Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Not again! Powerline smoking out another MSM memo?

Not again! Has another sloppy network news staff jumped at the first incriminating document they could get their hands on? It can't really be falling apart this quickly, can it? When will they learn?

The way these stories are debunked by the bloggers is absolutely fascinating. One thing that runs through every example is that it all starts with the most basic question, "This doesn't seem right?"

Here's how it started.....

A Fishy Story Gets Fishier,

ABC News and the Washington Post have described--but not actually produced--a memorandum relating to the Terri Schiavo case which they have described as "GOP talking points" that were "distributed only to Republican Senators." Many other news outlets have picked up on ABC's and the Post's reporting, such as this Houston Chronicle article, which relies in part on the memo to support a bitter attack on the Republican Party:

Most interesting is a talking-points memo from the Senate side of the Capitol
that spells it right out in stark electoral terms: "the pro-life base will be
excited" and "this is a great political issue, this is a tough issue for
Democrats."

"Talking Points" Story Imploding?

Blogger Josh Clayborn has been talking to ABC representatives, both on and
off the record, and they are now telling him that they never meant to imply that
the "talking points" memo originated with the Republicans--only that it was
given to some Republican Senators.

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