Marvin Kalb re Rather

Wednesday, October 05, 2005
Some time ago I wrote Marvin Kalb with reference to the Dan Rather interview (the original questions I noted in comments, but I'll put them here as well, for convenience):

(1) Do you accept the conclusion of appendix 4 of the Thornburg Report that the memos in question were forged? If not, why not?

(2) As noted in the powerline article, there are a number of internal contradictions in the "Fortunate Son" story --- such as the statement that General Staudt was attempting to apply pressure to LTC Hodges more than a year after his retirement --- as well as direct testimony from people involved in the process and copies of Bush's efficiency ratings that contradict the notion that Bush received unusual preference in his enlistment, his advancement, and his eventual seperation from the service. This appears to be substantial evidence, as you requested, that Bush did not receive preferential treatment. Have you evidence to the contrary? If so, can you cite it
and is it available for examination?

If you've been following this, Kalb replied to Powerline, answering the first question in the affirmative. I then wrote, as exerpted below:

Sir --- I note that you have responded to John Hunderacker at Powerline and I apologize for saying that I would append a link in my previous email and then failing, by oversight, to do so. I'm glad to see that you did make the connection in any case. And I appreciate your answer to my question (1).

I'm still interested in the answer to question (2), ie, do you believe that Bush rceived preferential treatment in joining the TANG, and if so, what evidence can you offer for this in the face of repeated denials and other contradictory evidence.

Mr Kalb responded to me by email today, both declining to answer and refusing permission to quote him.

Of course, comments are open and I'll be happy to publish any answer or correspondence he wishes.


vnjagvet said...

Without quoting Mr. Kalb, what reasons did he give for refusing to answer and be quoted?

It seems to me this carries on the fine tradition of the "elite media" as a legend in their own minds.

Seneca the Younger said...

None. He did, however, object to me noting his refusal to comment. Since I shan't be able to quote his response, I can't give specifics, but but I will say that it was composed primarily of a supercilious and sarcastic ad hominem.

Rick Ballard said...

How else could he reply? The SoS media has been reduced to sticking its thumbs in it ears, waggling fingers and sticking out its tongue for some time. I know that you visit Rosen's blog from time to time, Seneca, and Steve Lovelady's responses over there are the same thing.

Being stupid AND thin skinned must be a terrible thing to endure.

vnjagvet said...

I am going to have to review the law on publishing correspondence without permission of the writer.

This intrigues me. I cannot believe that he can insult you and legally seal your lips. Wadda jerk.

Seneca the Younger said...

Vet, it's not a matter of what he can legally do, it's what I feel I can ethically do. I asked him for permission to quote him and he refused, so I'm ethically bound.

On the other hand, as I pointed out to him, he could hardly expect me not to note that he's refused to comment.

David Thomson said...

Anyone associated with Harvard University should be deeply ashamed of Marvin Kalb. He has greatly dishonored the institution. His gross ignorance concerning the discredited documents is inexcusable. Kalb should be able to meticulously point out the errors. Isn't the man being paid to be knowledgeable about media matters? Intellectual snobbery is probably the reason for Kalb’s disgusting behavior. This is why so many Harvard graduates are so mediocre. They blip off their radar screen information from sources which are not considered sufficiently “elite.”

I am not generally impressed by a degree from Harvard. Yes, I am very well aware that only the best students get into the school. So what? A high IQ cannot overcome a snobbish attitude. Too often someone from Harvard merely puts their wet finger into the air to see which way the wind blows. They are whores to their ambitions.