It seems the phrase “far right” may have lost its cachet as far as Rupert Murdoch’s news outlets are concerned.
In the past few days, the Times of London has hysterically branded Breitbart News an “extremist” website, of course without pointing to what they find to be even remotely extremist, while Sky News has adopted the moniker “ultra-right” to describe us.
But let me pull back the curtain for you a little bit on just how disingenuous the Westminster swamp’s journalists are. Actually, I think if Washington, D.C. is the swamp, then we should start referring to Westminster as the bog. The bog that needs flushing.
When Sky has asked me to come on to debate — a number of times in the last few years — they never asked me on as an “extremist” voice. They’ve asked me on to talk about migration, multi-culturalism, Greenpeace, my UKIP leadership bid, and more. I wasn’t an extremist back then, was I?
And before I trotted into the Sky studios for Murnaghan during my leadership bid, the organisation’s own (dreadful) reporter Beth Rigby stopped me in the make-up room to beg me for information about the UKIP leadership race. Terrible stuff from Ms. Rigby, cavorting with extremists behind closed doors!
Fast-forward a month, and Ms. Rigby is churlishly tweeting Huffington Post headlines in an attempt to undermine me in the eyes of her fellow bog-dwellers:
— Beth Rigby (@BethRigby) November 16, 2016
But, as usual, it doesn’t work. Not least because I know exactly how to deal with these people:
Yes, they want human beings (who make mistakes sometimes). Not robots like you who read from their iPhones when they're on TV. https://t.co/RWTf9f3Niq
— Raheem Kassam (@RaheemKassam) November 16, 2016
In response, it seems, Ms. Rigby decided to throw her toys out of the pram and pen an article for something called “Sky Views” which reads:
Raheem Kassam, a close ally of Mr [Arron] Banks and the UK editor of the ultra-right Breitbart News website, says the US election proved people are ready for a “coarsening” of public discourse.
Well, that’s not quite what I said, firstly. But more interestingly, you can see how the establishment is attempting, scrambling even, to close ranks on news organisations like Breitbart.
In the past few days, blog-sites like the Indy100, tied to the Independent website, published a list of “fake news” sites. Breitbart was one of them. Which is bizarre when the Independent issues more corrections and apologies per year than Breitbart ever has. They had to add a right-of-reply on an article they wrote about me a few weeks ago, and indeed asked me to write an op-ed for their paper as recently as late October (I never did).
And it seems the phrase “far right”, which has floated around for some time — pushed by George Soros-funded groups like Hope not Hate and the Southern Poverty Law Center — is not strong enough anymore. Apparently, now, I am an ultra!
Again, news to me. And if Beth Rigby had any interest in being a real journalist she would have been on the front lines with me at the “Crush Trump” rally in New York which was organised by self-professed hard-left “ultras” — fans of the New York Cosmos football team — who were being stirred up by a hard-left, UK-based “Anti-Fa” activist and marketing man.
When I was first interviewed by Dermot Murnaghan, he declared immediately afterwards: “I really enjoyed that!”
Again, fast-forward a few weeks and the veteran Sky News presenter humiliated himself by pursuing a bizarre line of questioning against me down the line from Washington, D.C. My crime? Not being able to find a crisp, Royal British Legion poppy in Midtown Manhattan to sport during my meeting with President-elect Donald J. Trump.
And today the Times declares Breitbart to be an “extremist” website.
Was I an extremist when their reporter Billy Kenber was harassing my family while I ran for UKIP leader?
Was I an extremist when their correspondents bumped into me on the street in Westminster and asked to take me to lunch to talk about the future of UKIP?
And was I an extremist when one of their reporters — probably their only decent one to be honest — interviewed me over four pints of beer outside the Westminster Arms for three hours? Or when their Sunday equivalent did the same just a few days later, bringing along their photographer to snap pics of me with my favourite ale? Doesn’t sound very extreme, does it?
And it would appear their readers aren’t fooled either.
Remember, the Times is behind a paywall so people writing comments have already somewhat endorsed the paper’s credibility with their wallets. But even they aren’t convinced. Under the latest hit-piece, comments include:
“Is calling a news outlet “racist, anti-Semitic and misogynist” a way of trying to stop us reading it? Weren’t 17.3 million British voters called “xenophobic racists” recently?”
“Prompted by comments below, I looked at the Breibart London site. I did not look at it carefully, but noted a report on the outcome of a court hearing where rioters in Rotherham were prosecuted, but acquitted. See: https://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/11/17/muslim-lives-matter-rioters-cleared-provoked-pub/. The article was balanced and did not argue that the acquittal was wrong. I have not seen this matter reported in The Times.”
“Breitbart is not an extremist website. Frankly its reporting of some issues puts The Times to shame.”
“Why is it extremist.? Would you call the BBC far left.? I would.”
“This is the second ToL article to smear Breitbart News as an extremist website. It was Breitbart London which first broke the story of the NYE Cologne attacks. Without this site, the horror would probably have been successfully hushed up.”
In fact, there are zero negative comments about Breitbart or me under the article. Every single one expresses disappointment with the Times and its allegations.
The people, it seems, are finally awake.