The connective tissue between progressives and the New York Times (a progressive mouthpiece) will forever remain secure, never mind the truth of any tale benefiting the conservative agenda. The Isley Brother’s version of “Twist & Shout©,” routines are common operational technique with the “Times,” and their sister prostituted media.
Their gnashing of teeth and wringing of hands will forever be the trademark of manufactured excuses placed at the feet of their progressive masters. They will never grasp the truth, or if they do, their lack of conscience and honesty will not allow them to tell it.
The American Spectator offers some perfect examples of the progressive way of reporting imperfectly in the cribs of the publishing houses of ill repute.
Posted: 29 May 2013 12:59 PM PDT
Kaylin is absolutely right about the recent New York Times article on the IRS scandal. The piece alleges that certain groups applying for tax-exempt status deserved to be scrutinized, and that may be true. But it also ignores two weeks of developments in the scandal, including that conservative applications were blocked entirely for 27 months; that the scope of the audits went far beyond 501(c)(4)s; that the harassment wasn’t just carried out by the IRS, but also the Department of Labor, the ATF, the FBI, and OSHA; and that several applications were inappropriately leaked by the IRS to left-wing news outlet ProPublica.
Now the Times’s myopic article is metastasizing across the left. Here’s Steve Benen:
Given this, it’s simply absurd to assume that every conservative group subjected to lengthy IRS examination is a victim of an out-of-control agency acting on partisan motivations. If our tax laws are going to have any meaning, groups like these should be subjected to detailed IRS scrutiny. These aren’t examples of the agency going too far; they’re examples of the agency doing its job.
None of this is to say an investigation of the IRS’s process is unnecessary. There are documented instances when the agency stepped beyond the lines of acceptability. What this shows, however, is that there’s still no substance behind the idea that it was engaged in political or ideological targeting.
Under the law, 501(c)(4)s cannot be “primarily engaged” in electioneering activity. Though the guidelines for acceptable levels of political activity are unclear, organizations with such designations operate under the understanding that they are prohibited from spending more than 49 percent of their funds or time on political advocacy.
The IRS wasn’t engaged in political targeting…when it stalled all Tea Party applications for more than two years while waving through liberal ones? The groups were violating election law…and that’s why the DoL was sent in to audit a Romney donor? It may very well be true that 501(c)(4) status is abused and that several conservative groups should have been more closely examined. But that information must be placed in the greater context of this story.
And for the most part, that greater context has been ignored by left-wing pundits. We’ve sat through a lot of supercilious back-patting over the past few years about how conservatives, unlike liberals, are stuck in a bubble where they only communicate with each other in between painful flare-ups of epistemic closure. But what happens when a real story, amounting to an authentic and widespread abuse of power, is discussed almost exclusively within that conservative bubble? It means that those who don’t follow right-wing media end up gazing at the spectacle through a keyhole, discussing that tiny view with those of like minds while missing out on the lion’s share of the story.
Come to think of it, that sounds a bit like a bubble doesn’t it?
Posted: 29 May 2013 10:27 AM PDT
Over the weekend, the New York Times published an article asserting that some conservative groups targeted by the IRS deserved it.
The headline, “Groups Targeted by I.R.S. Tested Rules on Politics” makes it sound like the only groups that were targeted were breaking the rules. Then they go on to cite several examples of groups that may have been engaging in too much political activity to be considered a 501(c)(4).
After the tax agency was denounced in recent weeks by President Obama, lawmakers and critics for what they described as improper scrutiny of at least 100 groups seeking I.R.S. recognition, The New York Times examined more than a dozen of the organizations.
This explanation is incredibly limited. In the past few weeks, the true depth of the scandal has been exposed. It wasn’t limited to a few lower-level employees in the Cincinnati office, which was the original story. It wasn’t even limited to the IRS. Conservative groups have said they were targeted by the Labor Department, the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, and even the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
The idea that this targeting was limited to 100 groups and that many of them deserved it is outrageous. Did some groups participate in activities that should have disqualified them from 501(c)(4) status? Probably. And I’m sure the same abuses could be found with some liberal groups, too.
But the extent of the targeting is not reflected in the article. It makes it sound like these groups just had their applications pulled aside, which is absolutely false. No conservative organizations applying for 501(c)(4) status had their applications approved for 27 months—not one—while progressive groups participating in similar types of activities had their applications approved without trouble.
Liberals love to complain about a right-wing noise machine that adds no substance to the conversation. It’s clear from this article, though, that the New York Times needs to pay more attention to the reporting coming out of that “noise machine,” because it’s way behind on the facts.