Thursday, September 18, 2008

Troy Eid and the Obama plotters: Blaming the bloggers

-- by Dave

Having grotesquely failed in taking seriously the plot by three white-supremacist tweakers to assassinate Barack Obama in Denver, Colorado’s Rove-appointed U.S. Attorney, Troy Eid, is complaining in the Denver Post that the resulting negative coverage is all the fault of anonymous liberal bloggers:

Long before respected mainstream news organizations, including The Denver Post, got so many of their story leads from anonymous Internet scribblers whose veracity and competency cannot by definition be verified.

Eid goes on to contend that "faceless bloggers" are destroying journalistic standards by publishing "wild internet rumors" that journalists then feel compelled to run. And that, you see, is why there were questions about his handling of the tweakers case. Not, you know, because they demonstrated a clear and bizarre double standard in his enforcement of the law.

Well, for what it's worth, this "faceless blogger" was one of the first bloggers tackling this case. I don't know to what extent we drove the subsequent reportage, but I do know that these posts generated a great deal of traffic.

And I have never blogged under anything but my own name. As you can see, my mug shot adorns my posts here. I am not faceless or nameless.

I also happen to have the credentials to be raising these questions: I've written books on the far right, have covered numerous federal court cases involving the far right, have covered FBI standoffs and have gotten to know a number of both FBI agents and federal prosecutors, and I know how these cases operate. In 2000, my reportage on domestic terrorism for MSNBC won a National Press Club Award for Distinguished Online Journalism.

And yes, I'm a blogger and a journalist, and proud of it.

Troy Eid is going to have to come up with a better excuse than this. Particularly as it becomes clear how badly he's botched this case. More on that later.

[H/t to Nicole at Crooks and Liars.]

[Cross-posted at Firedoglake.]

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