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Archives 2001

CRACK-UP COMING! Sheer stupidity is now de rigeur on the right. This foretells a Conservative Crack-up:

Our current howler (part I): (12/19/01)
Red plus blue made purple prose—and foretold a conservative crack-up.

Our current howler (part II): (12/21/01)
On the right, stupidity is now de rigeur. Why, they’ve even dragged David Brooks into it!

Our current howler (part III): (12/22/01)
Noemie Emery's open dissembling suggests a Big Crackup is coming.

Our current howler (part IV): (01/10/02)
As Kelly and Sully play Rubin and Hoffman, the Con Crack-Up is now on the way.

A DAILY HOWLER PUNDIT PROFILE! Is there a bigger phony on earth than Howard Fineman? If so, we don’t know who it is:

Our current howler (part I): (12/10/01)
Fineman praised the prez when he "changed his attire." Our analysts swung into action.

Our current howler (part II): (12/11/01)
Fineman praised Bush for "changing attire." But he called Gore a nut when he did it.

HERCULEAN LABORS! At work on a truly incomparable book, we still plan to limn a few stories:

Our current howler: (12/7/01)
Bill Press’ new book really starts to crackle—right around page 48.

READING ASSIGNMENT! We’re thankful today for a Rolling Stone piece. We suggest that you go out and buy it.

Our current howler: (11/20/01)
We’re thankful today for a Rolling Stone piece. We suggest that you go out and buy it. (NOTE: The Rolling Stone piece is now on-line. You know what to do. Just click here.)

IN SEARCH OF AMERICAN VALUES! There’s nothing too dishonest or dumb for those who yell "anti-American:"

Our current howler (part I): (11/7/01)
We needed domestic witches to hunt. In the Standard, Noemie Emery started lying.

Our current howler (part II): (11/9/01)
Clinton gave a perfectly sensible speech. Then Andrew Sullivan—and his friends—started lying.

Our current howler (part III): (11/12/01)
There’s only one word for the Washington Times. Their conduct is anti-American.

Our current howler (part IV): (11/14/01)
Those Fox "all-stars" discussed Clinton’s speech. Too bad that no "all-star" had read it.

TEXTBOOK OF SPIN! Richard Berke said Dems are glad that Gore lost. His piece was a textbook of spin:

Our current howler (part I): (10/29/01)
Richard Berke said he spoke to some Dems. He just wouldn’t tell us how many.

Our current howler (part II): (10/30/01)
Jim Moran didn’t say he was glad that Gore lost. But to Rick Berke, it sounded just like it.

Our current howler (part III): (10/31/01)
Did anyone say he was glad that Gore lost? If someone said it, Rick Berke didn’t quote him.

Our current howler (part IV): (11/1/01)
The rules of engagement all favored Berke. He still couldn’t give what he promised.

Our current howler (part V): (11/2/01)
Why, oh why, did Gore get "Berked?" We suspect it all comes down to character

CHURLS IN CHARGE? Does the fate of Politically Incorrect make a difference? You bet your sweet bippy it does.

Our current howler (part I): (10/01/01)
Does the fate of Politically Incorrect really matter? You bet your sweet bippy it does

Our current howler (part II): (10/03/01)
Where in the world did our press elite ever find the bizarre Michael Kelly?

Our current howler (part II): (10/05/01)
Little Rich Lowry puffed himself up and said a big brave word: "anti-American."

WAR FEVER! LOOSE LIPS! Jihads seemed to come from all sides. But the bold MRC got it right!

Our current howler (part I): (9/22/01)
Bravely setting its world-view aside, the MRC–defending Jennings–got it right.

Our current howler (part II): (9/25/01)
The impulse to jihad is found worldwide. Today’s example? Check out Michelle Malkin

Our current howler (part III): (9/26/01)
Michael Kelly went to war with America’s pacifists. And guess what—he couldn’t name one.

Our current howler (part IV): (9/29/01)
It’s time to have a grown-up discourse. Will holy warriors like Malkin permit one?

WHILE CABLE SLEPT! This summer, your "press corps" took a pass on Osama. They pondered Gary Condit instead:

Our current howler: (9/15/01)
When the airwaves are devoted to Nonsense and Trivia, eventually something blows up.

FINAL NOTES (PLEASE!) ON A TOP SUMMER THRILLER! The Days of the Condit are nearing their end. We clean up a few final points:

Our current howler (part I): (9/4/01)
Duffy and Gibbs chose to Play It Real Dumb about that "specific request."

Our current howler (part II): (9/7/01)
Whose account of that phone call is right? Dr. Levy seems to support Gary Condit—but the parsons and goodies don’t care.

INVENTING THE NEW GREAT AMERICAN NOVEL! Your cable pundits are writing a novel. But alas–they’re completely corrupt:

Our current howler (part I): (8/27/01)
The police think Chandra lied, the Times said. And you haven’t heard Word One about it. (EXTRA! The Levys reveal that Chandra wasn’t pregnant. Why did they wait to report it?)

Our current howler (part II): (8/28/01)
Martin lied in Russert’s face. We’re waiting for Tim to address it.

Our current howler (part III): (8/29/01)
Do police believe the "no-ID" theory? Guess what–Martin started that too. (EXTRA! On cable, Chandra Levy’s still pregnant.)

Our current howler (part IV): (8/30/01)
Where did the pregnancy rumor begin? The source is clear: "Levy investigators."

Smile-a-while: (8/31/01)
Jim Robinson has now offered four sets of dates. On cable, they know not to notice.

SUMMER SMILE-A-WHILE SPECTACULAR! The Post is shocked by Hoover's vendetta. Two years back, they launched one of their own:

Smile-a-while: (8/23/01)
"Style" slams Hoover for trashing Gore Senior. But how did &"Style" deal with the son?

DEFEATING THE DOLDRUMS! News slows down this time of the year. Your pundit corps fills in the dead spots:

Our current howler (part I): (8/8/01)
If it’s sheer dissembling that you enjoy, Chris Matthews is still a best bet.

Our current howler (part II): (8/11/01)
When Gore grew a beard without asking permission, Maureen Dowd got her circus act workin’

Our current howler (part III): (8/14/01)
On Sunday morning, various scribes embarrassed themselves with ruminations about Gore’s vexing beard. (PLUS: Dowd wrong again!)

Our current howler (part IV): (8/20/01)
The press corps hijacked your last election. And they’re eager to do so again

MEDICARE REDUX? It just ain’t hard to explain SS. But will the press corps be able to do it?

Our current howler (part I): (7/31/01)
It just ain’t hard to explain SS. But will the press corps be able to do it?

Our current howler (part II): (8/1/01)
There are a million ways to misstate the problem. If history actually serves as a guide, Lisa Myers will find every one.

Our current howler (part III): (8/3/01)
When Dems and Reps fought the Medicare wars, the key facts were never disputed.

Our current howler (part IV): (8/6/01)
The SS debate involves real questions. We should fight to avoid getting sidetracked.

TABLOID TALES! When Tabloid Nation tells you a story, it tells you the version it likes:

Our current howler (part I): (7/24/01)
What did Condit tell the police? Larry King’s dissembling pundits know which reports they can’t mention.

Our current howler (part II): (7/25/01)
Pundits tell Gary to take that test. But they know what they simply mustn’t mention.

Our current howler (part III): (7/26/01)
Jim Lehrer is also a missing person. Therein lies this story’s key tale.

Our current howler (part IV): (7/28/01)
If we just stop correcting bad facts, Kausfiles says, the truth will emerge in the end.

SEQUEL–WHERE DO THEY FIND THEM? When Barbara Olson did Modesto, she showed us the soul of our pundits:

Our current howler: (7/23/01)
When Barbara Olson studied Amtrak, all (rail)roads led straight back to sex.

THE PATHOLOGY OF THE TV PUNDITS! Our pundits are dumb, and they’re grossly dishonest. So our question is simple: Why is that?

Our current howler (part I): (7/17/01)
If Washington’s pundits didn’t exist, it would be also impossible to invent them.

Our current howler (part II): (7/18/01)
It was too hot to run, Barbara Olson said. But it’s never too hot to dissemble.

Our current howler (part III): (7/19/01)
The loathsome ghost of Tailgunner Joe was back last night with Paula.

Our current howler (part IV): (7/20/01)
The cable nets have made it clear—they plan to be Totally Tabloid.

TABLOID NATION! Pundits are thrilled that the Levy case has allowed them to talk about sex:

Our current howler (part I): (7/10/01)
Juan Williams hasn’t seen anyone pushing the sex. Quite clearly, he doesn’t watch Fox.

Our current howler (part II): (7/12/01)
Sometimes, if it weren’t for Invented Facts, there would be no facts at all.

Our current howler (part III): (7/14/01)
Linda Vester knew where she was going when it came to that thrilling phone call.

Our current howler (part IV): (7/16/01)
Pandering pundits will do and say anything to tell you the story they like. (Featured pundits: Juan Williams, Chris Matthews)

A HOWLER SEQUEL! SON OF SAMMON! Our press corps’ culture worships dissembling. So what’s a free people to do?

A HOWLER sequel: (6/28/01)
Should journalists try to tell the truth? Andrew Sullivan doesn’t seem all that certain.

MORE FUN WITH BOOKS! Bill Sammon’s book about the election is a textbook of spin and deception:

Our current howler (part I): (6/18/01)
We knew enough to check Sammon’s source. Free people should see what we found.

Our current howler (part II): (6/19/01)
The opening chapter of Sammon’s book is a textbook in how to mislead.

Our current howler (part III): (6/21/01)
Sammon’s account of Election Night is a study in self-contradiction.

Our current howler (part IV): (6/25/01)
Bill Sammon wrote an indefensible book. And Big Pundits know not to say so.

POST PATTERNS! Marjorie Williams shrinks Bill and Al—and Ari Fleischer gets dissed by William Raspberry:

Our current howler: (6/15/01)
Raspberry slammed Fleischer for the alleged White House trashing. Here’s what he wrote in real time.

MORE FROM BIG PINK! Two scribes slammed the Jenna coverage. Where were they all through the election?

Our current howler: (6/8/01)
Williams and Dionne condemn press corps shrinks—now that it’s Real Safe to do so.

FUN WITH BOOKS! Pundits are penning election books, reinforcing those Official Press Stories:

Our current howler (part I): (5/29/01)
Jeff Greenfield supports an Official Press Story in his new book about the election.

Our current howler (part II): (5/30/01)
Transcripts exist of the Bush-Gore debate. Greenfield improved them a tad.

Our current howler (part III): (5/31/01)
Al Gore behaved like a villainous wrestler. And at CNN, Jeff Greenfield didn’t notice!

Our current howler (part IV): (6/1/01)
Gore corrected Bush because Bush was wrong. Six months later, Jeff Greenfield won’t say it.

Our current howler (part V): (6/2/01)
A few did mention Gore’s naughty conduct. It’s intriguing to note who they were.

THE PEW PEOPLE’S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE! The vastly overrated people at Pew have unloaded their latest shaky study:

Our current howler (part I): (5/21/01)
Comedy break! The Pew people studied the first sixty days. They reported about the first hundred.

Our current howler (part II): (5/22/01)
The reporting on Bush was more positive everywhere. But bumbling Pew buried that fact.

Our current howler (part III): (5/23/01)
How does Pew know if a statement is "negative?" That’s easy—they just ask the boss.

Our current howler (part IV): (5/24/01)
There were far fewer stories about Bush, Pew found. Politely, they didn’t note why.

TONAL VISION! We couldn’t help chuckling at one of the ways Candidate Bush changed the tone here in Washington:

Smile-a-while: (5/14/01)
We couldn’t help chuckling at one of the ways Candidate Bush changed the tone here in Washington.

Our current howler: (5/18/01)
Andrew Sullivan is perfectly honest about the dishonesty in the Bush budget plan.

BOWING LOW BEFORE HIS LORDS! Judging Bush at 100 Days, John Harris politely played courtier:

Our current howler (part I) (5/8/01)
Bush’s staffers said Bush was great. So John Harris typed it right up.

Our current howler (part II) (5/9/01)
Whenever it seems that Bush may have goofed, Harris finds an upbeat explanation.

Our current howler (part III) (5/11/01)
In a back-and-forth mea culpa, Harris panders, not to Bush, but to you.

STILL THE SAME! Weren’t we lied to enough during Vietnam? For many pundits, the practice continues:

Our current howler (5/2/01)
Here at THE HOWLER, we don’t judge Bob Kerrey. We do judge our army of spinners.

GOOFUS AND GALLANT! When the Times is bad, it’s very, very bad. But one day, we had to defend it:

Our current howler (part I) (4/26/01)
We rarely defend the New York Times. Gregg Easterbrook drove us to do it.

Our current howler (part II) (4/27/01)
When the Times goofs up, they goof up good. Professor Butterfield recently demonstrated. (Extra: Fox All-Stars do Vietnam!)

IN SEARCH OF THE HOWLER’S NEW WEB SITE! When the New York Times put the NAEP on page one, we dreamed of improved ed reporting:

Our current howler (part I) (4/09/01)
Who flunked the recent NAEP fourth-grade test? Let’s start with the New York Times.

Our current howler (part II) (4/13/01)
The Times reviewed NAEP’s state-by-state scores. But they worked at a Dick-and-Jane level.

Our current howler (part III) (4/19/01)
The press corps was shocked by the rash of cheating. But then, they’d been shocked by it ten years before.

The Howler postscript (4/20/01)
William Raspberry’s piece in this morning’s Post makes our point for us quite nicely.

CONFUSED? NO WONDER: The Post "Outlook" section is valuable space. So why do they waste it like this?

Our current howler (part I) (3/28/01)
A groaning piece in the Post "Outlook" section helps show us the shape of our world.

Our current howler (part II) (3/30/01)
A review of Paul Krugman’s budget critiques helps show what might have been.

HOW BUDGET PLANS STAY MURKY! When you’re asked a question on Sunday morning, your hosts don’t expect you to answer:

Our current howler (part I) (3/14/01)
Gloria Borger asked a good question. Next time, she should try for an answer.

Our current howler (part II) (3/15/01)
Does the Washington press corps have attention-span problems? Last Sunday, Meet the Press made us wonder.

Our current howler (part III) (3/20/01)
Does President Bush’s tax cut add up? With Russert, you’ll never find out.

Our current howler (part IV) (3/23/01)
Does the tax cut add up? The discussion is over. Have you seen one intelligent treatment?

BUNGLED BUDGET! Will the public be well informed on Bush’s budget proposals? So far, the signs are all bad:

Our current howler (part I) (3/5/01)
Handed absolute nonsense by Bush, the courteous Post started typing.

Our current howler (part II) (3/6/01)
Russert questioned O’Neill on the tax cut. We’re not all that sure why he bothered.

Our current howler (part III) (3/7/01)
Who gets what from Bush’s plan? Russert asked—but he seemed unprepared.

Our current howler (part IV) (3/8/01)
Paul O’Neill ate Russert for lunch. Why wasn’t the big guy prepared?

Our current howler (3/9/01)
O’Neill was hoping to fool more reporters. David Gregory was soon lunch meat too.

HOME IMPROVEMENTS! The press corps loves improving the news. We offer some recent examples:

Our current howler (part I) (2/26/01)
A page-one headline talked about "pardons." Turned out that it just wasn’t so.

Our current howler (part II) (2/27/01)
Every time Bill Bennett opened his mouth, you saw the real truth in his thesis.

Our current howler (part III) (2/28/01)
Hunt, Dowd and Carlson repeat favorite tales. You might say there’s "no give" in their stories.

Smile-a-while (3/1/01)
McCord and the I-man helped us recall. It isn’t the sex. It’s the lying.

Our current howler (part IV) (3/2/01)
How can the press corps’ work be so awful? We trace it right back to first principles.

DID BILL AND HILL STEAL THE WHITE HOUSE BLIND? The celebrity press corps—in love with the story—knew enough to deep-six certain facts:

Smile-a-while (2/17/01)
Two Journal killjoys dug up some facts. The press corps knew what to do—it ignored them.

Our current howler (2/19/01)
A woeful column by a big, upset novelist helps show how propaganda gets peddled.

THE CLINTON SCANDALS CONTINUED TO GROW. We thought we espied some dissembling:

Our current howler (2/07/01)
Hay-yo! When the "Fox All-Stars" gathered last Sunday, the dissembling got started in earnest.


Smile-a-while (2/01/01)
We swore that we would never come back. But last Sunday, The Dean made us do it!


Our current howler (1/10/01)
A number of readers have asked where we are. Today, we incomparably explain.