Leaked Tape from ABC News Shows Trump Has Media on the Ropes

Donald Trump has unquestionably ushered in an era of never-before-seen scrutiny on the Democrat Media Complex.

Credit where credit is due: Donald Trump has unquestionably ushered in an era of never-before-seen scrutiny on the Democrat Media Complex. For years conservatives have bemoaned the ungodly bias exhibited by the mainstream press – from CNN to the New York Times, Washington Post to the network triumvirate of ABC, CBS, and NBC. Brent Bozell and company founded an entire operation, the Media Research Center, including its online offshoot Newsbusters, to combat the nonsense.

But even though Republican politicians were acutely aware of the problem of journalistic malpractice in America, none were bold enough to confront it aggressively. Many would mention it in passing, joke about double standards at campaign stops, and fundraise off of it. But none made warring against the liberal behemoth their daily pastime. But that was all before Donald Trump.

These days the media knows they are in an all-out war for their credibility with a president who commands the bully pulpit. They have to cover him, and yet every time they put microphones in front of him, they risk him exposing their duplicity in a way that becomes a social media gif or meme that lives on in perpetuity. Trump’s dismissal of CNN’s Jim Acosta as being “fake news” at an early press conference remains one of the most iconic moments of his young presidency.

And while journalists are understandably and rightly concerned about the danger posed to a civilization where people don’t trust those who provide them the news, they have to understand that the problem isn’t really Trump’s. Their own advocacy journalism and opinion journalism that they pretended for years was objective news has played a much bigger role in this current media crisis.

Some seem to understand that, like the President of ABC News, James Goldston. A private recording has leaked of Goldston tearing into his reporters (and particularly chief investigative reporter and notorious left-wing partisan Brian Ross) for butchering the facts about Trump transition team member Michael Flynn.

The contents of his furious tirade reveal a great deal about the pressure media now feels to get the story right.

"I don't think ever in my career have I felt more rage and disappointment and frustration that I felt through this weekend and through the last half of Friday," Goldston told the ABC newsroom. I don't even know how many times we've talked about this, how many times we have talked about the need to get it right," he added. "That how we have to be right and not first. About how in this particular moment, with the stakes as high as these stakes are right now, we cannot afford to get it wrong."

Notice those words “with the stakes as high as these stakes are right now, we cannot afford to get it wrong.” What does that mean? It seems pretty clear this is a reference to a president who will make them pay in a way they’ve never paid before if they mess up. He goes on to essentially confirm this interpretation:

Goldston also noted how badly ABC suffered in the aftermath. We "spent this weekend getting absolutely pilloried as a news division for reporting fake news," he said. "250,000 tweets. One percent positive, 99 percent negative about this news division. Two tweets from the president. If it isn't obvious to everyone in this news division, we have taken a huge hit and we have made the job of every single person in this news division harder as a result. It's much, much harder," Goldston continued. "We have people in Washington who are going to bear the brunt of this today and in the days forward. Very, very, very, very unfortunate. Really, really angry about it."

Should news organizations have always taken their job of accuracy this seriously? Of course. But Goldston’s remarks demonstrate that they haven’t because they’ve never had to. And why? To be honest, because before President Trump they never faced a Republican president who would aggressively and mercilessly expose them.

For the first time they are being held accountable publicly in a way that embarrasses and humiliates them for their bias and shoddy journalism. That isn’t a bad thing for our republic.

I am sorry, but this is a ridiculous "theory" you have there, Peter Heck.

Trump has not "exposed" any truths with his tweets except his own totally disregard for facts.

I could make never-ending list of Trump's outrageous falsehoods , from his infamous "what happened in Sweden last night" to his claims about Muslims were dancing in the streets in New Jersey on 9/11 2001 to his recent dissemination of blatantly false online videos spread by disreputable British racists.

Sure -- everyone makes mistakes. But the mainstream media gets the facts right far more often than e.g. Breitbart or "Project Veritas" does. The Washington Post's recent coverage of the Roy Moore saga has even drawn praise from mainstream right wingers as it was carefully and meticulously prepared.

Uh, “what happened in Sweden last night” did happen. Not a Trump fan, but it helps to be fact-based. Also, Veritas has been right more than wrong. Acorn, selling baby parts - both were big reveals.

I am not a big Trump fan, and I don't much like a lot of his "tweets". However, the fact that he does take on the media, which has openly, willfully lied on so many subjects relating to conservatives, republicans and Trump is a good thing. Maybe some of the people who take these media outlets as being honest reporters will finally realize the "news" they get is not necessarily the truth.

If the media’s going to bewail the fact that lack of trust weakens our republic, then maybe it’s time to take the Serenity Prayer seriously and control what they can: own the problem, and be worthy of the trust they are asking if audience. If they were wiser, they’d admit that they cannot possibly control or even contain Trump!

When the media start covering all sides with the same intensity for truth, then I will start trusting the medaa again. The first election I remember was Eisenhower and the media have never been honest in covering events and people since then. They did not truthfully cover the nuclear testing in Colorado in the 50s and have not truthfully covered anything since. If they had, Roosevelt would have never completed one term, no Clinton would have ever served in any capacity, most Congressmen and women would never get re-elected if they even completed a term. The corruptness and hyprocrisy in government at all levels is staggering.

Whether for better or worse, the political and media dynamics really have been transformed. We are witnessing the U.S. Presidency in open warfare with an establishment media that is displaying its cultural corruption.

Political ournalism has always been biased. Take a look at the newspapers (such as they were) from the time of the revolutionary war on. The term “yellow” journalism is as a old as the 19th century. The big difference now is that for some reason, the media elite have convinced the populace at large that they are unbiased. That was the real coup. It is imperative that sites like this one constantly challenge those media outlets that attempt to control the narrative as though they were writing their own fiction novel. Cudos to Trump for doing what all Republican politicians should be doing and calling the media out on their half-truths, lies, and biases at EVERY turn.

To Mlindroos: I think Mr. Heck was praising Trump for standing up to the msm. Trump's behavior is another topic but Trump is the only R president who hasn't tried to win the press over. The press hates Trump and they don't like R's nor conservatives. The press should be informative but it's manipulative. The mainstream media has been - let's say - slanted for years. It's pathetic. And the same standard should be applied to all news outlets.

The press has to get it right each and every time, and should not be the least bit concerned about who they are reporting on. Viewers/readers should almost despise reporters as they constantly dig, dig, dig, trying to get answers, and refusing to accept evasive or deflecting answers. Politicians at all levels should be absolutely fearful of breaking any rules, knowing they will be held accountable. Right now, this is all part of a fantasy world, as politicians get into the safety of their offices, cars, homes etc. surrounded by their staff and family, all offering comfort and support, none of whom have the courage to stand up to them, or even better, expose them for their lying, cheating, corrupt ways. Why the media lets them abuse them in this manner has always both mystified and dismayed me. I would have thought Mr. Trump, both during the campaign and now as President, would have emboldened more in the media to take a stand, not for President Trump, but for what is right.

TO: mlindroos I believe Peter Hect makes valid points in his comments; and your comments actually support that! If I state as fact something that I gleaned from a news broadcast or print, I would expect it to be accurate. Journalists at one time possessed that level of professionalism, ethics and unbiased accuracy. I no longer have that level of confidence; therefore, when I hear Trump or anyone repeat as fact something later revealed as false, I blame the source, not the person who used the source for talking points or in casual conversation. Such is the issue with Roy Moore. Most everything accusers claimed, and has been reported as fact, has been debunked by sources with as much or more credibility as that of the accusers.

There was once in Chicago an enterprise not unlike the AP wire service known as the City News Bureau. It operated from 1890 to 1999, providing stories for many newspapers across the nation. The accuracy standards for its reporters were set by editor Arnold Dornfeld, known to be not just a stickler, but a holy terror when it came to insisting his reporters double-check their facts and get them right. His motto, reportedly posted on a sign above his office door, was, “If your mother says she loves you, check it out.”
In their eagerness to bring down the Trump administration and any even tangentially associated conservative efforts, the clowns posing as journalists and editors today have all but abandoned that sage advice.