Wednesday, April 23, 2008

On The Mark -- Stephen Hadley: Give the Guy a Break?

Heard on NPR last weekend that President Bush's national security adviser, Stephen Hadley, head of the NSA, spoke on national television on a recent Sunday about whether Bush should boycott the opening ceremonies at the Olympics in China this summer.

It's been well-reported in the blogosphere that in his response defending Bush's planned attendance that Hadley referred several times to China's problems with Nepal instead of saying Tibet. Not once or twice did he say Nepal instead of Tibet, but six times or more. I also believe this occurred at a couple different Sunday morning news shows, so he didn't even correct himself after he had a chance to go off-camera.

But the real story is that AP, Reuters and the New York Times reported on these interviews and they took the liberty to change Nepal to Tibet in Hadley's quotes. The Times concluded their article by noting that Hadley had misspoken, and that the Bush Administration later confirmed that he meant to say Tibet.

If Hadley had misspoken once, then I might be able to understand why these reporters and their editors would take the liberty to make it accurate, but the fact that he did so repeatedly should be grounds for quoting the precise words he spoke.

In what other stories have these media outlets corrected statements based on what they believe a spokesperson meant, but did not actually state?

1 comment:

feefifoto said...

You know what Bush said to Hadley after his weekend's television work?

"Hadley, you're doin' a heckuva job."