People Unclear

An ongoing scandal – number 13

This Senator Menendez story will not go away. Previously I looked into an item that appeared on The Federalist site. See the link above:

The lined story was posted by Bre Payton, who is a staff writer covering culture and millennial politics, and she has some interesting things to say about the just started trial of Democratic Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey:

Media Won’t Talk About Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez’s Corruption Trial

Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez’s upcoming corruption trial has gotten very little attention from members of the media. When they do talk about it, they like to leave out the fact he’s a Democrat.

So there was some back and forth about this in a Facebook exchange. My take was Bre Payton, author of the above, was commenting on the news without first reading the news. And on. And I got some push back.

Your analysis is for nought. Here’s the real truth:

http://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/when-is-a-scandal-not-a-scandal-when-theres-a-democrat-involved/

The link tracks to an editorial item appearing in Investor’s Business Daily:

When Is A Scandal Not A Scandal? When There’s A Democrat Involved

Corruption: A sitting U.S. Senator is currently on trial for bribery, and if he’s found guilty it could have major political ramifications. Haven’t heard about this case? That’s because the Senator in question is a Democrat.

A CNN story this week about the opening of the trial against New Jersey Sen. Robert Menendez noted that “Democrats are eager to avoid the subject of Menendez’s bribery trial.”

That headline would have been just as accurate if it said “Reporters” instead of “Democrats.”

Menendez in on trial for allegedly having sold his office in exchange for luxury vacations, private flights, and piles of campaign cash. In his opening remarks, Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter Koski said “this case is about a corrupt politician who sold his Senate office for a life of luxury he couldn’t afford and a greedy doctor who put that senator on his payroll. … The defendants didn’t just trade money for power, they also tried to cover it up.”

And I was quick to think my Facebook correspondent for coming forward with the real  truth. Also, I was particularly taken by an opening sentence: “Haven’t heard about this case?” It was impossibly for me not to respond:

John Blanton “Haven’t heard about this case? ” Really? Who has not? It’s been in the news for years.

Please read the entire piece to completely appreciate it. There is no byline, so I am concluding this is from the editorial board of Investor’s Business Daily. I am also concluding that collectively the editorial board of Investor’s Business Daily does not read the news. As I pointed out in the previous installation of this series, the Menendez story has been carried by mainstream media since it broke years ago. And with rare exceptions, Senator Menendez has been identified as a Democrat. I first wrote about it over two years ago, and, bleeding heart liberal that I am, I made sure the Senator was appropriately cataloged.

To be sure, IBD did cite a case of mis-association:

Then there’s the version of an AP story that ran on the NBC News website, which identified Menendez as “R-N.J.” in the first paragraph. Several hours later, NBC corrected its mistake, noting that “an earlier version of this article misstated the party affiliation of Menendez. He is a Democrat, not a Republican.”

Sloppiness? Bias? You decide. But try to imagine these reporters making such Journalism 101 mistakes if the case had involved a Republican. Does anyone outside of the liberal media bubble really think that a reporter would incorrectly identify a Republican as a Democrat when reporting on a major scandal? Or fail to mention the person’s party affiliation at all?

Yeah, methinks IBD doth protest too much.

I also run into complaints that the Menendez case does not get the amount of coverage by mainstream media it does on right-leaning outlets. This after first asserting that you would never know of it if you relied on mainstream media. I looked. I saw. I beheld. Menendez is not a screaming headline in The New York Times, on CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC. Could there be a reason for that? Some Skeptical  Analysis is due.

I looked. I saw. I analyzed.

Yes, there is a at least one reason Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey is not front and center every day. First let’s discount Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which, paired together, have swamped the news of late. Forgetting these major news stories, what else is crowding the Menendez story? It turns out another famous player is hogging the political spotlight these days:

Trump Associate Boasted That Moscow Business Deal ‘Will Get Donald Elected’

WASHINGTON — A business associate of President Trump promised in 2015 to engineer a real estate deal with the aid of the president of RussiaVladimir V. Putin, that he said would help Mr. Trump win the presidency.

The associate, Felix Sater, wrote a series of emails to Mr. Trump’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, in which he boasted about his ties to Mr. Putin. He predicted that building a Trump Tower in Moscow would highlight Mr. Trump’s savvy negotiating skills and be a political boon to his candidacy.

How many of these do I need  to post to get across the idea. If Donald Trump would quit grabbing pussy, lying about global warming, lying about election fraud, lying about the size of his inauguration crowd, lying about why he fired the FBI director, and if he would quit abrogating treaties (e.g., the Paris Climate Accord) and insulting friendly heads of state, then maybe the mainstream media will find it in themselves to push Senator Menendez (D-NJ) above the fold.

Wait for me. I will hold my breath. In the meantime, may Jesus have mercy on our souls.

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One thought on “People Unclear

  1. Pingback: People Unclear | Skeptical Analysis

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