After exposing the shocking, yet predictable, political bias of journalists at CNN and New York Times, Project Veritas has now set their sights on the Washington Post. In a candid conversation with an undercover Project Veritas journalist, the Post’s National Security Director, Adam Entous, put himself in danger of being a bit too honest, at least by his employer’s standards, by admitting that “there’s no evidence of [Trump-Russia collusion] that I’ve seen so far.” Entous goes on to admit that “it’s a fucking crap shoot” and that he has no idea how Mueller’s investigation might turn out.
Entous: “Our reporting has not taken us to a plcae where I would be able to say with any confidence that the result of it is going to be the president being guilty of being in cahoots with the Russians. There’s no evidence of that that I’ve seen so far.”
PV Journalist: “There has to be something, right?”
Entous: “Maybe, maybe not. It could just be lower-level people being manipulated or manipulating, but it’s very hard to, it’s really…It’s a fucking black box.”
“We’ve seen a lot of flirtation, if you will, between them but nothing that, in my opinion, would rank as actual collusion. Now that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist, it just means we haven’t found it yet. Or maybe it doesn’t exist.”
“I mean it’s a fucking crap shoot. I literally have no prediction whatsoever as to what would happen, and I do all the stuff for the Post on this so…”
Of course, on the surface, Entous’ opinions are not that explosive and likely mimic the views held by many Americans…namely that despite 1.5 years of investigations no one has presented any actual, tangible evidence of Trump-Russia collusion.
That said, what is explosive about this particular undercover sting is just how different Entous’ private views on the Trump-Russia investigation are from the constant stream of narrative-building collusion headlines that flood the Washington Post’s homepage each and every day.
Like this one…
Or this one if you prefer…
Of course, rather than focus on the blatant media bias that has once again been exposed by Project Veritas, the mainstream media rushed to the defense of the Washington Post by focusing instead on the foiled attempt of one of O’Keefe’s journalists to plant a fake story at WaPo to see if they would simply run it with no questions asked or actually do their jobs. Apparently CNN thought the foiled plot had put O’Keefe “on the defensive”…
…but O’Keefe seemed to not be all that defensive in his response below…which presumably means we’ll all be treated to many more undercover stings in the years to come.
MSM want to destroy @Project_Veritas. They see us as their enemy. When we expose them, they are lose their power. We have a stone lodged between Goliath’s eyes. They want me to kneel down & apologize. I will not. We will keep pushing, we will expose the truth. –@JamesOKeefeIII
Finally, here is the latest Project Veritas video for your viewing pleasure:
Special Report: As the U.S. government doles out tens of millions of dollars to “combat Russian propaganda,” one result is a slew of new “studies” by “scholars” and “researchers” auditioning for the loot, reports Robert Parry.
By Robert Parry
The “Field of Dreams” slogan for America’s NGOs should be: “If you pay for it, we will come.” And right now, tens of millions of dollars are flowing to non-governmental organizations if they will buttress the thesis of Russian “meddling” in the U.S. democratic process no matter how sloppy the “research” or how absurd the “findings.”
And, if you think the pillars of the U.S. mainstream media – The Washington Post, The New York Times, CNN and others – will apply some quality controls, you haven’t been paying attention for the past year or so. The MSM is just as unethical as the NGOs are.
So, we are now in a phase of Russia-gate in which NGO “scholars” produce deeply biased reports and their nonsense is treated as front-page news and items for serious discussion across the MSM.
Yet, there’s even an implicit confession about how pathetic some of this “scholarship” is in the hazy phrasing that gets applied to the “findings,” although the weasel words will slip past most unsuspecting Americans and will be dropped for more definitive language when the narrative is summarized in the next day’s newspaper or in a cable-news “crawl.”
For example, a Times front-page story on Thursday reported that “a network of Twitter accounts suspected of links to Russia seized on both sides of the [NFL players kneeling during the National Anthem] issue with hashtags, such as #boycottnfl, #standforouranthem and #takeaknee.”
The story, which fits neatly into the current U.S. propaganda meme that the Russian government somehow is undermining American democracy by stirring up dissent inside the U.S., quickly spread to other news outlets and became the latest “proof” of a Russian “war” against America.
However, before we empty the nuclear silos and exterminate life on the planet, we might take a second to look at the Times phrasing: “a network of Twitter accounts suspected of links to Russia.”
The vague wording doesn’t even say the Russian government was involved but rather presents an unsupported claim that some Twitter accounts are “suspected” of being part of some “network” and that this “network” may have some ill-defined connection – or “links” – to “Russia,” a country of 144 million people.
‘Six Degrees from Kevin Bacon’
It’s like the old game of “six degrees of separation” from Kevin Bacon. Yes, perhaps we are all “linked” to Kevin Bacon somehow but that doesn’t prove that we know Kevin Bacon or are part of a Kevin Bacon “network” that is executing a grand conspiracy to sow discontent by taking opposite sides of issues and then tweeting.
Yet that is the underlying absurdity of the Times article by Daisuke Wakabayashi and Scott Shane. Still, as silly as the article may be that doesn’t mean it’s not dangerous. The Times’ high-profile treatment of these gauzy allegations represents a grave danger to the world by fueling a growing hysteria inside the United States about being “at war” with nuclear-armed Russia. At some point, someone might begin to take this alarmist rhetoric seriously.
Yes, I understand that lots of people hate President Trump and see Russia-gate as the golden ticket to his impeachment. But that doesn’t justify making serious allegations with next to no proof, especially when the outcome could be thermonuclear war.
However, with all those millions of dollars sloshing around the NGO world and Western academia – all looking for some “study” to fund that makes Russia look bad – you are sure to get plenty of takers. And, we should now expect that new “findings” like these will fill in for the so-far evidence-free suspicions about Russia and Trump colluding to steal the presidency from Hillary Clinton.
If you read more deeply into the Times story, you get a taste of where Russia-gate is headed next and a clue as to who is behind it:
“Since last month, researchers at the Alliance for Securing Democracy, a bipartisan initiative of the German Marshall Fund, a public policy research group in Washington, have been publicly tracking 600 Twitter accounts — human users and suspected bots alike — they have linked to Russian influence operations. Those were the accounts pushing the opposing messages on the N.F.L. and the national anthem.
“Of 80 news stories promoted last week by those accounts, more than 25 percent ‘had a primary theme of anti-Americanism,’ the researchers found. About 15 percent were critical of Hillary Clinton, falsely accusing her of funding left-wing antifa — short for anti-fascist — protesters, tying her to the lethal terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012 and discussing her daughter Chelsea’s use of Twitter. Eleven percent focused on wiretapping in the federal investigation into Paul Manafort, President Trump’s former campaign chairman, with most of them treated the news as a vindication for President Trump’s earlier wiretapping claims.”
The Neocons, Again!
So, let’s stop and unpack this Times’ reporting. First, this Alliance for Securing Democracy is not some neutral truth-seeking organization but a neoconservative-dominated outfit that includes on its advisory board such neocon luminaries as Mike Chertoff, Bill Kristol and former Freedom House president David Kramer along with other anti-Russia hardliners such as former deputy CIA director Michael Morell and former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers.
How many of these guys, do you think, were assuring us that Iraq was hiding WMDs back in 2003?
This group clearly has an ax to grind, a record of deception, and plenty of patrons in the Military-Industrial Complex who stand to make billions of dollars from the New Cold War.
The neocons also have been targeting Russia for regime change for years because they see Russian President Vladimir Putin as the chief obstacle to their goal of helping Israel achieve its desire for “regime change” in Syria and a chance to bomb-bomb-bomb Iran. Russia-gate has served the neocons well as a very convenient way to pull Democrats, liberals and even progressives into the neocon agenda because Russia-gate is sold as a powerful weapon for the anti-Trump Resistance.
The Times article also might have mentioned that Twitter has 974 million accounts. So, this alarm over 600 accounts is a bit disproportionate for a front-page story in the Times, don’t you think?
And, there’s the definitional problem of what constitutes “anti-Americanism” in a news article. And what does it mean to be “linked to Russian influence operations”? Does that include Americans who may not march in lockstep to the one-sided State Department narratives on the crises in Ukraine and Syria? Any deviation from Official Washington’s groupthink makes you a “Moscow stooge.”
And, is it a crime to be “critical” of Hillary Clinton or to note that the U.S. mainstream media was dismissive of Trump’s claims about being wiretapped only for us to find out later that the FBI apparently was wiretapping his campaign manager?
However, such questions aren’t going to be asked amid what has become a massive Russia-gate groupthink, dominating not just Official Washington, but across much of America’s political landscape and throughout the European Union.
Why the Bias?
Beyond the obvious political motivations for this bias, we also have had the introduction of vast sums of money pouring in from the U.S. government, NATO and European institutions to support the business of “combatting Russian propaganda.”
For example, last December, President Obama signed into law a $160 million funding mechanism entitled the “Combating Foreign Propaganda and Disinformation Act.” But that amounts to only a drop in the bucket considering already existing Western propaganda projects targeting Russia.
So, a scramble is on to develop seemingly academic models to “prove” what Western authorities want proven: that Russia is at fault for pretty much every bad thing that happens in the world, particularly the alienation of many working-class people from the Washington-Brussels elites.
The truth cannot be that establishment policies have led to massive income inequality and left the working class struggling to survive and thus are to blame for ugly political manifestations – from Trump to Brexit to the surprising support for Germany’s far-right AfD party. No, it must be Russia! Russia! Russia! And there’s a lot of money on the bed to prove that point.
There’s also the fact that the major Western news media is deeply invested in bashing Russia as well as in the related contempt for Trump and his followers. Those twin prejudices have annihilated all professional standards that would normally be applied to news judgments regarding these flawed “studies.”
On Thursday, The Washington Post ran its own banner-headlined story drawn from the same loose accusations made by that neocon-led Alliance for Securing Democracy, but instead the Post sourced the claims to Sen. James Lankford, R-Oklahoma. The headline read: “Russian trolls are stoking NFL controversy, senator says.”
The “evidence” cited by Lankford’s office was one “Twitter account calling itself Boston Antifa that gives its geolocation as Vladivostok, Russia,” the Post reported.
By Thursday, Twitter had suspended the Boston Antifa account, so I couldn’t send it a question, but earlier this month, Dan Glaun, a reporter for Masslive.com, reported that the people behind Boston Antifa were “a pair of anti-leftist pranksters from Oregon who started Boston Antifa as a parody of actual anti-fascist groups.”
In an email to me on Thursday, Glaun cited an interview that the Boston Antifa pranksters had done with right-wing radio talk show host Gavin McInnes last April.
And, by the way, there are apps that let you manipulate your geolocation data on Twitter. Or, you can choose to believe that the highly professional Russian intelligence agencies didn’t notice that they were telegraphing their location as Vladivostok.
Mindless Russia Bashing
Another example of this mindless Russia bashing appeared just below the Post’s story on Lankford’s remarks. The Post sidebar cited a “study” from researchers at Oxford University’s Project on Computational Propaganda asserting that “junk news” on Twitter “flowed more heavily in a dozen [U.S.] battleground states than in the nation overall in the days immediately before and after the 2016 presidential election, suggesting that a coordinated effort targeted the most pivotal voters.” Cue the spooky Boris and Natasha music!
One of the biggest problems facing this nation is the amount of money that has been “sequestered,” to term it, for “Non-Profit Organizations,” or “NPO’s.” Why? They present a problem when they can be used by an unscrupulous individual or groups of unscrupulous individuals (for examples, a George Soros, or the Democratic Party respectively). What is an NPO? Let’s look at what they are and see if the definition is characterized by actual NPO actions.
Here is an excerpt from a book that describes NPO’s (what they should be):
“The main financial difference between a for-profit and a not-for-profit enterprise is what happens to the profit. In a for-profit company like Ford or Microsoft or Disney or your favorite fast-food establishment, profits are paid to the owners, including shareholders. But a nonprofit can’t do that. Any profit remaining after the bills are paid has to be plowed back into the organization’s service program. So profit can’t be distributed to individuals, such as the organization’s board of directors, who are volunteers in every sense of the word.”
“Nonprofit Kit for Dummies,” ISBN: 0-7645-5347-X, pg. 8
Austere and stoic, these NPO’s, all! Ahh, but what is conveniently left out is the salary portion…for the directors. Those salaries are written off as an operating expense by the “Non-Profit,” but they’re hardly the funds gleaned by a “simple volunteer for the beneficent NPO.” Another paragraph from the book shows this:
…for the most part, we’re talking about an organization that the Internal Revenue Service has classified as a 501(c)(3). They receive exemption from federal income taxes and sometimes relief from property taxes at the local level. Nonprofit organizations classified as 501(c)(3) receive extra privileges under the law. They are, with minor exceptions, the only group of tax-exempt organizations that can receive tax-deductible contributions from individuals and organizations.
Being a nonprofit organization does not mean that an entity is exempt from paying all taxes. Nonprofit organizations pay employment taxes just like for-profit businesses do. In some states, but not all, nonprofits are exempt from paying sales tax…”
Race–baiting: “the unfair use of statements about race to try to influence the actions or attitudes of a particular group of people.”
This is typical of the New York Times’ race baiting.
After the author goes “slumming it” undercover at a rural Michigan Walmart she concludes that the white, working poor voted for Trump because of resentment at the loss of their white privilege.
I wonder if she had moonlighted at a majority black or South Asian-staffed Walmart in suburban Maryland, Virginia or Pennsylvania her conclusions would have been different.
By focusing on just the white working poor, the author’s goal is to increase racial divisions in the working class, to divide them and distract from the political and media establishments’ roles in turning our country into a 3rd world, banana republic for corporate exploitation.
Is she trying to imply that if they just hadn’t been so blinded by their own racist reactions to globalist Darwinism, they would have voted for Hillary Clinton?
The author doesn’t explain how these race-blind 2008 voters, that helped elect Obama, are white supremacists 8 years later.
She also doesn’t take into account that they might not have voted for Hillary for many non-racist reasons, including how Hillary’s husband passed NAFTA, and after 8 years in office her would-be White House predecessor doubled the national debt (to “bail-out” banks) and created less than 3% growth with 95% of new jobs being part-time, temp or contract.
The Washington Post works hard to distract from the fact that the American Dream has faded for the entire working class, not just a particular race, and that fading was designed to benefit global corporations and the oligarchs that own them.
White Resentment on the Night Shift at Walmart
By TRACIE McMILLAN
“Seven years ago, I joined the night shift at a Walmart in rural Michigan. For $8.10 an hour, I spent four or five nights a week filling shelves with the flour and sugar and marshmallow fluff that residents of the local county, which in 2008 voted for Barack Obama, needed to get through the holidays. Four years ago, the county went with President Obama a second time, though by a thinner margin. But this past November, the county, like the state, turned red.”
One of the group’s biggest donors is the Tides Foundation, a non-profit funded by billionaire progressive philanthropist George Soros. Tides gave AfGJ $50,000.
The United Steel Workers labor union also contributed $5,000. The city of Tucson is also listed in AfGJ’s 990 as a donor, but a city official says that the city acted merely as a pass-through for a Native American tribe that provided a grant to the activist group. The city official said that no city money went to AfGJ.
Charities associated with several major corporations also donated. Patagonia.org, the outdoor apparel and equipment company, gave $40,000. The Ben & Jerry Foundation, the charity associated with the ice cream maker, gave $20,000. And Lush Cosmetic gave $43,950.
Another bit of irony is seen in the $5,000 contribution from the Peace Development Fund, a group that claims to support organizations that fight for human rights and social justice.
Another major donation came from a group that was chaired by Hillary Clinton during the 1980s. The New World Foundation gave $52,000 to AfGJ.
There’s a solitary man at the financial center of the Ferguson protest movement. No, it’s not victim Michael Brown or Officer Darren Wilson. It’s not even the Rev. Al Sharpton, despite his ubiquitous campaign on TV and the streets.
Rather, it’s liberal billionaire George Soros, who has built a business empire that dominates across the ocean in Europe while forging a political machine powered by nonprofit foundations that impacts American politics and policy, not unlike what he did with MoveOn.org.
Mr. Soros spurred the Ferguson protest movement through years of funding and mobilizing groups across the U.S., according to interviews with key players and financial records reviewed by The Washington Times.
In all, Mr. Soros gave at least $33 million in one year to support already-established groups that emboldened the grass-roots, on-the-ground activists in Ferguson, according to the most recent tax filings of his nonprofit Open Society Foundations.
Flemming Rose is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute. Jacob Mchangama is director of the Copenhagen-based think tank Justitia.
Remember George Orwell’s Ministry of Truth? In his dystopian novel “1984,” its purpose was to dictate and protect the government’s version of reality. During the Cold War, Orwell’s book was banned behind the Iron Curtain, because readers perceived the novel as an allegory for their own repressive regimes.
It was a serious crime to distribute information defaming the Soviet social and political system. Such criminal laws were widely used by the Kremlin to silence dissidents, human rights activists, religious movements and groups fighting for independence in the Soviet republics. Similar laws were on the books in East Germany, Poland and other Eastern bloc countries.
Thankfully, today this landscape is much changed, but increasingly there are disturbing echoes of the past. Amid a debate about the rising influence of fake news and the danger it poses to the political and social order in the West, democratic politicians in Europe have proposed sanctions — and even prison terms — for those found responsible for distributing false information.
National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was fired by Trump. Flynn was caught discussing sanctions with the Russian ambassador even before Trump took office.
Sounds bad, right?
But Bloomberg columnist Eli Lake – the former senior national security correspondent for the Daily Beast, who covered national security and intelligence for the Washington Times, the New York Sun and UPI – notes:
One White House official with knowledge of the conversations told me that the Russian ambassador raised the sanctionsto Flynn and that Flynn responded that the Trump team would be taking office in a few weeks and would review Russia policy and sanctions. That’s neither illegal nor improper.
If true, then all that happened is that the Russian ambassador asked about sanctions, and Flynn responded that he couldn’t say anything until he got marching orders from the Trump administration after it took the helm.
The bottom line here is that the only incremental news is that Manafort knowingly or unknowingly came into contact with Russian intelligence officials during his business dealings but no election-collusion was discovered.
Once again, reading beyond the headline reveals this is just another bold-faced attempt by the former establishment to undermine and discredit the Trump administration.
The establishment takes advantage of the fact that most people only read headlines and listen to sound bites but anyone reading deeper into this will see that they’ve made no solid accusations and have little proof, if any, of actual lawbreaking or collusion.
Once again, just like with the previous attempts, you’ll see that they don’t go to a full investigation because that would reveal the accusation are baseless.
NYTimes Reports Trump Aides’ “Repeated Contact” With Russian Intel Officials, Admits No Collusion Discovered | Zero Hedge
The New York Times appears to be resurrecting an old story with a new angle to keep the ‘blame the Russians’ narrative alive. Following FISA court approval (to spy on Trump’s campaign), intercepted calls reportedly show “repeated contact” between Trump advisor Paul Manafort and senior Russian intelligence officials… but reveal no collusion.
Intercepted phone calls and phone records show that several aides and allies to President Trump’s campaign were in repeated contact with senior Russian intelligence officials, according to the New York Times. As The Hill explains,
Current and former officials that spoke with the Times would not give many details, and it’s not clear exactly who, both from the U.S. and Russia, were part of the conversations or what they talked about, including if discussions centered on Trump himself.
Officials told the publication that they have seen no evidence of collusion in regards to hacking or the election.
Three of the four current and former officials who spoke with the Times said the contacts were discovered during the same time that U.S. intelligence agencies were investigating Russia’s extensive hacking campaign, later determined to be aimed at helping Trump win the White House.
The Times’ sources said Paul Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, was picked up on the calls. Manafort left the campaign after several months as reports swirled about his business ties in Russia and the Ukraine.
The officials would not name any other Trump aides or supporters captured in the conversations.
Manafort, who has not been charged with any crimes, exclaims To Britain’s Telegraph that “this is absurb,”
“I have no idea what this is referring to. I have never knowingly spoken to Russian intelligence officers, and I have never been involved with anything to do with the Russian government or the Putin administration or any other issues under investigation today.”
Mr. Manafort added, “It’s not like these people wear badges that say, ‘I’m a Russian intelligence officer.’”
Several of Mr. Trump’s associates, like Mr. Manafort, have done business in Russia, and it is not unusual for American businessmen to come in contact with foreign intelligence officials, sometimes unwittingly, in countries like Russia and Ukraine, where the spy services are deeply embedded in society. Law enforcement officials did not say to what extent the contacts may have been about business.
Finally, buried deep in The New York Times’ story – which is sure to run the narrative during tomorrow’s media cycle (and already is a hot topic of conjecture on CNN) – the author admits, rather sheepishly that…
The intelligence agencies then sought to learn whether the Trump campaign was colluding with the Russians on the hacking or other efforts to influence the election.
The officials interviewed in recent weeks said that, so far, they had seen no evidence of such cooperation.
Which confirms what The FBI said back in November. * * * The bottom line here is that the only incremental news is that Manafort knowingly or unknowingly came into contact with Russian intelligence officials during his business dealings but no election-collusion was discovered. We leave it to Ari Fleischer to sum it all up perfectly…