Media outlets favorable to President Trump seized on a pile of data that emerged in May from Harvard’s Shorenstein Center. Researchers had analyzed a bunch of coverage of Trump over the first 100 days of his presidency, with the conclusion that a preponderance of that coverage was negative in tone.

On Fox News, host Tucker Carlson whined, “At CNN and NBC, both purportedly straight news outlets, 93 percent of the stories were negative, which is remarkable considering that there’s no way that 93 percent of their stories about — I don’t know, pick someone, Fidel Castro— were negative.” Note: That interpretation of the data is mistaken. Ninety-three percent of the CNN and NBC stories that had some tonal title were negative; those figures don’t include neutral pieces.

In the abstract, sure — the numbers look a bit skewed. Can’t the media find more positive or neutral things to say about Trump?

Nah. Thursday morning demonstrated why:

The tweets apparently came in retaliation from criticism stemming from Thursday’s edition of “Morning Joe,” MSNBC’s morning news-analysis program. Attacking Trump’s Twitter reliance, co-host Mika Brzezinski said, “That’s your president of the United States lying to you.”

Trump’s response carries facially offensive and misogynistic thoughts. There is no other way to couch them. CNN host Poppy Harlow did a nice job of describing them in a segment Thursday morning: “This is objectively a statement from the highest office in the land, from the president, that objectifies women. This is a statement that is cruel, it attacks a woman’s appearance.”

The New York Times: “President Trump on Thursday assailed the television host Mika Brzezinski in unusually personal and vulgar terms, the latest of a string of escalating attacks by the president on the national news media.”

MSNBC has released a statement: “It’s a sad day for America when the president spends his time bullying, lying and spewing petty personal attacks instead of doing his job.”

That’s not media bias; that’s descriptive journalism. To paraphrase Harry S. Truman, the media isn’t giving Trump hell. It’s reporting on his tweets, and his critics defenders just think it’s hell.