A 'golden opportunity' for conservative journalism
National Review’s Jonah Goldberg thinks Donald Trump’s administration provides “a golden opportunity for quality conservative journalism.” Writing in his weekly G-File column, Goldberg, a conservative intellectual who is no fan of Donald Trump, says the coverage of Trump in the mainstream press has been hysterical, while pro-Trump outlets like Breitbart have produced only sycophantic praise.
“Based on what has transpired so far, much of the mainstream media can’t be trusted to respond proportionately or accurately to Trump,” Goldberg writes. “Neither can big swaths of the entertainment wing of the right-wing media. They will, Pravda-like, announce that each new Trumpian wheat harvest has exceeded all expectations, for quite a while it seems.”
While acknowledging that, if hypocrisy were helium, “we’d all have funny voices and some folks would just float away,” Goldberg says “you’ll find that [traditional conservatives] tend not to be swept up in the hysteria of the Left or the Right. There’s a diversity of writers and opinions to be sure, but on the whole we have praised some of what Trump has done and criticized other things.”
In an interview for CJR’s oral history of the 2016 campaign, I asked Goldberg what impact Trump’s rise would have on conservative media. Reaching to history, he responded, “There’s this famous line where somebody asked Zhou Enlai what he thought of the French Revolution, and he said, ‘Too soon to tell.’”
Below, some context from conservative voices in the media.
Other notable stories
- During January, CJR saw its highest month of Web traffic in our history. Our readers responded with a flood of feedback, ranging from “Thank you for restoring my faith” to “I am embarrassed for you.” Read more responses here.
- After acting Attorney General Sally Yates, an Obama appointee, said yesterday that the Justice Department would not defend the president’s executive order banning refugees, Trump fired her.
- Former independent presidential candidate Evan McMullin wrote in praise of Yates’s decision. “May other Americans in the government have the same resolve when required,” McMullin tweeted.
- BuzzFeed’s Emma Loop reports that senior officials were left in the dark on Trump’s immigration order.
- For CJR, Nicholas Dias, Rashida Kamal, and Laurent Bastien analyzed more than 33,000 Freedom of Information Act requests to determine factors that lead to success.