New Journalistic Standard?

Doubts Raised On Schiavo Memo (washingtonpost.com)

Fresh from declaring victory over CBS News and its discredited National Guard memos about President Bush, some of the same bloggers are raising questions about a strategy memo, first reported by ABC News and The Washington Post, that cast the Schiavo right-to-die case as a partisan opportunity for Republicans to stick it to Democrats.

“Fake but Accurate Again?” says the Weekly Standard headline on an article by John Hinderaker, an attorney and conservative blogger who had challenged the CBS documents.

Howard Kurtz is in full “cover” mode. He defends the stories attributing the memo to the Republicans by saying, “there is no hard evidence that the memo is fake”. This is a new standard in journalism then. Yesterday David Shaw touted journalists as “accurate” and “fair” while disparaging bloggers. Today Howard Kurtz declares that “journalists” can report anything as fact and it is up to opponents to prove them false. That doesn’t strike me as much of a standard.

As far as the truth goes:

A Democratic Senate official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the party is not publicly discussing the memo’s origin, said: “It’s ridiculous to suggest that these are some talking points concocted by a Democratic staffer. The fact is, these talking points were given to a Democratic member by a Republican senator.” Democratic aides, in turn, gave the memo to reporters, as the New York Times reported last week.

The only ones we know were passing out the memo were Democrat sraffers, where did they get it? If from a Republican Senator’s office, which one, and when?

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