TheBlaze.com shows how James O’Keefe edited, rearranged the NPR videos
Say what? theblaze.com is exposing O’Keefe as a fraud? The same website website that doubles as Glenn Beck’s hate filled fringe hell-hole?
Whenever that James O’Keefe guy puts out another heavily edited video against some liberal bogeyman, both the White House and the Washington/New York media quickly fire everyone involved — because the only rational way to deal with claims made by partisan pranksters is to simply punish anyone targeted. That’s why Shirley Sherrod was immediately fired by the White House while the Lame Stream Media nodded approvingly and only Wonkette bothered to look at the allegedly damning video closely enough to see that Breitbart’s crew had carefully edited it to make Sherrod sound like a raving racist.
Likewise, the firing of NPR executive Ron Schiller and his CEO boss was cheered by the liberal media and got solemn nods from Democrats in Washington. Only Glenn Beck’s reporters at his website, The Blaze, bothered to watch the unedited footage and note that the various bombshells in the video were taken out of context (the opinions of others made to look like the opinions of Schiller, for example) and that Schiller’s pro-Republican statements were (obviously) all cut out of the video released by O’Keefe…
There’s a lot more of this on The Blaze: eight sections of raw video with written commentary by a video producer from the website. She finds numerous instances of editing to make Schiller sound like he’s replying to completely different statements (a bemused reaction to something about restaurant reservations is made to look like a response to implementing sharia law worldwide), and she also finds sections where the audio has clearly been switched from another part of the video, as well as the complete removal of many instances of Schiller and his colleague praising either Republicans or the Fox News audience.
On Wednesday, The Blaze posted a lengthy report looking at the ethics of undercover journalism. The comments on the post show a lively debate and wide-ranging views on what is considered ethical and acceptable in pursuit of a scoop.
Plenty of readers felt the new NPR exposé justified any ethical misgivings involved in producing it. Others felt that those seeking truths should hold to higher standards.
When undercover video like the NPR story first surfaces, we often look to see if there is raw video of the material used to produce the report as a basis for evaluating the accuracy of the representations made.
And we decided to do that in this case.
The Blaze’s Pam Key, who produces most of our original videos, is experienced in reviewing hours and hours of raw audio/video to find key sections that can then be used in proper context. Her review of the NPR exposé identifies a number of areas to examine.
Do these areas reveal problematic editing choices? Are assertions made in the video misleading? Are the tactics used by the video producers unethical?
Clearly the NPR executives, particularly Ron Schiller, show poor and, at times, despicable judgment. Do any of the revelations from the raw video ameliorate that? Do their wrongdoing justify any wrongdoing by the video producers?
These are sometimes difficult matters to consider, especially for those who are pleased with the outcomes produced by the release of video reports like this; however, the ethical implications can be significant. And as we say around The Blaze watercooler…the truth has no agenda. Perspective and context are essential elements in bringing truth to the forefront. To exclude or alter them can obscure truths rather than reveal them.
Of course theblaze.com leaves it up to the reader to decide if the ends justifies the means. I mean why would a website run by a man who claims to be the most upright citizen in our Republic actually call out someone on the far-right for their smear tactics?