November 09, 2005

2 Sense from Maninblack

Mary Mapes: The River Queen of De-nial

What, Me Worry? about journalistic standards? She’s at it again. Where do we start with Mary Mapes? Remember her? She’s the “journalist,” term used very loosely, who produced the discredited “60 Minutes II” report which tried to derail GW’s reelection by casting doubts on his military record and reputation.

At the heart of the report were documents supposedly created on a 1970 typewriter, which amazingly had fonts that could only be created on a modern word processor with Microsoft Word. After an internal CBS News investigation on the report, Mapes was forced to resign. Her flawed report, a.k.a. political hitpiece, also caused the early retirement of anchor Dan Rather (thank you Mary, did I ever tell you thank you for that?).

Mapes, the poster-person for everything that is wrong with the “Old Media,” (apologies to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld) is claiming that she did not commit any “bad journalism,” according to an ABC News interview.

She tells [ABC News reporter Brian] Ross that she had no journalistic obligation to prove the authenticity of the documents before including them in the "60 Minutes II" report. "I don't think that's the standard," she said.

Dan's best attempt at doing Robert DeNiro in the 'Fockers' What? Isn’t that Journalism 101 – to verify the veracity of any documents or sources before you go to the public with accusations, especially the type that could bring down a presidency? If this is the journalistic standard held by all news producers, then the American people should not be watching TV news, oh wait, their ratings have been plummeting the last decade, so she must just be confirming what the people already know.

If every profession was held to her “standard,” again a term used loosely in regards to Mapes, bridges would be crumbling and airplanes would be falling out of the sky.

“Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. This is your Captain speaking. We will be traveling at an altitude of 35,000 feet today, although, I have no professional obligation to prove the authenticity of my flight plans. I have no duty to ensure this airplane is properly maintained. I also have no responsibility to assure you we will try to avoid any mid-air crashes. I don’t think that’s the standard. So, just sit back and enjoy your flight.”

Mapes also criticizes other reporters for spending too much time on her story and other flawed journalism.

She's right, the media should just ignore when stories meant to bring down a presidency are based on flat out lies (eyes rolling). Wow, anyone in need of a news director should look this woman up. Oh, by the way, she wrote a whole book on the subject.

Mapes says one of her few regrets in handling the story was her phone call to a member of Sen. John Kerry's presidential campaign staff prior to the broadcast. "I wish to God I hadn't done it, because I think it was so wildly misinterpreted." She says she made the call only as a way to gain favor with the source who provided her with the documents.

Mapes rejects suggestions she had political motives. "I did not have it in for George Bush," she said.

She had access to the highest levels of the Kerry campaign and wanted to show-off to the source of the fake documents about it. She then contends she didn’t have “it in” for GW. Mary is from Venus and Mapes is from Mars.

Mapes says she is continuing to investigate the source of the controversial documents whose authenticity was seriously questioned by the CBS panel.

How's that investigation going, O.J.?She could wind up conducting her investigation on the same golf courses that O.J. Simpson is continuing his search for his wife’s killers. Maybe she could enlist the help of Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald who is conducting the non-crime, non-leak investigation to find out more about her source. Problem is both of these other investigations are proving pointless.

Better yet, she should just stick to her “standard” and forget about trying to figure out what the rest of America knows: the documents were fakes created to try and knock a president out of office.

ABC News also posted an excerpt from her book, "Truth and Duty: The Press, the President, and the Privilege of Power." She’s apparently a fan of alliteration.

They'd Earn a Purple Heart in Kerry's Army

Although very brave for fighting to maintain freedom in their central asian country, the Christian Science Monitor reports that soldiers in the Afghan National Army are prone to shooting themselves in the foot.

But the ANA still have a disconcerting habit of shooting themselves with their own weapons. "The problem is muzzle discipline," says 2nd Lieut. Ben Wisnioski, a commander of an ANA unit based in Qalat. In the week before the elections, Lieutenant Wisnioski lost three ANA soldiers to self-inflicted wounds.

As we learned in the last presidential campaign, one of democrat presidential candidate John Kerry's Purple Hearts may have been the result of a self-inflicted wound. If the ANA, or anyone for that matter, had access to the requested-but-never-turned-over Kerry service records then the wounded soldiers could see how to write up their citation for an award.

Let's check back in a few years to see if any of these soldiers oppose current Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai in their next election.

Did I Miss Something? Was  Crime Committed Here?

Everyone who lives here knows about Scooter I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Vice President Cheney's former chief of staff, was indicted last week by Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald as everyone in the solar system knows. (Oh did you know that the Iraq Constitution was approved after ten days of vote counting? Oh yeah, that's not big news I guess to the American mainstream media). Yet, as thoughtful analysis of the Libby indictment actually seeps into the press, the indictment begs a really big question: What crime was committed again?

The entire investigation began with trying to figure out who leaked the name of Joe Wilson's wife, a CIA-operative-turned-desk-jockey-for-the-last-five-years to columnist Robert Novak (I certainly don't want to mention her name for fear of being indicted for not committing a crime). Yet, the Libby indictment, which doesn't even mention Novak, has absolutely nothing to do with the actual leak, which, did I mention, is what started the investigation in the first place.

Legal experts are beginning to agree that no crime was committed with the supposed "leak." USA Today reports that people are really beginning to wonder what happened in the leak case.

Novak's absence from the case, says attorney Steven Reich, supports the assumption that Fitzgerald decided the leak itself wasn't a crime. Reich was a senior associate counsel in the Clinton White House...

...No one who leaked CIA officer Valerie Plame's name has been charged with a crime for doing so and Fitzgerald has said his investigation is nearly over...

...Reich says, "it seems that what happened with Mr. Novak is essentially beside the point," because no crime was likely committed by the person who told Novak about Plame...

...But attorneys and former prosecutors draw this conclusion about Novak's "original" source: It almost surely was not Libby....

...In the indictment, Fitzgerald details conversations Libby had about Plame with Time's Cooper and with Judith Miller of The New York Times. He mentions no conversations between Libby and Novak...

...Other clues...lead to the conclusion that Libby was not a source for Novak on the Plame leak come from outside Fitzgerald's investigation...

...A mystery source - who wasn't Libby...

So, not only is Libby not the Novak source, but no crime was committed by the source.

It seems, then, Libby is accused of allegedly lying to investigators about his non-role in a non-crime, the non-crime being what started the investigation.

Okay, I think I got it. And this overshadowed the approval of the Iraq Constitution?

June 29, 2005

Wolfpack Baller, economy, more harris bashing, new link, Religion, and wrestling

Challenge Day 4

Congrats to Wolfpack baller Julius Hodge, 20th pick to the Denver Nuggets in last night's NBA Draft.

I missed the speech last night, and I am sure you have already read all about, but if you haven't here's a roundup of coverage in the major media provided by Outdside the Beltway.

US Economy still improving. Thank the Bush Tax Cuts. More would be better.

Looking for more reasons to doubt Katherine Harris? Then carry your liberal backside over to this post - NEW QUINNIPIAC POLL CONFIRMS NELSON LEAD OVER HARRIS IN HEAD TO HEAD SENATE BATTLE - at I4Jamming

White Trash Wednesday at Pirates Cove. It's not as bad as it sounds.

Are testing agencies in it for the buck or for the educational improvement of the children? Go from that to the difference between parents and teachers expectations for children and some historical links to educational expectations of children by the institution.

Level 4 Morality, Idealism and Individualism at the Partial Observer.

Presidents and Religion through SOS.

Staying with religion and seguing to the Supreme Court is this interesting post about the Ten Commandments and the Beatitutdes. I definitely see his point. However, I think the foundations of law and society are based on old school rules. The foundations of morality and relationships, love and forgiveness, are based on new school teachings. Think of it this way,

  • Old school rules are for the group, the impersonal
  • New school rules are for the individual, the personal

God doesn't care about the group, he cares about you personally. At least I think so anyway.

SCOTUS and China? Read this opinion on the Kelo decision from Matt Warner of the James Madison Institute in today's Democrat. My favorite part -

Totalitarian governments with a socialist bent are experts when it comes to trampling on individual rights in the name of benefiting the masses.

How easy would it be to replace Totalitarian governments with the Democratic Party and nobody would even notice? 

From SCOTUS Blog, Will there be a resignation?

And finally, Did you know Hulk Hogan lived in Florida? Did you know he has a TV show?

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