Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Robert Novak Was a Liar

By Robert Parry
August 19, 2009

Washington’s punditocracy is in mourning over the death of right-wing columnist Robert Novak, with many warm remembrances about his outsized personality and his supposed love of reporting. But Novak often served as a dishonest propagandist and would have been condemned in a healthy journalistic world.

Read on.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for not allowing our "free press" to eulogize this liar for the liar he is. I anticipate any day to hear he will be receiving the Medal of Freedom for much the same reasons as the freak Bush handed it to for such a well done job in Iraq after the invasion. All this praising of Novak makes my gag reflex kick in. I consider him a traitor to this country.

Anonymous said...

Kudos to Bob Parry for reminding everyone with an interest about the depth and breadth of Novak's dishonesty.

James Young said...

Typical. Far-Left. Class.

George said...

I suppose 'far left' is a matter of perspective. I think anyone who cares, knows that Novak, who apparently cultivated his brand as a Dark Prince of journalism, picked his niche as a rogue to better market his dubious beliefs.

It's a leap, but perhaps he simply was incompetent in choosing what to believe - which could explain his unusual late life, religious conversion or flip flop.

That said, as to the 'far left', I think that Novak's dirty hands in Plamegate pale by comparison with our President's repeated misstatements about our government's motives and the necessity for our fighting a war in Afghanistan and his incongruous blase willingness to use drones, including Stanley McChrystal, to wreak terror in Afghanistan, killing purported suspects in an abysmal ratio of "bad guys" to infants, children, women....

How does this really differ in kind from the Reagan war crimes in Latin America for which another President with an easy smile is regularly and properly excoriated in Bob's writings.

As many have noted, policy-wise and to a deplorable extent, Obama is Bush with juiced IQ, more seductive smile and mystifying conflicts between his oft stated and facilely revised principles and his pattern of contradictory behavior as the Decider du jour.

In terms of monstrous lies, Novak by comparison is a piker.

George Collins

me said...

Novak was a piece of shit too, but the MSM didn't mention that either.

I've hated that bastard for decades, and I'm glad he's dead.

DeanTaylor said...

Robert Parry--

A noteworthy comment from Alex Cockburn in his Friday journal,
where he remarks upon a relative candor to be found in Novak's work--i.e., compared to the more egregious guile to be found amongst the MSM--in Novak's acknowledgement of some degree of self-interest, political biases of one stripe or another, etc., in said corporate media "journalism."

That is, Novak's "ethic," according to Cockburn, prescinded from self-serving and grandiose notions of journalism--and DC reporting at that--as the relaying of Truth, capital "T." Cockburn:

"What Novak’s prissy colleagues and competitors never liked about him and Evans (who died in 2001) was that they made obvious what most journalists preferred to conceal, that their information came from self-interested sources, using the press – in this case Novak – to fight their bureaucratic wars. Particularly ludicrous was the spectacle of the liberal-left in periodicals like The Nation solemnly deploring Novak’s leaking of Plame’s name as somehow 'compromising national security.', as if The Nation magazine in the 1960s had not been a trailblazer in exposing the activities of the CIA."

In apposition to his argument he closes with a compelling-because-laudatory assessment of Novak's role in "Plame-gate", to wit:

"In short, the Plame disclosure was one of Novak’s finest hours."

Cockburn's remark, "THEY MADE OBVIOUS what most journalists preferred to conceal," invites the question, "obvious to whom," i.e., obvious to their colleagues in the know or the newspaper-reading public, bewildered enough as it is? [stress added].

Chances are that you've seen the article. Any comments?

DeanTaylor said...


In his article, Cockburn was NOT holding up Novak's work as the epitome of a principled conveyance of disinterested veracity--e.g., a Kantian Weltanschauung of life in the West as we know it.

Rather, his argument stresses one journalist's non-conformist (i.e., within the confines of DC reporting criteria) penchant for writing outside the System of journalism-as-Truth-revealing medium.

That is, DC MSM were (are) unqualifiedly reprehensible in their religiously-slavish attentiveness to the DC/corporate sector status quo, which attentiveness being all-the-more deplorable cloaked in a mantle of authenticity, soi-disant.

Novak, then, was--only comparatively speaking--refreshing, in that his writing harbored no (fewer?) pretensions about the "dirty" nature of the work in DC, i.e., the cut-throat, adversarial party machinations, in-fighting, etc., AND the role of the MSM in DC in the playing out of that often stomach-turning drama.

Still, Robert Parry, and solely within the context of other DC "journalists," did Novak get fair marks--e.g., for being less self-righteous in what he was imparting?