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June 25, 2007



There are few things that inspire greater disgust in me than journos parading their virtue while letting crooks and politicians get away with murder. There's a characteristic tone that comes into their voices, "you're not suggesting that we violate the Code of Ethics, are you?" they chime with strident rectitude, as Rome burns and the criminals laugh at the fourth estate's self-imposed Pollyanna ethical constraints.

Here's a scenario: it's 1943, and you have filed a story with your Berlin editor revealing the true meaning of Sonderbehandlung ("Special Handling"). You obtained the story by impersonating an SS officer, gaining access to the camp in Silesia, and sitting down to some sausage and schnapps with Commandant Hoess, who, in a moment of back-slapping good humor among six-foot-plus, pure Aryan Kameraden, has let you in on the real meaning of the term.

"Sorry Ken, it's a great story, but that's just not the way we practice journalism here" says the rueful but proud-he-knows-his-ethics editor as you sputter, "but sir, they're exterminating an entire race!" "Doesn't matter Ken, impersonating any military officer -- much less an elite member of the SS -- is a crime under the laws of this Reich, and we will not be a party to it! Now, somebody bring me that copy for tomorrow's edition about the administration's Strength through Joy travel programs. Speer's people tell me they're credited with a 20 percent increase in productivity at the Schweinfurt ball-bearing factory. Now that's news you can use!"

Ryan Ver Berkmoes

Kurtz and by association Wertz are shills for the cozy DC establishment. You won't see them break a sweat until someone threatens the Media-Governmental complex and then it's 'bring all guns to bear'. In their world we know all the news already so there's no need to report it, just regurgitate more of the pap from the governmental buddies they yucked it up with during Rich Little. People think we are ill-served by government. We are just as ill-served by the DC press corps who have failed in their very role as watchdogs in our democracy. Maybe if some of them had an ounce of independence and weren't worried about pissing off a lunch buddy (and losing 'access'!?!) the last few years would have been different. But oh I forgot, your average DC press person thinks integrity and competence in public service are merely the fantasies of rubes. Looks like Wertz has a bright future ahead, how do you spell 'K Street?'

Robert Green

has this article been changed from its original incarnation in any way? and has that change in any way cut against, or supported, its original supposition?

of course i know the answer to these questions: the writer of this article had a point of view on silverstein's piece, a negative one. he used an incorrect spin based on not having read the piece (oy!) to attack silverstein for a crime he did not commit.

this entry has now been redacted, but there is no acknowledgment of the change, nor is there any acknowledgment that the essential nature of this post is wrong.

this is a serious breach of any kind of journalistic ethics. but hey, why even point out that this is a tad ironic.

physician, heal thyself.

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