The dog has barked and, without the videotape, the caravan has moved on.
The Eason Jordan vs The Bloggers match ended its first set today with a high lob set-up from Howard Kurtz at the Washington Post put away by an overhand smash by Mr. Adams of Davos who announced that the videotape of the Davos meeting, in which Jordan claimed the US Military was deliberatly killing journalists in Iraq, would not be released to the public.
Jordan's office also released a yet another "clarifying" statement which was picked up and noted in passing by the Boston Globe.
Yes, the New York Sun and the Washington Times have both covered the story and amplified the reports and the reporting by the blogosphere, with Michelle Malkin being especially distinguished in this regard.
But, for the time being, that's all folks.
As I remarked yesterday, the videotape is the key. But just knowing there is a videotape is not enough. At a bare minimum, the videotape must be seen, and widely seen, for it to make a difference. The Jordan/Davos videotape is the McGuffin here in the same way that the Rathergate CBS PDF documents were in that case. If the Jordan videotape is not seen at all, not all the sworn affidavits and interviews with eye-witnesses nor all the "outrage" of career politicians will matter one whit. And we now know that there will be no videotape released. Videotape, as I have said before, is Mr. Jordan's game. You don't think he'd be stupid enough to let it see the light of day if there were any way in which it could be prevented, do you? As William Burroughs is fond of asking, "Wouldn't you?"
Mr. Jordan controls the tape in the best way one can possibly control such a potentially damaging item. He controls is without controlling it. 'It's not me,' he can justly claim. 'It is that damned Davos conference and their Chatham House Rules. Can't do a think about it, fellows.'
I'm not really surprised and neither, do I think, are any other of the online commentators on this issue. Calls for the release of the tape will go on as part of the standard after-game Stonewalling wrap-up, and the whole incident will be marked in Mr. Jordan's Permanent Online Conduct Record. And that, as they say, will be that.
As to mainstream media coverage outside the blogosphere, well, you've had all you're likely to get. With Kurtz at the Washington Post finally weighing in, that's going to be it. Interview with principle, plausible deniability, David Gergan fallen in line, small squib in the Boston Globe.... What more could anyone possibly expect?
Mickey Kaus, it would seem, expected more and harped on Kurtz for days to get on the story. Now that Kurtz has, Kaus is upset because Kurtz didn't go for the jugular. Absurd. What did Kaus expect Kurtz to do? If he expected anything more penetrating that what he got, Kaus is a fool. And I don't think Kaus is a fool, but was setting Kurtz up for a small one-day game of inside-gotcha. That's also over now with the game point going to Kurtz and Jordan.
The Jordan Affair is now officially stamped with the big red stencil that spells out: O L D N E W S.
In this world, if it doesn't happen on television it doesn't happen, and without the videotape this will not happen on television.
Woof. Woof. Woof. Saddle the camels. Head out for the dunes.
As President Bartlett says, "What's next?"
UPDATE: Reynolds @ Instapundit is quite correct when he notes:
"I hate to accuse Gerard of old-media thinking, but I think that's what's going on here. It's true, of course, that without video the story won't get a lot of play on TV. But that's the short game, in which the goal is getting rid of Eason Jordan. Or hanging on to him."
To which I plead "Guilty... but with an explanation." I said "Game. Set." not "Game. Set. Match."
That outcome is likely to be very different indeed. And for the middle phase, Reynolds rightly points to Jim Geraghty's excellent "Remember this the next time" item found HERE AT TKS.Posted by Vanderleun at February 8, 2005 9:54 AM | TrackBack