My friend Roger Simon, CEO of PJ Media, today announces his imminent retirement from that august position. Roger’s announcement makes me realize to my astonishment that I, at his invitation, have been contributing to PJ (formerly “Pajamas”) media now for more than six years. Yikes! That has been the quickest 2300 or so days on record, at least on my record.
I first met Roger (I think of him as “the other Roger,” but he assures me that’s my name) when he was working on Turning Right at Hollywood and Vine, his unputdownable memoir of growing up Left as a Hollywood screenwriter and what it was like when he began entertaining second thoughts. I am proud to have published the book at Encounter, just as I am proud to have collaborated with Roger on inaugurating the Walter Duranty Award for Journalistic Mendacity (first winner, Anna Wintour) and to have published The Party Line, the riveting play about Duranty by Roger and his wife Sheryl Longin, as the inaugural volume in The New Criterion’s new publishing initiative Criterion Books.
But Roger’s announcement that he will be hanging up his managerial (though not his writerly) spurs at PJM next week prompts me to reflect on all that he and his PJM colleagues have accomplished both with the web site and the new Internet TV initiative. PJM may not rival Fox in size, but is there a more vigorous center-right purveyor of news and opinion going? Let’s leave my own contributions out of the equation and look at the other talent Roger has assembled: Andrew McCarthy, Victor Davis Hanson, Ron Radosh, David Goldman, Michael Ledeen,Andrew Klavan, Bill Whittle, Richard Fernandez, Claudia Rosett, Michael Walsh, Ed Driscoll, Helen Smith, and on and on. Is there a stronger stable anywhere? I doubt it. And add to the mix Glenn Reynolds and Instapundit, whom Roger brought into the PJM fold, and you have one of the most formidable journalistic teams on offer. I think Roger has done an amazing job at PJM and I have been delighted to be part of his effort to take back America.
As Roger says, he is not going away. He’ll just be taking fewer meetings and penning fewer memoranda. In compensation, he will be devoting a lot more time to his first literary loves, writing screenplays and novels. I look forward to the next installments. In the meantime, hearty congratulations to Roger for his inspiring leadership and role in creating a great institution.
Image courtesy shutterstock / EDHAR