Matt Drudge had it just about right last weekend in describing the
case of premeditated journalcide committed against him by Frank Rich of
the New York Times.
The New Media star called the opinion hit piece, titled “The Strange
Legacy of Matt Drudge,” his “obituary.”
But I’ve got news for Rich. He isn’t worthy of carrying Drudge’s
laptop. And, no matter what the New York Times thinks, the New Media
aren’t about to go away and permit the corporate establishment a
monopoly on the dissemination of news any more.
Rich gives himself away early in the piece: “… Mr. Drudge is the
fedora-wearing grandstander whom many, I included, once feared as the
Devil of journalism incarnate.”
Note that Rich “feared” Drudge. You bet he does. And so does his
nearly fossilized old news institution.
But imagine what a little wimp Rich must be — afraid of Drudge! And
he admits it!
What exactly was he afraid of? He never really says. But I guess we
can assume it is the fact that Drudge is richer and more famous than him
and has made scooping multibillion dollar news conglomerates look easy
— which it is.
Rich goes through the expected gyrations of denouncing Drudge as a
rumor-monger. And he all but pronounces him irrelevant.
Let me tell you, Mr. Rich, the rumors you propagate of Drudge’s
demise are, to paraphrase Mark Twain, greatly exaggerated.
The “news peg” Rich uses to attack Drudge is his departure from Fox
News Network. Rich strongly suggests that the “mutual agreement” to
terminate the show was actually a one-sided decision by Rupert Murdoch’s
network. It was not. Drudge simply would not allow the network to make
arbitrary and politically biased judgments about what he was allowed to
do with the program. That, Mr. Rich, is called integrity. I’m sure it’s
a character trait with which you are somewhat unfamiliar.
Drudge wouldn’t allow his network handlers to censor his program —
to spike segments, such as the photograph he wanted to show of a
pre-born baby. I have more respect for Matt Drudge because of that
decision than anything he has done to date. And he’s got an admirable
track record of breaking news and embarrassing the establishment press
with his one-man media crusade.
Rich, on the other hand, is the despicable slimeball who used his
column in the New York Times to “out” former journalist David Brock. He
let the world know that Brock was, at the time, a closet homosexual.
This from a liberal icon who would, no doubt, call it “McCarthyism” if a
conservative publication pulled such a stunt and made such insinuations.
Brock never recovered from the invasion of his private life. He
turned. He went from Clinton-hater to Clinton champion. How ironic that
the New York Times was one of those establishment voices telling us that
the president’s “private life” was none of our business. If that’s so,
how does Rich rationalize “outing” David Brock?
Maybe Rich and the New York Times think they can intimidate another
“problem” journalist — one who actually hurt the media establishment
far more than Brock. Personally, I don’t think they laid a glove on
Drudge in this round. But watch out! These low-life slugs don’t give up
easily. They’ll be back. We haven’t seen the last of their attacks on
Matt Drudge and his cohorts in the New Media.
They’ll stoop to any level of gutter journalism. You have no idea of
the pressures they can bring to bear. A couple weeks ago, the ombudsman
of the Washington Post linked my name with David Duke. Now the New York
Times is besmirching Drudge.
Rumors? Gossip? Innuendo? Isn’t the pot calling the kettle black? Who
used rumor and gossip to defang David Brock — to turn him into a
pussycat, to lobotomize him, to render him impotent?
That may be Rich’s claim to fame. That may be the former theater
critic’s biggest scalp. That may be his “strange legacy.” But the New
York Times shouldn’t throw stones at anyone for “getting stories wrong.”
The paper has plenty of glass windows of its own.
The New York Times, the so-called paper of record, won a Pulitzer
Prize for covering up Stalin’s bloodiest purges. It never relinquished
the award or corrected the deliberate historical lies it published for
profit and for ideological reasons. In the grand scheme of things, I
would say this “error” was a trifle more serious than anything for which
Drudge has ever been accused.
No matter how they lie today, I don’t think Frank Rich and the New
York Times are going to turn Matt Drudge like they did with Brock.
Drudge is tough. Drudge is determined. Drudge has character.
They used to say imitation was the highest form of flattery. If you
work in the New Media today, the highest form of flattery is malicious
name-calling by the dinosaurs of the establishment press.