journalistic integrity

The Conservative Way (Tuckomatic Mix)

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 7 - Tucker Carlson, a conservative pundit, at the office of the new website, the Daily Caller, on January 6, 2010, in Washington, DC.  The site, at which Carlson is editor-in-chief, has been branded as a "conservative Huffington Post". (Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post)

All hail FOX News.

Unless your name is Mickey Kaus.

The blogger Mickey Kaus has quit his job at The Daily Caller after the conservative site’s editor-in-chief, Tucker Carlson, pulled a critical column about Fox News from the site, Kaus told the On Media blog on Tuesday.

Mickey Kaus (via KausFiles)“It’s pretty simple,” Kaus said in an interview, “I wrote a piece attacking Fox for not being the opposition on immigration and amnesty — for filling up the airwaves with reports on ISIS and terrorism, and not fulfilling their responsibility of being the opposition on amnesty and immigration…. I posted it at 6:30 in the morning. When I got up, Tucker had taken it down. He said, ‘We can’t trash Fox on the site. I work there.'”

Carlson, who co-founded The Daily Caller in 2010, is a conservative contributor to Fox News and the host of its weekend edition of “Fox & Friends.”

Kaus says when he told Carlson he needed to be able to write about Fox, Carlson told him it was a hard-and-fast rule, and non-negotiable.

“He said it was a rule, and he wouldn’t be able to change that rule. So I told him I quit,” Kaus explained. “I just don’t see how you can put out a publication with that kind of giant no-go area. It’s not like we’re owned by Joe’s Muffler Shop, so we just can’t write about Joe’s Muffler shop.”

(Byers)

It would not be fair to wonder specifically why Kaus, a self-described neoliberal, would want to work for a conservative propagandist like Carlson, who once used a platform on msnbc to denounce San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsome as a Nazi for showing compassion to undocumented immigrants. Yes, really, Carlson called Newsome a Nazi for not going after minorities. But neither can we demand that our public discourse be wholly segregated; in this case, it just didn’t work out, because whatever Kaus’ priorities are, Carlson is focused on marketing the conservative brand.

Then again, who knows what to think of Kaus’ implication that he would be happy to tank coverage of his employer.

Maybe that was his common ground with a shill like Carlson.

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Byers, Dylan. “Mickey Kaus quits Daily Caller after Tucker Carlson pulls critical Fox News column”. Politico. 17 March 2015.

A Little Light … er … ah … Something

D'oh!  An earlier version misidentified the Skipper costume as The Professor.

Normally, we find the saccharine-sweet clickbait going around social media downright idiotic, and possibly even offensive. And that isn’t necessarily because the overdose of toxic cuteness is itself stupid; rather, it has to do with the fact that it is so easy to “share” content that people seem to have stopped thinking about what they’re passing along.

Detail of photograph by Gina Lee, ca. 2013.To the other, it’s not like we’re going to knock Gina Lee or her daughter Willow. But in the first place, the destruction of language—such as Mike Spohr’s BuzzFeed headline, “A Little Girl Named Willow’s Costume Game Has Already Won Halloween”—really should stop. Professional writers should not go out of their way to behave as if they are functionally illiterate. Then again, botching the language is a commodity these days, so … you know … whatever. And Mr. Spohr can always blame his editors. We hope.

And, additionally, there are still other treasures to be found. The photographic exhibit also contains one of the best editorial corrections I’ve ever witnessed:

An earlier version misidentified the Skipper costume as The Professor.

Is this the part where we say, “Oh, my”?

Or would, “Ouch!” suffice?

To the other, BuzzFeed is aiming for proper journalism, saccharine clickbait notwithstanding. Many, perhaps most, of us would likely have just made the correction and not attached any sort of note. So thank you, Mr. Spohr, for taking that one on the chin for the sake of journalistic integrity.

And, no, that’s not nearly as much of a joke as it sounds.

But, yeah. We’ll give a little razzing. How could we not?

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Spohr, Mike. “A Little Girl Named Willow’s Costume Game Has Already Won Halloween”. BuzzFeed. 21 October 2014.