On Wednesday, a Global Opinions Editor at the Washington Post praised the work of Christopher Steele as "extraordinarily prescient," created by a man who "had stumbled onto a breathtaking threat to U.S. national security." Accordingly, Steele, per the headline at Christian Caryl's opinion piece, "is a hero – and Americans owe him their thanks" — a Four-Pinocchio claim by the Post's own standards.
Google’s new fact-checker is just as bias as you would expect. On Tuesday, The Daily Caller reported that the feature, for the most part, only targets conservative sites. For example, both The Daily Caller and Daily Wire are fact checked (and mostly incorrectly as the two sites point out), but Vox, HuffPost, ThinkProgress, Slate, Salon, Mother Jones, and Daily Kos are not.
Politico media reporter Michael Calderone reports that Mother Jones employees complained years ago about alleged sexual harassment by David Corn, the magazine’s Washington bureau chief.
As Houston lays flooded by Hurricane Harvey, the liberal media and climate alarmists raced to connect the natural disaster to their manmade global warming agenda in spite of scientific disagreement. On broadcast and cable news, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and Thomas Roberts, CBS fill-in co-host Dana Jacobson, CNN’s Jeffrey Toobin and others tried to link Harvey to human-caused global warming. The Los Angeles Times editorial board said the hurricane “should be a warning to Trump that climate change is a global threat.” One newspaper editor in Australia even used the disaster as an opportunity to attack ExxonMobil and promote the “ExxonKnew” crusade.
“It’s a lot cheaper to grab a couple drugs and kill you than it is to provide you with life sustaining therapy,” Dr. Brian Callister of Reno, NV told the Patients’ Rights Action Fund. “Simple as that.” His words appeared in a sobering video PRAF released exposing the shockingly limited treatment options available to terminally ill patients.
On Friday (appearing in Saturday's print edition), the New York Times published its first column by Bret Stephens, the former Wall Street Journal columnist recently hired as a "conservative" voice. Its theme was that the political "hyperbole" about climate change doesn't match the underlying science — even if one trusts the underlying science. That alone was enough to send journalists into unhinged and often profane orbit.
Though it’s not clear whether the Democratic party will produce a post-presidential-election “autopsy report” like Republicans did in early 2013, there has been a lot of self-scrutiny among liberals since Hillary Clinton’s surprise loss. One example is Kevin Drum's Friday post written in response to a fellow liberal’s cluelessness. After New York Times columnist Paul Krugman claimed to be unaware that “affluent liberals…sneer at the Joe Sixpacks,” an amazed Drum declared, “I'm not here to get into a fight with Krugman, but come on. Sure, the right-wing media fans the flames of this stuff, but is there really any question that liberal city folks tend to sneer at rural working-class folks? I'm not even talking about stuff like abortion and guns and gay marriage, where we disagree over major points of policy. I'm talking about lifestyle.”
For the but-tell-us-how-you-really-feel file, this headline on a Friday post by Mother Jones blogger Kevin Drum: “Fuck You, James Comey.” The post, of course, centered on the presumed effect on presidential voting of Comey’s October 28 letter which jump-started the Hillary Clinton e-mail story. “When an election is close…there are dozens of people, events, and movements that can make a difference of 1 percent or so,” wrote Drum. “But if we're going to choose one particular person who managed to hand the White House to a buffoonish game show host, it's FBI director James Comey, the guy who…provided the match that Trump used to light the country on fire.”
Conservatives are unwilling to let Hillary be Hillary where transparency is concerned, and “it drives them crazy,” believes Kevin Drum. In a post last Wednesday, Drum argued that whenever the right has “forced…openness on Clinton in an effort to destroy her,” it’s “done nothing except paint a portrait of a pretty normal politician,” a failure that’s left those conservatives with “bizarre levels” of “Clinton Derangement Syndrome.”
Plenty of journalists saw Hillary Clinton’s Thursday speech on Donald Trump and white nationalists as an attempt to further separate the GOP nominee from Republicans who aren’t #NeverTrump but are leery of voting for him. Kevin Drum of Mother Jones “propose[d] a different explanation”: that Hillary “was giving the press permission to talk about Donald Trump's racism." But Esquire’s Charles Pierce has no confidence that pundits and reporters will deal properly with the racism issue. The media, Pierce says, have "normalized [the] candidate" who "normalized hate groups."
Kevin Drum has been blogging for a long time, so it’s not surprising that he’s got a flair for clickbait. You have to admit that the Monday headline “Hillary Clinton Is One of America’s Most Honest Politicians” is quite an attention-grabber. Of course, whether or not it’s true is another matter. Drum commented, “All politicians lie sometimes. That includes Hillary Clinton. But...Hillary is one of the most honest politicians on the national stage...I know it's in their partisan self interest for conservatives to insist that Hillary is the world's biggest liar. But she isn't. Not by a long, long way. Republicans need to get the beam out of their own eye before they keep banging on about the mote in Hillary's.”
Much like Phil Mickelson took a big early lead in the British Open, Esquire’s Charles Pierce has taken a big rhetorical-excess lead in early blogging about Donald Trump’s VP pick, Indiana governor Mike Pence, calling him a “very strange and completely unreconstructed wingnut” whose paper trail contains “a rich deposit of sweet crude crazy.” Kevin Drum of Mother Jones described Pence as "not especially bright or quick on his feet, which means he might have trouble defending Trump's frequent idiocies and backflips. It should be fun to watch him squirm.”