“Looks as though Joe Klein is back on the Narrative Plantation,” John Nolte writes at Big Journalism. “After blistering the Obama Administration over revelations that the IRS was targeting conservative groups, today Klein took his marching orders from Ezra Klein and publicly walked it all way back:”

I may have swung a bit too hard, putting Barack Obama’s Administration in the same league as Franklin Roosevelt’s and Richard Nixon’s when it comes to the Internal Revenue Service. The situation remains a major embarrassment, though.

The most important difference is that the Roosevelt and Nixon IRS depredations came from the White House. This mess seems to have percolated from the middle–the IRS’s Cincinnati office (a major facility, by the way)–up to the upper-middle. It was an overreaction, to be sure–but, as Ezra Klein explains, it was a response to a very real problem[.]

“So now Joe Klein is back in the club — back on the Narrative Plantation as a member of Ezra Klein’s JournOlist in good standing,” Nolte adds. “Now that everyone is in line and knows their place, the media can proceed to circle the wagons.”

I’d love to know how Joe was instructed to dial it back. Did anything need to be spoken, or was it simply understood? “Joe, you’re 66 years old, only a few years younger than Bob Woodward. You saw what me and the rest of the boys in the Juicebox Mafia did to him a couple of month ago, right? Shame if something like that were to happen to you…”

Update: And again (times two): “The New JournoList spin on the IRS,” as spotted by Meryl Yourish:

That’s funny. Two different articles, one in Mother Jones, one in the WaPo, yet they’re running the exact same explanation as to why the IRS targeted conservative groups filing for tax exemptions.

“I found two,”  Yourish adds. “How many more New JournoList IRS apologists can you find?” Add Klein to the list, which could keep on growing.