URLs du Jour


It turns out that today is "Respect the Disassociated Press Day" here at … no, wait, I got that wrong … it's "Disrespect the Associated Press Day" here at Pun Salad!

  • First off, Captain Ed notices the AP committing serial inaccuracy in their allegatation that President Bush "rejected" the Kyoto Accord. He prints the entire sense-of-the-Senate resolution rejecting Kyoto, passed 95-0 back in 1997, which, for viewers at home, was well before the Dubya era.

    Even if I hadn't already written about this, I could have found this in about ten seconds simply by doing a search of the Internet. The Wikipedia entry is well-researched, and even an advocacy group manages to get this correct. Why can't the AP? Now that two of their reporters have found it impossible to accurately recount the history, it seems less likely that it reflects incompetence and more likely that it reflects a bias -- especially since that vaunted system of fact-checking and editorial oversight has once again allowed misinformation into print.


  • It's always good for a wince when one of our local loons (no, not talking about a bird here) makes the national news:
    Mitt Romney's visit to New Hampshire started on a sour note Tuesday when a restaurant patron declared he would not vote for the Republican presidential contender because of his faith.

    "I'm one person who will not vote for a Mormon," Al Michaud of Dover shouted at Romney when the former Massachusetts governor approached him inside Harvey's Bakery. Romney was kicking off the second of two day's worth of campaign visits in the lead primary state.

    Al reveals himself as a Hillary supporter later in the article. I don't know that Senator Clinton has a total lock on the religious bigot vote, but (in any case) I fervently hope it's not as large as this story makes it seem to be.

    By the way, Al's previous appearance in the news is here, almost five years ago: "Volunteer, 72, keeps city streets clean", about how he daily wandered the Dover byways, picking up trash as he went. I'm not absolutely sure it's the same "Al Michaud", but I'd bet some money on it.

    In keeping with our theme, today's story is from the AP, and their headline seems more than a bit off-kilter:

    Romney Criticized for Mormon Faith in N.H.
    Shouldn't that be more like: "Romney Encounters Ill-Mannered Democratic Crank in N.H."? (Via Dean Barnett, who also comments about the AP's cavalier attitude toward the matter. Also see Hugh.)

  • And what is it about the AP and New Hampshire, anyway? Joe Malchow compiles reactions to a recent AP story about newly-elected Dartmouth trustee Stephen Smith. Summary:
    Left, right, and center, Dartmouth has spoken clearly: The AP just doesn't know what it's talking about with respect to our small college.

  • An article at NRO by Byron York has an Alice in Wonderland feel to it. York describes the argument prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald is making to Lewis ("Scooter") Libby's sentencing hearing in support of a stiff jail term. Fitzgerald is arguing that Libby obstructed the investigation of Very Serious Laws indeed: the Intelligence Identities Protection Act and the Espionage Act.

    Even though Fitzgerald has not charged anyone with breaking either law. Even though no evidence was presented at Libby's trial that such crimes even occurred, let alone by Libby.

    This is jurisprudence worthy of the Queen of Hearts. To tie this into our theme: here is an AP story on the matter. To their credit, although they lack York's sharp analysis, they do manage to juxtapose two telling paragraphs:

    Libby "lied repeatedly and blatantly about matters at the heart of a criminal investigation concerning the disclosure of a covert intelligence officer's identity," Fitzgerald wrote. "He has shown no regret for his actions, which significantly impeded the investigation."

    No one was charged with the leak itself, including the initial source of the disclosure, former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage. Fitzgerald was aware early on that Armitage was the original source of the leak.

    A very serious investigation of a leak, where the leaker was already known, and not charged with any wrongdoing. Yeah, throw away the key.