June 11, 2006

COLUMNIST PAUL MULSHINE OF THE NEWARK STAR-LEDGER IS BEING DISHONEST. Writing about a post of mine on Zarqawi’s death and the press reaction in Baghdad, Mulshine writes:

Sure enough, there was Reynolds holding forth on the MSM’s insufficiently obsequious coverage of the killing of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. It seems that during the news conference in Iraq at which the killing was announced, the Iraqi reporters broke into cheers but the American reporters didn’t. After deep rumi nation, Reynolds lumped this in with other perceived MSM offenses as symptoms of “the misconduct of the American press.”

What Mulshine leaves out — because, being an old-media columnist who doesn’t have to provide links, he can leave it out — is what my post actually said. You can read it here.

When you do, you’ll see that the mention that it was Iraqi reporters, not U.S. reporters, who were cheering was there as a correction to Howard Kurtz, who was quoting a report of cheering reporters as evidence that the U.S. press was properly patriotic.

The sad thing about guys like Mulshine isn’t that this sort of dishonesty is new. It’s that they keep doing it even when it’s easy to catch them. But “old media” isn’t necessarily “bright media,” as we’ve seen.

UPDATE: Reader Brian Weigand emails:

I narrowly avoided a spittake at this part of the column:

“The lawyer, on the other hand, tends to take one side of an issue and then make the evidence fit the argument.”

He actually does what he wrongly accuses you of doing. I suppose it’s no wonder that he did not provide a link to your post. (Maybe he just doesn’t know how.) Further I see no link to email him.

Maybe we have a new MSM motto here:

We’re Big Media. Not only don’t we feel any need to provide evidence to support our specious conclusions, but we don’t want to hear from you peons about it. So f*** off (but continue to subscribe.)

it’s a bit long, but it’ll do.

It’s a bit harsh, but it’ll do, too. Meanwhile, a new Jersey blogger writes that I’ve been trolled:

The funny thing is, more people will now read a Mulshine column because widely read blogger, Glenn Reynolds, linked to his piece. It looks like Ann Coulter isn’t the only one stirring up controversy for the sake of publicity.

Well, I certainly hadn’t paid any attention to Mulshine before.

Meanwhile, Mark Hessey emails:

Mulshine’s conclusion strikes me as bit odd and decidedly unfunny:

“Anyone can travel to a war zone and write about it. I would strongly recommend this for any of the critics of the MSM who are seeking to get out the real truth about Iraq. Go for it, guys. War coverage is great fun. One word of caution, though: Don’t lose your heads in all the excitement.”

It sounds as if he’s completely unaware of Yon and Roggio, to name but two that have done just that, and whose reporting runs circles around anything produced by the MSM.

I think he’s unaware of a number of things.

By the way, the link in my older post unaccountably points to a later Kurtz column. The correct link is here.

The Philadelphia Enquirer’s Frank Wilson thinks that the future of newspapers won’t be bright if this sort of thing continues.

As Fausta notes, at some papers, the present isn’t very bright . . . .

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