New York Times columnist David Brooks and Rolling Stone contributing editor Matt Taibbi are not supporters of Donald Trump, but they both have been fierce critics of the media's coverage of Special Counsel Robert Mueller clearing the President of Russian collusion. That criticism earned both earned the ire of MSNBC Morning Joe co-host Joe Scarborough on Tuesday.
Scarborough went on a rant earlier in show where he told Trump supporters, who he accused of selling their souls, that their "bitching and moaning" about the press was unjustified. He would not admit that one can be criticize both Seth Rich conspiracy peddlers and Russia-gate hustlers.
In a New York Times column entitled "We've Just Made Fools of Ourselves -- Again," David Brooks criticized the constant scandal-mongering attitude that seeks to compare everything to Watergate. He wrote, "It's clear that people like Beto O'Rourke and John Brennan owe Donald Trump a public apology. If you call someone a traitor and it turns out you lacked the evidence for that charge, then the only decent thing to do is apologize." Scarborough, quoted Brooks, "Imaginative pundits take a few dots of information and connect them to vast if speculative constellations of guilt."
When he finished quoting the columnist, Scarborough dismissed Brooks' argument, "Blah, Blah, Blah. I can't believe your making me read all of this." But, Scarborough didn't read "all of this" because if he did he could also have read, "Republicans and the Sean Hannity-style Trumpians... should apologize for peddling the sort of deep cynicism that undermines our country's institutions."
Fellow co-host Mika Brzezinski then brought up Matt Taibbi saying, "Russiagate is this generation's WMD." Scarborough was incredulous: "Really, Matt? Really, David? Really, Fox News?" He demanded to know, "What would you have the media do?"
To answer the question, maybe instead of just repeating Adam Schiff's talking points the media could have done some reporting or having eight person panels where all eight people agree with each other. When news breaks that is contradictory to what you've spent the last 22 months saying, the correct response, as Brooks wrote, is to apologize, and not to accuse anyone to the right of MSNBC of selling their soul.
Here is a transcript of the March 26 show:
JOE SCARBOROUGH: The attacks on the media by some in the media, in the wake of the Attorney General releasing a summary of the report wasn't limited to Fox News. The latest piece in The New York Times entitled “We’ve all just made fools of ourselves again.” David Brooks wrote “The political media especially on TV now has a template it can apply whenever a scandal looms into view to hook viewers into the speculative story line. The accused’s political opponents assume maximum guilt. Imaginative pundits take a few dots of information and connect them to vast if speculative constellations of guilt. ‘I hear the indictments are coming down next week,’ they whisper to one another. Members of the accused’s party attack the investigators themselves. They get to enjoy a sense of spiritual superiority when it turns out the scandal is smaller than it appears which is almost always the case. It's all a wonderful game.” Blah, blah, blah. I can't believe you're making me read all of this.
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: The New York Times notes Matt Taibbi of “Rolling Stone” called the apparent lack of new charges resulting from the Mueller Report quote, “a death blow for the reputation of the American news media.” Comparing the erroneous reporting on weapons of mass destruction in the run-up to the Iraq War.
SCARBOROUGH: Really, Matt? Really, David? Really? Fox News? What were you -- what would you have the media do? As first reported by our own David Ignatius, national security Michael Flynn lied to federal agents about discussing election related sanctions with the Russian Ambassador. The same person who Attorney General Jeff sessions met with during the campaign. Meeting Sessions didn't reveal the Judiciary Committee when he voluntarily said he met with the Russians, but he lied about that just like the national security advisor lied about, just like Vice President lied about that unequivocally that the Trump campaign had no contacts with the Russians echoing the line that came from top Trump aide Hope Hicks after the election. She lied about that and repeated by Donald Trump himself in the White House, lying about that.