LA Times Reporter: CMP's Anti-Planned Parenthood Vids Are Like 'Discredited' Swiftvets 'Smear'

August 22nd, 2015 1:11 PM

Well, this was inevitable. On the same day that the Center for Medical Progress exposed the CEO of former Planned Parenthood partner StemExpress laughing "about shipping whole baby heads," a reporter at the Los Angeles Times, in what I have beeen told is a front-page story, has compared CMP's video campaign exposing the commerce in baby body parts to the 2004 Swift Boat Veterans for the Truth's campaign. The Swift Boat Vets' effort successfully exposed Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry's serial lies about his service in Vietnam and his smearing of Vietnam veterans as war criminals after he returned.

Times reporter Maria L. La Ganga joined the paper in 1981, and "has served as San Francisco bureau chief, edited in the Business section and pitched in on five presidential elections." Even if one of those five elections wasn't 2004, and even if she didn't dig into conflicting claims over whether Kerry truly earned the Vietnam War medals he received, it's virtually inconceivable that she doesn't know about his frequently stated "Christmas in Cambodia" lie.

Here are relevant excerpts from La Ganga's laughable piece, which lionizes Planned Parenthood's supposed success in fighting back against CMP's exposure (HT to frequent commenter and tipster Gary Hall; bolds are mine throughout this post):

Hit hard by secretly recorded videos, Planned Parenthood fights back

... On one front, #StandWithPP petitions have garnered more than 900,000 online signatures, the group said.

On another, the respected New England Journal of Medicine published two essays in support of the organization. One concludes: “We thank the women who made the choice to help improve the human condition through their tissue donation. ... We are outraged by those who debase these women, this work, and Planned Parenthood by distorting the facts for political ends.”

... Dawn Laguens, executive vice president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said the videos show how little has changed. “Ninety-nine years ago, Margaret Sanger was arrested for handing out birth control pamphlets,” she said. “And we’re still under attack.”

Laguens said the videos have been deceptively edited and are simply an “anti-abortion, Planned Parenthood-destroying strategy.” She likens it to the 2004 push to assail then-Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry’s military record in Vietnam, considered one of the ugliest, most unfair attacks in recent political memory.

... At least one conservative consultant working on the anti-Planned Parenthood effort had a hand in the so-called Swift Boat campaign. Peter Robbio represents the Center for Medical Progress; he handled public relations for the book “Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry.” Although the Swift Boat claims were later discredited, they seriously damaged Kerry’s White House hopes.

... (CMP's) Daleiden did not respond to requests for comment. In a written statement supplied by Robbio, the organization said it follows “all applicable laws in the course of our investigative journalism work and will contest all attempts from Planned Parenthood and their allies to silence our 1st Amendment rights and suppress investigative journalism.”

(Disclosure: Mr. Robbio is a publicist for Creative Response Concepts, which is also the public relations firm for the Media Research Center.)

So readers are now supposed to believe that it is established wisdom that the Swfit Boat Vets conducted "one of the ugliest, most unfair attacks in recent political memory," and that "their claims were later discredited."

While ugliness may be in the eye of the beholder, political attacks are only "unfair" if they're either untrue or incomplete. The facts are that the Swift Boat Vets told the complete truth from their perspective; that their primary claims were never debunked; and that those, including Kerry, who threatened to go to court over the matter never did (anyone with an ounce of sense knows why). At this point, the only thing Democrats and the left can hope to do is scream "discredited" loudly and often enough to the point where most people believe it.

Sadly, they have made progress in that regard. Wikipedia accepts the idea that the Swift Boat Vets were "discredited," even though the claim's two footnotes don't appear to contain any substantive support for that assertion.

I could find no evidence that the footnoted aritcle referenced says that they were "discredited"; even if it's there somewhere in its ponderous prose, the article involved presents no hard evidence.

The book to which Wikipedia refers in its second "discredited" footnote "highlight(s) the intersection between politics, media, and popular culture, this encyclopedia ... for the past 200 years, with the main focus on developments since the advent of movies and broadcast radio." Its description at doesn't mention the controversy, and, though it's conceivably possible, it's hard to imagine that it delves deeply enough into the constitute a "discrediting." If it were, some left-controlled media outlet would have printed it verbatim by now. As far as I can tell, that hasn't happened.

Those who need a full education or a refresher on the Swift Boat Vets' claims can go to their five-video documentary series (episodes One, Two, Three, Four and Five). I'll concentrate on Part Two, "Christmas in Cambodia."

The full truckload of evidence about John Kerry's made-up "Christmas in Cambodia" story is here. Here is the related five-minute video from the documentary series:

John Kerry was not in Cambodia at Christmastime in 1968 with those under his command — then, or ever during his tour of duty. Here are just a few pieces of proof offered in the video:

  • Steve Gardher — "At that point in time on Christmas Eve 1968, we were sitting in 'Sadet' (not clear on spelling — Ed.), having Christmas Eve dinner."
  • John O'Neill — "Your own biography, the book written under contract with you, and in this biography you told the world that you were not in Cambodia, but in Sadet on December 24 and 25, 1968."
  • O'Neill — "(Your presence in Cambodia) was so secret that none of the people who were with you on the boat that day remember even faintly. All of them said they were never in Cambodia."
  • O'Neill — "You wrote (your parents) a letter that night, on the night of December 24, 1968, placing yourself in Central Vietnam and telling your parents you were dreaming, secure in your bed, of sugar plums dancing in your head."
  • O'Neill — "Even your own campaign has admitted you were not in Cambodia on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day of 1968. Even your own campaign has admitted that that you couldn't have heard Richard Nixon talk about that, because he wasn't even President of the United States then."

Swift Boat Veterans for the Truth exposed Kerry's lies about "Christmas in Cambodia" and other Vietnam-related matters during the final months of the 2004 presidential campaign, arguably saving the nation from being "served" by a President John Kerry (for now). As seen above, the Kerry campaign admitted that their candidate wasn't there. The left has never successfully "discredited" the Swift Vets, except in their own fevered alternative universe where their truth-challenged candidates are prevented from winning elections by a GOP "smear machine" which doesn't exist. (The Swift Vets acted entirely on their own, and incumbent Republican President George W. Bush called their efforts "bad for the system.")

Maria L. La Ganga at the LA Times should know — and, as noted earlier, I believe she does know — that CMP is indeed doing what the Swift Boat Vets did, namely exposing the truth, even when it hurts leftists' most precious pet causes.

Cross-posted at