Matthew Continetti of the Weekly Standard has been a stalwart of the VRWC, penning such classics as "A Little Literary Flair" to debunk Joe Wilson and "The Color Purple", which wrapped up the debate on Kerry's first Purple Heart.
Mr. Continetti goes after Nick Kristof in his latest effort, "Look What Kitty Dragged In". Sadly, he falls well short of his usual high standards. But we are going to get him back on track, and back on the attack!
Mr. Continetti's subject is a recent Nick Kristof column which was based on the Bush-bashing stories of Yoshi Tsurumi, who taught President Bush at Harvard Business school. The general theme - Kristof will give ink to any Bush-basher that shows up on his doorstep.
Relying on Nexis, Mr. Continetti tells us that "[Yoshi Tsurumi] did not recall any of these stories publicly until March 2004....
Oh, dear. In my earlier post on the same Kristof-bashing theme, I found evidence that Prof. Tsurumi was peddling his stories in 2000.
I also found a great interview with Prof. Tsurumi conducted this July by the good people at Air America - the speculation about just how often Bush showed up drunk for class may not burnish the Prof's credibility.
However, Mr. Continetti could have had an even stronger Kristof-crusher if he had related this Tsurumi column back to the recent Kristof effort flacking for the "Texans for Truth". Kristof interviewed Bob Mintz, the new star of the "Texans for Truth" ad. The theme - Mintz was, according to Kristof, a "compelling witness" with his story that Bush had not appeared in Alabama to perform his Guard duty. Kristof did not disclose that an ad was upcoming, nor did he do the research to reveal that Mintz was being duplicitous when he suggested that he had only recently come forward because ""After a lot of soul-searching, I just feel it's my duty to stand up and do the right thing."
Please - CBS had interviewed him in February. The day after Kristof published, CBS announced that in the February interview, Mintz had said that ""I cannot say he was not there," Mintz said. "Absolutely positively was not there. I cannot say that. I cannot say he didn't do his duty."
The column was sufficiently problematic that Kristof delivered a minimalist correction.
Finally, Mr. Continetti might want to strengthen his story by broadening the theme slightly. In two recent efforts, Kristof happily parroted whatever Bush-bashing was being peddled that day. However, when he sat down to take a serious, fair and balanced look at the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, two things happened - he became a stony-faced skeptic unwilling to believe anything not full documented, and his research abilities (weak, as previously demonstrated) continued to betray him.
Pump it up.