The New York Times has invested three years of hostile coverage on Brexit and mockery of the (once) hopeless crusade of Boris Johnson to become British Prime Minister. Once in office, Johnson was vilified for attempting to lead the United Kingdom out of the European Union. The Times has blamed the Brexit push for, among other things, shorter life spans; racist and Islamophobic attacks, even “Talibanization.” Brexit supporters were mocked for “virtually cultlike certitude"; an opinion contributor insulted Brexit voters as “old people, 80 and above, wearing blank stares.” Feverish anti-Brexit, anti-Boris bias emanated from the Times in the run-up to Election Day December 12, which ended up wildly successful for the Conservative Party.
Ever since the surprise referendum result in June 2016, the New York Times and rest of the mainstream press has been virulently anti-Brexit. That has translated into hostile coverage of Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has called an election to strengthen his position as he attempts to make Brexit a reality. The New York Times is clearly stretching to attack Johnson with any weapon to hand, including actor Hugh Grant.
Showing that its Boris Johnson-bashing tradition will be upheld through the British elections December 12 (in which he is currently favored to prevail), Tuesday’s New York Times found a way to use the latest London Bridge terror attack to put Conservative Party Prime Minister Boris Johnson on the defensive in “For Johnson, a Week of Courting Allies and Hosting Sometimes Rivals.” Reporters Mark Landler and Benjamin Mueller checked attacks by Boris Johnson against his left-wing opponents in the Labour Party, especially leader Jeremy Corbyn.
The bruising political backlash against British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his aggressive push in Parliament for a “no deal” exit from the European Union led Thursday’s New York Times. The paper blamed Brexit for everything wrong in British politics while mocking a social conservative politician for lying down on a Parliament bench: "...it was a devastating look, seeming to confirm critics’ worst fears about a government of smug, entitled private school types sleepwalking into a no-deal Brexit that could wreck the economy and starve Britons of food and medicine."
After a 22-month investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller investigating Russian ties to the Trump campaign and possible presidential obstruction of justice, the final 448-page report on the investigation has been released, confirming the previous summary by Attorney General Bill Barr that Mueller found no collusion and uncovered insufficient evidence to charge Trump with obstruction. Which didn’t stop the New York Times from sounding bitter, and in particular targeting Barr for sounding too much like an advocate for Trump (who, after all, was not charged with anything).
The New York Times’ reaction to the anti-Semitic controversies engulfing two freshmen Democrats shows that “whataboutism” -- trying to discredit an opponent's position by charging them with hypocrisy -- is no longer “the last refuge of scoundrels” but is back in favor. Mark Landler used Democratic-friendly rhetoric to change the subject and tar Trump as the one with the anti-Semitism problem, in “Trump, No Stranger to Jewish Stereotypes, Rejects Ilhan Omar’s Apology.” Sheryl Gay Stolberg’s story, “In Surprise Vote, House Republicans Lift Anti-Semitism to Political Issue,” also had a distinct “Republicans pounce” vibe, casting Omar and Rashida Tlaib as poor, passive victims of cynical Republicans:
There were lots of lefty angles to the New York Times coverage of President Trump’s well-received State of the Union address. White House reporter Peter Baker opened with a dig: "President Trump...signaled that he would continue to wage war for the hard-line immigration policies that have polarized the capital and the nation. " A fact-check article on the speech insisted socialism wasn’t the problem in Venezuela’s circle down the drain. And Annie Karni, lunging to prove Trump wrong, ignorantly asserted on Twitter: "Trump just ad-libbed 'they came down from heaven' when quoting a Holocaust survivor watching American soldiers liberate Dachau. Jews don't believe in heaven."
The media is ready to convict President Trump of “treason” for his shaky summit in Helsinki with Russian dictator Vladimir Putin and has been obsessed with Trump’s supposed “collusion” with Russia during the 2016 election campaign. But this new-found fear of all things Russia is more than a little politically expedient. The New York Times is just one outlet that dismissed the very idea of Russia as a threat back in the spring of 2012, mocking then-Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney:" Two decades after the end of the cold war, Mitt Romney still considers Russia to be America’s ‘No. 1 geopolitical foe.’ His comments display either a shocking lack of knowledge about international affairs or just craven politics. Either way, they are reckless and unworthy of a major presidential contender."
The sudden, if not unexpected, appointment of John Bolton as President Trump’s national security adviser led the New York Times on Friday and the paper packed a year’s worth of predictable “hard-line” and “hawkish” labels in one edition. (The Times has used “hard-line” to describe Soviet Communists and Iranians who support the continuing Islamic death sentence against author Salman Rushdie, so it’s a pretty loaded term in Timesland.
Betraying its obvious antagonism toward America’s ally Israel, and coddling the statehood hopes of Palestinians (along with much of the rest of the media), the New York Times reacted with alarm to the breaking news Tuesday that President Trump would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Israel’s center of government since 1948.
The mass murder in Las Vegas is invariably leading to laments about the lack of congressional action on gun control at the New York Times. Reporter Mark Landler traveled with the president to Las Vegas for “Trump to a Grieving City: ‘This Is a Rough Time,’” in Thursday’s edition. And an earlier story gave away the slant in the headline: “Conversation Turns to Guns, Then Republicans Change the Subject.” Landler’s last paragraphs devolved into non-journalistic sentiment rebuking the Republican-held Congress for failing to enact the Times preferred strict gun-control laws, while praising President Obama’s care and weeping.
Wednesday’s White House press briefing didn’t feature CNN’s Jim Acosta, so his colleagues picked up the slack with lobbying efforts for single-payer health care, ensuring wealthy Americans don’t get tax cuts, and anti-Trump comments by ESPN’s Jemele Hill. Los Angeles Times reporter Noah Bierman got the ball rolling on single-payer health care, asking Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders what she made of Democrats proposing such a change.