THE AGE OF BELIEF: What should universities do?

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 10, 2014

Part 3—Rolling Stone fails to ask:
Let’s return to yesterday’s question. Did a college student tell Rolling Stone that this event occurred?
ERDELY (11/19/14): This past spring, in separate incidents, both Emily Renda and Jackie were harassed outside bars on the Corner by men who recognized them from presentations and called them "cunt" and "feminazi bitch." One flung a bottle at Jackie that broke on the side of her face, leaving a blood-red bruise around her eye.

She e-mailed [Dean Nicole] Eramo so they could discuss the attack—and discuss another matter, too, which was troubling Jackie a great deal.
Did a college student named Jackie actually tell Rolling Stone that this event occurred? Did she tell Rolling Stone that someone threw a bottle at her head? That the bottle hit her with so much force that it “broke on the side of her face?”

As noted in yesterday's report, it seems hard to believe that such an event could have happened. Did the student tell Rolling Stone that it did?

We wouldn’t make that assumption. Once we realize that a journalist is an unreliable player, we should stop assuming the truth of various things she has said.

In this case, it may be that the student described some similar type of incident and the journalist embellished what she said. At this point, we can only know what the journalist wrote, not what the student said.

That journalist, Sabrina Rudin Erdely, told a compelling tale in the pages of Rolling Stone. It may turn out that some or most of the story she told is accurate, although the journalist’s failure to fact-check the student’s story has left this question in doubt.

Friends of the student have now contradicted some of the things the student seems to have said. That said, we’re focusing on the journalist here, not on the student.

The journalist told a compelling story in her 9,000-word report. She described the most heinous possible conduct on the part of various actors.

Indeed, the conduct is so unrelentingly heinous that some observers have found the story hard to believe. Along with the heinous conduct, events are described which seem impossible, given the basic laws of physics, including that bottle which was thrown with such force that it broke on the student’s face.

The journalist’s story is quite compelling. It carries a familiar cast of villains, including nine amazingly heinous men who stage a vicious, preplanned attack and three teen-aged friends of the victim who give her the world’s most shallow advice in the immediate wake of the heinous assault.

In effect, Erdely has written a Lifetime movie. It may turn out that the events she describes happened in much the way she reports them. But we don’t have much faith in Erdely’s accuracy, or in her morals or judgment.

Let’s return to that broken bottle so we can tell you why.

Erdely would have us believe that someone called the student a vile name, then threw a bottle at her with such force that it broke against her face. It seems hard to believe that this could have happened.

But as we continue this part of the story, the student reports this latest attack to the appropriate dean, Nicole Eramo. She also reports two other recent gang rapes on the UVa campus:
ERDELY: She e-mailed Eramo so they could discuss the attack—and discuss another matter, too, which was troubling Jackie a great deal. Through her ever expanding network, Jackie had come across something deeply disturbing: two other young women who, she says, confided that they, too, had recently been Phi Kappa Psi gang-rape victims.

A bruise still mottling her face, Jackie sat in Eramo's office in May 2014 and told her about the two others.
One, she says, is a 2013 graduate, who'd told Jackie that she'd been gang-raped as a freshman at the Phi Psi house. The other was a first-year whose worried friends had called Jackie after the girl had come home wearing no pants. Jackie said the girl told her she'd been assaulted by four men in a Phi Psi bathroom while a fifth watched. (Neither woman was willing to talk to RS.)

As Jackie wrapped up her story, she was disappointed by Eramo's nonreaction. She'd expected shock, disgust, horror. For months, Jackie had been assuaging her despair by throwing herself into peer education, but there was no denying her helplessness when she thought about Phi Psi, or about her own alleged assailants still walking the grounds. She'd recently been aghast to bump into Drew [her principal assailant], who greeted her with friendly nonchalance. "For a whole year, I thought about how he had ruined my life, and how he is the worst human being ever," Jackie says. "And then I saw him and I couldn't say anything."

...That interaction would render her too depressed to leave her room for days. Of all her assailants, Drew was the one she wanted to see held accountable—but with Drew about to graduate, he was going to get away with it. Because, as she miserably reminded Eramo in her office, she didn't feel ready to file a complaint. Eramo, as always, understood.
Forgive us for a flippant remark. But as Erdely extends the story there, the Lifetime movie continues.

The student continues to be taunted and failed by everyone around her. She is disappointed in the dean—but Erdely never explains what the dean should have done, given the fact that the student was still refusing to file a complaint.

Perhaps there’s an answer to that question. Erdely doesn’t attempt to provide it.

That said, note the deeply heinous situation into which we have now descended. It is now the end of the student’s sophomore year. By now, the following events have occurred:

The student has been brutally raped by seven men, as two other men look on.

The student has been attacked in a public place, in a way which presumably could have killed her.

Most remarkably, the student has become aware of two other gang rapes at the same fraternity where she herself was assaulted. One of these assaults has occurred that very year.

According to what the student has heard, young women are still being assaulted by other students—students she can name. But she still refuses to file a complaint. As far as we know, she still refuses to provide their names. This is a situation Erdely barely deigns to explore.

In the real world, a victim of a vicious assault might react in the way this student is said to have done. That said, we’re struck by the relative nonchalance Erdely seems to bring to this horrible matter.

Should it perhaps be troubling in some way when the student keeps refusing to name her attackers? Should the student perhaps be encouraged to step forward?

Even as others are being assaulted, Erdely never really explores these obvious questions. Instead, she offers this confusing account of the reasons why many victims at U-Va have refused to file formal complaints.

The student is now meeting regularly with a 45-member campus support group. Erdely offers this account of their attitudes about the pursuit of the heinous people who are conducting gang rapes:
ERDELY: After feeling isolated for more than a year, Jackie was astonished at how much she and this sisterhood had in common, including the fact that a surprising number hadn't pursued any form of complaint. Although many had contacted Dean Eramo, whom they laud as their best advocate and den mother—Jackie repeatedly calls her "an asset to the community"—few ever filed reports with UVA or with police. Instead, basking in the safety of one another's company, the members of One Less applauded the brave few who chose to take action, but mostly affirmed each other's choices not to report, in an echo of their university's approach. So profound was the students' faith in its administration that although they were appalled by Jackie's story, no one voiced questions about UVA's strategy of doing nothing to warn the campus of gang-rape allegations against a fraternity that still held parties and was rushing a new pledge class.

Some of these women are disturbed by the contradiction. "It's easy to cover up a rape at a university if no one is reporting," admits Jackie's friend Alex Pinkleton. And privately, some of Jackie's confidantes were outraged. "The university ignores the problem to make itself look better," says recent grad Rachel Soltis, Jackie's former roommate. "They should have done something in Jackie's case. Me and several other people know exactly who did this to her. But they want to protect even the people who are doing these horrible things."
“Although they were appalled by Jackie's story, no one voiced questions about UVA's strategy of doing nothing?” Was anyone concerned about the student’s refusal to report?

Was anyone troubled by the fact that the student refused to name her assailants, even as assaults continued at their fraternity house? Did anyone try to persuade the student that, despite her apparent traumatization, she ought to report?

This problem doesn’t even seem to occur to Erdely. In the second part of that passage, she describes a student criticizing the university for failing to “do something,” even though the student in question was still refusing to file a complaint.

In the process, no one ever explains what the university should do. No one is ever asked if the student should be encouraged to name the criminals who assaulted her—the criminals who seem to be attacking other students.

At one point, Erdely seems to suggest one possible course of action. The university should have “warned the campus of gang-rape allegations against a fraternity that still held parties and was rushing a new pledge class.”

The university could have done that, of course—assuming the student in question actually made that allegation to the dean. Under the circumstances, though, would that have been a wise decision? Would it even be allowed under the federal guidelines which now regulate these matters?

Erdely rushes past these questions. And uh-oh! By now, it seems that the student may have named the wrong fraternity as the site of her attack—may have been confused about the location of her alleged gang rape.

Does it still seem that the university should have warned the campus about that fraternity? We don’t have the answer to that; Erdely doesn’t much seem to care.

Rolling Stone told a lurid, cinematic, highly compelling story. In the process, it included a range of events which strain credulity a bit, including a few which seem impossible on their face.

The magazine told a compelling story. Here’s what it didn’t do:

It didn’t attempt to fact-check even the most basic elements of the case. And it didn’t do a very good job of explaining what a university can and should do when faced with events of this type.

The deans are included among the villains; such villains help make a story compelling. That said, what should those villains have done in this appalling situation, assuming the student made the allegations Erdely describes?

Erdely is lazy and weak on that point. She didn’t bother checking her facts, nor did she outline solutions.

What kind of journalism is this? In part, it looks like the pleasing journalism of the perfect story.

Tomorrow: The role of the perfect story

120 comments:

  1. A big problem is that's hard to know where "Jackie's" fabulism ends and Erdely's begins. "Jackie" is still officially anonymous, and Erdely has dropped off the face of the earth. Obviously the story as a whole is a ludicrous fabrication, though its possible there may be a kernel of truth buried somewhere within. But until either individual talks its hard to know which one deserves which percentage of the blame.

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    1. This would mark the first time in history a young adult female has fabricated a story about being the victim of misogynistic abuse. As such I think Jackie's story must be true. RS shouldn't apologize over a simple procedure detail regarding the source.

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    2. Tell that to the Duke Lacrosse Team.

      Crystal Gail Mangum is a woman from Durham, North Carolina, who is best known for making false allegations of rape against lacrosse players in the Duke lacrosse case

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    3. Or tell it to J. Swift.

      Originator of canned Irish baby meat.

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    4. Yes, cicero, twice in eight years America has been lied to by evil women.

      It is now open season on women and on unarmed young black males. In short, your dream world has come true.

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    5. No, his dream is still to hang out with the homies on the next Breitbart cruise.

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    6. Educating Anonymous 5:23 that their comment was erroneous provokes liberal righteous indignation and bizarre hysteria about "open season on women and unarmed young black males.".

      SDE has done more harm to those attempting to combat college campus rape than Alex Kelly.

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    7. You left out Carolyn Bryant, Cicero.

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    8. Unless Carolyn Donham wrote for RS, what does Emmett Till's widow have to do with campus rape?

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    9. You do play the role of the ignorant cracker bigot well, cicero. Unless, of course, you are not acting.

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    10. Libs consider anyone who criticizes POTUS Obama as an "ignorant cracker bigot." That VP Biden could make racist comments about his future boss with out any condemnation from libs is jindicative of lib hypocrisy.

      "I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that's a storybook, man." J.B. February, 2007

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    11. CFG Troll checklist, right down to the punctuation.

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    12. You and little girls? Now that you mention it ....

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    13. Please leave me out of your fantasies.

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  2. "THE AGE OF BELIEF: What should universities do?"

    Here's a thought. Universities should continue to collect data and facts as best they can, then devise programs to raise awareness and reduce the rapes and sexual assaults on campus, and provide as much encouragement to report and assistance to recover as they can.

    But then, Somerby will ridicule those efforts as well.

    After all, MIT wrote its survey in Norwegian. And Rolling Stone wrote a very bad article.

    How can anyone possibly take this issue seriously now?

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    Replies
    1. Bob still doesn't know when the MIT survey was conducted.

      I still don't know who the Richard Perez-Pena Sam Hill is.

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    2. Somerby is criticizing Rolling Stone's journalism not UVa's response.

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    3. What should universities do @ 10:49?

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  3. "Recent grad Rachel Soltis" said "'Me and several other people....'" Good grief, don't they offer English classes at UVA?

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    1. They are too busy shutting down fraternities.

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    2. We now know what is the greatest tragic victim in this complex tale of feminism gone wild.

      Greek life in American academia.

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    3. Sandra Fluke still believes it is lack of taxpayer paid contraceptives.

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    4. Well cicero, you can't really blame her for demanding equity given taxpayer paid boner pills for limp dicked geezers.

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    5. How about they make all these items available over the counter. That way Obamacare has zero to do with the responsibility for purchasing them.

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    6. Shoot cicero, you can get everything you need on the internet.

      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00J0IJIPQ?gclid=CJPfgb6svsICFaU7Mgodu3MA2g

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    7. But cicero, no one is pushing to do what you are proposing. Instead it has been decided to just let women do without. Is that fine with you?

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    8. Who decided that women do without contraception? The SCOTUS ruled that Hobby Lobby's insurance need not cover 4 of the 26 types of contraception. Is that too onerous for you?

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  4. The laws of Economics tell us that when something is rewarded, more of it will be produced. At the moment, rape accusations are being rewarded. E.g., Lena Dunham's publisher has publicly admitted, on her behalf, that her rape accusation was filled with falsehoods. As a result, she's getting additional publicity. which, I imagine will help her sell more books. See http://www.buzzfeed.com/lenadunham/lena-dunham-why-i-chose-to-speak-out

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    1. B.F. Skinner and Thorndike demonstrated this, not "laws of economics."

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    2. We must again point out that this sort of ignorant kookiness comes from a source -- right wing media -- that does not exist as far as Bob is concerned. Yet it is massively, and destructively, influential. How one can claim to be a media watchdog or analyst or whatever it is Bob is supposed to be, while ignoring it completely mystifies us. It is rather like being a doctor who rants and raves about a patient's poor eating habits while ignoring the 50 pound tumor protruding from the patient's abdomen.

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    3. Not only are you not compelled to point out here the failings of rightwing media, you should probably stop doing it. TDH does point out of the ignorance on the right, but he does so to warn that the left is prone to the same tribal tactics. That's what this blog is about. It may disappoint you that TDH doesn't serve as a media watchdog or analyst. Bob Somerby writes a blog that covers topics he's interested in and he doesn't write a blog that covers topics you're interested in. I fail to see what's so mystifying about that. The solution to your complaint isn't the slightest bit mystifying either.

      Your doctor analogy is entirely inapt, except inasmuch that a patient whose abdomen is distended by a 50-pound tumor should probably seek medical care from a practitioner other than one who lectures him on poor eating habits. Here are several more helpful analogies.

      You're like a guy in a poker game who asks for three cards, throws down his hand, and yells "Bingo!"

      You're like a teenager who get's a ticket for going 60 in a residential zone, and responds to a parental lecture on dangerous driving by saying, "But my friend Tommy drives 70 everywhere."

      You're like a diner at a French restaurant who demands to talk to the chef to complain that chicken tikka masala isn't on the menu.

      You're like a patient who makes an appointment with a migraine specialist to ask about his bunions.

      Still mystified?

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  5. OMB (Your majneb gets results...with OTB)

    "majneb December 9, 2014 at 2:21 PM

    Interesting - Bob seems to think the beer bottle story is obviously implausible on its face because of physics. That may be true.
    ------------------
    Just one of the many incidents in the Rolling Stone story that read more like a bad Lifetime movie-of-the-week script than reality."

    "In effect, Erdely has written a Lifetime movie."
    BOB - this post


    We know from the strong assertion of faithful knowledgeable readers that BOB either does not or should not read comments made to his own blog, so we cannot possibly allege BOB is copying the work of majneb from yesterday.

    Does BOB watch Lifetime movies? It is possible, though we cannot say with any certainty he does or does not. That said, we do not know if he watches television currently other than Rachel Maddow.

    So we wondered if BOB had referred to the movie offerings of the Lifetime channel before when deniograting the work of other journalists. We could not find such a reference in the current Howler archives.

    We looked for other compelling evidence of the source of this heinous put down of the Rolling Stone's hyphenated scribe's work. It sounds much like original Somerbese, a style which has always vacillated between pseudo-Faulknerian eloquence and clean, Hemingwayesque prose.

    Sure enough it may have been influenced by Hemingway.

    That is, Mollie Hemingway, at The Federalist, whose review of Rubin-Ederley is making rounds of all the better right wings blogs.

    "Sabrina Rubin Erdely’s Old Stories Sure Read Like Bad Lifetime Movies

    http://thefederalist.com/2014/12/08/sabrina-rubin-erdelys-old-stories-sure-read-like-bad-lifetime-movies/


    And now it is here. At TDH.

    Courtesy of majneb. And BOB.

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    1. Therefore, Bob is like right wing bloggers. lol.

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    2. So Somerby is reduced to lifting and repeating analogies from the right-wing noise machine.

      How terribly sad.

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    3. No, 6:29. It's even sadder than that, and what I have long suspected.

      Bob isn't "like" right-wing bloggers. He IS a right-wing blogger.

      And like all great stand-up comics before him, not afraid one bit to steal a laugh line.


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    4. I would never have imagined in a million years that one day the great Bob Somerby would steal a line from me. I'm truly humbled.

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    5. Yeah, he stole the line that you stole. Or he stole it from the same source.

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    6. It's possible I unconsciously stole it. I do read a lot of political blogs of both right and left. Not the Federalist, though.

      Regardless its a fairly common put down.

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    7. Uh, no it's not.

      The only time it was ever used on TDH -- searching all the way back to 1998 -- was on April 12, 2002, and that wasn't by Somerby. It was by a commenter named Hypo.

      Now as repetitive as Somerby is with his insults, you'd think he'd have written it before now. Instead, he is searching and quoting -- without attribution -- The Federalist for "ideas."

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    8. It may not be common for Bob, but I consider it practically a cliche for describing a trite and overwrought tale of damsel-in-distress-ery.

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    9. howler didn't have comments in 2g2.

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    10. Did it use stupid acronyms in MMII?

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    11. I think it is sad Bob knows what Lifetime movies are all about.

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    12. Here you go majneb. Happy reading:

      http://thefederalist.com/2014/12/09/why-i-left-feminism-or-how-feminism-left-me/

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    13. Hey Anonymous @ VII:XIX

      Ever consider it might have been a typo?

      From the archives.....

      ..................................................

      Hypo April 12, 2012 at 5:15 PM.

      You make me sad, gyrfalcon. Only because ... bad about that piece was the cloying visuals. The slow pans, the soft focus, the enhanced photos made it seem like a Lifetime made-for-TV movie.
      --------------------------

      Alas, Hypo and gyrfalcon. Chased away by KZ no doubt.

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    14. I didn't consider that. Hey, I got 2g2 from snoop dogg so fuck off!

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    15. the whole thing is a non issue so all ya'll fuck off!

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    16. If you say gyrfalcon's name three times he'll reappear. He still reads this blog.

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    17. Schizophrenics like KZ are really good at making connections between things but terrible at sorting out which are accidental and which are causal. Enjoy your trip through the windmills of his mind.

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    18. KZ never fails to bring out your best efforts at demonstrating your qualifications for something you never achieved.

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    19. If what you wrote makes sense to you, you and KZ make a good pair.

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    20. You are the one who seems wedded to KZ. Which is why perhaps nothing makes sense to you.

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    21. When KZ disappears, I'm not the one missing him -- no one is.

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    22. Don't be too hard on KZ. Now that he posts about me I'm starting to appreciate the wisdom beneath the madness.

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  6. Liberals have become the parodies they were once inaccurately accused of being.

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    1. When were they ever inaccurately accused?

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    2. December 10, 2014. by 2 ConTrolls.

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  7. This story gets stranger by the day:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/u-va-students-challenge-rolling-stone-account-of-attack/2014/12/10/ef345e42-7fcb-11e4-81fd-8c4814dfa9d7_story.html?hpid=z1

    Based on the above, it looks like Jackie invented a fictional suitor in order to make her real life friend "Randall" jealous. Then, on the fateful night in question, she pretended she went out on a dinner date with her fictional paramour. Later she met up with "Randall" and two others in a hysterical state, claiming her "date" had forced her to perform oral sex on 5 other guys. Was this merely a wholly-concocted plea for sympathy from her real crush "Randall?" Or, despite all her fabrications, did something traumatic actually happen to her that night?

    To the Post's credit, they are at least making an attempt to find out whatever kernel of truth exists. It would have been nice if Rolling Stone had actually cared to do the same.

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    1. Praising the WaPo is not allowed here. Watergate spawned Reagan. Or was it hippies? Bob hasn't repeated that post recently so one forgets.

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    2. Watergate spawned bad 70's conspiracy flicks like " Three Days of The Condor," "The Parallax View", "The Cassandra Crossing," and most any Oliver Stone movie.

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    3. At least DinC pretends he is not demonstrating he is a fool.

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    4. You know, majneb, the Washington Post has been all over this issue since Rolling Stone first published the story November 19. That was several weeks after Somerby made such a big deal out of the MIT rape survey story in the New York Times.

      The issue had become quite a national controversy. Yet Somerby waited over two weeks, until the Washington Post had pointed out the contradictions between Rolling Stone's version and Jackie's friend's
      recollection before himself discovering the physics of beer bottles and weighing in on this terrible piece of journalism.

      Wonder why Somerby waited almost three weeks before picking the low fruit that Rolling Stone's Erdely had become.

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    5. Maybe he doesn't have time to read everything anyone writes the moment it is written and establishes priorities of some sort. While everyone else is chasing the rape issue, someone should examine the journalism, wouldn't you think, since it has contributed to the situation.

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    6. The journalism was there for examination on November 19th. The Post began their work in earnest on that RS article December 1.

      TDH was on to the story of...the New Republic as covered by the New York Times. And a Salon piece on big butts. And Rachel Maddow's coverage of a ski slope spat.

      The next substantive work was another attack on Salon and Charles Blow.

      He soon treated TDH readers to two long posts about the sins of WaPo's Ruth Marcus writing in defense of an autistic boy in solitary confinement, These posts were provoked not by Marcus's original column, but by a letter to the editor mentioning hoodies. In between he treated readers to another letter to the editor writer's work in the WaPo, this one containing the "h" word Himmler.

      Somerby does establish priorities of some sort. He just happened to miss this story about the guild taking down a pleasing tale written by another member of the guild. He has mentioned the Rolling Stone article three times now. He hasn't mentioned the work of the Washington Post once in connection with the unravelling of the Rolling Stone story.

      He's just several days late with his beer bottle blockbuster.

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    7. anon 1:02 a.m., maybe you, and others here, can now join me, as paid subscribers to this blog, in calling for the ouster of Mr. Somerby (a/k/a Andrew Breitbart, Jr.) as editor and publisher. Whatever he is being paid for doing this is way too much. One suggestion I have is that ZKoD be brought on board as his replacement to rescue this sinking ship.

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    8. "He just happened to miss this story about the guild taking down a pleasing tale written by another member of the guild."

      But that would severely damage one of Somerby's favorite themes -- that a "code of silence" exists that is so strong that guild members NEVER criticize the poor work of other guild members.

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    9. Your comment @ 6:48 shatters my image of Somerby like a beer bottle crashing against my high cheek bones.

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    10. Anonymous @12:22P, I don't believe you have high cheek bones.

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  8. It is possible to be emotionally disturbed and unable to cope with college life without having been raped.

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    1. Yeah, Seung-Hui Cho and Charles Whitman are good examples,

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    2. It is a shame Ted Bundy went awry. He was in a perfect position to become a foot soldier, heck, even a First Lt. in the Reagan Revolution.

      And shame on all those women embellishing the tales of Ted with their scolding tongues wagging from their severed heads.

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    3. Severed heads? That was "The Monster of Piedras Blancas" He never matriculated.

      BTW: Jeffrey Dahmer was a Democrat. He could have been Obama's nutrition czar.

      http://chicagoghouls.blogspot.com/2010/03/monster-of-piedras-blancas.html

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    4. The only thing missing from cicero's posts at this point is an illustration of Obama with a bone through his nose.

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    5. Thank you for illustrating the typical liberal racist comment that is excused by other liberals.

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    6. Any time, racist.

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    7. Indeed. You are an any time racist.

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  9. I have wondered all of these things myself. It's astonishing that, with all the scrutiny some elements of this story have gotten, no journalists are asking these questions. At least certainly not that I've seen.

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  10. The hurled beer bottle breaking against the face story doesn't ring true. Beginning at approx the 9:50 mark the following shows seven Sabu attempts before finally successfully smashing a non-gimmicked beer bottle over the head of Cactus Jack.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qcZuHihL6_s
    I know this is not definitive proof one way or another, but may help provide some reference useful to solving the controversy.

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  11. Perhaps RS could hire Professor Gruber to explain to the writing staff how to make advocacy journalism less susceptible to being busted as total fiction by "stupid" American readers. As soon as Gruber finds his tax returns that show what he was paid for his services to promote Obamacare he will be available for hire.

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    1. cicero has no need for Obamacare.

      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00J0IJIPQ?gclid=CJPfgb6svsICFaU7Mgodu3MA2g

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    2. Or nonwhites or women.

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    3. No need for Gruber is indeed a repudiation of Obamacare, but only a truly callow and venal lib could interpret that as an indictment of minorities and females. The mind boggles.

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    4. Body of work, jackass.

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    5. Sorry. Jackass is Democrat..

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  12. Years ago, I was at an outdoor concert in Milwaukee. People starting hurling beer bottles, and one hit a friend of mine on the head. The bottle shattered, and he was a little stunned for a moment, but he wasn't cut and was otherwise fine. So, drunks do throw beer bottles, and the bottles can definitely be broken on the heads they hit.

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    1. And you have not identified yourself or your friend or any of the other facts of this event. Excellent proof!

      I could as easily say that I am a materials engineer and that I have worked out the math by systematically varying the distances and the drunkness of the thrower and the victim and conclusively proved that it is impossible to break a bottle in this manner. Would I be believed?

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    2. Seeing is believing. I was there, so I don't need any proof. If you choose not to believe the story, that's your choice, but you'd be wrong.

      Now, if I was making up a story, I would have claimed to be a materials engineer, etc.

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  13. Bob says this about the Rolling Stone gang rape story:

    "It may turn out that some or most of the story she told is accurate."

    Nope. Not even close.

    It's going to turn out - already is turning out- that most if not all of the story was fabricated. "Jackie" - the woman whose "ordeal" was the focus of the story - has some real issues. So does Rolling Stone. Rolling Stone let a writer go off virtually unchecked to write the story that she wanted to be true, but was too ideologically blinded to actual vet.

    All kinds of people jumped on the "rape culture' bandwagon without bothering to consult their brains. University of Virginia administrators reacted rashly, and badly.

    This is a sordid story all the way around. But not nearly as sordid as the release of the Senate torture report.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bob will wait a few weeks until the right wing spin on the torture report is fully developed before he repeats it here and lectures the "liberal" media for the way it's been reported.

      Delete
    2. For Bob to concede that most of the story is inaccurate he would have to acknowledge the work of the Washinton Post.

      Delete
    3. And now I acknowledge he has done so today.

      Delete
    4. "But not nearly as sordid as the contents of the Senate torture report."

      FTFY. You're welcome.

      Delete
    5. To 10:37, the release is what's sordid.

      Delete
  14. I was hoping to enjoy "The role of the perfect story" over my perfect lunch. I'll just put off eating and reread the post on the Luxury Conference instead.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, thank heavens. Not a moment too soon! Just in time. Thanks TDH. I was really hungry.

      Delete
  15. "the first time in history a young woman has fabricated a story..."

    So we know that there are adults who go around thinking like this.

    We should note that, obviously, false accusations are not something dreamed up in cases to serve the political left. If you hate Al Sharton for the Brawley case, you better double despise Donald Trump for his behavior re The Central Park Five.
    The subjects of rape, and even more so child molestation, carry with them built in hysteria it is very hard for the media, who profit by hysterical reactions, not to cash in on.
    This is really just another case, there will be more. What's truly comic tragic is the you reporter the Newshour had on night before last; issuing non answers to non questions re the case they were pretending to talk about.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There's a big difference between the Central Park rape case and the Tawana Brawley case.. The 5 youths in the Central Park case were convicted after a trial. And, every one of them confessed to the crime.

      Delete
    2. And every one of them were released because their confessions were coerced.

      Mendacity, thy name is David in Cal.

      Delete
    3. I'm glad to see that you've kept your string of ignorance unbroken. Four of the suspects confessed.

      But at least you understand that the "big difference" is that the Central Park Five case was a much bigger miscarriage of justice than the Tawana Brawley case.

      You do understand that, right?

      Delete
    4. It must have been as Al Sharpton is POTUS Obama's race czar.

      Delete
    5. Thanks for the correction, deadrat. Anon 2:11, I didn't mean to mislead. I was focusing out a difference. Four boys confessed and later recanted. Steven Pagones never confessed. I hope you would agree that at a point in time when 4 had confessed and all had been convicted, it was reasonable to think they were guilty.

      Delete
    6. given the controversy AT THE TIME, you are simply wrong again.

      Delete
    7. Yet another racist brainfart from cicero.

      Delete
    8. Mentioning Obama's race czar by name is racist? Ok.

      Delete
    9. Oh, not to worry, DAinCA. You couldn't mislead me if you tried.

      Your hopes are hereby dashed. There was never a reason to believe the recanted confessions. They were inconsistent and obtained after hours of interrogation involving ruses and (the suspects claim) threats. There was no forensic evidence to tie the five to the crime, and the police knew that the DNA evidence was from one person only.

      Steven Pagones (the Dutchess county ADA involved in the Tawana Brawley case) never confessed. Of course, he was never charged. In fact, he was exonerated by a grand jury. The only charges were the unsubstantiated claims of Brawley, Sharprton, Maddox, and Mason, all of whom ended up paying judgments resulting from Pagones' successful defamation suit against them.

      Pagones says that the charges roiled his life and cost him his marriage. Then Central Park Five all completed prison sentences for crimes they didn't commit.

      Delete
    10. Anonymous @2:11P,

      All five had their convictions vacated, but after they'd completed their sentences. They weren't exonerated because the confessions were coerced, but because the DNA evidence matched a man who confessed to the crime.

      Delete
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