The national security lesson of the day is by analogy and is from Brian Domitrovic writing at Forbes on the sad and pathetic tradition of revisionist history. While Domitrovic (who is writing about Thomas Sowell revealing the distortions of revisionist economic history), the lessons still fall into the national security arena (and really, everything else). The money quote from the Domitrovic’s final paragraph:
Heaven’s to Betsey, scholarship can’t be trusted. Elisions and evasions all around. Things will get better in the future, when all books are written with hyperlinks to sources, and the corner-cutting which people like [Arthur] Schlesinger [Jr.] and [William] Leuchtenburg tried to get away with can be exposed immediately.
I’m not really sure things will get better in the future, but they are more likely to be rapidly brought to light. And while the lesson—that people lie and misrepresent the truth (see Dan Rather, Jayson Blair, Stephen Glass, Jay Forman, et al as a very incomplete and non-scholarship oriented sampling)—has been known for quite a while, it’s useful to ponder it periodically. The real truth is that much writing is autobiographical, too often including those from the academy.