Kevin Boyle reviewed two new books on the Ku Klux Klan for the Sunday Times Book Review under the heading “The Not-So-Invisible Empire.” Boyle, an Ohio State University history professor and frequent contributor to the Times Book Review, compared the Tea Party to the Ku Klux Klan. Boyle's review started and ended offensively:
Seattle-based New York Times reporter William Yardley made the front of the Monday Business section with a friendly interview with Kalle Lasn, the catalyst for the Occupy movement and the controversial editor of the Canadian “anticonsumerist” (how about left wing?) magazine Adbusters: “The Branding of the Occupy Movement.”
While crediting Lasn (pictured) for branding the Occupy Wall Street movement, Yardley went 19 paragraphs before mentioning Lasn’s inflammatory 2004 anti-Jewish attack on the Iraq War and neo-conservatives, “Why Won’t Anyone Say They Are Jewish?”
Former poet laureate Robert Hass participated in the "Occupy Cal" campout at the University of California at Berkeley a couple of weeks ago – and in the latest example of knee-jerk left-wing Reagan-bashing in the Times Sunday Review: “Poet-Bashing Police.”
The former poet laureate and his wife come off rather naive about life, pompously lecturing their unlettered fellow humans (who are nearly "all white men") in the police force.
First it was the New York Times Sunday Review that traded in liberal news analysis for hard-left essays; will the Times Sunday Magazine follow in those left-ward steps? Three long stories from outside writers suggest yes.
Social liberalism: Laurie Abraham’s cover story celebrated the joy of talking sex with high-school seniors: “Teaching Good Sex – A frank, fearless approach to the birds and the bees.” The Table of Contents approvingly quoted teacher Al Vernacchio, “‘What if our kids really believed we wanted them to have great sex?’ Introducing pleasure to the peril of sex education.”
On the eve of Saturday’s Massachusetts state swim championship at M.I.T, the front of the New York Times sports page that morning was dominated by reporter Karen Crouse’s “Boys Swimming on Girls Teams Find Success, Then Draw Jeers." The prospect of boys and girls competing on the same team and in the same contests has suddenly become controversial at the Times. But why now?
Tea Party beat reporter Kate Zernike was back on the reporting scene in a Thursday afternoon “Caucus” post, “A Tea Party ‘Hearing’ in the Senate That Wasn’t.” Zernike surely used up her monthly quota of sarcastic quote marks in this snarky post mocking the unofficial hearings (sorry, “hearings”) held by congressmen who support the Tea Party.
By contrast, Times reporter Scott Shane was quite respectful of an unofficial hearing held on June 16, 2005 by a far-left anti-war fringe aimed at impeaching President George W. Bush.
New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor, whose book on the Obamas comes out in January, reappeared on Friday’s front page to fawn over Michelle Obama, “First Lady Takes On the Role of Staff Energizer.”
Kantor’s book, “The Obamas,” certainly does not sound like it will afflict the comfortable couple in the White House: “Filled with riveting detail and insight into their partnership, emotions and personalities, and written with a keen eye for the ironies of public life, THE OBAMAS is an intimate portrait that will surprise even readers who thought they knew the President and First Lady.” That promotional tone matches Kantor’s previous Times coverage of the First Couple.
When Gov. Rick Perry attacked President Obama as an elitist, New York Times reporter Richard Oppel Jr. didn’t just quibble with or criticize the attacks as overboard, but banished them to the “realm of falsehood," in Friday's “Perry’s Latest Attacks Distort Obama’s Words and Past.”
A day after Times Watch noted that the New York Times virtually ignored Obama’s supposedly “famous” “57 states” gaffe during the 2008 campaign, reporter Michael Shear rectified that omission, albeit in a story on gaffe-prone GOP candidates, "Flubs Rubbing Some Republicans the Wrong Way," in Wednesday's paper.
Energy Secretary Steven Chu is testifying today before a Congressional committee on Solyndra, the solar equipment maker favored by the Obama administration that went bankrupt after being pledged federal loan guarantees worth a half-billion dollars.
Revelations that the administration asked Solyndra to delay a layoff announcement until after the 2010 midterm elections made the front page of the Washington Post on Wednesday: “The Obama administration, which gave the solar company Solyndra a half-billion-dollar loan to help create jobs, asked the company to delay announcing it would lay off workers until after the hotly contested November 2010 midterm elections that imperiled Democratic control of Congress, newly released e-mails show.”
Meanwhile, the New York Times buried the revelation in a page 24 story Wednesday by Matthew Wald, “Solyndra Was Asked to Delay Layoff News Till After Midterms, Memo Says.”
New York Times Berlin bureau chief Nicholas Kulish was harsh on his hosts in his “Memo From Germany” on Wednesday, “Success and Advice Cast a Giant as a Villain, Not a Model, in Europe.” Germany’s leadership has had the gall to fix work-force rules and institute pension reforms and are insisting that bailout help for free-spending, sclerotic Greece must be contingent on similar requirements, or as Kulish calls it, “austerity and suffering.”
New York Times political reporters Jeff Zeleny (pictured) and Jim Rutenberg teamed up on Tuesday for a preview of the possible presidential head-to-head matchup Obama vs. Mitt Romney: “As the Primary Campaign Grinds On, Romney’s Team Prepares for Obama.” But they felt the need to put a metaphorical finger on the scale with a negative description of the GOP.
New York Times Public Editor Arthur Brisbane devoted his Sunday Review column on the future of the paper's coverage of the Occupy Wall Street movement (it ran before Mayor Mike Bloomberg ousted the OWSers from Zuccotti Park). Brisbane also quoted Executive Editor Jill Abramson sounding sympathetic to Occupy’s goals, promising to produce more stories on the group’s signature cause of income inequality.
The New York Times Sunday Review resembles the hard-left New York Review of Books more and more with every passing week. Formerly the Week in Review, the revamped Sunday Review is lighter on news analysis from liberal Times reporters and heavier on outside essays, often with a hard-left outlook. It’s put together by veteran Times man Andrew Rosenthal, who demonstrates his "alarm" about “right-wing” Republicans at his New York Times blog “The Loyal Opposition.” This week’s target: Ronald Reagan.
Yale professor Harold Bloom’s long essay, “Will This Election Be the Mormon Breakthrough?” was devoted mostly to attacking Joseph Smith, founder of the Mormon religion. But he included plenty of insults against the former president.
Former executive editor, now New York Times columnist Bill Keller theorized on Monday on “How Romney Could Win.” For one, he is “certifiably sane,” unlike some in the GOP field. Keller dismissed Herman Cain as “not-so-serious” and hoped Newt Gingrich would “pass like a tantrum.” But he misses Bill Clinton most of all.
Former New York Times freelance reporter Natasha Lennard, who contributed to the paper’s reporting on Occupy Wall Street, then participated in a left-wing panel discussion of OWS tactics with protest participants and supporters, broke the chains of "objectivity" for good in a rather refreshing article posted Tuesday morning at left-wing Salon Magazine: “Why I quit the mainstream media – Journalism must break the chains of objectivity and report truth -- and the Occupy movement led me to do just that.” (Lennard has previously contributed to Salon.) She agreed with the "right-wing firebrands" who said "I have no place in the mainstream media."
The latest New York Times weekly “Caucus” podcast, hosted by reporters Sam Roberts and Michael Shear, opened with Gov. Rick Perry’s blank-out over the third federal agency he would shut down at last week’s Republican presidential debate, an event the Times and other media outlets rewarded with blanket coverage. Shear compared Perry’s flub to a supposedly “famous” one by candidate Barack Obama in 2008, in which Obama appeared to think there were 58 states in the U.S. But was it famous in the Times? Hardly.
The exchange from the podcast, created last Thursday and posted to nytimes.com on Friday.
John Harwood, chief Washington correspondent for CNBC, co-hosted the GOP debate in Michigan last Wednesday, and had a hand in Perry’s infamous debate “oops” moment, when the Texas governor was unable to list all three of the federal agencies he planned to eliminate as president. On Monday Harwood revealed that a CNBC producer helped prod Perry’s long, awkward moment by shouting a directive into Harwood’s earpiece.
Harwood also writes a weekly “Caucus” column for the New York Times. On Monday he discussed his role in Gov. Rick Perry’s infamous debate "oops," as well as how the audience booed the hosts for bringing up Herman Cain's sexual harassment controversy.
New York Times correspondent Alan Cowell issued a moralistic “Memo from London” on Monday on the humble joys of post-World War II austerity compared to today, where the "have-nots" are tempted by things they cannot have: “As the riots in London and elsewhere in August seemed to show, the profound gulf between haves and have-nots has been magnified by the inequalities and envies of a society that has built its newest altars to consumption and greed.”
Cowell used the memoir of a left-wing intellectual to make his point in Monday’s “New Austerity Incites a Bitterness the Postwar Generation Did Without.”
A hostile New York Times Sunday Magazine profile of GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain by T.A. Frank compared his policy knowledge unfavorably to that of Britney Spears: “...to say that Herman Cain has an imperfect grasp of policy would be unfair not only to George W. Bush in 1999 but also to Britney Spears in 1999. Herman Cain seems like someone who, quite frankly, has never opened a newspaper.”
Frank has written for liberal magazines like Washington Monthly and The New Republic, and his long profile of Cain (who Frank never actually spoke with), “‘I Still Don’t Plan On Going to Any Political-Correctness School,'” was hostile from the start.