Move along, nothing to see here but right-wing conspiracy-mongering. That was the New York Times’ message covering the Inspector General report on how the F.B.I. came to investigate ties between Russia and the Trump campaign. Though the report was highly critical of the F.B.I., reporter Mark Mazzetti’s lead “news analysis” on Tuesday appeared under the banner headline “Report Debunks Anti-Trump Plot In Russia Inquiry.” The paper did at long last debunk the Russian dossier, albeit on page 18.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was arrested, and the front page of Friday’s New York Times featured Scott Shane and Steven Erlanger’s recap of Assange and the effect of his leaking of classified national security information (and Democratic Party secrets) in “A Divisive Prophet of the Public’s Right to Know.” The paper noticed that the tide of sophisticated opinion, once favorable to the Assange, turned in 2016, when Assange’s actions started hurting Democrats and helping the hated Donald Trump. But Shane and Erlanger didn’t make an issue of the glaring political hypocrisy on display or mention the strange new disgust toward Assange coming from the Democratic left.
BuzzFeed News was tattling on some shady business by The New York Times in a story headlined "A NY Times Reporter Spoke At An Event Organized By Alabama Dirty Tricksters."
The front page of Sunday’s New York Times brought the expected comprehensive dissection of President Trump’s second Supreme Court justice nominee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, in 4,500 words: “Trump’s Choice: Beltway Insider Born And Bred – Father Was A Lobbyist – Supreme Court Nominee Is Being Promoted as Business Friendly.” A photo caption online made the ideological toneclear: “The Supreme Court nomination of Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh, center with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Vice President Mike Pence, is the culmination of a 30-year conservative movement to shift the judiciary to the right.”
The New York Times’ attacks on the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Devin Nunes, continued in Sunday’s news section: “Wielding Threats, Nunes Attacks Justice Dept.” The text box featured typical liberal media weasel wording: “Some see an effort to weaponize documents and undermine the Russia inquiry.” When the Times claims “some see,” one can safely substitute the phrase “Liberal Times reporters see.” The Times and the left are furious at Nunes’ muddying the soothing narrative of Russia-Trump “collusion” in Campaign 2016.
The New York Times two-column lead story Tuesday was predictable: FBI director James Comey’s testimony in front of the House Intelligence Committee, where he announced that the FBI is in fact “investigating whether members of President Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia to influence the 2016 election.” (The Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Trump nominee Neil Gorsuch were relegated to page 20.) “Comey Confirms Inquiry On Russia And Trump Allies," breathlessly reported that Comey had “placed a criminal investigation at the doorstep of the White House.” As a snotty sidebar, Tuesday’s front page also featured reporter Michael Shear, “G.O.P. Reply Is to Change The Subject.” Shear also eagerly used the “criminal investigation” formula.
New York Times Scott Shane pushed back against Donald Trump’s claim that the media was not adequately covering Islamic terrorism on Wednesday’s front page: “Terror News Underplayed? Many Say No.” But Shane, the paper’s intelligence report, does not have much credibility on that issue given that his reporting has taken great pains to downplay the terror threat from radical Islam. Less than two weeks ago Shane was featured on Sunday’s front page, approvingly quoting a silly batch of stats that attempted to quantify the terror threat down to nothingness
Some serious bias by omission about President Trump’s executive order Friday on immigration, especially in the New York Times, none of whose reporters appeared to have actually read it. Trump’s executive order has its roots in previous legislation, The Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act signed into law by...President Obama in 2015. But that was ignored by intelligence reporter New York Times in his “news analysis” for Sunday’s front page, “Visceral Fear, Dubious Cure.” The jump-page headline: “A Dubious Cure for Terrorism That Indulges Visceral Fear.”
After its favored candidate lost the presidential election in shocking fashion, the New York Times is suddenly wide awake to the threat posed by Russia. It devoted 8,000 words and Wednesday’s front page to “Hacking The Democrats – How Russia Honed its Cyberpower and Trained It on an American Election.” The accompanying photo of the filing cabinet broken into during Watergate made it clear the Times considered this a national (and Democratic) tragedy. But the paper has not always been so concerned about the Russia threat, especially when it’s a Republican presidential candidate sounding the alarm. It's tone toward WikiLeaks has also changed since it was gleefully puttting hacked foreign policy memos in print.
The New York Times frantically played defense for Hillary Clinton in Tuesday’s edition, as her smooth ride to victory encountered some unexpected turbulence in the form of FBI director James Comey’s letter to Congress. The ghost of former FBI director J. Edgar Hoover hovered over the front page the day after Halloween, and the lead editorial tut-tutted over “James Comey’s Big Mistake.”
The failures of liberal internationalism meets the New York Times’ liberal hypocrisy on interventionism, in an enormous front-page Sunday story on Hillary Clinton’s decision to bomb Libya, and the catastrophic results:“The Libya Gamble,” by Jo Becker and Scott Shane. But left out of the thousands of words: How the New York Times itself aggressively pushed war in Libya hard on its news pages, while boasting that the Obama Administration was beloved and its troops greeted like liberators.
Scott Shane's front-page New York Times Tuesday on a liberal mosque in Boston, a city that's hosted a growing number of Islamic terrorists and extremists, focused on a liberal mosque that promotes tolerance: "Muslims Work To Shed Stigma Tied to Terror – in Boston, a Tolerant Vision of Islam." But Shane's feverish defense of peaceful American Muslims calls up questions of his own previous story, that blamed conservative critics of Islam for fomenting international Islamic extremism.