Howard Kurtz seems to be committed to making his conflict of interest as obvious as possible. Here's Kurtz during an appearance on the conservative Hugh Hewitt radio show:
HUGH HEWITT (host): The second story, the birthers. Today, the National Review joined me, [radio host] Michael Medved, most every center-right responsible conservative I know in denouncing the idea that the president isn't a citizen. But yet this story continues to have legs. Today, the Hawaii guy came out and said, no, we got his birth certificate, how long does this go on, Howard, and do you sense that the media is - and by that I mean, mainstream media, is having fun with this because it has the potential to embarrass some conservatives because of the, in the way that the [9-11] Truthers embarrassed some Democrats?
KURTZ: Probably in some quarters. I applaud the conservatives who have stood up and said basically this is wacko stuff, there's not a shred of evidence, I don't want to associate with these folks. I don't understand why this has gotten so much prominence, particularly on cable television in the first place if we make a judgment as journalists that this is basically a lot of garbage, then why do we have to spend a lot of time flogging this horse? The guy who has been flogging this the most, it seems to me, is Chris Matthews on MSNBC. And while I agree with his general point of view on this, which is that it is a load of baloney, he - I don't think there's been one show in the last seven where he hasn't dragged somebody on - G. Gordon Liddy, whoever - in order to beat up on that person. So -
HEWITT: I think he does it because --
KURTZ: -- I think it's got enough attention.
HEWITT: -- It's low-hanging fruit. It's such an easy target. It's making fun of people with marginal grasp of logic and so I think it's just too easy for him, but I hope it goes away soon because it does divert from the key discussion, and this is the question, is healthcare being covered the right way.
No mention of CNN. No mention of Lou Dobbs. No mention of Jonathan Klein's defense of Dobbs. Instead, Kurtz singles out Chris Matthews, who has been debunking the birther nonsense, as the person primarily responsible for it, rather than Lou Dobbs, who has been promoting it.
And, as I'm sure you know by now, CNN pays Howard Kurtz a nice chunk of change. Might that have anything to do with his refusal to hold CNN -- whose president, Jonathan Klein, defends Dobbs' promotion of birther conspiracy theories -- responsible for their conduct?
How could it not?
(See also InstaPutz)