Our Adversarial Press, Then and Now

Yesterday CNN’s Jim Acosta grumbled about the fact that a Daily Caller reporter asked President Trump a softball question at the end of the president’s appearance in the Rose Garden. How dare he? Doesn’t he know the press is supposed to be adversarial, speaking truth to power? Someone on Twitter put Acosta’s gibe at the Daily Caller reporter together with his own fawning question to President Obama a few years ago:

To which Sarah Sanders tweeted: “Dear Diary…#BestWeekEver.”

Acosta is a joke, of course, but he is also typical of the White House press corps and of our news media in general. Reporters take pride in being adversarial, in asking tough questions, in standing up to authority. But that is only when Republicans are in power. When they are talking to Democrats, they are house pets, just like Tass or Izvestia reporters in the bygone days of the U.S.S.R. Today’s conjunction of Acosta then and now is a useful reminder of how corrupt the American press is.