HUBRIS: Selling the Iraq War

As I wrote in Atta in Prague Poppycock:

Which matters more — the source of the evidence or whether or not it makes sense?

Both should be considered, but the focus should be on the second. Greg Thielmann sets the standard for sound judgment in an unaired portion of his interview with PBS FRONTLINE: “We were willing to listen to anything. We tried to set our biases aside on a first look at information, because no matter how disreputable a source of information, if that person had access, it’s worth looking at what they’re saying.”

That Thielmann was talking about Ahmed Chalabi in that statement is a model of objective analysis.

No one thinks of themselves as being closed-minded, but when you summarily reject evidence based on the source alone, you are being prejudiced by definition.

I’m no fan of Rachel Maddow (though in full transparency — I used to be). But whatever my opinion of her, I appreciated her efforts in putting together the HUBRIS documentary for the 10-year anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. It fell far short of living up to the depth of HUBRIS by Michael Isikoff and David Corn — but it was a decent attempt at subject matter that has gone unconscionably underreported by the cable clans and broadcast news.



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