As you have probably heard, Michael Hastings died this morning in a car crash. Rolling Stone has a good obituary for him that you ought to read. I noticed that last November I wrote what could have stood as it’s own obituary in an article, Michael Hastings Ruining Journalism… Again. “I really like Michael Hastings. Like most people, I learned about him when he published his explosive The Runaway General in Rolling Stone. I didn’t give the article itself that much thought. A reporter had a good scoop. It was the reaction to the article that made me take notice of him. It seemed you couldn’t turn the page of a magazine without being confronted with another journalist explaining why Hastings’ article was a bad thing. Never again would the disgraced Stanley McChrystal trust him.”
Of course, that wasn’t what I most liked about him. I continued, “My opinion of Hastings went even higher when he appeared on Up with Chris Hayes in August and dismantled Josh Barro’s fascist argument against Julian Assange. Even more than Jeremy Scahill, Hastings seems determined to get at the truth regardless (or perhaps because) of powerful interests.”
Here he is in that exchange saying what ought to be understood by all journalists, “My job is not to help the US government fulfill their diplomatic objectives.”
And here he is on CNN with the evil idiot Piers Morgan:
Hastings’ death is a great loss to journalism. It shouldn’t be. He should have been typical. He was anything but. And now he’s not even around as an example of how the job should be done.