Hmm, methinks Greenwald struck a delicate, precious nerve with CNN
tongue bather Chief Political Correspondent John King after GG took King to the woodshed the other day over a recent Situation Room rim job King gave to perpetual media darling John McCain (as is apparently King’s wont):
From: King, John C
Sent: Tuesday, January 15, 2008 5:40 PM
Subject: excuse me?
I don’t read biased uninformed drivel so I’m a little late to the game.
But a friend who understands how my business works and knows a little something about my 20 plus years in it sent me the link to your ramblings.
Since the site suggests you have law training, maybe you forgot that good lawyers to a little research before they spit out words.
Did you think to ask me or anyone who works with me whether that was the entire interview? No. (It was not; just a portion used by one of the many CNN programs.)
Did you reach out to ask the purpose of that specific interview? No.
Or how it might have fit in with other questions being asked of other candidates that day? No.
Or anything that might have put facts or context or fairness into your critique. No.
McCain, for better or worse, is a very accessible candidate. If you did a little research (there he goes with that word again) you would find I have had my share of contentious moments with him over the years.
But because of that accessibility, you don’t have to go into every interview asking him about the time he cheated on his sixth grade math test.
The interview was mainly to get a couple of questions to him on his thoughts on the role of government when the economy is teetering on the edge of recession, in conjunction with similar questions being put to several of the other candidates.
The portion you cited was aired by one of our programs — so by all means it is fair game for whatever “analysis” you care to apply to it using your right of free speech and your lack of any journalistic standards or fact checking or just plain basic curiosity.
You clearly know very little about journalism. But credibility matters. It is what allows you to cover six presidential campaigns and be viewed as fair and respectful, while perhaps a little cranky, but Democrats and Republicans alike. When I am writing something that calls someone’s credibility into question, I pick up the phone and give them a chance to give their side, or perspective.
That way, even on days that I don’t consider my best, or anywhere close, I can look myself in the mirror and know I tried to be fair and didn’t call into question someone’s credibility just for sport, or because I like seeing my name on a website or my face on TV.
Greenwald’s post wasn’t evidence of unprofessional “bias”; he was merely utilizing one of the senses evolution gave us hairless apes–in this case, a keen nose that caught a whiff of what King was so eagerly shoveling.
As Greenwald tartly observes:
Ponder how much better things would be if establishment journalists — in response to being endlessly lied to and manipulated by political officials and upon witnessing extreme lawbreaking and corruption at the highest levels of our government — were able to muster just a tiny fraction of the high dudgeon, petulant offense, and melodramatic outrage that comes pouring forth whenever their “reporting” is criticized.
Hey, here’s another novel idea, John–how about directing some of your self-important umbrage towards your CNN producers–y’know, the ones who (apparently) bowdlerized your hard-hitting muckracking until it was nothing but anodyne pablum. Either that, or cut the crap and become The Maverick’s new communications director. But for the love of god, don’t get your dander up in an entitlement-infused huff just because a member of the great online unwashed dared to call bullshit.