What they're not looking for
You can find out a whole lot more about what is real and what is Twitter/X trolling by seeing what’s living rent-free in the heads that populate 620 Eighth Avenue: that is, the newsroom of the New York Times. To wit: Andrew Clark, a GOP strategist, put together a timeline of Trump indictments against breaking stories regarding Hunter Biden and posted it on Twitter. No big deal here, right? Honestly, I wouldn’t even have noticed, except for the reaction.
The New York Times fact-checker noticed. In a piece intended to debunk most of the Republican talking points about Trump’s latest indictment, they hit on the timeline angle. They did this purportedly because Maria Bartiromo talked about it on Fox News.
“All of these indictments have been called into question because they come right after massive evidence is released about the Biden family. On June 7, the F.B.I. released documents alleging that the Bidens took in $10 million in bribes from Burisma. The very next day, Jack Smith indicted Trump over the classified documents kept at Mar-a-Lago. And then you go to July 26. That’s when Hunter Biden’s plea deal fell apart after the D.O.J. tried giving him blanket immunity from any future prosecutions. The very next day, Jack Smith added more charges to the Mar-a-Lago case. And now, just one day after Devon Archer gave explosive testimony about Joe Biden’s involvement in Hunter Biden’s business deals, Smith indicts Trump for Jan. 6.”
Bartiromo has been the queen of stolen election conspiracy claims, and played no small part in Fox’s near-billion dollar payout to Dominion Voting Systems. Frankly, it’s a wonder she kept her job at all. Why the NYT fact-checker spent 12 paragraphs disputing a tweet by a GOP hack and Bartiromo’s seven sentences is kind of a tell to me.
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This is especially true given how the response begins:
This lacks evidence. Mr. Trump and many of his supporters have suggested that the timing of developments in investigations into his conduct runs suspiciously parallel to investigations into the conduct of Hunter Biden and is meant as a distraction.
Notice that Linda Qiu, the writer, isn’t disputing the timing itself. In fact, she stipulates that the timing is accurate. She is asserting that those who make the claim lack evidence. This is really the fox saying the chickens have no evidence that foxes exist. Qiu doesn’t offer much in the way of evidence there wasn’t some effort to make the news timing work to cover up the Hunter Biden stories, only that “Mr. Smith has little control over the developments or when they are publicly revealed.”
I don’t necessarily buy that. I do buy that “Mr. Trump himself, not the Justice Department, announced that he had been charged over his mishandling of classified documents.” Trump had plenty of control of the news cycle, and still does. That’s probably the best explanation of why a Democrat-led conspiracy to “OBE” (overcome by events) Hunter stories is untenable. But Qiu sticks to the “not entirely in Mr. Smith’s hands” explanation.
The Gray Lady doth protest too much, I think. If there’s no evidence of a news cycle manipulation to help Hunter, then I wonder why the New York Times isn’t looking for the evidence. Isn’t it newsworthy if the timing of the Trump indictments was somehow engineered to give negative Biden stories some cover? But they’re not looking for evidence, yet the entire hack-generated conspiracy lives in their heads.
Entirely suspicious, since if there was this kind of evidence, it likely exists in the New York Times news room. This reminds me of the Kevin Costner/Gene Hackman movie “No Way Out,” where the whole plot centers around a Soviet mole who is charged with the task of flushing out a Soviet mole—himself.
Now, I’m not saying there is some conspiracy here—remember, I think Trump did all the things he’s charged with, and I think Trump compulsively has to be the center of the news, so it’s pointless to try to divine what drove the news cycle. However, it is very convenient that the indictment announcements fell in the way they did.
That fact this lives in the heads of the NYT fact-checkers, and made it into their morning newsletter email is simply a tell, that’s all.