…There’s a broader problem. While I’m a liberal journalist, I’m also a liberal journalist and so I’m not going to pretend that Kerry’s stance on gay marriage is one of pure conscience and principle when it seems clear to me that it isn’t.
Which is fine. I don’t want to be a hack, I want to be a journalist — an observer, an analyst, a polemicist, but even on the latter point an honest one. But as an observer I can see that liberalism is structurally disadvantaged by the fact that a far lower proportion of our commentators want to be hacks, as an analyst I can see that this “hack gap” plays a role in creating bad policy for the United States of America, and as a polemicist it seems to me that closing the hack gap is an important step in improving policy. But while I’m happy to do what I can to close the hack gap by trying to shame rightwingers into being less hackish, I’m not going to close it by becoming a hack — it’s not what I do, and it’s not what I want to do.
I don’t think Matt is a hack (I do think he is a partisan, but so am I), but making broad, sweeping statements about the opposition while annointing your own side of the ideological is the definition of being a hack.
No it isn’t. A hack is someone who will disingenuously argue for his chosen side, regardless of the merits.
It all depends on what the meaning of ‘hack’ is.
mike the analyst
I think theCoach has a point.
What Matt is doing is NOT being a hack, but he is being “partisan” maybe even biased. It’s like me asserting that I believe that Democrats pull more dirty political tricks than Republicans regardless if you throw Nixon or Rodney Alexander in my face… “as an observer… I see conservatives as structurally disadvantaged by the fact we have a higher proportion of honest politicians…”
There are some points – are GOP analysts bigger hacks? are Dems dirtier pols? that we can argue til the cows come home without really proving them. Putting your belief in one side or the other is where partisanship lies. I think “hackdom” is many levels below that.
I have to agree with Coach too. A hack is somebody like Joe Conason who will defend a Democrat even if he’s standing there with a smoking gun in his hand. The person who witnessed the shooting would go through six degrees of Richard Melon Scaife and be declared to not be credible because he bought one of Scaife’s newspapers 10 years before while stopping in Pittsburgh to catch a connecting flight to Newark.
Yglesias’s broad sweeping statements are just plain ole stupid.
Matt used to shoot pretty straight but now I don’t know. He was outraged by Milsovec and now is silent about Kosovo. He doesn’t think the talk about Kerry’s record 30 years ago is relevant but Kerry is the one running with it. This comes across like – I’m a really cool journalist not like those other hacks. Although we need more hacks.
Just my opinion.