Big Journalism, Round 2

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Oct. 18 2011 9:59 AM

Big Journalism, Round 2

Dana Loesch corrects one of my spelling errors and argues that I went too easy on the liberal media figures whose e-mails appeared on the September17 listserv for Occupy Everywhere organizers.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

The media did not “aid” the tea party; the tea party grew in spite of it.

This statement is accurate if you leave Fox News out of a definition of "the media." Why would you, though? Fox News's roster in 2009 included a host, Glenn Beck, who started a movement that grew parallel to the Tea Party (the 9-12 movement), and who told viewers to join rallies. Not all reporters or pundits or anchors claim to be objective, with views from nowhere, which was my point.

I am not an “unbiased” NBC anchor who reports on the tea party while hiding the fact that I help write messaging for it. Ratigan and [Matt] Taibbi, especially the former, report on the Occupy movement and expect to be taken objectively, Ratigan more so.

Right, Loesch is clearly identified as a conservative pundit when she appears on CNN. But the "'unbiased' NBC anchor" she refers to here is Dylan Ratigan, who doesn't say he's unbiased. Like I wrote, he proudly leads a new cause called GetMoneyOut, the goal of which is to limit corporate speech and influence in elections. Here's how his website describes his take on news.

Ratigan left as host of CNBC’s Fast Money in 2009, provoked by outrage over the governments handling of the 2008 financial crisis. Since then, he has dedicated his work to launching media properties that will engage and debate the U.S. government on policy, while opening the door for millions to learn more about money’s often poisonous role in our democracy.

The author of Greedy Bastards, who says his goal is "for millions to learn more about money’s often poisonous role in our democracy," comes at the Occupy Wall Street story with a clear POV, which he tells viewers about. Loesch is assigning him a role that he doesn't pretend to play. Same goes for Taibbi. Should they disclose that they've e-mailed a listserv of activists that they disagree with, and shared advice with them? That's what they've been doing in public already!

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics


Justice Ginsburg’s Crucial Dissent in the Texas Voter ID Case

The Jarring Experience of Watching White Americans Speak Frankly About Race

How Facebook’s New Feature Could Come in Handy During a Disaster

The Most Ingenious Teaching Device Ever Invented

Sprawl, Decadence, and Environmental Ruin in Nevada

View From Chicago

You Should Be Able to Sell Your Kidney

Or at least trade it for something.

Space: The Next Generation

An All-Female Mission to Mars

As a NASA guinea pig, I verified that women would be cheaper to launch than men.

Terrorism, Immigration, and Ebola Are Combining Into a Supercluster of Anxiety

The Legal Loophole That Allows Microsoft to Seize Assets and Shut Down Companies

  News & Politics
Oct. 19 2014 1:05 PM Dawn Patrol Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s critically important 5 a.m. wake-up call on voting rights.
Business Insider
Oct. 19 2014 11:40 AM Pot-Infused Halloween Candy Is a Worry in Colorado
Oct. 17 2014 5:26 PM Judge Begrudgingly Strikes Down Wyoming’s Gay Marriage Ban
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 17 2014 4:23 PM A Former FBI Agent On Why It’s So Hard to Prosecute Gamergate Trolls
  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Oct. 17 2014 1:33 PM What Happened at Slate This Week?  Senior editor David Haglund shares what intrigued him at the magazine. 
Oct. 19 2014 4:33 PM Building Family Relationships in and out of Juvenile Detention Centers
Future Tense
Oct. 17 2014 6:05 PM There Is No Better Use For Drones Than Star Wars Reenactments
  Health & Science
Space: The Next Generation
Oct. 19 2014 11:45 PM An All-Female Mission to Mars As a NASA guinea pig, I verified that women would be cheaper to launch than men.
Sports Nut
Oct. 16 2014 2:03 PM Oh What a Relief It Is How the rise of the bullpen has changed baseball.