Now that James O’Keefe can claim another scalp in his quest to secretly tape the world Andrew Breitbart (O’Keefe’s original champion) is back in the spotlight.
Breitbart showed up on Piers Morgan last night to discuss (crow about) the latest in the video scandal rocking National Public Radio that forced CEO Vivian Schiller to resign.
He was joined by NPR ombudsman Alicia Shepard who had some harsh words for Ron Schiller over at WaPo yesterday.
In the clip below, which is only a partial capture of the segment, Morgan, a former editor of the British tabloid News of the World (and hence presumably someone who knows skulduggery when he sees it) asks Breitbart if such journalism is fair, — a loaded question considering Breitbart’s “skulduggery” with the Shirley Sherrod video over the summer.
Breitbart insisted that criticism of the NPR video prove that journalists like James O’Keefe “are held to a different standard,” because of the left-of-centre, “coastal media elite” is disgusted by his conservative politics.
However, the best moment is Morgan repeating the question and then being especially British (emphasised in italics):
Morgan: “Doesn’t matter to me which side of the political persuasion you come from. Where is the line drawn? I mean, you are an activist, for want of a better phrase.”
Breitbart: “I’m not.”
Morgan: “Well, you are, really, aren’t you“
Breitbart dodged the question and brought up Morgan’s apparently overwhelming Britishness, stumbling around for a good minute. Breitbart thinks we are heading to a more British model where newspapers don’t pretend to be objective. And since you are probably wondering, according to Breitbart here is where he draws his line:
If James O’Keefe, who is an independent journalist, comes to me with something that doesn’t sit right with me, I’m going to pass on it. I think that we have to live with our consciences. And what, you know — the public is going to judge whether or not a tactic is over the line. But I don’t think what he did is over the line. It comports with what the mainstream media has been doing for years.
Andrew Breitbart is friends with his conscience! It’s a shame that the video cuts off here, because the most informative moments happened after:
Shepard points out again that Ron Schiller’s unprofessional demeanor going public only proves the changing times, where we all “live in public,” and will only be under more scrutiny.
And Breitbart’s surprising response:
“Well, first of all, I will say this: the best coverage on this incident has been NPR [David Folkenflik, ftw!]. It’s been impeccable. And I as a conservative will say that it is the most reliable and best resource for me to get news on how people who are left of centre think. I respect NPR more than you would actually think. “
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