What Fresh Hell Is This?

July 2, 2011

Another Lesson In How The Right Wing Message Machine Works

We'll start at the end and work backwards. Today in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review we find an editorial that begins thusly:
Eric Holder's coddling of terrorists -- during both the Clinton and Obama administrations -- makes him manifestly unfit to be U.S. attorney general.

At a National Press Club conference in Washington this week, Cliff Kincaid, president of America's Survival Inc., and speakers personally affected by terrorist beneficiaries of Mr. Holder's lax approach laid out his damning record.
When we head to the website for America's Survival Inc., we find this:
America’s Survival, Inc. (ASI) President Cliff Kincaid, who also serves as the Director of the Accuracy in Media (AIM) Center for Investigative Journalism, has announced a national conference in Washington, D.C. to examine Communist Cuba’s sponsorship of anti-American terrorism and harboring of fugitives from justice and the need to keep Cuba on the official U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism. Evidence will also be presented of how Castro’s agents of influence continue subversive operations on American soil and how the Obama Administration’s expansion of travel to and from the communist island undermines American national security.
On June 29, the Trib's news division published this:
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder "has lied about his role in granting pardons to terrorists" under Presidents Clinton and Obama and should be removed from office, according to Cliff Kincaid, president of America's Survival Inc.

Kincaid moderated a daylong conference on Tuesday at the National Press Club, sponsored by his Washington-based investigative organization.
Which then was reposted at the America's Survivial website here:
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder "has lied about his role in granting pardons to terrorists" under Presidents Clinton and Obama and should be removed from office, according to Cliff Kincaid, president of America's Survival Inc.

Kincaid moderated a daylong conference on Tuesday at the National Press Club, sponsored by his Washington-based investigative organization.
And then finally editorialized this morning at the Tribune-Review.

Why the trail?

You guessed it. America's Survival's got some serious funding support from the foundations controlled by Trib owner, Richard Mellon Scaife.
  • $200,000 from the Sarah Scaife Foundation in 2010
  • $150,000 from the Sarah Scaife Foundation in 2009
  • $150,000 from the Sarah Scaife Foundation in 2008
  • $60,000 from the Sarah Scaife Foundation in 2007
  • $110,000 from the Carthage Foundation in 2007
  • $100,000 from the Carthage Foundation in 2006
That's about three-quarters of a million dollars worth of support from foundations controlled by Richard Mellon Scaife, owner of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Any mention of any of that in the coverage?

Nope. Not a peep. Even from the Trib's news division. It's one thing for the editorial page (which I am told has no connection with the news division) to want to cover for the boss, but it's another when the more or less straight news division does the same. It's an embarrassment all the way round.

And we didn't even get to the Scaife money used to support Kincaid's other employer, Accuracy in Media. According to the media transparency project (or whatever it's called) Scaife's supported AIM to the tune of $4.36 million dollars.

Why does all this matter? Think of it this way, if Scaife hadn't given all that money to America's Survival, then it probably wouldn't exist. And if it didn't exist, there probably wouldn't have been a conference/discussion about AG Eric Holder at the National Press Club. And if there wasn't a discussion of the AG, there wouldn't have been any news coverage of it in the Scaife owned Tribune-Review.

The fact that none of the financial ties that bind Kincaid to Scaife are mentioned in the Trib's coverage of ASI is another example of the journalistic conflict of interest that's defining the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's editorial page and has tainted the Trib's news division.

4 comments:

rich10e said...

Lions, and tigers and Bears, Oh my!!!

EdHeath said...

Ah, insightful commentary that totally refutes the idea that news organizations ought to have some standards or responsibility to their readers.

Conservative Mountaineer said...

@Ed.. Yes, the same standards of NY Times, ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC, etal. Yeah, that's the ticket.

EdHeath said...

Any specifics, CM, or just a vague comment? Did you want to add Fox News, the Wall Street Journal, the World Net Daily and BigGovernment?