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WaPo Remains Embarrassing, AP Interviews the Dead, and Tampons and the Patriarchy…or Something

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"Riffed from the Headlines" is Townhall's daily VIP feature with coverage of the deeply flawed aspects of journalism in the nation. We'll look to bring accountability to the mishaps, malaprops, misdeeds, manipulations, malpractice, and manufactured narratives in mainstream media.

06.13.22

Reporting on the Mirror – WASHINGTON POST

After dealing with their imbalanced reporter, Felicia Sonmez (finally), Washington Post executives once again need to publicly contend with their other problematic writer, Taylor Lorenz. 

WaPo media writer Eric Wemple followed up on the matter at his paper and was actually stonewalled on the issue – by his paper. He asked managers about the standing contradiction that in a Correction, the paper stipulates a factual error had been inserted into Lorenz's piece by an editor, but she later attested that she was the reason behind the said error. 

It becomes farcical that the management held Wemple at arm's length and stood by the correction, and then, in WaPo fashion, Wemple's piece ended up having an Update affixed at the top. 

Prose & Contradiction – ASSOCIATED PRESS

Is contacting the dead becoming a new media trend? We had just detailed how Chuck Todd attempted to land an interview with the recently departed Congressman Don Young, and now the AP takes this to a new level. The announcement of a Democrat effort to purchase a number of Spanish-language radio stations in an effort to stem the tide of Hispanic voters fleeing the party has excited many in the press. The AP covered some of the reactions to this news in the Miami area, and among those interviewed, they had a curious source. 

It was soon noticed there was a slight problem with this segment. 

A correction was issued that does little to answer other questions, such as who they had actually spoken with and what led them to believe they talked to the late Ms. Flores? 

Gilded Reframe – USA TODAY

The announcement has come from the executives at Gannett that they are in the process of a wholesale change to their collection of newspapers. USA Today and the hundreds of daily papers will be seeing a scaling back on editorials and op-ed features in their publications. Many of the local papers have curtailed the frequency of these features in a process seen across the network of papers.

- "The company has been pushing for the cutbacks for years, and they have become increasingly visible to readers since a committee of editors formally recommended them at a meeting in April. 'Readers don't want us to tell them what to think,' the editors, who come from Gannett newsrooms across the country, declared in an internal presentation. 'They don't believe we have the expertise to tell anyone what to think on most issues. They perceive us as having a biased agenda.'"

Legalized Press-titution – FOX NEWS

  • David Hogg is not a politician, so this is not an in-kind donation.

Even if you are a wholesale supporter of David Hogg and his March For Our Lives activism, is there no room at all for objective analysis or critiques? 

Chad Pergram repeats a series of quotes from Hogg, and a simple moment spent on introspection would warrant a comment. 

I guess the accuracy is in the phrase "lobbied for" since it does not mean "effectively implemented." Because see, Chad, had March For Our Lives actually been successful in its mission to save lives and end gun violence, there would not be any need for them to reintroduce their series of marches and speeches today. 

Pre-Written Field Reports – NFL NETWORK

  • They only need to be objective when reporting on football, apparently.

Last week, the ever-problematic Washington football team decided they needed to fine an assistant coach, Jack Del Rio, for expressing his opinion on a news matter. After Del Rio made comments downplaying the January 6 attack on the Capitol, the team ignorantly tried to state the George Floyd riots were not at all comparable. This despite the riots leading to looting and arson in D.C., as well as an attack on the White House where numerous police were injured. So yea, completely different. 

After the fine was levied, Ian Rappaport reported on the announcement – and also weighed in with his own commentary to help out football fans. Declaring Del Rio made "troublesome and wrong comments" really helps us to understand the issue better. 

Pulitzer Prize Nomination – TIME 

If you were not aware, Joe Biden is about to be facing yet another crisis in the marketplace. Feminine hygiene products are becoming as scarce on store shelves as baby formula, and Time Magazine is on the case. It is a bit of obliviousness that there is this inherent need to blame issues such as this on men, all in an effort to deflect blame from Joe Biden – who identifies as a man. 

As the baby shortage reared up, there were comments that this would not have happened if men had to breastfeed. Extending that type of genius thinking is Alana Samuels, who posits that this shortage in tampons could be the work of those accursed men. 

When this is your fallback blame for…well, most things, you tend to overlook the obvious things. For this little dose of theorizing to hold up, Ms. Samuels has to begin with the premise that men in business are not all that interested in seeing a product get into the marketplace in order to generate a profit. 

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