Howard Kurtz Says No Bias on Benghazi; Just Boredom
Last night, Fox News media analyst Howard Kurtz appeared on The O'Reilly Factor. He was there to discuss the newly released email implicating the White House in the shaping of Susan Rice's now infamous, untrue talking points on the Benghazi, Libya attack.
Of course, the White House has long denied any involvement in concocting the false narrative that the 2012 attack was spawned from a spontaneous mob that was angry over an anti-Islam video. They instead blamed the misinformation on faulty intelligence from the CIA.
Well, we've now learned from previously redacted email information (recently acquired through a lawsuit filed by Judicial Watch) that the White House wasn't telling the truth about its role in Susan's Rice's talking points.
An email titled "PREP CALL with Susan", sent by Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes to top spokespeople in the White House and State Department before Rice's media blitz, included this key objective: "To underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy."
This is very important because it substantiates a long-held belief of many critics of the administration: Less than two months out from the 2012 presidential election, when President Obama was campaigning heavily on his anti-terror record, the White House covered up the fact that four American patriots were murdered in Benghazi as part of a coordinated terrorist attack.
As Bill O'Reilly said on his show last night, "This is a huge story!"
Yet, the mainstream media hasn't shown much interest in the revelation, just like they haven't shown much interest in the Benghazi controversy as a whole. Howard Kurtz was on O'Reilly's show to explain why... And boy, did he offer up a whopper of an explanation.
Kurtz adamantly rejected O'Reilly's assertion that the media's negligence has been motivated by their inclination to protect President Obama, and said, "I think the press is bored by the story." He also said that most of the media believes that the story is "old, complicated, and the country has moved on." He later conceded that the White House's Benghazi spin was indeed a scandal, but that it was a scandal "that's been going on for more than a year and a half."
I found the analysis to be nothing short of outrageous, especially coming from someone who has acknowledged the problem of liberal media bias several times in the past.
I would love to pose a few questions to Mr. Kurtz:
What true-blooded, American journalist would look at a White House cover-up of a terrorist attack, done for the purpose of bolstering a president's re-election prospects, and find that story to be dull?
What true-blooded, American journalist would yawn at an administration repeatedly lying to the public (and the parents of four dead men) about a YouTube video, whose creator they used as a scapegoat, being responsible for such an attack?
What true-blooded, American journalist would view the forced release of previously redacted information that strongly suggests that an administration made up a story to win an election, and choose to play video-solitaire over actually reporting on the story?
This kind of behavior doesn't stem from boredom. It stems from bias.
If a Republican were in the White House, Benghazi would have been an absolutely explosive scandal with every major news outlet approaching the story with the same zest as individuals like Sharyl Attkisson, Jonathan Karl, and those who work for Fox News have. Is there anyone - I mean anyone - who truly doesn't believe that?
Do you not believe that, Mr. Kurtz?
Instead, these renegade reporters bothering to investigate the Obama administration's handling of the Benghazi aftermath are mocked by their colleagues. They're marginalized as conspiracy theorists or idealogues, and are told that they just don't know when to let things go.
If Kurtz honestly believes what he says about boredom being a factor in the reporting on presidential scandals, I would love for him to explain to me why Plamegate and the dismissal of U.S. attorneys during the Bush administration were so much more exciting than Benghazi.
I would also love to hear his explanation as to why journalists were so much more eager to tie George W. Bush to disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff than they are to tie Barack Obama to the words that repeatedly came out of his mouth in September and October of 2012.
The importance of Plamegate, the U.S. attorneys, and Jack Abramoff absolutely pales in comparison to Benghazi, yet the media certainly wasn't paralyzed with boredom when it came to those scandals.
And if the statue of limitations has somehow run out on the importance of Benghazi, how would Kurtz explain how long the media's obsession with Abu Ghraib lasted? Is the image of Ambassador Christopher Stevens' blackened body being dragged through the streets of Libya just not as iconic as that of naked Iraqis stacked in pyramids?
Let's get real. There is a painfully clear double-standard between how scandals are covered during Democratic administrations and how they're covered during Republican administrations. The discrepancy has nothing to do with boredom.
What's become boring are media apologists who don't have the nerve to call out their peers for their stunning lack of objectivity.