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fu olberman

fu olberman

Somebody tell Keith Olbermann to pop a Benadryl and give his mouth a rest. Actually, put some mittens on that guy and keep his fingers away from the Twitter machine. I have room for only one KO in my life and it’s the Knockout babe who is constantly trying to wife me up. Okay, maybe that last sentence was a lie. But still, the only KO I want in my life is Kevin Ollie, and even he is on thin ice right now.

As a spirit animal for many radical left-wingers, Olbermann has used this campaign to catapult himself back into the public spotlight. At least, he is trying to. Is he a sportscaster talking politics? Or is he a political pundit who dabbles in sports? Find a lane Mr. Olbermann.

Actually, I will find it for you.

You simply do not have a good, clear political mind. You are a prisoner of a time period which millennials live in; a cultural generation swinging away from an older populace who desperately desires relevance. Yes, millennials do live in a microwave culture. We want what we want and we wanted it yesterday. But, we still want good content. We do not want to sacrifice solid political reporting for the poorly-produced, albeit instantaneously punditry you supply. The young audience you are trying to captivate, Mr. Olbermann, recognizes when someone warms up old Ramen Noodles and tries to pass it off as Neo-Thai infused with Peruvian spice.

Let’s look at the video Olbermann has been pushing on Twitter. As the host of a web show no one really takes seriously (GQ’s The Closer with Keith Olbermann) Olbermann has found an outlet to spew his extreme, incendiary and anti-Trump rhetoric to whoever watches. One of his weekly reports detailed an obscure section of our Constitution; Article 25 Section 4. To quickly summarize, the presidential cabinet and the VP can remove the POTUS if they deem him or her unfit to serve. The purpose of the clause is to provide an escape route for the country in the event a president suddenly undergoes circumstances that makes him or her mentally or physically unstable. Think Reagan and when he transferred the presidency to his VP for about 8 hours while he underwent surgery.

You guessed it, Olbermann is calling on the cabinet and Pence to act on this clause and remove DJT from the White House. Do I think Trump is mentally unfit to head our country and therefore the Free World? Yes. Do I think we should provoke this clause and set a dangerous precedent in the name of edgy political commentary? Hell no.
By tossing around this clip on Twitter Olbermann is demonstrating that he is just as unstable as the man he is railing against. It does not matter if Olbermann, or I, think that Trump is a mental train wreck. The two of us are not the ones who decide if a president is unfit to serve. The American public decides that issue. And just about half of all voters think the guy can do a good job in office. The ultimate irony is that Olbermann wants to remove a man he believes to be a detriment to democracy by refusing to acknowledge the voice of millions of voters. My question to Mr. Olbermann: Who died and made you the ultimate moral compass for our country?

The time for griping is over. Trump will be president by February. I disagree with him on just about every policy and I plan to have those discussions in order to express my dissent. What I will not do is wine like a child who just got his kickball stolen by the mean 5th grader. Grow up, Keith, and spend the next four years doing pushups so you can whoop that mean 5th grader’s ass four years from now. Spending the next two months crying about it won’t get you anywhere.
Oh, and while you’re at it, stop urging your hundreds and thousands of followers to destabilize our precious system of government. We can weather the next four years. Let’s not jeopardize our democracy in the meantime.

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How It Happened

How It Happened

This lengthy is Part One of a two part feature. We now know everything this campaign was not. Next piece, I focus on what it was. I will identify the major mechanisms at play which allowed for such a movement to take hold.  Featured will be the most interesting question of the entire campaign.

___

Part One: Everything This Is Not

Sometimes the only way I can make sense of things is to analyze them the way I am trained to.

My last article, a humorous retelling of an Obama story, relayed that I am an MA candidate for History with aspirations of enrolling in law school or a doctoral program. At the risk of sounding pretentious, or downright immodest, I have been taught to observe trends, events and movements through a particular lens.

 

Imagine each discipline wearing a different pair of glasses. The lens I’m currently gazing through happens to purposely be tinted by American History. I tint the glasses even more to specifically observe societal, cultural and political history in America.

 

I do not want to provide a breakdown of why half of the electorate voted for Donald Trump. Yet, I feel a duty to do so. Our path to reconciliation and therefore unity begins with one courageous step: understanding. Although it may seem so, my purpose is not to berate the millions who casted their ballot for the conservative candidate. Rather, this piece is the first step on a long path towards progression. It just so happens we must take our first step in the name of comprehension. If it makes me ostensibly look like a jerk, so be it, but remember; the monster in the closet is only scary until we swing open those closet doors and see that nothing is there. Allow me to use my skills as an amateur historian — and my experience as a field director for a Republican State Representative candidate — to delineate why many Americans voted for the most enigmatic, polarizing human being this young century has seen. In order to do so, I must tell you everything this campaign is not.

 

Yesterday evening, I stood outside of my local middle school. It was a popular polling center and I was greeting potential voters on behalf of my State Rep candidate. One man, graying into his late fifties, recognized I was campaigning on behalf of a conservative candidate. He assumed I was also a Republican (I am not) and approached me to discuss his devil reincarnated, Hillary Clinton.

 

The man told me a story about his son, a navy officer. The son’s commanding officer had been charged and sentenced for sending classified documents, akin to Mrs. Clinton’s email dilemma. The man candidly explained that he was voting for Trump because “Hillary should be behind bars too.”

 

What’s the moral of the story? This voter wanted fairness. Lady Justice must put her blindfold back on and treat everyone the same. Anti-Elitism was the heart of his message.

 

Donald Trump sold many American voters on an idea: politicians and big businessmen should not be given special treatment under the watchful eyes of the Law. He constantly paraded Clinton’s scandals (or lack thereof) as proof that a select group of wealthy individuals get to take advantage of the working man while running around Washington D.C consequence-free. “Drain the swamp,” became a memorable refrain during the last two weeks of this election. Elitism had finally grown too dangerous and must be taken care of, or else.

 

This narrative is not only dangerous enough in itself once believed, but, it is also false. The question I pose: Why now? As an aspiring historian, I could not help but to think of the several examples of egregious elitist manipulation just in the most recent elections.

 

Ronald Reagan, a celebrated actor and national figure, had violated the Boland Amendment during the famous Iran-Contra scandal. Yet, he got away clean. In span of eight years we saw two separate Bushes prove that American royalty exists by attaining office, despite the younger being objectively unqualified. Name and money bought George W. Bush a presidency and yet, many did not gripe about elitism despite it blatantly spitting in our faces.

 

We didn’t gripe when Bush pardoned Oliver North despite him being in jail for his involvement in the aforementioned Iran-Contra scandal. A third Bush had a shot at winning the GOP nomination and we still did not gripe about elitism! My friends and readers, this was not about elitism at all. We have seen both Republicans and Liberals abuse their wealth and power for decades. This was an attack on Liberalism, masked as an attack on elitism.

 

The data backs it up. Let’s look at the trends. Firstly, Liberalism has become the new dirty word. To be Liberal is to be politically correct; another dirty term. To be Liberal is to be upper middle class with a degree from a prestigious New England or Californian university. To be Liberal is to get by in life just fine without experiencing a second of the working class struggle. To be Liberal is to retain job security in a country readying to for unprecedented minority advancement. To be Liberal is to have forgotten about the only marginalized demographic not mentioned during this campaign: white middle class 50 something-year-olds.

 

This election had a remarkable shift in demographics. Democrats used to be a party for the working man; uniting union workers under a common fight for higher wages and better benefits. That demographic now belongs to Trumpian Conservatism. Trump did not label himself the “Blue Collar Billionaire” in order to attract union workers. Conversely, union workers were attracted to him, affording Trump the ability to give himself the most oxymoronic, nonsensical moniker of all time. From the gold-plated Trump signs, to the fourteen million dollars in loans, Donald Trump has proven himself to be the very definition of elitism. He self funded his campaign.

 

In the not-so-distant past, we have seen three Bushes vie for the presidency, and two be successful; the very definition of political elitism. And it is just now that millions of voters are displaying a raging protest against the Establishment? I do not buy that. Logically, you cannot disavow Clinton for elitism while supporting Donald Trump. Make no mistake: this was an attack on Liberalism disguised as something else.

 

One of the women I volunteered with decided to open up to me a few weeks ago. She is in her mid-thirties, a mother and a wife. Her occupation: piano teacher. One night, she decided to confide in me how much she owed in student loans (around $80,000.) She actually calculated how much she owed every day in interest alone. An avid Trump supporter, she justified her support because Trump would “level the playing field.” He was going to bring back fairness and equal opportunity to the regular Joe or Josephine. Again, we have another false narrative supplied by Trump supporters.

 

Hillary Clinton is the equal opportunity candidate. At least, it would appear that way. She proposed subsidizing student loans. To do this she would tax the wealthy the adequate amount, as her four percent surcharge on multimillionaires suggested. In incendiary tones she advocated for closing unjustifiable tax loopholes and for the reregulation of Wall Street giants.

 

Mr. Trump promoted just the opposite. With rhetoric as fiery as Clinton’s, he stumped for lowering the tax rate on the wealthiest Americans. Less than a decade removed from one of the greatest economic collapses of all time, Trump remarked he would deregulate Wall Street and Big Business. The Estate Tax (Death Tax), our final backstop for clever, wealthy tax evaders, will be removed with Trump in office.

 

Speaking of tax evasion…While the aforementioned woman is struggling to pay off student debt, her beloved candidate avoided paying taxes for years. Hillary Clinton, at the very least, is a beacon for gender equality. Behind numerous sexual harassment allegations and the infamous audio tape, Trump has cemented himself as the antithesis of gender equality. No, this was not an attack branching off of the previously discussed elitism. The plain fact is that one of the wealthiest, most notorious U.S business tycoons ran on the premise of transparency, honesty and fairness while simultaneously hiding his tax returns, habitually lying and operating within the “1 percent.”

 

Us Americans may be misinformed or uninformed, but we are not blind. This was not an assault on fairness and equality; it was an assault on Liberalism. For good or for bad, many Trump voters have been persuaded to believe Liberals are the cause of their recent struggles. The issues of fairness, equality and elitism were twisted, albeit adroitly, by Trump and his team to pin Democrats as the ultimate scapegoat.

 

 

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overhyped pacers

overhyped pacers

Some of the most overhyped things of 2016:

  1. The Life of Pablo
  2. Chick-fil-a moving up North
  3. Every Sandler movie on Netflix
  4. The new Iphone
  5. My writing ability

 

Also on this list: The Indiana Pacers

Let me be blunt and state that my fellow Open Field writers will not like this. I don’t expect them to. But hey, I can’t let me assessment of the Pacers fall to the wayside just because I am scared of pissing off a couple people. Without a further ado- I hate this Pacers team.

 

Reason 1: George Hill is a better fit than Jeff Teague

 

Teague is the better talent but, not by much. The Wake Forest product has more athleticism than Hill and is a better assist man. But, Hill had a slightly higher 3 point percentage and a significantly higher effective field goal percentage. In terms of shooting the ball, Hill is the better talent. Why is this important? Paul George is the focal point of the team. We know this due to his seriously high usage percentage (30%.) PG13 was allowed to thrive because he had the ball in his hands. What made the Pacers overachievers last year was the fact that Hill was able to play off the ball. He let Paul George create the offense by being a legit threat off the ball, contributing to this team’s spacing. Pairing Teague with Ellis is a disaster waiting to happen. Neither of them have had success playing off the ball; something essential for this team’s offensive flow and success. With Ellis, PG and Teague, the Pacers now have three players who need the ball in their hands to score. There are too many cooks in the kitchen.

 

Reason 2: Speaking of spacing…

 

Do you want to know why the Celtics did not advance past the first round of the playoffs last year? They could not make threes. Sure, they had wonderful floor spacing. But that was because the defense could sag off Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier. It was fake spacing, or defense-generated spacing. I expect the same to happen in Indiana. When Paul George drives and kicks, where doe the ball go? To Monta Ellis who shot 30% from 3 last year? To Thad Young who has never attempted for than 2 a game in his career? Or to an unproven 20 year old center?  Sure, Jeff Teague was a remarkable spot up shooter last year however, he only did so on 10% of his possessions. Hill did so on almost 20%. Teague will be asked to expand into a role I do not think he is ready for; one that Hill damn near perfected. The Pacers will be playing with pace but, the space part…I’m not so sure.

 

Reason 3: Speaking of pace…

 

What fueled the acquisition of Teague was a desire by Larry Bird for the team to play more quickly. He was tired of Frank Vogel and his defense-first agenda, hence the firing then hiring of Nate “Sarge” McMillan. This line up however, is not one perfectly made for sprinting up and down the floor. Thad Young is athletic yet, this will be his tenth NBA season. Draft experts legitimately questions Myles Turner’s ability to run up and down the floor because he looks like a dinosaur when doing so. Ellis is entering his 12th year and George is a year removed from his gruesome injury. Hey, at least the nimble Al Jefferson can come off the bench for some energy. This team wants to run. They simply aren’t made for it. Here’s a nugget for you to ponder: Jeff Teague is only two years younger than George Hill. They didn’t exactly trade for a spring chicken.

 

Reason 4: The competition got better

 

Cleveland did Cleveland things this offseason. Toronto did not add much but, Masai Ujiri is known for drafting players who develop quickly. Count on Norman Powell, Delon Wright and JV to make noticeable, impactful strides this year. Boston vaulted into number two seed talks. Detroit, Milwaukee and Charlotte all will progress naturally. Chicago hustled sideways, not backwards. Oh, and the Knicks could actually win 40 games. Do I think the Pacers will drop out of the playoff race? No. Do I trust Nate McMillan, a guy who has lost in the first round of the playoffs 4 of the 5 times he has made them, to navigate his way to 48 wins? No.

Expectations:

This team will lose more games than it win. On court chemistry is a real issue. What happens when Monta Ellis sees his usage percentage drop to a career low? How will Teague react to not having the ball in his hands? At what point does Thad Young say, “So, I’m on this team just to get rebounds, huh?” Simply put, there isn’t enough ball to go around. Unless, some players get injured, which they will. This faster system is designed to hurt aging players. Jefferson is good for missing at least 20 games. Myles Turner will be playing around 15 minutes more per game; expect him to suit up for less than 70. Ellis is due for wrist sprain. Ironically, I expect this team to perform best when some players are out. Regardless, the East is too good for this team to be anything more than a 6th seed. And, don’t be surprised if they are fighting for a playoff spot. This season’s underrated darlings are sure to underproduce.

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where else can average dudes waste their time? : matt’s week 8 fantasy

where else can average dudes waste their time? : matt’s week 8 fantasy

I hate Fantasy. Last week, I dropped over 130 points in a ½ PPR league and I still lost. My opponent put up 150 and his team scored ten total TDs. Shoot me now, God. But, in the words of Lil Bow Wow: “I’m back at it like a crack addict out of rehab.” Here’s my line up for this week.

 

QB: Lucky Luck                                             Flex: Will Fuller House

RB: Best in the league (DJ)                             Flex: Michael Thomas

RB: Best on his tea (Gio)                                TE: The guy on the Texans with the long name

WR: Dez “Welcome Back” Bryant                  D: Titans

WR: D. Thomas

 

Some major changes. Dez is back and I am playing him. If Dak can make Cole Beasley a star…Will Fuller makes an appearance. I hate the Brock Lobster but, this game against Detroit should be a shootout. Michael Thomas is arguable the best receiver on his team. The Seahawks secondary has been awful lately and they are missing some pieces. I like Brees as home as well. I switched Zach Miller for anyone else because Miller takes on the Vikings. The Titans D was a steal for about 50 minutes.

 

Waive Wire Gems:

 

Need a player for upcoming bye weeks? I got them for you. Is your team set and you are looking for that one stash that will get you through the playoffs? I got you.

 

Chris Thompson:

Love CT as the season rolls on. Matt Jones is a fumble away from losing some serious touches. The Redskins will be an RRBC before the season is over. The one to own is Chris Thompson. He has an excellent YPC and is the pass catching back. Games against Dallas, Green Bay, Philly, Carolina and Arizona could all see a script in which Thompson has a lot of involvement. Expect both his carries and targets to go up.

 

Thomas Rawls:

Forgot about him? Most of us did. Do yourself a favor and look at his numbers last year. When healthy, this guy was a major talent. He will split carries with Christine Michael, sure. But, Rawls has a track record of success. Stash him on your bench. There is a scenario in which Pete Carroll returns to Rawls towards the season’s end.

 

Kennith Dixon:

This draft and stash candidate has been a bust so far. Fortunately, it has been reported that the Ravens want him to get more involved. West has been dominant so far however, this will be the most work he has ever seen in a season. We saw Mark Ingram get injured last year because he faced an unprecedented workload. Dixon is a great handcuff. Also along the lines of handcuffs: Robert Kelly, Kapri Bibbs and Tim Hightower.

 

Mohamed Sanu:

After the week one explosion, Sanu has come back down to Earth. He is not owned in over 50% of leagues. Julio Jones is perpetually questionable and could miss a game later on in the season as the Falcons look towards the playoffs. Sanu will be a guy who wins you a game and could push you into your own Fantasy playoffs.

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LANKY BRAZILIANS AND THE STATE OF THE NBA

LANKY BRAZILIANS AND THE STATE OF THE NBA

Bruno Caboclo is officially two years away from being an NBA player.

 

The league is back and better than ever unless you consider that parity thing to be an issue. We will shelve that topic now and stick with the “two years away” theme. The lanky Brazilian should be a reliable NBA competitor in a couple of years. In what other ways will the NBA change in the next few years? What teams are lurking in the shadows, waiting for Lebron to meet his most elusive rival to date: Father Time? What owners are doing their best Mr. Burns impression while waiting for the current super teams to phase out? Yes, this current season has just tipped off. Still, I am going to show a little prescience here and look to the future. After all, my Celtics won’t truly be contenders until then always.

 

 

Detroit Pistons:

Drummond, Johnson, Harris, KCP and Ellenson are all under 25. The non-baseball Reggie Jackson is 26. In two years this team will see its core players entering their prime or firmly in it. The team is moving out of Auburn Hills and back into the heart of the city (cue Jay-Z song.) Free agents are never attracted to Detroit however; a reenergized city supporting a growing cast of studs with a proven head coach has tons of potential. The natural growth of this team will make it a fringe contender in a few years. They’re a better point guard away from scaring the hell out of some teams.

 

Fear the Deer:

Or, fear their old jerseys should they ever make a comeback. The NBA landscape is changing. We’re moving towards a game of interchangeable parts and fluidity; position-less basketball. No team is better equipped to adapt to this movement than the Bucks. Giannis can defend and play four positions on the court. Kris Middleton is the league’s best kept secret. The guy can defend three positions and kill you from deep. Jabari is the next generation of hybrid forward; players who are quick enough to defend 3s and strong enough to defend 4s. Think of him as Paul Millsap with a better offensive game (aka a future multiple time all star.) There will be times when you simply cannot discern what player is playing which position. Watch out.

 

Boston:

Some critics hated the Horford signing. Other applauded it, thinking it was the first of many dominoes to fall. I love it. In two years, some Cs will obviously be older however, they won’t be old. If you think this team is scary now, picture it with Smart, Rozier, Brown and a future #1 overall pick gaining more experience. The will be the league’s best blend of veteran savvy and youthful explosiveness. The most well rounded team in basketball, the Cs will be contenders regardless of other changes around the league.

 

‘Sota:

Smell ya, Rubio. I give it until December until the Spaniard is moved. Towns is going to win an MVP in his lifetime. If only he had an uber athletic wing with a growing skill set to compliment him? Oh wait, he does and his name is A. Wiggins. If only he had an uber athletic wing with a growing skill set to compliment him? Oh wait, he does and his name is Zach Lavine. Now he certainly needs an NBA ready point man on the defensive end with floor general potential. Dunn deal. The only way this team doesn’t progress is if Thibs doesn’t let it. Personally, I am worried he will run them into the ground by trying to win a championship in the first handful of years. Hopefully management can step in and allow this team to develop into the C’s future title rivals.

 

Rip City:

Don’t look now, but the oldest member of their core is 27 (Al-Farouq Aminu.) Some loathed the Turner signing but, his ability to run the offense will keep Dame and CJ properly rested as they wait for Golden State to simmer down. Sure, Portland is one more star away. They have the assets to get that star, however. They are waiting in the wings for a wing. There are a few 3s who could potentially want out of their city with two more years of predictable mediocrity. Paul George is on the most overhyped in the league and it’s a matter of time until Jimmy Butler realizes Chicago is a mess. Portland is the Celtics of the West except they actually have a top 15 player. Lilliard is legit and so are their chances of competing for a title in the next two years.

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Matt’s Week 7 Fantasy

Matt’s Week 7 Fantasy

Want to hear something scary? I wrote an article defending Donald Trump. Want to hear something scarier? Imagine being down 30 points to the only undefeated team in your fantasy league with one player left to play. Want to hear the scariest thing of all? I was totally confident that I would pull off the win. Why? Because the one player was David Johnson. Winner winner chicken dinner. DJ scored over 30 points on three touchdowns and I moved into second place in my division. I’m more pumped up than a gym class kickball. But, let’s talk about this week.

 

Dez is on bye. Steve Smith is old and his ankle sucks farts through a curly straw. After some moves on the waiver wire, this is who I am starting.

 

QB: Luck                                                                    WR: Shep

RB: David “Perennial Keeper” Johnson                     Flex: D-Jax

RB: Gio Bernard                                                         Flex: Gillislee

WR: D. Thomas                                                          D: Giants (gulp)

TE: Zach Miller Lite

 

Sitting Michael Thomas after three straight games with a touchdown was a hard decision to make. But, the Saints play KC on the road. Also, what are the odds he catches a TD in four straight? Will Fuller has yet to play for me since trading for him. Had to sit him against the Denver D. I was tempted to play Duke Johnson against Cinci but decided to go with the second best back on my team instead (Gio.) For some reason I really like my team this week despite some average match ups.

 

Buy Low

If you can make a reasonable trade offer for these guys, then do it. Don’t sell the farm but, try and take advantage of a friend who just isn’t feeling their team anymore.

 

Julian Edelman: After two poor weeks with Brady at the helm, I know some owners who are giving up on the receiver. The guy has yet to put up more than 12 points in ½ ppr leagues. Think of it this way: he has nowhere to go but up. At the end of the day, Brady is going to throw for a ton of TDs and Edelman will get his fair share.

 

Nuke Hopkins: Clemson stand up. Nuke has been underwhelming so far this year. His 2016 campaign is laughable compared to his 2015 explosion. This week, he will surely struggle against the Denver defense. Yet, his upcoming schedule is looking great. Plus, Lamar Miller finally seemed to get going, which will open up the offense. Wait for Nuke to struggle this week then, jump on him with some low ball offer.

 

Doug Martin: The Muscle Hamster will have missed four straight games (not including the bye week) when he sits out this Sunday. Owners are starting to feel the pressure to unload him, whether it is for a roster spot or some other reason. If Martin can get healthy, his upcoming schedule features games against Atlanta, Oakland and Chicago. His fantasy playoff schedule is also juicy. Put together a compelling package for the running back and pray he get healthy; it could really pay off.

 

Allen Robinson: I have been on the “Bortles is overrated” train for some time now. Still, Allen Robinson should have a solid season. He has three touchdowns on the year and should finish the season with 9 or 10. Jacksonville may decide that the season is lost and yet again let Bortles throw the ball around just to work in his development. Hate Blake. Love Robinson. Trade for him.

 

Alshon Jeffery: The massive receiver suffered with Hoyer under center. Hoyer often looked towards the Kevin White/ Cam Meridith guy during plays. Hoyer is out and Cutler is back in. Yes, Cutler is garbage. But, that Jeffery should benefit. The two play well together and Cutler should look to just chuck that thing in the air and hope Alshon comes down with it, which he can and will. Personally, I will be looking to scoop Jeffrey in a few leagues.

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So, Trump May Be Right About This Media Thing

So, Trump May Be Right About This Media Thing

This election has witnessed some remarkable journalism. David Fahrentold of the Washington Post has worked tirelessly to unravel the mystery behind Donald Trump’s charitable reputation. Kurt Eichenwald reported a flooring piece factually exposing the method in which Russia is trying to manipulate this election’s result. Although loathed by Trump, the New York Times has also contributed honorably to the last 18 months of coverage…at least, until this week, however.

 

Eric Lichtblau and Steven Lee Meyers attempted to debunk the “quid pro quo” story we all have been hearing about recently. On Wednesday, they published an article in the Times that addressed the situation. To summarize, during Clinton’s years as Secretary of State, one of her underlings (Patrick F. Kennedy) sent an email to a former FBI employee (Brian McCauley.) The FBI was classifying documents in preparation for some of them to be released to the public. If deemed too important to national security, then some documents would presumably be labeled accordingly and therefore not released to the public. Some conservatives alleged that Mr. Kennedy had offered McCauley a deal in order to stop a certain email to be released. To be even clearer, the email concerned Clinton and was possibly being used during her congressional hearing regarding Benghazi.

 

The Times interviewed McCauley, who admitted that he was the one who approached Kennedy about a deal. The proposed deal would see that the email was never released to the public and in return, the FBI would be granted two more agents to be placed in Baghdad. McCauley claimed that Kennedy never made an offer and did not break any laws. Plus, McCauley said he rescinded his offer once he learned the email in question was about Benghazi. On the surface, it appears as though the NYT took an objective approach to fact-checking an incredibly magnetic story before it spun out of control. What they really did however, was much more egregious and unprofessional. It is imperative to point out the faults of this article as many Liberal pundits are waiving around this article as proof that Trump has been pushing yet another conspiracy theory. The article does anything but affirm that notion.

 

The piece interviewed the two main people involved, McCauley and Kennedy. McCauley is retired and has nothing to lose by telling his version of the truth. Naturally, Kennedy would avoid saying anything incriminating. The Times made no effort to seek other sources that could provide their respective accounts of what happened. Instead, they drew information out of the two people who most wanted to see this story go away. This is not exactly the definition of sound, objective journalism.

 

The language of the piece is lacking. A context is hardly set. One could observe this piece then argue that the two authors left out some incredibly important details. For instance, they never discussed why these emails were being released to the public. It is as if the reader is thrown into episode five of House of Cards then left alone to piece together the first four episodes. This semi-scandal has a complicated storyline that oscillates back and forth between two bureaucracies which are clandestine in their very nature. It desperately needed an unpacking that I believe these two authors purposely, while perhaps subconsciously, avoided.

 

The very first sentence of this article claims that McCauley is the one responsible for this “quid pro quo” story. The next paragraph is one sentence long and is a quote from McCauley reaffirming the claim. The third paragraph reminds us that Republicans are behind these allegations which have promptly been debunked. I understand an article’s need to catch the reader within the first few sentences. But, the authors tipped their hand. There bias is hiding in plain sight: Stomp out any Republican movement which could damage Clinton’s campaign. This article was never truly about clearing Kennedy’s name for his sake. It was about damaging the Conservative brand while protecting the coveted Hillary Clinton.

 

Right in front of our very eyes we have proof that two government agencies attempted to collude and violate U.S law. An FBI agent made an illegal offer to someone high up in the State Department. And this was after Kennedy, who according to McCauley, had approached the FBI about having to have this email “buried in the basement” of the State Department! This is the story that should have been reported; one of corruption, deceit and violations. I understand that McCauley and Kennedy never went through with the deal however; they had one on the table. They are living proof that the agencies funded by our tax dollars will violate the law in order to help their respective careers. This story is massive, revealing and newsworthy yet, the Times manipulated it in a way which only benefitted them and their anti-Trump cause. Journalists would kill for a story this good and yet, Lichtblau and Meyers merely used it as a rhetorical pawn in their disgusting game. Furthermore, popular pundits such as Tommy Vietor of the respectable podcast Keeping it 1600 have gone on the claim that this article “eviscerated” any Republican Benghazi conspiracy theories. In doing so, Mr. Vietor, you have failed to hit the ball, let alone swing the bat. Influential critics everywhere have pimped out this story for their own benefit, making a mockery of what is supposed to be America’s 4th Estate.

 

If you have read any of my pieces, you know just how much I despise the orange vile which manifests itself as Donald Trump. I have no inclination to defend him at all. But as someone who claims to write with at least an ounce of objectivity, I had to come to bat for him this time. The Times got a few quotes from the accused and decided it was good enough to label this scandal “debunked.” That is just poor investigative journalism. Not one outside source was pulled in. The ever so important context of this story is blatantly and unforgivably missing; leaving the reader confused and left with no other choice than to trust what the authors wrote. What is most disconcerting however, is that a real story is here; something more than just a headline. Americans deserve to know every instance in which their tax dollars and trust has been violated by those sworn to serve us. Instead of condemning these two conniving and shady bureaucrats, these journalists decided to exonerate them. I hope our authors realize that they just performed an injustice equally as harmful as Kennedy and McCauley’s.

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