As It Finally Begins Covering Hillary’s Health, HuffPo Political Editor Tweets Trigger Warning to Readers
The Huffington Post faced a quandary yesterday.
Because of the “medical episode” Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton suffered yesterday, HuffPo Senior Politics Editor Sam Stein knew that far-left website, after months of avoidance, would have to break down and start treating her health and stamina as genuine news topics. But he also decided that he needed to tweet the equivalent of a trigger warning to the website’s large cadre of easily offended, reality-avoiding readers.
HuffPo has spent several months squelching posts about and limiting discussions of Mrs. Clinton’s health, seemingly ramping up its censorship in direct proportion to the level of attention it has been getting from Matt Drudge and others. Two weeks ago, HuffPo summarily fired a longtime columnist who dared to question her health.
Stein’s HuffPo bio says that “… he has worked for Newsweek magazine, the New York Daily News and the investigative journalism group Center for Public Integrity,” and “has a masters from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and is a graduate of Dartmouth College.”
Despite this supposedly impressive background, Stein has a long-running history of intense leftist bias and sloppiness going back at least eight years.
For sloppiness, it’s hard to beat his 2008 claim that GOP presidential nominee John McCain’s team failed to adequately vet Sarah Palin because his people didn’t come to Alaska and review the paper archives at her hometown’s newspaper. For heaven’s sake, Sam, they didn’t have to. There’s this thing called the Internet, which has websites. The website for Palin’s local paper, the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman, had “over 10 years of archived information available on Sarah Palin in hundreds of articles.”
For bias with the smear meter turned up to 11, it’s hard to beat Stein’s mid-June contention that GOP nominee Donald Trump “is this close, this close to talking about internment camps. This close to talking about internment camps.” No, Sam. It was Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and he did more than actually talk about them. He had them.
For all of his considerable faults, you would think, based on his background and experience, that Stein would at least be unapologetic about HuffPo doing its journalistic job and actually covering Mrs. Clinton’s health. You would be wrong, as seen in this Sunday morning tweet (HT Twitchy):
Stein calculated, probably correctly, that the mere mention of anything negative relating to Mrs. Clinton’s health would set many HuffPo readers off. But that doesn’t mean you have to indulge them and engage in craven preemptive capitulation by apologizing in advance for running a news story.
If Mrs. Clinton’s health problems continue, the website may have to come out with a safe-space version of itself for readers who can’t bear to be exposed to the truth.
The blowback at Stein’s tweet from sensible people has been fierce, and deserved:
- Why are you apologizing in advance for doing your job?
- “Please fellow Democrats, don’t hate me because I said something true about our Memaw!”
- Why are you sorry if it offends one of the campaigns, “journalist”?
- The fact that you even have to tweet this is SO telling.
- Is this what journalism has become? Apologizing for reporting facts? Sad.
But some offended delicate flowers have also weighed in:
- Because someone overwhelmed briefly by heat is more important than tax returns, political bribery payoffs, praising Putin, huh?
- Sorry but it’s not breaking news! Again, feeding Trumps talking points. A women got over heated….BFD!
- And there’s absolutely no discussion of a mentally ill 70 year old obese man that tears through fast food.
It’s reasonable to believe that Sam Stein’s definition of “responsible” as it relates to the issue of Mrs. Clinton’s health is: “We’ll report only what we feel we absolutely have to, and give it the most conceivably positive framing.”
An example of that “responsibility” appeared Sunday evening.
In “Hillary’s Pneumonia: The Media’s Lowest Moment,” the author lauds how “A 68-year-old woman with pneumonia still kept a schedule that most of us wouldn’t make it through” as “not weak … (but) actually tough as hell.” The author believes that “What this whole episode has proved is that people like Roger Stone and Steve Bannon have gotten into the media’s collective head.”
At this rate, HuffPo will be back in palace guard mode within hours.
Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.