Lee Fang, investigative researcher and blogger at ThinkProgress, has published a blog post drawing a link between billionaire hedge fund manager Paul Singer and journalists funded by him attempting to “smear” the Occupy Wall Street protests.Fang, who’s blog posts have been the subject of controversy in the past, claims the Singer financed reporters are trying to “tarnish the reputation of 99 per cent Movement demonstrators.”
Here’s his first piece of evidence:
Journalist Who Admitted To Infiltrating Protests To ‘Mock And Undermine’ The Movement Works For A singer-Supported Right-Wing Magazine. In a column posted last night, reporter Patrick Howley admitted that he had surreptitiously joined an anti-war spin-off from the OccupyDC protesters that planned to demonstrate at a military drone exhibit at the Smithsonian’s Air and Space museum. Howley wrote that he “infiltrated” the action and sprinted into the police along with a few protesters in order to “mock and undermine” the movement. Singer is a major donor the Spector, a right-wing magazine known for its role in the “Arkansas Project,” a well-funded effort to invent stories with the goal of eventually impeaching President Clinton.
Interesting: Howley’s blog post originally did say “mock and undermine,” but the language has since been changed without explanation. It no longer says “mock and undermine.”
Here’s Fang’s other example:
Journalist Pushing To Discredit Occupy Wall Street Is Funded By Singer’s Think Tank. Josh Barro, a journalist who has attacked the 99 per cent Movement in the National Review and the New York Daily News, draws a salary from the Wriston Fellowship at the Manhattan Institute, a big business advocacy think tank in New York. Barro makes the same tired arguments, that anti-Wall Street protesters are too inarticulate and “extreme” to be taken seriously. Singer is the chairman of the Manhattan Institute, and even oversees the Wriston annual fundraiser.
We read Barro’s op-ed in the New York Daily News and it’s perfectly legitimate, especially since the purpose of an op-ed is to express your own opinion on a subject.
What’s more is Barro is a columnist and public policy analyst. He’s not really a journalist even though Fang identifies him as one.
In his opinion piece, Barro simply says Occupy Wall Streeters can learn lessons from the Tea Party movement. He also says that if the protesters want change to happen then they have to come up with solutions. While he raises suspicions about the OWS demonstration’s efficacy, he does acknowledge that it’s still very young movement and with time they may figure out what they want.
Clearly, there is not enough substantial evidence to prove that these so-called Singer financed journalists are demeaning the Occupy Wall Street movement because they have a connection to the billionaire hedge fund manager.
Singer, an active Republican Party contributor and top donor to legalise gay marriage in New York, has yet to voice his opinion publicly on the demonstrations popping up throughout the country.
A request for comment from Elliot Management’s Singer was not immediately returned at the time of publication.