Saturday, April 20, 2019

Report in haste, corrections on page 12

Federalist: "7 Ways The Mueller Report Exposed The Media’s ‘Bombshell’ Fake News Stories" - "When Special Counsel Robert Mueller released his 448-page report on Russian interference in the 2016 election, some of the conclusions debunked many misleading, and anonymously sourced, conspiracy theories."


Anonymous said...

Columbia Journalism Review:
Until Mueller, the battle between Trump and the press had been a frustrating standoff: media outlets reported damning things about the administration, Trump and his lackeys claimed they were wrong or exaggerated or fake, prompting reporters, or sometimes their editors, to firmly stand by their stories. Things got muddled, neither side emerged clean.

The Mueller report, among many other things, exposed those Trump lies as what they were, which were cynical attempts to discredit bad news even though it was true. Time and again, the report cited reporting by the Times, Post, CNN, and others, and provided outside, third-party proof that the media was right and Trump was wrong. It wasn’t nearly as muddy as Trump would have had us believe.

It was he said, we said. Now, Mueller has spoken, and he lost.

Chicago Tribune:
Fake news? No, Mueller report shows journalists mostly got it right on Trump, Russia

Poynter Institute for Media Studies:
Mueller proves ‘fake news’ to be true

Detroit News:
Mueller confirms news Trump dismissed as fake

Eric said...

Are you the same guy who insisted that McClatchy has an excellent record and therefore Michael Cohen *must* have been in Prague?

I don't have a lot of commenters.

Robert Fisk said...

Yes, indeed.

Recent history lesson:
If I had done something criminal and/or clandestine, but only one news organization was reporting on it, I would very much want that news organization NOT to be McClatchy.

Still, he's breathing a sigh of relief that you asked him about McClatchy and not BuzzFeed


A big sigh.

Anonymous said...

Not quite. I'm the same guy who insisted that McClatchy has an excellent record for breaking stories, and that it conspicuously reaffirmed their disputed reporting on this one. No *must*s from me, sorry. I don't work there.

In the event that McClatchy's reporting is 112% incorrect, their error wouldn't alter the predominant accuracy of the media's coverage, which is borne out in page after page of the Mueller report. Nor would it make the contents of the Mueller report any less damning for Trump.

Unlike our president who suborned perjury yet screams about everyone else being "fake" and "conflicted," McClatchy remains forthright about its story and standards, even if their sourcing ends up being unreliable. As part of that forthrightness, it has attached an Editor's Note preface to all of its previous Cohen/Prague articles. It also published a story on Thursday that's entirely about Cohen's testimony to Mueller as recounted in the report, and how it contradicts McClatchy's own news coverage. That article concludes:

McClatchy’s Dec. 2018 reporting was based on information from five individuals with foreign intelligence connections, who all requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the information shared and concerns about sources and methods. Each obtained their information independently from each other. McClatchy stands by the reporting.

Because parts of the Mueller report were redacted to protect secret grand jury testimony and information coming from intelligence gathering and counter-intelligence operations, it is difficult to independently gauge what Mueller knew about the Prague allegations or how he reached his conclusions.

As you know but presumably won't yet admit, jumping to conclusions about Donald Trump's exoneration was both a factual and a tactical mistake.

With all that's behind those blacked-out pages, why the burning urge to jump a second time? McClatchy claims five separate sources for their Prague story; Trump claims the media invents its sources out of thin air. Who do you imagine has more credence?

McClatchy's introductory notation that now leads all of its past coverage reads:
EDITOR’S NOTE: Robert Mueller’s report to the attorney general states that Mr. Cohen was not in Prague. It is silent on whether the investigation received evidence that Mr. Cohen’s phone pinged in or near Prague, as McClatchy reported.

Anonymous said...

This article also addresses the McClatchy/Mueller/Cohen/Prague standoff:

The Associated Press:
Fake news? Mueller isn’t buying it

President Donald Trump and his team love to deride unfavorable stories as “fake news,” but it’s clear from Robert Mueller’s report that the special counsel isn’t buying it.

While there are a few exceptions, Mueller’s investigation repeatedly supports news reporting that was done on the Russia probe over the last two years and details several instances where the president and his team sought to mislead the public.
. . . . . .
Fox News Channel’s Laura Ingraham [had a] message to the news media: “You owe us an apology.”

But the news stories were, for the great part, accurate.

Eric said...

Yeah, I got it. Time's Person of the Year is doing a stand-up job.

Also: McClatchy never meant to imply that Cohen was in Prague. Just his phone. Gosh.

Robert Fisk said...

Yeah, I got it. Time's Person of the Year is doing a stand-up job.

His endless repetition on the same theme isn't for convincing you; it's for reassuring himself.

Roger Bournival said...

The first rule of holes - stop digging. This 'anon' commenter goes out and rents a fucking backhoe...

Anonymous said...

Beats using a fucking backhoe to dig for one or two magical cherries that are supposed to invalidate everything else. Ignore the Mueller Report because PRAGUE!

And you don't even trust Trump over the "liberal media." It's just a ploy to allow you to argue on behalf of the indefensible, and make you feel less icky about the Vichy compromises you've chosen to make.

Since you're not fooling me, and you're not even fooling yourselves, why bother?