The Washington Post has done it again. This time they’ve published an anonymously sourced story claiming Mr. Trump somehow gave away the intelligence store in a meeting with the Russians. In short order, every person in the room for that meeting—and there were few—has clearly stated the Wapo’s story is false, including the Russians, yet the Media, including Fox News, continue to treat it as though it were true.
This raises interesting issues. When every person involved in the story specifically and clearly states it is false, does that end it? Does that force the Wapo to admit they got it wrong and issue a retraction and apology? Or are Americans to believe the Media over the President and multiple high-level officials? More on this later, but first, an interesting article from Legal Insurrection on the trustworthiness of the Media:
On his Fox News show last night, Tucker Carlson ripped Mika Brzezinski for quoting, on yesterday’s Morning Joe, unflattering things that Kellyanne Conway allegedly said about Donald Trump in private, off-the-air conversations.
Tucker cited Mika as an example of journalists who have ‘degraded and humiliated themselves’ out of their anti-Trump ‘hysteria.’ Tucker: ‘TV anchors almost never reveal what their guests have said off-camera, and for good reason. People come to TV studios so they can speak on TV. They do not come with the expectation that their private conversations will wind up broadcast to the country.’
Tucker’s broader point was that the normal rules of journalism have been suspended: ‘because with Trump, all bets are off. Many journalists believe it’s literally impossible to be unfair to Donald Trump or the people who work for him. Extremism in the pursuit of Trump is no vice. That’s the view in newsrooms.
Every week, week after week, particularly since Mr. Trump’s inauguration, Americans have been deluged with “news” stories that are not only grotesquely biased and unprofessional, but usually, false in part or whole. The Media have become the vanguard of “the resistance,” and all is fair in love and war. Any rational American understand the media simply can no longer be trusted, and even the most innocuous seeming assertion must be carefully vetted. Carlson continues:
In more than 20 years of working in TV, I have never seen that happen. And trust me, I’ve heard a lot of weird things on and off the air. Television networks don’t have hidden cameras in their bathrooms for the same reason. Even in media, there is a zone of privacy, those are the rules, or they were the rules. That was before NBC videotaped Donald Trump without his knowledge and then leaked that tape 11 years later to the Washington Post in an effort to destroy his presidential campaign.
The Wapo has worked hard not only to deny Mr. Trump the presidency, but to wrench it from him after his election. The Wapo is not alone in that determination. But why would the Media, which is supposed to pride itself on accuracy, on factual, supportable reporting, do such a thing? The simplest answer is they are progressives, progressive operatives with bylines, with all that entails. But this time it’s not merely political, it’s personal.
Mr. Trump has delighted in humiliating the media, which has been easy indeed. His technique has consisted of merely telling the truth about them, which has infuriated them beyond sanity. In essence, they continuously humiliate themselves. The Media were wrong, virtually to a man and woman, about the election, about everything relating to it, and Mr. Trump rubbed their noses in their own unprofessional, unethical bias, hatred for Americans and America, and their own arrogance and stupidity. They know Americans are laughing at them, and worse, ignoring them, which makes them hate the deplorables all the more. How dare they ridicule and ignore their betters! And of course, Mr. Trump has interrupted the inevitable march of progressive history. Worst of all, he doesn’t much care what they think!
As to the Wapo story that has caused the recent uproar, we turn again to Legal Insurrection:
The Washington Post ran a story late this afternoon [05-15-17] claiming Donald Trump, in his meeting with Russian Foreign Minister and Ambassador, disclosed highly classified information, including information that could reveal sources and methods. [skip]
‘Trump went on to discuss aspects of the threat that the United States learned only through the espionage capabilities of a key partner. He did not reveal the specific intelligence-gathering method, but he described how the Islamic State was pursuing elements of a specific plot and how much harm such an attack could cause under varying circumstances. Most alarmingly, officials said, Trump revealed the city in the Islamic State’s territory where the U.S. intelligence partner detected the threat.
Fact: the President of the United States, if he chooses, may declassify pretty much anything.
It’s important that the story, as written, does not say Trump exposed any sources. It says revealing the name of the city where the information was discovered could lead the Russians to figure out the source. There’s no way of assessing that, but it’s a matter of opinion not fact.
The story set the internet on fire, with the WaPo newsroom cheering as the incoming traffic numbers showed levels higher than even the Trump Access Hollywood tape story:
The reaction from #NeverTrump ‘conservatives’ was among the most disgusting I’ve ever seen — there was absolute joy to the point of giddiness that Trump was going down.
There were a few voices, including me, urging caution, since almost every mainstream media anonymously sourced report on the Comey firing was wrong. Two excellent sources on that are What a breathless media got wrong about Trump, Comey and Russia this week and 8 FACTS Contradict The MSM’s Serial-Comey Lies.
This is not the first time the Wapo showed such blatant political bias. The American Mirror reports:
It’s not the first time the mask slipped and reporters applauded in the newsroom.
On Tuesday morning, Matt Drudge tweeted a link to a Politico story from 2009 which contained a pool report about President-Elect Barack Obama’s visit to the newsroom.
After three and a half hours at his transition office, PEOTUS obama took another 6 minute ride through washington, arriving at 157 pm at the nondescript soviet-style building at 15th and L street that houses the washington post.
Around 100 people–Post reporters perhaps?–awaited PEOTUS’s arrival, cheering and bobbing their coffee cups.
As I’ve previously mentioned, everyone in the room for the meeting in question has repudiated the Wapo story:
Deputy National Security Advisor Dina Powell issued a statement as follows:
‘This story is false. The president only discussed the common threats that both countries faced.’
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson issued this statement:
‘During President Trump’s meeting with Foreign Minister Lavrov, a broad range of subjects were discussed among which were common efforts and threats regarding counter-terrorism. During that exchange the nature of specific threats were discussed, but they did not discuss sources, methods or military operations.
General H.R. McMaster’s statement was even more emphatic, and to my way of thinking, entirely credible (so were the statements of Powell and Tillerson):
A brief statement for the record. There is nothing that the president takes more seriously than the security of the American people. The story that came out tonight as reported is false. The president of the foreign minister reviewed a range of common threats to our two countries, including threats to civil aviation. At no time, at no time, where intelligence sources or methods discussed. The president did not disclose any military operations that were not already publicly known. Two other senior officials who were present, including the secretary of the state, remember the meeting the same way and have said so. Going on the record should outweigh the anonymous sources. I was in the room. It didn’t happen.
Again, following McMaster’s statement, even the Russians have exposed the Wapo story as false. In fact, even Russian President Vladimir Putin has confirmed Mr. Trump did not expose any secrets, and has volunteered his Ambassador’s and Foreign Minister’s notes about the meeting.
It is now up to Americans to decide. Do they believe an anonymously sourced story, particularly one in which several of the supposed sources are almost certainly moles–Obama loyalists still lurking in government service–published by a newspaper with an unbroken record of doing whatever it can—“extremism in the pursuit of Trump is no vice”–to damage Donald Trump? Are we to believe these anonymous sources were so concerned about Mr. Trump’s supposed revelation of classified information they immediately gave the same information to reporters from the Washington Post? Is it possible the Wapo is willing to believe anything derogatory about Donald Trump? Does the Wapo universally practice the “too good to check” doctrine where Mr. Trump is concerned? Is this just another lame attempt to bolster the false and failing Russian collusion narrative? Or are there no anonymous sources other than the reporter’s active imaginations? Some pundits have even suggested Mr. Trump leaked the information about the meeting, ostensibly to refocus the media away from the Russian collusion story, or the Comey firing story, or… you get the picture, gentle readers.
Or are the clear statements by everyone actually present in the room—“I was in the room—it didn’t happen”—more credible?
The delusion of the media, even media outlets that tend to be more honest, such as Fox News, is telling. I watched Fox’s coverage of the McMaster statement, and after his flat denial, the panel still proceeded as though the story were true. They assume the Wapo would never lie about such a story. The new standard seems to be whatever the media claims must be the truth, and there is nothing Mr. Trump or his people can do to debunk it. In a “media said/Trump said” argument, the Media must always be given the benefit of the doubt, even though, for decades, they’ve demonstrated their manifest unfitness to receive it. With Mr. Putin’s support of Mr. Trump, Americans are given the choice of believing the Russians or the Washington Post/Democrats/Washington Elite.
Given that choice, I’ll take the Russians any day.
Herein we find yet another convincing argument for the public’s disgust for the Media. Americans understand this report is likely just another attempt to make it impossible for Mr. Trump to govern, which is an ongoing, and not at all hidden project of the Left. Mr. Trump’s executive orders will be fought in court, attorneys for the states will make berserk arguments such as claiming if Hillary made the same order, if would be constitutional, but not Trump, because Trump. Everything Mr. Trump does will be breathlessly claimed a crime, or at least evidence of incompetence, or of Mr. Trump’s nastiness or his general poopy-facedness.
Americans are much smarter than the Media understands or can ever admit, and the media shills are far less intelligent and perceptive than they imagine. Absent convincing, actual, on the record evidence to the contrary, the only reasonable conclusion is the Wapo’s story is false, and maliciously so, just another feeble attempt to vindicate the media’s squandered credibility and spit in the face of deplorables.
Pre-posting Update: Former FBI Director Robert Mueller has been appointed as special counsel to investigate the Russia/collusion allegations. Once again, Donald Trump surprises Democrats and catches them off-balance. More as it develops.