A May 13 item on the Columbia Journalism Review's website described how ABC's Jake Tapper handled the out-of-context twisting of Obama's "constant sore" comment:
Given the mainstream media’s tendency toward false even-handedness, we might have expected this to be reported neutrally, under a headline like: “Boehner Attacks Obama Over Israel Comments.”
Instead, Tapper posted an item on his ABC News blog last night under the admirably straightforward headline: “House Republican Leader Twists Obama Statement on Israel.” His post begins:In an interview with The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., talked a great deal about Israel. He was rather effusive in his support for the Jewish state. Apparently given nothing of substance to criticize, House Republican leaders then took a statement Obama made and twisted it to act as if the Democrat had insulted the Jewish state. Which he had not.
Tapper then went on to lay out the facts of the case, concluding:When Obama twisted Sen. John McCain’s “100 Years” comment, it was pretty dishonest as well. [We agree.] But this may be worse, because Boehner et al are falsely accusing Obama of besmirching a nation and a people. They are accusing him of being anti-Israel, even anti-Semitic. It is false.
Tapper’s post serves as a model for how the media should handle these efforts by both parties to generate phony controversies. Here’s hoping it starts a trend.
Of course, WorldNetDaily did none of this -- as we detailed, it devoted an entire article portraying the false assertion as true and the phony controversy as legitimate. It remains on the WND site with nary a retraction or apology to be found.
Tapper's behavior here demostrates how real journalists behave. WND's behavior, by contrast, demonstrates that he is not a source of real journalism -- after all, it has hired Aaron Klein, a partisan hack whose repeated smears of Obama demonstrate that he may as well be on John McCain's payroll (if he isn't already) -- And it's another reason that WorldNetDaily cannot be taken seriously as a news organization.
UPDATE: The WND article in question is unbylined, and was apparently not written by Aaron Klein. This item has been updated to reflect that.