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April 16, 2014 / 16 Nisan, 5774
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Al Gore Gives Al Jazeera 40 Million US Homes, Taking $100 Million


al gore al jazeera

Photo Credit: Yori Yanover

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Al Gore, former politician, “founder” of the Internet, and Global Warming Guru has just traded entree into 40 million U.S. homes for $100 million from the Qatari-Royal-Family-Owned Arab media conglomerate Al Jazeera.  The operation will be called Al JazeeraAmerica.

The deal has left many questioning its kosher bona fides.

Perhaps the most traif aspect of the sale was the press release issued by Gore and his parter, Joel Hyatt, the co-founders of Current TV.  They wrote: “We are proud and pleased that Al Jazeera, the award-winning international news organization, has bought Current TV.” But the rest of the release bordered on self-parody, given that two multimillionaires were selling their ownership to a royal family which controls its citizens, and whose estimated worth is in the range of many $ billions.

Gore and his partner claimed they were selling their ownership to an entity that shares their views. Glenn Beck disclosed on Friday, January 4, that he reached out to Gore in an effort to acquire Current TV, but was rejected by Gore who said he wanted to “wanted to sell Current to someone ‘aligned’ with his values.”

The release by Gore and his partner described their efforts at Current Media as having been driven by a few central goals:

To give voice to those who are not typically heard; to speak truth to power; to provide independent and diverse points of view; and to tell the stories that no one else is telling. Al Jazeera, like Current, believes that facts and truth lead to a better understanding of the world around us.

The idea that Current TV, which was created by, and peopled by and for the progressive left is “a voice that is not typically heard,” is patently absurd.  The mainstream media in the United States is almost entirely by and for the “progressive left.”

But perhaps the claim that either Gore and Hyatt, or the Qatari royal family, will be speaking “truth to power” begs the question: who is “power” if not someone like Al Gore, a member of the metaphorical American Democratic Party’s royal family, or the Qatari Emirate and his family, who actually are royalty?

And then, of course, the stable of talent at Current TV ranged from left to further left, with “stars” like disgraced former New York Governor Elliot Spitzer, former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm – whose speech at the Democratic National Convention was so “animated” it set the twitter world aflame – and liberal lightening rod and former MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann.

Gore and Hyatt may have been correct when they said they were selling to a like-minded outlet; but it is much harder to make the claim that the views represented on Current TV and Al Jazeera are either diverse or independent.

It should be noted that one former American reporter who worked at Al Jazeera said he left the network in 2008 because of “cultural issues.”  Dave Marash, who had worked at Nightline, left al Jazeera in part because he said he sensed an ‘anti-American’ bias there.

And then there’s the outcry that such a public supporter of increased taxes on the rich as Al Gore closed the deal just before the end of the year, which means that Gore’s tidy profit will not be subject to the  new tax increases those other “millionaires and billionaires” will have to pay.

But what is really inciting hysteria by critics of the deal is that a non-free non-Western media outlet will be pouring out its version of what constitutes news to a largely unsuspecting American public.  The reason this is so objectionable is that Al-Jazeera, unlike other state-owned media outlets such as the BBC, FRANCE 24, and Voice of America, does not reveal the state-ownership and censorship by Qatar.

As Elliot Abrams of the Council on Foreign Relations put it: “The answer is not censorship, but candor; if al-Jazeera were called Voice of Qatar, and clearly labeled as that nation’s international broadcaster, the situation would be clear to its viewers.”

While Gore and Hyatt have made out handsomely, Al Jazeera’s immediate payoff will not be financial.  In fact, according to the Wall Street Journal, Current TV had been struggling with low ratings for quite some time.

Al Jazeera executive producer Robert Wheelock told the PBS Newshour that what the network was seeking was not financial rewards, but access to American viewers.  “Access, access across this country, across the United States, something that we tried in various forms to gain.”  Wheelock admitted that Al Jazeera management has aggressively pursued this kind of access, and they were willing to risk financial instability of the outlet in order to acquire it.

Still, it is possible the Al Jazeera management had not anticipated the extent of bad financial news it has received. After the announcement of the deal, Time Warner decided to drop Al Jazeera from its lineup.  This loss is likely to lead to a severe decline in cash flow for the network in 2013, during which it may drop as much as 76%, according to analysts.  Based upon this analysis, some say it is possible that Al Jazeera America will have to drop its license fees to $0.

But for an empire like Al Jazeera, whose finances appear limitless, the newly acquired access to the minds of tens of millions of American viewers is apparently priceless.

 

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About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools.


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18 Responses to “Al Gore Gives Al Jazeera 40 Million US Homes, Taking $100 Million”

  1. This story spotlights just how far off the left in America and the world has veered from morality and justice. But, the sad reality is that this is the way the majority of the world has gone as well. Yesterday I read a story about the rampant antisemitism displayed in Ireland. Norway, to my surprise has such a problem with antisemitism that it's institutionalized in their government. There are countless antisemitic web sites, and the list goes on and on. But, none of this is anything new. The Jewish people have been a favorite punching bag of the world for as long as Judaism has been around. I find the self hating Jews to be the most disturbing. It's inexcusable for any Jewish journalist to display such disdain for their own people. Have Jewish activist partake in antisemitic hate campaigns against Israel, who wave Palestinian flags around. Have Jewish students throughout America join Israel apartheid or boycott Israel events. How a tiny religion of fourteen million people can be the cause of all the worlds problems is ridiculous and totally illogical. But, none of this stops me from continuing to do battle with any of these people. Why, because I know that Judaism is for the most part a good and descent religion, that emphasizes morality, doing what's right over doing what's easy, and provides a blueprint on how to lead a respectable life and skills necessary to navigate through life's challenges and struggles. In fact, I am convinced that if people spent some time learning about Judaism and how it is life focused and morally centered, the world would be a much better place. I am certainly no Torah scholar by any means. But, even the tiny amount I am aware of proved to me that Judaism is a worthy religion. I don't consider being Jewish a curse. To the contrary, I believe it's a blessing. That's why I will continue to support and defend Israel. I don't care who it is, if I learn of some antisemitic rant, you can be sure they will hear from me. I am a strong believer in putting our oppressors in their place with swift and powerful counterattacks whether it be militarily or any other way. Let the world understand that there will be a heavy price to pay if anyone messes with us. The only way we lose is if we beat ourselves by not showing solidarity and not being proud of who we are.

  2. The America will pay more expensive price for this trade.

  3. Tasso Triantaphyllis says:

    Gore never claimed that he was "founder" of the Internet. Please do not distort the truth of what he really said.

  4. Anonymous says:

    they're just buttmad the station wasn't sold to the zionist Beck

  5. Shi Yuehan says:

    Smart boy Al, take the money and run.

  6. Shi Yuehan says:

    Smart boy Al, take the money and run.

  7. Ethan Perks says:

    I don't care about Al Jezeera/Current. I doubt they'll do any better. Although American Muslims may tune in as is their right. And I certainly don't expect anything better from AlGore.

  8. Ethan Perks says:

    Your anti-semitism is showing. If that's your entire rational, you're pathetic.

  9. Tasso Triantaphyllis says:

    Ethan: Are you talking to me?

  10. Tasso Triantaphyllis says:

    Ethan Perks : Are you talking to the "me" above or to me?

  11. Gil Gilman says:

    Ethan Perks was talking to the "me" above, not to the "me" of you ;-)

  12. Gil Gilman says:

    Gore's statement of purpose would be laughable if it wasn't so laughable. When he uses the term "like-minded" is he indicating that his views are as mundane, controlled by government pressure, and outright prejudice, as Al Jazeera?

  13. Tasso Triantaphyllis says:

    I just want to make sure that there is no MEsunderstanding:)

  14. You are right and I am so discussed by it i would like to move to another planet. Al Jazeera does not report the truth and lies. It will also have one agenda in English, a sweet tone, and a very different one , barbaric, in Arabic. I cannot stand the self hating Jews . They are traitor to their people and to their culture. They are usually virulent anti Israel and anti Semite.Ii am a christian and i am very pro Israel and always will be. Al Gore is a pro Muslim and an anti Semite. He is a man without honor and amoral.

  15. "The release by Gore and his partner described their efforts at Current Media as having been driven by a few central goals:

    To give voice to those who are not typically heard…"

    I thought Hamas and every other Jew Hater has been "heard" loud and clear.

  16. Al Gore is a slave of all mighty Cash, no good can come from scum like him.

  17. Gil Gilman says:

    In a totally unrelated episode, I discovered that that this could mean simply that he has a misogynistic view of women, as did Lawrence of Arabia, and that is how he fits in with the Al Jezeera crowd ;-)

  18. Ruth Hirt says:

    You got it right. America has been losing credibility on its own, it is fumbling for acceptance, for wealth-resource allies, even at the throes of trading the whole gamut of American spirit. What aggravates the scenario on Israel's part is really the anti-Jewish Jews. Despicable, flabbergasting is their ignorance, despising what Israel stands for, waiving their divine heritage. Preferring fads, identifying with aimless, nameless mobs …

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