Soundtrack in my head: Don Henley, “Dirty Laundry”
The things that pass for the news and credible journalism these days are, well, incredible.
Trusted news source CNN thought they could get a leg up on the competition by identifying the person reportedly at the center of the Secret Service scandal. Upon publicly identifying him, they also thought it might be a good idea to find his private residence and broadcast live from in front of it. Well, CNN got a leg up alright, but in doing so resembled a dog at a fire hydrant, not a sprinter inching out ahead of the competition. See for yourself:
I suppose CNN could say they got themselves a scoop, but I think what they got is more commonly served with a shovel. I first saw this video clip at the break room at work, and couldn’t stop laughing, even though I was also quite disgusted.
I noticed that they have edited the video clip a little since then. When I originally saw Brian Todd talking about neighbor comments, he dutifully reported that one neighbor remarked “Have you no sense of decency?” I wonder if Todd was deftly offering on-air feedback about just what he thought of his assignment. In any case, that quote was conveniently edited out of the clip above.
I’d commented before on the tendency of American journalism to publicly humiliate individuals in front of an audience of hundreds of millions. It looks like CNN found another “freak of the week” to pick on to bolster their “news gathering.” But in the process, they truly made themselves look like the punch line to a joke.
One useful link for observing how American journalistic standards measure up against the world is a website called “WTF CNN?” I think the title says it all.