Years ago, in another life, I dated a man who had worked for Rolling Stone and personally knew Jann Wenner. (My ex-boyfriend claimed that a well-known Rolling Stone photographer was the one who introduced him to and got him hooked on cocaine. I have no idea if he was telling the truth or not, but it made for a good story.)
My old boyfriend had cleaned up his act by the time I met him, and was decently reticent about his past, but it was pretty clear from the few stories he told that (a) Rolling Stone personnel, at least at one time, had embraced the drug culture with gusto and (b) that it was a sleazy, counter-culture magazine. Today, all you need to do to know that it is still a sleazy, counter-culture (read: anti-American) magazine is to buy a copy at the store — or, better yet, leaf through one and then abandon it without bothering to buy it. As for the drug issues that were once a part of the magazine’s culture, perhaps the drugs’ legacy lives on and helps explain the shoddy, vicious journalism that routinely emanates from that saggy, flabby, 1960s era hangover.
Don’t believe me about shoddy, vicious journalism? I understand that. My old boyfriend’s stories about the magazine’s past are pure hearsay. But right now, today, Michael Yon has actual percipient witness journalism on his side when it comes to challenging Rolling Stone’s most recent smear piece about our troops in Afghanistan. Read Yon and your blood will boil.
Huge kudos to Yon, not only for his own journalism, but for his willingness to take on one of the old media’s sacred cows.