The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

An Elbert Hubbard Moment

Posted on | April 18, 2011 | 8 Comments

If you work for a man, in heaven’s name work for him!
If he pays you wages that supply you your bread and butter, work for him—speak well of him, think well of him, stand by him and stand by the institution he represents.
I think if I worked for a man I would work for him. I would not work for him a part of the time, and the rest of the time work against him. I would give an undivided service or none.
If put to the pinch, an ounce of loyalty is worth a pound of cleverness.

Elbert Hubbard, 1902

If I were going to work for Roger Ailes, I’d work for Roger Ailes. And the first thing I’d advise Mr. Ailes would be not to hire a 20-something kid to run his newspaper.

A job like that calls for a man of immense experience in the newspaper business, and I’ve got ties older than Joe Lindsley.

UPDATE: Linked by Dan Collins at Piece of Work in Progress. Thanks! As for the main topic addressed in Dan’s post, I have many thoughts, none of which I feel particularly compelled to share in this context.

UPDATE II: Changed my mind, because of Jimmie Bise Jr.’s recounting how one his best blog posts ever — which got linked by Instapundit, National Review and the Anchoress — became fodder for a Glenn Beck monologue, without Beck bothering to mention Jimmie’s name or the name of his blog on the air. Jimmie’s post was linked at, but that’s not the same, is it?

Let’s say this: It’s about a star system. If your name is well-known — say, you’re Jonah Goldberg or P.J. O’Rourke — people are not going to use your work without giving you credit. In fact, if you’re already someone thought of as important, they’ll make a point of using your name, because the Famous Name lends authority to what is said. (There are some people who think they can settle an argument merely by invoking the words of a Famous Name.)

How to get from being nobody to being a Famous Name? That’s the tricky part, isn’t it? Being “blog famous” doesn’t mean much to people who are accustomed to dealing with the much larger audiences of nationally syndicated radio programs or TV shows.

Was Beck “stealing” or merely being thoughtless? Or, as I suppose quite possible, does the blame attach more properly to the young producers who work for Beck? Did someone just hand him this stuff (“Hey, look what I found …”) without bothering to note the authorship?

UPDATE III: Jeff Dunetz at Yid With Lid defends Glenn Beck: “The truth is most of the time when a site or a radio host forgets to give credit it is an error of omission.” And says he’s been ripped off by Bill O’Reilly.


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