In August Donald Trump’s Press Secretary, Sean Spicer (Fibby Spice), was advised that his services would no longer be required. He was fired after only six months of loyal lying for the President. At first glance, Spicer seemed to be the perfect person for the job. On his first day at work he assembled the Washington press corps to berate them for telling the truth about the dismal attendance at Trump’s inauguration. And it was all downhill from there.
The White House has jettisoned a record number of top staffers in its short tenure. They include his chief of staff Reince Priebus, national security advisor Michael Flynn, and communications director Anthony Scaramucci. Some of Trump’s castoffs have already found new employment with right-wing media outlets like Breitbart News and the Sinclair Broadcast Group. But Spicer is having a rough go of it in his post-Trump career. NBC News reports that:
“The big five news organizations have passed on offering former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer a job as an exclusive paid contributor, network sources confirmed to NBC News on Tuesday.
“Since Spicer exited the White House, his representatives have been holding individual conversations about the possibility of President Donald Trump’s former flack joining one of the major TV networks, which include CBS News, CNN, Fox News, ABC News and NBC News.
“But ‘they won’t touch him,’ said a media industry executive familiar with those conversations.”
The reason given by some of these networks for rejecting Spicer was his “lack of credibility.” Which, ironically, is what qualified him for his job in the Trump administration in the first place. Spicer devotedly backed up Trump’s false assertions that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election. He did the same with the claim that President Obama had tapped Trump’s phone. And he supported Trump, Jr.’s description of a meeting with Russian operatives as only about adoption. That was even after Donnie’s emails disclosed that it was actually about getting dirt on Hillary Clinton.
The fact that these networks all passed on Spicer is a notable step in the right direction. But if “lack of credibility” is their standard then you have to wonder why they still employ people like Sean Hannity, Hugh Hewitt, Stephen Moore, etc. There are numerous pundits whose record for honesty, or at least accuracy, is suspect. Yet they continue to keep their jobs. What’s more, these networks also book guests whose comments are brazenly untruthful. They are nothing more than propagandists for the Trump White House. Chief among them is prevaricator extraordinaire, Kellyanne Conway. Reputable news organizations should never allow people on the air who repeatedly and shamelessly lie.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.
Spicer’s career is not totally kaput. There are opportunities for him in the conservative fringe media. He can go on the speakers circuit for some big bucks from corporations. And he has already tested the entertainment waters with his cameo on the Emmys. But if the networks maintain this newly adopted standard of credibility, there may be some hope for the future. Perhaps the media will begin to value truth and honesty over balance and false equivalencies. It’s too soon to draw that optimistic conclusion, but the snubbing of Sean Spicer is a good start.