Bloomberg Law downplays its erroneous Labor Department story
Erik Wemple of The Washington Post examines the strategy at Bloomberg Law of downplaying a story about a Labor Department attorney’s Facebook posts, which initially caused his resignation, after they were determined to be sarcastic.
Wemple writes, “Readers with no grounding in this unfortunate sequence might emerge mystified as to how this all happened. For instance, the new headline suggests that this Facebook post magically surfaced, as opposed to the actual circumstances: Bloomberg Law dug it up and presented it to the Labor Department. Nor does the italicized text provide any hint that those ‘subsequent events’ consisted of the world trying to clean up the mess left by Bloomberg Law.
“Though Bloomberg Law fixed the most egregious falsehood in the story — regarding anti-Semitism, that is — it has left standing some absurd stretches of text. Consider this stuff, about how the Trump administration evaluates prospective hires:
Olson’s arrival at the agency, which was quietly noted in an online WHD organization chart, raises more questions about the Trump administration’s vetting system for political appointees.
The White House Presidential Personnel Office came under fire after a 2018 Washington Post article chronicled the office’s frat-house atmosphere filled with young, inexperienced former Trump campaign aides. More broadly, the Trump administration’s personnel clearance process has been criticized for not flagging various executive branch officials and nominees with checkered histories.
“Actually: Olson’s story raises no questions about the Trump administration’s personnel-vetting procedures. It raises questions about Bloomberg Law’s story-vetting procedures.
“No wonder it didn’t want anyone to read anything more about Olson! The Erik Wemple Blog has asked Bloomberg Law some questions about the no-tweet instructions, which were referenced by CNN’s Oliver Darcy. The outlet declined to comment.”
Read more here.