Saturday, August 07, 2004

Out here, they're always keeping score

...Aaaand now it turns out that the Boston Globe reporter who wrote the incredibly erroneous story on the Swift Vets the other day isn't actually a paid Kerry hack. (At least, he isn't now, but was previously planning to be.) Beyond the further news cycle whiplash it inspires, this doesn't seem to change much about v2.0 of the story. If Michael Kranish didn't write a misleading (or even outright false) article for the sake of attempting to shoot down a Kerry critic, why did he do it? Hugh Hewitt thinks Kranish should sue Matt Drudge for libel, for the damage done to his journalistic reputation. I'm not so inclined to be kind. Drudge apparently made an honest mistake of fact, working with old information (such as Amazon's publisher details) that still listed Michael Kranish as a contributor to the official Kerry campaign narrative. Kranish, on the other hand, seems to have gone out of his way to (maliciously or not) misquote an interviewee in indirect aid of the Kerry campaign. Never mind Drudge; whether Kranish is on the campaign payroll or not - and failing some other exculpatory evidence - he would appear to be enough in the wrong all by himself to damage his reputation, if only by virtue of sloppiness. Yes, Drudge might have jumped the gun in loudly connecting the dots based on partial information. But being in possession of only partial information and reporting it all is much different than having the full story and purposely reporting only parts. If Kranish is never considered an honest and trustworthy journalist again, it'll still serve him right.

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