Nixon's Monica Stonewalls, Part II

Gossip, speculation, and scuttlebutt about politics.
Aug. 30 1999 4:38 PM

Nixon's Monica Stonewalls, Part II

Monica Crowley, the Fox News political analyst and author of two books about her former boss, Richard Nixon, is annoyed with Chatterbox for characterizing her stance toward her plagiarism controversy (see "Nixon's Monica Stonewalls About Plagiarism!") as "stonewalling." She told Chatterbox (who finally reached her today by phone): "I did not stonewall you or the issue." She hadn't returned Chatterbox's earlier queries because she was on vacation, she said; and she'd already explained herself to Felicity Barringer of the New York Times.


But careful readers of Chatterbox's earlier item--about the striking similarities between a recent Op-Ed piece Crowley wrote for the Wall Street Journal and an essay written 11 years earlier by Paul Johnson for Commentary--will note that Chatterbox had already allowed for the possibility that Crowley was on vacation. They will also note that Crowley's comment as quoted in the Times--that "I have not read" Johnson's piece--seemed, under the circumstances, to be less than truthful. It was mainly in reference to this Times quote that Chatterbox was accusing Crowley of "stonewalling." And guess what? Crowley--who confirmed to Chatterbox that she's currently writing a Liddy Dole profile for Talk magazine--is still stonewalling!

To review: No fewer than five passages in Crowley's Op-Ed, a tribute to Nixon pegged to the 25th anniversary of his resignation, were worded in ways that were identical or nearly identical to passages in the Johnson article. (Scroll down to the bottom of Chatterbox's earlier item to assess the extremely damaging evidence.) It isn't possible that Crowley never read Johnson's piece. When the Journal got wind of the similarities, it published an editor's note saying it wouldn't have published Crowley's piece had it been aware of the "striking similarities in phraseology."

Crowley now says she does not remember making the absolute statement ("I have not read") that the Times attributed to her. Her mantra to Chatterbox was, "I do not remember reading the [Johnson] piece." Cleverly pretending the accusation against her was that she stole Johnson's ideas about Nixon, she said that "the concepts in question are shared by those with a knowledgeable background of [Nixon's] life and career." Well, sure, it can well be imagined that two people would independently arrive at the (erroneous) idea that Nixon got screwed. What can't be imagined is that two people would independently arrive at the same words to express this idea.

"I understand that there are clear similarities in some of the language use, but I arrived at my conclusions independently and I expressed them that way," Crowley told Chatterbox. "Nor would I ever submit material from a source for publication without attribution, without citing it properly."

But surely, Chatterbox sputtered, you must have read Johnson's article. Are you saying you didn't read Johnson's article?

"I don't remember ever reading the piece," Crowley answered.

But that's not possible! Chatterbox said. Lengthy passages are repeated verbatim, or almost verbatim!

"I acknowledge to you there are similarities in the phraseology," Crowley said.

Oh, come on, Chatterbox said. Why not come clean and at least admit that you must have plagiarized inadvertently?



The Ebola Story

How our minds build narratives out of disaster.

The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics

A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers


Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.


The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Would You Trust Walmart to Provide Your Health Care? (You Should.)

  News & Politics
The World
Oct. 22 2014 2:05 PM Paul Farmer Says Up to Ninety Percent of Those Infected Should Survive Ebola. Is He Right?
Business Insider
Oct. 22 2014 2:27 PM Facebook Made $595 Million in the U.K. Last Year. It Paid $0 in Taxes
Dear Prudence
Oct. 23 2014 6:00 AM Monster Kids from poorer neighborhoods keep coming to trick-or-treat in mine. Do I have to give them candy?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 22 2014 10:00 AM On the Internet, Men Are Called Names. Women Are Stalked and Sexually Harassed.
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 22 2014 5:27 PM The Slate Walking Dead Podcast A spoiler-filled discussion of Episodes 1 and 2.
Brow Beat
Oct. 22 2014 10:39 PM Avengers: Age of Ultron Looks Like a Fun, Sprawling, and Extremely Satisfying Sequel
Future Tense
Oct. 22 2014 2:59 PM Netizen Report: Twitter Users Under Fire in Mexico, Venezuela, Turkey
  Health & Science
Wild Things
Oct. 22 2014 2:42 PM Orcas, Via Drone, for the First Time Ever
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.