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The Gray Lady Rejects McCain

The story of the senator's discarded op-ed explains why the New York Times is dying. (Read more from Roger L. Simon here.)

by
Rick Moran

Bio

July 21, 2008 - 10:26 am
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Someday, when newspapers are a thing of the past and you take your grandkid to the museum where artifacts of the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and the Chicago Tribune are on display in vacuum sealed cases to protect the yellowing, brittle paper from disappearing entirely, there will be a special exhibit devoted entirely to the New York Times.

Famous front pages will be featured along with pictures of the Sulzberger family who owned the paper for generations, famous reporters, and the last publisher when the paper folded in 2018 — Matt Drudge.

The inscription on the shiny bronze plate below the exhibit might read:

Thought of as the “newspaper of record” for more than 100 years, the Times eventually succumbed to disappearing ad revenue, a catastrophic decline in circulation, and the consequences of a perpetual, unrelenting, obvious and sickening bias exhibited against its political enemies.

Scott Rasmussen has been polling the attitudes of voters toward the news media and has uncovered the not-so-startling statistic that 50% of independent voters believe that reporters favor Barack Obama and are trying to help him win. Only 14% believe that they are assisting John McCain. With half the country able to see through the gushing idolatry of the press and their shameless promotion of Obama’s candidacy, where does that leave journalistic standards like objectivity and fairness?

Newspapers, we are told, should not strive for something as elusive as a will-o-the-wisp objectivity in their reporting. Whether that’s true or not we will never know because no major paper has ever risen to the challenge and tried it.

But at the very least, the consumer of news should be able to expect some kind of fairness in coverage of the major issues of the day. At least an attempt at fairness is acceptable. If you’re going write a hit piece about an alderman with his hand in the till, you owe the crook the benefit of asking for his reaction or response to the charges.

For the New York Times, however, no such mundane rules apply. From their lofty perch, manning the battlements promoting and protecting liberal causes and candidates, all they espy through their cracked and warped looking glass is a single field of vision that allows for no discernment beyond their own rigid and crude biases.

Last week, Barack Obama published an op-ed that could have been titled “What I did on my Summer Vacation,” so empty and full of meaningless platitudes as it was. Instead, he cleverly titled it “My Plan For Iraq,” to which he could have added “This Week” but didn’t. It broke no new ground, generated a moderate amount of buzz in that people still marvel at how much Obama can write without saying anything of substance, and was considered a curiosity considering Obama was set to deliver his “big speech” on Iraq the following day in Washington.

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