I’ve refrained from commenting on the Brian Williams/NBC Nightly New situation because, frankly, I don’t much care. His exaggerations may have been intentional, but maybe not, and either way, it’s just not that big of a deal. NBC did the right thing by suspending him, and he’s probably gone for good, but my views of him as a journalist haven’t changed.
Let’s contrast that with the situation at Fox News, where Bill O’Reilly has been caught-out exaggerating to pretty much the same degree. Has Fox News suspended him? Of course not. Instead they’re blaming the whole thing on “far-left advocates”. This despite the fact that they admit he’s exaggerated his record, at the very least.
Let’s contrast these two things. First off, Williams voluntarily suspended himself before NBC did so. He did this because it was the right thing to do. By contrast, Fox has admitted that O’Reilly exaggerated some things, and haven’t taken any steps to discipline him. He certainly hasn’t taken any steps himself.
So here we have a great example of old-school journalism, which included integrity and accountability, up against modern “journalism”, which includes neither. This should be a surprise to no one.