I’m posting this on the sidebar and not the front page as this is my opinion on a much bigger issue – something that to a degree, we have been covering and discussing here for a long time now. I also want to state unequivocally that this is not in response to the post by Rosi about Oliver – I agree with her position there.
One thing that I always liked about blogging, and even more so since I started posting here 5 years or so ago is that, despite the attempts to portray bloggers as not being serious, there are many many instances where we have been able to ask questions and do digging or research that our counterparts in the corporate media can’t or won’t do themselves. Over the years here, we have uncovered and broken many important stories – but have also been able to (in at least a small way) help shape opinion with posts on framing that are less of the digging-variety and more of the opinion/thought evoking types.
I’m proud to have been able to collaborate with many great writers and researchers, some of whom are no longer here, on both fronts. And while there is tremendous value in both, the biggest mistake is one where opinion clouds judgment and “facts” or “evidence” become the basis for assertions where such facts or evidence do not actually exist, or giant leaps are made in order to fit an opinion.
One thing that has always been a pet peeve of mine is when this distinction is clouded – by the corporate media and more importantly by bloggers – since bloggers already start without the same “benefit of the doubt” as those in the corporate media have. We have called out members of the media in the past, and we have also developed good relationships with members of the media – even those who we have called out.
The good thing is that the vast majority of writers here strive for something similar – not only to achieve better Democrats, but a progressive vision. Sometimes, however, what a writer or journalist wishes to be true is asserted as stone cold fact. This happens. I’ve done it in the past and I am sure most have as well. But while this is a dangerous thing to do (even by accident), what is more dangerous – whether it is a blogger or a professional journalist – is to double down when challenged on facts, accusations, assertions and conclusions and make it personal. Just because someone is certain they are right and repeats their assertions over and over again doesn’t make them right – it only confirms the shallowness of the underlying argument. This has happened here at Blue Jersey from time to time over the years.
We rightfully laugh when someone like Mulshine does it. We may reach out to explain to someone like Jane Roe that what she may see as a “food fight” is really a debate about opinion asserted as fact. And when I get something wrong, I certainly try to consider the source, my conclusion and perhaps edit the diary if necessary.
To pivot onto a bigger picture item – yesterday’s news brought out more very disturbing information about Governor Christie’s ties to Koch – something that we have also covered here in the past. Here is a potential Presidential candidate at a secret meeting with Koch, who has lied in the past and covered up his association with Koch, their interests and what very well could be quid pro quo events like RGGI, just to name the most obvious.
This is one of those times that Blue Jersey can take the lead and do something that could burst Christie’s bubble on the national scene in a huge way. This is something that could ruin Christie.
We are supposed to be on the same page here – working toward a common goal. The politics of personal destruction are what the Republican Party specializes in. Most of us agree on 85%+ of things. It’s too bad when some can’t see the big picture and past the other 10% or so and destroy others to further their own egos and personal agendas.
Blue Jersey has seized the moment before – on many occasions. Here is another such occasion.