David Chalian was fired by Yahoo News yesterday because he was caught saying something unflattering about the Romneys and their pals by NewsBusters.
This is absolute bullshit.
David was my direct supervisor when I interned at the ABC News political unit, where he was first deputy political director, and then promoted to director. He then worked for the NewsHour at PBS and then later Yahoo. He is a great journalist, with more intelligence and savvy than almost anyone I’ve seen, as well as being utterly fair, rigorous, and an exemplar of integrity. Everyone in the press and in the Beltway universe knows this to be true.
But then that festering swamp of self-important hacks, NewsBusters (a right-wing media “watchdog”) caught David saying this about the Romneys as they partied with fellow rich people, when he thought he was off-air:
They’re not concerned at all. They’re happy to have a party with black people drowning.
While it may not be fair to presume that the Romneys personally are “not concerned at all” about the suffering of black storm victims (David nor anyone else is capable of reading their minds), it’s certainly true that concern is not at all evident in anything the Romneys or their party does, ever. Everything their party stands for, especially recently, is devoted to obstructing African-Americans’ ability to vote and worsening their economic conditions in order to further enrich the already-wealthy. But this truth is something that cannot be grasped by conservatives today, and certainly not by the knee-jerk, offense-seeking bottom-dwellers at NewsBusters.
And Yahoo reacted in a sadly-predictable, yet utterly cowardly way. They fired David.
David Chalian (who immediately gave an extremely classy and heartfelt apology) is far too good for an outfit like Yahoo, and they just proved it. They buckled immediately, tossed a good man overboard like he had some kind of virus, and gave NewsBusters their scalp.
What a wretched day for journalism. I hope you will join me in telling Yahoo what a spineless, shameful move they’ve made, and avoid their coverage.