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I admit that I was stunned to see Thomas Mann and Norm Ornstein on the guest list for Reliable Sources this week. Mann and Ornstein's book placed very pointed blame on the media for failing Americans in presenting the truth of the extremism of the Republican Party. So how could the king of the false equivalency, Howard Kurtz, handle having on such dead-on criticism on his show?
By pretending that he isn't part of the problem, natch. And then a little blaming-the-messenger suggestion to dismiss the allegations:
KURTZ: Well, this is a striking message coming from the two of you, because you've both been around Washington a long time. You do have a reputation as being kind of centrist, even though you're different kinds of think tanks.
But at the same time, I just have to wonder, maybe you just don't like where the Republican Party has gone. I mean, after all, the people who represent the Republicans here in D.C. were elected by constituents who want them to do what they're doing. And so this is more of an ideological message on your part as opposed to calling out the press for supposed bias.
MANN: It could be, but I don't believe it is. We don't do that kind of analysis and --
KURTZ: You do it right here. The Republicans are extremists. Republicans are radicals.
MANN: But look to see how we back it up. I mean, we really look at arguments made and there's no truth content to them.
Wait...facts backed up by evidence? Thems alien concepts to Kurtz. And to the rest of the Beltway media, which Kurtz never internalizes. In fact, I've never seen him more invested in not internalizing what's being said or following up on questions in an interview. Clearly, Mann and Ornstein have hit too close to home.