Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Do They Have any Sense of Decency?

It was supposed to be a media coup to bring down a president. As it turns out, it looks more and more like media suicide. The American news media, in its frenzy to overturn the results of a fair election, has covered itself in ignominy.

And all for an incompetent fraud named Hillary Clinton.

Something is not right in their minds. The question now is: do they have enough of a sense of shame to apologize? 

Let’s tally it up. From January, 2017 to March, 2019 the mainstream media devoted 2,284 minutes to Trump collusion stories.

As for social media, Axios has the numbers:

Since May 2017, 533,074 web articles have been published about Russia and Trump/Mueller, generating 245 million interactions — including likes, comments and shares — on Twitter and Facebook, according to data from social-media analytics company NewsWhip.

Mainstream media, pundits galore, the NeverTrump right all conspired, dare we say colluded, in an effort to bring down the president. Roger Kimball adds a note about the NeverTrumpers (via Maggie’s Farm):

How that announcement must have stung the NeverTrump fraternity. Here they were, huddled around Bill Kristol’s Twitter feed for the last two-plus years, praying, predicting, posturing that very soon now, any day in fact, Robert Mueller would descend into their midst, the deus ex machina through whose instrumentality they were to be delivered at long last from the nightmare of Donald Trump and his unacceptable record of robust economic growth, hundreds of constitutionally-minded judicial appointments, rising wages, historically low unemployment, a more rational and business-friendly regulatory environment, deeper ties with Israel, a revitalized military, and serious attention to our immigration crisis and the growing threat of an increasing militant China. Yes, it’s been a bad couple of years for the NeverTrumpers.

Want some more? Sean Davis writes in the Wall Street Journal this morning that the mainstream media, the one that Ted Koppel recently excoriated for turning news reporting into propaganda hit pieces, has lost some serious face. That is, it has compromised its reputation for honest journalism in the interest of mounting a coup… in the name of Hillary Clinton:

America’s blue-chip journalists botched the entire story, from its birth during the presidential campaign to its final breath Sunday—and they never stopped congratulating themselves for it. Last year the New York Times and Washington Post shared a Pulitzer Prize “for deeply sourced, relentlessly reported coverage in the public interest that dramatically furthered the nation’s understanding of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and its connections to the Trump campaign, the President-elect’s transition team and his eventual administration.” A 2017 Time magazine cover depicted the White House getting a “makeover” to transform it into the Kremlin.

Davis continues:

All based on a theory—that the president of the United States was a Russian asset—produced by a retired foreign spy whose work was funded by the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign. An unbiased observer would have taken the theory’s partisan provenance as a red flag, but most political journalists saw nothing but green lights. No unverified rumor was too salacious and no anonymous tip was too outlandish to print. From CNN to the Times and the Post, from esteemed and experienced reporters to opinion writers and bloggers, everyone wanted a share of the Trump-treason beat. What good is the 21st-century Watergate if you don’t at least make an effort to cast yourself as the fearless journalist risking it all who got that one big tip that brought down a president?

And he adds a few names to the list, names like Jonathan Chait of New York Magazine, and of course, the idiot savant, Paul Krugman:

Last July, before Mr. Trump met Mr. Putin in Helsinki, Mr. Chait penned a nearly 8,000-word piece titled “Will Trump Be Meeting With His Counterpart—or His Handler?” Mr. Chait’s speculation—that “Trump has been a Russian asset since 1987”—was worthy of the late Lyndon LaRouche.

In a January 2019 Twitter thread, meanwhile, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman asserted that “the failure to connect the dots on Trump-Russia” was one of the “big failures of 2016 campaign coverage.” He added: “There is no sin quite as offensive as challenging conventional wisdom early, and then being proved right.”

The question now remaining is comes to us from Joseph Welch, a lawyer at the Congressional hearings about Sen. Joseph McCarthy: “At long last, have you left no sense of decency?” To be fair about it, the Russia collusion hoax was McCarthyism redux.

Which means, do they have any sense of shame. Because, as Alan Dershowitz explained on Fox News, CNN should now be hanging its collective head in shame. The retired Harvard law professor added, on Tucker Carlson’s show last night, that while Tucker Carlson had listened to many of those, especially Adam Schiff, who were peddling the Russia collusion narrative, CNN banned Dershowitz because he refused to toe the party line. 

Among those who were right all along and who provided us with sober analysis, we count The Nation’s Stephen Cohen and The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald.

So, we await an apology, from Congressional Democrats, from media mavens, from journalists who have thrown their reputations to the wind, from stand-up comedians to the punditocracy and the NeverTrump conservatives. They went all-in on Robert Mueller and he let them down. He did not buy their conspiracy theory. He rejected their paranoid delusion about Trump being a Russian agent.

Writing in The Nation before the Barr summary of the report was released, Stephen Cohen summed up the calamities that the media hysteria has produced:

Russiagate allegations that the Kremlin has a subversive hold over President Trump, and even put him in the White House, have poisoned American political life for almost three years. Among other afflictions, it has inspired an array of media malpractices, virtually criminalized anti–Cold War thinking about Russia, and distorted the priorities of the Democratic Party. And this leaves aside the woeful impact Russiagate has had in Moscow—on its policymakers’ perception of the US as a reliable partner on mutually vital strategic issues and on Russian democrats who once looked to the American political system as one to be emulated, a loss of “illusions” I previously reported.

Contrary to many expectations, even if the Mueller report, said to be impending, finds, as did a Senate committee recently, “no direct evidence of conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia,” Russiagate allegations are unlikely to dissipate in the near future and certainly not before the 2020 presidential election. There are several reasons this is so, foremost among them the following:

§ The story of a “Kremlin puppet” in the White House is so fabulous and unprecedented it is certain to become a tenacious political legend, as have others in American history despite the absence of any supporting evidence.

§ The careers of many previously semi-obscure Democratic members of Congress have been greatly enhanced—if that is the right word—by their aggressive promotion of Russiagate. (Think, for example, of the ubiquitous media coverage and cable-television appearances awarded to Representatives Adam Schiff, Eric Swalwell, and Maxine Walters, and to Senators Mark Warner and Richard Blumenthal.) If Mueller fails to report “collusion” of real political substance, these and other Russiagate zealots, as well as their supporters in the media, will need to reinterpret run-of-the-mill (and bipartisan) financial corruption and mundane “contacts with Russia” as somehow treasonous.

Hats off to those who have provided throughout objective analysis and intelligent commentary.

The last word goes to Glenn Greenwald for his rant on Tucker Carlson's show last night.


. trigger warning said...

Well, the day finally arrived when the J-school graduates/pinheads weep and rend their garments...

Because the POTUS is not a traitor.

Falling back on an ancient internet trope, I respond


whitney said...

That was weirdly intimate knowing that you were holding up your phone to record that :).

I hope he's right that there are people out there that only watch MSNBC and are now completely befuddled by what's happened and realize that they've been lied to. I don't know anyone that doesn't pay attention and the only liberals I know are my family and we never talked about this stuff so it's hard for me to tell

UbuMaccabee said...

From an interview with Stephen F. Cohen

Even Henry Kissinger — I think it was in March 2014 in the Washington Post — wrote this line: “The demonization of Putin is not a policy. It’s an alibi for not having a policy.” And then I wrote in reply to that: That’s right, but it’s much worse than that, because it’s also that the demonization of Putin is an obstacle to thinking rationally, having a rational discourse or debate about American national security. And it’s not just this catastrophe in Ukraine and the new Cold War; it’s from there to Syria to Afghanistan, to the proliferation of nuclear weapons, to fighting global terrorism. The demonization of Putin excludes a partner in the Kremlin that the U.S. needs, no matter who sits there.

I stand much closer to Anne Applebaum regarding Putin and Russia, but the last line stands. To restate Churchill, if the Devil himself was in the Kremlin (and he was, for a time) we'd still have to act rationally toward them and formulate policy accordingly.

The US media and the Democratic Party has be-clowned itself to the world, and certainly to the Russian government, by this grand debacle. It has made the US look terribly weak and divided, and weakness is blood in the water.

Thankfully, Trump is now in a much stronger position, and that is the best deterrence we have. The tyrants are afraid of him. And Donald is going on offense--domestically and internationally.

It's the opening bell of round 8, and we're Ali, and they're Forman. Ding-ding.

Christopher B said...

whitney, I know few, too, and they have seamlessly transitioned to 'But Obstruction!' and the claim that Barr's finding was a quid pro quo for his appointment.

They are delusional.

whitney said...

That's my impression also

Ares Olympus said...

If you want to use a better video in the post, here's an official one from Fox:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zIqh1TOQ2Kw Greenwald: Journalists 'eagerly manipulated' on Russia story

UbuMaccabee said...

Ways to differentiate a leftist from a liberal:

1. Did Brett Kavanaugh participate in a rape circle?
2. Is Cuba a desirable or undesirable place to live?
3. Was Trump guilty of collusion? Obstruction?
4. Can black people be racist?

That's a start. There is hope for a liberal. They're cowards but at least they can reason, and many have an intellectual conscience. We largely disagree on policy.

Leftists will have to be destroyed without mercy. Destroyed. Happy to provide historical examples of what that entails. If you show mercy to them, they will destroy you.

Sam L. said...

No. They have NO decency. They can't even SPELL "decency". No sense of shame, either.

(The Never Trumpers were worse, because they were collaborators.)

"That is, it has compromised its reputation for honest journalism in the interest of mounting a coup… in the name of Hillary Clinton:..." Oh, NO. No, No, No: They lost that yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaars ago. They have always hated Republicans, and those who voted for Republicans.

Haven't I said here that media is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Dem Party? I have now.

" And he adds a few names to the list, names like Jonathan Chait of New York Magazine, and of course, the idiot savant, Paul Krugman:..." Or, as I like to call him, Paullie
"The Beard" Krugman.

"Which means, do they have any sense of shame. Because, as Alan Dershowitz explained on Fox News, CNN should now be hanging its collective head in shame." They don't DO shame. It was surgically removed from them when they hired on.

"So, we await an apology, from Congressional Democrats, from media mavens, from journalists who have thrown their reputations to the wind, from stand-up comedians to the punditocracy and the NeverTrump conservatives." Forget it Jake; it's Democrat-town. Not gonna happen.

This is Sam, signing off.

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

I’m with Ubu. Leftists are ideological lunatics who must be destroyed — not bargained nor reasoned with.

No compromise with the Left. It’s all about winning. Against all of them. And so far as I can tell, the Democrat field thus far is a bunch of Progressives or Leftists. Not a “Liberal” (Ubu’s definition) among them.

The Ctrl-Left Big Enemedia is a disgrace, and in tatters. No one believes them anymore. It’s over. They are Leftist activists (see above).

Their clear goal is to destroy the U.S. Constitution. And with it, our freedoms. Because freedom means choice, and choice is anathema — verboten in the Leftist vocabulary. For irreligious “nones,” they are very dogmatic about America’s “Original Sin.” Always ask what they propose as a solution. It’s enlightening. Bring popcorn and an ice-cold beer and enjoy.

Loons. Disgraceful. Pathetic. And that’s for starters. And the Never Trumpers with them. The Democrat party is a receptacle of aggrieved groups. And it’s backfiring, because Trumpism is focused on the people who WORK. Net contributors. Wealth-builders, and those who work for them. Wow, what a concept.

Anonymous said...

Do they have any sense of decency?


Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

Follow the unmasking.

And Valerie Jarrettt.

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

The key question at the end of all this: Do Democrats actually care about America? I don’t mean America as a place where they work and have family and friends. I mean whether they care about the idea of America. Because the idea of America has nothing to do with equality of outcomes. It means equality before the law (Jussie Smollett). It means the Bill of Rights (the Second Amendment). It means the Fourth Amendment (the DOJ/FBI/NSA/CIA spying on Trump). What kind of America to “mainstream” Democrats believe in??? I think all Democrat candidates should be asked these questions in the next elections. We should demand answers — clear answers.

Anonymous said...

One of the many reasons I believe Mueller was and is corrupt.

Did you ever wonder why Flynn was one of the first people Mueller went after Flynn? To the point that the FBI people who interviewed Flynn did not believe he lied on purpose, but Mueller insisted and then attempted to bankrupt Flynn. Thus opening the doors for Clapper and Brennan to get revenge on Flynn and to use their supposed expertise to call Trump a traitor.