The question is, if Federer isn't the GOAT who is? Most journalists are too ignorant to have any plausible alternative.
Exactly, the argument is so redundant because no one side can conclusively decide who is better as hatred/rivalry/distaste for players cloud genuine judgement. I say everyone have their own GOAT and be done with it, Laver is a GOAT because he was so dominant in a time of poor professional management, Borg is a GOAT because he was supremely talented and ahead of his time, McEnroe for being other worldly talented, Lendl for determination to improve and dominate, Sampras for modern supremity, Connors for tenacity, Agassi for fighting his demons and suceeding stupendously in a sport he struggled to love, Federer for the great talents blessed to him and the domination he displayed, Nadal for the never say die mindset - willingness to improve and suceed on surfaces which aren't his preferred etc
There will never be an exclusive GOAT as every player will have some form of hole in their CV, its inevitable in a sport which commands fields of simultaneous greats. Find your own GOAT and love that player for what they individually contributed to a great sport.