There could not be a better example of liberal media double standards than the kerfuffle over former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin posing in front of Hillary Clinton’s White House portrait (as First Lady) with rock stars Kid Rock and Ted Nugent. The ladies of The View had their knickers in a knot.
Jeffrey Lord is a Contributing Writer for NewsBusters.
Lord is a former White House political director in the Reagan White House and aide to HUD Secretary Jack Kemp. After graduating from Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania he went on to work for the Pennsylvania State Senate Majority Leader, then going on to serve on Capitol Hill as a press secretary and legislative director for Congressman Bud Shuster (R-Pa.) and Executive Assistant to US Senator John Heinz (R-Pa.). He was the chief of staff for Reagan-Bush ’84 co-chair Drew Lewis as well as to Mr. Lewis in his role as chairman of Warner-Amex Cable (now Time Warner) in New York City.
Now a writer and commentator, he is a Contributing Editor of The American Spectator, and has appeared on Fox News, CNN, CNBC, the Fox Business Channel and Newsmax TV. His work has been discussed on The Rush Limbaugh Show, and he has also appeared on the Sean Hannity, Mark Levin and Laura Ingraham talk radio shows in addition to talk radio programs across the country. His articles have been published in The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Times, National Review, The Weekly Standard, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, The Harrisburg Patriot-News and other publications. He is the author of The Borking Rebellion:The Untold True Story of How a Bipartisan Group of Pennsylvania Women Attorneys Took on the Entire US Senate Judicial Confirmation Process - and Won. Lord, a native of Northampton, Massachusetts, now lives in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania.
Before this story recedes into the distant past of more than a couple weeks, let’s take one more look at that encounter on CBS between Fox’s Sean Hannity and Ted Koppel. And oh yes, my own version of the liberal mania coming at me, as William F. Buckley described it, with “lance cocked.”
It was set to be a night like any other in the world of television commentating, in this case at CNN. Specifically on the set of AC360, hosted by Anderson Cooper. The topic of the moment was the news that House Intelligence Committee Chairman had removed himself from the inquiry into the Trump-Russia kerfuffle. (And I say kerfuffle as opposed to “scandal” because after months of nonsense and headlines as of this moment there is zero evidence - say again zero - that there was any “collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russia that resulted in a Trump victory over Hillary Clinton.)
Over at Reason, University of Alabama professor of history David T. Beito has written a fascinating look at “Roosevelt’s War Against the Press.” The telling subtitle? “FDR Had His Own Breitbart, and Radio Was His Twitter.” Well, yes. Exactly. I have been writing for sometime that not only is the FDR and radio comparison to Trump and Twitter eerily analogous, but that two other presidents made superb use of the new technology of their day: Abraham Lincoln and the telegraph and John F. Kennedy and the live televised presidential press conference.
It is one of the most famous liberal media narratives in American history. On November 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. For anyone alive in the day - I was in the 7th grade - it was a horrific moment. The America of 1963 was experiencing the beginning turmoil of the Civil Rights movement. There were a handful of military “advisers” in a far off place called Vietnam. But for the most part the country was at peace, its eyes already trained on Thanksgiving, a mere week distant, and the Christmas holidays that would follow.
Words matter. Fact: The administration of President Barack Obama surveilled the campaign associates of the President’s political opponent, Donald Trump. Then the classified information gained was leaked to the press - repeatedly. All of which furthered a liberal narrative that Trump colluded with the Russians to steal the 2016 election from Hillary Clinton. How do we know? Because the New York Times says so.
The President of the United States made it all up, says Time magazine. But then again, he was right - says Time magazine. In a remarkable cover story http://time.com/4696428/donald-trump-war-state-government/ notable for its schizophrenia, Time has a cover depicting a casual President Donald Trump tweeting while leaning against a cracked and crumbling Washington Monument. The caption: Trump’s War on Washington.
Here at NewsBusters this was the headline: “NBC News Uses Kids to Criticize Trump in New Video.” The story by Melissa Mullins began this way: “On Sunday, NBC News has resorted to using children in videos to deliver statements criticizing to President Trump just one month into his presidency. Opening with a young boy eager about an outsider coming to Washington to bring people together, the series, ‘Dear Mr. President: Letters from the American Children,’ then begins throwing cheap shots by using kids.”
You might call it The Media versus America. The President of the United States held a press conference on Thursday. On that, everyone agreed. But after that? Words like “unhinged” a particular favorite to describe the event. Here’s a sample of the headline reaction.The New York Times: An Aggrieved President Moves His Surrogates Aside, The Washington Post: Debrief: In an erratic performance, Trump shows his supporters who’s boss
The late Vice President Spiro Agnew, President Nixon’s famous-in-the-day number two, would recognize exactly what he was seeing had he been reading Time magazine in December of 2008 and then again in December of 2016. The difference in the treatment of Presidents Obama and Trump by the media can perhaps be best symbolized by two Time magazine covers in December of 2008 and 2016. Both men were newly elected presidents of the United States. Both were selected as Time’s “Person of the Year.”
It all fits the media template. President Trump, that reckless egomaniac, gets on the phone with the Prime Minister of Australia who leads a beloved American ally. Then Trump blows his top and hangs up over the subject of admitting refugees into the US. Except, of course, in the telling the Washington Post and the New York Times managed in some mystifying, unfathomable way to leave out a set of two key facts. Facts that could be found with a stroke of the keyboard to Mr. Google.
The photo is as instructive as its meaning is ignored. Taken in October, 1994, I recognized everyone. There is the late Pennsylvania Republican State Committee chairwoman, Ann Anstine. Just behind her stands a friend who in the day was a staffer for then GOP US Senator Arlen Specter. At the center of the photo is Bruce Marks - then a young Republican State Senator for whom all the others are present as this is a Marks campaign fundraiser that also headlined gubernatorial candidate Tom Ridge. And there is one other person in the photo, front and center with the young Senator Marks. That would be Donald Trump.
Is it hasta la vista, baby, for the venerable White House daily briefing for the media? Way back there in 1955 James Hagerty, the press secretary for President Dwight Eisenhower, came to the conclusion that admitting television cameras to presidential press conferences Ike held in the Indian Treaty Room of the next-door to the White House Old Executive Office Building (now named for Eisenhower) was the future.
Donald Trump asked the right question in this tweet:“How did NBC get "an exclusive look into the top secret report he (Obama) was presented?" Who gave them this report and why? Politics!” Exactly. But buckle in. This is what the Trump White House - or any GOP White House that is elected to change the way government is run - will face.
Back there in the mists of time -- that would be last month -- I wrote about The Attacks on Conservative Talk Radio. Not for the first time, what has become an institution of American life was under attack. This time, however, the attackers (Oliver Darcy and Pamela Engel writing in Business Insider) were citing - approvingly - President Obama’s blame of talk radio for the rise of Donald Trump.
Put simply, the mainstream media are beside itself. Among other reasons — many of them fairly standard like the shape of the economy — one the central reasons Donald J. Trump is president-elect is because he ran a very unconventional campaign. Time after time after time since he famously descended that Trump Tower escalator to announce his candidacy in June of 2015, one journalist after another predicted his political demise. And invariably the reason for this allegedly inevitable failure was because Trump had violated some supposed sacred convention of the political and media world.
The remarkable -- make that astounding -- presidential election of 2016 is over. Of the many “notables” and tradition-breaking moments, one has been the superb use of Twitter by President-elect Donald Trump that drove the media crazy. He was at it again over the weekend, this time messaging his thoughts on companies that depart the US for abroad, taking American jobs with them.
The fact that Trump turned Twitter and tweeting into such a deadly 21st century political weapon in his successful campaign -- a campaign that right up until election night most media savants were insisting he would lose -- has stuck in the media’s craw.
The dateline: October 24, 2015. The cover of Time magazine? Art work of Donald Trump’s hair and face- melting. The headline: “Total Meltdown.” In fact, the cover was the second Time cover depicting a melting Donald, the first running in August of 2016 and titled simply: “Meltdown”
So the latest round of sheer nuttiness from the mainstream media? The idea that President-elect Trump intends to resurrect the infamous and quite decidedly racist “internment camps” established for Japanese-American citizens in 1942. How did this start? It started last week on FNC’s The Kelly File during a segment with Trump surrogate and former Navy Seal Carl Higbie (whom I know).
The Washington Post wrote off Donald Trump this way. The headline from the Post’s Chris Cillizza was as follows on June 17, 2015, a total of two days after Trump rode into the GOP presidential race on a Trump Tower escalator: "Why no one should take Donald Trump seriously, in one very simple chart."