Weekly Featured Profile – Tom Tilden


Tom Tilden

Tom Tilden, is 2nd Associate-chair of the Nebraska Democratic Party. A position he won in 2016. He is also a Marxist, a leader of the recently founded Omaha Democratic Socialists of America.

Tom Tilden, a longtime activist in Omaha, was one of the key Sanders grassroots leaders in Nebraska. After some encouragement from the Progressive Democrats of America, Tom Tilden, is among those Democratic Socialists of America members setting up shop for socialism deep in Trump country. Tilden is a DSA veteran, having joined when he lived in Chicago in the late ’80s. But when he moved to Nebraska in 1993, Tilden says, he didn’t consider starting a new chapter there, though he remained a member of the national organization. When people talk about “the Left” in conservative Nebraska, Tilden explains, they’re referring to “people in the middle of the Democratic Party leftward. ‘The Left’ is progressive. People don’t usually think in terms of socialist.”

Tilden sees potential in building institutions outside the Democratic Party, but is also a firm believer in trying to stage a takeover from the inside. This fall, he joined Keystone XL pipeline opponent Jane Kleeb on the ticket to run Nebraska’s Democratic Party. She’s now the party’s state chair. Tilden is second associate chair and has similar goals for his work in this position as he does as a local DSA organizer: Reaching working-class voters, especially those who went for Trump, but might yet be won over to the kind of anti-racist, anti-capitalist movement that DSA hopes to build.

“People in rural Nebraska are more progressive than they realize,” Tilden reasons. While door-knocking during the Sanders campaign, he and other volunteers found that many rural voters took firm stands against corporate agriculture and attacks on public education. “I think once we work with them on their issue, they’ll see that the people on their side are not the Republicans.”

Bold Nebraska protesters held a rally in Omaha on January 20th, 2016 to convince senators to reject some of president-elect Trump’s cabinet picks.

The group held a rally at Sen. Deb Fischer‘s office as part of a nationwide “Day Against Denial,” calling on all 100 U.S. Senators to reject President-elect Trump’s climate-denying cabinet selections.

Those in attendance said they were fighting against Trump’s cabinet picks including Rex Tillerson, CEO of Exxon, for Secretary of State, Scott Pruitt for the EPA Administration, Ex-Gov. Rick Perry for Secretary of Energy and Rep. Ryan Zinke for the Department of Interior.

“I want to make sure the Senator knows that this is important issue and there is a lot of people who care about the climate and the choice is here are you on the side of science or are you on the side of Exxon, big energy companies, are you for them or for science? It’s one of the other,” said demonstrator Tom Tilden.

Rally goers said anyone who denies climate change shouldn’t be in the White House cabinet.

(Tom Tilden|more…)


Free Judge Napolitano!

By: Cliff Kincaid | Accuracy in Media

BuzzFeed, described by Wikipedia as “a liberal American internet media company based in New York City,” is in the “donor spotlight” at the national news museum in Washington, D.C., known as the Newseum. The “honor” demonstrates how the media have changed and how low they have sunk.

A virtual property of Comcast Corp.’s NBCUniversal, BuzzFeed has been a cog in the anti-Trump media machine.

The “donor spotlight” designation is strangely appropriate, since BuzzFeed disclosed the so-called “Trump Dossier” used by the intelligence community to smear President Trump. “The allegations are unverified, and the report contains errors,” the social media site acknowledged while spreading the dubious claims.

By contrast, the John Peter Zenger exhibit located in the Newseum highlights a printer whose publication used the weapon of truth. The Newseum tells us, “German immigrant John Peter Zenger became a free-press hero before there was a First Amendment. On Nov. 17, 1734, the newspaper publisher was jailed for printing truthful articles in his New-York Weekly Journal accusing British Colonial governor William Cosby of being corrupt.”

The “Trump Dossier” released by BuzzFeed was concocted by a former British intelligence agent, and turned over to James Comey’s FBI. Around that time, in July of 2016, notes columnist Lawrence Sellin, the FBI launched its investigation of the unproven connections between the Trump campaign and the Russians. Comey told Congress that the Bureau has been actively investigating possible links between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin since “late July” of 2016.

“What a coincidence,” writes Sellin, a retired colonel with 29 years of service in the U.S. Army Reserve and a veteran of Afghanistan and Iraq. This means that “the FBI investigation was based on highly questionable evidence” for which former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele reportedly “paid intermediaries who in turn paid sources for the information he used in the report.” In other words, he says, they were third-hand rumors from unidentified individuals. Sellin adds, “Remarkably, along with Trump’s political opponents, the Obama-Comey FBI planned to pay Steele to continue his work.”

The British link is significant. While Fox News commentator Judge Andrew Napolitano has been suspended for suggesting that the British NSA, known as GCHQ, had access to the surveillance information used against Trump, the two organizations do in fact have a history of working closely together.

This is shaping up as an example of how the Deep State operates, writes Sellin. In this case, intelligence arrangements are made “that open the possibility for government officials to skirt inconvenient national laws in order to surveil citizens and then use the products of that surveillance for political purposes.”

For raising necessary questions about this arrangement, Napolitano was reportedly banned from Fox News. He is the modern-day John Peter Zenger. However, his March 16 column, “Did Obama Spy on Trump?” is still on his website and looks increasingly relevant every day that passes.

This has been a major black mark for Fox News. Still, Fox News personalities like Sean Hannity are trying to cover the deepening scandal involving Obama administration surveillance of Trump and his associates.

The role that has been played by Comcast and its properties in the anti-Trump campaign is a teachable moment that allows us to reflect on the meaning of the First Amendment and how modern media have left behind the legacy of John Peter Zenger.

In contrast to Zenger, who used the weapon of truth against public officials, BuzzFeed used lies that were apparently devised for partisan political purposes by a foreign operative.

Referring to Comcast and others, Trump adviser Peter Navarro said during the campaign, “Donald Trump will break up the new media conglomerate oligopolies that have gained enormous control over our information, intrude into our personal lives, and in this election, are attempting to unduly influence America’s political process.”

BuzzFeed has been forced to apologize to one of those named in the Trump Dossier, in preparation for a suit filed against them.

By contrast, Zenger was found not guilty of seditious libel after his attorney, Alexander Hamilton, said, “It is not the cause of one poor printer, but the cause of liberty.”

Rather than being given a distinction as a valued donor, perhaps an exhibit in the Newseum should highlight BuzzFeed as an example of the politically-correct corporate media that today makes a mockery of First Amendment values.

At the same time, the Newseum should consider embracing the cause of freeing Judge Napolitano.

There’s no money in doing so. It would just be the right thing to do. It would be a reaffirmation of First Amendment values.

Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at [email protected] View the complete archives from Cliff Kincaid.


Susan Rice is the Wrong Person to Attack Trump’s Credibility

By: Roger Aronoff | Accuracy in Media

In a recent opinion column for The Washington Post, former United Nations ambassador and national security advisor to Barack Obama, Susan Rice, had the temerity to lecture President Donald Trump about telling the truth. She writes that “our friends must be able to trust the word of the U.S. president.”

This extends far beyond hypocrisy coming from a person who visited five Sunday talk shows to peddle administration falsehoods about the 2012 terror attacks in Benghazi, Libya. In addition, she served in those positions during a period of other disastrous foreign policy decisions—deceptively sold to the American people—such as the Iran nuclear deal and the entire Libyan debacle.

Regarding her appearance on five Sunday shows the weekend following the terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Rice said that “Based on the best information we have to date, what our assessment is as of the present, is in fact it began spontaneously in Benghazi, as a reaction to what had transpired hours earlier in Cairo, where of course as you know there was a violent protest outside of our embassy, sparked by this hateful video.”

In other words, Rice lied and said that the origin of the Benghazi attacks was a protest sparked by the “Innocence of Muslims” video. In reality, the attacks were premeditated and organized by jihadists who attacked the U.S. Special Mission compound without warning. “Again, sir,” said former head of AFRICOM General Carter Ham, “I think, you know, there was some preliminary discussion about, you know, maybe there was a demonstration. But I think at the command, I personally and I think the command very quickly got to the point that this was not a demonstration, this was a terrorist attack.” That discussion took place between Ham and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and General Martin Dempsey the night of the attack.

As we have pointed out, Rice was preceded on CBS’s “Face the Nation” by Mohamed El-Magariaf, then Libyan National Congress president, who characterized the attacks as “preplanned” and perpetrated by extremists. In her comments immediately following Magariaf’s, Rice stuck to the false story that this was really about the YouTube video.

But where did Rice get these ideas in the first place? The Washington Examiner reported that the House Select Committee on Benghazi found that “before going on TV, Rice was briefed only by Obama’s political team, not anyone from the FBI, CIA or the Defense Department.” In other words, Rice was peddling an official administration narrative.

Yet Rice has the gall to lecture President Trump about truthfulness when she and Obama were caught telling numerous lies. It also shows the lengths that The Washington Post will go to in its constant campaign to discredit and undermine the Trump presidency. Rice writes, “To lead effectively, the United States must maintain respect and trust. So, when a White House deliberately dissembles and serially contorts the facts, its actions pose a serious risk to America’s global leadership, among friends and adversaries alike.”

If the left-wing, mainstream media had any say about how the Benghazi scandal was covered, both Rice and Obama would emerge unscathed from their deceptions. NBC News, in its reporting on her column, left mention of Rice’s deceit to the last paragraph and then characterized the controversy as one manufactured by Republicans. “Rice had been lined up to replace Hillary Clinton as President Barack Obama’s secretary of state,” Alastair Jamieson reports, “but dropped out of the running after she was criticized by Republicans for initially characterizing the assault on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, as opportunistic when evidence later emerged that it was a premeditated attack.” While Jamieson claims that “evidence later emerged,” we have noted that there was evidence that this was a premeditated, terrorist attack on the very night of the attack. Hillary’s emails proved that she knew it was al-Qaeda related, based on her emails to her daughter, as well as communications with the president of Libya and the prime minister of Egypt. President Obama and his administration simply chose to lie about its nature.

This wouldn’t be the first, or the last, of Obama’s falsehoods. The intervention in Libya was based upon the false assertion that Muammar Qaddafi was about to massacre tens of thousands of innocent civilians in Benghazi. Yet later in his term Obama stood by while hundreds of thousands died due to the conflict in Syria. While the initial intervention into Libya was based upon a limited mission of establishing a no fly zone, this was quickly turned into a vendetta to help the rebels remove Qaddafi. As the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi has revealed, Qaddafi was prepared to negotiate his abdication under a white flag of truce; the administration scuttled that offer.

Obama was not honest about the unsigned Iran deal, either. While he claimed that this political arrangement would prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons, the agreement is, in fact, designed to legitimize the Iranian nuclear program. The mainstream media have been dishonest about the deal, as well, referring to it as signed when it is little more than a collection of political commitments. Obama has referred to it as signed as well, when he obviously knows it is not.

In her article, Rice boasts that “Obama built broad coalitions to combat the Islamic State.” The truth is that this phony coalition stood by as ISIS grew from being the “JV,” as Obama described it, to having committed 140 terrorist attacks in 31 countries, as reported by CNN last month. That doesn’t even count the beheadings, endless slaughter and misery caused by these Islamic jihadists.

Obama as president also lied about the state of the economy by focusing on the unemployment rate while ignoring the abysmal labor participation rate. And he lied about whether Americans could keep their doctors if they wanted to under Obamacare. He lied about his administration’s IRS scandal, and about his knowledge of his administration’s national security scandal tied to his secretary of state, Hillary Clinton’s, use of a private, unsecured email server for classified material, including Top Secret documents.

“When the American people question the commander in chief’s statements, his ability to harness public support to confront a national crisis is undermined,” writes Rice for the Post. Rice is certainly holding Trump to a higher standard than she did her own boss, Barack Obama. But she isn’t alone. The same media were in constant protect-and-defend mode for their favorite president. Now that Trump is President, they have rediscovered their inner-journalist.

Rice herself refuses to admit that she lied to the public. In 2013 she told CBS’s “60 Minutes” that she didn’t have time for a “false controversy.” And in 2014 she told NBC’s “Meet the Press” that she had “commented that this was based on what we knew on that morning, was provided to me and my colleagues, and indeed, to Congress, by the intelligence community. And that’s been well validated in many different ways since.”

While Rice claims that it is Trump who is on “vacation from veracity,” she clearly has problems with accepting and telling the truth herself. Her empty justifications and refusal to atone for, or even admit to, her dissembling means that she is uniquely unqualified to lecture our current president about honesty. So while Trump is fair game, and should certainly be held accountable for the accuracy of his statements as well, surely the Post could find a better source to make that case.

Roger Aronoff is the Editor of Accuracy in Media, and a member of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi. He can be contacted at [email protected]. View the complete archives from Roger Aronoff.