In the last two days, we’ve witnessed an ugly trainwreck among conservative activist journalists. The crash involved James O’ Keefe’s Project Veritas. That well-funded guerilla journalism group has a track record of investigating and exposing leftist organizations and leaders. It revealed systemic corruption among the federally-funded “community organizers” of ACORN. Veritas got Hollywood environmentalists on tape, accepting the offer of a fake Saudi “oil sheikh” to fund an anti-fracking documentary — in order to boost the price of crude oil.
All that was fun. It danced on the line between advocacy journalism and culture warrior pranksterism. There’s no reason, in principle, why the Right shouldn’t use such weapons. It’s not “beneath” us. The Trump election proved the limits of bringing a Boy Scout penknife to a gun fight.
Most importantly, O’Keefe worked with Lila Rose (now of Live Action) to expose Planned Parenthood employees. Posing as a pimp and several young women who posed as underage prostitutes, O’Keefe’s team found Planned Parenthood’s staffers ready and willing to break the law. They apparently knew all about how to cover up sex trafficking by arranging discreet abortions.
That investigation of Planned Parenthood led directly to the work of David Daleiden and the Center for Medical Progress. They exposed Planned Parenthood’s for-profit sale of unborn baby parts. Without O’Keefe, and the people he trained or inspired, we’d have no hard evidence of Planned Parenthood’s appalling organ trafficking business. Nor any hope of stripping that racist-founded group of hundreds of millions in federal funding.
Giving The Washington Post a Win
The latest Veritas project targeted The Washington Post, and misfired badly. Apparently, O’Keefe was deeply suspicious of The Post’s reporting on the underage sex allegations regarding Judge Roy Moore of Alabama. So O’Keefe decided to “sting” them. How? By offering them apparent evidence of an invented sex scandal concerning Moore. The goal? To see if The Post would run with shaky allegations. If it did, that would cast a cold light, he thought, on the stories The Post had run so far. O’Keefe also had employees use hidden cameras/mikes to try to catch Post employees admitting journalistic bias in their coverage of President Trump.
Read more at The Stream.