The MRC's Dirty War Against George Soros Continues
In addition to the usual attacks, the Media Research Center is freaking out that a company tangentally linked to Soros is buying Spanish-language radio stations -- and it still bizarrely believes that Soros controls content on (user-written) Wikipedia.
By Terry Krepel
ConWebWatch has noted how the MRC was blaming Soros for pointing out that two straight quarters of negative GDP may not be a completely reliable indicator of a recession.
Meanwhile, the MRC was similarly appalled that Soros was being allowed to express opinions on a website he helped pay for. Jeffrey Clark ranted in a July 5 post:
Liberal billionaire George Soros claimed that the greatest threat to the U.S. is “far-right extremists” on the U.S. Supreme Court and not dictators like China’s Xi Jinping or Russia’s Vladimir Putin.
Of course, any content that's even slightly to the left of the right-wing rants published by the MRC are "radical" and "extremist" in Clark's eyes. Indeed, so opposed is Clark to the mere idea of Soros being allowed to express an opinion that he bizarrely complained that "Soros then ridiculously suggested that because he is partisan, he can comment on nonpartisan issues." Clark has never applied that logic to any of his MRC co-workers.
An Aug. 1 post by Clark ranted that Soros "is pushing back big time against critics of woke prosecutors that he helped elect across the country. He claimed in a recent commentary that the 'agenda' of his 'reform-minded prosecutors' is both 'popular' and 'effective.'” But he hid the fact that the op-ed appeared in the Wall Street Journal -- hardly a "radical leftist opinion site." Clark apparently didn't want to admit that a Rupert Murdoch-owned publication bets known for its right-wing commentary deviated from that agenda to publish something written by Soros.
The MRC finished out 2022 with even more anti-Soros attacks:
Note that some of these items are lashing out at Soros-linked efforts to remove disinformation on social media, which are dishonestly framed as "censorship" or framed as "so-called disinfo," as if there was no objective definition of the word.
Vazquez used a Dec. 18 post to again push his bizarre claim that Soros directly controls the content of Wikipedia:
Leftists at the George Soros-funded Wikipedia attempted to paint the elitist journalists who shared the real-time flight location information of Twitter owner Elon Musk as victims of a “massacre.”
Vazquez is apparently too young to understand what metaphors are, or to know that the term is, in fact, an allusion to the infamous "Saturday Night Massacre," in which President Nixon order the attorney general to fire the special prosecutor looking into the Watergate scandal (he and his chief deputy resigned rather than do so, leaving the third in command, future failed Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork, to do the dirty work).
Vazquez concluded by ranting:
The irony is that Soros said at the time of his endowment to Wikipedia that his gift “represents a commitment to the ideals of open knowledgeand to the long-term importance of free knowledge sources that benefit people around the world.” Apparently the “ideals” Soros’ Wikipedia funding supports are only those that cater to leftist propaganda.
Vazquez is obviously so consumed with irrational hatred of Soros that he doesn't understand that its Wikipedia articles are written by website users, not Soros himself.
The MRC cheered the anti-Soros propaganda of of the right-wing Convention of States. A Sept. 30 post by Jeffrey Clark detailed the softball inter view his boss, Brent Bozell, gave to the head of a group that wants a constitutional convention (but don't call it that):
Convention of States president Mark Meckler torched the George Soros-funded, anti-American organizations working to undermine his mission of “restor[ing] a culture of self-governance in America and to curtail federal overreach.”
The need to tie any critics of Mecker's group to Soros was not explained -- aside, of course, from the kneejerk demonizing of Soros endemic in right-wing circles -- nor did Meckler offer proof that all 230 organizations who signed the statement were "leftist."
Unsurprisingly, the MRC tried to work its hatred for Soros into its pro-Elon Musk narratives regarding Twitter. A Nov. 17 item by Clark complained that "Two groups linked to failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and liberal billionaire George Soros are behind a massive pressure campaign aimed at sinking Twitter and destroying its advertising revenue after Elon Musk took control of the platform," complaining further that "Soros gave $450,000 to UltraViolet Action, the lobbying arm of UltraViolet, in 2020 alone." Vazquez ranted in a Nov. 30 post:
A group funded by liberal billionaire George Soros is pressuring the federal government to investigate the world’s richest man simply because he now owns Twitter.
As if the war on Soros by Vazquez and the rest of the MRC wasn't heavily based in absurd fear-mongering language.
A Dec. 21 post by Vazquez parroted claims from hand-picked "independent journalist" Michael Schellenberger (who was taking his orders from Musk, so there's lots of questions about just how "independent" he is) about how "A radical group heavily funded by leftist billionaire George Soros has now been linked to Twitter’s FBI-influenced effort to squash the Hunter Biden laptop scandal" -- specifically, the Aspen Institute. Vazquez never explained what, exactly, made this group so "radical"; more of that absurd fear-mongering language, apparently.
MRC ties Twitter whistleblower to Soros
At the MRC, you're a good whistleblower only if you advance right-wing narratives, like Peiter “Mudge” Zatko did in bolstering Elon Musk's pre-purchase attacks on Twitter and like Frances Haugen did in criticizing Facebook (at least until Facebook started working behind the scenes with right-wing media outlets to attack her, at which point the MRC flipped as well).
When a whistleblower emerged who countered right-wing anti-Twitter narratives, the MRC was quick to attack by playing the Soros card in an attempt to discredit him. Vazquez threw a massive tantrum in a Sept. 23 post, whining that this whistleblower was distracting from Zatko's pro-Musk narrative:
The Washington Post found a so-called “whistleblower” connected to liberal billionaire George Soros to stoke hysteria about how former President Donald Trump’s Twitter account threatened the planet.
At no point did Vazquez disprove anything Navaroli said, and he didn't even bother to prove Navaroli is a "leftist" -- he was just mad that his preferred narratives were getting ignored by someone with at least as much credibility as Zatko offering a different story that was just as credible.
'Soros radio' meltdown
But it also reserved ire for media-related claims. A June 4 post by Jorge Bonilla (also in Spanish) freaked out that a non-conservative owners with a tangental tie to Soros are buying several Spanish-language radio stations in Florida and elsewhere:
After years of whining about "Spanish-language disinformation" and watching the Democrats continue to lose Hispanic electoral share to the GOP, the left has had enough.
Doesn't Bonilla's freakout over this business deal suggest that he's the one who doing the "panic move" here? Meanwhile, one observer pointed out that Radio Mambí is not just the "anti-communist" Bonilla describes it as; it's "anti-Democrat, anti-Biden, pro-Trump and spreads beliefs that Democrats stole the 2020 election and are conspiring to steal the 2022 midterms and the 2024 presidential election," and some hosts "have gone so far as to praise the militant far-right Proud Boys and speak favorably about violence as a way to combat 'a looming Democratic Party dictatorship.'"
As the deal moved closer to completion, the freakout continued -- coupled with whining about how right-wing misinformation about it was being called out. Jorge Bonilla huffed in a Nov. 6 post:
You can tell we’re at the tail end of another election cycle where the GOP is doing well with Hispanics, because as a recent report from CBS Mornings shows, the media have gone back to their favorite trope: “Spanish-language disinformation”.
Actually, Bonilla's freakout over the sale shows he's the one who's panicking, and that "data that shows that corporate Spanish-language media are the biggest disseminators of Spanish-language disinformation" he referenced -- which he hyped in an Oct. 30 post -- is actually nothing more than a poll conducted by the right-wing Latino group Bienvenido, so bias is to be assumed. He went on to whine:
In its one-sidedness, the report makes no note of the reasons why Hispanics are abandoning their designated media gatekeepers- only that they must be doing so due to "disinformation".
Given that Radio Mambi was filled with disinformation, that's not the bad thing Bonilla wants you to think it is, and perhaps those hosts quit to avoid being held accountable for their lies. Despite all that, Bonilla thought his post to be so important that it was translated into Spanish.
In a Nov. 13 post (also translated into Spanish), Bonilla complained that it was "obnoxious and bigoted" for former White House press secretary Jen Psaki to point out the "massive disinformation problem in Spanish language media" that fed a narrative of Hispanics shifting rightward that was dispelled by the results of the midterm elections, going on to huff:
This talking point was echoed half an hour later by Latino Media Network (“Radio Soros”) board member, former Univision anchor and current ABC contributor María Elena Salinas, who tried to reassure liberals by saying that the GOP’s Hispanic vote blowout in Florida is “not indicative of the national Latino vote. Florida is a very small fraction of the Latino vote on a national level, so, we have to be careful not to read too much into this. This is just Florida.”
The right-wing narrative is totally real, Bonilla insisted, actual election results notwithstanding:
No one said that the ongoing Hispanic shift to the right would happen in one or two cycles. The shift is rooted in things that have been happening over the course of several decades, separate from the current issue arrays. The effort to conflate the shift to the stillborn red wave is intended to be disinformation and suppressive.
When the radio deal was cleared by federal officials, Bonilla went into another freakout in a Nov. 22 post (again, translated into Spanish):
As expected, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has cleared the way for the Soros-backed Latino Media Network’s (LMN) purchase of 18 Televisa Univision radio stations, among them Miami’s Radio Mambí.
You mean all those partisan right-wing disinformers in right-wing Hispanic radio weren't exerting undue influence upon our elections? Only liberals are capable of "exerting undue influence," apparently. Bonilla's whinefest continued:
With the last significant roadblock removed, the Soros-backed Latino Media Network can finalize its purchase of the Univision stations, neuter or kill anti-communist bastion Radio Mambí, and attempt to exert influence upon the 2024 election across the nation’s top Hispanic markets, which include such places as the Rio Grande Valley (McAllen, TX) and Las Vegas.
Bonilla ignored the fact that those right-wing disinfo-pumping stations were found not to be trusted purveyors of information -- portraying Radio Mambi as "anti-communist" doesn't give it exemption from facts.
Bonilla continued whining in a Nov. 26 post (yes, it's also in Spanish) complaining that PolitiFact is hiring a Spanish-language fact-checker:
The hunt for “Spanish-language disinformation” is proving to be America’s fastest-growing grift: so much so that Politifact is now itching to get into the game.
If calling out Spanish-language disinformation is a "grift," then defending that disinformation as Bonilla does has to be one too. But grifters won't tell you about the grift -- they simply accuse others of what they're doing.