This past week, the Washington Post ran a pretty incredible story about the Democrat opposition research group, Fusion GPS. The organization has never fully been vetted by journalists because it has spoon fed so many stories to so many reporters. The reporters have been protecting their source. In fact, even the Washington Post did not dive too deeply into the company's ties to Russians and elsewhere.
What the Washington Post did confirm, though, is that Fusion GPS has a lot of former journalists on its payroll as employees and also works with a lot of reports to help shape stories. We also now know that Fusion GPS did not just hire journalists, but also had a senior Department of Justice employee's wife on its payroll at a time it was creating the Steel dossier.
This likewise comes as there are new questions about Congressman Adam Schiff, the congressman the media loves. He may have been one of the CNN sources who caused them to get basic facts wrong last week in a story related to Trump's emails.
During the Obama Administration, many members of the media floated in and out of the administration and in and out of leftwing blogs and think tanks. They are still around with many of them serving as reporters and their leftwing friends as active members of the Democrats' "resistance." They trade information and shape each other's worldviews and I am not convinced the heads of media outlets are doing enough to push their reporters to separate their worldview from the facts at hand. As a result, we are not getting the whole truth, but a narrative within which facts are shaped to advance the narrative.
There is a pretty substantial symbiotic relationship between the political left in Washington and the media. While a few people went from the media to the Bush Administration, it was never like it was with Obama.
Jay Carney went from Time to the White House press secretary's office. Shailagh Murray went from the Washington Post to the Veep's office while married to Neil King at the Wall Street Journal. Neil King has left the Wall Street Journal to work for Fusion GPS. Linda Douglass went from ABC News to the White House and then the Atlantic. Jill Zuckman went from the Chicago Tribune to the Obama Administration's Transportation Department. Douglas Frantz went from the Washington Post to the State Department and Stephen Barr went from the Post to the Labor Department.
Ruth Marcus, who heads the Washington Post Editorial Board, is married to the Obama Administration's former Federal Trade Commission Chairman. Jonathan Allen had been at the Politico before going to work for Debbie Wasserman Schultz, then back to Politico before going to the left leaning Vox. Now he is at NBC News. Andy Barr worked for the Politico before leaving for Democrat politics. Michael Scherer was at both Salon and Mother Jones before going to Time. Laura Rozen was at Mother Jones and the American Prospect before Foreign Policy magazine. Even Nate Silver had started out at Daily Kos. Then, of course, there is Matthew Dowd, who worked for scores of Democrats before working for George Bush. That, though he later washed his hands of Bush, bought him street credibility with ABC News to become its senior politically analyst alongside George Stephanopoulos, formerly of the Clinton Administration.
It goes on and on in a feedback loop of incestuous politics and worldview shaping. In the Obama Era, it was all about protecting their precious. Now it is about undermining the president. Many of the editorial level checks lean left and so do not run traps as effectively against bad stories. We are seeing a continued breakdown in reporting and a further erosion of public trust as a result. Something has to give. But I fear the media is inside a bubble of its own creation to do necessary due diligence.
It's not that these reporters cannot be fair. It's that many of them do not even realize their biases and left-leaning pre-suppositions are tripping them up.
To find out more about Erick Erickson and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.