Friday, August 22, 2014

Beware of 'journalist' filmmakers with big money

Beware of 'journalists' with video cameras 

and big money

CMD Targeted by Attack-Dog "Journalists" 

By Center for Media Democracy
Indigenous Resistance

Dear CMD/Progressive supporter,

At the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) there is an awful lot of good fortune coming our way.
First, a mysterious Middle East millionaire wanted to give us a boatload of money to produce a documentary on fracking and global warming (we declined).
Then our Lisa Graves was showered with compliments on our investigations into undisclosed election spending as a team repeatedly tried to get her on film at a recent Netroots Nation conference. When she asked them for their contact information, they claimed to have no email or Twitter accounts (at Netroots? Really?). The duo followed her to a private party and one stalked her down a hotel hallway at 2:00 in the morning, prompting another writer to intervene.

Now another deep-pocketed mystery funder wants to bankroll us to help with a film about the impact of dark money on the African American community -- a great idea frankly as the Koch-fueled attack on health care is resulting in governors, like our own Scott Walker, rejecting federal funds for expanded health care coverage.
But alas, we fear that the film idea is yet another scam designed for another phony "gotcha" moment.
When I met with the film maker it quickly became clear she knew very little about the topic of undisclosed dark money in campaigns and elections. She had no candidates, races or specific issues in mind. She did seem willing, however, to send us money to help her with her film. The incident has all the hallmarks of a James O'Keefe stunt.
If you don't know Mr. O’Keefe, he first hit Fox News wearing pimp garb and peddling a distorted video targeting ACORN, a nationwide association of community groups which had a long track record of effectively registering low income Americans to vote. That effort was followed up by more video lies about USDA official Shirley Sherrod, plus hatchet jobs on NPR and Planned Parenthood. And how can we forget O'Keefe's effort to “probe” U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu’s office? A spectacular move that got him arrested by the FBI.
It was O’Keefe who was behind the fantasy Middle Eastern millionaire. He attempted, but failed to sting "Gaslands" producer Josh Fox with that one.
Now O'Keefe or one of his ilk appears to have CMD in his sights.
Will you take action now to support our investigations that these groups are trying to suppress?
O’Keefe is known to get some portion of his funding from the Koch-funded Donor’s Trust and Donor’s Capitol. The twin donor-advised funds were specifically designed to allow politically motivated right-wing individuals and corporations to remain hidden when "funding sensitive or controversial issues.”
CMD is an expert in these type of dark money flows and we have profiles of all the major groups (and O'Keefe) in our Sourcewatch wiki.
We can't continue to be independent and report on the undisclosed money undermining our democracy with out your help. Will you consider a $25, $50 or $100 dollar donation today?
Thank you for all you do to make our democracy stronger!

Mary Bottari and the whole team at CMD and The Progressive
Center for Media and Democracy
409 East Main Street, Suite 100
Madison, Wisconsin 53703-4929
Phone: 608-260-9713
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