Another insightful analysis by Thomas Continetti in the Free Beacon bewails the bias in the press that Trump has no pushed into the open. Among other things, he blames groupthink fostered by social media. I'm not sure it's social media so much as cultural isolation.
When I was writing my political column for MarketWatch, the editors gave me totally free rein to pick my subjects, write my columns, express my opinions. It was a liberating experience and I'm grateful to them. Only once did I take part in an editorial conference call, shortly before the November election. to coordinate coverage of the big event. I was astonished -- and that is a mild word for my feeling -- at the groupthink evident in the call. The disdain for Trump (and his supporters), the unshakable conviction that Hillary was going to win skewed the whole conversation as editors and columnists divvied up how to cover her victory. I kept quiet. In my columns, I'd already repeatedly expressed my concern that Trump was on a path to victory because of Hillary's flaws and his ability to find issues that people cared about.
All this only got worse when he won, and that is the point of Continetti's column today:
The forces that brought Trump to power are alien to the experience of the men and women who populate newsrooms, his supporters unlike their colleagues, friends, and neighbors, his agenda anathema to the catechism of social liberalism, his career and business empire complex and murky and sensational. Little surprise that journalists reacted to his election with a combination of panic, fear, disgust, fascination, exhilaration, and the self-affirming belief that they remain the last line of defense against an emerging American autocracy.
Especially when the depletion of veteran editors, the relative youth and inexperience of political and congressional reporters, and the proliferation of social media, with its hot takes and quips, its groupthink and instant gratification, makes the transition from inquiry to indignation all too easy.I don't know how this ends, but I can't think it's helping media any.
There is still excellent journalism. I would point, for starters, to the work on charter flights that led to the resignation of Tom Price. But the overall tone of coverage of this president and his administration is somewhere between the hysterical and the lunatic.