Rhetorically Speaking has spotted a rather remarkable item that's appeared on Mel Phillips's Spectator blog:
Your article, “Carpe diem -- or can we all relax now?” by Melanie Phillips (26 November 2008), repeats a number of patently false assertions about Robert Malley that are currently blighting the more dubious corners of the internet and do not belong in a respected publication.
Mr Malley did not work for the Obama campaign, nor is he working for the transition team. He did not travel anywhere for Obama, neither before nor after the election.
A simple phone call to the International Crisis Group when writing the article would have cleared up all of these points, but your author apparently found it easier simply to copy-and-paste a libellous statement from an American web page.
Whoopsy! Make no mistake, this letter wouldn't be on there if there were any doubt about its veracity. And to think just a simple phone call to check the facts would have sufficed... but why bother when you're a high-profile journalist? Shades of Ross/Brand, I fear. But will the Spectator learn the same lessons that the BBC had to about the power of 'talent' and the need for checks and balances?
Mad Mel's 'Carpe Diem' appears to have been snipped from the Spectator's website, but happily it persists elsewhere on the internet, where it's reprinted verbatim and doubtless won't be updated in the light of new information. In a deliciously unselfaware paragraph, Melanie opines:
The Republicans, who really don't begin to grasp just what has hit them, similarly fail to acknowledge that among their own ranks are many who, just like in the British Conservative party, share with the left the desire to neutralize American power and throw Israel under the bus. Some of those people came to power under George W Bush and set him on the disastrous path to appeasement — which his demented detractors on the left somehow failed altogether to notice.
You can't help but chuckle at Phillips saying that batshit-insane nonsense, then claiming that anyone who disagrees is 'demented'. Hell, maybe she is right and there is a worldwide conspiracy, from the 'Left' all the way through most of the Conservative Party and including many of the Bush administration (though not the great man himself, luckily) which is determined to destroy Israel. Or maybe not.