Patterico's Pontifications

10/19/2008

L.A. Times Admits (in an Elliptical Fashion) That It Botched a Sarah Palin Quote

Filed under: 2008 Election,Dog Trainer — Patterico @ 9:27 am

This blog has obtained another correction from the L.A. Times. The last one I obtained ran on October 4. And I have another one I’m about to put in the pipeline. Maybe I can score a hat trick before the month is over.

On October 10 I wrote a letter to the Readers’ Representative at the Los Angeles Times, in which I complained that the paper had blindly quoted a transcript that had badly botched Sarah Palin’s remarks in an interview with Sean Hannity. I argued that the garbled syntax should have raised red flags with the reporter, who should have watched the segment itself to verify the transcript’s accuracy.

On Friday the paper issued this correction:

Palin and Hannity: An article in the Oct. 9 Section A about the increasingly sharp attacks in the presidential campaign quoted Sarah Palin in an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity, citing as a source the transcript distributed by the network. What the Republican vice presidential nominee actually said was different. The story quoted her as saying: “And — not only those terrorist activities that Bill Ayers was involved in, but the questions need to be asked, I believe, when did Barack Obama know of these activities? We’ve heard so many confliction stories and flip-flop answers about when he knew the guy, did he realize that he knocked off his political career in the guy’s living room?” Palin actually said: “And — not only those atrocious activities that Bill Ayers was involved in, but the questions need to be asked, I believe, when did Barack Obama know of his activities? We’ve heard so many conflicting stories and flip-flopped answers about when he knew the guy, did he realize that he kicked off his political career in the guy’s living room, first it was yes and then it was no . . . “

They’re getting quicker: it took them only six days to watch the video I had supplied them with and compare it to the transcript. Their last correction took 10 days.

P.S. The next request will relate to the paper’s claim that there is “no recorded basis” for John McCain’s assertion that “Obama launched his political career in the former Weatherman’s [Bill Ayers'] living room.” In fact, a 2005 blog entry, reported in February by Politico, was made by a liberal who was there in the living room. She explicitly said that Ayers and Dorhn had “launched” Obama’s career in their “livingroom.” I’ll be writing the Readers’ Rep about that one today.

P.S. The Politico link has much more documentation of the meeting. I cite the blog entry specifically because it was written by someone who was there, who does not equivocate on the living room function being the “launching” of Obama’s political career.

46 Responses to “L.A. Times Admits (in an Elliptical Fashion) That It Botched a Sarah Palin Quote”

  1. Patterico, thanks for keeping LATimes on its toes. I know they think of bloggers (or rather rightwing bloggers) like they think of republicans and Sarah Palin in particular, but keep up the good fight!
    As for your next correction don’t expect it to come out before election day. Or the paper will say it was correct because there are no sound RECORDINGS, that RECORDED those words coming out of the lips of Bill Ayres. Or they will find some way, like they tried with Joe the Plumber, to focus on the suspect individuals who made these assertions rather than the truth of the contested matter itself.
    Anyway, pay a visit to gateway pundit, lots of new info on how Obama shared office space in Chicago on the same floor with that passing ship in the night, Bill Ayers, and Maoist Klonsky for at least three years (1995-1998). Strangers in the night, exchanging glances…

    eaglewingz08 (013c81)

  2. I’m more interested in this quote Patterico.
    Let us return to Palins actual words.

    “Governor,” asked a reporter with the Anchorage Daily News, “finding Number One on the report was that you abused your power by violating state law. Do you think you did anything wrong at all in this Troopergate case?”

    “Not at all and I’ll tell you, it, I think that you’re always going to ruffle feathers as you do what you believe is in the best interest of the people whom you are serving,” Palin said. “In this case I knew that I had to have the right people in the right position at the right time in this cabinet to best serve Alaskans, and Walt Monegan was not the right person at the right time to meet the goals that we had set out in our administration. So no, not having done anything wrong, and again very much appreciating being cleared of any legal wrongdoing or unethical activity at all.

    You tell me, Patterico, O Honest Man, please, is Palin lying, delusional, or did she just not read the legal document that found her GUILTY of unethical abuse of power?

    griefer (0ce4e8)

  3. Quite clearly, Palin is incorrect. The report concluded that she had not complied with ethical statutes, from what I read.

    Patterico (cc3b34)

  4. That report was written by a single person and was not reviewed by the committee or allowed to be challenged prior to issuance. The language in which the investigator make the charge that Governor Palin had not complied with ethical statutes needs to be read carefully and the sentences parsed. What you will find is one man’s opinion unsupported by any evidence posing as a conclusion of fact and/or law. In my fourteen years as an administrative law judge, I have read many legal briefs that tried to make the weaker case the stronger but this investigator’s report wins the prize. There is no credible evidence introduced in the report to support the investigator’s conclusion.

    longwalker (6afa35)

  5. Palin should have said all along that her power to hire or fire who she wants is guaranteed by the Alaska Constitution, and that any statute purporting to limit that power is invalid as a blatant violation of the separation of powers.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  6. The committee had no authority to try the Governor – their findings are meaningless

    So they stated

    They Also said she acted within the confines of her authority to do so

    EricPWJohnson (47b9ab)

  7. You tell me, Patterico, O Honest Man, please, is Palin lying, delusional, or did she just not read the legal document that found her GUILTY of unethical abuse of power?

    Comment by griefer

    Just got back from a seminar, did you ? You find people guilty in courts. That was a one man report requested by an Obama supporter in the legislature. Had she not been chosen by McCain, the whole matter would have died the quick death it deserved.

    I’m more interested in Rezko but he will probably hold out until after November 4. If so, I hope Fitzgerald socks it to him before president Obama can fire Fitzgerald.

    Mike K (d8deba)

  8. There is at least one, perhaps two more references to the “Kicking off his political career in the Ayers-Dohrn livingroom” story.

    The first is from the outgoing Illinois Senator Alice Palmer who decided Obama was her heir apparent. She was at the get-together in the Ayers-Dohrn livingroom, but she didn’t organize it. CNN had a report on this, and there’s a slice of it in this video (seven minutes in) CNN Alice Palmer

    I’ve read another report from an eyewitness, a doctor IIRC, but I’m having trouble re-locating it.

    Al (b624ac)

  9. Hold on a minute. The source the McCain campaign is using regarding where Obama “launched his political career” is an opinion on some random person’s blog – that can be corroborated nowhere else? WTF??? Are all of the McCain camp’s assertions this thoroughly vetted? No wonder the “dishonest ads” meme is sticking so well.

    If all it takes to meet the McCain standard of truth is to have an opinion and a blog, hell…any one of us could be the next primary source!

    Tom (04f1d9)

  10. Tom, Tom, Tom,

    The Politico link has much more documentation of the meeting. I cite the blog entry specifically because it was written by someone who was there (by the name of Maria Warren), who does not equivocate on the living room function being the “launching” of Obama’s political career.

    Next time read the links first, and make the uninformed comment second. Who knows . . . if you do it in that order, you might not even end up making the uninformed comment.

    I said “might not.”

    Patterico (cc3b34)

  11. Hold on a minute, Tom can’t be bothered with pesky things like actual details.

    Dmac (cc81d9)

  12. O Honest Patterico, why is she incorrect?
    Is she a bot mouthing talking points or delusional?

    griefer (0ce4e8)

  13. griefer,

    How would I know why she is incorrect? Clearly, she *should* know of the unfavorable findings as well as the favorable ones. Regardless of the power/authority of the person making the report, or the accuracy of the conclusions, she is making a misstatement. Either she is inexcusably ignorant on this issue, or she’s not telling the truth.

    Can the attitude.

    Patterico (cc3b34)

  14. Dear Patterico:

    When you wrote, about yet another troll:

    “…Can the attitude….”

    I wish you luck, though it is unlikely that this troll will not act in such a fashion.

    There are left of center people here who are serious and civil. But MOST of the recent troll-types are not. They are just “getting in the face” of people.

    You try to be fair, and it is appreciated. But these other people? Not so much.

    Eric Blair (2bdff8)

  15. Patterico,

    I think you misunderstand what I’m referring to. I am interested in where this notion that “Obama launched his political career” in Ayers’ living room came from. That’s the preeminent talking point, after all. I do not dispute that the meeting occurred, but rather the way in which it is now being presented.

    Politico’s title sums up the general gist of the article to which you link: “Obama once visited ’60s radicals.” This is a far cry from the now-famous talking point, “Obama launched his career in Ayers’ living room.” It is apparently only Warren who asserts that Ayers and Dohrn were “launching” Obama at all. So unless there are other sources than Warren who claim that Obama “launched his career in Ayers’ living room” (which even Warren herself did not claim), then I think I am right about the source for that particular message being merely an “opinion on some random person’s blog – that can be corroborated nowhere else.”

    Tom

    Tom (961f97)

  16. Dr Quentin Young, grandfather to our daughter’s playmates, confirmed this.

    Obama's Neighbor (f28dac)

  17. You tell me, Patterico, O Honest Man, please, is Palin lying, delusional

    The interesting aspect of that controversy is that the core of it involves a cop — Palin’s former brother-in-law — who had developed a track record of displaying abusive, if not potentially dangerous or illegal, behavior. Also, another facet of the story (which has generally gone unmentioned) is its illustration of the potential code of silence that can easily surround certain government employees—-ie, those with guns and badges. A code of silence, not to mention protection provided by government-employee unions, that will challenge the authority of even a sitting governor.

    I read an editorial in the Washington Post the other day that took Palin to task regarding this matter, and not one word was said about the origins of it: the abusive cop. How odd that the liberal (or liberals) who penned the editorial apparently couldn’t care less about the angle of an abusive cop. I’m sure the piece would have been written no differently if a Democrat candidate were in Palin’s shoes. Yea, right. And the Sahara is cold and Anarctica is hot.

    Mark (add396)

  18. L.A. Times Admits (in an Elliptical Fashion) That It Botched a Sarah Palin Quote

    It’s interesting that the Times is being run into the ground by its current owner, Sam Zell, who is known to have complained about the left-leaning tilt in the supposedly straight-news sections of a newspaper. He also was quoted as saying he didn’t care for Hillary Clinton.

    The destruction of a quality publication is unfortunate. But considering the nonsensical ideology that dominates the LA Times, and all the clueless liberals who are employed there and throughout the field of journalism, it’s a bit less unfortunate, a bit less sad.

    Mark (add396)

  19. Mark, the LA Times was being driven into the ground long before Zell came along. He’s just failed to arrest the descent.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  20. Tom,

    The “random person” was there when it happened. That makes her far short of “random.”

    Patterico (b6c2fe)

  21. Random Facts!
    So inconvenient.

    Another Drew (b13f9c)

  22. Maria Warren recalls that “[Ayers & Dohrn] were launching him–introducing him to the Hyde Park community as the best thing since sliced bread.” I’m not convinced that factually contradicts the WaPo’s Michael Dobbs:

    “It is true that Obama attended a coffee meeting at Ayers’ home after he announced his intention to run for the state senate in September 1995.”

    I gather he’s adapting Lynn Sweet’s account in the Chicago Sun-Times, which is far from best evidence. But neither is Warren specific about the order of events. The coffees were designed to propel Obama’s run for office; she happened upon one at Ayers’ house.

    steve (30a6c7)

  23. Obama has more than paid Ayers back for his launch. Between the Annenberg Challenge and the Woods Fund, Obama oversaw just under $2 million of grants to Ayers controlled education projects. Another $750,000 or so went to projects sponsored by John Ayers, Bill’s brother. But hey, there is no evidence Barack and Bill shared office space for three years either or shared an education philosophy of nonintegration which neatly ties in the Black liberation theology Jeremiah Wright was preaching at TUCC. Absolutely nothing to see here.

    It’s no wonder the campaign was desperately trying to hide these records and details of the connections.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  24. Matches the lying Obama is actively doing about his record on gun rights legislation.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  25. That blog entry you linked to is now missing. Here we go again.

    Jim Treacher (592cb4)

  26. I’ve confirmed Jim’s finding that the blog you linked is now missing. It could be that the site is overloaded with traffic, as I have seen a few other conservative blogs link the same post.

    Tom, as far as the reliability of the post, how many eyewitnesses do we now need to confirm that a fact is a fact? Perhaps one blog wouldn’t condemn a man in a court of law, but as has been pointed out, the Politico article provides more evidence to the point. In addition, I feel that since the now-missing blog past was written in 2005, before either McCain or Obama were candidates for President, handily defeats the challenge that it was a pro-McCain plant.

    Jon Brown (144178)

  27. It’s still at the Internet Wayback Machine, here.

    Here’s the text from the Musings & Migraines blog:

    Thursday, January 27, 2005
    Get to know Barack Obama
    When I first met Barack Obama, he was giving a standard, innocuous little talk in the livingroom of those two legends-in-their-own-minds, Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn. They were launching him–introducing him to the Hyde Park community as the best thing since sliced bread. His “bright eyes and easy smile” struck me as contrived and calculated–maybe because I was supporting another candidate. Since then, I’ve never heard him say anything new or earthshaking, or support anything that would require the courage of his convictions. I only voted for him in this last race–because his opponent was a pinhead. And I’ve been mostly alone in my views. But maybe that’s changing.

    Thanks, Barack. By voting to confirm Condoleezza Rice for Secretary of State you confirmed my opinion of you as someone who will not come through when it counts. You voted with the entire Republican membership rather than your compadre, Dick Durbin, and the man you supported for president, John Kerry. Your sense of collegiality is ridiculous under the circumstances.

    What are all those people who thought you walked on water thinking now? I’m just wondering who’s going to whisper in President CandyAss’s ear when Condo’s busy playing Secretary of State.

    posted by red rabbit @ 1:30 PM

    Not a fan, apparently, and judging by the blogroll it’s a lefty blog.

    Jim Treacher (592cb4)

  28. Thank you Jim (#27) – that’s very helpful.

    Jon (#26): I certainly don’t think Warren is a “McCain plant.” That has never been my position.

    Patterico (#20): I don’t think it is accurate or honest to take a single blog post reading “They were launching him–introducing him to the Hyde Park community as the best thing since sliced bread” and twist it into Gov. Palin’s comments that Obama “launched his career in the living room of a domestic terrorist”. Even if we assume Warren’s post is absolutely true, it names Ayers and Dohrn as the ‘launchers’ – while Palin implies that it was Obama’s doing in order to fit the broader narrative that Obama is in league with terrorists. That’s not simply grasping at straws, it’s dishonest.

    Tom (961f97)

  29. the legal document that found her GUILTY of unethical abuse of power

    I thought a Judge or jury had to find one guilty of a crime. Now it just requires a document?

    JD (f7900a)

  30. So, Tom is quibbling with the semantics of whether or not Baracky’s political career was launched in Bill Ayers’ living room, or whether that event simply occurred around the time his political career was being launched. Is he being willfully obtuse, or does he just revel in hyper-parsing even single word?

    JD (f7900a)

  31. So JD either can’t see the difference I’ve outlined or is diminishing it because it is inconvenient. Also, he apparently enjoys arguing in the third person.

    Tom (961f97)

  32. You are the one that introduced that there is a broader narrative that somehow implies that Baracky is in league with terrorists. The Ayers facts simply show that he has no problem associating with, and working with, unrepentant domestic terrorists.

    You dispute the notion, confirmed by contemporaneous reporting and by people present, by questioning whether or not Ayers or Baracky was the launcher?

    JD (f7900a)

  33. I generally dispute the ‘broader narrative’ because it is utter nonsense. But here, yes, I specifically dispute Palin’s claim that Obama launched his political career in Ayers’ living room, for the reasons I’ve mentioned already.

    Tom (961f97)

  34. Tom – You introduced the idea of the “broader narrative”. You are disputing the very idea that you introduced to the discussion?

    So where did Barack launch his political career? Why do people that were actually there, and reported on it contemporaneously disagree with you? How would you characterize the political gathering for Baracky’s benefit held in the living room of Bill Ayers?

    JD (f7900a)

  35. JD, I’m going to assume that you don’t understand what I’m saying because I am not able to satisfactorily convey my points. So I’m going to stop trying for now.

    Tom (961f97)

  36. Enlighten me, please.

    JD (f7900a)

  37. I find it interesting that the new spin from Patterico’s fans (but not from the man himself) is that the investigator of the “scandal” was just one guy? AMAZING

    How convenient it is for you guys to ignore the unanimous adopting of the report by the 12 members of the legislative committee!

    Eric Johnson, fresh off his pwning at Volokh for his Paul Krugman opinions (just hysterical by the way), contradicts himself (in three lines no less!) by asserting the “committee had no authority to try the Governor – their findings are meaningless” and then revels in their decision that she acted legally. Which is it, Eric? Do they have the authority to say she acted legally or are they “meaningless”?

    Longwalker notes the committee couldn’t change the report….so, apparently, their lack of input made them so angry, they showed everybody up by adopting it unanimously!

    Look, you guys, when Palin runs again in 4 years (for the top this time), you’ll need more than Agnew-esque resentment of the “media elites” and cheap victimization. This lady, as her SNL stint shows, is as gifted of a cipher and communicator as anyone since Reagan. She will do anything and say anything (I sold it on Ebay…I told Congress “thanks, but no thanks…”) and do it with a smile. She deserves better spin than this.

    timb (a83d56)

  38. Patterico – The folks like #37 ignore your words, and ignore the words of the actual report.

    JD (f7900a)

  39. well the blog by red rabbit has been removed by someone ? but i got a screen shot of it :)

    jack (9f8c22)

  40. timb @37 – Interesting link. That is the only one I have seen which states the committee adopted the report. All the other accounts I have read state merely that they voted unanimously to release the report without taking any action on it. Perhaps adopt doesn’t mean what you think it means in this context or you have an outlier of a report.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  41. Alaska Reports is a left-wing rag put out by a non-profit headquartered in New York City that specializes in puff-pieces on the UN.
    non-profit

    Another Drew (25937f)

  42. So, Tom is quibbling with the semantics of whether or not Baracky’s political career was launched in Bill Ayers’ living room, or whether that event simply occurred around the time his political career was being launched. Is he being willfully obtuse, or does he just revel in hyper-parsing even single word?

    Tom’s just a commenter in our neighborhood.

    Jim Treacher (592cb4)

  43. JD, I’m going to assume that you don’t understand what I’m saying because I am not able to satisfactorily convey my points.

    You seem to be saying that Obama hasn’t been lying about his relationship with William Ayers because we can’t prove whether it was their idea or his.

    Jim Treacher (592cb4)

  44. Don’t you dare throw him under the back of the bus, Treacher.

    JD (f7900a)

  45. The LA Times would rather throw the dirt about Palin and McCain out there first and then have to say a small “My bad” later. In the meantime, the damage is already done. Obama and his leftist cronies owe the mainstream media a big payday if he makes it to the White House.

    Jeff (9f2f2a)

  46. It will be so nice when Obama takes over the White House, then you can take off in another direction with your rabble.

    Cory

    Cory (8127d1)


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