Posted by lex, on June 25, 2010
I only read David Wiegel’s “Right N0w – Inside the conservative movement and the Republican Party” blog on the Washington Post episodically. Nothing the journoblogger wrote seemed particularly trenchant or relevant to my interests. There were no pretty airplane pictures for example, nor thoughtful exposés on foreign women. With rifles.
And when I noted him halfheartedly defending the “hug” that North Carolina Congressman Bob Etheridge gave a young videographer who had the temerity to ask a public servant what his public position was, I sort of assumed that his “inside the conservative movement” subtitle was either inside the beltway irony, or else some Fossian, “conservatives in the mist” research project.
But apparently, the WaPo is so unfamiliar with Actual Conservatives that the paper hired Wiegel to balance their left leaning editorial slant in an embedded blog at their online newspaper portal.
A mistake, as it turns out:
The current flap over Washington Post blogger Dave Weigel has its roots in a fact that suprised me when I learned of it earlier this year: The Post appears to have hired Weigel, a liberal blogger, under the false impression that he’s a conservative. The new controversy over the revelation that he’s liberal is primarily the Post’s fault, not his, except to the degree that he allowed the paper’s brass to put him in an unsustainable position.
Wiegel was hired by the Post to bridge the gap between “responsible journalism”, editorial and the blogosphere that depends upon them. He has resigned his position after someone on Ezra Klein’s “Journolist” listserve openly published some rather intemperate language Wiegel reserved for Matt Drudge and others, language for which Wiegel later apologized. Sort of.
I don’t fault Wiegel for holding views heterodox to my own, and do believe that it’s more than a little creepy that someone on an invitation only, private listserve would go trawling through the archives on a journey of targeted personal destruction.
And I really do believe that the Post ought to take a field trip out behind the beltway barricades, so that next time around they might recognize a conservative, or even Republican when next they meet one.