Media

Leaks Show JournoList Members Plotting to Push Back Against Rev. Wright Stories, Accuse Random Republicans of Being Racist

|

Don't hurt me, Attackerman!

Looks like Delaware Dave Weigel won't be the only member of the recently shuttered JournoList to be made professionally uncomfortable by the selective publication of inflammatory statements made to the ostensibly private listserv of several hundred D.C.-centered liberal journalists and commentators. Tucker Carlson's Daily Caller has unearthed some of JournoList's chatter during the high points of the controversy over Obama's former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Excerpt:

Employees of news organizations including Time, Politico, the Huffington Post, the Baltimore Sun, the Guardian, Salon and the New Republic participated in outpourings of anger over how Obama had been treated in the media, and in some cases plotted to fix the damage.

In one instance, Spencer Ackerman of the Washington Independent urged his colleagues to deflect attention from Obama's relationship with Wright by changing the subject. Pick one of Obama's conservative critics, Ackerman wrote, "Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists."

Michael Tomasky, a writer for the Guardian, also tried to rally his fellow members of Journolist: "Listen folks–in my opinion, we all have to do what we can to kill ABC and this idiocy in whatever venues we have. This isn't about defending Obama. This is about how the [mainstream media] kills any chance of discourse that actually serves the people." […]

The emphasis is on empiricism, not ideology

Thomas Schaller, a columnist for the Baltimore Sun as well as a political science professor, upped the ante from there. In a post with the subject header, "why don't we use the power of this list to do something about the debate?" Schaller proposed coordinating a "smart statement expressing disgust" at the questions Gibson and Stephanopoulos had posed to Obama.

"It would create quite a stir, I bet, and be a warning against future behavior of the sort," Schaller wrote.

Tomasky approved. "YES. A thousand times yes," he exclaimed.

The members began collaborating on their open letter. Jonathan Stein of Mother Jones rejected an early draft, saying, "I'd say too short. In my opinion, it doesn't go far enough in highlighting the inanity of some of [Gibson's] and [Stephanopoulos's] questions. And it doesn't point out their factual inaccuracies….Our friends at Media Matters probably have tons of experience with this sort of thing, if we want their input."

Jared Bernstein, who would go on to be Vice President Joe Biden's top economist when Obama took office, helped, too.

Ackerman's characteristically juvenile bravado did draw JournoList rebukes from Mark Schmitt and Kevin Drum, the Daily Caller reported. Read the whole thing here; Reason on JournoList here.

As this whole episode describes a world utterly alien to me–listservs, major-party affiliation, political team identity, desire to help out politicians–I am experiencing this mostly as a consumer of entertainment news (with the caveat that I have met several of the people involved). There is a certain poetry, however, to seeing Joe Conason's name associated with it all.

NEXT: "A city outsources everything. Sky doesn't fall."

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. I’m ready for my facial now.

  2. It is funny how violent they all are. Ackerman couldn’t win a physical confrontation with the average junior high girl. Yet, he is wanting to “throw a chair”

    The whole thing is just funny and pathetic. This was supposed to be a place where only the “best and brightest” bounced ideas off of one another away from the rabble. Fuck, Edward Tony and Joe could form a journolist and come up with more interesting shit than this. What a bunch of tools.

    1. Don’t forget me!

      1. Better not leave ME out, Christfags!

    2. It is funny how violent they all are. Ackerman couldn’t win a physical confrontation with the average junior high girl. Yet, he is wanting to “throw a chair”

      Maybe he means one of those plastic lawn chairs. You know, the ones that a five year-old can pick up.

        1. Spencer Ackerman: The Wussening.

    3. John, it is a little outrageous that this post is so similar to your comment from a few hours ago, without a h/t. When it comes to this topic, the reason staff can save some time and just read through your comments.

      1. They threw me a bone the other day. So i didn’t whine for a hat tip. And this story is too good to even worry about such stuff. But thanks.

        1. I am tempted to start a bake sale to fund an endowment to Reason for “The Weigel Chair of Irony” and insist you are the column writer.

          1. That bake sale will probably require a food permit, so get your stuff together early.

            1. If it’s a bake sale, let’s make sure we charge less for purchases by minorities.

            2. The funny brownies aren’t legal yet in DC.

          2. Bake sale? Better invite KMW, in case Meme Roth decides to crash the party.

    4. And all the anger because journalists dared ask a Presidential candidate about the insane racist church he attended for years. Obviously the churches Republicans attend are the only fair game.

  3. the selective publication of inflammatory statements made to the ostensibly private listserv

    Selective publication is the dark side of “private” listservs (and other documents).

    You don’t think the selection of items to publish is fair? Then data-dump the whole thing. Unless, of course, you (still) have something to hide.

    None of these people should ever hold jobs in journalism again, BTW. Credibility should be a job requirement in that field, and I don’t see how any of this crew has any left.

    1. They have no credibility. And these e-mails should be thrown in their face every time they say something in public.

      But from the perspective of wanting to see these losers suffer, the slow death of an embarrassing disclosure every few months is much more fun than a big dumb.

      I wonder if Ackerman is who outed Weigal and this is Weigal’s revenge.

      1. They also have no shame, John. Throwing it in their face would be a badge of honor.

      2. The “credibility” cat has been out of the bag for years. Journalists, once regarded as defenders of liberty–the last bulwark against tyranny–now rank just above lawyers and car salesmen on the trust scale. There is little journalistic objectivity in the blog era as “consumers” of news identify with their own personal propagandists. Does this surprise anyone in these anti-philosophical times?

        1. Journalism as we know it is in its death throws. These guys days of pretending to be impartial journalists are over.

          1. Yep. Most high-end journos and pundits are openly and happily serving as propaganda tools for their political masters. It’s a symbiotic relationship and nobody in the mainstream press wants to spoil it. Look at all the heat FOX News’s Bret Baier took a few months ago for daring to ask Obama some tough questions. The left got the vapors and roundly criticized Baier for his audacity.

            1. Also recall that Chris Matthews was being talked about as a potential senate candidate in 2008.

              Chris. Fucking. Matthews.

              1. Thankfully that’s not going to happen now, after his Obama-slobbering.

          2. I agree. But I don’t know that this is necessarily a bad thing. I know it’s time consuming, but I’d rather go to WSJ, Reason, NYT and BBC to get my news every day and know exactly how each is biased instead of going to one of them and expecting straight facts.

        2. Indeed.

          No one should be surprised by this.

          Most of the MSM have operated this way for a very long time.

        3. The “credibility” cat has been out of the bag for years. Journalists, once regarded as defenders of liberty–the last bulwark against tyranny–now rank just above lawyers and car salesmen on the trust scale. There is little journalistic objectivity in the blog era as “consumers” of news identify with their own personal propagandists. Does this surprise anyone in these anti-philosophical times?

          I think it started even before some of them tried to slander General Motors. (Ironically, their attempt eventually ended up delaying General Motors’s bankruptcy by what, a few months or so?)

  4. Link to Ackerman’s BS is broken.

  5. Not to mention that anyone stupid enough to believe that a listserv of any kind, much less one made up of professional rivals and journalists, would ever stay confidential.

    I tell everyone at my hospital to assume that any email or other communication that they make will be public at some point.

    1. Seriously. Just how dim is this cabal?

      Oh well, let us not fret about their vapidness and stupidity and instead, let us revel in it.

      1. They were taught by the AGW cabal.

    2. Re: R C Dean,

      Not to mention that anyone stupid enough to believe that a listserv of any kind, much less one made up of professional rivals and journalists, would ever stay confidential.

      Can you spell “ARROGANCE”?

      Really, RC, they were THAT STUPID. They are arrogant, self-centered, self-deluded elitists; they are worse than a Marie Antoinette.

      1. Arrogant mediocrities. If I were a stockholder for the Washington Post or the Atlantic or any of the other organizations that employ employee these clowns, I would sure want to know how the hiring process got so broken that it allowed these people to get jobs.

        1. This story is hubris defined.

        2. John–The only differences between these schmucks and the bulk of their peers is that a) they spoke their thoughts aloud and b) got caught.

          1. Probably so. And that why big media is dying. It is not so much that they are partisan. It is that they are just lousy writers and worse thinkers. Judging from these e-mails, is there any reason to believe any of these people are capable of writing anything that anyone would ever want to read?

        3. Have you actually read The Atlantic recently? You could power Boston on a turbine attached to James Russell Lowell’s coffin.

          1. Yeah. To think that that magazine started during the Civil War. What a shame.

            1. I remember twenty years ago when they published things like John Chever’s autobiography and Jihad vs. McWorld by political scientist Benjamin R. Barber

  6. You know, if Obama had balls he would have just admitted what was apparently the case – he doesn’t go to church very often. But that would have upturned much of his image as a church a going, etc. man.

    1. He did back in the day. Back when going to Wright’s church helped him politically he went a lot. Also, like most marriages, his wife makes the decisions on how often and where to go to church. And I think Michelle and Jerimiah are pretty much soul mates if they were both honest.

      1. Thank God I’m not like most marriages.

    2. Obama, like many men, was as likely as not buying peace throughout the week with an hour on a Sunday morning. I was always willing to give Obama a by on the Rev. Wright thing.

      1. I get what you’re saying, but there is a limit to what one should do to buy peace from the significant other. I’ve gone to a lot of church services to placate the women in my life, but there is a minimum threshold of “listenability” I require. I wouldn’t sit through sermons by a pastor who was virulently homophobic or who condoned attacks against abortion clinics, no matter how much peace at home it would bring me. Either my wife (in this hypothetical situation) would have needed to find another church more amenable to my opinions, or she’d be going alone.

        And somehow I think the excuse “I only went because it made my wife happy. SHE is the anti-american racist,” would have went over well in the Obama household.

        1. “I wouldn’t sit through sermons by a pastor who was virulently homophobic or who condoned attacks against abortion clinics, no matter how much peace at home it would bring me.”

          Oh I would. Just so I couls debate him about the insanity of his views in front of the entire congregation while shaking his hand at in the sanctuary door at the end of the service.

          1. I wouldn’t sit through sermons by a pastor who was virulently homophobic or who condoned attacks against abortion clinics, no matter how much peace at home it would bring me.

            If the significant spouse was extremely hot, I could endure anything for an hour or so each Sunday.

  7. Sounds like a vast left-wing conspiracy.

    1. +1

      I am still waiting for the identical story from “the other side”. Since some here claim both sides always do it.

      1. Me too. But even with a lack of evidence, if any of us don’t believe that those on Fox and other conservative news outlets don’t cullude so they might spin the news in their chosen direction, we’re fools.

        It may not be quite as malicious as the “call them racists!” mantra of liberals, but I’m sure it exists.

        1. Of course the media bigwigs (everyone from Roger Ailes to Ted Turner) slant coverage to their liking, but I have trouble believing that there are lowly conservative journalists who assemble and scheme ways to influence coverage. Judging by my bimonthly visit to National Review’s Corner, political strategizing is not their strong point.

      2. Listen to Beck and listen to Rush and then you will see how much they contradict one another.

        In fact this very subject came up on Rush’s show like a week or two ago and Rush said he would tell you why the right does not collude but if he did he would lose friends and so didn’t say why. Whatever that means.

        But yeah in general conservatives do not talk on point and do not collude.

        You have to rememebr that conservatives make up a larger minority then leftists in this country. If they actually did stick together and stick to talking points they would not currently be out of power.

        1. Actually i should back up a bit. Conservatives do have a listserv and it is called Drudge.

          If you listen to Rush you can actually follow the show as he goes down the stories found on drudge. Not every day but enough that it is noticeable.

          One thing that is odd though….why isn’t this story on Drudge right now?

        2. Yes but conservative writers do have that nasty habit of colluding to call random Democrats pedophiles or Trotskyists whenever they want to turn attention away from a story. Ask MNG.

      3. There won’t be another side. There aren’t enough conservative journalists to form basketball team, let alone a listserv.

  8. Leaks Show JournoList Members Plotting to Push Back Against Rev. Wright Stories, Accuse Random Republicans of Being Racist.

    Oh, and rain is wet. News at 11.

  9. This whole thing would be a complete joke, except for the fact that all of the coordinated lies and disinformation put out by these scumbags were all too successful in fooling enough of the country to elect the worthless jerk we’re now stuck with.

    Most of the country now realizes what a sham it all was, but it’s too late, and the country is going to continue to suffer dearly for some time to come.

    1. This whole thing would be a complete joke, except for the fact that all of the coordinated lies and disinformation put out by these scumbags were all too successful in fooling enough of the country to elect the worthless jerk we’re now stuck with.

      The media no longer serves the country.

      1. True. Once we had honest-to-goodness reporters, and now we have “journolists”.

    2. ObamaCare. Brought to you by Minnesota’s felons.

  10. Every single fucking thing about Ackerman is rage-inducing: his stupid glasses, his immaculately gelled hair, his perfectly-trimmed little facial scruff, his smug smirk, etc., etc. I don’t see how he’s survived for so long.

    1. He has a more punchable face than Ezra Klein. And that is saying something. And he has survived so long by never leaving the few areas of the country that tolerate his existence. If he ever left those areas, you are right someone would kill him and later be acquitted on grounds of justifiable homicide.

      1. Backpfeifengesicht. The German language of one of western civilization’s great accomplishments.

    2. Urge to punch face rising.

    3. Warty, you forgot his tight ass, his muscled thighs, the way he makes you feel.

      1. I told you already, retard: pick a fucking name.

        1. I did

          1. You’re adorable, retard. Now stick with your little handle there so we can ignore you more easily.

            1. poor little Warty is frustrated

              1. STFU moron.

                1. John, don’t fuck with me today. Or, I’ll put you on my little bitch list

                  1. In your dreams sweat heart. XXX

                    1. You would sweat baby but fucking dream on.

                  2. STFU Max

                1. Maverick you are a fucking bore. I can’t think of anything interesting you ever wrote.

                  1. Sometimes you herp, when you should derp, MNGminge.

                    1. The trolls seem to be getting increasingly angry and desperate.

                    2. That’s what happens when forced to justify failure.

                    3. But they love it when you respond to them.

                    4. Why can’t i get a troll?

                    5. Holy shit Maverick. I was wrong to not see your genius.

                    6. Who is this troll that keeps changing its name?

                    7. Used to be poster “oh no not this again”, a female poster who brags about her sex life while, in the same breath, calling us all trashy.

                    8. In other words, Warty’s mom.

                    9. Max

    4. He looks like a cross between Ezra Klein and Seth Green. That’s like turning punchability to 11.

      1. I’d but that DVD, honey. Do you think Stagiano might be the distributor?

        Kiss Kiss!
        YFQ

    5. Every time I see his picture I’m overcome with the urge to break his glasses and steal him lunch money.

      1. I am sure he knows the routine.

      2. break his glasses and steal him lunch money

        So you punch him in the face, and then steal someone else’s lunch money and throw it at him? You are an evil genius.

        1. Typing is hard while making sandwiches.

          1. Grammar is an oppressive patriarchal construct, so don’t worry.

        2. Tenacious D: MAGIC SPINNING LOOSE CHANGE!

  11. would like to see what this group was saying about the access issues for reporters re: the gulf oil spill.

  12. Carlson and Breitbart are on fire!

  13. rebukes

    That’s not what those are.

    I wonder if Ackerman is who outed Weigal and this is Weigal’s revenge.

    Psychologically, that’s implausible. Any Weigel-on-Journolist “revenge” is.

    And I don’t think it fits the timeline. Back then, Weigel was auditioning. Here. Good times.

    1. I wonder who leaked it. I bet they are pissing their pants today. We are on a pace of about one embarrassing disclosure a month. Just when people forget the last one, a new one is released. God this is funny.

      1. There is talk that Breitbart has all of the emails given that he announced that something fantastic was about to unfold and formally withdrew his offer of $100,000 for them.

        1. I saw that. It appears that he has. It should make August very interesting.

    2. Yeah, it definitely wasn’t Ackerman. As scoops go, “Spencer Ackerman sometimes reveals a short fuse and gift for crazy hyperbole” is not that explosive.

  14. This isn’t about defending Obama. This is about how the [mainstream media] kills any chance of discourse that actually serves the people.” […],

    Bubble?

    What bubble?

  15. Yeah, if it wasn’t until now, the cry “racist” is officially a joke.

      1. Not for them it isn’t. So let’s see if they keep doing it – mark my words, they will.

        1. When it’s all ya got . . .

        2. It will never end. And I mean “never” quite literally. But it becomes less effective after each mendacious use.

    1. You got that right, cracker!

    2. Raaaaacist!!

  16. Pick one of Obama’s conservative critics, Ackerman wrote, “Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares ? and call them racists.”

    8-). That’s really working for the libs. Everybody is RAACCCCIISSSST! Wah!

    1. That’s really working for the libs.

      They call someone a racist, the gullible types gasp “Oh my! I better not allow myself to be associated with this person or this person’s ideas or I will be called a racist!”

      Unfortunately it really does work.

      1. They call someone a racist, the gullible types gasp “Oh my! I better not allow myself to be associated with this person or this person’s ideas or I will be called a racist!”

        I wonder if there were similar accusations about the antiwar movement being anti-Jewish.

        1. I doubt it. Antisemitism was politically correct back then, as was racism. Heck, back then there was a scientific consensus that government action was needed to keep the gene pool from getting polluted. It only came out of favor after some European leader took it a little too seriously.

  17. “””This whole thing would be a complete joke, except for the fact that all of the coordinated lies and disinformation put out by these scumbags were all too successful in fooling enough of the country to…”””

    go to war with Iraq?

    elect Hopey McChange?

    What the hell is wrong with this country?

    1. The teacher’s union.

  18. This is why I’m glad I never succumbed to the siren song of New York, D.C. or Chicago. There are a lot of assholes/hacks in the business, and they tend to congregate where the “action” is.
    I genuinely like and respect most of my colleagues (even those who are well-meaning idiots) at my mid-sized Midwestern font of information.
    I also love my profession, but it has always been replete with assholes, hacks, and folks who would have flunked out of anything but J-school.
    But this stuff is extraordinary, and embarrassing to us all.

    1. Every person I know who is worth a shit in Washington wants to get out. Only the real lowlifes and college kids who are not old enough to know better thrive and want to stay.

      1. why aren’t you leaving John?

        1. You forgot your fucking name, retard?

          1. more than one person dislikes you little Warty.

            1. When did Warty’s mom start commenting here?

              1. And what’s she doing out of the kitchen?

                1. I like you, Warty. All bald and muscular. Pay no mind to Whiny the Anono-Twat.

                  1. Everyone likes Warty. I can’t really understand we he has drawn the wrath of the trolls lately. They seem to be getting increasingly angry and desperate for attention.

                    1. Well, I would imagine that Dan T. hates me pretty good by now, and that whiny and self-obsessed feminist from a few weeks ago was not a fan of my work. And let’s not mention LoneWacko. So AnonoRetard is right, more than one person dislikes me.

                    2. This doesn’t strike me as lonewacko’s style. And whoever is doing this hates me to. And lonewacko has never said anything to me. I suspect Dan T.

                    3. Dan T. was my thought too. I just wish he’d write some new short stories for me.

                    4. “So AnonoRetard is right, more than one person dislikes me.”

                      You have yet to name a person, Warty.

                  2. All bald and muscular.
                    You must be thinking of me, SF.
                    Except for the muscular part.

                    1. Warty has taken to shaving his head. He’s gotten into heading, which is like fisting, only with a real risk of suffocation.

                    2. I took up Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu recently, and that just sort of naturally leads to heading. That’s all I’ll say about that.

                    3. I hope your hat size in less than 8!

            2. Possibly, but everyone finds you trite.

              Kiss Kiss!
              YFQ

        2. Because I am so in love with you. I just can’t part from you.

  19. So outside of people who troll political blogs, who else is hearing this story? Anyone?

    1. Assuming this is this Fred Barnes or Karl Rove, why are you such a racist?

    2. Thought I saw it on Drudge earlier this morning but it may have been John’s link. Early morning news sort of blends together before the second cup of coffee kicks in.

    3. Fox will carry it. The rest of the media will politely avert their eyes, perhaps in a few weeks run a chin-puller on why they didn’t cover it.

      1. And the Washington Post’s ombudsman will be writing an mea culpa for not covering it in about a month or so.

    4. I am wondering why Drudge is not running it.

  20. Can’t wait until the Sarah Palin threads go public.

    1. I didn’t realize Keith Olbermann (or pick your own bottom of the barrel lefty hack) was writing rap songs these days.

  21. Here is the story everyone should be reading…crazy shit man.

    1. Was he guilty over killing the deer? Or was he riding somewhere to kill himself and just happened to hit the deer on the way?

      Reminds me of Harold Ramis commenting on his friend Doug Kenny’s death from falling off a cliff in Hawaii. Ramis said “poor Doug, he probably fell while looking for a place to jump.”

      1. Shot himself while riding the bike, causing him to run into the deer.

        1. Shot himself while riding the bike

          In the back of the head?

    2. The story is unclear, but it’d take a real limber dude to shot himself in the back of the head.

      1. Maybe JournoList is tying up their loose ends…the deer was a witness…

      2. Murder/suicide. Did they dust the gun for hoof prints?

        1. Cherchez la femme

    3. I posted this to see if any of you would be able to help me wrap my head around this story, but more questions have been raised than answered.

      I will say that I had not suspected the deer of any foul play until now, but it must be considered.

      I hope “the goddamn liberal media” keeps up with this story as it seems like some important developments could…um develop.

    4. For Future Readers Of This Post

      Below this line, joe-levels of Democratic fluffing and prevarication have been detected.

      Proceed at your own risk.
      ________________________________

      1. Threadwinner.

  22. Does any sane person think the Guardian, Mother Jones, Salon and the Huffington Post don’t root for liberals? WTF?

    Another funny thing about this is that these people were attacking Gibson and Stephanopoulus from major networks that conservatives usually decry as foundations of “teh evil MSM”

    1. And that liberals decry as the “corporate media”. It cuts both ways.

      1. Oh I think both sides bitching over “teh Media” is hilarious.

    2. Does any sane person fail to understand the difference between rooting for liberals and manipulating the news coverage?

      1. Oh dear lord it’s like you’re a virgin or something. Both sides do that all the time…

        1. Gabe? Is that you? The Koctopus is calling.

    3. “Does any sane person think the Guardian, Mother Jones, Salon and the Huffington Post don’t root for liberals? WTF?”

      You left out Time magazine.

      We all know they root for liberals too.

      1. Was it reporters for Time or columinists that have written for Time? If the former, they need to be fired. If the latter, meh.

        1. There is no distinction between the two.

            1. Liberals are PHYSICALLY INCAPABLE of functioning as reporters.

              They are all merely propagandists regardless of what they nominal title happens to be.

              1. You should do stand up Gillie, you’re hilarious.

      2. He also left out the Washington Post as well.

        In any event, there were what, something like 400 active members of the “Journolist”? We don’t have anything remotely close to the full list of participants and their media employers, despite what the Shit Facktory wants us to believe.

        1. Mike M is Gobby? Hm, I never heard his mom call him that before…

    4. Does any sane person recall endless, breathless lefty rendings over Fox News’ “biased” news?

      And what CN said.

      1. Well duh Fox is biased. I’ve never seen it as some huge deal. People know what they are getting when they watch Fox or they are mental slugs. But people should know what they are getting from the Guardian and Huffington Post too for pete’s sake.

        1. Uh Huh.

          And CNN, PBS, NPR, ABC, NBC, CBS, BBC, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the LA Times, etc. etc. etc.

          1. Shorter Gilbert: And any other outlet i don’t immediately agree with!

            1. There is no liberal alive on the planet who is the least bit capable of proving that ANY of those organizations is one iota less biased to the left than they claim Fox is to the right.

              And you are no exception, MNG.

                1. I took a shit in 1998.

        2. The chorus always sounds in tune when you’re singing along. you should the sneers of smelling something bad that hard lefties get, when someone mentions Fox News around them.

          Yeah, no shit, Fox is biased, as is every other media outlet. The only difference is that Fox does it with a wink and a nod with their “Fair and Balanced” while the big liberal outlets protest loudly over their objectivity being impugned by such scandalous talk.

          You do realize that this is an honest-to-gog conspiracy, right?

            1. If by conspiracy you mean they hoped through coordinated efforts to change what people were talking about, well, sure it is. My point is that this obviously goes on all the time.

              1. Shorter MNG: Hey! Look over there!

                1. Shorter JW: Guys can you believe it! The sky has been reported as BLUE!

                  1. What was that Officer Barbrady? Move along?

              2. By conspiracy, I mean, attempting to deliberately manipulate, by coordinated efforts, news coverage of a presidential election.

                The last time we had such overt conspiratorial efforts in a presidential race, we ended up with 18 minutes of missing tape.

                1. Yeah JW, we haven’t had any coordinated efforts to manipulate news coverage of a Presidential candidate since Richard Nixon.

                  How naive can a human being be?

                  1. Proof talks. Bullshit walks.

                    Get some good shoes.

              3. “If by conspiracy you mean they hoped through coordinated efforts to change what people were talking about, well, sure it is. My point is that this obviously goes on all the time.”

                Pick one of Obama’s conservative critics, Ackerman wrote, “Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares ? and call them racists.

                Game. Set. Match.

              4. No we mean that they wanted to distract from real news coverage by coordinating a libel where they would pick someone at random and call them a racist.

                Just as you want to distract from this fact by repeating the same irrelevant nullities again and again.

                That is, when you aren’t lurking in the junior high bathroom stalls trying to molest your students.

    5. the Stephanopoulus thing actually gave me pause…then i remembered he was in the Clinton white house and who Obama was really running against.

      Also the listserv did not choose to call Stephanopoulus a racist…they called other people racists.

  23. I expect columnists to take sides. I’d be more worried about actual journalists doing so.

    1. Even columnists are discouraged (or prohibited, as the case may be)by legitimate news outlets from acting as a partisan in a professional capacity.
      Jesus. Do you really not know that?

      1. Yeah, Paul Krugman is not known for his partisanship…I could multiply that by a thousand you know.

        1. When Krugman is found to have been shilling in secret for the DNC, get back to me.

          1. How many threads have we had on H&R about Krugman’s obvious partisanship?

            1. MNG – Do you really not understand the difference between favoring one team and conspiring to manage news coverage in favor of one team?

              1. Everyone does it, so it’s OK. Or so I’m told.

          2. Yeah!

      2. Before MNG can parse his way clear of the weeds, let me add that this does not include guest columns by folks who are identified as professional partisans.

          1. Krugman is identified as a professional partisan?

            1. If he is not a professional partisan what the hell is he? He stopped being an economist at least ten years ago.

    2. Do you expect them to conclude on who they randomly and falsely plan to call a racist to distract the public from a story they don’t like? Because that is what is going on here.

  24. To think, that our masters are deceiving us, shocking.

  25. MNG, how many ‘legitimate’ newscritters are on email lists w/ the “lets spin this for Bush” crowd, with that list explicitly closed to Bush’s opponents?

    1. Are we talking columnists or reporters?

      Cuz I imagine quite a few conservative columnists are on listserves or emaillists.

      1. When you find them conspiring to manage news coverage, let me know, ok?

        1. What do you think is going on when they all pick up on the same meme on a weekly basis (and that meme is also usually the one the RNC is pushing)? John Stewart and Colbert show this kind of thing all the time (sometimes the exact same phrase is used by everyone). Al Franken used to have a segment on this called “Follow the Memo” that was hilarious.

          1. Group think vs. coordinated plan. Big difference.

            1. It’s pretty naive to think that stuff wasn’t coordinated.

              1. Maybe so. But here we have a smoking gun. And every (legitimate) editor I know would be kicking an ass from here to the Tidal Basin if one of his/her columnists was found to be doing this shit.

          2. Shorter MNG:

            I’ve got nothing and I’m sucking wind.

          3. meme =/= libel.

            Because that’s what Ackerman is perpetrating.

      2. As mentioned above the list is called drudge and it is done more or less in public.

        Also conservatives tend to be more independent.

        Britebart and Carlson are competitors (which my explain why this story is not on Drudge)

        Rush and Beck are competitors.

        The result is they have no unified message in terms of media.

  26. Reporters, MNG, reporters. JournoList was ‘reporters’ and columnists. How many “legitimate newspeople” are on email lists w/ conservative columnists, where liberals are explicitly excluded?

    1. How many of these people were reporters? All the names I read in the post were not.

      1. Legitimate columnists may have strong opinions. They may not work together in coordinated campaigns to manage the news.

        1. This obviously is always going on.

          Here’s a neat form of it. If you read, say, George Will, he will often open a column by mentioning recent research done by a right wing think tank on a topic of the day. You don’t think he is on an email list from that think tank and got the press release that way? And these think tanks coordinate the release of their stuff to friendly media folks to get the word out.

          I mean, you’re acting like a naif here.

          1. And I believe you are being deliberately obtuse. At least I hope it’s deliberate.

            1. ARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARF

              THROW THE STICK

              ARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARF

            2. He’s being acutely obtuse, at least from my angle.

          2. True, but then the fact that he is basing his column on the foundation established by the think tank is upfront and clear to the audience. Making those arrangements in secret feels underhanded and Big Lie-esque.

          3. Sorry bitch. George Will, Charles Krauthammer et al don’t sit around discussing how to silence coverage of Cong. Vitter’s hiring a hooker by picking some Democrat at random, say Dean or Kerry, and accusing them of being a pedophile.

            But you and the sorry shits you felch DO sit around proposing that to distract from stories exposing your rulers’ vices you should libel random people as racist.

            Which shows that (1) your side is morally the equivalent of sewage because they do this and (2) you are a moral retard in that you don’t even see the distinction between your behavior and that of writers on the right.

            Why are you even here you silly fart? You have nothing to offer. Flush yourself.

        2. That CN is the problem IMHO. As far as I can tell, there essentially is no “journalistic code of ethics” that actually could be enforced in a situation such as this. I don’t mean this in a mean way – but no group truely polices their own members.

  27. If you read, say, George Will

    Do you consider George Will an objective news source? Does he pose as an objective news source? Is he on an email list of conservative opinionmakers and ‘objective’ reporters, with liberals explicitly excluded?

    1. No he’s not, he’s a columnist with a definite slant. Of course he’s on an email list of conservative opinionmakers, I mean WTF? You think the man doesn’t communicate with other conservative thinkers? You think he doesn’t prefer particular candidates and more favorably covers them? You think he doesn’t talk about that with his conservative friends?

      WTF?

  28. Shorter MNG: Both conservative and liberal columnists exist, therefore “both sides do it”, for any value of ‘it’.

    1. If by “it” you mean prefer candidates and talk to like minded colleagues about that preference then yes I do think that POLITICAL COLUMNISTS probably do that all the time.

      Silly me.

      1. MNG, if this was JouroList was no big deal, why did Ezra Klien shut it down when the Weigel story broke?

      2. There were straight journalists who were on the list. Those journalists were urged to bury the story. And here is Chris Hayes, of The Nation,

        “Hayes urged his colleagues ? especially the straight news reporters who were charged with covering the campaign in a neutral way ? to bury the Wright scandal. “I’m not saying we should all rush en masse to defend Wright. If you don’t think he’s worthy of defense, don’t defend him! What I’m saying is that there is no earthly reason to use our various platforms to discuss what about Wright we find objectionable,” Hayes said.”

        Every straight journalist on that list ought to have to go back and explain how their actual coverage of Wright shows they didn’t follow this advice.

      3. “If by “it” you mean prefer candidates and talk to like minded colleagues about that preference then yes I do think that POLITICAL COLUMNISTS probably do that all the time.”

        No, cuntwad. The LIBEL thing.

  29. All I can say is that if someone at my outfit was caught pulling this, they’d probably be allowed to finish the day and pack up their own desk. And I don’t think my rag is an outlier.

    1. That CN is the problem IMHO. As far as
      I’ll just repeat what I said above:

      I can tell, there essentially is no “journalistic code of ethics” that actually could be enforced in a situation such as this. I don’t mean this in a mean way – but no group truely polices their own members.

      1. preview is my friend

        1. Society of Professional Journalists’ ethics code

          1. Journalists should:

            ?Avoid conflicts of interest, real or perceived.
            ? Remain free of associations and activities that may compromise integrity or damage credibility.
            ? Refuse gifts, favors, fees, free travel and special treatment, and shun secondary employment, political involvement, public office and service in community organizations if they compromise journalistic integrity.
            ? Disclose unavoidable conflicts.
            ? Be vigilant and courageous about holding those with power accountable.
            ? Deny favored treatment to advertisers and special interests and resist their pressure to influence news coverage.
            ? Be wary of sources offering information for favors or money; avoid bidding for news.

          2. Then I will wait with baited breath, now that the nefarious nature of “JournoList” and its seemingly rampant insider trading, for editors from across the country to pull in members of your profession into their office to ask if they were ever a member of this organization. And if so, if they will be “allowed to finish the day and pack up their own desk”

            Furthermore, I will wait to see the reportage on this attempt to smear individuals that didn’t tow the lion, pasted on all the front pages of the affected news organizations.

            1. I don’t think simply being a member of the list is enough. But those who were planning a coordinated “he’s a racist!” campaign should probably find another line of work. Won’t happen, of course.

              1. Either report on the list or leave the list. Silence is consent.

                1. At this point, you may be right.

                2. Somebody apparently agreed with you. Or with the idea of getting a hundred grand, either way.

            2. Are you now or have you ever been a member of the JournoList Party?

            3. Are you the same Ben Dover sock puppet who trolls FaceBook?

              McCarthy was actually right. Communist Party organizer did infiltrate Hollywood and blackmail stars into endorsing and funding communist party front groups. One cash cow target they milked the most were Hollywood lesbians, detailed in Diana McLellan’s “The Girls: Sappho Goes to Hollywood” http://www.amazon.com/Girls-Sa…..0312246471

              So now that these Journ-0-Lisps who cover up for a red diaper Prez have been outed maybe we should out the cabals in Hollywood functioning today.

    2. Interesting MNG doesn’t bother to respond to an actual journalist who says this is anything but typical in the industry and would not and should not be tolerated at most respectable publications.

      The MNG playbook

      1. Liberals never do anything wrong
      2. When liberals do anything wrong it is usually the obvious and rational response to something conservatives have done
      3. Whatever liberals do, conservatives are always guilty of something worse that mitigates and in fact makes the liberal behavior laudable.
      4. Hey look over there!!

      1. 4. Hey look over there!!

        Is the Mel Gibson thing an example of this?

        Or is it more like Weigel talking about hugs and trying to find out who those meddling kids are?

        Oh wait you said MNG playbook…thought you were talking about leftists in general.

  30. You think he doesn’t talk about that with his conservative friends?

    So you admit that the supposedly objective journalists on the list were really these peoples’ “liberal friends” and “like minded colleagues”?

    1. You’re trying to hold a moonbat to the same standard they hold others to, and that is not allowed.

      Shame on you.

      Bend over and take your punishment…

  31. Shorter MNG: “I’m forced to fall back to saying all news is as bad as Fox News, but I will continue to only slam Fox anyway”

  32. Society of Professional Journalists’ ethics code

    A quaint relic of bygone days.

    1. True dat. Except the parts about cultural sensitivity. That’s completely up to date.

  33. Hey MNG, do you judge the “objective nonpartisan journalists” who would accept invitations to this sort of exclusive list as harshly as you judge, say, Fox?

  34. One thing that was missed in this post. Breitbart has rescinded his 100K offer for the journolist e-mails. Apparently Daily Caller has all of them.

    Oh boy is this going to be fun.

    1. From his twitter feed.

      Whereby I formally rescind my $100k Journolist reward & wish Spencer Ackerman the very best in whatever profession he now chooses to enter.

      And from a few minutes earlier. . .

      Hey @ericboehlert & the mostly male Caucasian @mmfa ‘senior fellows’: Get some rest. Tomorrow’s gonna be long day & first of many in a row.

      This isn’t going to be the last round of e-mails.

      1. I’m sure an independent panel of British academics will clear the journolist participants of any wrongdoing.

        1. Goddammit, that’s some good stuff right there.

  35. The article also has this gem:

    Katha Pollitt ? Hayes’s colleague at the Nation ? didn’t disagree on principle, though she did sound weary of the propaganda. “I hear you. but I am really tired of defending the indefensible. The people who attacked Clinton on Monica were prissy and ridiculous, but let me tell you it was no fun, as a feminist and a woman, waving aside as politically irrelevant and part of the vast rightwing conspiracy Paula, Monica, Kathleen, Juanita,” Pollitt said.

    1. It is so hard being a hack for the cause. I am sure Katha has a golden heart. Most hookers do.

    2. Juanita?????

    3. “I am really tired of defending the indefensible”

      What a startling admission. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard someone admit to hackery so directly.

  36. Meh, big deal. I had the transcripts on these pimpled 7th grade choads months ago.

    As for Ackerman, love those intimidating uber-punk-rawk high-contrast stenciled ransom note fist graphics on his website. If JournoList was a boy band, I’m guessing Ackerman would be the sensitive bad boy.

    1. I may have to take a few minutes to night and register on FDL so I can comment on the tough guy’s site. See who he plans to call a racist today.

    2. And Iowahawk, you satire attributed them with way too much intelligence. The real stuff makes your parody seem intelligent and thoughtful by comparison.

      1. “After all, why vote for him if it turns out he’s not going change the way politics works?” – Kevin Drum

  37. Silly liberal fuckheads. Big O doesn’t need that kind of help. When the sheeple are unsettled, uncertain, or longing for hope and change – give a leg-tingling speech, or the quintessential goto: Bush done it! Surely the good reverend wouldn’t have been upset about Whitey if Bush and Cheney didn’t fly those planes into the towers.

  38. “George [Stephanopoulos],” fumed Richard Kim of the Nation, is “being a disgusting little rat snake.”

    WTF?!?!

    Weigel also had a thing for ratfuckers…

    What is up with the left wingers and rats?

    Are rats the natural enemy of Moonbats?

    1. Damn right they are you ratbagging teafucker.

      1. Woot!!

        I sort of got a troll.

  39. He looks like Morgan from “Chuck.” I feel bad for the guy from “Chuck.”

  40. Did MNG run away?

    1. Guess so. I guess is capacity for defending the indefensible has been reached.

      1. Probably waiting for his next email full of talking points from the new listserv.

      2. My guess is he will come back…when the climate gate stuff hit and they started being hit with quotes from the actual emails they was a noticeable lag in their responses…

        They need to go to Kos or wherever read up on their marching orders and then come back to tell us what they have been told to say.

        MNG should be commended though…he did try to wing it for awhile.

        Anyway i suspect there has been no official marching orders given…when it is expect the whole sick crew to show up.

  41. Excellent turn of affairs. Hopefully this turns a few more gullible people who believe in most journalists’ integrity to the morbid cynic side.

  42. I can’t wait for the next round of crying wolf racism.

  43. Good job of setting up this listserv, Ezra.

  44. I have not seen a single black person’s picture on the Journolist. Why is that? Don’t you like black people? What did they ever do to you? Maybe all you crackers should attend a diversity training class. Unlike you obvious liberal racists we at The Moron Nation do not care if a hobo is black or white. Just sayin’

    1. MSNBC does not hire people to be hosts, only contributors.

      They are afraid one of them might have a pang of conscience when Maddow, Olberman and Schultz do their weekly herding of stray black kids they sell off to a state lobotomy center for educrat union dollars.

      1. hire black people that is

  45. So you are saying that come the R3volution, we already have a list of 400 names for the Citizen’s Tribunals, and the these junior Leni Reifenstahls even signed away their Miranda rights and gave us the evidence to convict them? Good deal!

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.