There was a letter to the editor in the New York Times this morning from the mayor of Paris, Bertrand Delanoe, bemoaning the sad state of our democracy here in the United States. His evidence? Caroline Kennedy's attempt to get herself appointed to Hillary Clinton's senate seat. "Surprising and appalling," Delanoe wrote, a "dynastic move" on the part of the "vanishing Kennedy clan," Kennedy has "no qualification whatsoever" to sit in the United States senate.
When I read it I thought, man, that seems... kinda undiplomatic. Delanoe may be right, but why would the mayor of Paris give a shit? Doesn't he have shit to worry about? WTF?
Turns out the letter was a hoax—um, whoops.
The Times blamed the mistake on a failure to verify the authenticity of a letter that arrived by e-mail.
"In this case, our staff sent an edited version of the letter to the sender of the e-mail and did not hear back," the paper said. "At that point, we should have contacted Mr. Delanoe's office to verify that he had, in fact, written to us. We did not do that. Without that verification, the letter should never have been printed."