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Grudging Credit to Glenn Greenwald

John on November 24, 2010 at 8:58 am

I’m not a fan of Glenn Greenwald or of Salon, but when you’re right, you’re right:

Today, The Nation — a magazine which generally offers very good journalism — subjects John Tyner to similar treatment, with such a shoddy, fact-free, and reckless hit piece (by Mark Ames and Yasha Levine) that I’m genuinely surprised its editors published it.  Beyond the inherent benefit of correcting the record, this particular article is suffused with all sorts of toxic though common premises that make it worth examining in detail.

Greenwald then proceeds to show, in some detail, that Nation piece really is fact-free and shoddy. It turns out the authors claim to fame is being the first people to claim the Tea Parties were Astroturf. Yes, apparently they still believe that on the basis of a few phone calls and a budget suitable to throw a block party, Freedom Works organized hundreds of Tea Parties involving hundreds of thousands of people nationwide.

This paragraph near the end deserves special commendation for calling out something most liberals seem eager to ignore:

And therein lies the most odious premise in this smear piece:  anyone who doesn’t quietly,  meekly and immediately submit to Government orders and invasions — or anyone who stands up to government power and challenges it — is inherently suspect.  Just as the establishment-worshiping, political-power-defending Ruth Marcus taught us today in The Washington Post, objecting to what the Government is doing here is just immature and ungrateful; mature, psychologically healthy people shut up and submit.

Again, I’m not a fan of Greenwald’s work (even this piece takes a cheap shot at Michelle Malkin) but I have to offer him some grudging respect on this issue. A lot of his compatriots who were in the business of mercilessly attacking George W. Bush for crimes real and imagined have suddenly become meek little mice in the wake of Obama’s inaguration. This is despite the fact that Obama has adopted and indeed enhanced most of Bush’s war policies. It shows that what most of the critics really cared about wasn’t the policies it was politics. Glenn Greenwald, to his credit, seems to be one of the few liberals who hasn’t gone silent in the Age of Obama.

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Category: Politics |

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