Senate Dem Seeks Investigation of RT for Being Russian-Funded

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D – NH) is pushing a bill that would seek a Justice Department investigation of whether television station RT America is “coordinating with the Russian government,” saying there is reason to believe that there are financial ties between the channel and the Russian government, and that “the American public has a right to know if that is the case.”

It is the case, of course. RT was founded by RIA Novosti in 2005 as a nominally “autonomous” non-profit organization. RIA Novosti is wholly owned by the Russian government.

This mirrors almost exactly the US government’s control over Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, and several other media outlets, which had long been run as nominally autonomous outlets themselves, under the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG).

That RT is an auxiliary of the Russian government was never actually in question, and financial ties are only to be expected. Sen. Shaheen’s efforts to try to argue RT employees are violating the Foreign Agents Registration Act, however, is another matter.

The act explicitly targets lobbyists and people engaging in “political activities,” but provides exemptions for many types of news organizations, and does not generally appear to be enforced against any of the other state-owned media outlets from around the world.

Whether RT can be targeted under the act appears to rest heavily on whether the US government decides it is or isn’t engaged in “bona fide news or journalistic activities,” or at least less-so than the BBC or al-Jazeera.

America’s long history of free press has historically precluded the federal government from getting involved in deciding what is or isn’t a “real” news outlet, and the precedent of doing so clearly has ramifications that go far beyond a single English-language news station run by Russia.

51 thoughts on “Senate Dem Seeks Investigation of RT for Being Russian-Funded”

  1. The democrats need diapers for they are crapping all over themselves. Talk about delusional; they fit it perfectly.

    1. Keep up the domestic politics of division, you’ll accompllish just what you’re trying for as-hole.

  2. This sounds like an effort to set a precedent. If Russian journalists can be prosecuted as foreign agents, then it’s “legally” possible to prosecute pesky American journalists and bloggers.

  3. Jeanne Shaheen is another hack politician for the warmongering
    Pentagon and USG political establishment. Her claims are even
    more ridiculous than Russia’s supposedly hacking into a Vermont
    power grid. A bullshit story concocted by the Washington Post.

    It also reminds me of Uncle Dick ‘Cheney’, who on Dec 9, 2001,
    told ‘Meet The Corporate Press’ his so-called ‘sources’ had ‘proof’
    Mohamed Atta (9/11 boogeyman terrorist) recieved a package of
    Anthrax from an agent of Saddam while in Prague Czechoslovakia.

    Cheney so ignorantly referred to the Czech Republic by its old
    name, Czechoslovakia, which was peacefully dissolved on January
    1, 1993 into the Czech Republic and Slovak Republic.

    Likewise, the MSM funneling this garbage to a gullible USG public,
    also failed to note Uncle Dick’s blunder. This clown would later
    claim he never mentioned Atta was in Prague – despite his being
    on video saying so.

    At the risk of being labeled anti-American, I subscribe to RT,
    al-Jazeera, and Free Speech Radio News.

  4. I hope they don’t force my cable provider to drop RT – it is a great source of independent news. And I love programs like Peter Lavelle’s “Cross Talk” and the “Max Keiser Report”. Some people need an injection of truth daily. Replace that with another dose of Zionist bullshit like CNN and I’ll turn into a hermit.

  5. If they add the nyt and washington post to the list I’m for it. They both get there news from the cia.
    RT is better than all of Amerikas noise machines and how sad for us.

  6. Let everybody forget about the this mammoth worldwide propaganda agency.

    (1975) CIA Admits Using News To Manipulate the USA

    This is an old clip showing admittance of the CIA that they use the mainstream media to manipulate the thoughts and ideas of American citizens in the USA. This has not changed obviously and is good to know happened in the past due to our reality today.

    9/23/1975 Tom Charles Huston Church Committee Testimony

    1. The CIA evolved from the OSS, Brian, and then President Harry Truman prohibited the agency from conducting any covert and/or overt operations on US soil. Such operations are only to be done outside of the US. In ensuing years, the CIA broke this law, intruding on the investigations/operations of the FBI, the only agency with authority to do so, before the “Intelligence Community” was expanded following the 9/11 terror attacks.
      Even now, the CIA’s still forbidden to conduct domestic operations, since there hasn’t been any legislation in Congress, nor Executive Order, to change the 1947 law on domestic operations.
      As for Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, she’s just another liberal hack who’s trying to make a name for herself. RT, unlike NYT, WaPo, et. al., is an actual news site and avoids propaganda. I’m a frequent visitor to RT and have found no propaganda, only news.

  7. Nothing like a hint of domestic political bias to get Americans posting here!
    This is positively good news because it’s an opportunity for us to see if it gets support from Republicans. Or even get support from the Dems?

    When the debate begins it’s going to be worth watching very closely. It has the potential of setting the record straight for everybody who supports this antiwar site. And then when it gets to a vote, that will seal it.
    Except for Trump that is and everybody should already know what he is all about.

    1. Yeah, we’re blessed with a basic Two Party system and as far as I can tell, we’re unique in the world for having only two candidates. Everybody else who has a democracy real or imagined has Parliamentary democracy.

  8. I’ve been objective about RT, NPR, and the other state funded outlets. I’ve found very little in comparison to western outlets to hold RT to account over.

    They can be credited with going places and telling stories that nobody else has been able or willing to do. Some of their documentaries are top notch, imo.

    1. It’s so interesting because it’s going to beg the question of what side US congress is going to take on this issue!

      The Russia hate thing has developed to the point at which it now stands because of Trump’s hint (phony) of cooperation with Russia. That then gave Clinton the perfect opportunity to challenge it as her platform. She knew that the American people would get behind her in large numbrers with that stance. They did and they are.

      Only she had much bigger problems that needed to be dealt with and that’s why she failed. Had it been contained to support or rejection of improved relations with Russia, she would have taken it in a landslide.

      Most people on this site seem to have finally arrived at that conclusion. Raimondo hasn’t and he gets some support on his column at least, but not much on the rest of the site.

      1. I think that he’ll try to rip off the Chinese and Russians. I’m pretty damn sure their executives and legislatures are filled up with people who aren’t stupid or ignorant in any way. So the odds are they know exactly what to expect. They govern with a lot more subtlety. Our politicians look like Foghorn Leghorn by comparison.

  9. This really is rich, with the US media following slavishly all the actions and suggestions, however bizarre, of the PTB and the leaders, and of course the 17 completely reliable “intelligence agencies”. Rupert Murdoch, Jeff Bezos and other worthies must be accepted without question, and US citizens are completely unable to distinguish truth from lies and cannot cope with different points of view. RT, you shameful twister of facts to destroy our democracy that we wish to share with the world.

    1. Well said rose! I always read your stuff with optimism these days.

      “…………, and US citizens are completely unable to distinguish truth from lies and cannot cope with different points of view.”

      That was worth reading a few times! I think it was sarcasm so I’ll offer something that could be a little closer to the truth. Every time hundreds or may a thousand Americans read or listen to RT, a few may stray from their pasture. Then the contented cows have a hard time staying faithful when they see the greener grass (facts) on the other side of the fence.

      Keep up the good work!

  10. Living in the midst of two vast oceans coupled with heightened disdain for our northern and southern neighbors plus widespread snobbishness from being told we are ‘exceptional’ has bred a couture of insularity that encourages ignorance.
    Sen. Jeanne Shaheen’s bill is a product of this.

    1. Right now the Republicans control the White House, and the Senate, and the House of Representatives, as well as completely controlling 24 state governments (versus the Democrats’ 7).

      To put it a different way, right now EVERYTHING of consequence that happens in American politics happens because Republicans want it to happen. The Democrats are about as consequential in American politics as are the armed forces of Burkina Faso.

      1. Except they are behind the insane anti-Russian hysteria that undermines Trump’s more reasonable policy of engagement with Russia.

        1. That’s not what Trump wants. It seems that he hasn’t even mentioned anything about it since his campaign.

          Your excuse you need to use now for that is that he’s intimidated and afraid to use it. How sad that Trump supporters on this site need to cling to such a flimsy excuse. At least you can be sure it’s not an issue with the bulk of his supporters who don’t give a fu-k about anything antiwar. They’re beginning to see that prowar is Trump’s plan to make America great again, and there won’t be any real objections coming from them.

          1. I’m not a Trump supporter. I know the bulk of his supporters aren’t antiwar and neither are Hillary’s.

      2. There’s some truth in what you say, but there is also some that misses the truth. Dems are doing quite an effective job of stopping Trump. His Muslim ban is a huge failure and the health care fiasco of the Repubs is big too. Although the Repubs are screwing themselves on the latter. Point taken though, fwiw.

        The Repubs are just as solid against Russia as the Dems are. That’s pretty clear I think to those who can rise above the domestic party politics. You need to break the connection between your libertarian party ideals and GOP ideals. They contradict each other.

        And then of course, Trump himself is not pro-Russia/US relations in any real way. I thought we got past that but I sense no real passion for promoting that truth coming from you.

        Mainly, what needs to happen is that we need to be able to come together and support US/Russia relations without seeming to have to take sides. Trump doesn’t represent that in any real way. It’s become a trap that those supporting the Dems and opposing Trump have fallen into.

        By design? Likely less than that. A natural progression of Ciinton building on anti-Russian rhetoric as a campaign ploy that worked against Trump to some degree. But what’s more important, it’s still working and threatens to continue to work in order to escalate toward a real war!

        And then, the fact that Trump never meant it in the first place. He used it to his everlasting detriment and can’t get himself out of it.

      3. Remember in 2009-10 when Obama as POTUS had Dems in majorites in House and Senate. He did nothing but pander to the Repugs with NO benefits, then managed to allow the disaster election of 2010 which set the stage for the future.
        Many people agree that the Wall Street support for Obama meant he did not try to do anything (eg reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act) and now so much is in the power of the Republicans that there is little hope. “Resistance” may not help.

  11. “America’s long history of free press”, is Ditz for real or just deluded?

    The [following] remarks were apparently made by Swinton, then the preeminent New York journalist (Contributor – Editor NYT), probably one night in 1880. Swinton was the guest of honour at a banquet given him by the leaders of his craft. Someone who knew neither the press nor Swinton offered a toast to the independent press. Swinton outraged his colleagues by replying:

    “There is no such thing, at this date of the world’s history, in America, as an independent press. You know it and I know it.
    There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print. I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with. Others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job. If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone.

    The business of the journalists is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press?

    We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes.”

    I have forgotten the source :

    “The most effectual engines for [pacifying a nation] are the public papers… [A despotic] government always [keeps] a kind of standing army of newswriters who, without any regard to truth or to what should be like truth, [invent] and put into the papers whatever might serve the ministers. This suffices with the mass of the people who have no means of distinguishing the false from the true paragraphs of a newspaper.”

    1. Trump has a share of the ownership of the National Enquirer, which praises him as the new messiah. Sort of. Close, just not real religious fervor for Mr Trump, in print at least. They had some really stupid crap for some really long time. But the stupid one from like 3 maybe 4 weeks ago was that Trump was going to DESTROY the “Hollywood elite” and he was going to have Vengeance against them. For what? Vengeance is for somebody who was genuinely wronged. Then, there was a more-real news item that Trump was concerned about “The Alec Baldwin Situation”. Hey, you go around spouting ridiculous crap, and as a high profile public official, you have no recourse if somebody finds a way to laugh at it.

      Government officials who insist that nobody ever mock them are generally called dangerously insane dictators.

      1. Kings and leaders have always had their fools and clowns, to mock and to keep the mighty ‘grounded’. This campaign against Trump is a deliberate war, not to keep him humble, but to undermine every aspect of him, his family, his associates and his policies. It is to humiliate him and especially his supporters, at every opportunity, to ridicule every aspect of his being and to undermine every possible support.
        Nothing that Trump has said is in any way ‘racist’ in any way against ‘Muslims’. He speaks for an hour and says 59 minutes of non-controversial policy. They seize on three words, take them out of context, and spend a week lambasting and vilifying their interpretation of the words.
        CNN proudly admit to not looking for ‘news’ or ‘policy’ they don’t cover those because ‘they are not controversial’. Their only aim is to create controversy, where none exists, for the purpose of justifying their support for the losers.
        “who insist that nobody ever mock them are generally called dangerously insane dictators” good luck with mocking Hillary or Bill, ‘Arkanicide’ is very real and coming to you soon.
        May he carry on ‘spouting ridiculous crap’ like ‘Let’s be friendly with Russia’ ‘Let’s vet immigrants’ ‘Let’s take care of Vets’.
        Their mockery is not in fun or in jest but to undermine the very democracy that Americans claim to support.
        “It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds.”
        Attributed to both Samuel and John Adams
        The majority may be ‘deplorable’, but these people are despicable.

        1. He ordered the deportation of people of color and people who are Muslim, has filled his cabinet with racist and anti-Muslim fascists like Sessions and Perry and Vos and is currently involved in a confirmation hearing for yet another “Originalist” meaning only wealthy white men would be able to make or change any policy.

          That WAS the original intent of the so-called Founding Fathers. They and Trump’s supporters and cabinet were and always have been propagating an anti-Native, anti-Black, anti-civil rights, police state militaristic agenda.

          Sessions was and still is a Klansman who backs the pigs every time they blow away or profile Black or Hispanic or Native citizens.
          And was one of the leaders of the Klan actions against VietNamese refugees using their emergency relocation support funds to do exactly what it was intended to do, build their lives in America with a minimum of of “welfare” payout. Specifically the ones who bought and worked their way into the shrimp fishing industry, and the White shrimpers screamed and shrieked, crybaby punks that they are, that these Viet dudes who had spent their entire lives in a war zone fighting for the Corrupt and Fascist Republic of Vietnam puppet dictatorship. Some of the white shrimpers are Vietnam vets too, but they served at most would have like 5 tours. But that doesn’t count to the Klan or Sessions, maybe since you know the Real Trump so well you could ask him to clean that up, maybe?

          The Klan and Aryan Nation and Blue Lives Matters and other assorted similar White Trash Elitists have endorsed him, because they recognize him for one of his own.

          And he really hasn’t told them to shut the flock up. He has a history of filing libel suits with far less provocation. Again, next time you talk to him, mention that, will you? Oh, and the guy who blew away a REAL man, unlike any of the racist pukes who worship Trump as a god, in Olathe… he and others of his ilk believe that Trump has given them a free pass to commit all sorts of terrorist activities. They have a website, it’s called Stormfront, David Duke, who is Sessions’ butt-buddy, kind of like Hitler and Ernst Rohm is a big sponsor of that.

          I mean, preachin’ to the choir here, but if you really want to get people to stop saying that Trump is a not-very-undercover Klansman, take it to them, or Breitbart. They’ll let anybody post to their crapfest, as long as you’re racist and/or elitist.

          Meanwhile, people mock his fascist government for what it is, Fascism. Nothing more nor less.

          1. It is clear that we can never have a rational debate.
            “What should be evident from the studies on the backfire effect is you can never win an argument online. When you start to pull out facts and figures, hyperlinks and quotes, you are actually making the opponent feel as though they are even more sure of their position than before you started the debate. As they match your fervor, the same thing happens in your skull. The backfire effect pushes both of you deeper into your original beliefs.”
            Global Research
            You will continue in your beliefs even though they are demonstrably ridiculous.
            Taking only your first sentence, ‘ordered the deportation of people of colour and people who are Muslim’ is so outlandishly wrong that it is hard to believe that you are not merely ‘trolling’.
            He ordered the deportation of criminals.
            End of.
            No person has been deported because of the race, religion or origin.
            No order has been given to do so.
            Every person to be deported has been convicted of a felony!
            You will never admit it, and I can’t be bothered to carry on with debating someone who is so devoid of truth of facts.
            Unless you come up with ‘facts’ not some BS CNN opinion, don’t bother to respond.
            Not one single fact, not even a ‘factoid’, nothing just repeating calumny.
            Good for you.

          2. TSA pulled Muhammad Ali Jr for interrogations twice just in the past 3 weeks. I don’t watch nor subscribe to CNN.
            My opinions are from a lifetime in close proximity to Klansmen and a keen memory. Did you check the VietNamese shrimper guerrilla (spanish for little war)? Sessions played a big role in it as did David Duke. or are you old enough to recall that, as it was in the late 70s and into the 80s.

            As I wrote, if you want to change the impressions, take a tour of Breitbart, (who lied to take down ACORN, recall that? I do) Trumps own assertion that he defrauded Gadafi which got like Zero Play on the MSM, and that people such as the Central Park 5 should be given the Death Penalty. To people with a lynch mob mentality, that’s a green light. They believe, whether Trump actually knows it, that if the Government doesn’t or can not stop a “crime” like the Olathe shooter stated was his motive for killing a REAL man… because he thought the people he shot were Iranian. Which isn’t a crime and any Iranians in America would be refugees, supporters of the Puppet Dictator Shah.

            If you want to change the impressions, go to the Right Wing Lunatic Fringe. If Trump won’t do it, maybe some rational Right Wing or Moderate Trumpista will tell his dork squad loudmouths at Stormfront to shut the hell up. Good luck having an intelligent conversation with them.

          3. And if you find your own opinions to be in line with the Stormfront Nazi Freaks, maybe that could induce you to examine your own opinions, maybe find out why you believe the way you do?
            One of their disciples, under orders from the Aryan Brotherhood, blew away a pizza delivery man , took his car, in Denver, drove to Black Forest which is a suburb of Colorado Springs, blew away the Colorado Director of Prisons, (his orders were specifically to kill the Director’s wife and anybody else in the home, because she is a prosecutor who has been investigating the Aryan “ubermenschen”) then drove the car stolen from his first victim, down to Texas and tried to kill a Texas deputy sheriff who got in his way, and had a paper with names like the Director’s wife, the pizza delivery man (who you probably would cheer for his death as he was a convicted felon) and several prosecutors in Texas.

            It was a declaration of war, he wasn’t expected to get past the Black Forest bit, and I know this because I happen to have polite conversation (sometimes) status with his gang. Not by my choice. And they boast of it. The way Trump boasts of getting away with advocating lynching (Central Park 5) and Grand Theft (Gadafi ripped off) even during the election, or did you miss that?

            And it’s not even dependent on Trump actually calling their shots, the Stormfronters actually BELIEVE they have his permission to do such. If he wants to be a Leader then by God he needs to rein in those particular Ass Monkeys, and not put their membership like Sessions and Perry into positions of great power.

          4. But my opinions have nothing in common with the “Stormfront Nazi Freaks’.
            You are just trolling.
            Sad. (by God) Really sad.

          5. Then why do you try the textual equivalent of trying to shout me down for nothing more than stating the same thing? The dude is a self-confessed thief, makes stupid comments which go past casual disdain for human life, and go to what could easily be interpreted by really stupid and violent people as a green light to kill their fellow americans. And the MSM doesn’t do any reporting of that. I mean, a criminal in the white house is nothing new, it’s kind of a tradition in the merged histories of America. There’s not much reported about Trump having said, repeatedly, over many years, how much he hates Native Sovereignty and now is orchestrating the takeover of Native lands, in projects in which he’s vested, like Keystone and DAPL pipelines. It’s like a thief’s dream come true, he gets to command the Army Corps of Engineers to put large amounts of taxpayer bread into his private stash.

            That’s just wrong on every level but that’s not the focus of the reporting. Where’s the reporting on the investing in private schools, which his new Education Secretary plans to use for replacing and destroying Public Education?

            There’s no reason for anybody to actually cooperate with him on those issues. But so very many of his loudest proponents insist that we have some kind of duty to obey. And it filters into the street level “Average Joe” conversations. The people who approach me in the street and saying that he’s going to deport all the Muslims and they love it. These are his supporters. Not a liberal smear agenda. They’ve been predicting what “we’re going to do to all those libruls and Mexicans and Negroes” and the Make America White Again is a policy His Supporters voted for. Those are the expectations of his base. If you want to convince anybody that somehow mass deportations with expedited “fair and impartial” hearings isn’t an attack on Mexicans and Muslims.

            It .. Is… Why… They.. Voted… For… Him

            They tell me that a lot. Very outspoken, but we get to be outspoken in opposition to that racist and fascist agenda.

            The Wall, for instance.. It’s supposed to be, according to Mr Trump, to be a 7billion dollar project. Groovy, he reportedly is worth 8 billion, he can pay for it himself.

            Instead a company in which he is invested, Halliburton, is going to be the biggest contractor. I’m from Texas, and until they broke my foot to hell and beyond with non-union no-insurance no-safety or environmental regulation, I was a construction worker. Fortunately I had a public education on which to rebuild my life. My father was a Sergeant in the Air Force and had 8 kids to support, where exactly would the private schools fit into that low a budget?

            But Halliburton, to bring it back in focus… is THE 800 pound gorilla in Texas construction. So they’ll no doubt get the biggest share of the Wall construction. And Trump is either invested in them or just for some reason doesn’t want extra money lying around, especially from a group of thieves who hate unions, hate workers, hate regulation, hate the minimum wage. So he’ll get more free money from the taxpayers. And at the very least his proponents say “he” will build the wall. If he does a speck of construction work on The Wall it will be the first time he ever did any such labor. That’s what peasants are for. And that’s just a few.

            There’s no backlash from him on the limited coverage of those issues. Instead he has his Drama Queen in Chief hissy fits over people mocking him.

            He’s not automatically entitled to not being mocked. He needs to man up about that. He’s not a victim, he has the highest political office in the U.S., given to him without having the popular vote.

            Both major candidates stank and still do. And you could bet a thousand percent of your arse that Hillary and Bill are just as vested in the same corporate welfare scam his Cabinet are using to rip off america.

          6. Just tellin’ it like it is, bub. If I leave it short, the Trolls bitch about not enough information and if I give details they come off with stupid crap about trolls.
            Just ain’t any pleasing them.

          7. I’m sure prosecutors rejoice when you report for jury duty, as you believe, clearly, that only the guilty ever get arrested. One of Trump’s themes is to punish the Central Park 5 even though they’ve been exonerated. He even re-stated it a week before the election. In shorter terms he’s advocating the form of Murder known as Lynching.

            It encourages ass-monkeys like Adam Purington to blow away a human being because he thought the man was Iranian. Which would make him a refugee from Iran, which isn’t any kind of of crime and especially not a capital offense. As it turned out the man was Indian. So was the other man from the same incident who was wounded and not killed. The whole mass deportation schtick is Lynch Mob Mentality. Now there’s a reported similar lynch mentality killing in New York, where a 66 year old man who happened to be black was murdered by somebody who hated black people and wanted to kill them. The two victims who died in the Tennessee Valley Unitarian church shooting, one of them a retired US Marine, who stood between the shooter Jim Adkisson and the children of the church. There’s a lot of Mad Dog Lone Wolf shooters who leave a Shooter’s Manifesto loaded with Republican hate-speech. Seems you have a ranch where you raise them.

            But hey, I’ve been told by Trump disciples that Trump doesn’t mean anything by his hate-filled statement, repeatedly urging Lynching. I hope the Olathe shooter and the one-man lynch mob in New York get fair hearings, full Due Process with no mistakes. Also at the start of this paragraph I wrote that Trumpistas say that Donald Does Not Mean What He Says. Good of them to admit that.

  12. Now that the Rand Paul issue has come up with McCain shit-ting all over him in the senate, do you feel any embarrassment for condemning just the Dems? Did Rand Paul get any support from his fellow Repubs? Will he? Will Trump pick up on it as support for one of his main themes during his campaign?

    What a wonderful opportunity for Trump to expand on his idea that Nato is obsolete! And what a wonderful boost to Rand Paul that could be!

    I suggest it just ain’t gonna happen and Rand Paul will limp off like a scolded puppy and thing better of what he says in the future.

    Just another of my attempts to drive the partisan politics bullsh-t out of this site. And I know that it must annoy you.

    1. Both parties are really unpopular. Wildly unpopular. Neither party leader got even 50% of the vote and the candidate who “won” with fewer actual people voting for him. Like, 3 million voters.

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