Former CBS News anchor Dan Rather, the man who epitomizes fake news, seriously lectured the media on calling out lies.
Rather was irked by Wall Street Journal editor-in-chief Gerard Baker saying on NBC’s Meet The Press that journalists should use the word “lie” with caution when it comes to vetting President-elect Donald Trump’s statements.
“‘Lie’ implies much more than just saying something that’s false,” Baker said. “It implies a deliberate intent to mislead.”
Baker went on to say that objective news reporting is based on allowing readers to come to their own conclusions after reporting on Trump’s statements rather than “ascribing a moral intent, as it were, to someone by saying that they’ve lied.”
Rather ranted about Baker’s statements in a Facebook post.
“A lie, is a lie, is a lie,” Rather wrote. “Journalism, as I was taught it, is a process of getting as close to some valid version of the truth as is humanly possible. And one of my definitions of news is information that the powerful don’t want you to know.”
Rather then deemed Baker’s stance on lying as “deeply disturbing.”
“It is not the proper role of journalists to meet lies—especially from someone of Mr. Trump’s stature and power—by hiding behind semantics and euphemisms,” Rather wrote. “Our role is to call it as we see it, based on solid reporting. When something is, in fact, a demonstrable lie, it is our responsibility to say so.”
Rather added that he has “deep respect” for the Wall Street Journal, but that the media as a whole needs to present the truth and nothing but the truth since the public is being confronted by truth “that resemble something spewed out by a fertilizer-spreader in a wind tunnel.”
“Some journalists and publications will rise to the occasion,” Rather concluded. “Some will not. You as the paying, subscribing public, can use your leverage and pocketbooks to keep those who should be honest brokers of information, well, honest.”
For Rather to be giving a lecture on lying is truly an example of delusional irony. Rather was fired from CBS in 2004 for falsely reporting that “that President George W. Bush avoided serving in Vietnam during his time at the Texas National Guard and was given preferential treatment because his father, George H.W. Bush, was a congressman.” The report was based on documents that were obviously forged, and Rather’s lame defense was that the story was “fake, but accurate.” To this day, Rather still maintains this defense, despite the fact that there has been no evidence to substantiate it.
Rather is the last person to be giving lectures on lying.