Dowd v. Miller

Maureen Dowd fires at Judy Miller — and at her paper — in today’s Times, under the snarly and snarky headline Woman of Mass Destruction. If this is a catfight, it’s one between Siberian tigers:

She never knew when to quit. That was her talent and her flaw. Sorely in need of a tight editorial leash, she was kept on no leash at all, and that has hurt this paper and its trust with readers. She more than earned her sobriquet “Miss Run Amok.”

Dowd ends with this kicker-on-the-way-out-the-door:

Judy told The Times that she plans to write a book and intends to return to the newsroom, hoping to cover “the same thing I’ve always covered – threats to our country.” If that were to happen, the institution most in danger would be the newspaper in your hands.

This is also the first time since Miller’s release from prison — and her most unsatisfying chronicle of the tale that put her there — that we have heard from the editorial and op-ed pages of The Times, which defended Miller and the principle they wrapped her in so vigorously.

One can’t help think that this is a message from those pages and those who run them. But you would need Oracle to analyze all the agendas at work here.

Dowd, of course, is liberal queen of the anti-Bush and anti-his-war camp and so she does not waste this nya-nya opportunity: ” Judy’s stories about W.M.D. fit too perfectly with the White House’s case for war.”

Dowd is also trying to defend her institutions — The Times and The Times’ editorial pages — from the cooties Miller has given them. The newsroom cannot stand Miller and how she printed her own paper, so she criticizes the management of her:

When Bill Keller became executive editor in the summer of 2003, he barred Judy from covering Iraq and W.M.D. issues. But he acknowledged in The Times’s Sunday story about Judy’s role in the Plame leak case that she had kept “drifting” back. Why did nobody stop this drift?

Dowd is defending journalism against the latest attack on its credibility from within.

Judy admitted in the story that she “got it totally wrong” about W.M.D. “If your sources are wrong,” she said, “you are wrong.” But investigative reporting is not stenography.

Then she recounts the ways in which Miller has been an unreliable narrator, which a journalist should never be.

Dowd is defending the principle of journalists protecting confidential sources:

Judy refused to answer a lot of questions put to her by Times reporters, or show the notes that she shared with the grand jury. I admire Arthur Sulzberger Jr. and Bill Keller for aggressively backing reporters in the cross hairs of a prosecutor. But before turning Judy’s case into a First Amendment battle, they should have nailed her to a chair and extracted the entire story of her escapade.

And, finally, Dowd is defending Miller in the way only one Timesman can defend another: while protesting too much. She says she enjoys “operatic” (read: obnoxious) behavior.

: So what should happen now?

I’ll repeat: The honorable thing Judy Miller should do for journalism and The Times was not going to jail; it is resigning.

I would not be surprised to see the newsroom rise up to ask her to do just that.

And we still must hear more from The Times. But I don’t just want to hear the facts and this unfacts that unravel in Miller’s tale.

We should hear the lessons learned. We should hear the editors and publisher of The Times tell us what lessons they have learned and it would not hurt for them to ask us, their readers, what we think this should teach them. We also also hear from the reporters who have, like Dowd, dissed Miller and what she has done but behind cloaks of confidentiality. Spare us the irony. The last thing anyone needs in this sad tale is more secrets. Why not invite readers and reporters to say what they think in public, in print, and then let the bosses join in.

One Dowd column does not a catharsis make.

(Sorry that the link above is behind the pay wall. On that, considering my own conflict of interest, should I say no comment? No, I’ll just apologize.)

: MORE: Howard Kurtz reports the first public rifts between Miller and The Times:

New York Times executives “fully encouraged” reporter Judith Miller in her refusal to testify in the CIA leak investigation, a stance that led to her jailing, and later told Miller she could not continue at the paper unless she wrote a first-person account, her attorney said yesterday.

The comments by Robert Bennett came as Executive Editor Bill Keller accused Miller of apparently misleading the newspaper about her dealings with Vice President Cheney’s top aide, signaling the first public split between Miller and the management of a newspaper that had fully embraced her in the contentious legal battle.

: See also Bill Keller’s memo to his staff on Romenesko. I found and read this after I wrote my suggestion above. Note that Keller is sharing his lessons with his staff; I hope he shares them with his public as well. Among those lessons:

These are instances, when viewed with the clarity of hindsight, where the mistakes carry lessons beyond the peculiar circumstances of this case.

I wish we had dealt with the controversy over our coverage of WMD as soon as I became executive editor. At the time, we thought we had compelling reasons for kicking the issue down the road. The paper had just been through a major trauma, the Jayson Blair episode, and needed to regain its equilibrium. It felt somehow unsavory to begin a tenure by attacking our predecessors. I was trying to get my arms around a huge new job, appoint my team, get the paper fully back to normal, and I feared the WMD issue could become a crippling distraction.

So it was a year before we got around to really dealing with the controversy….

By waiting a year to own up to our mistakes, we allowed the anger inside and outside the paper to fester. Worse, we fear, we fostered an impression that The Times put a higher premium on protecting its reporters than on coming clean with its readers.

I wish that when I learned Judy Miller had been subpoenaed as a witness in the leak investigation, I had sat her down for a thorough debriefing, and followed up with some reporting of my own….

Dick Stevenson has expressed the larger lesson here in an e-mail that strikes me as just right: “I think there is, or should be, a contract between the paper and its reporters. The contract holds that the paper will go to the mat to back them up institutionally — but only to the degree that the reporter has lived up to his or her end of the bargain, specifically to have conducted him or herself in a way consistent with our legal, ethical and journalistic standards, to have been open and candid with the paper about sources, mistakes, conflicts and the like, and generally to deserve having the reputations of all of us put behind him or her. In that way, everybody knows going into a battle exactly what the situation is, what we’re fighting for, the degree to which the facts might counsel compromise or not, and the degree to which our collective credibility should be put on the line.”…

: Judy Miller should blog.

Consider that so much of what big-media accuse blogs of doing, she did. She went off on her own, without supervision and proper editing, and published speculation and innaccuracy. But note that if a blogger does that, she’ll get hounded into making a correction a helluva lot faster than Judy’s paper or she did. She operated in an echo chamber. She was a self-promoter. Yup, she should blog. She’ll need something to keep her busy and I suspect it’s not going to be The Times.

So, Judy, a gift for you: is available.

: LATER: Arianna Huffington on the Keller memo:

I’m assuming that his memo “slipped out” on Friday because he knows that on Sunday the paper’s public editor, Barney Calame, is going to write a devastating critique of the Times and he wanted to do some pre-emptive self-flagellation.

I’m assuming that Keller has not yet accepted that Judy Miller is only one part of the Times’ problem — that he must also confront an institutional arrogance that extends beyond one rogue reporter.

I’m assuming that Judy Miller has written her last story for the New York Times.

  • Jorge

    I think that Ms Miller is just dust on the can lid of a very deep plot against freedom. But that is another part of the story.

    Ms Millers’ inappropirate actions as a journalist should be first on the ‘Times’ plate of moral and legal obligations.

    It must be very difficult for Ms Dowd to critize a fellow journalist. But I would bet a million bucks if she were asked her opinion from the very start of this she would be able to say I told you so.

  • It would have been great if dowd ended with (suggesting that miller was to report on threats to this nation):

    So one should expect an autobiography soon. :)

    Bathroom Review

  • David

    >I’ll repeat: The honorable thing Judy Miller should do for journalism and The
    >Times was not going to jail; it is resigning.

    The same can be said of Keller. He should resign or be fired for letting Judith run amok in the newsroom. If Judith was a black man he’d already be out the door.

  • David

    >She went off on her own, without supervision and proper editing, and
    >published speculation and innaccuracy.

    Where was Keller while all that was happening? Why does he still have a job?

  • Forget NASCAR! I wanna see Hi-Brow Gal Journalists Gone Wild on my TV. Of course Nancy Grace would MC/host/blow hard/cry/wag a finger.

  • kat

    No, she would only be out the door if she was a white man…otherwise there’d be howls of racism…Jesse Jackson would get lots of appearnaces on MSM.

  • Keith Martin

    I should just say “Katrina” and leave it for others to make the connection. Why the self-involved kerfuffle over how Miller got it wrong on WMDs occupies the Times’ entire attention when the stain of the very same kind of “stenography” lies even larger at the MSM’s feet as a debacle of a larger magnitude, it just makes you wonder who they think they’re kidding. They all have an agenda, and there is no such thing as objectivity.

  • Ms Miller’s days at the Times are numbered. She will end up at Fox News, Washington Times or one of the neo-con think tanks. She might even be allowed to run amok. Then, of course, there is the book in the works.

  • DBL

    I can no longer summon up the energy to care about what happens at the NYT. It’s irrelevant and unreadable.

  • “Dowd, of course, is liberal queen of the anti-Bush and anti-his-war camp and so she does not waste this nya-nya opportunity: “”Judy’s stories about W.M.D. fit too perfectly with the White House’s case for war.'”

    Doesn’t the fact that Miller’s reporting actually did fit too perfectly with the White House’s case for war — that her reporting was wrong — elevate this a bit above a nya-nya opportunity?

    Isn’t that in fact a rather important part of the Miller story?

  • David

    >No, she would only be out the door if she was a white man…otherwise
    >there’d be howls of racism…

    Jason Blair would disagree with you KittyKat. When Blair was pushed out the door the MSM decided it was a story about Affirmative Action runamok instead of one bad reporter. I remember the shows done by the likes of Russert and Kurtz who basically trashed all african american reporters. So where are they now when a white woman is allowed to runamok in the newsroom reporting stories that had world wide consequences.

    Since we all know that White Women are the ones who benefitted most from affirmative action policies, why aren’t the mostly white MSM asking if this was a case of a white woman being treated differently. Did the fact that Judith was a white woman keep Keller from doing his job? Did the fact that Judith was a white woman keep her from getting fired?

    Keller needs to resign or be fired.

  • David

    >Isn’t that in fact a rather important part of the Miller story?

    Give Jarvis the friedman chickenhawk a break, he had to find some way to put in the fact that Dowd is a “liberal” and that was the best he could do.

  • Jane

    “I didn’t know that Judy had been one of the reporters on the receiving end of the anti-Wilson whisper campaign.

    Why didn’t Keller anticipate that a journalist with extensive connections to the White House and intelligence agencies would have approached or been approached about the White House’s perspective on Wilson’s leaks to Kristof/Pincus and his subsequent editorial? Why is the White House’s attempt to refute Wilson’s allegation that the 16 words in the State of the Union were a lie labeled as an “anti-Wilson whisper campaign.”

  • I agree with DBL, this is soap operatic and irrelevant.

    This what everyone needs to remember about the New York Times.

    Does anyone know how their website paid subscriptions are doing?

  • Bart

    What will happen if perchance WMD’s are found buried under the sands of Syria?

  • Jimmy

    >Dowd, of course, is liberal queen of the anti-Bush and anti-his-war camp and so she does not waste this nya-nya opportunity: ” Judy’s stories about W.M.D. fit too perfectly with the White House’s case for war.”

  • kat

    I don’t disagree that feminazis are handled with the same kid gloves.

  • Daver

    “Anti-Wilson wispering campaign” – hah!

    How about the Wilson’s and the NYT’s anti-administration propaganda campaign? Oops, I forgot… it is now illegal for a Republican to say that a Democrat is lying.

    I gotta find me an ol’ lady that works for the agency… then I can do anything and it’s illegal for anybody (well, anybody the press doesn’t like) to do or say anything about it!! Sweet. Thank God the media watchdogs are protecting us.

  • megrez80

    Oh, please! All this hand wringing and mea culpa by the Times over WMD reporting is just pathetic. If I remember correctly, the intelligence and reporting on it existed long before 2000.

    When is the Times gonna do a mea culpa on Wilson’s leaks to Kristof and his op-ed? (rhetorical, I know)

  • Here is a link to Dowd’s column that is not behind the Times wall.

    I wrote a memo to Bill Keller replying to his memo and emailed it to him this morning.
    posted it here.

  • What megrez80 said.

    It’s laughable reading Dowd critique Miller on journalism, when it’s become obvious that NYT editorialists like Dowd and Krugman believe themselves to be above having to rely on mere facts themselves. Krugman refuses to correct outright lies in past columns. And does anybody remember why the term “dowdification” was coined? That was Dowd creatively editing quotations in order to make them mean something other than what the speaker intended. If an establishment cared about journalistic practices over promulgating a partisan viewpoint, both of those snarky hacks would have been out on their butts long ago.

    What’s funny for many of us, too, is that Miller is obviously no Bush/Rethuglican stooge, but for the fact that her reporting happened to support assumptions about WMD that *both* parties previously shared. The left is literally eating its own, and it shows from Miller’s bafflement at the response from her liberal colleagues. It’s roughly the equivalent of conservatives piling on against Harriet Miers.

    Go ahead and eat Miller. One less liberal journalist, one more major disgrace for the biased media establishment. Dowd et al might think they are at opposite poles from Miller, but to us they are one and the same.

  • Mike

    LOL, the NYT is a Joke!! Has been for years! Nuttin but a Lib Rag, and I do mean Rag!!

    It’s funny to watch the in fighting!! Each blaming the other for the Demise of this Once Great Newspaper!

    I don’t have a Bird, so no need to subscribe!!:)

  • Ravo

    FLASHBACK: October 10, 2003
    Who ‘Blew’ Mrs. Wilson Cover?

  • kat

    I agree–but it was great kitty litter box liner. However, I much prefer to not waste money for Leftist liner. They’re buried knee deep in their own poop.

  • 1. Editorial writers are not reporters. By design they do not (necessarily) agree with the Times corporate editorial policy (if there is, indeed, even one).

    2. How is it that the Times is a “liberal” paper when Miller is supposed to be a covert spokesman for the administration? How did the “liberal” editors allow this to happen?

    3. I know this is a media-related blog, but Miller and the Times are not the story, Rove, Libby and their bosses are.

    4. When Bush said “There are lots of ‘senior officials’ in the whitehouse” that could have been Novack’s source why did no one follow up. This was a Mitchell-like “third rate burglary” moment. When is someone going to ask the obvious question: if Rove is involved, why didn’t Bush know that he was. If Bush knew Rove was involved why did he imply otherwise? If Bush didn’t know Rove was involved then Rove must have lied to him when Bush asked all his staff to come forward with the truth.

    Let’s focus on “what he knew and when he knew it”.

    OK, back to Miller/Times bashing…

  • Ravo

    her reporting happened to support assumptions about WMD that *both* parties previously shared

    The bodies of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi’s in mass grounds attests that those assumptiions were correct.

    The list of the liberals believing as Bush did, is here:

    if the Bush administration lied….so did these people.

    The WMD’s are most likely buried in Syria somewhere.

    Islamic radicals are losing badly on the combat front of this war and are being kept in the game solely because of their powerful ally; the United States media.>


    Our enemy understands that if they can defeat us in the media, they will NOT have to defeat us on the battlefield.

  • Ravo

    More Plame Game

    A Criminal Prosecution or Political Persecution?

    The investigation was supposed to be about finding out who illegally and unethically outed covert CIA agent Valerie Plame. The first problem with the investigation before it even got rolling was the fact that Valerie Plame was not a covert CIA operative and hadn’t been for years.

    The second problem was that her husband, Joe Wilson, had made a common practice of bragging about his CIA wife at Washington cocktail parties for years. So most likely, Joe outed his own wife over cocktails with the Washington media elite.

    Now we begin to see where this thing was really headed from the start and that is right where most of us thinking folks knew we were headed. ……..we are on yet another politically motivated witch hunt and White House political guru Karl Rove is the target.

  • randy ray haugen

    “the w.m.d.’s are most likely buried in syria somewhere.”
    ravo, are you working for the next phase of the perpetual war against terror? yeah, i’m sure we’ll find them in the deserts of syria, somewhere.
    meanwhile, how many more will lose their lives so guys like you can keep up the good fight.
    judith miller IS the classic example of the libreal media you keep talking about. if there were really a liberal media, we would not have been dooped into this illegal war in the first place.
    thanks, judy.
    thanks ravo.
    syria, here we come.

  • I just posted
    an update including my thoughts on Dowd’s memo.

  • Ravo

    how many more will lose their lives so guys like you can keep up the good fight.

    A whole lot LESS than if we don’t

  • Ravo

    If the CIA is the real villain in the case, then almost everything we have been told about the scandal by the media is wrong.

  • I hope that call for Judy Miller to blog is tongue-in-cheek. Maybe she, Jayson Blair and Rick Bragg can start a group blog for disgraced New York Times reporters.

  • Clarice

    Maybe now Keller will be free to probe Kristof who set off the Wilson lies in that same paper. How did he get in touch with Wilson? What bona fides did he present to persuade Kristof his story was accurate? Since Tenet never knew of the trip nor had he ever got word of the report (read sandbagged), wasn’t this a clever way to make slanderous charges against an Administration who had no idea what he was talking about? And, finally, after every single thing in that initial report was discredited by the SSCI, why did the newspaper not acknowledge that report was a complete fabrication? And why does it still ignore the SCCI report and continue to repeat these lies?

    And when Keller is finished with his probe,perhaps the Wash Po can undertake the same one with respect to Pincus’ contemporaneous airing of Wilson’s lies?

    And shoudln’t both papers acknowledge that they were hoodwinked by a well-coordinated campaign to attack the Administration, and that by continuing to repeat as fact Wilson’s lies, they have become even more complicit in this scam on their readers and the public?

  • Bart

    If we could clear the Bush haters out of the CIA,
    dig around in Syria and find the WMD’s, and Fitzgerald did the right thing with who he indicts, the whole picture would change.

    I’m not sure the media has the ability or guts to amplify the villain article below:

    If it wasn’t for the angst out there, this could clear up rapidly.

  • shark

    And shoudln’t both papers acknowledge that they were hoodwinked by a well-coordinated campaign to attack the Administration, and that by continuing to repeat as fact Wilson’s lies, they have become even more complicit in this scam on their readers and the public

    Don’t be absurd. The Times recently published a timeline of the Wilson “scandal” starting with the Joe Wilson editorial, and they left out the convenient fact that the Senate Intel. Committee report proved Wilson to be a bald-faced liar. To this day the official history in the NYTimes still doesn’t acknowledge Wilson to be a liar (and treasonous to boot). Even John Kerry was quick to make Wilson an Unperson and erase all traces of him from his campaign materials and website.

    Judy Miller went to jail? Everyone who allowed the Wilson editiorial to run should be in jail.

  • Ravo
  • KirkPete

    To those calling for Bill Keller’s head… He was a columnist during the time of Judy Miller’s misadventures in reporting. He became Executive Editor in 2003 (according to the NYTCo website). While he could be criticized, I suppose, for not acting faster to overturn the prior administration’s mistakes, or for not pulling the plug on the paper’s support for its imprisoned reporter. But the Miss Run Amok activity occurred on Howell Raines’ watch.

  • Ravo

    Sadly, our President fights two wars. Al Queda, and Our Media.

    The Commander in Chief, the Generals, the officers, the troops, the Iraqis and the enemy all understand that the only way we can lose this war is if the people of the United States lose their will to fight it.

    Our media seems to be doing everything it can to slant its coverage of the war in an attempt to erode public support and hinder President Bush from reaching his well defined objectives.

  • shark

    Sadly, our President fights two wars. Al Queda, and Our Media

    Actually, it’s 3 wars, because he’s had to deal with factions at CIA and State who have been actively working (and leaking) against him.

    In the meantime. Oil for Food is now tied in ever closer to Saddam AND Al Qaeda…..not that anyone outside of FNC or WSJ seem to care much. Guess they know which war is REALLY important to them…

  • Ravo

    The following is excerpted from the Plame Game, by J.B. Williams:

    Democrats are becoming increasingly shrill in their attacks, growing more desperate by the moment, and being more willing to abuse our legal system for political purposes.

    Is it working? Again, as I have been predicting, NO!

    Are they successful in manipulating polls to show a lack of support for this administration, our military effort, or our economic successes?

    Sure, because this is a game played on their home-field in the liberal media, all at their advantage. But what impact is it having with real mainstream Americans? According to RNC fund-raising efforts, it seems to be even further energizing the team, just as I also predicted.

    What Democrats just don’t get is that the American people are sick and tired of back-stabbing politics of personal destruction. They are well aware of the fact that the Democratic Party hasn’t had a single positive original idea in forty years and they are not at all convinced that their life sucks or that it is the federal government’s job to manage people’s personal lives even if it does.

    Democrats have a vision for America alright: a socialist vision based on a welfare-state full of beer slurping Big Mac-eating couch potatoes too lazy to care for themselves, and willing to exchange their freedom for a meager federal handout from a handful of socialist Democratic elites hungry for political power.

    They have a strategy, too. It is one based on destroying the Republican Party in order to improve their own public image by default.

    But it isn’t an American vision and it isn’t a winning strategy. Neither is new and both have been failing for years now. But don’t expect the DNC leaders to come up with anything new or positive anytime soon. They are officially the “glass is half empty” party. They couldn’t muster a positive thought if their life depended on it.

    So kick back and continue to enjoy the Howard Dean-led implosion of the DNC. Get some popcorn and a coke. It’s going to get really entertaining in the upcoming election cycle.

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  • Ravo

    …the Russians are binding themselves tightly to Iran and North Korea … ”

    American foreign policy has been so undermined by the anti-war movement, media opposition and poor public relations by the Bush administration that even threatening military action against Iran would be untenable.

    This is the chief problem with the left’s attempted subversion of the war in Iraq: It has reinforced the impression that Americans cannot maintain a strong foreign policy in the face of a determined opposition.

    Such an impression will only lead to greater anti-American activity in the Muslim world.

    Meanwhile, Americans become more and more convinced that in order for us to consider military or covert action, a threat must fully materialize beyond a shadow of a doubt.

    This is a recipe for disaster: an unwilling public, an unable administration and an unafraid enemy.

    Keep it up liberal left media…left to your devices, the good people of this nation would get what only YOU deserve.

  • Miller told her readers what the intelligence services of the world were telling their clients. That there were WMDs. We now know there is lots of evidence that there was a WMD program. The weapons themselves have not turned up and Syria or a number of other locations may contain them. Or, they may never have existed and the Saddamists were running a brilliant deception operation. In any event, no one came up with the headline “Saddam bluffing”.

    Miller’s editors should certainly have put some caveats in her reporting. They didn’t.

    For MoMo to be dumping on Miller at this point is interesting as she thereby avoids asking how Ms. Run Amok was allowed to continue. (And, I’ll bet, encouraged.) Because the only thing which scares MoMo more than W is the prospect that the NYT has ceased to be taken seriously as a paper of record.

    It is now pretty much a rather large daily talking points memo for the leftish end of American politics. Sadly, as such it is losing readers fast and gradually being marginalized as a source of analysis. It’s sister paper, the Boston Globe is losing readers in droves as people begin to realize that the NYT world view is stuck in 1975.

  • When Maureen Dowd writes seriously — and she is quite serious about the reputation of the New York Times — she reminds me of how she got an op-ed column in the first place. Like Judith Miller, she needs an editor. The Times needs to rein in all its prima donnas. There’s been way too much amok lately.

  • Jorge


    You seem to be staggeringly drunk on the kool-aid.

    Pray to God to help you see the light and sober up.

  • Getting back on topic here… but WHEN is somebody at the Times gonna be fired over all of this? Printing mea culpas in the 15th hour written like a scolded kid digging his toe into the dirt with his head down saying, “Golly, I made a mistake,” isn’t cutting it any more. Not with the staff. Not with the readers. Just like in the Jayson Blair scandal, this thing isn’t even close to being over until heads start to roll.

  • AST

    “[Miller] has hurt this paper and its trust with readers.”

    How could they tell? Maureen Dowd is hardly the one I’d choose to defend journalism. They’ve all become celebrities, more important than what they report. Is it any wonder that Miller is now the star of “Desperate Journalists”?

  • jack

    I find it incredible that there are still knuckleheads defending Judith Miller’s reporting of the last several years. It took guts for Maureen Dowd to out one of her own. I would have loved to have been in on the meetings around do we or do we not allow Miss Dowd’s WMD story to go to print. Obviously Judith Miller’s side lost the argument and the American public is the winner.

  • kat

    It takes real guts to kick someone when they are down. Yeah, right. Too little too late–Times covering ass.

  • Cog

    Stenographer? Why, isnt that what Dowd needs to correct her Dowdification of other peoples comments? The Times has excused Dowd’s and Krugman’s rampant intentional inaccuracies, without clarification, for years. For either of them to crack on Miller is bizarre.

  • Bart


    Please don’t lapse into the below, rather than making some salient statements about your point of view. Some people will show their angst rather than their talking points of view which could be very valuable.


    Jorge Says:

    October 22nd, 2005 at 7:34 pm

    You seem to be staggeringly drunk on the kool-aid.

    Pray to God to help you see the light and sober up.

  • Judy Miller should blog? But we already have!

  • jaypee

    I’m with Jarvis: Miller needs to go now.

  • judith miller IS the classic example of the libreal media you keep talking about. if there were really a liberal media, we would not have been dooped into this illegal war in the first place.

    This remains a self-delusional rewriting of history on the part of many on the left. This statement relies primarily on the assumption that *all* pre-Iraq war intelligence and reporting on Saddam’s WMD was generated solely to support the future war by George W Bush, presumably even as Clinton was reigning for double terms.

    It was not liberal or not-liberal to believe or not believe the information on WMD; it was only *AFTER* the Iraq war that many on the left picked up the “we never believed it!” line, presumably to better differentiate themselves from the right (a losing strategy at the ballot box, so far). Pre-Bush, most on the left couldn’t care less if Saddam had WMD or not. It is baldly contemporary strategeering, and not historically valid.

    And therefore to make this circular argument that pre-Iraq war WMD reporting has any bearing on the liberal status of big media, the New York Times, or even Judy Miller herself, is simply absurd. Save the spin for campaign commercials; these delusions have no place in a serious discussion on these issues.

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  • owl

    Where to even start?

    If Keller believes that Miller is his biggest problem at the NYT, he lives in la-la-land. Now they want to convince me that Miller was just some lil “out-of-control” journalist in cahoots with a big bad administration. Dowd? The PURE OUTRAGE at Miller. Have you ever heard such since Miers? I mean they are all OUTRAGED and shocked.

    1. NYT let their editorials AND news screw facts. Miller is not standing alone in that position.
    2. Repeat after me, there is not any non-partisans today, and
    certainly not those vaulted writers at NYT. They vote…..let me guess.
    3. Have you heard any “professional journalist” or left blogger defend
    Miller in the last 5 years? No? So it didn’t just start?
    4. When the NYT did their grand mea culpa on WMDs and “oh why oh why
    didn’t we question the big bad war”, they failed to COUNT. Yes, I said
    COUNT. They failed to take into consideration the facts that would lead
    me not to believe one word of it. I can COUNT. So what am I counting?
    How many anti-war articles (psst they like to label a lot of them as
    news) they run along side of ole Judys. Yep, she ran One–They ran ??
    Ten?? Twenty??? Problem for the non counters.
    5. Do you suppose anyone bothered to COUNT the NYT leak stories. No, I am not talking about Miller/Wilson. I am COUNTING other CIA leaks published on front pages of NYT. Where is Judy when you need her?

    And after all, this is what its all about, true? Otherwise, why would any paper run that many pictures of Abu Graib, knowing it was hurting America? Why would any paper run that many articles on torture, knowing it was hurting America?

    Yes, NYT has problems, but they sure don’t start or stop with Miss Judy.

    I could not even find Berger’s name listed as “Berger” during his little misapprobiation of documents stuffed into his socks, taken out of a Secret Place. So how many (COUNT) times have I COUNTED Rove’s name over the last 2 years?

    I have a burning question for the NYT—–What happened between Feb 2003 and May 2003? Surely they know. And this one you can’t blame Miller. The MSM and the Huffs and the Lefties are nuts over Miller not spitting and shedding Libby for their enjoyment. They kept their mouths shut because they thought she would come through for them. Eighty-Five days and it was tough, but they kept a lid on it. When she didn’t, she is TOAST. So back to my question for all MSM and Keller, because just think how you can be out in front of this ball, instead of hiding behind Miss Judy.

    The question? Who shopped Wilson all over town? Why aren’t you doing the big reporting on Krisoff’s original article published long before Wilson. Why did Wilson change the story between Feb 2003 and Krisoff?

  • David

    Dowd, Liberal Queen? Ha. What a laugh. She won the pulitzer for her 5 years of non-stop assaults on Bill Clinton and probes of his privates. Just because she criticized Bush — she’s a liberal. I suppose when she bashed the Clintons week after week she was a conservative.

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  • Mike Bryant

    Get a life. The average citizen could care less about who leaked what to whom, who was exposed by whom, who worked for whom or who goes to jail because of whom.

    The average citizen cares about the price of fuel for his/her automobile, fuel to heat his/her home and the decreasing buying power of the vastly underpaid worker.

    The average citizen is sick to their respective stomach seeing “talking heads” rant and rave about poor government, lack of accountability in government and government and the media in general and reporters like Maureen Down and her employer, the Times in particular.

    They, the average citizen trying to keep his/her head above water could give a damn about Maureen Dowd, Judy Miller, the CIA or any of it’s employees being “outed” or the consequences of any behavior to those air-heads associated with whatever people like Maureen Dowd is trying to reveal. What part of “we don’t care” do people like her not understand?

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