Rolling Stone executive editor Eric Bates spoke on MSNBC’s Morning Joe today about the editorial process behind the magazine’s explosive profile of General Stanley McChrystal. Mr. Bates emphasized that the general and his aides knew they were on the record for all of their candid remarks — including a now viral one where an adviser says “‘Biden? Did you say: Bite Me?'”
Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski incredulously asked about the magazine’s fact-checking process, likening the situation to the famous scene in Almost Famous in which a band member denies every quote in a Rolling Stone piece about him.
SCARBOROUGH: Now, the general must be fired. Anybody that understands the chain of command in the United States military knows he has to be fired unless he can come out and say I was misquoted. When you were fact checking this article, did the general or his staff deny any of the quotes? Any pushback at all on the accuracy of this article?
BATES: No. No, I haven’t heard that. Didn’t hear that during the course of the story. I didn’t hear that in his apology –
SCARBOROUGH: So, it wasn’t like “Almost Famous,” part two?
BATES: No. And from what I can tell from the general’s apology –
SCARBOROUGH: He was just a cad! Did you even see “Almost Famous”?
BATES: I did. I was in on “Almost Famous.” No, I wasn’t.