Before I dig into this, let me provide a bit of background.
I’ve worked with James O’Keefe off and on since the beginning of Project Veritas. I consider James a friend and have always been an supporter of his work and understand the impact that it makes along with the importance of undercover journalism.
Historically, corporate media is in direct collusion with government . . . by government design.
With the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and other government agencies looming over nearly every business deal, content providers have to weigh this important question before exposing government wrongdoing: which politician will go after us?
Only when it fits a publication’s political agenda, will a news outlet even cover leaked government scandals like Watergate, the Pentagon Papers, or more recently WikiLeaks.
With Project Veritas, they’re doing the work that wasn’t really ever done by the media. Their work is more closely related to the work our government sometimes does with investigations like ABSCAM where seven members of Congress, including one senator were convicted of bribery and conspiracy in 1981.
But even those government-led investigations are few and far between.
As a result, there is no truly independent investigator looking into the dark corners of government and the political arena (and don’t even bring up Mueller).
That’s where Project Veritas comes into play.
James has honed his craft for over a decade now, starting his undercover work at his alma mater, Rutgers University with his “Lucky Charms” video that showed the ridiculous nature of political correctness.
James’ and Project Veritas’ apex moment came in 2016 when they linked the violence at Trump rallies directly to disruption efforts paid for by the DNC.
But when it comes to impact, their work investigating voter fraud has made more of a difference in our society than 40 years of work by most other conservative groups . . . combined.
Since Project Veritas began their work on voter fraud in 2012, 14 states have implemented Voter ID laws (which is just one topic covered by the group).
I can personally say that Project Veritas is directly responsible for many of those states changing their laws for the better.
While serving as Project Veritas’ Executive Director years ago, I recall a Virginia state rep breathlessly calling me up, requesting permission to show the tape to his colleagues before the initial law passed in 2013.
My response was simply, “Go for it, it’s a public video.”
That’s the beauty of their work. Project Veritas doesn’t have to advocate for an issue or lobby politicians to make an impact. They simply expose the truth.
But here’s the kicker, for James and Project Veritas to survive the long haul and continue to make a significant impact, their work must be unbiased and above reproach.
Their release today, despite the overblown hype, falls far from that tree.
On Wednesday, Project Veritas released a 20-minute video investigating (again) the New Jersey Education Association (NJEA).
In the video, you’ll see union rep, Dr. David Perry, the association’s President for Hamilton Township (a population of 88,000), explaining that his job is to protect union members.
Perry was presented with the scenario that a teacher hit a student and was concerned about reporting the incident.
The union rep showed his loyalty to union members by explaining the report would be kept confidential and if needed, they would provide the teacher with an attorney at no cost.
The most damning part of the 20-minute video was Perry’s statement that he has to “know the truth, so that we can bend the truth.”
While that statement isn’t flattering portrayal of honesty for a union rep, Perry’s candid, unknowing performance should serve as a recruiting video for the NJEA and their commitment to teachers.
After all, it’s a teacher’s union, not a student’s union.
And let’s not kid ourselves, the “it’s for the children” plea that is used and abused by anyone with an agenda simply isn’t reality.
While teachers should never strike a student in anger, we are talking about today’s youth. For a good percentage of today’s teens, when they’re not busy eating Tide Pods and taking selfies, they’re showing little respect for societal norms or flat out throwing violent fits.
A “scuffle” between a teacher and a student is likely more common than we all know.
But it’s not a scandal.
If a scandal exists in this story, it’s what was not yet told.
Back to the importance of Project Veritas maintaining integrity: it’s vital that they publish both the bad and the good.
While this first video focuses on the unfiltered words of a low level union rep, what went unsaid was the botched attempt to sting union officials in a different state, Ohio.
According to the head of a teacher’s union in Ohio, Project Veritas investigators, “infiltrated three Ohio schools and three union offices [last] Wednesday, claiming knowledge of a sexual relationship between a student and teacher.”
At one school, when the Project Veritas investigator was asked for her ID, she left. The school’s resource officer dispatched the police who pulled over the women who was driving with another PV operative.
It can be assumed that the investigative pair had to explain to the police that they were conducting an undercover investigation.
The bottom line to this is that the Ohio school’s staff did the right thing and immediately reported the alleged incident (which would have been a real crime) to the police resulting in action.
Will this be covered in a forthcoming video by Project Veritas? I guess we’ll see but by no means is this the first time that Project Veritas has “caught” the subjects of their investigations doing good.
In order to find the bad apple in a bushel you have to look at each individual apple.
In defense of James and Project Veritas, 75% of those apples are surprisingly bad, but the remaining 25% are shining examples of integrity . . . and should be celebrated.
And for Project Veritas’ work to be considered true, objective, journalism, they are best served by telling the full truth, otherwise, they’re doing no better than Union Rep David Perry, and simply “knowing the truth so that they can bend the truth.”