The federal authorities have charged a St. Louis man with making more than half a dozen bomb threats against Jewish community centers, schools and a Jewish history museum, an unsealed court document shows.He's a former reporter for a number of left-leaning news organizations, primarily the Intercept -- which fired him:
The man, Juan Thompson, made some of the threats in his own name and others in the name of a former girlfriend, apparently in an attempt to intimidate her, according to a federal complaint filed by the United States attorney’s office in Manhattan and unsealed on Friday....
Mr. Thompson is not believed to be responsible for the majority of threats made against Jewish centers around the country, according to F.B.I. officials....
A news website, The Intercept, confirmed in a statement on Friday that Mr. Thompson worked for the publication for a little over a year, until he was fired in January 2016 after it was discovered that he had fabricated sources and quotes in his articles.This has led to a lot of schadenfreude on the right. Headline at Ben Shapiro's Daily Wire: "Suspect Who Phoned 8 Bomb Threats To Jewish Community Centers Arrested…And He’s A Left-Wing Fake News Reporter." But please note that at the time of his arrest, Thompson was not a reporter. He'd been eighty-sixed by multiple news organizations on the left. In addition to the Intercept, Talking Points Memo pulled a piece he'd written once the Intercept had exposed his fabrications and lies. Another site for which he briefly worked, Raw Story, was among the first to identify and denounce him today:
Anti-Jewish bomb threat suspect Juan Thompson was disgraced left-wing journalistAt the right-wing site Hot Air, Ed Morrissey wrote this:
... Thompson was revealed as a serial fabulist and in February 2016 after The Intercept added editor’s notes to five of his prior stories, including a retraction of an article that included bogus quotes attributed to a cousin of white supremacist Dylann Roof.
That article quoted the nonexistent cousin, “Scott Roof,” who speculated the white supremacist had killed nine black churchgoers in South Carolina because a woman had rejected him for a black man....
Thompson worked as a Raw Story editor for two weeks prior to the revelations about his previous work at The Intercept.
Kudos to Raw Story for running this story. Thompson’s brief employment there is no reflection on them, of course, but it might be tempting for a media outlet to avoid commenting on this.Why would that be "tempting"? This guy was a disgraceful excuse for a journalist -- and, if the charges are accurate, a stalker and a sociopath.
Of course Raw Story (and the Intercept and TPM) want to disavow him.
Thompson is "a left-wing fake news reporter"? Yes, but our side made him a pariah. It seems to be different on the right: A decade ago, when he was a young man on the verge of getting a job at The Washington Post, Ben Domenech was identified as a serial plagiarist. He landed on his feet and is now the publisher of the Federalist, and widely published elsewhere. Chuck C. Johnson is a serial fabulist and relentless troll. He reportedly helped vet appointees for the Trump administration. David Martosko, working with Johnson, pursued a fake story linking Democratic senator Bob Menendez to Dominican prostitutes. Martosko got a job in England exporting right-wing clickbait back to America as the U.S. politics editor of the Daily Mail, and was interviewed for a job in the Trump administration, possibly press secretary.
We don't place tribal loyalty above all else.