Patterico's Pontifications

12/28/2009

L.A. Times Fails to Correct Slander Against James O’Keefe

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General — Patterico @ 10:01 am

Few things in life are as aggravating as having someone put words in your mouth. Earlier this year, the Washington Post did exactly that to James O’Keefe. They eventually had to admit it — but the L.A. Times, which has unfairly targeted O’Keefe all year, continues to run the false article uncorrected.

The Post article contained this eye-opening claim:

Though O’Keefe described himself as a progressive radical, not a conservative, he said he targeted ACORN for the same reasons that the political right does: its massive voter registration drives that turn out poor African Americans and Latinos to cast ballots against Republicans.

Wow. O’Keefe said that he targeted ACORN because they register blacks and Latinos to vote? Well, of course not. The quote would set off even the least sensitive bullshit-o-meter. Trouble is, many Big Media organizations have failed to invest in this technology. And so, in September, Joel Mowbray took up O’Keefe’s cause, with the help of Power Line, and the Post eventually issued a weak correction:

This article about the community organizing group ACORN incorrectly said that a conservative journalist targeted the organization for hidden-camera videos partly because its voter-registration drives bring Latinos and African Americans to the polls. Although ACORN registers people mostly from those groups, the maker of the videos, James E. O’Keefe, did not specifically mention them.

He didn’t generally mention them either. The word “specifically” was inserted, not for accuracy, but as a slippery move to disguise just how starkly the Post had manufactured this allegation.

But at least the correction was issued.

Here’s the thing: months later, the L.A. Times version of the article still remains uncorrected. The Times reprinted the Post article in its entirety. But the correction never made it into the version reprinted by The Times. You may view the L.A. Times version of the story at this link. It still bears the false claim that O’Keefe targeted ACORN as an effort to suppress the minority vote.

In essence, the article suggests that O’Keefe is a racist. That’s a hell of an allegation to level at someone when there is no evidence to support it. When your accusation is based on a quote that you made up.

The L.A. Times should finally correct this — and institute a mechanism so that when they reprint articles from other publications, they receive notice of corrections to those articles. This is a systematic problem that demands a comprehensive solution.

People’s reputations depend on it.

In the meantime, help me get this corrected. Baby steps. It starts with your e-mail to the Readers’ Representative. Write to Readers.Rep@latimes.com.

11 Responses to “L.A. Times Fails to Correct Slander Against James O’Keefe”

  1. But, but. . .the Los Angeles Times doesn’t have a Readers’ Representative any more.

    Official Internet Data Office (7735a9)

  2. I mean, really…it’s just a stupid newspaper.

    Do people actually read and **gasp** believe what they write?

    Newspapers need to die along with the TV news. If you use these sources for your news, you will be sadly misinformed. REALLY!

    Charlotte (dad663)

  3. It’s so bad that even my parakeet won’t poop on it.

    Old Coot (d2bd0f)

  4. The number of accusations of racism will climb this year as the election approaches and will really skyrocket in 2012. They have already begun in some quarters with fever dreams arriving early.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  5. “the Los Angeles Times doesn’t have a Readers’ Representative any more.”

    Correction: They still have a lame duck in the position, through December 31, 2009.

    The staff of OIDO regrets the error.

    Official Internet Data Office (7735a9)

  6. Better yet: E-mail the writer of the original story directly. Say that he/she has committed libel; that you as a reader resent it, and resent even more his paper’s failure to correct it; and that if the situation isn’t cured IMMEDIATELY, you will spread around the blogesphere true but necessarily negative assesments of the writer’s work, as a counter to the false assesment of James O’Keefe. Then do so. All these assholes care about is their own reps, their own future prizes.

    Kevin Stafford (abdb87)

  7. Dont ever expect the L.A. SLIMES to apppoligise for slander even if it leads to a lawsuit

    Krazy Kagu (8fb162)

  8. O’Keefe may not have actually mouthed the offending statement, but as a rightwing neocon and a lie-spewing hate-monger surely he THOUGHT it. And to our leftist friends isn’t that is all that matters?

    Frank (d9fa21)

  9. [...] if all this wasn’t enough, the paper let stand another fabricated quote from O’Keefe, which was originally reported by the Washington Post, and reprinted by the L.A. Times. The Post [...]

    Patterico's Pontifications » Patterico’s Los Angeles Dog Trainer Year in Review 2009 (e4ab32)

  10. Whether he said actually mentioned the minority groups by name or not, he targeted them because the people they register to vote tend to vote for democrats. He is still a racist, we know who he was speaking of and bottom line is Conservatives have been targeting ACORN for years for this very reason.

    Scotty (4ab91e)

  11. Shorter Scotty: “Fake, but accurate.”

    Racist.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)


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