Even MSNBC is reevaluating its HR decisions. Shouldn't David Bradley be doing the same? How long does it take to tear down a century-old reputation?
Update: Galley Friend A.W. sends in another example of Sullivan's shoddy reporting/analysis. Here's A.W.:
Sullivan, referring to "Troopergate," links to an ABC News video and concludes, "Palin clearly lied."
But if you watch the video, you find two things:
(1) Accusations from the fired state official that he believes he was fired because of the brother-in-law; and
(2) Audio recordings that literally include no reference to Palin intending to fire the police commissioner.
It's funny that Sullivan would call this, in effect, a "slam dunk." There's no evidence there! And Sullivan never hesitates to (1) bemoan the Bush administration's reliance on thin evidence in the run-up to the war, or (2) remind us all that "true" conservatives are skeptics.
Update 2: A little Kremlinology: So last night Sullivan posts what reads like a semi-CYA post saying that he really does admire Sarah Palin quite a lot.* Then he posts a nonsensical bit about the NYT Trig Palin story, which somehow suggests that the story was an "exposé" (as per Drudge's promise). (The story wasn't, by-the-by.)
And since then: silence. Well, not total silence, just one wordless picture out a window. People have been emailing me all afternoon speculating that management over at the National Journal group may be dealing with the Sullivan problem in some way. My guess is that he's just in transit somewhere. We'll see.
* A close reading of that semi-endorsement of Palin, however, shows that Sullivan is still peddling the smear that Trig isn't the governor's baby. Look very carefully at Sullivan's wording. He says, "I want to go on record again as saying that the decision to bring up a child with Down Syndrome is one of the most noble, beautiful and admirable decisions any person can make. That Sarah Palin is doing that says a huge amount in favor of her." [emphasis added]
Is it coincidence that Sullivan merely credits Palin with "bringing up" the baby, instead of, you know, "bearing him" or "having him" or "giving birth to him"? I don't think so. It seems pretty clear that even as late as last night, Sullivan was still hinting to readers of The Atlantic that Palin's youngest child isn't actually hers.
Update 3: Other writers for The Atlantic are beginning to address the question of Sullivan's disappearance. Ta-Nehisi Coates has now forbidden commenters from speculating about Sullivan, saying, "Frankly, I have no clue what the situation is--and neither do you."
That sounds kind of ominous. Marc Ambinder says "Lots of e-mails asking about Andrew's whereabouts. I checked in with him; he's fine. He's taking a few days off."
Does this mean that David Bradley has finally stepped in to take control of his magazine? Doesn't this, finally, serve as enough of a hook to get some media reporters to start making phone calls?
Update 4: More speculation. It would be nice to have some actual reporting, though. Romenesko? Kurtz? Anyone?
Update 5: Sullivan speaks! "I'm absolutely fine, nothing has changed with this blog, no one is pressuring me to write or not write anything . . ." Not quite a total denial that there is some friction with management. After all, he'd be free to write anything he wanted at andrewsullivan.com--and he could do it without embarrassing The Atlantic Monthly.