Interlude—Telling the truth very slowly: We couldn’t help chuckling about one part of Frank Bruni’s column this Sunday.
At the start of his column, Bruni described a new book by Matt Bai—a book about the press coverage of Gary Hart.
Bai’s new book may be very good. “But good lord,” we incomparably said. “They tell the truth very slowly:”
BRUNI (9/21/14): ...I sank into a newly deep funk about the kinds of people drawn to politics these days.Good God! Frank Bruni sunk into a funk about the press coverage of Gary Hart! Bai is exploring that troubling press coverage in his important new book.
Then I burrowed into Matt Bai's new book and I hit rock bottom.
It's called ''All the Truth Is Out,'' it will be published later this month and it's about Gary Hart. Remember him: the presidential contender who rode a boat named Monkey Business into a media whirlpool? You should, as the book, which is excerpted in The Times Magazine this weekend, makes clear.
And the reason isn't so much the scandal that swallowed him or his particular exit from the political arena. It's the warning that his story sounded—about a new brutality on the campaign trail, about uncharted frontiers of media invasiveness...
The press coverage in question may be worth discussing. But please understand:
The press coverage to which Bruni refers happened in May 1987!
People! Gary Hart got outed by the press twenty-seven years ago, early in Campaign 1988. Twenty-seven years later, Bruni seems to think it’s time that we explore what happened!
Here at this site, we’ve penned volumes about the press coverage of Campaign 2000—coverage which began in March 1999. (Our discussion began in real time.)
We’ve tried and tried, and tried and tried, to get other people to discuss this deeply important history.
We’ve tried and we’ve tried—and it can’t be done! At long last, we understand why!
Apparently, we have a new piece of Hard Pundit Law to consider. Within the walls of the mainstream press, you have to wait at least 27 years before you’re allowed to discuss what your colleagues have done in coverage of White House campaigns.
As a courtesy, you’ll want to wait a good twenty-seven years. At that point, the time will be right!
On that basis, someone may start to discuss the two-year war against Candidate Gore sometime around the year 2027. That two-year jihad helps explain why we’re back at war today.
But so what? If we might borrow from Orson Welles, we’ve been trying to bring you that knowledge long before its time!
Bruni’s mention of Bai’s daring book made us think of Candidate Muskie. Muskie got mugged by the mainstream press early in Campaign 1972.
In real time, David Broder played the leading role in spreading the notion that Candidate Muskie had disgracefully wept on the campaign trail. In 1987, Broder wrote an astonishing piece in The Washington Monthly confessing that Muskie probably hadn’t wept!
No wonder no one challenged or criticized Broder about his astounding confession. Only fifteen years had passed! It wasn’t yet time!
For background and links, click here.
In our current series, The Houses of Nantucket County, we’re going to look at the astonishing coverage of Campaign 2000 which came from one part of NBC News, which was then owned by jack welch. We want to tell this remarkable story the best way we can. For that reason, we’re going to postpone Part 2 until tomorrow.
For today, just consider the ludicrous culture of our mainstream press.
As we’ve long told you, the press corps will never tell you the truth about its own conduct and values. The code of silence within this guild is just extremely strong.
Bruni’s column provides a comical example of this general tendency. Now that it’s 2014, we can finally discuss the press corps' behavior in 1987!
We have an unpleasant fact to share—the people in your mainstream press are just extremely dishonest. They simply will not tell you the truth about their own behavior.
If they do, they tell you the truth very slowly. This is the way the guild rolls.
Tomorrow, we’ll offer part 2 in our current series. Due to their suffocating code of silence, none of your favorite star career liberals will repeat a word we say.
That will start in the year 2027. Ken Burns may do a film.
Readers, alert the grandkids! Knowledge is on the way!
Tomorrow: Jack Welch, Rupert Murdoch