Monday, August 04, 2003


Every now and then one is given a bit of a glimpse into just how clueless the guardians of our national discourse really are. Check out these comments by Time magazine editor-at-large Mike Elliot:

Elliott: Most of America has forgotten about 9/11. I don’t think it has changed the United States in the way that people say that it has. If it had done so, in the year afterward you would’ve seen an upsurge in recruitment to the armed forces. It didn’t happen. You would’ve seen an upsurge in religious observance or devotion. It absolutely didn’t happen. Every bit of reporting I’ve done has convinced me that outside of this little hothouse that we live in in New York and Washington, people have left this behind. I don’t think our readers come to this story with some incubus of 9/11.

You see, post 9-11 this was the script we were all supposed to follow. We are all supposed to "get serious," go to church, and join the military. That's what Time magazine told us, anyway. What really happened is we started drinking more. People like Mike Elliot thought it would be patriotic to not bother questioning the events leading up to 9/11, or the administration's handling thereafter. Right now we're eroding civil liberties, deporting thousands of long time Muslim residents over technical vioaltions, shredding our system and notions of justice, and cheering on the slaughter of thousands of innocents in Iraq, ALL BECAUSE OF 9/11.

And Mike Elliot thinks nothing has changed.

Things have changed a lot, just not in the way Andrew Sullivan, Jonah Goldberg, MK Ultrahack, and Mike Elliot told us they would.

Some more comments:

John Donvan, correspondent, ABC News’ Nightline: Our car was literally looted in Safran the first day. The very first day, I reported that it was unstable in the place where just yesterday people were cheering. And our editors in New York were saying, “Well, John, could you get us some of those pictures of people cheering?”


MacArthur: When I see Walt Rogers on CNN announcing while they’re speeding toward Baghdad, “This is fun!,” I think, This is a joke, this is a circus performance, not journalism in a traditional sense that I grew up with. It hearkened back to 1880s and 1890s journalism that Pulitzer and Hearst were so good at. It was a show—until it got ugly and then it wasn’t so much fun anymore.

Hemmer: I listened to Rogers virtually every time he was on the air and I never remember the word fun coming out of his mouth.


Mark Whitaker, editor, Newsweek: We knew a lot of intelligence was flimsy before the war. I think most people understood that the reason we were going to war was because the Bush administration was determined to go to war on this timetable. And I’m not sure it was the intelligence which convinced anyone.

(gee, thanks for telling us)