By S.T. Patrick
There is a real disconnect in American journalism that exists somewhere within the nexus of truth, freedom, rationality, and objectivity. The old joke about argument was that the difficult personality would even decline conceding that the sky was blue. In the case of Hunter Biden’s laptop, America’s mainstream journalists are even denying there is a sky—but if there is, then it was the Russians who put it there. Hunter’s laptop is real, and the contents within are real. It can be proven that the laptop is real. The contents contained therein will leak out over time. In the words of conservative columnist Jim Pinkerton, “Information likes to be free.”
There is a trail of factual, unambiguous evidence to be followed when discussing the laptop-in-question of Hunter, the second son of Joe Biden:
1) Hunter takes a water-damaged Mac laptop computer to The Mac Shop in Wilmington, Del. on April 12, 2019. Biden wants the data from the laptop recovered and signs a work order for data recovery totaling $85.
2) The shop completes the data recovery on April 17, 2019 and notifies Hunter by email and phone that the laptop and data are available for retrieval. Biden doesn’t respond to either attempt at contact.
3) John Paul Mac Isaac, the owner of The Mac Shop, consults with his father in September 2019 after the Biden-Ukraine story has grown nationally. Believing that the laptop might have valuable information on it, and with the reality that Biden has not picked it up in five months, father Steve Mac Isaac offers to contact the FBI regarding the laptop.
4) The FBI in Albuquerque, N.M. makes a copy of the work order Steve brings to them, but they do not take the hard drive. Steve is asked to leave.
5) In November 2019, the FBI in Delaware contacts John Paul Isaac but, again, refuses to take the laptop and its hard drive.
6) In December 2019, the FBI visits The Mac Shop again, this time with a grand jury subpoena for the laptop and its hard drive. Mac happily rids himself of the materials, giving them to the FBI.
7) When the FBI by September 2020 had refused to act, publicly, on the contents of the hard drive, John Paul took a copy of the hard drive to Rudy Giuliani’s attorney. At no point in the chain of evidence does Mac attempt to sell the contents to a tabloid media organization and at no point does he peddle it to a known conservative media outlet, despite being an admitted conservative, himself. Mac makes no attempt to profit and no suspicious links to any foreign influence have been proven, even tangentially.
As soon as the story broke, the mainstream media (MSM) moved into position to classify all troubled contents of the laptop as “Russian disinformation.” Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe confirmed that the information found on the laptop was not Russian disinformation. Ratcliffe was then backed up by the FBI and the Department of Justice.
The emails found within are not a Russian disinformation campaign, as the mainstream media and Trump enemies within the intelligence community have stated.
There is much foresight that would have had to take place for the laptop to have contained Russian disinformation that would have been found by The Mac Shop. The Russians would have had to fill the laptop with disinformation, make sure it got water damaged, and then assure that it found its way into the hands of John Paul in Wilmington. The Russians would also have had to foresee a Biden primary victory and then a prolonged FBI seizure that culminated with an “October Surprise.” The Russians would have had to be in control of both The Mac Shop’s actions and the FBI’s reactions, all of which is highly unlikely bordering on impossible.
Commentaries on the story have ranged from partisan hits such as Gregg Jarrett of Fox News referring to Hunter as “a monument to greed” to left-leaning journalists and news outlets charging that this is yet another brandishing of the far-right’s “vast right-wing conspiracy.” Those feigning objectivity are claiming, “There’s no ‘there’ there.” The Washington Post, which should openly label itself the media wing of national intelligence, has attempted to obfuscate the issue, publishing a piece entitled “Insisting that Hunter Biden’s Laptop Is Fake Is a Trap. So Is Insisting That It’s Real.” The truth is that we don’t know what is there or not there. But John Paul does, and he has lawyered up.
Conservative talk host Wayne Allyn Root has been at the forefront of media figures openly discussing what he believes is on the laptop, other than information about greed and influence peddling in the Ukraine. “My sources who actually watched videos [and] images on Hunter Biden’s laptop said it was horrifying,” Root tweeted on October 19. There have been hosts and media figures who have ties to Giuliani’s attorneys. They have heard about the contents from those who have seen them personally. We know there are images of Biden engaged in illegal drug activity. Portions of the videos showing Hunter Biden allegedly having sexual relations with young women have been released by “Gateway Pundit” website. What else exists on the laptop in the form of images and videos has yet to be seen but has been widely labeled as everything from “illegal” to “gross.”
Instead, we have MSNBC and CNN acting as Biden State Media (BSM). Matt Taibbi is an admitted and proud leftist, someone who has long written for Rolling Stone magazine but was part of a brave cadre of left-leaning writers who were Russiagate skeptics early. Taibbi has been openly critical of the way the MSM has handled the laptop story, preferring to comment on what it means in the macro.
“The number of press outlets willing to use terms like ‘misinformation’ or ‘disinformation’ about this material when the Biden camp is not even denying it’s real shows how far gone this situation is,” Taibbi tweeted. “Coverage is more overtly politicized than campaign rhetoric.”
The extra precaution and reflexive disdain the mainstream media has had for the laptop story does not equal their treatment of the bogus Steele dossier that lit the firestorm of Russiagate, nor the “losers” and “suckers” comment, allegedly made by President Donald Trump that was denied by 29 people who accompanied the president on the overseas journey during which the comments were supposedly made about U.S. World War I servicemen. That unverified story was originally published in the left-leaning Atlantic magazine, though only “unnamed sources” were cited in the article. There was an eagerness to latch onto both stories and turn them into national headlines and exact assessments on the president and his administration. Remember at this time that the Steele dossier also produced some allegations that could be labelled as uncouth and gross. Yet the mainstream media was more than willing to distribute those as fact. With the Biden laptop, as with the Jeffrey Epstein material that has yet to be seen publicly, we have physical evidence that could be leaked (and if Julian Assange were a free man and if journalism was truly independent, probably would be leaked) to the masses.
One obvious question must be asked. If one of Donald Trump’s eldest sons had lost a laptop filled with videos of illicit drug activity, sexual relations with possible prostitutes, and emails that indicated Donald Trump had been part of a scheme to sell access to him for foreign donors—some considered adversaries—would the MSM and Big Tech companies have censored the information or labeled it as “Russian disinformation”? The answer is, obviously, no; it would have been broadcast 24 hours a day right along with the daily coronavirus death statistics.
Many keen observers on the political right and left have assessed that journalism in the Age of Trump was, at worst, dead and, at best, gasping for breath and seeing a bright light for the final time. As it turns out, it was even worse. While still masking themselves as the information leaders, America’s journalistic corps is openly campaigning with placards, oversized campaign buttons, and noisemakers, all to the great detriment of investigation, objectivity, and a genuine search for answers. If something meaningful is found deep within Hunter Biden’s laptop, please let it be the self-respect American journalism angrily discarded on Election Day 2016.
S.T. Patrick holds degrees in both journalism and social studies education. He spent 10 years as an educator and now hosts the “Midnight Writer News Show.” His email is [email protected]. He is also an occasional contributor to TBR history magazine and the current managing editor of Deep Truth Journal (DTJ), a new conspiracy-focused publication available from the AFP Online Store.