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Thomas Lipscomb Wasn’t Nominated for a Pulitzer

June 15, 2006

I’m kinda ticked. Really. I don’t really get too worked up if people want to be provocative as a way to sell books, be it Ann Coulter or Al Franken. Sometimes it can be amusing and an effective style, especially if your subject is absurd in itself. If their facts are good, and jibes are delivered in good taste, I have even less a problem with it. In doing so, you may run the risk of turning off people who disagree with you even more than a straight journalistic style would, but that’s a decision we all have to make. I like to read stuff that’s fun to read. I also like people to stick to a reasonably honest interpretation of the facts.

Commenter Flinger does a great job of fisking the Thomas Lipscomb’s bio and the quotes I highlighted in my last post. It seems that in numerous places, Lipscomb’s bio indicates that he was nominated for a Pulitzer prize. He may indeed have been- possibly by himself. It really doesn’t mean much. It is a deliberate twisting of the facts –  easily verifiable ones at that – and it taints the rest of his work’s credibility. If this is the standard of truth in his own bio, what is it in the rest of his work?

Thomas Lipscomb needs to issue an apology for this obvious mis-representation, and remove the Pulitzer claim from his bio. It’s misleading and gives people an easy way to dismiss his work. His bio seems impressive enough without it.

RealClearPolitics should also address the issue for the sake of their own credibility. I have found them to be a very reputable source of info, but this one instance of repeating misleading facts has put a stain on their integrity.

I think the Swift Boat issue as whole has not been well covered, a point which Lipscomb’s article makes a good case for, if nothing else. Most of the reaction is of the nature "oh this can’t possibly be true", which may well be the case, but is not a point-by-point refutation of some well-documented claims by a large number of vets.

Now I didn’t need the Swift Boat Vets to tel me that John Kerry would make a poor leader- his own words convinced me of that- but this is a case where I think the MSM’s reaction was to bury rather than disprove, which only fuels the case for conspiracy.

My own take is than if nothing else, Kerry has shrewdly manipulated his war record to suit the politics of the moment. He’s tried to have it both ways- the war protester as war hero- and the result is an incoherent mess. Which is what Kerry is, and what the Democrats wanted to elect last year. It would have been better for him to minimize his service as a campaign issue. But he keeps bringing it up.

Of all the Kerry contradictions, two have stood out to me as tall tales: his Christmas "trip to Cambodia" which was "seared, seared" into his memory, and the so-called "magic hat" story. Those stories, which appear to be stretching the truth, call into to question some of his other accounts. Kerry has prevaricated in response to challenges on those counts. Hopefully he, and Lipscomb, could be more direct with the facts. Both would gain credibility.

I have no real interest in pursuing the Kerry/Swift Vet story much further; indeed if Kerry hadn’t begun to bring it up again, I would be happy to forget about it. But many issues do remain murky.

UPDATE: I submitted this article to RCP in the Reader Articles section. You can vote for it and get more people to look at it.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Rufus T. Flinger permalink
    June 16, 2006 1:52 am


    You wrote – “UP

    Nicely done Count…

    I just registered at RCP and voted just now — and doubled the votes on your RCP posting…

    Rufus out

  2. Mr Bear permalink
    July 5, 2006 8:08 pm

    Actually, Lipscomb was a Pulitzer nominee. They only post the top 3 on their site. He still was on the list, just not in the top 3. It is a common practice for newspapers, etc, to refer to everyone on the list, not just the top 3, as a nominee. Just thought I’d make sure you now have the correct info:)

  3. Rufus T. Flinger permalink
    July 5, 2006 8:45 pm

    Mr. Bear:

    Can you source that he was a “nominated finalist” for the Pulitzer?

    From what I could tell as I pulled from their site Pulitzers have three categories: Submissions, Nominated Finalists and Winners.

    And that “Work that has been submitted for Prize consideration but not chosen as either a nominated finalist or a winner is termed an entry or submission. No information on entrants is provided.”

    From everything I could tell his work was a “submission” status, but did not make it to become a “nominated finalist.”

    Infact here is a link to a search for all finalists or winners of Pulitzers on the name “Lipscomb” that comes up empty.

    But if you have better sources on this, great.


  4. Mr Bear permalink
    July 7, 2006 2:55 pm

    Rufus, yeah, Pulitzer has admitted this. It came from them, they are the source:)Glad to help you out:)

  5. Rufus T. Flinger permalink
    July 7, 2006 10:41 pm

    > Pulitzer has admitted this. It came from >them, they are the source:)Glad to help you >out:)

    Is that on the Pulitzer site, or online somewhere?

  6. Matchpoint permalink
    July 17, 2006 12:53 am

    Mr. Bear is wrong, and you are right, Rufus.

    ONLY the three nominated finalists are recognized by the Pulitzer organization as nominees. (History)

    You see, it is the nominating committee that does the nominating, not the 1400+ blokes who filled out forms.

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