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White House Bars NYT, CNN, and Politico from Briefing (nytimes.com)
660 points by ComputerGuru on Feb 24, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 384 comments



Well done to Time and AP, who skipped in protest.


While I agree on the whole solidarity thing, isn't it better to have more news organizations at the press briefings?


If the sole goal of the press briefings becomes manipulation and propaganda, then at some point giving them airtime and headline space can be worse than abstaining from coverage altogether. This is why some cable news channels have stopped inviting Kellyanne Conway on the air, for example.


No, it's better to enforce the norms of a free and antagonistic press.


Right, which usually requires press people to show up to do the reporting.

I mean it may not be as much of a requirement now in the age of live TV and internet streaming, but if we're going to argue about norms then certainly the norm of sending reporters to actually report on stuff is kind of important.


It requires people to do reporting. It does not require them to show up at a press briefing - that doesn't happen in a lot of countries, or if it does, the press is a mouthpiece for the government to say whatever it wants to say whether true or false.

It's certainly helpful for the White House to distill information into an easy-to-digest press briefing. But the AP, Time, and other barred and protesting organizations are certainly capable of reporting on what actually happens rather than what they're told at a press briefing. Reuters described it aptly here:

http://www.reuters.com/article/rpb-adlertrump-idUSKBN15F276

> Become ever-more resourceful: If one door to information closes, open another one.

> Give up on hand-outs and worry less about official access. They were never all that valuable anyway. Our coverage of Iran has been outstanding, and we have virtually no official access. What we have are sources.

> Don’t take too dark a view of the reporting environment: It’s an opportunity for us to practice the skills we’ve learned in much tougher places around the world...


By that you acknowledge that it is "the norm"


They would probably be banned later anyways. Makes sense for them to pre-emptively not attend.

That said, I do appreciate their taking a stand on principle. Just pointing out the likely future outcome.


Yes more not selectively more.


Better none than this approach.



So I can see the rationale for Barring CNN, or more specifically, Jim Acosta from attending Press briefings after his disruption back in January but as for barring the rest, is this really as corrupt as it sounds? Only allow in press who are "Trump friendly".


This is great. More ammunition to build a case against Trump. This type of behavior doesn't benefit him, but scares a lot of independent voters. He will be in for a rude awakening in the next election cycle


much ado about nothing. press access has always been limited to a select handful. even making it into the room doesn't guarantee you'll be acknowledged or, if called on, have your question answered.


The largest media outlets in the country being denied access to the WH Press Room?


at times there is literally one reporter in the room (MLK Bust story). I'm not arguing they should be excluded forever, just think all perspective is lost when dealing with Trump. Somehow CNN being excluded from a gaggle turns into Trump being a dictator at war with the 1st amendment.

Maybe he is, and maybe this is a tiny piece of a multi-year plot. Or maybe not.


At times..but that's not what we're talking about. Why should they be excluded at all? Regardless if it's a multi-year plot or just throwing a fit, it's unacceptable. One of factors behind Trump becoming President is how much time the media spent on him because of his unusual campaign style and rhetoric, and now he wants to pick and choose the media allowed to cover him to suit his narrative and it doesn't work that way.

What I don't understand is why so many tolerate his lies.


I know this may be a tired question, but why is this falling on the front-page when the points are continuing to increase?


This isn't about banning particular media outlets for asking hard questions or being fake news or whatever. This is about setting up the mainstream media as the enemy, and treating them as such. Trump's target is his supporters. "Do you trust me? If you trust me, then you can't trust them."


Trump thinks he's still on the apprentice...doesn't like a news outlet, "You're fired!"


I wrote a snarky if apt comment, but I'll rephrase it seriously.

I hope the resources put in limbo by this can be devoted to investigating and reporting some independent and accurate accounts of what's happening.

Such as, say, refuting every false statement that is coming from the press room podium.

I'd pay for that paper.


Now we know which publications we can trust to stand up to the President. Why isn't the WSJ banned?


Sounds like he is getting desperate.


See 1984, Ministry of Truth. Sadly the novel seems to be a how to manual instead of a warning.


I think at this point the White House Correspondents Association should disband, and all reputable outlets should pull their reporters, similar to how a government official might resign in protest of something.

What would we miss? Another story about spin?


Well proof will come out in the mid-terms. Do most voters want this kind of leadership or not?

Of course the GOP is going to contract voting rights as much as possible in the interim, so it's going to be a battle.

Liberals don't vote. Will that change?


I'm sorry to be the one to break it to you, but liberals vote. There's just not enough of them to win Presidential elections decisively by themselves.

If you are a liberal, do not fall into the same trap the conservatives did after their loss in 2012. They believed that there was a Missing Conservative Voter Who Stayed Home, who could be won over if the party went further rightward. Ted Cruz bet his whole candidacy on that. Trump is proof that voter either isn’t real or isn't motivated by ideology.

I don't know what the Democrat version of Trump is going to be, but there will be space for one if you assume that there's Missing Liberal Voters Who Stayed Home and all you have to do is go further leftward to pick them up.


Well that's factually incorrect. Democratic turn out was down in 2016.


That doesn't mean liberals don't vote. It may mean other things:

1. Obama voters flipped for Trump (this actually happened in PA)

2. Moderate voters may have stayed home or flipped.

3. Some races were not terribly competitive, so people stayed home even though it would not have mattered for them to vote (e.g. the CA Senate race between two Democrats)

I mean, if you're really a liberal, would you have not voted? Exceptions perhaps being carved out for people who objected specifically to Hillary Clinton because of her other problems... which would mean Democrats need to pick better people as candidates.


Oh there's no doubt people stayed home because of both candidates, but it's my theory many democrats stayed home because of Hillary.

Agreed. Democrats need to choose young, dashing, charismatic, unimpeachable candidates at every level. This is how dems get excited and actually vote.

Conservatives vote based on policy. Liberals vote based on the person. This is their (our) failure.


> Liberals don't vote

The Democrats won the popular vote by 3 million votes, so this doesn't seem right. But for some surgical gerrymandering we might not be having a conversation about President Trump at all.


Most of the extra votes are in one state, California. This is not a reasonable argument.


Gerrymandering affects the House of Representatives and nothing else on a federal level.


> surgical gerrymandering

Also known as "state lines", a great many of which have been in place for over a century.


I don't know why you are being downvoted. Gerrymandering affects congressional districts and has no direct effect on the presidential election.


> Gerrymandering affects congressional districts and has no direct effect on the presidential election.

There are a couple states that assign Presidential electors on a basis of two to the statewide winner plus one to the winner in each Congressional district, rather than winner-take-all, so Congressional districting (including gerrymandering) does have a direct effect on Presidential election s as well as House elections.


They have a total of 5 electoral votes. When split the only election where they could have made a difference was in 2000. But yes, in this case it those have a direct effect but a VERY minor effect that has never affected the outcome of an election.


WHAT?! NO! TRUMPIST LIES, ALL OF IT!

Everyone knows that gerrymandering is the only way Republicans ever get any votes — really they should get zero!


By the way. 29.9% of eligible voters didn't vote last November. I think it's dubious to assume they approve of Trump. It's more likely they just see him as the same stupidity they see in all politics.

But I have this crazy hope that Trump will awaken some of these voters to progressive politics.


Not a Trump supporter in the slightest but after seeing how they mis-characterized Pewdiepie I have to say I have no trust in the media either so do hell with them.


Sane media should stop going. No point participating in a charade the administration is directing.

Edit: apparently this is already happening. Time and AP among those who chose not to attend.

Dystopia.


But is this literal or serious? /s


Just for some perspective, the previous administration was also not great in this regard:

"Obama shuts Fox out of press briefings related to Benghazi" [1]

"The Obama White House went to war against Fox News": Jake Tapper. [2]

"Fishbowl DC has been keeping tabs of which media outlets have been allowed to ask a question at President-elect Barack Obama’s five press conferences so far. They report Fox News is 0–5. “Questions instead went to such outlets as ABC, New York Times, CBS, Reuters and the Associated Press.”" [3]

"In 2010, President Obama said that Fox News had a point of view which was “ultimately destructive” for America...The University of Minnesota’s Eric Ostermeier tallied up the number of questions each member of the White House press corp had been able to ask during all of Obama’s first term press conferences. ABC, CBS, the Associated Press and NBC led the pack, with ABC having been selected for questioning 29 times over 36 solo press conferences. (Overall, reporters have had fewer chances to ask questions than any White House press corps since Ronald Reagan’s.)...Fox News, though it has a reach that far outstrips its competitors and sometimes rivals the broadcast networks, was in ninth place on the list, having been called on 14 times...NBC’s Chuck Todd and ABC’s Jake Tapper (now at CNN) were called on the most of any reporters — they each got 23 chances to question Obama." [4]

"Mr. Axelrod said it was the view of the White House that Fox News had blurred the line between news and anti-Obama advocacy...By the following weekend, officials at the White House had decided that if anything, it was time to take the relationship to an even more confrontational level. The spur: Executives at other news organizations, including The New York Times, had publicly said that their newsrooms had not been fast enough in following stories that Fox News, to the administration’s chagrin, had been heavily covering through the summer and early fall — namely, past statements and affiliations of the White House adviser Van Jones that ultimately led to his resignation and questions surrounding the community activist group Acorn...Those reports included a critical segment on the schools safety official Kevin Jennings, with the on-screen headline “School Czar’s Past May Be Too Radical”; urgent news coverage of a video showing schoolchildren “singing the praises, quite literally, of the president,” which the Fox News contributor Tucker Carlson later called “pure Khmer Rouge stuff”...There followed, beginning in earnest more than two weeks ago, an intensified volley of White House comments describing Fox as “not a news network.”...Then, in an interview with NBC News on Wednesday, the president went public. “What our advisers have simply said is that we are going to take media as it comes,” he said. “And if media is operating, basically, as a talk radio format, then that’s one thing. And if it’s operating as a news outlet, then that’s another.”...“We simply decided to stop abiding by the fiction, which is aided and abetted by the mainstream press, that Fox is a traditional news organization,” said Dan Pfeiffer, the deputy White House communications director." [5]

December 2012: Several journalists reported that MSNBC hosts were meeting privately with President Obama to discuss the impending “fiscal cliff” fight. [6]

March 2015: Politico’s media reporter, Hadas Gold, reported that “a group of journalists and columnists,” all on the left, met privately with President Obama, but the White House refused to say “who else was at the meeting or what was discussed.” [7]

[1] http://www.wnd.com/2014/01/fox-anchor-team-obama-threatened-...

[2] http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/kristine-marsh/2017/01/1...

[3] https://thinkprogress.org/fox-news-shut-out-again-at-obama-p...

[4] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/17/obama-fox-news-pres...

[5] http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/23/us/politics/23fox.html

[6] http://www.mediaite.com/tv/msnbc-hosts-spotted-visiting-obam...

[7] http://www.politico.com/blogs/media/2015/03/obama-holds-off-...


Yes, its an offensive dick-move by Trump but rather than get agitated, I hope that more people will try look behind this.

This has been a relatively slow news week, I get the feeling someone needs a little attention?


Im praying for 4 years of slow news.


if we're going to be honest, most are upset because they have an issue with trump to start with. after he was elected Trump did hour-long interviews with 60-minutes, ABC, O-Reily, and Hannity. Where's the outrage over that? Shouldn't equal time have been given to Dateline, CBS, Anderson Cooper, and Van Jones?

Sooner or later there will be a real issue and most of us are going to tune it out because CNN/NYT/Others have treated every day since he took office as the 2nd coming of Hitler and beginning of WW3.


Granting long interviews is fundamentally different from access to briefings.


agreed. being excluded from one is also different from being excluded from all.

there's also 6+ other news organizations in there -- not all trump friendly. I just don't see how CNN being excluded equates to the end of freedom of the press. The reach of those included is far greater than those explicitly excluded.


I don't think it's the end of freedom of the press, but it's a dangerous step towards it. The fact that other groups have more reach doesn't lessen the damage excluding a major news organization just because you don't like what they're reporting. If they're not reporting the truth that's one thing, but this isn't that.


Maybe this will send a message to said media outlets to stop making crap up and traffic in real issues with some impartial professional journalism that used to occur in this country.


It is absolutely not the place of the president to "send a message" to the press.


Whose place is it?


The journals' audience and, more generally, the citizens of the country.

A huge pillar of the press in the US is that it keeps the president in check. You can't be the one regulating what keeps you in check. Have you ever heard the phrase "judge, jury and executioner"?


Maybe this will send a message to said media outlets to stop making crap up

I'll bite. Give us some examples, please.


Completely unacceptable!


Wow, the downvotes are rolling in.


Please don't do this. It breaks the HN guidelines: https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html.

We detached this comment from https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13727131 and marked it off-topic.


Duly noted. Is there any way to report vote thrashing, or do you have tools to detect it?


If you think people are doing something abusive you're welcome to email hn@ycombinator.com and we'll look into it for you.


I think the answer is "Just be an adult and move on. It's only one comment".


Yes, and I think this illustrates why the political ban on HN should be re-instituted. Downvotes without explanation are emotional, and do nothing to improve quality of conversation.

God forbid one doesn't immediately leap up and denounce $POLITICIAN in the impromptu Two Minutes' Hate.


[flagged]


I'm sure there are many who agree with your comment, we are simply less common. Too many keep quiet.

In response to both the topic in hand and HN users down-voting w/e they disagree:

"They have shut up all their fools in a house apart, to make sure that they are wise men themselves." - Dostoyevsky


You can paint yourself as the victim, but that doesn't make partisan attacks against actual news more accurate.


Point is, the media has done a terrible job, misguided the people, and deserve _no sympathy_.

It failed to give a honest account of Cuba [1], Vietnam [2], Iraq [3], Syria [4] (Nicaragua, Guatemala, and so on). In fact, it lied about it. That had deadly consequences for millions of humans.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda_of_the_Spanish%E2%8...

[2] http://www.globalissues.org/article/402/media-propaganda-and...

[3] http://www.nytimes.com/2003/04/21/world/aftereffects-prohibi...

[4] http://www.globalresearch.ca/war-propaganda-syrias-destructi...

To answer your introductory clause: Not trying to paint myself as the victim or w/e.


> He has taken to blatantly and explicitly lying about simple verifiable facts, and doubling down on those lies when challenged.

I'm not saying that's not true (I'm not a Trump supporter), but what sticks out to you as an instance of him doubling down on a lie?

Edit: It's disappointing to be down voted rather than being directly engaged. If you have a beef with what I said, please tell me where I've erred. I would love to change my mind on this topic. This is Hacker News after all, not Reddit.


We detached this subthread from https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13727728 and marked it off-topic.


Start here: http://www.politifact.com/personalities/donald-trump/stateme...

How about:

* Lying about his past opposition to the Iraq war

* Lying about Russia only hacking the DNC (they hacked the RNC too, or at least tried to, but didn't release anything)

* Lying about the size of the crowd at his inauguration

* Lying about his "historic" electoral win (it wasn't)

* Lying about the election being rigged against him (before the election)

* Lying about the state of African American communities

* Lying about inner-city crime rates

* Lying about Obama and Clinton literally "founding" ISIS

* Lying about Ted Cruz's father being involved in the JFK assassination

* Lying about his charitable donations and activities

* Lying about his inability to release his tax returns because of an ongoing IRS audit

* Lying about his association with David Duke and the white national movement

* Lying about his history and relationship with Vladimir Putin

That's just a taste. I could go on.


Shame on you. You don't like his politics, fine, but cut the propaganda.

> Lying about his past support for the Iraq war

Go watch his Howard Stern interview yourself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2OU_Vrb_QXo. Listen at how indecisive he is for that question compared to the rest of the interview. It's wishy washy. It's hesitant. It's not a statement of support to call someone a liar over, unless you have an agenda.


> Shame on you. You don't like his politics, fine, but cut the propaganda.

You can't address other users like that on Hacker News, so please don't do it again.

Also, this account has been using HN exclusively for political battle. That's an abuse of this site and we ban accounts that do it. The purpose of HN is to gratify intellectual curiosity. It can't both be that kind of site and a political battlefield.


"I was totally against the war in Iraq." — Donald Trump on NBC News in 2016[0]

That's a lie, and one he's repeated often. Wishy-washy, hesitant support for a thing is not the same as being totally against a thing. His assertion that he was in opposition to it from the very beginning is a deliberate, egregious misrepresentation of his past views intended to convey authority on a subject that he simply does not possess.

I'll update the wording of my initial point to be more clear, since you have my original wording quoted here for posterity.

0. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/09/07/th...


"Look at the war in Iraq and the mess that we’re in. I would never have handled it that way. Does anybody really believe that Iraq is going to be a wonderful democracy where people are going to run down to the voting box and gently put in their ballot and the winner is happily going to step up to lead the county? C’mon. Two minutes after we leave, there’s going to be a revolution, and the meanest, toughest, smartest, most vicious guy will take over. And he’ll have weapons of mass destruction, which Saddam didn’t have. - Trump in Esquire 2004


Sure. A lot of people were against it after it started, especially when it began to go south. That's not what we're talking about. We're talking about statements like this:

"[H]ad I been in Congress at the time of the invasion, I would have cast a vote in opposition." — Donald Trump at an education event on 8-Sep-2016[0]

Considering that the vote was on 11-Oct-2002, and we have audio of Trump expressing hesitant, wishy-washy support for the war on 11-Sep-2002, that is almost certainly not true.

0. https://www.usnews.com/news/politics/articles/2016-09-10/ap-...


You're trying to put his statement into a different context now. I thought we were talking about him saying that he was totally against the war in Iraq, which he was. So we agree that wasn't a lie.

> "[H]ad I been in Congress at the time of the invasion, I would have cast a vote in opposition." — Donald Trump at an education event on September 8th, 2016[0]

You can't disprove a hypothetical situation that never happened to call him a liar. Who knows what he would have done if he had been in congress instead of a businessman. It's clear though he was questioning it publicly as early as 2003 in the Cavuto interview, which was before the war started, and came out totally against it publicly in 2004 less than a year after it started. Who knows what he was saying privately before that. You don't know. This isn't grounds to call him a liar.


Being against the war after it started is utterly irrelevant.

If you remove that from your defense of him, there is nothing left.

He was weakly in support of the war before it started. That is a fact.

When he says he was against the way, he says it to differentiate himself from the people who voted for it.

When he does that, he is lying.

There is no evidence whatever to support any other conclusion. Anything that comes from after the war was in progress is of no relevance.


This is actually a great example of how modern day propaganda works. One tactic to discredit someone is to combine two true statements by them that look similar to create a false statement. Case in point:

Claim 1: Trump says he was against the war before it started. In the Cavuto interview he's questioning the war, and he says he used to argue with Sean Hannity about it. Sean Hannity backed this up. There's no reason to doubt this.

Claim 2: Trump says he's different from his opponents because he came out strongly against the war before anyone else did. That's a fact and there's plenty of evidence.

Then comes the spin. The media will mix the two statements together to say Trump said he came out strongly against the war before it started. They'll use this to call him a liar. Try to find me one example of him saying he came out strongly against the war before it started. You can't, because he never did.

This is why people don't trust the media.


Nope.

Claiming he was against the war, after it started is irrelevant. It doesn't matter how many times you act as though it is.

One person saying they had a private argument with him before the war is also irrelevant. How many other people had private arguments but didn't express these reservations publicly?

If Trump was against the war before it started and had been brave enough to say so there would be evidence.

There is not. You can support Trump without having to be his propaganda ministry. The man makes false statements.


When did Hillary come out against the war?


Irrelevant.

Hillary has nothing to do with Trump's lies. And no failure of hers excuses him of anything.

It looks like you can't defend him anymore.


Seems my point flew over your head again. You keep calling things irrelevant that you don't like. I'm done.


No - you tried to make this about Hilary - when it isn't - it's just about Trump lying.

If you seriously don't see Trump lying, it probably is better for you to bow out.


> Being against the war after it started is utterly irrelevant.

It’s not irrelevant when someone claims "I was totally against the war in Iraq” is a lie. That's provably true.

> He was weakly in support of the war before it started. That is a fact.

Very weakly after he was asked the question for the first time. It’s utterly irrelevant.

> When he says he was against the way, he says it to differentiate himself from the people who voted for it.

Yes. Because those that voted for the war did not come out against it until much later, if they even did at all. He came out against it early.

> When he does that, he is lying.

Nope. That doesn't follow from what you wrote. Do you want to try again?


Does "millions of illegal voters" ring a bell?


What has Jil Stein to do with that story?


[flagged]


We detached this subthread from https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13727188 and marked it off-topic.


Bullshit. Obama was a presidential candidate when this took place, not even the president. You're making this into a partisan issue; not the others upthread of you.


10/15/09

>The administration has taken increasing steps in recent weeks and months to isolate the TV network, with some Capitol Hill veterans recalling no such similar steps by any president since Richard Nixon’s retaliation against The New York Times and The Washington Post during Watergate.

>“The point is this, and it really needs to be made: Fox is not just another television network,” said Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (Ill.), a close Obama ally. “Fox has become the official/semi-official voice for the Republican Party, in opposition to the president. And I think calling them out is the only way to delegitimize them as political propaganda.”

http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/63167-congression...


That wasn't the original source, nor was it discussing the same issue. This is a very different issue, which I do think was a case of overstepping by the Obama administration. However, your comment was entirely out of line for what the thread was actually discussing.


Which is why I provided a source for another situation that is directly equivalent.


This is known as "moving the goalposts". You commented on a thread discussing one issue and jumped to a conclusion that this was partisan bickering. Then when called out on it, you moved the goalposts to another issue. It's not conducive to honest discussion.


That is not what "moving the goalposts" means. You said "this is about B, not A," so in response I gave a citation for B.


FTA:

"White House press secretary Robert Gibbs still calls on Fox News reporter Major Garrett at press briefings"

...because the reporter was in the press briefing.

The journalists we're discussing now could not have been called on, as they were denied access.


[flagged]


As a non-American, it fascinates me to watch the mental gymnastics indulged in by Trump supporters to justify behavior that's clearly harmful and indicative of more harmful behavior to come.

Does it not seem like a bad thing that your president is excluding media that are critical of him from press briefings? Doesn't that seem like it might not be a good thing for the general well-being of the nation?


The GOP mantra has been for at least 10 years that anyone in the media criticizing anything they do is a Liberal Shill Who Is Lying. Trump is just the natural conclusion of that stupidity, which is why he hates the NYT so much. They print evidence of his corruption and he can't stand it.

Thankfully this stunt is probably going to cause the NYT's subscription rate to go even higher than it currently is and will probably break another subscription record this month.


Has it honestly not occurred to you that they might treat him with disrespect and disdain because he earned it?


Has it honestly not occurred to you that he might treat him with disrespect and disdain because they earned it?

Just as one example, CNN was reporting on that fake new about the "golden showers."


But they never presented it as factual. What was "true" was that they reported on a 35 page dossier created by a former British intelligence official.

In fact, they never even released the dossier -- they only reported that the classified documents were presented to Obama and Trump. Your post is some serious disinformation.


Ok, so that's the template that make fake news legitimate.

1) Get a dossier from an anonymous source claiming X did Y. According to you, it doesn't even have to exist.

2) Report on the existence of the dossier, making sure to click-bait the hell out the Y.

3) When criticized, respond that you are are "just reporting."

How well would it go over with you if Fox had started reporting on the existence of an a dossier from an anonymous source saying that former President Obama had a faked birth certificate?


> Get a dossier from an anonymous source

The source (unless you are referring to some intermediary source that delivered the dossier to the media rather than the original source) is not anonymous; media covered his background more than his identity because "former British intelligence officer" conveys more meaningful information than "Christopher Steele".


1) Get a dossier that can be traced to a British intelligence officer, which is so damning that John McCain decided to deliver it personally to the director of FBI.

FTFY.

But if you have, say, an email sent by Bill Clinton to NSA urging to investigate Obama's secret Kenyan birthplace as documented by an officer of Mossad, feel free to share with us.


People with integrity value hard questions from their critics.


But did you see his inauguration crowds? How about those millions bussed into New Hampshire to illegally vote?


I just can't get worked up about this. Had these "news" organizations been doing their jobs I might be more concerned. As it stands this is just elevating one group of propaganda orgs over others.

The difference between what Trump has done here and what prior administrations did is the publicity and brazen transparency around it. I find it amusing that people think this is somehow a terrible, ominous event. This is a trifling thing compared to the egregious ethical violations and corruption, especially around information dissemination through the press, that has existed in this institution for decades.

The most interesting and concerning thing about it is the apparent weight given to these briefings. Except in very rare circumstances (e.g. killing of OBL, some attack like 9/11), these things are basically just PR displays by the administration. They serve no newsworthy purpose.


what job are they not doing?


They have only just started being critical of an administration. Prior to Trump they basically played the "access" game: they would eschew doing genuinely tough journalistic investigation in exchange for having access to high profile politicians in interviews and other situations. This isn't a liberal or conservative thing (I'm far to the left of this country's mainstream). Even the stuff they're going after Trump for is shallow obvious things, mainly because of the shallow obvious ways that Trump lies and otherwise acts poorly.


Objectively reporting the news for one.


Ya, well the press's treatment of Trump has been a bit one sided. And well out of proportion to his actual comments and deeds.

You might not like Trump, and you might have good reasons but the above is true all the same. And, he is sitting president of the USA right now, irrespective of how you feel about him, his platforms and his supporters.

The amount of vitriol involving Trump is ridiculous. It really is. I'm not saying Trump has good manners (because he doesn't) but the press hasn't been many steps behind in utter nastiness. And they have, in most cases, stopped even pretending to be objective. It's gotten where I can't even watch or read the news anymore. It's just irrational nastiness from one side or the other with zero nuance.

I don't know where this all ends if we stay on the trajectory. Gang warfare and cutting off heads maybe. Seems the veneer of civilization indeed might be pretty thin. Maybe we might have to relearn the hard way about the things we take for granted in the social order.


> It's just irrational nastiness

Can you point out any significant press coverage of Trump's nastiness that qualifies as "irrational"?

If the press reports on Trump's nastiness, does that make the press nasty?


"Can you point out any significant press coverage of Trump's nastiness that qualifies as "irrational"?"

Sure but I'll leave it as an exercise for the reader.


Seems like substantiating your allegation would increase the likelihood of being taken seriously -- or proven wrong, of course, which is what I'll assume you are as long as you are unwilling to prove it.

"As appealing as it might be for some people to believe your comment it doesn't pass the basic sniff test."

- mythrwy, 13 days ago https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13620408


Thanks for going back through my old comments. I love it when people take me seriously enough to investigate.

You aren't going to be able to "prove me wrong" because what we are talking about here is largely a matter of nuance and opinion. Or manifest and obvious fact if you'd rather see it like that. I know what facts I see. Feel free to register your disagreement.


Look everyone understands Trump hates newspapers that call him out on his lies which is why he banned them, it is pretty straightforward.

Hence that whole Flynn thing. Or did Trump fire a guy over a fake story?


> Sure but I'll leave it as an exercise for the reader.

You seem to think you're a professor we're all dying to listen to. Make a point or get the fuck out.


Make a point or get the fuck out.

No matter what the behavior of other users it's never okay on HN to be uncivil.


The use of the word 'fuck' doesn't mean it's uncivil. I'm merely making a point as forcefully as the subject demands.


Suggesting someone should leave a forum because you don't have the patience to read what they are writing is uncivil. Just don't read it and move on.


My point is in the original post but you are making it so much better than I ever could.


You haven't made point one. Give it a fucking rest.


We've banned this account for breaking the HN guidelines. Would you please stop creating accounts to do this with?

Everybody's political feelings are inflamed these days, so we all need to work together to prevent this site from going down in flames.


I probably kept it going for further than I should have also. Apologies.

I understand and accept some people disagree and probably have valid reasons for doing so. Fine. Accepted.

But back the original point, I just don't understand nor get on any level the mouth foaming hatred. It doesn't appear rational. Seems like disagreement would be enough and so much more effective.


If you don't want ludicrous news reports, don't do ludicrous things. The press is going to report what happens and what's said, colored by each outlet's direction and strength of bias. But if there's something to report, it's going to be reported.

Similar for leaks, which are always going to happen. You can't stop leaks, but you can prevent bad things from leaking by not doing bad things.


One sided. The side of truth and sanity. The man tells a steady stream of blatant lies. He doesn't even care if they're readily objectively disprovable. The media should have been shredding him like this for over a year now. That's literally their job. I have major, major differences with every one of his opponents in the primaries, but they're all reasonably sane and professional and I wouldn't be complaining terribly if any of them won(even the equally inexperienced Carson). Only Trump is a pathological liar with a total disregard for the institutions that have kept our country safe, prosperous, and democratic for two centuries. We're not overreacting. I have literally had an acquaintance who is a huge Trump supporter and annoyed at the protests tell me that maybe Trump should have the military run the country and then things would be a lot better. Normally I would have been shocked by that statement, but that seems to be pretty much par for the course in Trumpland.


"The side of truth and sanity".

Absolutism without the admission of nuance historically leads down a dark road with a pit at the end.

I understand you think Trump is wrong and liar. But that doesn't excuse the behavior of the press in this regard. They do themselves no favors and neither do those who aren't "overreacting" while spewing vitriol.


I'm not complaining about downvotes because I don't care but the downvotes on this post are pretty clear evidence of exactly what I'm talking about.

Nastiness and lack of good manners isn't my preferred response to lack of good manners. Because if it keeps escalating it winds up in a very bad place.

There was a time people were close enough to a natural state they knew this. They bowed. They chose their words carefully and respectfully. They treated others, even strangers, by custom with a measure of consideration. And there likely were good evolutionary reasons for this which we have apparently forgotten. Now we figure with a credit card and a laptop we can do whatever and civilization will protect us. But this is just an artificial (albeit important) construct.




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