So I'm reading Jamison Foser's usual excellent column at Media Matters discussing why John Edwards' $400 haircut is always in the news, and I come upon this really interesting nugget. According to the Providence Journal's Tom Mooney, apparently, NBC Pentagon correspondent Jim Miklaszewski was paid $30,000 to give a speech for the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce, a speech in which he bashed Edwards for the haircut incident. Let's leave aside Miklaszewski's Bushnik 'the enemy is patient and America has a short attention span' wingnut rhetoric, and focus on a very specific practice going on here known in the industry as 'buckraking'.
Buckraking is the practice whereby a journalist is paid to speak to a business or right-wing group for large sums of money, and buckraking is a serious offense (it's also apparently against NBC's corporate policy). [..]
Did Miklaszewski break company policy by accepting this speaking fee? It certainly would seem he did (he's listed as a speaker for hire on speaker provider Barber and Associates' web site). Chris Matthews fell into a bit of hot water last year for apparently accepting speaking fees from special interest corporate groups, and Rick Kaplan, then MSNBC's President, made it clear that the policy for news anchors at NBC was that buckraking would result in firing.
By Nicole Belle — July 14, 2007