Now that’s she’s out of jail and can freely read the Internet and even respond, let me say this about New York Times reporter Judith Miller to Judith Miller – I’m glad you went to jail.
She’ll be testifying today in front of a grand jury, sharing conversations she had with Lewis “Scooter” Libby, chief of staff to vice president Dick Cheney. She was put in a detention center in Alexandria, Va. on President Bush’s birthday, July 6.
Though you never bylined a story about the Valerie Plame case, Judith, you wouldn’t reveal your sources in the federal case being built surrounding the issue of who outed CIA agent Valerie Plame from her undercover status.
You’re a reporter too-willingly led to believe anything by your multitude of sources, but I love you because you and your Joey Ramone retro-look stood up to be discounted by those you were protecting.
You Ms. Miller are a very public person in a very public case and so you were our shining example of reporters who have a backbone and use it.
A backbone underneath a shiny leather jacket.
I’m glad one stinking reporter was seen to have a spine. Because those, like me, who populate the world of journalism talk a lot about sources; the sanctity of sources, the importance of working with sources to get to the truth, and the special privileges and laws that are created to preserve and protect this right; not only for journalists but authors and by logical extension whistle-blowers themselves.
Unfortunately there is no distinct and separated federal right of source protection given and so sources get burned. There are other legal avenues to pursue here, but all of them would have meant many more months in
It’s a lot of talk about something most people really couldn’t care less about. But everyone understands jail-time. Maybe you’ve helped people understand that if they would kill a man for looking twice at their 10-year-old daughter and be glad to go to jail, that reporters would 1) Gladly get your side of the story because people understand that motivation and 2) Be willing to go to jail for something they think is vitally important toward their duty to speak truth to power and afflict the comfortable.
Now it’s true this one is a little backward. You let power speak untruths to you. That only matters to those who are paying attention and those who think you should be paying a little more attention to your work. What people will get out of your 85 days in the pokey is that Time magazine’s Matt Cooper is just a wussy. And his boss, editor-in-chief Norman Perlstein is the kind of boss all the rest of us can only dream of. Dream of killing with a blunt object. Like wit. A witty baseball bat.
Judith, you’ve got more balls than both of them put together. Or is that base-on-balls?
In your statement, given through the New York Times, you said what you could:
“My source has now voluntarily and personally released me from my promise of confidentiality regarding our conversations. I went to jail to preserve the time-honored principle that a journalist must respect a promise not to reveal the identity of a confidential source. I chose to take the consequences – 85 days in prison – rather than violate that promise
The fact that you’re going to now come and testify does not damage this legacy and the strong stand you took one bit. Not all. Ok, well maybe just a little bit. Because none who are paying attention believe that Lewis “Scooter” Libby only now – for whatever reason – decided to give you a letter of recommendation to spill the beans. You know if he waited this long there would be something important he didn’t want you to say. Either that or he was just tickled thinking of you in prison.
Or your paper was going to “Do A Perlstein” anyway.Powered by Sidelines