September 27, 2009

Is it wrong for me to wait too long before writing about what the NYT public editor has written about why the NYT took so long to write about the ACORN story?

Somehow I, a lone blogger, feel that it is wrong for me to wait, so how absurd it feels to me that the Times, with all its resources, waited as long as it did.

You can read what the public editor, Clark Hoyt, has to say on the subject here. Note the URL. I love the way the URL generator coined the word "pubed" out of public editor. It's not a new coinage though. Urban Dictionary has already defined "pube" — usually a noun — as a verb. Definition #5:
to place a hair from the pubic male region on a piece of food to be served to a customer usually though not necessarily, by a worker of the establishment

"i was pubed last night by the guys at jj's" (past tense)
There's got to be an analogy here, but I will move back to Hoyt's gentle probing of his employer. I'll skip a lot of the details, which you either know or can read at the first link. I'll just quote a couple things I want to comment on.
Some stories, lacking facts, never catch fire. But others do, and a newspaper like The Times needs to be alert to them or wind up looking clueless or, worse, partisan itself.
Some editors told me they were not immediately aware of the Acorn videos on Fox, YouTube and a new conservative Web site called BigGovernment.com.
And Hoyt yelled "You lie!" No, he probably didn't, but come on. They had to be lying. I'd prefer to think they were lying. How could they be that out of the loop? It takes 2 seconds to glance at Drudge and Memeorandum. If you have any interest in current events, it's harder not to do than to do.

And what's with "Some stories, lacking facts, never catch fire." Isn't the Times in the business of looking for facts? A great newspaper should be setting the "fires"  — breaking stories — not covering stories that other people have broken, which is what the Times was left doing with ACORN.
[O]n Sept. 16, nearly a week after the first video was posted, The Times took note of the controversy, under the headline, “Conservatives Draw Blood From Acorn, Favored Foe.”...
By stressing the politics, the article irritated more readers. “A suspicious person might see an attempt to deflect criticism of Acorn by highlighting how those pesky conservatives are at it again,” said Albert Smith of Chatham, N.J.

I thought politics was emphasized too much, at the expense of questions about an organization whose employees in city after city participated in outlandish conversations about illegal and immoral activities....
Emphasizing the politics was a way of pretending that the earlier story wasn't news fit to print. It wasn't so embarrassingly late to be talking about the politics of it all.
[The reporter Scott] Shane said he thought it was correct to approach the Acorn sting as a political story. Absent that aspect, he said, the discussion of prostitution by low-level employees was not compelling news.

Some conservatives think O’Keefe and Giles were doing work that should have been done by the mainstream media. But most news organizations consider such tactics unethical — The Times specifically prohibits reporters from misrepresenting themselves or making secret recordings. And the two were sloppy with facts.
All that may be true, but why hasn't the Times ever investigated ACORN in all these years? Why was it left to a couple of quirky amateurs to bring some light to a huge shady operation. Follow great journalistic ethics and investigate some things and bring us some facts.
Jill Abramson, the managing editor for news, agreed with me that the paper was “slow off the mark,” and blamed “insufficient tuned-in-ness to the issues that are dominating Fox News and talk radio.” She and Bill Keller, the executive editor, said last week that they would now assign an editor to monitor opinion media and brief them frequently on bubbling controversies. Keller declined to identify the editor, saying he wanted to spare that person “a bombardment of e-mails and excoriation in the blogosphere.”
So you're assigning somebody to get the clues you've been too lame to pick up, and yet you don't want people to be able to send him clues because — you've got to be kidding! — he'd get too much email. Who with any level of connectedness has not learned to deal with a ton of email?! Come on. I want to just yell "bullshit!," but I'll spell it out. I get 100s of email messages every day, and it's not even my job to pick up clues. I deal with it, and it's not even that hard. You have an email address that is different from the one you use with people you know and trust, and you scan the first lines as they appear in the inbox. From that alone, you can see what's going on, and you can choose to click through to whatever you want and spend as little as half a second reading it if you are any good. Damn, if your clue-getter isn't able to do that, you might as well give up and write more stories about what middle-aged moms in Park Slope are saying about popsicles and iPhones.

And as for the desire to avoid excoriation in the blogosphere... have a nice day.

107 comments:

lucid said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lucid said...

The thing that shows how much of a sealed bubble they live in is that they would expect anyone to believe their lie that "We just didn't know" what everyone from the US Congress to the NY City Council knew.

Aren't newspapers supposed to know things?

AllenS said...

Well written, Althouse.

c3 said...

Absent that aspect, he said, the discussion of prostitution by low-level employees was not compelling news.

Huh!!!.... don't you mean the aiding and abetting of individuals trying to set up an underage whore house and all in the name of community organizing. Desperately trying to take off my partisan hat, that sure seems compelling to me (particularly when it seems to be not just one isolated office.)

At a minimum it demands a "What the hell kind of organization are you running here!? Or is no one minding the store?"

Is there any way for someone to do an objective review of "stories" first percolating in the blogosphere and to track how quickly (if at all) they are picked up by key MSM outlets (i.e. NYT, WaPo, etc) and then see if there is any difference between stories that favor one party's agenda over the others?

steve said...

"and the two were sloppy with facts". What facts were they sloppy with? All they did was turn on a hidden camera and start recording. They let the videos speak for themselves.

dbp said...

"Damn, if your clue-getter isn't able to do that, you might as well give up and write more stories about what middle-aged moms in Park Slope are saying about popsicles and iPhones."

Classic Althouse line: And the reason why I keep coming back here.

wv hestsatc-- the feeling of unrestrained joy that comes over scarlet lettered ladies.

t-man said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
t-man said...

I think you are falling for misdirection from Hoyt. The Times did investigate ACORN, and the assigned reporter found some pretty interesting facts about ACORN coordinating with the Obama campaign. This was all before the election, and the NYT editors spiked the story because they didn't want to hurt Obama. Michelle Malkin has the details on her website.

Tom Watson said...

I hope the Urban Dictionary gave credit to Clarence Thomas, who famously pubed Anita Hill.

EDH said...

Pubes are nothing to laugh about.

Curb: Mary, Joseph and Larry

Nothing goes right for Larry during this Christmas Episode. He starts off by having to go to the doctor because he has a pubic hair caught in his throat that’s given him a dry cough...


Video.

wv - "hymeme" = transmitting the notion that one is still a virgin

William said...

Some facts are more factual than other facts. Malcolm Muggeridge was a reporter for the Guardian in Moscow during the thirties. The Guardian was a liberal British newspaper. Muggeridge was one of the few western reporters who wrote about the Soviet famine. The Guardian printed his articles but they held them back until a day when they could headline some fresh Nazi atrocity and, thus, bury his article inside the paper. During the twentieth century the sins of capitalism and fascism have been covered exhaustively. That's as it should be. But the sins of communism were revealed reluctantly and grudgingly. Worse there seems to be no curiousity on the part of journalists as to why such paragons of the profession as Lincoln Steffens, the Webbs, Theodore White, I.F. Stone. et al. got so many things wrong.

Bruce Hayden said...

I think that Ann has it right - if you are trying to figure out what is going on in the world, there are a couple sites out there that are a daily necessity, and one of them is Drudge. It would have taken them a minute a day to have detected this pending scandal, and then they could have linked to one of the videos, and hopefully gone from there.

The NYT though probably hasn't forgiven Drudge for being instrumental in getting Clinton impeached. The problem for them though is that if there is a scandal in this country, or maybe even outside, it will probably be there, and if it involves high level Democrats, or their major supporters (like ACORN), it will be there. Guaranteed.

John Lynch said...

I think they do read Drudge, and this bullshit about being ignorant is just hiding their bias.

The truth is most of the stuff on Drudge or the internet is safely ignored and it doesn't matter. The Post can get away with it-- ninety nine times out of a hundred (and to be fair much of it isn't worth their time).

It's rare that one big scandal comes along that they have to cover, but it's worth taking the heat to bury the other ninety nine.

Alex said...

Althouse clearly felt the need to throw fresh red bloody meat to her hillbillies. Thanks Ann.

Montagne Montaigne said...

The New York Times is a private company. If you don't like what they are selling, don't buy it. They are under no obligation to read Drudge or write about ACORN. Get a life.

p.s. Does it ever bother you that Blackwater loses more money in Iraq in a month than ACORN has ever received from the government for the past 20 years?

Here is the frigging federal contractor misconduct database

http://www.contractormisconduct.org/

ACORN, not even CLOSE to being in the top 100. Yet they are the devil to conservatives. I wonder why. HMMMMMMMMM. Why could it be.

M. Simon said...

At lest the NYTs got in an Obama Democrat saying "She's bright" about Palin in Hong Kong.

At the bottom of the article of course. But still.

I blogged it:

She Is Bright - They Are Stuck On Stupid

M. Simon said...

Ha Blackwater ever been convicted of vote fraud? Or helped clients get NINJA mortgages?

Direct costs are not the only way to cause big trouble.

daubiere said...

has anyone noticed that "alex" seems to be scizophrenic? sometimes hes an overwrought "wingnut" type and sometimes hes a bitter lefty. i think someones playing games here....

Montagne Montaigne said...

ACORN-- never "convicted of vote fraud." There were incidents of voter REGISTRATION fraud, which is not at all the same thing, in that one leads to a false vote being cast and effects the outcome of an election and one, well, doesn't.

Conservatives acting like ACORN is a vast organized crime conspiracy is freaking disgusting. You don't know what ACORN is, you don't know what it does-- all you want is witches to burn.

Zachary Paul Sire said...

Of all the organizations and businesses out there running scams and being immoral, ACORN is the one I'm supposed to care about? No thanks.

elHombre said...

A particularly apropos reminder when discussing the selective journalism of the NYT:

It is in the nature of [secular progressivism] for its adherents to make a certain kind of lying – and not only to others but first of all to themselves – a fundamental part of their lives.

It is always a mistake to assume that [secular progressives] do not know the truth about the political reality they espouse. If they don’t know the truth (or all of it) one day, they know it the next, and it makes absolutely no difference to them politically. For their loyalty is to something other than the truth. And no historical enormity is so great, no personal humiliation or betrayal so extreme, no crime so heinous that it cannot be assimilated into the ‘ideals’ that govern the [secular progressive] mind, which is impervious alike to documentary evidence and moral discrimination.– Hilton Kramer

Kramer was writing about Stalinists. However, secular progressives in the US would be Stalinists but for constraints imposed on them by the traditional American institutions they work to dismantle: The Constitution, capitalism and Judeo-Christian values.

WV "lardei" = Time interval set aside to honor Obama's budget proposals.

WV "jinglics" = Patriotism for Obots.

tjl said...

"The New York Times is a private company. If you don't like what they are selling, don't buy it. They are under no obligation to read Drudge or write about ACORN."

Perhaps, except that few other private companies proclaim themselves to be the Newspaper of Record that determines what news is Fit to Print.
If they're going to pursue advocacy journalism they'll have to abdicate the pontifical throne.

tjl said...

"ACORN-- never "convicted of vote fraud." There were incidents of voter REGISTRATION fraud, which is not at all the same thing, in that one leads to a false vote being cast and effects the outcome of an election and one, well, doesn't"

It doesn't? How does fraudulent voter registration not lead to the casting of a false vote?

AJ Lynch said...

Acorn is a canary in the mine shaft. It shows there is a large, well financed but corrupt non-profit group. It is likely there are many others.

Americans should refrain from making charitable donations until these charities and non-profits clean up their acts.

garage mahal said...

Why was it left to a couple of quirky amateurs to bring some light to a huge shady operation.

Huge and shady. That sounds pretty ominous. But not compared to any defense contractor who in one month was paid more than ACORN was in the past decade. Without the rapes, murders, and the fraud. One thing you can guarantee is you will never see the story of the KBR employee who was raped and tossed in a container for a week on this blog or the Times. I call bullshit.

Montagne Montaigne said...

Voter registration fraud was a scam ON acorn, not by acorn.

You can't cast a vote with a false registration. The canvassers who committed the fraud wanted to hit their registration quotas without actually getting the registrations.

There has never been an instance of a vote being cast that was fraudulent... The whole notion is a republican boondoggle to suppress the votes of lower income people by making it harder to vote.

LonewackoDotCom said...

I'm sure the NYT's new BlogMonitor will be along shortly to review Althouse's post and determine whether there's anything newsworthy in it.

Meanwhile:

1. If anyone wants to make the NYT, CNN, and the AP look bad in a non-opiniony way and you can make phone calls, get the answers to the questions in the FAX at the end of this. Several hundreds of people have seen that page, but no one to my knowledge has been able to get over their fear of making a phone call.

2. Over two years ago I called Hoyt a disingenuous shill and a hack.

3. And, almost a year ago I offered this post about Scott Shane, the NYT reporter who wrote one of the ACORN stories.

avwh said...

The NYT doesn't deserve to stay in business. Their bias and cheerleading is showing more & more, and their basic business tools are lacking.

I couldn't change my address online when I moved; had to use a live customer service person, and they STILL couldn't deliver the paper. Nor could I pay directly online when I tried, so I finally said, "screw it - you don't deserve my money any longer, between the political bias and basic business incompetence."

ACORN exposed them for the flacks they are. And I love the lefty trolls changing the subject to Blackwater - apparently, mercenaries are WORSE than child prostitution supporters and tax cheaters, in the lefty world.

daubiere said...

dont partisans ever feel ashamed shilling and running interference for anyone and everyone they think is "on their team"?? I know i would. not everything your "team" does is defensible nor should be defended. acorn is not worth defending. the absolutely embarrassing behavior of the so-called paper of record is not worth defending. it wont make you a bad liberal, it wont make us think youre a secret right winger. it will make us think youre principled rather than just a partisan hack.

start defending ideas not parties. the constant attempt to deflect and belittle makes you look desperate.

elHombre said...

@Montaigne: Do you ever have a point besides offering hackneyed defenses for your cause?

"If you don't like what they are selling, don't buy it."

Are you kidding? We're not talking about candy bars. The NYT professes to be a news source and is granted privileged status because of it. It also professes to be the best and most reliable of the genre and it effects our lives whether we buy it or not. You know, "All the news that's fit to print" and the like.

"... one leads to a false vote being cast and effects the outcome of an election and one, well, doesn't."

So you really think that voter registration fraud doesn't effect the outcome of elections? Then why prohibit it? Or more importantly, why do it?

John Lynch said...

I don't understand how misconduct by a defense contractor excuses misconduct by a nonprofit. So, they're both wrong. Criticizing one is not defending the other.

PatCA said...

If they don't follow the blogs, as they claim, how did they know about Althouse?

Tomorrow, short correction on page A37: "We're just liars."

John Burgess said...

Montagne Montaigne says: "All you want is witches to burn."

We'll settle for sock puppets like you. You're clearly marching as ordered, so the mass won't miss you much.

The NYT claims itself to be exceptional. It also claims constitutional protections unavailable to the ordinary people. In doing so, it sets itself to be held to a much higher standard than the ordinary Joe Bloke blogger. So when it fails, it's worth pointing it out.

WV: obaoke... A new PR ploy to get the forests singing the praises of Our Leader

elHombre said...

Montaigne wrote: Voter registration fraud was a scam ON acorn, not by acorn....

You can't cast a vote with a false registration. ... There has never been an instance of a vote being cast that was fraudulent... The whole notion is a republican boondoggle to suppress the votes of lower income people....

These statements are either demonstrably false or factually insupportable.

Why are you offering this bullshit? Are you an ACORN pimp or just a dupe?

Montagne Montaigne said...

The NYT, ACORN and the left in general don't need me to "defend" them. That's not why I'm here.

I'm here because proud idiots shouldn't be able to play in closed circles of ignorance.

And it's fun.

The conservative obsession with ACORN demonstrates priorities. As long as you are blowing up something or someone, you can do no wrong.

Start messing with giving downtrodden people a little political juice, and watch out.

Montagne Montaigne said...

el Hombre-- the burden of proof is on you then. Prove it.

Quixotic said...

Now I'm wondering what middle-aged moms in Park Slope are saying about popsicles and iPhones.

Knowing those Park Slope Moms, I bet it's really lewd.

rcocean said...

"Damn, if your clue-getter isn't able to do that, you might as well give up and write more stories about what middle-aged moms in Park Slope are saying about popsicles and iPhones."

Ha.

John Stodder said...

Shorter version of garage, montaigne, zachary:

Squirrel!

rhhardin said...

I wonder how much could be accounted for if you said the NYT was the paper of the matriarchy.

Steven said...

"There has never been an instance of a vote being cast that was fraudulent."

Really? So the New York Times story "Boss Tweed is Gone, But Not His Vote" is phony?

Chip Ahoy said...

Montagne Montaigne, you make a very good and wise point up there.

The lowest amount on that useful list you linked is 517.1 million. Acorn Federal contract is 1/10 that at 53 million, not including state contracts. So it doesn't even come close to dead last for the top 100 government contracts listed. (Lockheed Martin, where dear lo' Dad retired, bless 'im, highest at 34,234.9 million)

Because of your link, I have changed my entire view on this, and now consider Acorn a mere blip on the screen, notwithstanding their videotaped by amateurs tax dodging and illegal alien child-prostituting advising, their general unaccountability and their many layered shifty shell-games that institutions like NYT have tried so hard but eventually failed to ignore. I mean that.

Ta.

Now, having changed my attitude so profoundly like this, and expecting more of your cogent persuasion, may I be so bold as to ask a small favor? Please, do learn the simple html code for hypertext link. Goes like this:

Where the link address is copy/pasted between " "

And the clickable words that show blue in the comments are typed between > <

This small effort will save us all, hundreds of us, eager to have our minds influenced and our values shifted, the trouble of opening another tab and c/p into a new address bar.

kcom said...

"Some stories, lacking facts, never catch fire. But others do, and a newspaper like The Times needs to be alert to them or wind up looking clueless or, worse, partisan itself."

It doesn't help their believeability in making a statement like that when one thinks back to last year's campaign and the "John McCain had an affair with a lobbyist" story that they were happy to run on their front page. By most accounts, including even by many other news outlets and even Barack Obama supporters, the whole thing stunk to high heaven. They were roundly criticized from all quarters for printing one of the lamest, least supportable political stories of the year. If their preferred M.O. is to sit on stories supposedly unsupported by facts, what is their explanation for that incident? To say it never caught fire is an understatement. It doesn't take a cynic to conclude that partisanship has to be a very large part of it. They'll bend the rules to trash people they oppose politicaly but be hyper-observant of the rules when a story would make their side look bad. John Edwards, Van Jones, ACORN, and on and on.

Some editors told me they were not immediately aware of the Acorn videos on Fox, YouTube and a new conservative Web site called BigGovernment.com."

Right. And then when they did become aware of them they still did nothing. And then when they finally did something they were journalistically derelict. They should have told us who (ACORN), what (evidence of corruption and law breaking), where (in offices all over the country), when (just a month ago), why (well, who knows). But at that point, after the facts were established, they could have gone into the analysis to figure out why and also explain how it all came to light. Instead, the first sentence of their very first story was an attempted political hatchet job on Republicans. (Repbublicans were also mentioned before Van Jones in their very first story about him, too.) Basically, they were poisoning the well, so by the time they got around to giving you actual facts they would have already set the meme with which you were supposed to interpret them, instead of letting you use your own intelligence to figure out what to think yourself. It's just shoddy, shoddy, embarassing journalism. And the fact that they did it twice in a month on stories they found uncomfortable shows that it wasn't a fluke the first time. They need to go back to journalism school and re-learn the basics of writing a news story that's about the facts, rather than an editorial masquerading as a news story.

Chip Ahoy said...

F**k. Blogger comments erases code.

Goes like this: ‹a href=""›‹/a›

Quayle said...

"If you don't like what they are selling, don't buy it.

Just a tip, Montagne. That line of argument and persuasion doesn't really work when the clear trend is that people aren't buying it.

Montagne Montaigne said...

Ha ha Chip. But look, is it possible to not defend the corruption of these acorn employees, while not condemning the organization as a whole as some kind of mafia setup? That's really all I'm saying.

Some perspective.

Lem said...

William Safire is dead at 79.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/28/us/28safire.html

Paco Wové said...

"If you don't like what they are selling, don't buy it."

This also seems particularly irony-rich coming from someone who only comes to this blog to complain about the slant of the content.

Montagne Montaigne said...

The bigger question in my mind is why does the New York Times bother paying an editor (the Public Editor) to listen to the whining of people who hate the New York Times, and only read it to find things to bitch about?

Like the people who get their news from Fox and Malkin and co. are really propping up the New York Times with their patronage. Those people HATE the New York Times! Why bother to listen to people who will hate you no matter what you do?

William T Sherman said...

Scenario:

Two left-wing guerrilla film makers pose as drug dealers, and walk into multiple National Rifle Association offices asking for tips on how to acquire guns illegally, each time video taping employees happily offering them such advice and then posting the recordings on YouTube and Daily Kos.

How long after the first video gets posted does the NY Times report it?

A) less than ten seconds
B) Within 24 hours
C) Within a week
D) A week to ten days
E) Ha Ha just kidding -- the film makers were working for the Times all along.

Steven said...

Well, Montagne Montaigne? Does a story in the New York Times not meet your burden of proof?

The obvious line of attack for you would be that the story isn't a recent one. However, the story itself establishes that fraud can fly under the radar for decades without getting attention.

Which is, of course, only logical; the local district attorneys who would naturally investigate voter fraud and have the local resources to uncover it are, in fact, put into office by the same fraudulent elections.

As long as federal investigations under a Republican president are delayed by internal resistance by members of the DoJ Civil Rights Division until a Democrat takes office, who will investigate and discover cases of pro-Democrat personation in Harlem?

elHombre said...

@Montaigne: Let's see, Montaigne, I wrote: [Your] statements are either demonstrably false or factually insupportable.

And you responded: el Hombre-- the burden of proof is on you then. Prove it.

Anyone with a modicum of intelligence can see that questioning your undocumented assertions does not shift the burden of proof to me. Consequently, let me reassert the applicable portion of my 1:28 post:

It is in the nature of [secular progressivism] for its adherents to make a certain kind of lying – and not only to others but first of all to themselves – a fundamental part of their lives.

Your posts easily meet my burden of proof on this point. Or, opting for the colloquial: Liar, liar, pants on fire!

Dust Bunny Queen said...

You can't cast a vote with a false registration.

Of course you can. What are you 7th grade? All you have to do is not get caught. Register in several locations and vote more than once.


There has never been an instance of a vote being cast that was fraudulent

REALLY? Not ever? Not even the dead people in Chicago?. Votes cast on behalf of people's dogs?

Never you say?

In February, Mr. Sandvick's unit released a 67-page report on what it called an "illegal organized attempt to influence the outcome of (the 2004) election in the state of Wisconsin" -- a swing state whose last two presidential races were decided by less than 12,000 votes.

The report found that between 4,600 and 5,300 more votes were counted in Milwaukee than the number of voters recorded as having cast ballots. Absentee ballots were cast by people living elsewhere; ineligible felons not only voted but worked at the polls; transient college students cast improper votes; and homeless voters possibly voted more than once.



Bullshit I say.

Fred4Pres said...

The Proper NYT Response: "We Suck. We Know It."

miller said...

well, at least they admit they missed it within the same year that they missed it.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

But look, is it possible to not defend the corruption of these acorn employees, while not condemning the organization as a whole as some kind of mafia setup? That's really all I'm saying.

Is it also possible for you to accept that we do not defend the wrong doers at Abu GHraib without you also claiming that everyone associated with the Bush Administration and the Military are in the habit of torture and are war criminals?

I didn't think so.

Jim Howard said...

Professor Ann, I wish you would quit sugar coating everything and tell us what you really think.

Fred4Pres said...

Safire died today, R.I.P.

The NYTs reputation, however, died before he did.

dick said...

MM,

When the ACORN employee registering the voters plies them with crack cocaine to get them to register, then it is a scam BY ACORN, not ON ACORN, that is, unless you are syaing that ACORN is not responsible for what its employees do.

Paul Zrimsek said...

The bigger question in my mind is why does the New York Times bother paying an editor (the Public Editor) to listen to the whining of people who hate the New York Times, and only read it to find things to bitch about?

You tell us. You expect us to listen to your whining about Althouse for free.

dave in boca said...

William Safire R.I.P. As a commenter above noted, the NYT deceased a while back, but everyone is afraid to write the obit.

And, does memory serve, or did Jill Un-tuned-in Abramson also say the same thing about Van Jones three weeks ago when everyone but the Times was following the story?

Maybe Jill needs a replacement, ditto, for Bill and his adoring employer Pinch, but that ain't gonna happen.

AJ Lynch said...

Nah, three weeks ago, Jill Abramson's excuse was "the NYT had a bunch of people on vacation and Van Jones was really just a mid-level White House employee...not high level enough".

John Burgess said...

Chip Ahoy, re: eaten HTML code...

It's not just blogger, it's every blogging software suite I've come across. What you need is escape coding.

Thus,

<a href=""></a>

is transformed into something that shows up.

WV: The 'I' is missing from the palace... palaco

Big Mike said...

Professor, I hope you just needed to exercise your fingers, because you're wasting your effort writing this post. People on the center and right know why the NYT was reluctant and late to the story, and people on the left are still seething that the story got any traction anywhere at all.

@Monty, you old rascal, you. Could you explain why anyone would bother with illegal registrations if not to commit election fraud?

NotYourTypicalNewYorker said...

The left deflects the Acorn story aside as so much fluff but if the name was changed to say The 700 Club or something like that,these same people would be rabidly the other way.

BTW-The Rachel Maddow meme about Halliburton isn't gonna fly this time around,it's been rendered a spent shell.

traditionalguy said...

The excuse that this News organisation does not know news when it sees it is probably true. News is a non-fiction report. The NYT has so seldom run a non-fictional report so they are not able to spot one on a platter(Drudge) in front of them. Does any one remember the shock we had a couple of days ago when Wolf Blitzer of CNN asked a non-fictional question of The Great Leader? That was like salt on the news meal to lessen its bland tastelessness. Just don't expect any added flavor of salt in a NYT bowl of Fictional Mush.

former law student said...

The NY Times has failed to keep up with the times: Everything is serious, everything must be taken at face value, even fratboys&gals dressed up for a Pimps 'n' Hos party. Just because they failed to cover the important Allen Funt revelation that Delaware (or was it New Jersey?) was closed, or neglected to take Alan Abel's Society for Indecency to Naked Animals at face value, doesn't mean that they can try to avoid getting Punk'd now.

The NY Times did publish Alan Abel's obituary prematurely, in 1980. And they're still burning over that whole Jayson Blair thing.) So maybe they have trained themselves to be too skeptical. (Is Fox News? You decide.)

(Equal time: According to Wikip, At the 2000 Republican National Convention in Philadelphia, Abel introduced a campaign to ban all breastfeeding because "it is an incestuous relationship between mother and baby that manifests an oral addiction leading youngsters to smoke, drink and even becoming a homosexual.")

Pastafarian said...

Montagne Montaigne said: “There has never been an instance of a vote being cast that was fraudulent.”

So I guess those multiple videos taken of several people in Cleveland openly admitting to having voted multiple times for BHO were staged; and probably by those same cunning bastards that staged the “moon landing” videos, the Freemasons.

And I guess those precincts that reported more votes than there were registered voters weren’t evidence of fraudulent votes; but rather disproof of the notion that the number of elements in a set is bounded by…the number of elements in that set.

I think you’ve stumbled upon a mathematical find, Montagne. You should publish.

Hey, shithead: I’m one of the 200,000 legitimate voters in Ohio who had their votes nullified by ACORN’s shenanigans. I personally know someone here in Ohio who was instructed to house and feed one of ACORN’s hooligans from Louisiana, who came up here to vote several times himself, to create as many fraudulent registrations as he could, and to bribe as many crackwhores and winos as he could and bus them to the polls during the extraordinary month-long voting period that we had here in 2008.

You know, on the way home from work this afternoon, I listened to “America Left” radio on Sirius; and they were making these same idiotic arguments in defense of ACORN: “But what about Lockheed Martin, and Blackwater, and their multiple fraud indictments?” Apparently, you’ve all received the memo. Interesting, how you on the left seem to march in perfect lockstep. You’ve overlooked the simple fact that Lockheed Martin has a legitimate job to do in defense of our country; and that ACORN is inherently fraudulent, even when they’re not facilitating child prostitution.

former law student said...

The Rachel Maddow meme about Halliburton isn't gonna fly this time around,it's been rendered a spent shell.

Of course it won't. It was DynCorp International employees who ran the child sex ring, not Halliburton. I do find it hard to understand how conservatives can wink at government contractors having sex with preteens, yet come down hard on bored office workers playing along with sick-joking conservative youth. But I guess, to conservatives, fantasy outweighs reality.

The Federal government still gives DynCorp International $2 billion of our tax dollars a year.

former law student said...

I personally know someone here in Ohio who was instructed to house and feed one of ACORN’s hooligans from Louisiana, who came up here to vote several times himself, to create as many fraudulent registrations as he could, and to bribe as many crackwhores and winos as he could and bus them to the polls during the extraordinary month-long voting period that we had here in 2008.

Let us strip Pastafarian of all governmental funding, for by his inaction he has let voter fraud flourish. What is the law on accessory liability in Ohio?

Change your nick, quick, before they're on to you, pasta.

garage mahal said...

et us strip Pastafarian of all governmental funding, for by his inaction he has let voter fraud flourish. What is the law on accessory liability in Ohio?

What's ironic is it was Karl Rove of all people who orchestrated fired US Attorneys because they wouldn't prosecute their bullshit voter fraud claims. Which Republicans feel is blacks and hispanics getting to vote. That's the fraud to them. For all the nonstop ACORN coverage, where are all the actual charges again?

Henry said...

daubiere wrote: dont partisans ever feel ashamed shilling and running interference for anyone and everyone they think is "on their team"??.... start defending ideas not parties. the constant attempt to deflect and belittle makes you look desperate.

Exactly. And let us point out that the first partisan to do so was Scott Shane of the New York Times.

Those here who argue that it is unfair for ACORN to become a scapegoat have a fair beef -- though considering ACORN's incompetence in the trifecta of voter registration AND housing advocacy AND Federal grant management, they may be unique.

Yes, Virginia, there is a scapegoat. Most of what passes for headline news is shallow, image-driven crap. If you don't like it, don't watch it. And don't invoke it when the scandal of the week breaks in your direction.

AJ Lynch said...

FLS:

Who the heck is Alan Abel?

And what the heck does he have to do with Althouse's post which deals with intentional embargoes of bad news stories by the MSM when the stories involve Democrats or their supporters?

Bruce Hayden said...

What's ironic is it was Karl Rove of all people who orchestrated fired US Attorneys because they wouldn't prosecute their bullshit voter fraud claims. Which Republicans feel is blacks and hispanics getting to vote. That's the fraud to them. For all the nonstop ACORN coverage, where are all the actual charges again?

Interesting that you ask that. I had just read this article: Worst trouble with ACORN is at the polls which pointed out that there were some states going after ACORN now for voter fraud, and it had nothing to do with registering Blacks or Hispanics, but rather, that in some states, 40% or so of their registrations were fraudulent. The author pointed at a couple of investigations:

The latest such scandal broke a few weeks ago, when authorities in Florida accused 11 ACORN workers of falsifying information on 888 voter-registration forms.

In May 2009, Nevada's attorney general charged ACORN and two employees with 39 felonies. Authorities raided ACORN offices after complaints about numerous forms with false addresses and names -- including the starting lineup of the Dallas Cowboys. Forty-eight percent of forms turned in were "clearly fraudulent," according to a Las Vegas election official. ACORN recruited felons living in transitional housing in Las Vegas to act as canvassers and promised illegal bonuses if they signed up more than 20 new voters a day
.

And then asked if maybe their registration of 43,000 new "voters" in Minn (where the author lives) provided the 312 votes that gave Al Franken his victory, and the Democrats technically their veto-proof edge in the Senate.

Bruce Hayden said...

When the ACORN employee registering the voters plies them with crack cocaine to get them to register, then it is a scam BY ACORN, not ON ACORN, that is, unless you are syaing that ACORN is not responsible for what its employees do.

It becomes a fraud by ACORN if and when their incentive system is such that it pretty much requires cheating by its employees and associates to make their numbers, but then doesn't have any quality control on the back end to make sure that they didn't cheat.

That has been alleged, but I don't know if it is true or not, and it may vary, state by state.

bagoh20 said...

Compare this story to the Valarie Plame year-long story with a special prosecutor to find out nothing asserted was true and that the real culprit can not be pursued because he was not a left-certified boogie man. Entire forests were felled to print that crap.

Cedarford said...

It's not a new coinage though. Urban Dictionary has already defined "pube" — usually a noun — as a verb. Definition #5:

to place a hair from the pubic male region on a piece of food to be served to a customer usually though not necessarily, by a worker of the establishment.

From that I can gather 3 facts:

1. Females lack pubic hair so they are never at fault.
2. Women are never immature enough to "pube" anyone. That is because women are morally perfect...just ask one, or a syncophantic gay or effeminant male.
3. Women, contrary to facts 1&2, can be vindictive and immature, and many are actually thought to have unshaved "bush's". However, they prefer to reach down male co-worker's pants and yank some male pubes out for decorating the food they serve with.

dick said...

Bruce,

That happened in NW Ohio in the Lima, Ohio area in 2004. There were several court cases brought up about that. Don't know what the final outcome of the cases was but several ACORN employees were handing out the crack cocaine as people filled in the voter registration forms.

I believe that it happened in Cleveland as well in that same election.

Mark said...

I do find it hard to understand how conservatives can wink at government contractors having sex with preteens, yet come down hard on bored office workers playing along with sick-joking conservative youth. But I guess, to conservatives, fantasy outweighs reality.

You're working hard for your money here.

Revenant said...

Of all the excuses offered up in this article, "we didn't notice that it was the top story on the #1 cable news network" is my favorite. Those are some finely-tuned investigative journalism instincts there, boys.

Slow Joe said...

What's strange is how the Austin Statesman went on and on about how because this story is on Fox News, they can't cover it.

Some twisted 'we can't let them have an impact on our agenda' rationale. As if their agenda isn't simply to cover the news. Either that or they assume everyone is watching Fox. The NYT probably realizes that they are not really a news organization anymore. They are an advocacy group, and their readers who want to be informed have supplemented their reading with the internet.

People claiming Voter Fraud fears amount to racism, like Garage, are either lazy trolls or just plain sick and evil. It's wrong to steal votes, ACORN did it, and we all know it. They didn't just make voter registrations that were bull... they made VOTES that COUNTED and shouldn't have. Which is true disenfranchisement.

Of course, very few radical ACORN supporters would mind if 'reich wing' 'faux snooze' 'bushilter' voters lost their votes. They are happy this happened.

Corky Boyd said...

I love how both the Times and Washington Post use similar cover terms for their lack of coverage.

Times: Slow off the mark.
WaPo: Lamentably late.

Both papers put a knock on the O'Keefe's and Gile's journalistic techniques. Guerrilla journalism in the Post and we don't do that sort of thing in the Times.

It's almost as if they compared notes befor writing their stories. Would these two papers ever do anything like that? Hmmm.

Pogo said...

I live in Minnesota, land of Senator Franken, comedian, Air America host, Boys & Girls club loans, and ACORN voter fraud recipient.

I previously wrote about the rising lack of trust I noted in a recent town hall meeting with our congressman, in which there were howls of disapproval when the paper tickets for choosing speakers was used to pick random questioners.

It was quite clear that the elderly people voicing objection were those one would expect to remain silent about such minor details.

But trust is gone, and without it, everything grinds to a halt.

Our Senator may have been elected by fraud. I don't trust MN ACORN to have been honest, and I don't trust MN newspapers to investigate or report on fraud.

It places a nation in serious peril when the elections themselves are untrustworthy.

6p00d83451eb3469e2 said...

"...but why hasn't the Times ever investigated ACORN in all these years?"

Actually the NY Times was investigating ACORN last October, until they spiked it at the request of the Obama campaign. Google 'Stephanie Strom ACORN.'

MathMom said...

Montagne Montaigne said...

Voter registration fraud was a scam ON acorn, not by acorn.

Voter registration fraud as practiced by ACORN is a Cloward-Piven strategy - manufacture chaos and overwhelm the system.

ACORN voter registrars created tens of thousands of bogus registrations, from Mickey Mouse to names from headstones. The point is that the little local office has to process all of these registrations, checking them out to see if they are valid. ACORN dumped the piles of registrations on the desks of those who validate voter registrations on the final day, one month before the election. Usually two or three people man those offices, and they simply could not process them all, even when Donald Duck and Superman were obviously not valid voters. They could see the obvious fakes, but what about the registrations that looked like they could be valid? Just scanning 20,000 voter registration forms takes a long time. When many of them look possibly valid, it takes longer. What should be a straightforward process has now become a zoo.

The offices couldn't validate all the voter registrations by election day, so they allowed provisional ballots to be cast. A horde of people with evil intent can go to many precincts casting provisional ballots under names that are being evaluated. Again, just by merit of the volume of these provisional ballots and the propensity of Dems to litigate elections (see Al Franken), many of those votes will be counted.

Paul said...

I remember The Atlantic doing a long long piece on Harold Raines and the New York Times. It was about that supposed authentic star they had that did all catfish and working class stories that turned out to be a fraud.

Anyways, in the article, Raines said he couldn't get the la-de-da lipwrists to leave the building and go report. He said they said "everything is on the Internet, so why leave?"

Now the editors say they are all out beating the bushes and don't have time for ...what ever.

Der Hahn said...

MathMom, well put.

Even with no vote fraud, bogus registrations make voter turnout look low, providing a self-fulfiling obligation for addition 'get out the vote' efforts and fodder for claims of voter intimidation or vote supression.

lacegrl130 said...

I am not a hillbilly...but if I were - so what?

darrell said...

> Those people HATE the New York Times! Why bother to listen to people who will hate you no matter what you do?

If the New York Times behaved responsibly, maybe people wouldn't hate them so much...?

You are correct that there are those like Malkin etc. who are blinded by partisanship and will never be satisfied. However, if the MSM were to commit to and practice honest journalism, the former, partisan though they may be, would not have a case against it.

Right now they have a very strong case, evidenced by the fact that the only real argument against it is more pathetic partisan stupidity ("Don't buy it if you don't like it! Think of the children!") from shills like you.

The NYT obviously doesn't give a crap about Malkin and Beck. But if people like you start demanding accuracy from them, they'll have to start listening. But you won't, because you like the warm fuzzy feeling you get from reading their garbage...so they will sink.

Peg C. said...

Excellent dissection, Ann. Boiled down to its essence, the NYT believes if they don't report it, it never happened. They do set the agenda for the rest of the state-run media and still have not digested the fact that whole hordes of bloggers, New Media sites such as biggovernment.com, cable and radio are routing around the NYT and the narrative it dictates to its MSM dependents.

Which regularly leaves the NYT exposed as either so clueless or so biased in what it considers news (endless unfounded rumors about McCain and Palin are "news" but hard and ugly truths about ACORN are not?) that it is falling into irrelevance. And as the NYT goes, so go virtually all papers and TV and radio news shows that peddle NYT misinformation as their news.

One almost feels sorry for Hoyt, except that if he had any integrity he'd have left the NYT long since.

Michael said...

"Huge and shady. That sounds pretty ominous. But not compared to any defense contractor who in one month was paid more than ACORN was in the past decade. Without the rapes, murders, and the fraud. "

And here I thought we were paying them for planes, ships and tanks.

My mom worked for Boeing for 20 years. Here I thought she was doing training systems for aircraft so our pilots could fly them right. I'll have to ask her about roaming the countryside in a band of marauders, raping and killing.

Ken said...

Mr Hoyt's job is to defend the newspaper while pretending to represent the public. He does it well.

MathMom said...

Der Hahn @ 7:55 a.m. -

Great point about the claims of voter intimidation or vote supression. I don't think this is what the Founders had in mind.

pinkmonkeybird said...

As Andrew Breitbart says;

It's Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib.

tim maguire said...

In a column full of laughers, I thought this one was the biggest:

" When the Senate voted to cut off all federal funds to Acorn, there was not a word in the newspaper or on its Web site. When the New York City Council froze all its funding for Acorn and the Brooklyn district attorney opened a criminal investigation, there was still nothing."

So the Senate voted on it, the City Council acted on it, but the New York Times didn't yet know about it?

Hoyt is accusing the Times of something more greivous even than lying. He is accusing them of not being a news organization at all.

Which, more and more, they are not.

gk1 said...

Oh dear, the house liberals are doing double time flaking for the paper of record. They must be exhausted after defending obama's many debacles lately. No rest for the weary.

former law student said...

And what the heck does [Alan Abel] have to do with Althouse's post which deals with intentional embargoes of bad news stories by the MSM when the stories involve Democrats or their supporters?

Althouse's post has to do with the failure of the New York Times to take political pranks seriously. The NY Times failed to act as "useful idiots" in the transmission of conservative agitprop to the American public. Thus they must be chastised.

Rich said...

I recently exchanged emails with a very liberal columnist for the very liberal St Pete Times. The article that got my attention was a denunciation of Obama comparisons to Hitler. I emailed him back to say that Obama is not Hitler, but neither was Bush and I didn't see him defending Bush. His response? "Not much to defend there bubela." I replied that it's no wonder papers like the SP Times are doing so poorly when they go out of they way to ignore or insult half the population. A week later the Times announced a 5% pay cut for everybody and a suspension of benefits for retirees. I think it's safe to predict that they will go down screaming, but go down they will.

c3 said...

MM;
Start messing with giving downtrodden people a little political juice, and watch out.
For 20+ years of my professional life I largely worked with the poor and downtrodden. I personally feel it is my and all of our obligations to serve/help the poor and downtrodden. so here's the thing from my perspective:

The LAST thing the poor and downtrodden need is poor service. And at a minimum these videos demonstrate poor management at multiple ACORN sites (and I would therefore assume poor management in the organization as a whole.)

Now certainly the poor and downtrodden don't need "illegal" service and it appears in some of these videos advise to conceal a crime was part of the service offered. But I'll leave that behind and go with the "few bad apples" explanation. If five different ACORN offices offered marginal (at best) tax and housing advise then I would be seriously concerned about the organization as a whole.

Nuclear said...

@Montagne Montaigne :

You can't cast a vote with a false registration.
...
There has never been an instance of a vote being cast that was fraudulent.


Never?
"
Wolf said he agreed to the plea deal because Borgman didn’t understand that he wasn’t eligible to vote, even though he signed the portion of the voter registration form in which the registrant is asked to affirm that the information on the form is correct, that they are an eligible voter and that they have not been convicted of a felony.
"

In this case, the process of checking names against the felon list was successful, and his vote did not count. This process is clearly not perfect in all cases, as evidenced in 2000 in Florida. Therefore voter registration fraud which involves felons un-knowningly registering and voting can and has in fact resulted in a non-zero number of illegitimate votes being case by disenfranchised felons.

I personally believe that this type of fraud is not especially meaningful and that disenfranchisement of any citizen is questionable at best. But if you are going to make maximalist statements about what can and cannot happen, you might wish to try harder to imagine scenarios under which they might.

=darwin

Jon Sandor said...

The New York Times is a private company. If you don't like what they are selling, don't buy it. They are under no obligation to read Drudge or write about ACORN. Get a life.






Wonderful! Does this mean the left will stop whining about Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, and Glen Beck?

No, I didn't think so.

Jon Sandor said...

There has never been an instance of a vote being cast that was fraudulent.




Then how do you explain the multiple instance where more ballots are cast than there are voters in a district?

Jon Sandor said...

is it possible to not defend the corruption of these acorn employees, while not condemning the organization as a whole as some kind of mafia setup?






Maybe it is. But the left IS defending "those acorn employees". Read the comments right here on this blog.

And ACORN as a whole has such a long history of wrongdoing that any reasonable person would have to conclude that the entire organization is rotten from the top down.

M. Simon said...

The New York Times is a private company. If you don't like what they are selling, don't buy it.

That appears to be happening a lot.

Have you seen their stock price lately?

AST said...

The Needle and the Damage Done?

I couldn't care less about what the NYTimes does or doesn't do these days. The less they cover real news, the faster they move toward bankruptcy (and possible buy out by Rupert Murdoch? Oh, wouldn't that be bitter? Too bad it would probably be blocked as an anti-trust violation.)

J said...

The NYT is a rag these days.

Maybe the eco-nuts can use it as non-plush TP, but it has lost so much credibility.

They are so biased they don't even see it anymore.

zefal said...

Wasn't it the NY Times owned "newspaper", the Boston Globe, that staked out Mitt Romney's house to catch the lawn service he used employing illegal aliens. Why yes it was.
Lawn work at Romney's home still done by illegal immigrants
http://www.boston.com/news/local/breaking_news/2007/12/lawn_work_at_ro.html


http://michellemalkin.com/2007/12/07/is-the-boston-globe-exploiting-illegal-aliens/


http://squaringtheglobe.blogspot.com/2007/12/astounding-boston-globe-chutzpah.html