How can Jennifer Rubin admit misleading readers in her "Right Turn" column and still remain employed by the supposedly august Washington Post?
Amidst all the pundit and pollster wreckage in the wake of yesterday's election, a few shining examples of sheer horror really stand out. Perhaps the greatest mismatch between an institution that thinks highly of its reputation and an employee who admits to intentionally, knowingly lying to readers is the
and right-wing columnist Jennifer Rubin.
Media Matters is having a hey day picking over Rubin's post-mortem ruminations posted a day after the election, with good reason:
Let's take what she's written here, in the cold reality of a Romney loss, and compare it to what she wrote when the Romney campaign was still in full swing.
Rubin now: "The convention speech was a huge missed opportunity."
Rubin then: "Mitt Romney accepted the nomination of his party for president with a speech that showed he can rise to an occasion, and let us see a side of him that was compelling and heartbreaking." [Right Turn, 8/30]
Rubin now: "Romney made a lunge now and then in the direction of immigration reform and an alternative health-care plan without giving those topics the attention they deserved."
Rubin then: "The media are doing their best to disguise the unpleasant fact that Mitt Romney has been more forthcoming on immigration than the president has in more than three years in office." [Right Turn, 6/24] "This isn't that hard: Romney will repeal Obamacare. He has always favored protection for people with preexisting conditions who move from one employer-provided plan to another or from an individual-purchased to an employer-provided plan." [Right Turn, 9/10]
There's much more at the link.
The point here isn't just that Rubin and so many were very, very wrong—in her case, knowingly, arrogantly so—it's that in a world where press institutions claim the high ground in the new media landscape, boasting of ethics and accountability, they keep people on their payroll who admit intentionally misleading readers.
When will these media institutions fire the liars? Or is keeping liars on board imperative to some weird mission of balancing out the truth-tellers? Someone should pay a price: Rubin. If she doesn't, the Washington Post will continues to bleed crediblity. It's their choice.