Associated Press: Long on style, short on substance

November 19, 2014

No matter WHAT they say, “illegal” is STILL illegal.

This past Saturday, the Globe reprinted a Seattle Times editorial that broke the irony meter. Titled “FBI harms free press” it recoils in horror that seven years ago an FBI agent posed as an Associated Press reporter to catch a teenager making bomb threats.

The tone was ominous: “By impersonating journalists, the FBI directly infringes upon the freedoms the Founding Fathers explicitly safeguarded in the Bill of Rights” and demanded “No U.S. Agency…should ever allow its agents to masquerade as news gatherers” and bemoaned that such “deception undermines core American principles.”

That the AP is suddenly shocked, shocked mind you, that the big government its reporting has protected for years as the giver of all things good and just, is also a danger to our Constitutional liberties and freedoms reminded me of the old limerick:

There was a young lady from Niger,

Who smiled as she rode on a tiger.

They came back from the ride

With the lady inside,

And the smile on the face of the tiger.

And boy has that tiger been smiling of late. Consider AP’s coverage of two of the hottest issues of the day: health care and illegal immigration.

As video after video of MIT economics professor Jonathan Gruber admitting that the Affordable Care Act was purposefully drafted in a way to hide the truth from “stupid” Americans kept surfacing last week it took the AP a full seven days to finally report it. (November 14, 4:20 p.m. EST)

That the man who released the videos wasn’t an AP “journalist” but rather just an ordinary private citizen that got snared in President Obama’s “if you like your plan you can keep your plan” lie makes the AP late reporting even more troublesome.

After having the policy that worked for his family canceled and seeing that a similar policy would cost him almost double, Rich Weinstein did what the AP has never seemed to care about when it came to Obamacare: he uncovered the truth behind the lies.

But AP’s love affair with illegal immigration is just as troubling as its head in the sand healthcare reporting.

From the Washington Post, April 2, 2013: “The Associated Press has dropped the phrase “illegal immigrant” from its stylebook, a victory for immigrant advocates who argue that the term is biased against the people it describes.”

No matter what one feels about current immigration policy, when someone chooses to overstay a visa or to enter this country illegally he/she has crossed the line from “legal” to “illegal”; and no amount of liberal phraseology can overcome that one simple fact.

Did the AP break the story back in January that the Obama administration was soliciting contracts for transportation for tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors? Minors that then “surprisingly” just appeared at the Texas border six months later.

Where is that so self-proud AP journalism regarding the millions of struggling legal Americans of all ethnicity’s whose wages and jobs are now at the mercy of a President readying his pen to please his left wing political base?

And is there any doubt among anyone other than denizens of Gruberville that should the Congress that the American people just elected dare to use its Constitutional “power of the purse” authority to withhold funding for Obama’s lawlessness that the AP and its siblings will most assuredly headline their stories: “Republicans shut down government over illegal immigration”?

For all the bluster though, the editorial did get one thing right: impersonating journalists is a deception that undermines the very foundation upon which America was built.

Now, if only the Times could get the AP to buy a mirror.

PUBLISHER’s NOTE:  A version of this column first appeared in the November 19, 2014 print edition of the Joplin Globe.

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