BuzzFeed.com, as you’re certainly aware by now, is a minor website that has, from time to time, detonated hydrogen bombs that devastated the political planet. They were the ones, you’ll recall, who published the celebrated but mendacious “Steele dossier” that enabled the Mediacrat party to start the Bobby Three Sticks thing that’s been ongoing for about two years now. And, last week, they published a story claiming that they had an anonymous source, presumably inside the independent counsel’s office, who claimed they had seen document(s) alleging that the president had ordered his erstwhile counsel, Michael Cohen, to lie to the congress.
Virtually every television news operation on this planet led with this story for about 18 hours, some while their anchors all but drooled and grinned in delight, certain that President Trump would be dragged from the White House and summarily hanged somewhere on the national mall while the entire nation cheered. Ditto almost every website and newspaper. Because this, this was the final nail in the coffin, the last straw, the smokingest of smoking guns, the piece of evidence that would finally rid the world of the worst human being that had ever lived, Donald Trump.
But then, talking heads, scribblers, reporters, editors and other professional leftists everywhere were stunned. In utter disbelief, and while still in denial, they were dragged, kicking and screaming, into reporting that the independent counsel’s office publicly denounced the claims in BuzzFeed.com’s story. “Inaccurate” was the term Mueller’s people used, D.C.-speak for “wrong”. The president himself referred to the whole moronic sequence of events as a “bad day for journalism.”
And it was. In fact, what we had here was not actually journalism, but a mass gossip operation spread by the people in the country who have, at once, the highest profiles in the information industry and whose hatred for the president, on the personal, professional, philosophical and political* levels approaches the pathological. Speaking strictly as a layman, of course.
In a seat that has been held, at times, by Roger Mudd, Marvin Kalb, Tom Brokaw and Tim Russert, he of the Lenin-esque goatee Chuck Todd ran Meet The Press Sunday, as has been observed, like the war room of a political campaign’s op research section, or something like that. In other words, after acknowledging that the entire episode seemed to confirm the press’ leftist bias, Todd wanted to deny “the right”, for some kind of tactical reason, any more evidence that the press was on the left. This would be possible, except for the blatant and obvious fact that the press is, actually, on the left. Todd’s on-camera ramblings were those of someone engaged in a political battle with an opponent, not those of a skeptical yet objective and truly dispassionate journalist.
On the “story that’s too good to check” scale, this one gets a 10, which means it’s just below the “polit. fantasy / contemp. fiction” scale. There were red flags all over this piece, which are even clearer in hindsight, but the people that ran with it are now loathe to admit they just didn’t want to see those flags because they wanted it to be true at least as much as they had wanted Hillary to win. The press in America again showed its partisan colors and, perversely, was proud to do so.
Well beyond their brazen denunciation of the concept of an objective press being necessary to the security of a free State, this time they happily ignored any pretext of basic journalistic integrity. A reporter should be a skeptic, an editor even more so. In this case, gleeful gullibility ruled and, instead of verifying it, most outlets minimally acknowledged the fact that their “coverage” did not come from a primary source, but, still, they couldn’t wait to get it out there. Where I come from, we call that, “rumors”, or “gossip” but not news.
Let’s be honest with ourselves: the interests of democracy (in the modern vernacular) are not served if the people are deliberately kept from receiving anything but all possible facts concerning the operation and costs of their government, and the relevant facts concerning those who would and do serve the people in that government. The policy, costs, ways and means, elected and appointed officials and other facets of governmental operation are ultimately decided by the people through elections. Since the people, and not ‘elites’, make those decisions, the people must have enough information to decide for themselves, and not have their decisions funneled toward conclusions directed by the communicator’s agenda. This episode only confirms how badly off-center our press and news media has become.
*probably, or perhaps, other things that begin with ‘p’, too