Pamela Geller tweeted this out last night from the so-called “Deploraball” (eye roll):
— Pamela Geller (@PamelaGeller) January 20, 2017
You might wonder whether she was trolling, but Oliver Darcy said the same thing:
Jim Hoft will apparently have a White House correspondent. https://t.co/jpG1AUa72X
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) January 20, 2017
I am of two minds about this.
On one hand, Jim Hoft of Gateway Pundit is, um, not a journalist. To put it mildly. I have described Hoft as someone “whose two-step editorial fact-checking process consists of 1) asking whether a story benefits Trump, and 2) determining how many exclamation points to include in the title.” Kimberly Ross recently wrote a post that laid out some of his past whoppers. You should read that post now if you haven’t already. Let me cite the errors noted by Kimberly and add a couple of my own. (Warning: if you actually click on any of the Gateway Pundit links, close the tab as soon as you’re done, since his site will furiously auto-refresh every second or so until you do.)
- The “Michelle Obama scrubs Hillary from her Twitter timeline” story, which Hoft had here, and which Sean Hannity apologized for repeating.
- The “Washington Post reporter took pictures of Rex Tillerson’s notes” story. Hoft’s original headline still resides in his URL for the post: http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2017/01/sick-wapo-reporter-caught-sneaking-photos-rex-tillersons-notes-senate-hearing-video/. As you can see, he directly accused a Washington Post reporter of being the “photographer” based on reports that the woman was Doris Truong of the Washington Post — but had to admit in an update: “This post was updated to note the reporter was not Doris Truong.”
- Remember how Hoft breathlessly assured the world that Darren Wilson, the officer in the Michael Brown shooting, had suffered a “blowout” orbital fracture to his eye socket? Months later he updated his post to say: “We previously reported that Officer Wilson suffered and [sic] orbital eye-socket fracture. It now appears he suffered severe bruising but no fracture.” The original claim still resides in his URL: http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2014/08/breaking-report-po-darren-wilson-suffered-orbital-blowout-fracture-to-eye-socket-during-encounter-with-mike-brown/
- Then there was Hoft’s post titled WHOA! It Sounds Like Chris Matthews Just Endorsed Trump (VIDEO). As I pointed out at the time, a non-edited version of the video showed Matthews saying “I say this not because I want Trump to win.” (WHOA! Sounds like he is endorsing Trump!!!)
So that’s a part of the case against Jim Hoft. Why, then, am I of two minds about this? Because, frankly, if you took most of the major news organizations, you could draw up an equally compelling list of absurdly misreported stories.
Just to take one example among many, I spent years covering the leftist nonsense coming out of the L.A. Times, until I got bored with it. If I started listing examples, we’d be here all day. But you could always go to this link and scroll down to sample some of the year-end roundups I used to do of the numerous errors, distortions, bias, and omissions I documented over the years.
They have White House press credentials.
So do organizations employing reporters who were revealed by Wikileaks to be overly cozy with Democrats.
In other words, Jim Hoft’s standards are non-existent. Indeed, they are much worse than those of most people in Big Media. But there are some in Big Media who are really almost as bad. They’re just a little more genteel, use fewer exclamation points, and (critically) have the opposite world view.
So, when I heard that Jim Hoft has White House press credentials, I’ll admit that I rolled my eyes. But I’m not going to declare the end of the free world.
And, in the end, Hoft is a clown covering another clown. Isn’t that kind of appropriate?