If you had any doubt that Media Matters — which just received an infusion of money from George Soros — is the most dangerous and intolerant media group in the nation, this piece by Ben Smith at Politico will convince you.
Media Matters, which started as one of the usual-sort of “watchdog” groups (which exist on the left and right) has transformed itself recently into a group devoted towards sabotaging Fox News, Media Matters’ war against Fox:
The liberal group Media Matters has quietly transformed itself in preparation for what its founder, David Brock, described in an interview as an all-out campaign of “guerrilla warfare and sabotage” aimed at the Fox News Channel….
“The strategy that we had had toward Fox was basically a strategy of containment,” said Brock, Media Matters’ chairman and founder and a former conservative journalist, adding that the group’s main aim had been to challenge the factual claims of the channel and to attempt to prevent them from reaching the mainstream media.
The new strategy, he said, is a “war on Fox.”
In an interview and a 2010 planning memo shared with POLITICO, Brock listed the fronts on which Media Matters – which he said is operating on a $10 million-plus annual budget — is working to chip away at Fox and its parent company, News Corp. They include its bread-and-butter distribution of embarrassing clips and attempts to rebut Fox points but also a series of under-the-radar tactics.
Media Matters, Brock said, is assembling opposition research files not only on Fox’s top executives but on a series of midlevel officials. It has hired an activist who has led a successful campaign to press advertisers to avoid Glenn Beck’s show.
The attacks will be very personal, extending not just to Fox News coverage (which is fair game for criticism) but trying to dig up dirt on Fox News executives:
Media Matters, he said, is also conducting “opposition research” on a dozen or so “mid- and senior-level execs and producers,” a campaign style move that he and Brock said would simply involve recording their public appearances and digging into public records associated with them.
But it doesn’t stop at Fox News. Media Matters also plans to attack conservative websites:
The group, launched as a more traditional media critic, has all but abandoned its monitoring of newspapers and other television networks and is narrowing its focus to Fox and a handful of conservative websites, which its leaders view as a political organizations and the “nerve center” of the conservative movement.
Media Matters has transformed itself into a very dangerous organization which engages in sabotage to disrupt opponents. None of this is surprising. When Media Matters says it wants freedom of speech and freedom of the press, what it means is that it wants freedom for its speech and its press.
Guerrilla warfare and sabotage. It’s what the most active Democratic media operation has come to. Scary times ahead.
And you don’t think they will do absolutely anything to get Obama reelected?
Update: I think it is a fair question to ask how what Media Matters plans differs from the recent sting operation against NPR. First, Fox News does not get government funding, as did NPR. The NPR story would have been a non-story were it not for the public funding of NPR. Also, the NPR sting took place in a public place and stood on its own merits, whereas Media Matters plans to infiltrate Fox News and go after Fox News executives for reasons unrelated to Fox News (e.g., is there something in their background which could be embarrassing). Finally, there is the scope; Media Matters has a $10 million per year budget, whereas James O’Keefe is out of money and in debt and runs his operation on a shoestring.
From my Media Matters archives:
- My First Media Matters Post
- TeaPartyTracker.org Fails
- Media Matters: Egypt Erupts, So Let’s Blame …The Israel Lobby!
- I Am Just A Member Of The Tribe
- The “Section 246 Proves Joe Wilson Is A Liar” Lie