The Right’s Top 25 Journalists?

Tunku Varadarajan, national affairs correspondent for The Daily Beast, has compiled a list of what he and 50 academics, politicians, and journalists, consider to be the top 25 right-wing journalists in America. The most enlightening thing we learn from this list has nothing to do with the ranking of wingnuts in the media. What is truly fascinating is how it reveals their definition of a journalist. Here are the top 10:

  1. Paul Gigot, Editorial Page Editor, The Wall Street Journal
  2. Glenn Beck, Fox News
  3. Rush Limbaugh, Radio Talk Show Host
  4. Peggy Noonan, The Wall Street Journal
  5. Bill O’Reilly, Fox News
  6. Michelle Malkin, Fox News/Blogger
  7. David Brooks, The New York Times
  8. Sean Hannity, Fox News
  9. James Taranto, The Wall Street Journal
  10. Matt Drudge, The Drudge Report

To be fair, placing Paul Gigot at the top of the list recognizes a veteran newsman who spent decades with ink-stained fingers pursuing his vocation as a reporter and editor. While devotedly right-wing in his current role as an editorialist and commentator, he also has the resume of a bona fide journalist. And that makes him the ONLY journalist on the list.

It is nearly hysterical that the 50 unnamed participants in this project elevated Glenn Beck to second place; and Rush Limbaugh to third; and Bill O’Reilly to fifth; and … well you get the idea. What’s more, Varadarajan obviously has a soft spot in his heart for his former employer, Rupert Murdoch. Seven of the top 10 are also Murdoch minions employed by either Fox News or the Wall Street Journal. I wonder if some of the few real journalists at those shops are upset that they were ignored in favor of Sean Hannity and Peggy Noonan?

It is rather telling that an assembly of conservative academics, politicians, and journalists, couldn’t actually come up with names of other conservatives who are actually journalists. One of their selections, Limbaugh, has already responded to the list by declaring that he shouldn’t be on it. At least he is honest enough in this circumstance to admit that what he does is not journalism.

Some of the notable non-journalists on the remainder of the list include raging propagandist Andrew Breitbart (11), serial interrupter Neil Cavuto (14), Coulter clone Laura Ingraham (21), and Marc Morano, a virulent Climate Crisis denier and science skeptic.

Overall, judging from this coterie of cranks, I’m surprised that James O’Keefe and Jeff Gannon weren’t given honorable mentions. Perhaps the panel should be consulted again and made aware of some of these glaring omissions. Remember, Joe the Plumber served as a war correspondent for Pajamas Media. How dare they insult these fine conservatives by failing to honor their contributions to the rightist media.

The Same Kenneth Tomlinson

The irrepressibly corrupt Kenneth Tomlinson has informed the White House that he will not seek renomination as chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG).

This is the same Kenneth Tomlinson that “improperly used his office, putting a friend on the payroll and running a “horse-racing operation” with government resources.”

This is the same Kenneth Tomlinson that presided over the Voice of America as it closed its Baghdad bureau because they could not retain journalists to staff it.

This is the same Kenneth Tomlinson who sheepishly resigned as chair of the Corporation For Public Broadcasting in advance of a report that found that he violated the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967.

This is the same Kenneth Tomlinson that paid $15,000 in payments to two Republican lobbyists that were not disclosed to the Corporation’s board.

This is the same Kenneth Tomlinson that had taken overtly partisan steps to remake the CPB as a publicly financed Fox News – hiring Tucker Carlson and Paul Gigot and recruiting a former co-chairman of the Republican National Committee as president of PBS.

This is the same Kenneth Tomlinson engaged in ethically-questionable tactics to discredit Bill Moyers, former host of PBS’ Now.

Now this same Kenneth Tomlinson is jumping ship rather than face the newly elected Democratic majority in the senate that would be unlikely to reconfirm him anyway. And in his message to the President, in a pique of denial and self-righteousness, he declares:

“I have concluded that it would be far more constructive to write a book on my experiences rather than to seek to continue government service. Accordingly, I ask that you nominate another person to serve as chairman of this board.”

I think we can expect that his book will reveal that he was a victim of the secular progressive cabal that his hero Bill O’Reilly rails against. We can expect that he will deny any wrongdoing and that he only tried to serve his country. Nevermind all the evidence against him, we can expect to learn that it was actually another scoundrel that was responsible for these misdeeds (probably Bill Clinton).

In short we can expect that the book will reveal the very same Kenneth Tomlinson. An alligator doesn’t change its scales.