Rolling Stone contributing editor Matt Taibbi emerged Friday as one of the few pundits enthusiastic over Joe Biden’s controversial performance in this week’s vice presidential debate against Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI). Beyond defending Biden’s interruptions and awkward laughter, Taibbi considers this approach the model for “objective” journalists covering the Republican presidential ticket.
Posting on his “Taibblog” the morning after the debate, the rave review read:
I’ve never thought much of Joe Biden. But man, did he get it right in last night’s debate, and not just because he walloped sniveling little Paul Ryan on the facts. What he got absolutely right, despite what you might read this morning (many outlets are criticizing Biden’s dramatic excesses), was his tone. Biden did absolutely roll his eyes, snort, laugh derisively and throw his hands up in the air whenever Ryan trotted out his little beady-eyed BS-isms.
But he should have! He was absolutely right to be doing it. We all should be doing it. That includes all of us in the media, and not just paid obnoxious-opinion-merchants like me, but so-called “objective” news reporters as well. We should all be rolling our eyes, and scoffing and saying, “Come back when you’re serious.”
The proper way to report such a tactic is to bring to your coverage exactly the feeling that Biden brought to the debate last night: contempt and amazement. We in the press should be offended by what Romney and Ryan are doing – we should take professional offense that any politician would try to whisk such a gigantic lie past us to our audiences, and we should take patriotic offense that anyone is trying to seize the White House using such transparently childish and dishonest tactics.
Taibbi was last noteworthy in March 2012 when he drew controversy for attacking Andrew Breitbart on the day of his death.