Q&A: My conversation with James O'Keefe

by Rush Limbaugh in the Limbaugh Letter, March 2018

A privilege to speak with the intrepid "guerrilla journalist" and founder of Project Veritas -- author of the must-read American Pravda: My Fight for Truth in the Era of Fake News -- whose undercover reporting has shown the light of truth on leftist organizations' slimy secrets:

RUSH: Hey, James. How are you doing today?

O'KEEFE: Mr. Limbaugh, I'm doing great now that I'm talking to you.

RUSH: It's great to have you here. I'm glad you're able to carve out some time for this. I want to start with something you told me just after the videos had been released revealing what you had discovered at Twitter. You said, "We're on the verge of changing journalism." Not only you specifically, but that we're in an era now where Project Veritas is leading the way toward changing journalism. Could you explain what you meant by that?

O'KEEFE: The Framers created a government that exists with the consent of the governed, but that consent must be informed. People need to be informed. It can't be manufactured consent.

Right now there is a conflict of visions. The mainstream media believes that you must not trust the evidence of your own eyes and ears. "You must listen to us interpret the information for you." The Veritas approach is to show you the raw data, which sometimes directly contradicts how they interpret that information. So we're changing journalism by circumventing the interpreters of reality by distributing reality in its raw, pure form.

The irony, of course, is that journalists are trying to cover up the facts that we expose. But we're bypassing the media. Images transfix, and images have the power to change hearts and minds, and the media feels threatened by that. It's all possible because of the dissemination techniques and technology that have only come into being in the last few years. So that's how we are transforming journalism, Rush.

RUSH: People ask me, "Will we ever see the day when the media will be objective, down-the-middle, reporting accurately, fairly on both sides?" I always said, No, I don't think the media is ever going to change. They're never going to be persuaded to change the way they do business. They're never going to be talked out of supporting Democrats, liberals."

Do you think that if you reach the pinnacle of your success, you could someday actually cause there to be some fundamental shift in the mission of the mainstream media? Do you think that kids growing up, seeing your work, wanting to go into journalism, maybe getting in the mainstream media, could have that impact? You're a young guy. Do you think in the next 50 years that this could happen?

O'KEEFE: I do. I'm very confident. Well, not to be macabre [laughs], but I could be falsely imprisoned, or someone could commit an act of violence against me, or the legal system could be used in a corrupt way to stop us. That's the only way that won't happen -- if the justice system is compromised and the First Amendment is compromised. But I absolutely believe that, based on history. Read Solzhenitsyn's Gulag Archipelago. Read F.A. Hayek, the Austrian-British economist who wrote The Road to Serfdom where he talked about the end of truth, the totalitarian mindset, the whole apparatus where the media is used to suppress information that opposes the regime.

The people in the Soviet Union understood that they lived in a system of lies, but they were unwilling to fight the lie because they would have been sent off to the gulags. I think right now the inflection point is sort of carrying the banner ahead of the charge.

RUSH: That is one of the big differences. The Soviet Union people knew they were being lied to, and there was nothing they could do about it, but a significant percentage of American news consumers do not know they're being lied to.

O'KEEFE: They don't know they're being lied to. And when CNN has their chyron, their subtitles, on the bottom of their screen for a week, they still have a tremendous power. I'm not going to say they don't have power, Rush. The airports show CNN. Studios and other gatekeepers watch CNN. They have the power to shame and humiliate Republicans, and even people in the conservative movement, which is what you and I talked about when I met you. That is the same type of power that Pravda in the Soviet Union wielded, which prevents people from coming forward with the truth. And when you do come forward with the truth, you're attacked, boycotted, targeted, silenced. That's the deterrent that prevents people like me from ultimately being more successful than I am.

But ultimately when you bring information right to the people, when people are able to see it for themselves, I think you're really able to move the masses. There's a turning point in our country right now where people are getting the information for themselves. The media is freaking out -- and doubling down.

RUSH: They are indeed. You're right about that. James, let's backtrack a little bit to find out what made you want to do what you do. A lot of people think, "James O'Keefe, Project Veritas. Secret videos. People disguised and tricking or misleading people who work at various organizations." But what you're doing is revealing the truth of what they do. The closest thing would be the original incarnation of "60 Minutes", when they actually did this kind of thing for journalistic reasons rather than what they do now, "gotchas" to destroy people. What is the root of Project Veritas and the desire to expose as you do these various organizations you've taken on?

O'KEEFE: Inevitably there is a gap between the way the world is and the way journalist present the world. With the introduction of the internet and new recording technology, that gap between the real and the reported ought to be narrowing, but it is not. What motivates me -- and I don't think it's just me, I think I speak for the American people -- is when you watch the media every day and there is a cavernous gap between the way they're presenting information and the way we perceive that information. We say, "They're not doing their job. Somebody ought to show people what the truth is."

When I was in college, I read The New York Times every single day, and what I read was different than how I thought the world was, the way I perceived it. When I read my student newspaper at Rutgers, called the The Targum, it wasn't reflecting what I perceived was happening on campus. So it was the desire to just inform the people. That's all it is. It's just the difference between reality and how that reality is reported.

I don't even think it's a left or right thing. I just think journalism ought to be the first draft of history. You're describing events as they take place. But journalism has drifted from that. It's no longer, "who, what, when, where, why". It's left description and gone toward prescription -- which is propaganda. The farther it gets away from the facts, the more motivated the citizen journalist becomes.

RUSH: How did you decide that you wanted to use your format, for lack of a better word, the secret investigation, disguising your reporters and yourself and exposing various organizations? Because there's nobody else doing what you're doing. It's very hard, James, to come up with something nobody else is doing in a country this populated that's been around this long. How did you craft this particular philosophy of dealing with journalism?

O'KEEFE: I think, Rush, it became a new discipline. I never intended to get this far. I've done lots of introspection to figure that question out, and the answer is, we do undercover work. We do use deception as a means to gain access to people, and we've been attacked for that. By the way, I don't think the attacks are really about the techniques. It's all about what side you're perceived to be on, and the consequences of your work.

But what created the discipline was the fact that the real deception is passing along information to the news consumer that's not true -- for economic reasons, political reasons, or maybe not to rock the boat. Noam Chomsky, no right-winger, said the media is propaganda due to various market forces. He wrote that many major media corporations wouldn't report on Hillary Clinton for fear that she would regulate them. Her FCC would take away their broadcast license.

Where is the virtue in passing along untrue information to the masses when a source tells you something on the record? When politicians say things to you on the record, it's probably false. They're not giving you the truth. So it was a desire to pull back the curtain and go into their private, unguarded moments when they are being honest with you, and to compare what they say in private versus what they say in public. They say, "That's Unethical." I say it's far more ethical to do that than it is to lie to the American People.

The most important virtue in journalism should be telling the truth to your audience. So we believe it's justified to use this deception with one person, in order to tell the truth to 100 million people.

RUSH: Let's list some of your successes. You have exposed momentous wrongdoing at Planned Parenthood. You have exposed incredible lying and disinformation from ACORN, the community organizing group connected to President Obama. You've done the same thing with teachers' unions. You've been able to infiltrate the DNC and get them to admit their real concerns and motivations. You've taken on National Public Radio, CNN, The Washington Post, and this latest on Twitter. Of all these, do any stand out in terms of successful missions?

O'KEEFE: The one exposing the DNC and Democracy Partners.

RUSH: Robert Creamer and that bunch?

O'KEEFE: Yes, Bob Creamer and Scott Foval. That was extraordinary, because Bob Creamer was one of Barack Obama's closest allies and community organizers. This young woman, Allison Maass, is mentioned in the book, and it reads like a John Grisham novel, following her along as she pretends to be the niece of a donor. She gets into his office, and they're describing how the money is funneled from Hillary to the DNC to Democracy Partners to the Foval Group to execute the expletive on the ground. That's to say, to foment violence at Trump rallies. She even meets with the "bird-doggers", as they're called, who incite this violence.

She's 22 years old, and she's been burned twice before, this woman with enormous courage. She's like a young Nellie Bly, infiltrating and exposing and unmasking the most powerful people in the world. Rush, she was even invited to the Obama White House while undercover. We couldn't go because we would be breaking the law using a fake name. But she was invited to meet with the President -- that's how effective an undercover reporter she was.

RUSH: This was big. Robert Creamer was the guy Obama met with frequently in the White House. It was Creamer who was hiring the rent-a-mobsters to disrupt Trump rallies. He was hiring them via ads, and he was paying them. They even got a rally called off in Chicago. We wouldn't know this if it weren't for your organization. We would only have had the usual suspicions, but you got in there with this reporter you're talking about. This was huge. It totally upset them for a long time. There were utter denials, but it was a masterful bit of work to expose these people. Are they still operating, though, even after your expos閟? Is Creamer still doing what he's always been doing? Are they still hiring rent-a-mobs, or have they slunk under a new rock?

O'KEEFE: I get asked all the time, "Why aren't these organizations decimated? Why won't the fraud go away?" I don't know. I would say he's probably doing it less. He's under so much scrutiny. He's sued us in federal court. I had to go to federal court with Allison two weeks ago in Washington, and it's entering the discovery phase of this trial.

He's suing us for breach of fiduciary duty, even though we didn't sign a non-disclosure agreement. We did our jobs and we did them well as undercover reporters. We broke no laws. We just built trust, and we did it the old-fashioned way.

But to answer your question, I'll just say this: The price of liberty is eternal vigilance. That's true as applied to campaigns whether you're working in the Democratic or the Party. It's true in journalism. These organizations aren't going away. The fraud's not going away. You have to keep exposing it. You have to keep uprooting it, unmasking it over and over again, until people are deterred from committing the fraud.

RUSH: Exactly.

O'KEEFE: So people look over their shoulders.

RUSH: Beating them is an everyday mission. Victory is never permanent against these people. They'll always come back, and you'll be right there when they reorganize. But this Creamer thing was so big because, had it not been exposed, there would have been mountains of dis- and misinformation about Trump and his supporters, and who knows how the election might have gone had you not exposed him. Creamer is the husband, by the way, of Democrat Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky. They're quite a pair. What alerted you to what he was doing?

O'KEEFE: One of my heros, Matt Drudge, said, "Good reporting is good snooping." As I tell the story in American Pravda, Project Veritas is in a bar in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on primary day in March of 2016. That's some seven months before the election, and my undercover reporter is talking to this man, Scott Foval, at the bar.

Scott says, "We've been busing people in to deal with you people for 50 years, and we're not going to stop now." My undercover reporter's ears perk up and he asks, "Who do you do this with?" Scott says, "This guy named Bob Creamer. He's the dark hat."

So we had to bridge Mr. Foval, whose loose lips sink ships, to his parent company, Democracy Partners. So after meeting the guy in the bar on primary day, we built a relationship with him. We built trust with him, and he led us to Bob Creamer, who led us to a series of other groups -- progressive, nonprofit organizations like Media Matters. We actually got a tour of Media Matters, and David Brock led us to another group, Americans United for Change, which wanted us to give them money. We just worked our way into a network of high-level Democratic operatives, all of whom led directly to the Obama White House.

Rush, I do think this had an impact on the election. Trump mentioned the videos in the debates with Hillary. We were the only journalists mentioned in the debates. Our work was directly cited. I think it confirmed suspicions, to borrow your phrase, and I think it deterred a lot of voter fraud in Wisconsin.

RUSH: Other targets of yours, success stories, Planned Parenthood, ACORN, and so on, were big too -- as you recount in your book.

O'KEEFE: Yes. On page 16 I list all the people who have resigned, and I make the argument -- and this is a bold claim, but I'd be happy to defend it against anybody who said otherwise -- that Project Veritas has had more legislative consequence, more resignations, more impact from our journalism, than any other journalist in the 21st century, by any measure.

Katie Couric won a Cronkite journalism award for asking Sarah Palin a difficult question. Allison Maass, my 22-year-old undercover reporter, who's been humiliated and sued, never got any journalism awards. I make the case that what we do is important. Why we do it, the impact, the results. And I am fighting an existential battle, because the people who oppose me are not just saying they don't like me. They're trying to put me in jail. They're trying to prevent me from raising funds. They're trying to say I'm not a journalist. So we make the case in this book. We list all the accomplishments, and I think it will be read in journalism schools one day.

RUSH: Good. Well, your expos?of Twitter was a bombshell, with the shadow banning and the openness with which they told you they discriminate. I marvel at the fact that you've been doing this a while now. So it's got to be harder to sneak in to the various targets you choose. They have to be more suspicious since you've had so many success stories. Have you had to account for that?

O'KEEFE: Rush, here's a headline from the Ringer, a pop culture website: "Why Project Veritas Has All of D.C. Looking Over Its Shoulder: Happy Hour and Networking in the Nation's Capital Might Never Be the Same." The article says "a sudden paranoia has set in" in Washington after Project Veritas went undercover into The Washington Post. What do I think is going to result from this? I think fraud will go into the shadows. I think they'll take the fraud onto encrypted messaging apps. They won't be as direct.

In the 1970s, according to a book called The Mirage, Chicago Sun-Times reporters used to go into a bar and just film all the kickbacks and bribes. This no longer happens. People don't do corruption the same way they did in the 60s and 70s. I think the fraud and corruption will go into the shadows, which means Veritas has to be far more sophisticated. We basically have to become a kind of intelligence operation.

In the book, I outline some of how we do that. It comes down to building relationships with sources. It comes down to the fact that you cannot con innocent people. We don't put words in people's mouths. We have to suspect that people are up to no good, and then we have to prove it. We never entrap people like the government does. We don't put drugs in people's pockets. We never force anyone.

RUSH: There are no Project Veritas "process crimes" in other words.

O'KEEFE: Right. We secret shop, but we can't entrap people, and that's a very important distinction, because the media would have you believe that we use CGI effects to make ACORN's lips move. Of course we don't do that. Right now we're getting people on tape actually doing the deeds, as we did in Twitter where they're literally showing us how they log into your direct messages, how they shadow ban tweets and censor conservatives. So it's graduated to a new level.

RUSH: That takes me to my next question. You are always criticized for supposedly selectively editing your videos. In fact, that's how you're identified in just about every news article: "James O'Keefe, who selectively edits his videos, blah, blah, blah..." But has anybody ever specifically identified one of those supposed edits?

O'KEEFE: The term "selective edit" doesn't actually mean anything. Words are "selectively edited" into sentences. Right? So if it's a sin to "selectively edit" something, then certainly it's wrong for journalists to describe things in words. But there's only one edit, Rush, they've ever pointed to, out of a hundred undercover investigations. They said I didn't wear a pimp costume into the ACORN office. I certainly identified myself as a pimp. I said I had 13 underage hookers. I said I wanted to whore out underage women. I said I wanted to profit off the women.

RUSH: I remember, and they were all for it. [Laughs] They tried to tell you how to do it.

O'KEEFE: If you look up "pimp" in the dictionary, you will see that I certainly behaved like a pimp, but in the introductory segment to the video, I walked around dressed in a garish chinchilla coat, and that's the only thing they have against me: I didn't wear the actual chinchilla fur, which is my grandmother's fur coat, into the office. So they would have you believe that everything is fake -- but even The New York Times said no audio was taken out of context in that case.

RUSH: I think people ought to know what this is costing you. In 2013, you had to pay $100,000 to a former ACORN employee. You recently said Project Veritas is facing 12 civil actions, and harassment from the California and New York attorneys general. You've got a major part of the liberal legal apparatus coming after you. It's a testament to your effectiveness. But in addition to frustrating you, does it intimidate you at all? Because nobody has the money these guys have. While it's a feather in your cap that they're coming after you, it's also quite a price to pay.

O'KEEFE: You once said, "The left circles the wagons; the right circles the firing squad." You made another comment once on the air, you said the hardest thing to get used to is being hated. So you understand this deeply. There are only a minority of people in the conservative movement who understand this. The temptation to sell out your brothers-in-arms and the freedom fighters or the truth-seekers in order to get praise from the press is enormous. I would say the hardest part for me is that betrayal.

Everyone says, "You're taking flak. You must be over the target." But I don't think the majority of people get that the left uses that to their advantage. Litigation is how they're trying to paralyze me. I'll give you one example that just happened. A financial institution refused to pass along a donation to us just because the New York Attorney General had sent me a letter and made that letter public to the New York Daily News.

The letter didn't allege anything illegal. It just sort of said we're looking into O'Keefe's nonprofit organization. The bank said, "There's a cloud of suspicion around this nonprofit organization. Therefore, we have to not pass along the donation."

Banks are supposed to follow donor intent, but the system is a victim of what the left does through boycotts and creating clouds of suspicion. The only solution I have is to break through it by continuing on. Yes, we have 12 civil actions. We're being sued in federal court. We oftentimes have to wonder whether we go forward. This year alone we have to spend $2 million in legal bills, 15 law firms.

Fifteen law firms! Tortious interference. And it's not that our stories are false; it's that the stories are true. And the more true they get [laughs], the more litigious the adversaries get.

RUSH: Have you sued any of these people back? Essentially, as you just said, you're dealing with truth where they're concerned, but you could say some of them are defaming you. Have you ever thought about returning fire and filing suit?

O'KEEFE: The best offense may be a scorched-earth campaign where we aggressively issue discovery requests. That's one of the most important things we're going to be doing in the Creamer litigation. We'll be looking into all his organizations that he alleges he worked with or lost income from, and their documents, and we'll be attempting to corroborate what we have on video. I'm no longer going to settle any of these cases.

I settled the ACORN case. It was an invasion of privacy lawsuit. They would have you believe that it was an issue related to defamation. It was all about whether or not you can film a worker without their permission, which we would argue is our Constitutional right if they're a government employee.

RUSH: Exactly. That's the difference.

O'KEEFE: We were not sued over lying. It's a big distinction. They're building an unjust system which prevents our First Amendment rights. We cannot back down. We have to go on the offense. But back to the idea that you get flak when you're over the target. It's this sort of moral courage that conservatives need to have if they're going to be effective, and if they're going to implement their policy solutions. If they're going to do what they say they're going to do, if they're going to expose things, they're going to get attacked.

RUSH: One of the things I have found in my career during those periods when I've been taking flak is that people who are not taking flak pretend to know what it's like, and they urge you to hang in there, as though it's easy. Many of these people urging you to hang in couldn't hang in for five minutes if it were happening to them.

Everybody wants to be on your team when you're winning. Success has many fathers. But when it comes down to actually assisting you, as you kind of alluded to, if there's any negative blowback to it, some of those same people run for the tall grass, hoping not to be caught up in the light that shines on you. So has it been challenging to find loyal people to work for you, stick with you, support you?

O'KEEFE: A great question. I'd quote Winston Churchill, he's one of my heros: "It's the courage to continue that counts. Success is not final, and failure is not fatal." It has been said about Veritas, "These guys just don't stop." [Laughs] "They get sued. People get arrested. People get charged." If I may be bold, I think it's that courage to continue which is resonating with a lot of people.

You can criticize us, and the people on my team get that. They're here because we keep going. They're here because we don't stop. It's a boxing match. They punch us with false allegations, and we punch back with truth. Where you lose your people is if you don't punch back. Where you lose your staff is if you give up. But we could have a hundred lawsuits, a thousand lawsuits, and as long as you keep going, I believe -- just as Winston Churchill said in history -- there will be people in this country who will have our backs.

So the answer is, you can't give up, and when they come after you in the most vicious ways, it's just a sign that you're respected enough to be gone after. That's really what my team believes. We've got some 50 people associated with Project Veritas now, not including inside those institutions who work with us to pass on information. We have a big professional team, and we're only getting bigger.

RUSH: You're absolutely right. You're being attacked precisely because it's important enough to them to silence you. You're being attacked because you're effective, and I hope you continue it. I hope you continue to love it, because it is very, very important. As I said, Mr. O'Keefe, there's nobody even attempting what you're doing. Godspeed, God bless, and let us know what we can do to help.

O'KEEFE: Thank you. And thank you for talking about the book on the air. It meant a lot to our team, and we all stood up and cheered both times you did it in the last few weeks.

RUSH: I got the nicest card. Everybody on your team signed that card. It was great. Never gotten anything like that before. I appreciate that.

O'KEEFE: Thank you for getting the word out. I hope to see you one day again.

RUSH: We will continue to get the word out on American Pravda. Hang tough, my man. You're doing great. 97超级碰碰碰碰久久久久_一线完整版在线观看免费_日本三级香港三级人妇三