Power of Story Send a Tweet        
OpEdNews Op Eds

How The Media's Obsession With "Optics" Is Ruining Campaign Journalism

By       Message Eric Boehlert       (Page 1 of 4 pages)     Permalink

Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; , Add Tags  Add to My Group(s)

Must Read 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H4 9/3/16

Author 22111
Become a Fan
  (5 fans)
- Advertisement -

Reprinted from Media Matters


(Image by Media Matters)   Permission   Details   DMCA

Joining a long list of concerned media voices, The New York Times' editorial page this week linked up with the Beltway chorus to express alarm over the Clinton Foundation and the "question" it presents for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton's campaign.

- Advertisement -

Surveying the well-trampled ground of supposed conflicts of interest and insinuations that Clinton sold State Department access to donors, the Times announced a pressing "need for major changes at the foundation now, before the November election."

As part of its declaration, the newspaper dutifully noted, "'Pay-to-play' charges by Donald Trump have not been proved." But the Times, like so many other lecturing voices, was quite clear in claiming that the Clintons have to address concerns about optics even if that means shutting down their landmark global charity. That's how important it now is for the do-good foundation to be spotless and pure: Optics trump humanitarianism.

Or, there's no proof anybody did anything wrong, therefore drastic actions must be taken to fix the problem.

- Advertisement -

The meandering foundation story has become a case study for the Beltway media's double standard: holding Clinton to a higher mark that's based on optics, not on facts. Unable to prove misconduct or anything close to it (just ask the AP), the press relies on the comfy confines of "optics" and the "appearance" of conflict to allow them to attack Clinton and the foundation.

For Clinton, it's a can't-win proposition. If the press says the story looks bad, even if there's nothing to suggest it actually is bad, she gets tagged with an optics problem. And because journalists are the only ones handing out the grades, they get to decide how bad it looks.

But the journalism malpractice doesn't end there. It extends to the fact that the press doesn't apply the same visual test to Republican nominee Donald Trump, whose far-flung business dealings would represent an actual, even historic, conflict of interest were he to be elected president.

Click Here to Read Whole Article

A recent NPR report also perfectly summed up the media's working equation:

"There's no question the optics are bad for Clinton and the Clinton Foundation. But no proof has emerged that any official favors -- regulations, government contracts, international deals -- were curried in exchange for donations or pledges."

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3  |  4

 

- Advertisement -

Must Read 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com

Eric Boehlert is the author of Lapdogs: How the Press Rolled Over for Bush (Free Press, 2006). He worked for five years as a senior writer for Salon.com, where he wrote extensively about media and politics. Prior to that, he worked as a (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon Share Author on Social Media   Go To Commenting

The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
- Advertisement -

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Even Trump lapdog Giuliani can't defend Trump's new ugly attack on Obama

White House stunned as Giuliani racks up new possible felonies for Trump

In Rare Public Rebuke, FBI Humiliates Nunes For "Memo" Smear Campaign

Struggling Clear Channel And Rush Limbaugh's $400 Million Payday

Trump's trade war backfires as red states defy him

How Fox News Is Destroying The Republican Party