WASHINGTON, DC: Hundreds of outraged readers flooded The Washington Post on Wednesday with web comments on Dana Milbank’s dismissive column about Rep. Dennis Kucinich’s resolution to impeach the Vice President. The Post’s decision to place the satirical article on page A-2 rather than in the Op-Ed pages or in the the Style section exhibits a dramatic departure from the tradition of journalistic objectivity.
The article reads like an item in an undergraduate campus newspaper. From the first line Milbanks makes no attempt to hide his contempt for the Congressman. It begins with an attempt at irony: “I do not stand alone,” Dennis Kucinich said as he stood, alone, in front of a cluster of microphones yesterday evening.
The column includes no information on the content of the Articles of Impeachment, nor does it even include the resolution’s bill number (H. Res 333) for those readers interested in seeing for themselves what Milbanks finds so hilarious about the bill. Instead, Milbank chooses to disparage the Congressman’s appearance, referring more than once to his small stature, and even making a bizarre conjecture at Kucinich’s hair product of choice.
The Post’s editors must have assumed that its readers would pile on to be included in the fraternity prank. Instead, the response to this Imus-esque misreading of public sentiment was over fifteen pages of comments, most of them from readers who were astonished and offended by the tone of the article, many of them calling for Milbanks’ termination from the paper. As rant wrote on April 2:…..as illustrated by the dismissive tone of this article, Reporters seem to think that no treason, even dragging America into a war under false premises, is too large it cant be overlooked if it goes against what the word in the cocktail party circuit is in Washington.
To read the piece in its entirety, comments included, see Kucinich’s Battle Against Cheney Not So (Im) Peachy Keen.