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Friday, October 27, 2006
Did CNS Conspire With Allen Campaign?

An Oct. 27 article by Monisha Bansal examined Virginia Senate candidate Jim Webb's fiction for purportedly "racist" and "misogynistic" statements. (It's one of three articles CNS has run today about Webb's fiction.) But did Bansal and CNS work with the campaign of Webb's opponent, Repblican Sen. George Allen, in the process?

The story suggests the possibility of coordination. Bansal notes that she talked to one person on Wednesday and that "Webb's campaign office has not returned multiple calls since Wednesday, seeking comment for this article. But she also notes that Allen's campaign "released a statement late Thursday listing excerpts from the books, charging that they "disturbingly and consistently -- indeed, almost uniformly -- portray women as servile, subordinate, inept, incompetent, promiscuous, perverted, or some combination of these."

Interesting bit of timing there, isn't it? Bansal's article came out just in time to support and promote Allen's press release, and the two accompanying flood-the-zone articles further promote it. You'd almost think that CNS was sitting on the story until Allen could make it an issue.

We have no evidence of this, mind you; but we do think that the obvious timing issues raise questions that, given CNS' tightness with conservatives, CNS needs to answer.

Additionally, Bansal's article quotes only one person who directly responded to the excerpts CNS (and/or the Allen campaign) culled: noted literary critic Mychal Massie of Project 21. Really, now: Is someone who compares Democrats to Orval Faubus and Bull Connor and regularly hurls the Nazi slur (but hypocritically denounces Democrats who do the same thing) and has other fits of rhetorical excess really the go-to guy on issues of fiction? (Then again, the guy has forwarded his share of fiction in his WorldNetDaily column.)

UPDATE: CNS has posted another story -- the fourth of the day -- on FictionGate.

Posted by Terry K. at 4:47 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, October 27, 2006 7:35 PM EDT

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