Archive for category Lying

All Your ‘No Go Zones’ Are Belong To Us

Young Turks host Cenk Uygur breaks it down. The amazing Faux News Channel lie about the supposed existence of European “no go zones” where Sharia law applies and non-Muslims can never set foot wasn’t simply a mistake by one so-called “terrorism expert.” They are professional liars, it’s what they do!

To be fair, after two weeks of repeating the “no go zone” lie across multiple programs, Faux News offered an extremely rare on-air apology admitting there is “no credible information” for what they claimed was an everyday fact of life in England and France. But not before Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal latched on to this, with incredibly bad timing.

More info:
Fox ‘Expert’ Totally Wrong But How The Internet Responds Is A Thing Of Beauty (Video)
CNN Correspondent Confronts Bobby Jindal Over False Comments About Muslims
Fox Host Apologizes For Letting Muslim “No-Go Zone” Myth Go “Unchallenged And Uncorrected
French Comedians Parody Terrified Fox Reporters In Paris ‘No-Go Zones’

UPDATE:
The Man Who Spawned “#FoxNewsFacts” Also Advises the U.S. Government on Terror

Self-styled “terror expert” Steve Emerson set off a sort of global laugh track last week when he claimed that parts of the United Kingdom had been completely taken over by Muslims, and that the city of Birmingham no longer allowed non-Muslims to enter. Emerson’s fact-free rant spawned the Twitter hashtag #FoxNewsFacts, prompting users to conjure up outlandishly satirical tales that mocked with the farcical quality of Fox News analysis. “When I heard this, frankly, I choked on my porridge and I thought it must be April Fool’s Day,” British Prime Minister David Cameron said of Emerson’s remarks. “This guy’s clearly a complete idiot.”

…Emerson is a shadowy figure who levels ridiculously defamatory claims against Muslims on a regular basis, reaping millions of dollars in profits in the process. His analysis is highly suspect, and yet he has been repeatedly called upon as a knowledgeable witness by government officials. The question is whether the snafu that made him the object of global ridicule finally end his status as “expert.”

Maybe Emerson is a complete idiot, but he’s apparently smarter than the people who pay all that money to his “Investigative Project on Terrorism.”

23 Comments

Keystone XL Zombie Lie

Via Media Matters.

Yesterday, the House of Representatives passed a bill approving the controversial Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. Virtually all the Republicans and 28 Democrats voted for this foreign-owned project, which is likely to impose significant environmental costs, cause an increase in American gasoline prices, and contribute to global warming. The proposed 1,200 mile dirty oil pipeline would carry bitumen — a tar-like substance mined from the Alberta tar sands, chemically diluted, and heated to improve flow — at high pressure across Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas to Gulf Coast refineries. Existing pipelines of this type spring dozens of leaks every year, and the mess is much more difficult to clean up than a crude oil spill.

Why allow this? Right-wing propagandists insist that Keystone XL will create “42,000 jobs.” This is false.

The State Department concluded that the Keystone XL project will result in just 50 jobs, including “35 permanent employees and 15 temporary contractors.” Further, their report stated that spending on the project would support only 3,900 temporary construction jobs if construction lasted one year and just 1,950 temporary construction jobs if construction lasted two years.

President Obama has threatened to veto the congressional attempt to force the issue, however he seems to be keeping the option open to ultimately approve this disastrous project.

UPDATE:
Senate Advances Bill To Approve Keystone Pipeline Despite Obama’s Veto Threat

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Newly-Empowered Tea-GOP Destroys the CBO’s Credibility

Jonathan Chait:

In a rapid vote yesterday, the House directed the Congressional Budget Office to use “dynamic scoring” — a Washington term of art to describe imposing conservative ideology upon the once-neutral task of measuring the budgetary impact of legislation.

…The new, “dynamic” CBO will be systematically biased to make conservative proposals appear misleadingly cheap and liberal proposals misleadingly costly to the public fisc.

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‘Did we torture people? Yes. Did it work? No.’

There’s a good chance we’ll never see the $50 million, 6,000-page Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA torture during the Bush administration. Today they are releasing a heavily-redacted 480-page executive summary.

The report, which was completed two years ago, found that torture did not lead to actionable intelligence. “Did we torture people? Yes. Did it work? No.”, says Senator Angus King (I-ME), a member of the committee. The Senate investigation also concluded that CIA torture techniques were far more brutal than previously known, and that the agency (including then-CIA director Gen. Michael Hayden) lied to the White House and Congress when they asserted torture thwarted specific terrorist plots, and falsely claimed terrorists were captured as a result of torture.

It has long been known that torture is not an effective means of acquiring intelligence, yet the Bush administration authorized, conducted, and promoted an illegal torture program in our name. There will be no accountability on the part of those who authorized and conducted the torture regime, we know that already.

More info: Senate Select Committee on Intelligence: Committee Study of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Detention and Interrogation Program (Executive Summary).

UPDATES:
The 5 Most Damning Revelations From The Senate’s Report On Bush-Era Torture
Obama Responds To CIA Torture Report: Enhanced Interrogation ‘Contrary To Our Values’ “Rather than another reason to refight old arguments, I hope that today’s report can help us leave these techniques where they belong—in the past.”
Faux News primal scream therapy: “The United States of America is awesome, we are awesome!” says Faux News pinhead Andrea Tantaros.
UN human rights expert: US legally obliged to prosecute senior Bush officials for torture crimes
Reminder: George W. Bush Said The U.S. Didn’t Use Torture
CIA Still Argues That Torture Worked David Kurtz: “So long as the CIA continues to assert that torture (though it doesn’t use that word) yielded actionable intelligence, I don’t see how you can call this a closed chapter in American history.”
This goes way past irony: The One Man Jailed For CIA Torture Tried To Expose It

50 Comments

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving, one and all. Don’t let right-wing lies ruin your Thanksgiving dinner. Media Matters offers this handy Thanksgiving Survival Guide.

Net neutrality

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How Fast Will YOU Be Able To Innovate?

Get Ready To Wait

Get Ready To Wait

No matter what political stripe you are, you are excited about Obama’s fierce defense of Net Neutrality lately. The problem is that he is standing up for something he can’t personally affect. It’s the FCC that will make that decision and the big downer is that the man Obama appointed to head the FCC , (Tom Wheeler), used to be a cable lobbyist.

Perfect. :(

Anyway, the best debate you’ll probably hear about the issue was on the Diane Rhem show from November 12th, since I don’t think there’s any way a public hearing will take place. The last time the FCC did that, it was an embarrassing spectacle for the commission as they faced an auditorium of very angry citizens back in the Bush days.

Diane likes to have a fair discussion, but I thought I could tell what side she was on. It’s not hard to be on the side of “Net Neutrality” because 4 million Americans have sent letters to the FCC about the issue, and I can guarantee you that a tiny fraction of the letters were for letting internet providers discriminate about the speed of the websites we choose.

It was a sensible discussion except for one panel member who was obviously there to bolster a corporate controlled internet. he’s Rob Atkinson, the president of something called, “The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation”. I get weary when ever I see the word innovation these days, because it usually means something like ‘get out of the way little man; we’ll decide what’s best’.

Atkinson doesn’t waste much time using the fear of government meme so popular with liars these days.

ROB ATKINSON:

All the major carriers, Verizon, Comcast, all the rest of them have committed never to block legal content, never to degrade legal content.It’s a red herring that the other side is doing because what they want is they want a regulated utility model and ultimately they want a government-owned model. That’s their game.

MARVIN AMMORI, (attorney in private practice, affiliate scholar, Stanford Law School’s Center for Internet & Society):

… When you look at the people who have lined up against net neutrality, it’s just the big cable and phone companies and the organizations like Rob’s that got funding from them. That’s it.

I’ve never heard Diane Rhem prod all other panel members to give their opinion on whether another guest was lying before, but I was delighted to hear this part of the show:

ROB ATKINSON:

In the famous case that Marvin’s talking about with what’s called the Comcast BitTorrent Case, Comcast did not block anything

DIANE REHM:

Marvin.

MARVIN AMMORI:

So I think Rob is just trying to throw some fud out there. The FCC found that Comcast was blocking. We proved it.

ROB ATKINSON:

No, they did not.

MARVIN AMMORI:

They did. It’s in the order. I litigated that decision. I argued that decision. I wrote the complaint in that case. And the CE…

DIANE REHM:

Did they or did they not?

GIGI SOHN, (special counsel for external affairs, Federal Communications Commission):

Yes, they did.

ROB ATKINSON:

They were slowing up…

MARVIN AMMORI:

The CEO of BitTorrent is a friend of mine and we collaborated the entire time during that case, both CEOs then and now.

DIANE REHM:

Cecilia, did they or did they…

CECILIA KANG, (reporter, The Washington Post):

They did, they did.

Oops!

I also thought it was funny that Atkinson was trying to make the case that most people really don’t care that much about high speeds after a question from a caller:

ROB ATKINSON:

What is true is very, very few consumers will pay even 5 or $10 more a month for the next tier up. So there — I can get 100 megabits to my house where I live in Washington, D.C. I don’t get it because I don’t want to pay the extra. Most consumers are like that. They just won’t pay a few dollars more for high speeds.

CECILIA KANG:

…So the idea that people don’t want to upgrade, I mean, I would love, if I could afford, to get the fastest no matter what. Nobody would say no to that if possible.

Amen and amen Cecilia!

It’s an interesting debate and, as usual, the transcripts and audio can be found at Rehms site.

37 Comments

Media Matters Brings Us Mythopedia, The Dictionary of Right-Wing Lies

With the truth at your fingertips, it’s easy to call out right-wing lies wherever they appear. Try Mythopedia today: http://mythopedia.mediamatters.org/

21 Comments

Welfare Beats Working? Not Even in a Depressed Economy

The Cato Institute is once again peddling the myth that government assistance to low-income Americans IS TOO GENEROUS and it discourages them from working (“keeps them in poverty” as right-wingers love to claim, with false empathy).

Their method of analysis was debunked long ago by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Not only does Cato count certain benefits as income when the typical AFDC family does not receive them, but Cato also exaggerates the average benefit levels these programs provide.

By overstating the benefits and ignoring means-testing, right-wing ideologues are able to conclude that welfare beats working for a living at a low-wage job. If this were true, the logical next step would be to increase wages – but instead the right-wingers demand a reduction in public assistance.

43 Comments

I Think These Are Important Films

Originally, I was thumbing through HULU to see if there was anything I could watch for free that would interest me, and I found a very good film by Robert Greenwald about the Koch Brothers. I’ve seen many of his films, and am so glad that somebody is working so hard, trying to find a way to inform us without making billions destroying our dignity here and around the world. The film tried to be – you know – “fair and balanced”, and they made many attempts to allow the Koch bro’s to criticize the content so they could add it to the end of the film. Apparently the Koch’s didn’t see this film as a threat.

Koch Brothers Exposed:

The Koch bro’s DID see a threat, when a film called, “Citizen Koch” was broadcast on a public television station and decided they had better attach themselves onto the end, before having the film erased from any other showings across the nation. They can do that, because they donate to public television. You can see David Koch’s name in the credits to the “Nova” science series, although – as Greenwalds film reveals -, the Koch’s don’t give a flying shit about your education or democracy. Their push to destroy both are WAY beyond the scope of this post.

After watching the HULU presentation of Greenwald’s film, another documentary automatically started which is called, “Crawford (2008). What a great film! This one is truly, “fair and balanced”, and I’m positive none of the people in Crawford, Texas made a dime, by giving their opinions on camera. These are just plain folk, who were speaking their minds. It covers what happened to this town, when George W. Bush decided to move in, just before his run for president in 2000. If you thought the entire movie was going to be about Cindy Sheehan – whom I admire greatly -, you’d be wrong. She is only featured in a fraction of the document. To me, the star of the movie is a young high school student in Crawford, who completely gets what’s happening around him and articulates it perfectly. You’ll find out what happens to him towards the end.

Crawford (2008):

I have to add one comment about Robert Greenwald. I went to a screening of a political film in Salt Lake many years ago which featured a discussion afterwards. After the discussion, a young man handed me copy of what might have been Greenwald’s first documentary. I think it was called, ‘The Truth About The War In Iraq’. It was dead-on, and proven to be accurate, even though it was published years before some of the media – sort of – dipped it’s toes into the truth. But the thing that amazed me was that this 30-something man also handed me a letter that was sent to him by Greenwald’s organization. The young man had bought about 13 of the DVD’s so he could give them out, but got a letter from “Brave New Films”, telling him he could just copy them at will and give them out. Sure enough, the DVD didn’t have any copy protection. :)

Some are in it for the money, and others aren’t. Who do you support!

18 Comments

Who The Hell is Karl Rove?

He’s not an elected official.

He doesn’t even show up for congressional subpoenas.

I mean: Who is this guy?

What happened to this:

5 Comments

Workers Not to Blame for Hostess Fiasco

Twinkies comeback

Via Media Matters

The AP reported Sunday that Hostess Brands LLC, a trimmed-down version of the defunct Hostess Brands Inc., is aiming to have Twinkies and other well-known Hostess brand products back on store shelves by July 15. The story noted that Hostess went bankrupt “after an acrimonious fight with its unionized workers” and described in he-said-she-said fashion how the company ultimately failed…

…The trimmed-down Hostess Brands LLC has a far less costly operating structure than the predecessor company. Some of the previous workers were hired back, but they’re no longer unionized.

The AP story omitted any mention of the huge concessions union workers made in an attempt to help the company avoid bankruptcy. It also neglected to point out that Hostess stopped contributing to workers’ pensions and cut wages and benefits “by 27 to 32 percent” while giving executives massive pay raises. For example, Brian Driscoll — Hostess CEO in March 2011 — received a salary increase from $750,000 to $2.25 million, according to The Wall Street Journal.

12 Comments

Pushing Back Against Right Wing Lies and Distortions

Recently, the glbt employee organization at the Department of Justice, put together and distributed a pamphlet entitled “LGBT Inclusion at Work: The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Managers.”  The trifold pamphlet included such commonsense advice as “Assume LGBT employees and their allies are listening to what you say (whether in a meeting or around the proverbial water cooler)  and will read what you’re writing (whether in a casual email or a formal document) and make sure the language you use is inclusive and respectful.”  It also included a section on how to respond when an employee comes out to you as a manager and pointed out that “Don’t judge or remain silent.  Silence will be interpreted as disapproval.” Read the rest of this entry »

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