Joke's on the press corps after Palin email witch-hunt turns up zilch

It was the biggest non-story story in Washington since Al Gore’s global warming tirades. I’m talking about the release of thousands of emails of former Gov. Sarah Palin last Friday in Juneau, Alaska. The release of emails (printed on paper) had reporters forming lines the lengths of which made the O.J. Simpson trial look like a queue at the local Dairy Queen.

News outlets such as The Washington Post publicly heralded their “read 'em here first” status. Never mind that no reporter had actually spent any time and bothered to read them. The editors just wanted to get the “full coverage” mantra out in order to light up the Google tote board.

That was Friday. By Saturday, a shocking revelation ripped through the nation’s headlines: Palin had a third email account! Oh, the political tremors that were felt then! No lie, folks. That was the headline, if you weren’t following. Surely, there would be something more salacious to uncover, no? I have three email accounts. Does The Washington Post want to put a dozen reporters on the case?

More breaking news revealed from poring over the Lost Scrolls of Palin — she used her email to discuss the indictment of Sen. Ted Stevens. Wow, what amazing sleuth work on the part of the mainstream media. Here we have the sitting governor of the state whose most powerful son — the senior senator — has been indicted and she (gasped) wanted to discuss the matter! Someone call Rod Blagojevich and tell him that’s how one uses email — not to sell a Senate seat to the highest bidder.

And then finally, on Sunday, the coup de grace: The Associated Press reporting that Palin’s emails painted her as an “image-conscious, driven leader angling for higher office.” Well now, they just described every member of the U.S. House and Senate. Chuck Schumer, look out.

This would be funny if the handling of the release by the media weren’t so sad. If only the press corps threw the same amount of time and energy into uncovering why this administration can’t seem to create one job in the private sector.

The Huffington Post’s John Linkins said it best on Friday when pondering if the press were really performing a public service, or just wasting a lot of time in scouring mundane and overall meaningless emails, saying, “It’s really not hard to think that the joke might somehow be on us.”

Indeed, it is.

More in Uncategorized

When social media leads to social action

Read more »