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Tuesday, May 15, 2012
At The MRC, The Truth Is A 'Smear'
Topic: NewsBusters

Only at the Media Research Center would the truth be treated as a "smear."

In a May 13 NewsBusters post, Noel Sheppard complains about "the [Washington] Post's recent smear of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney."That's a reference to the story about Romney's boarding-school years, in which he took part in a forced hair-cutting of a student suspected to be gay.

Where, exactly, is the "smear"? Sheppard doesn't say. After all, not even Romney himself has challenged the accuracy of the story. The Post is standing by the story, with ombudsman Patrick Pexton pointing out that it talked to five different sources about the hair-cutting incident.

In other words, Sheppard is attacking the Post for reporting the truth. But that's what we've come to expect from the MRC, whose "Tell the Truth!" campaign gets upset when the truth is told about conservative. 

Sheppard's snit fit was merely the silliest reaction among MRC and NewsBusters writers to the Romney story.

A May 10 NewsBusters post by Tom Blumer endeavored to explain away Romney's behavior:

Of course, this wouldn't make anyone's list of their proudest moments as an 18 year-old (Romney had just turned 18 at the time). But [Post writer Jason] Horowitz did not note any physical injury Lauber might have suffered as a result of the incident, wasn't able to pin any specific anti-homosexual utterance to Romney, and provided no proof that Romney might have known for certain that Lauber had homosexual tendencies. No one can possibly believe that the WaPo writer didn't try to find evidence of all of the above, or that he would have eagerly reported it had he found it.

Blumer went on to assert that the story was "an archetypal example of why their newspaper publishing segment is in so much financial trouble" -- even though he, like Sheppard, could not identify any factual errors.

Tim Graham rants in a May 10 NewsBusters post: "Did The WashPost Report a 5,000-Word Expose on Obama's Cocaine Use In the Last Cycle? Of Course Not." Graham conveniently ignores the fact that Obama disclosed his youthful drug use himself in his 1995 bio, "Dreams From My Father," while Romney made no such self-disclosure -- even as he quotes a Post article citing political experts who claim that "it is better for a politician to disclose his own transgressions, rather than be put on the defensive by revelations."

This is what passes for "media research" at the MRC. Simply reporting inconvenient facts makes you guilty of "liberal bias."

Posted by Terry K. at 11:05 AM EDT

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