This one had me laughing so hard my stomach began to hurt.
New York Magazine's Daily Intel blog is reporting that Fox News contributor Sarah Palin had a fun time scolding members of the press at the TIME 100 party on Tuesday night (emphasis added):
Sarah [Palin], on the other hand, was happy to be in a room with so many reporters - particularly Time's Joe Klein, of whom she is a fan - so she could set the record straight. "I did talk to a couple of reporters already and said that a bunch of stuff that they write is bogus, but we had a great conversation about it and we agreed to disagree on a lot of things," she said. "One thing we can all agree on, though, is how much we respect and want to protect the freedom of the press and we have that in common, so at the end of the day, I think as long as we're protecting that and not abusing the right - we have to be writing truth - then we'll get along just fine tonight." Particularly, she wanted to clear up "the bogus reports about how much money I supposedly make," she said. "I have a business. I run a business with my speaker's fee."
It takes a lot of guts for the former half-term Governor of Alaska to attack the media for the unspecified "bunch" of "bogus" "stuff" it reports when her own Facebook profile and appearances on Fox News would keep fact-checkers and editors busy for weeks.
Then there's the gem about Palin agreeing, "[H]ow much we respect and want to protect the freedom of the press." How much respect could she possibly have for an institution that she routinely calls the "lamestream media" and so rarely avails herself to for serious sit-down interviews?
If anything, Palin routinely shows contempt for the press. As I wrote last week:
Sure we all remember when the former half-term Governor of Alaska was paid to speak at the National Tea Party Convention -- a speech that was initially closed to press except for a few right-wing outlets like Fox News (her employer.) Then there was the news that one of her speaking contracts required "questions" following her remarks were "to be collected from the audience in advance" and "pre-screened."
Now, Think Progress brings us word of yet another disturbing story: Palin's speech earlier this week "at a fundraiser for the Austin-based Heroic Media, a "faith-based" anti-choice organization that seeks to reduce the number of abortions "by creating a Culture of Life through television, billboard and internet advertising."
The piece by Think Progress' Ben Armbruster goes on to note a report from the Austin-American Statesmen that members of the press had to make a contribution to Heroic Media in order to attend Palin's address.
In order to understand the delusion that fuels Palin's bizarre "media" talking points, it's worth revisiting the justification she offered Jay Leno when asked about her decision to join Fox News earlier in the year (again, emphasis added):
"I had studied journalism...my college degree there in communications and now I am back there wanting to build some trust back in our media. I think that the mainstream media is quite broken and I think that there needs to be the fairness, the balance in there...that's why I joined Fox."
"Those years ago that I studied journalism, it was all about the who, what, where, when and why. It was not so much the opinion interjected in hard news stories. So, I would like to see, in order to build trust in the media, because it is a cornerstone of our democracy, Americans deserve to have more of that factual fairness."
Far from respecting the First Amendment or media as an institution, Palin -- like scores of right-wingers before her -- uses the media to score political points with a conservative basis detached from reality and glued to the political spin coming from right-wing outlets like Fox News and Rush Limbaugh.