In a bit of editorial faux pas, Salon had to edit a headline to an article on going negative against Rudy Giuliani. Originally titled "Swiftboating Rudy," the article details all the missteps in Rudy's record and personal history with which Democratic hitmen could draw up a plan of attack.
But it seems the decidedly Liberal readership took exception to the idea of "swiftboating" anyone, and three cheers to those who wrote in to complain.
"This is really appalling. The Swiftboat attacks involved throwing lies and sludge at Kerry, financed by some truely [sic] terrible people," said one poster by the name gW. "The day liberals are involved in "swiftboating" anyone is the day I get off the train."
"We don't need to distort and lie in order to show how disgusting Republicans like Giuliani really are; we do, however, need to get the word out," said another named Alicia.
It didn't take long for Salon to react and change the title to the less punchy, but more accurate, "What an anti-Giuliani Ad Should Say."
As our little discussion earlier this week illustrates, I find the entire idea of Swiftboating to be abhorrent. There is a difference between tough, hardball politics, and character assassination. Kudos to the readers of Salon for keeping the editors in check and (begrudging) kudos to those editors for mending their mistake.
The pains of copywriting...