Palin’s misplaced media criticism

PALIN’S MISPLACED MEDIA CRITICISM…. Chatting with Esquire, Sarah Palin decided to complain, once again, about the media. This latest whine, however, was a little more foolish than the others.

“I’ll tell you, yesterday the Anchorage Daily News, they called again to ask — double-, triple-, quadruple-check — who is Trig’s real mom,” Palin said. “And I said, ‘Come on, are you kidding me? We’re gonna answer this? Do you not believe me or my doctor?’ And they said, No, it’s been quite cryptic the way that my son’s birth has been discussed. And I thought, Okay, more indication of continued problems in the world of journalism.”

At first blush, this might sound reasonable. For the Anchorage Daily News to call, months after the campaign, just to make sure the governor really is her son’s mother seems like a clear example of media excess.

Except, that isn’t what happened. My friend Alex Koppelman explained that the paper was actually defending Palin and debunking the bogus rumors about her family. The Anchorage Daily News’ editor even emailed Palin directly about this, responding to her concerns.

“You may have been too busy with the campaign to notice, but the Daily News has, from the beginning, dismissed the conspiracy theories about Trig’s birth as nonsense. I don’t believe we have ever published in the newspaper a story, a letter, a column or anything alleging a coverup surrounding your maternity.

“In fact, my integrity and the integrity of the newspaper have been repeatedly attacked in national forums for our complicity in the ‘coverup.’ I have personally received more than 100 emails accusing me and the paper of conspiring to hide the truth (about Trig’s birth.) […]

“[W]e have been amazed by the widespread and enduring quality of these rumors. I finally decided, after watching this go on unabated for months, to let a reporter try to do a story about the ‘conspiracy theory that would not die’ and, possibly, report the facts of Trig’s birth thoroughly enough to kill the nonsense once and for all.”

So, Palin’s favorite example of the “continued problems in the world of journalism” is actually a newspaper coming to her defense, setting the record straight, and defending her against nasty and baseless rumors.

She sure is an odd one.

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation