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Feb
28

The ATF has said it wants to ban certain types of AR-15 ammunition because it can pierce the kind of body armor worn by police. But Fox News host Tucker Carlson suggested on Saturday that it was more about disarming citizens, and he had on a gun activist who said these were “tiny bullets” that actually couldn’t pierce armor.

Earlier this month, an ammunition retailer warned that “Obama and his cronies in key government posts are trying to once again de facto suppress our Second Amendment rights” by taking executive action to reclassify certain types of .223 ammunition.

According to Carlson, the move was “not really about protecting cops as much as it is about disarming citizens.”

But Mark Glaze, executive director of Every Town For Gun Safety, told the Fox News host that the reclassification really was about law enforcement because some handguns could also fire the ammunition.

“The problem is that these bullets still can pierce the armor that many police officers wear,” Glaze explained. “And the primary danger that police officers face on the street is handguns, not rifles or shotguns.”

Giles, who founded Girls Just Want To Have Guns, argued that the primary use of the M855 cartridges was target practice.

“The reason rifle shooters use this ammunition is because it’s accurate,” she said. “So the fact that the ATF wants to ban target shooting ammunition is beyond me.”

“They don’t actually want to ban target shooting ammunition,” Glaze pointed out. “They want to use other target shooting ammunition that can’t pierce through the Kevlar vests that police officers wear on the streets.”

“Sorry, it’s actually target ammunition,” Giles shot back. “And no person who uses a gun to carry will use this because it’s not as effective as others.”

“And to say that this is going to pierce through the armor of cops is ridiculous because it’s a tiny bullet like this big,” she added, demonstrating the size with her fingers. “And to say that the cop’s Kevlar isn’t tough enough to handle that ammunition is ridiculous. And like the FBI said, no one has used this in a handgun to shoot a cop.”

Earlier this week, Snopes debunked the claim that President Barack Obama was banning ammunition through executive action.

“While it’s true that the ATF proposed a ban on ‘green tip’ ammunition in February 2015, President Obama was not involved through executive action of any description,” Snopes noted. “The ATF described the proposal as the result of a long-term examination, several years in the making, of whether the ammunition fit the criteria for an exemption for sporting purposes.”

Watch the video below from Fox News’ Fox & Friends, broadcast Feb. 28, 2015.

Credit: Raw Story

Feb
27

Gothamist reports Now This Is How You Hang Your Dry Cleaning On The Subway

Feb
26

Newser reports KFC to Unveil Edible Coffee Cups in UK

Feb
25

Newser reports World Bacon-Eating Record Has Been Broken

Feb
24

Conservative media are reacting to a terrorist threat against Mall of America by calling for people to be allowed to carry concealed guns in more places even though no evidence exists that civilians with concealed carry permits stop mass attacks.

During a February 22 appearance on CNN, Department of Homeland Security secretary Jeh Johnson told visitors to Minnesota’s Mall of America to be “particularly careful,” citing a video released by Somalia-based terror group Al-Shabaab that called for an attack on the shopping center. Local law enforcement say there is “no credible threat” to the mall, but that Mall of America has “implemented extra security precautions.”

Shoppers visiting Mall of America are not allowed to carry firearms, although one local lawmaker isattempting to change that policy in light of Al-Shabaab’s threat. As a reaction to the September 11 terror attacks, Mall of America created its own 150-member counterterrorism security force that is “modeled after similar units in Israel.” Local police also have a unit dedicated to the mall.

Conservatives have used the threat to question the mall’s no guns policy for shoppers and to push the myth that places where guns are not allowed are particularly dangerous.

On February 24, Outnumbered co-hosts Andrea Tantaros, Stacey Dash, and Kennedy along with guest and Fox News contributor Bo Dietl all endorsed carrying concealed guns in Mall of America. Kennedy suggested that Mall of America is a “gun-free zone” and argued that such an area “really is an invitation” for terrorists. Tantaros falsely suggested that the gunman in the 2007 Virginia Tech mass shooting was “taken down” with a firearm to advance the carrying of guns. In fact, the shooter in that incident committed suicide.

Fox’s The Five and Fox & Friends both used the threat against Mall of America to question policies that prohibit the carrying of guns.

Writing for Townhall, Fox News contributor Katie Pavlich called Mall of America “a ‘gun free,’ anti-concealed carry zone, making it even more of a soft-target for terror groups who have people embedded in U.S. cities.” An article in the NRA’s magazine American Rifleman wrote of Mall of America’s policy to not allow shoppers to bring guns: “Unfortunately, rendering all of the lawful patrons defenseless makes the 520-store, 50-restaurant facility — and home to the world’s largest indoor theme park — a more desirable target.”

There is no evidence that policies disallowing the carrying of firearms encourage public attacks or that civilians with concealed weapons stop public attacks. According to a Mother Jones analysis of 62 mass shootings in the United States between 1982 and 2012, not a single incident involved a shooter who chose his or her target because guns were not allowed to be carried at that location — instead, “in many of the cases there was clearly another motive for the choice of location.”

None of those 62 incidents were stopped by a civilian carrying a concealed weapon, although Mother Jonesdid describe two incidents, both in 2005, where a civilian with a concealed gun was injured or killed trying to stop a public attack. Following a June 2014 attack that left two Las Vegas police officers dead, a man who drew his concealed weapon with the intention of confronting one of the perpetrators was killed by the other perpetrator.

Conservative media have increasingly used terrorism as a means to advance pro-gun arguments.

Following a December 2014 hostage situation in a Sydney, Australia, café, Fox News questioned Australia’s strict gun regulations, even though Americans are murdered by guns at a rate more than ten times greater in the United States, where laws are comparatively looser. After terrorists used guns in an attack on Paris-based satire publication Charlie Hebdo, Fox figures again criticized France’s strict gun laws, even though mass shootings and gun violence generally are far more prevalent in the United States where there are far fewer restrictions on firearm ownership. Without citing examples, Washington, D.C.-based Fox reporter Emily Millerclaimed during a January 11 appearance on Fox News that the reason terrorists don’t come here is because of civilian’s ownership” of firearms and that terrorists “come here and they bomb us, unfortunately, which is horrible, but they’re not coming here with guns because Americans can shoot back.”

Credit: Media Matters

Feb
23

The hosts of Fox & Friends and Fox News contributor Stacy Dash on Monday slammed the Academy Awards for focusing on wage inequality, immigration, and for “snubbing” Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper film.

“To every woman who gave birth, to every taxpayer and citizen of this nation, we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights,” Arquette told the audience after winning the Oscar for best supporting actress. “It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all and equal rights for women in the United States of America!”

After winning the award for Best Original Song, John Legend said that he and Common wrote the piece for the move Selma to remind America that “the struggle for justice is right now.”

“We know that the Voting Rights Act that they fought for 50 years ago is being compromised now in this country today,” Legend pointed out. “Right now the struggle for freedom and justice is real.”

On Monday, Dash said that she was “appalled” by those speeches.

“I could not believe it,” she opined. “I mean, first of all, Patricia Arquette needs to do her history. In 1963, Kennedy passed the equal pay law. It’s still in effect. I didn’t get the memo that I didn’t have any rights.”

“I miss the glamour, the elegance, the class, the majesty of the Oscars,” Dash added. “You know, I’m an actress. I’ve dreamed about it my whole life. And it just seems to be going away.”

Fox News host Elisabeth Hasselbeck suggested that liberal politics had become so “pervasive in Hollywood right now to the point that we can’t even watch the Oscars.”

Co-host Brian Kilmeade argued that American Sniper may have missed out on the Best Picture award because director Clint Eastwood had participated in the 2012 Republican National Convention.

“Is Clint Eastwood the problem with American Sniper?” he wondered. “Because he was at the RNC talking to the [empty] chair?”

“Probably,” Dash agreed. “Which is, I mean, so sad. It’s Clint Eastwood, and that film was the most beautiful film I’ve seen in a very long time.”

Dash asserted that if conservatives had spoken out at the Oscars, they would have been told that “we’re racist, we’re homophobic, we don’t like women.”

Watch the video below from Fox News’ Fox & Friends, broadcast Feb. 23, 2015.

Credit: Raw Story

Feb
22

VoteVets, a leading progressive veterans advocacy group, is calling on Fox News to take Bill O’Reilly off the air following revelations from Mother Jones that the Fox News host may have repeatedly misrepresented his experiences reporting on the 1982 Falklands War.

NBC acted completely appropriately in taking Brian Williams off the air and looking into claims he’s made over the years. Fox News has to do the same thing,” Jon Soltz, chairman of VoteVets.org, a 400,000-member organization that advocates for vets and military families, said in a statement. “The issue, for me, isn’t that Fox has been caught off guard, and didn’t realize O’Reilly was telling possibly false tales. That I can accept. It’s what do they do about it now? That will tell us a lot about how seriously they take their news organization.”

So far, the response from O’Reilly and Fox does not suggest that they take the apparent infraction seriously. Fox News media reporter Howard Kurtz published a piece featuring O’Reilly saying Mother Jones Washington bureau chief David Corn is “a liar, a smear merchant, and will do anything he can to injure me and the network. Everybody knows that. Everything I’ve reported about my journalistic career is true.”

On Thursday, Mother Jones reported that O’Reilly “repeatedly told his audience that he was a war correspondent during the Falklands war and that he experienced combat during that 1982 conflict between England and Argentina. He has often invoked this experience to emphasize that he understands war as only someone who has witnessed it could. As he once put it, ‘I’ve been there. That’s really what separates me from most of these other bloviators. I bloviate, but I bloviate about stuff I’ve seen. They bloviate about stuff that they haven’t.'”

The magazine went on to note that American journalists were not allowed near combat in that conflict, even citing a CBS News producer who worked on the coverage. The findings follow O’Reilly’s criticism of NBC News anchor Brian Williams, who was recently suspended for misleading viewers about his own combat experience.

“Men and women have fought, died, been wounded, and scarred by war. There are many journalists who actually were in the crossfire, who died, trying to bring the story to the American people,” Soltz added. “What Bill O’Reilly has done is steal their valor, and it is wrong.”

Soltz, a combat veteran of the Iraq War, said O’Reilly’s misleading efforts are also an insult to veteran war correspondents.

“It makes it seem like anyone can head on over to a war zone,” he said via email. “But honestly it is more insulting to the war reporters who never bragged about their war experience, but just kept their head down and did their job. Some of them died doing that job. In my mind, those reporters were heroes.”

Credit: Media Matters

Feb
21

There is nothing that stirs up the rancid juices of a conservative sociopath like being fingered as a conservative sociopath. It’s very much the same furious reaction that racists have when you point out that they’re being racist. And this week the American Taliban got their feathers ruffled again by the Department of Homeland Security’s “intelligence assessment” that reportedly “focuses on the domestic terror threat from right-wing sovereign citizen extremists.”

The release of this report predictably ignited a temper tantrum by the hypersensitive rage-meisters at Fox News. They immediately slammed the report as being offensive to the totally rational, peace-loving, icons of harmony that populate the Tea Party and other rightist models of national unity. Why ever would they be regarded as potentially dangerous just because they brag about their arsenals while holding signs that say “We came unarmed – this time.”

Never mind that the report documents a couple of dozen instances of criminal violence by wingnuts in the mold of Timothy McVeigh and Eric Rudolph. And set aside the fact that state and local law enforcement officers, when surveyed last year, cited “sovereign citizen terrorists” as the top domestic terror threat ahead of foreign Islamic jihadis. That’s an understandable and thoroughly logical conclusion coming from the first responders who are often the targets of the anti-government right-wingers. Just ask the families of the two Las Vegas police officers who were murdered by followers of Cliven Bundy, the deadbeat rancher who assembled a brigade of armed protesters to do battle with agents from the Bureau of Land Management.

The zealousness with which Fox News defends violent American jihadis who hate the government (particularly since that black guy was elected) is evidence of their support for extremists, so long as they are extreme in the proper fashion. This response to a perfectly reasonable law enforcement analysis only validates the politicization of national security that Fox engages in. At Fox News they don’t care if a heavily armed NRA “patriot” is parading around the Wal-Mart with assault weapons. But if a black kid with an iced tea and a bag of Skittles is gunned down by a self-appointed vigilante while walking home, then Fox portrays him as a thug who must have been up to no good.

What makes this outburst of outrage even more ludicrous is that the DHS is only doing its job of protecting the American people. They are not playing favorites by drawing attention to extremists on the right. The proof of that is that the agency previously published a report that warned of the potential dangers of left-wing extremists. News Corpse wrote about this six years ago, the last time that Fox News and other wingnut media mouthpieces went bonkers over a DHS report. That article contained a link to a security analysis that said…

“Left-wing extremism is ‘alive and well’ both in the US and internationally. … There are individuals and organizations within the U.S. who maintain the same ideology that resulted in the growth of left-wing terrorism in this country in the 1970s and 1980s … and new leaders and groups are emerging.”

Good luck trying to find any reporting on Fox News about that study. While there are a few mentions of left-wing extremism on Fox, they are conspicuously thin and refer primarily to animal rights activists and environmentalists – a scary bunch of bloodthirsty hooligans if there ever were any.

Credit: News Corpse

Feb
20

Mother Jones on Thursday reported that Bill O’Reilly back when he was on CBS, lied in his reporting during the Falklands War. The war, to give you some background, was fought between the United Kingdom and Argentina over the Falkland Islands and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands from April 2 to June 14, 1982. Argentina was among many South American nations that were ruled by dictatorships one after another. The dictator at the time, Leopoldo Galtieri, led the campaign to take the islands. Argentina invaded the islands and occupied it on April 2. On April 5, the British government dispatched a naval task force to engage the Argentine Navy and Air Force before making an amphibious assault on the islands. The conflict lasted 74 days and ended with the Argentine surrender on 14 June 1982, returning the islands to British control. In total, 649 Argentine military personnel, 255 British military personnel, and three Falkland Islanders died during the hostilities.

Argentina and the U.K. have maintained great relations going back to December 15, 1823, when both nations established diplomatic relations. Following the war which cut off the years of peaceful relations, diplomatic relations were reinstated in 1990. Post-war relations between the two countries improved significantly up until the mid-2000s. But the war has caused a strain in recent years because both countries still are arguing who owns these islands. To add insult to injury, in 1994, Argentina’s claim to the territories was added to its constitution.

Bill O’Reilly who worked for CBS at the time covered the war. The report from Mother Jones’ David Corn and Daniel Schulman, examines O’Reilly’s repeated claims to have seen combat while working as a CBS correspondent in Argentina during the 1982 Falklands war.

Corn and Schulman find that O’Reilly’s on-air claims are not supported by his own memoirs or the recollection of other CBS employees at the time. He was, they conclude, “claiming he acted heroically in a war zone that he apparently never set foot in.”

O’Reilly told Politico that the Mother Jones piece is “a piece of garbage,” and called Corn “a despicable guttersnipe” out to get him. “I was not on the Falkland Islands and I never said I was,” O’Reilly told Politico. “I was in Buenos Aires … In Buenos Aires we were in a combat situation after the Argentines surrendered.

O’Reilly has claimed that he saw combat around the Falklands war. In a 2013 Fox News segment, for example, he said, “I was in a situation one time, in a war zone in Argentina, in the Falklands, where my photographer got run down and then hit his head and was bleeding from the ear on the concrete.”

Corn and Schulman document a number of similar claims from O’Reilly — and then argue that these claims appear likely to be false.

Here’s the core of their piece:

[O’Reilly’s] own account of his time in Argentina in his 2001 book, The No Spin Zone, contains no references to O’Reilly experiencing or covering any combat during the Falklands war. In the book, which in part chronicles his troubled stint as a CBS News reporter, O’Reilly reports that he arrived in Buenos Aires soon before the Argentine junta surrendered to the British, ending the 10-week war over control of two territories far off the coast of Argentina. There is nothing in this memoir indicating that O’Reilly witnessed the fighting between British and Argentine military forces — or that he got anywhere close to the Falkland Islands, which are 300 miles off Argentina’s shore and about 1,200 miles south of Buenos Aires.

“Nobody from CBS got to the Falklands,” Bob Schieffer, the chief CBS correspondent covering the war at the time, told Mother Jones. Susan Zirinsky, a CBS producer who worked on Falklands coverage, said the same thing: “Nobody got to the war zone during the Falklands war.”

Another part of the story is O’Reilly and the protests following Argentina’s surrender to the U.K. which marked the end of the war. Washington bureau chief David Corn highlighted discrepancies between O’Reilly’s description of his experiences in Argentina in a 2001 book and several public statements regarding his time there.

In the book, Corn stated, O’Reilly says he was reporting for CBS News in Buenos Aires — more than 1,000 miles from the actual warzone — when he was “right in the middle” of a major riot that caused several fatalities. The riot, which was widely reported, followed Argentina’s surrender to United Kingdom forces in July 1982, ending the Falklands conflict. O’Reilly says a soldier aimed his weapon toward him, and that he and other journalists were tear-gassed and attacked before he escaped the scene.

“I managed to make it back to the Sheraton with the best news footage I have ever seen,” O’Reilly wrote. “This was major violence up close and personal, and it was an important international story.”

O’Reilly also claimed in the book that he was “big-footed” when the network’s story that evening featured lead correspondent Bob Schieffer instead of him. Mother Jones posted footage of CBS’ report, which can be seen below.

But according to Corn, though CBS and other U.S. outlets covered the rioting in the city, there were no reported deaths during the incident. However, O’Reilly claimed there was widespread violence during the protest in a television interview in 2009.

“There must have been 5 or 6,000 people, and the army was standing between the people and the presidential palace,” O’Reilly said at the time. “Here in the United States we would do tear gas and rubber bullets. Here, they were doing real bullets. They were just gunning these people down, shooting them down in the streets.”

But while his book did not mention covering actual combat in the Falklands, Corn wrote, the Factor host has described himself on multiple occasions as having reported there, including a 2008 episode in which he took a swipe at Bill Moyers.

“I missed Moyers in the war zones of El Salvador, the Falklands conflict in Argentina and the Middle East and Northern Ireland,” O’Reilly said. “I looked for Bill, but I didn’t see him.”

According to other reporters — including Schiffer, O’Reilly’s colleague during that conflict — it was impossible to see any media outlets near the fighting.

“Nobody from CBS got to the Falklands. I came close. We’d been trying to get somebody down there. It was impossible,” Schiffer said. “For us, you were a thousand miles from where the fighting was. So we had some great meals.”

On Thursday, O’Reilly called Corn a “despicable guttersnipe” and said he never claimed to have been on the islands.

“It was clear that I did not say I was in the Falkland Islands,” he told Politico. “I’ve done myriad interviews over the years and I never said that.”

Corn, an MSNBC contributor, posted his own response to O’Reilly on Twitter:

Fox News will not fire Bill, but instead stand behind him because that’s what a fake news channel does and Bill has been there since the channel’s first day in 1996. Bill is important to them and not news or should I say real news? He also continues to being in more war zones or crime sprees such as El Salvador, Uruguay and he made sure that he wasn’t in Grenada when that war happened and he “didn’t want to get in trouble”. Bernie Goldberg also made a dumb argument that Obama has controlled the media by telling them what to report on the administration like the IRS “scandal”.

Mother Jones explains in this video below on O’Reilly’s inaccurate reporting on his own experiences as a war correspondent.

And he once told a viewer who caught his show in Argentina, “Tell everybody down there I covered the Falklands war. They’ll remember.”

O’Reilly has frequently represented himself as a combat-hardened journalist—he has visited US troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan and reported from those countries—and he has referred to his assignment in Argentina to bolster this impression. On his television show in 1999, O’Reilly responded to a letter from a retired Air Force colonel, who said he had flown 123 missions over Vietnam and who criticized O’Reilly for supporting military action in Kosovo, by citing his Falklands war days: “Hey, Colonel, did you ever have a hostile point an M-16 at your head from 10 yards away? That happened to me while I was covering the Falklands war.” In his 2013 book Keep It Pithy, he writes, “I’ve seen soldiers gun down unarmed civilians in Latin America.” During his radio show on January 13, 2005, he declared, “I’ve been in combat. I’ve seen it. I’ve been close to it.” When a caller questioned him about this, O’Reilly shot back: “I was in the middle of a couple of firefights in South and Central America.” O’Reilly did not specify where these firefights occurred—in The No Spin Zone, the only South America assignment he writes about is his trip to Argentina—and then he hung up on the caller.

In The No Spin Zone, O’Reilly does write vividly about an assignment that took him to El Salvador during the country’s civil war shortly after CBS News hired him as a correspondent in 1981. As O’Reilly recalls in the book, he and his crew drove for a full day to reach Morazán province, “a dangerous place,” and headed to a small village called Meanguera, where, a Salvadoran captain claimed, guerrillas had wiped out the town. “Nobody in his right mind would go into the guerilla-controlled area,” O’Reilly writes. But he did, and he notes he found a horrific scene: “The place was leveled to the ground and fires were still smoldering. But even though the carnage was obviously recent, we saw no one live or dead. There was absolutely nobody around who could tell us what happened. I quickly did a stand-up amid the rubble and we got the hell out of there.” He does not mention being in any firefight.

O’Reilly’s account of his El Salvador mission is inconsistent with the report he filed for CBS News, which aired on May 20, 1982—shortly before he was dispatched to Buenos Aires. “These days Salvadoran soldiers appear to be doing more singing than fighting,” O’Reilly said in the opening narration, pointing out that not much combat was under way in the country at that time. O’Reilly noted that the defense ministry claimed it had succeeded in “scattering the rebel forces, leaving government troops in control of most of the country.” He reported that a military helicopter had taken him and his crew on a tour of areas formerly held by the rebels. (This fact was not included in the account in The No Spin Zone.) From the air, O’Reilly and his team saw houses destroyed and dead animals “but no signs of insurgent forces.”

As part of the same 90-second story, O’Reilly reported from Meanguera, saying rebels had been driven out of the hamlet by the Salvadoran military after intense fighting. But this was not a wiped-out village of the dead. His own footage, which was recently posted by The Nation, showed residents walking about and only one or two burned-down structures. O’Reilly’s CBS report gave no indication that he had experienced any combat on this assignment in El Salvador.

When O’Reilly was excoriating Brian Williams last week for telling a war-related whopper, he said of his Fox television show, “We’ve made some mistakes in the past but very few…We take great pains to present you with information that can be verified.” And he asserted, “Reporting comes with a big responsibility, the Founding Fathers made that point very clearly. They said to us, ‘We’ll give you freedom. We’ll protect you from government intrusion. But, in return, you, the press, must be honest.'”

When the Iraq War of 2003 was coming, Bill O’Reilly speaking on ABC’s Good Morning America on March 18, 2003, O’Reilly promised that “If the Americans go in and overthrow Saddam Hussein and it’s clean [of weapons of mass destruction]…I will apologize to the nation, and I will not trust the Bush administration again.” In another appearance on the same program on February 10, 2004, O’Reilly responded to repeated requests for him to honor his pledge: “My analysis was wrong and I’m sorry. I was wrong. I’m not pleased about it at all.” “With regard to never again trusting the current U.S. government, he said, “I am much more skeptical of the Bush administration now than I was at that time.”

But with the apology, O’Reilly hasn’t honored the pledge fully. When the war began and went badly, O’Reilly backtracked on his reporting unlike when it began. O’Reilly told people to “shut up” once the fighting begins and to support the military completely regardless. He hasn’t apologized for his “shut up” comments and he won’t. He lied to us before the war and while he apologized for his analysis, he hasn’t to those he told to “shut up” and let the war start. He still supported the war because America was involved. He argued that if America didn’t go to Iraq in the first place, then it would have terrible for the region and the country. He also supported whatever the Bush administration did in Iraq regardless of when things were getting worse and worse and argues that the U.S. shouldn’t have left in 2011 because it made Iraq worse. The hypocrisy of O’Reilly is common and it’s not a surprise that his lies from years ago are being exposed to the public.

“Reporting comes with a big responsibility, the Founding Fathers made that point very clearly. They said to us, ‘We’ll give you freedom. We’ll protect you from government intrusion. But, in return, you, the press, must be honest.'” O’Reilly hasn’t done what he has said in this quote because he doesn’t care about getting the truth. He only cares about getting ratings and promoting a conservative agenda on Fox News and don’t expect him to leave Fox because he is their “holy warrior” and “crusader” for their “War on Christmas”. And the video below explains how typical O’Reilly conducts any sort of business anywhere and that’s with the “shut up” line.

“Shut Up!”

Sources:

Vox

Raw Story

Mother Jones

Media Matters (1), (2)

Feb
20

Gothamist reports Here’s What Happens When Subway Announcements Get REAL

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