Skip to main content

CBS logo in yellow
Sorry, CBS, but that section B, page 6 apology tacked into the Andy Rooney position of last week's 60 Minutes? It doesn't even begin to address the problem.  Let's review.

You paraded an absolute fabrication in front of the world and gave assurances that it was the verified, vetted truth. The subject of this report was so serious, and the accusations it made so vile, that the story made a deep and immediate impact on the business of the nation. In a Congress already beset by deliberate stalling and obstruction, this one report provided succor to those trying to halt the gears of government. It acted as an excuse to delay appointments from the courts to the FCC. It is not an exaggeration to say that the cost of this mistake can be measured in lost jobs, lost dollars, and lost opportunities.

The cost can also be measured in the horrible emotional blows it landed. A swift kick to the families of those who lost their lives in Benghazi, who could easily conclude from this report that their loved ones had been cruelly abandoned. A slap in the face of those in the military and State Department who did all they could to help, and whose motives and actions were again called into doubt.

Your story brought on anguish, misery, and political turmoil. For a lie. But if that was the worst of it, if being "mislead" was your only failing, this pared down apologia might be sufficient.  

The thing is, the story itself was the least of it.

It's not that you made a mistake.  It's that you sold that mistake with such vigor.  You maintained that the report had been verified by FBI sources. It hadn't.  Instead, sources in the FBI quite readily acknowledged that the story your source had provided to them did not match your information. You were already aware that Dylan Davies had given a different account of events to his employer. More than that, you were certainly aware that months of congressional testimony and investigations had produced information that directly contradicted the information in your story. The narrative provided by Davis should have been subject to the kind of extraordinary proof that such extraordinary claims demand. Far from validating the information, you deliberately and knowingly withheld information that made your source appear less reliable, and clearly you did not carry out the level of validation you maintained. That's not being misled. That's abetting a lie. That's collusion.

Why would you take this action? Well, the reporter in the story admitted openly that she had a direct, political motive. She wasn't passing along information to enlighten the public.  She didn't even make a pretense at neutrality. She called for vindictive action against people who had done nothing wrong, on the basis of a story she knew—knew—was at best the unverified second (if not the third) version of a story told by a confessed liar. In running her story without validation, you endorsed that position.

Finally, you ran the story with no admission that CBS' parent organization had a direct, financial interest in raising the profile of this tale and it's author. It's not the first time that a network has failed to divulge its clear interest in promoting other media properties in their portfolio, but it may be the most egregious.

A completely fabricated story? Yes, but that's not the real issue. Dylan Davies may have lied to you, but you lied to us. You pretended to verification you didn't do. You accepted a story from a reporter working toward an acknowledged political goal. And you ran a story in which you had an undisclosed, but clear financial interest.

That's journalistic malpractice in the first degree. "Whoops," is not going to cut it.

Originally posted to Devil's Tower on Tue Nov 12, 2013 at 10:00 PM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

SME in Seattle, Pat K California, fly, Duckman GR, Alumbrados, paradox, buffalo soldier, Sylv, vicki, chrississippi, TXdem, i dunno, From the choir, RF, Bill in Portland Maine, Mogolori, Chi, oofer, filkertom, jexter, MadRuth, lapin, melo, copymark, dalemac, teacherken, LoneStarMike, glitterscale, Liberal Thinking, TrueBlueMajority, NYmom, lost, nmjardine, bosdcla14, Sprinkles, Emerson, Shockwave, Eman, Heimyankel, Minnesota Deb, Sherri in TX, LynChi, genethefiend, eeff, rubyr, frsbdg, TX Unmuzzled, xynz, figdish, Sandy on Signal, dhl, MarkInSanFran, expat germany, expatjourno, Radical Faith, Caneel, dpeifer1949, hubcap, niemann, Addison, Gustogirl, workersuntie, missLotus, 88kathy, Babsnc, EricS, CanadaGoose, pucklady, susakinovember, whenwego, ask, highacidity, boadicea, AlyoshaKaramazov, gayntom, gakke, rabel, roses, samddobermann, Frederick Clarkson, Clues, vmckimmey, fumie, dylanfan, high uintas, Alna Dem, sidnora, wader, lulusbackintown, Lilyvt, Texknight, manneckdesign, psnyder, Tracker, Eyesbright, brainwave, Lawrence, delphine, yet another liberal, DSC on the Plateau, Steven Payne, Sychotic1, Catte Nappe, RuralLiberal, Calidrissp, kalmoth, riverlover, BlogDog, 2dot, Lilith, outragedinSF, imicon, JayBat, zerelda, Sembtex, side pocket, Curt Matlock, mungley, tomjones, JayDean, ScienceMom, Black Max, American in Kathmandu, AaronBa, vivadissent, Josiah Bartlett, rmx2630, eyeball, BDA in VA, environmentalist, decitect, Longwing, Gowrie Gal, Ohkwai, weelzup, libnewsie, rapala, nailbender, davidincleveland, A Citizen, maybeeso in michigan, Simian, marina, 3goldens, jrooth, Ckntfld, LakeSuperior, caul, LarisaW, democracy inaction, irate, PsychoSavannah, sap, JohnB47, elkhunter, citizenx, basquebob, viral, stagemom, Brooke In Seattle, EJP in Maine, Laurence Lewis, Kevskos, Lepanto, Gary Norton, reflectionsv37, fixxit, eru, WinSmith, bleeding blue, cfk, SaraBeth, Sun Tzu, where4art, Kayakbiker, stevemb, most peculiar mama, blue jersey mom, Hastur, RichterScale, kaliope, PinHole, rb608, Tunk, rofodem, Rusty in PA, FindingMyVoice, leftynyc, sodalis, Lisa Lockwood, Pluto, sillia, laurel g 15942, peacestpete, Ekaterin, Box of Rain, zozie, ThatSinger, Philpm, Nowhere Man, Mother Mags, martini, LeftOverAmerica, don corazon, Knucklehead, esquimaux, snazzzybird, The Sheeping of America, BalanceSeeker, tommymet, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, Medium Head Boy, Pinko Elephant, myboo, Kingsmeg, DrSpalding, RustyBrown, cybersaur, Mr Bojangles, BlueInARedState, tobendaro, Themistoclea, Malachite, mr crabby, rl en france, Yellow Canary, Dvalkure, smokeymonkey, rhetoricus, Naniboujou, arlene, sailmaker, Gottlieb, Lefty Coaster, blueoasis, SherriG, DarkestHour, MJ via Chicago, aloevera, wild hair, gpoutney, The Hindsight Times, Ooooh, NCJan, Crashing Vor, PapaChach, JVolvo, sceptical observer, ER Doc, middleagedhousewife, hlsmlane, oakroyd, blue in NC, Turbonerd, onionjim, SingerInTheChoir, IL clb, Mad 60, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, BB10, blueoregon, kurt, lynneinfla, Bernie68, bstotts, dochackenbush, kenosha kid, bartcopfan, sea note, Little, samfish, Sapere aude, pgm 01, FoundingFatherDAR, Polacolor, anotherdemocrat, dotsright, Cronesense, Haningchadus14, Wanda517, LiberalLady, camlbacker, Deadicated Marxist, ksp, devis1, Dartagnan, ColoTim, gloriana, EdSF, ProBerk, Mary Mike, Duccio, veinbulge2000, HeartlandLiberal, Matt Z, mommyof3, dclawyer06, certainot, davehouck, jayden, Midwesterners, jedennis, buckshot face, Bullie, Patience is Not a Virtue, Back In Blue, jnhobbs, Bridge Master, gchaucer2, carpunder, Librarianmom, Wreck Smurfy, Rumarhazzit, GeorgeXVIII, Got a Grip, skod, JML9999, Ralphdog, craiger, chujb, on the cusp, TomP, Empower Ink, gizmo59, fb, VA Breeze, MKinTN, coachster, rogerdaddy, misterwade, TX Freethinker, flowerfarmer, hulagirl, angry hopeful liberal, kingneil, GAS, 6412093, poligirl, OleHippieChick, Sixty Something, Youffraita, Senor Unoball, Tchrldy, Involuntary Exile, dadadata, NewDealer, elwior, CDH in Brooklyn, lineatus, alasmoses, KJG52, Its any one guess, VL Baker, lavorare, monkeybrainpolitics, here4tehbeer, TomFromNJ, rssrai, royce, boatjones, RandomNonviolence, hwmnbn, TokenLiberal, Jeff Y, catly, Kathy S, petulans, Notreadytobenice, TexanJane, luckylizard, Parthenia, BYw, palantir, HoosierDeb, watercarrier4diogenes, GrannyOPhilly, lissablack, Wordsinthewind, oldliberal, Marnie1, BvueDem, bluebelle7, maggiejean, Sun dog, dingdang, Bule Betawi, Rhysling, zmom, DemSign, Glacial Erratic, greengemini, ewmorr, Don Enrique, maryabein, Norm in Chicago, Methinks They Lie, ebrann, aunt blabby, Bindle, CookyMonzta, petral, followyourbliss, Joealan, dskoe, Jonohex, johnosahon, Denise Oliver Velez, kevinpdx, Keith Pickering, ArthurPoet, Tortmaster, ayjaymay, GWinkler, Dragon5616, MizKit, Livvy5, LookingUp, collardgreens, Words In Action, Lefty Ladig, ruscle, BlueOak, Amber6541, Just Bob, hotdamn, cezariusz, commonmass, awcomeon, pyegar, FogCityJohn, p gorden lippy, Shannon S, Captain Marty, The Jester, NJpeach, gramofsam1, Tea and Strumpets, blueyescryinintherain, David Harris Gershon, secret38b, Anima, biggiefries, Crabby Abbey, mookins, DrWhk, rkthomas, Garfnobl, renzo capetti, Eddie L, Klick2con10ue, gulfgal98, tb mare, ItsSimpleSimon, ramara, Yasuragi, addisnana, Texnance, kenwards, ericlewis0, USHomeopath, Loose Fur, cocinero, Dems in 08, nosleep4u, fiercefilms, stevenaxelrod, Actbriniel, slice, newusername, Joe Hills Ghost, theKgirls, Pakalolo, Onomastic, annieli, kerflooey, cultjake, Acktiv, Catherine R, lady blair, sostos, implicate order, xarkGirl, vahana, Mr MadAsHell, freesia, bootsykronos, Bluerall, FarWestGirl, lexalou, mikejay611, Mr Raymond Luxury Yacht, Nicci August, deeproots, NormAl1792, skip945, CoExistNow, lupinella, gongee, cama2008, trumpeter, boomerchick, Haf2Read, PorridgeGun, zukesgirl64, Kokomo for Obama, Ace Nelson, vjcalaska, badscience, thomask, ShowMeMoBlue, akmk, BarackStarObama, muddy boots, smoothnmellow, 1718bill, abbotkinney, phoebesdatter, IB JOHN, createpeace, wintergreen8694, antooo, shevas01, Tommy T, myrmecia gulosa, poliwrangler, Caddis Fly, waiting for lefty, carl offner, bakeneko, smirking, Hayate Yagami, blue aardvark, ratcityreprobate, imlpdx, joanbrooker, DRo, T100R, allergywoman, No one gets out alive, Laurel in CA, BlueDragon, AnnetteK, Sister Inspired Revolver of Freedom, hulibow, MNGlasnant, bluezen, anodnhajo, sow hat, StonyB, cwsmoke, TheLizardKing, IndieGuy, turn blue, AnnieR, Deep Texan, exatc, Horace Boothroyd III, dog in va, This old man, jan4insight, belinda ridgewood, radical simplicity, Arahahex, BusyinCA, doroma, cuphalffull, lunachickie, tytalus, avsp, Denver11, Victim of Circumstance, FrY10cK, George3, wasatch, pashber, Robynhood too, CalBearMom, Arilca Mockingbird, Heavy Mettle, Hammerhand, News Corpse, KingTag, corpsechorus, Upie, nuclear winter solstice, nomandates, ericf, nolagrl, newinfluence, Linda1961, kickthecan, remembrance, CharlesInCharge, VeloDramatic, Setsuna Mudo, RerumCognoscereCausas, 84thProblem, goodpractice, gypsytoo, SixSixSix, Coastside Scout, aresea, topazOR, leeleedee, howabout, Icicle68, bob152, Smoh, solarbay, Hey338Too, LilithGardener, Jim Domenico, OceanDiver, garme01, alevei, Rumor, Ellen Columbo, starduster, Rich452, RUNDOWN, Dominar, Dodgerdog1, eagleray, maryannm, Capt Crunch, RightHeaded, achronon, Generic Democrat, VPofKarma, kkkkate, Electric Monk, ginimck, Red Robin, Here since 02, LilPeach, wilywascal, IsaacKuo, Spengle, kgoodwin1960

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site