The Corner

See Dick Type

The writer formerly known as Dick Blow has a snippy response in his comments section. He says he never read the review I wrote for the Wall Street Journal of his book. I’m sure he’s telling the truth because he’s so well known in Washington and New York as an honest and up-front guy famously secure in his own skin. He would never care what reviewers said about him. I mean it’s not like he’s the kind of guy who would change his own family name because he couldn’t handle the barbs of public life.

But he does lie about me and my resume and I figured I might as well clear the air. He says I only got into journalism because of the Lewinsky scandal. For the record: Among the places I worked in one capacity or another before my mom attempted to, in his words, “bring down a president” were United Press International, Scripps Howard News Service and various gigs in publishing. I worked for a nationally syndicated columnist doing research and reporting for him for several years and had written articles for Commentary, The Public Interest, The Wilson Quarterly and Wall Street Journal and elsewhere long before I’d ever heard the name Monica Lewinsky. I’d worked on several journalistic political specials for PBS with Ben Wattenberg and David Gergen and others. I was the producer and later senior producer of one weekly public affairs television program and had done off-camera reporting in a number of fields here and abroad. As for my work post-Lewinsky, I think it speaks for itself and even if it doesn’t I’m not going to bother speaking for it. I find it revealing that Blow finds it necessary to attack what he thinks is my C.V. rather than defend his own book which, I should add, was nigh-upon universally panned across the ideological spectrum as a cheap bit of fluff intended to exploit the memory of a dead man he didn’t know very well and who had treated him better than he deserved. It was printed at the expense of what little journalistic integrity an editor for George magazine had to begin with.

I’ll close by noting that I can’t claim to have betrayed a friend in order to cash-in and write a tell-all book, a claim often made by Blow-types about me and mine. But I can say that about him.

Jonah Goldberg, a senior editor of National Review and the author of Suicide of the West, holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute.

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