In Defense Of Breitbart

Matt Welch joins the fray and takes some pot shots at the Atlantic. His larger point:

[P]artisan media criticism is not "rapidly replacing journalism," it's supplementing journalism, forcing journalism to be sharper, and frequently committing acts of journalism in its own right, despite not being motivated by the same allegedly pristine Mission guiding postwar American newspaper types. That fact is not difficult for most consumers to grasp, but it's proven maddeningly elusive for keepers of the old flame. Here's the scoop: Media critics are more motivated by politics than journalistic purity, and in their extra motivation they can and will occasionally steal the old guard's lunch. They–and more importantly, their work–should be held to the same standard that people apply to alt-journalism from all sources, not just those whose politics seem yucky.

I don't disagree. I haven't attacked BigGovernment; in fact the Dish gave it mad props for its ACORN scoop. I like Andrew Breitbart and championed Drudge when it was really unpopular. More power to them. I've said the same thing over the years about Reynolds and Malkin and did all I could to promote Instapundit in the early days. I think my record in holding the MSM to account is pretty strong. And I do think their liberal bias and institutional cowardice has hurt them. The Dish tries to take strong positions, but also air dissent and opposing views. I do not pretend to be neutral but I do try to be fair and accountable. That's very difficult, but we should all aim for it. I don't blame people for failing; I do blame them for not trying.