Since the Carter years, political ideology has slowly replaced objectivity, among the ranks of America’s Main Stream Media, until, as was demonstrated by http://www.politico.com yesterday, “reporters” don’t even try to hide their loyalty to the Democratic Party, anymore.
Yesterday, Dr. Ben Carson was the target of a failed ‘Hit Piece” by the Liberal Political Website.
Before we look at the details of that attempt at “Political Assassination”, let’s look at his TRUE Biography, first, courtesy of achievement.org…
Benjamin Carson was born in Detroit, Michigan. His mother Sonya had dropped out of school in the third grade, and married when she was only 13. When Benjamin Carson was only eight, his parents divorced, and Mrs. Carson was left to raise Benjamin and his older brother Curtis on her own. She worked at two, sometimes three, jobs at a time to provide for her boys.Benjamin and his brother fell farther and farther behind in school. In fifth grade, Carson was at the bottom of his class. His classmates called him “dummy” and he developed a violent, uncontrollable temper.
When Mrs. Carson saw Benjamin’s failing grades, she determined to turn her sons’ lives around. She sharply limited the boys’ television watching and refused to let them outside to play until they had finished their homework each day. She required them to read two library books a week and to give her written reports on their reading even though, with her own poor education, she could barely read what they had written.
Within a few weeks, Carson astonished his classmates by identifying rock samples his teacher had brought to class. He recognized them from one of the books he had read. “It was at that moment that I realized I wasn’t stupid,” he recalled later. Carson continued to amaze his classmates with his newfound knowledge and within a year he was at the top of his class.
The hunger for knowledge had taken hold of him, and he began to read voraciously on all subjects. He determined to become a physician, and he learned to control the violent temper that still threatened his future. After graduating with honors from his high school, he attended Yale University, where he earned a degree in Psychology.From Yale, he went to the Medical School of the University of Michigan, where his interest shifted from psychiatry to neurosurgery. His excellent hand-eye coordination and three-dimensional reasoning skills made him a superior surgeon. After medical school he became a neurosurgery resident at the world-famous Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. At age 32, he became the hospital’s Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery, a position he would hold for the next 29 years.
In 1987, Carson made medical history with an operation to separate a pair of Siamese twins. The Binder twins were born joined at the back of the head. Operations to separate twins joined in this way had always failed, resulting in the death of one or both of the infants. Carson agreed to undertake the operation. A 70-member surgical team, led by Dr. Carson, worked for 22 hours. At the end, the twins were successfully separated and can now survive independently.Carson’s other surgical innovations have included the first intra-uterine procedure to relieve pressure on the brain of a hydrocephalic fetal twin, and a hemispherectomy, in which an infant suffering from uncontrollable seizures has half of its brain removed. This stops the seizures, and the remaining half of the brain actually compensates for the missing hemisphere.
In addition to his medical practice, Dr. Carson has long been in constant demand as a public speaker, and devotes much of his time to meeting with groups of young people. In 2008, President George W. Bush awarded Dr. Carson the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.
…Dr. Carson opposed passage of the federal Affordable Care Act of 2010, often called the ACA or Obamacare. After retiring from his position as Director of Pediatric Neursurgery at Hopkins in 2012, Carson began to speak more frequently on other public issues and emerged as a vocal critic of the Obama administration. In the news media and political circles, he attracted considerable attention as a possible candidate for public office. In May 2015, he ended several months of speculation by announcing his intention to seek the Republican Party’s nomination for President of the United States.
Now, let’s look at the LIE that Politico published online yesterday, in order to attempt to politically “assassinate” Dr. Carson.
Mollie Hemingway, the Senior Editor at thefederalist.com, summarized the whole sorry story late yesterday afternoon…
Politico‘s Kyle Cheney admitted that he fabricated a negative story about Ben Carson. At least, according to his own standards, he admitted the grievous journalistic sin.
In a story published early on Friday, Politico’s Kyle Cheney authored a piece headlined “Ben Carson admits fabricating West Point scholarship” with a subhed “Carson’s campaign on Friday conceded that a central point in his inspirational personal story did not occur as he previously described.”
There were at least five major problems with the story:
The headline was completely false
The subhed was also completely false
The opening paragraph was false false false
The substance of the piece was missing key exonerating information
The article demonstrated confusion about service academy admissions and benefits
But other than that, A+++ work, Kyle Cheney and Politico.
It could take all day to parse the problems with Kyle Cheney’s now-somewhat-cleaned-up hit piece on Carson, but let’s just look at his original introductory claims:
“Ben Carson’s campaign on Friday admitted, in a response to an inquiry from POLITICO, that a central point in his inspirational personal story was fabricated: his application and acceptance into the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. The academy has occupied a central place in Carson’s tale for years. According to a story told in Carson’s book, “Gifted Hands,” the then-17 year old was introduced in 1969 to Gen. William Westmoreland, who had just ended his command of U.S. forces in Vietnam, and the two dined together. That meeting, according to Carson’s telling, was followed by a “full scholarship” to the military academy. West Point, however, has no record of Carson applying, much less being extended admission…When presented with this evidence, Carson’s campaign conceded the story was false.”
Roughly none of this is true. Ben Carson’s campaign did not “admit” that a central point in his story “was fabricated.” Quite the opposite. The central point of the story is falsely described by Cheney/Politico as being that he applied and was accepted at West Point. Carson, in fact, has repeatedly claimed not to have applied. So any claim regarding the absence of West Point records of such an application would not debunk Carson’s point. And, again, Carson’s campaign never “conceded” the story was false at least in part because the story, as characterized by Politico, is not one he told. Further, Cheney is unable to substantiate his claim that Carson told this story. Nowhere in the article does he even explain, with facts, where he came up with the idea that Carson has ever made this claim.
Politico stealthily edited the inflammatory headline and lede, after the damage was done. They made changes without adding a note about what was corrected. They didn’t update the piece or add an editor’s note. The new headline is very much toned down to “Exclusive: Carson claimed West Point ‘scholarship’ but never applied.” This is a claim not exclusive to Politico and not newsworthy in the least. Carson himself broke this news 23 years ago when he said he was offered a scholarship to West Point but never applied. The cleaned-up story still says that Carson “conceded that he never applied nor was granted admission to West Point.” To concede is to admit that something is true. But, again, Carson himself made this claim more than two decades ago, so he’s not conceding the point to Kyle Cheney or Politico simply because Kyle Cheney and Politico misread him.
The Washington Post‘s Dave Weigel, who immediately expressed skepticism about the significance of the Politico hit that was taking everybody by storm, has a balanced take on the kerfuffle here. He also noted (on Twitter):
daveweigel @daveweigel 15 hours ago
“Also, taking “fabrication” out of that headline is like taking uranium out of an A-bomb.”
One other quick point to make about Politico and Kyle Cheney’s piece. The original story claimed that Carson also lied by claiming he was offered a full scholarship to West Point since the service academy is entirely taxpayer funded. Or, as Politico put it: “indeed there are no ‘full scholarships,’ per se.” The only problem with this is that the academy itself describes this benefit as a “full scholarship.”
Ben Carson was a brilliant student who had already shown an interest in the military and had demonstrated leadership skills. It would be weirder if West Point hadn’t tried to recruit him than tried to recruit him. This doesn’t happen to we journalists, for obvious reasons, but exceptional students are recruited by top colleges and universities all the time.
Now, as for Kyle Cheney’s concession that he fabricated his piece on Carson. He didn’t. That’s how I’m interpreting his decision to stealthily edit his piece to remove much of the error. But Ben Carson didn’t “admit” or “concede” to fabrication and he’s been tarred by Cheney as if he had. So I’ll keep the headline.
Other critiques of Cheney and Politico are available from across the political and media spectrum here, here, here, here, and here.
At a time when the media need to demonstrate good faith efforts to cover Republicans and conservatives with even a modicum of fairness, Kyle Cheney and Politico have done a tremendous disservice to their brands.
Last night, Dr. Carson showed why he is one of the top two Candidates for the Republican Presidential Nomination, as he let the assembled members of the Main Stream Media know how he felt about their “lack of subjectivity”.
Mediaite.com reported that
Ben Carson faced some combative reporters during a press conference in Florida tonight about the various issues in his background that have been raised this week.He dismissed Politico‘s report about him not being formally offered a West Point scholarship, simply insisting it was relayed to him that he could get one with the kind of accomplishments in his background.
He declared, “There is a desperation on behalf of some to try to find a way to tarnish me… Next week it’ll be my kindergarten teacher who said I peed in my pants.”
As the reporters at his Florida presser continued to press Carson, he got pretty steamed and denounced the “witch hunt,” saying, “I do not remember this level of scrutiny for one President Barack Obama.”
In a very mocking voice, Carson brought up a lot of issues from the president’s past before turning the tables on the reporters and asking them point-blank why they’re not interested in Obama’s sealed college records.
The assembled reporters kept pressing Carson and he told them, “My job is to call you out when you’re unfair.”
Yesterday afternoon, before Politico admitted to lying, Rush Limbaugh, the Godfather of Conservative Talk Radio said the following on his program:
I think what we have here is an electronic lynching. We have an electronic lynching being conducted against a Republican African-American candidate by a majority white, mainstream American liberal media where — if you’re not a good liberal and a good African-American on their plantation — they are gonna take you out. And we are witnessing it. It’s the same thing, folks, that happened to Clarence Thomas back in 1990 I believe it was. Again, back in 1990 there wasn’t any Fox News. There wasn’t a blogosphere.There were just the beginnings of the conservative presence on the web — and there was me, talk radio. But there was nothing else. This is the kind of thing they used to get away with. This used to be the standard way news happened. This is not character assassination. This goes way beyond character assassination. This is an attempt to destroy Carson’s reputation, his political future, his career, his credibility, all of it. This is intended to destroy him. Like just told our liberal caller: It’s the only way these people can win. They think Carson’s a lunatic and they still can’t — or are not comfortable taking him on in the arena of ideas. They have to character assassinate and destroy.
This is despicable, despicable stuff.
Yes, it is.
The Democratic Party and their Liberal Minions are desperate to somehow stop the momentum of America’s Political Pendulum, which is in the process of swinging execrably to the Right, or Conservative side.
We witnessed it with the debacle that was the Republican Candidate Debate on CNBC, in which the Junkyard Chihuahuas, that are the Min Stream Media, were loosed on the Republican Candidates, a laughable attempt, just like yesterday’s slander of Dr. Carson, which failed miserably.
The thing about it is: We still have a year to go before the Presidential Elections.
How much more “yipping at the heels” of those who dare oppose “The Old White Folks From the Northeast” who comprise the Democratic Presidential Hopefuls, are the Junkyard Chihuahuas of the Liberal Main Stream Media capable of?
How much food can Rosie O’Donnell put away at an all-you-can-eat buffet?
Until He Comes,