Nothing the column by Glenn Harlan Reynolds in Wednesday’s USA Today should come as a surprise to conservative consumers of the mainstream media. Still, it’s refreshing to have it laid out in a publication that is often among the offenders.
Reynolds, the University of Tennessee law professor better known to prowlers of the Internet as the indefatigable “Instapundit,” skewers the MSM, the Associated Press in particular, for its eyebrow-raising disinterest in Leland Yee, the recently former California state senator, candidate for secretary of state and enthusiastic gun-control advocate who was indicted a couple of weeks ago for conspiring to run genuine assault weapons – not rifles equipped with pistol grips, but actual grenade launchers – between foreign terrorists and domestic mobsters.
Revealingly, few media outlets beyond the reach of the San Francisco Bay area – Yee’s home – have shown more than dismissive interest, as Reynolds notes, and the professor has a theory for that. It’s because Yee is a Democrat.
“When Republicans do things that embarrass their party, the national media are happy to take note, even if they’re mere state senators. But when Democrats like Yee get busted for actual felonies, and pretty dramatic ones at that, the press suddenly isn’t interested.
“We’ve seen this before, of course: Washington Post reporter Sarah Kliff dismissed the horrific Kermit Gosnell trial as a ‘local crime story,’ even as the press was going crazy covering another equally local crime story, the George Zimmerman trial. Likewise, another state senator, Texas’ Wendy Davis, got national attention when she filibustered an abortion bill, a story that fit conveniently with the ‘war on women’ theme used by Democrats.
“It’s almost as if ‘what’s news’ is just a synonym for ‘what advances the narrative chosen by the Democratic Party.’ The question that ‘news’ operations like CNN may want to ask is, how many people are really interested in getting their news from party organs.”
Take a few moments to read it all. If Reynolds’ analysis doesn’t make your blood boil, it ought at least make you go “Hmmm.”