Tom Brokaw did his very best to contextualize the numerous scandals pummeling the Obama Administration by saying they don’t rise up to the level of Watergate, Iran-Contra, or even Abu Ghraib.
I was covering Iran-Contra during the Reagan administration when [Peggy Noonan] was working for that president, in which we were funding a war illegally. We were trying to make a deal with the Iranians at the time. That was a pretty big damn scandal.
Brokaw seems to be employing a tactic common among has-been journalists these days. They seem to be afraid that any story seen as “bigger” than the stories they covered in their day somehow diminishes their life work, and therefore any suggestion to this effect must be smacked down immediately.
So, in Brokaw’s opinion:
- The Department of Justice obtaining secret subpoenas naming reporters as an aider, abetter and co-conspirator and confiscating thousands of reporters’ phone records is not as serious as Abu Ghraib.
- The President’s inaction as our consulate was under attack in Libya, resulting in the death of four Americans at the hands of terrorists, and the Administration’s efforts to mislead the press and American people during a presidential campaign doesn’t rise to the level of Abu Ghraib.
- The IRS using their power and intimidation tactics to discriminate against groups and individuals because of their political beliefs is not as significant as Abu Ghraib
Brokaw explained his rationale for making Abu Ghraib the be all and end all of presidential scandals: “Abu Ghraib was a big scandal and how it – no one was really held accountable for it.”
If accountability (or lack thereof) is the new standard for scandals, then Brokaw needs to re-calibrate his memory of Abu Ghraib and the comparison to the Obama scandals. Eleven soldiers were convicted of various charges relating to the Abu Ghraib incident. Meanwhile, every single government employee involved with Benghazi, the IRS, HHS fundraising, AP subpoenas and the Fox News/James Rosen subpoenas continues to cash their paychecks and are in line for full government pensions.
Watch the segment here: