Tuesday I posted LA Times Gets It Wrong. It drew a comment I want to respond to.
So here first is the post; then below the star line you'll find the comment; and after that my fisking response.
LA Times Gets It Wrong
Gateway Pundit has posted:
Wrong: Media's Story on Gen. Peter Pace Urging Troop Reduction
On Friday we heard this all over the news- via Memeorandum:
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is expected to advise President Bush to reduce the U.S. force in Iraq next year by almost half.
Today we heard this:
Pace on Friday said, "The story is wrong, it is speculative. I have not made or decided on any recommendations yet."
Funny, the correction didn't make any headlines.
Nice work, Gateway Pundit and Memorandum.
Now the comment ---
Um, this actually shows your ignorance of the political process. The general said the story was "wrong, it is speculative."
But the LAT had never reported that he HAD made a recommendation. It reported only that he is "expected" to make a certain recommendation to the president, based on interviews with unnamed sources.
Politicians often play these games. They challenge the validity of a story, but it's bluster. The only way for the LAT to have been wrong would have been for the general to say: "The story is wrong. I plan to recommend that we triple our troops, double our troops, etc."
He didn't say that.
So, this analysis that the LAT story is flawed is, itself, flawed.
By the way, when were you last in Iraq providing insight from the ground?
OK, folks, I’m sure some of you are asking, “Why is John going to respond to a troll? Why doesn’t he just delete the comment?”
Because in this case, if it is a troll’s comment, it’s useful in that it allows me to make some important points.
The comment is certainly trollish in that it begins with what is meant to be an insult to me and in the very next sentence provides information that confirms what the Gateway Pundit post was saying and which I endorsed. So we read:
Um, this actually shows your ignorance of the political process. The general said the story was "wrong, it is speculative." (emphasis mine)That’s right. General Case said the LAT story was “wrong.”
Newspapers shouldn’t run news stories that are wrong. They’re supposed to check to see if the story is right which the LAT could have done with a phone call to Pace's office.
If an MSM news organization is going to do a story on what a public figure is planning to do, shouldn’t we expect the MSM outfit to check with the person to find out what he/she has to say?
If the LAT had checked with Pase, he would’ve told the LAT what it was forced to admit the next day buried in the seventh paragraph of a story not on troop deployment in Iraq, but on troop morale there:
Pace on Friday said, "The story is wrong, it is speculative. I have not made or decided on any recommendations yet."Why did the LAT publish a speculative story without checking first with Pace? Especially, why did the LAT publish that kind of speculative story in a time of war?
The troll or the actually serious commenter ends with:
By the way, when were you last in Iraq providing insight from the ground?That’s a silly and irrelevant question.
But it's useful in this regard: It reminded me of a post I’ve thought about doing now for some time.
In 1970 I visited Chappaquiddick Island where, most of you probably recall, Sen. Ted Kennedy was involved in a fatal auto accident in 1969.
I’ve wanted to tell you what I learned there when I spoke to locals and drove the route Kennedy took that led to his driving off the Dike (also spelled Dyke) Bridge and the death of the passenger in his car, a 28-year-old woman, Mary Jo Kopechne.
I’ll put that post up early next week.