Even though fewer than a half-million votes going the other way in just four swing states would’ve changed the outcome of the 2012 presidential election, that inconvenient fact hasn’t stopped left-wing journalists from taking victory laps as though last Tuesday was as pivotal a moment in history as the North winning the Civil War. Especially left-wing journalists at Politico, who seem pretty sure Obama’s reelection validates everything they hate about the Right.
That’s not to say the GOP doesn’t have some wounds to lick, some thinking to do, and a lot of hard work ahead. That’s also not to say that those of us in New Media don’t need to stop and take a breath from time to time. But it’s just a fact that, had less than one-half of one-percent of the vote gone a different way, Politico’s Jonathan Martin would’ve had to use this weekend for something other than penning a small-minded revenge piece titled: “The GOP’s Media Cocoon.”
And you just know Martin wrote it out of anger. Why else would a good leftist suddenly become anti-science?
To be fair, though, let’s remember that Politico also has every right to resent New Media. There’s no question that, through the exposure of Politico’s biases, New Media’s done irreparable damage to Politico’s reputation. Over the past couple of years, Politico’s traffic’s fallen, and their influence has been marginalized. So bad is it now that most of Politico’s “reporters” — like Martin — have been relegated to the fever swamp of MSNBC.
And you just know it just wasn’t supposed to be like that.
But it’s not just those on the Right who see Politico as a punch-line. Many in the mainstream media associate Politico with the worst kind of click-bait bottom-feeding journalism that hurts the institution as a whole. Which is exactly what we’re dealing with in Martin’s feather-brained attack on the so-called GOP cocoon.
Once again, to gussie up an opinion piece as though it’s journalism, Politico solicits quotes from those who can be counted on to say only what affirms the premise, and the headline is made aggregation-friendly to lather up the MSNBC crowd. But in the end, Martin’s piece is like most everything else you read at Politico: partisan, silly, a little desperate, and just plain wrong.
And here are five reasons why:
1. Martin Pretends Republicans Were Certain of a Victory:
Martin’s article is based on the absurd premise that the Right is so cocooned we were almost universally caught off guard when Obama won, when he knows this simply isn’t true. In fact, I don’t know of anyone who was sure or even comfortably confident of a Romney victory.
While some of us doubted many of the polls, in the closing days the universal sense on the Right was that it was going to be close and all come down to turnout. This not only ended up being the case, but how many times did Martin say the same thing?
Well, I can tell you for a fact that in the closing days, this was the opinion Martin gave Chuck Todd — and I agreed with him and so did almost every Republican I know of.
So all Martin’s doing with this premise is dishonestly burning himself a straw man.
And without this premise, he has no article.
So there you go.
2. Martin Mocks Those Who Took Rasmussen Polls as “Gospel”:
Rasmussen has a superb track record and was backed by another pollster with an even better one: Gallup. I’m not sure how believing a pollster like Gallup makes one “insular” and “bubbled.”
And again, in the end, Gallup and Rasmussen both agreed with Martin in the “too close to call” department.
That’s a little fact Martin leaves out.
3. Martin Manufactures a Benghazi Strawman:
In this reassuring conservative pocket universe … the Benghazi controversy is worse than Watergate[.]
While some do believe this, and not without cause, what Martin’s intentionally doing is pretending the extreme is the norm so he can debate the extreme as opposed to those of us critical of a mainstream media that protected Obama through the willful downplaying of a legitimate story. Naturally, one of the most glaring members of this conspiracy-of-silence was Politico.
Moreover, unless Martin’s including Kirsten Powers, the Daily Beast, Jake Tapper, and Sharyl Attkisson in the group, it isn’t just a “conservative pocket universe” that believes Benghazi was and is a big deal.
Anyway, and I’m not trying to be glib, how could Martin and Politico possibly know how big of a story Libya is when they’ve done nothing to investigate it?
4. Martin Mocks Dick Morris:
Listen, I most certainly realize that Morris is more of a showman than anything else, but for all his flaws, any day of the week I’ll take the entertaining Dick Morris over the unconscionable race-baiting of Al Sharpton and Chris Matthews, and the religious bigotry of Lawrence O’Donnell and Martin Bashir.
But here’s the kicker: On an almost daily basis, Politico shows up, smiles, and kisses the rings of those MSNBC race-baiters and religious bigots.
Sure, like many of his counterparts on the Left, Dick Morris says outlandish things. But if he’s ever declared his partisan gratitude for a hurricane responsible for over 100 deaths, I must’ve missed it.
5. Martin Pretends Voter Fraud Is a Unicorn:
This is simple desperation:
Even this past weekend, days after a convincing Obama win, it wasn’t hard to find fringes of the right who are convinced he did so only because of mass voter fraud and mysteriously missing military ballots.
Actually, I agree with this statement and appreciate Martin’s willingness to relegate this kind of thinking to the “fringe.” But that doesn’t mean another fringe doesn’t exist — a fringe that refuses to acknowledge any kind of voter fraud. Well, to be fair, that’s not the fringe; that’s how the whole of the left-wing mainstream media thinks, most especially Politico.
For example, this is a real story that left-wing reporters like Martin and left-wing outlets like Politico will never put any effort into investigating, even as they mock their fringe counterparts who see vote fraud everywhere.
You could add a number six that, once again, reminds the anti-science Martin that studies show he’s just plain wrong. But Martin and Politico aren’t fact or science or data-based. They’re close-minded ideologues with bylines — and beholden for traffic by the kind of people grateful for killer hurricanes.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC