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Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Denial: It's a Family Disease

Salon is reporting that while the NYT staff may be presenting a unified "go, Judy!" front, privately they put down the pom-poms and admit she's the family embarassment:
"She is obviously a very contentious person," one co-worker, who requested anonymity, said. "There are people who have a question about the integrity of [her] reporting." Another colleague called her WMD reporting "a dark chapter." "I'm not sure there is a lot of sympathy or support," a third fellow reporter said about Miller.
None of this seems to be reaching the ears of Editor & Chief Apologist Bill Keller, whose consciousness remains ungrazed within his glass menagerie. He was also quick to invoke the Novakian "I'd really love to but my attorney says I can't" Cone of Silence:
Keller also spoke to the questions surrounding what Miller's assignment was at the time she learned Plame's identity, but declined to spell it out. "While the questions of what Judy knew, and what she was working on, may be matters of general curiosity, the answers don't touch the heart of the case," he claims. "The question of what is going on with the case -- meaning what the special prosecutor is up to, and why he seems to regard Judy as important to the case -- is a mystery to me. It's something I'd like to have answered -- not just for our staff, but for our readers."
Right. So despite the fact that the federal prosecutor is prevented by law from discussing the case with anyone outside the investigation for a host of reasons regarding judicial prudence, Patrick Fitzgerald should start talking because the poor Times staff has had their curiosity piqued. While the Times, who is under no prohibition to discuss the matter whatsoever other than a desire to cover its own hopelessly compromised ass, won't answer any questions because they "don't touch the heart of the case." And how would we know this? Well, I guess we'll just have to trust Bill.

One final insult:
Observes Times columnist Thomas Friedman, "People really support Judy and this principle."
If I'm ever in the slammer and he wants to come to my defense, just tell him to shut the fuck up.

Update: Arianna in Editor & Publisher, on why the Depends media are such a bunch of fish: "The Judy-as-First Amendment-hero angle is the easy first response to the story. It's the conventional wisdom -- and the mainstream media like nothing better than going with the flow of the 'CW.' It's also the path of least resistance. ... Just hit the hot key on your computer and out pops the jailed-journalist-as-martyr story. It's much harder to swim against the current, to rethink, to reexamine, to reopen closed doors. And you risk stepping on toes -- maybe even the toes of people you socialize with."