Sale of liberal media star a symbol of looming election verdict on Obama.
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Perhaps more telling are the stories Newsweek didn’t get the scoop on. In this decade it was the National Enquirer, not Newsweek, that revealed liberal hero and presidential candidate former senator John Edwards was having an affair with Rielle Hunter. Where was Newsweek’s head? Into earnestly publishing Edward’s musings (2006) on how America needed “real moral leadership.” Really. No kidding.
Then there was the 1998 Clinton-Lewinsky story, developed by reporter Michael Isikoff — and spiked by editors. Were it not for the then-new on the scene conservative founder Matt Drudge of The Drudge Report, the entire incident could have remained hidden from the American people.
In 1978 Newsweek was busy pushing President Jimmy Carter with stories from reporter Eleanor Clift like “Carter’s Momentum” (October 9, 1978) and “Carter’s Upswing,” while reporter Susan Fraker got the October 2, 1978 cover with a smiling cartoon of Mr. Jimmy beneath the exuberantly hopeful headline “Born Again!” All this, mind you, when Carter’s liberal policies were sending the American people into such fury they gave Ronald Reagan a 44-state victory two years later.
To go even further back in the magazine’s history, to the 1960s, there was the complete silence by then Washington Bureau Chief Ben Bradlee on the discovery that his own sister-in-law, Mary Meyer, had left behind after her murder a diary detailing an affair with Bradlee friend, the then-late President John F. Kennedy. The story emerged in the National Enquirer (where else? Not Newsweek) in the 1970s, with Bradlee finally ‘fessing up that the story was true, he had read the diary, it was destroyed, and he had no intention of ever publishing the story — and was indeed angry that the Enquirer had unearthed it.
Why bring up all of this now?
Because what was really going on here over all this time was the increasingly strained song of the canary in the coal mine of liberalism — in this case the mine tunnel that housed the credibility of the mainstream media. Newsweek itself will one day make a fascinating case study of how a magazine that so shamelessly pumped out PR for the failed liberal agenda under the guise of straight news began itself to fail as the agenda’s results failed.
Rupert Murdoch was still in Adelaide, Roger Ailes learning TV in Cleveland. Rush was Jeff Christie the disk jockey in Pittsburgh, and Sean Hannity, Mark Levin and even this magazine were barely known outside a few small circles of family and friends.
But Newsweek was big time, prosperous, fat, so totally convinced in the success of liberalism’s world view that it was unable or unwilling to understand that pushing a liberal agenda while proclaiming non-partisan straight-news credibility was in fact pumping a steady flow of political methane and carbon gas into the liberal media mine shaft. The poisonous gas coming directly from the real-world explosions of the liberal agenda itself.
Only last year, Newsweek’s managing editor Jon Meacham appeared on The O’Reilly Factor to insist to an astonished O’Reilly that Newsweek was nothing more than just a non-partisan news magazine.
By 2009, with the canary ominously gasping in desperation, the conversation went like this, as reported by Newsbusters:
Bill O’Reilly: “What, you’re a not a left-wing magazine?”
Meacham denied any liberal agenda….
“No, I don’t — We’re not a partisan magazine. We’re just not.”
A skeptical O’Reilly replied: “Come on.”
Meacham defended his assertion: “We’re not. We try to be provocative. We try to break news. We try to contribute to the conversation. You can decide whether we do or not.”
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?