Today’s New York Times Magazine article on Rob Reiner is a howler. Third graph:
Reiner talked authoritatively about weapons inspectors and the National Intelligence Estimate, and he made reference, with evident satisfaction, to a poll showing that just 38 percent of the public thought the country was now headed in the right direction. The decibel level of his voice began to rise in anger, as if it were not I sitting across from Reiner on his couch but the president himself. “To me, the death of people at somebody’s hands over the stupidity of this man is astounding!” he shouted at me. “When I hear that on the weekend of the Super Bowl an Iraqi expatriate was explaining to him the difference between Kurds and Sunnis and Shiites, it makes me want to cry. I want to cry!” (Reiner said he recalled hearing this anecdote on cable news or talk radio, though I wasn’t able to find any reference to it subsequently.) “How do you send people into a region, the most powerful superpower in the world, when you have no idea what’s going on there? I’m not an Arab expert. Fine. So read a book! Sit down and learn something!” At this, Reiner leaned forward and emphasized each word with a nod of his sizable head: “Read! A! Book!”
(Emphasis, and laughter, added.)
Read the whole thing. It is hard to fathom why the New York Times, or Mr. Bai –a rising star in the world of political journalism– would allow Reiner to launch an argument with a made-up recollection.
But the suspension of disbelief belongs in the movie theaters, not the pages of MSM.
BTW: Bai’s biggest bonehead line:
And yet it’s also true that Hollywood quickly grasped realities about the war that Washington, for all its gravity and accumulated sagacity, did not.
Really? Which is why I suppose Reiner’s guy in Iowa –Howard Dean– fell flat on his face despite the fact that Reiner did the primary eve bus thing with Dean, and why Bush won overwhelmingly in 2004, and why the elections in January and October and those forthcoming in December saw enormous turnout.
The best thing about this article is that we no longer have to guess about Matt Bai’s politics when his byline appears. Though he’s working for the MSM, his creed is fever swamp certainty, through and through.
Mr. Reiner, you have an open invitation to co-host with me for a full week. Or a day. Or an hour.
But you might want. To. Read. A. Book. First. Or. Two. Or. Twenty.