When New Yorker staff writer Ryan Lizza went on Hugh Hewitt's radio show to discuss his recent profile of Congressman Darrell Issa, he got the classic faux-polite Hewitt treatment. Introduced by the Republican activist as "one of the premiere political reporters of the United States working at this time," Lizza was peppered with compliments: "You do a good job for a reader who doesn’t know anything about him," he says at one point.
So it was interesting to see how Hewitt referenced the interview on his blog. The New Yorker article "shouldn't be missed," he tells his readers:
It demonstrates, however, that the GOP needs much better thinking on how and when to engage the Manhattan-Beltway media elite. The New Yorker is a unique platform with which to engage with that elite, but the profile doesn't advance Issa's agenda and does some damage to his ability to make a strong start ... The timing would have been much better if Issa had already conducted some effective oversight, but what is done is done and now the question is will the Chairman begin to use all available media to push an agenda of reform.
The Beltway GOP has always felt the need to seek the approval of the MSM, and there appears to be no way to cure that impulse even when the media revolution is so far advanced and its results so obvious.
So a journalist argues that Issa shoud not have cooperated with Lizza because "the profile doesn't advance Issa's agenda and does some damage to his ability to make a strong start." So the fair respectful interview is inherently disingenuous.
Obviously you're always going to have political operatives whose job is to advance Team Red's agenda, the truth be damned. But think about Hewitt's job. He is a law professor and a broadcaster. Is it really healthy for the right's broadcasters to lament instances when the public is given accurate information that makes them think less of Republican officials?
The conservative movement's strategy is to delegitimize the media regardless of its fairness and accuracy. In its place, we've seen the rise of broadcasters whose foremost loyalty isn't to informing their audience. What we have are propagandists masquerading as journalists.
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