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A letter to NewsMax

The following letter was e-mailed to NewsMax's Christopher Ruddy on Nov. 1:

Dear Mr. Ruddy:

NewsMax has been, over the past several months, critical of Teresa Heinz Kerry, wife of presidential candidate John Kerry, for being slow to release her personal financial records to the public.

I expect that this spirit of enthusiasm about financial disclosure in political campaigns will also apply to NewsMax's own political activities. Thus, I expect NewsMax Media Inc. to disclose to the public the amount of money it has spent on airtime to air the film "Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal," in both monetary terms and amount of employee time devoted to the logistics of these activities, and the sources of that money, including how much it has received in donations toward airtime of the film through solicitations on the NewsMax web site. After all, despite NewsMax's claim of "newsworthiness," NewsMax has made no attempt to alert its online or broadcast audience to several factual errors in the film that others have documented; indeed, a New York Times review of "Stolen Honor" called the film "often specious." This refusal to tell a balanced, factual story to the public indicates that NewsMax is more interested in making a partisan political statement of dubious veracity than reporting genuine news. Such activity would seem to place it under the purview of federal election law, which encourages, if not mandates, public disclosure of finances.

An Oct. 29 e-mail to subscribers states that "NewsMax is committed to the public's right to know on matters of public policy." I hope that policy applies to NewsMax's own activities in the public policy arena with its sponsorship of "Stolen Honor." I am looking forward to the disclosure of this information to the public.


Terry Krepel
Editor, ConWebWatch

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Posted 11/1/2004

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