Monday, December 21, 2009

Media Matters Daily Summary 12-21-09 falsely claimed CBO said "Senate health bill won't reduce deficits"
A headline posted on falsely claimed, "CBO: Senate Health Bill Won't Reduce Deficits." In fact, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) concluded that the bill would reduce federal deficits by $132 billion over 2010-2019 and would continue to reduce deficits in subsequent decades. Read More

Buchanan claims climate change is a "hoax" because Antarctic ice is "expanding," but science says otherwise
On MSNBC and in his Creators Syndicate column, Pat Buchanan claimed that climate change is "a fraud, and a scam, and a hoax," and as evidence, suggested that greenhouse gases are not warming the planet because the Antarctic ice sheet has expanded in the past three decades. However, the source Buchanan cited in his column -- a press release from the British Antarctic Survey -- undercuts his claim, saying that the ice increase is "a result of the ozone hole delaying the impact of greenhouse gas increases on the climate of the continent," but that "this will not last." Read More

David Limbaugh continues right-wing smear campaign against "known homosexual activist" Jennings
David Limbaugh continued the right-wing assault on Department of Education official Kevin Jennings, using anti-gay rhetoric and advancing a number outrageous smears and distortions in order to attack him as a "known homosexual activist" who was appointed to "propagandiz[e] for the normalization of homosexuality." These smears and distortions include the conclusively debunked falsehood that Jennings "failed to report statutory rape," the false suggestion that Jennings praised a gay rights activist because he was a "promoter of pedophilia," and the claim that Jennings - currently a board member of Union Theological Seminary - should be disqualified from public service because he purportedly "harbored a hatred for God" as a teenager. Read More

Glenn Beck: Media Matters' 2009 Misinformer of the Year
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Fox doesn't disclose health care opponent Donatelli's consulting conflict of interest
Continuing its pattern of failure to disclose the conflicts of interest of health care reform opponents who appear on its programs, Fox News hosted Frank Donatelli -- identified only as chairman of the "Republican advocacy organization" GOPAC - who claimed that Democrats "don't really want the American people to see what's in" the Senate health reform bill "because it's so bad." Donatelli also serves as executive vice president of a public affairs consulting firm whose clients include firms in the health insurance, health care provider, and pharmaceutical industries. Read More

Perino's "convoluted" attack on health care bill is all fuzzy math
On Fox & Friends, Dana Perino used an apples-to-oranges comparison to raise doubts about reports that the Senate health care bill would reduce the number of uninsured people by 31 million. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has stated that under current law, 54 million people will be uninsured by the end of 2019 and that under the Senate bill, 23 million people would be uninsured -- a difference of 31 million people.
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Most outrageous comments of 2009
Outrageous comments are nothing new to the conservative media -- one might even call them a defining characteristic. The Most Outrageous Comment of the 2009 came when Fox News host Glenn Beck asserted that Obama is a "racist" who has "exposed himself as a guy" with "a deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture," but right-wing media figures made plenty of other unhinged remarks throughout the year: Read More

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