Standards

Let’s be honest: is anyone surprised by National Review‘s decision to hire a plagiarist?

Well, that didn’t take long. Just a little over a month after being fired for at least 41 instances of plagiarism, former BuzzFeed viral politics editor Benny Johnson has been hired as The National Review‘s first-ever social-media director. He’ll begin his new job on Monday, reports Politico’s Mike Allen. The conservative magazine seems like a good fit for Johnson, who previously worked at Breitbart and Glenn Beck’s the Blaze. The National Review also just happens to be one of the many publications Johnson plagiarized from while he was at BuzzFeed. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery!

“Benny made a terrible mistake. But he has owned up to it and learned from it,” said National Review editor Rich Lowry. “He’s a talented journalist, with obviously a lot to contribute. He knows he’s joining a storied institution at NR, and we look forward to his helping us carry on our mission across all platforms.”

National Review, of course, is the same publication that had no problem with one of their writers comparing acclaimed climate scientist Michael Mann to a rapist. So we know they’ll basically hire anyone off the street, so long as they have the right (wing) politics.

The hiring of Johnson is just one more example of the political right’s investment in ignorance. The low-IQ lemmings who are now bombarding Amazon.com with negative reviews of Michael Mann’s outstanding book The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars have been brainwashed by billionaires desperate to defend their fossil-fuel funds–and as the old saying goes, in most cases, only a light rinse was necessary.

While stupid people attack, smart people act. They act by standing with the hundreds of thousands who will attend the People’s Climate March on September 21. They act by supporting courageous activists like Ken Ward and Jay O’Hara, who will stand trial tomorrow in Fall River, Massachusetts for fighting to protect human beings from the harm caused by carbon pollution. They act by fighting for climate justice on the streets and at the polls.

You can have the dimwits, National Review. I’m standing with the dignified.

D.R. Tucker

D. R. Tucker is a Massachusetts-based journalist who has served as the weekend contributor for the Washington Monthly since May 2014. He has also written for the Huffington Post, the Washington Spectator, the Metrowest Daily News, investigative journalist Brad Friedman's Brad Blog and environmental journalist Peter Sinclair's Climate Crocks.