March 24, 2005

Is Deep Throat really Ben Stein?

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 24, 2005 11:04 PM

Wow...that's one I've never heard before.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at March 24, 2005 11:20 PM

I heard it mentioned last when John Dean made his little quip two months ago about Deep Throat being ill. Of course, at the same time another story came out claiming DT was not mentioned in the original manuscript of All the President's Men, but showed up in a revised version as a way to punch up the story.

Stein may have given Woodward or Bernstein some information during the course of Watergate, but odds are DT was a composite of several different background sources. But we are getting close to the date when Woodward's going to have to fish or cut bait on the identity, and once he finally names a name, people will be able to go back and see if some of the information attributed to DT really could have come from that person.

Posted by: John at March 24, 2005 11:25 PM


Howard Kurtz says that Woodward has not told the Post that DT is quite ill--Dean just made that one up.

Posted by: oj at March 24, 2005 11:27 PM

Stein has been appearing regularly in the American Spectator -- I think his most recent column was about drag racing his son down Wilshire Blvd. -- so unless he has more of a death wish than a terminal illness, it sounded strange that his name would have been brought up in connection with Dean's comments (most of the speculation I saw that dealt with it centered more on William Rhenquist, though I never could figure out how that connected, since it's unlikely a junior Supreme Court justice was spending his off hours hanging around 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and parking garages in the northwest quadrant of the District).

Posted by: John at March 24, 2005 11:51 PM

He only gave Woodward and Bernstein the information they needed when they beat him in a test of 10 questions in 30 seconds read by Jimmy Kimmel.

Posted by: Governor Breck at March 25, 2005 7:35 AM

Silly game. There was no Deep Throat. At least not in Watergate. I understand there was a porn movie with that name.

Woodward will wait a good long while, then finally name somebody who's safely dead - and who, of course, was not DT because there was no DT. Any inconsistencies between that man's actual whereabouts and DT's alleged itinerary will be explained away as necessary to protect the greatest source ever.

Posted by: Casey Abell at March 25, 2005 7:57 AM

Other than baby-boomer journalists nostalgic for the days when they could Speat Truth To Power and Stick It To The Man, and a bunch of below-the-Beltway wonks, does anyone care?

Posted by: Mike Morley at March 25, 2005 10:06 AM

Heh, c'mon folks it was a really good piece. Fascinating in fact.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at March 25, 2005 10:12 AM

If Woodward dies before whoever he intended to pin the DT tag on, will Bernstein and Bradlee keep playing the game? Or will they just toss in the towel and admit that there was no DT?

Posted by: Casey Abell at March 25, 2005 11:59 AM

Just thought of a really weird but by no means impossible scenario. What if Woodward, Bernstein and Bradlee ALL die before the guy they were planning to pin the DT label on?

It's obviously not out of the question. Bradlee is really getting up in age, and Woodward and Bernstein ain't spring chickens any more.

Supposedly, these three guys are the only Keepers of the Great Secret. (Of course, there is no secret because there's no DT. If there was one, the three would just name him now. They're waiting until somebody croaks that they can pass off as DT.)

Would the Great Hoax-Secret die with its only three possessors? This is really starting to remind me of a very funny story by Orrin's fave, Henry James. It's called The Figure in the Carpet, and it concerns how the possessors of a great secret expire one by one, until nobody's really sure there was any secret to begin with.

Posted by: Casey Abell at March 25, 2005 12:12 PM

Casey --

Maybe as Woodward is dying someone can pull a William Casey on him, and come up with the name of Deep Throat they claim Woodward spoke on his deathbed.

Posted by: John at March 25, 2005 2:23 PM

Fred Fielding.

Posted by: h-man at March 25, 2005 3:52 PM