What Now, New York Times?
It’s easy to excoriate the sulking, sycophantic cretins at The New York Times—these are, after all, the “journalists” who let Judy Miller be a happy war propagandist for 18 months and sat on the domestic spying story for a year, the 2004 election so conveniently occurring in that time span. The New York Times earns the extremely harsh, judgmental adjectives with every body bag that comes home.
Bush let loose the full fury of his right wing freak base when The New York Times “broke” the story of domestic spying, describing them as endangering national security with the truth (even a year late). This after personally summoning the publisher and editor to the oval office to try and stop the story—lord knows what other filthy, nasty tricks Bush tried to shut The New York Times up with over the years.
Now would be a good time for the intellectual community of the United States, such as it is, to dance a gleeful jig on the grave of The New York Times' credibility and shitcan its writers and thinking wherever possible. They’re disgusting wussies who still have yet to explain Miller or the one year delay, they simply earned it many times over, get on with it.
Unfortunately this extremely satisfying dictum is as immature and shortsighted as the recent behavior of The New York Times; human beings would have never amounted to anything had they been eternally condemned for mistakes. In theory journalism and searching for truth is good for the country, and The New York Times is uniquely suited for such a mission; should they ever decide to undertake it their efforts could be very useful.
I know Gail Collins and Paul Krugman are not intellectually bent. They would never go to work and publish knowing their employer was a propaganda arm. Even though the political reporting at The New York Times has been atrocious for a decade (Gerth, Seelyle) there are still good elements at that paper that significantly contribute to vital elements of the republic.
I do not trust Frank Rich—I am not convinced his motives for writing are for principle or merely promotion of self and the Times—but one must say that his work in the last 180 days has been very good. Today’s work is very well written, pithy, uses special characters for Spanish and French, has an excellent illustration, classy portrait shot, and even spreads credit and truth around with links to the Washington Post (!), NBC and Arianna’s place. Very impressive journalism, no doubt about it.
I don’t trust a word of it and I won’t until The New York Times explains Judy Miller and the one year delay. Answering those 35 questions from the new ombudsman would be a good start.
Until those two issues are publicly and exhaustively explained The New York Times remains crippled and useless. It certainly does not have to stay that way, but that is the undeniable conclusion now.