June 27, 2005

Lying for a Living: THR Columnist Exposed

The Times Herald-Record's Beth Quinn has made it abundantly obvious that she's a columnist instead of a reporter. Reporters rely on facts when composing a story. Quinn's, “Proof is in the memo: Soldiers died for a lie,” editorial shows that she is unencumbered by such constraints.

The high-pitched polemic professes to be about the now infamous meeting minutes of top British government officials that became known as the “Downing Street Memo,” or the DSM. Liberals such as Quinn claim that the document shows that President Bush knew that there were no weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) in Iraq, and that he was determined to attack seven months before the war.

The DSM does not in fact show that. As a matter of fact, six more documents were leaked by the same source, and some flatly contradict the claim, but you won't here that from the Record's Quinn. She either didn't bother to research the subject, or made the conscious decision to ignore the evidence. It seems her hatred of President Bush was more important than the truth. Quite frankly, I'm surprised her editorial made it to print.

Even her understanding of the original DSM as a stand-alone document is nearly nonexistent.

Quinn makes the claim that the original DSM “is a report on a meeting between Rycroft and the White House in July 2002.” That is patently false. The DSM was the minutes of a meeting—not a report—among top British officials. The White House is never mentioned, and the only mention of Bush was the comment that “it seemed” he had made up his mind. This is hardly evidence. This is an opinion, and one that turned out to be wrong, as later documents showed.

Quinn spews:

What we're talking about here is proof that Bush engineered the war in Iraq – based on a lie. What we're talking about here is 1,700 dead Americans – based on a lie.

What we're talking about here is Lou Allen of Milford, Pa.; Brian Pavlich of Port Jervis; Eugene Williams of Highland; Irving Medina of Middletown; Doron Chan of Highland; Catalin Dima of White Lake; Brian Parrello of West Milford, N.J.; Kenneth VonRonn of Bloomingburg; Joseph Tremblay of New Windsor.
All dead – based on a lie.

There are lies being perpetrated, but they manifest from Beth Quinn, not George Bush. She presents the hearsay contentions of the Downing Street Memo as documented fact, but Quinn's fellow liberal Michael Kinsley said:
But even on its face, the memo is not proof that Bush had decided on war. It says that war is "now seen as inevitable" by "Washington." That is, people other than Bush had concluded, based on observation, that he was determined to go to war. There is no claim of even fourth-hand knowledge that he had actually declared this intention. Even if "Washington" meant actual administration decision makers, rather than the usual freelance chatterboxes, C is saying only that these people believe that war is how events will play out.
In short, Quinn presents “we think he might” as “he said he would.” This is patently dishonest, especially when taken with the fact that the other DSMs explicitly state that Bush had not “fixed” his policy on an invasion.

The David Manning memo to Tony Blair, one of the additional documents leaked, says in a telling line, “Bush wants to hear you [sic] views on Iraq before taking decisions.” The Iraqi Options paper (PDF) specifically mentions that the United States is “considering regime change”—specifically indicating that the decision to invade had not been made.

Beth Quinn, by design and by obscuring facts that contradict her predetermined ideological position, lied to her readers. Even more disgusting is that Quinn would cheapen the sacrifice of our local servicemen in her quest to further her cause.

Quinn mentions that, “if it turns out he lied, as the Downing Street Memo most surely suggests, let's impeach him.”
I'm all for firing those who lie on the job. Perhaps we should start with Beth Quinn.

Contact the Times Herald-Record.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at June 27, 2005 01:40 PM | TrackBack