The media is overplaying its hand on the Russia election story

Matt Taibbi:
Why the Russia Story Is a Minefield for Democrats and the Media

Russia scandals have bloodied the Trump administration. But it carries dangers for those reporting it.
This is the former Director of National Intelligence telling all of us that as of 12:01 a.m. on January 20th, when he left government, the intelligence agencies had no evidence of collusion between Donald Trump's campaign and the government of Vladimir Putin's Russia.

Virtually all of the explosive breaking news stories on the Trump-Russia front dating back months contain some version of this same disclaimer.

The notion that the president is either an agent or a useful idiot of the Russian state is so freely accepted in some quarters that Beck Bennett's shirtless representation of Putin palling with Alec Baldwin's Trump is already a no-questions-asked yuks routine for the urban smart set.

And yet, this is an extraordinarily complex tale that derives much of its power from suppositions and assumptions.

But it could also be true that both the Democratic Party and many leading media outlets are making a dangerous gamble, betting their professional and political capital on the promise of future disclosures that may not come.

We have to remember that the unpopularity of the press was a key to Trump's election. Journalists helped solve the billionaire's accessibility problem by being a more hated group than the arrogant rich. Trump has people believing he shares a common enemy with them: the news media. When we do badly, he does well.
There is much more.

He may be one of the first in the media to recognize the enormous gamble they are making with a story based on thinly sourced supposition.  I think it is based more on hate of Trump and looking for an excuse to take him down than on reality.  It is also based on their search for a reason about why they were so wrong about the election.  They can't seem to accept that voters rejected them and their favored candidate.  They are still looking for a boogie man to blame it own.


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