Spare a thought for the media

The mainstream media hate the fact that blogs pick on them.

John Yoo at an April 18 Civil Liberties debate (via blogger Roger Ailes):

[Since 9/11] we have had outpourings of new political speech through new methods and means, for example, uh, people I wish never existed — bloggers. This did not exist before 9/11. Are we really in such a civil liberties crisis if bloggers are able to use this new media to say I think quite incredible things?

As Ailes says: “Yoo wishes they never existed because, unlike illegally-detained prisoners, torture victims and law school students, bloggers talk back.”

For those who are not familiar with Yoo, he was the humanitarian advisor to Bush who stated that Bush has the right to torture, even if it involved crushing the testicles of a child in front of their parents.

Time Magazine’s Joe Klein at a May 5 Annapolis Book Festival, broadcast on C-SPAN (h/t reader CG):

I am really getting sick and tired of people bashing the press all the time. It used to be that people like me would get bashed from the right, and now there is the whole blogosphere bashing us as well.

Look, at this point, we’re pretty well battered. We’re losing advertising revenue.

And unless we can actually have the revenue to go out there and the credibility to report these issues, all of these right-wing talk show hosts like Rush Limbaugh, and the left-wing bloggers who are parasites on our reporting, are going to have nothing to do but sit home and twiddle their thumbs and opine about things they have no data for.

Apparently, things were fine — and the Joe Kleins were perfectly content — when they were getting viciously attacked and mauled every day by Rush Limbaugh and the right. But matters became intolerable once left-wing bloggers started criticizing the press. That is when things just went too far.

Newsweek’s Jonathan Alter, at The Huffington Post, in a post last night:

There’s one dimension of the blogosphere that never ceases to amaze me: Some people disbelieve nearly everything they read in the “mainstream media” — and believe nearly everything they read online. Never mind that the ground-breaking reporting on which they base their opinions often comes from the MSM publications like Newsweek, The Washington Post, and The New York Times. That’s because until now, few online publications have invested enough money to undertake original reporting, which is much more expensive than mouthing off at home. I’m happy to see that the Huffington Post is moving to change that disparity by hiring top-flight and highly experienced reporters like Tom Edsall.

I’m also glad to see the magazine Radar sending young reporters like Jebediah Reed out to cover politics. The more the merrier. Unfortunately, Reed is a bad reporter, and his bad reporting of a 30-second sidewalk conversation involving me, Edsall and former Sen. Mike Gravel is now rocketing around the web. . . .

Why do I bore you with this? Only to reinforce the point to be careful of believing everything you read. Just because it’s in Radar or online somewhere doesn’t make it true. The same goes for reading me or Tom Edsall or others who happen to have worked at first-rate news organizations.

But our batting averages–and David Broder’s–are a helluva lot higher than the Jebidiah Reeds of the world, which is only one of the reasons why the readers of Huffington Post are lucky to have Edsall aboard.

Apparently Jonathan Alter didn’t see the irony in the fact that he published this post on a blog.

Of course, little stunts like firing General Batiste for daring to quesion the Commander guy is just the thing to win the hearts and minds of the public.

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