Sorry, but this is reality, not film. This is less about Cuomo than it is about what passes for journalism today.
After his resignation, the narrative is struggling to evolve into something that reporters and editors can be more…comfortable with. So they are picking up on the “Me-Too” meme, about his sex-mad, discriminatory and abusive behavior – all hidden by his sycophantic minions, until now – and digging even deeper into his incurably “diseased” character. This narrative will liberate them to express all the hostility they are capable of. And, as we have repeatedly seen, they are capable of a lot, especially if it furthers their careers.
One early example – the most disgusting so far – is Bret Stephens’ gleeful rant about why the public is – finally – after all this time! – being forced to face the truly deplorable behavior and meanness of spirit that they have failed to see for so many years. Except for Stephens, with his awesomely refined perspicacity. In a jovially-toned sit-down with Gail Collins, from August 10th, he glides into a seemingly “spontaneous” riff of “r” words that sum up the monster wittily.
But even more pathetic is the New York hatchet job of August 13th, which is given phony legitimacy by summarizing Cuomo’s own “defense” in his phone call with the writers, Andrew Rice and Laura Nahmias. Normally, anonymous source droppings are rightfully dismissed as plain stuffing for the bias of reporters and editors, but this piece shows something more. The sheer number of mystery shit-smearers is beyond count, inducing nausea. The piece does highlight one or two of the few who dare to self-identify, like Dick Ravitch, who said the governor has “no friends” – none! – and that this is understandable because of the marrow-deep mendacity that has terrorized all who have had contact with him, including the family members who refuse to be interviewed by the press. It is to be assumed, of course, that none of the dupes who actually voted for him may still remember something like the warmth of his intimacy, as expressed in his public appearances, which is something so few politicians were capable of.
What are these anonymous “victims” so afraid of? The writers venture that these truth-tellers are so terrified of even the mention of his name, after witnessing his vengeance for so many years, that they dare not challenge even his political corpse.
Apparently, though, that corpse is stirring. The piece is so heavily weighted with undocumented accounts of his vague misdeeds, going back to young adulthood, that the image is less of a real human being than some amorphous force of evil, like “The Taliban”. They reinforce this with the hoary practice of assuming their godlike omniscience of the public’s collective mental state. In spite of this, they cannot avoid noting the fact that he is now preparing to run for a fourth term, in spite of the avalanche of punishment that awaits him. The implication is that he is – ready for this – certifiably insane!
But not so fast. The piece not only avoids identifying nearly all of his still-quaking victims but studiously, if clumsily, hides the identity of those who may be supporting his evil dream of returning to public service. There is a reason for this, one that is attached like a barnacle to the sanctimonious definition of journalism as it is practiced today. One that is echoed too by the unspoken need to hide the identity of his accusers as well. The reason is, not to protect the source, but to protect the journalist and editor. If unidentified, the sources cannot be brought into the public arena, where they will have to face questions by a public who demand the facts that supposedly support their allegations. Some of these questioners will be hitherto unidentified Cuomo supporters, but also – shockingly! – other journalists who can smell a boost to their own careers. The writers’ own discrepancies and evasions will be revealed, and they may have to publicly defend them. They would then have to become part of the story they were supposed to own for themselves. No, better to avoid the kind of “transparency” that doesn’t fit into their scheme.