Ben Adler, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the conservative media, is not making sense:
Conservative publications, both in print and online, have generally competed to be the farthest right and the most extreme in their denunciations of “liberal treason.” National Review, The Weekly Standard, and The American Spectator—the three most influential conservative print magazines (not counting more academic quarterlies such as Commentary and City Journal)—have consistently backed the policies of the Republican Party and its leaders in Congress and the White House, even when those leaders seemingly betrayed their principles. Those publications didn’t complain, for instance, when George W. Bush abandoned his campaign pledge to advance a “humble” foreign policy to launch the Iraq invasion. And when they have criticized Republicans, it has usually been from the right.
Now, if I wanted to do the self-absorbed thing, I could point to dozens of articles and blog posts that I’ve personally written criticizing Republicans under The American Spectator banner, or document such articles by others, and I would have been happy to do so had Adler contacted me for this story, but I’ll hold off and instead draw attention to how blatantly Adler manages to contradict himself within just a few sentences. First, he writes that along with other conservative magazines, TAS has backed Republicans, “even when those leaders seemingly betrayed their principles.” Then he says when these magazines have criticized the GOP, “it has usually been from the right.” This doesn’t add up. Either we are shills who will sacrifice our principles to tout the Republican line, or we’re so committed to our conservative principles, that we’re willing to criticize Republicans. Both statements cannot be true.