NEW YORK—Leave it to a bunch of self-important self-righteous self-serious journalists to miss the whole point. (That’s what they call themselves. They prefer the French word instead of the word that was used for 150 years—“reporter.”)
I’m talking about the now-infamous White House Correspondents Dinner at which Michelle Wolf lacerated some of the assembled guests, especially Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who had to sit there taking the mean-spirited abuse because she wasn’t given a rebuttal slot. (Don’t call it a roast, as some of Michelle’s defenders did. At a roast, the roastee speaks last. This was a comedy execution.)
Even before it was over, various journalists had taken to the ramparts to either defend or condemn, with the stand-up comedy world chiming in to support Wolf’s acidity and take-no-prisoners style, even if it humiliated people in the room, under the theory that her targets were people who “signed up for it,” while other journalists—mostly the mainstream of the mainstream—chided Wolf for her lack of subtlety and politeness.
I’m actually glad that they self-describe as journalists so that we can more accurately distinguish them from reporters. Whoever these guys are who write the daily pieces about the nation’s doom—probably the same guys who announced the death of objectivity as a standard—have long since identified themselves as grim soldiers of code-word prose pretending to be detached observers. There was a time when nobody wanted the White House correspondent job because you were locked into pool reporting with a pack of loafers happy to regurgitate press releases while watching staged events from behind the purple ropes. Now, blessed with the greatest soap opera in White House history and an Oval Office more leaky than a paper…