Monday, July 03, 2006

More Media GroupThink

Sunday saw a continued onslaught of talking points in defense of the NY Times publication of the SWIFT program. If you caught Reliable Sources in the morning, one of Howard Kurtz's guests was non-other than Eric Lichtblau, co-author of the NY Times piece in question. He regurgitated the now seemingly "Conventional Wisdom" in defense of the publication. Namely, that it wasn't really secret. As PostWatch put it:

The Lichtblau who wrote that story needs to speak to the one appearing on Kurtz's show; video and partial transcript available ViaInsta at Ian Schwartz's Expose the Left.

...the transcript shows, Lichtblau says Administration officials were "publicly talking about how they are tracing and cutting off money to terrorists, weeks and weeks before our story ran," and that USA Today ran a story recently saying terrorists know their money is being traced. "It is by no means a secret," Lichtblau says.

Tom Maguire skewered this logic in a post yesterday:

This 'everybody knew but Congress' explanation is, one the one hand, touching - it is nice to see the Times so concerned about the preservation of Congressional prerogatives. However, it would look a lot less like an ex post rationalization if the original story had run some quotes from outraged Congressfolks deploring a lack of Administration candor - I cannot find any mention of Senators Frist, Roberts, or Rockefeller, or Representative Jane Harman, ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, in that first pass.

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