Tag: washington post

Media FOIA Requests Skyrocketed After Trump’s Election

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests by mainstream media outlets into the EPA skyrocketed immediately after President Trump took office, according to the Washington Free Beacon.

The Beacon writes, “The New York Times, for example, made just 13 FOIA requests during the four years of Obama’s second term, sending 3 in 2013, 1 in 2014, 7 in 2015, and 2 in 2016. The number of FOIA requests the Times sent for Obama’s entire second term was nearly quadrupled in the first year of Trump’s presidency alone, when the Times sent 59 FOIA requests to the EPA.”

Since Trump took office, New York Times reporters have made over 100 FOIA requests–a 669 percent increase from the requests made during the four years of Obama’s second term.

**LISTEN: Dan discusses the real collusion scandal in the 2016 election involving Ukraine**

The Washington Post filed just one EPA FOIA request during Obama’s second term, but has now filed 43 requests since President Trump was elected.

“The sharp increase in FOIA requests to the EPA was also apparent at Politico (15 requests in Obama’s second term, 198 since Trump took office), The Hill (20 requests in Obama’s second term, 67 since Trump took office), CNN (25 requests in Obama’s second term, 47 since Trump took office), Buzzfeed (18 requests in Obama’s second term, 38 since Trump took office), and ABC News (4 requests in Obama’s second term, 32 since Trump took office),” writes the Free Beacon.

For the full report, click HERE.

McCain Associate Contacted 12 Reporters, Govt Officials Regarding Dossier

David Kramer–a former State Department official and associate of late Sen. John McCain–said he contacted a dozen reporters and a handful of government officials regarding the discredited, anti-Trump dossier, according to the Daily Caller.

In a Dec. 13, 2017 court deposition that was unsealed yesterday, Kramer said he provided a copy of the dossier to news outlets including McClatchy, NPR, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and BuzzFeed and CNN’s Carl Bernstein.

Kramer also shared the dossier with Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL), State Department official Victoria Nuland and Obama official, Celeste Wallander.

The dossier was funded by the Clinton campaign and the DNC and was created by ex-British spy Christopher Steele who was hired by opposition research firm Fusion GPS to compile the information.

The Daily Caller reports:

Kramer said he believed McCain was sought out in order to provide more “oomph” in terms of attracting the FBI’s attention.

“I think they felt a senior Republican was better to be the recipient of this rather than a Democrat because if it were a Democrat, I think that the view was that it would have been dismissed as a political attack,” said Kramer.

In some cases, according to the deposition, Kramer shared the dossier with reporters with Steele’s and (Fusion GPS founder Glenn) Simpson’s knowledge.

For the full story, click HERE.

Covington Student Files Defamation Suit Against Washington Post

Covington Catholic High School student, Nick Sandmann is suing the Washington Post for $250 million in damages, claiming the newspaper wrote “false and defamatory” articles about him.

The lawsuit was filed in Kentucky federal court yesterday and accused the Post of targeting Sandmann through a “modern day form of McCarthyism” and “using its vast financial resources to enter the bully pulpit by publishing a series of false and defamatory print and online articles … to smear a young boy who was in its view an acceptable casualty in their war against the president.”

Sandmann’s attorneys Lin Wood and Todd McMurty wrote in the lawsuit that “The Post rushed to lead the mainstream media to assassinate Nicholas’ character and bully him” and the newspaper “[fanned] the flames of the social media mob into a mainstream media frenzy of false attacks and threats against Nicholas.”

Sandmann and his fellow students were wrongly accused of being disrespectful to Native American a protester while they attended the March for Life in Washington D.C. in January. However, a full video of the incident reveals that the students were taunted by protesters–most likely–for wearing pro-Trump MAGA hats. The extended version of the video also shows the Native American approaching the students.

Video also shows the students were harassed by a group of “Black Hebrew Israelites” who called the children products of incest, “peckerwoods” and “dusty ass crackers,” among other names.

Fox News writes that the lawsuit also alleges:

The Post “ignored the truth” about the incident and says the paper “falsely accused Nicholas of … ‘accost[ing]’ Phillips by ‘suddenly swarm[ing]’ him in a ‘threaten[ing]’ and ‘physically intimidat[ing]’ manner … ‘block[ing]’ Phillips path, refusing to allow Phillips ‘to retreat,’ ‘taunting the dispersing indigenous crowd,’ [and] chanting, ‘Build that wall,’ ‘Trump2020,’ or ‘Go back to Africa,’ and otherwise engaging in racist and improper conduct. …”Sandmann’s attorneys accuse The Post of publishing seven “false and defamatory” articles about the incident between Jan. 19 and 21 and claim the paper “knew and intended that its false and defamatory accusations would be republished by others, including media outlets and others on social media.”

 

UPDATE: President Trump has commented on the lawsuit.

On Twitter, the president wrote: ‘The Washington Post ignored basic journalistic standards because it wanted to advance its well-known and easily documented biased agenda against President Donald J. Trump.’ Covington student suing WAPO. Go get them Nick. Fake News!”

AOC Attempt to Fact-Check the Fact-Checkers Fails Miserably

Back on the campaign trail, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez often played naive when one of her gaffes was brought to light or challenged. Now with her newfound confidence as Representative she’s firing back against the fact checkers… with limited success.

Cortez thinks that the Washington Post’s fact-checkers have a vendetta against her, which is ironic considering that for every claim of hers they’ve fact-checked, the Post has analyzed thousands of claims from President Trump (many of which are nitpicking, such as “debunking” Trump’s hyperbolic claim that the thousand McDonalds hamburgers he purchased for the Clemson Tigers would stack a mile high).

Earlier in the month, Cortez fired back at the Post after they debunked her claim that the Pentagon had wasted over $21 trillion dollars – which is a greater figure than the cumulative defense budget since the founding of our Republic. Cortez responded not by challenging the correction but blasting the Post for not spending their time fact-checking Trump instead. At the time, the post had fact-checked 7,645 Trump claims, and Cortez twice. Cortez’s impossible Pentagon claim remains up on her twitter despite being mathematically impossible.

Another Day, Another Falsehood

The latest obviously-bogus Cortez claim that she’s attempting to defend is in regards to a living wage. Speaking to Ta-Nehisi Coates at Riverside Church earlier in the week, Cortez said that “I think it’s wrong that a vast majority of the country doesn’t make a living wage, I think it’s wrong that you can work 100 hours and not feed your kids. I think it’s wrong that corporations like Walmart and Amazon can get paid by the government, essentially experience a wealth transfer from the public, for paying people less than a minimum wage.”

The Post’s Glenn Kessler challenged the claim, first by addressing the statement that a majority of American doesn’t earn a living wage (which is interesting given the amount of living that seems to be going on right now).

  • In support of her statement, Ocasio-Cortez’s office first sent an article [to the Post], based on a United Way study, that said that nearly 51 million households — or 43 percent of households — “don’t earn enough to afford a monthly budget that includes housing, food, child care, health care, transportation and a cell phone.” That’s certainly a lot, but not a majority, let alone a “vast majority.”
  • The MIT Living Wage calculator says the living wage in the United States was $16.07 per hour in 2017, before taxes, for a family of four (two working adults, two children).  Ryan Nunn, an economics fellow at the Brookings Institution, has tracked the hourly wage distribution of full-time workers. He found that 67.7 percent of full-time workers earn at least $16.07 per hour, 61.9 percent of all workers (i.e., full-time and part-time) earn $16.07 per hour or more, and the median hourly wage for full-time workers is $21 per hour, and the median hourly wage for all workers is $19.60 per hour. In other words, about 32 to 38 percent of workers earn less than $16.07. That’s below the 43 percent estimate in the United Way report.

And note that this is before any transfer payments that workers receive from the government.

While I personally disagree, Kessler actually did rank Cortez’s statement that “I think it’s wrong you can work 100 hours and not feed your kids” are true, because a single mom with two children earning $7.25 an hour actually would have to work over 100 hours a week to earn a living wage. But remember, that’s not including any transfer payments (and child support payments) a single mom would unquestionably receive, and few people are actually in such a situation to begin with.

In 2015, only 11 percent of (working age) people in poverty worked full time. By contrast, 63 percent of those in poverty don’t work at all. Of full time workers in America, only 2 percent live in poverty (compared to 32 percent of the unemployed). If we look at those with families, the numbers become even more stark. For instance, in 2011 only 0.3 percent of families in poverty worked an hourly job earning the minimum wage. Poverty is a work problem, not a wage problem.

The last part of Cortez’s statement, that “corporations like Walmart and Amazon can get paid by the government, essentially experience a wealth transfer from the public, for paying people less than a minimum wage” needs some explaining. What Cortez is saying here is that because Walmart doesn’t pay workers a living wage, it’s up to the American taxpayer to subsidize the difference. Of course, Walmart would be paying the same wage independent of whether or not a welfare state exists, so this thought experiment is pointless. Furthermore, in a world where a welfare state does exist, would you rather subsidize someone earning $10 an hour at Walmart or an unemployed person earning $0 an hour? I think it’s obvious which would be cheaper.

Cortez Fights Back

Cortez is fighting back by criticizing one of the studies Kessler cited, even though she literally didn’t even read the first page of it, or accurately figure out who even published it. In the tweet below, Cortez blasts one of Kessler’s citations (the Mackinak Center) as a “Walmart-funded think tank.”

I didn’t mention the study that Cortez is criticizing in my criticisms of her because it’s not needed to debunk her claim – but to give some background, Kessler linked to a 2005 study from professor Jason Furman when talking about Cortez’s claims that businesses that Walmart are recieving a “wealth transfer” from the American public. In the statement “The standard incidence analysis used by the Congressional Budget Office, Joint Committee on Taxation and other researchers generally assumes all costs and benefits of labor-related taxes and benefits are borne by labor — i.e., the worker, not the employer. So wages would be largely unaffected if taxes went up or public assistance went up” Kessler hyperlinks to the Furman study. I’ll note that that entire paragraph could be removed from Kessler’s article and it wouldn’t change his article’s overall thesis.

Contrary to what Cortez says, the study was not “Walmart funded.” While Kessler’s citation linked back to the right-wing Mackinac Center, they were republishing the study (which they did not fund). Furman was the chairman of Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers – and the 2005 study was authored by the left-wing Center for American Progress. Furman says he’s never even heard of the Mackinac Center. Cortez responded by completely ignoring that Kessler is a liberal who worked for Obama.

Regardless of Furman’s background, the fact that his study says on page one that “The author has never received payment from Wal-Mart of any kind” should’ve prevented Cortez from making such a criticism. Then again, I doubt she reads much.

President Responds to Mitt Romney’s Shameful Anti-Trump Op-Ed

President Trump has responded this morning after failed Republican presidential candidate and Senator-elect Mitt Romney (R-UT) issued an op-ed in the Washington Post critical of the commander-in-chief.

In a New Year’s Day op-ed, Romney said the president “has not risen to the mantle of the office” and suggested he had “glaring” shortfalls in his character.

President Trump took aim this morning, questioning whether or not Romney will be like former GOP Senator (and total sellout) Jeff Flake (AZ).

“Here we go with Mitt Romney, but so fast! Question will be, is he a Flake? I hope not. Would much prefer that Mitt focus on Border Security and so many other things where he can be helpful. I won big, and he didn’t. He should be happy for all Republicans. Be a TEAM player & WIN!”

Last February, Romney had no problem accepting President Trump’s endorsement during his Senate run.

After the President tweeted his support for Romney, he responded, “Thank you Mr. President for the support. I hope that over the course of the campaign I also earn the support and endorsement of the people of Utah.”

 

 

The Top Fake News Stories of 2018

In his Christmas Day podcast, Dan goes over the Daily Caller’s list of the “Most Egregious Fake News Stories of 2018.”

**LISTEN: Dan discusses the top fake news stories of 2018**

All of the usual suspects are among the top winners, including the Washington Post, CNN, and the New York Times.

We’ve listed the top ten of over 30 fake news stories that made it into the Daily Caller’s list:

  1. Washington Post blamed the death of a 7-year-old migrant girl on Border Patrol
    • The paper disgracefully blamed U.S. Border Patrol for the death of the little girl, despite the fact that her own father praised the agency for doing everything they could to help her. The full timeline of events also paint a different picture than what the Post portrays.
  2. CNN and the Hill both reported on a sexual assault claim against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh without mentioning that the claim had been quickly retracted.
    • The Hill eventually deleted a tweet about the claim and CNN updated its story.
  3. The Boston Globe had to correct it’s story about Elizabeth Warren and admit she’s even LESS Native American than they had thought.
    • The paper initially stated that the Massachusetts senator was between 1/32 and 1/512th Native American, but had to issue a correction stating she was actually between 1/64th and 1/1,024th Native American.
  4. The New York Times shamefully reported that former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley purchased expensive curtains for her New York apartment.
    • In reality, the $52,000 curtains were approved in 2016 and the ambassador had no say in the matter.
  5. The media still blames Republicans for the Steele dossier.
    • The Daily Caller points out that so-called reporters such as CNN’s Jim Sciutto, MSNBC’s Katy Tur, and MSNBC’s Ari Melber all perpetuated the falsehood that the GOP was responsible for the salacious, unverified, anti-Trump dossier. In reality, the research conducted by ex-British spy Christopher Steele and eventually compiled into the dossier was solely paid for by the DNC and Clinton campaign.
  6. A CNN analyst published a “dubious” report about more unsubstantiated Brett Kavanaugh claims.
    • The DC points out, “CNN political analyst and Sentinel editor Brian Karem published a report in September claiming that ‘Montgomery County investigators’ were looking into an additional allegation of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.Local police disputed that they were investigating any claims, and Karem later updated his reporting to indicate that his sources were not police, but rather random ‘investigators in Montgomery County.'”
  7. Just one day after Sen. Ted Cruz did a 15 minute interview with CNN, the network claimed he was “scared” to appear on their channel in the wake of the Parkland, Florida school shooting.
    • Cruz slammed the network on Twitter, writing “CNN has aired NONE of it. Why not air the (entire) interview?”
  8. CNN spreads false school shooting statistic.
    • CNN’s Jim Sciutto claimed there had been 22 school shootings in 2018. However, school shootings–according to CNN–include accidental firearm discharges, domestic disputes, and some events that involve no children at all.

9. NBC withheld evidence supporting then-Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh for weeks.

  • The Daily Caller writes, “While NBC’s story is not incorrect, its choice to sit on evidence that contradicted a serious sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh earned them a spot on this list. Celebrity porn lawyer Michael Avenatti claimed he knew a second woman who could back up gang rape allegations made against Kavanaugh by his client, Julie Swetnick. That second woman actually contradicted the allegations in a phone interview with NBC News on September 30. Mysteriously, NBC chose not to publish this information until weeks later and after Kavanaugh had already been confirmed to the Supreme Court.

10. McClatchy reported that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had evidence that former Trump attorney Michael Cohen had traveled to Prague in 2016–a claim that would seemingly corroborate a portion of the Steele dossier.

  • The news agency’s claims were not confirmed by any other news outlets, and Cohen himself handed over his passport to Buzzfeed in an attempt to clear his name. The passport showed that the embattled former Trump lawyer had zero stamps for the Czech Republic. A Mueller spokesman also suggested to the Daily Caller that the reports about Cohen could be false.

For the full article, click HERE.

 

Washington Post Blasts “Foxification” of White House – Forgets Obama Hired 3x More Journalists

According to the Washington Post, the “Trump White House” is now the “Fox News White House.” As former Fox News anchor Heather Nauert was selected by President Donald Trump to replace Nikki Haley as U.N. ambassador, Post columnist Philip Bump decried the “Foxification” of the White House. And Trump has indeed hired plenty of Fox News talent.

Among those former Fox News employees that work (or worked) for the Trump Administration include National Security Adviser John Bolton, Trump legal team member Joseph E. diGenova,  Director of Strategic Communications Mercedes Schlapp, former Deputy National Security Adviser K.T. McFarland, Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs for the Treasury Tony Sayegh, Communications Advisor Bill Shine, and now Heather Nauert. The only other network Trump has hired a journalist from was CNBC’s Larry Kudlow. 

Without any context for those seven FNC hires, the Washington Post’s criticism is meaningless. After all, how many journalists did Barack Obama hire? The answer is nearly three times as many, and ironically, it was another writer at the Washington Post, Paul Farhi, who called foul on Obama’s massive hiring of left-wing journalists back in 2013 following the hiring of TIME’s Richard Stengel.  While Farhi noted that it’s common for presidents to hire members of the press, he expressed concern at the time, because “Obama may be different in terms of the sheer number of ink-stained wretches and other news-media denizens that he has attracted.” More specifically: “The pattern of Obama hires has periodically aroused suspicions about the media’s allegedly cozy relationship with the president.”

Obama hired at least 23 journalists, and hilariously, hired nearly as many solely from the Washington Post as Trump has hired exclusively from Fox. The list includes:

  • U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power (U.S. News, the Boston Globe, the New Republic).
  • Speechwriter Desson Thomson (Washington Post movie critic and Clinton speechwriter).
  • John Kerry staffer Glen Johnson (Boston Globe editor).
  • Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs Douglas Frantz (Los Angeles Times, the New York Times and the Washington Post).
  • Press Secretary Jay Carney (TIME Magazine).
  • State Department Undersecretary Richard Stengal (TIME Magazine managing editor).
  • Senior Managing Director of the Office of Public Affairs Stephen Barr (Washington Post).
  • VP Joe Biden’s Communications Director Shailagh Murray (Washington Post).
  • Counselor Rosa Brooks (Los Angeles Times).
  • Senior Communications Adviser for the HHS Roberta Baskin (Center for Public Inquiry).
  • Department of Education Deputy Assistant Secretary for Communication David Hoff (Education Week).
  • Department of Transportation spokeswoman Sasha Johnson (CNN).
  • Department of Transportation communications director Jill Zuckman (MSNBC).
  • Senior Policy Strategy for Science and Technology Rick Weiss (Washington Post, Center for American Progress).
  • Communications Director for the Office of Health Reform Linda Douglass (CBS, ABC).
  • The Treasury Department’s Eric Dash (New York Times)
  • The Treasury Department’s Anthony Reyes (MSNBC)
  • Obama speechwriter Aneesh Raman (CNN).
  • Chief of Staff to the U.S. China ambassador Jim Sciutto (CNN).
  • The EPA’s Kelly Zito (San Francisco Chronicle).
  • Susan Rice speechwriter Warren Bass (Washington Post).
  • The Justice Department’s Beverly Lumpkin (Project on Government Oversight).
  • The Defense Department’s Geoff Morell (ABC). This one deserves a disclaimer, as Morell was hired by George W. Bush and retained his employment under Obama.

One of those on the list, ABC’s Geoff Morell, began working for the Defense Department in 2007, and continued working in the Obama administration, so perhaps it would be appropriate to factor him out.

Regardless, there’s still at least 22 journalists who went to work for Obama, while Trump is under fire for hiring seven from Fox (or eight if you include Kudlow). Either way, Obama has hired roughly three times as many journalists are Trump has, and of course, they were all journalists who previously cozied up to the administration in their work.

The only attempt I’ve seen for a rebuttal to this fact came from The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple, who argued that Obama’s hiring was different because they weren’t all from one network (Fox). But as is obvious to anyone’s that’s channel surfed before, that’s because there aren’t any other mainstream right-wing networks to choose journalists from. Given that Wemple is employed in a field (journalism) where only 7% of people are Republicans, he should know this.