Mike Daisey's stirring monologue The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs was performed at the Public Theater for what will likely be the final time on Sunday. In the wake of a nasty backlash against the show's veracity, Daisey prefaced the monologue by informing the audience that This American Life was retracting a segment about his show, which concerns the mistreatment of workers who make Apple products in Chinese Foxconn factories.

I want you to understand that's being called into question are the personal experiences. The facts of what the situation is in China in manufacturing are undisputed... I wanted to let you know that I stand behind this work. And the work you're going to see today has changes made to it, so that we can stand behind it completely, and includes this controversy in it, so that you can have a full picture, and then you can do what you want with it, because I believe as an audience that's your role... I think context is utterly important.

Daisey admitted to Glass that he didn’t meet any poisoned workers and guessed at the ages of some he met. And his translator says that while he did meet a Chinese man with a deformed hand, this man was not a Foxconn worker, and the translator does not recall the man describing an iPad as "magic." Daisey also admitted that some other details he used were things he read about happening elsewhere. On his blog, Daisey had this to say today:

Many consider this week’s THIS AMERICAN LIFE episode one of the most painful they’ve ever listened to. In particular the segment with me is excruciating—four hours of grilling edited down to fifteen minutes. I thought the dead air was a nice touch, and finishing the episode with audio pulled out of context from my performance was masterful.

That’s Ira’s choice, and it’s his show. He’s a storyteller within the context of radio journalism, and I am a storyteller in the theater. In the last forty-eight hours I have been equated with Stephen Glass, James Frey, and Greg Mortenson. Given the tenor of the condemnation, you would think I had concocted an elaborate, fanciful universe filled with furnaces in which babies are burned to make iPhone components, or that I never went to China, never stood outside the gates of Foxconn, never pretended to be a businessman to get inside of factories, never spoke to any workers.

Especially galling is how many are gleefully eager to dance on my grave expressly so they can return to ignoring everything about the circumstances under which their devices are made. Given the tone, you would think I had fabulated an elaborate hoax, filled with astonishing horrors that no one had ever seen before.

Except that we all know that isn’t true. There is nothing in this controversy that contests the facts in my work about the nature of Chinese manufacturing. Nothing. I think we all know if there was, Ira would have brought it up. You certainly don’t need to listen to me. Read the New York Times reporting. Listen to the NPR piece that ran just last week in which workers at an iPad plant go on record saying the plant was inspected by Apple just hours before it exploded, and that the inspection lasted all of ten minutes.

If you think this story is bigger than that story, something is wrong with your priorities.

NY Times columnist David Carr seems particularly disappointed in Daisey, beginning an article today thus: "Is it O.K. to lie on the way to telling a greater truth? The short answer is also the right one. No." Carr sought comment from someone he describes as "an expert on journalistic malfeasance" and asked this person how any media outlet can ever know for sure if a source is lying. "All the good editing, fact-checking and plagiarism-detection software in the world is not going to change the fact that anyone is, under the right circumstances, capable of anything and that journalism is essentially built on trust," Jayson Blair replied.