I have no idea if my sincere desire to see conservatives take advantage of the momentous opportunity afforded by the pathetic shills in the mainstream media will come to fruition. I don’t know if we’ll be able to successfully shame people into having as much respect for Big News as they do for used car salesmen. But here’s what I know: if such a movement is successful, we might just look back on last Sunday’s CBS 60 Minutes “interview” with Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton as the moment when the mainstream media jumped the shark.
To put it plainly, it was bad. Real bad. So bad that fellow mainstreamers had to give the boys at 60 Minutes a chance to defend it (see the Piers Morgan interview with Steve Kroft) – which only made it worse, by the way. And the subsequent discussion over the pitiful swooning over Obama/Clinton that took place is more fuel for the fire of conservatives who have known for decades how miserable the state of American media is.
The tireless watchdog of the insanity of our media, Brent Bozell (head of the Media Research Center) chronicled this sad display better than anyone. First, he threw some misdirection to demonstrate just how backwards the so-called journalists have become:
Did you see that hard-hitting report on 60 Minutes Sunday, the one that charged that one of our nation's most famous leaders and role models is a shameless liar, a ruthless intimidator and even "incinerator" of enemies, a man who operates like the Mafia?
No, that wasn't the interview with Barack Obama alongside Hillary Clinton. It was an interview later in the same show about the drug-enhanced bicyclist Lance Armstrong. That's CBS News for you — a guy who pedals a bike through France is hammered as if he is the most powerful man in the world, while the most powerful man is treated like a lovable celebrity — because that is precisely how they feel.
The agenda of 60 Minutes should remind viewers that CBS CEO Les Moonves attended a glitzy Obama/DNC fundraiser in Beverly Hills last June, where he admitted the obvious: "Ultimately, journalism has changed ... partisanship is very much a part of journalism now."
The thing is, Les, it’s fine for partisanship to be part of journalism. I would argue that it always has been. The problem comes when some folks aren’t honest about their partisanship. For instance, everyone knows my perspective – they know they are getting commentary from a conservative point of view. They know that because I willingly acknowledge that’s who I am and what I do. I’m not trying to package myself and market myself as an objective reporter who is down the center. Maybe I should. Can you imagine how angry the left would become if I did? They’d be livid. Welcome to the conservative’s world. Every day we get to watch interviews like 60 Minutes just conducted, where the same people who say they are there to “speak truth to power,” willingly acknowledge that Obama knows he’s not going to face any “gotcha questions” when he goes on with them.
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Bozell noted something curious about that:
60 Minutes used to be synonymous with "gotcha," and it certainly was when it broke the Abu Ghraib story to hurt Bush in 2004, and when Dan Rather flaunted fake Texas Air National Guard documents to hurt Bush months later.
In the 2008 election cycle, 60 Minutes asked John McCain why he would "let the Wall Street executives sail away on their yachts and leave this (bailout) on the American taxpayer?" They hammered Romney about avoiding military service — and his five sons avoiding military service.
Kroft has never asked Obama about his failure to serve in the military, and he certainly never asked about whether he had premarital sex with his wife, which Mike Wallace threw at Romney.
But this was the Barack and Hillary Show, and it focused on that wondrous relationship. "How would you characterize your relationship right now?" He asked Hillary: "What did he promise you? And has he kept the promises?" He asked the president: "Has she had much influence in this administration?" He asked them both: "What do you think the biggest success has been, foreign policy success, of the first term?"
When Kroft turned to "specifics" on Benghazi, he wanted to know about her testimony before the House and Senate. "You had a very long day. Also, how is your health?" After setting that sympathetic tone, he asked one specific question. "Do you feel guilty in any way, at a personal level? Do you blame yourself that you didn't know or that you should have known?"
Good gravy. As Bozell points out, before you’re tempted to think that the one “specific question” there is a difficult or aggressive one, ask yourself how any government official would react to that question. There’s no challenge there. It’s a simple answer. “Of course I wish I would have known. Of course I wish there was something that could have been done.” Cake. Just as it was intended.
During the hearings, Team Obama was sharply criticized for blatantly lying and blaming the Benghazi attacks on a video, spurring Hillary to yell at Sen. Ron Johnson, "What difference does it make?" It begged for the famed Mike Wallace incredulity thrust: "What difference did it make?!"
Nothing. Apparently Hillary's flagrant non-answer was somehow a great answer. She's a Clinton. Lying always gets them out of a jam because the compliant liberal media will never call them out. To borrow a phrase from Bill, "maintaining their political viability within the system" is always their first priority. The same can be said for their media enablers.
This isn’t journalism. This isn’t speaking truth to power. It’s a state-run media responsible for the promotion of pro-regime propaganda. They have become as believable as Baghdad Bob...and they aren’t nearly as funny. Needless to say, the shark has been jumped. Let’s make sure as many Americans see that as possible.