SIGN IN to access Harper’s Magazine
1. Sign in to Customer Care using your account number or postal address.
2. Select Email/Password Information.
3. Enter your new information and click on Save My Changes.
Subscribers can find additional help here. Not a subscriber? Subscribe today!
In an op-ed column that appears in today’s Washington Post, the “dean of the Washington press corps,” David Broder, struggles with the trial and sentencing of Scooter Libby. It raises the question: does David Broder belong to the reality-based community?
Depends. On whether you read the central or concluding paragraphs, that is. For it turns out that David Broder is quite decisively of two altogether irreconcilable minds on the subject. On one hand, this whole trial is a farce and Scooter Libby never should have been tried. But on the other, it was completely reasonable for Judge Reggie Walton to have sentenced him just as he did.
Some may call Broder’s a liberal spirit. Others will opt for a clinical diagnosis of schizophrenia. As for me, its plainly senile dementia. But then I don’t have a license. So perhaps we should call in Dr. Frist for a videocamera diagnosis.
One thing I do know, however: Broder said that journalists – he cited Sidney Blumenthal, Newsweek and Joe Conason – had done wrong by saying that Karl Rove was at the heart of the Valerie Plame scandal. Broder wrote:
These and other publications owe Karl Rove an apology. And all of journalism needs to relearn the lesson: Can the conspiracy theories and stick to the facts.
Of course, the prosecution proved that Broder was wrong, and that Blumenthal, Newsweek, and Conason were right on the money. So, it’s true that an apology is owing. From David Broder, a embarrassing example of an opinion journalist, to the serious journalists he maligned.
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
Mark Denbeaux on the NCIS cover-up of three “suicides” at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp
Estimated cost of the environmental damage caused each year by the world’s 3,000 largest companies:
Two thirds of U.S. teenagers experience uncontrollable rage.
Beekeepers began extracting 1 million honeybees living beneath the siding of a house in New York State.
Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!
“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”