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Sunday, May 29, 2022
As Lia Thomas Wins NCAA Titles, MRC's Hateful Transphobia Grows
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has been spewing hate at transgender swimmer Lia Thomas ever since she starting winning college competition, thus making her a designated enemy of anti-trans right-wingers. As Thomas competed in college conference competitions, the hate ratcheted up. Alex Christy huffed in a March 18 post:

MSNBC’s Hallie Jackson took a break from Ukraine coverage towards the end of her Thursday show to hype the “potentially history-making night” to come as transgender swimming Lia Thomas prepared to compete in the NCAA swimming championships -- which Thomas did win later in the day. Together with activist Chris Mosier, the duo demanded Thomas be celebrated for making it to the championships.

After touting the historic nature of the situation, Jackson asked Mosier to “Talk a little about what's at stake tonight.”

Christy complained that Jackson "cherry-picked" a competitor who didn't object to competing against her and ignored "plenty of reports that her teammates resent having to share the same locker room as Thomas and compete at such a biological disadvantage." But the reports Christy cited come from the New York Post, which has the same right-wing anti-trans agenda as the MRC, and are anonymous sourced, which we knowthe MRC doesn't like. Christ went on to baselessly suggest that Thomas became transgender solely because she couldn't compete successfully as a male:

Thomas went from being the 462nd ranked male swimmer to the number one ranked female swimmer and later on Thursday would go on to win the national championship. It doesn’t take an advanced biology or anatomy and physiology degree to figure why and that is not a cause for celebration.

The same day, John Simmons cheered that "tranny" Thomas received "warranted backlash" for winning a race at the NCAA championships:

In the most unsurprising sports headline of the week, Lia Thomas - a transgendered female - defeated a pool (no pun intended) of real women in the 500-yard freestyle event at the NCAA Division I Championships in Atlanta, GA on Thursday, with a time of 4 minutes, 33.24 seconds.

Thomas, who has been rightly scrutinized for being a biological male that the NCAA has somehow let compete in women's sports, defeated the next closest competitor by roughly two seconds and was just a little over nine seconds from breaking Olympic gold medalist Katie Ledecky’s world record time.

While the NCAA and ESPN fawned over Thomas’ “win,” plenty of people condemned Thomas' charade, and several of Thomas’ teammates have anonymously decried Thomas' actions for several months. They don't support what this tranny is doing and that it eliminates any competition before the race has started.

Simmons didn't explain why anonymous sources should be trusted to trash Thomas. And like Christy, his sources of criticism of Thomas were mostly right-wing activists, and the first one he cited was notorious homophobe Matt Walsh. Simmons concluded by ranting:

When you start to lose the support of feminists for what you are doing, maybe it’s time to take stock in just how bonkers of a situation we have on our hands.

We have stooped to the level of allowing men who fail competing against other men to mutilate themselves, claim they are women, beat biological women in sporting events, and then hail them as individuals worthy of praise. We have abandoned reason, forsaken truth, and embraced foolishness with open arms.

What a sick world we live in.

By contrast, Simmons and the rest of the MRC have stayed silent about Walsh's sick stunt of deceiving transgender people into thinking he was making a pro-transgender film.

Jay Maxson -- who has ironically made so little personal information availabale online that we don't know the person's gender -- cheered the right-wing backlash as well in a March 21 post:

America’s college women’s swimming season is over, but the controversy over transgender fraud Will “Lia” Thomas isn’t disappearing any time soon. 


Thomas (at left, on NCAA victory stand, in photo) won the national championship in the 500-yard freestyle last week, preventing real women from advancing to the finals and relegating them to lower finishes than they would have gained had the NCAA not allowed him to compete. He defeated three U.S. Olympic silver medalists in the process. 

“We think everyone should play sports fairly,” Save Women’s Sports told the New York Post on Saturday. The group aims to restore biology-based eligibility and identifies itself as “pro women,” but not specifically targeting Thomas.

Beth Stelzer, an amateur powerlifter and the founder of Save Women’s Sports, says that defending women in athletics shouldn't be seen as a partisan or religious issue. The group protested the NCAA policy of allowing men to compete on college women’s sports teams during the national women’s swimming championships last week in Atlanta.

Maxson hid the fact that Save Women's Sports is very much making it a partisan political issue; members protested outside the NCAA swimming championships even though none of them had any background in swimming and have consistently misgendered Thomas. Maxson deliberately misgendered her too:

Meanwhile, Thomas, who is a senior and finished with college competition, is setting his sights on the 2024 women’s Olympic swimming competition. He’s aiming to take his ill-gotten eligibility for women’s swimming to its highest competitive level. The unfairness never ends in this mad, mad, mad world of woke sports.

Maxson put out another rant the same day complaining that  "NBC airbrushed a photo of Penn University swimmer Will “Lia” Thomas to portray him [sic] more like a cover girl than a manly man."

John Simmons used a March 25 post to gush over how transgender person Caitlyn Jenner criticized Thomas while also misgendering her as well:

Caitlyn Jenner is an odd individual. He transitioned to a she in 2015 and has been an outspoken supporter of trans rights in recent years, but yesterday Jenner made a statement that might have some trans people scratching their heads.


Many Americans need to take note of what just happened.

A transgender individual just came out and blasted the fact that a man who wants to be a woman is competing against and beating women in women’s sports. Not only is she saying this is wrong, she is saying that it is common sense. Even someone who is living their life in the transgender delusion can say that what Thomas is doing should not be applauded, celebrated, or allowed.

That means everyone else, whether conservative, progressive, or somewhere in the middle, should also be seeing Thomas’ actions for what they are: abominable in every sense of the word. There is no middle ground, there is no rationalizing Thomas’ actions, there is no sympathizing with this delusion. 

Tolerating the ideology that Thomas’ embraces needs to stop. Ironically, even transgendered people get that.

Yes, Simmons really thinks being transgender is an "ideology" like his being a hateful right-winger.

Simmons used a March 29 post to cheer that a college swimmer went on a right-wing podcast and "detailed how repulsive it was being in the same locker room with a man," going on to rant that Thomas was destroying American society:

A growing contingent of NCAA swimmers have had enough with Lia Thomas ruining women’s swimming not just in the pool, but in other aspects as well. 

According to one of Thomas’ peers, the transgendered female, who still has male genitalia and is by any objective measure still a man, currently undresses and gets ready for races in a women’s locker room.

Is nothing sacred anymore?


The problem with enabling men like Thomas to dictate our norms is that we destroy basic human barriers that have kept our society functioning. Just 10 years ago, it would be common sense to say that a man cannot be a woman, and that men cannot be in the same locker room as women (or vice versa). When we destroy the basic building blocks of what makes a society function properly, like acknowledging that there are two genders that are separate in function but equal in value, society will devolve into chaos and ruin.

Simmons concluded by sneering, "Hopefully, pressure like this will be enough to get Thomas out of the pool with biological women and get him back to being mediocre against other men."

An April 7 post by Maxson championed another swimmer bashing Thomas, prompting yet another transphobic rant:

Excuse me, but Lia does not need anything but a one way ticket out of women's swimming.

Thomas has been a disgrace to the sport and one of the biggest proponents of an ideology that is bringing ruin upon our culture. Because the NCAA has indulged his fantasies and desires for what he wants reality to be, women like Gaines are being erased from today's culture.

Maxson used an April 11 post to baselessly claim that Thomas became a woman to win more medals, then bashed the NCAA for not hating LGBT people as much as he (or she) does:

For three long seasons, Pennsylvania University student William Thomas toiled at the back of the pack in men’s collegiate swimming. To say he was an also-ran would be an insult to also-runs. After ranking a woeful 462nd in men’s swimming, he re-invented himself as “Lia” Thomas, a transgender “woman.” 

A season in which Thomas reduced women’s swimming competition to rubble is over, but nearly 40 former women’s college swimmers are collectively demanding the NCAA stop the charade of male transgender migrants ruining the integrity of women’s sports.


The 40 letter signees are courageous in standing against the NCAA’s prevailing tide. However, the group that oversees collegiate sports has never had the guts to oppose LGBT priorities, and that isn’t likely that will change. In fact, the anacronyms NCAA and LGBT could just as well be combined to form NCAALBGT.

The MRC's war on Thomas has always been about dehumanizing and smearing her for being transgender, and it's a part of the organization 'soverall hatred of anyone and anything LGBT. Let's not pretend it involves any sort of desire for "integrity."

Posted by Terry K. at 10:13 PM EDT
Who Cares About Facts? ConWeb Wants You To Believe A Bird Pooped On Biden
Topic: The ConWeb

It was a story too good to fact-check: Something appeared on President Biden's suit coat during a speech in Iowa, and it obviously had to be bird poop. Susan Jones wrote in an April 12 article illustrated with three photos and a video:

About three minutes into his speech at an ethanol plant in Iowa Tuesday, President Biden was annointed from above by -- a bird?

Biden, standing near a pile of corn in what he called a "giant barn," was talking about "the work we’re doing to lower costs for American families and put rural America at the center of our efforts to build a future that’s made in America. And that’s not hyperbole; it’s about being made in America," he said.

Biden started to say, "A lot of that has — has to do with this industry." And as he said the words "a lot," something from above stained the shoulder of his navy blue blazer. Biden did not pause, assuming he even noticed.

The white splotch remained on his collar, above the pocket handkerchief and pin, as Biden took several minutes after his speech to meet and greet the plant workers.

But later, as he prepared to depart Iowa, the stain was no longer evident as Biden stopped briefly to speak to reporters.

WorldNetDaily followed suit the same day, with Joe Kovacs copying-and-pasting social media insults:

Is it a message from above?

Joe Biden was the recipient of a "gift" from the heavens Tuesday when something dropped on him during his televised speech.

The president was speaking in Menlo, Iowa, during the first stop of his administration's new "rural infrastructure tour."

As Biden said, "It's not hyperbole. It's about being made in America," a dropping of something that itself was made in America suddenly appeared on the left shoulder of the president's blue blazer near the neckline.

And, of course, the video was posted on social media.

"Look closely. It 100% looks like a bird just pooped on Joe Biden. Lmfaoo," tweeted Greg Price of Philadelphia.

The providential dropping is uniting Americans, with reactions online including:

  • "It's a sign 😂"
  • "Literally a sh** show."
  • "Or what's left of brains spilling out of his ear."
  • "Everyone's a critic."
  • "It was #Putin.🙄"
  • "A new national bird."
  • "I wish it had been a bald eagle."
  • "Looks like the bird's aim was a little off there."
  • "It's a nice garnish for the verbal diarrhea pouring out of his mouth."
  • "An omen from the gods."
  • "Even the bird knows he's full of cr**!"
  • "Insurrection! We must ban birds."
  • "God has the best sense of humor 🤣"
  • "The bird did what all of America wants to do."

Biden's dropping incident is reminiscent of a series of times when Barack Obama was bugged by flies and bees during his time in the Oval Office.

Oddly -- considering how much WND enjoys publishing falsehoods and misinformation -- Kovacs updated his article on April 18: "A fact check by Politifact, one of Facebook's partners, indicates: "Something did stain the president's suit during his speech, but it was distillers grains, according to reporters in the room and the White House. A video clearly shows particles flying around from a giant, nearby grain pile."

And because the claim was fact-checked, Media Research Center rushed to object to the fact-check in an April 18 post, even though he admits the claim is "erroneous":

Even the silliest content about President Biden can be grounds for punishing conservative sites.

Take the erroneous "Biden had bird poop on him" story. The president gave a speech in Iowa promoting how corn-enhanced gasoline could help reduce the price at the pump. PolitiFact didn't offer a "fact check" on anything Biden said, but it did trash conservative sites for what appeared on Biden's jacket.

It was "FALSE" to say “A bird pooped on Joe Biden during his speech” in Iowa. PolitiFact's Jeff Cercone summarized on April 13: 


Notice Cercone didn't evaluate Biden blaming price hikes on Putin. He was poop-focused. But PolitiFact looks like a partisan site when Sen. Ron Johnson gets a "Mostly False" for blaming high gas prices on the Democrats and Joe Biden gets a Mostly True for claiming "The current spike in gas prices is largely the fault of Vladimir Putin."

At no point does Graham apologize for publishing false information. To the contrary, he's mad that conservative media is being held accountable for it, huffing that "Based on the "fact checkers," Facebook has restricted our sister site MRCTV’s 3.3-million-follower page for the next three months for an article insisting that the president had the poopoo, and the article having now been branded with a “false information” label to protect the public from such damaging myths." Graham included a screenshot of an MRCTV Twitter post featuring the false claim -- which Graham admits is false -- that "A bird pooped on Joe Biden in Iowa."

A post the next day from Joseph Vazquez whined at length about the MRC being held accountable for its false claims:

The hypocrisy of Facebook’s fact-checking partners knows no bounds. In an act of discrimination against the Media Research Center, a Meta platform fact-checking partner threw a fit after MRC’s video division, MRCTV, dared to write about a video that showed President Joe Biden getting smacked with a white or yellow substance, depending on the photo or video.

MRCTV managing editor Brittany Hughes headlined, “Yes, a Bird Just Crapped On Biden During a Speech.” Hughes quipped that “It appears a bird proceeded to crap on Joe Biden while the president was speaking in Iowa Tuesday, dropping a big, dripping pile of poo directly on Biden’s shoulder in full view of God and everyone.”

“False information,” cried Facebook in a filter it slapped over MRCTV’s post of Hughes’ blog. The platform linked out to an absurd article by left-wing fact-checker PolitiFact that tried to protect biden. Facebook in turn canceled MRCTV, restricting its account and reducing its page quality for at least 90 days for supposedly having “repeatedly shared false information.” Oh, please. MRCTV received previous “missing context” flags, which are supposedly not supposed to hurt the quality of its page but did anyway.

Vazquez then bizarrely attacked the PolitiFact fact-checker for not personally investigating the substance on Biden's lapel:

While Cercone acknowledged that “there were birds in what the president called the ‘giant barn,’” he appears to have taken others’ word for it and dismissed the poop theory out of hand. “It became clear fairly soon after that the theory was a load of bird poop, but by that point the video had been widely shared.” Cercone continued: “A video clearly shows particles flying around from a giant, nearby grain pile. We rate this claim False.” Did Cercone examine the substance himself? Did he smell it? Did he smush it between his fingers? Did he taste it? Did he ask the White House for a sample of the substance and have it tested in a lab somewhere? It doesn’t appear so.


Cercone’s “bird poop” of a fact-check ridiculously tried but couldn't prove with hard evidence that the substance wasn’t feces. Yet, Facebook took PolitFact seriously anyway.

But it got even more ridiculous. PolitiFact cited a Des Moines Register article which “showed a closeup image of the president’s jacket, which clearly shows a yellow color, not the traditional white usually dropped on us by our avian friends.” Ah, so the brilliant rebuttal from PolitiFact’s in-house ornithologist is that the substance was too yellow to be bird poop? Apparently Facebook saw that as enough of an excuse to censor MRCTV.

Vazquez refused to admit the MRC was wrong, and Hughes' post remains live and uncorrected. That's right-wing arrogance and disregard for the truth in a nutshell.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:36 AM EDT
Saturday, May 28, 2022
MRC's Graham, Houck Toss Softballs At Kayleigh McEnany
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center loves to complain about softball interviews in the "liberal media," but the boys at the MRC can lob slow, fat softballs like a champion when their narratives need to be advanced. And so it was when former Trump White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany appeared on Tim Graham's April 27 podcast. Joining Graham for the softball-tossing was Curtis Houck, who wrote many glowing reviews of her insult-laden press briefings.

Graham was tossing softballs right out of the gate, as his first question teed up McEnany to comment on then-current White House press secretary Jen Psaki seeking a new job at MSNBC while still working at her old one.  Surprisingly, McEnany didn't bite, noting that she followed the proper ethical steps. Houck then stepped up to gush over the "outstanding pieces of media analysis" in McEnany's book and simply asked her to "expand" on what she wrote. McEnany took offense at ABC reporter Jonathan Karl calling his memoir of the Trump years "Front Row at the Trump Show" -- "it's not a show, it's not in the front row of a Trump show, you're asking questions for the  American people" -- apparently oblivious to the fact that Houck has dismissively labeled Psaki's hearings as "the Psaki Show" (and Houck was certainly not going to remind her of that inconvenient fact). McEnany later returned the favor by gushing about how she follows Psaki's briefings though the selective video clips Houck posts to his Twitter account and touted how she reads NewsBusters "every day," adding that "you guys are the experts."

Because Graham never forgets a right-wing grievance, he brought up the then-upcoming White House Correspondents Dinner and rehashing how host Trevor Noah will not "make fun of Jen Psaki's makeup the way what's her -- Michelle Wolf when after Sarah Huckabee." Graham forgot that the organization he runs has no problem mocking someone's looks when that person is a non-conservative. That, of course, was simply setup for another softball for McEnany to knock out of the park.

There was a lot of commisseration between Graham, Houck and McEnany about how terrible the "liberal media" is and how it purportedly pushed false stories during the Trump adminstration, as well as lots of whining about anonymous sources (never mind that the MRC cites them too when politically advantageous). Graham cued McEnany up to rant regarding the claim that Trump ordered Lafayette Square to be cleared of protesters so he could do a photo op with a Bible in front of a church that "the inspector general said that wasn't true ... so not true, debunked" (actually, the Park Police inspector general's investigation was incomplete and does not definitively clear Trump) and thtt "COVID lab leak theories" were dismissed (they still haven't proven to be fact).

Graham and Houck also teed up McEnany to chat about her dailiy "smackdown at the end of the briefing" and her briefing book, and they gently asked for advice on how Republican press officials should handle the media. They certainly weren't going to ask McEnany about how she abandoned her job after the Capitol riot. Houck concluded by with even more McEnany gushing, dubiously claiming that conservatives never melt down like liberals do because conservatives "can rest knowing in our identity in Christ" while lberals "who haven't accepted Jesus" think "politics and winning on the battlefield is how they determine what a good life looks like."

There wasn't a tough question in the bunch. Graham and Houck should keep their fluffy, sycophantic treatment of McEnany in mind the next time they accuse the "liberal media" of conducting softball interviews.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:28 AM EDT
Updated: Saturday, May 28, 2022 10:48 AM EDT
14 Years Later, WND's Farah Is Still Lying About Obama 'Civilian National Security Force' Statement
Topic: WorldNetDaily

A prime example of the so-called journalism that has pushed WorldNetDaily to the brink of extinction is its portrayal of Barack Obama's "civilian national security force" remark. Even though -- as we documented in 2008 -- Obama was clearly referring to the use of diplomacy "soft power" in international relations, WND editor Joseph Farah created the false narrative that Obama was actually referring to "some kind of massive but secret national police force" he would create as president. Despite the fact that it's not true and has been easily proven to not be true, Farah and WND pushed the lie for years. Now 14 years later -- despite the falsehood having long ago been definitively disproven -- Farah once again played dumb about the remark in his April 14 column:

Way back on July 2, 2008, Barack Obama issued a declaration that made my head spin, yet no one, and I mean no one, took notice until I wrote about it several days later.

Then it caught fire. I'm still wondering about it – 14 years later!

Stay with me. I think it explains a lot – all the corruption the Democrats have wrought over the years.

In a long campaign speech, then-candidate Obama dropped this little bomb: "We cannot continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we've set. We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded."

Over the years, I've wondered what became of that idea – a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded as the U.S. military.

A sinple internet search 14 years ago could have stopped all that wondering. But Farah is apparently still in the throes of ObamaDerangement Syndrome, and a narrative about a president who left office five years ago is more important to him than the truth. So manufacture that bogus narrative, Joe:

At first, I began wondering if Obama's daydream may have materialized when we began seeing violence in the streets of mostly blue America in 2020, as cities burn needlessly – without local response – from Berkeley to Minneapolis to Portland to Chicago to Kenosha.

Could the antifa thugs, anti-Semite leftists and Black Lives Matter racists represent what Obama had in mind? And it started early – like the day of Trump's inauguration.

Organizing for Action, a group founded by Obama and featured prominently on his post-presidency website, began distributing a training manuals to anti-Trump activists that advised them to bully GOP lawmakers into backing off support for repealing Obamacare, curbing immigration from high-risk Islamic nations and building a border wall, reporter supreme Paul Sperry reported.


And here's the key: A script advised callers to complain about Trump adviser Steve Bannon: "I'm honestly scared that a known racist and anti-Semite will be working just feet from the Oval Office. … It is everyone's business if a man who promoted white supremacy is serving as an adviser to the president."

Trump the racist – a bogus, baseless, defenseless charge that came from Obama. The rest is history, as they say.

Actually, there's plenty of evidence of racism from both Trump and Bannon. But Farah's fantasy was only getting more paranoid:

Know this: Obama is STILL around as the only Democrat with the dream of replacing Joe Biden. There's nobody else in contention! Did he look at home in the White House last week? Did he seize the room? Did Biden even know what to do with himself?

What else did Obama have in mind with this new "civilian national security force"?

What about the purging of our armed forces under Biden, probably under the quiet direction of Obama?

Did we ever see anything more un-American than that?

How about Critical Race Theory being pushed by the education establishment?

How about the Jan. 6 debacle and how FBI made it happen so it could all be blamed on Trump?

Maybe Obama failed to call it a COVERT "civilian national security force."

Perhaps, it was at work in both the midterm elections in 2018 and the presidential election of 2020.

Maybe the Deep State should be more appropriately called the SECRET "civilian national security force" – the permanent occupying army of Barack Obama.

His hand is still in play. He's going to take over for Biden. He's the only one who can.

Farah concluded by linking to WND's copy of Obama's speech -- in which it's clear that, in context, brought up the Peace Corps and the U.S. foreign service (another description for diplomats) in discussing a "civilian national security force." He signed off by writing, "I'm still in shock."

Sadly, we're not in shock that Farah continues to lie to his readers after 14 years.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:23 AM EDT
Friday, May 27, 2022
MRC Psaki-Bashing, Doocy-Fluffing Watch, On-Message Edition
Topic: Media Research Center

A busy news cycle was not going to keep Curtis Houck from his Doocy-fluffing rounds, so he devoted an April 11 post to lavishing the praise he couldn't do earlier regarding briefings on April 7 and 8:

Given the busy news week, we wanted on Monday morning to recap the best and the worst from Thursday and Friday’s episodes of The Psaki Show and hone in on Fox’s Peter Doocy sparring with Press Secretary Jen Psaki over COVID cases around the President and Vice President and then free cellphones for illegal immigrants.

In contrast, other reporters came at Psaki from the left, expressing fear of the virus, regardless of how many shots one might have had.

Doocy began his Thursday questioning with this zinger about Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) positive COVID test following a White House event: “How can you guys say that President Biden was not a close contact with Speaker Pelosi when there is video of the Speaker kissing him?”

Psaki insisted the Center for Disease Control’s “definition of it is 15 minutes of contact within a set period of time within six feet” and they “did not meet that bar.” Thankfully Doocy pressed on the insanity of this and whether a rash of cases among key officials could be “a national security problem.”

Psaki noted the importance of boosters and the availability of working from home, so Doocy closed the circle with a question about Friday’s celebration of incoming Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson before moving on to immigration and what’s expected to be an explosion of people at the border.


Going to Friday, Doocy similarly began with a bang, sarcastically asking whether there’s “a carve-out in CDC regulations for COVID for the Vice President.”

Psaki invited him to “[t]ell me more” as “I’m sure this is going somewhere” even though she wasn’t entirely certain of what he had for her “on a Friday.”

Take note below of how Psaki had the gall to note Harris was emotional as she had important business to attend to, which led Doocy to question whether this was a case of “rules for thee but not for VP”[.]


On immigration, Doocy wanted to know whether free smartphones could be given “to U.S. citizens that way them” for free with “a free monthly plan” seeing as how they’re being doled out to illegal immigrants.

Psaki wasn’t having it, asking how instead should they be tracked and also inviting Doocy to provide “an alternative suggestion.” Doocy was a good sport, stating he “unfortunately, [has] not been asked to make...policy.”

Houck didn't have Doocy to fluff for the April 13 briefing, so he found a way to get off on Psaki being asked tough questions (something he never did regarding his beloved Kayleigh McEnany): "Hump Day marked a tough day for Jen Psaki as she reportedly careens toward the series finale of The Psaki Show as the White House press secretary faced tough questions on inflation and another off-the-cuff remark from President Biden about Russia’s unprovoked war against Ukraine, including one that questioned whether there needs to be 'an asterisk next to anything that the President says.'" He did give a shout-ouyt to the Fox News employees that were in the room, Jacqui Heinrich and Edward Lawrence.

The writeup was assigned to Kevin Tober for the April 18 briefing, but he knew how to follow Houck's Doocy-fluffing template:

Another day another wild episode of the final season of the Psaki Show. This time with a well-deserved grilling by Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy, and some rather bizarre questions from a couple of other reporters in the room. 


Next up, is the moment you’ve all been waiting for with Peter Doocy firing off a number of hard-hitting questions for Psaki: 

You said about this mask ruling out of a federal court in Florida that it’s a disappointing decision and you say you continue to recommend that people wear masks. Why is it that we can sit here in the White House briefing room with no masks, but people can't sit in an airplane cabin with no masks?

In response, Psaki sassed Doocy by claiming she’s “not a doctor” and neither is he: “You're not a doctor that I'm aware of.” 

Finally getting around to answering the question, the belligerent press secretary tried to explain how the mask decisions are made: “these determinations, remember the masking guidance is there are is green, yellow and red. We are currently in a green zone in Washington, D. C. So they're not recommending it.”

Doocy promptly asked without skipping a beat “then would the President support if a flight is leaving from an airport in a green zone, those people don't have to wear masks?” 

The next briefing writeup didn't happen until April 27, in which Houck referenced a briefing he oddly didn't write up and praised Fox's Heinrich for pushing the right-wing talking point du jour on Hunter Biden (which the MRC as a whole had also been dutifully pushing as if following orders, and Houck himself hyped in his briefing writeups the month before):

A day after PBS’s Lisa DeJardins asked White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki for comment on the latest Hunter Biden finding by the New York Post, Fox’s Jacqui Heinrich came into Tuesday’s briefing with a question that’ll be worth revisiting as the Biden probe in Delaware moves along as she wanted to know whether President Joe Biden still stands by his claims that he never discussed Hunter’s business dealings with him or with other people.

Heinrich wrapped her questions with one about Hunter in context of the Post’s story from this past weekend that said a Hunter Biden associate had visited the White House 19 times while Hunter’s father was Vice President:


Prior to her Hunter question, Heinrich brought up the CDC order Title 42 and its use at the southern border and whether it was true that the President’s “looking forward to lifting Title 42, describing it as an excuse to keep people out of the country and anti-immigrant.”

Psaki replied that while he “never felt that Title 42 was a — an effective immigration policy...the authority has always rested in the CDC to make that determination.”

And on a topic semi-related, Heinrich questioned whether the supposed drying up of government COVID-19 funding could soon result in a scenario with illegal immigrants receiving vaccinations and pandemic-related care free of charge while American citizens aren’t[.]

The next day, Houck served up more Heinrich love for staying on message over Hunter Biden:

For the second day in a row on Wednesday, Fox’s Jacqui Heinrich pressed lame duck White House press secretary Jen Psaki on both Hunter Biden’s life of corruption and the ongoing crisis at the border as the Biden administration continues to divert resources away from American citizens and toward illegal immigrants.

Heinrich sandwiched her Hunter Biden questions in between back-and-forth’s on Saturday’s White House Correspondents Dinner (WHCD) and Title 42, stating she “want[ed] to take another stab at a question I tried yesterday.”

“We’ve heard the President say over and over again that he has never spoken to his son about his business dealings.  Has he ever spoken to his son’s business partners about his son’s business dealings,” she asked.

Psaki made it as clear as day for the U.S. Attorney and grand jury in Delaware, saying “nothing has changed about what I said yesterday” in that President Biden “does not get involved in the business dealings of his son.”

Heinrich twice followed up to have Psaki repeat herself:

Houck didn't think Heinrich was a bad reporter for asking questions that elicited the same answers from Psaki -- she stayed on message with the right-wing agenda, and that's all that matters to him.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:00 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, June 13, 2022 12:54 AM EDT
CNS Unemployment Coverage Distortion Watch

In keeping with the pattern of recent months,'s coverage of unemployement numbers downplayed the positive numbers while cherry-picking the ones that aren't so good. This went to an extreme in Susan Jones' lead story on April's numbers, which carried the headline "April Downer: Labor Force Participation and Number of Employed People Fall; Unemployment Rate Holds at 3.6%." Yet the article began this way:

Non-farm payrolls added 428,000 jobs in April, in line with the the consensus estimate of around 400,000, the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday.

Jones followed that with her longtime obsession with the labor force participation rate, which she tends to hype whenever a Democrat is president, as well as another obsession with reminding us how great things supposedly were under Donald Trump before the pandemic:

The number of employed people fell to 158,105,000, a decrease of 353,000 from the prior month. But the number of unemployed people -- those who have actively looked for work in the prior four weeks and are currently available for work -- also dropped by 11,000 to 5,941,000.

The April unemployment rate held steady at 3.6 percent, the same low rate as it was in March. But the labor force participation rate is moving in the wrong direction.

In April, the civilian non-institutional population in the United States was 263,559,000. That included all people 16 and older who did not live in an institution, such as a prison, nursing home or long-term care facility.

Of that civilian non-institutional population, 164,046,000 were participating in the labor force, meaning they were either employed or unemployed -- they either had a job or were actively seeking one during the last month. This resulted in a labor force participation rate of 62.2 percent in April, down from 62.4 percent in March.

The participation rate was 61.4 percent when Joe Biden took office. Today's number, 62.2 percent, is still below the Trump-era high of 63.4 percent in February 2020, just before COVID shut things down.

It wasn't until the eighth paragraph that she admitted the inconvenient truth (for her narrative, anyway) that the labor force participation rate is low because of "the growing number of Baby Boom retirees."

Editor Terry Jeffrey served up his usual sidebar on government employment, this time complaining that "The number of people working for government in the United States grew by 22,000 in April."

Posted by Terry K. at 3:49 PM EDT
WND Falsely Portrays Another COVID Vaccine Study And Where It Was Published
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's Art Moore wrote in an April 14 article:

A long-term study published by the prestigious British journal The Lancet that follows up on participants in the Moderna and Pfizer trials found the vaccines had no effect on overall mortality.

Among 74,000 trial participants, there were 31 all-cause deaths among the vaccinated and 30 among the placebo groups as of January, reported Daniel Horowitz of The Blaze.

Curiously, as Horowitz noted, the authors of the Danish-government-funded study state: "Based on the RCTs with the longest possible follow-up, mRNA vaccines had no effect on overall mortality despite protecting against fatal COVID-19."

Horowitz asked: "So how is it that mRNAs had no effect on all-cause mortality but protect against fatal COVID?"

He supposed that either the vaccines "don't really protect against COVID, or the nominal benefit is washed away by the mortality from adverse events."

Moore got one key fact wrong. The study has not been published in The Lancet -- it was published on a separate preprint website prior to peer review; if it clears peer review, only then will it actually be published in The Lancet.Moore aldo didn't explain why the Blaze writer was demanding that COVID vaccines prevent death from non-COVID causes.

On top of that, Moore (along with the Blaze) overstates what the study actually says. PolitiFact reported:

"The study isn’t about the effectiveness of mRNA vaccines against COVID," said Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health and Security. "The study is aimed to determine if COVID vaccines have non-specific mortality impacts that extend beyond the incontrovertible mortality benefit they confer with COVID-19. Certain vaccines have effects that extend beyond the target infection and decrease mortality from other causes (e.g. measles vaccine)."

Dr. Monica Gandhi, an infectious disease specialist at the University of California, San Francisco, also said the question of the paper isn’t about COVID-19, but whether the vaccines had a beneficial effect on other causes of mortality.

The research reinforced that both types of vaccines significantly prevented COVID-19 deaths, "which is not surprising as both types of vaccines generate cellular immunity against SARS-CoV-2, protecting us against severe disease."


This is an oversimplification that doesn’t accurately reflect the preprint study, which was not peer reviewed. Researchers used clinical trial data to see how the different COVID-19 vaccines reduced deaths from all causes. They found that adenovirus-vector vaccines appeared to protect against non-accident, non-COVID-19 deaths, while mRNA vaccines didn’t have much of an impact. They said more research is needed. 

The research didn’t conclude that mRNA vaccines were ineffective at protecting people from dying of COVID-19.

Moore does have an unfortunate tendency to falsely report on study results in order to push the bogus narrative that COVID vaccines don't work.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:21 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE -- Out There, Exhibit 81: The Only Good Superman Is A Straight White One
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center melts down over the idea that Superman can be an alien of color or bisexual. It's similarly upset that Robin is no longer heteronormative and that Supergirl is "woke." Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:28 AM EDT
Thursday, May 26, 2022
How Is The MRC Fearmongering About Soros Now?
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center issues regular attacks on George Soros complaining he's funding various things it doesn't like in order to portray him as a liberal puppetmaster (never mind how anti-Semitic that looks). Let's see how many attacks have piled up since the last time we checked:

We've already noted how the MRC invoked Soros in an attempt to criticize ADL leader Alan Greenblatt for working with Whoopi Goldberg over her incorrect statements about the Holocaust. But the MRC has also dragged its Soros obsession into other narratives it has pushed. As part of its campaign of hate against Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson, Joseph Vazquez huffed in a March 23 post:

A leftist dark money group funded by liberal billionaire George Soros is closely connected to efforts to push for confirmation of President Joe Biden’s Supreme Court nominee.

Demand Justice, which has advocated for radical left-wing reforms like packing the Court, has aggressively pushed for the nomination of District of Columbia Circuit Court Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson for at least around two years. Demand Justice’s shortlist for Court nominees includes Jackson. The group even included her on a shortlist as far back as September 2020. Soros gave at least $1,337,000 and possibly as much as $3,837,000 to Demand Justice between 2018 and 2020, according to Open Society Foundations and Open Society Policy Center records respectively.


Soros’s Open Society Policy Center (OSPC) directly funded Demand Justice to the tune of $1,337,000 between 2018 and 2020 through the left-wing dark money group Sixteen Thirty Fund, according to Open Society Foundations records. In addition, OSPC records suggest that it may have given another $2.5 million to Demand Justice through the fund between April 1, 2018 and June 30, 2018. The billionaire also spent at least “$29 million in funding” through his “personal network of political action committees (PACs)” to help elect at least 23 leftist district attorneys spread throughout the country. Jackson’s confirmation to SCOTUS would fit right in line with the overarching leftist goals of Demand Justice and Soros.

Demand Justice’s actions to reshape the Court into a pro-abortion bulwark and its connections to Soros have gone largely ignored by the liberal media. A Nexis search revealed that the group’s involvement in Jackson’s nomination received no coverage by the ABC, CBS and NBC broadcast networks from her Feb. 25 nomination to March 20.

By contrast, Vazquez has been silent about right-wing dark money influencing the selection of conservative judges and Supreme Court members, or that said dark money funded attacks on Jackson.

The MRC also tried to tie Soros to criticism of Elon Musk's purchase of Twitter, which it heartily supports:

  • Vazquez groused in an April 15 item that Free Press, "a left-wing outlet funded by liberal billionaire George Soros," had "whined that the world’s richest man’s plan to purchase Twitter was a threat to democracy."
  • A May 4 item by Alexander Hall complained that groups "heavily funded by liberal megadonor George Soros" were among organizations arguing that Musk buying Twitter "will further toxify our information ecosystem and be a direct threat to public safety, especially among those already most vulnerable and marginalized.”Hall did not dispute the claim; instead, he attacked some of the signatories as purportedly being "pro-censorship."
  • In a May 24 post laughably headlined "VILLAINS, UNITED?", Jeffrey Clark whined that Soros and Bill Gates "funneled millions into some of the same organizations that attacked Tesla CEO Elon Musk as a threat to democracy. " He unironically added: "Ironically, the same groups dedicated to dismantling free speech in the United States apparently had no qualms accepting money from one of the most influential purveyors of leftist policy in the world, George Soros."

Does Clark not know who funds his paycheck?

Posted by Terry K. at 9:57 PM EDT
Norris Abuses WND Column Again To Sell Stuff -- And Joseph Farah Helps
Topic: WorldNetDaily

We've documented how Chuck Norris has shamelessly and unethically used his WorldNetDaily column to shill for the gold company that hired him as a spokesman. But now he has a new profitable venture to use his column to shill for. He began his April 18 column this way:

I'm definitely not an alarmist or fear monger, and I dislike those who are. Succumbing to fear literally robs us of life and paralyzes us from achieving our best.

At the same time, I don't believe in sticking our heads in the sands of ignorance or denial. I believe in having a plan, a back-up plan and preparing for the future in case of emergency. That includes preparing even for events we pray will never happen, like nuclear or civil war.

The world is a very volatile place, and even life in America is escalating more and more to a frantic peak. Let me give you some bad news before some good news. Consider just these few international and national news facts and headlines:

All of which, of course, are alarmist and fearmongering. Nevertheless, he repeated himself: "As I said, I'm not an alarmist, but I do believe in being ready in season and out of season no matter what comes."

He then started ranting about EMP attacks "that could knock out the power grid for months across the whole U.S. from a high-altitude detonation of a single nuclear warhead in the skies above us," then asked: "Imagine what would be the impact on our economy and your life if an EMP hit America simultaneously with an imminent global food crisis? Is that really so far-fetched when Biden himself recently confessed that the food shortage "is going to be real"?" That hint turned into a full-blown promotional ad a few paragraphs later:

All the preceding global and domestic threats, in addition to my love for America and Americans, is what prompted my wife, Gena, and I to decide to support and endorse some new survival resources we call "Roundhouse Provisions." (

Please watch this brand-new 50-second video I just created about "Roundhouse Provisions," then visit the Roundhouse Provisions website to learn more about emergency survival and preparations. There you will also find some of the most tasty, nutritious and cost-effective options for food storage.

It may seem like a no-brainer to many, but in this terror-pervasive age, we all need to have "a personal survival kit" or a survival storage closet or room that contains essentials that could last us for months at a minimum.

Below is my list of essential emergency supplies. I know that some of these are costly items, so I'd encourage you to save for each, and check them off until you have them all.


Everyone (and I mean, everyone) should have essential emergency supplies, regardless of whether or not you're a survivalist. These items can help you and your loved ones survive a host of emergency situations or disasters, whether the cause is from weather, power outages, EMPs, or something worse – such as a terrorist attack – that completely shuts down communications, travel or the financial system for an extended period of time.

Preparation is absolutely key. When disaster hits, the time to prepare has passed.

Proverbs 27:12 says, "A prudent person foresees the danger ahead and takes precautions. The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences."

Or, as Howard Ruff, a financial adviser and writer, wisely and simply put it: "It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark."

(Again, please take a few minutes to check out our "Roundhouse Provisions." I bet you'll be glad you did.)

Yes, Norris is so shameless that he threw in a Bible verse as an incentive to buy his stuff.

The really sad thing, though, is that three days later, WND editor Joseph Farah devoted his column to praising Norris -- and endorsing his prepper fearmongering:

I truly love Chuck Norris. He's my hero, my friend, my Christian brother, my inspiration. And the funny thing is I rarely see him in these strange times in which we live. I take him altogether for granted – which means, for me, the matter is settled.

The reason I write this today is because he and I think alike. I don't have to talk to him regularly to know it. At a heart level, we see eye-to-eye.

Do we agree America is the greatest country ever devised by man? Yes.

Do we think Israel is the greatest country ever created by God? Yes.

Things like that – and so much more.


God bless Chuck Norris for issuing this timely reminder to all of us. It's worth the list of things he and his wife, Gena, prepared that we need to think about. They've done the hard work for us.

Every day, we see more of the kinds of economic and global conditions that can put us and our families at risk, the events we have to be prepared for – for ourselves, our loved ones and for the God who loves us all.


Why am I bearing my soul about this?

Because he just wrote a column in WND that took my breath away – truly.


I was moved by it – and I have been a "survivalist" most of my life. So, is my wife, Elizabeth.

It was like a wake-up call!

It was very real.

So much is happening to this nation and world now that we have been both expecting and dreading at the same time.

But we're talking about all these things as if they are somehow unrelated. They're not. They are "harbingers," as another dear friend would say – Jonathan Cahn, a man who was prepared by God for a time such as this.

Interestingly, Farah didn't specifically promote the prepper food Norris was shilling. Instead, he highlighted "special preparadness offers for WND readers," which icluded links to "the PREPAREDNESS section of the WND Superstore" and to a place that claims to help you "Shield your retirement savings from Biden's tax plans now" -- which just so happens to be Goldco, the company Norris has been abusing his WND column to shill for.

The fact that Farah is clearly allowing Norris to used his column to make money instead of imparting useful information is another sign that WND has no interest in correcting the dubious business practices and editorial policies that have ied it to the brink of insolvency.


Posted by Terry K. at 6:17 PM EDT
MRC Gets Mad When Hungary's Orban Is Accurately Described As Authoritarian
Topic: Media Research Center

We've already caught the Media Research Center cozying up to Hungary's right-wing authoritarian leader Viktor Orban, portraying his as an avatar of "free speech" despite his history of cracking down on dissent and imposing censorship. An April 20 post by Curtis Houck complained that Orban's authoritarianism was called out:

Wednesday’s CBS Mornings and Reliable Sources Daily on CNN+ flashed the profession’s virulent hatred for conservatives by giving cushy interviews to Daily Show correspondent and failed Comedy Central host Jordan Klepper ahead of his new special trashing Hungary as a bastion of authoritarianism reminiscent of what Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) has done with Florida.

Having established himself as the show’s correspondent who paints non-leftists as some combination of dangerous, idiotic, and underdeveloped, Klepper was welcomed with four teases on CBS. In the first, fill-in co-host Vladimir Duthiers said Klepper investigated “an unusual fascination shared by some supporters of former President Trump” in Hungary’s “authoritarian government” (under Viktor Orban).

Dokoupil began the piece by touting his recent trip to CPAC 2022 and how that led to visiting Budapest, Hungary to find out “why so many seem to look to Hungary and its authoritarian leader as a model for America’s future.”


Dokoupil then remarked how it’s been “ Hungary has declined from a near democracy to what has been qualified as an authoritarian state” with Duthiers wondering “how” Klepper “see[s] the antecedents here in the U.S.”

Klepper obliged by explaining that Hungary’s made “voting harder,” created “a lot of gerrymandering,” fostered a media landscape that’s “owned by wealthy oligarchs who have connections to the ruling party,” and “villified” “the LGBTQ community.”

Perhaps knowing that he can't refute Klepper on the facts, Houck instead resorted to lazy whataboutism: "As a side note on the media angle, if it’s some right-wing playbook, then how would Klepper explain the executives who run ABC, CBS, CNN, NBCUniversal (aka Comcast), and the major papers?"

Houck only briefly mentioned in passing a discussion about how Klepper and Dokoupil discussed "how it’s a farce to argue George Soros is “the boogeyman who controls things,” making sure not to mention that this is exactly the anti-Soros narrative that his employer pushes.

Houck continued to whitewash Orban when Klepper appeared on CNN, pretending that his campaign of anti-LGBT hate is merely "refusal to kowtow to the LGBTQ agenda" and indulged in the MRC's usual smear of CNN's Brian Stelter as a "media janitor":

A few hours later, Klepper joined media janitor Brian Stelter for more of the same, including the same condescending dismissal people would mention Hunter Biden’s laptop.

Klepper lamented the angle about refusal to kowtow to the LGBTQ agenda, claiming they’re being ostracized and thus a country where “progressives...are frustrated” and cities aren’t able to be left-wing bastions with “liberties...stamped out” and “a brain drain of young people.”

“Hungary was — was progressive 15 years ago. I talked to people who were there, like, it was more inclusive, more open, and now that’s changing and changing and changing and the ability to actually change that narrative, it’s harder for people with a progressive mindset,” Klepper added.

Stelter then commiserated with him about how similar Orban and Hungary are to Republicans and red states given “the anti-trans legislation” and “anti-gay narratives in GOP media.”

This gave Klepper the room to argue such legislation that forbids the teaching of sex education and encouraging of transgenderism toward young children is dangerous and will lead to a world in which gay people are seen as pedophiles

Again, Houck didn't dispute the factuality of anything Klepper said -- even when he pointed how conservativfes have "conflated sexuality with pedophila." The goal here is to shout down and dismiss Klepper as an enemy of right-wingers like Houck and the MRC, not engage in any sort of reasoned debate.It's also to pretend that foreign leaders can't possibly be authoritarian if they're spouting the same right-wing rhetoric that the MRC does.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:25 PM EDT
CNS Joins MRC Parent In Flip-Flopping On Musk Over Twitter Buy

Like the Media Research Center, its "news" division was critical of Elon Musk -- in particular his ties to Russia and China -- before sharing the big flip-flop with its parent over his plan to buy Twitter. For example, an April 2020 column by Chuck Muth denounced Musk as a "repeated Trump backstabber" who engaged in "political grandstanding" for being named to Trump administration advisory councils then "chose publicly to throw a fit and leave the council by way of a tweet." A June 2020 column by Justin Caruso was headlined "Celebrate the SpaceX Launch, but Don’t Pretend Elon Musk Is a Free Market Hero,"noting that Musk's space company "is ultimately looking for big bucks from the government in the form of federal subsidies." A July 2020 article by Craig Bannister seemed to be upset that "Musk said that government should maximize citizens’ happiness by giving each one of them money to be spent however he or she sees fit."

Christopher Smithmyer ranted against Musk in a June 2021 column:

No stranger to getting in bed with U.S. geopolitical adversaries, it looks like Musk may have a new controversial partnership in his crosshairs: Russia.

In a recent webinar Q&A for Kremlin students, Musk was asked if he had plans to expand his empire to Russia. The Tesla and SpaceX boss answered in the affirmative, saying that he thinks they are “close” to establishing a presence in the country.

Just how far does Musk have to stray before the U.S. starts to place some sort of legal boundaries on him?

It wasn't long after that that CNS stopped being concerned about putting legal boundaries on Musk. A Dec, 1 article by Bannister touted how Musk said that "People should be taught how to debug their brains and purge mental malware," Bannister followed that with a Dec. 15 article cheering how "After Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) accused Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk of “freeloading,” the billionaire who publicly opposes Democrats’ $1.75 trillion “Build Back Better” plan, fired back with a series of barbs and rebuttals," including "liken[ing] Warren to an angry woman who yells at everyone for no reason and applying the pejorative moniker 'Karen' to the senator."

When Musk bought a stake in Twitter in early April, Bannister rushed to approve with an April 7 article featuring fave Republican Rep. Rand Paul claiming that "Musk’s impact will be even more beneficial to free speech if liberal outrage over the news prompts Twitter’s “left-wing crazies” to abandon the social media platform they currently dominate." Susan Jones whined about criticism of Musk's offer to buy all of Twitter in an April 15 article:

"Morning Joe" anchor Mika Brzezinski on Friday left no doubt about where she stands on speech she doesn't like.

She not only slammed Twitter as "Donald Trump's playground to be...cruel toward people," but she also called Elon Musk's attempted takeover of Twitter a "very dangerous precedent."

To help Brzezinski buttress the Musk-bashing, MSNBC brought on a little-known columnist who slammed Musk as a "petulant billionaire" and -- yes, of course -- a "racist."

Jones buried in a transcript how the "little-known columnist" -- Linette Lopez of Business Insider -- pointed out inconvenient facts such as Tesla being sued for discrimination and needing at "Twitter sitter" because 'He's not allowed to tweet things about Tesla without legal review because he used Twitter to commit fraud" (though Jones did link to outside items proving Lopez correct). Jones never explained why she denigrated Lopez as a "little-known columnist" when she was actually fact-checking and verifying the things Lopez said.

An April 18 article by Bannister promoted former SEC Chairman Harvey Pitt giving Twitter's handling of Musk's bid for purportedly ignoring their responsibility to act in the best interests of the company’s shareholders. And managing editor Michael W. Chapman used an April 20 article to detail a non-Twitter-related pontification from Musk: "Although some climate change activists claim overpopulation is a serious problem that contributes to global warming and must be curtailed, investor and business giant Elon Musk said it is a "false impression" that there are too many people in the world, and added that the 'Earth could maintain a population many times the current level.'"

Bannister followd up with an April 22 article forwarding an implied threat to Twitter's board: "A letter sent Friday and signed by a group of 18 House Republicans, headlined by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), calls on Twitter’s board members to prepare to provide information about their efforts to prevent billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk from buying the social media platform." Bannister went on to gush that "Musk is seeking to buy the social media giant in order to rid it of its partisan censorship practices," as if any proof existed to back up Musk's words.

When the Twitter board accepted Musk's offer on April 25, the editorial floodgates opened at CNS as if it was working for Musk directly:

CNS' columnists were in a gushing mood as well. Ryan McMaken wrote an April 26 column headlined "Is Musk's Twitter Buyout the First Counteroffensive Against 'Woke CEOs'?" while Ben Shapiro proclaimed that "Musk may be just the man to help restore institutional trust to social media. But that will require him to bulldoze those who helped undermine that trust in the first place."

Needless to say, there was no mention of Musk's real-life record on free-speech issues; as Judd Legum detailed, Musk is all too eager to censor speech by trying to shut down critics, firing Tesla workers for union advocacy, and asking the Chinese governmen to silence Tesla critics in that country.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:44 AM EDT
Updated: Thursday, May 26, 2022 3:39 PM EDT
Wednesday, May 25, 2022
MRC's Doocy Defense Committee Activates Again
Topic: Media Research Center

We've documented how the Media Research Center acts as the Peter Doocy Protection Center, attacking anyone who dares criticize its favorite biased Fox News reporter, particularly after President Biden got caught calling him a "stupid son of a bitch.". Well, Doocy got besmirched again, and PDPC leader (and chief Doocy man-crusher) Curtis Houck snapped into defense mode yet again in an April 15 post:

Thursday night during a taping of the Obama bros podcast Pod Save America, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki implicitly doubled down on President Biden’s insistence that Fox News reporter Peter Doocy is a “stupid son of a bitch,” arguing he works for a network that “provides questions that...might make anyone sound like” one.

Psaki also weighed in on her tenure at the Briefing Room podium, danced around questions of when she’ll move to MSNBC. And seeing as how the press corps have decided it’s not an issue (other than a few questions on April 1) to take a taxpayer-funded salary while negotiating with an outlet that’s supposed to hold her to account, she’s clearly felt empowered to say things like that.

Co-host and former Psaki colleague Dan Pfeiffer brought up Doocy (to the groan and laughter of the live audience) as a way of asking: Given the show’s audience and the voting demographics of Washington D.C., the crowd went wild in applause and laughter.

Psaki found a back-handed way of answering in the affirmative: “[H]e works for a network that provides people with questions that, nothing personal to any individual, including Peter Doocy, but might make anyone sound like a stupid son of a bitch.”

Both the crowd and co-hosts went ballistic in laughter, which gave Psaki the chance to pivot to a more diplomatic answer with a retelling of what happened on January 24 between Biden and Doocy because it was “a nice Peter Doocy story” even if it’s not “popular in this crowd.”

Houck went on to gushabout how Doocy "took the high road when talking about" Biden's comment, though he grudgingly conceded that "Psaki added it 'was a moment of grace' by Doocy and one could say that without 'lik[ing] everything [he] says and does.'"

A couple hours later, Houck lashed out at designated MRC villain Brian Stelter of CNN for refusing to be the top-level Doocy-fluffer he is:

Like the quisling that he is, CNN’s Reliable Sources host Brian Stelter defended White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Friday afternoon after she said “sound[s] like a stupid son of a bitch” by working at Fox News, arguing “she didn’t really criticize him” and was “relaxing” in her final moments before leaving for MSNBC.

The liberal media janitor appeared on CNN Newsroom and was proceeded by co-host Victor Blackwell characterizing Psaki’s remarks as “choice words for her frequent press room rival, Peter Doocy during a taping of Pod Save America podcast.”

After co-host Alisyn Camerota asked whether Psaki should know the tough questions and Doocy being “a thorn in the side...come[s] with the territory,” Stelter conceded the last part, but quickly went into spin mode sucking up to Psaki.

“I think the point she's trying to say there is that Fox pushes storylines that are sometimes nonsense. Doocy does that in the briefing room,” Stelter boasted, fretting that her comments “to a liberal audience” will “cause a lot of outrage from Fox” lasting a “few days.”


Stelter added another shameless defense by claiming Psaki “didn’t really criticize him directly” but instead “Fox News as an organization.”

At no point did Houck dispute Stelter's contention that Doocy's job is to "advance right-wing talking points" on behalf of his employer -- after all, that's exactly why Houck has such a man-crush on the guy. Houck concluded by sneering that Stelter expressed "virulent hatred for Fox" -- which is a lie. Stelter simply told the truth, which, again, Houc, did not dispute; the only "virulent hatred" we see is from Houck against anyone who offers a truthful assessment of Doocy.

Of course, Houck is personally invested in pushing every narrative Doocy and Fox News forward, no matter how bogus, because he is a true right-wing believer who believes they are above all criticism. To him, Psaki and Stelter are subhuman for daring to criticize them.

UPDATE: Newsmax host Eric Bolling also got into the act, saying on his April 19 show that Russians see Carlson “as their ally,” and referred to him as “the guy across the ocean who’s helping their cause,” and that Carlson's failure to condemn Russian war crimes puts him on "the wrong side of history."

Posted by Terry K. at 8:36 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, May 26, 2022 1:33 AM EDT
Newsmax's Morris Still Hammering Tucker Carlson For Supporting Putin
Topic: Newsmax

Dick Morris has been notoriously wrong about many things, but his stopped-clock example of hammering Tucker Carlson and Fox News for effectively supporting Vladimir Putin's aggression in Ukraine has been surprisingly persistent and on point. He served up even more in an April 17 article:

Russia's Vladimir Putin has snagged Fox News and host Tucker Carlson hook, line, and sinker by his propaganda machine, sharing an "anti-American" narrative to conservatives, according to political strategist Dick Morris on Newsmax.

"Putin's strategy is, essentially what the Russians have always done, which is when they do something wrong: They take the copy and they turn it around on its head and blame us for it, even though it's something that they, and not we, have done," Morris, a former adviser to both former President Bill Clinton and President Donald Trump, told Saturday's "The Count."

"It's shocking to see Tucker Carlson doing this, and it's outrageous to see Fox News going along. This is not just pro-Russia, this is not anti-Ukraine, this anti-American."


Russia is even using Fox News and Carlson clips to justify Putin's invasion of Ukraine and continued escalations, Morris lamented.

"To see the Russian state media, the propaganda machine, quoting the leading talk television host in the United States is outrageous," he added.

Siding with Russia as it invades Ukraine is not only a bad look, but it is spreading disinformation to Americans, according to Morris.

"I think it's absurd and really shocking that Tucker Carlson in particular and Fox News in general really appear to be siding with Russia in this war," he said. "We have Tucker's overt statements saying, 'I side with Russia or I prefer Russia.'"

"And every night Tucker spews a monologue that basically says that the United States and our allies caused this invasion by provoking it by flirting with the idea of Ukraine joining NATO."

Morris said he spent a night this week watching Fox News and "found absolutely no coverage of what's really happening in Ukraine."

"No coverage of Putin's war crimes; no coverage of the atrocities – sometimes they pass it off with, 'We all know that Putin's not a great guy, but,' and then you go on," Morris noted.


Fox News is just not sharing the total truth, Morris concluded.

"Every night we see real images, not phony ones, of unbelievable havoc and hell being wrought upon the people of Ukraine by Russia – and yet we turn to Fox News and we see this stuff denied, downplayed," Morris said.

Morris used a May 17 column to lash out at Republican Sen. Rand Paul for obstructing U.S. aid to Ukraine, taking another shot at Carlson and Fox News in the process:

Rand Paul and a small band of Republican congressmen are using the same arguments and the same phony construct to oppose aid to Ukraine.

It is a message that Fox News' Tucker Carlson has been pushing for weeks: Why are we spending money on Ukraine when we need money for cancer research, roads and bridges, border security -- and as we struggle to keep gas prices down and fight inflation.

Carlson has long been a Kremlin apologist. And Fox News has been abetting his position with little or no coverage of Russia's war on Ukraine during its prime-time hours.

Fox's audience is becoming increasingly blind to the reality of this war, opening the door for Rand Paul and others.

Thankfully most Americans see the real danger Vladimir Putin poses to all of us.

Morris isn't the only person at Newsmax serving up stopped-clock takes, however. The hard-right David Horowitz and Daniel Greenfield took their own shots at Carlson and Fox News in a May 19 column, though he did make sure to blame Democrats for doing things that led up to this and President Biden for not doing anything effective:

Tucker and the conservative patriots who have joined him are wrong — wrong in their analyses, wrong in their priorities, and wrong in their opposition to a war that the West (led by the United States) must win.

Tucker has argued that Ukraine is a remote European country, and the U.S. has no security interest there that is worth the cost or the risks involved in defending it.

But in today’s world there are no remote countries.


What is happening in Ukraine is like 40 Guernicas or Coventrys rolled into one; it is also a spectacle of inspiring human heroism and courage with few parallels in our time or any other.

America can not turn our backs on the ordinary Ukrainian people who have risen so nobly to defend their homes.


Under President Trump, this crisis would not have occurred. There’s a reason that both of Putin’s invasions of Ukraine took place under White House Democrats.

That’s also why Russia’s Alaska incursions flared up under Obama and Biden.

Weakness is much more likely to bring on a war.

Abandoning the Ukrainians would be a sign of crippling weakness.

Biden badly mishandled the Ukraine crisis.

But we should not let the corruption in the White House or other political institutions, here and abroad, blind us to the human suffering or the bigger issues at stake for our national security.

If Russia’s efforts in Ukraine fall apart, it will not be due to Biden or the European Union, but the resilience of ordinary people in the face of war.

Horowitz and Greenfield can't quite concede that the billions in aid and weapons the U.S. and Europe are sending to Ukraine might be playing a major role, presumably because Democrats and liberals are behind them.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:19 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, May 25, 2022 5:20 PM EDT
WND Writer Can't Stop Defending The (Dubious) Honor Of Ivermectin
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Art Moore has been WorldNetDaioly's biggest promoter of ivermectin as a treatment for COVID -- and biggest censor of the fact that legitimate testing has shown that the drug doesn't actually work in treating COVID. So whenever someone besmirches the drug (read: accurately report on it), Moore is there to defend its good name. He complained in an April 22 article:

Dr. Anthony Fauci says that to preserve his "integrity," he had to publicly "correct" President Trump on the validity of ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine as treatments for COVID-19.


He complained of "the people who were talking about hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin and the virus is going to go away, it’s going to disappear."

"I had to maintain my integrity as well as my responsibility to the public to tell them the truth. That clearly alienated a lot of people," Fauci said.

Then Moore's defense brigade kicked in:

In fact, when the pandemic began, mass vaccination to quell a pandemic was an unproven novel therapy while physicians and medical scientists around the world were finding success using anti-viral drugs such as ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine.

Esteemed epidemiologist Dr. Harvey Risch of Yale Medical School was among scientists and physicians who said in Senate testimony that thousands of lives could have been saved if the treatments had not been suppressed.

One major problem for the promoters of the experimental vaccines was that they could not be granted emergency use authorization – shrinking the approval time from less give to 10 years to less than one year – if a viable alternative treatment of COVID-19 was available.

Under Fauci's leadership, physicians were punished, including losing their licenses, for legally treating COVID patients with the drugs off-label.

From 10% to 20% of all prescribed drugs are used off-label. Ivermectin has been shown to be effective as a preventative and early- and late-stage in at least 82 controlled studies. Researchers have demonstrated its ability to inhibit the replication of SARS-CoV-2 as well as its strong anti-inflammatory properties.

Risch is an anti-vaccine activist, so he's much less "esteemed" in real life than Moore would like you to believe. Also, mass vaccination is has proven quite successful in the past to quell or eradicate diseases, smallpox and polio among them. And again, Moore linked to the anonymous website that claims to document ivermectin studies, which may be secretly run by WND's favorite fringe-right medical group, the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons.

The defense continued:

One of the physicians punished for treating patients off-label is Dr. Meryl Nass, a Maine clinician and scientist. She points to a 2005 paper published by the CDC showing chloroquine – the stronger form of hydroxychloroquine – was an effective drug against SARS coronaviruses, exhibiting "strong antiviral effects."

In 2014, scientists at Fauci's NIAID came to the same conclusion.

In fact, Nass is an anti-vaxx extremist whose medical license was suspended because she lied to get an ivermectin prescription by falsely claiming a patient had Lyme disease.

Moore sent on to hype "prominent cardiologist and epidemiologist" Peter McCullough -- a major COVID miosinformer -- for praising the South Carolina attorney general for issuing a legal opinion that permitted medicationslike ivermectin to be used for"off-label" uses.

IN an April 26 article, Moore repeated last fall's defense of ivermectin fronm those who (accurately) point out that its main purposethese days is treating horses and livestock:

Noticing that the word ivermectin is trending on the newly liberated Twitterverse under Elon Musk, the FDA has reprised its disingenuous "horse dewormer" smear of the drug as a treatment for COVID-19.

"Hold your horses, y'all. Ivermectin may be trending, but it still isn't authorized or approved to treat COVID-19," said a post on the FDA's Twitter account.

The reference to horses played on the explosion last fall of media articles and social media posts mocking people who treated COVID-19 with the drug as ignorant rubes who were sneaking into farms or patronizing Tractor Supply stores in quest of "horse dewormer."

During the pandemic, Twitter and other social media platforms censored positive mention of ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine despite the countless testimonies and dozens of studies from around the world showing the drugs to be effective in treating COVID-19.

Moore then called on a fringe ivermectin promoter to hurl insults:

Dr. Pierre Kory, who has testified to the Senate of the effectiveness of ivermectin against COVID-19, fired back.

"You are not a horse, you are not a cow, you are Big Pharma's ass," he tweeted.

The FDA, he wrote, was "messaging BS" by citing "one corrupt study" while ignoring 82 trials, including 33 randomized controlled trials with 129,000 patients from 27 countries that show "massive benefits" of ivermectin in treating COVID-19.

"Stop lying man, people are dying," he wrote, adding the hashtag "earlytreatmentworks."

Moore also gave space to Kory to complain about a trial in Brazil that found ivermectin had no effect on COVID hospitalizations, insisting that "The dosage of the trial was far lower than everyday Brazilian clinicians were prescribing patients at the time to match the strength of the strain."

Posted by Terry K. at 1:04 PM EDT

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