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They also might help you hunt down the leaker. That seems to be Disney's bag.
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Fake Impeachment Hearing thread
I'll keep bumping this post so that it's the second post on the page.
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« "Feedback" Feedback | Main | Why Did the Forger Incorrectly Believe Lt. Col. Staudt Was Still Serving in 1973? Distributed Intelligence May Tell »
September 13, 2004

Bad Days at Black Rock

According to this American Spectator piece, they're not quite as convinced of the documents' authenticity as Dan Rather would have his audience believe:

On Friday, according to CBS News sources, Rather spent the day on the phone and dealing with CBS suits who were nervous about the fall out from the story. "All Dan could say was that this was an attack from the right-wing nuts, and that we should have expected this, given the stakes," says a CBS News producer. "He was terribly defensive and nervous. You could tell."

All day Friday, Rather, his producer on the story, Mary Mapes, and other 60 Minutes staffers were scrambling to shore up support from their sources on the story. That effort didn't go so well. By Saturday, one of their key sources, retired Maj. Gen. Bobby Hodges, had said that CBS misled him, and that he had never been shown the memos in question.

"We pulled the trick of only calling some sources at the last minute to reconfirm," says the CBS producer. "Someone called Hodges, I think, on Monday night and read him parts of the document. The late contacts are a standard practice so we don't tip off the competition or our sources."

...

PERHAPS MOST TROUBLING to the CBS News staff looking into how its story went off the rails is the timing of the memos' appearance. "Some 60 Minutes staffers have been working on this story for more than three years off and on," says the CBS News producer. "There have been rumors about these memos and what was in them for at least that long. No one had been able to find anything. Not a single piece of paper. But we know that a lot of people here interviewed a lot of people in Texas and elsewhere and asked very explicit questions about the existence of these memos. Then all of a sudden they show up? In one nice, neat package?"

This CBS New producer went on to explain that the questions 60 Minutes folk were asking were specific enough that people would have been able to fabricate the memorandums to meet the exact specifications the investigative journalists were looking for. "People were asking questions of sources like, 'Have you ever seen or heard of a memo that suspended Bush for failing to appear for a physical?' and 'Have you heard about or know of someone who has any documentation from back in the 1970s that shows there was pressure to get Bush into the National Guard?' It was like they were placing an order for a ready-made product. That is the biggest problem I have with this. It's all too neat and perfect for what we needed. Without these exact pieces of paper, we don't have a story. Dan has as much as admitted that. Everyone knows it. We were at a standstill on this story until these memos showed up."

The article also states that people at CBS are floating rumors that the actual documents were hand-written, but that someone "typed them up" to make them look "more official."

This is absurd. Handwritten documents are nearly self-authenticating, and no one would commit fraud to make a more-authentic original look like a less-authentic copy.

This ridiculous "Plan B" defense, however, is similar to what I expect we will soon be hearing: Someone really saw these documents, and they said almost exactly what the forgeries say, only the witness in question didn't take the documents or make copies of them.

Therefore, to get out "the truth" which he cannot unfortunately prove with documentary evidence, he typed up what he knew was in the documents (working from a nearly perfect memory).

I don't even think our liberal Spirit Squad media would dare run with such a "forgery-but-nevertheless-accurate" defense, but I was shocked by Dan Rather's blazingly dishonest performance on Friday; before this is over, I expect to be shocked three or four more times.

Does that defense sound too ridiculous?

Is it any more ridiculous than what you've heard so far?

Is it any more ridiculous than trained reporters at CBS beginning to spin tales about real handwritten documents being "typed up" to look pretty for TV?

They are in trouble and they almost know it. When you get to this level of desperation, you begin spinning pleasing but absurd "what-if" scenarios that will get you out of the jam.

But they won't get out of this jam. This will not stand.


posted by Ace at 01:52 PM