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Political Editors / Apr. 1, 2021

In Brief: Leftmedia Hacks Target Citizens

Glenn Greenwald rebukes USA Today for its coverage of Capitol rioters.

British journalist Glenn Greenwald is no conservative, but he’s also an old-school journalist who gives no quarter to the leftist hacks and activists that populate modern newsrooms. In one of his latest installments of his newsletter, he slams the “brave and intrepid journalistic work” of a couple of USA Today reporters. What did they do to earn his ire? They outed and harassed private citizens for daring to raise money for legal defense.

On Sunday, the paper published and heavily promoted a repellent article complaining that “defendants accused in the Capitol riot Jan. 6 crowdfund their legal fees online, using popular payment processors and an expanding network of fundraising platforms, despite a crackdown by tech companies.” It provided a road map for snitching on how these private citizens — who are charged with serious felonies by the U.S. Justice Department but as of yet convicted of nothing — are engaged in “a game of cat-and-mouse as they spring from one fundraising tool to another” in order to avoid bans on their ability to raise desperately needed funds to pay their criminal lawyers to mount a vigorous defense.

In other words, the only purpose of the article — headlined: “Insurrection fundraiser: Capitol riot extremists, Trump supporters raise money for lawyer bills online” — was to pressure and shame tech companies to do more to block these criminal defendants from being able to raise funds for their legal fees, and to tattle to tech companies by showing them what techniques these indigent defendants are using to raise money online.

The USA Today reporters went far beyond merely reporting how this fundraising was being conducted. They went so far as to tattle to PayPal and other funding sites on two of those defendants, Joe Biggs and Dominic Pezzola, and then boasted of their success in having their accounts terminated.

He mocks and rebukes them for “working as little police officers for tech giants” instead of actually speaking truth to power. He reminds his readers that “the right to a vigorous defense … caused then-candidate Kamala Harris to solicit donations last summer that went to protesters charged with violent rioting.” USA Today didn’t complain much about that. Moreover, he says:

This USA Today article is thus yet another example of journalists at major media outlets abusing their platforms to attack and expose anything other than the real power centers which compose the ruling class and govern the U.S.

Meanwhile, he relays numerous examples of big, powerful media companies targeting private citizens for destruction, before concluding:

My principal critique of the contemporary media posture — and my governing view of the real purpose of journalism — is summarized by this: If you think the real power centers in the US are the Proud Boys, 4Chan & Boogaloos rather than the CIA, FBI, NSA, Wall Street and Silicon Valley, and spend most of your time battling the former while serving the latter as stenographers, your journalism is definitionally s—t.

Read the whole thing here.

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