August 17, 2007

Media casualty follow up

When I asked, a week ago, why the media outlets that were attacking The New Republic's Baghdad Diarist made no note of The Nation's similar but more reliable and more frightening feature story, I was told that I'd created a straw man: "Very few of the questions raised about Beauchamp's work came out of nothing more than a disbelief that bad things happen in war. They came out of very specific details in his reporting that don't make sense."

Dan Kennedy's picks up the same topic today and notes that at least one attack had nothing to do with getting details right, and went beyond "disbelief" to explicitly advocating willful denial. Here's Brent Bozell on Fox News: "This is the kind of stuff the Soviet Union was proud of. You put it out there. Whether it's true or not, it's irrelevant." (Emphasis added)

Even assuming that most people weren't quite so craven in their reasons for ignoring the Nation's report, Kennedy makes an important observation:

The Nation is every bit as far to the left as Brent Bozell and Sean Hannity imagine the New Republic to be, and its circulation - about 180,000 - is approximately triple that of its rival. Yet the Washington-based TNR is part of mainstream political discourse in a way that the editors of The Nation, marooned in New York and isolated by their impolite ideological views, can only imagine.

Wait - "marooned in New York?" This from a guy in Boston?

Posted by Daniel Radosh


I'm pretty sure you're misreading Bozell. "Whether it's true or not, it's irrelevant" is his characterization of how propagandists operate. In other words, he's not advocating willful denial, he's (ridiculously) accusing TNR of being propagandist who are indifferent to the truth.

Oh, yeah, you could be right about that. Well, too late now!

Whether your reading is true or not, it's irrelevant. Bozell's a douchebag either way.

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