Ward Churchill on defending academic fraud
Honestly, I don't think you could make this stuff up. Ward Churchill speaking on Michael Bellesiles:
"Consider the case of Michael Bellesiles, the young historian at Emory who wrote Arming America, a study devoted to debunking many of the more cherished myths of the country's thriving gun culture (for which he won the prestigious Bancroft Prize in 2000). It wasn't other academics who went after Bellesiles, but the National Rifle Association, which commenced a campaign alleging "academic fraud" even before the book was published (there were nearly 250 national articles published on the "Bellesiles Hoax" in less than two years). Ultimately, the "fraud" claim hinged on a single footnote in which Bellesiles gave the wrong archival location for certain documents he cited to demonstrate that gun ownership in early America was much less common than those of the NRA persuasion-which, by the way, includes me-would have it. The documents actually existed, and they said pretty much what Bellesiles said they said. Nonetheless, in the face of an unrelenting barrage of negative publicity-the NRA was able to orchestrate nearly 250 articles on the "Bellesiles Hoax" in less than two years-a panel of "impartial" scholars commissioned by Emory to "investigate the integrity of Professor Bellesiles' scholarship" concluded that in this instance his handling of data was "less than professional." On that basis, although the university tried to put a happy face on the situation by allowing him to "resign," Bellesiles was effectively fired. Once again, the performance of the left was something less than exemplary. Although there were a few progressive scholars who publicly defended Bellesiles-Gary Wills comes to mind-I can name none who expressed a sense of outrage that their colleagues on the left weren't joining in."
I can't see one statement of fact (other than that Bellesiles published a book) that isn't utterly false. Well, one is only misleading. He did get the Bancroft Prize ... but it got revoked.