Searching US newspapers on Lexis Nexis for “Obama,” “Muslim,” and “smear” generates 509 unique hits …

There have been plenty of reports debunking the Obama Muslim allegation, but not enough about the racial subtext of “smearing” a politician for being Muslim.

Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting released a report documenting the 12 Islamophobes in US media. The all-star list includes (unsurprisingly): Bill O’Reilly, David Horowitz, Michelle Malkin, and Sean Hannity.

FAIR’s senior analyst Steve Rendall told Brooke Gladstone on On The Media:

If someone was accused of being a secret Jew we’d have a discussion not only about the fact of the matter, but one about anti-Semitism in the campaign. The second part is not happening in this case.

How do these viral e-mail rumors get started? The Nation‘s Chris Hayes had an excellent piece last year about the origins of these smear campaigns.

Poke around on the Smearcasters web site here and find out how your favorite talking heads are spreading bigotry and misinformation.