Thursday, September 16, 2004

You can't have it both ways, Danny-boy

Babble on.

Dan Rather is quoted in today's New York Observer (thx to Professor Penny) regarding the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy to discredit the obviously fake totally true Killian memos:

"If you can’t deny the information, then attack and seek to destroy the credibility of the messenger, the bearer of the information. And in this case, it’s change the subject from the truth of the information to the truth of the documents."
His point is that whether the actual documents are forgeries or not, the information contained in them is true. (OK, so if I can find an obviously fake totally true memo that says John Kerry was in Cambodia for Christmas 1969, 60 Minutes will put an end to that vicious pajama-warrior rumour too? Sorry, I digress...) Of course, Rather then goes on to bury his own argument:

Mr. Rather said that he and Ms. Mapes had heard about the National Guard memos as long ago as 1999.
While Mr. Rather and Ms. Mapes were able to glean the contents of the memos before they actually acquired them, and while they worked to convince the source to hand over the memos, he said they tried to verify the facts in them so they could be sure they were on the right trail.

"Within the last few months," he said, "we got a look at the documents, and we said we’d like to have a copy of the documents."

He said they met the source in a "remote location." "[The source] said they were copies of the documents, and he told us some of the history of where they came from and how they came to him," Mr. Rather said.

If Rather and Mapes heard about the story in 1999, why did they wait until 2004 to go public with it? I mean, if it's true now, it would have been equally true back then, wouldn't it? Ooooh, except that the public expects journalists to be able to back their stories up.

Which brings us back to whether forged documents can be used to back this story up. Or any story at all, for that matter.

You can't have it both ways, Danny-boy. CBS is going to stand for Caught Bull-Shitting until further notice.

Babble off.

Update: Jay Currie continues in this general direction, albeit more colourfully than I do ("...I can grab a picture of John Kerry, crudely Photoshop him having relations with a goat and run with the story...). I will take issue with his last point, however: there is no such thing as newsie heaven - none of them would qualify.

...and, uh, Mr. Lileks. I will now shut up. One does not continue listening to the Junior Stage Band when the London Symphony Orchestra is playing the same tune.


At 12:05 p.m., Blogger Greg said...

Hey B. Spread the word. Someone can earn $50,000 U.S. if they can prove they served with W. in Alabama. Easy money, baby.


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home