There are plenty of deserving pols this week. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) slammed the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice for her prevarication; but he also stood tall with his compatriot Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) to defend Victoria Nuland’s nomination assistant secretary of state for Europe. (Nuland has been unfairly smeared in the Benghazi scandal by virtue of a misleading summary of the talking points emails and then sloppy reporting). Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) showed that deal making is not a lost art when he successfully expanded the H1-B visa proposal (to the horror of Big Labor) and helped move the Gang of Eight’s immigration plan with a lopsided vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee. Continued kudos go to Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and his phalanx of conservative reformers to standing tall for immigration reform.
But in a week in which we saw how fragile civil liberties can be, the rampant misbehavior of federal officials and the dangers of intellectually corrupt sycophants masquerading as journalists, two men who aren’t politicians at all stood out in the crowd : Fox News reporter James Rosen and his boss, Roger Ailes. Rosen has been accused of criminal activity and been surveiled like no journalist in history by an attorney general who stated under oath he’s never been involved in snooping on journalists. Yet Rosen and Ailes kept swinging away. Ailes’s memo to his troops is worth repeating in full:
The recent news about the FBI’s seizure of the phone and email records of Fox News employees, including James Rosen, calls into question whether the federal government is meeting its constitutional obligation to preserve and protect a free press in the United States. We reject the government’s efforts to criminalize the pursuit of investigative journalism and falsely characterize a Fox News reporter to a Federal judge as a “co-conspirator” in a crime. I know how concerned you are because so many of you have asked me: why should the government make me afraid to use a work phone or email account to gather news or even call a friend or family member? Well, they shouldn’t have done it. The administration’s attempt to intimidate Fox News and its employees will not succeed and their excuses will stand neither the test of law, the test of decency, nor the test of time. We will not allow a climate of press intimidation, unseen since the McCarthy era, to frighten any of us away from the truth.
I am proud of your tireless effort to report the news over the last 17 years. I stand with you, I support you and I thank you for your reporting with courageous optimism. Too many Americans fought and died to protect our unique American right of press freedom. We can’t and we won’t forget that. To be an American journalist is not only a great responsibility, but also a great honor. To be a Fox journalist is a high honor, not a high crime. Even this memo of support will cause some to demonize us and try to find irrelevant things to cause us to waver. We will not waver.
As Fox News employees, we sometimes are forced to stand alone, but even then when we know we are reporting what is true and what is right, we stand proud and fearless. Thank you for your hard work and all your efforts.
For standing up to an abusive administration and showing the rest of the media just how credible their news organization is (no one at MSNBC is ever going to get bugged by this administration), well done, gentlemen.