Sunday, May 13, 2018

The media outrage over Michelle Wolf's speech only proved her right

It's an annual gathering of the nation's most elite political reporters, attended by elite national political figures, business leaders, and celebrities, and they like to call it "nerd prom.” Self-awareness is not their strong suit.

White House correspondents are by nature sycophants. It's how they got there. They have no shame. And more than anything else, what freaks them out is the possibility that they really aren't actually good at what they do, that they not only aren't necessary but they are easily replaceable, and that access journalism is the lowest common denominator, a career path that was open to them not because no one else could do it but because so few actual journalists would want to degrade themselves to that level. There are, of course, exceptions, but this is about the rule. And woe to anyone who would dare transgress the rule.

The reporters and pundits who feigned outrage over Michelle Wolf's evisceration of the eminently evisceratable Sarah Huckabee Sanders don't actually care about her or about some farcical standard of comity, but they do care about themselves. They care about preserving the access without which they might be confronted with the bleak reality that they never learned how to be journalists, but even more they desperately care about their delusions of significance. They cling to it with raw and bloodied fingernails, as if shipwreck survivors on the cliffs of a ragged stone promontory in a perpetually shrieking tempest. It wasn't about Sanders, it was about them. It wasn't about eye shadow, it was this:
You guys are obsessed with Trump. Did you used to date him? Because you pretend like you hate him, but I think you love him. I think what no one in this room wants to admit is that Trump has helped all of you. He couldn’t sell steaks or vodka or water or college or ties or Eric, but he has helped you. He’s helped you sell your papers and your books and your TV. You helped create this monster, and now you’re profiting off of him. If you’re going to profit off of Trump, you should at least give him some money, because he doesn’t have any.
The media created Trump. Many independent and mutually exclusive factors put Trump in the Oval Office, but the media were one of the largest. And they point fingers at everyone and everything except themselves. And they don't want to hear it. And their supposed outrage at Wolf’s evisceration of Sanders only proved Wolf right about them.

Sanders, after all, said all the women who have accused Trump of sexual assault "are lying." Where was the media outrage about that? Sanders has defended Trump's sick racist attacks on Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Where is the media outrage about that?  Sanders repeatedly berates or derides White House correspondents themselves. Where is the media outrage over that? Sanders simply lies for a living.

To them. Where is the media outrage over that? Meanwhile, her boss is openly undermining the media's very role as potential public servant, thus undermining the existence of democracy itself. And where is the media outrage about that?

Where is the outrage over Trump's bigotry and misogyny and other abominations and depredations that now are so taken for granted that the media barely notice them?

And the outrage and criticism of Wolf didn't come just from already established hypocritical morons, it came from the president of the White House Correspondents' Association, who so embarrassed herself that journalists around the country criticized or derided her.

People wonder how a disaster like Trump could befall this nation, and whether the republic will survive as a republic. Well, the reaction to Michelle Wolf’s speech provided an answer to the former and leaves open the answer to the latter. It is yet to be seen whether the Constitution, conscientious public servants, and the American people themselves are capable of defending the republic at such a moment of crisis, but we do know who aren’t. And every single critic of Wolf’s speech can be counted among them.

No comments: