Jonathan Chait defends himself and journo-list. It was just a water-cooler list-serv that just happened to be open only to liberals whom Ezra Klein liked. (Why writers and reporters cannot kibbitz one on one or share their private thoughts by email outside such an exclusive list is beyond me.) Spencer Ackerman's post - and the obvious assumptions behind it - are just Spencer, and have nothing to do with Chait or anyone else at Journolist. And there's no double standard between Chait's condemnation of Townhouse because the Townhouse members were open activists, while the hacks on Journolist are pure as the driven snow and seeking truth among one another, untainted by any smidgen of groupthink, collusion or a partisan echo-chamber.
For the record, I never stated that Journolist was started as a means to foster groupthink. My point is that such a smug, self-satisfied elitist clique cannot but evoke such an atmosphere over time. And it did. That Klein had to stop collective petitions suggests there was an atmosphere in which such petitions were likely, no? If it were just a water-cooler, how could that possibly have happened? What bizarre idea did some of the members get into their heads?
As I've said all along, I'm sure much of the list's chats were entirely proper, helpful, productive, etc. I defended the privacy of the list and found the scummy attacks on Weigel to be awful. I do not publish private emails and never have. But I don't believe liberals are somehow immune to the groupthink that has destroyed conservatism as a coherent governing philosophy.
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