Anybody who has ever watched professional poker players will notice that they never reveal their hole cards unless their bet is called. Even when the hand is over and the chips have been raked in, the pros will “muck” (throw in) their cards face down so that the other players will never know if they were bluffing or had a great hand. On the surface, there seems to be no good reason for this; after all, the hand is over. The reason is that the pros don’t want to reveal any information at all. If they turn over either a bluff or a strong hand, other poker players will relate this back to facial tics, body language, chip handling, betting patterns, or other “tells” to piece together how the player will react in a given situation.
This simple logic seems to have escaped the New York Times which chose to reveal a legal and secret program to track possible funding of terrorist elements in the United States. NY Times editor Bill Keller wrote a weak defense that was promptly ripped apart by Glenn Reynolds and Hugh Hewitt. For an extra measure of the NY Times mindset, here’s former theater critic Frank Rich revealing his ignorance on CNN’s Reliable Sources only to be smacked down by National Review’s David Frum:
RICH: Can I just say, we have to stop assuming that the terrorists are morons. When the "Times" publishes an NSA story which indicated there was some domestic surveillance involving tracking al Qaeda terrorists or other terrorists, while that story broke, there was a fictional show on Showtime called "Sleeper Cell" about a sort of fictional terror cell in Los Angeles where on the show, in the script, the screen writers imagined that they know they're being wiretapped, even though all the calls are within the United States.Exactly. Why give the terrorists any information whatsoever about what we might know or might not know? Only the haughty hubris of the NY Times could dream up a justification for selling newspapers that trumps national security.
These people aren't idiots. They're very, very dangerous enemies, and the idea that this has changed the equation -- this is some secret that's changed the equation...
KURTZ: David, I've got 10 seconds for a final word.
FRUM: If they're not -- if they're not idiots, then it's very dangerous to confirm what they think might be true as being positively true.
Extra – Michael Barone – “The New York Times at war with America” Also, Tom Maguire and conservative journalist (?) Matt Hoy weigh in.
More – From AJ Strata: “What does it say when the NY Times go so far over the edge even John Murtha won’t follow? I doubt Keller will survive the summer, the NY Times will need a sacrificial lamb, and it is obvious someone pressured Keller to get out and deal with his anti-American acts.”