The Corner

Blair, The Glass Pr/Redemption Project

Jayson Blair makes Glass’s book look like just another book:

If Mr. Blair’s instincts as a journalist are shaky, his skills as a self-promoter appear to be solid: On Monday, he issued a statement to CNN that said, “I hope to have the opportunity to write and share my story so that it can help others to heal.”

Mr. Vigliano, meanwhile, is working hard—and fast—to turn the 27-year-old into Jayson Blair Inc. It’s a story that he believes could be worth hundreds of thousands, if not millions, in film and book royalties.

But unlike Mr. Blair’s career-suicide doppelgänger, Stephen Glass—who has said he spent five years in therapy before publishing a work of fiction about his fabrications in The New Republic—the former Times reporter isn’t waiting around to get his head straight. He’s diving right in, not slowed down at all by the gummy ethical issues involved in exploiting his own bad behavior for personal profit. The memoir that Mr. Blair wants to write will either justify his actions or further damn them. Above all, the proposal claims, the book will have something to teach others: “I want to offer my experience as a lesson,” Mr. Blair writes, “for the precipice from which I plunged is one on which many young, ambitious, well-educated and accomplished African Americans and other ‘minorities’ teeter, though most, of course, do manage to pull back from the brink. That precipice overhangs America’s racial divide; and the winds sucking us down into the chasm (cultural isolation, professional mistrust, and the external and internal imperatives to succeed, at all costs, to name a few) can be too strong for the troubled and unprepared—as I was—to withstand.

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