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Thursday, December 7, 2023
WND Can't Stop Trying To Rebrand Anti-LGBT Conversion Therapy
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily continued its longtime efforts to rebrand anti-LGBT conversion therapy -- this time as nothing more than "everyday conversations" -- in an Oct. 21 article:

LGBT activists for several years already have been on the warpath against "conversion therapy."

They contend that counselors or therapists talking with people, especially minors, about NOT pursuing any transient gender confusion ideologies must be criminal.

Actually, such therapy and counseling has helped hundreds, if not thousands, of people, including those young people who mostly resolved their issues comfortably in their birth gender if they are not led astray by adults.

The crackdown move has been evident both in the United Kingdom and the United States, and court fights continue over the disagreement.

But now the Christian Institute, in the U.K., is warning government officials they cannot use that theory to make everyday conversations illegal.

In an online announcement, the organization confirmed its readiness to take legal action against the Westminster government if it adopts the anti-"conversion therapy" ideology, because it impacts everyday religious practice.

The statement came on the heels of press speculation that the government is ready to move ahead with a draft bill that would ban such conversations.

Unruh again ignores the fact that conversaion therapy tends to be involuntary and coercive.Inmstead, Unruh portray being LGBT as a "lifetyle" something that people must be "converted" from:

The issue is important to those caught up in the LGBT ideology, as they repeatedly claim that they have those lifestyles because they were born that way.

However, counseling that, over and over, has proven effectively in ridding individuals of unwanted same-sex attractions undermines that argument entirely.

Activist Jayne Ozanne, in fact, has demanded that "gentle non-coercive prayer" be made criminal.

That statement is taken out of context from a longer statement in which she pointed out that is no such thing as "non-coercive prayer" to change sexual orentation:

Jayne Ozanne, a prominent campaigner on LGBT+ rights and the editor of ViaMedia.News, said: “I’m very grateful to Bishop David for his clear support for a ban, although I would strongly refute that ‘gentle non-coercive prayer’ should be allowed. All prayer that seeks to change or suppress someone’s innate sexuality or gender identity is deeply damaging and causes immeasurable harm, as it comes from a place – no matter how well meaning – that says who you are is unacceptable and wrong.”

All conversion “therapy” was coercive, she added. “We know that this occurs in numerous C of E churches and many other faith settings – indeed there are evangelical organisations that openly advocate it. This must stop before more lives are ruined and sadly even lost.”

Because Unruh has no interest in that larger discussion and only wants to be a stenographer for an anti-LGBT group, he omitted that context.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:34 PM EST
At The MRC, 'Real Journalism' = Bashing Biden
Topic: Media Research Center

Media Research Center writer Curtis Houck's embarrassing fawning over NewsNation for purportedly being objective (which actually having some right-wing bias) continued in a Sept. 27 post:

On Tuesday night, NewsNation continued its commitment to real journalism by holding a town hall with primetime host Chris Cuomo in East Palestine, Ohio on continued fallout from the February 3 toxic train derailment. Put aside whatever one might think about Cuomo and his past for a moment and what’s left was a true example of what journalism should be.

In this case, it’s keeping the spotlight on the lack of answers from all levers of government power and the economic, health, and societal impact its had on residents, something few in the media of all stripes have done.

As became mmediately clear, though, Houck's idea of "real journalism" involves bashing government in general and the Biden administration in particular:

Cuomo ended with the simple fact that “President Biden has still not come” despite smirking and smiling on March 2 that he would “be out there at some point.”

In contrast, Cuomo responded by painting East Palestine as “like a lot of small places in America” that seem “easy to forget” though, “as you drive through here and you talk to the people, they know that they’ve been forgot and what matters to them, they will never forget.”

Throughout the hour, Cuomo called on longtime investigative reporter Rich McHugh, who said at one point that residents were “so confused about the messages” from agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and thus “not sure who to trust.”


Despite having an hour, Cuomo told viewers that officials from the White House to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on down to the state level were invited to participate, but no one agreed.


Cuomo turned back to Biden to close out the hour, challenging him to sign “an emergency declaration” from months back that’s still “on his desk.”

And yet, Biden not only hasn’t moved, but he flew over Ohio on Tuesday “on his way to Detroit”:

We've documented how the MRC weaponized the derailment for partisan purposes to attack the Biden administration for purportedly not sufficiently reacting to the derailjment, while remaining nearly silent about the railroad's central role in the derailment. If Cuomo talked about the railroad's responsibility for the derailment and the cleanup afterward -- as the EPA ordered it to do -- Houck did not mention it.

If Cuomo and NewsNation are pushing right-wing narratives, it's not doing "real journalism." But Houck is too biased and too desperate to embrace those narratives to understand the difference.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:12 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: Shenanigans at Newsmax
Topic: Newsmax
From pay-to-play allegations to running a legal defense fund for Rudy Giuliani to hiring more disgraced ex-Fox News hosts, Newsmax has been busy with odd behind-the-scenes machinations. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 1:55 AM EST
Wednesday, December 6, 2023
MRC Wants To Blame Everyone But Hard-Right Republicans for McCarthy Getting Booted As Speaker
Topic: Media Research Center

When Kevin McCarthy got ousted as House speaker, the Media Research Center was a bit desperate to blame anyone but the hard-right House members who engineered it.Kevin Tober whined that a news report accurately described them in an Oct. 3 post:

On Tuesday, a group of conservatives led by Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz ousted House Republican Speaker Kevin McCarthy (CA) over what they describe as broken promises made during McCarthy’s election as speaker. Later that evening, all three evening news networks pounded their chests in rage and shock over McCarthy’s ouster. 

“Tonight, for the first time in U.S. history, the House has voted to oust the speaker. Kevin McCarthy brought down by a handful of hard-right members of his own party who were furious with McCarthy for working with moderate Republicans and the Democrats to keep the government open,” ABC’s World News Tonight anchor David Muir huffed. 

Has Muir ever referred to the radical leftists of the “Squad” as hard-left members of the Democrat Party [sic]? Not to our knowledge.

Tober did not explain why "hard-right" was not an accurate descriptor of those who pushed McCarthy out.

The next day, Alex Christy was mad that it was pointed out that the House had more stable leadership when it was run by Democrats:

All In host Chris Hayes traveled over to NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers on Tuesday to discuss the state of the political world including the situation surrounding House Republicans, Kevin McCarthy, and Matt Gaetz. For Hayes, one of the big takeaways was that the whole episode shows just how awesome former Speaker Nancy Pelosi was.

Meyers noted that McCarthy found himself between a rock and a hard place, “This is interesting, the sort of, I guess the calculus of this moment is a reminder that because there wasn't a red wave, like Kevin McCarthy does have this very thin line. And so, you know, ultimately, yes, the, you know, Republicans won the House. But you realize the way they won it, the math just stinks.”

Hayes conceded Meyers’s point was true, but that should not be used an excuse for McCarthy, “It does, although, that's true and obviously if they had a 20-vote majority, it would be a very different situation but Pelosi had the exact same majority last Congress.”

As he continued, Hayes claimed something he thought made Democrats look good, but in reality was just the opposite, “And partly that's because not only is Nancy Pelosi an incredibly skilled legislator just in terms of the dynamics of keeping a caucus together. There's just much more of a unified Democratic governing vision. There was stuff they wanted to do.”


Arguing that the Democratic establishment and progressive radicals are closer aligned than the moderates versus progressives narrative the media usually tries spin is not the argument Hayes seems to think it is.  

Suggesting that McCarthy deserved to be fired because he didn't sufficiently kowtow to the extremists in his caucus is not the win Christy seems to think it is. Christy huffed over another positive reference to Pelosi in another Oct. 4 post trying to justify Republicans' pettiness in abruptly kicking Pelosi out of an office reserved for former speakers:

Andrea Mitchell isn’t just a midday MSNBC host, she is also arguably former Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s number one media fan, so naturally she got triggered when former communications advisors to former Speakers John Boehner and Paul Ryan, Brendan Buck defended Republicans booting Pelosi out of her office in the Capitol in the aftermath of Democrats joining with eight Republicans to unseat Kevin McCarthy.

Mitchell began, “Let me ask you about the retaliatory action that was taken within an hour or so, taking away the ceremonial rooms of Nancy Pelosi. Speakers need offices in the Capitol and they by-- I think Pelosi let John Boehner –”

Buck interrupted to add some context, “Well, Boehner left, but Denny Hastert had on office in the Capital—”

Not acknowledging that important detail, Mitchell continued, “And also let Paul Ryan keep offices for a while, not sure which happened, but she did not take the rooms away and did that in the past.”

Christy then tried to blame Democrats for McCarthy losing the speaker job:

Democrats and their media friends demanded Republicans put the country before party and< McCarthy even claimed that Pelosi declared that if a motion to vacate came up, Democrats would do just that. Naturally this did not matter to Mitchell and when given that choice on Tuesday, Democrats put their partisan self-interest first because McCarthy allegedly hurt their feelings and they think Republican dysfunction benefits them at the ballot box.

Christy conveniently ignored the fact that a sufficient number of Republicans had to vote against McCarthy in order to remove him, and Democrats could not have acted alone.

When Hayes tried to make that point, Tober lashed out in an Oct. 4 post, complaineing that he "aired a montague [sic] of various media figures accurately blaming Democrats for McCarthy’s ouster. ... When Hayes returned live he mocked New York Republican Congressman Mike Lawler like a juvenile brat: “'Oh, you had a bad taste in your mouth because the Democrats didn't do what you wanted?'" Tober did not explain how it was "accurate" that Democrats ousted McCarthy when they don't have a House majority to win such a vote.

Tim Graham regurgitated Christy's labeling complaint in his Oct. 4 podcast:

The unprecedented ouster of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy caused the pro-Biden media to stick with their government-shutdown framing. The "hard right" Republicans are ruining Washington. ABC anchor David Muir said McCarthy was "brought down by a handful of hard-right members of his own party who were furious with McCarthy for working with moderate Republicans and the Democrats to keep the government open.

Then Muir added “House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries calling on Republicans to break from the extremists and end the chaos.” Democrats regular decry "MAGA extremists" and no one ever gets to call them extreme in the "objective" press.

Like Chrisy, Graham did not explain why "hard-right" is not an accurate label.

Christy again tried to blame Democrats for ousting McCarthy in an Oct. 6 post:

For years, NBC Late Night host Seth Meyers has demanded that Republicans put the country above their partisan self-interest, but when Republicans recently attacked Democrats for not doing so during the Speaker vote, Meyers essentially told Republicans on Thursday that they deserve it.

The reason wasn’t even a good one. For Meyers, the fact that Kevin McCarthy may have hurt Democrats’ feelings was enough:

But here's the especially infuriating thing. When this small band of GOP hardliners voted to oust McCarthy, McCarthy could have, if he really wanted to keep his job, reached out to Democrats to try to win their support, you know, the same way he made concessions to the hardliners in his own caucus to get the job in the first place. He didn't do that. He dissed Democrats, he told them to F off. So Democrats voted against McCarthy for extremely obvious reasons and yet Republicans have the gall to blame Democrats for not voting for McCarthy and bailing them out.

McCarthy never told Democrats to "F off," he did blame them for the government almost shutting down, but that is standard political rhetoric. Nevertheless, after a series of clips of various Republicans and Fox personalities blaming Democrats or labeling McCarthy’s ousting as one that was led by Democrats, Meyers ranted, “Are you out of your [bleep] minds? Democrats are in the minority while you accuse each other of downing Viagra like Pez and threaten to beat the [bleep] out of each other?”

Christy went on to whine that "Democrats, Meyers, and the media have constantly lectured Republicans about the need to marginalize 'the hardliners' for the betterment of the country. Yet, when given the choice between McCarthy and 'the hardliners,' Democrats chose the latter." Christy seems to want to deny that there are any hardliners in the Republican Party.

Rich Noyes served up an Oct. 7 "flashback" post complaining that it was pointed out that hard-right Republicans also forced the departure of John Boehner as speaker, adding: "Such slogans — 'hard-right,' 'hardline,' 'far-right,' 'ultra-conservative,' etc. — are meant to separate conservatives from what the media would consider the respectable mainstream of U.S. politics." Noyes didn't dispute the accuracy of those labels or offer an acceptable substitute.

Jeffrey Lord used his Oct. 7 column to distract from McCarthy's ouster by playing whataboutism to a completely unrelated controversy over a Republcaan-written New York Times op-ed.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:35 PM EST
Newsmax Floated Idea Of Trump As House Speaker
Topic: Newsmax

In the turmoil after House Republicans ousted Kevin McCarthy as speaker, Newsmax floated the idea of Donald Trump serving as speaker, at least temporarily. (Newsmax worked to make sure Trump got credit for McCarthy's original ascension to the speaker post.) An Oct. 4 article by Eric Mack quoted Trump effectively endorsing the trial balloon:

While former President Donald Trump said he is "focused" on running for president, he would not rule out being the GOP speaker of the House on Wednesday.

"A lot of people have been calling me about speaker," Trump told reporters before heading into the courtroom for Day 3 of his $250 million civil trial. "All I can say is we'll do whatever is best for country and for the Republican Party.

"We have some great, great people."

Reporters noted Trump did not rule out becoming speaker if he was asked, admitting only that there are a lot of people asking.

That was followed later in the day with a column by Tamar Fleishman endorsing the idea, declaring that he "has the leadership, respect and knows the issues inside and out":

Trump has always shied away from the beaten path. It's what makes him great! He wouldn't accept "just because it's not done" as an excuse not to name a former president and current candidate, as speaker of the House. He may not have been a politician in 2016, but he is now and a savvy one at that. He's seen it all!

PTrump [sic] is a do-er. Whether it's a building an ice rink or historic-on-a-biblical scale Middle East peace treaty, Trump plays to win. He won't tolerate excuses, tactical delays, Parliamentary tactical slight of hand or general nonsense.

Another Oct. 4 article, by Charlie McCarthy, tried to distance Trump from McCarthy's ouster in the first place:

Advisers to Donald Trump questioned Florida Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz's comment indicating the former president supported the effort to oust House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Cali regarding GOP infighting.


"Why is it that Republicans are always fighting among themselves, why aren't they fighting the Radical Left Democrats who are destroying our Country?" Trump posted.

After the House vote, Gaetz suggested he had Trump's backing.

"My conversations with the former president leave me with great confidence that I did the right thing," Gaetz told reporters.

Trump advisers, though, had their doubts.

An Oct. 5 article by Mack hyped Trump offering "short-term" assistance in choosing a speaker, followed by an article by Mark Swanson touting Trump claiming that "he would be willing to become speaker of the House 'for a short period of time' and serve as a party 'unifier' until Republicans settle on their permanent choice." Newsmax then hosted a Republican congressman cheering the idea:

Who better than former President Donald Trump to fill the vacant House speaker's seat — at least in the short term — Rep. Greg Steube told Newsmax.

"How awesome would it be for President Trump to be the leader of the House and negotiate with [Senate Majority Leader] Chuck Schumer and [President] Joe Biden spending policies from a conservative majority House?" Steube, R-Fla., said Thursday on "Eric Bolling The Balance." "I can't think of somebody that would be better to do it."


The only Republicans who are unlikely to support Trump, Steube said, are those in heavily Democratic districts. But they risk being primaried in the next election if they choose to vote against Trump, he said.

"And wouldn't it just be sweet to all these Democrats who kicked out our former speaker that they got rid of [California Rep.] Kevin McCarthy and now they have to deal with President Trump?" he added.

Newsmax served up additional teasing, as well as portraying Trump as an allegedly vital part of the selection process:

The Trump-speaker boomlet, however, got shot down pretty quickly by one of its own pundits, as Sandy Fitzgerald wrote in an Oct. 6 article:

It would not benefit former President Donald Trump to step in and act as House speaker temporarily, as he says he's willing to do, because it could hinder his fight against the indictments he's facing, former New York City Police Commissioner Bernie Kerik said on Newsmax Friday.

"I think that would be a bad move for him. I honestly do," Kerik told Newsmax's "Newsline." "I think he's got to focus on these persecutions."

There are people "looking at putting him in prison," Kerik added. "There is nothing more serious than the deprivation of your freedom and liberty."

Newsmax stopped talking about the idea of Trump as speaker after that, though it continued to run articles promoting him as a player in the selection of a new speaker, including one of him quipping about the prolonged battle over speaker and suggesting only Jesus Christ could do it. When Mike Johnson was eventually settled upon, Newsmax articles touted Trump's endorsement before and after the vote.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:11 PM EST
WND Laughably Tries To Portray Pro-Palestine Protest As 'Insurrection'
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Bob Unruh wrote in an Oct. 18 WorldNetDaily article:

Pro-Hamas protesters staged what some are calling an "insurrection" at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, demanding Israel stop its response to the terror attack staged by Hamas on innocent civilians days ago, where whole families were burned alive and babies beheaded.

And U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican firebrand from Georgia, wondered why they weren't being arrested.

Lots of false information in just two tiny paragraphs. First, the protest didn't take place in the Capitol -- it took place in the Cannon Office Building near the Capitol. Second, more than 300 protesters were arrested, discrediting Greene's talking point. Further, Unruh offered no evidence that the protests were "pro-Hamas"; rather, the protesters were calling for a cease-fire in the war between Israel and Hamas to protect innocent civilians in Gaza.

Unruh also invoked the amorphous "some" to try and portray the protest as an "insurrection," a ridiculous claim that Sarah Rumpf shot down at Mediaite:

Wednesday’s protesters who entered the Cannon building were not attempting to disrupt any official federal government proceeding (the basis for many of the charges against Jan. 6 rioters), overturn any election, or otherwise interrupt any congressional vote or action.

They were just…protesting.

That’s not an “insurrection.” (It’s a more minor issue but it should be emphasized that the Cannon building is the offices, not the Capitol itself where the House and Senate meet and vote, moving this even further away from being an insurrection.)

Moreover, the public is normally allowed into the Cannon building; I’ve visited many times myself. The protesters did not break any laws by merely entering the building and they didn’t have to assault any police officers or knock down police barricades to enter. It was the activity of protesting and blocking the ability of others to move through the area that is not allowed inside the building that triggered the police to arrest them.

In contrast, due to the security threats at the time, the presence of Vice President Mike Pence and all of the members of Congress, and the important official business of the Electoral College certification, the Capitol was closed to the public on Jan. 6, 2021.

Unruh then quickly flipped to repeating discredited right-wing talking points defending the Capitol riot:

After all, more than a thousand people, protesting at the time what they considered to be a stolen election, were arrested, often at the point of a SWAT team gun in a raid, and jailed, sometimes for years, before they were given a trial, and THEN sentenced to more jail for the Jan. 6, 2021, protest-turned riot.

And since then, there has been significant documentation of the bias in that election, including Mark Zuckerberg's $400 million plus handed out to recruit voters from Democrat districts to help Joe Biden.

Even more significant was the FBI's decision to interfere in the election, by warning media outlets to suppress the accurate reporting on the Biden family scandals revealed in a laptop computer abandoned by Hunter Biden at a repair shop. A subsequent survey confirmed Biden almost undoubtedly would have lost had that information been routinely reported.

As responsible journalists have pointed out, Zuckerberg's money was available to any election agency who wanted it, get-out-the-vote efforts are not illegal, and there's no evidence any money went to exclusively recruit "Democrat" voters. And that "survey" Unruh is referencing regarding Hunter Biden's laptop is presumably the one done by the Media Research Center, which paid Trump's 2020 election polister and another firm founded by Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway -- both dubious sources -- to do them.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:06 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC's Transphobic Rage At Pride Month, Part 2
Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center finished out June by spewing more anti-transgender hate -- and then kept it up for the rest of the summer. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 11:55 AM EST
Tuesday, December 5, 2023
MRC Largely Stopped Promoting RFK Jr.'s Campaign After He Went Independent (And Became A Threat To Trump)
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Centte spent much of this year being an enthusiastic booster of Robert Kennedy Jr.'s presidential campaign -- not because it actually wanted him to win, but because he was running as a Democrat and, thus, might hurt President Biden's re-election. But when Kennedy became an independent candidate -- and Republicans started attacking him as it became even more clear that an independent Kennedy would pull more votes from Donald Trump than from Biden -- the MRC stopped promoting him almost completely.

After Kennedy announced his switch to an independent campaign,  the MRC was completely silent about him for three weeks. The first referenfe to him after that was an Oct. 31 post by Alex Christy about Nazi analogies in which specifically noted "Democratic-turned-independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on COVID-era mandates and vaccines" and tried to link him with the left: "Robert F. Kennedy's history of anti-vaccine activism predates COVID, so his attacks were still considered to be from the left despite the media typically associating the issue with the right." Christy didn't disclose that thet MRC is also filled with anti-vaxxers who have defended Kennedy's conspiracy theories, or that Kennedy's anti-vaxxer conspiracy theories have never had a home on the left.

After that, references to Kennedy were limited to claims related to so-called "censorship" and gamed Google searches purporting to demonstrate bias:

  • A Nov. 3 post by Catherine Salgado complained that Kennedy was among candidates who were "censored" by being fact-checked through Twitter/X's Community Notes feature , which the MRC has long flip-flopped over.
  • A Nov. 8 post by Gabriela Pariseau claimed that Kennedy didn't show up on the first page of a Google search for “independent presidential campaign websites” -- a narrative that's part of an MRC campaign to smear Google searches as biased against conservatives.
  • A Nov., 28 report by Pariseau and Heather Moon attacking "big tech" for allegedly "cdensoring" presidential candidates claimed that "Biden’s chief in-party rival Robert F. Kennedy Jr. received the brunt of the censorship on the Democratic side." They then effectively conceded that Kennedy was "censored" for spreading falsehoods, conspiracy theories and misinformation: "YouTube has been particularly harsh to Kennedy Jr., as it deleted seven videos featuring interviews with the now-Independent candidate when he spoke on the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccines or the assassination of his father." No evidence was offered that any of those things have anything to do with Kennedy's candidacy.Nevertheless, MRC chief Brent Bozell insisted it was , as summarized in a Dec. 1 post by Luis Cornelio:: "If you dare dispute the Big Tech-Silicon Valley belief about climate change; or COVID; or the RFK assassination; or transgender mutilation, you are knocked off of Big Tech."

Then there was a Nov. 22 column by Tim Graham in which he complained that Kennedy's background was being investigated:

One of the ways that Democrat Party [sic] newspapers tell us they are Democrat Party [sic] newspapers is the timing of their investigative journalism. On the front page November 17, The New York Times ran a 4100-word hit piece on Robert F. Kennedy Jr. titled “In Public Causes, Kennedy Earns Acclaim, Criticism and a Fortune.”

Investigative reporter Susanne Craig summarized her thesis on her Twitter account. “The causes RFK Jr. has championed have made him A LOT of money,” she wrote. “His life has been a long, private hustle of paid speeches, advisory gigs and so on. Wealthy friends were behind the purchase of his home on the Kennedy compound.”


The Times didn’t publish this attack while Kennedy was still within the Democratic Party fold, when there might have been a remote possibility of withdrawal and a Biden endorsement before any primaries took place. Instead, RFK announcing an independent campaign for president wreaks havoc on Biden’s re-election chances, so it’s time for the “objective” media outlets to discover the “hypocrite with the long private hustle” narrative.

Graham didn't mention that most polling shows an independent Kennedy pulling more votes from Trump than from Biden -- contrary to his assertion that it "wreaks havoc on Biden’s re-election chances." Nor did he explain why his MRC largely stopped promoting Kennedy after he became an independent in recognition of that fact and that it apparently got marching orders from Republican bigwigs to stop. And he did not disclose that the idea of a Kennedy candidacy might "wreak havoc on Biden’s re-election chances" was the only reason why it was promoting the campaign.

The MRC's Kennedy boosterism has always been a cynical political calciulation -- much more than anything Graham is accusing the Times of doing. Graham, however, refuses to admit that fact.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:44 PM EST
Updated: Tuesday, December 5, 2023 9:46 PM EST
WND's Schlafly Hopes Russia's Invasion Of Ukraine Will Cost Biden Re-Election
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Add Andy Schlafly to the list of pro-Russian WorldNetDaily columnists regarding its invasion of Ukraine. But he didn't reference Russia at all in his Oct. 3 WorldNetDaily column; instead, he tried to frame the war as being waged by NATO (despite the fact that NATO is a defensive alliance, not an offensive one), cheering Republican efforts to stop the U.S. from funding Ukraine's defense:

A silver lining to the stopgap funding bill was how House Republicans blocked sending billions more to the NATO war in Ukraine. As good jobs disappear in our country, it is dismaying that some Senate leaders care more about continuing to fund bloodshed halfway around the world than taking care of our economy back home.

Fortunately, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) has led the fight against forcing Americans to fund NATO’s war to expand its membership to include Ukraine. Congress has already sent $113 billion of hard-earned American taxpayer funds to Ukraine’s Volodymyr Zelensky without accountability of where it ultimately went.

Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH), who has a large Ukrainian constituency, opposes pouring more American money into the war there. “Five years from now … you’re going to find a lot of people have gotten rich from this,” he said last month.


Our own presidential election is a year away, and the pro-globalism Senate leadership thinks that voters will forget by then or fail to assert themselves against this looting by D.C. of America. But on Saturday the American people won on this issue of pouring billions more into this war in Ukraine.

“Senate leadership tried to get Ukraine jammed into the CR and they just got bucked,” celebrated Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), talking about the continuing resolution enacted on Saturday. Yet the next day President Biden announced that he expects more funding of this NATO war in Ukraine to pass in a separate vote, which no Republican Speaker of the House should schedule.

Schlafly then likened  the war in Ukraine to the Vietnam War and cheered the thought that it might cost Preident Biden a second term like the vietnam war forced Lyndon Johnson to drop his re-election bid, invoking his mom to do so:

Phyllis Schlafly correctly predicted in 1967 that President Lyndon B. Johnson could not be reelected if the Vietnam War continued through 1968. “Johnson’s political future depends on ending the war in some way,” she wrote 56 years ago in her book against the Deep State entitled Safe - Not Sorry.

That war did continue, and as now we were entangled in it without a full debate and formal declaration by Congress. Subsequently the otherwise invincible Johnson was humiliated in his own primary and forced to withdraw from the presidential race in order to be replaced as the Democrat nominee.

As the recession takes hold and deepens in the United States, Biden and Democrats will lose badly on Election Day next year if they continue to send money to fuel NATO’s agenda in Ukraine. They can avoid talking about the recession, but they cannot avoid voters’ wrath for advancing a pro-war globalist ideology rather than America First.

At no point did Schlafly explain why Ukraine should not fight back against Russia.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:24 PM EST
LIAR: MRC's Fondacaro Falsely Claims Maddow 'Inspired' Shooter
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Nicholas Fondacaro began an Oct. 18 post this way:

The incendiary language from MSNBC host Rachel Maddow was one of the things that inspired James T. Hodgkinson’s attempted assassination of multiple congressional Republicans at a baseball practice in 2017.

Fondacaro is lying. He cited absolutely no instance of "incendiary language" by Maddow that "inspired" Hodgkinson -- or any "incendiary language" at all. His purported proof of this was a CNN article that noted only that Hodgkinson claimed to have watched Maddow's show on social media -- which, of course, is proof of nothing, and certainly not the incitement Fondacaro is claiming.

As we've documented, Fondacaro is a very prolific liar -- something for which the MRC pays him handsomely to do, given that he remains employed there and he has not been made to correct and apologize for his lies.

The rest of Fondacaro's post was whining that Maddow wrote about warning about a likely fascist state if Donald Trump is re-elected:

Maddow was on The View to hawk her new book Prequel: An American Fight Against Fascism(tying the American right to parallels with the rise of European fascism) and to discuss the topics of the day, including the 2024 presidential election. According to her, if you really listened to what Trump was saying, he was pitching an America ruled by him with no elections ever again:

I mean, the Republican Party right now has to make a decision and it's their decision to make. We have party processes for a reason, but ultimately if you listen to what Trump is saying; you don't sort of regard him as a spectacle but listen to what he's saying. He's basically portraying a future for America, if he is put back in the White House, in which we don't have another election after that.

Of course, her unsupported claims and doomsaying got the approval from the entire case including faux conservative Alyssa Farah Griffin.

The conversation spurred on co-host Sara Haines to assert that Trump would “cancel the news.” “Like, the news, you’re done,” she said. Maddow agreed and added: “He wants to put MSNBC on trial for treason so that he can execute us.”

She provided no evidence for that disturbing accusation.

As far as "unsupported claims and doomsaying," that's all presumably in her book, which Fondacaro apparently can't be bothered to read. As far as MSNBC goes, a month later Trump made a post to his ersatz Twitter clone whining that MSNBC "is nothing but a 24 hour hit job on Donald J. Trump and the Republican Party for purposes of ELECTION INTERFERENCE" and that the government "should come down hard on them and make them pay for their illegal political activity." So, yes, Trump does want to punish any critic of him (note that he did not demand that Fox News suffer the same fate even though it does arguably the same thing, but on Trump's behalf).

Fondacaro concljuded by huffing that "Farah Griffin also called Maddow’s book “phenomenal” and bragged that she “tried to be consistent in calling out right-wing moves towards fascism and extremism.” She failed to ask Maddow about how she inspired Hodgkinson’s anti-Republican extremism and attempted assassinations." Again, Fondacaro refused to cite a single instance of Maddow having "inspired" Hodgkinson -- which means that he's lying again. But, again, lying is what the MRC pays him to do.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:49 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: WND Boosts The Conspiracy Theory President
Topic: WorldNetDaily
WorldNetDaily was already predisposed toward Robert Kennedy Jr.'s anti-vaxxer rantings, so it gladly helped to boost his presidential campaign, though only in the hope that he might serve as a Biden spoiler. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 2:03 AM EST
Monday, December 4, 2023
Dirty War: MRC Takes Soros Quote Out Of Context To Claim He Supports Hamas Terrorists
Topic: Media Research Center

One of the Media Research Center's intial reactions to the attack on Israel by Hamas appears to have been: How can we exploit it to attack George Soros? That's what it did in the days after the attack, trying to tie Soros to anything even remotely pro-Hamas. Theh first salvo was an Oct. 10 post by Joseph Vazquez:

A radical pro-Hamas group funded by leftist billionaire George Soros offered a statement of support for the abhorrent, genocidal terrorist attacks on Israel.

Al-Shabaka, also known as the “Middle East Policy Network,” published a disgustingly brazen post on X (formerly Twitter) in support of Hamas roughly a day after the terrorist group launched thousands of rockets on Israel and proceeded to rape women, murder civilians and kidnap children and the elderly. “We stand alongside those committed to this effort [of decolonization from Israel] and to the liberation of Palestinians worldwide,” Al-Shabaka spewed on X Oct. 8. “Al Shabaka rejects the Israeli regime’s colonial borders that work to fragment and ultimately erase Palestinian existence.” 

Open Society Foundations records show that when George Soros was in charge, OSF gave the group a sizable $550,000 between 2017 and 2021 alone. George Soros’ son Alex, the newly-minted, unhinged heir to the $25 billion OSF empire, was deputy chairman during the funding period. In the group’s Spring 2022-Spring 2023 annual report, Al-Shabaka listed OSF as one of its “valued supporters.”

“Iran and its allies have been clear about their goals to end America, eliminate Israel and exterminate Jews everywhere. If George and Alex Soros cannot define the enemy here, there can be no more doubt about where their allegiance lies,” MRC Business Vice President Dan Schneider said. “It is beyond horrific that the Soros fortune is being used to support Al-Shabaka and numerous other backers of terrorism, murder and war crimes. The Soros family is on notice: it is a crime to aid and abet the enemy.”

In addition to all his wildly slanted language -- which makes him look much more like a crazy person than the "media researcher" he purprorts to be -- Vazquez got th egroup's subtitle wrong; it's "The Palestinian Policy Network," not the "Middle "laced with anti-Semitic drivel," Also, Vazquez failed to identify any specific attacks from the group on Jews per se; he didn't explain how the group's copious criticism of Israrel is "anti-Semitic." And as we've documented, despite Vazquez's attempts to portray him as "unhinged," Alex Soros' expressed views are within the realm of standard liberalism; of course, to a far-right activist like Vazquez, anything even slightly to his left must look "unhinged." He also made sure to frame Soros as the Jew right-wingers are allowed to hate for not giving Israel the free pass that right-wingers demand:

Soros has already been shown to have used his fortune to fuel anti-Israel causes. “‘[N]o single person has done more to damage Israel’s standing in the world, especially among so-called progressives, than George Soros,’” said Harvard Law School Professor Emeritus Alan Dershowitz. Israel Heritage Foundation Chairman Farley Weiss wrote in a Jan. 23, 2023 article for the Jewish News Service that “[N]o one has financed more destructive attacks on Israel and the American Jewish community than [George] Soros. He is, at best, a self-hating Jew, and shouldn’t be let off the hook because of his ancestry.”

The next day, Vazquez presented a Soros quote out of context to attack him further:

In a 2007 op-ed, leftist billionaire George Soros outrageously called on America and Israel to “open the door[s]” to Hamas, and now that clarion call has come back to haunt him. 

Following Hamas terrorist attacks that resulted in at least 1,200 people in Israel being killed with another 2,700 wounded, MRC called on Soros to provide an explanation for funding the pro-Hamas group Al-Shabaka, which celebrated the terrorist invasion. However, it turns out that Soros has an even longer history of supporting Hamas.

The disturbing pro-Hamas headline from his March 19, 2007 screed posted on his personal website speaks for itself: “ America and Israel Must Open the Door to Hamas.”


“George Soros has consistently and continuously funded the most hateful, anti-American and anti-freedom organizations in the world, and that includes terrorist organizations that want to bring an end to a Jewish state,” said MRC Business Vice President Dan Schneider. “But instead of shining a light on his disgusting plans, legacy media has protected him from criticism."

Soros leveled outrageous accusations against former President George W. Bush’s administration for “supporting the Israeli government in its refusal to recognise a Palestinian unity government that includes Hamas.” In Soros’s insane worldview, Israel not kowtowing to a murderous terrorist group precluded “any progress towards a peace settlement at a time when such progress could help avert conflagration in the greater Middle East.”

But this, and the headline, are the only quotes from the Soros op-ed -- which actually first appeared in the Financial Times, not merely on his website -- Vazquez cited in his post. He declined to quote Soros explaining the situation at the time:

Many causes of the current impasse go back to the decision by Ariel Sharon, former Israeli prime minister, to withdraw from the Gaza Strip unilaterally, without negotiating with the then Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority. This contributed to Hamas’s electoral victory. Then Israel, with strong US backing, refused to recognise the democratically elected Hamas government and withheld payment of the millions in taxes collected by the Israelis on its behalf. This caused economic hardship and undermined the government’s ability to function. But it did not reduce support for Hamas among Palestinians and it reinforced the position of Islamic and other extremists who oppose negotiations with Israel. The situation deteriorated to the point where Palestine no longer had an authority with which Israel could negotiate.

There's one more crucial bit of context Vazauez was silent about: the political situation at the time. As John Oliver pointed out, Hamas was elected in a 2006 election by portraying itself as a more moderate alternative to faction then in power, Fatah, which proved to be corrupt.But Hamas became more radical and has not held an election since, and even most Palestinians say their right to peaceful protest is not protected and that they support a peaceful resolution to the conflict with Israel.

But who needs context and nuance when there are political points to score and partisan attacks to make? But the MRC had its talking point -- however dishonest -- andit was going to flog the thing. An anonymously written Oct. 16 post touted the promotion of said talking points with a bad-faith letter to soros' Open Society Foundations:

MRC President Brent Bozell and MRC Free Speech America Vice President Dan Schneider rebuked the Soros empire for financing groups that have voiced support for the terrorist group Hamas.

In an Oct. 12 letter to Open Society Foundations (OSF) founder George Soros and his son — OSF Chairman Alex Soros — Bozell and Schneider called on both George and Alex Soros to disclose all of their pro-Hamas grantees, publicly disavow them and terminate all funding to those groups. “Given that your donations have gone straight into the bloodstream of those who seek to exterminate Jews and push Israel into the sea, it is clear that you have an even greater duty to purge yourselves of your transgressions,” Bozell and Schneider wrote. 

Given the MRC's campaign of hate against Soros, there's no reason for him to take this letter seriously. Schneider then went to a far-right TV channel to peddle those talking points again, summarized in an Oct. 20 post by Tom Olohan:

MRC Business Vice President Dan Schneider ripped George and Alex Soros for financing groups that have voiced support for the terrorist group Hamas. 

During an interview with One America News that aired on October 19, Schneider told host Dan Baldwin that the Soros family has consistently stood against the Jewish state of Israel. “George Soros and now his son Alex — who has taken over the evil empire — have defined the enemy and the enemy is Israel.  They have, in word and deed, they have consistently supported Hamas and Hezbollah against the Jewish state.  And I know that they claim to be Jewish, but their actions reject the whole idea of a Jewish state,”  Schneider said.


When Baldwin referenced this letter, Schneider broke down Soros’ donations and past statements advocating for Hamas. “George Soros has intentionally and knowingly given money to groups like [Al-Shabaka]. In 2007 he actually called, demanded that Hamas have a seat at the table when negotiating with Israel and the U.S.”

Schneider was referring to a 2007 op-ed by George Soros, where the leftist billionaire ludicrously advocates for the United States and Israel to “open the door” to Hamas in negotiations. The MRC was the first to resurface that horrific op-ed buried in Soros’ archives.

Neither Olohan nor Schneider mentioned the context in which Soros made those remarks. Narratives are more important than facts, after all. And MRC executive Tim Graham did his part by having Vazquez on his Oct. 23 podcast to talk up his attacks on Soros. Context was, presumably, not discussed.

Posted by Terry K. at 9:25 PM EST
Newsmax Goes The Streaming Route With Second Channel Filled With Dubious Hosts
Topic: Newsmax

Newsmax announced its new streaming service in an Oct. 31 article:

Newsmax's continued growth will include Wednesday's launch of a new subscription service for its streaming content.

Newsmax+ is a paid subscription service that will provide access to the full Newsmax channel on your phone or TV app.

Subscribers will get all the breaking news, expert analysis, and commentary from Newsmax's renowned contributors and pundits that you can't find anywhere else.

"Millions of Americans are tuning into Newsmax and we want to give them even more content they can stream at home or on their phones," Chris Ruddy, Newsmax CEO, said of the new launch.

As of Nov. 1, the popular Newsmax channel will go behind a paywall due to cable agreements — and will no longer be streaming for free on services like Samsung, Roku, Vizio, LG — or on smartphones.

Newsmax is also launching Wednesday N2, or Newsmax2, its free streaming channel with top news headlines and informative shows.

Newsmax+ will make it easy for viewers to download our new app on their home TV store or on their smartphone.

Basically, Newsmax has to start a paid streaming option because it can't stream the channel for free anymore because cable companies don't like it when a service they're making people pay for is offered for free, and it now apparently has enough cable carriage that it can do so.

But what is Newsmax2, the new free channel? As Mediaite explains, it's largely simulcasts of right-wing radio hosts, which is almost as exciting as it sounds. But there will also be original programming from people too disgraced to appear on the main channel. First up is a show hosted by Ed Henry, who has a long list of issues that we documented when it was first reported he was in talks with Newsmax, from the sexual harassment allegations that got him fired from Fox News to a more recent DUI conviction. He is so toxic that even other Newsmax employees were lobbying against his hiring.

Also getting a new show is Rudy Giuliani -- yes, the disgraced and indicted former New York City mayor for whom Newsmax is running a legal defense fund. That seems a bit like another payment of sorts to the legal defense fund.

Another former Fox News talking head getting a show on N2, according to Mediate, is Andrew Napolitano, who has the same issue as Henry and other ex-Fox News folks now working for Newsmax -- he was fired over a sexual harassment complaint.

Newsmax has since been touting that Newsmax+ has reached 150,000 subscribers. It didn't talk much about N2.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:53 PM EST
WND Obsessed Over Release Of Alleged Manfiesto Because Shooter Was Transgender
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Back in 2015, WorldNetDaily wasn't terribly interested in reporting on the racist manifesto of Dylann Roof, who killed nine black people in a South Carolina church -- perhaps because Roof's views largely mirrored those promoted by WND. When it came to the school shooting in Nashville, the revelation that the shooter allegedly had written a manifesto prompted WND to obsess over it and demand its release, presumably due to the fact that the shooter was allegtedly transgender. Peter LaBarbera complained in a March 30 article:

The Nashville Metro Police Department caved to public pressure and has agreed to publish trans child-murderer Audrey Hale's pre-rampage "manifesto," but only after FBI profilers pour over the document first.

LGBT activist groups had urged Nashville police not to release the manifesto, but conservatives and others demanded that it be treated like other mass-murderer screeds that have been made public through the media in the past.

LaBarbera also whined that the transphobic intentions of the right-wingers like him demanding the manifesto's release:

Meanwhile, as "progressive" Democrats used the trans killer's murderous, anti-Christian-school attack to crusade for anti-gun laws, LGBT leftists used conservatives' reaction to it to buttress their longstanding claim that most opponents of transgender and LGBT agendas are guilty of "hate."

"In a grotesque expression of their hate, the GOP's far-right extremists – which now extends to most of their party – used the horrific school shooting in Nashville yesterday to attack and smear transgender people," wrote homosexual radio talk show host Michelangelo Signorile, who bills himself as one who "fearlessly [takes] on the right wing, the main stream media, and the bigots with hard-hitting progressive talk."

LaBarbera accused the lack of its immediate release to be a "cover-up" in an April 19 article:

As millions of Americans wonder why the "manifesto" of Audrey Hale, the "trans"-identified mass-murderer of three children and three adults at a Nashville Christian elementary school, has not been released to the public, one "honest liberal" journalist is trying to do something about it.

Glenn Greenwald, the free-speech-crusading homosexual man of the left who regularly pillories the Democrat-subservient corporate media, said he is trying to hire a lawyer to pry the "manifesto" from the government's hands. Why? Because the public deserves to know what motivated Hale to commit what, in liberal media jargon, has all the characteristics of an anti-Christian "hate crime."

It has been 23 days since Hale, a woman who claimed the opposite-sex pronouns "He/Him" in a public profile, broke into the Covenant School in Nashville where she was once a student and fired a total of 152 rounds shooting to death three 9-year-old students and three adult staff members. Hale herself was fatally gunned down by quick-acting police before she could slaughter more innocents. After the murders, Nashville police revealed that Hale left behind a "manifesto" but neither released it nor promised its imminent release.

An anonymously written May 2 article hyped a lawsuit calling for the manifesto's release:

Before Audrey Elizabeth Hale stormed the private Covenant Presbyterian School in Nashville and killed three children and three adults, she wrote a manifesto.

But authorities still are concealing it, depriving the community of what might prove to be important information about the assault.

Note that the anonymous author erased Hale's reported transgender identity. Bob Unruh hyped another right-wing attempt to force the relase of the manifesto in a June 3 article (while also erasing Hale's alleged transgender identity):

When mass shooter Audrey Hale, deceased, planned to shoot up a Christian school in Nashville, she wrote a manifesto.

Weeks after the massacre of six people, including three children, it's still being concealed.

And the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, in one of the cases seeking its release, is asking a court for an order that the FBI release it.


WILL's client is The Star News Network, which is based in Nashville and continues to investigate the motivation of the shooter.

The FBI has denied access to the manifesto, and so WILL sued.

LaBarbera returned for an Aug. 28 article that at least somewhat admitted that the demand for the manifesto's release is politically driven, further complaining that parents at the school are demanding to keep the manifesto unreleased:

Conservatives are outraged over the double-standard they see in the release of mass-murderers' "manifestos," contrasting the quick release of a Florida mass-killer's murderous, anti-black screed with the ongoing non-release of transgender-identified Audrey Hale's manifesto five months after she shot up a Christian elementary school in Nashville, Tennessee.

Hale shot six people, including three students, dead at the Presbyterian Covenant School March 27, before she was gunned down by police at the scene. Ever since then, conservatives have been clamoring for authorities, including the FBI, to release of the information Hale left behind explaining her motives.


Nevertheless, the quick release of a manifesto of Florida mass-murderer Ryan Palmeter's manifesto, which police called the "diary of a madman" for his stated goal of killing black people, has led critics to say this is only the latest example of a two-tiered justice system and biased media coverage that repeatedly favors narratives on the Left. Palmeter allegedly killed three black people inside and outside a Dollar General store in Jacksonville on Saturday before turning his gun on himself.

This, by the way, is the only reference to Palmeter at WND, which otherwise censored all mention of his manifesto.

LaBarbera also complained that parents at the school object to releasing the manifesto, and he leaned into denying their rights in favor of so-called "transparency" (which, of course, is really all about smearing all transgender people as wannabe killers):

However, there is a complicating factor in the comparison between the two senseless slaughters: parents representing more than 100 families with children at Covenant School are suing to keep the Hale documents – journals, laptop files and other materials that collectively comprise what is called the killer's "manifesto" – private.

They argue that a full release of the documents could "traumatize survivors of the attack or inspire copycat shootings," as USA Today reported in June. Media companies and groups favoring transparency in government are fighting in court to release the documents.


As WKRN reported in late May, parents of Covenant School students are urging the court to release only selective documents from Hale's manifesto, while shielding most of her writings from the public.

“This Court can shield Jane Doe and John Doe from a lifetime of abuse and harassment by the shooter from beyond the grave,” the attorneys for the parents say in the court filings, obtained by WKRN. “The Parents believe that the large tranche of documents they do not object to will provide the public with the information needed to understand this horrific crime.”

"We are in 'uncharted waters' because we have a unique opportunity following a mass murder at an elementary school to prevent the shooter’s writings and anything else that is likely to inspire future attacks from being released and causing pain and suffering to the victims," the lawyers write, according to WKRN.

But transparency advocates say shutting down information could set a dangerous precedent for controlling the public's access to information in future criminal cases.

LaBarbera didn't explain why the rights of the parents don't matter here when they usually are defended by WND in most other circumstances.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:09 PM EST
Updated: Monday, December 4, 2023 3:17 PM EST
NEW ARTICLE: The MRC's Transphobic Rage At Pride Month, Part 1
Topic: Media Research Center
The anti-transgender hate the Media Research Center has been displaying all year unsurprisingly bled into Pride Month in June, with lots of anger at anyone who doesn't parrot their hate. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 1:56 AM EST

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