Some Bachmann Home State Newspapers Reluctant to Cover Her Latest Conspiracy Mongering

When Republican John McCain went to the Senate floor and condemned Republican Michele Bachmann and some of her Republican colleagues for fomenting McCarthyite conspiracy theories against the US government...

...even the Minneapolis Star Tribune and the St. Paul Pioneer Press were forced to report the story.

The Strib ran the story page one, top of the paper. The PiPress (which prides itself on having having a more conservative readership) ran the story on page two.

That's right, the Pioneer Press ran this story--about how the most influential national politician in Minnesota was alleging an Islamist, anti-American conspiracy inside the U.S. State Department--on page two. What did the PiPress paper run on page one? The more important story, in their view: how to get in to see the new 'Batman' movie. And Stillwater won't be holding its Lumberjack Days Festival.

This should trigger something in your head about why and how Minnesota government gets chronically paralyzed by kooks at the extremes, about about why and how the MN GOP came to be dominated by liars, nuts, extremists, and con men. If this is how the Pioneer Press calibrates its coverage of the misdeeds of the highest profile politician in Minnesota--how trustworthy do you think the PiPress is on the less notorious stories? On the budget story, on the voting ID story, on federal news stories? This is cowardly, fish-wrapper cr*p journalism, from one of the two most influential papers in the state.

The Strib must be very proud of itself (by comparison) with their headline piece on the same story. Unfortunately, they gave it to their Washington correspondent Kevin Diaz, who (in light of his position, opportunities, and responsibilities) I consider to be the most worthless of all the Minnesota reporters on the Bachmann story.

Minnesotans have been telling Washington correspondent Diaz and the Strib for years about documented Bachmann statements indicating that she's an ultraright nut. I mean for years, since before Diaz was appointed Washington correspondent.  But the Strib never had the courage to print that rock-solid evidence in a timely fashion: incontrovertible evidence of Bachmann's right wing paranoia and hate mongering, out of her own mouth.

For example, in 2006 I sent a conspiracy nut flyer co-authored and signed by then State Senator Michele Bachmann to the Star Tribune. In the flyer she alleged that the Bush government and the Republican congress were assenting to the end of the free enterprise system and educational policy that would result in a Soviet style economy and the end of American sovereignty. The Strib acknowledged receipt of the document--but would not publish it or report it to its readers. Neither would Minnesota Public Radio, despite the facts that I sent them excerpts, too. These news organizations were simply refusing to acquaint their readers with the fact that Bachmann (a Minnesota State Senator) was authoring and disseminating crackpot conspiracy theories with the ultraright--even though the evidence was impeccable; authored by Bachmann herself.

So Diaz and the Strib can't plead ignorance. The evidence was printed, years worth of it, available for free on the blogs and sometimes published in the City Pages. The Strib seemed to consider spiking the story of Bachmann's extremism to be a part of their journalistic mission; Diaz even described her to his readers as a "populist."

Diaz and his editors have had a national Minnesota news story about an internationally famous politician available to them since 2006--and they've neglected it to the point of aiding Michele Bachmann in her attempts at spreading crackpot lies and paranoia.

In truth, neither paper has anything to be proud of in calling attentio to Bachmann's latest conspiracy theory. Once again, they're simply following the lead of news sources outside the state. When it comes to bringing Minnesota voters the most important information about Michele Bachmann's political views and agenda, that's what they've been doing for six years.

And it's disgraceful and yes, cowardly, and yes, the disgrace and cowardice amount to policy on their part. The Strib and the PiPress have played a huge role in the making of Michele Bachmann's political career. Over the years their reporters and editors have had access to countless examples of outright lies, hateful accusations, and paranoid conspiracy theories delivered by Michele Bachmann.

They haven't reported that because they don't want to report it, not even if it's documented and then laid in their laps at no charge by local bloggers. They want to spike that stuff, knowing that keeping those Bachmann statements out of Minnesota media benefits Michele Bachmann--a nut, a liar, a bigot influencing millions in American politics.

Go to MN State Page
Category: 
origin Blog: 
origin Author: 
Showing 0 comments