No, seriously. There really is more.
Update: Defense Tech responds to my e-mail about the car that was allegedly destroyed by an Israeli “missile.” They’re skeptical, too, but they think the damage might conceivably have been caused by a Sensor Fuzed Weapon, which is a type of cluster bomb developed by U.S.
…That’s, er, capable of piercing armor, and is typically used against tank formations. And yet somehow didn’t manage to shatter the windshield of this junkpile.
Mainstream media will do itself no favors by downplaying this as a controversy hyped up by opinionated bloggers… [E]very time a straight-news journalist alters a fact—even something as picayune as the color of a bomb blast or the number of flares fired from a plane—it convinces people that the media must lie about big things as well. All facts become suspect, all information becomes relative, and you might as well believe whatever your gut tells you, because the news is invariably driven by its own bias, which is, invariably, against you…
[E]very time something like this happens, the winners are the people of every political stripe who believe it’s their calling to, to paraphrase another war, destroy the truth in order to save it.
About two weeks after Rathergate broke in September 2004, the same rag that published this load ran a cover story about the political Rashomonization of America. Facts were no longer objectively true or false, it seemed, but true or false depending upon which ideology one subscribed to. Barbarians at the gates of reality, we were. And now here’s Poniewozik, reality-based gent that he is, coincidentally hitting that same note.
Media scandals driven by right-wing bloggers sure do bring out their protective side when it comes to the truth, isn’t it? And the more hard, objective, documentary evidence of malfeasance we have, the more adorably defensive they become. We’re never so “destructive” of “the truth,” it seems, as when we have the truth most clearly on our side.
Also note the transparent, hack-lawyer rhetorical strategy Poniewozik uses, conceding and inflating his opponents’ weakest point in hopes of distracting attention from their stronger arguments. Photoshoppery is the least of the media’s sins in Lebanon; asking his colleagues not to minimize it is his backdoor attempt at making this a story about digital manipulation, which is rare, instead of a story about photos being staged and captions being written in false or misleading ways. Which, um, isn’t.
Update: Since we have a cameo by the Freshmaker in this thread, how about a Lieberman mini-roundup? The papers have been filed. Some journalists are thrilled with the primary result, others not so much. Neddy, bless his heart, finally had his memory jogged regarding those blogs he knew nothing about six days ago:
At a campaign stop in Bridgeport, Conn., just hours before his victory, however, he said that bloggers had been key early on when the traditional media didn’t think he had much of a chance.
“There were these guys on the netroots — guys on the Internet — that sort of took a look and said, ‘Look, I don’t know a lot about Ned Lamont, but I know a lot about Lieberman, so go hear what Lamont has to say, he’ll be up at Naples pizza at 5 p.m. this evening,’ and all of a sudden we had not 25 people but 125 people, and that was the beginning of something.”
Everyone in public life gets tagged. But this is one of the first times in a long time that somebody’s base got tagged. The Kos crowd is viewed by most people outside that crowd as hate-fueled, bitter and stupid–the devil’s flying monkeys making their “Eeek! Eeek!” sounds. As a political phenomenon such people do not . . . inspire. They’re not like the young lefties of old trying to be “Clean for Gene.”
They seem like people who do not–cannot–create and cohere. They seem driven by a spirit of destruction. This will take you only so far. It didn’t help when Kos himself, Markos Moulitsas, got all Robespierre the other day and instructed Harry Reid to strip Mr. Lieberman of all his committee assignments.
Meanwhile, the flying monkeys have a target in sight.