Click through to the link. That was the advice the www.sullywatch.blogspot.com offered to readers of Andrew Sullivan back during the Wild West days of blogging. And that advice goes double with the MSM – Milwaukee’s Stupider Media.
It’s true for Jessica McBride. And it’s true for Patrick McIlheran.
The total coalition troop casualties (a volatile number, but generally declining in recent months, and well below the peaks of 2004 and early 2005), and civilians killed (rising in recent months, but below the spike of last September). They also point out that megawatts of electricity produced is pretty flat, at around 3,800 megawatts, about what it was before the war, oil production’s been rising since January, though it’s still a little below the pre-war level, GDP is well above pre-war levels, and Internet use is 33 times what it was in Saddam’s day.
We’re not sure how many of McIlheran’s readers will wade through a 58-page report. But the Brawler did. And, incredibly, he found McIlheran neglected to mention some negative indicators.
* In May the number of lethal and non lethal car bomb attacks hit their highest number since July.
*The estimated strength of the insurgency (the Brooking Institution’s term) is at 20,000-plus -- in other words, strong as it has ever been.
* The number of daily attacks hit a peak in May not seen since November.
* Baghdad has 8.4 hours of electricity a day vs. 16 hours to 24 hours prewar. (Nationwide its 11.3 hours vs. 4 hours to 8 hours a day before the war.)
* McIlheran points to GDP yet fails to note the unemployment rate ranges from 25% to 40%. You can't eat GDP.
* The infant mortality rate (under 1 year) is 102 per 1,000 live births compared to an average of 37 for the rest of the Middle East and North Africa.
* Polling conducted in March by the International Republican Institute found that 52% of people think the country is going the wrong direction.
* In January 80% of Iraqis expected the U.S. would establish permanent bases. A whopping 87% approve the government endorsing a timeline for U.S. withdrawal. (Which means George Bush is ignoring the will of the people we're allegedly trying to help when he refuses to set a time table.)
* Overall 47% of Iraqis approve of attacks on U.S.-led forces (41% of Shia, 88% of Sunni and 16% of Kurds).
McIlheran also praises a book called "Disinformation" by one Richard Miniter as being "required reading for thoughtful consideration of Iraq." Given McIlheran's track record of endorsing deceitful hacks, one might suspect Miniter is full of shit. One would be correct.