Jeffrey Lord -- who thinks it's a "legitimate conservative" tactic to smear people as Nazis -- spends his Sept. 12 NewsBusters column complaining about the purportedly dishonesty-laden "Liberal Media Narrative." He explains:
How does the Liberal Media Narrative game work? Like this.
Reported the New York Post of then-Senator Barack Obama during the fall campaign of 2008 in a remark that was instantly seen by Republicans as an attack on Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.
“You know, you can put lipstick on a pig,” Obama said, “but it’s still a pig.”
….Many in the Obama crowd leaped to their feet in delight – apparently taking the “pig” comment as a direct slam at Palin.”
The liberal media of the day was outraged. From the New York Times to the Washington Post to MSNBC, Obama was pilloried for being a sexist and a misogynist. His poll numbers tanked.
Just kidding. The media didn’t care a whit, Senator Obama was not only elected president he was re-elected.
Except, well, that's not how that happened at all -- starting with what Obama actually said.
Obama was criticizing John McCain's policies by referencing a common saying, and Obama's full statement in context shows that he didn't reference Palin at all. The New York Post made up the part about the statement being a "direct slam at Palin."
Contrary to Lord's claim, MSNBC did, in fact, promote the idea that Obama was attacking Palin. Even the Associated Press, whhich Lord would most certainly count among the "liberal media," did it as well.
Media critic Howard Kurtz, now with Fox News, pointed out at the time that the right's narrative on the "lipstick" quote was a "manufactured story that was pushed by the right ... pushed along and made up by Drudge, Sean Hannity, and the New York Post," and yet the media did "segment after segment on it."
That's what you might call the Conservative Media Narrative -- and Lord fell for it.
Why is Lord doing this? To deflect from Donald Trump's recent misogynistic remarks toward Carly Fiorina and Fox News' Megyn Kelly. He's following the MRC playbook as Ted Cruz did by insisting that any criticism of Trump is, by definition, liberal:
Now comes the media dust-up over Trump’s remark’s about Carly Fiorina. And unlike the media’s treatment of then-Senator Obama’s attack on Sarah Palin with his “lipstick on a pig” comment, Trump gets no pass. As he did not with his comments on Fox’s Megyn Kelly after the Fox debate. The Liberal Media Narrative game is in play.
And it isn’t working.
What is the lesson here? It’s an easy lesson, an old lesson and a lesson that has nothing whatsoever to do with Donald Trump on Carly Fiorina’s looks or Ted Cruz on a government shutdown beyond the fact that they are Republicans. The fact is that no Republican - no matter who he or she is - will get a pass on anything the media decides is “controversial.” The Liberal Media Narrative must be served come hell or high water.
Despite the fact that Obama was definitely not referencing Palin in his remarks while Trump was directly and unambiguously directly his remarks at Kelly and Fiorina, Lord insists that Trump's fans -- himself apparently among them -- "understand why comments about the physical looks of a woman are bad if coming from Donald Trump, irrelevant and dismissed if coming from Barack Obama."
At no point, however, does Lord breathe a word of what Trump actually said about Kelly and Fiorina in his defense of them; he simply declares any atempt to hold Trump accountable for his words (never mind the fact that even conservatives criticized his nasty jabs at Fiorina and Kelly) is part of the "Liberal Media Narrative."
But if there is a dishonest "liberal media narrative" that Lord believes exists, then there is also a conservative media narrative that is just as dishonest -- and Lord's column is all about furthering that dishonesty.