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View Diary: Some Would Have You Believe David Brooks Is An Airhead (253 comments)

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  •  Goodwin's plagiarism doesn't condemn her in toto. (0+ / 0-)

    It ill becomes a self-proclaimed big-tent Democrat to insist that she be silenced for her crimes against literature.

    •  Literature? (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      3goldens, kaye, isis2, Big Tent Democrat

      Goodwin is writing non-fiction, so accuracy is paramount.  However, for either fiction or non-fiction, plagiarism is unacceptable.

      'Silenced' is another matter.  Having a spot on a nationally televised broadcast should be a priveledge for the most reliable and respected sources (OK let's not get into right-wing nut shows).  Using a plagiarist as a reliable source for commentary diminishes the quality of discussion.

      •  Nonfiction is literature. n/t (0+ / 0-)
      •  What does "reliable source for commentary" mean? (0+ / 0-)

        It seems to conflate two very different concepts, fact and opinion.

        •  Well, it seems to me that that's what pundits do. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Pundits are folks who sit around and give their opinion of stuff.  So why the heck should we listen to them?  (As opposed to you or me, everyone should listen to us.)

          Pundits or editorialists are paid to give their opinions based on their review of the issue - whatever the news of the day might be.  So if you are choosing a pundit, you want somebody with expertise in an area.  Whether that area is politics, science or history, you start out with the thought that the pundit's ideas will be valuable based on their experience.  So, to my thinking, if the pundit's expertise is suspect - and this is the reason they've been asked to comment - then their commentary will be less valuable.

          In this case, we have a person who's veracity is in question.  We see that she's not told the truth in matters regarding book quotations.  Can we then also rely on her to be telling the truth about her knowledge of history at any given moment in her pundit commentary?  Maybe yes, maybe no.

          Have you ever personally had a discussion with someone who just 'pulls a fact out of the air' to make a point?  Later then it turns out that the fact or story was complete fiction, invented to reinforce their argument.  We've sure seen this on say, Bill O'Reilly - he does this all the time.  But on the NewsHour, the impression you get is that they are trying to avoid having the kind of people who are there to make emotional arguments not based in facts or reality.  They seem to want experts, who may sometimes say 'I don't know' or who won't just make stuff up but be making arguments based on facts.

          So the lack of professional credibility would directly impact a person's usefulness as a potential pundit guest.  That's how I see it.

          •  "give their opinion of stuff" and "report stuff" (0+ / 0-)

            are two completely different concepts. Despite what those pundits might have you believe. (We're liberals--we think for ourselves, right?)

            None of the bad things that Doris Kearns Goodwin did (and yes, they were bad things) have any bearing on her ability to render and communicate informed opinions on topics she knows well.

            For example, when the topic is the Iraq Study Group, I'd like to know what parallels Goodwin sees between it and the "Wise Men" who advised LBJ.

            I'm a liberal. I reject the misguided and mean-spirited notion that the sentence for plagiarism involves duct tape applied to the mouth.

            •  It's all about trust then (0+ / 0-)

              You see the bad things she did as not having any bearing on her ability to be a pundit; but I do.  We disagree on this point.  I guess for me, it's hard for folks to win back my trust.  I think I'm a liberal, too, in spite of this.

              The thing about the NewsHour is - they could choose someone else, without any cloud on their background.  I'm sure there are lots of qualified historians who would love to be invited.  For me, I think it would be good to give someone else the opportunity.  This doesn't imply silencing Goodwin - she can voice her opinions whereever;  it implies opening opportunity to someone else.

              •  If she had stolen her opinions, then yes, (0+ / 0-)

                she would be unqualified to give opinions. But that's not what she did.

                She didn't even make things up, as Jayson Blair did. What she did, and all she did, was to pass off others' work as her own--a serious error she'll spend the rest of her career trying to atone for. I say that's appropriate, and anything beyond that inappropriate.

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