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LA Times, Wall Street Journal, SF Chronicle Don’t Participate in Organized Effort to Denounce Trump’s Press Attacks

LA Times, Wall Street Journal, SF Chronicle Don’t Participate in Organized Effort to Denounce Trump’s Press Attacks

SF Chronicle: “It plays into Trump’s narrative that the media are aligned against him.”

Newspapers across the country have joined forces to publish editorials that protest President Donald Trump’s attacks against the press and declaring the media the enemy of the people.

That group is missing three large publications: The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The San Francisco Chronicle.

When I heard about this protest, I thought to myself, “So you’re giving Trump and his followers more reasons to attack you. They say you’re actively working against his administration and this is your response?”

The Los Angeles Times editorial board made it known they support other publications to do this and reminded everyone that they have published editorials criticizing Trump’s comments.

However, they chose not to take part in the protest (emphasis mine):

We still believe that. Nevertheless, the editorial board decided not to write about the subject on this particular Thursday because we cherish our independence.

The Los Angeles Times editorial board does not speak for the New York Times or for the Boston Globe or the Chicago Tribune or the Denver Post. We share certain opinions with those newspapers; we disagree on other things. Even when we do agree with another editorial page — on the death penalty or climate change or war in Afghanistan, say — we reach our own decisions and positions after careful consultation and deliberation among ourselves, and then we write our own editorials. We would not want to leave the impression that we take our lead from others, or that we engage in groupthink.

The president himself already treats the media as a cabal — “enemies of the people,” he has called us, suggesting over and over that we’re in cahoots to do damage to the country. The idea of joining together to protest him seems almost to encourage that kind of conspiracy thinking by the president and his loyalists. Why give them ammunition to scream about “collusion”?

The Wall Street Journal decided not to join as well:

The First Amendment does not say that the government cannot criticize the press. Mr. Trump enjoys free speech just as his media adversaries do. Rather, the First Amendment prevents government from infringing on the rights of Americans to speak and publish. And on that score, there’s a reasonable case that Mr. Trump’s predecessor presented a greater threat to press freedom, to say nothing of Mr. Trump’s 2016 opponent. Mrs. Clinton wanted to restrict the ability of Americans to make a documentary about her. We don’t recall editorial boards joining together to announce they were not with her.

As for the Globe’s current campaign, Journal editorial page Editor Paul Gigot says that this newspaper will not be participating.

The San Francisco Chronicle chose not to participate:

One of our most essential values is independence. The Globe’s argument is that having a united front on the issue — with voices from Boise to Boston taking a stand for the First Amendment, each in a newspaper’s own words — makes a powerful statement. However, I would counter that answering a call to join the crowd, no matter how worthy the cause, is not the same as an institution deciding on its own to raise a matter.

Our decision might have been different had we not weighed in so often on Trump’s myriad moves to undermine journalism: from calling us “enemies of the American people” to invoking the term “fake news” against real news to denying access to reporters who dare do their jobs to slapping tariffs on newsprint to requesting the prosecution of reporters who reveal classified information to threatening punitive actions against the business interest of owners of CNN and the Washington Post.

Just like the LA Times, the SF Chronicle worries that this campaign “plays into Trump’s narrative that the media are aligned against him.”

I hate hearing the president call the press the enemy of the people. But as Elizabeth Nolan Brown at Reason points out, “whipping up contempt toward the press has been a staple of right-wing talking points in this country for at least two decades. The president’s preening anti-media tirades are not so much stirring new hatred within his base as stoking a longstanding sentiment.”

Brown also notes that “the good folks in Congress, state government, and federal agencies are doing things all the time that actually infringe on freedom of the press, freedom of speech, and an open internet, while the vast majority of news outlets remain silent at best.”

I’d like to add that the media chooses to chase tabloid stories or stretch the truth. Instead of reporting on issues that actually affect our daily lives, they choose to operate like soap operas. All this week it’s been nothing but Omarosa! I know policy isn’t sexy, but come on.

Plus, the media has a wide array of issues to legitimately nitpick at when it comes to Trump’s administration. They don’t need to make things up or cause drama over some tweets.

For instance, it’s sexier and more Hollywood-like to dig deep into Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s personal life than dig through his past rulings and bring up his views on the 4th amendment. But I guess that’s a big deal, even though interpreting the Constitution will literally be his job on the Supreme Court. Nope! It’s more important to find out who went with him to baseball games.

Then there’s Jeff Sessions. I cannot stand the man and have many reasons to dislike him so I don’t have to make things up. The media does! In July, the media claimed Sessions chanted “lock her up” with college kids at a youth summit. He did not do this. If you don’t want to be called fake news then don’t spread fake news!

How about good old Jim Acosta? He plasters himself all over the place, acting like he’s challenging Trump’s narrative when he’s really only making the story about himself. Instead, he should counter Trump’s narrative by pushing out real news like his colleague Jake Tapper or Salena Zito. Now if Acosta acted this way with every administration his actions wouldn’t bother me.

That’s the other thing and the WSJ‘s editorial touched on it. If the press acted up in arms about press threats during Obama’s administration or aggressively went after his policies and officials like they do with Trump, it wouldn’t bother me so much.


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Morning Sunshine | August 16, 2018 at 3:34 pm

hm… there are some thinkers in the media. Whudathoughtit?

“I hate hearing the president call the press the enemy of the people. ”

Good, but this is a reminder that you did not hear that. The Presidents identified FAKE NEWS, not the press, as an enemy of the people, and the Democrat-controlled press very deliberately conflated the two.

So did my local paper, the San Diego Union-Tribune, in its editorial, today. The U-T pointed out that it has high journalistic standards, and good quality reporting, citing its coverage of local stories. It then went on to expend several paragraphs on Richard Nixon, and wound up talking about how dangerous it is for a US President to attack the press.

They never once acknowledged the difference in ethical standards governing themselves and the vendors of their national news stories. The local news stories, for example, do not carry unsourced speculation, or anonymous accusations of wrongdoing.

WSJ‘s was written by an adult. The other two, obviously written by children, and rather unpromising children at that. The LAT admits that it doesn’t want to be caught with its hands in the cookie jar, even though that’s where they’ve been for decades, and the Chronicle is in classic denial, simply chanting that its fake news is real, damnit, no matter what everybody can see.

I don’t know Elizabeth Nolan Brown at Reason but she sounds rather mentally defective, too. Phraseology such as “the president’s preening anti-media tirades” is a fancy way to say that the writer doesn’t understand a word Trump says . . . but assumes it must be bad. Hell, we can get that sort of unperceptive ignorance from the LAT and the Chronicle, we don’t need Reason at all.

    guyjones in reply to tom_swift. | August 16, 2018 at 4:07 pm

    I’ll have to check out the essay you refer to. I check in with Reason, daily, as there still seems to be some worthy libertarian content, over there, from Nick Gillespie and others.

    MarkSmith in reply to tom_swift. | August 16, 2018 at 7:25 pm

    I don’t know about you, but the WSJ is just as bad, just not in this case. I have been reading them for the past 30 years and they are at their worst. I am about ready to dump them. My wife can’t stand reading them anymore.

    As for GPS Fusion and Perkin Coie, WSJ is in it thick. There was an interview with a guy on this streaming station I have been listening to called WMAL out of DC. Chris Plante is on in the morning and he interviewed a guy that talked about how the WSJ and GPS Fusion shut him in on some drug cartel in was covering in South America.

    Don’t be deceived by WSJ. Shoot all the Carl Rove Opinions is enough to make you barf.

    There is something brewing about an investigated reporter possible getting killed on Thomas Paine. Sounds like a Seth Rich thing, another person getting wacked because they knew too much about Clinton. Fasten your seat belts, I think the roller coaster is about to leave. Next two weeks are going to be fun.

      tom_swift in reply to MarkSmith. | August 16, 2018 at 9:05 pm

      I never said the WSJ piece was good; I never said it was even competent. I said it was written by a person with adult mental processes, flawed or even despicable though they may be . . . and the other two were not.

      Once one realizes that much of the mental landscape of the modern Left is a product of behavioral or conceptual immaturity, some puzzling things about the modern world become clear. When I say they’re a bunch of 12-year-olds, it’s a diagnosis, not just a casual putdown.

      inspectorudy in reply to MarkSmith. | August 17, 2018 at 1:03 pm

      I get the WSJ every morning and find that just like going to a library you have to look through the stacks to find a good read. Obviously, you have to skip the entire front section except on business matters. They usually have an entire page on anti-Trump crap that isn’t worth reading. Then the editorial section and other smaller sections are mostly free of anti-Trump bias. They are known for being anti-trade war and pro unlimited immigration of any kind but I overlook those articles. My local choice is the AJC which is a white publication but all of their articles are about black victims and what a racist Trump is. I know the WSJ has its limitations but they are so much better than any paper that has the AP byline anywhere in it. I lived in Annapolis MD and used to read the WaPo but it is so slanted now that it is like the NYT and basically unreadable.

I don’t consider condemnation of FAKE NEWS to be an attack on the press.

A decent number of people have seen with their own eyes, and heard with their own ears, what the President says or tweets or does, then they see what the press does with that. Is that integrity to spin every story into a hit piece against Trump?

Sanders should have turned the Acosta rant, which it always is with his “questions”, a 30-40 second editorial followed by a question, then more chatter from him cutting off the answers, anyway, I digress… Sanders should have turned the Enemy of the People back on him and asked him if he felt that the media and the press turning and twisting his words into things they are not is the actions of friends, the actions of allies or the actions of enemies. Acosta wouldn’t truthfully be able to answer that.

The media has little trust outside the sycophants, who are so filled with this hatred they pretend is love, and the distortions they present fall right in line with their hatreds.

Is it “real news” when every thing the media “reports” is an excuse to editorialize and spread the propaganda of the DNC? The media has long been a propaganda wing of the leftists, and it has gotten to a point where it hard to tell which are actually looking to rule. When you see news reports that use almost identical language, including key buzz words which you also hear from the left elites, how is that not more like Pravda than real news? When the reporters, oh, excuse me, journalists, believe their job is to form opinions and viewpoints rather than report the news, then you don’t have an organization that is for the people.

The media isn’t for the people, it does it’s best work to cover up positive stories when it pertains to republican Presidents and Congress members, while covering up and explaining the negative things their side believes or should know.

They print lies, then if it ever gets corrected, those corrections don’t even make much sense because of the strange way they make their notations on most of those corrections, sometimes not even mentioning the report, but siting page numbers and articles.

So, in a sense, the media, the press, is an enemy of the people because they are dishonest in the whole goal of their methods of reporting.

I expect to see trust in the media continue it’s slide.

    inspectorudy in reply to oldgoat36. | August 17, 2018 at 1:07 pm

    I think Sanders is the best POTUS mouthpiece in many years but she allows jerks like Acosta to bully her over and over again. In a normal crowd, someone would step forward and defend her but this is the WH press corps after all. I do wish she would man up a little and shut him down with a warning that any more insulting rants will lead to his removal. Also, just take ONE, SINGLE, 1, question from them. Not a “Follow up” that goes on for three minutes!

They can dish it out but they can’t take it.

“I hate hearing the president call the press the enemy of the people.”

Q: When has President Trump ever said, “The Press are the enemy of the people”…..?

A: Never. President Trump has never ever even once uttered those words.

President Trump has however said, “Fake News is the enemy of the people”. Also, “The fake news press is the enemy of the people.” And, he is absolutely correct. We do not have lying eyes and lying ears. At least, I sure as heck do not.

There is a definitive distinction, and it is absolutely a very important distinction. Tremendously colossal definitive distinction even, and I really hope that these so-called “Political Pundits” start getting it right real soon or I am going to end up firmly believing that they’re just more useful idiots and tools in service to the deep state swamp like all the others if they do not.


notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | August 16, 2018 at 4:45 pm

So True.

NYT has been a state department tool for at least a century now and the Amazon Washington Post is a CIA tool.

So now the CIA owns Amazon. Think about that.

“Newspapers across the country have joined forces to publish editorials that protest President Donald Trump’s attacks against the press…”

Gee. Original thought so independent it’s all coordinated to burp up the same thing. Are we sure ‘media’ are plural?

Mary wisdom: “They say you’re actively working against his administration and this is your response?”

Well, they are professional democrat operatives with bylines, afterall.

The WSJ’s comment is the winner, but the S.F. Chronicle and L.A. Times’ declarations of independence is at least a start.

Then again, it’s one loud bellow of defiance plus two declarations of independence (both of which seem more concerned about the appearance of bias than about actual bias) against hundreds? of lock-step conformist indignation.

The Chronicle is owned by Hearst, which apparently is willing to tolerate at least some luke-warm non-conformity. Would Gannett permit dissent from this conformity (or are those who work for it too scared to find out)?

JusticeDelivered | August 16, 2018 at 5:22 pm

The press has been in decline for decades, in large part over advertising revenue dropping like a rock. There was a time when there was a firewall between the business side and the news side. That no longer exists, and with its loss comes a big loss in credibility.
Much of media today acts like a tabloid, complete with exaggeration, selective facts and outright lies.

The Fourth Estate is not so monolithic or they have a few discerning journalists. Good for them. The collusion of journolists is still fresh in people’s minds.

PDT’s troll level on this was Master Of All 77 Universes.

They created a Journolist so they could throw Obama an eight year long lipstick party and now this. And they wonder why they’re despised?

“I hate hearing the president call the press the enemy of the people.”

Did you hear the president call the press the enemy of the people, or did you hear/read other people saying that the president called the press the enemy of the people?

It’s possible he did say this. He tends to be careless with his words. It’s also possible that this is just more fake news.

I suggest you research this and determine whether or not you should retract this statement.

DouglasJBender | August 17, 2018 at 8:29 am

I hate it when President Trump calls the enemy of the people the enemy of the people.

The idea of joining together to protest him seems almost to encourage that kind of conspiracy thinking by the president and his loyalists. Why give them ammunition to scream about “collusion”?

We’re not screaming about collusion. We’re laughing at you for your denials of it.