A guest post by AKUS
Adam Levick has already demonstrated the prevalence of typically anti-Semitic language and themes that form the core of the disgusting article by Arun Kundnani, Newt Gingrich’s agenda-setting big donor, with its implication of “Jewish money” setting the agenda for the US elections, and the twinned article by Paul Harris, The Secrets of the billionaire bankrolling Gingrich’s shot at the White House, with its juicy hint of a secretive Jewish donor manipulating the Republican nomination campaign.
Arun Kundnani claims that Adelson is “setting the agenda” for Gingrich by donating money to a Super-PAC that supports Gingrich’s candidacy.
This, of course, is nonsense. A PAC does not “set the agenda” for a candidate. All PACs promote the agenda of candidates they find consistent with their donors’ views by placing advertizing in the media. Kundnani basically admits as much:
Of course, like all private funding of politics, there is no way of knowing with certainty what the Adelsons expect to achieve with their money.
Precisely. There is no way to know what donors expect other than they hope their preferred candidate will win the nomination and will, therefore, implement polices the donors support – but do not control. The idea that because Adelson is Jewish (and even worse – a Jew who loves and supports Israel) he must be setting Newt’s agenda is clearly a reversion to the age-old theme that “Jewish money” controls politics (among other things).
Money is flooding into the coffers of all candidates now that the Supreme Court has (foolishly, I believe) opened the doors to corporate donors. The Sunlight Foundation has been tracking Super PAC money, and it reveals that although the pro-Gingrich Super PAC that Adelson supports, Winning Our Future, has spent $8,511,433, the pro-Romney Super PAC, Restore Our Future, has outspent Gingrich’s Super Pac by more than 2:1 – $17,485,657.
PACs supporting other candidates have spent or raised amounts in the $1 million to $4 million range, including, by the way, a PAC that supports perennial Guardian favorite, the anti-Israeli Ron Paul.
Yet we do not see an investigative piece in the Guardian that tries to tie Romney’s donors to powerful and wealthy Mormons, or Ron Paul’s PAC to – well, some lunatic fringe Texan, I suppose who hopes to “achieve something with his money” such as restoring the US to the gold standard.
In fact, while Adelson might support Gingrich because Gingrich supports Israel is very likely true, it is apparently not necessarily true that Gingrich is supporting Israel to court “Jewish money”. Even the virulently anti-Israeli Guardian journalist, Chris McGreal, has dropped his blinkers long enough to note what everyone else already realized some time ago – that Newt’s real audience is the vastly greater evangelical voting bloc:
But Gingrich’s vocal support of Israel has less to do with support from the Jewish community than the votes of a much larger group: Christian evangelicals, who are strongly supportive of Israel for theological reasons
McGreal went on to cite a person claiming that the evangelicals are to the right of Netanyahu’s government when it comes to the Israeli-Arab conflict. Nevertheless, he also could not avoid bringing Adelson into the mix, even though he is only one of Gingrich’s donors and we have no way to know how he compares with other donors – for example, to donors to Romney’s far greater Super PAC. For those interested, it is worth noting that Jeffrey Katzenberg has donated $2 million to Barak Obama’s Super PAC, but the Guardian editorial pool does not seem to feel that this donation raises the specter of “Jewish money” at work distorting the electoral process.
Harris article, The Secrets of the billionaire bankrolling Gingrich’s shot at the White House, was typical of the worst of the Guardian’s feeble attempts at investigative reporting. In more than 2,000 words, Harris revealed “secrets” that a few milliseconds on Google would turn up. The gist, of course, was that as a result of the Adelsons’ support, heavily outspent Gingrich “…suddenly has an outside chance of becoming president”. Perhaps to put this whole affair in perspective, take a look at the billions spent by lobbying companies listed at OpenSecrets.org.
It is the delicious conjunction of “Adelson” – “Jewish” – “Israel”- Abe Foxman” – “AIPAC” and, of course, “money” that makes the whole issue of Adelson’s very public “secrets” so interesting to Harris and the Guardian. The Guardian even foolishly added the sub-header claim, ludicrous to every sane observer of the Republican nomination process, that is being debunked even as I write this, that “Sheldon Adelson is not running for office – but his cash could swing Tuesday’s Florida primary”.
Well, it may not. Romney is trouncing Gingrich in the Florida primary polls.
If it is inappropriate for wealthy people to support Gingrich, why is it not inappropriate for Romney to raise at least twice as much money, and far more than twice as much before the Adelsons stepped forward with their donation or donations? There is really only one answer, and it runs like a shameful thread through all three articles. It is because Adelson is Jewish and a supporter of Israel, and Newt has been more outspoken in his support of Israel than Romney (but less, by the way, than former candidate Michele Bachman, for example).
The Guardian moderators were out in force shredding comments BTL to Kundani’s article. One of the comments deleted was this one, and I would say that SantaMoniker only got it half right:
The fact is, there was nothing “wink, wink, nudge, nudge” about the articles by Kundnani and Harris, in particular. They were blatant invocations of the age-old anti-Semitic idea that “Jewish money” controls politicians. The Guardian has been slipping more and more frequently into the sewer of anti-Semitism, and this time was in it up to its neck.
But the Republicans of Florida will vote, and it appears that Romney will trounce Gingrich.
Will we then see a shame-faced retraction by the Guardian? Of course not.