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Monday, May 22, 2017
MRC's Totally Hypocritical Attack on Anonymous Sources
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's Tim Graham and Brent Bozell denounced anonymous sourcing in their May 17 column:

In the current hothouse environment, with liberal media that define Trump as the antonym of democracy, the public should be wary of anonymous sources. This is especially true today. Newspapers that crusaded against Trump in their pages — both news sections and editorial pages — simply cannot be trusted. Theirs is not the pursuit of truth; it's the hunt for Donald J. Trump's scalp.

Earth to the Post: Your new motto is "Democracy Dies in Darkness," but anonymous sourcing is darkness. Every source who hides behind a wall as he tries to ruin other people's careers is a self-serving coward with a personal or political axe to grind. Without knowing an identity, the public has no way of telling anything. It's idiotic for the press to demand transparency in government at the exact same time it rewards government officials who refuse to be transparent themselves.

Journalists pat themselves on the back that they would never be "stenographers to power," but they're worse than that now. In their zeal to destroy Trump, they've become stenographers to anonymous power.

Graham repeated his (and Bozell's) complaint in an appearance on Fox News, where he grumbled about "news media about Trump that has been driven by anonymous sources trying to destroy this president."

Needless to say, Graham and Bozell are being totally hypocritical. When anonymous sources were being used to attack people other than Trump, the MRC has been more than happy to promote their claims.

Shortly before the election, Fox News reported -- based on anonymous sources -- that an indictment of Hillary Clinton was likely over her emails. The MRC not only didn't question Fox's use of anonymous sources, it demanded that other media outlets report the story, even as it was falling apart.

Fox News ultimately retracted the story, conceding that its claims were never verified. The MRC never told its readers about that.

So, Messrs. Graham and Bozell, spare us your selective, hypocritical, politically motivated concern over anonymous sources -- nobody's buying it. We know you'll love them again when they are being used to report a claim about a non-conservative political figure.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:09 PM EDT

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