Today, the Wall Street Journal editorial page, as James Carville predicted, came to Bob Novak’s defense. But what a ridiculous defense it is.
Here’s their main argument:
“But far from ‘watching’ Mr. Novak, we’ve defended him while the rest of the press corps has assailed him for doing his job and breaking the news about Valerie Plame’s role in getting her husband Joe Wilson a job as a CIA consultant.”
That’s exactly the point! Despite specifically being asked by the CIA not to divulge Plame’s identity, Novak did so anyways. The WSJ has led the right-wing establishment’s defense of Novak’s reprehensible behavior. And that is why Novak has to return the favor by, as Carville suggested, showing “he’s got a backbone.”
WSJ: “Mr. Novak has since appropriately apologized for losing his cool, but Mr. Carville is lucky he didn’t get punched in the nose.”
So Carville says Novak has to look tough. Novak responds by walking off the set. The henchmen at the WSJ, in their disappointment, suggest Carville should have been “punched in the nose” for telling the truth. It appears Novak wasn’t tough enough for the WSJ.
WSJ: “Mr. Carville is the professional political wrestler, but CNN has asked only Mr. Novak to take a vacation.”
The WSJ’s logically incomprehensible suggestion that Carville should be asked by CNN to go on indefinite leave makes no sense for two reasons. First, Novak is just as much the “professional political wrestler” as is Carville, having appeared for 15 years as a host of CNN’s crossfire — the place where “political wrestlers” went to wrestle. Second, Novak wasn’t asked to leave because he’s a political hack. He was asked to leave because he cursed on live TV and walked off the set. Carville didn’t do either.
The WSJ’s closing line is comical:
“The members of the liberal press pack owe Mr. Novak an apology, not vice versa.”
Novak curses live on television and walks off the set because someone dares to tell the truth about him. And he deserves an apology?