2004-09-14

Content, Form, and Dan Rather

Now the forged/unforged memos of Dan Rather have entered the form vs. content (vs. intention?) argument! It seems that the form of certain documents used on 60 Minutes in question of Bush's National Guard service might be less than authentic (according to ABC News--and Geoff Pullum). This doesn't bother CBS, however, who maintain that it is the spirit or "thrust" of the documents, fake or not, that should be focused on--thus, fake but authentic. I say, dream on Dan.
from ABC News:

Since the CBS News program 60 Minutes II filed a report on President Bush's record in the National Guard during the Vietnam War, citing documents allegedly written by Bush's squadron commander, the authenticity of the documents has been widely questioned.

Two of the document experts hired by CBS News now say the network ignored concerns they raised prior to the broadcast of 60 Minutes II about the disputed National Guard records attributed to Lt. Col. Jerry Killian, who died in 1984.

"Most importantly, the content of the documents was backed up by our reporting and our sources who knew the thoughts and behavior of Lt. Col. Jerry Killian at the time," the statement said.

Killian's former secretary, Marian Carr Knox, told ABC News she believes the documents are fake, but that they do reflect some of what her former boss thought of then-Lt. George W. Bush.

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