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Caveat lector

11 December 1998

Our current howler: Still forever young (continued)

Synopsis: Majority counsel David Schippers was mixed up on that one basic fact.

Presentation by David Schippers
House Judiciary Committee, 12/10/98

We know-JudeCo majority counsel David Schippers is not a part of this celebrity press corps. But based on his skill at bungling basic facts, he just might have a future in journalism:

SCHIPPERS: President Clinton claimed that he engaged in wrong conduct with Miss Lewinsky, quote, on certain occasions in 1996, and once in 1997, closed quote. Notice he didn't mention 1995. There was a reason. On the three occasions in 1995, Monica was a 21-year-old intern.

You can just imagine how the analysts yowled when they heard the grumpy counsel say that. What's the use of all our efforts, they sighed, when David Schippers gets his clock cleaned like that?

As we've stated in these pages again and again, Monica Lewinsky turned 22 on July 23, 1995. She first flashed her undies at Chief Exec Bill four months later, on November 15. Nope-the president never engaged in any "wrong conduct" with that "21-year-old intern" certain folks love to cite. In fact, by the time that Vile Clinton took a look at Mo's thong, she was almost 22 and a half!

We've reported these facts again and again, but apparently we aren't making much progress. Even a hard-headed fellow like David Schippers has succumbed to the spin and the guile. As we've mentioned, conservative pundits just loved the (false) idea that Vile Clinton's gal Friday was just 21. The apocryphal age told the story they loved, so they went ahead with the slight small deception. And how firmly engrained in the public mind is their lie? Even Schippers got fooled by their act!

We guess it shows how important it is for the press to perform classic functions. No one in the mainstream press corps corrected the spin on Mo's age. Too fat and lazy to perform simple tasks, journalists let the spinning go on. As we've pointed out before (see below), even Jay Leno somehow got her age right. But not this celebrity press corps.

Anyway, there's one other thing we couldn't help wonder, after Schippers misstated this fact. If he's getting Mo's age from the Washington Times, how much else of his tale did he get there? Does it make you feel good that the grouchy head counsel couldn't even get straight on a matter like this? Jeez. The guy seems to know every time Clinton lies. How'd he ever get taken like that?

Visit our incomparable archives: Enjoy each installment in our age-of-Mo series:

Forever young: THE DAILY HOWLER, 10/8/98
Still forever young: THE DAILY HOWLER, 11/9/98
Leno gets it right: THE DAILY HOWLER, 11/10/98

Addendum: A pair of scribes at the New York Times corrected the grumpmeister's blunder. See "A Howler addendum," 12/11/98.