Ed Driscoll

The MSM: Where Breaking News Goes to Die


“Mainstream Media Fail to Break Even One of Four Obama Scandals,” John Nolte writes at Big Journalism:

Over the past few weeks, four major scandals have broken over the Obama administration, and it is a very sad (and frightening) truth that our pathetic, American, lapdog mainstream media is not responsible for breaking even a single one.

Verizon? Nope, not our guys. That was the Brits over at The Guardian.

IRS? Nope, not our guys. The IRS broke their own scandal with a planted question.

The Justice Department’s seizure of Associated Press phone records? Nope, not our guys. Believe it or not, the Associated Press didn’t even break that story. Like the IRS, we only found out because the Justice Department outted itself in a letter notifying the AP of what it had done.

Benghazi? Are you kidding. With a couple of rare exceptions (Jake Tapper, Sharyl Attkisson) the media has spent the last 8 months attacking those seeking the truth (Congress, Fox News) not seeking the truth. It was the GOP congress that demanded the email exchanges around the shaping of the talking points, not the media.

Left up to the media, we wouldn’t know anything about Libya. All of the media’s energy was collectively poured into ensuring the truth was never discovered.

And do you want to know what makes this realization especially pathetic? In three of the four scandals (the AP being the exception), had our media been less interested in protecting Power and more interested in holding Power accountable, these huge, career-making stories were right there for their taking.

But that’s been true right from the start of Obama’s entry onto the national stage; which the media enabled. The addiction to the teleprompter and his frequent poor performances when it breaks down? The first I heard about that was in February of 2008 from the late Dean Barnett. The Bitter Clingers speech? Well those Hillary-supporting Pennsylvania redneck Democrats had it coming to them, right? Obama’s connection to the incendiary Rev. Wright? CNN first praises Wright, then builds what it calls “the Wright-Free Zone” after Obama underbusses Wright. Bill Ayers? How dare you mention him!

Obama as a candidate vows to bankrupt the coal industry? Look, whatever radical environmental views you believe, if you’re holding yourself out as a major newspaper, when a leading candidate for the White House vows to destroy an entire industry — that’s front page news. Instead his statement was simply either ignored or buried by the San Francisco Chronicle in January of 2008. To believe the former is to admit that the Chronicle has an absolutely terrible sense of what’s news. To believe the latter is to admit that they were — and are — completely in the tank for Obama.

Of course, the two aren’t mutually exclusive…

As Nolte writes:

Our media is not only biased, it is an utter and complete failure and embarrassment. And although there are plenty of remaining table scraps to make meals out of, the media is already losing interest in the IRS, Libya, and AP scandals, but for only one reason–they are absolutely terrified of where they might lead.

During the Bush years, it was the New York Times, Washington Post and Sy Hersh breaking story  after story after story about the White House. And yes, some of that reporting was–ahem –overreach, but at least Power knew it was being watched; our democracy was safe because an overzealous media is what you call a luxury problem.

Today, it is the complete opposite and the result is an administration run amok.

Which brings us to this moment when Illinois GOP Senator Mark Kirk plays Eric Holder like a chewtoy:

Attorney General Eric Holder refused to answer when asked if the Justice Department is spying on Members of Congress, citing the need for a classified conversation, which lawmakers accepted while asking him to make sure that evidence of such surveillance is not destroyed.

“With all due respect, Senator, I don’t think this is an appropriate setting for me to discuss [this issue],” Holder replied during a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing when Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., asked if the executive branch was conducting surveillance that would give “unique leverage” over lawmakers.

Kirk replied that “the correct answer would be no, we stayed within our lane, and we did not spy on Members of Congress.”

As Ace writes:

Note how this question is phrased: Not “did you spy on Congressmen” but rather “Did you breach the unassailable core of the Constitution, that the Executive and Legislature shall be coequal branches, and for one to gain undue leverage over the other should be a tyranny.”

Now, he didn’t say it like that, but that’s what he’s getting at.

As he mentions in the same post, Ace was apparently namechecked by a GOP congressman today:

Representative Louis Gohmert read a quote on the Congressional floor, I’m told.

So the Congressional Record now contains this (approximately):

“As the blogger Ace of Spades said, ‘I guess we all have an Obamaphone now.'”


Related: “Obama in 2007: No More Spying on Citizens Not Suspected of a Crime:”

This Administration also puts forward a false choice between the liberties we cherish and the security we demand. I will provide our intelligence and law enforcement agencies with the tools they need to track and take out the terrorists without undermining our Constitution and our freedom.

That means no more illegal wire-tapping of American citizens. No more national security letters to spy on citizens who are not suspected of a crime. No more tracking citizens who do nothing more than protest a misguided war. No more ignoring the law when it is inconvenient. That is not who we are. And it is not what is necessary to defeat the terrorists. The FISA court works. The separation of powers works. Our Constitution works. We will again set an example for the world that the law is not subject to the whims of stubborn rulers, and that justice is not arbitrary.

The speech was at the Woodrow Wilson Center, ironically enough.

(Artwork created using multiple Shutterstock.com images.)