Law prof: Bidens Are the Corruption GOAT
New info from a whistleblower and the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability are “shedding light on what could be one of the largest influence peddling efforts in history,” marvels Jonathan Turley at Fox News. “For a city where influence peddling is a virtual cottage industry, that is saying a lot. Even in this premier league of corruption, the Biden family is the GOAT.” For starters, documents show “six additional Biden family members may have benefited from foreign payments,” bringing the total to nine. And “past disclosures of alleged influence peddling by Hunter Biden and his uncle James” already raised enough suspicions to warrant “full investigation.” True, influence-peddling isn’t illegal, but it’s “most certainly a form of corruption.” Democrats shouldn’t “die on” this hill.
From the left: News Blackout on Elex Interference
“An all-time media blackout is in effect. We’re experiencing real-time Sovietization,” thunders Racket News’ Matt Taibbi of press reaction to news that the Biden campaign ginned up the “51 intel experts” letter denouncing The Post’s Hunter Biden laptop reporting as Russian disinformation. “If we go by the usual measuring stick of American scandal, the Watergate story, this potentially meets or exceeds that, on almost every level,” yet temporarily “that may be obscured by the absolute corruption of American media,” which barely noted the news outside the conservative press. “Once-great news organizations deciding to devote zero column inches to this means they’ve committed to a fully political news model.”
Crime desk: DOJ Is Failing Cities
“In the 1990s and 2000s, the Department of Justice played a critical role in halting the violence plaguing American cities”; now comes a report from Syracuse University researchers ranking how the feds are doing today, cheers Thomas Hogan in City Journal. It finds many “federal prosecutors’ offices are delivering a substantial number of convictions against gun-wielding felons,” but the jurisdictions are telling. “DOJ’s outposts in Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Portland, and Seattle” are at the bottom of the rankings — as “progressive de-prosecution philosophies have infected the chief federal prosecutors in many of the most crime-ridden American cities.” Hogan urges DOJ “to take up its traditional role of sword and shield, protecting the residents of these cities from those who would do them harm.”
From the right: Rotten Reporting on Thomas
“ProPublica’s big scoop” on Justice Clarence Thomas “turned out to be a quarter-teaspoon,” quips The Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto. Yes, “Thomas didn’t disclose the 2014 sale of his one-third interest” in some Georgia properties to developer Harlan Crow. But his “decision to amend his disclosure is so insignificant that ProPublica, which discovered and hyped the omission, hasn’t bothered to claim vindication.” And the rest of its report was “error-filled” — “a travesty of journalism.” The hostility is in marked contrast to “an exemplary 1991 piece” by The Washington Post’s Ruth Marcus, in which “cash gifts of $20,000” and $120,000 in forgiven mortgage principal to Justice William Brennan passed without criticism. “Readers can draw their own conclusions” why.
Culture critic: Long Live the Magazine
The “American magazine is in a state of decay,” laments Christian Lorentzen in The Washington Post. Known “mostly as brands, once sumptuous print publications exist primarily as websites or YouTube channels, hosts for generic scribblings, the ever-ubiquitous ‘take.’” Bookforum, the “scrappy quarterly with an outsize impact” that just shuttered, was a “haven from culture war and dwindling standards of intellectual discourse.” “Its editors were wise talent spotters” who “took in the whole world: not only literature but also art, cinema, music, philosophy, politics, technology, history, food, sports and fashion.” The mag never saw “readers as mere shoppers” but “had a column dedicated to bestsellers, a category studiously ignored by most book critics.” In our “age of publicity about publicity” and “cultural disintegration,” we “need more than ever” the “intelligence, verve and criticality of a well-edited little magazine. Bookforum is dead. Long live Bookforum!”
— Compiled by The Post Editorial Board