Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

D.C. is on Fire! (With Bad Feelings)

Ooh, smoke billowing at 14th and I, NW, in D.C.! Maybe it's all the hot air being burned right now on Cabalist in the wake of that story on up-and-coming journalist-and-blogger Beltway Insiders, the one that had an all-male cast. Cabalist, should you not be a manly Beltway Insider yourself, is the email listserv Journolist replacement, where the in-the-know politicos discuss amongst themselves the weighty wonky workings of the world. (I'm jealous! I want in!) Here's a brief note to our wonky Cabalistic boyfriends in D.C.: whenever a reporter calls, you always ask with whom else he is speaking. And who his editor is. And what his brief is. And you make yourself familiar with his work. And then you make suggestions of who else he should talk to! That's called "not getting set up." There's no excuse for a reporter to be surprised by another reporter! And it actually is the subject's responsibility to do that, and the subjects of stories often actually do know in advance what the article is going to say—because they ask questions. And what's more, there's plenty of people who happily say "actually, please do not write about 'how awesome' I am." Because it might not be good for them.

Still, in the end, none of this matters. Who knows better than the folks that cover politics that there's no difference between negative and positive attention these days? Now go get me some coffee, ladies.

5 Comments / Post A Comment

Smitros (#5,315)

The fire itself is no big thing, and it's under control, so it may be remembered more as metaphor than fact.

It smells awful, though.

deepomega (#1,720)

Signs and portents! Is the fire maybe coming from within the massive city-wide pentagram? Because I think that means Shub-Niggurath is rising.

barnhouse (#1,326)

So long as it's not Shrub-Niggurath.

I am too sorry but Ezra Klein really is the best Beltway journalist and has been since the health care circus. He bothers to read the stuff he reports on, for one thing. He is smart and fair and doesn't talk down to the reader. So far at least, he hasn't disappeared up his own posterior, which is more than you can say for most of the Old Guard.

Which really is part of the reason many prefer to get their news and analysis from blogs. It is actually about the quality of the work, for those of us who are actually reading it, not about "position".

(I too would like to be on that list! I wonder if they allow girls, snort.)

Tulletilsynet (#333)

There's no excuse for a reporter to be surprised by another reporter! — No, assuming the other reporter plays it straight. — With that reservation, this is so right. And (but) the flip side is that practically nobody in the world who is not a reporter or a person who jerks around reporters for a living knows what to do when a reporter calls.

Matt (#26)

I know I feel bad, anyway.

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