Fat Steve's Blatherings

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Medium class and low class

      I recently posted on the Minneapolis Star-Tribune's op-ed piece by Bill Moyers, in which Moyers claimed that Watt had said something in front of Congress that he never in fact said. I mentioned in an update that Moyers had called Watt on the phone to apologize, and promised to repeat the apology publicly.

      The Strib shows a medium amount of class in all this.  It doesn't say anything about how it picks opinion pieces without making any effort to check the alleged facts in them, or attempt to contact people for rebuttal before publication, but it does open it's op-ed page to Watt, lets him have his say about how stupid the whole thing was, and then says, flat out, that they made an error and they're sorry.

      Moyers shows low class.  He offers excuses for saying what he said ('Other people said it too'); he doesn't ask why he believed something preposterous (Watt's rebuttal makes the point that Moyers was Lyndon Johnson's press secretary; he should know that the Senate would never confirm someone who expressed Watt's alleged attitudes); he doesn't reflect on why he, Moyers, and other sources Moyers trusts make dumb errors so easily; nor does Moyers correct any of the other errors in his op-ed.

      Moyers does say this:
I talked to Mr. Watt on the phone and expressed my own regret at using a quote that I had not myself confirmed. I also told him that I continue to find his policies as secretary of the interior abysmally at odds with what I, as well as other Christians, understand to be our obligation to be stewards of the earth.
      So, Moyers was wrong, but Watt is a bad Christian.

      Moyers, you're a fucking disgrace as a journalist and as a human being.  Eat shit and die.



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