‘The Nation’ Helps The Establishment, Adds Massive Editor’s Note To Its VIPS Article
Establishment propaganda firm The Hill has just released an article under the header “The Nation adds editor’s note walking back story ‘debunking’ DNC email hack”. It is the first of what is sure to be many dishonest spin jobs by establishment loyalists using a completely unnecessary preface that The Nation’s Katrina vanden Heuvel has attached to the beginning of an article her publication released last month about a memo by the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity. The memo casts severe doubt on the establishment Russian hacking narrative that has been promulgated as fact by corporate media and Washington politicians for over a year.
In reality the editor’s note doesn’t actually walk back anything, and the word “debunk” — placed in quotation marks by The Hill — does not appear once in The Nation’s article by Patrick Lawrence. What the unusually lengthy note by vanden Heuvel does do, however, is give establishment attack dogs an extremely toxic counter-narrative to help prevent the contents of the VIPS report from breaking into mainstream American awareness.
And, right on cue, here’s one of my readers notifying me in real time that the CIA-funded Washington Post has joined in the fun already:
There will be others. These outlets, who refused to cover the VIPS report when it surfaced and continued to ignore it after The Nation pushed it toward mainstream attention, will now disingenuously leverage the editor’s note to inform their audience that the memo they’ve been deliberately marginalizing has been officially invalidated. After more than three weeks of ignoring the article, now all of a sudden it’s front-page news.
This was completely unnecessary. A simple, brief editor’s note informing readers of the existence of a new article by The Nation featuring the ongoing debate between VIPS members about the organization’s latest memo would have been perfectly sufficient. There were already two short editor’s notes at the end of the original article (one correcting a minor error and one containing the DNC’s amazingly feeble response to the report), showing standard protocol for the publication, and there was no legitimate reason for vanden Huevel to deviate from that standard protocol here.
Which is a shame, because The Nation’s new article is actually very even-handed and informative. Had it been left to stand on its own, readers would have simply seen a lively debate between the VIPS members who signed the memo and those who declined to, which is of course a good thing. Those skeptical of the memo’s claims were allowed to make their case in a public venue, and those standing by it were allowed to make a point-by-point rebuttal against that case in a way that arguably strengthens their original position. This is a conversation that should be happening in full view of the public, and it should be left to stand on its own.
Instead, vanden Heuvel’s now highly-publicized editor’s note is skewing that debate in the favor of establishment interests who want the VIPS memo to disappear from public attention. The ridiculous lengthiness of the newly-added preface to Lawrence’s article in and of itself presents a deterrent to readers’ examining the original piece for themselves, and vanden Heuvel’s mealy-mouthed equivocations about the veracity of Lawrence’s work will surely cause many people to view his well-researched and well-presented essay through that lens. Her bloviating about the internal debate among VIPS members is completely redundant due to the article her publication had just released about that very subject, and her assertion that The Nation “should have made certain that several of the article’s conclusions were presented as possibilities, not as certainties” disputes a claim of certainty that Lawrence never made.
Why did vanden Heuvel feel the need to insert this bizarre editorial addendum into an article that did nothing but point out suspicious plot holes in the official narrative and ask important questions that need answering? I don’t know, but it was likely for the same reason that she felt the need to go to the Washington Post two weeks ago and inform Erik Wemple (the author of the new WaPo article about her editor’s note) that there was internal dispute within The Nation about Lawrence’s piece. All I know is that there is no reason for any truth-seeker to ever trust the Bezos propaganda empire, that her editor’s note serves a pernicious function, and that America’s unelected power establishment doesn’t need any damn help manipulating the public into pro-establishment narratives.
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