SATURDAY, AUGUST 25, 2018
Bret Stephens believes in the truth: Almost surely, CNN's Chris Cillizza isn't the world's dumbest person.
That said, he'll do in a pinch! Or so we thought when we clicked a link from the New York Times' Bret Stephens—a link which took us to this recent post by Cillizza.
Stephens starts his new column as they'll all be doing now—with a throw-away reference to "truth isn't truth." This is very much the way their brains look on stampede.
In fact, it was perfectly obvious what Rudy Giuliani was saying when he made his "truth isn't truth" remark on Meet the Press. He was making the world's most obvious statement, as the full transcript of the exchange makes perfectly clear:
He was saying a person can make a true statement which won't be accepted as truth. He was saying a person can be charged with lying even though he's telling the truth.
It's perfectly obvious that this is true, and that this is what Giuliani was saying. But when our "journalists" start a stampede, they like their claims against their target to be comically obvious.
They'll rarely read a full chunk of transcript if a comical claim can be derived from the first few words which were said. It's how their brains work on stampede. They've behaved this way many times in the past, and they'll do so again.
People are dead all over the world because they behave this way. But thanks to a basic fact of life, people like Stephens will continue to function this way.
That basic fact of life is this: we actually aren't "the rational animal," as Aristotle is said to have said. As Professor Harari has instead suggested, we're "the animal inclined to gossip and to adopt group fictions." We're the animal inclined to stampede, as our journalists are currently doing.
"Witch hunts" can be directed at guilty parties; that doesn't mean they weren't witch hunts. Truth to tell, there's a bit of a hunt going on right now, a bit of a press corps stampede.
Regarding Cillizza: We'd planned to discuss one part of the Cillizza piece to which Stephens links. We'd planned to connect it to something Brian said last night.
Our intentions were the best. Sorry. Too depressing.
Regarding Lanny Davis: Has Lanny Davis ever met his client, Michael Cohen? That's the question with which we were left after watching Davis speak with Anderson Cooper this past Wednesday night.
Has Lanny Davis ever met Mike? To see what your best guess might be, you can peruse the transcript here.