Kenneth P. Vogel's October 4 Politico article reported that conservatives are increasingly turning on James O'Keefe in the wake of his alleged plan to "seduce" and publicly humilitate CNN reporter Abbie Boudreau.
From Vogel's article:
Heralded last year as epitomizing a new form of "activist" journalist, James O'Keefe now finds himself abandoned by some of the powerful conservatives who championed him. And a multi-million dollar effort designed to offset what many conservatives regard as the leftward tilt of the mainstream media has been undermined by a series of increasingly bizarre incidents.
"Just because conservatives have what I believe is a well-grounded beef with the establishment press, doesn't mean that they don't have to abide by rules themselves," Brent Bozell, founder of the Media Research Center, told POLITICO. "I have been telling my fellow conservatives that if we are going to accuse liberals of not following rules of journalistic ethics, then by God, we better follow them or we open ourselves up to all sorts of accusations, and one of them is hypocrisy."
Politico also reported that O'Keefe is losing support from conservatives who have previously funded O'Keefe and donors to organizations that have funded O'Keefe, such as the Leadership Institute and the Collegiate Network:
One such funder, the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, over the years has given more than $1.6 million to the groups. But, in an interview after O'Keefe's arrest in New Orleans, " foundation president Mike Grebe sounded cautious when asked about whether the foundation viewed O'Keefe's style of journalism as helpful for the conservative cause.
"It's worthwhile, depending on the tactics involved, obviously," he said. "There should be some limits on that kind of activity. We think that the coverage of the problems at ACORN was very effective and turned some opinions regarding that organization, so there a place for it, but again, within limits."
On Monday, Grebe seemed to distance the foundation further, explaining it had "never funded O'Keefe or Veritas," and adding that its grants to the Collegiate Network and Leadership Institute "have always been for general operating purposes and their grant requests have never made any mention of undercover video journalism. And I have no knowledge of what they may or may not do in that field."
From the April 20 edition of C-Span's Washington Journal:
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From Politico's December 5 article, "Right-wing talkers go for the gold":
For years a certain strain of conservative thought has held that there was one sure hedge against economic depression, civil disorder and liberal rule - gold. Now that belief has led to a kind of harmonic convergence between ideology and commerce.
Anyone tuning in to conservative talk radio or Fox News's Bill O'Reilly and Glenn Beck shows is bombarded by commercials for gold, mainly in the form of collectible coins, with announcers intoning that inflation and deficits caused by big government spending are devaluing the dollar and making gold the best investment money can buy.
The dire tone sounded in the ads often echo the occasionally apocalyptic economic forecasts of the shows' hosts, many of whom have endorsement contracts with the gold retailers, appear in their ads, or have had their executives as guests to trash the economic course set by President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats, and to preach the attractions of gold.
And it's become an increasingly profitable synergy for everyone involved - the retailers, the networks and an array of hosts including O'Reilly and Beck, as well as radio talkers Mark Levin, Michael Savage, Laura Ingraham, Dennis Miller, Fred Thompson and G. Gordon Liddy.
This year, Goldline boasted it had become "the exclusive gold and precious metals company" of both Levin's show and the one hosted by Thompson. Other Goldline endorsers include Beck, Ingraham, Miller and Lars Larson.
Beck, who has taken to comparing the state of the U.S. economy to that of modern day Zimbabwe or pre-Hitler Germany, has been urging his viewers to invest in gold, and bragging about his own gold investments since at least last year.
"I know that you've been listening and watching my shows," he said in a promo incorporated into a "Beck talks" video on his website.
"If you've been watching for any length of time, and you still haven't looked into buying gold, what's wrong with you? I was going to say 'are you just a reporter for the New York Times?' but I don't think they actually watch. They just write about it.
"I think you're nuts. When the system eventually collapses, and the government comes with guns and confiscates, you know, everything in your home and all your possessions, and then you fight off the raving mad cannibalistic crowds that Ted Turner talked about, don't come crying to me. I told you: get gold."
But Beck has recently come under fire from liberals alleging a conflict of interest. The criticism spiked after he used one of his trademark blackboard illustrations to provide tips for weathering "the three scenarios that we could be facing: recession, depression or collapse." In the case of a total collapse of the economic system, he recommended that his viewers construct "fruit cellars" and rely on what he called "the three G system. It's God, gold and guns."
The Democrat-aligned watchdog group Media Matters asserted the segment was a "reward" to his gold advertisers, while liberal MSNBC host Keith Olbermann charged that Beck is "in it for the money. He keeps trying to sell people gold, largely because a disproportionate number of his advertisers sell people gold."
Peter Epstein, president of Merit Financial Services, which advertises on Beck's show, says gold retailers expect favorable coverage from commentators on whose shows they pay to advertise. "You pay anybody on any network and they say what you pay them to say," said Epstein. "They're bought and sold."
Beck, who through a publicist declined to comment for this story, addressed the Media Matters allegation on his Thursday show, saying "So, I shouldn't make money?" And he made the point that he touted gold before he became a Goldline endorser, and urges viewers to study and pray before investing in it.
From Kenneth P. Vogel's 738-word November 20 Politico article:
Glenn Beck, the controversial Fox News television host, is planning on becoming more active in the populist conservative movement he spawned, according to sources familiar with his thinking.
At a rally Saturday at a massive retirement community in Central Florida, Beck is planning to unveil what he has billed as a "big plan" for 2010, which is expected to involve the 9.12 Project, the group he started earlier this year and named for the day after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, when he says the nation was unified.
"Coming this January, my whole approach changes on this program," he hinted cryptically on his Wednesday show. "This next year is going to be critical, and I think it's going to change and I think we are going to set it right, at least set our course right. And if that means the Democrats or the Republicans are destroyed along the way, well, good. Good."
Beck's Saturday rally, which is set for 3 p.m., is timed to coincide with the kickoff of a tour promoting his new book, "Arguing with Idiots."