Thursday, February 18, 2010

Media Matters Daily Summary 02-18-10

NY Post op-ed falsely claims Obama promised stimulus would end net job losses
In a New York Post op-ed, Brian Riedl of the Heritage Foundation falsely suggested that President Obama promised the Recovery Act would end net job losses; in fact, Obama stated in February 2009 before the stimulus passed that the "magnitude of the crisis" means that even with the stimulus "you're going to have some net job loss, but at least we can start slowing the trend." Additionally, Riedl attacked the "White House estimate of 'saving' nearly 2 million jobs" as "nothing but faith-based economics," ignoring that the administration's estimates of the stimulus' job impact falls within the range of those given by independent analysts. Read More

Fox News crops Romer remarks to two words to falsely claim "she contradicted herself"
Fox News' Sean Hannity and Fox & Friends misleadingly cropped White House economic advisor Christina Romer's remarks to claim that "she contradicted herself" because she said on February 17 that the biggest bang from the stimulus is "absolutely not" behind us and stated in October 2009 that "fiscal stimulus will have its greatest impact on growth in the second and third quarters of 2009." However, as her unedited remarks show, Romer was discussing the impact of the stimulus on employment on February 17 and the impact on GDP in October 22. Read More

Witch Hunt: Right-wing media smears Rashad Hussain as a "terrorist sympathizer"
Right-wing media figures seized on what ABC News' Jake Tapper has described as an "apparently erroneous" report of a statement allegedly made by President Obama's nominee for special envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference Rashad Hussain to portray him as a "pro-jihadist," a "radical," and a "terrorist sympathizer." But, as Tapper points out, Hussain has argued that terrorism is "antithetical" to Islam had has written extensively on "[d]iscrediting the terrorist stop al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups." Read More

Cal Thomas, FrontPageMag accusations of Hussain's ties to "Muslim Brotherhood" fall flat
In the latest attack on an Obama appointee, conservative columnist Cal Thomas and each claimed that special envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference Rashad Hussain has, in Thomas' words, "a history of participating in events connected with the Muslim Brotherhood." However, the Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report, from where their claims stem, has been criticized for employing a "fairly loose definition of Muslim Brotherhood affiliates," and numerous prominent conservatives have also met with representatives or affiliates of groups named in its article. Read More

Right-wing media promote, give platform to "anti-government extremist" Oath Keepers
Over the past several months, right-wing media have promoted the Oath Keepers, a group established in 2009 and identified by the Anti-Defamation League as "encourag[ing] members of the military and law enforcement to pledge not to follow certain hypothetical 'orders' from the federal government" that "echo longstanding conspiracy theories embraced by anti-government extremists." On February 17, Bill O'Reilly said that he intended to host a member of the group on his next show to "give forth their point of view." Read More

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