Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Slate on Sullivan on Shalit


The Sullivan blog's serial maiming of Raines isn't just payback, of course. The Raines regime deserves much of its dressing down. But when Sullivan goes on and on about how the Blair scandal isn't about "an overwhelmed, twenty-something young reporter" but "how he wasn't stopped, and despite crystal-clear warnings, was actually promoted at the behest of the highest authorities in the place: Gerald Boyd and Howell Raines," one can only offer two words: Ruth Shalit. As editor of the New Republic in the mid-'90s, Sullivan protected and defended the young Shalit in an almost identical fashion as she sloppily cribbed and plagiarized again and again after being busted in public again and again. (See Lisa Depaulo's definitive feature in the February/March 1996 George for all the incriminating details.) Of Boyd and Raines, Sullivan writes, "They weren't just AWOL for this calamity; they compounded and magnified it, by promoting Blair again and again, despite their own editors' ferocious objections and a fast-accumulating record of inaccuracy and deception." Talk about glass houses!