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Tuesday, February 7, 2023
WND Trots Out Its Favorite Right-Wing Prophet To Rant Against Biden
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Jonathan Cahn has long been a WorldNetDaily favorite (and onetime cash cow) -- a self-proclaimed messianic rabbi whose prophecies just happened to coincide with his (and WND's) right-wing editorial agenda -- and it's been trotting him out again recently. In January 2022, it promoted an event featuring Cahn that purported to be "focused on America's history, its spiritual foundations and the importance of its covenant with God." Given that it also featured fringe figures like pseudo-historian David Barton and election denier and MyPillow guy Mike Lindell, it's unlikely the event offered any sort of enlightenment (not to mention the fact that Cahn diminished what standing he has by appearing with such grifters).

In April, Art Moore interviewed Cahn to promote his latest "harbinger" pronouncements in a film in which he claimed to be "answering the 'what now' question that many have posed to him as current events mirror the biblical pattern he wrote about in 2011 in his first book." Cahn did another interview with Moore in September, in which he hyperbolically likened the secularization of Western culture to Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia: ""It's never neutral. The Soviet Union wasn't neutral. Nazi Germany wasn't neutral. And this isn't neutral ... It's just exposing itself now."

Cahn returned for a Jan. 3 article by Bob Unruh hyping his latest attack on President Biden, this time for not hating gay people:

Messianic rabbi Jonathan Cahn, who famously warned Joe Biden when he became president to follow God's laws or see America's blessings vanish, now is insisting that Biden prepare himself for the time that will come that he will face God.

"The day will come that you will stand before God and you will have no more position, no administration, no government, no media and no public opinion. It will just be you and Him, and He will ask you to give account of what you did, what you did with regard to His Word and His ways."

Cahn said, on video, "Judgment will come."

"Mr. President, the hour is late and eternity is soon coming. Repent and turn to God. The only hope yo have, and all of us have, is salvation."

Biden recently marked his 80th birthday.

Cahn noted he had asked Biden when he took office how he could place his left hand on a Bible, and then with his right hand sign laws that "war against the Word of God."

The issue at that point was the abortion-promoting agenda that Biden was pursuing. The latest video notes Biden's celebration of the misnamed "Respect for Marriage Act" that declares marriage to be whatever two people say.

Cahn cited his warning about following God's laws, or breaking them.

"Now you've done it," he said, citing Biden's decision to officiate over a ceremony that altered federal law.

"You did something no president had ever done," which was enshrine an alternate to marriage into federal law.

Then Biden held a "festival," Cahn said.

Unruh inserted his own bias along with Cahn's attacks:

Since he's been in office, Biden has overseen inflation of up to 9.1%, sky high fuel costs, an open southern border drawing millions of illegal aliens to America, an unstable relationship with foreign powers, shortages of medicine, radical ideologies forced on schools and members of the military, and much more.

Cahn, on Biden's ascension to the White House, noted the pattern of God's judgment from the Old Testament that he discovered were remarkably repeated in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, including on the spot where George Washington stood and prayed on the day of his inauguration. For Israel, he noted that after such a warning, there was a window of time of 19 years to return to God before judgment, or "great shakings" began. Clearly, 19 years after 2001, America suffered a year of "great shakings."

He directed his words to the current president.

"Mr. Biden, you have called for unity and peace. But how can a nation have unity and peace when it wars against the very foundation on which it stands?" he said.

Cahn said the nation can't have unity and peace when it has "turned against the God who brought it into existence."

There was no mention of the adulterous, immoral, thrice-married Donald Trump.


Posted by Terry K. at 4:53 PM EST
Newsmax Still Screaming Victimhood In Week 2 Of DirecTV Deplatforming
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax entered its second week of loudly screaming victimhood and dishonestly elevating DirecTV dropping its TV channel in a business dispute into a "censorship" case and trying to get the government to interfere in it and punish DirecTV and its AT&T parent for its business decision. It has seemingly called in every right-winger who has ever appeared on the channel to register a complaint:

By our count, this makes at least 82 articles Newsmax has published attacking DirecTV in the first 10 days since it was deplatformed.

Newsmax CEO Chrstopher Ruddy also spoke out in a Feb. 1 article that began by complaining that DirecTV wouldn't negortiate with it, then ramping up the victimhood and unproven conspiracy theory that Newsmax was targeted for being right-wing:

"It makes you wonder if there's something bigger behind this that they're so inflexible," Ruddy said.

There has been a "targeted" attack on silencing conservative dissent of liberal political views, he added.

"It was a political decision," Ruddy said, rejecting DirecTV's claim the deplatforming was a "business decision." "They know the elections are coming up. They want to silence conservative voices. They got away with deplatforming One America News, and they hope that they can get away with this, and I think they were shocked and surprised by the outcry."

[...]

"They really were selectively trying to target us to essentially put us out of business, because they know a cable news channel needs to have license fee income to exist, and they didn't want us to be treated like another cable news channel," Ruddy told Van Susteren, maintaining that  DirecTV's "cost-cutting" explanation does not hold water.

"Usually you do it by eliminating the very costly channels that have very little ratings," Ruddy continued. "And with us, they're taking a highly rated channel — we're No. 5 for cable news in the United States, we reach 25 million Americans, and we're top 20 of cable overall.

"We're a big deal in cable, and they're saying that we're not eligible for a fee."

Ruddy pompously thinking Newsmax is "a big deal in cable" doesn't mean it actually is.He also didn't mention that DirecTV replaced Newsmax with another right-wing channel, The First.

Newsmax columnists have also had their say.A Jan. 31 column by Craig Shirley weirdly blamed the "dark forces of Wokeism" for Newsmax being kicked off DirecTV:

Newsmax is the vision of founder Christopher Ruddy along with his flagship magazine and radio networks.

But collectivism cannot stand the dissemination of conservative ideas simply because, freedom is better than tyranny.

At the very least, DirecTV — and AT&T are guilty of violating the constitutionally protected right of free speech.

In other words, Direct TV is interfering with Newsmax audience's right to hear all the information on breaking news.

And Direct TV is disrupting Newsmax’s right to do business with you, the viewer.

You don’t get news and information anymore from NBC News' "Meet the Press," they are interested only in shrinking knowledge, not expanding it.

The program's ratings are abysmal.

Same too with The Washington Post, The New York Times, ABC and CBS.

In fact, all the left-wing news outlets.

And forget about NPR. You might as well be reading Mao’s "Little Red Book."

The left just doesn’t want your hard-earned money.

They want to regulate and control you.

In fact, "Meet the Press" garners more than 2 million viewers weekly, while Newsmax TV hovers around 100,000 viewers on a daily basis.

A Feb. 2 column by Dave Donaldson offered another reason to oppose Newsmax's deflatforming -- it gave right-wing and religious groups (he runs a religious group called CityServe) free publicity:

Each week, Newsmax TV gives scores of nonprofits, especially faith-based organizations, valuable airtime to communicate with a broader audience. They get to talk about their projects and why they matter to the broader community. And Newsmax has a reputation for being very generous with its airtime.

Newsmax sees the world in a way that transcends the common partisan struggles over money and politics. Now, I'm sure losing the opportunity to reach 13 million DirecTV viewers will impact Newsmax's carriage and ad revenue. But AT&T and DirecTV need to understand who else is going to suffer.

By the way, none of these people, including Ruddy, have mentioned the fact that DirecTV replaced Newsmax with another right-wing channel, The First, meaning that claims of viewpoint "censorship"are completely inoperative.


Posted by Terry K. at 1:24 PM EST
CNS' Catholic Priest Still Spouting Right-Wing Politics, Conspriacy Theories
Topic: CNSNews.com

Rev. Michael Orsi still can't decide if he's a Catholic priest or a wannabe right-wing pundit, so he's still ranting about things at CNSNews.com. He leapt aboard the anti-transgender bandwagon in his Oct. 19 column (after first ranting about "the legalization, and consequent proliferation, of marijuana"):

Transgenderism is a symptom of mental and emotional conflicts that need to be addressed before they prompt radical, self-destructive actions. But as with marijuana, we have failed to counter the strong economic incentives behind this movement. There’s big money in hormone therapies and sex-reassignment surgery.

Add to that the ideological insanity that’s promoting this nonsense even in our schools, and in spite of parents’ objections (often without their knowledge), and we’re witnessing a health crisis of monumental proportions.

People are not being helped by these barbaric procedures. Bodies are being mutilated. Families are being destroyed. Souls are being lost.

The Church — which is to say we believers who are the Church — must speak out against such plagues as marijuana and transgenderism. We certainly can’t depend on government to do it. The madness surrounding our health officials’ handling of COVID demonstrated their inability to discern appropriate preventive measures.

And now they’re issuing dire warnings about a monkeypox pandemic. Have they told us that the primary way monkeypox is transmitted is through homosexual contact?

CNS wouldn't let anyone forget how monkeypox is primarily spread.

Orsi spent his Nov. 3 column defending getting involved in politics:

I often hear complaints about “that priest down in Florida who gets involved in politics.”

Let me plead guilty to being that priest.

Clergy are often reluctant to take a public stand on political issues. They don’t want to risk alienating members of their congregations, or they fear challenges to their churches’ tax exempt status.

My view is that religious leaders must get involved in politics. Indeed, they have an obligation to address important public questions. Elections determine who will hold temporal power in the nation — and therefore, who gets to determine the civic atmosphere in which people attempt to live their faith.

Living by faith can be difficult under the best of circumstances. Right now, when so many stumbling blocks have been put in the way, conducting a moral, faith-filled life is a special challenge.

Politics matters, because souls are at stake.

Orsi then spouted righ-twing talking points on Republican hot-button issues like schools ("schools today celebrate perversion, and young people are actually groomed to take part in sexual practices that are not conducive to a healthy life and human flourishing"), border security ("Not only do we have a flood of illegal immigrants, we are being inundated with fentanyl and other dangerous drugs") and Ukraine ("We are spending billions of dollars, and putting American lives at possible risk, even raising the specter of nuclear war — all in a part of the world where we have no vital interests").

Orsi's Nov. 22 column was dedicated to bashing the Respect for Marriage Act (which the rest of CNS was already doing):

Lefty political planners are great at coming up with appealing names for laws that accomplish the exact opposite of what those names promise. Recall the Affordable Care Act (otherwise known as “Obamacare”). That law wound up costing most people more for healthcare than before the misnamed legislation.

Now we are presented with something called the Respect for Marriage Act. And a less accurate legislative title can hardly be imagined.

This bit of political sleight-of-hand doesn’t respect marriage at all — at least not marriage as it’s always been understood. What we have here instead is a brazen attempt to force people of faith into accepting relationships that are contrary to God’s law, and consequently have been considered evil by virtually every traditional religion from the beginning of civilization.

Orsi once again went into conspiracy theory territory -- spouting more right-wing tropes -- in his Dec. 15 column:

Society has reached a point where we face a choice, and it’s truly an existential choice — which is to say it touches on our very existence. We must choose between:

(A) the New World Order (otherwise referred to as the Great Reset), in which our educational paths, our economic options, and our life prospects come under central global control; or...

(B) God’s World Order (otherwise referred to as Faith), in which Jesus shows us how to live in freedom and individual moral responsibility.

I hate to say it, but right now I think the New World Order is ahead in its influence and persuasiveness. The most powerful advantage it enjoys is: fear.

Those pushing a globalist agenda have been wildly successful in ratcheting up public anxiety about a broad range of concerns, the foremost of which is climate change.

Orsi then demanded that people distrust expertise (while, of course, denying he was doing any such thing):

We saw fear at work in a similar way during the pandemic. A new illness had come upon us with unpredictable effects, and we were frightened. So we turned to the “authorities,” who told us to separate ourselves physically, wear masks and face shields, stay home, take vaccines that were developed hastily and promoted in an atmosphere of panic.

What was the result? Putting our wellbeing into the hands of “authorities,” a lot of people still got sick. Some died. Others contracted weird and damaging health conditions (often fatal) from the vaccines. Some lost jobs or businesses because of public health restrictions.

Once again we trusted those whom we believed were most qualified. And — ironically — our trust was rewarded with physical, social and economic loss.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not telling anyone to ignore genuine expertise. There’s an old saying that illustrates the folly of that: “A man who tries to be his own lawyer has a fool for a client.”

But God has given us common sense. We must be attentive and astute in discerning between those with real knowledge and those who are feeding us half-baked ideas in order to advance an agenda.

Unfortunately, there’s a lot of the latter type.

Individuals like Bill Gates, George Soros, Claus Schwab, and a host of others with global economic interests or political ambitions have determined that humanity would be better off if national boundaries, cultural distinctions, and constitutional protections were weakened (or eliminated altogether). These folks envision a system where everybody trades in one global digital currency, allowing the “authorities” to monitor our transactions and to “encourage” us toward more “sustainable” and “equitable” living arrangements.

Orsi concluded by trying to put a religious bow on things: "The greatest reset in history was accomplished by Jesus on the cross. We’re called to put our faith in him, face our fears, and choose God’s World Order."

Orsi doesn't seem to understand that Catholics would rather see a priest whose pronouncements on politics are driven by faith rather than whatever conspiracy theory he stumbled across on a right-wing website that morning.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:58 AM EST
Monday, February 6, 2023
Post-Election, MRC Continued To Serve As DeSantis' PR Agent
Topic: Media Research Center

After Republican Ron DeSantis won re-election as Florida governor -- a campaign for which his fanboys at the Media Research Center served effectively as a campaign press agent -- the MRC continued for weeks afterward to lash out at any perceived criticism of him in the media:

The MRC got some cheerleading in as well, such as in a Nov. 29 post by Catherine Salgado gushing over how DeSantis "slammed Apple for kowtowing to the Chinese communist government while simultaneously trying to squash free speech in America by potentially banning Twitter from the App Store." She didn't explain what such foreign policy pronounceents had to do with him governing Florida. Meanwhile, Tim Graham complained about all the criticism in his Dec. 2 column:

It’s a fair point for Trump diehards to suggest that DeSantis is going to face an all-out national-media assault. But that’s true of any candidate who leads a Republican primary poll. In 2011, the national media ripped into every Republican who seemed like the front-runner, from Michele Bachmann to Rick Perry to Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich, and then Romney.

Republican presidential contenders should never expect national reporters to be friendly to their campaigns, and neither should Republican voters expect that national reporters are interested in any other goal than keeping a Democrat in the White House.

This being the MRC, some of its defenses of DeSantis veered from reality. Kevin Tober complained in a Nov. 13 post:

On Sunday night’s American Voices on MSNBC, host Alicia Menendez and his panel of left wing radicals attempted to smear Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis as a “white Christian nationalist” whose religious beliefs “see[p] into his governance” of the state of Florida. 

“Here's the thing with DeSantis. It's not just rhetorical. Right? It actually–this idea seeps into his governance,” Menendez cried. 

Turning to MSNBC columnist and author Anthea Butler, Menendez wanted her to talk through the ridiculous argument she just made. 

“it seeps into his governance because the way he thinks about the world is that God has put him in that place to rule over Florida. And so when you see this, when he’s against trans kids, and the don't say gay bill, and all of this, this is part and parcel of what he sees his Christian nationalism to be,” Butler falsely claimed.

Continuing to smear DeSantis and proving what an anti-Christian bigot she is, Butler huffed that DeSantis “thinks that he has dominion over this Earth and God has given it to him.”

But Tober censored any mention of the evidence that backs this up: an ad tweeted out by DeSantis' wife before the election featuring images of the candidate that began, "On the eighth day, God looked down on his planned paradise and said: ‘I need a protector.’ So God made a fighter." The ad went on to invoke God's name a whopping 10 times. It was so over the top that even religious media outlets criticized it -- but Tober wants you to believe such criticism of DeSantis is apropos of nothing.

Clay Waters complained that DeSantis' record on COVID issues and pandering to anti-vaxxers was criticized in a Dec. 17 post:

Don’t be fooled, voters: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is as insane as Donald Trump! That was Paul Krugman’s warning in his Friday column based on DeSantis’s occasionally hesitant tone toward vaccinations and a recent request for a grand jury probe over statements from COVID-vaccine makers: “DeSantis May Make 2024 an Election About Vaccines.”

[...]

He was angry with DeSantis for calling for a grand jury to look into possible misinformation spread by vaccine companies. Krugman sneered, “I doubt that anyone believes that DeSantis knows or cares about the scientific evidence here.”

Actually, DeSantis provided several examples of misleading claims about vaccine efficacy from Pfizer and Moderna, and President Biden himself, who falsely stated "You're not going to get Covid if you have these vaccinations." Krugman probably didn’t bother looking.

To commit his latest anti-DeSantis rant, Krugman had to ignore actual facts, available at nytimes.com, showing Florida’s “fully vaccinated” percentage of the population is slightly higher than the national average (68 percent vs 67 percent), significantly higher than blue states like Michigan and comparable to Oregon and Minnesota. If DeSantis is trying to seed anti-vaccine propaganda in Florida, he’s doing a lousy job of it.

Waters went on to complain that Krugman noted "thousands of excess deaths in the Sunshine State" -- which, interestingly, he didn't dispute, perhaps beause he can't. Waters also cherry-picked the vaccination number: While the "fully vaccinated" number -- which refers only to the first round of vaccines -- is around the national average, the Times data to which Waters refers also notes that the booster rate is notably below the national average (29% vs. 34%).

Meanwhile, the MRC has been silent about election truther and MyPillow guy Mike Lindell questioning the legitimacy of DeSantis' re-election. It appears that not even the MRC will never amplify questions about elections in which Republicans win, even as it continues to cling to its bogus stolen-election narrative involving Donald Trump.


Posted by Terry K. at 9:36 PM EST
Updated: Monday, February 6, 2023 9:59 PM EST
WND Contiues To Spin, Whitewash Capitol Riot
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily has constantly tried to whitewash and downplay the Capitol riot since it happened, most recently complaining it was (not inaccurately) being called an "insurrection." Between the release of the House committee report and the second anniversary of the riot, WND -- mostly reporter Bob Unruh -- continued pushing that narrative. Unruh unsurprisingly promoted a shoddy Republican "shadow committee" report on the riot in a Dec. 22 article:

A partisan congressional committee this week blamed President Trump for the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the Capitol that left an unarmed protester dead at the hands of police, asking the Department of Justice to investigate and charge him with four crimes.

However, a new report from the House GOP suggested that outgoing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her staff were more culpable than they've ever admitted.

[...]

It's been reported before that President Trump had offered additional National Guard troops to be present at the Capitol that day, but those responsible for security of the building, including Pelosi, refused.

Note that Unruh called the real committee report "partisan" but not this one, even though only Republicans are associated with it. As more honest media outlets reported, the GOP report omitted activities of congressional leadership on Jan. 6 scrambling to try to get the National Guard to the Capitol, or any mention that there were hours of inaction from former President Trump as well as other relevant information that's inconvenient to the narrative. Further, Trump did not sign an order to deploy the National Guard, so Unruh is perpetuating a lie.

On the anniversary of the riot, on  Jan. 6, Unruh served up some partisan deflection on the fates of officers who died or committed suicde afterward:

There are a lot of very unpleasant facts surrounding the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol.

They include the fact that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been blamed, at least in part, for allowing the riot to occur since she rejected President Trump's offer of additional troops to be there, a responsibility that never was addressed during her congressional committee's review of the violence.

Another is that police shot and killed an unarmed protester, Ashli Babbit, the only person actually killed in the riot.

Another is that one police officer died of natural causes shortly after the riot.

And yet another is that four police officers committed suicide in the months following the fracas, for which nearly 1,000 people have been arrested on charges, often including trespassing.

But Kamala Harris, Joe Biden's vice president, invoked the names of those five officers in her politicized statement on the two-year anniversary of the riot, saying all died "protecting our democracy."

Although all the officer deaths are tragedies, details on the suicides have never been released that would show the Jan. 6 riot had any bearing on their decision to take their own lives.

Unruh went on to claim that the officer who died of "natural causes," Brian Sicknick, "died of natural causes, multiple strokes," while "the other four ended their own lives," going on to whine that "for weeks after the riot, major media persisted in claiming daily that Sicknick had been killed by pro-Trump rioters who hurled a fire extinguisher at the officer -- a total fabrication." In fact, the medical examiner who looked into Sicknick's death stated that "all that transpired" at the Capitol riot "played a role in his condition," and the suicide of at least one officer has been ruled a death in the line of duty.

Unruh went on to complain in a Jan. 9 article:

A report from government watchdog Judicial Watch reveals that Michael Byrd, the Capitol Police officer who shot and killed an unarmed Ashli Babbitt during the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the Capitol, was given, afterward, the "Distinguished Visitor Suite" at Joint Base Andrews in which to live.

The report said thousands of taxpayer dollars were used to house Byrd and "his pet" for several months.

It was the only "homicide" tied to the riot, the watchdog said.

Neither Unruh nor Judicial Watch seem to have considered the possibility that Byrd was housed there to protect him from rabid, violent MAGA supporters -- like those who took inspiration from Trump to perpetrate the riot -- who seek to avenge the death of domestic terrorist Babbitt.

Unruh served up more partisan reframing in a Jan. 15 article:

A new report has documented the latest round of "more proof" of former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's culpability for the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.

It's that senators have unanimously approved a plan to deprive the House speaker of the authority to call out the National Guard to protect to Capitol, and give that decision to Capitol Police.

The report is from PJMedia and expands on the well-known agenda of Pelosi's own special committee to investigate the riot that ignored her own decisions.

In fact, President Trump had offered additional troops to protect the Capitol on that day, when hundreds broke into the building, or walked past security officers holding the doors open for them, and did vandalism.

Others simply walked about and took selfies in the building.

Again: Unruh is lying by claiming Trump offered the National Guard that day. And in fact, the bill merely allows the Capitol Police to call in the National Guard without having to go thorugh the Capitol Police Board, of which Pelosi was not a member (it's made up of the Senate and House sergeants at arms, the architect of the Capitol and the police chief).


Posted by Terry K. at 6:35 PM EST
MRC Just Can't Stop Bashing Brittney Griner
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center cheered how WNBA star Brittney Griner was rotting in a Russian prison on trumped-up drug charges, smearing her as a black non-heterosexual who purportedly doesn't love America anough, and then was bitter when she was released in a prisoner swap (while censoring the actual criminal history of their preferred release fandidate, Paul Whelan). Nicholas Fondacaro spent a Dec. 22 post complaining that another American imprisoned in Russia on dubious charges didn't get the same attention as Griner:

When it comes to Americans being detained and held hostage in Russia, many have focused on the case of anti-American WNBA star Brittney Griner being swapped for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, while U.S. Marine Paul Whelan got left behind. But as ABC’s Good Morning America revealed on Thursday, there was another: Sarah Krivanek, who was arrested two months before Griner but was left to “rot” by the Biden administration and assaulted by a male inmate while in prison.

Krivanek was released the same day as Griner, and Fondacaro huffed that "there was no reception for Krivanek nor evidence the Biden administration helped out." But even he was forced to admit that "Krivanek wasn’t bitter with Griner for getting released in a prisoner swap."

Fondacaro not only failed to offer evidence to substantiate his claim that Griner is "anti-American," his whining about this is hypocritical to the max: This post is the only reference to Krivanek in the NewsBusters database, showing that she was "forgotten" by the MRC as well.

Jay Maxson -- the MRC's point man (or woman) in hating Griner -- spewed even more hate at her in a Jan. 3 post:

The legend of Brittney Griner grows. Now she’s “the face of global unrest” and Arizonan of the Year, according to the left-stream Phoenix newspaper, The Arizona Republic. That award went to the late, great American hero Pat Tillman in 2004, but the standards for this honor have weakened substantially since then. 

“Today we name Brittney Griner ‘Arizonan of the Year’ because no other Arizona newsmaker in 2022 captured the public eye as intensely as she did,” wrote the Arizona Republic’s editorial board. “Nor has anyone’s story in this state aroused the kind of fear and foreboding that hers had for nearly 300 days.” 

She broke the law on foreign soil. She was in the public eye only because of her modest fame -- and perhaps because she checked lefty identity boxes.

When a sports writer pointed out how right-wingers (like Maxson) smeared Griner for not standing for the national anthem as a protest against police brutality, Maxson sneered that "Griner was just another lemming following the crowd," further whining that she is "a hero of the Black Lives Matter movement that shook down corporate America and professional sports two years ago, ruining the sports experience for untold numbers of Americans."

Maxson also attacked President Biden,claiming that he "let the Russians keep a real hero, Marine Paul Whelan, locked up so that a woke athlete could play basketball." Yes, Maxson thinks a man who  received a bad-conduct discharge from the Marines following a court martial for attempted larceny, false statements and dereliction of duty, among other things, is a "real hero."

Maxon concluded with more hate:

Arizona criminal of the year would have been a more appropriate “honor” for the woman for whom President Joe Biden gave up the Merchant of Death – Viktor Bout – in a late-year prisoner swap. 

How about cannabis smuggler of the year? This one applies, too.  

Griner checks all the boxes for fawning left-stream media: she’s black, lesbian, woke and despises American ideals.

[...]

Griner isn’t anywhere near the heroic stuff of Pat Tillman, and it’s true that she hasn’t asked for awards like this one. Her story is another example of media idiocy in the U.S. Tillman was a true American hero, and he must be turning over in his grave regarding The Republic’s farce. 

Maxson is simply parroting the hate of his (or her) fellow right-wingers desperate for any excuse to attack a woman of color who's not heterosexual and who won't also peddle their partisan narratives. Who's the real lemming here?


Posted by Terry K. at 2:50 PM EST
Updated: Monday, February 6, 2023 3:22 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: Lack Of Respect For Marriage At CNS
Topic: CNSNews.com
CNSNews.com's coverage of the passage of the Respect for Marriage Act was highly biased to the point of bordering on homophobic. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 1:41 AM EST
Sunday, February 5, 2023
MRC Starts New Year Keeping Up Its Role As Musk Stenographer
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center entered 2023 continuing to serve as Elon Musk's servile stenographer, uncritically promoting the selectively released "Twitter files" he gave to hand-picked journalists. Gabriela Pariseau wrote in a Jan. 3 post:

The latest Twitter files show that the liberal media mafia, Democrat politicians and the intelligence community went on an apparent witch hunt to shut down Russian social media accounts, bringing Twitter to its knees and paving the way for the FBI to push Twitter to censor the Hunter Biden laptop story.

The media, politicians, and so-called experts worked in lockstep bullying Twitter into making mass Russian disinformation materialize as far back as 2017, according to the latest Twitter files. “This cycle – threatened legislation, wedded to scare headlines pushed by congressional/intel sources, followed by Twitter caving to moderation asks – would later be formalized in partnerships with federal law enforcement,” independent journalist Matt Taibbi tweeted Tuesday.

If Taibbi is Musk's handppicked journalist, he's not "independent." And Pariseau's description of outlets who don't peddle pro-Musk narratives as the " liberal media mafia" shows she's far from independent as welll. Augumn Johnson served up more Taibbi stenography the next day:

A Tuesday evening “Twitter Files” drop revealed the censorship-obsessed Big Tech platform caved to pressure from Democrats and created a task force to investigate Russian “interference” in the 2016 election.

The document drop is the latest installment of internal “Twitter Files” company owner Elon Musk promised to promote transparency on the platform after years of one-sided censorship. Matt Taibbi, who has reported several file drops, revealed damning evidence of an “astonishing variety of requests from officials asking for individuals they didn’t like to be banned.”

In one glaring case, the office of California Representative and House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D) reportedly asked journalist Paul Sperry.

Twitter denied the request, but Taibbi said “almost everyone else’s requests” were granted. The platform apparently received later suspended by Twitter anyway.

In a Jan. 6 post, Catherine Salgado expressed horror at the idea that Musk might be forced to address disinformaiton on Twitter:

Germany’s digital affairs minister claimed on Twitter that Elon Musk agreed to target “disinformation” on the platform, which would be problematic for free speech.

The German Federal Minister for Digital and Transport Volker Wissing claimed Twitter owner Elon Musk had agreed to restrictions on “disinformation” until pro-censorship European Union (EU) legislation comes into force. Such an agreement could do further damage to the already >precarious state of online free speech in Europe. But more troublesome is Musk’s apparent agreement to censor speech even before such legislation takes effect.

Wissing tweeted Jan. 4 from his verified account (Twitter’s translation), “Thank you @elonmusk for a constructive conversation in San Francisco. My stance is clear: the platforms' commitment to #D[i]sinformation must be strictly adhered to until #DSA comes into force. Elon Musk agreed with me.” The tweet included a selfie of Musk and Wissing.

[...]

The left routinely uses “disinformation” removal as an overused catch-all excuse to censor free speech.

That statement, of course, is more of a restatement of a right-wing narrative than verified fact. Salgado didn't explain why she doesn't believe that disinformation on social media should be allowed to spread unchecked.

An anonymously written Jan. 9 post detailed how the MRC and its fellow right-wing Musk fanboys are requesting a meeting with their idol:

Dozens of members of the Free Speech Alliance sent a letter to Twitter owner Elon Musk requesting for him to meet with conservative leaders to discuss methods to promote free speech on the Big Tech platform following years of massive censorship. The Media Research Center's CensorTrack database has currently logged over 4,800 cases of censorship across a litany of Big Tech platforms, and cases from Twitter make up over 55 percent of that number.

The CensorTrack database is a partisan tool, not a  legitimate research database, because it excludes anythignn that doesn't advance the right-wing "censorship" narrative. Meanwhile, the same day, Salgado served up another dose of Musk stenography:

A Pfizer director pushed Twitter to censor critics of COVID-19 vaccines while denying his actions, according to the most recent Twitter Files drop.

Former FDA commissioner, CNBC contributor and current Pfizer Director Dr. Scott Gottlieb pressured Twitter to censor tweets critical of COVID-19 vaccines, former New York Times journalist Alex Berenson reported in the latest installment of the Twitter Files. Not only was Gottlieb pushing purely positive coverage of Pfizer’s product, but Gottlieb even publicly denied that he was exerting censorship pressure. The Pfizer director also “used the same Twitter lobbyist the White House did.”

Salgado didn't mention that Berenson is a notorious COVID misinformer -- which means Musk further showed his partisan agenda by choosing Berenson for this selective document. Needless to say, the MRC has previously bestowed victimhood on Berenson after being held accountable for his misinformation.

Salgado (and Musk) merged the "Twitter files" with another right-wing narrative in a Jan. 12 post:

Democrats pushed Twitter to support the Russia-Trump collusion hoax without evidence, as per the revelations in Thursday's newest batch of Twitter Files.

The accusations of “Russia collusion” (“Russiagate”) against then-President Donald Trump turned out to be lies, but that didn’t stop Democrats from pushing the accusations.

Actually, Salgado is the liar here. There was, in fact, plenty of evidence to warrant an investigation into Trump's Russia connections and contacts.

Meanwhile, the MRC was silent about how NBC News found that child sexual abuse content continues to be prevalent on Twitter despite Musk's vow to fight child exploitation on the platform. Twitter did block the related hashtags after the story went public.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:32 PM EST
As Inflation Goes Down, CNS Stops Invoking It To Attack Biden
Topic: CNSNews.com

As it did with oil prices, CNSNews.com followed the partisan right-wing playbook to explicitly or implicitly blame President Biden for high inflation even if it couldn't identify any specifric policy that led to a specific increase. A Sept. 13 article by editor Terry Jeffrey, hyped how "prices on all items in the United States increased by 8.3 percent from August of 2021 to August of 2022" and was illustrated with a file photo of Biden.

A Sept. 19 article by Susan Jones complained that Biden was "putting his best possible spin on the highest inflation since 1982" by emphasizing slowing month-to-month increases instead of the annual number Jones would rather hype, though he did parenthetically admit his humbers were correct: "The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that year-to-year inflation in August was 8.3 percent, but the monthly increase was 0.1 percent, both numbers higher than expected." Jones didn't identify who "expected" lower numbers. Of course, Jones was determined to put her worst spin out there, in part by including a chartt hat "shows how inflation has accelerated since Biden took office," though she identified nothing showing Biden was personally responsible for any of it.

An Oct. 13 article by Jones hyped another monthly inflation increase:

Inflation in September was worse than predicted, rising 0.4 percent month-to-month, compared with the 0.1 percent monthly increase in August.

The year-to-year number, the "headline" number, was 8.2 percent for September, down a tenth of a point from +8.3 percent in August, but still hovering at 40-year highs.

The headline noted that the midterm elections were approaching, which is why Jones hyped these numbers -- to help Republicans win and Democrats lose. Jones complained about another failure to accept right-wing narratives on inflation -- or, in the headline's words, "reframe[d] the argument" -- in an Oct. 13 post:

With two weeks to go until election day, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) suggested that Americans shouldn't worry so much about the rising price of food and gasoline, because that's not the real issue.

"It's not -- the fight is not about inflation. It's about the cost of living," Pelosi told CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday.

"And if you look at what we have done to bring down the cost of prescription drugs, to bring down the cost of -- of energy and the rest in our legislation, you will see that that has been opposed every step of the way by the Republicans, and they have no plan for lowering the cost of living or helping with inflation."

Pelosi said when the talk turns to inflation, Democrats "have to change that subject."

She noted, as other Democrats have done, that inflation is a "global phenomenon." "The E.U., the European Union, the U.K., the British, have a higher inflation rate than we do here."

An Oct. 17 article by Melanie Arter seemed annoyed that Rep. Bernie Sanders (not inaccurately) argued that inflation was being caused by the pandemic, the war in Ukraine and "incredible corporate greed."

When those inflation attacks failed to significantly hurt Democrats in the midterms, CNS seemed to take revenge in reporting on the next month's numbers in a Nov. 10 article by Craig Bannister wordily headlined "Fuel Oil Prices Skyrocket 68.5% and Overall Energy Prices Jump 17.6% Over Past 12 Months in October, BLS Reports":

Consumer prices rose 7.7% in September, compared to the same month last year, and increased 0.4% from September, on a seasonally-adjusted basis – but, the cost of energy rose much more, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reportedThursday.

Overall, energy prices rose 17.6% in October on an unadjusted basis, compared to the same month in 2021. Compared to the previous month, October 2022 saw the energy price index increase a seasonally-adjusted 1.8%, according to the monthly BLS report.

he price increases in energy products are making it much harder for Americans to afford to heat their homes this winter.

Bannister concluded with a quote from the right-wing Heritage Foundation attacking Biden for inflation, though citing no specific policies responsible for a specific increase. 

When November's numbers came out, CNS went into spin mode again. A Dec. 12 article by Arter complained that "President Biden on Tuesday seized on news that inflation is slowing, rising only 0.1 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis in November, after increasing 0.4 percent in October."  The next day, Bannister did some more reframing to portray inflation as still high while hiding that rate decrased, under the similarly wordy headline "Inflation Tops 7% for 12th Straight Month in November, with Food, Energy Recording Double-Digit Increases from Year-Ago":

Over the last 12 months, consumer prices for all items have increased 7.1%, before seasonal adjustment, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Tuesday, releasing data for November 2022.

On a seasonally-adjusted basis, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 0.1% in November. However, when compared to the same month in 2021, overall prices were up 7.1% last month, with the food and energy categories suffering double-digit percentage price increases.

What’s more, it’s been a full year since the last time inflation increased by less than 7.0%, year-over-year. In November of 2021, prices rose 6.8% from the previous November’s level. The next month, the 12-month increase rose to 7.0% and hasn’t been that low in any month since.

Bannister refused to tell readers that the rate was a decrease from 7.7 percent in October.

Inflation fell even further in December to an annual rate of 6.5 percent thanks to a 0.1 percent decrease from November to December. But neither Bannister nor anyone else at CNS thought this was newsworthy enough to do a story about.


Posted by Terry K. at 11:43 AM EST
Updated: Sunday, February 5, 2023 11:48 AM EST
Saturday, February 4, 2023
MRC Writer Freaks Out At Reid For Criticizing His Boss
Topic: Media Research Center

It seems that Media Research Center employees are mandated to defend their boss, Brent Bozell, from even a glancing reference in the media. Witness this Jan. 5 freakout by Kevin Tober:

On Wednesday night's The ReidOut on MSNBC, Joy Reid took to the airwaves to attack MRC president Brent Bozell for daring to sign on to a letter in his personal capacity from the Conservative Action Project, that called for fresh, new conservative leadership in the United States House of Representatives. When listing off prominent names who signed the letter, Reid pretended to not know the name of the organization Bozell founded, calling it the "right-wing media research thing." 

Reid started off by trashing the GOP base which she claimed, without evidence, "at some point stopped wanting actual policy and stopped wanting things out of Washington." What they really want according to Reid is "the theater of owning the libs." 

"There’s a group of 26 conservatives who put out a letter backing this, and it's not regular Joe average voters. It's people like Ginni Thomas, it’s people like Cleta Mitchell who helped in the insurrection, it’s Jenny Beth Martin, the co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots who was at the stop the steal rally," Reid bitterly listed off.

Continuing to read from the letter, Reid kvetched: "Brent Bozell, this guy who does this right-wing media research thing. You can go on—Ed Meese, Ed Meese III, Reagan’s Attorney General! So there's a group of people who are serious right-wing people who are now backing this effort."

In fact, the letter does not state that any signatory did so in their "personal capacity," and Bozell is clearly identified by his MRC affiliation. Also, it's not an "attack" if you're just listing who signed this petition, and Tober doesn't not dispute Reid's characterization of any of the names listed other than to whine that she didn't the MRC's name right.

Tober also left out the context that the "fresh, new conservative leadership" being sought was much farther to the right than their target, Kevin McCarthy, whom the letter accused of criticizing far-right Repubicans; the letter also cheered that McCarthy was failing to get a majority of votes needed to be speaker. Among Bozell's fellow signatories are Jim Hoft of the wildly inaccurate Gateway Pundit and former WND writer and Obama birther Jerome Corsi.

Tober went on to huff that Reid was "smearing the conservative movement" -- by reading a list of names -- then grumbled that "turncoat Republican former Congressman Denver Riggleman got his turn to level smears." But Tober didn't dispute anything Riggleman said either.

Tober concluded by laughably calling this a "demonic segment." Yes, right-wingers tend to believe that any criticism of them is of the devil. This kind of hypersensitivity demonstrates why the MRC's "media research" is too partisan to be taken seriously.


Posted by Terry K. at 10:12 AM EST
WND's Farah Clings To Capitol Riot Conspiracy Theories
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily was quick to peddle right-wing narratives and conspiracy theories about the Capitol riot -- and two years later, it's still not about to let go of them. Joseph Farah spent his Jan. 4 column cheering Fox News host Tucker Carlson's demand that House majority leader Kevin McCarthy "release all documents and videos pertaining to the January 6 Capitol 'insurrection.' In addition, he should to appoint Rep. Thomas Massie as the head of a new Frank Church committee to uncover increased FBI surveillance and corruption." Farah went on to rehash those conspiracies:

We're rapidly approaching the second anniversary of January 6. Don't we deserve to finally learn the truth about Ray Epps and the phantom bombers seen in photos and many other anomalies from that day?

And, for heavens' sake, why can't we see the thousands of photos and images and videos with our own eyes now?

That's evidence that deserves a verdict.

When are the American people going to see it all?

Who can explain the video we've all seen of hundreds of protesters being led by Capitol Police into the "sacred" halls, people who were later arrested?

The American people were fooled. Why?

Why can't we get answers about undercover FBI agents on the premises of the Capitol that day?

The only people who died that day died at the hands of policemen. That has never been more clear.

But, still, we are told this was an "insurrection." How is this possible?

Will we ever be given the truth – after two years of lies?

Farah found some more to rehash in his Jan. 9 column, starting with the domestic terrorist who was shot by police:

Ashli Babbitt was the ONLY person shot and killed on Jan. 6, 2021, disturbance at the U.S. Capitol. She was unarmed, tiny and posed no visible threats. She was a married 14-year veteran of the U.S. military.

That's where the lies began on Jan. 6. Almost everything the public has heard about it, the deliberately controlled information, from Day 1 has been whole-cloth disinformation shamelessly manufactured – a sham that makes a mockery of the U.S. Constitution.

It began with who it was that killed the only victim in what has been called an "insurrection."

It was a Capitol Hill police officer named Michael Byrd who shot Babbitt in the neck. At the time of that killing, Byrd had a documented history of gross negligence with a firearm. He left a loaded Glock pistol in a public men's room at the Capitol, a firing offense for any law-enforcement officer. But for some reason, Michael Byrd was still on the force that day – prominently.

He killed her in cold blood but was never charged with any offense. Instead, he was called a national hero.

In fact, Babbitt was part of a violent mob that had been vandalizing the Capitol and was crawling through a broken window at the time of her death.The officer who shot her reasonably felt threatened. Farah then whined that the officers who died or committed suicide in the days after the riot were treated as victims:

Remember what you were told about the five police officers that were killed that day?

It was another lie. Fortunately, none was killed Jan. 6. But still the loose talk by people trying to equate the Capitol fracas with Pearl Harbor and 9/11 continues.

Hakeem Jeffries, the Democratic House leader, said this: "We are gathered here to honor their memory and acknowledge with deep gratitude the tremendous bravery of the hundreds of officers who defended us at this citadel of democracy that fateful day. As a result of the events on January 6, the lives of five heroic officers were lost."

Speaking of Garland, a man that should know better, recently said this: "We will never forget the five officers who responded selflessly on January 6 and who have since lost their lives."

Joe Biden reiterated this lie on the anniversary of Jan. 6: "These people and the people representing those who couldn't be here because they gave their lives for this did, is incredibly consequential. That's not political talk. That's historical fact."

We thought right-wingers like Farah respected law enforcement. Apparently not, if they interfere with right-wing insurrectionists. Also, the death of at least one of those officers who committed suicide has been ruled to be a line-of-duty death.

Farah closed with once again referencing yet another right-wing riot-related obsession:

"Nor does anyone in authority want to talk about Ray Epps," says Carlson. "Ray Epps, of course, is the man who was caught on tape encouraging the crowd outside the Capitol, both on January 5 and 6, to commit felonies by rushing inside. Now, what's interesting is that the January 6 Committee, under public pressure, did in the end interview Ray Epps. Now, we don't have all of the committee's records about that interview. We should, but we don't. But some have been released, and what they tell is a remarkable story. In the testimony that we have, the committee coaches Ray Epps on how to answer questions about his involvement. 'I was in the front with a few others. I also orchestrated it. I helped get people there.'"

Let's hope when Republicans have a turn to ask questions shortly we might be able to get better answers.

WND is quite obsessed with Ray Epps, even though there's no actual evidence to frame him as the FBI plant Farah wants him to be.


Posted by Terry K. at 12:30 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, February 4, 2023 12:31 AM EST
Friday, February 3, 2023
MRC's Jean-Pierre-Bashing, Doocy-Fluffing Watch, New Year Edition
Topic: Media Research Center

After taking a lazy attitude toward her in the final few months of 2022, the Media Research Center suddenly decided to amp up its attacks on White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre. The year started a bit lame, with Curtis Houck writing up the Jan. 3 briefing with his usual blend of Karine-bashing and Doocy-fluffing:

Tuesday marked the first White House press briefing of 2023 and, in her ninth month as press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre continued to stammer and stonewall her way through even the most benign questions. Meanwhile, Fox’s Peter Doocy kept up the heat by wondering whether anyone in the White House could say with a straight face whether “the southern border is secure” and if President Biden lied about not being involved in his family’s corruption.

After some friendly banter about the upcoming due date of Doocy’s wife Hillary Vaughn of Fox Business, Doocy cut to the chase: “Does anybody around here think that the southern border is secure?”

Jean-Pierre didn’t offer anything new and wouldn’t even directly answer the question (though she had used the word “secure” in the past): “What I can tell you is: This is a President who has been working since day one to work on border security, to make immigration a priority. That’s why he put forth a comprehensive immigration reform plan”.

She went onto offer more boilerplate nonsense, lamenting that while Biden has “solutions...Republicans...are doing political stunts”.

It was another week before the MRC wrote up another briefing -- and only because of the emergence of classified documents found at places once frequented by President Biden. And writing up the Jan. 12 briefing, Houck was positively gleeful he didn't have to cite only his biased right-wing buddies asking questions:

Thursday’s White House press conference was as contentious as you would’ve imagined after the announcement that President Joe Biden kept classified documents in the garage at his home in Delaware. The reckless disregard for America’s national security by carelessly leaving classified documents in three different places was such a big story that even the leftist media couldn’t hide it from their viewers and readers. 

First out of the gate was Chris Megerian from the Associated Press who asked: “is the President willing to be interviewed by federal investigators about his handling of classified documents?” White House press secretary and diversity hire Karine Jean-Pierre was once again unprepared for any substantive question posed to her: “I’m just not going to get into hypotheticals,” she responded. 

Yet Megerian didn’t back down. “It’s not a hypothetical question. There’s an investigation ongoing. Will the President speak to investigators?” he asked.

No matter how many times she’s asked a question, Jean-Pierre proves she just isn’t cut out for the job. After getting another shot at answering the question, Jean-Pierre replied: “You’re asking me about something in the future, and I am telling you that I’m not going to get ahead of what the Department of Justice is going to decide.”

Houck made sure to faithfully document Doocy Time, of course, since portraying Doocy as a briefing-room stud surely helps him get on Fox News:

Last but not least, Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy referred to the Biden classified documents scandal as “GarageGate”. Doocy asked: “what is the White House trying to hide?”

“Nothing,” Jean-Pierre bluntly responded. 

“Someone gave the President a statement to read on Tuesday that was incomplete at best, misleading at worst. Who?” Doocy asked. 

Jean-Pierre claimed Biden “did not know that the records were there,” and that “we take this very seriously and the President does as well.”

Houck made sure to stick "GarageGate" in his headline, presumably hoping to draw the attention of his mancrush.

Houck's writeup of the Jan. 13 briefing purported to identify "the Smartest and Dumbest Questions on the Biden Docs from Friday’s WH Briefing." Of coufse, the "dumbest" questions were the ones that didn't ask about the docments.

Then, in a Jan 16 post, Mark Finkelstein laughably complained that MSNBC's Joe Scarborough called out Republicans for smearing Jean-Pierre as an incompetent diversity hire:

Spit it out, Scarborough! Instead of making ugly, thinly veiled accusations against Republicans, have the guts to flatly say what you think!

On today's Morning Joe, Scarborough, discussing the performance of Biden spox Karine Jean-Pierre, said:

"When you look at the briefings [on Biden's docs situation], you know, there have been a lot of Republicans who have been critical of Karine Jean-Pierre, of course they have been from the beginning. I'll let people draw their own conclusions as to why. It seems pretty obvious to me."

Gee, wonder what Joe might have been implying? Let's see: Jean-Pierre is celebrated as a black lesbian immigrant from Haiti. Certainly sounds like Scarborough is accusing Republicans of hitting the bigotry trifecta of homophobia, racism, and sexism.

Typically, Mika chimed in to agree with Joe, adding "yeah."

So is there no proof that Jean-Pierre isn't quite up to the press secretary's job? 

[...]

The bottom line is that anyone who has followed Jean-Pierre's embarrassing career behind the briefing-room mic knows that she is utterly unfit for the job. And it's not just Republicans who are dissatisfied with her performance. For example here 's a White House reporter for CBS, hardly a conservative outlet, clashing with the press secretary over her obfuscation on Biden's classified documents. 

Finkelstein didn't mention that his MRC colleagues have quite literally called Jean-Pierre an incompetent diversity hire, which supports what Scarborough said.


Posted by Terry K. at 7:28 PM EST
CNS Surprisingly Quiet On Defrocking Of Anti-Abortion Extremist Priest
Topic: CNSNews.com

CNSNews.com has long been a fan of anti-abortion extremist and Catholic priest Frank Pavone. It has published numerous columns by him, largely raging against abortion; though an August 2020 column, however, repeated righ-twing talking points against early voting, and an October 2020 column was an effective endorsement of Donald Trump's re-election as president -- complete with a reference to "Fake News media" that won't report his alleged accomplishments. He gushed that "the saving of lives, both in America and abroad, is a clear hallmark, a pivotal motivation, and a shining success of the first term of President Donald J. Trump," adding: "Unborn babies, sick children and adults, women, soldiers, veterans, Americans living in border towns, and many others are safer today than they were four years ago. Every one of these policies put in place or actions taken by President Trump has saved lives or safeguarded them from future harm."

Oddly, though, CNS hadn't published any columns by Pavone since then. And for all the beliefs of the guys who run CNS that they are more Catholic than the pope, they were unusually quiet when Pope Francis defrocked Pavone over his anti-abortion extremism, which included stunts like posting video of himself putting an aborted fetus on an altar. (The official offenses were "blasphemous communications on social media and of persistent disobedience of the lawful instructions of his diocesan bishop.")

The only reference to Pavone's defrocking at CNS is a Dec. 15 "commentary" from Pavone himself raging against the defrocking and declaring himselrf above the church he supp[osedly wants to represent: "I am appealing to the People of God, who are becoming wiser to all that is going on and who will be the judges of whether the work my 50-person team at Priests for Life and I do is worthy of support or not. I have made an irrevocable commitment to defend the unborn and to be a priest. I will not walk away from either one."

This may very well be a tacit admission that even CNS knows that Pavone went too far and was punished accordingly, and even that Pope Francis, who CNS despises, acted appropriately in defrocking Pavone. Still, the bio on the Pavone archive still erroneously lists him as "Father Frank Pavone."


Posted by Terry K. at 4:55 PM EST
Newsmax Amps Up Victimhood Over DirecTV Cancellation
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax knows from its years in right-wing politics how to play the victim, and it's very much doing that after DirecTV dropped it from its lineup in a dispute over licensing fees, calling in every Republican politican and right-wing activist to complain about it. Newsmax continued to rack up those conspiratorial complaints last weekend -- including demands for federal investigations -- over just Jan. 28-31 alone:

There's also no explanation of how demands that the government harrass DirecTV for dropping Newsmax comports with conservative principles of keeping the government out of private business.

Newsmax has also set up a website filled with its talking points to encourage its viewers to harass DirecTV and its AT&T parent , including the demonstrable lie that "DirectTV wants to silence conservative voices in favor of liberal channels." In fact, DirecTV replaced Newsmax with another right-wing channel, The First, so there is in fact no "censorship" of right-wing views happening as a result of Newsmax's removal.

By our count, Newsmax has published at least 56 articles attacking DirecTV in the week after being dropped, and no articles that gave DirecTV a chance to defend itself. That campaign of hate doesn't seem very fair or balanced -- and perhaps justification that DirecTV made a sound business decision.

Newsmax also had columnists weight in as well. James Hirsen used his Jan. 30 column to peddle the corpporate argument that "a host of channels that are filled with radical-left programming are still readily available to DirecTV users, even though viewing audiences remain in short supply," though he named only one:

One of the outlets with an extreme left-wing agenda that is allowed to freely prattle on is Vice Media. The channel is a virtual promoter of the trademark liberal political violence that has been witnessed over the past several years.

Not only does Vice Media get to remain on the platform, it turns out that it is being subsidized financially by a managing owner of DirecTV.

Newsmax has experienced tremendous growth precisely because it continues to deliver to audiences the content they consitently seek; information largely denied to them elsewhere.

Hirsen named no examples of the "extreme left-wing agenda" purportedly beingpushed by Vice Media., nor did he admit that DirecTV replaced Newsmax with another right-wing channel. Instead, he went conspiracy-mongering in an attempt to link DirecTV to the hot new cause on the right, attacking ESG investing:

House committees may be taking a closer look at an entity called TPG Capital.

This is a private equity fund that reportedly owns a 30% stake in DirecTV and also appears to oversee the cable company’s operations.

A few more details:

TPG Capital is the private equity arm of the global asset firm TPG, which has fully adopted a woke-oriented agenda referred to in the business world as Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG).

ESG is a sort of measuring tool to gauge whether or not business organizations are sufficiently onboard with the woke agenda in order to qualify for financing and other advantages that equity firms provide.

[...]

The politics of those at the top rung of TPG are of the ultra-liberal kind.

TPG’s executives have given Democratic candidates 90% of their political donations. The private equity firm has also subsidized the aforementioned far-left news network Vice Media to the tune of hundreds of millions.

Hirsen did not explain how giving to Democratic candidates made one "ultra-liberal."He concluded by ranting that Congress needs to act fast to rescue free speech from the clutches of the stealth partners in the censorship battle" even though, again, no viewpoints have been "censored." He also completely censored the fact that this is a business dispute about licensing fees that Newsmax is demanding but DirecTV decided it didn't want to pay.


Posted by Terry K. at 2:53 PM EST
Updated: Friday, February 3, 2023 4:33 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE -- The MRC's Election of Failed Narratives, Part 3: The Polls
Topic: Media Research Center
Despite declaring that it distrusted media polls after the 2020 election, the Media Research Center enthusiastically hyped media polls that made the Biden administration look bad all the way through the midterm elections (which didn't work out well). Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 1:04 AM EST

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