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Robert J. Elisberg

Robert J. Elisberg

Posted: December 4, 2007 11:01 AM

Newsweek Pleads Insanity


Sometimes, you look at something and can only scratch your head and say, "Honestly. What were they thinking????"

Getting rid of Coke for New Coke is one of those moments. Asking Roseanne Barr to sing the National Anthem is another. You try to be fair and look at all possible reasons from every conceivable angle...and just can't see any rational, human reason behind the thinking.

We can add to the list Newsweek hiring Karl Rove as a commentator.

Honestly. What were they thinking????

I mean, sure, we all know what their justification is, but understand that Ford can show you all the crack research that explains why the Edsel was going to be one great-selling car.

Yes, Newsweek will explain it's important to have a conservative voice in the mix. And that it's interesting to have someone with government experience.

Hey. This is Karl Rove we're talking about. We're not idiots, ya know. This isn't a conservative voice with government experience. This is Fagan teaching all the lost urchins how to pickpocket and not get caught. Scooter Libby is a conservative with government experience, too -- Newsweek could have gotten him, and he doesn't even have to write from behind bars, thanks to Mr. Rove's former boss. And keep in mind that Karl Rove only escaped indictment himself by about 15 minutes, because some lawyer blabbed and gave Rove time to change his story before Patrick Fitzgerald handed him a "Go Directly to Jail" card.

And Newsweek hired him as a commentator.

Honestly -- what were they thinking????

Yes, the magazine will tell us that they can justify hiring Karl Rove as a commentator because it balances things after hiring Markos Moulitsas of Daily Kos.

Hint: if you hire someone to explain about being nice to people, that doesn't mean you should get Josef Stalin to balance that position.

Newsweek
has hired a man to write commentary who told interviewer Charlie Rose that "one of the untold stories about the war is why did the United States Congress, the United States Senate, vote on the war resolution in the fall of 2002...This administration was opposed to it."

As Keith Olbermann put it, the story was untold because it's not true. As documents on the White House website put it, it's not true. Little babies teething understand it's not true. That tree outside my front door knows it's not true. Whoever you are, you know it's not true.

And Newsweek hired him as a commentator.

What were they thinking????

(It gets worse. Mr. Rove tries to squirm out some explanation why we should believe the administration was opposed to it. "Because we didn't think it belonged within the confines of the election," he weaseled. "We thought it made it too political." There is nothing this administration thought was too political. If someone hugged a puppy, and the Bush White House could think of how to make it political, they'd have made it political.)

This is a free peek at what Newsweek hired. It is not opinion. It's not even propaganda. What this is, is lies. It is lies. And everyone, including the 31% who still support George Bush understand that it is lies. Indeed, one of the very reasons those 31% still support George Bush is specifically because he pressured Congress into voting America into war.

Newsweek has hired a man who tells lies, like other people take breaths. And for the same reason, because they need to, or else they will die. This isn't whimsy, the history of Rove lies have been overwhelmingly documented throughout the land, most notably in James Moore and Wayne Slater's book, Bush's Brain.

And Newsweek hired this known, documented liar as a commentator.

What in the world were they possibly thinking????

Back in January, I wrote a piece, "Getting Advice from the Chronically Wrong." For some reason, the media is still inviting certain commentators to give their opinions despite having been shown to be wrong on pretty much everything. Yet William Kristol, Kate O'Beirne, Sean Hannity, Bay Buchanan, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and the like continue to be trotted out like show ponies. That's bad enough. But for Newsweek to go to the next level and hire as a regular columnist someone who not only has been wrong on pretty much everything, but has driven the U.S. into a bottomless hole and lied about it, that is utterly incomprehensible.

Did they think Karl Rove would attract the far right-wing base? Those people aren't readers. And they don't trust the press. And they most-especially hate the Washington Post, which owns Newsweek.

So, all that can come of hiring Karl Rove as a commentator is to destroy the magazine's credibility, and drive other readers away. It's hard not to imagine Newsweek subscriptions being cancelled.

Honestly. What were they thinking?????

This assumes, of course, that they were thinking.