claims Ted Koppel in the Washington Post:
Whether by strategy or inadvertence, President Trump has drawn much of the media into a distortion of their traditional roles. Editors and reporters insist that they are bound by the strictures of objectivity, but the very nature of the president’s character — the preening, the boasting, the torrent of careless tweets and the avalanche of lies, the seemingly reckless assaults on pillars of the establishment — provokes reactions that confirm precisely what Trump’s most avid supporters already believe: The creatures of “the swamp” belong to a secret society from which they are excluded.
For a quarter century, Koppel hosted Nightline on ABC, the network where Clinton Foundation contributor George Stephanopoulos poses daily as being “objective,” and whose former equally objective anchor, the late Peter Jennings derided the arrival of a Republican House and Senate in 1994 as the American voters having a “temper tantrum.” Speaking of Jennings, as John Fund noted on Sunday at NRO in his encomium to the capriciousness that was Sen. John McCain:
During the 2000 Republican presidential convention in Philadelphia, I went to a tony restaurant to attend a reception. By accident, I stumbled into a room chock-full of top-shelf media types: Dan Rather of CBS, the late Peter Jennings of ABC, Tom Brokaw of NBC, Arthur Sulzberger of the New York Times. After a few minutes, I realized I was at the wrong event. It was a birthday party for John McCain. I recall telling Peter Jennings that it was a strange party for a politician to have. As far as I could tell, there were no family members present, no donors, no party officials. In a deadpan tone, Jennings told me: “Well, this is really the first meeting of John McCain’s next precinct-organizing committee.”
But when McCain ran a more conventionally conservative campaign in 2008, competing with the media’s new heartthrob, Barack Obama, the pundits turned on him with a vengeance. According to the Pew Research Center, between the Republican National Convention’s close on September 4 and the final presidential debate on October 15, McCain’s media coverage was negative over positive by a 4-to-1 ratio.
New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd complained that McCain had “turned on his former base, the news media.” He now had feet of clay: “Even some of McCain’s former aides are disturbed by the 73-year-old’s hostile, vindictive, sarcastic persona.”
Gosh, whatever could have soured McCain’s mood?
Incidentally, Koppel’s essay arrives a day after Chuck Todd of NBC wrote in the Atlantic that “It’s Time for the Press to Stop Complaining—And to Start Fighting Back.”