Before there was Andrew Breitbart, there was Michelle Malkin to hate:
Things got a little more heated than usual on tonight’s Hannity in a debate between noted conservative blogger Michelle Malkin and liberal Fox News contributor Juan Williams over the nature of the recent White House leaks.
Williams had tried to argue that there was nothing particularly special about the leaks regarding national security currently emanating from the White House, claiming that every administration had done the same thing. Malkin fired back by raising the point that the liberal press had excoriated former President Bush over the leaks regarding CIA agent Valerie Plame, which were seen as an attack on the country’s intelligence community and, by extension, on national security.
Williams’ response was to pull rank on Malkin. “I’m a real reporter, I’m not a blogger out on the blogosphere,” Williams said dismissively, before launching into a lecture about how reporters talk to officials, something he apparently didn’t believe Malkin had any experience with.
“The American people are sick of the kind of snotty condescension from liberal elite journalists like Juan Williams who tell us that the rest of us are not doing our jobs, when the point is that when Eric Holder was shamefully approved and nominated and approved to be Attorney General, he had already had a long record of bastardizing national security and the rule of law,” Malkin said.
Williams must have sensed he was bleeding this point, and interrupted, accusing Malkin of going off-topic before launching into an extended repeat of his original arguments, virtually unaltered. It was at this point that Hannity interrupted to tell Williams that he was going to have to accept that “Holder is finished” before closing the segment. Williams tried to protest, at which point Malkin got in her killing blow.
“So real journalists are apologists for corrupt-ocracy, we got it,” Malkin said drippingly.
According to Wikipedia, Malkin got an English degree from Oberlin college in 1992 where she worked on a conservative student newspaper.
Malkin began her journalism career at the Los Angeles Daily News, working as a columnist from 1992 to 1994. In 1995, she worked in Washington, D.C., as a journalism fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a free-market, anti-government regulation, libertarian think tank. In 1996, she moved to Seattle, Washington, where she wrote columns for The Seattle Times. Malkin became a nationally-syndicated columnist with Creators Syndicate in 1999.
For many years, Malkin was a frequent commentator for Fox News Channel and a regular guest host of The O’Reilly Factor. In 2007, she announced that she would not return to The O’Reilly Factor, claiming that Fox News had mishandled a dispute over derogatory statements made about her by Geraldo Rivera in a Boston Globe interview. Since 2007, she has concentrated on her writing, blogging and public speaking, although she still appears on television occasionally, especially with Sean Hannity on Fox News and Fox & Friends once a week. In December 2009, Malkin began writing for the St. Louis Globe-Democrat.
She also has written four non-fiction books (including two bestsellers) and has been blogging since 2004.
But she’s not a “real” journalist?
The progressive blogosphere got its start as a reaction to “real” journalism. Two of the earliest blogs (called “webzines” back in those prehistoric times) were The Daily Howler (1998-present) and Media Whores Online (2000-2004). Talking Points Memo started in 2000 and Media Matters for America (MMfA) started in 2004. All of them were media critics/watchdogs.
By the end of the Nineties there were three full-time news networks (CNN, FOX and MSNBC) but journalism was becoming increasingly lazy, decadent and corrupt. The media came to see themselves as gatekeepers of information and kingmakers in politics. They took it upon themselves to decide what we should and should not know, as well as which candidates we should support.
I used to think of reporters and journalists as people who went out and found stories. In reality they spend most of their time at their desks, waiting for news to come to them. They regurgitate official talking points and cooperate to stage photo-ops.
On television there are basically two types of “journalists.” The first is a news reader in the style of Ron Burgundy. They are hired for their looks and voice qualities, and they sit in front of a camera and read the news to us off a teleprompter.
The second type is the pundit or bloviating gasbag. They don’t provide us with any information, they just tell us what they think about the stories of the day. (As far as I am concerned the term “news anchor” should refer to the weight that keeps the body of a bloviating gasbag from rising to the surface.)
Compared to Juan Williams and most “real reporters”, Michelle Malkin is way above average. At least she does some research on the topics she plans to discuss. She must be doing something right or the proggers wouldn’t hate her so much.