Pundits, and Thus Pols: ‘Pathologically’ Blameless

Writing on Salon (5/31/09, ad-viewing required) of the “controversy surrounding Jeffrey Rosen’s New Republic anonymity-driven smear attack on Sonia Sotomayor’s intellect and character,” Glenn Greenwald sees more evidence that

the one trait that defines establishment pundits more than any other is a pathological inability ever to accept blame or admit error. That’s because they work in the most accountability-free profession in America, where people like Bill Kristol (with a record like this) and Jeffrey Goldberg (with a record like this) get promoted despite no retractions or remorse, and establishment media stars in general can pretend that they bear no responsibility for enabling the abuses and crimes of the Bush years. And all of that is simply an extension of the prevailing ethos that political, financial and media elites should be immunized from accountability in general–which is why the Beltway elite class collectively scoffs at the very notion that there should be any consequences at all when our highest political leaders commit the most serious crimes.

Greenwald recounts for us how, in the New Republic‘s latest contribution to “that grand accountability-free tradition,” Jeffrey “Rosen blames everyone but himself for what he did, but then melodramatically announces that he will no longer ‘blog’–as though it’s the medium, rather than his own standards and choices, that are to blame for what he did.”