Fumbling Towards Ecstasy

In her latest combination defense and apology for her newspaper cooking the books to help nudge President Elect Obama over the finish line, Deborah Howell, the Washington Post’s Ombudswoman writes:


Journalism naturally draws liberals; we like to change the world.

To which James Lileks wrote the perfect rejoinder three and half years ago:

The first question in any J-school application ought to be “do you want to change the world?” And anyone who answers yes gets kindly turned away. Your job is to describe the way the world changes. Not pretend you’re there to nudge it along towards utopia.

Howell adds:

I’ll bet that most Post journalists voted for Obama. I did. There are centrists at The Post as well. But the conservatives I know here feel so outnumbered that they don’t even want to be quoted by name in a memo.

So what are you doing to change such an obviously poisoned internal culture?

Update: “As for Howell’s presumption [that] ‘most Post journalists voted for Obama,’ that’s a safe bet given how 96 percent of the staff at Post-owned Slate reported they planned to back Obama.”


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