Today, The Washington Times had an editorial by William Campenni on Bush's Guard service. Campenni, one of those shuck and jive Shrub apologists, dismisses the various charges against Bush with the usual you all just don't understand the way the Guard works spiel. (Actually, the problem is that we understand only too well). Interestingly, he does accept that favoritism may have been at play, but tells us, "It is ironic that the media is hypocritically worked up on this fact of life, given William McGowan's study on the nepotism for the children of media biggies in their own profession." I don't quite get the point being made here. Is it: Our politicians are worthless, but that's okay, because our media is worthless as well? I have heard that Bush was accepted to the Guard on the same day he applied! (This, with over a hundred-thousand applicants and the lowest test score that one could apply with!) If this is true, we can only agree with Campenni that our media (as well as our plutocrat leaders) are indeed totally worthless--Why haven't they dug this up and droned on about it like they have about the Swift Boat folks? [Incidently, this entire post should be read along with my post below on Bush and the Guard.]
For those interested, click here for William McGowan's article in the National Review Online. McGowan evidently wrote a book called Coloring the News (discussed in a related post on Instapundit).
Matthew Yglesias, commenting on McGowan's ideas, writes, "Journalism isn't exactly your golden road to riches, so insofar as nepotism is a factor in blocking social mobility (which it surely is) one probably wants to look elsewhere for the truly troubling examples. Cops, firefighters, and soldiers all legendarily often form family traditions in those professions and I don't thing anyone finds that terribly worrying."
Tapped sends McGowan to the McTrashbin with the following:
Indeed, Tapped can, without thinking too hard, name just as many conservatives in the media who are the sons and daughters of conservative journalists or conservative society types. Let's see: William Kristol, editor of The Weekly Standard and son of Irving; John Podhoretz (whom McGowan mentions), columnist at the New York Post and son of Norman; Rupert Murdoch's son Lachlan, who became publisher of the Post at the age of 30; humorist Christopher Buckley, son of Bill, Jr.; talk show host Michael Reagan, son of Ronald. Near the top of the masthead of the online publication in which McGowan has published his screed is Jonah Goldberg, whose first job in journalism was as founding editor of NRO, and whose mother is wingnut doyenne Lucianne Goldberg. Last but certainly not least, there's Adam Bellow, son of Saul. Who is Adam Bellow? He's a book editor who, ironically, is about to publish a volume in defense of nepotism -- and he's also the guy who commissioned McGowan's last book.
In sum, Campenni bases his illogical argument (that oh so subtle rhetorical flourish called "Well, they were doing it too though!") on an equally illogical argument (a couple A's are B's so obviously all A's are B's).