On June 21, 2023, America’s Future filed an Amicus brief with the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) in Blankenship v NBC Universal, LLC, SCOTUS Dkt. 22-1125. The SCOTUS public docket for this case can be located here.
America’s Future joined the brief in support of petitioner, Don Blankenship in his pursuit to clear his name, rehabilitate his reputation, and expose the fraud and malfeasance by major media conglomerates that continue to do the bidding for and act at the behest of Washington D.C.’s most powerful. The case at bar arises out of abject media deceit, including false narratives and tales of fiction relentlessly repeated by America’s unaccountable regime media about one man in connection with a criminal matter. With few exceptions, court filings in criminal matters are publicly available, and considering the media’s awareness of the same, to argue the media did not intentionally lie to the public is absurd. Lying by omission, especially by “professional journalists,” is lying just the same.
The regime media in this country has gotten far too comfortable abusing its powers for far too long. America’s Future filed a brief in this case to call out media organizations for wielding unbridled control over public consumption of information to the detriment of the individuals it targets and the public, as a whole. The regime media uses a landmark 1964 SCOTUS case called NY Times v Sullivan (1964) to shield itself from any accountability or legal liability in connection with despicable and sordid lies it propagates against public figures because public figures have the dubious task of proving “actual malice” in order to prevail in a case against the media. In turn, the regime media continues its assault on truth, running roughshod over our First Amendment right to a free press. Remember, it is not the media’s First Amendment right to a free press, it is We The People’s right, and we are entitled to all of the fruits of that liberty without interference from the government or its proxies like today’s media conglomerates.
In this case, the facts are not in dispute and stem from a separate earlier criminal case against the petitioner. For background, in the afternoon of April 5, 2010, “an explosion ripped through the underground workings [of the Upper Big Branch mine (‘UBB mine’)] taking the lives of 29 miners and injuring two others.” At the time of the deadly explosion, Massey Energy Company owned and operated the mine, and Don Blankenship, the petitioner in this case, was serving as its CEO.
Following a full federal investigation into the UBB mine disaster by the U.S. Department of Labor – Office of Mine Safety and Health Administration, Mr. Blankenship was indicted on various misdemeanor and felony charges. Two years later, in 2016, he was acquitted on all charges other than one misdemeanor charge for which he was sentenced to 12 months in federal prison and ordered to pay a fine of $250,000. Mr. Blankenship was released from federal prison in 2017.
As our brief explains, “[a]fter his release from prison in 2017, Blankenship sought the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate from West Virginia . During his campaign, a number of media organizations reporting on the race falsely referred to Blankenship as a ‘felon’ and ‘convicted felon,’ and having been convicted of manslaughter. He was unable to obtain retractions of those claims before the primary election…By any standard, this case presented an exceptionally strong circumstantial showing of ‘actual malice,’ [otherwise] this Court’s test in New York Times v. Sullivan is hopelessly flawed.”
“Blankenship was the victim of a high-tech digital political assassination by some of the nation’s most powerful media conglomerates, performed at the behest of powerful federal government officials.” This abuse of power by the mainstream media is, sadly, no longer an aberration, but has become the norm in our society.
We, at America’s Future, believe in a free and uncompromised press. We hope the SCOTUS reverses its own decision from 60 years ago in N.Y. Times v Sullivan. The majority of Americans have completely lost faith in the media. This country has been torn apart over the last decade and undoubtedly, the major media conglomerates have played a primary role and therefore are a culpable party. Our country needs SCOTUS more than ever to step up to the plate and restore this nation’s faith in a government of the people, by the people, and for the people.