In Which Athenae Gives Props To Those Who Deserve It

Listen, kids, because this may be the only time you hear me stick up for Powerline, Free Republic, whoever it was that first reported Eason Jordan’s comments, etc. And the only reason I’m doing it is that they’re right, and everybody over at Romenesko, and I mean everybody, those saying BLOGS IZ PASTEDE ON YAY and those saying BLOGS IZ TEH SUXXORZ, is just so absolutely wrong.

Stop it stop it stop it stop it stop it stop it.

Good God. The sanctimony oozing from these reporters’ pores is just too much to take. Collecting scalps? Oh, the horror. How dare those bloggers take pride in getting people who were stupid and/or wrong and/or just not very politically savvy ousted from their jobs.

Lord knows the investigative reporters bemoaning such scalp-collecting never, ever, ever exposed someone stupid, corrupt, and/or simply not very politically savvy and collected quite the hefty prize for such actions.

Lord knows the journalists now clutching their pearls over bloggers’ investigations of a gay male prostitute credentialed as a member of the White House press corps under an alias never wrote stories that pressed politicians on issues of propriety. The hypocrisy would be laughable if it wasn’t being trumpeted in normally sensible places like Romenesko, which I’ve come to rely on for downsmacking of fatuous crapola like this.

Look, I have friends who are journalists. I have friends who laughingly tell the story about the million-dollar suit by a target of their investigations that they fought, and won, because they were right, and the corrupt fucker who sued them was wrong. Does that count as “scalp collecting?” The Boston Globe busted the extra ball and brought down a Cardinal who enabled child molesters. Was that “scalp collecting?” The Washington Post busted the extra ball and brought down a corrupt president’s entire administration. Was that “scalp collecting?” It wasn’t? Why not? Why are we now pissed off at bloggers for doing what, if t’were done by a TV station during sweeps, would be rewarded with an Emmy?

I really don’t think there’s anything wrong with taking pride in exposing corruption on your chosen beat. Whether that’s media, as is the case on many blogs, or government, as is the case on many others, why are we so upset that those who did something that was, at best, not very astute and at worst, criminal, are being exposed?

Should Eason Jordan have resigned? I don’t know and honestly, I don’t care. I wish more right-wing bloggers would remember Jordan was backing coverage of Saddam and establishing a bureau in Baghdad while most of their hated “MSM” were in diapers, but the question of whether or not he should have resigned is an entirely different one from the question of whether his words should have been reported, questioned, and discussed. Of course they should have. I’m a liberal, fer chrissakes. More information, more transparency, more openness. I’m a blogger. Information for the sake of information. Whether Jordan stood up for himself, released a tape of his remarks and told Powerline and Free Republic to shut the fuck up is up to him, not them, and blaming them for his refusal to do that is a sign of something, that’s for sure, but it’s not the “bloggers IZ OUT OF CONTROL” storyline that’s now taking shape.

All this sanctimony is very pretty. I hope the reporters who are feigning shock will think about their affronted virgin eyes and ears the next time they force a mayor or councilman out of office for getting traffic tickets dismissed for his mistress. I hope they’ll wonder long and hard whether they should be “scalp collecting” like that. And then I hope they get over it, and go back to doing their fucking jobs.

A.