Lazy Liberal Journalists Smear Bannon
By: Cliff Kincaid | Accuracy in Media
Media bias won’t let up just because the liberal media were humiliated on November 8. The bias is now being directed at the President-elect’s conservative appointments.
On Monday night’s CBS Evening News, anchor Scott Pelley proclaimed that the Southern Poverty Law Center had declared that Donald J. Trump’s campaign CEO Stephen Bannon “has no business being in the White House.” Bannon was named as chief strategist and counselor.
In fact, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has no business being cited as a credible source by any responsible news organization. It smears conservatives for profit, diverting attention from real domestic threats, such as the Marxist extremists currently demonstrating against Trump in the streets and threatening to disrupt his inauguration.
Many of the demonstrators are from the ANSWER Coalition, an outgrowth of the pro-North Korea Marxist-Leninist Workers World Party.
But don’t expect to get any information about the ANSWER Coalition from the SPLC.
In fact, the SPLC is in bed with communists of all kinds, having participated in the notorious Left Forum held in New York City earlier this year. We noted at the time that the event featured “an assortment of communists, 9/11 truthers, pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel activists, and other extremists.”
Even more troubling, SPLC President and CEO Richard Cohen was a member of the “Countering Violent Extremism Working Group” of the Department of Homeland Security in 2010. It is possible that Cohen, in this capacity, was able to get access to classified information, and that the SPLC, in turn, shared its erroneous data on conservative opponents of the Obama administration with federal law enforcement agencies.
The attacks on Bannon stem from his leadership of the news site, Breitbart News, a popular source of alternative news and information which was strongly pro-Trump during the campaign. On occasion, the site features some unorthodox conservative views that Bannon’s critics have tried to pin on him.
The site was named for Andrew Breitbart, who pioneered new and effective ways to undermine the left. One of his disciples, Jeremy Segal, did a video exposing Democratic Rep. Danny K. Davis (IL) being honored at the Communist Party U.S.A.’s headquarters in Chicago for a lifetime of “inspiring leadership.”
Lazy liberal journalists would rather cite the SPLC as authoritative without having to bother to investigate how the group has been exposed by such investigative reporters on the left as Ken Silverstein. At one time, notes Silverstein, the group did some good work against racist hate groups. But later, in order to expand its business model and make more money, it expanded the “hate” label to mainstream conservative organizations. It has accumulated $300 million in a reserve fund and has become “one of the most profitable charities in the country,” with its top officials getting membership in the so-called financial elite one percent.
This journalist was named a member of the “radical right,” a designation then transformed into a charge of “Islamophobia” by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). The accusations are designed to silence First Amendment rights and discourage the media from going to conservative sources for news, information and commentary.
Before Pelley uncritically cited the SPLC, Kate Snow was on MSNBC talking about how Trump’s stand against illegal immigration was similar to that of the secretary of state of Kansas, Kris Kobach. She said Kobach had given “support” to the Social Contract Press, which she described as a “hate group” designated by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
The Social Contract Press rebuts all of the accusations, while noting that the SPLC’s $300 million cash hoard “rivals that of [the] Clinton Foundation.” It was the Social Contract Press which published one of Silverstein’s articles exposing the SPLC.
Indeed, Silverstein’s exposé was just one section of a major report the Social Contract Press published in 2010 that examined the SPLC’s strategy and tactics.
Yet, it’s Bannon who is being accused of being an extremist. The Washington Post admitsthere’s no real evidence behind the allegation, making it just another smear picked up by most of the media without adequate checking or verification.
What we are witnessing in the faux outrage against Bannon is a fear that the Trump administration and the new Republican Congress will get back to the business of monitoring real domestic threats.
For example, Trump adviser Walid Phares has already indicated that the President-elect will back a bill, the Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act, which could lead to an investigation of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
Trevor Loudon, the producer of the new film, “Enemies Within,” says the Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act could be supplemented by the House and Senate bringing back committees or subcommittees devoted to exposing internal security problems, also known as un-American activities.
A member of Congress exposed in the film for his ties to the Muslim Brotherhood is Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), who is running for chairman of the Democratic National Committee.
Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. View the complete archives from Cliff Kincaid.