Wednesday, July 29, 2009

On Fight Clubs, Journalists, and German Magazines

Just when I have gone and condemned baseball as a stultifying and backward-thinking sport, thereby alienating approximately 47 percent of the already modest readership of this corner of cyberspace--well, along come the Mets, whose general manager, Omar Minaya, having previously hired Tyler Durden as VP for player development, defended himself by auditioning for the role of media ombudsman, accusing an unsuspecting Daily News reporter named Adam Rubin of "lobbying" for a job in player development. This led to a press conference of the genre classified by cultural anthropologists and light-beer enthusiasts as "extremely uncomfortable," during which a man's career flashes before our very eyes.

In this case, it was immediately clear that, even if Minaya's accusations were completely true (and Rubin claims they are exaggerated), his attempt to deflect the blame was embarrassingly ill-advised. And while Rubin may have erred in his judgment (though given the nature of the newspaper business, one can hardly blame him), the error appears forgivable and had little or nothing to do with the actual business at hand. "My reporting was solid, met the journalistic standards of sourcing and beyond and was untainted by any personal agenda on my part," Rubin wrote, and at this point, I have little reason to doubt him, because he is a trained journalist who is getting paid for his work and who publicly disclosed his role in this situation, and the Mets' management appears to have corroborated his account. In other words, no one denied he wrote the truth.

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