Give Ryan Grim of the Huffington Post credit: it takes courage to change one’s mind, and to admit an earlier mistake.
Grim has written that he was wrong to dismiss a November 2011 report by 60 Minutes (based on Breitbart editor Peter Schweitzer’s book, Throw Them All Out) on insider trading in Congress:
At the time, I wrongly reported that 60 Minutes’ poor choice of targets for its report, and its clumsy attempt to connect specific trading to specific legislative action, set momentum for the bill back. Instead, in fact, the report propelled the legislation forward.
Grim had initially reported that the 60 Minutes report “falls short.”
What has changed his view is not the merits of the argument against insider trading–which Grim acknowledged at the time as “a serious problem in Washington”–but the fate of the legislation, which President Barack Obama suddenly supported during his State of the Union address last night:
Much of the left and the left media–including the Huffington Post, Politico, and Media Matters for America–dismissed the issue of insider trading and tried to discredit both the allegations and their source. Now that Obama has taken up the legislation–with its sponsor, Senator Scott Brown (R-MA) obtaining Obama’s explicit commitment to make Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid move it through the Senate–the left is scrambling to catch up.
Grim’s (honest) change of heart is likely the beginning of a broader and less principled shift, in which the left will attempt, in Orwellian fashion, to rewrite the history of its opposition to the Schweizer book, the 60 Minutes report, and congressional legislation on insider trading.
Big Brother says insider trading in Congress is wrong; therefore it has always been wrong.
The reversal is inevitable, given that the Obama cult of personality still enthralls many of his media admirers–and given the political advantage of supporting insider trading legislation when Republican leaders in Congress have stalled it and none few of the remaining Republican presidential candidates has yet seized upon it (Gov. Rick Perry, no longer running, did champion the issue at the time). Update: Newt Gingrich did attack congressional insider trading while on the stump in South Carolina.
Some congressional Democrats are still resisting a ban on congressional insider trading, and some liberal journalists are only now discovering that it exists, but the shift in left-wing media has already begun.
Obama has spoken–and there’s an election to win, after all. Just try not to give Breitbart any credit.