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Monday, September 20, 2004

MSM Doesn't Get It
The NPR program "The Connection" aired a story about Memogate today that was pretty interesting. One of the guests was purported to be Orville Schell, Dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California Berkeley, but I swear it was Dan Rather trying to disguise his voice. Schell (if it really was him) started by saying he had "questions"* about who these mysterious bloggers are and if they were being manipulated. But these questions never rose above the level of dark insunuations, and it seemed pretty clear that he spends no time on-line. From there he argued that it was "no big deal." While he thought Rather should apologize, he said we should then just "move on." He also bravely offered that "the content" of the story "had not been challenged" and that this was distracting from " stories important to the election" like whether or not George Bush had a physical in 1972. He also said Rather is a standup guy and we all make mistakes.

I just can't believe that the effing Dean of UC-Berkeley's J-School thinks "Fake But Accurate" cuts the mustard! If a prosecutor was found to be using doctored evidence and then tried to argue it was "no big deal" and shouldn't distract from the guilt of the defendent, you and I and Schell would all think it was a gross dereliction of duty and the lawyer should be disbarred. But it is good enough for See-BS and Berkeley's J-School. I still hope the real Orville Schell is trussed up under his desk, impressed by Dan Rather's ninja talents and aghast that Dan is now forging interviews as well.

The program is not all frustrating because Marvin Kalb, Senior fellow at the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy is much, much better.

*All quotes from memory, and therefore not perfect. If you don't trust me, listen to the audio yourself.

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