DC Trawler

The NYT’s James Risen finds himself in a sticky situation

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Earlier this week, James Risen at the New York Times had this front-page story:

The United States has discovered nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan, far beyond any previously known reserves and enough to fundamentally alter the Afghan economy and perhaps the Afghan war itself, according to senior American government officials.

But according to John Cook at Yahoo! News:

Risen’s piece quickly drew fire from online reporters and writers (including this one), who pointed out that many of the story’s purported revelations about Afghanistan’s mineral reserves had been previously reported. They also questioned the timing of the story, coming as it did on the heels of a series of troubling reports about the stability of the Karzai government and one day before Gen. David Petraeus was scheduled to testify before Congress about the war…

Risen didn’t take kindly to the blogospheric criticism. “Bloggers should do their own reporting instead of sitting around in their pajamas,” Risen said.

And then he complains about how they don’t realize how important he is, they’re all a bunch of stinky babies, etc. All of which is, of course, boring. The interesting part is the tidbit Cook left out of his story but tweeted in a Twitter tweet:

Speaking as a blogger, I will neither confirm nor deny Risen’s allegation. But isn’t it kind of sad that a big-time reporter is still complaining so bitterly about bloggers? It’s so ’04. We’re here, we’re the ‘sphere, get used to it!

As if that isn’t clueless enough, in order to learn his real feelings about it, you need to read a tweet. Which is a word the NYT is trying to excise from its pages. Hey, “journalists,” maybe more people would want to buy your wares if you weren’t so tedious and stodgy.

Uh-oh, I just realized I’m in a roomful of reporters right now. I hope they don’t get to me before I can finish thi

Jim Treacher