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January 23, 2013

Rand Paul Questions Hillary's Comptency; Reporter Terry Moran Questions Rand Paul's Credentials

The Watchdogs of the Press. The Fourth Estate, keeping a vigilant watch on Government Power.

Or, for the past four years: Defending Government Power like it's their dad and attacking anyone who says something bad about their dad.


So Rand Paul had a strong statement to Hillary, not a question, really, but at least he told her she was incompetent. (Video below the fold.)

Which immediately prompted this dismissive sneer from Obama's Palace Guard:

Curious: What is Rand Paul’s foreign policy background? Did he serve in the military? Did he study, live, do business or charity overseas?

— Terry Moran (@TerryMoran) January 23, 2013

What's Terry Moran's credentials to opine on foreign policy? Or anything? Those who play the credentials card ought to have some credentials themselves, no?

I can only repeat myself so many times: Reporters treat the business of reporting, and their laughable J-school degree, as conferring a general expertise on everything. The very fact they are reporters is what gives the expertise on all subject matters that might drift into their purview.

But we have thousands of English majors reporting on Business, and prognosticating on economic matters; and thousands of Art majors reporting on science and "global warming."

And getting it mostly wrong.

Instapundit is fond of citing the Gell-Mann Amnesia Effect, as explained by Michael Crichton:

“Briefly stated, the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect is as follows. You open the newspaper to an article on some subject you know well. In Murray's case, physics. In mine, show business. You read the article and see the journalist has absolutely no understanding of either the facts or the issues. Often, the article is so wrong it actually presents the story backward—reversing cause and effect. I call these the "wet streets cause rain" stories. Paper's full of them.

In any case, you read with exasperation or amusement the multiple errors in a story, and then turn the page to national or international affairs, and read as if the rest of the newspaper was somehow more accurate about Palestine than the baloney you just read. You turn the page, and forget what you know.”

Reporters suffer from the Gell-Mann Amnesia Effect most of all -- the moment they start typing up words that someone else (an expert in the field) said, mangling those words, misstating major principles announced in those words, they quickly forget they were B+ students in Recreational Pottery: Practical Application and Theory and begin behaving as if they're experts simply because they've occasionally spoken to (and completely misunderstood) experts.

I speak of the attempt to create a New Aristocracy a lot. Obviously this maneuver -- questioning of credentials -- is functionally equivalent to noting that someone is of a Lower Class without proper Education or a Vocation which involves Mind Work (rather than dirty, dumb Hand Work) and hence is not qualified to even have an opinion on Lady Briggs-Stanton's impending nuptials to the thrice-divorced Duke of Beaufort.

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posted by Ace at 01:26 PM

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