Unexpectedly, it’s turned into Charlie Pierce Week here at Media Nation. Why? Because conservative media critic Tim Graham is smearing Pierce with a five-year-old lie — a lie that Graham had a hand in spreading in the first place.
Pierce has a story in the new Esquire on the presidential campaign. Graham doesn’t like it very much. Fair enough. But Graham, writing for NewsBusters, begins with this:
Charles Pierce is the infamous Boston Globe writer who tried to insist in 2003 that if Mary Jo Kopechne had survived Chappaquiddick, she would enjoy all the senior citizen benefits provided by Ted Kennedy’s beneficent policies.
I’ve written about this several times before, and I don’t feel like doing it again; just read this and this. As you will see, Graham deliberately misconstrues what may be the single meanest thing ever written about Ted Kennedy (by a liberal, anyway), strips out the irony and sarcasm, and then pretends that Pierce is tastelessly using Kopechne’s death to praise Kennedy.
Since the record has been corrected several times, Graham is no longer mistaken. Now he’s lying.