Give the New York Times credit. At least they waited until after John McCain won the Republican nomination to unleash a smear campaign that left more questions about their own ethics than those of McCain.
Give the New York Times credit.
At least they waited until after John McCain won the Republican nomination to unleash a smear campaign that left more questions about their own ethics than those of McCain.
This wasn't Watergate, and the sources were certainly no deep throats. The Times attacked McCain on an eight-year-old rumor that never had any traction then.
But now that he is the GOP nominee, the prurient interest in the allegations has risen exponentially. The Times seeks to profit from perniciousness.
But in reading, and rereading, the defamatory piece, one thing remained missing - sources for the allegations.
Not one person who makes a claim again McCain was quoted directly or identified.
All claims made against McCain come from "some of his top advisers," "several people involved in the campaign" and "some aides."
The Times even indirectly quoted McCain through unnamed sources.
"In interviews, the two former associates said they joined in a series of confrontations with Mr. McCain, warning him that he was risking his campaign and career. Both said Mr. McCain acknowledged behaving inappropriately and pledged to keep his distance from Ms. Iseman. The two associates, who said they had become disillusioned with the senator, spoke independently of each other and provided details that were corroborated by others."
Both of these disgruntled former employees were interviewed and we are led to believe the corroborated each other's stories. However, was what they said really so earth shattering that their identity could not be divulged? The Times asks us to trust them despite their lack of effort to take this rumor from the gutter to a news story with even minimal attribution.
It is easy to get people to tell you salacious details of an event. If you protect their identity, the details tend to migrate toward the more interesting end of the spectrum.
The New York Times is supposed to be a bastion of journalism and a beacon of ethical reporting.
This piece should have been relegated to one of the rags sold at grocery store check out lines.
John Newton, a slave trader turned abolitionist who later in life became a minister and penned the words to the hymn Amazing Grace, was often quoted as saying "There is no right way to do a wrong thing."
The Times was wrong to run this story with no attribution. This is a perfect example of what is wrong with journalism today.
If the people who said it don't give their names, a newspaper should not give them a voice.
It was wrong and we can only hope that the Times apologizes to the McCain campaign and its readers for this error in judgment.