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Roger’s Rules

From Bad to Worse at the Times

June 3rd, 2011 - 6:32 am

So, Bill Keller, who as executive editor presided over the descent of The New York Times from an important left-wing soap box to a nearly bankrupt  left-over left-wing irrelevancy, is stepping down. He’s not leaving the Times, though.  Heaven forfend. He will henceforth—connoisseurs of fatuousness take note: this Bud’s for you!—yes, henceforth Bill Keller will devote himself to writing for our former paper of record.  We obviously have a lot to look forward to.

But the real news is Keller’s replacement: it’s Jill Abramson, former “investigative reporter,” i.e., the woman who co-authored, Strange Justice, a despicable hatchet job on Justice Clarence Thomas in the 1990s. (Her co-author, by the way, was Jane “aren’t-the-Koch-Brothers-awful” Mayer).

Aside: Why, I wonder, did I keep thinking about Macbeth? Where was the third weird sister?

Anyway, the piece the Times ran about the succession was plenty emetic—my favorite bit was Abramson’s declaration that becoming executive editor of a superannuated business novelty was like “ascending to Valhalla.” (Well, there is something posthumous about the whole scenario, but I don’t think that’s quite what she meant.)

The very best line about the whole development, however,  did not appear in the Times. I saw it in the ever-percipient Micahel Walsh’s column on NRO:

“In my house growing up, the Times substituted for religion,” she said. “If the Times said it, it was the absolute truth.”

There you have it, folks.  Upper-West-Side-Limousine-Liberalism as your “substitute for religion.” Almost comically biased reporting as “the absolute truth.”  Don;t say you weren’t warned.

UPDATE:: Wait!! Shame is not dead. That bit about how the Times had “substituted for religion” etc. was in the original story. Obviously, they ran out of airsickness bags and so decided to scrub that little bijou.

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