ConWebBlog: The Weblog of ConWebWatch

your New Media watchdog

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

Friday, June 9, 2023
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC's Transgender Targets
Topic: Media Research Center
In addition to loathing transgender people in general, The Media Research Center loves to lash out at specific people -- like Rachel Levine and Dwyane Wade's child -- who have offended it by committing the offense of existing as transgender in public. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:12 AM EDT
Thursday, June 8, 2023
MRC Continued Fretting Over Tucker Carlson's Firing, Defending His Extreme Views
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center had a sad about Fox News firing Tucker Carlson, but it cheered CNN's firing of Don Lemon, then falsely tried to conflate the two even though they didn't have equivalent jobs. It was ultimately more concerned about Carlson's firing though. An April 24 post by Curtis Houck examined speculation over the firings -- but he gushed more about the speculation over Lemon while dismissing specuation about Carlson as coming from "liberal journalists" and "the ever-hacktastic Daily Beast." An April 26 post by Alex Christy -- who previously played joke policeman by whining that late-night comedy shows told too many jokes about Carlson -- complained that NBC's Seth Meyers "piled on Tucker Carlson" with Democratic Rep. Katie Porter.

Kevin Tober breathlessly hyped Carlson issuing a brief mesage after his firing:

Former Fox News host Tucker Carlson broke his silence Wednesday night in a two-minute-long video posted to Twitter. In it, he torched the establishment media and what he describes as both political parties and their donors reaching "consensus on what benefits them and they actively collude to shut down any conversation about it." He ended the video with a hint that his future in conservative media was far from over. 

Tucker started the video by remarking about his perspective since leaving Fox News: "One of the first things you realize, when you step outside the noise for a few days, is how many genuinely nice people there are in this country. Kind and decent people. People who really care about what’s true and a bunch of hilarious people also. A lot of those! It’s got to be the majority of the population even now. So that’s heartening."


Maybe Carlson will release a nightly monologue on Twitter. His monologues on his former Fox News show frequently made news and got people talking on Twitter. He can easily do that again by going directly to the newly liberated Elon Musk-owned Twitter.

It should be noted that as of publication, Carlson's video had over six million impressions, which was double what his old cable news show received on an average night. 

Jeffrey Lord tried to manufacture a conspiracy about Fox News not being right-wing enough in his April 29 column:

One can only wonder, as many have, why in the world Fox would shut down its number one host. Tucker Carlson is a very popular conservative and a decidedly smart guy as well. All of which has been evident on his nightly show, and all of which his audience both understands and loves.


It boggles the mind that the people who created, own and run Fox News could be this far along in their creation and ownership of this network and not understand in a blink that the “blowback” from silencing Tucker could in fact be “this bad.”

All of which leads to the larger questions of what, exactly, Americans are really seeing as all of this drama unfolds. Is Fox deliberately turning its sights into becoming an “establishment” network? 

That, I suspect, gets right to the real reason the Fox management cut Tucker loose. He was saying things on air that went against the grain of Establishment “truths”. Whether it was his opposition to the war in Ukraine, his thoughts on the transgender obsessions or saying that illegal immigrants were literally littering the countryside of the American Southwest, Tucker was fearless.

Notably he happily showed the January 6 inside-the-Capitol videos given to him by Speaker Kevin McCarthy. Tellingly others in the GOP leadership - like Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell - were livid at Tucker’s presentation of internal videos that directly contradicted the presentations of the House January 6 Committee. Tellingly, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer was so incensed that he demanded Rupert Murdoch take him off the air. And also tellingly, Schumer has now been granted his wish.

In fact, it's been proven that Carlson's cherry-picked videos don't accurately reflect the reality of the riot.

Luis Cornelio spent a May 1 post hyping speculation from podcaster Joe Rogan that Carlson might be moving to right-wing video site Rumble. MRC executive Tim Graham, meanwhile, ran to Newsmax to complain about leaked audio of unflattering behavior by Carlson and defending his right to be a nasty whiner:

NewsBusters executive editor Tim Graham appeared on the Newsmax evening show Eric Bolling The Balance to discuss Tucker Carlson's dismissal and the aftermath at Fox News, and whether Fox is becoming too "establishment."

Bolling ran video of the latest leak of Tucker running down the Fox Nation website, saying it's dysfunctional and it drives him crazy. Bolling said "the speculation is that Fox is leaking that stuff from the inside."

TIM GRAHAM: Well that's the weirdest stuff. It's like we're sitting here on a day where Trump is going to do a live town hall on CNN and Fox is leaking stuff to Media Matters? (Laughs) Where are we living?!

Look, I think, just like we heard Tucker saying nasty things about Trump in the text messages or emails in the Dominion suit. People should have a right to have moments where they're upset with people. Right? I mean, we all have this inside our own office. Sometimes where we're not happy with the way things are going, But there's just you blow off steam. It doesn't mean that you're going to be a disloyal employee. I mean, the people that should be seen as the disloyal employees are all the Fox people who talked to Brian Stelter for his nasty books!

BOLLING: Yeah, and Gabe Sherman back in the day. 

Graham didn't explain what, if anything, in Stelter's book about Fox News was "nasty," or why those who spoke to him for the book were "disloyal" while Carlson wasn't.

After one leaked audio clip showed Carlson making racist-leaning comments, Mark Finkelstein took offense when "Morning Joe" featured it, using whataboutism to distract from it:

In the course of a long Morning Joe segment today focusing on an exposed Tucker Carlson text message to a colleague that the way some January 6th rioters were beating up an Antifa guy isn't "how white men fight," Michael Steele commented:

The fact that something like that could be sent to a colleague and it sort of sits there, and nothing happens or comes from it, and it's not until you get into this sort of adversarial, prosecutorial setting in which it becomes public or potentially becomes public that they see some reaction. So it really speaks to the culture inside the building in many respects that that type of communication doesn't rise to a point where, you know, he's brought in by the leadership of the company saying, what the hell are you talking about, how white men fight?"

If Steele is shocked that there would be no immediate corporate repercussions for Tucker saying that in a private communication between two people, how about a TV host bragging—live on the air—about how he would threaten and attack someone merely doing something he didn't approve of? Steele need look no further than across the morning's panel, at certified very-white-man Joe Scarborough.

Want to know "how white men fight," Michael?  Last year, we caught Macho Joe, commenting on tourists in the Capitol the day before January 6th, bragging about how he'd attack one. Mind you: not someone who had confronted or attacked Joe. Just someone doing something Scarborough didn't approve of[.]

Graham complained more about the leaks in his May 3 podcast:

Don Lemon's firing at CNN was not mysterious, but we're in week two of trying to figure out why Fox News parted ways with Tucker Carlson. Was he too insubordinate with the Murdochs? Did he use the C-word for women too often? It seems like nobody really knows yet. 

New leaks to Tucker-hating liberal outlets and "watchdog groups" seemed intended to damage the ex-Fox host's standing, but conservatives largely found they liked him more. One video showed Carlson complaining about flaws on the Fox Nation website. Another showed him suggesting one man's wife looked "yummy"....then he took it back when he thought someone might find it from a satellite transmission. He told one Fox-hating watchdog group to...."GFY."

Graham ranted about the leaked Tucker videos again in a May 7 post, with added indignance that Carlson was labeled (accurately, it can be argued) as a racist:

On Wednesday's World News Tonight, ABC reporter Terry Moran reveled in a leaked Tucker Carlson text message about a mob of white men beating up an "antifa kid." He claimed "For years...Tucker Carlson promoted racist views on his show, the highest-rated program on Fox...viewers had long heard Carlson give voice to a message of white supremacy, especially on the issue of immigration."

ABC anchor David Muir introduced the story with these words behind him on screen: "NYT UNCOVERS RACIST CARLSON TEXT."


To describe Carlson's show as "racist" in general is a smear not only of the host, but the audience that makes it "the highest rated program on Fox." In The New York Times, A.O. Scott said the same thing, only fancier: "His most successful on-air persona, perfected on Fox after the departure of Bill O’Reilly, has been a volatile mixture of upper crust and salt of the earth. Whiteness was the glue that held the package together, and in this text you can see it coming unstuck, even as Carlson tries to work through some inherent contradictions."

Graham went on to play whataboutism rather than actually try and prove Carlson isn't racist. You may remember that the MRC tried to lamely insist that the Carlson-promoted racist replacement conspiracy theory -- which seems to have inspired a gun massacre -- wasn't racist or a conspiracy theory.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:47 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, June 9, 2023 9:56 PM EDT
Newsmax Columnists Fret Over Tucker Carlson's Firing, Hope Newsmax Benefits
Topic: Newsmax

We've shown how Newsmax flip-flopped on Tucker Carlson, going from bashing him over his pro-Russia stance to treating him as a victim after Fox News fired him (in part because it would desperately love to hire Carlson). Newsma 's columnists also fretted over Carlson's firing. Michael Dorstewitz declaring that his firing was "bad for all of society" in an April 26 column:

The release of Tucker Carlson from Fox News, coming one week after conservative political commentator Dan Bongino was also let go, represents a disturbing and evolving trend in American society: freedom of thought is out; totalitarianism is in.


Afterwards, dressed in what appeared to be the same jacket and tie, Carlson delivered the keynote address at The Heritage Foundation’s 50th anniversary Gala. He talked about freedom.

"I am not a slave," he said. "I am a free citizen, and I'm not doing that, and there's nothing you can do to me to make me do it, and I hope it won't come to that, but if it does come to that, here I am. Here I am. It's Paul on trial. Here I am."

Carlson also spoke about truth and lies.

"The truth is contagious," he said. "the more you tell the truth, the stronger you become. . . .the more you lie, the weaker and more terrified you become . . . you see these people and some of them really have paid a heavy price for telling the truth . . . but they do it anyway. . . "

Dorstewitz didn't mention that Carlson's record of spreading falsehoods and misinformation is so egregious that Fox News lawyers resorted to defending him against him by declaring that nobody should believe a single word he says.

Bill Donohue whined that the media is accurately labeling Carlson's views:

Today, these terms have lost their meaning. The lead story in today's New York Times is: "Fox News Ousts Carlson, a Voice Of the Far Right."

What did Carlson do to merit this invidious tag? The news story says he took "far-right positions on issues like border policy and race relations."

Carlson believes that people who break the law by crashing our border and entering the country illegally should be prosecuted. The surveys show so do most Americans.

Carlson also believes that critical race theory, which teaches that every white person is a racist, is irresponsible. The surveys show most Americans agree with him. In other words, according to the New York Times, most Americans are Nazi-like creatures.

Most fair-minded observers would say that Carlson is to the right of center the way Don Lemon is to the left of center. Accordingly, if The New York Times were fair, it would brand Lemon "far left." But that is not what they called him recently: He is called a "fiery political commentator."

This could also be said of Carlson, but that is not what they say about him. He is an extremist.

Donohue offered no proof that Lemon is as far left as Carlson is to the right.

John Burnett argued that Carlson's firing is good news ... for Newsmax, because Fox News has decided it would rather "dominate the political center, which requires it not to be too far right to capture Democrats and independents":

So, where do the defecting 3.7 million center-right Fox viewers go? Newsmax is the optimal choice, and the network is well-positioned to gain viewers, streamers, and subscribers requesting the station in cable network channel packages.

And the timing is excellent for Newsmax, having recently resolved its dispute with DirecTV as we enter a period of presidential politics that will yield more campaign announcements and Republican debates set to kick off in August this year.

The floridly bylined Tamar Alexia Fleishman, Esq., thinks that Carlson's firing means that Fox News will not support Donald Trump in 2024:

The ignominious firing of a top performer — often the No. 1 show on cable — seemed to strike a chord across America. But as his audience was generally only about 1% of the U.S. population and so many of us already switched to Newsmax, there was something incongruous about the collective reaction. It felt more like a death in the family, even if it was someone you didn’t see too often.

Why? Carlson was one person in the mainstream media who dared to look at things in a different way, even if sometimes utterly unpopular.

Whether you agreed or not, he articulated a certain point of view. This was generally the America First, MAGA lens: on the topics of the vaccine, Ukraine, immigration or President Trump, he was not milquetoast.

Paradoxically, the more popular he became, it appears the more he rubbed Fox News’ Rupert Murdoch the wrong way. Murdoch, a billionaire born in Australia, doesn’t have a natural love for the viewers. The audience is a necessary evil for him to deal with: Grab their money and use their numbers to wield disproportionate power.

What did he want to do with his power? Clearly, Murdoch expects to use it to prevent Donald Trump from being president again. If Murdoch can create a news blackout, there goes the “earned media” that was part of the secret sauce for Trump’s first victory.

It should make every thinking American shudder to envision himself as a mere pawn of Rupert Murdoch. He can never be president himself.


We cannot allow the Murdochs to silence us, or trample our will.

Josh Hammer insisted that Carlson needs a massive platform again to hate transgender people:

Hopefully, Carlson will retain something approximating his exceptional level of cultural and political influence in whatever role he next serves, because his witness to truth and civilizational sanity has never been more necessary.

This is perhaps most clearly true when it comes to gender ideology and transgenderism, which is the issue most directly implicated by Carlson's framing of America's fundamental divide as a struggle between differing theological and anthropological conceptions of man.

Is sexual dimorphism an obvious empirical reality, rooted in Genesis 1:27, and mandating legal codification for any regime that claims a basis in truth and justice? Or is gender instead "fluid," wherein man can replace God and change his gender on a lark, and wherein it is contemptible bigotry to deny anyone's subjective sense of biological or sexual reality?

Tucker Carlson certainly knew his answer: He opened a memorable 2021 interview of former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson by asking the then-sitting governor, who had shamefully vetoed a bill to protect vulnerable children from the predatory scalpels of the woke-besotted medical establishment, why he had "come out publicly as 'pro-choice' on the question of chemical castration of children." Oof.

That is not a debate where the "best white paper wins." It is a zero-sum contestation of clashing visions of the human person, rooted in diametrically opposed substantive underpinnings. And, more to the point, the forces of godlessness, paganism and civilizational arson certainly already treat the debate over gender ideology as a vicious winner-take-all battle.

Dennis Kneale also mined a pro-Newsmax angle to Carlson's firing in his May 1 column, in which he also touted three previous Newsmax appearances by him in the span of just a few paragraphs:

Tucker Carlson's ouster is downright rude; it had to hurt, as I mentioned on Rita Cosby’s show on Saturday morning on Newsmax TV, here.

One clear winner in this Tucker trauma has emerged, says veteran political advisor Dick Morris, whom I joined in a Newsmax segment on Monday of last week.

Morris declared:

"The obvious fact is that Newsmax has won. Newsmax is now the sole conservative voice in media, and Fox News can talk about that, but by firing Carlson they have decidedly moved to the left and the center."

He added, "I think ratings are going to increase dramatically, I think that people that are used to watching Fox are going to flock to Newsmax."

Good call.

Newsmax ratings were up 261% in the 8 p.m. slot, up 220% in prime time over all, and up 113% for total day, for Monday to Wednesday last week, compared with the two previous weeks. I discussed this with anchors Lidia Curanaj and Michael Grimm on Sunday morning on Newsmax's "Wake Up America Weekend."

Scott Powell's May 2 column took the doom-and-conspiracy route:

But there are profound lessons that have come to the fore via his departure from Fox, which reveal more nuance and depth about what's wrong with America’s mainstream media; that is, how it's influenced by America haters who manipulate advertisers to defund truth tellers, and how weak leadership of our media utterly fails our country and helps our enemies.


Tucker had the largest viewership of any talk show in the genre, and he was waking people up more effectively than any other "talking head."

But he was relentlessly attacked by left-wing critics who succeeded in intimidating advertisers from continuing their support of his show.

This may have been a factor in Fox management’s decision to cancel him.

Many have noted that Fox received advertising revenue from Pfizer.

Did that affect the network's coverage of an important and lasting story of our time: COVID-19 vaccines?


One can’t help but recognize that what makes Tucker Carlson so powerful is his God-given combination of compelling and disarming qualities of being an extraordinarily likeable truth teller. So, if that iron law is true, the best for Tucker Carlson must be yet to come.

And like an exceptional performance's encore, let’s bring him back, unleashed  — now.

But Fox News stopped liking him, and that's what matters at this point.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:28 PM EDT
WND's Defense Of Man Who Killed Protester Aged Poorly
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Peter LaBarbera wrote in an April 10 WorldNetDaily article:

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is pledging to "work swiftly" to pardon Army Sgt. Daniel Perry, who was convicted of murdering AK-47-toting BLM extremist Garrett Foster to death in 2020 after Perry accidentally drove his car for Uber into an Austin street mobbed by leftist, anti-cop protesters.

The conviction of Perry, who could face life in prison, is clouded by allegations that Rick Garcia, the George Soros-backed, "progressive" Travis County D.A. who successfully prosecuted him, instructed an investigator of the case to leave out exculpatory information about Perry in his court testimony during the trial.

The Perry case is potentially as incendiary as that of Kyle Rittenhouse, who in 2021 was acquitted of several homicide charges after defending himself with his weapon in riots the previous year in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The accusation that "exculpatory information" was removed from testimony comes from a claim from Perry's attorneys regarding retired detective David Fugitt. But as prosecutors pointed out, Fugitt's claim was addressed and rejected before Perry's trial.

But as with the Media Research Center's similar defense of Perry, it didn't age well. A few days later, unsealed documents from the case revealed that Perry had a history of making racist and violent comments on social media, stating just a couple months before the shooting that “I might go to Dallas to shoot looters," and stating in another post that “It is official I am a racist because I do not agree with people acting like animals at the zoo."

LaBarbera seemed to try to inoculate his reporting from this by writing a section of his article wiht the subhead "Liberal media ignores and distorts context":

Online broadcaster and self-described "disaffected liberal" Tim Pool (@Timcast on Twitter) gave a tutorial of sorts on press bias in analyzing liberal media coverage of the Perry case. In his Rumble broadcast, Pool accused media like the Austin Chronicle of selectively taking portions of past remarks by Perry, out of their proper context, to make it appear as if Perry relished the idea of shooting BLM protesters.

Pool also warned of the danger to Americans' basic rights if past comments they made defending their Second Amendment right to self-defense can later be used and distorted to provide supposed evidence of murderous- or harmful intent.

LaBarbera then tried to argue that Foster deserved to die:

Pool cited a tweet by former Army Green Beret Jim Hanson who explained how Foster, by having his weapon "employed" or "brandished" (as opposed to merely carrying it), posed an immediate threat to Perry sitting in his vehicle, surrounded by protesters:

In a follow-up tweet, Hanson said: "I've seen arguments Garrett Foster was only defending himself when Daniel Perry shot him. The easiest way to actually stay safe would have been stop mobbing his car & brandishing a rifle. But even if he was 'defending' himself, that doesn't remove Perry's right to do the same."

LaBarbera didn't update his story to address the newly released statements by Perry, and WND hasn't touched the story since. So much for LaBarbera being a fair and balanced reporter.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:10 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE -- The MRC's DeSantis Defense Brigade: Transition Time
Topic: Media Research Center
After helping Ron DeSantis win another term as Florida governor, the Media Research Center is now trying to pave the way for his presidential ambitions. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 9:33 AM EDT
Wednesday, June 7, 2023
Transgender Lawmaker's Rhetoric Gives MRC The (Hypocritical) Vapors
Topic: Media Research Center

When Montana state Rep. Zooey Zephyr, who is transgender, gave a passionate speech in which she warned her fellow lawmakers they would have "blood on your hands" if they approved an anti-transgender law -- which got her barred from the legislative floor for the rest of the session while that law passed -- the Media Research Center got the vapors over the remark (as if its haven't attacked its enemies with greater vitriol; see George Soros). Tim Graham spent an April 21 post complaining that people who aren't transphobes weren't scandalized by Zephyr's rhetoric:

This could be a poll question: Which speech is more offensive? 

--"Misgendering" a trans woman as a "he"? 

--Telling someone who opposes trans amputations and chemicals they have "blood on their hands"?

The Washington Post picked (A). Their headline was "Montana Republicans misgender trans lawmaker in letter calling for civility." Reporter Maria Luisa Paul explained state Rep. "Zooey Zephyr" claimed Republicans were shameful for making gender-dysphoric kids go through puberty without chemicals:


So telling people they have blood on their hands for failing to support amputations sounds like it needs a fact check as well as a civility check. Who's eroding norms here as they nuke the gender binary? 

Graham won't tell you that accusing others of having blood on their hands is not uncommon in political rhetoric -- even on the website he manages. Last June, for example, John Simmons said that doctors who perform abortions have "blood on their hands, and in December, Tierin-Rose Mandelburg declared that those who support abortion rights "are stained with the blood of the 63 million + babies who have been killed as a result of Roe." And in January 2022, as we've documented, the MRC praised singer John Ondrasik for writing a song called "Blood On My Hands," which attacked the Biden administration over the messy U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Graham was also being hypocritical about inflammatory language, bashing Zephyr's rhetoric while maliciously portraying being transgender as all aboaut "chemicals" and "amputations."And his outrage over Zephyr's remarks is doubly hypocritical given his own history of inflammatory rhetoric, most notoriously trying to slut-shame Monica Lewinsky.

The next MRC writer to get the performative vapors over Zephyr's rhetoric was Curtis Houck, who ranted in an April 26 post:

Wednesday’s broadcast networks brought the first batch of broadcast network stories trashing the push to protect women and girls from biological men and children from medical castration by the Montana state legislature and cheering the latest leftist hooliganism. 

Worse yet, they cheered transgender Representative Zooey Zephyr (D) — a man pretending to a woman — threatening anyone who supports such legislation means they wholly support murder and suicides of transgender people since they’ll have “blood on [their] hands.”

So much for civility. It’s hard to have a country and civic society when the left and their media allies accuse tens of millions of eagerly supporting mass killings and suicides. Remember that the next time the press insists they’re for all Americans.

As if nastily smearing Zephyr as "a man pretending to a woman" is not designed to be inflammatory.

Clay Waters was next up to whine in an April 29 post:

The tax-funded PBS NewsHour on Wednesday night was the latest outlet to leap upon the cause of Montana legislator and transgender Democrat Zooey Zephyr, barred from the House chamber for violating rules of decorum during a debate on a bill that would ban so-called “gender-affirming care” for gender-dysmorphic minors wishing to surgically or chemically “transition.”

The vote came after a nasty speech by Zephyr, a biological male, accusing colleagues who oppose such care: “If you vote yes on this bill, I hope the next time there’s an invocation, when you bow your heads in prayer, you see the blood on your hands.” Zephyr also claimed failing to provide such care was “tantamount to torture.” But those inflammatory quotes, delivered on the Montana House floor, didn’t make PBS’s hagiography.

Nawaz hosted Zephyr (who for a legislator representing 11,000 constituents certainly gets their share of publicity) and the resulting conversation was more therapy session than journalism: "You know, when you spoke in your defense before the vote today, you said that you felt you were being asked to be -- quote -- 'complicit in the eradication of your community.' What did you mean by that?"

Yes, Waters' complaint that Zephyr got too much publlicity while giving her publicity came without a hint of irony.

Graham name-checked Zephyr in his May 5 podcast devoted to complaining that "While the national liberal networks tout Democrats fighting the GOP in red state legislatures, radical left-wing bills in blue states are going ignored." He similaly whined in his May 10 column: "Just as allegedly prestigious outlets like NPR have championed transgender legislator Zooey Zephyr in Montana and the Bullhorn Justins in Tennessee, the only point of view worth exploring and defending in state politics right now is on the radical left. "

Posted by Terry K. at 10:03 PM EDT
WND Promotes False Attack On Trudeau From Fake-News Website
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Bob Unruh wrote in an April 6 WorldNetDaily article:

Canada has moved, on several issues, to an extreme, such as assisted suicide (freely available), transgenderism (a protected class), and speech limits.

Now it apparently is trying to take the point in the move to make drugs legal. That would be hard drugs – for children.

A report from Newpunch has revealed, "Justin Trudeau has announced plans to legalize hard drugs for children, including heroin and crack cocaine, as part of a new radical policy aimed at destigmatizing drug addiction."

The report said the city of Toronto is setting the pace.

Unruh's source is actually named NewsPunch, not "Newpunch," though it has since changed its name to The People's Voice. Media Bias Fact Check calls NewsPunch/The People's Voice a "clickbait news website that promotes extreme right-wing conspiracy theories and pseudoscience misinformation," where "Headlines use loaded emotional language" and "story selection almost always favors the right through negative stories regarding liberal policy and politicians." It concluded: "This website has zero credibility due to the routine publishing of fake news." Ad Fontes Media similarly calls the website "unreliable" and notes that it "has been accused of publishing misinformation and conspiracy theories."

Indeed, the article's claim that "Justin Trudeau has announced plans to legalize hard drugs for children" is unsupported; no proof is offered that he has announced that specific plan. In reality, Trudeau has allowed provinces to decriminalize drug possession on a province level in pilot projects in an attempt to treat drug use as a health issue, not a criminal one. While the Toronto pilot would decriminialize drug possession for all ages, it is false to claim that equals "legalizing hard drugs for children," given that the sale of such drugs is still illegal.

Unruh clearly doesn't understand the difference between decriminalization and legalization, because later in the article he falsely called Toronto's pilot "drugs-for-all policies."

Repeating a false story from a known fake-news operation is not the way WND should be trying to rebuild its lost credibility among readers, and it will only keep the website on its lengthy death spiral.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:56 PM EDT
MRC Still Trying To Cover Up Musk's Twitter Blue-Check Debacle
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has done its best to bury the debacle that is Elon Musk's plan to deprecate Twitter's blue-check symbol from offical assurance that an account is authentic to a meaningless dot that proves only that the user is enough of a sucker to pay Musk $8 a month to have one. When a tiny fraction of people actually bought the blue checks -- understanding the ruse -- Musk arbitrariily slapped the blue check on accounts that didn't even pay for it, including celebrities (even dead ones). (Meanwhile, Twitter awarded a gold verification badge, which reportedly costs $1,000 a month, to a fake account purporting to respresent the children's channel Disney Junior.)

But the MRC would rather you not talk about any of this. Instead, it's doing Musk PR by raging at the hated George Soros for buying a blue check (even though it shows he's a smart businessmann by refusing to pay for something that offers nothing of value in return). An April 24 post by Clay Waters was another PR piece that lashed out at a report that pointed out how Musk had rendered the blue check meaningless:

A double panic attack took place on Friday’s edition  of the talk show Amanpour & Co, which co-airs on CNN and PBS, over Twitter chief Elon Musk no longer handing out account verifications (i.e. “blue checks”) to liberal journalists willy-nilly, but instead giving them to anyone willing to pay the fee.

Liberal journalists like the New York Times’ Paul Krugman have developed a complex over blue checkmarks, with Musk himself< seeming to enjoy toying with their fragile self-regard online.

Musk’s move apparently threatens an onslaught of “disinformation.” Amanpour fill-in host Bianna Golodryga’s overwrought fears were on display in her introduction:

Waters then tried to fame former Twitter executive Vivian Schiller pointing out that the blue check means nothing as a complaint coming only from "liberal elites":

Liberal elites are impressed by their blue-check status, suggesting concerns about “misinformation” are window-dressing over their real concern, that the hoi polloi can now pay $8 a month for the mark of prestige previously reserved for themselves, although Schiller defensively denied such thinking:

When it was pointed out that Musk is rolling back anti-hate policies such as dropping punishments fordeliberately misgendering transgender people, Waters tried to play the victim card:

The liberal whining began in earnest, with Golodryga asking Schiller about Twitter “quietly rolling back some of its protections, specifically for transgender people,” including “misgendering or deadnaming of transgender individuals.”

Schiller: ….the policy specifically called out transgender individuals who we already know are subject to a lot of abuse online. And by removing that line and keeping it broadly, targeting of others, it removes tha added protection…

Conservatives get smeared and cursed and throttled on Twitter thousands of times a day, often by radical transgender activists. Yet it’s transgenders who require “added protection” from being called by their birth names?

Waters appears not to have considered the possibilty that he and his fellow right-wingers could simply stop obsessively hating transgender, and he didn't explain why right-wingers must misgender people.

Luis Cornelio turned a Twitter user's confusion about the proliferation of various colored check marks for Twitter users (he thought the blue check for President Biden's account had been dropped; instead, it had been changed to a newly invented gray check given to accounts of government officials)into an April 25 post which cheered right-wing pundit Ben Shapiro ranting about it, then tried to relitigate Donald Trump's social media suspensions:

Shapiro’s slap-down response to Dobrofsky’s tweet made reference to Big Tech’s censorship efforts to ban then-President Trump from all major social media platforms amid the January 6 Capitol riot.

At the time, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, Reddit, Chinese communist-tied TikTok and even Shopify participated in the coordinated effort to ban a sitting president. Digital store Shopify went as far as to block stores that sell Trump-related content.


According to an MRC Free Speech America study, the same Big Tech companies that banned Trump allowed seven dictators, including embattled Russian President Vladimir Putin, to post government propaganda, reaching approximately 50 million followers.

Cornelio omitted the fact that Trump was credibily accused of inciting the Capitol riot through his false claims of election fraud. He aldo didn't menetion that his fellow right-wingers like Putin's policies, particularly his similar hatred of LGBT people.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:16 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: The Root of COVID Misinformation Continues To Grow
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily columnist Wayne Allyn Root just can't stop spreading false and misleading claims about the safety of COVID vaccines -- even creating a rigged lie detector test to spread them. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:05 AM EDT
Tuesday, June 6, 2023
MRC Still Spewing Hate At Dylan Mulvaney, Bud Light
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has long hated transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney for failing to be heterosexual, and it hates Bud Light for doing a promotion with her, joining other right-wing haters in irrationally trying to destroy the company for doing so.' An April 19 post by Matt Philbin -- his last before he mysteriously parted ways with the MRC, a departure neither he nor the MRC has discussed publicly -- was a total insult-fest complete with misgendering:

Dylan Mulvaney is “trying really hard to maintain a relationship with God.” Admirable. Of course, it might be easier if Mulvaney didn’t reject His handiwork. 

If you didn’t know (and if you didn’t you’re one of a happy few), Mulvaney is a 26 year-old actor and TikTok pest who publicly “transitioned” to being a “woman” and now runs around as a campy Audrey Hepburn look-alike.

For this, he’s been celebrated by leftist elites and received lucrative endorsement partnerships with Bud Light and Nike. Apparently, actual women are hard to come by in giant corporations. You can buy swag from his website. Mocking God’s Creation seems to be a good way to earn your daily bread.

According to Neil Munro at Breitbart, back in March somebody interviewed Mulvaney about faith and Relevant Magazine posted it because of the Bud Light brewhaha. “I don’t think He made a mistake with me, and that maybe one day, I will actually be grateful for being trans, that this isn’t some curse, but it’s just a different path to the same destination,” Mulvaney said. 

Maybe, Aquinas. But self-obsession and acute narcissism are a tough place to start.

Philbin's apparent obsession with Mulvaney sure didn't keep him from losing his MRC job.

The next day, Tierin-Rose Mandelburg cheered the right-wing hysteria over Bud Light while mixing in a little vicious transphobia:

No matter how many times we say “get woke, go broke,” it seems like it never really clicks for the left.

Amid the weeks-long controversy surrounding Bud Light’s marketing choice to use a transgender person, essentially a biological man parading as a little girl, for a partnership, the company seems to face more and more backlash daily. As a matter of fact, a Rasmussen poll indicated that 50 percent of middle-income earners are less likely to buy Bud Light over it’s new transgender face.

When Bud Light’s Marketing VP suggested the use of Dylan Mulvaney, a man who makes his living from sponsorships with tampon brands, makeup companies and social media, its aim supposedly was to generate more “inclusivity.” Well, if you know anything about Bud Light, its main demographic is men, typically middle-aged men who like cracking open a cold one with their buddies out fishing, by a fire, grilling hamburgers, etc. Men who like doing manly stuff, not men who like pretending they’re Eloise at the Plaza.

Obviously the marketing move was a flop. Bud Light has lost more than six billion dollars since its partnership with Ms. Man and after “5,600 news articles were published about the controversy in two weeks,” things aren’t looking great for the future of the company.

Mandelburg didn't mention the right-wing bias of Rasmussen polls. And contrary to her assertion, the dip in valuation of Bud Light's parent company AB InBev, is making the stock a recommended buy. Still, she insisted that "it's kind of funny to watch the left squirm when their plans yet again fail." Finally, she forgot to mention that the company's facilities have been the target of violent threats, presumably from people who hate transgender people as much as she does.

Alex Christy devoted an April 25 post to complaining that "The Daily Show" defended both Mulvaney and Bud Light:

Each of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show temp hosts have used their time to talk about issues they care about and Desi Lydic was no exception, using Monday’s show to talk about the status of women in the workplace, but before she did that she undermined any point she would make when she defended Bud Light’s Dylan Mulvaney marketing campaign, “I am so sick of this ‘trans women are not real women.’ Having a vagina does not make you a woman.”

Lydic began the show by referencing the Bud Light-Mulvaney partnership, “and I just have to talk about it.”

She then proceeded to declare, “Okay, so last month, Bud Light did a social media campaign with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney and conservatives absolutely lost their shit over it. They were filming themselves shooting cans, running over cans, hitting cans with a baseball bat. It was like a Saw movie but starring Bud Light, but now their meltdown has even its own merch.”

Lydic then played a video from Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders that parodied Bud Light’s Real Men of Genius ads by focusing on “real women of politics” and fellow female GOP Govs. Kristi Noem, Kay Ivey, and Kim Reynolds.

Curtis Houck spent a May 5 post whining, as the MRC usually does, that that non-right-wing media didn't rush to parrot right-wing narratives, this time regarding Mulvaney and Bud Light:

After over a month of silence as corporate liberalism suffered a massive blow as ordinary Americans rose up against Anheuser-Busch InBev and dumped Bud Light (and the company’s sales) for worshiping at the alter of transgenderism and Dylan Mulvaney, NBC’s Today cracked one open Friday with the first story from a broadcast network morning or evening news show about the fallout.

Despite the controversy having started back on April 1 with Mulvaney’s infamous video announcing Bud Light had sent a can with their face on it to commemorate “my day 365 of womanhood,” NBC’s Today acted like this had happened only recently.

Right-wing transphobes shouldn't be confused with "ordinary Americans." But Houck pushed that narrative anyway, claiming that "As the Daily Wire’s Michael Knowles and others have explained, conservatives successfully had their morals make an imprint on business (as opposed to the church of wokeism)." Irrational hate is not "morals," and Houck forgot to mention that Knowles is the guy who demanded that "transgenderism must be eradicated," a form of extremism that typically turns into the eradication of actual transgender people.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:07 PM EDT
Updated: Thursday, June 8, 2023 10:11 AM EDT
CNS Got In One Last Lazy 'Meathead' Shot At Rob Reiner Before Shutdown
Topic: had a weird inability to separate an actor from his role when it came to Rob Reiner, repeatedly insisting on referring to him as "Meathead" -- even though he hasn't played that role in nearly half a century -- as a lazy form of revenge for his criticism for his criticism of Donald Trump. CNS did this one last time before it was shut down, in an anonymously written (of course) March 22 article, which made sure to prominently place "Meathead" in the headline:

Rob Reiner, who played Archie Bunker’s son-in-law (“Meathead”) on All in the Family, sent out a tweet on March 18 stating that the reason he joined Twitter was to have a platform for attacking former President Donald Trump.

“When Donald Trump became the Republican nominee for president in 2016, I joined Twitter,” Reiner said in a tweet.

“I wanted to speak out against a man who I knew to be a Pathologically Lying Misogynistic Racist who was an is an existential danger to our Democracy,” Reiner continued.

“The elimination of this scourge is upon US,” he said.

The anonymous writer did not fact-check Reiner's tweet, or was it explained why the tweet was so important that it deserved its own "news" story -- aside, of course, from yet another opportunity for CNS to try to lazily dunk him by throwing around the word "Meathead." And, yes, the article was illustrated with a nearly 50-year-old photo of him and Carroll O'Connor from "All in the Family."

Maybe this insistence on presenting lazy partisan attacks as "news" was one reason the Media Research Center pulled the plug on CNS.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:41 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, June 6, 2023 5:47 PM EDT
WND Muted On Fox News-Dominon Settlement ... Except For Wayne Allyn Root
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's coverage of Fox News' $787 million settlement with Dominion over defamation was muted, receiving only a story stolen from evil "liberal media" source NBC. That is perhaps understandable, given that WND did some of the things Fox News was accused of doing and would likely not want to remind people of it. Not only did it uncritically promote baseless accusations that Dominion and fellow voting-tech company Smartmatic changed vote tallies, columnist James Zumwalt forwarded the false attack that a Dominion official confessed to changing vote totals and worked with Antifa. That official is suing the originator of that false claim, far-right podcaster Joe Oltmann, and other promoters of it for defamation; WND and Zumwalt have so far escaped being sued.

But WND columnist Wayne Allyn Root apparently didn't get that memo, so he spent his April 22 column loudly insisting that the settlement doesn't affect his longrunning election fraud conspiracy theories:

I feel like Paul Revere for patriots. Except I'm shouting, "The elections are being stolen! The elections are being stolen!"

I grew up on the mean streets of New York. I am very familiar with bait and switch. Walking the streets of New York City, I saw three-card Monte con men setting up shop on sidewalks every day. Their goal was to distract you from picking the right card ... and to separate you from your money. We all just witnessed a bait and switch in the news headlines earlier this week. This is three-card Monte on STEROIDS.

Fox News settled with Dominion over claims of election fraud in the 2020 presidential election. Fox News will now pay Dominion $787 million because Fox News claimed the election was rigged by fraudulent voting machines.

Because Fox News settled with Dominion, now the Marxist-controlled mainstream media will go into full bait-and-switch mode. They will claim "the case is settled and closed. It's now proven the 2020 election wasn't rigged and stolen."

What a scam. What a con. This is the all-time bait and switch.

I may be the TV and radio host most associated with reporting the 2020 election was rigged and stolen. I've said it thousands of times on radio and TV. I've said it from the day after the 2020 election to today. I'll never stop saying it – because it's true.

The 2020 election was stolen.

And I believe elections are still being rigged and stolen. The 2022 midterms were almost as bad as the 2020 presidential election. One race is Exhibit A. Democrats clearly stole the Arizona governor's race from Kari Lake. Arizona Democrats rigged the vote by making sure vote tabulators didn't work on Election Day in heavily GOP districts.

Democrats are rigging and stealing elections like the Swiss make clocks – with precision. It's what they do. They rig, cheat and steal.

Yet in all these many years of my reporting and shouting and warning about stolen elections, I've never mentioned Dominion, or their voting machines. Because there are so many other simple, easy, low-tech ways Democrats steal elections.

He then listed numerous ways this purportedly happens, but he offered no proof that any of this happened in 2020. Then he came in for the (supposedly) big one:

And the big one...

No. 12: We now know the FBI rigged the election. They paid Twitter to change the news feed in favor of Biden and silence conservative voices on social media. See emails released by Elon Musk. The FBI rigged the 2020 election. FACT.

Wrong. As we pointed out when the Media Research Center parroted this same "Twitter files" claim -- and as fact-checkers also noted -- the FBI paid Twitter to fulfill document requests, not to "siilence conservative voices."

Nevertheless, Root concluded: "So, a FNC settlement with Dominion settles nothing. You and I know the 2020 election was rigged and stolen from a hundred directions. Don't fall for the bait and switch." Then again, Root also wants you to believe that literally everything is evidence of election fraud.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:59 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE -- New Press Secretary, Same MRC Hate: March 2023
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center was happy to have Peter Doocy to fluff again, and it praised a reporter for an obscure African website for throwing temper tantrums in the White House briefing room. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 10:58 AM EDT
Monday, June 5, 2023
MRC Spread Falsehoods About Swalwell And Spy -- But Won't Correct The Record Now That He's Been Cleared
Topic: Media Research Center

Last month, the House Ethics Committee closed its investigation into Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell over allegations he had a relationship with a woman who turned out to be a Chinese spy, making no findings of wrongdoing. Swalwell had never been credibly accused of any wrongdoing, and he cut off all ties to her when he learned about her spy activity in 2015.

The Media Research Center won't tell you this, however, because it's been attacking Swalwell over the alleged relationship for years.

In a November column, for instance, Jeffrey Lord cheered that Swalwell might be removed from House committees by Republcians for what he described as "a decidedly ill-advised affair with an alleged Chinese spy," touting how incoming House speaker Kevin McCarthy "clearly thinks" he showed "appallingly bad judgement and cannot be allowed to sit on the Intelligence Committee."

Whe the GOP officially took over the House, the MRC cheered Republican attacks on Swalwell, just as it did  over attacks on Rep. Ilhan Omar similarly designed to force her off House committees for not being a right-wing toady:

  • A Jan. 12 post by Bill D'Agostino complained that "CNN cut away from House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s press conference after he made a series of unflattering claims about Representatives Eric Swalwell (D-CA) and Adam Schiff (D-CA)."
  • A Jan. 18 post by Nicholas Fondacaro raged that when Swalwell appeared on "The View," the hosts "didn’t even question Swalwell about his possible sexual relationship with Chinese Spy Fang Fang. Instead, she simply asked him to give his response to what Speaker McCarthy has said about him when he announced his intent to strip the compromised Congressman of his seat on the House Intelligence Committee."

Fondacaro ranted in another post the same day:

Not long after Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) warned on Tuesday that he received a classified intelligence briefing from the FBI about Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-CA) that concerned him enough to pull his Intelligence Committee assignment, some of CNN’s purported journalists on The Lead – including host Jake Tapper – pretended not to know why the compromised Congressman shouldn’t be allowed to serve on the committee. Essentially, gaslighting their viewers.

In December 2020, Axios reported that Swalwell’s campaign was infiltrated by a Chinese spy that went by the name Fang Fang. They noted that Fang installed an intern in Swalwell’s office and had sexual relationships “with at least two mayors of Midwestern cities.” Swalwell has never been publicly grilled on whether his relationship with Fang was also sexual.

Fondacaro censored the fact that Axios also reported that Swalwell immediately dropped the relationship after being alerted to Fang's spy activity and no one has accused him of wrongdoing.

Tim Graham spent a Jan. 23 post whining that a fact-checker found McCarthy's attacks on Swalwell and others to be "specious" -- but rather than rebut any points in the fact-checker, he grumbled: "This is where liberal-media 'fact-checking' is annoying. They use their own partisan incuriosity against Republicans." Kevin Tober served up his own whining fit in a post the next day:

Apparently having sex with a Chinese spy as a member of Congress isn’t enough for MSNBC. During Monday night’s The 11th Hour on MSNBC, frequent guest Jason Johnson lashed out at House Speaker Kevin McCarthy for daring to express his desire to prevent Democrat Congressmen Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell, the latter of which had reportedly had sex with a Chinese spy, from serving on the House Intelligence Committee. 


Johnson then said with a straight face and without any hint of irony that “there's no legitimate reason to keep Schiff or Swalwell off the intelligence committee. In fact, if anything it's to lock out people who are primarily concerned with this country from knowing the dangers that perhaps other colleagues on the committee provide to this country.”

Alex Christy complained that "As House Republicans prepare to kick Democratic Reps. Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell off the Intelligence Committee, CNN Newsroom co-host Erica Hill condemned Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday for not following 'tradition.' Apparently, Hill forgot that history did not begin yesterday." Hethengroused that Hill did not say why Swalwell was a "target," but he refused to mention the fact that nobody has credibly accused Swalwell of wrongdoing.

Tober came back on Jan. 29 to cheer how Swalwell and other Democratic members of Congress targeted by the GOP were asked about those accusations on CNN, and he noted (relucantly, we presume) that Swalwell responded by noting that "three different times, [the FBI] came out and said two things. All I did was help them, and also, I was never under any suspicion of wrongdoing."

With the Republicans having ultimately done its partisan duty and kicking Swalwell off the intelligence committee, the MRC went silent about him for a while, though a March 11 post by Mark Finkelstein complained that Swalwell advocated blocking access to Fox News to military bases in the wake of revelations in the Dominion lawsuit shwoing that Fox News deliberatly lied to its viewers about election fraud in thte 2020 election. But when a defender popped up on TV, Tober was there to rant about it in an April 21 post:

On MSNBC’s The ReidOut, host Joy Reid returned to one of her favorite Republican targets in the United States Congress: Marjorie Taylor Greene. The source of her rage this time was Greene’s comments during a House Homeland Security Committee hearing where she pointed out that her colleague Eric Swalwell (D-CA) was reported to have slept with a Chinese spy. Despite the allegations being legitimate enough to have him booted off the House Intelligence Committee, Reid still insisted it was nothing more than a “right-wing conspiracy theory.”

Republicans acting in a partisan manner against Swalwell does not equate to the allegations against him being "legitimate."

Tober, like the rest of his MRC co-workers, will not tell you that a Republican-led House ethics committee found no wrongdoing, just like every other authority who has looked into it. And it's even less likely that the MRC will apologize to Swalwell for spreading falsehoods about him and correct the record.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:50 PM EDT
Newsmax Quietly Deletes Many Guo Wengui-Paid Propaganda Pieces
Topic: Newsmax

Is Newsmax suddenly ashamed of taking money to publish propaganda?

We've documented how, over the past couple of months, Newsmax has published numerous "sponsored" articles written by moonlighting right-wing writers who were paid to churn out articles defending Chinese billionaire Guo Wengui (a.k.a Miles Guo), who was arrested on fraud charges. One of those writers was Matt Palumbo, who works for right-wing radio host Dan Bongino. The other main writer was Kelly John Walker, a right-wing podcaster who was arrested and convicted last year for threatening to zip-tie an elementary school principal because a friend's child missed a school field trip because had to quarantine due to COVID exposure. These were some of the articles he wrote:

But some of these articles -- along with many of those written by Palumbo -- have since been deleted by Newsmax. No explanation was provided; perhaps the Guo checks cleared and they no longer wanted to seen as a willing provider of paid propaganda. 

We've also noted that the Guo propaganda pieces on Newsmax have a listed "sponsor" of Token Team -- which happens to be the name of a company with whom Newsmax partnered a few years back to accept cryptocurrency as payment for ads. The two prinicpals of Token Team were John Tabacco, later a Newsmax TV host, and Vito Fossella, whose congressional career ended in disgrace when it was discovered he had two families, one in Washington and another back home in Staten Island.

Well, we found another connection: A show called "Wise Guys with John Tabacco" airs weekly on Newsmax, and the March 26 edition of his show featured Nicole Tsai, spokesperson for a Guo front group called the New Federal State of China. The interview was filled with softballs, and Tabacco challenged none of the talking points Tsai promoted, including her suggestion that federal agents set Guo's apartment on fire shortly after his arrest. Co-host Cara Castronuova, with a group called Citizens Against Political Persecution, fed the narrative too, hyping Guo's ties to Donald Trump and claiming he's a victim of "political persecution," conspiratorially adding: "I'm not going to throw out accusations, but I do think Biden and his son have ties to the CCP."

Neither Tabacco or any of the other interview panel participants -- who also included defense attorney Lou Gelormino -- disclosed any ties with Guo and his businesses and movements. And Guo interests clearly loved this segment because it has been reposted elsewhere with Chinese subtitles.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:33 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, July 19, 2023 8:55 PM EDT

Newer | Latest | Older

Bookmark and Share

Get the WorldNetDaily Lies sticker!

Find more neat stuff at the ConWebWatch store!

Buy through this Amazon link and support ConWebWatch!

Support This Site

« June 2023 »
1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30

Bloggers' Rights at EFF
Support Bloggers' Rights!

News Media Blog Network

Add to Google