This has been kicking around in my head for a couple of days now. I was interviewing my comedian friend Kevin Downey Jr. for my latest Kruiser Kabana podcast and — as conservatives are wont to do — we got around to discussing the thorough awfulness of the mainstream media. We are all aware that examples of said awfulness abound but the two that were freshest in my mind were the MSM treatment of the two worst governors in America: Andrew Cuomo and Gretchen Whitmer.
Throughout almost all of March, April, and May we bombarded with stories about Cuomo’s brilliant handling of the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in New York. All featured a “this is how real leadership looks” theme and added the perfunctory Orange Man Bad whining.
The only truth in the early days of the pandemic was that no one really new what the truth was. That didn’t keep the media from lauding every move Cuomo made even though he was winging it just like everyone else was at the time.
Now that we have some experience and data available it turns out that not only was Cuomo not brilliant, he was an unmitigated disaster.
We’ve touched on this several times before. Back in late April the NY Times reported that New York state had issued a new rule mandating that nursing homes take COVID-19 patients back after hospitals had diagnosed and cared for them. That decision, which was prompted by a desire to prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed, turned out to be one of the biggest mistakes the state made.
This week, ProPublica published a story looking at the results of the decision. Not only did New York require nursing homes take patients back from hospitals it also specified that the homes were not allowed to test those returning to see if they still had the virus.
It was a monumental, deadly blunder that Cuomo didn’t back away from until the second week of May. Here is more from the ProPublica article cited in the post:
In the weeks that followed the March 25 order, COVID-19 tore through New York state’s nursing facilities, killing more than 6,000 people — about 6% of its more than 100,000 nursing home residents. In all, as many as 4,500 COVID-19 infected patients were sent to nursing homes across the state, according to a count conducted by The Associated Press…
States that issued orders similar to Cuomo’s recorded comparably grim outcomes. Michigan lost 5% of roughly 38,000 nursing home residents to COVID-19 since the outbreak began. New Jersey lost 12% of its more than 43,000 residents.
In Florida, where such transfers were barred, just 1.6% of 73,000 nursing home residents died of the virus. California, after initially moving toward a policy like New York’s, quickly revised it. So far, it has lost 2% of its 103,000 nursing home residents.
While Cuomo was being tongue-bathed by the biased media, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis was being excoriated for almost every move he made. He was falsely accused of manipulating COVID-19 data, ridiculed for not issuing a statewide stay-at-home order, and when he reopened the state earlier than other states several members of the media said he had “blood on his hands.”
Because she’s not an original thinker, Gretchen Whitmer copied Cuomo and did the same thing in Michigan with, as noted above, similarly disastrous results.
While people were needlessly dying by the tens of thousands because of decisions these two governors made, the American mainstream media hacks were running a relentless PR campaign to propel both to the loftiest of heights.
We were subjected to at least a solid month of speculation that the Democrats were going to keep Crazy Joe the Wonder Veep in his basement forever and replace him with — you guessed it — Andrew Cuomo.
When they weren’t talking about replacing Biden, they were feverishly insisting that Whitmer’s leadership in Michigan made her the best choice to be the Democrats’ VP pick.
All of this was going on while the MSM was blaming Trump for all things pandemic.
There was virtually ZERO journalism happening during this Cuomo/Whitmer fanfest. They were Democrats and they said bad things about Trump so no critical examination of what they were actually doing was necessary.
An Op-Ed in the UK Guardian last month hit the tone that more American journos (who are all really just Op-Ed writers anyway) would have been taking if they were at all honest. The subtitle of the article said that Cuomo’s “abysmal handling of the crisis should get him thrown out of office.”
Despite the raw data proving his deadly mistake, Cuomo remains cavalier and unapologetic about it:
“Do you ever change your mind, governor, about anything based on what these reporters are saying?” host Alan Chartock asked Cuomo. “I think a about the nursing home situation, you got a lot of criticism from them, they asked one question after another. Is there anything you could point to in which you say ‘Ok, they really sort of have convinced me I’m on the wrong track here.’”
“No,” Cuomo replied. “The nursing home is an unfortunate situation on two levels. No. 1, people in nursing homes died. The nursing home is pure politics, the Republicans in Congress, they think there’s a vulnerability.”
“The nursing home thing it’s just all politics and it’s, frankly, the New York Post, and [columnist Michael] Goodwin, this is their way of defending Trump,” Cuomo continued.
As for Whitmer, she continues to be a petty tyrant. She arbitrarily extended the state of emergency in Michigan, which lets her be a dictator for a while longer. An Op-Ed in The Detroit News stated the obvious and said the extension was not supported by the data.
Predictably, there has been little to no coverage by the MSM about just how wrong Cuomo and Whitmer got things. If they were Republicans, we would be drowning in stories about it.
There is little reason to believe there will be a day when journalists become responsible and take their jobs seriously again. Fortunately, we have alternatives now that we didn’t have as recently as fifteen years ago. As this is a VIP post, I would be remiss if I didn’t thank all of you for supporting one of those alternatives.
I keep saying I can’t imagine the MSM getting any worse and I keep being proven wrong. The rot goes so deep now that it’s impossible to cure.
PJ Media Senior Columnist and Associate Editor Stephen Kruiser is the author of “Don’t Let the Hippies Shower” and “Straight Outta Feelings: Political Zen in the Age of Outrage,” both of which address serious subjects in a humorous way. Monday through Friday he edits PJ Media’s “Morning Briefing.” His columns appear twice a week.