Glenn Beck distorted remarks by Apollo Alliance co-founder Joel Rogers to suggest that Rogers' "definition of the green economy" is to bring "the economy to a complete halt" by eliminating "every power plant" and stopping "every car in America." In fact, nowhere in the remarks that Beck played did Rogers advocate "bringing the economy to a halt," and the Apollo Alliance's plan for a "clean energy economy" includes improving the efficiency of cars and power plants -- not stopping them.
On The O'Reilly Factor, Ann Coulter stated that "everyone is blatantly lying" when saying the new Arizona immigration law could lead to racial profiling. However, several Fox News personalities have said that the law may lead to racial profiling.
On his Fox News show, Glenn Beck falsely claimed that there has been "zero warming for over a decade" and that climate change is a "scam" and has been "totally discredited". In fact, longer-term data establishes a warming trend, and the scientific consensus behind human-driven climate change remains intact.
On Fox News' Glenn Beck, Andrew Breitbart falsely claimed that a White House official told "organized labor" that "if they punch you, punch back twice as hard." In fact, the official was reportedly speaking to Senate Democrats -- not to any union groups -- and there is no evidence it was anything other than a metaphorical explanation of how the White House planned to respond politically to attacks against Senate Democrats.
Attending the "Online Tax Revolt" Tea Party today at Freedom Plaza in Washington, DC for Media Matters, I saw several posters and signs that echoed the falsehoods, smears and extreme rhetoric launched against the Obama administration and Democratic Congress by many in the conservative media. Here is a selection of them:
While criticizing congressional Democrats for touting March's improved employment figures, Fox News' Mike Huckabee claimed that "there are fewer private sector jobs because of their policies, their regulations." But the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that private employers added 123,000 jobs in March, which is the biggest gain in nearly three years.
Glenn Beck has repeatedly used violent rhetoric in referring to the passage of health care reform. After the House passed the Senate's version of reform legislation, Beck stated that while the "battle was lost, the war is not over," and after President Obama signed the bill, he suggested that Obama and Speaker Nancy Pelosi supported "pick[ing] up a gun" to advance "revolution."
Fox & Friends perpetuated the false claim advanced on right-wing blogs that President Obama was incorrect in stating during a Fox News interview that Hawaii suffered an earthquake in 2006 -- a disaster Fox News itself reported on at the time. In a 2007 memo, a Fox News executive reportedly warned staff that "seeing an item on a website does not mean it is right. Nor does it mean it is ready for air on FNC."
Newt Gingrich and Joe Scarborough have recently criticized a proposed legislative procedure to finalize health care reform as "radical" and "incredible," despite having supported the use of the same legislative process while they were members of Congress. The rule in question is an accepted part of House procedure, and in the years after Gingrich became speaker of the House and Scarborough was elected, Congress "set new records" for its use.
Media conservatives have falsely characterized a legislative proposal reportedly being considered to finalize health care reform in the House as unprecedented, undemocratic, and unconstitutional. But the rule in question is an accepted part of House procedure, and Congress repeatedly used the rule under GOP leadership, according to a former GOP staff director of the House Rules Committee.