Let’s look at the New York Times through the frame of the recent 2016 US Presidential Election.
What happens if presidential news coverage becomes presidential propaganda? How can the public determine if they are getting the “real story”? In today’s day and age-what’s trustworthy and what’s not?
The New York Times reporting of the Democratic National Convention in Nevada, 2016
Thrown chairs. Leaked cellphone numbers. Death threats spewed across the internet.
With those two words, the NY Times opened their article about the Nevada Democratic Convention on May 14, 2016.
The problem is, it never happened.
The article goes on to portray Sanders supporters as violent aggressors and accuse them of threatening to harm people, even children:
“It’s been threatening messages, threatening my family, threatening my life, threatening my grandchild.”
If one listens to the evidence, The New York Times provides to substantiate Ms. Lange’s claims, a soft-spoken woman on a voicemail says the following:
Hi Roberta Lange, I’m pretty sure you’re not going to get back to me, because you don’t care about the American people. But what you did today-it was corrupt, it was wrong, and the Founding Fathers of our country would be ashamed of you. You deserve to be in prison, not the Chairman of the Democratic Party.
Those that were at the convention make reference to illegal rule changes, made by Chairwoman Lange.
The Republican stronghold Fox News reported the convention as a reaction to unfair rule changes and disqualification of delegates.
The article below the live news report, further stating:
Law enforcement officers and hotel security quickly formed a line in front of the stage as an unidentified individual pleaded with the crowd to exit. At one point several lights in the hall were reportedly turned off to try to get attendees to leave. Eventually, the attendees in the room peacefully dispersed. No arrests were reported.
Yet the NY Times reported:
“The convention concluded abruptly after security staff no longer felt it could ensure the safety of the participants, many of whom were yelling and throwing things.”
The New York Times True or False?
Alternative news sources published exhaustively-sourced articles the day after, on May 15, 2016 explaining what happened, using videos and testimony from the people in the room at the time, to dispel the myth of violence perpetrated by the Times.
Many people saw this as the beginning of the NY Times “fall from grace”, as evidenced in this now-famous clip from Frank Puig who sorrowfully ended his 50 year relationship with the NY Times over its treatment of Bernie Sanders and posted it online.
Frank Puig posts his “break-up” with The New York Times.
Even the liberal NPR, begrudgingly admitted
When Ralston's reporting came under question, we adjusted our language," by not repeating the word "thrown”.
The reporting of the events by the New York Times and other mainstream news media outlets came under fire when multiple videos emerged of Senator Barbara Boxer mocking delegates and flipping the middle finger to people as she left the stage.
Why would the New York Times lie about violence, “threats” and chairs being thrown, but not report on the claim of the delegates; that illegal rule changes made by the Chairwoman, were at the heart of the row?
State Senator Nina Turner -who was in the room- states outright of the claims made by the media:
“it really is a convenient narrative that mainstream media has going on right now, and also the DNC (Democratic National Committee), to malign the integrity and the intent of the supporters of Bernie Sanders, wholesale.”
The claim that Senator Turner makes -that the liberal mainstream media would be lying to help one particular Presidential candidate by “maligning the integrity” another- is very serious. Is there any substantiation to such a claim?
What evidence, if any, is there that The New York Times has an unethical bias towards Hillary Clinton?
In 2008, it was suggested there was a conflict of interest when the New York Times endorsed Hillary Clinton for President, after she gave a $100,000 charitable donation to the NY Times that same year.
Almost 10 years ago now, it’s worth noting that majority ownership of The New York Times has changed hands since that time.
NY Times Majority Owner Carlos Slim
In January of 2015 , Mexican billionaire, Carlos Slim became the top owner of The New York Times.
Only 4 months earlier, Hillary Clinton was a featured speaker at the annual gala for Carlos Slim’s charity after his organization donated 250,000 to the Clinton Foundation.
“Billionaire Carlos Slim’s contribution to the Clinton Foundation is paying off”
Hillary Clinton hugs Carlos Slim in 2014 / Credit: The Telmex Foundation
Slim proudly lists Bill Clinton among his supporters on his personal website.
The Clinton Foundation presented Carlos Slim with a Clinton Global Citizen Award in 2012
Actress Eva Longoria handed the Clinton Global Citizen Award to Mr. Carlos Slim Helú because of his leadership in philanthropy
Credit: Adam Schultz/Clinton Global Initiative
Bill Clinton and Carlos Slim’s relationship dates back to at least 2008, when, along with Frank Giustra, the three sponsored a 20 million dollar works project in Mexico called the Clinton Giustra Sustainable Growth Initiative (CGSGI). Both Frank Giustra and Carlos Slim pledged 100 million each to The Clinton Foundation in 2009.
Both Carlos Slim and Frank Giustra donated to the Clinton Foundation in 2016, Giustra recently giving 25 million
Giustra, Clinton and Slim in 2008. Credit: CGSGI/Slim/Giustra
Of note is that in January of 2015, it was reported by Forbes, that Carlos Slim’s company TracFone Wireless was ordered to pay the Federal Trade Commission for using deceptive practices and defrauding customers.
So, while long-time Clinton friend, Carlos Slim was taking majority control of the New York Times, one of his companies was found guilty of deceptive practices and defrauding US customers to the tune of 40 million dollars.
What is WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks publishes large data-sets of leaked official materials “involving war, spying and corruption”. To understand the connection to crowd-sourcing and crime, it’s best to think of Wikileaks as an online safe, into which huge amounts of information and data are placed all at once, commonly referred to as a data dump.
The most important part about this online “safe” is that nothing can be placed inside of it which has not been verified to be authentic.
Although no organization can hope to have a perfect record forever, thus far WikiLeaks has a perfect record in document authentication and resistance to all censorship attempts.
How does this relate to investigative journalism?
Because of Wikileaks’s method of dumping huge piles of information online all at once, it becomes the work of researchers and the public-at-large to mine this information for anything which may or not be of relevance regarding events, illegal or otherwise, “involving war, spying and corruption.”
At the end of 2016, a story began to unfold online in the US referred to as “pizzagate”. The term “pizzagate” specifically refers to code language researchers believe they found in emails Wikileaked from Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager John Podesta.
Researchers believed the language alluded to organized pedophilia in elite US circles.
The New York Times and BBC published contemporary articles alleging the American pedophile scandal was fake.
While pizzagate investigations were unfolding online, an event took place in Washington DC on December 5th 2016 that became known as the “pizzagate shooter” incident. A man named Edgar Maddison Welch claimed to be on a mission to “free children” from a DC pizzeria named Comet Ping Pong, connected to the Podesta/Clinton friend group. He apparently walked in, shot a rifle in frustration when he found no children to “free”, and was arrested shortly thereafter.
“Pizzagate Shooter Edgar Maddison Welch”
The New York Times and the BBC’s coverage over time, merged the terms “pizzagate” and “pizzagate shooter” with the term “fake news”.
NY Times pizzagate: “fake news”
Nov 21 2016
BBC pizzagate: “fake story” and “conspiracy theory”
Dec 2 2016
NY Times pizzagate: “conspiracy theory” with “pizzagate shooter” story
Dec 5 2016
NY Times pizzagate: “fake news” with “pizzagate shooter” shooter story (https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/05/business/media/comet-ping-pong-pizza-shooting-fake-news-consequences.html)
Dec 5 2016
NY Times pizzagate: “conspiracy theory”
Dec 10 2016
Who is “pizzagate shooter” Edgar Maddison Welch?
With an “uncredited extra” (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1206881/?ref_=ttfc_fc_tt)part in The Bleeding (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1206881/?ref_=ttfc_fc_tt), (2009) Starring: Armand Assante, (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000800/?ref_=ttfc_fc_cl_t4) DMX, (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0229422/?ref_=ttfc_fc_cl_t8) Michael Madsen (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000514/?ref_=ttfc_fc_cl_t14)and famous British footballer, Vinnie Jones, (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0005068/?ref_=ttfc_fc_cl_t2) people have been wondering why The New York Times fails to mention it.
Who is Edgar’s Father, Harry L. Welch, Jr?
Edgar Maddison Welch’s father, Harry L. Welch Jr. also has an IMDb page
One of Harry Welch’s companies is a film production company called Forever Young Productions, Inc.
It’s not unusual to see he also has an IMDb page.
However, the things listed on his IMDb page are so far afield of film making, and are so unusual, they seem to be spoofs, or put another way, “fake”.
All of the items listed on the Harry L. Welch Jr. IMDb page, he confirms on his personal website (http://www.harrywelchjr.com/):
- Harry has been a NRA firearms instructor for over 35 years. He is rated as a Fire Arm Training Counselor, which enables him to train others trying to get their instructor's rating. Harry has taught hundreds of civilians, military, and law enforcement officers in the tactical use of firearms and CCW classes. He is recognized as an expert firearms witness by the North Carolina Supreme Court.
- Elected President of the North Carolina Crime Stoppers Association (two terms). Served as Executive Director for Protect-A-Child, a national, non-profit organization to prevent abuse and abduction of children. Appointed by Governor Jim Martin to the Governor's Commission on Child Victimization.
- In 1988, President Ronald Reagan selected Harry to join 15 other broadcasters to visit US Military Installation in Colorado. They received national clearance from the US Defense Department to visit the Cheyenne Mountain Nuclear Bunker the alternate command center for NORAD.
- Harry worked on federal, state and local task forces fighting the war on drugs. He served five years with the Rowan County ABC police. Duties included: stakeouts, watching illegal stills, patrolling the county for suspected bootleggers transporting non-tax paid whiskey, working undercover to purchase illegal liquor and participating in raids on stills and gambling houses. Their agency also worked with the U.S. Treasury Department's local office of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms which increased their coverage area to eight counties.
- Harry is a special deputy with the Iredell County Sheriff's Department.
Curiously, this Washington Post article written extensively about Edgar Maddison Welch’s parents and home-life, also never mentions that Harry Welch Jr. works in law enforcement, has done under-cover operations, was a broadcaster hand-picked by Reagan, is an expert in fire arms, has national security clearance from the Department of Defense, or that he:
Served as Executive Director for Protect-A-Child, a national, non-profit organization to prevent abuse and abduction of children.
This seems like an obvious connection to the story about his son rescuing children- yet it is never mentioned.
What is Forever Young Productions, Inc.?
Edgar Madison Welch, his father Harry L. Welch Jr. and his mom Terri, all work for their family-owned film production company called, Forever Young Productions, Inc.
They make films with and about children.
The public Facebook page of their film “Mermaid Treasure, shows Edgar acting .
Edgar is assisting in the production, tagged in these behind the scenes production photos.
They are the same photos on the website of Forever Young Productions.com.
Public pages on Facebook are in the Public Domain. (https://wiki.creativecommons.org/wiki/Public_domain)
Why is this significant?
If the New York Times had reported the story of a troubled actor from a family of child-rescuers, whose father was the president of an anti child abuse organization, there would be no issue. If they had reported it as the story of a troubled actor whose father works in law enforcement and who also owns and operates a film production company which makes films about children, there still might be no issue.
In reality, Edgar Madison Welch is an actor and marksman who walked into Comet Ping Pong Pizza and shot the computer. Charges filed against suspected "Pizzagate" gunman
Welch fired the rifle inside the restaurant, and rounds possibly hit the walls, door and a computer, all of which were damaged, police spokeswoman Karimah Bilal said.
If I wanted to hire someone to give me plausible deniability to destroy evidence of criminality on a company hard drive- while creating a wave of sympathy for me as the victim rather than a perpetrator, I would hire Edgar “Maddy” Welch to do exactly what he did.
It’s impossible to prove from that Edgar Madison Welch was just an actor, paid to play the “pizzagate shooter role” in a piece of “news-theater”.
Because of this uncovered information, it is also impossible to disprove.
What is real news and what is “fake news”?
Formally, the term “fake news” in popular language, as a descriptor- was not in use until recently. Researchers, suspicious of mainstream media by this time, wondered if the term “fake news” was manufactured and pumped out into “bogus” articles specifically in response to pizzagate- in order to “popularly discredit” the allegations without an investigation.
Google Trends appears to corroborate this notion and show a bump in “fake news” just ahead of “pizzagate” at the onset.
Researchers started to notice and track multiple waves of bots posting online in social media forums and added them to their “executive summaries” involving pizzagate itself:
Credit: Fully Sourced Executive Summary of Pizzagate Evidence | pizzagate (https://voat.co/v/pizzagate/1497611) /pbs. twimg dot com Credit: Fully Sourced Executive Summary of Pizzagate Evidence | pizzagate (https://voat.co/v/pizzagate/1497611) /img safe dot com
In an ironic twist, online researchers who created the website Pizzagate.com (http://pizzagate.com/) have offered $50,000 to anyone who can debunk their evidence without using “fake news” -which they describe as being Buzzfeed or CNN:
There is a $50,000 reward to anybody who can successfully debunk every point on Pizzagate is not fake news. (http://Pizzagate.com) If Pizzagate and Pedogate is fake news then do the work and collect your money. We are legally obligated to pay up, as rewards are considered to be unilateral contracts.
(https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/unilateral_contract) Please provide citations that do not bounce back to unsourced articles
(eg. fake news such as Buzzfeed or CNN).
What effect, if any, have these events had on the American public’s perception of media overall?
September 14 2016
Two months before the 2016 US Presidential Election a Gallup Poll taken revealed the lowest confidence in mainstream media in the entire 75 years of Gallup Poll history:
Credit: Gallup Poll
While it is clear Americans' trust in the media has been eroding over time, the election campaign may be the reason that it has fallen so sharply this year. With many Republican leaders and conservative pundits saying Hillary Clinton has received overly positive media attention, while Donald Trump has been receiving unfair or negative attention, this may be the prime reason their relatively low trust in the media has evaporated even more.