July 26, 2010
By Mark J. Fitzgibbons
The disinfectant properties of sunshine appear to be causing uncertainty and fear among members of the now-defunct Journolist cabal. Some of the emails demonstrate certain liberal journalists willing and eager to employ malice as part and parcel of their professional duties.
The fact that such open malice of at least a few of the four hundred “professionals” on Journolist did not result in their expulsion from this professional Listserv, and indeed seemed tolerated at the time by its members and now by its defenders, would seem to indicate a more widespread problem. The dog doesn’t bark when it’s comfortable with the visitor.
Jonathan Strong of The Daily Caller broke the news about left-wing journalists conspiring on Journolist to kill the stories during the 2008 election about Barack Obama’s relationship with the Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Strong writes,
In one instance, Spencer Ackerman of the Washington Independent urged his colleagues to deflect attention from Obama’s relationship with Wright by changing the subject. Pick one of Obama’s conservative critics, Ackerman wrote, “Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists.”
Ackerman skipped the intermediary suggestion of even asking loaded questions of Obama’s conservative critics and proceeded directly to proposing false accusations against figures — “who cares” — on the right.
Strong reports that others on Journolist objected to the strategy proposed by Ackerman — not because what Ackerman suggested involved malice, but because strategically it did not aid their cause:
Kevin Drum, then of Washington Monthly, also disagreed with Ackerman’s strategy. “I think it’s worth keeping in mind that Obama is trying (or says he’s trying) to run a campaign that avoids precisely the kind of thing Spencer is talking about, and turning this into a gutter brawl would probably hurt the Obama brand pretty strongly. After all, why vote for him if it turns out he’s not going change the way politics works?”
Fred Barnes wrote a measured, thoughtful response to the report. Barnes’ style isn’t provocative or satirical, as Rush Limbaugh’s or Ann Coulter’s can be. All three, however, face the malice of the left because they advocate for less government.
The malice exhibited in the e-mails is about more than journalistic ethics, and it may have legal consequences, with the immediate potential to cause jitters in the bars of Georgetown and Manhattan.
Malice becomes very, very significant in the case of public figures like Limbaugh, Barnes, and Rove ever since The New York Times v. Sullivan decision. Such public figures have a very difficult time winning damages for libel because of the “malice” evidentiary hurdle announced in Sullivan. As Mark Tapscott of the Washington Examiner explains,
Rove is certainly a public figure and a strong case could be made that Barnes is as well. Thus, any temptation to sue they might experience would be tempered by the Sullivan standard – unless conscious, actual malice by the defendant can be proven, forget it.
On the other hand, it’s not difficult to envision an enterprising attorney finding an arguable case that specific examples culled from among the voluminous comments exchanged among JournoList participants clearly indicate high levels of what sure looks an awful lot like actual malice towards all sorts of prominent people on the Right.
This might help explain a curious passage in JournoList honcho Ezra Klein’s explanation … of his response to Tucker Carlson’s request to be allowed to join the list serv:
“Adding someone to the list meant giving them access to the entirety of the archives. That didn’t bother me very much. Sure, you could comb through tens of thousands of e-mails and pull intemperate moments and inartful wording out of context to embarrass people, but so long as you weren’t there with an eye towards malice, you’d recognize it for what it was: A wonkish, fun, political yelling match.” (Emphasis added.)
As The Daily Caller continues to expose vile exchanges on Journolist, we read about the hateful fantasy of one NPR producer involving Rush Limbaugh having a heart attack, and “serious” discussions that the government should shut down Fox News.
Why are any of these people still employed by news agencies instead of flipping tofu burgers?
JournoList’s members included dozens of straight-news reporters from major news organizations, including Time, Newsweek, The Associated Press, Reuters, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Politico, Bloomberg, Huffington Post, PBS and a large NPR affiliate in California. Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2010/07/25/the-fix-was-in-journolist-e-mails-reveal-how-the-liberal-media-shaped-the-2008-election/#ixzz0umja7hyN
Proof of CNN Bias: The Politics of Planting!
Then Watch THIS:
NOW FROM THE UBER LEFT:
Howard Dean tells Fox: Your coverage of Sherrod was racist
Howard Dean gets caught up in his own “newspeak”……….
ANOTHER EXAMPLE of LIBERAL MEDIA:
MSNBC host, Ed Schultz: “I busted my ass for Obama”
Suggested reading: George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four.
Newspeak personified by liberal media.
n. Deliberately ambiguous and contradictory language used to mislead and manipulate the public.
JUST NO LONGER SILENT.