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A Smear Too Far

Written By : Robert Stacy McCain
September 8, 2010

In “How to Write an Anti-Palin Hit Piece,” I quoted a source who described the cheap-and-easy method by which reporters get those “anonymous sources” to provide them with fodder for their stories.

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Vanity Fair‘s Michael Gross today lashed out at his critics and claimed, among other things, that Gina Loudon is lying about him.

That’s so unfair, isn’t it, Michael? You have a conversation with someone, then they tell their side of the story in a way that makes you look bad, and . . . well, it just feels kind of wrong, doesn’t it?

Anyway, Susanna Fleetwood has a long piece at Minority Report (cross-posted at NewsReal) examining why liberals have denounced Gross’s story:

Michael Gross not only not only made a flaming ass out of himself, but he also totally humiliated the liberal mainstream media. He managed to bring every caricature of an elitist, egotistical, out of touch, liberal journalist to life. And the worst part was that he was incredibly sloppy with many of the facts — which in turn, discredits his entire piece. Credible leftist/progressive journalists and columnists can’t flee from his disaster of a column fast enough — and I don’t blame them.

One point: It wasn’t a “column,” it was a 10,000-word feature article. And as someone who knows a thing or two about the publishing industry, let me point out that 10,000 words is a very good head-start on a book. If Gross isn’t already under contract for an anti-Palin book, this article certainly looks like it was intended as a pitch for such a book.

As I said before, every liberal journalist with any influence or ambition is either now writing an anti-Palin book or is trying to hustle a deal for an anti-Palin book. The fact that Sarah Palin isn’t cooperating with writers like Gross (i.e., she’s not helping him get paid to trash her) indicates that she’s not quite as stupid as he thinks she is.

Here’s some hard-to-watch video of Michael Gross on Hardball with Chris Matthews:

It’s hard to watch, I say, because even Chris Matthews seems embarrassed to have this idiot on his show.

(Cross-posted at The Other McCain.)

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