Helen Thomas: Bad Journalism and Iraq War Traced Back to Bloggers

The so-called "dean of the White House press corps" is at it again - not abusing her front row position at White House press briefings and criticizing the Bush administration, but this time by taking shots at the new media.

Helen Thomas, columnist for Hearst newspapers and long-time White House Press Corp member, blamed bloggers for contributing to the "deterioration" of journalism that led to the Iraq war.

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"What I really worry about is that I think the bloggers and everyone, everyone with a laptop thinks they're journalists," Thomas said. "And, they certainly don't have our standards. They don't have our ethics, and so forth. There's a deterioration," she continued. "Reporters laid down on the job in the run up to this [the Iraq] war."
Thomas made those remarks at a January 4 round-table discussion that followed the premiere of a documentary about the National Press Club 100th anniversary, "The National Press Club at 100: A Century of Headlines." The documentary chronicled how the National Press Club has changed over the years as forms of media have changed - from newspapers to radio, TV, magazines and now bloggers.

"I think they did a lousy job and we're making for it now because the questions that should have been asked were not asked and because of 9/11 and the fear of being called unpatriotic, un-American and so forth. We let the country down," Thomas added.

Thomas openly admitted she was liberal in a November 5, 2006, Philadelphia Inquirer interview and her actions have proved it. She has repetitively derided her colleagues in the media for not being more aggressive with their questioning of the president. In March 2006, she appeared on CNN's "The Situation Room" and accused Bush of killing innocent people.

"In this case, in the case of the President and his cohorts, I think they have really spread war throughout the Middle East," Thomas said on March 22, 2006. "They have really encouraged all of the horror that's going on. We have killed so many innocent people."