February 13, 2005

I Love Saying "I Told You So"

My recent post on the "witch hunt" and "McCarthyism" canards, and the real history behind these clichés, has been vindicated all too soon, and linked with the big kahuna of this month's blogosphere activity, the Eason Jordan foofaraw.

One Bertrand Pecquerie (yes, that's the name) waxes indignant over the hue and cry after Jordan:

Nevertheless, there is one advantage in this story: masks are fallen! Within the honest community of bloggers, some of them claimed to be the "sons of the First Amendment", they just were the sons of Senator McCarthy. And this is very worrying to see this new wedding between self-proclaimed citizen's media and maintstream [sic]journalists scalps' hunters. Fifty years ago, it was enough to be communist to be fired, today, it is enough to raise questions about the Bush administration policy in Iraq to be denounced as "anti-American". Maybe the only difference is that you are not fired, but that you must dismiss! What's my conclusion? Real promoters of citizen media would have to take some distance with those who have fueled and organised the Eason Jordan hatred. If not, the "new era of journalism" opened by the blogosphere will appear as the old clothes of American populism.

What balderdash! All kinds of people criticize Bush's policy in Iraq, and evoke no more than sneers and disagreement. What Jordan did, if the accounts are correct, is not criticize Bush, but accuse our forces of war crimes without evidence, only to back off (a bit) when challenged. Worse are the identity of the accuser and the setting: Eason Jordan was a top journalist with a major network, hobnobbing with a gaqgle of international big shots.

Pressing the McCarthy button here was gratuitous and a false analogy.

Pecquerie also ignores the fact that much of the blogging was about typical reporter's questions: what did he really say, who heard him say it, and where's the videotape. Just the facts, ma'am. Not a witch hunt, a fact hunt.

HT: Powerline, as usual.

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