A couple of months ago, Washington Free Beacon (and yes, that's "beacon," not "bacon") launched with some reasonably experienced conservative journalists and a mandate to hold their political opponents accountable with rock-solid journalism. The site describes itself this way: "Dedicated to uncovering the stories that the professional left hopes will never see the light of day, the Free Beacon produces in-depth and investigative reporting on a wide range of issues, including public policy, government affairs, international security, and media criticism." That sounds fair enough. I'm all for rigorous journalism that nevertheless has an ideological perspective—after all, that's what we do here at the Prospect. But let's just say conservatives have a particular perspective on how to go about this. These were the top three stories on the Beacon's site when I read it on Wednesday:
1. "The Myth of Daphne," in which they reveal that among a group of millionaires who came out in support of the Obama administration's proposed "Buffett Rule" was Abigail Disney, head of the Daphne Foundation, which holds investments in some companies that have been criticized by liberals, including Goldman Sachs and Halliburton. So obviously, the Buffett Rule is a bad idea.
2. "Follow the Beater," which uncorks the blockbuster revelation that an Obama campaign staffer who has criticized conservative misogyny follows Mike Tyson, Chris Brown, and Charlie Sheen on Twitter. The staffer, Lis Smith, also follows 1,261 other people, but whatever. So obviously, Democratic accusations that Republicans are waging a "war on women" are wrong.
3. "Hostile Workplace," which reveals that despite the fact that President Obama signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, in his White House, the average man's salary is higher than the average woman's salary. That this actually indicates that men, on average, are occupying higher-paying jobs in the White House (a legitimate grounds for criticism, but not something they pointed out), not that women are being paid less for doing the same job—the kind of discrimination the Ledbetter act was designed to combat—doesn't seem to have occurred to the Beacon.
This is the Breitbartization of journalism, in which the only goal is to embarrass liberals, because, you know, screw you, hippie. Conservatives cry a lot about bias in the media, and every once in a while, they say, "We'll show you! We'll start our own news organizations, and they'll show everyone the real news the liberal media won't tell you! Not only that, this won't be just a bunch of conservatives calling people names. It'll be real journalism!" And then this is the best they can come up with.
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