Pole dancing the news
OtherWise Justice

Life imitates art

CooperI've been watching "The Newsroom" on HBO, largely because I'm a sucker for Aaron Sorkin's snappy dialogue.

The show itself is about a news anchor who is so principled that watching requires a hefty suspension of disbelief, especially for anyone who has ever been around a real newsroom.

In the last episode I saw, for example, he decided that it was time for TV news to call politicians liers when they lie. What a concept.

I knew it would never happen in the real world of on-the-one-hand and on-the-other-hand journalism, where the dopiest, most outlandish opinions are treated as if they're the legitmate "other side" of an issue.

But wait. It has happened.

Last night, Anderson Cooper devoted 7 minutes of his CNN broadcast to debunking the claims of some Republican members of Congress that the Obama administration has been "infiltrated by Islamist extremists." 

They have called for investigations into the matter, and have specifically pointed a finger at Huma Abedin, a longtime aide to Hillary Clinton.

Cooper carefully dismantled what little evidence the accusers offered. It wasn't too hard since their accusations are based on a series of tenuous familial connections that even Joe McCarthy would have been embarassed to hang an attack on. 

"Huma Abedin's deceased father, who started an organization decades ago, had the support of a guy who had another organization that might have had the support of another organization, the Muslim Brotherhood," Cooper explained. "And because of that, Huma Abedin might be some sort of spy or infiltrator and deserves to be investigated."

Cooper's raised eyebrow was his understated way of shouting "liar, liar, pants of fire."  You can see it here (warning: there's a commercial).

Here's a case where life immitated art. To our benefit for a change.



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