Certified CNN Trump defiler, Carl Bernstein, the Watergate has-been has egg all over his face after a false story bearing his name was hocked as Breaking News by his employer CNN.
Since Bernstein is the go-to guy for analysis on the Trump/Russian narrative,it will be most interesting to hear how he — of Watergate fame — failed to abide by the most rudimentary principles of journalism. Before he helped break the Watergate story, Bernstein was schooled by Ben Bradlee, then editor of the Washington Post, to assiduously check sources before running with a story, particularly one that accuses the president of malfeasance or criminality.
Anyone who doubts that his was the prevailing state of affairs at the Post, should watch the movie, All the President’s Men.Dustin Hoffman plays Bernstein; Robert Redford plays Bob Woodward.
Alas, the standard Bernstein used in terms of checking a sources reliability, was cast aside for the Trump Tower story, which he and two other reporters who had a byline on the story, published. The source on which Bernstein and CNN relied was Lanny Davis, a well known dissembler and prevaricator from the Clinton scandal days. Why CNN and Bernstein would rely on this well known liar, demonstrates how Bernstein and other “journalists” have discarded all standards in order to drive Trump from office.
These new standards, or lack of standards, in the eyes of journalists still in shock over Hillary Clinton’s defeat are wholly justified because of the danger Trump poses to the Republic.
Here is how Jim Rutenberg of the New York Times justified departure from orthodox rules for reporting,
“If you’re a working journalist and you believe that Donald J. Trump is a demagogue playing to the nation’s worst racist and nationalistic tendencies, that he cozies up to anti-American dictators and that he would be dangerous with control of the United States nuclear codes, how the heck are you supposed to cover him?
Because if you believe all of those things, you have to throw out the textbook American journalism has been using for the better part of the past half-century, if not longer, and approach it in a way you’ve never approached anything in your career. If you view a Trump presidency as something that’s potentially dangerous, then your reporting is going to reflect that. You would move closer than you’ve ever been to being oppositional. That’s uncomfortable and uncharted territory for every mainstream, nonopinion journalist I’ve ever known, and by normal standards, untenable.
Taking his cue from Rutenberg,Bernstein called Trump’s Administration, a “malignant presidency.”
As it turns out, the only malignancy, is Bernstein’s reporting.