Our new “Think Again” column, “The Surprising Success of the Right-WingRant,” is here. It’s an exploration of the weird success of the right’s hysterical racist andsexist attacks on Sonia Sotomayor in setting the MSM’s agenda for theircoverage.
I also did two columns this week for The Daily Beast; one this morningabout Osama’s attempts to link Obama to George W. Bush, here and one on the success of the Christian Right in this country in preventing access to abortion, even without murdering the doctors who perform it.
Regarding my Nation column here, the twentieth anniversary of Tiananmen Square puts me in mind of the death of I.F. Stone, which happened right around the same time. It was one of Izzy’s charms that it is entirely believable that, while in a hospital in Boston where hewould finally give out, he awoke briefly from a lengthy period ofunconsciousness to ask his doctors about the fate of the youngprotesters there. (His opposition to Chinese Communist oppression wasof a piece with his brilliant exposes of the abuses of Soviet psychiatryat the end of his six days career. These do not of course “make up” forthe mistakes he made defending Stalin half a century earlier, but theydo provide context for those who would paint his politics asmonochromatic.)
This is yet another column about the attempts to smear Izzy’sreputation. I’ve written about him quite a lot during the pasttwenty or so years beginning with a profile in Mother Jones back inJune, 1988, which you can find here. I’ve also done some first-hand investigation of the nature of the charges against him, which I described hereand hereI was a close friend of Stone’s during the final decade of his life and so I was pleased when Tina Brown asked me to take a look at charges on the day that theyappeared for her website, The Daily Beast. I was amazed at thedisconnect between the inflammatory language employed by the authors andthe skimpiness of their evidence. That is here.