Having touted these "multiple sources" in his lede, Zaki neither quotes, paraphrases nor describes them at any later point in the item. Nor is there so much as a "could not be reached for comment" indicating that he had attempted to get the Palins to verify what he heard from these mysterious "multiple sources" (who for all we know are his wife's hairdresser, the shoeshine man at the bus station and a night-shift clerk at the second-largest convenience store in Wasilla.)Please read the whole thing, Mrs. Palin. Even the jokes have been "confirmed by multiple sources."
Ask any newspaper editor in the country whether he would dare publish a story that alleged so much on the basis of so little. Among the Old School editors for whom I worked was the legendary Wes Pruden of The Washington Times. Wes would have personally fired any reporter who ever turned in such a smelly pile of steaming nonsense, which wouldn't have gotten past any assistant metro-desk editor who valued his paycheck. . . .
Thanks for the earlier linkage from Carol at No Sheeples Here, Wizbang, Darleen Click at Protein Wisdom, Jimmie Bise at Sundries Shack, TigerHawk, Fishersville Mike, and Dan Riehl. And go give a big blog-birthday hug to Pat at And So It Goes In Shreveport.
UPDATE: Thanks to Tim Lindell of Conservatives For Palin, serving as the blogospheric equivalent of the copy desk. If I'm going to rip this clown a new one, I guess it probably helps to spell his name right, huh?
Tim also has the complete roundup, including smackdowns of Politico's Jonathan Martin, who actually blamed Palin for denying Zaki's smear.
So vicious smear artists like Zaki and his buddy Gryphen can post any calumny they want, puff it up with talk about their "sources," get linked all over the left-wing blogsphere, and if Palin bothers to deny it, she's the bad guy?
We are grateful to Jonathan Martin for providing this clarification of the Politico's ethical standards.
URGENT UPDATE 2:14 a.m. 8/2: This just in -- "multiple sources confirm" that Jonathan Martin recently raped a chihuahua.
No criminal charges were filed, because the chihuaua didn't even notice . . .