Re: Facts

1

"The sourcing is very, very strong, Paul, or I wouldn't go with it."

Shazam!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 3:49 PM
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I stopped reading here:

There are still, thank goodness, a lot of real journalists out there. Tim Russert was first.

Posted by: P.G. Delightful | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 3:51 PM
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Maybe if Begala had provided strong sourcing for his 'facts', he could have convinced Garrett.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 3:55 PM
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If he'd gotten someone else to call in, and say "Hey, Paul himself told me he isn't working for Hillary!" perchance.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 4:00 PM
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5

Someone else authoritative. Not just someone off the street.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 4:06 PM
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Given that it's Fox, I want to read something nefarious into this. But it's simply nonsensical. If Fox's sourcing is doubleplus good why not run Begala's denial too? Isn't that a bigger story. Or maybe they just haven't come up with the 'When did you stop beating your wife angle':
Top Clinton Adviser Ashamed of Her: Seen Walking 3 ft. Behind Her in the Mall, Pretending to Be Alone .


Posted by: ixnaythemetier | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 4:09 PM
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5- How about a taxi driver in Mumbai?
Not to defend Fox, but of course there are cases where you ignore a strong denial if you've got strong sourcing- for example, most denials of wrongdoing coming from the WH press secretary. This, however, obviously isn't such a case- it's a minor, non-embarrassing, personal matter where the subject in question should have the final word. Who really gives enough of a shit about something like this to engineer a cover-up?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 4:13 PM
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8

I stopped reading when Begala called Russert a real journalist.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 5:02 PM
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8: I stopped reading when Begala called Russert a real journalist
the comments after oudemia said Shazam!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 5:07 PM
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10

Fox reports, you decide. That's the deal. Fox never said it reports factually.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:17 PM
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It's funny. If it were college football and Begala was a coach, Garrett would have kept on keeping on and no one would blink. It's not and he's not, though.


Posted by: Klug | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:32 PM
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11: I don't blame Fox at all for doubting Begala. Job changes are one of the obvious examples of situations where the major players lie about their intentions.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:39 PM
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12: It does seem strange though that when Fox has Begala there for a quote, though, that they don't at least run that.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:41 PM
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14

Okay, but they could have reported his denial.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:41 PM
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15

How great would it be if Begala didn't have any kids?


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:43 PM
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16

Damn you, Cala. Damn you.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:44 PM
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15: That probably seems either obscure or mean. He refers to telling his boys "Not. Happening. Dude." I just thought it would be funny if Begala was lying in shameless Lionel Hutz fashion.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:45 PM
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15: Where do you get "kids" from "the boys"? Maybe he just has boys.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:46 PM
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You mean in the Archbishop sense of "boys"?


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:48 PM
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Or as I say to my boys, N.H.D. Not. Happening. Dude.

See, I just thought he was talking to his testicles there.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:49 PM
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How great would it be if Begala didn't have any kids?

This would, indeed, be totally awesome. Or if he and his boys were all working for Hillary.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:52 PM
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Or if his boys were on the conference call, transcribing things for dad.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 6:55 PM
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Fox did go to court to defend their right to disseminate lies and call it news, after all.


Posted by: Hamilton-Lovecraft | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 7:10 PM
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See, I just thought he was talking to his testicles there.

God, great, Rob, just great.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 7:15 PM
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The striking thing here is that Begala confronted a guy with no interest in the truth, and Begala's response - even after the fact - is to describe Garrett as "a good guy" whom he likes and respects.

Fact is, Begala recognizes that he is part of the same corrupt system as Garrett, and Begala does nothing to distance himself from that system, except to note that he was a victim of it in this particular case.

Of course, because Begala is part of that corrupt system, he also knows he will have to make nice with Garrett in the future.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 10:14 PM
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Wow, so Fox actually reports stuff it knows to be false? That's shocking, and one hell of a scoop. Thanks, Paul Begala!


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 11:02 PM
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God, great, Rob

Way to accidentally create a minor religion there, coach.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 01- 9-08 11:07 PM
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speaking of minor religions, I googled myself (real name) for the first time in ages the other day because there was an NYT article about it. things I found included people I'd never heard of with a crush on me (OK, whatever, mainly just flattering) but much stranger, someone who had an episode of excruciating pain and felt compelled to repeat my name over and over till it passed. I mean, wha? I almost wanted to contact the person but since they said it made them feel queasy to think about me now, I didn't. also, what would I say? people I know in real life not uncommonly develop some weird fixation with me, but I don't really see how that can carry over onto my online persona.

on topic, this is a hilarious exchange. it's easy to imagine situations in which someone did ave a strong motive to lie about leaving their current employer, but this is not plausibly one of them. I always wonder, what do reporters say to sources who have bald-faced lied to them? generally they seem to say fuck all, or perhaps, please sir may I have another. this is a strange attitude. I associate it with supine NYT reporters being spun by the government, but perhaps it applies across the board.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 5:39 AM
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I'm now repeating your nick in the rhythm of that faux-Native American chant: A-la-mei-da-a-la-mei-da A-la-mei-da-a-la-mei-da. It's oddly soothing.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 6:05 AM
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The NYT did a bio on my ex, X, and because the reporter wanted to tell it as Crazy Artist Saved By (Current) True Love, he had to make X's past into a hell of loveless suffering. I got turned into "a [nameless] friend who sometimes brought him a sandwich" or something like that. It was kind of a breathtaking summary of a fifteen year relationship. X called me and swore that he hadn't referred to me as a friend who brought him sandwiches, and I believe him, plus who wants to be in a story your ex is telling, but it was still weird to get erased that way. If the past hadn't been discussed at all, it would have seemed fine, of course.

I had thought this kind of bio-bending to fit a story arc was something disreputable tabloids did. I thought the respectable papers only lied about politics, the economy, and international relations.


Posted by: X's ex | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 6:43 AM
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What this reporter does if he catches someone lying to him is make sure the bastard regrets it for a long long time. It's not always possible, but in any game which is played over enough rounds, there is always a chance to get payback and it is important to be known as someone who will take it.


Posted by: Nworb Werdna | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 7:12 AM
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"long long time." s/b "long, long time </corleone>" but it got sanitised.


Posted by: Nworb Werdna | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 7:13 AM
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make sure the bastard regrets it for a long long time

Werdna signs him up for one of those Book of the Month clubs.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 7:17 AM
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someone who had an episode of excruciating pain and felt compelled to repeat my name over and over till it passed

This is possibly the most incredibly awesome thing I have ever read in my entire life.


Posted by: Robust McManlyPants | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 7:32 AM
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35

I had thought this kind of bio-bending to fit a story arc was something disreputable tabloids did. I thought the respectable papers only lied about politics, the economy, and international relations.

Not hardly.

The main paper in my city did an article on my ex-wife where they referred to her as being left by her husband because of the autistic child and how she has been a single mother struggling to take care of her autistic daughter all by herself.

I heard about the article when I got 4 or 5 emails from friends and about the same number of phone calls.

I ripped off a furious email to the reporter and her editor. The reporter's first attempt to respond included multiple insults to me and justifications about how my ex really was doing it by herself. The reporter's email was followed up by the editor (realizing the damage) racing to apologize.

That afternoon, I receive a long apology from the reporter.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 7:40 AM
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36

I got turned into "a [nameless] friend who sometimes brought him a sandwich" or something like that

X's ex:

For what it is worth, I would wear "a [nameless] friend who sometimes brought him a sandwich" with pride.

That is fabulous. Your friends should have framed the hottest, best picture of you along with that portion of the article. Many people go through life and never receive such a great nickname from anyone, much less the NYT.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 8:03 AM
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"I always wonder, what do reporters say to sources who have bald-faced lied to them? generally they seem to say fuck all, or perhaps, please sir may I have another. "

Depending on how reliable they are normally and what the precise circumstances, I'll either blacklist them or get payback some other way, like quoting more people slagging them off.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 9:04 AM
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It does worry me a bit that every news story I've either been involved in or otherwise had certain knowledge about has contained trivially fixable factual errors in the reporting. On the other hand, they were all pretty minor stories and for the most part the factual errors weren't very important. So I tell myself that a) small selection and b) no reason to extrapolate too strongly means that I shouldn't read too much into it.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 9:09 AM
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35: Will, that really sucks. Was there any public correction?


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:12 AM
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35: That is godawful. Do you know what happened? Your ex spun a story for the reporter, or the reporter made it up because it sounded better that way?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:17 AM
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No public correction. I didn't really want one. I thought it would make me sound like a tool.

The people who know me or my daughter know the truth. A lot of people got a really good laugh at the article though.

I suspect that it was a little of the reporter and a little of the ex.

BR's typical response when these types of things arise:

"Sweet, I look really sane and normal now!!!!"


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:25 AM
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people I know in real life not uncommonly develop some weird fixation with me, but I don't really see how that can carry over onto my online persona.

As SCMT.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:28 AM
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You know what is puzzling to me? I've seen commentary about this in a few places now. Everywhere in the discussion people seem to a) accept and b) start from the premise that Fox News is, in fact, a news organization. This assumes facts not in evidence.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:34 AM
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should have read primarily a news organization.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:36 AM
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No public correction. I didn't really want one. I thought it would make me sound like a tool.

That's the infuriating part, really. But yes, at least your friends know the real story.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:41 AM
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I thought it would make me sound like a tool.

Yeah, this sounds a bit of a lose-lose situation. It's admirable to take a `those who matter, know the truth' attitude to this sort of thing. I can see that being pretty hard sometimes, though.


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:43 AM
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That really sounds like something out of one of those Mark Twain or O.Henry stories about small-town newspapers, where someone was always showing up to horsewhip the editor.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:44 AM
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Will's a bigger man than I am, I guess. I wouldn't see anything toolish at all about demanding the paper retract calling you a deadbeat who had left his ex and autistic daughter in the lurch.


Posted by: DS | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:48 AM
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49

Will's a bigger man than I am

Diet talk is in the other thread.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 10:49 AM
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Will's a bigger man than I am, I guess.

Not really. It was two lines in an article.

For the first couple of years after divorce, a lot of friends came up to me and told me about hearing from others similar stories. These people would call me out of the blue, outraged, telling me how they had to correct other people.

I soon realized that the most effective way of dealing with it was to let my actions speak for themselves. Telling people what you are truly like isn't nearly as effective as showing them.

It also didn't hurt that a lot of people knew the truth.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:00 AM
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In any event, never trust a newspaper article to get any facts correct. They are telling you the story that they want you to hear.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:01 AM
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I'd almost think it would be a professional issue, though. Your clients want to be hiring someone of reasonable integrity, etc. -- having a newspaper story describing you as a despicable loser can't have done you any good.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:03 AM
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53

52:

Are you kidding? I'm a divorce lawyer! They want someone who is willing to do whatever it takes!


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:05 AM
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54

I'm a bulldog! Aren't you scared of me yet?


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:05 AM
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Dietck talk is in the other thread.

Typo corrected.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:06 AM
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Oh, man, that's funny: "Hey, he really screwed his ex-wife over! Maybe he can help me to screw mine!" Awful, but funny.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:07 AM
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Your clients want to be hiring someone of reasonable integrity, etc.

We are talking about divorce proceedings here, right?


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:09 AM
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57 pwdned by 56, dammit


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:10 AM
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Lawyer joke:

Two male lawyers are having a drink together. A beautiful woman walks by. The first lawyer says, "Man, I'd like to screw her." The second looks at him blankly and asks, "Out of what?"


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:12 AM
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60

I was once interviewed about a labor dispute. I was just the first person they saw when they came in the door -- I was a temp who knew more or less nothing about the strike. If I had chosen to, I suspect that with a little lick I could have gotten some misinformation or nonsense on Seattle TV (though the Longshoreman Union presumably would have had me killed afterwards.)


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:13 AM
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"Luck", and no coarse jokes please.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:18 AM
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Come now John. Would anyone here joke about licking a longshoreman?


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:22 AM
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63

The joke in 59 is also available in a Catholic priest/rabbi/little boy version.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:23 AM
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64

I would have been licking a TV reporter dressed up in the funny clown suit that was modish in 1969-1970.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:24 AM
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64: sweet!


Posted by: soup biscuit | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:26 AM
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66

That was your chance to say "As we say in the labor movement, Arbeit Macht Frei".


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 01-10-08 11:33 AM
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