Earlier I wrote about Buzzfeed’s “if true” bombshell report that Trump directed Michael Cohen to lie to Congress, and cautioned:

We have been here sooooooo many times before.

A media outlet publishes an article based on anonymous sources providing information that is so vague it cannot be proven or disproven, but which purports to (1) implicate Trump in a crime, (2) show collusion with the Russians, and/or (3) raise enough suspicions to justify a 3-5 day news cycle.

So many of these reports are dropped before a weekend, guaranteeing they will dominate the news cycle for days.

And in each and every instance the report is blown out of the water or substantially rewritten, other news outlets could not verify, or other news outlets themselves call the report into doubt. Even when there is a kernel of fact underlying the report, the spin is usually the key to why people click on it. This is all fed by the news media “Scoop” culture.

The typical reaction from people who are not part of #TheResistance, whether Trump supporters or not, is the preface “if true.”

I’ve seen a number of people say they follow a 24-hour rule on these bombshell reports. I think that’s too kind. It’s better to wait 48-72 hours, at a minimum, since so many of these bombshells take days, not hours, to reveal themselves to be duds.

The Buzzfeed story led to foaming-at-the-mouth Democrat congressional demands for an impeachment investigation.

But the Buzzfeed story barely made it to the 24 hour mark.

In an unusual move, Robert Mueller’s office issued a statement disputing the Buzzfeed story.

The following “Update” has been posted to the Buzzfeed story:

A spokesperson for special counsel Robert Mueller’s office, Peter Carr, disputed aspects of BuzzFeed News’ report.

“BuzzFeed’s description of specific statements to the Special Counsel’s Office, and characterization of documents and testimony obtained by this office, regarding Michael Cohen’s Congressional testimony are not accurate,” Carr said.


Ronan Farrow passed on the story:

I can’t speak to Buzzfeed’s sourcing, but, for what it’s worth, I declined to run with parts of the narrative they conveyed based on a source central to the story repeatedly disputing the idea that Trump directly issued orders of that kind.

Buzzfeed is standing by its story, and wants Mueller to be more specific. (That’s not how it works.)

In response to the statement tonight from the Special Counsel’s spokesman: We stand by our reporting and the sources who informed it, and we urge the Special Counsel to make clear what he’s disputing.

Rudy is spiking the football and doing an end zone dance:

I commend Bob Mueller’s office for correcting the BuzzFeed false story that Pres. Trump encouraged Cohen to lie. I ask the press to take heed that their hysterical desire to destroy this President has gone too far. They pursued this without critical analysis all day. #FAKENEWS



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