We've long documented the right-wing blogosphere's curious inability to get its facts straight, and the striking tendency of their stories to collapse under scrutiny. Today, however, it's time to give them credit: They (almost!) got one right.
It started last night, when Instapundit Glenn Reynolds commented on the Seattle Times' “implausible report” that “A rock was thrown through the window of [Rep. Steve] Driehaus' [D-OH] Cincinnati office Sunday,” a paraphrase of a comment from Driehaus' spokesman.
According to Reynolds:
Justin Binik-Thomas emails from Cincinnati that Rep. Driehaus' office “is on the 30th floor of a skyscraper downtown.” He also says that he spoke to Driehaus' office today and they said this never happened.
Oh, but thousands (or is it hundreds?) of Seattle readers will believe it, plus the readers of the news service from which the Times originally obtained its info if an original report was indeed mistaken (I haven't found another such report in a brief search for one).
The false Driehaus story will feed the bogus but growing media meme that opponents of this administration are violently unhinged. Absent a retraction, it may be that the folks at the Times are really celebrating a mission accomplished.
Ah, the vaunted research skills of the denizens of Newsbusters.
My own “brief search” indicates that the Times does appear to have made a mistake: A rock was not thrown through “the window of Driehaus' Cincinnati office Sunday.” Instead, a rock was thrown through the window of the office of the Hamilton County Democratic Party headquarters Sunday, which is in Driehaus' district. They've posted a picture of the hole in their window on their website. As Sunday night was when the health care legislation was passed, suggesting that the rock was a message for Driehaus isn't exactly absurd.
So yeah, the Times is in error. But their mistake over which Democratic office in Driehaus' district got a rock thrown through its window doesn't do much to debunk the idea that “opponents of this legislation are violently unhinged.”