"Media Critic"

WaPo's Howie Kurtz is, as anyone who has ever read him knows, a joke. Via Digby, he is at it again. This time he makes statements so stupefyingly wrongheaded that it is a wonder he is allowed to publish:

I agree that leakers often get to set the story line, but I also know that Democrats are not unfamiliar with the practice. (Remember the Bush DUI leak just before the 2000 election?) And those who leaked information about domestic surveillance, Abu Ghraib and secret CIA prisons also had an impact.

Digby explains how the timing of Bush's DUI story was actually a function of Media incompetence, not leaking. But the truly stunning assertion from Kurtz is his view that McConnell's office's attack on the Frosts is comparable to this:

You may not remember the name Joe Darby, but you remember the impact of what he did. Darby turned in the pictures of prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib in Iraq – pictures he had discovered purely by accident. Unfortunately for Darby, exposing the truth has changed his life forever, and for the worse.

Comparing Joseph Darby's act of courage to the McConnell false smear of 12 year old Graeme Frost? Are you serious Mr. Kurtz? What a dim hack you are. As for the warrantless surveillance leak, the one the Times held inappropriately for a year, what can one say? It is simply incredible that Howard Kurtz is a reporter, much less a Media critic. He is truly awful.

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    The new aristocracy (none / 0) (#1)
    by manys on Sat Oct 20, 2007 at 11:36:54 AM EST
    The higher you go in the stairway of American power, the more you see people who are doing God's Own Bidding. Questions are out (notice Howie's lack). If there's any complication or nuance to the story, they pull back into vagueries like "had an impact" that allow a lowest-common-denominator comparison to save their sensibilities and their thinking time.

    I think this is all a piece with "manners." Historically, manners were defined as the set of behaviors to be adopted if someone is not to be associated with the rabble. Howie makes wild comparisons just so that someone drinking tea without their pinky raised can be equated with torturers.

    The fact is, as we've seen before in the fall of aristocracy 100 years ago, the circle of people willing to go through the motions and rituals of pandering to the status quo shrinks and shrinks as those people lose power, causing there to be an asymmetry of information since those in power still control the news.

    However, online news, commentary, and blogs have changed this power dynamic over the past five years, which is why you hear a lot of derogatory commentary from the entrenched media about internet mobs and the like. They're lashing out as they drown in their own self-importance, and the most they can do as parts of the Establishment is to write something in their clay tablets that the bloggers (which they hate) will write about.