Several reputations were injured over the weekend during a rush to judgment by members of the blogosphere after an article on Drudge accused Michael Ware of heckling John McCain. Later video of the event did not show the alleged incident, although many bloggers still maintained that it was true because they wanted it to be true.
“I don’t believe the proof of the video.” Said one disgruntled blogger. “This seems like something that Ware would do, and I want to believe that it’s something that Ware did, so I will not accept any evidence to the contrary.”
The original reporter of the story, Drudge Report, stood by their story. “I have an unnamed source who gave me this story without any providence whatsoever, so I’m going to run with it. A video not showing the alleged incident doesn’t prove anything, it just underscores how important it is not to get too wrapped up in evidence.”
The alleged incident occurred during a press conference in Iraq, where Ware was supposed to have publicly ridiculed presidential aspirant John McCain. McCain’s office declined to comment, perhaps because the story did not fit in with his ‘maverick’ image and therefore was of no value, or maybe because the incident did not occur.
Ware has released videos of the press conference and taped an interview with fellow CNN reporter Soledad O’Brien where he hotly denied the rumors, as if true they would almost certainly lead to the loss of his job and the destruction of his career.
An unnamed spokesman for Drudge dismissed Ware’s comments. “We all learned from Mapes and Rather that it’s more important to display no proof than fabricated proof, and that’s exactly what we did. Why can’t people just trust those of us who are investigative reporters?”
In addition to the damage to several reputations over the weekend in the conservative blogosphere, sources knowledgeable with the liberal blogosphere reported a surge in schadenfreude, fortunately with no injuries.