Bloggety Blah Blah Blah — February 21, 2011 at 10:41 pm

Insipid New York Times reporting worse than was first thought


Last Friday I blogged about an absurd New York Times article that highlighted a Democrat that supports the moronic tea party Congresswoman from Minnesota, Michele Bachmann. This person chosen was sourced as, I kid you not, “one person on a blog”.

Later that day, Jason Linkins of the Huffington Post ran a piece in which he quoted my blog and linked it as well:

Hey, everyone! Watch me as I get my own random person on a blog, to counter this, all while properly identifying and linking to them:

Word of advice to any aspiring journalists: if you are reduced to citing “one person on a blog” as your source, it’s probably time to find another occupation.

Buried in the middle of the piece is the part that should have been the real headline:

“Ms. Bachmann was wrong that Mrs. Obama wants the government to pay for breast pumps; the I.R.S. would simply allow people to deduct breast-feeding expenses if they itemize, or use the pre-tax dollars in their medical savings accounts to pay for pumps.”

And neither of these things was what “one person on a blog” was referencing. Really, really shabby journalism.

You know what? The blogger that I found and can identify and can link to (at Eclectablog) makes a really excellent point! If you can concede the fact that Michele Bachmann was wrong, what value are you adding by finding some random person who won’t identify themselves, claims to be a blogger but won’t prove that claim, and is also wrong?

Well, today, Jason Linkins ran a follow-up piece where he identified the “one person on a blog” as an anonymous commenter on a blog on the City Pages website from the Twin Cities.

Here’s the comment:

Holy mackeral! I might have agree with Michelle Bachman on this one!

Okay, let’s have a closer look at that comment. Notice anything wrong with it? No, let me rephrase that. Notice FOUR things wrong with that? They are:

  1. “Mackerel” spelled wrong.
  2. Missing “to” between “have” and “agree”.
  3. “Michele” spelled wrong.
  4. “Bachmann” spelled wrong.

Here’s how the New York Times piece wrote it:

“Holy mackerel, I might have to agree with Michele Bachmann on this one!” noted one person on a blog.

The author of that piece, Kate Zernike, corrected not one but FOUR mistakes in the comment by the anonymous and clearly intelligence-challenged commenter on a very obscure blog that she used as her source. This was her example that “hey, on this issue, even some Democrats think Michelle Obama is wrong and Michele Bachmann is right!”

In my original blog entry, I called this “really, really shabby” journalism. I’m going to now up this from “really, really shabby journalism” to “OMFG, are you KIDDING me? shabby journalism”. Seriously, people, this is the New York Times, fer cryin’ out loud.

Oh, and Linkins linked my blog again in his piece today. I’m sure my check from AOL will arrive any day now.

I’m “some random guy on a blog just sayin’…