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David Brooks on Reagan in Neshoba
Posted by: Jon Henke on Friday, November 09, 2007

A couple months ago, Bob Herbert wrote a thoroughly deceptive and inaccurate column about Reagan's speech at the Neshoba County Fair outside Philadelphia, MS. I responded with a post pointing out the facts that Herbert had not seen fit to provide to his readers.

Today, David Brooks takes on that same allegation, calling it a "slur" by "left-wing commentators". Brooks doesn't name Bob Herbert specifically, but he doesn't have to. His column is clear enough.
Still, the agitprop version of this week — that Reagan opened his campaign with an appeal to racism — is a distortion, as honest investigators ranging from Bruce Bartlett, who worked for the Reagan administration and is the author of “Impostor: How George W. Bush Bankrupted America and Betrayed the Reagan Legacy,” to Kevin Drum, who writes for Washington Monthly, have concluded.

But still the slur spreads. It’s spread by people who, before making one of the most heinous charges imaginable, couldn’t even take 10 minutes to look at the evidence. It posits that there was a master conspiracy to play on the alleged Klan-like prejudices of American voters, when there is no evidence of that conspiracy. And, of course, in a partisan age there are always people eager to believe this stuff.
It would be nice to think that Brooks was prompted, or somewhat informed, by my own recent response to Herbert, or a previous post I'd written on the issue, since they cover some of the same territory. But perhaps not.

I would rather believe there is a chance that Bob Herbert will respond to this challenge to his integrity by acknowledging his error and providing his own readers with the rest of the story.
 
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One thing I’ve learned: Democrats never pass up on a chance to call Republicans racist, and never apologize for it when they’re wrong. Look at the recent threads on immigration.
 
Written By: Steverino
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This is Bob Herbert we’re talking about. Challenges to integrity mean nothing to those who have none.
 
Written By: MarkD
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