In one of the more amusing attempts to discredit Glenn Beck's week-long expose on billionaire George Soros' unparalleled influence in global politics, Salon's Justin Elliott reports that one of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's aides is actually on Soros' payroll. Scandal!
Uh, not quite.
Given Soros' alleged role plotting to destroy the United States, Beck and his Fox viewership might be surprised to learn that one of Sarah Palin's top aides has been on Soros' payroll for years.
That would be Republican lobbyist Randy Scheunemann, Palin's foreign policy adviser and a member of her small inner circle. He runs a Washington, D.C., consulting firm called Orion Strategies. Scheunemann and a partner have since 2003 been paid over $150,000 by one of Soros' organizations for lobbying work, according to federal disclosure forms reviewed by Salon. The lobbying, which has continued to the present, centers on legislation involving sanctions and democracy promotion in Burma.
According to their website, Orion Strategies performs a number of functions, including public relations, political consulting and even advertising. Needless to say, it's a firm with a broad portfolio.
We advise and consult a variety of businesses (law firms, financial companies, services), organizations (professional organizations, lobbying groups and labor unions), political campaigns and public relation projects. Our political experience includes statewide, congressional, legislative, judicial and county races.
According to Elliot, one of the firm's clients is Soros' Open Society Policy Center, an organization that "encourages Congress and the Administration to press the military dictatorship in Burma to restore political rights and democracy."
In the course of Beck's three-day look at Soros' network of organizations and his links to Democratic politicians, the fact that a top aide to a likely GOP presidential candidate has been retained by a Soros outfit did not come up.
Palin has not commented on the Salon report, nor do I expect her to. The fact that one individual obviously knowledgeable on international politics advised the one-time vice presidential contender is moot and extending this individual connection and extrapolating a wider relationship between Scheunemann's entire firm and Soros' global business empire is a stretch, to say the very least. A further stretch is a conjectured connection between all of this and Beck's thorough assessment of the controversial billionaire.
After an entire week of reporting the questionable agenda and unchallenged facts presented in Beck's look at the "puppet master," is this seriously the best, er, refutation (?) the left can come up with? Fighting facts with sheer (unrelated) speculation?