It is time to stop quivering in our boots in pointless fear of the future and just roll up our sleeves and build it.
- Ray Pierrehumbert

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Pilfered Emails, Bogus Scandals

Sure enough, the so far only slightly mitigated success of "climategate" has led to imitation.

Perhaps the fact that the latest massive email trawl picked journalists as a target will awaken the journalistic community to the nature of the travesty.

Matt Yglesias summarizes:
I’d encourage everyone to read this Ann Althouse post on today’s bogus Daily Caller story about JournoList. Her bottom line: “The Daily Caller’s article is weak. And I’m inclined to think the material in the Journolist archive is pretty mild stuff.”

What’s maddening about this whole issue is that of course it’s impossible to prove a negative. The closest one can come, however, is reasonable inference. The Caller appears to have access to a very large proportion of JournoList emails and they can’t come up with anything that withstands cursory scrutiny.
Sound familiar? It should.

Thanks to Things Break (in comments) for the pointer, and also to this related item on Salon.

3 comments:

Orne Batmagoo said...

Q. What do climategate, the Sherrod case, the Acorn case, the swiftboating of Kerry (and others) all have in common?

A. People perfectly willing to lie to your face, if they think it will help them get the football back in November. They are called "Republicans", and it's what they do.

[They will lie, cheat, steal, and have "plumbers" break into the Watergate hotel. This is nothing new. The part I don't understand is why so many people fall for the con, and let these liars pull the wool over their eyes, to be bamboozled, hoodwinked, or "snookered" as the head of the NAACP put it, when most of the lies are easily debunked! I'm flummoxed.]

Tony Lee said...

Long ago, the right realised that perception is stronger than reality. Ironically, it was liberal arts projects like post-modernism that helped bring them to that awareness. I can't blame scientists for thinking that facts matter more than PR -- I still think they do! But events like the Shirley Sherrod mess sure do make me question the eventual outcome.

frank -- Decoding SwiftHack said...

"why so many people fall for the con, and let these liars pull the wool over their eyes, to be bamboozled, hoodwinked, or 'snookered' as the head of the NAACP put it, when most of the lies are easily debunked!"

And the answer by politicians, journalists, and pundits is usually, "Because it's politically smart!"

Except it's not.

-- frank