The American media has been liberal for decades, but the utter disregard for the truth that pervades much of the reporting today is something new. With all the alarm over misinformation on the right, little attention has been paid to the much broader form of misinformation that dominant corporate media perpetrates today.
One of the biggest stories of our time is the way Communist China has co-opted so many leading American institutions and individuals. How is it that America, a country committed to human rights, is freely trading with China, a country currently operating slave labor camps? That’s a serious and important question, but it’s one the media barely addresses.
Many well-intentioned Americans believed that free trade would liberalize China and provide low-cost goods, ultimately helping American families. In reality, free trade fueled Communist China’s rise, minus the promise of liberalization. Moreover, these policies left America overly dependent on Chinese-made goods, including key products needed for America’s security, its health care and even, astoundingly, its military.
More broadly, the loss of American manufacturing has harmed many formerly thriving American communities and helped upend the American political system. It turns out that free trade theory may not work out when one party is a developed free economy and the other is a mercantilist system marked by corruption and slave labor.
In addition to the American leaders who botched these policies through well-meaning intentions, there are others who were economically or politically conflicted. Many American companies made billions by moving factories to China. Wall Street made even more by financing the whole thing. Some American companies and elite institutions were flat-out co-opted by Chinese interests. The Chinese Communist Party has an organized effort to influence American policymakers and business leaders. Most Americans don’t even know they’ve been targeted by Communist Party operatives. They are drawn in by the potential for financial gain or by a desire to bring the two countries closer together.
The Daily Caller News Foundation’s Philip Lenczycki is one of the leading American reporters covering the Chinese Communist Party’s influence operations in the United States. With 20 years of experience traveling frequently to China, six years living in China full time, fluency in Mandarin, a master’s degree in Chinese language and culture, sources all over China and as the top student at Harvard’s Beijing Academy, it’s hard to point to a more well-equipped reporter elsewhere in American media.
Lenczycki recently made two astounding discoveries, which he detailed in a series of articles. First, he revealed how California Democratic Rep. Judy Chu served for over a decade as the “honorary president” of an organization whose leadership includes several individuals who’ve belonged to alleged Chinese intelligence front groups. Lenczycki also revealed how Chu was named “honorary chairwoman” of an alleged Chinese intelligence front group back in 2019.
Second, Lenczycki exposed how Dominic Ng, CEO of East West Bank, whom President Joe Biden recently appointed to represent the U.S. at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meetings, had been a member of at least two groups allegedly linked to Chinese Communist Party intelligence efforts.
Top U.S. leaders associating with groups linked to alleged Chinese intelligence efforts is, of course a huge story, yet the corporate media did not touch it.
Republican members of Congress called for investigations as a result of Lenczycki’s reporting. The Democrats’ response to all this was basically their standard playbook in 2023: ignore the facts altogether and claim the whole thing is driven by racism. When the facts aren’t with you, change the subject and attack the messenger. That’s not good behavior; in fact, it’s utterly juvenile, but it’s how politics often works.
Reporters are supposed to be different. They are supposed to search for the truth. They are supposed to ask tough questions. Of course, the legacy media did not do that. In reporting on the whole incident, corporate media outlets have yet to examine the actual facts Lenczycki unearthed. They instead summarily wrote his work off as “unsubstantiated.” Lenczycki’s reporting is well-documented, and, more importantly, it’s on the web for anyone to analyze. Any reporter who felt the need to further substantiate it could go to his articles, find links to the source materials and experts who commented, and do all the necessary substantiation. But not a single corporate media reporter did that. Why? They don’t want to get to the truth. They don’t like where it may lead. It’s much cleaner to call it “unsubstantiated” or “racist” and write it off. This is the same way they handled the Hunter Biden laptop story, the story of whether COVID came from a lab in China and so many other story lines that they do not want to explore for political reasons.
It’s important to note that Lenczycki never once alleged in his reporting that either Ng or Chu were knowingly doing the bidding of the Chinese Communist Party. He didn’t allege that because he doesn’t know if it’s true. What is true is that both parties have troubling ties to alleged Chinese intelligence front groups. Besides tarring those looking into these serious allegations as “racists,” both Chu and Ng have defended themselves either by totally denying any affiliations with these groups or by downplaying any ties as having fizzled out years ago.
There could be some truth to that, but these top American leaders’ mere associations with parties doing the bidding for the increasingly brutal Chinese Communist state is worthy of more scrutiny. This is doubly true in this case, where the subjects’ excuses don’t line up with all the available facts. And if it’s all innocent, then it seems really odd that these alleged Chinese intelligence groups are busy scrubbing their websites to try to retroactively cover their tracks.
The corporate media has not pressed Ng and Chu on any of this. Chinese Communist influence operations in America are not a story that interests them. Besides NBC News, none of the media outlets branding Lenczycki’s reporting as “racist” even reached out for comment — a journalistic norm that Lenczycki offered to both Ng and Chu numerous times without success.
The story of the Chinese Communist Party’s influence operations in the U.S. is in many ways part of the story of our time. America’s financial and political leaders put in place policies that helped China’s Communists at the expense of the American middle class. Many of America’s major media outlets were part of the problem. They took millions of dollars to run Chinese Communist propaganda for many years. Included among the news outlets that ran this paid propaganda were The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and The New York Times. More recently, all the major D.C. newsletters — Axios, Playbook and Punchbowl — are on the Chinese dole. Semafor was even more bold: They enthusiastically announced partnership with a barely concealed Chinese influence group.
Maybe that explains why they’re all so uninterested in the story. Maybe it isn’t money. Maybe academic notions of racial intersectionality and “Asian hate” have paralyzed them into submission. In either case, this much is clear: China is aggressively targeting American leaders and institutions, and it is succeeding. That’s a huge story. We aren’t intimidated by the name-calling; if the legacy media won’t cover it, we certainly will.
Neil Patel co-founded The Daily Caller, one of America’s fastest-growing online news outlets, which regularly breaks news and distributes it to over 15 million monthly readers. Patel also co-founded The Daily Caller News Foundation, a nonprofit news company that trains journalists, produces fact-checks and conducts longer-term investigative reporting. The Daily Caller News Foundation licenses its content free of charge to over 300 news outlets, reaching potentially hundreds of millions of people per month. To find out more about Neil Patel and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators website at www.creators.com
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