Charles Cooke of National Review Online considers the Washington Post’s explanation of a major example of mainstream media malpractice.

One of the main reasons that the mainstream press is so utterly lost these days is that the mainstream press does not know that it is utterly lost these days. See, for a good example, this preposterous post-rationalization of the reaction to the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story that has been put together by the Washington Post’s Philip Bump.

Introducing his piece — which is titled, “The forgotten — and ignored — context for the emergence of the Hunter Biden laptop story” — Bump writes:

“When the New York Post reported on Oct. 14, 2020, that it was in possession of emails between a Ukrainian businessman and Hunter Biden, son of the then-Democratic presidential nominee, it would have been hard to predict what followed. This was less than three weeks before the election itself, and the content of the report was soon subsumed to the odd way in which the paper obtained the information. Mainstream outlets and social media companies balked at elevating the story’s claims, triggering frustrations on the right that remain to this day.”

Before we go on, let me stop Bump right there. “Social media companies” did not “balk at elevating the story’s claims.” They worked overtime to stop anybody reading the story at all. Twitter prevented users from sharing links to the piece by showing those who tried a message that read, “We can’t complete this request because this link has been identified by Twitter or our partners as being potentially harmful,” and it went so far as to suspend the New York Post’s account completely, until the paper agreed to delete its tweets on the matter. …

… [T]he mainstream press is not a habitually skeptical institution. Rather, it is a gullible, ill-informed, hysterical, lazy, dumb, and duplicitous institution, and its aims are utterly transparent.