Wait a sec...he wasn't kidding?? When I read Joe Klein's bizarre attempt to defend his repugnant remark through strawmen and semantic trickery, I just assumed he was joking. He said "leftists", not "liberals"? C'mon, that's hilarious.
In case you hadn't already figured it out for yourself, Mr. Klein, your patronizing and arbitrary distinction between "liberals" and "leftists" is pretty damnned offensive. When I first read about your "America-haters" quote, I figured you'd go the Chris Matthews route and defend your remarks by pretending you were joking or something. Instead you took an even more cowardly path by insisting, when confronted by justifiably-outraged liberals, that you weren't talking about them, just some left-wing crazies who you won't have to worry about running into at any Beltway cocktail parties. Don't worry, liberals, you're one of the good ones.
I have to admit that I'm amused by the irony that your defense for being misquoted is to put words in other's mouths, but RJ Eskow is right to call you to the mat for your bogus charges :
Should we really be surprised that Mr. "Anonymous" wasn't man enough to stand by his own words?
Klein purports to be a journalist. Do the right thing as a journalist, Joe: Provide names, dates, and quotes from 'left wing Democrats' about hating America, to substantiate your inflammatory charge - or issue an immediate and unequivocal apology.
. . .
If you can't provides names and quotes, the conclusion becomes inevitable: you, Joe Klein, are profoundly full of shit. And if you don't apologize, your resignation letter should be on the desk of Time's editor-in-chief by close of business today - and it should be promptly accepted. In fact, you should resign either way. Your credibility is shot.