Thursday, April 23, 2009

Media Matters Daily Summary 04-23-09

Media ignore facts undermining GOP calls for Napolitano resignation
The Politico, Roll Call, and uncritically quoted Republican congressmen suggesting that the DHS report on right-wing extremist groups was "politic[ally]" motivated. None of the articles noted that DHS also issued an assessment of left-wing extremism. Read More

NY Times drew false "contrast" between Blair, other Obama officials
The New York Times purported to draw a "contrast" between Dennis Blair, who has said that harsh interrogation techniques yielded "high value information," and "President Obama and most of his top aides," who have argued the use of the techniques "betrayed American values." In fact, Blair has also said he opposes their use. Read More

O'Reilly revived "wall" falsehood to suggest Holder -- not Bush officials -- should be "prosecuted"
Bill O'Reilly falsely claimed "Eric Holder and Janet Reno put the wall up between the FBI and the CIA." In fact, the guidelines to which O'Reilly referred had no impact on communications between the FBI and the CIA, the Department of Defense, or any other agencies. Read More

Political History 101: O'Reilly falsely claimed Nixon never met with Mao
Bill O'Reilly falsely claimed Richard Nixon never met Mao Zedong. In fact, Nixon met with Mao in February 1972. Read More

Fox News' Hemmer "keeping track of the stimulus money" -- by lifting research from GOP website
Bill Hemmer repeatedly suggested information about four "interesting" projects reportedly funded by the recovery act was obtained through Fox News' own research, even though nearly all of the information Hemmer mentioned, as well as that included in on-screen text and graphics, first appeared on Rep. Eric Cantor's Republican Whip website. Read More

More Fox figures pick up tenuous claim that harsh interrogations thwarted L.A. plot
Neil Cavuto, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, and Catherine Herridge joined other Fox News figures in advancing Marc Thiessen's claim that the use of harsh interrogations techniques on Khalid Shaikh Mohammed "stopped an attack on the Library Tower." But the Bush administration has said that the attack was thwarted more than a year before Mohammed was captured. Read More

Fox News greets alleged torture with antics
Many on Fox News have greeted the release of Justice Department memos authorizing the CIA's use of harsh interrogation techniques with antics that mock the notion that these practices constitute torture. Read More

Conservative media claim prosecution of Bush administration officials will turn U.S. into "banana republic"
Conservative media figures are comparing possible prosecutions of Bush administration officials for their roles in authorizing the use of harsh interrogation techniques to circumstances in a "banana republic," in "Third World ... dictatorships," or "some little Latin American country that's run by ... the latest junta." Read More

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