Well, this just keeps getting more ridiculous. As reported Monday, CNN media experts Brian Stelter and Oliver Darcy got into a snit with sister website RedState over an op-ed that declared they had partied with Katie Hill at a social function. (Disclosure – This editor also writes on the front page of RedState.)

Stelter’s offended rebuke constituted him admitting he attended a book-signing party, but he did not actively party (v.).

Seriously.

For his part, Darcy took an equally sniveling approach, choosing to focus on the word ”with”, to accuse RedState of slanderous commentary.

Parsing words in order to demand a clearing of the record is about as neutered a demand as you can find from a professional journalist.

What these two firefighters intentionally are deflecting from is the very idea of an ethical problem with the media comingling with the individuals they are reporting on and around whom they are crafting narratives. That Stelter previously had Katie Hill on his program to help any way he could to rehabilitate her reputation was already journalistically questionable. Attending flashy public functions with these same players only makes things more questionable.

Now we come to learn that the book party in question was entirely a news-based function, one in which Katie Hill was invited. It was a book party for the release by a journalist and was hosted by yet another member of the news media.

Seriously.

Molly Jong-Fast wrote articles in support of Katie Hill, stipulating she was the victim of an unethical hit piece. Now she hosts parties where Hill is asked to join, and if anyone suggests there is a problem they get the media attack-Corgis in a lather.

The press hosts a party for a book by members of the press and other members of the press attend, but if anyone suggests the press was partying with Katie Hill at this press event it is a violation of journalistic ethics. Suuuurrrre.

It gets better.

The party was set up to promote the upcoming release of a book written by Lachlan Markay and Asawin Suebsaeng. The two Daily Beast writers were recent guests on the show hosted by — Brian Stelter. He had them on to help excuse Stelter away from responsibility for his longtime promotion of Michael Avenatti.

This means we have CNN hosts comingling with other reporters, who then have those hosts invited to their book party, and another previous guest Katie Hill is also invited, and the hosts get enflamed at the suggestion there was anything to connect them all together.

Kind of like the Avenatti connection. Another guest on their CNN shows who was also in attendance with them at parties.

You mean to say ”social engagements” with their on-air subjects seems to be a pattern of behavior at CNN???

Now here you can see every reason why they are so sensitive about with whom they are accused of ”partying” in the media. Don’t want any journalism breaking out and affecting the reputation of journalists.