Thursday, September 16, 2004

Delusion and Confusion from Political

Those are the only words that come to mind when trying to come up with a description of Dan Rather and his boss at CBS, Andrew Heyward. They are completely out of touch with reality. How else to describe this statement by Rather, reported by Howard Kurtz in today’s WaPo?:

“If the documents are not what we were led to believe, I’d like to break that story,” Rather said in an interview last night. “Any time I’m wrong, I want to be right out front and say, ‘Folks, this is what went wrong and how it went wrong.’ ”

Does he not realize that he and his network are the story? And it was broken a week ago. Dan, wake the %*^* up! It is time to pack it in, grab the gold watch and attempt to salvage your reputation.

Andrew Sullivan has regained some perspective and sums things up succinctly:

I have to say that the risible statement given by CBS News last night finally did it for me. Who do these people think they are? They have failed to find a single expert who will back the authenticity of the memos; their own experts say they warned CBS not to go with the story; Killian’s secretary thinks they’re fakes … and yet Rather and Heyward say they stand by their story and will continue to investigate the provenance and dubiousness of the forgeries! This beggars belief. How do I put this to Rather: it doesn’t matter if the underlying story is true. All that matters is that CBS’s evidence is fake. Get it? End of story.

Welcome back to reality, friend. And kudos to Kurtz for covering this fiasco. There are certainly no Pulitzers or ‘atta-boys at the end of this nightmare. Had we been discussing forged Pentagon memos or some such, there would be high-fives all around the newsroom. No, there is no glory in this for the mainstreamers, but it must be covered for the sake of an entire industry.
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