Integrity among professionals and journalists is in short supply in the Trump Era, as bias, especially partisan bias, increasingly rules the loyalties, judgment and minds of all but a few. Here are a couple recent examples of those few…
Ethics Hero: Ian Bremmer
Foreign policy expert and Eurasia Group President Ian Bremmer, often a harsh critic of President Trump,
…Unequivocally credited the President for the major diplomatic breakthrough with North Korea.
…chided those refusing to give him proper praise for the achievement, and
…did this on MSNBC, where fairness to President Trump is as welcome as an evolution lecture on the “700 Club.”
Bremmer told a shocked Stephanie Ruhl:
“But we have to give him credit. Look, as you know, I’ve been critical of President Trump probably 90% of the foreign policy decisions he’s made since he’s become president. Not the whole administration, but certainly stuff he said. But on this issue, on North Korea, the only way you say that Trump isn’t part of it is if you’re just a partisan, if you’re just being illogical. And that’s not – I mean, I understand that that’s good for eyeballs, but it’s not good for our country.”
Wow! What a concept!
Ethics Hero: Neil Cavuto
Long-time Fox News host Neil Cavuto correctly and fairly lambasted President Trump for his habitual shading, distortions and sometimes outright defiance of facts and the truth.
“Let me be clear, Mr. President,” Cavuto said. “How can you drain the swamp if you’re the one who keeps muddying the waters? You didn’t know about the $130,000 payment to a porn star, until you did. Said you knew nothing about how your former lawyer handled this, until you acknowledged today that you were the guy behind the retainer payment that took care of this. You insist that money from the campaign or campaign contributions played no role in this transaction. Of that you’re sure. The thing is, not even 24 hours ago, sir, you couldn’t recall any of this…the time you said the Russians didn’t interfere in the 2016 election, until a lot of Republicans had to remind you they did…Came back months later, and you said, ‘Well, I never said that Russia didn’t meddle in the election,’ when in fact you had — a lot.”
Cavuto went on in this vein at length, recalling when Trump claimed the tax reform bill “would cost you a fortune when it turns out it is going to help make you a bigger fortune,” when “you said there was serious voter fraud in New Hampshire, and there wasn’t” and the time Trump said “millions of illegals voted in the last election, but they didn’t.”
Cavuto said that such blatant falsehoods and being so careless with facts make “calling out the press for being so a bit of a stretch.”
“You are right to say some of them are out to get you. But oftentimes they’re using your own words to bat you,” Cavuto concluded. “You probably might not care. But you should. I guess you’ve been too busy draining the swamp to stop and smell the stink you’re creating. That’s your doing. That’s your stink. Mr. President, that’s your swamp.”
Good for Cavuto. (Full disclosure: I’ve been a guest on his show.) One of his points is just wrong, although it is one I hear often. The disgraceful news media abandonment of its duty to inform the public objectively, fully and honestly should be criticized, hard, and the unethical proclivities of critics don’t make such criticism less necessary or less valid. Cavuto betrays his own biases toward his colleagues there. Nonetheless, it is refreshing to see a prominent Fox News figure deliver such a tough message to President Trump.
Not that it will have any effect whatsoever…