These McCarthyite Accusations Benefit No One And Harm Everyone


by Caitlin Johnstone, Caitlin Johnstone:

In response to the reprehensible NBC hit piece we discussed the other day in which Hawaii congresswoman and Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard was smeared as a darling of the Russian government, journalist Glenn Greenwald published an article documenting the astonishing amount of journalistic malpractice which went into the piece’s formation. In the article, Greenwald wrote the following:

“That’s because the playbook used by the axis of the Democratic Party, NBC,MSNBC, neocons, and the intelligence community has been, is, and will continue to be a very simple one: to smear any adversary of the establishment wing of the Democratic Party — whether on the left or the right — as a stooge or asset of the Kremlin.”

Displaying a remarkable lack of self-awareness, Democratic establishment pundit and professional Russiagater Caroline Orr responded to Gabbard’s share of this article on Twitter as follows:

“And here, Tulsi Gabbard cites a Kremlin propagandist to deny claims that Kremlin propagandists support her campaign.”

This demented McCarthyite mind virus was exemplified even more egregiously in a recent attack on comedian and progressive commentator Jimmy Dore, in which fellow comedian and former Daily Show producer Jena Friedman publicly accused him of being a Kremlin agent just for disagreeing with her. After Dore’s fan base reacted to this deranged smear as any sane person would expect them to, Friedman claimed that this was evidence of a coordinated campaign against her by Russian trolls and bots.

“I wouldn’t doubt it if Jimmy Dore was a Russian asset,” Friedman tweeted in response to Dore’s having criticized her crazed Louise Mensch-esque rantings. “Why else would he drag my name in the mud and misquote me when I said that Russian trolls are fueling the fire and radicalizing people online, which has been in Washington Post. It’s all so insidious. Be careful, friends.”

“The real tell of who the paid assets are is that they all seem to be so coordinated,” Friedman added. “Do you know which of the 999 Dem contenders you are voting for yet? I don’t but if RT and Jimmy Dore and everyone who seems sketchy are pushing for Tusli [sic] Gabbard, it’s hard not to question why?”

“If I question whether someone is on Putin’s payroll and then immediately receive 100+ tweets harassing me as a result, that only proves my point,” Friedman posted in response to the wave of responses her behavior elicited on Twitter, later adding, “There are progressive people fighting with me on here who I am sure are kind (ish) and also bots and assholes using their platforms to troll me in ways that feel oddly suspect. Sorry to question if some guy is paid by Putin but people actually are so why not just say no and move on?”

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