Thankfully, Breitbart's time as a mainstream, albeit right-wing, media star is now on the descent. And that's not because of evil liberal bias. Network television, as well as all types of traditional, corporate news outlets, continues to extend their hands to conservative voices. It's just that mainstream news outlets don't want to deal with somebody who cannot be trusted. And not only can't he be trusted for the work he produces, he can't be trusted in work a professional manner when dealing with media outlets.
Meaning, Breitbart's mainstream bubble has burst.
The self-implosion has been unfolding in an almost slow motion manner all year. It started to unravel last winter when Media Matters, following the early lead of blogger Brad Friedman, started asking questions about that supposedly ground-breaking and heroic ACORN investigation. We started asking if the video clips were really what they appeared to be, or whether Breitbart and his team of undercover agents played fast and loose with the truth and concocted the narrative that videographer James O'Keefe had been dressed up as a Halloween-style pimp when he strolled into ACORN offices looking for tax advice for his illegal entrepreneur activities.
Soon, a handful of independent and law enforcement groups also started giving the video investigation a closer look and came to the same conclusions we did: Key portions of the tapes were a fraud, and it appeared that Breitbart had purposefully peddled a phony tale about ACORN in order to attack the modest advocacy group.
Another big Breitbart setback last winter came when news broke that his ACORN protégé O'Keefe had been arrested in New Orleans while he and his buddies were dressed up as telephone repairmen and charged with entering a federal building under false pretenses while they tried to talk their way into the office of U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu. Breitbart wasted his remaining credibility by going all in on behalf of O'Keefe, waging a propaganda war in the press, insisting his young online friend had been a victim of a massive law enforcement conspiracy that stretched from New Orleans to the Obama's Justice Department. In the end, O'Keefe pled guilty to the charges.
In July, Breitbart set off yet another humiliating firestorm when he posted an out of context video and publically tagged Shirley Sherrod as a racist. The claim was utterly bogus and seemed to seal Breitbart's reputation as an irresponsible provocateur.
And now comes to the ABC News snub.
I'm not suggesting that Breitbart's going away. He has built up a sycophantic following of right-wing believers who will gladly swallow whatever tall tale he's telling. Keep in mind, Dumbest Man on Internet Jim Hoft at Gateway Pundit has an audience and he's not even right twice a day. This is the conservative blogosphere where talking about here. There are no rules and there are no standards. It's a place where loyal readers apparently go to be misinformed on purpose. That's the whole point. So yes, Breitbart's medicine show is safe for now.
He'll continue his angry, and at times, incoherent stone-throwing routine, and his stable of unknown bloggers will dream upunimaginable conspiracy theories that purport to explain how the liberally wired world really works. But I think that from this day forward, Breitbart is destined for a career inside the right-wing bubble.
Read the full Media Matters column, here.