Florida Pilot

A compendium of random thoughts from a former Washington Beltway insider who is now having a lot more fun flying small airplanes in Central Florida.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

Hailey rides to the rescue of Rather et al

David Hailey is a faculty member at Utah State University who has been trying to show that the forged Bush memos used by Dan Rather were actually produced on a typewriter.

Of course, as most everyone knows, Charles Johnson created an animated gif file that proved beyond any reasonable doubt that the forged memos had been prepared using the Times New Roman font under Microsoft Word. But maybe David Hailey didn't see this as his paper expresses some surprise that so many have concluded that the font used was indeed Times New Roman.

But apparently unaware of the existence of the animated gif and through some very complex and convoluted cut and paste and computer-assisted manipulations, Hailey concludes that the font used was a "typewriter" font and that, therefore, it was most likely produced using a typewrite. But when Hailey concludes it was a typewriter font, that means that he found it by searching a font directory using "typewriter" as the keyword. Of course, a compter font called "typewriter" would not be uncommon.

The bottom line here is that Hailey seems to be trying to produce something that Rather, Mapes, et al. can use to justify acceptance of the forged documents in the first place. They can reference Hailey to show that some presumably educated person with some presumed expertise in the field was able to conclude that the documents may have been prepared on a typewriter and, if so, how could lay persons like Rather and Mapes be expected to know any better.

But what is in this for Hailey? Perhaps a casting call for the next round of celebrity wresling? For sure, Hailey will get a place in the Mary Mapes' Rolodex if she gets into trouble again in the future.


At 3:46 PM, Blogger MP said...

What's the link for that? In any case, I'm surprised anyone is wasting his time on that story at this point. Pretty much everyone has concluded that the docs were blatent forgeries. Even some of the other MSM outlets were basically justifying their use because the rest of the story was so good. I've always thought though, that if Fox had used some crap like that in a story blasting Kerry there would be so end to it.

At 10:49 PM, Blogger FL pilot said...

Apparently Hailey has removed his strange analysis from the location it was referenced by Wizbang and he has replaced it with a discussion about how he was attacked for publishing the study in the first place.


Hailey is obviously unhappy about the negative attention that his work has attracted. Well, those are the consequences of playing with the big boys; it is clear that CBS was willing to go to extraordinary lengths to produce stories that would damage the president's re-election effory and Hailey inserted himself in such a way that he became a pawn in part of that ultimately failed effort. At this point, the only remaining issue is whether the CBS managers and staffers responsible for the phoney story based on the forged documents will suffer some consequences -- in that regard, an attempt will likely be made to hold up Hailey's "work" as a justification for failing to quickly conclude the documents were, in fact, forgeries.

I don't think that one can conclude from Hailey's work whether he is guilty of deliberate fraud or just very, very careless and inept work. Given the facts the folks at Wizbang have uncovered, one can certainly make a strong case that the numerous flaws in Hailey's work go beyond common ineptitude. Evidently, the folks who employ him at Utah State University are not uncomfortable with such a low level of research talent and they are the ones paying his salary.


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