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July 26, 2017

Must-Read Piece About Fusion GPS

Lee Smith details the history of the firm.

Why work for a salaryman's wage when you can make a pile of money running a corporation funded by other well-heeled corporations, organizations, and even foreign governments?

Basically, some reporters realized that the model of news-researched-by-newspapers was over. So they opened a research/"comms" shop to research the news (or "news," or even #FakeNews) and just deliver it to friendlies, chiefly on the left, who have neither the institutional support nor the personal work ethic to do the work themselves.

Reporters know about Fusion GPS, Lee Smith says, but they don't mention them -- they don't mention them because they don't want to burn their sources. They want Fusion to deliver them scoops (or even "Scoops") that have been paid for by political/agenda-driven groups. They want to hide the hand that delivered them their stories, both for personal aggrandizement (they don't want to admit they're just pass-throughs for a privately funded opposition research group) and to make sure the free stories keep coming.

And Fusion GPS was working closely with Russia -- they were among the shops hired to get the Magnitsky Act overturned.

Reporters know this, obviously -- but how often do you ever see this mentioned in a story?

Why do you imagine that is? Why does someone hide from the public a fact that they know, if their entire job is (supposedly) to "report the truth"?

Here's Smith:

There is no accurate accounting of how many of the stories you read in the news are the fruit of opposition research, because no journalist wants to admit how many of their top "sources" are just information packagers--which is why the blinding success of Fusion GPS is the least-covered media story in America right now. There's plenty of oppo research on the right, but most of it comes from the left. Thatís not because Republicans are more virtuous than Democrats and look for dirt less than their rivals do. Nor conversely is it because Republicans make a richer subject for opposition research because they're so much more corrupt. Nope, itís simple arithmetic: Most journalists lean to the left, and so do the majority of career officials who staff the federal government. There are more sounding boards on the left, and more sources. Itís not ideological, it's business.

Thus, most of Fusion GPS's contracts seem to come from the left--except for its most famous project, the Russia dossier. Before it was passed on to the Democrats, it started on the right, when one Republican candidate--thought to be Jeb Bush but never confirmed--hired the outfit to amass damning material on Trump. From humble beginnings, it has taken on the shape of a modern-day legend....

The Trump-Russia story has frequently been likened to Watergate, a specious comparison since the latter started with evidence of a crime and the former with publication of an anthology of fables, pornography, and Russian-sourced disinformation put together and distributed by partisan political operatives. The salient comparison is rather in the effect--it has the same feel as Watergate. And it's taking up the same space as Watergate--and that's because comms shops-for-hire like Fusion GPS have assumed the role that the American press used to occupy.



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posted by Ace at 05:07 PM

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