Remember When Ronan Farrow Was a Journalist? Pulitzer Winner is Reduced to Kavanaugh Smear Merchant

Ronan Farrow attends Variety's Power of Women: New York event at Cipriani Wall Street on Friday, April 13, 2018, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

 

Farrow embarrasses himself in the latest attack launched at the Supreme Court nominee

 

Once Mitch McConnell walked to the floor of the Senate last night to announce cloture for Friday, leading to a confirmation vote for Saturday, you just knew it would provoke a desperate reaction from the left. It took almost a couple of hours

Just after that announcement late last night Ronan Farrow – along with frequent collaborator Jane Mayer – conveniently dropped a new article that had been loaded in the Brett Kavanaugh elephant gun, and there is desperation throughout. The writer who provoked the #MeToo movement with his exhaustive investigations into Harvey Weinstein’s depredations has become reduced to a party partisan who is willing to release any accusation that could land a broadside hit into the confirmation.

The headline declares that, in the course of the oft-demanded federal investigation, the FBI “ignored” former classmates of Kavanaugh. You are already on questionable ground when the thrust of your piece is delving into the high school activities of thirty-plus years ago. Ronan details that “dozens” of people have contacted the Bureau with intel on Kavanaugh, but there has been “a lack of interest in their accounts”. Remember just last month when the press hailed the FBI as our most venerated of institutions? Today they are a lax authority, one that dismisses important witness accounts.

As we learn from reading, there is sound reasoning why these should be dismissed

While in the past he did impressive work the difference is now Farrow does not have the luxury of cultivating his contacts and fleshing out his story in full. The attempted takedown of Kavanaugh has a firm expiration date, and that means the reporter needs to pump out his charges. The result however is that in playing the warrior for the left he delivers an embarrassing piece that under normal circumstances should have an editor handing it back to the writer and saying, “You don’t have it yet.” But there is a need to scuttle this nomination on the quick, so editorial standards are jettisoned in the name of expediency.

Farrow begins with Deborah Ramirez, the second woman to come forward with charges Kavanaugh executed sexual assault with her. Well, maybe. Ramirez was the one, in an interview with Farrow, alleging she was inebriated at a party where some boys flashed their penis in her face, and Kavanaugh may have been one of them, according to her murky memory. There has been trouble getting substantial corroborations to this Ramirez story.

Ramirez currently says she is upset it took the FBI this long to reach her, and that she was granted only a token interview. “I feel like I am being silenced,” she tells Farrow. This is the same Ramirez who declined the chance to testify at the Senate hearing with her account. When contacted by the committee staff to appear the lawyer representing Ramirez stated they would be giving no comment, and any details could be found in her New Yorker interview. News outlets do not carry the onus of contempt, like a sworn Senate visitation would, you see.

From this already questionable source Farrow’s article descends from being a stretch, to reaching down into the the realm of wish-casting. He cites one of Brett’s former Yale suite-mates, Kenneth Appold, as among those who should have been contacted by the FBI. Below is the account of Appold, with the conflicting/curious/comical segments placed in boldface by myself:

Appold, who is the James Hastings Nichols Professor of Reformation History at Princeton Theological Seminary, said that he first heard about the alleged incident involving Kavanaugh and Ramirez either the night it occurred or a day or two later. Appold said that he was “one-hundred-per-cent certain” that he was told that Kavanaugh was the male student who exposed himself to Ramirez. He said that he never discussed the allegation with Ramirez, whom he said he barely knew in college. But he recalled details—which, he said, an eyewitness described to him at the time—that match Ramirez’s memory of what happened. “I can corroborate Debbie’s account,” he said in an interview. “I believe her, because it matches the same story I heard thirty-five years ago, although the two of us have never talked.”

 

This is not a witness testimony. This is a rumor. Nothing more. Except Farrow elevates this to be held up as some sort of evidence. Appold had heard about something happening, by others, about someone he was unfamiliar with, thirty five years ago. You can picture the FBI agent listening to this account and then quietly closing their notebook and replacing their pen in their suit pocket.

And it gets worse. Appold goes on to say that he attempted to reach out to the person who had told him the account. The result is less than…well, let’s just say it fails to deliver:

He hoped to make contact first with the classmate who, to the best of his recollection, told him about the party and was an eyewitness to the incident. He said that he had not been able to get any response from that person, despite multiple attempts to do so. The New Yorker reached the classmate, but he said that he had no memory of the incident.

 

Here would be where you have been essentially been granted permission to stop reading Farrow’s article — from Farrow himself. We are now at the fourth-person level of an account, and at that level the individual has nothing to corroborate. Who would expect any type of activity from authorities with this nonsense? Farrow tries stating that multi-layered hearsay, regarding an allegation from an individual refusing to give testimony, is a valid claim.

This may be enough for the standards of today’s media complex, but it hardly qualifies as worth the time of any law enforcement.

Deeper in the piece Farrow provides a number of other individuals he declares qualify as “potential witnesses”, and the basis for being investigated are even more removed. One classmate from Yale was upset no one living in a particular dorm had been interviewed. There was no charge, and no particular incident mentioned — the FBI is just expected to arrive and start rooting around for…something.

Another student (remaining anonymous) from Georgetown Preparatory high school went to the FBI with a written statement to declare Kavanaugh was in a group of friends who sometimes “routinely picked on” other students. This non-gripping charge becomes even further diluted. The potential witness states he never saw Kavanaugh attacking students, but that he “did nothing to stop the physical and verbal abuse.” So, he was there, you say?

Then we get the statement from one Angela Walker, who went to a completely different school, the Stone Ridge Academy. She also provided a written statement to the FBI. In it the most damning thing she indicates is an account from a party she once attended. “A friend from Prep warned me not to go upstairs, where the bedrooms were, cautioning me that it could be dangerous.” And?

That is all. No incident is reported. Nothing wrong, objectionable, problematic, nor controversial is mentioned. Brett Kavanaugh is not named by Walker. Yet Farrow, and many on the left, are upset that the FBI is not investigating a not-crime, and a not-story, that did not involve Kavanaugh. We do not even know if Kavanaugh was in attendance. Yet the FBI is accused of investigative sloth, for not pursuing these merit-free reports.

This is where Ronan Farrow has roamed off to since his days of journalistic glory. He seems to have drifted from an esteemed position to one now acting as little more than a convenient flak for the Democrats’ spin machine; from Frank’s respected son, to Rosemary’s baby, as it were.

There is a very telling quote, provided by Ronan’s problematic witness, Kenneth Appold. “The thing I ask myself is, why didn’t anybody do anything about it? Why didn’t anybody report it?” That is a sound question. If these events were as horrific and traumatic as he and the others declare, how is it no one had the inspiration to step in, or alert authorities, until three decades later?

Tellingly, the claims were so weak in the 1980s that they did not warrant being reported. Today though, when these wan accounts are brought up, Ronan Farrow will report on them — diligently.

 

for more political commentary, or deranged cultural coverage, follow me at @MartiniShark