Re: The New York Times Is Not A Very Good Paper: Defending People I Despise Edition

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Also, things I care about? Do not include the hairstyle of the spouse of the candidate.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 8:52 AM
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Unless it's really interesting. Show me a First Lady with a yard-high mass of hair including a birdcage or a model ship, and I'll agree it deserves coverage. Moving from a pixie cut to an updo, not so much.

But really, slipping in an "Even his mother doesn't like him"? That's weird.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 8:55 AM
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"She was so exquisite I really couldn't keep my mouth closed. I mean I just couldn't shut it."

Mom McCain has a thing for the ladies.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 8:55 AM
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I would vote for a candidate whose wife's hair had a model ship.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 8:57 AM
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Are you trying to establish fair-minded cred, LB?


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 8:57 AM
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I do find it interesting that their 15yo found that racist Bush campaign thing about her on the web. It makes it harder for me to understand how McCain can so regularly have Bush's back now, when his daughter is just coming into an awareness of how cruel Bush was to her family.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:00 AM
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Yes, I'm catering to baa.

No, actually, I read it and cracked up, because it's a nicely crafted dig. And really, nicely crafted digs do not belong in what's supposed to be straight news. I figure that I might as well call them as I see them.

(I'm not particularly fair-minded. If I thought McCain was an actual threat, I probably wouldn't object to the Times torpedoing what remains of its journalistic credibility to attack him. But this is pointlessly kicking someone when they're down.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:01 AM
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NYT reports first: No snags in Mrs. McCain's pantyhose! EXCLUSIVE!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:02 AM
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But this is pointlessly kicking someone when they're down

Is this the kicking thread?


Posted by: I don't pay | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:03 AM
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No, kickboxing ("Sport of the future") is in the other thread.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:13 AM
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But this is pointlessly kicking someone when they're down.

But that's the perfect time to kick.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:15 AM
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It drives me crazy that so many nominally informed people I know still take the NYTimes seriously. It is a total dishrag.

(Hey, LB said "sneaked!")


Posted by: cerebrocrat | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:22 AM
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It is a total dishrag.

This I can't agree with. It's still a great paper, and covers a lot of interesting stories well. There's plenty wrong with it, but disparaging it so totally just helps the there-are-no-facts, the-MSM-drools wingnuts.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:25 AM
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Get with the program, LB. If you don't liked these United States, there are over 200 other countries to choose from. Fascist.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:28 AM
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"A respectable paper"?

The New York Times is considered this country's Paper Of Record.

For lack of any other newspaper older, larger, or more highly reputed, the Times considers itself to be one of the world's great news organizations.

But when the Times led the parade that marched this nation into the illegal invasion of Iraq, it began a headlong slide downhill that continues today.

The New York Times has become a national embarrassment.


Posted by: Steve MacDonald | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:29 AM
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200 other countries to choose from

I hope you are excluding Pakistan and the Vatican City. And ancient Athens.


Posted by: Clownaesthesiologist | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:36 AM
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13: I just don't understand how it gets to be a great paper given how much it gets wrong and how complicit it's been in the slow-moving train wreck of the Bush admin, not to mention Whitewater, Wen Ho Lee, etc. before. This is the paper that has put forward Judy Miller and Jeff Gerth as their stars, whose first ombudsman made a regular practice of wiping his ass with reader feedback. Not to mention the insufferable classism of pretty much all the fluffy parts. At least they publish the wedding announcements of rich gay people as well as rich straight people, I guess that counts for something.


Posted by: cerebrocrat | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:37 AM
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It's the Quorn of papers of record.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:42 AM
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17: Well, there isn't anything comprehensively better out there. I've got all sorts of issues with it, but if I haven't got an alternative recommendation that improves on it, I guess it's a great paper.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:46 AM
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Not a great, nor even a good paper. It holds its position by default. It's still important, though because of that default position. For reasons Krugman's column today, behind the screen, about Murdoch's bid for The Wall Street Journal lays out.


Posted by: I don't pay | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:48 AM
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Cindy McCain grew up in Arizona and was a rodeo queen in 1968. She schooled her husband in the ways of her home state when he moved there with her after their marriage in 1980. Mr. McCain had met her in Hawaii while he was married to his first wife, Carol.

It was far from clear whether Mrs. McCain would be more liability or asset as the wife of an ambitious politician. In 1994, her addiction to painkillers was exposed, in tandem with a federal investigation into her theft of painkillers from a medical charity she ran.

I don't want to continue with the personal attacks -- there are better reasons to vote against McCain than his wife's problems, this is old and irrelevant and relatively minor in the first place, etc. ad infinitum -- but, geez, yet another example of how politics fucks people up and/or you have to be fucked up to get into politics. It seems that being a Senator's wife is so stressful she was driven to drugs, but the Senator kept on being a Senator. And that's the best-case scenario.


Posted by: Cyrus | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 9:55 AM
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20: I think this describes the situation well. And part of what makes the Times especially un-great is how it wastes its importance.


Posted by: cerebrocrat | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 10:00 AM
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I remember reading a profile of Sir John Browne, the chairman of British Petroleum, in Forbes that included a throw-away line about how the never-married oil executive lived with his mother and was a collector of Mapplethorpes. I was livid.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 10:07 AM
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Okay, I'll bite: when Mrs. McCain said that about Cindy, how could the reporter *not* ask whether that's how she felt about *her own son*?

And what would've been so hard about Mrs. M. smiling and saying "why of course"? She chooses not to do that, it goes in the paper.


Posted by: Anderson | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 10:09 AM
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I was livid

You and William Donohue both.


Posted by: Clownaesthesiologist | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 10:11 AM
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Not a great, nor even a good paper. It holds its position by default.

I think it is good (often) and great (occasionally). But it is also petty, pretentious, and sometimes horrifyingly mendacious.

Seriously, though: The long investigation on accidents at railroad crossings? The OSHA stuff? Even the series on class (and race) in America, as wincingly well-meaning as they sometimes were -- I appreciate a paper that at least occasionally tries to do something more than report the daily political points scored.

And cerebrocrat, I gotta disagree with you about the first ombudsman. His "Yes of course the Times is a liberal paper" column was wonderfully honest.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 10:13 AM
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24: She's in her freaking 80's, maybe 90s. It makes sense to publish that an old woman bobbled a question in a manner that could be interpreted uncharitably?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 10:17 AM
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Am I really the only one here who thinks that this line was a joke? I mean, criminy, what mother doesn't see flaws in her children?

I didn't read the story, so maybe the context makes it nastier, but this line really strikes me as a little maternal dig. For all the MIL jokes in our culture, the idea of the mother who loves her daughter-in-law while viewer her son as a bit of a dope isn't exactly unheard of.

Further, I don't think that the reporter was obliged to make explicit that it was a joke, if that was clear at the time. I suppose adding the word "wryly" wouldn't have harmed anything.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 12:19 PM
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But she didn't say anything. If there were a quote like: "So, do you feel that way about your son?" "Maybe I'd better change the subject," that would be a dig from Ms. McCain, and I suppose reporting it would be no sillier than the rest of the article. Instead, the reporter took silence that could have signified "I didn't catch that", or "Well, of course, but you can't brag about your relationship with your own children that way, it's immodest" or anything, and reported it as meaning that his mother doesn't think much of him.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 12:23 PM
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20: IDP, what was the gist of Krugman's column? As nutty as the editorial page of the WSJ is, I am totally freaked out by the thought of Murdoch owning the Journal.

I'm told that the Times of London was once a good paper. Shudder.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 06-29-07 5:17 PM
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The New York Times is the newspaper of record because it's where the establishment records its opinions. It's vaguely liberal on domestic policies, though from a largely upperclass point of view and its foreign policy views almost always aligns with those of whatever administration is in power. It's cheerleading for the invasion of Iraq is not an aberration: it's par for the course.

Of course for wingnuts, anything but a slavering adherence to their latest cherished stories is being anti-american and so the impression of the NYT as a strong liberal paper appears...


Posted by: Martin Wisse | Link to this comment | 07- 1-07 6:48 AM
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