When it comes to gathering and reporting the news, it is hard to beat the uncommon sense of legendary journalist Peter Kihss. I wrote several months ago that, as a young reporter, I learned from him that there are no such things as stupid questions to politicians, only stupid answers.
From The New York Post
Now another Kihss gem applies, this time to the early media coverage of President Trump. More than three decades ago, Kihss and I were talking in the old newsroom of The New York Times when, after a frustrating day of seeing his story mangled by editors, he looked at me and said: Always remember, the job of the editor is to separate the wheat from the chaff — and publish the chaff in the newspaper.
I laughed, he didn’t, but his warning seemed especially prescient after Trump’s first Monday in the Oval Office. The new president delivered tons of wheat while most of the media was obsessed with the chaff.
The adage that actions speak louder than words is freely ignored when it comes to Trump. As part of their double standard, the ink-stained mob and broadcast confederates prefer to watch what he says instead of what he does.
Here’s Monday’s wheat: Trump signed an executive order freezing the federal workforce and another pulling the US out of the unpopular Asian trade deal. He met with manufacturing executives about forming an advisory panel on cutting job-killing taxes and regulations, then met with union leaders who emerged with praise for his approach to trade and his pledge to modernize America’s infrastructure.
Nearly all the union leaders, who represent carpenters, construction workers, plumbers and sheet-metal workers, endorsed Hillary Clinton, yet they called their meeting with Trump “incredible” and gave him a round of applause for spiking the Asian trade deal.
Richard Trumpka, head of the AFL-CIO, issued a statement hailing the decision, as well as Trump’s plan to reopen the North American Free Trade Agreement.
It was a jobs-jobs-jobs day, one that cut across partisan lines so American workers could benefit. The day had the added advantage of Trump keeping his campaign promises, which is not exactly a regular occurrence in Washington, so that alone should have been big news.
To top it off, Trump met with congressional leaders of both parties in a bid to build relationships of the kind President Obama scorned. That, too, could have been fodder for a story of contrasts, yet that meeting produced the chaff the media really wanted.
“Trump repeats an election lie” the Times declared, a glaring accusation about the president insisting to the congressional leaders that illegal voters gave Hillary Clinton her popular-vote victory.
In eight years of lick-spittle coverups, the Times never called Obama dishonest, let alone a liar. But they were enchanted by what books he read and how many almonds he ate each night.
But all Republicans, and Trump especially, start out by being treated like dirt, and it’s downhill from there. Other outlets raced to echo the Times “liar” charge and made much ado about other chaff, including Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s complaints about a “negative” drumbeat from the press.
Spicer was mocked as a crybaby, but his wheat was ignored. In his maiden briefing, he threw out the playbook on which organizations got to ask questions.
The first one is usually reserved for The Associated Press, but this time it went to The Post’s Daniel Halper. The second question went to the Christian Broadcasting Network and the third to Univision.
This was more than a symbol. Like Trump taking action on his jobs agenda, this was Spicer’s down payment on the plan to democratize access and end the practice of giving special privileges to major liberal organizations.
It’s a big deal, though most Americans probably didn’t hear about it, but they surely heard about the outrage that Tom Brady is friends with Trump. Although the Patriots’ quarterback is taking his team to the Super Bowl, he is being brutally sacked by the media mob because — I think this is the point — no decent person could be friends with Trump.
To be clear, Trump should stop talking about the election. It’s over and there is no dispute that he won and is president.
If he’s worried about voter fraud, he should lend his support to state laws requiring identification and make sure his Justice Department takes the issue seriously.
Read Full Story At The New York Post