanting to spend even more on coronavirus relief:

But now House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would like to see Congress enact the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act, an additional COVID-19 relief bill that the Democrat-controlled House approved in May. According to the CBO's estimate, this bill would increase the deficit by $3.445 trillion.

Thus, with just one bill, Congress could increase the deficit by more than all the money the federal government borrowed in the first 214 years of this republic.

[...]

If the speaker gets her way, Americans born this year will be paying interest on the additional trillions of dollars she hopes to add to the debt this year — for their entire working lives.

Jeffrey used harsher language to bash Pelosi over a proposed bill that will almost certainly never be approved for that amount after negotiations with the GOP-controlled Senate than he did the actual bills that Trump signed.

By the time Jeffrey's mid-month stories rolled around, however, he wasn't so intersted in assigning blame. In an Aug. 12 article, Jeffrey wrote:

The federal government set records for the amount of money it spent and the size of the deficit it ran up in the first ten months of fiscal 2020 (October through July), according to data released today in the Monthly Treasury Statement.

In fact, the $5,630,859,000,000 the federal government spent in the first ten months of this fiscal year is more than the government has ever spent in any previous full fiscal year.

Jeffrey didn't mention the words "Trump" or "Republican" in his article. And, as per usual, the stock photo includes Democrats as if they were equally responsible for the spending approved by a Republican-controlled Senate and signed by a Republican president.

Jeffrey is also being doubly dishonest here. He, nor anyone else at CNS, have reported to their readers that CNS' parent, the Media Research Center, contributed to this growing federal deficit Jeffrey is decrying by accepting more than $1 million in Paycheck Protection Program money.

In other words, at least part of Jeffrey's salary this year is being paid in part from the federal debt. As far as we know, he hasn't turned it down due to concerns over federal overspending.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:20 AM EDT
Monday, August 31, 2020
MRC's Graham Tries, Fails To Play Gotcha On A Fact-Checker
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Tim Graham continued his tilting at fact-checking windmills in an Aug. 8 post:

Matt Palumbo at Bongino.com took issue with the extremely biased nature of PolitiFact's "Truth-O-Meter" in assessing "facts." The controversy? This week, President Trump signed an executive order to prevent illegal immigrants from being counted for the purposes of re-apportioning congressional districts after the 2020 census.

PolitiFact's Tom Kertscher decided to warn America that the following claim was "Mostly False."

“California has six extra” congressional representatives “because illegals are counted” in the census.

After noting that PolitiFact contacted an expert in demography who noted that the state has, at best, two to four extra seats due to undocumented immigrants -- whom Graham dismissed as biased because he has "been a repetitive small donor to the Democratic National Committee," though he didn't explain how such small donations equals lying about demographics to PolitiFact -- Graham huffed:

This takes us back to the obvious point we have to make over and over again when it comes to these "fact checkers." They are taking exception to an estimate, which is not a hard fact. To disagree on an estimate on this scale should not rise to the level of "false news and misinformation." 

Except that the Bongino item and the Facebook post it's based on said nothing about the number being an estimate; it was stated as "hard fact" and claimed to be based on the 2010 Census and "the number of people illegally there."

Graham then serves up his usual whine about purported bias of PolitiFact: "A search of 'Bongino' at PolitiFact locates four 'fact checks' in the last year or so....all of them Mostly False or worse."Well, it's not like Graham or the MRC would ever be moved to fact-check Bongino, right? Their job is to ampllify right-wingers, not fact-check them.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:07 PM EDT
WND's Cashill Has An Anti-Obama Book To Promote
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Jack Cashill's new book, "Unmasking Obama," is out now, though not at WorldNetDaily's online store -- as near as we can tell, the floundering operation has not added any new products of late beyond new monthly editions of WND's sparsely read Whistleblower magazine. So Cashill must supply the Amazon link to the book in his WND columns promoting it. The premise of the book is that "While the major media were spinning their collective fairy tale about the Obama presidency, the alternative conservative media — America’s 'samizdat' — were telling the truth."

That is manifestly false. WND spent the entirety of Barack Obama's presidency pushing the lie that the birth certificates Obama released were inaccurate or outright faked, and Cashill himself was caught falsely claiming that a photo of Obama with his grandparents was fake because Obama was photoshopped into it when, in fact, a photo in which Obama was photoshopped out of that he portrayed was the "real" photo is actually the fake one. (It was this column, which WND refused to tell readers a correction was made on even as it scrubbed the false information from it, that caused then-editor Joseph Farah to effectively brag about how WND publishes misinformation.) 

In excerpting his book in his WND columns, Cashill demonstrates once again why he can't be trusted. On Aug. 16, he rehashed yet again his biased, racially tainted interpretation of the Trayvon Martin case, asserting that Obama's sdtatement that "if I had a son, he would look like Trayvon" to be the most destructive moment of his presidency." He also rehashed the film about the Martin case made by Joel Gilbert, while making sure to hide the fact that Gilbert is a lying charlatan whose film about Obama pushed the malicious lie that Obama's mother posed nude for Frank Marshall Davis.

On Aug. 18, Cashill ranted that "the mischief surrounding the passage and implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – also known as 'Obamacare' – puts Obama in the Harding-Grant strata of scandal-plagued presidencies" and tried to make Obama's not-entirely-inaccurate statement that people can keep their doctors under the plan to be some kind of massive conspiracy.

Cashill's Aug. 20 column totally buys into the conspiracy tyheory that "President Barack Obama had been using an anomalous and possibly fraudulent SSN for more than twenty years." He made sure to elide the fact that releasing Obama's Social Security number as one "samizdat" member did without Obama's permission is likely illegal, despite his insistence that the random right-wing person's poking around the number was "perfectly legal." He bashed teh fact-checkers at Snopes for debunking the conspiracy, huffing that it"seemed to have no greater purpose during Obama’s presidency than to kill stories potentially harmful to the president." Cashill rejected the obvious explanation -- some clerk apparently mistyped Obama's zip code so that he was given a number normally given to those who live in Connecticut rather than Hawall, where Obama lived -- instead complaining: "Journalists who shied from learning the truth about Obama’s Social Security number were not about to ask him where he was on the night the Benghazi consulate was attacked, what he knew about the IRS war on the Tea Party, or how he came to authorize 'Fast and Furious,' let alone what role he played in protecting Hillary Clinton from prosecution or in spying on Donald Trump’s campaign."

Cashill also referenced Obama's birth certificate, "whose legitimacy may never be certified." On Aug. 26, Cashill dove into the birther issue from a different angle. He first asserted that "Barack Obama resisted sharing his birth certificate at considerable cost and very nearly to the point of political self-destruction. This much is undeniable." This is a lie; Obama released a state-generated birth certificate in 2008 and another in 2012 only after birthers like Donald Trump repeatedly pushed the issue by falsely portraying the original certificate as somehow not authentic enough. He slagged Obama's mother as once having "a crush on the eponymous Afro-Brazilian of the movie 'Black Orpheus'" -- apparently trying to dogwhistle to the more racist Obama-haters out there -- and posited that Obama was born a few months earlier than the date on his birth certificate, arguing that "the Dunham family might have claimed a home birth and called it in to the authorities in August."

In other words, Cashill's book appears to be nothing more than another highly speculative hit job from a longtime Obama-hater. Treat it accordingly.


Posted by Terry K. at 5:33 PM EDT
Sunday, August 30, 2020
Is MRC's Fondacaro Enabling Right-Wing Vigilantes?
Topic: Media Research Center

One of the shrillest and most dishonest voices at the Media Research Center belongs to "media analyst" Nicholas Fondacaro. Over the summer, he has been ranting about media coverage of racial unrest and accusing outlets who don't limit themselves to a fowarding his right-wing agenda blaming everyone but conservatives ahd President Trump of "enabling" the unrest by the "terrorists" of Antifa and Black Lives Matter. This culminated in a July 24 column written not for the MRC but for the Daily Caller -- yes, the Tucker Carlson-founded operation that loves to hire white nationalists -- that summarized his narrative. He began by ranting:

With Portland and Seattle being inundated with waves of chaos and violence at the hands of extremist leftists Antifa and Black Lives Matter, the silence from the liberal media is deafening. Despite nightly clashes in both cities (and murders in Seattle’s CHOP zone), there was nary a word from the cable and broadcast networks. But this is by design. Seeing as how the media spent years covering up, downplaying and even normalizing their base’s radicalism and the resulting violence.

Sadly, such behavior was entirely predictable after the press spent the 2016 general election blatantly suggesting one of the candidates would be the new Adolf Hitler and his supporters are modern-day Klansmen. And thus, a movement to “resist” was born.

Fondacaro then comnplained that one media outlet had on "Antifa apologist Mark Bray, allowing Bray to romanticize the terrorist group’s violent history, ignore their ties to communism and promote violence as a legitimate form of political dissent," emphasizing how "Bray was publicly disavowed by Dartmouth, where he was a lecturer at the time."

In fact, that disavowal came after a right-wing website distorted Bray's views on antifa -- he's an academic who has argued that violent protest can be appropriate response to violent actors on the right, like white supremacists and neo-Nazis -- and other Dartmouth instructors objected to the disavowal because Bray was not given a chance to make his case to the university beforehand. Bray recedived death threats afterward; we don't recally Fondacaro speaking out against that.

Meanwhile, one can arguing that Fondacaro is helping to enable violent terrorism on his end of the political scale.

When Trump-supporting teenager Kyle Rittenhouse shot three people in altercations in Kenosha, Wis., killing two of them, Fondacarto rushed to his defense based on incomplete video of the incidents, despite the fact investigations into them are far from complete and no official conclusions have been reached.

In an Aug. 26 post, Fondacaro huffed that "the viewers of ABC, CBS, and NBC were treated to lies and misinformation"in their coverage. But instead of identifying what "lies" were told, Fondacaro insisted that "Video evidence from multiple angles show 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse running into a parking lot as a violent rioter chased after him and threw something at him. As the assailant got closer, Rittenhouse turned and fired his rifle. The 17-year-old was then chased down the street as a violent mob attacked him. He fell to the ground and was beaten with a skateboard by one assailant and another brandished a handgun at him. Again Rittenhouse defended himself with his rifle."

Fondacaro refused to concede that his bias-influenced narrative is not the only possible interpretation of what was captured on those videos. Another interpretation is that people were chasing Rittenhouse because he shot a guy, then shot two of the people who were trying to stop him. Nevertheless, he arrogantly continued to push his narrative:

The next day, Fondacaro argued that one of Rittenhouse's victims deserved to die because, according to another right-wing website, "He has a criminal history that includes charges of battery & repeat domestic abuse" and was hitting Rittenhouse with a skateboard when he was shot. Fondacaro didn't consider that the victim might have been a little angry because he had just witnessed Rittehnouse shoot and kill someone.Fondacaro also justified thte shooting of another Rittenhouse victim because he "has a long rap sheet whcih included weapons charges."

Despite cheering the shooting of Rittenhouse's victims, he complained in another post that CNN's Jake Tapper "appeared to call for Rittenhouse to be assaulted" and that he pointed out that Rittenhouse was "a Trump supporter."

With such lionizing of a shooter and callous disregard for the lives of his victims, it could be argued that Fondacaro is enabling right-wing vigilantes to be violent against those whose views they oppose. He'll never admit that, of course -- he's too wedded to the right-wing pro-Trump agenda to admit any fault in his thinking.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:53 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, August 31, 2020 9:15 AM EDT
CNS Does Damage Control For Parler
Topic: CNSNews.com

We can't prove there's a link, but it does seem a bit odd that just a few days after we detailed how the Media Research Center has embraced Parler as a "free speech" Twitter alternative even though it too has odd restrictions on speech and is turning into a right-wing echo chamber, the MRC's "news" division, CNSNews.com, went into damage-control mode.

An Aug. 5 CNS article featured an interview Rob Shimshock -- CNS' commentary editor, by the way, not an actual reporter -- conducted with Parler's CEO. It sure reads like damage control:

John Matze, CEO of social media company Parler, committed not to ban users for "hate speech," stated that his company would fix an "awkward" "fighting words" clause in its community guidelines, and called the decision by Big Tech companies to censor the America's Frontline Doctors video "ridiculous," in an exclusive interview with CNSNews.com.

"We refuse to ban people on something so arbitrary that it can’t be defined," Matze said when asked whether Parler has banned or ever will ban users for "hate speech." "You see these sites trying to enforce these arbitrary rules and you notice that people are getting kicked off for the most random and arbitrary things like misgendering people. It's absurd. So no, we won't be pursuing that policy."

The Parler CEO also commented on the subjective nature of the "Fighting Words or Threats to Harm" portion of the company's community guidelines, which, as of press time, gives as an example "any direct and very personal insult with the intention of stirring and upsetting the recipient—i.e., words that would lead to violence if you were to speak in that fashion in person."

"We just hired a chief policy officer who's a real lawyer," Matze said. "She's actually overhauling that specific clause that you brought up because she said it's a really awkward clause to have online....Our goal here is to maximize free speech, maximize online discussion, while maintaining an actual community feel."

[...]

The Parler CEO discussed with CNSNews a variety of other topics, including the platform's content moderation system, its recent growth from 1 million to 3.3 million users, its plan to implement a "groups" feature, the dropping of an indemnification clause in its user agreement, and the company's plans to combat other kinds of tech censorship.

Shimshock makes sure to gloss over the fact that Parler is only now having a "real lawyer" review its policies doesn't exactly inspire confidence in the company, as does its walking back of certain policies that contradict its reputation in right-wing media as a "free speech" platform, like not allowing users to sue Parler and forcing users to pay Parler's legal fees.

Shimshock also pushed the false idea that the only reason the America's Frontline Doctors video was taken down by other social media sites was because "a doctor posited [hydroxychloroquine] as a cure for the coronavirus." In fact, the video included several other pieces of false or misleading information; as one actual doctor summarized, video participants claimed "that there is no need for masks, and that schools can open right away without any effect on viral spread. In addition, they continue promoting the false claim that this virus is less deadly than the flu, and that tracking its spread and numbers is unimportant."


Posted by Terry K. at 3:02 PM EDT
Saturday, August 29, 2020
MRC Rants Some More About 'Leftist Fact-Checkers' At Facebook
Topic: Media Research Center

In addition to hypocritically bashing Facebook for purportedly discriminating against conservatives while censoring the fact that Facebook has repeatedly sucked up to those very same conservatives (including secret dinners between Mark Zuckerberg and Brent Bozell), the Media Research Center also kept up its war on fact-checking through attacking the fact-checkers Facebook employs.

An Aug. 12 post by Alexander Hall literally declared that it's not "fair to conservatives" to fact-check them:

Two massive announcements from Facebook have revealed just how much Facebook has given up all pretense at being fair to conservatives.

Facebook announced new rules this week clarifying its hate speech policy and stating that it may even fact-check opinion pieces on the platform. Facebook sent a statement to the International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN) Monday night, declaring that opinion pieces may not be immune from the scrutiny of fact-checkers. The next day Facebook’s VP of integrity Guy Rosen vowed that the platform will launch a new crackdown on “certain kinds of implicit hate speech” in an August 11 blog post.

Facebook’s devastating announcement about fact-checking was a turning point for the worse for any hopes that Facebook would be “moderate” in its moderation practices.

Hall went on to huff that "What conservatives and Christians know is that from Facebook’s clear record in recent weeks, opinions that are contrary to the leftist narrative are not allowed in this 'inclusive' vision of a diverse future." Hall's example of "Facebook's clear record" was a link to a post two days before complaining that a pro-Trump group's Facebook page was "censored" -- which downplayed the fact that the page was restricted for repeatedly promoting false content. Hall apprently believes that "diversity" must include the freedom to spread lies.

Hall also lamented: "Under the guise of cracking down on the most egregious forms of bigotry, this may instead lead to more censorship of the right. Indeed, it is conceivable that Facebook could begin censoring criticism of liberal billionaire George Soros as some kind of anti-Semitic canard." Hall failed to note that his employer has, in fact, used anti-Semitic imagery in criticizing Soros. He also did;t mention that the MRC has also attacked the International Fact-Checking Network as a "Soros-funded" project and, therefore, "liberal" and untrustworthy.

Hall has moved so far right on the issue of fact-checking that he's even lashing out at the Anti-Defamation League. After noting that "ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt tweeted his support for the changes" at Facebook, he then ranted:

Greenblatt served as “special assistant to President Obama,” and before that “directed an initiative at the Aspen Institute, a George Soros-financed, left-leaning nonprofit.”

As far as hate speech is concerned, Facebook would be better off if it ignored the advice of the Anti-Defamation League, whose very purpose appears to be defaming conservatives. The ADL has even alleged that the “OK” hand gesture and imagery “directed against antifa” are signs one may be a white supremacist.

Well, given that white supremacists have, in fact, labored to turn the OK symbol into a symbol of support and that they also use anti-antifa symbolism, the ADL is correct to highlight these things. Of course, Hall has complained about both of them.

It's clear that Hall wants conservatives to be able to lie on Facebook and other social media with impunity. Otherwise, there's no reason to lash out at fact-checkers.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:07 AM EDT
WND Columnist: 'Democrats' Nuked Nagasaki To Stop Christianity In Japan
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Lowell Ponte has always had a case of Democrat Derangement Syndrome. He took that to another level in his Aug. 6 worldNetDaily column, in which he pushed the evidence-free conspiracy theory that the U.S. dropped a nuclear bomb on Nagasaki, Japan, during World War II because it was a center of Christianity in the country and the "leftist Democratic ruling elite in 1945 Washington, D.C." were "anti-Christian":

Such violence happened 75 years ago – Aug. 9, 1945 – when President Harry Truman unleashed the second atomic bomb, on the Japanese city of Nagasaki.

Nagasaki had little military, but vast cultural and religious, significance. Nagasaki had been Japan's only port open to foreign ships and influence. It is the setting of Puccini's opera "Madame Butterfly," a star-crossed romance between a Japanese woman and an American sailor.

Nagasaki was home to Japan's only Roman Catholic cathedral. The carefully aimed plutonium bomb "Fat Man" detonated within a quarter-mile of that cathedral.

Thousands of Japan's secret Christians went to Nagasaki, believing that Christian America would never destroy Japan's most "Christian" city. More Japanese Christians died in that atomic blast than during centuries of Japan's persecution of Christians.

They did not know that the leftist Democratic ruling elite in 1945 Washington, D.C., as now, were anti-Christian.

[...]

Who targeted Nagasaki at the last moment? This is uncertain, although pro-New Deal historians claim that FDR's globalist token-Republican Secretary of War Henry Stimson crossed out the original target, Kyoto.

Godless New Deal leftists had both opportunity and motive to destroy this center of Christian influence in Japan. If Nagasaki and its faithful survived, Japan might have become more Christian, closer to America, and stronger foes of global communism.

As actual historians point out, Nagasaki had a major shipbuilding industry and munitions factories, and the intended target that day, Kokura, had to be rejected because of poor visibility over the city.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:57 AM EDT

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