Friday, December 02, 2005

Dear Tina Brown

In your latest Washington Post column, Anonymous Sources And a Known Quantity, you stand up for Bob Woodward and complain about "the pincer assaults of the fact-free ethical anarchy of the blogosphere" but you don't seem to get what most of the anger is about.

Kurtz got it.

As I blogged about a few days ago, Kurtz' article on Bob Woodward carried the subtitle, "For Bob Woodward, Proximity to Power Cuts Both Ways."

But you, Tina, think that Bob knows more than us about what makes an item "newsworthy."

Contrary to some of the postings from the grassy knoll, I believe Woodward when he says he didn't think the leak he heard about Valerie Plame's job was important at the time. He probably did see it as gossip, somewhere between macho knowingness and just another routine drive-by shooting from the Bush crowd. The problem is that when Woodward hears political gossip it's not a couple of lowly hacks at the office water cooler -- it's a transaction between one Big Beast at the heart of the power jungle and another. He hoarded the info for some larger reportorial purpose because that's what Big Beasts do. They don't waste time fiddling around with the quotidian crumbs from the dish of the day when they're aiming to haul in the big, fat story we'll all be chewing on for months.

Sorry, Tina, but I think the crumbs are important, and I'd prefer that the "big, fat" stories get written when they mean an election or before a war based on a lie gets launched.

And speaking of proximity to power, Tina, I was wondering who you might have as the guest of honor at your next book party. Paul Wolfowitz was such a hit back in March...maybe you can rope in Condi or Libby or somebody cool for your next big shindig.


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