Still More From The Ethics Alarms “Nah, There’s No Mainstream Media Bias!” Files, Double Standards Section

As various wags have noted recently, the partisan, ideologically-driven and deliberately manipulative mainstream news media isn’t even trying to hide its bias any more. It openly is taking sides, and the news media isn’t supposed to take sides when reporting events. Nor is it supposed to frame what it reports in ways that warp a reader’s comprehension of it.

Two details are notable in the items above. First, the Post report refers to the individuals as vandals or engaging in vandalism rather than as protesters, as was the apparently agreed upon terminology when describing various statues being defaced or toppled. This was a typical report:

CNN: Protesters tore down a George Washington statue and set
a fire on its head: A crowd of protesters gathered around a statue of George Washington in Portland, Oregon, on Thursday night and lit a fire on its head before…

Second, the race of the protesters is never mentioned unless they are white…and, as the previous post demonstrated, sometimes the report attempts to make the reader think a white-supremacy minded  individual engaged in wrongful conduct even when the miscreant wasn’t white.

There was a third bit of sinister misdirection in the evidence above; at least it fooled me. Slogans painted in block letters on a street do not constitute “murals.”  When I read the media reports, I assumed that artwork was destroyed.

This is a mural:

This  (in D.C.) is government propaganda:

The definition of “mural” specifies that it is on a wall or ceiling

Streets don’t count, yet somehow multiple news media sources deci—all on their own!—to use a word that was  misleading, and made the act seem like something other than it was. What a coincidence!

It did nor require an artist to create this “mural, “or to design it;  it took a few government employees with yellow paint and big stencils. In fact, I’d be tempted to call painting political slogans on public streets vandalism by the government. Legal vandalism.

The stories also demonstrate that the city governments and the news media are allied, which should make fans of democracy nervous. Police aren’t looking for those peaceful protesters who tore down the Christopher Columbus statue in Baltimore’s Little Italy and threw it in the bay, but the police have the bloodhounds out for the pair of white vandals who painted over “Black Lives Matter.”

Final notes:

  • It’s all vandalism, unless those destroying public property allow themselves to be arrested and charged. Neither the white vandals nor the raceless protesters who protest by engaging in vandalism but the media won’t call it that because they approve of tearing down the statues of Founders, Presidents and others had the guts or integrity to  accept the consequences of civil disobedience.
  • City governments should not be plastering the political views and biases of its elected officials on city property. “Black Lives Matter” is no more legitimate than “Vote For Biden,”  “Eat at Joes” or “Mayor Muriel Bowser is God” (no, not mural. Cut that out!) I hope lawsuits against this ominous trend succeed: giant block letters telling us what to think is in the same noxious category as giant portraits or Lenin, Stalin or Mao.
  • Increasingly. “Fact Don’t Matter” to the news media: the “movement” does, the “resistance” does, social justice “by any means necessary” does. This means that, also increasingly, we have no news media, just partisan agents. The Founders whose statues are being toppled believed that democracy was impossible without a free (and responsible) press.
  • They were right.

 

Washington Post Editor Karen Attiah, The Human Smoking Gun

The above tweet was posted two days ago by Karen Attiah, the Washington Post  global opinions editor. After it was immediately and legitimately attacked for what it was—yes, this is res ipsa loquitur— she took it down, but not before her position had been captured in hundreds of screenshots like the one above. Later she tweeted, “Non, je ne regrette rien,” French for “No, I do not regret anything.” (Apparently Attiah believes the foes of unethical journalism are too primitive and uneducated to understand French, or too dim to use an online translator.)

The Washington Post should have given her reason to regret, but it hasn’t, and unless its readers and media critics force the paper to act, it won’t. Since the deleted tweet, the Post has refused to comment on its editor’s outburst, and other than her snotty Gallic tweet of defiance, so has Attiah. Continue reading

From The Washington Post: A Fake News Classic!

And, of course, a “Nah, there’s no mainstream media bias!” masterpiece.

For shame.

Here is the headline:

Trump keeps claiming the most dangerous cities in America are run by  Democrats. They aren’t.

To be fair, the writer of the piece, apparently insane Post reporter Philip Bump, focuses on the President’s statement that the top twenty most dangerous cities are run by Democrats. Gotcha! Bump triumphantly produces this stunning graph to prove that, once again, Trump has lied, the bastard:

Ah HA! See??? Continue reading

Ethical Quote, Fair Quote, Unethical Quote, Share Quote…

The ethical quote:

These words are on the outside wall of the Museum of Natural History near the Teddy Roosevelt statue that will be coming down, according to the museum.

The quote is a far better memorial to Roosevelt  and his character than the statue.

The fair quote:

The question is how soon this will dawn on the groveling, and how soon the intimidated will have the courage to speak the truth.

The unethical quote:

The Washington Post issued a justification for its widely (and correctly) criticized 3000 word story about a politically incorrect  costume that a woman wore at the Halloween party of Post editorial cartoonist Tom Toles two years ago. Because two vicious social justice Furies who were guests at the party decided that the current George Floyd Freakout presented  an opportunity to humiliate the woman and contacted the paper, it published 3000 words about an old, private incident, resulting in the woman losing her job, and Toles, who had refused to identify her when one of the vengeful and self-righteous women called him to re-open the episode, was embarrassed by his own employer.

The Post’s own readership found the paper’s news journalism ethics atrocious (as do I), prompting this response from a spokesperson to Fox News:

“Employees of The Washington Post, including a prominent host, were involved in this incident, which impelled us to tell the story ourselves thoroughly and accurately while allowing all involved to have their say. The piece conveys with nuance and sensitivity the complex, emotionally fraught circumstances that unfolded at the party attended by media figures only two years ago where an individual in blackface was not told promptly to leave. America’s grappling with racism has entered a phase in which people who once felt they should keep quiet are now raising their voices in public. The story is a microcosm of what the country is going through right now,”

A simple “We’re sorry, we screwed up, the story never should have been written and we don’t know what came over us and we pledge to be more responsible and to exercise better judgment in the future” might have salvaged a smidgen of the paper’s rotting reputation. Instead we have more evidence of just how unethical and untrustworthy this rag is: Continue reading

Saturday Ethics Freakout, 6/20/2020: Fake News, Resignations, Topplings And Cancellations…But Also Hope

I know just how you feel, Homer.

1. Mainstream media journalism, 2020. I thank Tim Levier for this classic, from NBC News:

Fake news. First, the Court did NOT rule that Trump cannot end DACA. The opinion by Chief Justice Roberts said explicitly that he can. Second, “Dreamers”  were not legal immigrants so they cannot magically become legal immigrants. At best, they will be illegal immigrants who have been given a pass for their violation.  The tweet is deceptive, misleading, and incompetent.

2. Cancellations, Resignations and Topplings Update! The current list of entertainment celebrities and politicians who have been documented as wearing blackface for one reason or another is long, and if one falls to the mob, the rest might start feeling awfully nervous.

The list includes Justin Trudeau, Ralph Northam, Howard Stern, Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Fallon, Joy Behar, Sarah Silverman, Ted Danson, Gigi Hadid, Julianne Hough and Billy Crystal.  Right now rumors are swirling around the irredeemable Jimmy Kimmel, who has suddenly announced a hiatus, with many speculating that he is holding on to his job by a thread…and if he goes, the innocuous Fallon may be next. Though Stern, Kimmel and Behar are blights on the culture whose professional demise I would cheer, long past blackface dabbling should not be used to punish any of these people now….except perhaps the Virginia Governor.  Northam is a special case, because his party is wildly hypocritical to allow him to escape accountability when it is cheering on the mobs. However, again, a law school costume has no relevance to the Governor today.

As for Trudeau–I don’t care.

3. Cancellations, Resignations and Topplings Update, Literary Division. At the Poetry Foundation earlier this month,  leadership was forced to resign because its official grovel to Black Lives Matter and the George Floyd mob was deemed not abject enough. The Foundation had issued a brief, four-sentence statement on June 3, expressing “solidarity with the Black community” and declaring faith in “the strength and power of poetry to uplift in times of despair.” This prompted a critical uproar from the progressive poets, with another letter from members calling the statement “worse than the bare minimum” and an insult to George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and other African-American victims of police violence. The foundation’s president and board chairman then quit, because, I suppose, poets are lovers, not fighters.

“As poets, we recognize a piece of writing that meets the urgency of its time with the appropriate fire when we see it — and this is not it,” the letter said. “Given the stakes, which equate to no less than genocide against Black people, the watery vagaries of this statement are, ultimately, a violence.”

Genocide! Talk about poetic license. Continue reading

Apparently I Don’t Understand The World Any More, Because This Story, From And About The Washington Post, Makes No Sense To Me At All (Or Maybe It Does)…

I end up defending the damnedest people on this blog.

Since 2012, I’ve put up three posts on what an unethical and obnoxious political cartoonist the Washington Posts’ Tom Toles is part of my ongoing campaign to retire the editorial cartoon completely, since  as Toles proves routinely, it  distorts facts under cover of being satire.  His commentary on the Wuhan virus has been especially despicable.

But I digress: I come to defend Toles, not to bury him.

Incredibly, the Washington Post learned this week that a guest wore a costume including blackface at a Toles Halloween party in 2018, and launched an investigation into it. This momentous event—from two years ago—was deemed so important that the Post assigned two reporters to the hot breaking story. From the result yesterday,

“At the 2018 party at the home of The Washington Post’s editorial cartoonist, [a]middle-aged white woman named Sue Schafer wore a conservative business suit and a name tag that said, “Hello, My Name is Megyn Kelly.” Her face was almost entirely blackened with makeup. Kelly, then an NBC morning show host, had just that week caused a stir by defending the use of blackface by white people: “When I was a kid, that was okay, as long as you were dressing up as, like, a character.”

…Some of the approximately 100 guests at the home of the cartoonist in the District’s American University Park neighborhood said they didn’t notice the blackface. Some noticed it and said nothing. A few people walked up to Schafer, who was then 54, and challenged her about her costume… Nearly two years later, the incident, which has bothered some people ever since but which many guests remember only barely or not at all, has resurfaced in the nationwide reckoning over race after George Floyd, an unarmed African American man, was killed when a white police officer in Minneapolis knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes. Many protesters have called on white Americans to reassess their own actions or inactions when confronting violent and everyday racism alike.”

What one woman wore as a satirical Halloween costume as an obvious critical commentary, not of African-Americans but of super-white conservative Megyn Kelly’s on-air defense of wearing blackface has bothered “some people” for almost two years, the Post story says.  Wow. That’s incipient mental illness. “I just can’t sleep—I keep thinking about the blackface a woman I don’t know wore at Tom Toles’ party in 2018!” Such an assertion needs to begin a story about unhealthy race-grievance obsessions and their consequences, not a two-year old Halloween party.

Inspired by the George Floyd Freakout, one of the guests at Toles’ party, a woman of Puerto Rican heritage, decided this was the perfect time to contact Toles and complain about the Megyn Kelly costume. Got that? Because a cop killed a black man in Minneapolis and triggered protests and riots all over the country resulting in millions of dollars of property damage and hundreds of injuries and deaths, Lexi Gruber thought  the appropriate response for her was to call up the host of a 2018 party to complain about a guest’s makeup.

Last week Gruber emailed Toles, whom she had never met other than attending his party, and told him,

“In 2018, I attended a Halloween party at your home. I understand that you are not responsible for the behavior of your guests, but at the party, a woman was in Blackface. She harassed me and my friend — the only two women of color — and it was clear she made her ‘costume’ with racist intent.”

The e-mail went on to say that the incident had “weighed heavily on my heart — it was abhorrent and egregious.” She asked Toles to identify the woman.

This is where Toles’ progressive bias finally bit him. What he should have written in response was, “I’m sorry, but you should have dealt with that situation when it occurred. I am not responsible for what my guests do, nor am I responsible for helping other guests who decide two years later that they have a score to settle with one of them. Bye.” Instead, he responded by offering “apologies for your experience at the party. A lot of people show up who I don’t know, and I don’t recognize the woman you’re inquiring about.”

Ah, but as the Post’s crack investigative reporting team discovered—a team larger and more committed to justice than, say, the paper’s half-hearted investigation of Obama’s IRS’s efforts to squelch Tea Party activities during the 2012 Presidential campaign—Toles did know Schafer, who had been to his parties before and is a friend of his family. This meant the cartoonist was involved in a blackface cover-up, which is ironic since blackface is itself a coverup. And as the Post knows better than anybody, the coverup is worse than the crime, not that wearing an anti-Megyn Kelly costume with blackface at a private party is a crime. Not yet, anyway. Continue reading

“Oh No! It’s Monday!” Ethics Review, 6/8/2020: A Yoo’s Rationalization Orgy!

Cheer up!

Things could be worse!

For example, I bet you thought a week ago that being in the middle of a pandemic was bad. What I have noticed, and if you’ve been reading regularly, so have you, is that we are increasingly being told by journalists, pundits and politicians that up is down, day is night and black is white, and we are expected to believe them. (They think we are really, really gullible.) This is Rationalization #64, Yoo’s Rationalization, “It isn’t what it is,” the rationalization version of “The Jumbo.” (“Elephant? What elephant?”) The society that allows such brazen misinformation to permeate its culture is on a fast track to totalitarianism.

Here are two recent examples….

1. Multiply the hypocrisy of Prof. Charles Bergstrom’s tweet by 1200, and you get…this, an open letter from health and medical officials making the head-exploding argument  that protests/riots around the United States should not be discouraged the way they discouraged every other public gathering. Everything I could say about this final proof that too many medical and health experts lack basic professional integrity, making the degree of trust placed in their advice by policy-makers, the media and the public not merely unwarranted but irresponsible, I have written here already. However, the text of the letter also suggests that too many medical and health experts just aren’t very bright. How else could one explain statements in the letter like,

“We created the letter in response to emerging narratives that seemed to malign demonstrations as risky for the public health because of Covid-19,” according to the letter writers, many of whom are part of the University of Washington’s Division of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.  Instead, we wanted to present a narrative that prioritizes opposition to racism as vital to the public health, including the epidemic response. We believe that the way forward is not to suppress protests in the name of public health but to respond to protesters demands in the name of public health, thereby addressing multiple public health crises.”

In other words, ‘We oppose maligning demonstrators as risky to the public health although we have maligned demonstrators in other contexts as risky  to the public health but because of the purpose of these demonstrations, they aren’t really risky to the public health compared to the risks of not addressing what they are protesting about, although nothing about the actual demonstrations will address those risks.’  Not only is this Rationalization #64, Yoo’s Rationalization, “It isn’t what it is,” it’s Authentic Frontier Gibberish! To state the obvious, or what should be, one may oppose racism without spreading the Wuhan virus: oppose it by staying home, Zooming, writing blog posts, anything but getting in the middle of mobs. Also “Respond to protesters’ demands” is an imaginary action: “Fix everything!” is not a demand capable of responding to.

Then there is this head-spinner:

“Staying at home, social distancing, and public masking are effective at minimizing the spread of COVID-19. To the extent possible, we support the application of these public health best practices during demonstrations that call attention to the pervasive lethal force of white supremacy. However, as public health advocates, we do not condemn these gatherings as risky for COVID-19 transmission. We support them as vital to the national public health and to the threatened health specifically of Black people in the United States. We can show that support by facilitating safest protesting practices without detracting from demonstrators’ ability to gather and demand change. This should not be confused with a permissive stance on all gatherings, particularly protests against stay-home orders.”

Never mind losing all respect for supposed medical professionals who could put their names on such illogical, dishonest, self-contradictory crap without using pseudonyms; I will ask my family to ship me to the  Home for the Bewildered  if I ever say anything this stupid.

2. Okay, I’ve turned both my college and grad school diplomas to the wall and turn my face away from them in abject shame when ever I pass by…now what? Christy E. Lopez, who is a a Distinguished Visitor from Practice at Georgetown Law School, authored a truly incompetent op-ed in the Washington Post titled “Defund the police? Here’s what that really means.” It makes the Tom Cotton’s op-ed that broke the New York Times look like “The Origin of the Species.”

“We turn to the police in situations where years of experience and common sense tell us that their involvement is unnecessary, and can make things worse. We ask police to take accident reports, respond to people who have overdosed and arrest, rather than cite, people who might have intentionally or not passed a counterfeit $20 bill. We call police to roust homeless people from corners and doorsteps, resolve verbal squabbles between family members and strangers alike, and arrest children for behavior that once would have been handled as a school disciplinary issue.”

Outside of the current fad of calling the cops on grade-schoolers who make gun shapes with their fingers, a legitimate example of misusing the police, what planet is this woman from? We ask police to take accident reports because it’s the only way to ensure that witnesses are questioned and scofflaws don’t flee the scenes of accidents they caused.  Police respond to people who have overdosed because a) they might die and b) they may be victims or perpetrators of crimes. Passing counterfeit $20 bills is a crime, and a form of robbery. Is someone who would do that expected to pay a $20 fine?  Does the professor think we should decriminalize counterfeiting?

Damn right we call police to roust homeless people from corners and doorsteps: I once had a demented homeless woman  banging on my door and screaming at 5 am. She also weighed about 300 pounds’ it took four officers to restrain her. Or would it  be better if I had just brained her with a baseball bat? “Squabbles between family members” are often what we call “domestic abuse” and end in violence. She’s lying about what the police are asked to address.

The op-ed is all like that: one more example of Rationalization #64, Yoo’s Rationalization, “It isn’t what it is.”  #64 is now in the DNA of progressive culture, and we shall see just how susceptible to Orwellian distortion–“War is Peace”— that the American public is. “Police abolition means reducing.with the vision of eventually eliminating, our reliance on policing to secure our public safety, ” she writes. Oh! That’s funny; I would think police abolition would mean abolishing the police. Aren’t lawyers supposed to be sticklers about language? Guess not. “It means recognizing that criminalizing addiction and poverty, making 10 million arrests per year and mass incarceration have not provided the public safety we want and never will.,” she explains.

Maybe not, but we’re a lot safer than we would be without those arrests…

But who in their right mind trusts someone who writes that by “police abolition” activists don’t mean police abolition? Hasn’t everyone heard enough double-talk like this? The Democrats don’t want open borders, they just don’t want anyone prosecuted for sneaking into the country. They don’t approve of infanticide, they just don’t think it should be a crime to kill a baby that survives an abortion. They don’t want to repeal the Second Amendment, they just want “comprehensive gun policy reform” that will make it impossible for a citizen to own a gun. They don’t oppose freedom of speech, they just want to make “hate speech” illegal, with them defining “hate.” They don’t want socialism, they just support a “Green New Deal” which advocates a guaranteed income for those “who choose not to” work.

Why would we ever think that the objective is to abolish police departments just because they call what they want to do “police abolition”? Boy, its conspiracies, conspiracies, conspiracies with you conservatives! You’re paranoid, that’s all.

Ann Althouse, a lawyer obsessed with words, similarly found Lopez’s “we don’t mean what we say” ruse annoying. She wrote,

Why not use words that people can understand and that convey the meaning you want to put in our head? If your idea is so reasonable, why not use words that are effective in making people who care about peace and harmony agree with you?

“Police abolition means reducing, with the vision of eventually eliminating, our reliance on policing to secure our public safety….”

Now, that’s just confusing! You said “reducing” but then you said “eliminating.”

No, it’s not confusing, Ann. It’s honest; she slipped up and said what she meant.

Ethics Quote Of The Month: Carol Roth

“I am so sick of the media trying to create celebrity politicians. Public service should be about representing us as citizens, not creating stardom for the person in office. Nobody “deserves” to hold an office. The focus should be on policies, principles, experience, etc.”

—Radio host and author Carol Roth on Twitter, commenting on the recent Washington Post puff piece on Stacey Abrams

Yes, that ridiculous photo above really accompanied a Washington Post magazine profile on Stacy Abrams. It really did. A few excerpts from the article:

  • “Whether or not she’s chosen as Biden’s running mate, she has moved into a unique space in American politics. DuBose Porter, former chair of the Georgia Democratic Party, told me she is “brilliant,” praise that comes in spite of what some view as a relatively thin political résumé”

Some view!” It’s a ridiculously thin résumé for someone who, we are told,  predicts that “she’ll be elected president by 2040.” It was a thin résumé for someone running for governor of Georgia.

  • “When she is finally introduced the women shout and leap to their feet. Young women stand on chairs, camera phones flash. Abrams, who appears both amused and slightly disturbed by the fuss over her, takes control of the chaotic scene. I’ve witnessed this level of affection for very few political leaders in the Democratic circles I’ve been in since the 1980s. They have the last names Clinton (both Hillary and Bill), Sanders, Warren, Jackson and Obama (both Michelle and Barack).”

Con artists all.

  • “Pandemonium ensues as she walks to the far left of the stage, like a runway supermodel, stops on a dime, poses, tilts her head slightly and smiles. Camera flashes explode. She next pivots and walks slowly to the center of the stage, freezes there and repeats the pose. Again, the flashes explode. Abrams is summoning her inner actress, and she is both enjoying the moment and getting through it to get to the conversation. She then pivots and walks to the far right of the stage, same. You wonder whether she has done this before, because it is not necessarily what one would expect from a 46-year-old politician who was nearly elected the first black female governor in U.S. history.”

Yup, that’s the first thing that leapt to my mind when I saw that photo: supermodel! Continue reading

Nah, I’m Not Getting Royally Sick Of Writing “Nah, There’s No Mainstream Media Bias!”!

Imagine how much we would benefit as a nation from knowing that news organizations were telling us about real events and conveying objective facts without concern about who or what they might hurt or benefit.

That doesn’t quite fit the music of John Lennon’s fatuous song, but it’s a much more useful hypothetical to consider than “Imagine there’s no countries.”

Yesterday, a thoroughly Trump-Deranged relative who is otherwise reasonable, informed and perceptive, was telling me that one reason he was convinced President Trump had mishandled the current virus threat is that “he doesn’t read his briefings.” This is a press-driven trope, as I tried to explain, and like so much fake news, designed to undermine trust by people who are ignorant. My relative isn’t ignorant. He just wants to believe what he already had decided before the election; it’s confirmation bias.

I pointed out that 1) the briefings smear came from unidentified leaks in the Administration, from those who by definition were attempting to damage the President. 2) The sources have been anonymous, and of the same level of trustworthiness that led to so many false reports and headlines during the Russian collusion investigations. 3) A lot of people, including very successful executives, process information better aurally than visually. I worked for one. Reading was hard for him; he was dyslexic. I would send him a long, detailed memo on an issue, and he would call me into his office, hand the memo back, and say, “Tell me what it says—the important stuff.” He was, by furlongs, the best manager I ever worked under. My relative, a lawyer and a manager himself, gets all of his information from reading (and based on our arguments, isn’t all that hot at processing it aurally.)

He also believes what he’s told by his fellow Deranged, and they told him yesterday that  the Washington Post had reported , in a story titled, “President’s intelligence briefing book repeatedly cited virus threat,”  that…

U.S. intelligence agencies issued warnings about the novel coronavirus in more than a dozen classified briefings prepared for President Trump in January and February, months during which he continued to play down the threat, according to current and former U.S. officials.The repeated warnings were conveyed in issues of the President’s Daily Brief, a sensitive report that is produced before dawn each day and designed to call the president’s attention to the most significant global developments and security threats.
For weeks, the PDB — as the report is known — traced the virus’s spread around the globe, made clear that China was suppressing information about the contagion’s transmissibility and lethal toll, and raised the prospect of dire political and economic consequences.

No sources were given, just “sources”—you know, like those sources during the Mueller investigation. A month ago, the same Post reporters submitted  virtually the same basic story, headlined  “U.S. intelligence reports from January and February warned about a likely pandemic.” It was also essentially the same story the New York Times had run earlier, “He Could Have Seen What Was Coming: Behind Trump’s Failure on the Virus,” and that ABC ran around the same time, “Intelligence report warned of coronavirus crisis as early as November: Sources.

You know: “sources.” Those “sources” were immediately debunked by none other than the Director of DIA’s National Center for Medical Intelligence , who sent this out: Continue reading

Saturday Ethics Warm-Up, 3/21/20: I See Terrible People.

Good morning…

1. Asshole move. Joe Biden says he is going to start a broadcast from his bunker essentially second-guessing everything President Trump does. That’s  despicable conduct generally, and wildly unethical conduct in a national crisis.

If anyone can come up with a more civil but equally accurate word for this kind of unprecedented effort to undermine Presidential leadership, please let me know.

2. Meanwhile, apparently terrified that the public isn’t properly blaming Trump for the pandemic, the Washington Post has an entirely anonymously sourced story this morning about how the White House did not take early reports about the virus’s spread in that country that had nothing to do with the pandemic s seriously enough. In “U.S. intelligence reports from January and February warned about a likely pandemic,” we are told, “The intelligence reports didn’t predict when the virus might land on U.S. shores or recommend particular steps that public health officials should take…. But they did track the spread of the virus in China, and later in other countries, and warned that Chinese officials appeared to be minimizing the severity of the outbreak…. But despite that constant flow of reporting, Trump continued publicly and privately to play down the threat the virus posed to Americans. Lawmakers, too, did not grapple with the virus in earnest until this month….”

Mark Tapscott notes that on the same op-ed page, nine former intelligence chiefs” warn that: “We cannot let the covid-19 pandemic be a cover for the deeply destructive path being pursued by the Trump administration. The most recent illustration of this unprecedented attack is the continuing dismissal of career intelligence professionals — officers who have ably served both Republican and Democratic administrations regardless of their personal political stripe.” He wonders where those “unsourced” sources for the White House briefings came from, and suggests that “Trump is remaking the leadership of the intelligence community, displacing the entrenched bureaucrats – careerists and career political operators – who tried to sell us the Russia hoax, the Mueller probe and the quid pro quo. So in response, they are weaponizing the coronavirus.” When officials make accusations and won’t go on the record, their motives are suspect, and deserve to be. This is why, once upon a time, the Post and other news organizations were wary of anonymous sources.

3. Kudos to Ann Althouse who mentions, though the Post somehow let this slip its mind, that during this period President Trump was the defendant in an impeachment trial, meeting regularly with his lawyers and Senate members, and was not acquitted until February 5th. The illicit impeachment was designed to cripple the Presidency, and now the Post is accusing the President of not being sufficiently attentive to a Chinese virus outbreak about which these unnamed intelligence officers would not  “predict when the virus might land on U.S. shores or recommend particular steps that public health officials should take.”

Ann gets double kudos for noting:

“And here’s a WaPo article from January 21st, 11 days before the aquittal: “Trump administration announces mandatory quarantines in response to coronavirus.”

The White House declared a “public health emergency” and — beginning on Sunday at 5 p.m. — will bar non-U.S. citizens who recently visited China from entering the United States, subject to a few exemptions…. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar also said the Trump administration would quarantine any Americans who had visited China’s Hubei province, where the disease originated, within the past 14 days….

President Trump so far has remained uncharacteristically muted on the coronavirus and praised China’s extraordinary response to the growing outbreak. On Wednesday, he tweeted photos of his Situation Room briefing and said his administration was working closely with China to contain the outbreak….

“That happened at a time when the World Health Organization was recommending that there be no travel restrictions”

4.  I don’t even know how to title this. Over on The View, even without the participation of the biggest fool in the room, Joy Behar, the ladies treated its audiences to this;

  • Whoopie Goldberg, the smartest one on the panel, God help us, said, “The interesting thing about all of this is whatever channel you’re watching, you’re still watching from home. You’re watching from inside your house. Because a pandemic has happened, and you are stuck, and whatever side you’re on, you understand that when you have leadership you would not be — you would not be stuck in your house.”

That’s right. Every nation is working to keep its citizens from spreading the virus, but if it wasn’t for the President’s mishandling of the crisis, Americans would be going about life as usual.

  • Then Sunny Hostin, who might beat Joy in a Scrabble game, but not by much, again flogged the false narrative that Trump called the virus a hoax.  It has been debunked and debunked, yet ABC had nobody available, certainly not on the biased and information-challenged panel, to correct this lie. Here, one again, is what the President actually said :

Now the Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus. You know that, right? Coronavirus. They’re politicizing it. We did one of the great jobs. You say, ‘How’s President Trump doing?’ They go, ‘Oh, not good, not good.’ They have no clue. They don’t have any clue. They can’t even count their votes in Iowa, they can’t even count. No they can’t. They can’t count their votes.

One of my people came up to me and said, ‘Mr. President, they tried to beat you on Russia, Russia, Russia. That didn’t work out too well. They couldn’t do it. They tried the impeachment hoax. That was on a perfect conversation. They tried anything, they tried it over and over, they’ve been doing it since you got in. It’s all turning, they lost, it’s all turning. Think of it. Think of it. And this is their new hoax….

The hoax was and is that the  Democrats, “resistance” and news media—and Whoopie,—are claiming that Trump is at fault for the pandemic. I wouldn’t call that a “hoax”—it’s just a lie, just like saying that  he ever called the disease itself, or the threat it posed, a hoax.

These are all terrible people, and I can only hope that they get what they deserve.