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Wednesday, January 12, 2005

A Question of Proportion: Armstrong Williams vs. Dan Rather

On the one hand, a respected journalist screws up by using an unauthenticated source that might be a forgery in the process of challenging Bush's dubious record in the national guard.

On the other, the government pays a journalist a quarter-million dollar bribe, paid for with our tax dollars to hawk the No Child Left Behind Act.

Which gets more news coverage? Rather, of course.

A googlenews search reveals five times as many hits for "Dan Rather" as a comparable search for "Armstrong Williams". In addition, Google News features articles about "Rathergate", meanwhile, Williams doesn't even rate front page coverage.

Would someone please explain to me why scandal prior to the election is getting more media scrutiny than an unfolding scandal involving misuse of public funds?

Only Hopes and Dreams

The search for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq has ended, officials tell two newspapers.

Weapon hunter Charles Duelfer and his team have wrapped up their work and come home, U.S. officials tell the Washington Post and the New York Times.

Violence in Iraq and an absence of new information prompted the team to return home before Christmas, the Post reports.

Duelfer is expected to make only small additions to his October report that found Saddam's weapons of mass destruction programs had deteriorated into only hopes and dreams by the time of the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

Let's take a trip in my time machine back to April, 2003:

British Prime Minister Tony Blair claimed,

"I am absolutely convinced and confident about the case on weapons of mass destruction.

"To you, and others, who believe somehow that this was all a myth invented by us, I would refer them first of all to the 12 years of the United Nations reports detailing exactly what weapons of mass destruction were held by the then Iraqi regime."

He added: "We are now in a deliberative way and in a considered way investigating the various sites - and we will bring forward the analysis, the results of that investigation, in due course.

"I think that when we do so you and others will be eating some of your words."

To the contrary, Tony, it's time for you and the warbloggers to eat a big steaming plate of crow.

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