Friday, January 15, 2016

I Think I Take Rejection Fairly Well


That is, I don't throw a fit when an editor rejects something I submit for publication. In fact, I really like it when that editor tells me why the piece doesn't pass muster. That kind of information helps me in various ways. It can help me become a better writer, if the noted deficiencies relate to my wordsmithing abilities. It can help me understand, and possibly tailor the later material I submit to, the publication's guidelines. And so on and so forth.

So when I got the rejection letter from OpEdNews for my recent Garrison Center piece on the "Audit the Fed" bill, I read it with interest. Here's the reasoning behind the rejection:

Thank you but this article doesn't meet our criteria for support for claims. Either the claims are totally unsupported or you have used links to sites that are not among those we feel are reliable, substantive or trustworthy.

I confess myself puzzled. As best I can distill them, here are the claims I make in the piece:

  1. That the "Audit the Fed" bill is periodically supported by politicians generally considered "dissidents" (e.g. Ron Paul and Bernie Sanders);
  2. That opposition to the bill generally comes from the Fed itself and from "big business" lobbies like the US Chamber of Commerce;
  3. That the opposition's argument against the bill is that it would "politicize" the Fed;
  4. That that argument doesn't hold water because the Fed is inherently "political;"
  5. That the only plausible real reason for the opposition is fear of transparency; and
  6. That that fear of transparency is in turn related to the Fed's mission being one of service to "the 1%," not to the general public.

I'm surprised that OpEdNews would consider any of these claims the least bit controversial or even contestable. I'd really only rate the first three as factual claims at all, the last three being more in the vein of argumentation.

In fact, when writing the piece, OpEdNews was one of two "left" publications that I kept at the front of my mind (the other was CounterPunch, which published it). That's one reason (another being my self-imposed length limits and a third being my own lack of effort in carefully vetting them myself) that I left out the kind of Fed criticisms one might find in, say, The Creature from Jekyll Island).

Puzzled. I thought this one would be a slam dunk.

But not angry. I will continue to submit to OpEdNews because I like the publication and because it lets me reach a "left" readership on issues we have in common. And let me link them again, because I hope you'll check out their offerings, which include a healthy leavening of libertarian material, e.g. John Whitehead's essays on the police state.

Hey, at least I got a blog post out of the rejection :D

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