Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Achenbach Update

Joel Achenbach, about whom I blogged below, appeared today on Hewitt’s radio show to respond to the response his blog post on the death of Zarqawi inspired. I felt sorry for him. The more I listened, the more it seemed to me that this may very well have been a simple case of sloppy writing. It reminded me of a similar incident that happened to me back in college when I was a freshman reporter. Of course, I had to admit my mistake and submit a correction. It was very embarassing but the kind of thing one hopes is behind you before you start writing for a major American newspaper! Achenbach, on the other hand, tried to defend himself and his writing and did not do a credible job of it--but he also said nothing to persuade me that he is capable of the kind of mental gymnastics and moral bankruptcy required to equate Zarqawi with American bombers. I say this not to excuse Achenbach but in the interest of fairness and clarity in the argument. I don’t think this man meant to imply what his writing implied.

But while I am glad (for Achenbach and his children’s sake) that he is not as morally confused as Michael Berg or Bill Mahr, there are (sadly) plenty folks ready to stand in for him.

It wasn’t up when I last checked, but the transcript from the interview with Achenbach should be posted at Radioblogger and this live blog during the interview gave a pretty fair assessment of Achenbach’s performance (though it was too interested in the question of whether or not he ought to have given the interview from a narrow self-interest point of view). In sum: Achenbach stepped in it. He should avoid this cow pasture in the future and stick to being a humorist.

Discussions - 3 Comments


Thank you so much for your link. Yes, my post was narrowly focused. You can tell that it didn’t strike a chord with the visitors by the lack of comments.

A while back I decided to refocus my blog towards business and marketing and away from politics. I really enjoy Hugh’s show, but I didn’t want to get back into the brawl of political blogging.

As a postscript on the subject, Joel missed his chance to market himself as a humorist, too. It isn’t very funny to go on the air and get defensive with the host. He could have taken the interview any number of funny directions. Hugh has a great sense of humor and probably would have gone right along with him.

"Still, given the extraordinary destruction evident at the house, a number of questions lingered, including how anyone could have survived such an attack, even for a few minutes, as American and Iraqi officials say Mr. Zarqawi did. It seemed puzzling, too, surveying the destruction, how Mr. Zarqawi’s head and upper body, shown on television screens across the world, could have remained largely intact."

The above is from the NY Times. I’m not as surprised as they are. Zarqawi has come through so many times for us before. Remember when the world was outraged at our the photos of torture and degradation at Abu Grayhab? Well who pulls our bacon out of the fire but Zarqawi with his fishy-looking Berg decapitation video.

And now we have his John-the-Baptist head on view just in time for Republicans to have something to say for the midterm elections.

I wonder what sort of surprise we will get in October of 2008. Probably a pristine Bin Laden head.

Finally, someone here who talks sense! I you haven’t read it already, I recommend "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion." It’s a real eye-opener, and will tell you all you need to know about the neocons.

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