The media types, along with Liberal university professors and activists, were members of a now defunct listserv called Journolist. They would post comments in what they considered a private, safe and confidential environment, secure in the knowledge (or so they thought) that their posts would never see daylight. They were wrong.
Some of the participants:
Richard Kim - The Nation
Spencer Ackerman - The Washington Independent
Michael Tomasky - The Guardian
Thomas Schaller -- Baltimore Sun columnist and college professor
Jonathan Stein - Mother Jones
Jared Bernstein - eventual top economist for VP Joe Biden
Holly Yeager - Columbia Journalism Review
Joe Conason - columnist
David Greenberg - Slate contributor
David Roberts - The Grist
Todd Gitlin - journalism professor, Columbia University
Okay, you get the idea. These were people with influence. Literally hundreds of Liberal journalists were members of this listserv. The particular episode I want to address was what these folks did during the brouhaha over Jeremiah Wright during the 2008 campaign. Here are some examples of their postings during that time (with some summary.)
- Chris Hayes of the Nation urged "those in the ostensible mainstream media” who were members of the list.to ignore Wright.
- Spencer Ackerman: "What is necessary is to raise the cost on the right of going after the left. In other words, find a rightwinger’s [sic] and smash it through a plate-glass window. Take a snapshot of the bleeding mess and send it out in a Christmas card to let the right know that it needs to live in a state of constant fear."
- Ackerman again: "...take one of them — Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists."
Some members of Journolist, disagreed with the tactic, saying that such a gutter fight would hurt the Obama brand. Ackerman's response: "I'm not saying Obama should do this. I'm saying WE should do this."
Makes you rethink all the media talk about Tea Party racism, doesn't it? (And yes, Andrew Breitbart really did offer $100,000 to anyone who could produce a video of Tea Partiers calling black congressmen racial epithets at the protest against the healthcare legislation in March. That money remains unclaimed.)
The Daily Caller also reveals how these same media conspired to ruin Sarah Palin's 2008 VP candidacy. Check it out.