Kausal Links

Kaus also points to <a href=”http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A59362-2002Jul24.html

“>this recent preoccupation of Lloyd Grove in the Washington Post:

Mutually Assured Dysfunction? Only a matter of time: Two like-minded magazines, the liberal-thinking American Prospect and the peace-oriented Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, are paying lawyers to try to resolve a dispute that erupted when the Prospect used an image of the Bulletin‘s copyrighted “Doomsday Clock” on its July 1 cover without permission — and, worse, changed the time. Bulletin publisher Stephen Schwartz, who noted that the Prospect set the clock at 4 minutes to doomsday, while the correct time is 7 minutes to doomsday, told us yesterday that his magazine sent a letter of displeasure, and that he isn’t entirely satisfied with the Prospect‘s correction, which appears in the latest issue. “What were they thinking? Schwartz demanded. “Something there must have broken down.”

You can just hear Kaus’ raspy palms rubbing together in glee at this specter of a dispute among the “liberal-thinking”

and the “peace-oriented”, although he disses TAP with that ultimate insult, “obscure” (which, at least to readers of FmH, it certainly is not…). Kaus really reaches escape velocity over Grove’s final point:

We hear a settlement might involve a favorable article about the Bulletin in a future issue of the Prospect. Our call to Prospect Editor Bob Kuttner was not returned.

Mickey the Rhino chomps at the bit [sorry to mix my metaphors with Krugman’s… — FmH]:

Wouldn’t that be a violation of, you know, journalistic ethics? (Imagine if the NYT or WaPo settled a libel suit by promising to publish a favorable article about a plaintiff.) Surely TAP wouldn’t do anything like that …

Wouldn’t that depend on exactly what Grove meant by “…a settlement might involve…”? Too bad Kuttner has yet, if ever, to weigh in on this one. At one extreme, The Bulletin might have demanded a favorable article as a condition of not bringing suit. At the other, might a conciliatory TAP have cited their preexisting admiration, proffering their intention to profile The Bulletin that may have predated the dispute? Most retractions I’ve seen in the press bend over backwards to compliment the source you might otherwise have been perceived as disparaging; that’s precisely what you are trying to achieve with a retraction in the first place. And it would be reasonable to claim you want to write about The Bulletin long about now. A venerable old slumbering giant of the disarmament movement since concerns about the nuclear arms race dropped off most people’s radar screens (a complacent self-delusion I’ve noted with concern here) after the collapse of the Soviet Union, it has been receiving a wave of fresh attention since the warmongering Son of a Bush has taken office, since we abrogated the ABM treaty to restart the nuclear arms race with NMD, since 9-11 and the WoT®, and since the loose cannons have been rolled into position along the Indian-Pakistani line in the sand. If you’re curious, scroll past the references to the Bulletin‘s own pages in this Google search to see some of the ‘net attention they receive these days…

And what’s up with Kaus’ continual references to the Washington Post as “WaPo“? Is it just me, or does it seem he’s enjoying evoking resonances to “wacko” just abit?