Yet that is exactly what the New York Times did. As pointed out by Professor Bill Black the Times labeled a Pete Peterson political group “center-left” despite the group being anything but.
Some lies will not die. As I have demonstrated repeatedly, Third Way is Wall Street on the Potomac. It is funded secretly by Wall Street (it refuses to reveal its donors), it is openly run by Wall Street, and it lobbies endlessly for Wall Street. Third Way, like every Pete Peterson front group, is dedicated to shredding the safety net as its highest priority and throwing the Nation back into a gratuitous recession through self-destructive austerity.
Third Way, like other Pete Peterson front groups, supports privatizing Social Security. That is Wall Street’s greatest dream, for it would increase their revenues by hundreds of billions of dollars.
Apparently all you have to do now is label your group something centrist sounding and tell a reporter you are on the left and boom, center-left organization. That was easy.
I had not counted on the New York Times failing to clear such a tiny research hurdle. Sadly, on March 20, 2013 the New York Times gave prominent coverage to a study sponsored by Third Way, which the reporter called “a center-left policy research organization” in an article entitled “ As Men Lose Economic Ground, Clues in the Family.”
Once again, Wall Street’s cynical effort to mislead by labeling its far-right economic policies and its lobbying group as “a center-left policy research organization” has triumphed. It triumphed because the curve of Wall Street’s cynicism intersected with the curve of lazy journalism at their respective maxima. The reporter emphasized Third Way’s faux “center-left” politics and its faux “research” function to make his story and the report seem more credible to the reader. The “central-left” aspect was supposed to lend credibility because the study was portrayed as supporting some extremely conservative memes. If even lefties admit that conservatives are right about the family and marriage, then surely the study is correct. It also suggests that Third Way must be a remarkable research organization because it is a “center-left” group, that sponsors research, that discredits “center-left” family policies.
Quite remarkable indeed. As long as Pete Peterson front groups can keep fooling reporters into labeling the right-wing the “center-left” the alternatives the public thinks it has will always be limited. Perhaps it’s the establishment press that is true culprit in the America’s unique right-wing slant. By narrowing the choices and limiting options to a right-wing portfolio they paint the public into a corner from which new solutions can never even be considered let alone pursued.