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Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:25 PM

How 'The New York Times' Bungled the Hillary Clinton Emails Story

What the hell is happening at The New York Times?

In March, the newspaper published a highly touted article about Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal email account that, as I wrote in an earlier column, was wrong in its major points. The Times’s public editor defended that piece, linking to a lengthy series of regulations that, in fact, proved the allegations contained in the article were false. While there has since been a lot of partisan hullaballoo about “email-bogus-gate”—something to be expected when the story involves a political party’s presidential front-runner—the reality remained that, when it came to this story, there was no there there.

Then, on Thursday night, the Times dropped a bombshell: Two government inspectors general had made a criminal referral to the Justice Department about Clinton and her handling of the emails. The story was largely impenetrable, because at no point did it offer even a suggestion of what might constitute a crime. By Friday morning, the Times did what is known in the media trade as a “skin back”—the article now said the criminal referral wasn’t about Clinton but about the department’s handling of emails. Still, it conveyed no indication of what possible crime might be involved.

The story seemed to further fall apart on Friday morning when Representative Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) issued a statement saying that he had spoken to the inspector general of the State Department and that there had been no criminal referral regarding Clinton’s email usage. Rather, Cummings said, the inspectors general for State and the intelligence community had simply notified the Justice Department—which issues the regulations on Freedom of Information Act requests—that some emails subject to FOIA review had been identified as classified when they had not previously been designated that way.

So had the Times mixed up a criminal referral—a major news event—with a notification to the department responsible for overseeing FOIA errors that might affect some documents’ release? It’s impossible to tell, because the Times story—complete with its lack of identification of any possible criminal activity—continues to mention a criminal referral.

.........

The problem is, it is not as if the real purpose of this memo was hard to discern. Here is the subject heading: “Potential Issues Identified by the Office of the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community Concerning the Department of State’s Process for the Review of Former Secretary Clinton’s Emails under the Freedom of Information Act (ESP-15-05)”

Get it? This is about the process being used by FOIA officials in reviewing former Secretary Clinton. And former government officials have nothing to do with how FOIA officials deal with requests for documentation. To jump from this fact to a conclusion that, somehow, someone thinks there is a criminal case against Clinton (the original story) requires a level of recklessness that borders on, well, criminal behavior.

http://www.newsweek.com/hillary-clinton-new-york-times-emails-357246

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Response to still_one (Original post)

Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:30 PM

1. The NYT did more than "bungle" the story. nt

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #1)

Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:31 PM

2. They sure did, and the article is posted is called the NY Times incompetent

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Response to still_one (Original post)

Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:35 PM

3. Well that didn't and does not stop corporate media and the GOP huh

Some on the DU are following suit as well.

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Response to Iliyah (Reply #3)

Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:40 PM

5. That is why I posted the Newsweek article by Kurt Eeichenwald, because the detail he provides takes

the NY Times apart piece by piece.

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Response to still_one (Original post)

Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:39 PM

4. There remains a vast right wing conpiracy.

The media has never been friendly with the Clintons.

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Response to Agnosticsherbet (Reply #4)

Sat Jul 25, 2015, 03:50 PM

6. That is true, but what was their excuse about the Iraq and WMDs. Jon Stewart interviewed Judy

Miller, and her justification was that everyone made the same mistake, but when Stewart pointed out that the Times story she wrote didn't provide the full picture, and left out what others in the government, along with other experts were saying, that contradicted the story, her replay was that they "ran out of space", so it wasn't published. The audience audibly gasped at that idiotic remark.

Here is the complete interview in two parts:

http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/o05yhi/exclusive---judith-miller-extended-interview-pt--1

http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/o615ba/exclusive---judith-miller-extended-interview-pt--2

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Response to still_one (Original post)

Sat Jul 25, 2015, 07:44 PM

7. The NYT blew this story

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