Topic: Media Research Center
Remember when the Media Research Center's Tim Graham embarrassed himself trying to parse President Trump's "nasty" remark about Meghan Markle? He wasn't the only one.
In a June 7 NewsBusters post, Clay Waters complained that the New York Times "upped the significance of the silly spat into a battle over ultimate truth" by pointing out that Trump flipped between confirming and denying what he said about Markle. Waters made sure to add his own defensive silliness: "Reading the full exchange makes one think Trump meant to say she had been “nasty” to him, not necessarily a nasty person."
Waters then took on the Times' suggestion that Trump was acting in an Orwellian manner through the hoary tradfition of the Clinton Equivocation:
By contrast, Bill Clinton’s infamous definition of the word “is” before a grand jury (“It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is” was a genuine Orwellian-style moment during the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Yet it was apparently (according to nytimes.com) never referred to as Orwellian in a news story (acerbic columnist Maureen Dowd did make the link in a column titled “The Wizard of Is”).
Waters wasn't the only MRC writer to take offense at Orwell references to Trump denying what he clearly said. Joseph Chalfant retorted in a June 3 post after CNN's Jeffrey Toobin dropped an Orwell comparison:
When Trump denied that he called Markle nasty, Toobin stated that the U.S. was now in a “1984-like scenario.” 1984, the classical work by dystopian author George Orwell, describes a totalitarian nation that regularly utilizes slogans such as “Ignorance is Strength” and “Freedom is Slavery.” Even attempting to connect these two administrations is ludicrous. It's a hard reach to equate a scenario in which a president denies an offhanded comment about a figurehead of another nation to one in which an entire government’s role is oppresses its citizens.
And Nicholas Fondacaro referenced Toobin's claim before huffing: "Last time this author checked, Trump wasn’t locking people up for talking about his “nasty” comment and sending them to be re-educated."