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CHINLUND’S LIST! That troubled gang at the Boston Globe continues its War Against John (HOWLER HISTORY continues tomorrow):


A WEEK OF HOWLER HISTORY: Sorry. Last night, we entertained the troops (well—a group of Washington-area contractors) and our next installment of HOWLER HISTORY must be postponed till tomorrow. Parts 4 and 5 of our current opus will be posted on Friday and Saturday. In the meantime, visit our incomparable archives! Enjoy each episode in our week-long report:

SPINNING WOLF (PART 1): The press discovered Wolf in plain sight—then conducted a smut-laden trashing. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 3/3/03.

SPINNING WOLF (PART 2): Weeks before the Wolf flap began, boots-and-suits made a strange earth tones prequel. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 3/4/03.

SPINNING WOLF (PART 3): Duffy’s report made a fleeting remark—and the pundits were soon spinning alpha. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 3/5/03.

CHINLUND’S LIST: The pathology of the Boston Globe is one for the Big Shrinks to ponder. Today, the paper continues its crackpot pummeling of Senator War Crimes, John Kerry. Read to see how hard the rag works to persuade you that John’s a Big Liar. In this current effort, the Globe continues the crackpot work it once aimed at Candidate Gore.

Sadly and strangely, the Globe has made its mark in recent years by assuming that major Dems are Big Liars, and by peddling stupid, dissembling stories which tried to get others to think so. The Globe’s trashing of Gore was simply astounding. Meanwhile, the paper has typed slimy tales about Kerry for years, even accusing the solon of war crimes in a story published one week before his 1996 re-election. (Within days, the paper acknowledged that its facts were wrong, and that the piece should not have been printed.) No other paper has shown such bad judgment, or such bad faith. We don’t have time today to walk you through the paper’s bizarro coverage of Gore, but for the record, Walter Robinson’s 4/11/00 report was just one part of the problem. More on this matter next week.

Amazing, isn’t it? Our current president routinely lies in the mighty Globe’s face, and the virtuous, truth-seeking rag barely stirs. By contrast, its scribes are now pawing through decades-old statements by Kerry staffers, trying to make John a liar. This is precisely the crackpot conduct this paper aimed at Candidate Gore. Our question: What have Americans ever done to deserve such work by this troubled paper? And when are major Boston voices going to tell it to stop?

VISIT OUR INCOMPARABLE ARCHIVES: More on the Globe’s bizarre conduct next week. In the meantime, our incomparable archives:

Robinson trashed Gore as a Big Liar, in what may have been the most dishonest report in all of Campaign 2000. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 9/12/02. For real-time reporting on Robinson’s bizarre piece, see THE DAILY HOWLER 5/9/00, 5/10/00, 5/11/00, and 5/12/00.

Just how bad is the Boston Globe’s judgment? A week before the ’96 election, the rag accused Kerry of war crimes. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 2/10/03.

The Daily update

COOLIN’ ON COLIN: In this morning’s Washington Post, Mary McGrory begs and pleads about her February 6 column. In that piece, McGrory joined a stampede of pundits; they simply couldn’t run fast enough to praise Colin Powell’s U.N. presentation (see THE DAILY HOWLER, 2/14/03, 2/24/03). But as we learn in her column today, McGrory’s readers were none too pleased by her pander to Powell. Today, she tries to talk her way out of the piece that has readers so hugely kerflubbled.

McGrory is clearly right on one point. The headline on the offending column—“I’m Persuaded”—overstated its contents. It implied that McGrory was ready for war, which wasn’t quite what she had said. But McGrory fails to come to terms with the foolishness of her column on Colin. At one point today, she wriggles away, penning this hopeless excuse:

MCGRORY: What impressed me about Powell’s presentation, besides his magisterial presence and impeccable prose, were the poisons he showed and the malice behind them. I did not have the benefit of the informed criticism that followed. The Post’s Walter Pincus wrote a summation of the weakest link in Powell’s speech, the al Qaeda connection. Lately, the coming conflict is presented seamlessly as “a war against Iraq and terrorism.”
And that’s right. McGrory didn’t “have the benefit of the informed criticism that followed”—because she rushed into print the very next day, insisting that Powell was perfect. In fact, she had no way of judging what the general had said, but she—like other pandering pundits—simply ran as fast as she could to praise Powell’s work to the skies. And even now, she understates the problems with Powell’s presentation. She panders to Post insider Pincus, saying that he found a glitch. But she fails to acknowledge the other problems that have turned up—the fact that Powell used worthless material cut-and-pasted from a 12-year-old grad school paper, for example, or the fact that Gilbert Cranberg wrote a piece challenging Powell’s translation (see THE DAILY HOWLER, 2/25/03). Even now, McGrory shades the truth. Or maybe she hasn’t yet had the chance to look through that “informed criticism.”

But then, are you really surprised by this lazy scribe’s work? Here’s the passage in which she explains her general judgment of Powell:
MCGRORY: I have thought well of Colin Powell since I heard him say that the most important lesson to teach the young is that they should do whatever job is assigned and do it well. As a teenager he mopped the floors at a soft-drink bottling factory so well he was promoted to the bottling line. His role in the Iran-contra scandal as an aide to Caspar Weinberger was not glorious, but I was ready to vote for him for president if he ran in 1996.
Mary McGrory thinks highly of Powell because he said that kids should do their jobs well, and because he mopped the floor when he was a teen. The mopping outweighs Iran-contra. And oh yes. As we see in the first passage quoted above, McGrory assumed that Powell’s report was OK “because of his magisterial presence.”

How vacuous is the Washington “press corps?” Read through McGrory’s column.

VISIT OUR INCOMPARABLE ARCHIVES: But then, are you really surprised by McGrory’s work? When Gore and Bradley held their first debate—the one where the press corps booed and jeered Gore—the great Post pundit was deeply disturbed by Gore’s very-troubling wardrobe. The candidates spoke at length about health care—and McGrory wrote at length about clothes. Her work was an insult to every American. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 8/12/02.

In the past, we have called your press corps “deeply dysfunctional.” Read the Globe, then read McGrory. Do you still think we’re hurling hyperbole?