Monday, January 16, 2006
Misdirected Liberal Hostility
While The Washington Post gets bumrushed by hordes of liberal bloggers because their extraordinary Abramoff coverage isn't partisan enough, The New York Times gets away with more Judith-Millerish crap that should be condemned all the way to Keller and back.
Carlotta Gall and Douglas Jehl share the credit for "U.S. Officials Believe Qaeda Agents Killed in Pakistan Strike" but since Gall reported from Peshawar, 'Jehl from Washington' must be reponsible for the utter nonsense contained within.
Unfortunately, there's no way of knowing what Times entity is responsible for the title of this article which seems to contain a typo. The 's' signifying plurality appears to be misplaced. According to (what I'm assuming is) Jehl's part of the article only one official believes that Qaeda agents died in the still-unconfirmed CIA airstrike. I guess "U.S. Official believes Qaeda Agents Killed in Pakistan Strike" isn't as catchy.
And since the one 'money quote' to support the headline includes "might have been" perhaps the headline has more than a plurality typo.
According to (who I'm assuming is) Jehl:
The C.I.A. and the White House have declined to comment on the raid, the third airstrike in recent weeks inside Pakistan territory by American aircraft. The American counterterrorism officials who agreed to speak about it were granted anonymity because they had not been authorized to speak publicly. They offered a defense of the attack, saying they did not believe that innocent bystanders in Pakistan had been killed. One counterterrorism official said that even if Mr. Zawahiri was not killed in the attacks, "Some very senior Al Qaeda types might have been." The official declined to identify other Qaeda members thought to have been at the scene.
I'm no mindreader. All I can go by is what (who I'm assuming is) Jehl tells me, and since he only specifies that one official said Qaeda members were killed I have to assume that that's the only one of the "American counterterrorism officials" who sold him that specious horseshit.
But what kind of a newspaper would allow something like "they did not believe that innocent bystanders" were killed when the very first line of this same story (written I assume by Gall) empirically states "but killed at least 18 civilians."
This is gobbly-gook.
This is worth getting angry about.
Whether or not Abramoff or DeLay were close buddies or not is so completely irrelevant that I'm beginning to think that most of the liberal blogosphere has been replaced by pod people.
Only to nitpickers does "Abramoff campaign money" translate into money directly contributed by Abramoff. This scandal - for the most part - is about Abramoff directing clients to pay Congressional members...not about his personal contributions. I guess since Frank Rich is behind-the-wall now, most bloggers don't realize that he wrote something very similiar yesterday to what the Washington Post ombudsman is getting attacked for (on so many freakin' blogs Sunday there's no need to provide links).
There's no doubt that the Abramoff scandal is mostly a GOP affair...but anyone that thinks that all Democrats will emerge unscathed hasn't been paying attention.
By all means, attack the journalists who - like President Bush - claim that both sides are equally muddied. But unless you've got an inside line to Abramoff's tribes or federal investigators it would be more prudent to keep an open mind as more emails and details are released.
That is...if you care at all about being wrong.
The other day I went off on Media Matters...but their article on the WaPo ombudsman column was the way it should be done. Directing hundreds of readers to leave comments on an unrelated Washington Post message board is the way it shouldn't be done (I originally wrote a long post which picked on certain bloggers for what they wrote about this...but I decided to kill it since it's a waste of time to write about that kind of stuff...there's just no getting through to them...and God help us all if these silly circle jerkers ever obtain real political or media power).