Roger L. Simon

The Which Blair Project II

It’s time for bloggers to watch our backs. I’m not kidding. If the Jayson Blair Scandal resulted in a wholesale reshuffling at The New York Times, where will the Kerry/Swift Boat Vets Scandal lead? One of the most important elections of modern times hangs in the balance and we are in the middle of it.

Who’d a thunk it? Certainly not me. But consider this: the Blair Affair was about some extreme neurotic making up stories in a newspaper and getting away with it. Pathetic, but oddly excusable if you think about the nightmare of trying to get a giant paper to bed every night. The partisan obscurantist reaction to the Kerry/Swift Boat affair is completely different because it is deliberate. The mask is off the “impartiality” of the mainstream media as never before. The meetings in the editorial rooms of NYT, WaPo and LAT are not hard to imagine, the coded discussions. A war is on, ladies and gentlemen, and as with most semi-normal people involved in a war, I don’t feel particularly comfortable in it – and not, obviously in this case, because I might get shot. I have friends and colleagues at those institutions. I wish them to remain so. But that cannot stop me from telling the truth. They are wrong. Their avoidance of this story was unconscionable. Their treatment of it now… as if the messenger were more important than the message… is worse.

If it turns out the Swift Boat Veterans were right in many of their accusations… and there probably will be more, stronger ones, to come… and Kerry does get elected anyway because the truth was blunted… that same truth will come out eventually and we all (on every side of the tetrahedon-like political spectrum)will pay for it.