Triple played

Latest from John Ziegler’s blogging at, in which he cites the Manti Te’o, Lance Armstrong, and Steubenville football team stories to yet again filets a media far too in love with spinning its own narratives, facts and logic be damned. Naturally, John also ties it nicely to his continuing examination of how it relates to reporting on the Sandusky scandal.

Obviously, much as with Te’o, the media desperately wanted the Armstong story (cancer surviving philanthropist dominates a sport of cheaters without cheating) to be true and they fought tooth and nail for him until Armstrong literally had to tell them to give up by “confessing” (isn’t it interesting that many in the media wouldn’t convict Armstrong until he confessed, and yet didn’t care that Paterno always maintained his innocence?).

Similarly, the media so fell in love with the Paterno downfall narrative that almost nothing was going to allow them to let go of it, especially once they became so committed to it that their perceived credibility was then permanently attached to that storyline being seen as not only true, but universally unquestioned.

One of the most maddening aspects (of many) of the how the media has handled the Penn State story is that you are considered by them to be “nuts” if you don’t accept the conventional wisdom. Making this concept particularly galling is that the “Conventional Wisdom” scenario is one that makes absolutely no sense and for which there is shockingly little evidence.

So we end up with the bizarre spectacle of the same members of the media who defended Armstrong despite a mountain of circumstantial evidence which fit a guilt narrative which was based in sound logic, destroying Paterno despite the fact that there wasn’t even a remotely plausible motive for him to have done the alleged misdeeds for which there is almost no evidence he committed.

9 comments to Triple played

  • JimmyC

    And speaking of Paterno:

    I could see Al Pacino playing Paterno. Thoughts?

  • Tink in Cali

    I have found what Ziegler says about Paterno to be very true. His name now elicits much the same response as you get from the name Sandusky and if you try to say something that strays from the narrative at all, people start foaming at the mouth.

  • kishke

    The difference is in the sin. Not everyone thinks drugs are so terrible, be they marijuana or steroids. Molesting children, however, is the sin of sins. (Except of course, when it comes to Polanski, which sort of proves your point.)

    • No argument, kishke, but that’s not the point Zig’s making about how the media steered the Sandusky narrative to the point Tink raised above.

      Now please tell me what Paterno should have done differently than anyone else who was also fooled by a pedophile who deftly hoodwinked people who are professionally trained to weed them out of society. At least Coach, unlike Spanier, attempted to keep Sandusky off campus completely.

      • kishke

        I haven’t followed the case with any degree of thoroughness, so maybe I’m off base, but I think he should not just have “tried” to keep Sandusky off campus, he should actually have done it. He was the man in that place; he had the juice to make his demand stick if he had cared enough to make this a priority.

        • If this sordid mess has taught me anything, it’s that Paterno had a lot less power at my alma mater than any of us suspected. Sure, he essentially could have served as the town’s permanent mayor if that was his desire, but then-Prez Graham Spanier wielded an interestingly powerful sword re. Sandusky, granting him emeritus status despite glaring non-qualifications, and denying even Paterno’s requests to keep Sandusky off campus, mainly relating to the emeritus status. After ol’ Jerry, Spanier the creepiest element in this disgusting tale.

          Still, while I’m not placing him on “Saint Joe” status, there’s nothing — nothing — he did in his 60-some years in State College which would indicate behavior even semi-nefarious enough to be involved in any cover-up … and I’ve yet to see any non-circumstantial evidence since November 2011 to support that either.

  • Scott M.

    When is that bastard Spanier going on trial?

  • Scott M.

    I blame asshats like Buzz Bissinger.He acts like a cast off mistress when his little Lancie is exposed.

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