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Patterico Confirms NYT Owes Its Readers a Correction

I wouldn’t think I’d need to explain this to a Deputy District Attorney for a major city like Patterico, but here are some of the definitions Merriam-Webster includes for the word “Bugger.”

Bugger: (Noun) A worthless person

Bugger: (Verb) Damn

Bugger: (Verb) Bungle or botch

Bugger: (Noun) A person who plants bugs

Bugger all: (Noun) Nothing

Bugger off: (Verb) Leave

Now, Patterico may not know me well enough to know that I live with an Irishman, and therefore it is not uncommon for me to hear and even use the word “bugger” as the Irish or Brits or Aussies do, as a catchall swear word generally tied to a fuck-up (though said Irishman wants it known that he says “bollocks” more than he does “bugger”). But it’s hard to know anything about me without knowing that I have a bit of a reputation for having a potty-mouth.

And so when Patterico thinks he’s caught me in a lie because I persist in describing four pathetic overgrown boys who botched their prank in Senator Landrieu’s office as TeaBuggers…

“Teabugger”? Oh, I get it. It’s like “tea bagger” — only the word “bugger” is substituted . . . a reference to O’Keefe’s “bugging,” which it’s now clear he did not do. So it’s a joke name based on a lie.

When the post in question includes all this in the first paragraph…

TeaBugger James O’Keefe had called on the FBI to release the videos he took while (according to the FBI) by false pretense, entering US government property with the intent of interfering with a phone system owned by the US government. He wanted those released because they would show he neither bugged the phones nor managed to do anything in the phone closet (largely because they were arrested before they were able to get to the phone closet).

It just shows that Patterico knows bugger all about language.

But Patterico’s post is quite amusing for the lengths he goes to to … confirm the NYT owes its readers a correction.

You see, Patterico claims that when the NYT wrote the following passage:

Mr. O’Keefe made his biggest national splash last year when he dressed up as a pimp and trained his secret camera on counselors with the liberal community group Acorn — eliciting advice on financing a brothel on videos that would threaten to become Acorn’s undoing.

He quickly became a cult hero among young conservatives who saw his work as groundbreaking and sought to emulate him.

Liberals have denounced his methods as dishonest, a form of entrapment, but national Republican leaders seized on them as revelatory, pressuring Congress into cutting Acorn’s financing.

Mr. O’Keefe produced his videos with a partner, Hannah Giles, who posed as a prostitute in them [my emphasis]

The NYT did not mean (Patterico claims) to imply that James O’Keefe was wearing his silly pimp costume when he went into ACORN offices and filmed them not breaking the law. Rather, Patterico insists, the NYT only meant that O’Keefe was posing at being a pimp, without suggesting that he was dressed up as one.

You can “pose” as a pimp without dressing like one. Look up the definition if you don’t believe me.

And therefore, Patterico seems to be saying, Bradblog was wrong to ask the NYT to correct the impression they left that O’Keefe was dressed up as a pimp when he went into the ACORN videos.

But there’s a problem with that, aside from the NYT’s use of the phrase “he dressed up as a pimp.”

The editor in question, Greg Brock, made it quite clear he understood the passage to mean that O’Keefe was wearing his pimp costume in the ACORN offices, because one of his emails said this:

As I said, we see nothing to correct. It is not merely a matter of accepting his version. He was videotaping some of the action, including when he left some of the offices. At one point, the camera was turned in such a way to catch part of the “costume” he was wearing. And ACORN employees who saw him described his costume.

And, as Eric Boehlert points out in his response to this same Patterico post, the NYT’s earlier reporting (which Brock also references for his proof that they don’t need to make a correction) clearly says that O’Keefe was dressed as a pimp, not just claiming to be a pimp while wearing his typical prep outfit.

Ready for the embarrassing part where I quote the New York Times claiming O’Keefe was dressed as a pimp visiting ACORN offices?Behold:

The undercover videos showed a scantily dressed young woman, Hannah Giles, posing as a prostitute, while a young man, James O’Keefe, played her pimp. They visited Acorn offices in Baltimore, Washington, Brooklyn and San Bernardino, Calif., candidly describing their illicit business and asking the advice of Acorn workers. Among other questions, they asked how to buy a house to use as a brothel employing under-age girls from El Salvador. Mr. O’Keefe, 25, a filmmaker and conservative activist, was dressed so outlandishly that he might have been playing in a risque high school play.

And again:

But never has his work had anything like the impact of the Acorn expose, conducted by Mr. O’Keefe and a friend he met through Facebook, 20-year-old Hannah Giles. Their travels in the gaudy guise of pimp and prostitute through various offices of Acorn, the national community organizing group, caught its low-level employees in five cities sounding eager to assist with tax evasion, human smuggling and child prostitution.

So Patterico is insisting that O’Keefe wasn’t dressed as a pimp but was just posing as one, all the while wearing khakis. He’d better tell the NYT, then, because they have reported multiple times (and Brock continues to claim in his response to Brad) that O’Keefe was not posing-in-khaki but was in fact dressed as a pimp.

One more thing.

In response to my repeated calls for O’Keefe to release his raw video from the ACORN stunt (particularly as he calls for authorities to release his raw video from the Landrieu stunt), Patterico very generously reminds me that there are unedited audiotapes of the stunts.

Also, all three bloggers repeatedly refer to a supposedly “independent” report by a guy paid by ACORN, which makes various findings totally at odds with the unedited audio that the report (and all three bloggers) refuse to acknowledge even exists. (Did you know there is unedited audio? In all the whining about the lack of unedited video, did anyone ever bother to tell you that you can listen to the full unedited audio of these visits? It’s true! Click the link if you don’t believe me.)

That’s as clever as Patterico gets, I guess! Want proof of how O’Keefe was dressed in one or another of his stunts, given that the videotape we do have is clearly edited? I know! Check the audiotape!

Video. Audio.

Yeah.

In other words, try as hard as Patterico can, he’s got bugger all to refute that O’Keefe in both his ACORN videos and his Landrieu stunt was involved in a bolloxed attempt to deceive.

Update: Edit to bugger reference above.

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