One of the Podesta emails released by Wikileaks has people in a frenzy over a conspiracy that The Colbert Report was being controlled by “the Left”. Here is the relevant email:
CGI U – The Colbert Report Special Episodes
From:email@example.com To: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com Date: 2013-04-10 14:29 Subject: CGI U – The Colbert Report Special Episodes
John, I hope you got a chance to see the The Colbert Report’s two special episodes I had them do about CGI U that we taped in St. Louis this weekend. This is the link to last nights with a sketch about commitments and the monologue and WJC interview aired Monday. Hope you enjoy and looking forward to your feedback. Next will be your Colbert appearance! -Craig http://t.colbertnation.com/
Seems alarming right? What does he mean he “had them do” those episodes?!
Well, the episode in question – #9082, April 8th 2013 – was a visit by Colbert to the institute. So when “Craig” from CGI says they “did” an episode for Colbert, he means that Colbert had literally visited the institute, and had interviewed Bill Clinton.
The Right is spinning this leak as evidence of Democratic tampering with popular media. This is a piece of fake news/conspiracy that I find particularly troubling, because it attempts to delegitimize someone who has been a keen political observer and who has been very vocal about Trump. We need those people. Satire is a strong tool for truth and progress. It is vital that sane critical-thinkers make the effort to expose these toxic misinformation attempts.