The Iraq/al-Qaeda connection disconnected

David Ignatius at the Washington Post explains why the leaked Feith memo doesn’t prove what the Weekly Standard says it proves. In fact, according to Ignatius, the one piece of new news in the Weekly Standard story points in the opposite direction.

[My respect for Ignatius is only increased by the fact that he spells “lead” (as in “leading paragraph of a newspaper article”) the normal way, rather than the oh-so-precious “lede.”]

Update Several readers point out that “lede” has respectable antecedents; since in the old days “lead” meant hot type, and in particular extra spacing inserted to fill out a line, “lede” was always used to refer to the first paragraph in marking copy. (Similarly, “graf” as a short form of “paragraph” distinguished it from reference to a graphic.) All that said, I see no reason to use “lede” outside the pressroom, and I think doing so now counts as an affectation.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com