Roger L. Simon

The New York Times' Rubio Derangement Syndrome

It took several years of George W. Bush’s presidency for the mainstream media to develop full-blown Bush Derangement Syndrome (BDS),  but the New York Times — the MSM’s very flagship — seems to have contracted Rubio Derangement Syndrome (RDS) over a year before there is even a Republican nominee, let alone a sitting president.

First the Times exposed Rubio for being some senatorial version of Speed Racer (sorry, Marco, four traffic violations in seventeen years just won’t cut it) and now they’re after him for the cardinal sin of having difficulty paying off his student loans.  Perhaps they would prefer a super rich candidate who would never have such problems like, say, Nancy Pelosi or, um, Hillary Clinton.

But never mind.  Rubio exhibited profligacy by buying himself what the Times characterized as an $80,000 “luxury speedboat.”   One can assume the reporters — Steve Eder and Michael Barbaro — have never heard J. P. Morgan’s saying about such purchases or have never  been to Monte Carlo (or even seen its tennis tournament on TV) if they think you can pick up a “luxury speedboat” or a luxury anything aquatic for a measly eighty grand. Those things usually start at about twenty times that figure.  As it turns out, Rubio bought a family fishing boat.

Of course, the eagle-eyed reporters are correct when they inform us the senator was paid a generous $800,000 advance for his book.  Both Clintons, as we know, were paid many times that for their tomes that no known person has read.  I would imagine Rubio hasn’t had that many readers either, at least not yet. All this proves is that publishers are suckers when it comes to politicians.  As an author, I should be jealous — and I am.  (Maybe I should run.)

But it’s clear what we have here is full-blown RDS on the part of the Times  avant la lettre.  Why?  Well, as many suggested,  Rubio is young, gifted, charismatic and Hispanic — a potential winner against the aging and oh-so-familiar Hillary in a general election.  But that still doesn’t quite account for the nuttiness at the Times.  After all, they’re spending more time investigating Rubio a year and a half out than they ever did at far more significant matters like Obama’s still unknown college record.

Perhaps it’s because Rubio threatens not just Hillary but them. He threatens their world view that the cool guy is always on the Democratic side. He exposes them for what they are — not exactly “with it,” but actually very square and old fashioned.  Liberalism, despite its recent supposed renaissance, is dead ideologically, out of ideas.  All they have left in their quiver is gay marriage (which does constitute a danger for Republicans).  But that’s the subject of another post, which I will be doing shortly.

Meanwhile, the video interview I did with Rubio in Iowa on Saturday is above.

UPDATE: Commentary’s Noah Rothman thinks Rubio should send the NYT a thank you card.  He’s right.

Roger L. Simon – Co-founder and CEO Emeritus of PJ Media – is an Academy Award-nominated screenwriter and prize-winning novelist.  He is covering the election of 2016 at Diary of a Mad Voter.