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posted anonymously, because I'm a dog

OK, for those who have been following the hoo-hah about anonymity and its motives, a quote from this morning’s New York Times, in Skirmish Over a Query About Roberts's Faith, by David D. Kirkpatrick: “The discussion was described by two officials who spoke anonymously because the meeting was confidential and by a Republican senator who was briefed on their conversation.”

Hmmm. How about ‘... because they wanted to remain anonymous’? Or ‘... because we let them’?

I mean, what is the point of having a policy that a reporter can only hide the identity of a leaker if there is no other way of getting the information, if the reporter is going to be a total patsy? And the editor is going to let the reporter be a patsy? Shouldn’t they just admit it and have a patsy policy?

chazak, chazak, v’nitchazek,


It's the New York Times. Readers are expected to know they have a patsy policy -- it's been in place for a long time. They're so devoted to this administration they've sent one of their own reporters to jail to protect it.

Their editorial page may not be the cozy Republican banquette of the Wall Street Journal, but the New York Times is not some bastion of independent and high-minded journalism.

I know, your questions are rhetorical, and you don't seriously expect the New York Times to be honest about its policies. You're just using that form. But I've been recently conditioned to answer questions as asked...

But I've been recently conditioned to answer questions as asked...

Hope you weren't hoping to be confirmed to the federal bench any time soon :-)

ack, that was me. not intentionally anonymous, just eating a sandwich and typing carelessly

all i can pretend to add to this is that 10 years ago, media watchdog types were already concerned about the "unnamed source" trend when the clinton folk were using it to do market research ("trial balloons"). now it's become The Deniability Channel, which is what they were worried about, pointing to article after article where no public sector source went named.

the press has let this happen. without a doubt in my mind, i say that. the administration(s) need to get the information out, they need to persuade people. if the press were to say, "no, no anonymity if you're not blowing a whistle," the executive branch would have to turn the lights back on. but the press likes to pretend they're giving out the skinny because it makes it look like the news organizations are working harder than they really are.

(i know there are things left unsaid from weeks ago but i can't get myself to look at it again)

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