A Mother Jones story today by Gavin Aronsen comes out swinging at Kimberly Dvorak—the so-called journalist “investigating” Michael Hastings’ death—and for good reason.
Dvorak has been pushing unsourced and, in some cases, debunked conspiracy theories about Hastings’ death at Examiner.com (most notably that he was assassinated, but she’s also open to the idea that he could’ve faked his death, too). Being that we’re talking about Examiner.com, this would make her only mildly annoying. Except that now, a San Diego TV station has started giving her airtime. That’s only led to papers like Britain’s Independent, Fox News (of course), Reason.com and others citing her work.
When asked for comment by Mother Jones, she says, “I’m going out on a limb reporting this. Journalists are becoming so irrelevant right now.” San Diego’s TV station refused to comment for the story.
An excerpt from Mother Jones:
“Dvorak’s reporting—and mainstream media outlets’ embrace of it—is ongoing. On Monday, Dvorak reported that she had ‘confirmed’ a claim made last week by Hastings’ widow, Elise Jordan, that Hastings was working on a profile of CIA Director John Brennan at the time of his death. (The news that Hastings had been investigating Brennan first appeared in the Los Angeles Times the day after Hastings’ death in June.) ‘It’s curious how his wife came out and talked about [Hastings’ death] and kind of had a smile on her face and didn’t seem like a grieving widow,’ Dvorak says.”
This isn’t the first time someone has taken issue with Dvorak. Huffington Post writers Jason Linkins and Ryan Grim pointed out way back in 2010 that not only had she fabricated a story about the Mexican Los Zetas gang seizing ranches in Texas (Dvorak claims border security as one of her areas of expertise), but also ripped off a legitimate story about an Immigration and Customs Enforcement informant who played both sides of the drug war.
So why do legit outlets keep giving Dvorak a pedestal to shout from? Maybe they just don’t have time to use Google to check her bona fides, or lack thereof?