[Note: JP covered this briefly the other day, but I’ve added some context to the story so I thought it would be worth adding here]
The media is so sure that only the worst about Palin could possibly be true that false stories, out right lies, and even comedy bits are constantly presented as actual news. TIME Magazine is the latest to fall into that trap by reporting a satirical Internet posting about Sarah Palin as hard news. It all just goes to prove that Sarah Palin lives in the heads of the Old Media and it must be awfully cramped up there.
Last week on TIME Mag's Celebrity Newsfeed, Nick Carbone reported satire as fact only to make a "correction" days later. Carbone had fallen for a "tongue-in-cheek" Internet posting that joked that in an interview with Fox News personality Sean Hannity Palin said she wanted to deport Christina Aguilera for screwing up the National Anthem at the opening of the Superbowl.
TIME's Carbone was outraged by this. He snakily wrote, "And you thought Sarah Palin went overboard by commenting that she wanted to deport the singer?" Aside from the fact that you should never start a paragraph off with the word "and" (I know, I've made that mistake myself and been slapped for it, but he's supposed to be a pro), the report that Carbone linked to was a piece of satire. Yet Carbone never double checked the source because he was so sure that it was true. Sadly for his skills as a reporter, the piece he was so sure was true was clearly marked as residing in the "comedy" section.
After TIME regurgitated satire as fact, Governor Palin took the time to send a friendly note to the struggling magazine to help them with their fact checking.
Subject: Great job, MSM!Apparently TIME hasn't the time for fact checking.
Jay - pls tell your bosses there at Time Magazine thank you for the invitations to attend the upcoming functions. I'll sure put a lot of thought into those invitations.
Then, have your editors retract Time's most recent ridiculous lies about me supposedly giving Sean Hannity a radio interview wherein I supposedly talked about Christina Aguilera (that I slammed her for her Nat'l Anthem mistake, and called for her deportation, etc). You guys were fooled into running a fake story that even US Weekly pulled and apologized for their blunder. Total lies - and you guys (once again) even put quotation marks around things I have never uttered. Then, Time needs to run an apology to Christina along with the retraction. (Add Hannity in your apology, too...those good folks don't deserve to be in a caustic, untrue story about me.) Thanks much - keep up the great work, Time Magazine.
This fits with so much of the "news" about Palin that has been disgorged by the media over the years. Not but two weeks ago, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow was also taken in by a statical piece about Palin. Early in February, Maddow breathlessly reported that Palin wanted to send the U.S. military to strike Egypt at its time of turmoil. When she finally discovered that the report was a joke and she was fooled by satire did she apologize? Sort of, but even as she apologized she quixotically blamed it all on Glenn Beck.
The Old Media has been presenting lies and calumny about Palin as fact for quite some time, now. We have but to go back to when Palin was chosen as McCain's VP nominee. Remember the false story that Palin banned books when she became the Mayor of Wasilla? During that 2008 campaign the media reported a long list of books that she supposedly banned. Turns out that list was not a list that had any connection at all to Sarah Palin as it was a list of books that had been banned over the last 100 years. This list should have been easy for the Old Media to discount because some of the books on the list had yet to be published when Palin was Mayor of Wasilla. Yet the media falsely reported this as Palin's book banning list regardless.
You'll see at this link a whole lot of stories during the 2008 campaign that the media reported as fact without bothering to check to see if they were true or not.
The sad fact is that the Old Media is so sure that Sarah Palin is the worst evil since Hitler that they'll believe anything negative about her that they see. No need to check the fact. If it's bad it simply must be true.
Warner Todd Huston is editor of Publius' Forum and a contributor to Texas for Sarah Palin as well as Big Government, Right Wing News, and a number of other websites.