Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Newsweek Fallout

There's a lot out there concerning Newsweek's false report on the desecration of the Quran by American interrogators at Guantanamo Bay and the magazine's subsequent retraction.

Here are a few recommendations: . . .

Marvin Olasky's excellent posts on World Magazine Blog: "Ignorance Has Fatal Consequences," "Unanswered Questions About Newsweek," and "Press Self-Criticism"
Michelle Malkin: "It's Not Just Newsweek"
Brent Bozell: "Newsweek: A Dan Rather Rerun"
Thomas Sowell: "Newsweak?"

The mainstream media apparently did not learn anything from the CBS/Dan Rather episode. Will it learn anything from this?


At Wednesday, May 18, 2005 11:31:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No. No they will not learn. Their intention is not to learn or adjust. In fact, this is for you to learn. The liberal mindset is that it is perfectly justified to kill the innocent, endanger our soldiers and create hostility against the U.S.

Why, you might ask? It's because the conservatives need to learn that Bush was wrong to invade, that we should not be the only world super power, that there is no difference between Christians and Muslims and that liberals should always be in power.

I don't buy for a minute that they are upset. It was intentional and it is all for their cause. No, they will not learn, they are celebrating.

the Heckler

At Wednesday, May 18, 2005 8:56:00 PM, Anonymous Ed Cone said...

Heckler -- have you ever met one person who fits the description you give of "liberals?"

I haven't. I get called a liberal, although I like to think of my politics as a bit more complex than something that can be captured by a simple label...I work in the corporate media...and I have never, ever heard anyone espouse the views you ascribe to liberals.

I can't imagine what it must be like to walk around with the suspicion that some large percentage of my neighbors are power-hungry, hostile to America, and willing to have innocents die.

At Thursday, May 19, 2005 9:19:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, indeed, Mr. Cone. Just spent last week with a business assoc. from CA who fit this description to a tee. But no, I don't know many because they're not the type I would voluntarily hang around.

But as to the specific topic of happy liberals celebrating Newsweak, just check out Or, listen to tapes of the press grilling the Scott McLellan yesterday. They are flat-out accussing the White House of attempting to dictate to the press what they are to do.

All of this was the response to one simple question to Scott, "what do you believe Newsweak can do now [to correct this mistake]." His SUGGESTION was to also add to their retraction what the actual U.S. policy is concerning the Koran.

Check the liberal blogs to see the fall-out from that! True colors were clearly revealed.

the Heckler

At Thursday, May 19, 2005 9:22:00 PM, Anonymous Ed Cone said...

You said, "The liberal mindset is that it is perfectly justified to kill the innocent, endanger our soldiers and create hostility against the U.S."

And you back that up with...vague references to a rabble-rousing website, and pretty much nothing else of substance. "The liberal blogs," you say. Which blogs? Which posts on those blogs say "it is perfectly justified to kill the innocent, endanger our soldiers and create hostility against the U.S."?

Of course, it's not true. You are demonizing an entire group -- although you don't really define it -- does the "liberal mindset" mean people who want to preserve social security, or pursue other "liberal" economic policies? People who take the liberal side on social issues? And, yes, people who opposed the invasion of Iraq?

Do all of those people -- or even some large representative percentage of them -- believe that it "justified to kill the innocent, endanger our soldiers and create hostility against the U.S."?

What good can possibly come of such broad-brush characterizations? What purpose is served by demonizing people in this way?

At Friday, May 20, 2005 12:09:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, Ed, I believe that all 3 characteristics can be found in this one Newsweak episode. And, yes, in the blog site I did mention I have read very crude notes that might shock even you.

Most actually refer to "dumbass soldiers who shouldn't be there in the first place" and "can't wait until we hit 1,000 dead...that'll help Kerry" kind of crap.

But the Newsweak story took the cake. They knew the mention of the the quran flushing would create hostility towards our president and our troops. These are smart guys and I can't believe they thought otherwise.

I'll give these guys the benefit of the doubt that they did not factor in 15 civilians dying as a result but I did see in certain areas of the media where they tried to use this massive media screw-up
to act as if the president was going to now dictate how they were going to have to react (as I mentioned earleir).

I don't believe the White House went far enough in suggesting that they print what the official policy is on the quran. They should also print the fact that in their country, anyone possessing a Holy Bible is beaten or killed.

But, Ed, I don't need to go any further than the back page of the N&R (or their blog) to understand exactly how these people think. Or look on previous front pages where we see people like Rep. Jim McDermont criticizing our president while standing on Iraqi soil.

Or Madam Albright wanting to share nuclear secrets with people like N. KOREA! so that we won't be the world's only super power. Duhhh!

It's time for me to go nighty night but if you need more examples, I'm sure more will come to mind...

the Heckler

At Friday, May 20, 2005 7:41:00 PM, Anonymous Ed Cone said...

Why do you characterize what you cite as the "liberal mindset"? I offered a few examples of liberal thought -- do you really think everyone, or even most, of the people who hold those positions agree with the outrageous stuff you say defines the "liberal mindset."?

I find that blanket smear of a huge number of your fellow citizens to be unfair, inaccurate, and representative of something dangerous.

At Friday, May 20, 2005 10:34:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


The only specific "liberal mindsets" you mentioned were preserving social security and being anti-Iraqi war. In each of these cases during the Clinton administration, the Democrats were gung-ho for both.

In both cases they did nothing. They said SS would be gone in just a few years and Bill said that Saddam was a grave threat and every freakin' liberal senator agreed. Just a few years later, after each had only gotten worse, all of a sudden they are diaboliclly opposed to both without explaining what cosmic event happened in the universe to correct these problems.

Why? Because their party won't get credit for the solution. If they honestly believed Bush's privatized plan was the greatest thing since sliced bread--they have to oppose it. It's supposed to be their baby.

Same with Iraq. They were all behind Clinton then but he did not have the spine. W. does and the lib's resent it.

SS cannot survive with 2.5 workers for one retiree- period. Iraq cannot ignore U.N. sanctions or it is worthless- period. BUT! a group a sniveling, whiney liberal senators and a willing media can muddy the entire picture to the point you can no longer see the constant.

But the "liberal mindset" is a variety of things. These are people who define things the way they think they should be irregardless of any facts that make their theorie's impossible.

They listen to only liberal media and suck in everything until it becomes part of their being. Or...

They are another victim of force-fed liberal educators who teach them how domineering and awful our nation is.

btw, check this gem out: This is just a guess...but pretty sure he's liberal.


At Saturday, May 21, 2005 8:33:00 AM, Anonymous Ed Cone said...

Actually, I offered a third set, which was people who have liberal views on social issues. But your point is made: you believe that political labels and lines are definitive, and that those with whom you disagree on policy are not just on the other side of an issue but wrong and quite possibly something worse than wrong, that is, bad and different and worthy of blanket condemnation.

As noted, I find this point of view to be not just inaccurate but sad and disturbing. Yet it's clear that you are not interested in having any sort of dialogue, so I'll leave you in peace to demonize half of you countrymen and dismiss views with which you disagree.

At Sunday, May 22, 2005 10:44:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ed, I'm very interested in a dialogue but you don't seem interested in challenging any of my charges. So all I can assume is that you agree they are true but consider me intolerant for not valuing their belief system.

But I also think that we may be talking about 2 different things.
Yes, about half of the country may be Democrat but not all Democrats are liberal. When a use the label "liberal", I believe I'm probably describing about 20% of the country.

I'm referring to a group of people whose beliefs I believe to be very out of whack and harmful to this country. If they were just standing on a street corner shouting out theirs views- that's one thing- but many of these 20% are in politics and the media.

These people have an agenda. They have power. They have a lot of influence. I believe that they FEEL they are doing something good. But I also believe that in reality they are our own worst enemy and if I can see it-- it's my American duty to try to defeat them.

Just take one of my cases...Albright handing over nuclear secrets and equipment to N. Korea. Would a Republican do that? How stupid can you get?

Or, back to the original point...Newsweek printing that story. They knew from the Abu Graib incident what would happen. THAT is sad and disturbing. They deserve whatever fallout comes their way.


At Monday, May 23, 2005 3:29:00 PM, Anonymous Ed Cone said...

Ah, so you have a special definition of "liberals." It doesn't mean people who are liberal on social or economic issues, it means people who hate America. Thus our breakdown in communication: you are using a word to mean something other than it is commonly undestood to mean. confusing.

And where do you get this 20% number? Do you really thing one out five Americans thinks all those bad thoughts you listed? I work in the media, and know plenty of people in politics, I just don't see that kind of attitude in large numbers of people.

As for Albright, who as secretary of state was involved in some technology transfer to North Korea -- certainly that does not look to have worked out very well. But your question was, can one imagine a Republican doing something so dumb? Well, sure. That's the issue I've had with your arguments all along -- you make big sweeping statements about whole groups of people, one side right and the other side not just wrong but bad... I just don't see the world that way.

I'm not answering charge by charge because I don't see the point. Your worldview is that you are right and people who differ with you are dumb and perhaps wicked. Arguing case by case is futile, you'll just come up with more cases to prove your point to yourself.

At Monday, May 23, 2005 11:40:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now, now, Ed. I did not say 'liberals' hate America. I said they FEEL like they are doing good. And not all Democrats are liberal. Not all Democrats agree that if you are fat, you sue a fast-food chain, for example.

Not all Dems believe that a homeowner is liable to the injured burglar who broke into his house or that the gov should pay for viagra for sex offenders or that a child can be suspended for bringing a Bible to school or buy into that whole creative math crap.

I don't know how large the actual percentage is. But I do know they have done much. I believe my value system is different- and YES! better (as do you, too).

I believe in personal responsibility, I believe grades A,B,C,D & F should not be replaced with N,S & O to make some kids feel better, I believe Christmas songs at Christmas and prayers at graduations are imperative. I quite frankly could not care less about the 1.5% who are offended.

I don't believe in crushing baby's skulls at birth, I don't think John and George make a nice couple and I do believe O.J. did it. In your world does this make me a bad person?

Is there room for me in the big, liberal tent of diversity? No. Shiite Muslims are more welcomed than I.

Republicans and Dems can have good, honest and constructive disagreements on things. But a liberal is a fringe element of the left that serves no greater purpose than would Eric Rudolph for the right.

At Tuesday, May 24, 2005 9:14:00 AM, Anonymous Ed Cone said...

You want to keep redefining words, fine, but it does make it hard for those of us who speak only English to keep up with the conversation.

Clearly you and I, based on your list, have many values in common, although you lose me when you say "I quite frankly could not care less about the 1.5% who are offended," not only because you are once again making up statistics (my old-school values tell me that numbers mean things, and you don't just brandish them as if facts don't matter) but because it seems rather hostile and un-neighborly to not care at all about such things.

Finally, the poor put-upon Conservative Christian thing is so tired. Of course there is room for you in the tent, but it sounds to me like you want to tell everyone else in the tent what they have to believe. We have freedoms in this country, to express ourselves and to avoid having the opinions of others imposed upon us. I'm hearing more from you about the first than the second.

At Tuesday, May 24, 2005 10:20:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Point taken. Forgive me for throwing inexact stats around. I'm very good at remembering numbers, though and can usually site many stats within a few points. If my recollection is accurate (and the study I saw), 88% of American adults believe in God or a 'higher being'. In 2nd place was the "no opinion" crowd and 3rd place was "absolutely no god, has-no- place-in-society-crowd.

The latter was a very small number. Just for example, When I went to school, there was no fear of retribution in mentioning God in the classroom. We sang Christmas carols at [winterfest] and opened our graduation ceremony with a prayer. Today, the only time He can be mentioned is during the vigil for the kids who got shot.

Contrast this with that "cherokee-wanna-be" professor and the garbage he can preach in his classroom. We've heard numerous stories over the years of things that go on in the classrooms that would never have happened 25 years ago.

But, Ed, you sound like you might be good with numbers, you care so much for every persons feelings and about fairness, So you tell me, what percentage of Americans need to be offended by Christmas carols before they are removed from the school's PTA program? 1%? 5%? 10, 20, 51%?

If you don't think the vast minority in this country is setting the tone, you are not paying attention. Yes, we should all be considerate of the few- but not to the extent that they dictate to the many.

At Tuesday, May 24, 2005 8:03:00 PM, Anonymous Ed Cone said...

You are assuming that all religious people want to have religion imposed in public places, which is a stretch.

Beyond that, our Founders were mindful of what John Stuart Mill would later call "the tyranny of the majority."

Me, I don't mind a little Christmas at Christmas, as I wrote in this newspaper column last December.

Anyway, I've enjoyed our conversation. I think we have reached some common ground, and that was my intent all along. I worry that our country is so angry and divided that we've lost the ability to see what we have in common. That's one of the things I like about this blog -- I know the author, and I know we share a lot in common, so when we disagree (as we do on many particulars) I am confident that there is still much important that we share.

Peace to you both.


At Tuesday, May 24, 2005 8:29:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Should the Bush administration be left off the hook for using dubious sources to build up their cause for war in Iraq? Aren't they the same administration who let Gannon into the press corp to feed BS questions?

And wasn't it the Joint Chief of Staff who said that Newsweek was not to blame for the riots that it was planned weeks before the article even ran?

Should Newsweek take the blame for muslims killing muslims? Aren't they responsible for their actions?

At Thursday, May 26, 2005 9:15:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


If you have kids, tell them that you are going to search for something in only their room and that you will be there to look in 6 hours. If you can't find just might be in the other kid's room. Saddam was also given the luxury of 6 months and limited scope of discovery.

Gannon? What the hell is the difference between that and Helen Thomas one administration ago?

The concert at Altamont was a planned event, too.

Muslims are responsible for themselves. But as a society we have also learned how reckless and fragile these radicals can be after the Abu Grhaib deal. Newsweek knew what the fallout would be but they are a half a world away from the hornets nest--our soldiers are living with them. Irresponsible, stupid, period.

Gone for vacation, thanks Ed, and maybe the 3 of us can get lunch sometime!

the Heckler


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