G. Gordon Liddy | Media Matters for America

G. Gordon Liddy

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  • Fox News' Contrived Outrage Over "'Cop Killer' Rapper"

    ››› ››› ZACHARY PLEAT

    Fox News has been ginning up hysteria over hip hop artist Common's appearance at a White House poetry event. The same Fox News smearing Common with claims that he "praise[d]" a "cop killer" has regularly hosted G. Gordon Liddy and employs Dick Morris and Ralph Peters, all of whom have seemingly expressed support for killing law enforcement officials or soldiers.

  • Right-Wing Media Celebrate Earth Day By Mocking Conservation

    ››› ››› FAE JENCKS

    In the lead-up to Earth Day, members of the right-wing media have ridiculed conservation efforts and downplayed the concerns of environmentalists. This is nothing new for conservative media figures who have, in the past, used the Earth Day to attack conservationists by urging audiences to cut down trees and increase their energy consumption.

  • "If The Talk Hosts Don't Influence Anybody, Why Do They Keep Talking?"

    Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

    As we consider violent rhetoric and the role it may play in violent acts, it's worth remembering that we've been here before -- all too often -- and that previous discussions of the topic contained some points worth keeping in mind. In the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing, for example, Robert Laurence wrote in the May 1, 1995 edition of the San Diego Union-Tribune:

    [G. Gordon] Liddy, a convicted Watergate felon who has found a home in the broadcast industry, last Tuesday advised listeners that during a raid by agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, one should shoot at their heads because their bodies will be covered by bulletproof vests.

    If a shot to the head misses, Liddy went on, "then shoot to the groin area." Having encouraged such craziness, talk show emcees then piously distance themselves from the predictable results of their work and pretend to be shocked.

    They are like the presidents of tobacco companies who spend countless millions advertising their products, then claim that their ads don't encourage people to smoke.

    If the talk hosts don't influence anybody, why do they keep talking?

    Though Liddy himself insisted he wasn't "fueling the lunatic fringe," he, too, made the point that the purpose of his rhetoric was to persuade people, as Howard Kurtz noted in the April 26, 1995 edition of the Washington Post:

    During an on-air news conference at WJFK-FM in Fairfax, the onetime FBI agent stuck to his rhetorical guns, saying talk radio is in no way responsible for the climate that led to last week's bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building.

    "I don't believe I'm fueling the lunatic fringe," Liddy said.

    The assembled reporters asked Liddy several times whether he felt any need to soften his rhetoric in the wake of Oklahoma City. He did not seize the opportunity.

    "Rhetoric means persuasive speech," Liddy said. "It is perfectly within the job of a talk show host to use persuasive speech."

  • The end of the Obama firearm "surge"

    Blog ››› ››› ALEX LAWSON & CHRIS BROWN

    Since the election of President Obama, conservative media figures such as Glenn Beck, Ann Coulter, and G. Gordon Liddy have advanced the false narrative that Obama is going to "take away your gun." This media hype quickly created a classic bubble in the market for guns and ammunition.

    In a typical segment on the subject from April 6, 2009, Glenn Beck stated on his radio show that the president would:

    Slowly but surely take away your gun or take away your ability to shoot a gun, carry a gun. He will make them more expensive; he'll tax them out of existence. He will because he has said he would. He will tax your gun or take your gun away one way or another.

    This fearmongering by the conservative media followed a $15 million campaign by the National Rifle Association (NRA) attacking Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential election. As documented by Factcheck.org, the NRA campaign included a series of attacks that badly distorted Obama's actual policy positions:

    A National Rifle Association advertising campaign distorts Obama's position on gun control beyond recognition.

    The NRA is circulating printed material and running TV ads making unsubstantiated claims that Obama plans to ban use of firearms for home defense, ban possession and manufacture of handguns, close 90 percent of gun shops and ban hunting ammunition.

    But as people have realized that the Obama administration has no covert plans to institute sweeping gun seizures, gun sales have fallen dramatically. In addition, executives say that many of the guns bought in reaction to Obama's election are now being re-sold on the secondary market, further depressing new gun sales. Public-earnings calls by two industry leaders detail the magnitude of the fear-based bubble that was created and perpetuated by the conservative media.

  • Erick Erickson set to host a birther radio show

    Blog ››› ››› ZACHARY PLEAT

    CNN contributor Erick Erickson, who once promised that he would ban birthers from his RedState blog, announced today that he would guest-host longtime birther G. Gordon Liddy's radio show. Erickson, who later seemingly reneged on this pledge, took to his Twitter account to make his announcement:

    In a February post, Erickson equated birthers with 9-11 truther conspiracy theorists and was specific about his position on not letting them post at RedState:

    If you think 9/11 was an inside job or you really want to debate whether or not Barack Obama is an American citizen eligible to be President, RedState is not a place for you.

    Birfers and Truthers are not welcome here. Period. End of Story.

    He also wrote, "The tea party movement is in danger of getting a bad reputation for allowing birfers and truthers to share the stage."

    One must wonder how he can reconcile his concern that birthers are damaging the reputation of tea partiers with guest-hosting G. Gordon Liddy's radio show, given Liddy's long history of supporting and repeating birther allegations against President Obama.

  • New book: Liddy's talk of killing journalist went well beyond talk

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    In 2008, Media Matters often noted the disparity in coverage of Barack Obama's purported ties to former Weather Underground member Bill Ayers and that of John McCain's association with right-wing radio host G. Gordon Liddy, whom Chicago Tribune columnist Steve Chapman has described as McCain's "own Bill Ayers."

    You'll recall:

    Liddy served four and a half years in prison in connection with his conviction for his role in the Watergate break-in and the break-in at the office of the psychiatrist of Daniel Ellsberg, the military analyst who leaked the Pentagon Papers. Liddy has acknowledged preparing to kill someone during the Ellsberg break-in "if necessary"; plotting to murder journalist Jack Anderson; plotting with a "gangland figure" to murder Howard Hunt to stop him from cooperating with investigators; plotting to firebomb the Brookings Institution; and plotting to kidnap "leftist guerillas" at the 1972 Republican National Convention -- a plan he outlined to the Nixon administration using terminology borrowed from the Nazis. (The murder, firebombing, and kidnapping plots were never carried out; the break-ins were.)

    Now, a new book by Mark Feldstein -- Poisoning the Press: Richard Nixon, Jack Anderson and the Rise of Washington's Scandal Culture (Farrar, Straus and Giroux 9/28/2010) -- appears aimed at pulling the lid off Liddy's sordid past. As Politico's Keach Hagey reports (emphasis added):

    But a new book by Mark Feldstein, "Poisoning the Press: Richard Nixon, Jack Anderson and the Rise of Washington's Scandal Culture" (FSG), reveals that the plot to assassinate [columnist Jack] Anderson went well beyond talk.

    Liddy and another Nixon operative, former CIA agent Howard Hunt, tailed the columnist and examined his Maryland home for "vulnerabilities," Hunt recalled. And later, they met at the Hay Adams Hotel with a CIA physician involved in a plot to poison Fidel Castro and plotted the poisoning of Jack Anderson.

    They discussed painting the steering wheel of his car with enough LSD to make him have a car crash, or perhaps dropping a poisoned pill into his aspirin bottle. Liddy eventually suggested Anderson "should just become a fatal victim of the notorious Washington street-crime rate."

    Liddy and Hunt eventually called off the plan because they had something more important to do: bug the Democratic Party headquarters at the Watergate.

  • Right-wing media hammer teachers, teachers unions

    ››› ››› SEAN EASTER

    Media conservatives have a history of criticizing of teachers, teachers unions, and public schools. Among their attacks are bizarre assertions that many teachers harbor Napoleon complexes or "peculiar attractions" to children, and claims that teachers unions are "communist" or the "single most dangerous entity ... in this country."

  • New Yorker's Hertzberg on right-wing media's hatred of soccer, World Cup

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    With Spain's victory over Germany today, the world will be watching as the country faces off against the Netherlands in the World Cup finals this weekend. For many, the quadrennial excitement is palpable. For many media conservatives, well, not so much.

    As the 2010 World Cup was just beginning in South Africa, Media Matters noted:

    ...conservative media figures have seized the opportunity to attack the tournament and the sport of soccer. They have also used soccer as a proxy to attack President Obama and progressives.

    Towards that end, Hendrik Hertzberg is up with a great look at soccer and the right's hatred of the sport in The New Yorker, which you can read excerpts of after the jump.