Maybe I’m missing something, but if Obama’s pal Dr. Eric Whitaker did offer Rev. Wright $150,000 to stay silent for the duration of the campaign, as charged by Ed Klein, how exactly is that different from John Edwards’ pal Fred Baron giving Rielle Hunter money to stay out of the limelight for the duration of the campaign?
There are several answers to that. First and foremost, I wouldn't consider Ed Klein a credible source even if he said "Hi, my name is Ed Klein." (More on that below.) Second, any private arrangement between a guy named Whitaker and a guy named Wright is just that: Private. (Presuming, of course, that such an agreement occurred; I remain doubtful.)
There is also the inconvenient fact that Wright did not
shut up. He got in front of any available microphone and talked and talked until everyone got sick of his guff. He did the Bill Moyers show. He gave a huge speech before the NAACP. He
did newspaper interviews. Jon Stewart called it the Reverending Story.
In a 2008 post, this humble blog took a look at the kinds of things Wright said in public after Obama tossed him under that famous bus
Speaking before an audience that included Marion Barry, Cornel West, Malik Zulu Shabazz of the New Black Panther Party and Nation of Islam official Jamil Muhammad, Wright praised Louis Farrakhan, defended the view that Zionism is racism, accused the United States of terrorism, repeated his view that the government created the AIDS virus to cause the genocide of racial minorities, stood by other past remarks (”God damn America”) and held himself out as a spokesman for the black church in America. . . .
(At the time, those brilliant progressives over on Daily Kos said that the Wright controversy was somehow ginned up by evil Hillary.)
Well, there's no need to relive all the idiocies of Campaign 2008. We're living in Campaign 2012, and we have a whole bunch of new idiocies to deal with.
The chief idiocy we need to address right now is the widespread pretense (and Mickey Kaus is hardly the sole pretender) that Ed Klein is worth taking seriously. Let me remind you: This is the same Ed Klein whose previous book on Hillary Clinton was so bad that even Peggy Noonan -- yes, Peggy freakin' Noonan
-- opined that the thing might be a liberal plot to discredit conservatism.
The book is poorly written, poorly thought, poorly sourced and full of the kind of loaded language that is appropriate to a polemic but not an investigative work.
You want a taste
of what that 2005 book is like?
The book's tone is clear from the second page of Chapter 1: "Was it true they slept in separate beds? Were there any telltale signs on the presidential sheets that they ever had sex with each other? For that matter, did the Big Girl have any interest in sex with a man? Or, as was widely rumored, was she a lesbian?"
Reportage of that sort is the reason why even Bill O'Reilly -- yes, Bill freakin' O'Reilly
-- refused to have Klein on as a guest when Klein was out flogging his Hillary hit piece.
I'm thinking of writing a book of my own -- a biography of Ed Klein. How's this for an opener?
Is it true that Ed Klein fucks goats? Are there are any telltale signs on the author's sheets indicating his tragophile tastes? Is it true that his favorite tipple is Bock beer? Did he once confess to an intimate that the "Lonely Goatherd" number in The Sound of Music gave him a day-long erection? Did he purchase a villa in Capri for a sultry brown-and-black Camosciata nanny named Viola whom he once described as "Sweeter than sugar and hotter than lava"?
Ed Klein demonstrates the truly tragic
state of modern American journalism.