Green Room

WaPo wonders: Was IRS revelation a Friday night dump?

posted at 11:47 am on May 11, 2013 by

Distractions, distractions. The editors at the Washington Post castigate the IRS and demand a full and independent inquiry in their lead editorial today, and immediately reject any proposal that allows the agency to investigate itself over their admission that they targeted groups for scrutiny based on their political affiliations.  They also pose a question near the end that’s worth pondering, emphasis mine:

Did some officials hope never to reveal this wrongdoing? Did others hope it could quickly get lost in the weekend news cycle? Misguided, if so. We hope to hear Democratic leaders as well as Republican ones loudly saying so.

Actually, one would have to be nuts to think this will disappear over a weekend news cycle.  Rather than getting lost in other news, it actually reinforces an emerging pattern of executive-branch intimidation that exists in the Benghazi scandal and the Inspectors General corps, most recently regarding Afghanistan reconstruction funds, and more.

That doesn’t mean some organizations won’t try to downplay it in the hopes it will go away:

Not front page material in the Grey Lady’s news judgment.  But good enough for page A-11.  With the third paragraph reassuring readers that an agency spokesperson had insisted

… that the move was not driven by politics, but she added, “We made some mistakes; some people didn’t use good judgment.”

Compare that to the WaPo’s much more skeptical tone in the editorial:

The agency said that it now has rules in place to make sure this sort of thing never happens again. How could such basic safeguards not have existed in the first place? And what are the new rules? In response to our questions, officials did not say.

So what did the Times’ editorial have to say?  Er …. nothing.  The persecution of conservative groups by the IRS wasn’t enough to get the Gray Lady’s editors interested, apparently.

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ah yes, but Sandra Fluke getting called exactly what she is……well, now that’s news, folks.

ted c on May 11, 2013 at 12:13 PM

I imagine the Times’ position would be exactly the same if the Romney IRS targeted Planned Murderhood and Media Matters.

KS Rex on May 11, 2013 at 12:24 PM

You know, Friday night dumps work because the MSM goes with whatever is handed to it (and any reaction) and by Monday, that’s all been mined. If they actually did any further investigating on their own, the stories would be on-going and no day would be better than another for news releases.

PersonFromPorlock on May 11, 2013 at 12:35 PM

You know how when an oil well catches on fire and the way they stop it is they basically blow it up? Well, that’s my guess at what’s going on with Benghazi, they’re trying, desperately, to remove attention, some or all, by throwing out what looks to be a red-meat issue for conservatives in hopes of throwing some of the hounds off the trail.

Sapience on May 11, 2013 at 12:41 PM

It’s rather easy to eliminate the Friday News Dump by just putting the news dumped on Friday on the top of page 1A in big bold headlines Monday morning.

Dusty on May 11, 2013 at 1:13 PM

Meanwhile, liberal publications like The Atlantic are at the same time mocking those who think there’s something wrong with Benghazi and simply ignoring the IRS scandal.

These are the people that claim to speak truth…

blue13326 on May 11, 2013 at 1:17 PM

That doesn’t mean some organizations won’t try to downplay it in the hopes it will go away:

I like David Burge’s characterization: “Journalism is about covering important stories. With a pillow, until they stop moving.”

Dusty on May 11, 2013 at 1:18 PM

We’re seeing more and more dyed-in-the-wool liberal publications coming out and criticizing this administration. Before, these publications didn’t just go to bat for this administration, they cobbled together however much credibility they thought they could wager and sent it all out to the front lines to die for it.

So here’s a question:

Are they recalibrating their journalistic compass, or are they merely rediscovering their integrity in the belief that this President is a lost cause, and they need to begin rebuilding credibility now in order to more effectively advocate for The Next Great Liberal Hope™ in 2015?

If the latter, I always figured it would happen eventually, but in the period between his re-election and the midterms? Could they be any more obvious?

mintycrys on May 11, 2013 at 1:25 PM

The reason most people will yawn over this is they don’t understand what the extra scrutiny of these organizations means. As I have heard it, it increases by orders of magnitude the documentation -> manpower -> $$$ that these orgs have to produce/waste/spend in order to get or keep their tax-exempt status. Can’t or won’t do the work? No tax-exempt for you!

It would be like a high-jump competition. Qualifying for most orgs starts at 6.8 feet. Got Tea Party or Patriots in your name? Your qualifying starts at 7.8 feet. Since the WR is just a tad over 8 feet, opening at 7.8 would be much, much harder.

Marcola on May 11, 2013 at 1:45 PM

Was IRS revelation a Friday night dump?

Does a bear…?

Is the Pope…?

Do New Zealanders like…?

Blake on May 11, 2013 at 2:13 PM

The Low-IQ Democrats commenting at the WaPo link do not disappoint!

Those of you that think Obama orchestrated this must think he has more fingers in pies than… than…Dick Cheney.

The GOP never used government agencies for political reasons.

(cough)US Attorney scandal(cough)

When was the ;last time there was an honest Republican?

So far no evidence has been produced that Obama knew anything about what the IRS was doing. It is absurd to assert that he should have or even could have known anything about it. It seems plausible that Republicans at the IRS are behind this whole thing in order to provide a scandal to take voters minds off of the mess in the House with wing nuts in control.

The tea party is anti-government, anti-tax, and anti-American. They hate every American who is non-white Anglo-Saxon Protestant. They especially hate black presidents who were born in Hawaii.

Tea Party = Radical right wing extremists/ racists.

Investigate, investigate, investigate. Where their is trash, their is putrid corruption.

“It Burns!”

Del Dolemonte on May 11, 2013 at 3:28 PM

Oh my…the seeds of deceit finally sprout and we see the mothers eating their offspring (let’s face it…media created ObamaMania, not the other way around). I am finally loving the press again these last few days…waiting for Jay Carney to quit because of stomach ulcers. BTW one of my favorite Mark Twain quotes was something along the lines of “never lie and you won’t have to remember so much”…I guess that is close to “what a tangled web we weave…”).

teejk on May 11, 2013 at 4:12 PM

Yes and no.

It was released on Friday to try to bury it; but that wasn’t the only goal.

Look at what they admitted to.. now wait a week and look at what people can actually prove they knew and did (and when).

It won’t just be “low level” staffers, it won’t just be 2012, and it won’t just be this… they’re also looking for cover for other somewhat related misdeeds so they can claim “we already addressed that” when the further news comes out.

I’m not sure what, but this is my prediction (already partially validated by the AP News link in the Headlines).

gekkobear on May 11, 2013 at 5:11 PM

Didn’t this come to light because of the ABA Taxation Section meetings? If so, then it wasn’t a news dump.

blammm on May 11, 2013 at 8:47 PM

This story will be swept under the rug by the LameStream Media.

Here’s a warning for all you elitist jerks:

“First they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.

Then they came for the socialists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a socialist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Catholic.

Then they came for me,
and there was no one left to speak for me.”

Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892–1984)

All the progressives are chuckling, “It can’t happen here”.

“…and there was no one left to speak for me.”

Buy a gun; buy lots of ammo, you will need it.

patch on May 11, 2013 at 11:29 PM

You know I understand the POTUS doing this. It’s the very first thing people should learn about government. power currupts and absolute power currupts absolutly. I can not understand the MSM esp the NYT. they are acting more like true blievers disragading, burying or out and out lying when the facts don’t match their world view. Our media is a JOKE it makes pravda look free and balanced.

the NYT thinks of itself more of a gatekeeper then a free press. They and only they in their minds will determine what is truth and what isn’t /

unseen on May 12, 2013 at 11:25 AM

“…and immediately reject any proposal that allows the agency to investigate itself…”

The WAPO knows that agencies still run by Bush appointees are not allowed to investigate themselves. The State Department, CIA and the Department of Justice, on the other hand…

drunyan8315 on May 12, 2013 at 12:09 PM