Having Their Fake and Eating It, Too
Is there any cry of oppression and unfairness more plaintive or heartfelt than the case of the oppressed “conservatives”?*
Matthew Boyle / Breitbart
— The scandal surrounding CNN’s mishandling of a very fake news hit piece on President Donald Trump and his associates grows bigger on Sunday night as the network’s president Jeff Zucker …
Right. Even though a faceless group has decided that smearing all “opposition” extends to an independent counsel that both sides of the aisle agree is a paragon of integrity and impartiality:
“Great America Alliance, a pro-Trump non-profit group that previously ran ads attacking former FBI director James Comey during his testimony, is running an ad that quotes Obama narrating his autobiographical book “Dreams From My Father.” The ad, however, does not mention that in the selected passage, Obama is actually quoting someone else who is speaking about the black community and Chicago politics before the early 1980s.”
Oh, whoops. That was from “A pro-Trump group is using Obama’s voice out of context in radio ad for Georgia’s special election,” by Andrew Kaczynski, CNN, Updated 6:46 PM ET, Sun June 18, 2017
No, what I really meant was:
Fig. 1 – air quotes
Pro-Trump group launches new attack ad against special counsel Robert Mueller
Lisa Mascaro / Los Angeles Times
A Southern California group backing President Trump is out with a new ad attacking special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, criticizing the investigation into the Trump campaign’s possible cooperation with Russian interference in the 2016 election. The ad, called “Witch Hunt,” features conservative favorite Tomi Lahren reflecting Trump’s own language to complain about the probe. The more than $400,000 ad buy is expected to start running Sunday.
“Only in Washington could a rigged game like this be called independent,” Lahren says, using air quotes in the ad to emphasize her point. She is now a senior advisor to Great America Alliance, which backs Trump.
Great America PAC was founded in 2016 by Eric Beach, a political strategist who is a veteran of presidential campaigns. Beach soon brought on Ed Rollins, a long time Republican campaign consultant and strategist who served as the campaign manager for Ronald Reagan’s 1984 presidential campaign.
Eric L. Beach is a Republican political strategist and consultant based out of Costa Mesa, California. Beach currently serves as the co-chair for the pro-Donald Trump Great America PAC, along with Ed Rollins. Beach is a veteran of Republican campaigns having served as a finance chair on Newt Gingrich’s 2012 presidential bid, working on former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s 2008 presidential bid and as an aide for Bill Simon’s 2002 campaign for California governor.
Which gives you some idea of who he’s tied to. Gingrich and Giuliani are both prominent Trump surrogates. But, the way that these organizations operate POST-Citizens United, it’s possible to take a nice paycheck and throw support to or against any cause (that won’t get you ostracized in party circles, that is). We only know that Beach and Rollins are running things for someone or not.
2016 PAC Summary Data [Founded 2016]
Total Receipts $28,684,573
Total Spent $26,625,503
Begin Cash on Hand $0
End Cash on Hand $2,059,070
Independent Expenditures $23,030,467
Not bad for a brand new PAC. Now, they are offering an off-year strategy, defend Trump. And they’re hiring:
Tomi Lahren lands job with a pro-Trump Great America Alliance
Fredreka Schouten , USA TODAY
Published 11:25 a.m. ET May 22, 2017 | Updated 11:28 a.m. ET May 22, 2017
WASHINGTON — Tomi Lahren, the outspoken conservative commentator, has landed a new gig and will work with Great America Alliance, a nonprofit group that aims to mobilize grassroots support for President Trump’s agenda, the nonprofit’s leaders announced Monday. The group’s organizers said Lahren will use her “growing national profile” to help “execute communications and messaging strategies.”
“The liberal establishment and mainstream media continue to fight our president at every turn, so it’s critical for all Americans to step up and do all they can to advance the America First agenda,” Lahren said in a statement. Lahren has been a rising star in conservative media, but this year she ran afoul of her then-employer, The Blaze, and its founder Glenn Beck, after she disclosed her support for abortion rights during an appearance on ABC’s The View television show…
Here, to be fair, is their neatly tailored, carefully spun and sanitized statement about who they are, entitled, imaginatively, “About Great America PAC“:
Great America PAC is the premiere [sic †] Pro-Trump Super PAC led by veteran Republican strategist, Ed Rollins. The group raised and spent over $30 million in support of Donald Trump’s candidacy, broadcasting more than 20,000 TV spots and 300,000 radio ads, secured over 250,000 contributors, built a file of millions of active, newly engaged Trump supporters across the country, sent over 2.5 million pieces of mail, and placed more than 30 million phone calls. Great America PAC was the ONLY PAC with field offices in the battleground states with boots on the ground and the ONLY PAC running Spanish-language ads on TV and online.
Great America PAC is committed to bringing people together and uniting them behind President Donald Trump and the movement he represents.
I’d be careful about mentioning “Donald Trump” and “movement” in the same sentence, but that’s their choice.
[† “premiere” means the initial performance, “premier” means first in status, chief; the hyperbolic statement was MEANT in the second case, which is the masculine form, with “premiere” being the feminine form of “premier,” in French. Both come to us from the same Latin root that gives us the English words “primary” and “prime.”]
Notice how Eric Beach is not mentioned? Just as Neil Patel (Cheney’s old chief of staff) is not mentioned when referring to The Daily Caller. Only Tucker Carlson. Still, aside from the sea-foam and occasional seagull poop, it’s a good life being a ship’s figurehead. (Or was, between the 16th and 20th centuries, aptly for any metaphor about the modern GOP).
I am tempted to ask the question, how is this dark money funneled (or more importantly, by whom) to this new PAC/policy shop? But that is not the monstrousness.
The monstrousness is that this PAC’s actual “fake news” has proved successful in Georgia special elections and now, perhaps, to smear an independent investigation of foreign espionage/sabotage/espionage into our elections?
The term “treasonous” comes to mind, but not for the obvious reason. No: because to smear the very process of law is to attempt to destroy it from without (as Trump’s attacks on judges has been, whether -advertent or in-) even as the Supreme Court is attempting to destroy it from within. (Citizens United, guns, Bush v. Gore, Dred Scott, Hobby Lobby, The McConnell Stolen Seats Initiative, and today’s gaping hole blown in the separation of church and state.)
If law is to be held in contempt whenever it is inconvenient, and if “truth” is held to be fake news when convenient (CNN is “fake news” for getting a story wrong, but Breitbart attacks with fake news EACH AND EVERY DAY. It is a propaganda shop decrying an honest news broker while weeping crocodile tears.)
In the coming months, you will see increasing calls for civility, and “the better angels of our nature.” But don’t be fooled. The social fabric is unraveling as accepted “reality” and “facts” disintegrates, and as law and justice are seen as a partisan tool, and not as the bedrock of a civil society.
Let me scream with all the pent-up passion of moderation that this is as screamingly wrong an action and an abuse of free speech as ever toppled a decent and humane nation: it is an attack on the very notion of moderation.
I said once that “when ballots fail, bullets follow.” Ballots HAVE failed. I will be expanding on this as we near the tenth anniversary of my protest against Ted Nugent’s hate letter to a generation that was published on David Brooks’ Wall Street Journal editorial page on July 4, 2007, and the subsequent attack on me by Fox News and Sean Hannity. (I was labeled by the Fox News chyron and by “meetoo” Nugent as an “assassin.” You won’t want to miss it.)
Because that of which I was accused of desiring and/or fomenting (I confess that I only prophesied) has come to pass is coming to pass must not be allowed to pass.
Civilization itself is under attack by those who do not understand it, but covet it nonetheless. I am reminded of the report of barbarians, sacking Rome, who smashed a mosaic to try to grab the swans pictured in the mosaic.
The Course of Empire – Destruction, Thomas Cole 1836
We is screwed, kiddos: Don’t take the soma; don’t be seduced by the palliatives and the feel goods.
[* The term “conservative” is entirely a misnomer in today’s partisan stew. There are many strains of “conservatism” — from the House’s “Liberty Caucus” which is a libertarian caucus, albeit “conservative” (e.g. “mean and judgmental”) — to the “conservatives” who want all restraints removed from banking and pollution and making a buck, generally. NONE are actually “conservative” (as in conserving our natural resources, e.g. fighting climate change or in embracing “traditional” principles) but are all, in their own ways, radicals. They desire radical change from the long-forged consensus social contract, which is truly the antithesis of “conservatism.” There IS no one conservative movement, just as we watch the various strains of “conservative Republican” fight one another to a standstill, creating gridlock without any need for bipartisan assistance. Kind of like losing a solo debate.]