Andrew Breitbart is a brilliant tactician with information. His latest pronouncement, however, is what one would expect from a political activist rather than an honest journalist seeking to inform the public, notes Daniel Crandall.
When mainstream journalists time story releases during an election year order in order to advantage a Democrat over a Republican, all reasonable people know that this is activism disguised as journalism. So what is it when an online journalist declares that he will time the a news story’s release to favor Republicans over Democrats?
During an interview with Sean Hannity, Andrew Breitbart declared,
“And this message is to Attorney General Holder: I want you to know that we have more tapes, it’s not just ACORN, and we’re going to hold out until the next election cycle, or else if you want to do a clean investigation, we will give you the rest of what we have, we will comply with you, we will give you the documentation we have from countless ACORN whistleblowers who want to come forward but are fearful of this organization and the retribution that they fear that this is a dangerous organization. So if you get into an investigation, we will give you the tapes; if you don’t … we will revisit these tapes come election time.” (emphasis added)
Granted the Left is much more cagey and underhanded with their informational weapons in the political battle of ideas. Typically they only release a story when it is all but impossible for its targets to adequately respond, and they will never warn their targets ahead of time. The only thing that makes Breitbart different from his ideological opponents, however, is he’s willing to negotiate the story’s release date.
Conservatives should no more praise Breitbart’s behavior in this matter than they would praise what happened to Bruce Herschensohn in 1992, Michael Huffington in 1994, Darrell Issa in 1998, or what Democrats in the Media attempted against George W. Bush in 2000 with the late release of his 1976 DUI conviction.
Breitbart was brilliant when he broke the ACORN, pimp, and prostitute scandal. As Bill Whittle put it, Breitbart “positioned his pieces in such a way, that every move his opponents made drew them ever deeper into the trap he had set for them.” While the release of that story had political ramifications, Breitbart’s direct opponents were ideologues in the Mainstream Media, not politicians. It is one thing to time a story’s release in order to show the establishment members of the Fourth Estate to be ideological hacks intent on turning journalism into propaganda. It is something else entirely to explicitly target political opponents with the release of a news story.
If Breitbart wants to prove himself to be something more than another conservative movement political activist, operating under the guise of journalism, then he should stop this informational blackmail.