Writing over at CNN.com, Reason Editor in Chief Matt Welch compares journalistic coverage of Sarah Palin to that of Barack Obama. Here is how the column starts:
On Friday afternoon the websites of the five most important newspapers in the United States -- the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, and USA Today -- each had above their digital folds the same breaking story: It seemed the former governor of the 47th-most populous state in the union, a woman who holds no elected office now and almost assuredly will not again anytime soon, had thousands of e-mails from her 21-month tenure data-dumped Video onto the public.
The New York Times responded with a rare burst of interactivity, inviting readers "to point out items of interest." The Washington Post had video, a photo gallery, live updates, and headlines such as "Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin's e-mails show a constant concern with how she is portrayed in the media, on matters big and small."
Transparency advocates doubtlessly breathed a sigh of satisfaction that sunlight-disinfectant was being applied to a government figure. And people with any sense of political proportion were left with an additional thought: When is this journalistic scrutiny going to be applied to politicians who wield actual power?
Read the whole thing here.