The Latest Unethical Tactic: Attacking Journalists Who Don’t Actively Try To Promote Hillary Over Trump [UPDATE: Hillary’s Health]


Once the New York Times embraced the rationalization “Ethics is a luxury we can’t afford” and announced that journalists had a duty to bias their reporting to block Donald Trump’s election, this result was foretold. It was really foretold in 2008, when the news media first abandoned even the pretense of fairness and objectivity to ensure the election of our first black President.

Matt Lauer, of all people, became the object of furious invective after he hosted a live prime-time forum with Trump and Hillary. He was accused of unfairness, gullibility and even sexism in his handling of the event. His main offenses: not “fact-checking” Trump, as when he said, not for the first time, that he opposed the Iraq invasion from the beginning (he didn’t), and grilling Hillary about her e-mail machinations.

The only way the transcript supports the latter contention is if one is Bernie Sanders and believes Hillary’s “stupid e-mail” is irrelevant. Lauer didn’t spend an inappropriate time on this issue, given what a perfect example it is of Clinton’s Arrogance, deviousness, lack of transparency, and, apparently, incompetence and recklessness.  I’d say he was easy on Hillary: he didn’t mention her sleazy conflicts with Clinton Foundation donors at all, and she is much less adept at spinning that slam-dunk conflict of interest and ethical violation than with her e-mail, which she has been lying about for more than a year. Pro-Clinton news media, which is to say, news media, howled about Lauer not challenging Trump’s thoroughly disproven claim about opposing the Iraq War, but Clinton already had done this, saying, “Now, my opponent was for the war in Iraq. He says he wasn’t. You can go back and look at the record. He supported it. He told Howard Stern he supported it.” Maybe Lauer thought that was enough; it should have been: Trump’s lie on this score has been well-publicized, including here, on Ethics Alarms.

Meanwhile, he did not challenge Clinton on her obviously false claim that emails cannot be considered classified if they do not contain formal classification markings, and worst of all, he did not challenge her unconstitutional call to ban citizens who are placed on a no-fly list from exercising their Second Amendment rights. This is especially important, because this fact isn’t understood by most Americans, and a Presidential candidate advocating defiance of the Constitution is, or should be, a big deal. Never mind, though: Lauer wasn’t supposed to be tough on Hillary. He was only supposed to be hard on Trump, and because he wasn’t “hard enough,” a.k.a., “harder,” a.k.a. “biased like the rest of the mainstream coverage,” then it means that he was incompetent.

This is especially ironic for Lauer, who allowed First Lady Hillary Clinton, then with complete knowledge that the allegations about Monica Lewinsky and her husband were true (meaning that he had lied under oath in court, to the press and to the American people), to claim that the entire scandal was the fantasy of a “vast right wing conspiracy,” as Matt nodded like a bobble-head. Given what we know to be his political leanings as he has displayed them on hundreds of interviews,Lauer’s performance last week was remarkably fair. He challenged both candidates. Lauer  called Trump on his dumb claim that he knew more about the Islamic State than the generals. He challenged Trump regarding his secret plan to defeat the Islamic State, and his assertion that we should have seized Iraqi oil.

That’s not good enough, though. The mainstream media strategy to save Hillary now is for the journalists to be united in criticizing Trump on everything he says, even the things he says that any idiot can tell he doesn’t mean literally (no, Trump does not really think that Obama and Hillary were the “founders” of ISIS), while simultaneously ignoring Clinton’s dishonesty, corruption, incompetence, lack of trustworthiness, and the apparent cover-up regarding her state of health. This means demonizing any journalist who dares to try to maintain those old-fashioned ethical values like neutrality and fairness, and attacking them so mercilessly that other journalists understand that not shilling for Hillary Clinton is a potential career-ender.

UPDATE: Speaking of her health<cough>,  I am reading right now that Clinton had to leave a 9-11 ceremony due to some kind of medical episode. At first, none of the mainstream media  (except Fox) reported it: huh, I wonder why? Then a few reported the Clinton campaign spin: No problem, Hillary just got a little over-heated, that’s all. No, of course she didn’t faint (though on-the-scene tweeters said she looked like she was close to it.) Then the videos came out, and now everyone is reporting it. Look:

Here is Chris Cillizza…who recently, furiously, demanded that everyone stop talking about Hillary’s health:

Hillary Clinton falling ill Sunday morning at a memorial service on the 15th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks will catapult questions about her health from the ranks of conservative conspiracy theory to perhaps the central debate in the presidential race over the coming days….Coughing, I wrote, is simply not evidence enough of any sort of major illness that Clinton is assumed to be hiding. Neither, of course, is feeling “overheated.” But those two things happening within six days of each other to a candidate who is 68 years old makes talk of Clinton’s health no longer just the stuff of conspiracy theorists.

What an ass. So although events now support those who saw enough clues to believe Clinton and her campaign were not being candid or transparent about her health, those concerns still constituted a conspiracy theory. Can you say “I was dead wrong,” Chris? Sure you can.

Right up to today, any reporter who suggested that Hillary wasn’t as healthy as a horse—did you see her open that pickle jar on Jimmy Kimmel’s show?—has been condemned as a biased hack.

Example: Daily Mail U.S. Political Editor David Martosko opined in a series of tweets that Hillary Clinton seemed tired and listless at her  press conference about national security last week. Nick Merrill, Clinton’s traveling press secretary, and Adam Parkhomenko, who was a state coordinator for the Clinton campaign and is now National Field Director for the Democratic Party, attacked him for it.

“Is it just me or does Hillary Clinton sound absolutely exhausted and quiet? Seems like an illustration of Trump’s whole “tired” critique” tweeted Martosko, who was watching the press conference on TV. “She sounds bored / half-awake / disinterested … not the kind of performance that inspires fear in our enemies. Where’s the caffeine?…I half expect her to slump over and collapse any second now. if she were doing a parody of “low energy” Jeb!, it couldn’t be more spot-on.”

Ginger Gibson, pro-Hillary Politico reporter, was shocked, tweeting back, “This isn’t a serious tweet, right? You are trying to mock people who talk about her tone, right?” Merrill replied to Martosko, who has been tough on both Trump and Hillary, with a more aggressive  “delete your account.”

Next, Parkhomenko threatened “You shouldn’t have a job in the morning.”

The news media and Democrats are clearly determined to bully what few objective journalists there are left into either helping them make Hillary President, or keeping quiet.

And the truth has no effect on them whatsoever.


38 thoughts on “The Latest Unethical Tactic: Attacking Journalists Who Don’t Actively Try To Promote Hillary Over Trump [UPDATE: Hillary’s Health]

  1. there is another recording of here getting into the van, from another view where it shows her legs giving out more clearly and them dragging her. (i wonder if they did that to make it appear she walked in rather than putting the poor woman in a wheel chair?) i don’t like her and i do feel bad for her too.

  2. Now Clinton’s doctor is saying she was diagnosed with pneumonia a couple of days ago. An emerging respiratory infection would explain tiredness, coughing, and the apparent collapse. So there really was something going on.

  3. Two of my friends on Facebook are avid Clinton supporters and both said that it was 100+ degrees in NY and she was wearing a polyester suit. They don’t know each other but both used the same defense.. did the campaign rush out a talking points email? And why would a gazillionaire like Hillary be wearing polyester? Also it’s very easy to find out what the temperature really was in Manhattan today (about 82). I’m in Florida at it was nowhere near 100 down here.

  4. We need Bon Jovi to come Turn Back Time so we can have a do-over of this whole election. Then we could pick two new candidates for both parties. Sigh. Hell, makes me wish Bernie was back.

  5. The recent “pneumonia” claim is absolutely brilliant spin:
    1. Pneumonia is well known and understood by most people as being serious, but treatable. Rest is a big part of that treatment.
    2. Her rest requirements, due to her treatment, will prevent her from being in the public eye for some period of time, and she will be held blameless for this. This period of time is undefined, and elastic, depending on the needs of the Democratic Party, and her actual health; in that order.
    3. While she is unavailable, a determination can be made as to whether the “Hilary is in great health!” charade is doable, or whether Joe Biden steps in to save the day for the Democrats. Short of Hilary actually being comatose, or passing away, I expect this will be a factional dogfight with no clean solution, further splitting the new Obama/Bernie Dems from the old Clintononian Dems.

    This promises to be a complete ethics catastrophe, because there are so many aspects and angles that can and will be lied about, obfuscated and misrepresented. I predict that the old Ethics Train Wreck classification may prove inadequate, and an Ethics Nuclear Blast tier might be needed.

  6. yah and when you have it the LAST thing you do is go out and expose everyone when you have pneumonia!!! at least that’s what MY doc told me.

    why the big secret if that is really what it was???? it’s highly suspicious. i mean NO one cares if she had that so why not say it on friday when it was diagnosed? why have her lean against a cement pillar to hold herself UP and cover up that she had trouble walking if it was just that? (notice one body guard first tries to help her walk, unsuccessfully before the other comes to help before they DRAG her into the van.)

    it makes zero sense to me. why not have her wear a face mask to cover her mouth (like michael jackson did) to not expose innocent people like the little girl she posed with for a photo op?

    does anyone believe this is true? that she has pneumonia? i don’t. for the above reasons.

  7. Well, I saw the latest issue of the National Inquirer at the supermarket today. Man she looks bad. I’m kind of surprised that Democratic progressives haven’t demanded that the issue be pulled off the shelf immediately. Joe Biden must be wishing now that he hadn’t decided not to run.

    • “Well, I saw the latest issue of the National Inquirer at the supermarket today. Man she looks bad. I’m kind of surprised that Democratic progressives haven’t demanded that the issue be pulled off the shelf immediately.”

      Why would you expect the National Enquirer (that’s how it’s spelled) would print a legitimate photo, when it intentionally misrepresents pretty much everyone of every party? Why would you expect anyone would make any demands on a tabloid that no rational person of either party takes seriously as a source of information?

  8. Meanwhile, he did not challenge Clinton on her obviously false claim that emails cannot be considered classified if they do not contain formal classification markings

    When receiving data from trusted sources, that is exactly what you have to assume. If you have knowledge that indicates the data has been misclassified, then yes, you have a responsibility to reclassify it to the degree you have authorisation to do so, and chase up all other copies, initiate inquiries as to the reason for misclassification, and start the damage assessment and mitigation process.

    It is a pain in the petunias beyond anything you are likely to have ever experienced, Jack.

    But if what you are receiving is an assessment from a trusted third party whose duty it is to classify it correctly, and you have no personal knowledge that is germane… then you have to trust them.

    It gets complex when the header and contents have wildly different classifications. It is possible for a document as a whole to be SECRET, yet each individual line of it taken in isolation to be UNCLASSIFIED.

    A document can be classed as SECRET with each paragraph having an individual classification, marked (U), (C), or (S).

    In each case, the document’s classification is given in big friendly letters on the header and footer.

    An unclassified document – one lacking such a header and footer – really should not contain a line such as
    (C) The Bopamaglvie’s Frammistan is unreticulated.

    But it can do, if the original source document was declassified or reclassified by the author so it was decided the line in isolation was unclassified, even if the paragraph it was in was CONFIDENTIAL. So how do you know? If there’s no header and footer, it’s unclass.

    It is anything but obvious.

    I haven’t gone into the various compartments and caveats possible, this is the simplified version.

    • Note that in the preceeding comment, there was a line indicating that that line was CONFIDENTIAL. Yet the post itself was not marked CONFIDENTIAL top and bottom, so you have to assume it is unclassified.

      That is exactly the situation with at least some of the infamous classified e-mails, according to reports.

      • No! The (c) means that the message is already classified. No c doesn’t mean it has been determined that the material isn’t classified…it may still be classified later. A couple thousand e-mails, if I recall, were like that. ..they were classified due to their subject matter, and as Comey said, a reasonable person would have treated them as such. This has always been one of Clinton’s lies that depended on public ignorance and media complicity. Government veterans laugh at it,

        • I try to couch that distinction with as much sarcastic condescension as possible: It’s appropriate at this point.

          “By that logic, Clinton could have Emailed troop movements to ISIS, and wouldn’t have been breaking classification because the Email she was writing lacked classification markers. Remember that about half of these Emails originated from Clinton… How do you think classification works? Do you think an aid watches what Hillary types over her shoulder and has a handy classification stamp to bump her screen with? Or perhaps a line of code parses an Email for terms and inserts the header as it’s generated (Except that said code would probably be exclusive to the actual government servers… Kinda like FOIA requests.)?

          • In fact, it’s not all that unusual for government systems to employ exactly the kind of “dirty word search” you describe in your last two sentences. Usually this is done at the gateways between classified and unclassified systems to guard against leakage into the lower system.

            More to the point, email systems on classified systems that include marking mechanisms always default to the highest classification level of the given system. If one wants to compose an unclassified message on that system, one has to positively change that default.

            This is, where the rubber hits the road, the real problem with the private email server. It won’t have the usual controls and security measures for handling classified information, so it becomes incumbent on the user to never send classified data on that system. It’s no different from “Don’t post troop movements on Facebook.”

            It’s really not that hard. Hell, I avoid posting classified data onto this blog every single time I use it….


      • In cases of mixed classification, one always treats the entire document at the highest level of its various classifications.

        One line of SECRET data makes the entire document classified SECRET, even if the rest of the document is nothing more than yesterday’s weather report–and even if the document has no header or footer. The inclusion of that one line mandates that the security controls appropriate to that level of classification MUST be employed.

        What part of “always err on the side on caution” is so difficult for a high government official to understand?


      • To what level? If you are to take classification seriously, and every single communication whatsoever is at least CONFIDENTIAL by default, then the decision by the security section that the Secretary of State did not need a TEMPEST rated smartphone is inexplicable.

        For my sins, I once worked on ADCNET, the secure comms Intranet used by the equivalent of your State Department.

        • My job title was Systems Engineering manager. There was also a Technical Manager (hardware) and a Project Manager (budget and human resources).

          Someone in counterintelligence, whose primary job requirement is to have a nasty suspicious mind, would point out that it may be in my country’s best interests for your State Department’s security to have some holes that we could exploit.

          Or we could be worried that you’re swallowing camels while straining at gnats. Security Theatre, not Security. Anything we tell you might get compromised.

        • 1. The equivalent of our State Department is still not our State Department.
          2. What’s inexplicable? Here’s the explanation: the Department was being led and managed by an ignoramus and tech-dolt more concerned with quid pro quo fund deals than paying attention.
          3. More inexplicable than the same department never giving Clinton security and technology training? More inexplicable than never finding 18 lost Blackberrys? More inexplicable than the SOS using unsecured communication in foreign countries, or taking the advice from a predecessor regarding e-mail from someone whose experience was FOUR YEARS old, meaning that it was useless and in fact dangerous at best?

        • TEMPEST, at least in the places I used it, was only required on foreign soil. There is a lower standard (I forget was it was called) for EM emissions in domestic locations, and most common computer equipment meets it so long as actual wireless communications (WiFi, Bluetooth, etc.) is disabled at the hardware level.


    • All of which make it even more inexplicable that she treated them so casually. It would be smart to use a secure server for everything except wedding planning and exercise routines unless she was doing something she didn’t want people to know about. That is the plausible explanation. Especially when a serial liar and hustler is sending them. No wonder she thinks we’re a basket of idiots. Everyone she has contact with believes her, or pretends to.

  9. That video of Clinton on 9/11 is showing a bit more than just an exhausted or “passed out” Clinton; there is some serious muscle control problems there! I wonder if her pneumonia infection spread to her blood like it did my mother one time, it made her appear delirious and intoxicated.

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