Sunday, December 04, 2005

Ruth Holladay: Fact-checker?


Atrios pointed us to the wanker of the day, soon-to-be-ex-professor at the Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis, William C. Bradford. He had this Holladay person pen a screed condemning the 'political correctness' of his prof colleagues in order to pressure them to give Bradrod tenure. Well, we found out that Bradford was a fraud, and Holladay has yet to apologize for her smear campaign.

So, we write letters:

Is fact-checking part of the job anymore? I mean, perhaps it did not appear to be central to the case, but at what point do people start to ask the obvious questions? Sometimes, people take into account more than PC and a person's political stance. Why is this guy so bent on letting everyone know he was a war hero? Bumper stickers, lapel pins, pimpin it on his blog, talking to students and other professors about it. Didn't anyone say, "Man - this guy is full of himself"? Nobody ever thought for a minute, "Hey - I've seen this type of behaviour before"? Or, as a reporter/columnist, one might expect you, Ruth, to *not* just take people's words as the whole truth. Is that part of the job description anymore?

There's nothing suspicious about a guy - a war hero - walking around campus pimping himself like he's the best thing since sliced bread? He actually saw combat and he's pimping it? Everybody knows the stereotype - whether true or not - of an ex-soldier who saw combat. THEY DO NOT TALK ABOUT IT. Was he running for office? He was in infantry and *intelligence*? Just how the heck does *that* transition occur? And if it *could* occur, how would the guy go from intelligence to infantry and not the other way around, since presumably he had to be infantry at the later stage of his military career, for desert storm I?

Ruth, I think it's time to convene another panel on blogger ethics. Would you agree?

Congrats, I guess, for eventually getting the real story here, but it was too long in coming. You damaged your own reputation, that of your newspaper, and the people you smeared. Way I see it, you owe an apology to a *lot* of people - not just a weak mea culpa that you didn't come out "looking very good in this," either. Your next column should contain your own apology and that of this loser professor who tried to make a buck off the backs of dead soldiers.

Here's a link to your smear article, in case you forgot what a piece of claptrap you worked up over this fraudulent prof, in case you forgot just how pathetic was your argument in favor of this fraudulent prof, in case you don't immediately recollect the damage you were willing to inflict on the reputations of innocents:

Eagerly awaiting that apology column...

I don't care if she's just a columnist as opposed to a reporter. If it's in the newspaper, online, anywhere - it should be TRUE. Opinion is opinion, but facts are facts - and often, they're easy to check. This columnist, Holladay, was, as we say, "all in the Kool-Aid and didn't know the flavor." She should have been more responsible before she wrote an attack piece that smeared a bunch of innocent professors, just trying to do their jobs like any other American. Paying bills, helping the kids with their homework, worrying about having enough money for retirement and health care, dealing with the in-laws, whatever. Real people. Real people that Holladay chose to scandalize in her column. Shameful.

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