But since the election, the press has doubled-down on stupid by reporting rumors about President Trump without bothering to get his side of the story. They have also doubled the insinuation. Let's review our year so far, shall we?
It began on New Year's with Don Lemon getting drunk on the air on CNN, which is usually a fire-able offense. But he's a man who thinks a black hole swallowed a missing airplane, so maybe CNN did not want to risk a discrimination against the mentally challenged lawsuit, and kept him.
A few days later, the Washington Post issued a correction to a Drudge-linked story: “An earlier version of this story incorrectly said that Russian hackers had penetrated the U.S. electric grid. Authorities say there is no indication of that so far. The computer at Burlington Electric that was hacked was not attached to the grid.”
Apparently the only fact the story got right was that it was written by Juliet Eilperin and Adam Entous.
To illustrate Russian hacking -- which was the latest fad in journalistic apocalypsing (global warming is so 2008) -- CNN used a screenshot from a video game. The other choice was the 1983 movie "WarGames," but that was about a teenage hacker. Never mind.
The New York Times reported that "in break with precedent," President Trump wanted all politically appointed ambassadors, bemoaning the fact that this would disrupt their family lives. Not explained was why this would come as a surprise to them since when they signed up for the job, they knew the job ended on January 20, 2017.
Not mentioned in the story was President Obama had given without warning about 40 Russian diplomats and their families 72 hours to leave the United States during Christmas week.
CNN reported that Monica Crowley, a Trump nominee and Fox News presenter, plagiarized her doctoral thesis and her book. Weeks later an attorney well-versed in the subject published her review which found far from being plagiarized, Crowley's work was well-documented and her research was impressive.
Meanwhile, plagiarist Fareed Zakaria continued to have a weekly show on CNN.
The lie cost her the appointment anyway.
Then CNN said intelligence officers "presented Trump with claims of Russian efforts to compromise him." Not only was the report in error, but it was illogical. How do you blackmail a thrice-married man who cheated on at least one wife, and said awful things about women attracted to rich men?
The Washington Post reported: "The head of the D.C. National Guard, Maj. Gen. Errol R. Schwartz, said Friday that he has been ordered removed from his command effective Jan. 20, 12:01 p.m., just as Donald Trump is sworn in as president."
Turned out this was standard operating procedure.
The Sunday Times of London reported Trump would meet with Putin at a summit at Reykjavik. That was a lie.
Bloomberg reported Trump said NATO was obsolete. He meant its mission, and he also said NATO was “very important to me.”
CNN said Nancy Sinatra was upset that "My Way" would be sung at Trump's inauguration. She tweeted: "That's not true. I never said that. Why do you lie, CNN?"
Time magazine's reporter tweeted Trump removed Martin Luther King's bust from the Oval Office. False. Two minutes later he apologized.
CBS News: "Most protesters arrested on Inauguration Day will face felony rioting charges, federal prosecutors say."
Masked people throwing rocks and burning a limo are not protesting. They are rioting.
Then there were the two headlines on January 23. CNN at 7:30 p.m.: "US investigating Flynn calls with Russian diplomat."
Washington Post at 8 p.m.: "FBI reviewed Flynn’s calls with Russian ambassador but found nothing illicit."
That was quick.
Amanda Terkel: "Donald Trump Signs Anti-Abortion Executive Order Surrounded By Men."
All nine justices in the Roe-Wade decision were men.
In an interview, Steve Bannon called the press the opposition party. Afterward, the editor of the New York Times tweeted on January 26: "To call journalists the opposition misunderstands our role. We are not here to help anyone win or lose."
The previous August 7, New York Times media critic Jim Rutenberg wrote: "If you view a Trump presidency as something that’s potentially dangerous, then your reporting is going to reflect that. You would move closer than you’ve ever been to being oppositional. That’s uncomfortable and uncharted territory for every mainstream, nonopinion journalist I’ve ever known, and by normal standards, untenable. But the question that everyone is grappling with is: Do normal standards apply? And if they don’t, what should take their place?"
That's not exactly Fake News by the editor of the New York Times, but an outrageous lie, nevertheless.
From Media-ite: "ABC News Apologizes After Editing Former Bush Spox's Praise of Sean Spicer to Sound Like Attack."
From CNBC: "Mar-a-Lago membership fee doubles to $200,000."
Back to where they were in 2012.
From Josh Rogin of the Washington Post: "The State Department’s entire senior administrative team just resigned."
This is normal. They were political appointees. Josh Rogin. Remember the name.
From the Wall Street Journal: "Trump's First Week: Governing Without a Script."
Actually, there was a script.
From the New York Times: "Donald Trump's Muslim Ban Is Cowardly and Dangerous."
The words "Muslim" and "ban" do not appear in the order. The executive order restricted for 90 to 120 days visits from seven countries -- a list drawn up by the Obama administration.
But hey, the New York Times is not part of the opposition party.
From Twitchy: "D’OH! NY Times WH correspondent asks for fact check on terrorism claim, tweeters oblige."
From the Washington Times: "NBC's Chuck Todd: Media knew how ‘hated’ Hillary was in heartland and we ‘underplayed’ it."
Had the coverage of her not been in-kind contributions from multinational corporations seeking favors from her administration -- Comcast, Disney, Time-Warner, etc. -- she would have won. Irony, thy name is media.
From Fox News 2 in Detroit: "Detroit family caught in Iraq travel ban, says mom died waiting to come home."
That was a lie.
Alex Pfeiffer of the Daily Caller noted a few other examples:
NBC reported Thursday that the Trump administration was easing sanctions on the FSB, one of Russia’s primary intelligence agencies. Peter Alexander, NBC’s national correspondent, tweeted, “US Treasury Dept easing Obama admin sanctions to allow companies to do transactions with Russia’s FSB, successor org to KGB.”
Less than an hour later, he wrote, “Source familiar w sanctions says it’s a technical fix, planned under Obama, to avoid unintended consequences of cybersanctions.” His initial and incorrect tweet received nearly seven thousand retweets and the correction has less than 300 retweets.On Saturday, Josh Rogin (remember him?) wrote: “White House chief strategist Stephen K. Bannon wanted to stop Kelly in his tracks. Bannon paid a personal and unscheduled visit to Kelly’s Department of Homeland Security office to deliver an order: Don’t issue the waiver. Kelly, according to two administration officials familiar with the confrontation, refused to comply with Bannon’s instruction.”
Only after the Washington Post published this did his editor, Fred Hiatt, bother to get the White House's side. Hiatt appended this to the online version of the story: “Prior to publication of this column, The Post sought comment from the Department of Homeland Security but not from the White House. We should have done both. After publication, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told The Post that Stephen Bannon did not travel to see Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly on the evening of Jan. 28.”
These are examples of a blatant, deliberate, and hopefully, ineffective campaign to discredit the duly elected Leader of the Free World.
I am sure readers have other examples.
Please share them in comments.
I wrote "Trump the Press" about how journalists missed Trump's nomination. "Trump the Press" is available as a paperback, and on Kindle.
On Tuesday, I will publish "Trump the Establishment" about how journalists missed the general election.
I want to tell America's journalists: Knock it off. I'm retired. I got better things to do than write about what miserable failures today's news outlets are.
Make Journalism Journalism Again -- and allow me to retire in peace.
Don't make me stop this car.
UPDATE: The Federalist has its list too.
For autographed copies of either book, email me at DonSurber@GMail.com
Be deplorable. Follow me on Twitter.