Dec
07
2011

Covering OWS, With Expert Commentary by Andrew Breitbart

USA Today's Rick Hampson has a piece today (12/7/11) on Occupy Wall Street's Occupy Our Homes actions, which include efforts to move families into vacant housing. This coverage is a good sign if you think there is still something happening with this movement after the evictions in New York, Los Angeles and elsewhere.

But why does the article include commentary from right-wing scam artist Andrew Breitbart? The paper reports:

Conservative online publisher and commentator Andrew Breitbart said the movement's new focus demonstrates that Occupy Wall Street is not "an authentic grassroots movement" but a political maneuver backed by organized labor and remnants of the ACORN community-organizing group aimed at boosting President Obama's re-election campaign.

"This is AstroTurf" rather than grassroots, he said. "This isn't about helping little old ladies….  This is about fomenting civil unrest, fomenting class warfare."

Breitbart's work is totally unreliable. He's been sounding the ACORN/SEIU alarms about Occupy Wall Street almost from the beginning–just like (at least) one Fox News host. The point is to try and link the movement to an array of progressive institutions and, apparently, the Obama campaign. It's nonsensical paranoia. Is he included for the sake of "balance"?

About Peter Hart

Activism Director and and Co-producer of CounterSpinPeter Hart is the activism director at FAIR. He writes for FAIR's magazine Extra! and is also a co-host and producer of FAIR's syndicated radio show CounterSpin. He is the author of The Oh Really? Factor: Unspinning Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly (Seven Stories Press, 2003). Hart has been interviewed by a number of media outlets, including NBC Nightly News, Fox News Channel's O'Reilly Factor, the Los Angeles Times, Newsday and the Associated Press. He has also appeared on Showtime and in the movie Outfoxed. Follow Peter on Twitter at @peterfhart.