How The New York Times Lost Nate Silver

Apparently, there was a culture clash at the Grey Lady.

NYT: Put Boots on the Ground in Libya

The NYT says it’s time for U. S. advisers and military air traffic controllers on the ground in Libya.

Liberal Washington Post Going Liberal!

Politico continues its recent spate of articles attacking the journalistic practices of its competitors with a piece bemoaning the Washington Post‘s shift leftward, evidenced by the hiring of Ezra Klein, Dave Weigel, and other prominent left-of-center bloggers. The once-cautious Washington Post has begun to invest heavily in the liberal blogosphere, transforming its online presence — […]

Moonies Selling Washington Times

The Washington Times, which emerged during the Reagan administration as a feisty, conservative alternative to the Washington Post, is up for sale after the Unification Church pulled its $35 million annual subsidy.  WaPo, naturally, has the story: Washington Times executives are negotiating to sell the newspaper, after the Rev. Sun Myung Moon’s family cut off […]

Thomas Friedman: Up to Iraqis Now

Thomas Friedman, who has over the years earned both enmity from the Right for his criticisms of the Iraq War and derision from the Left by his continual calls for another six months, leaves plenty for everyone in his latest column. On the one hand, the weekend elections were another “very good day for Iraq” […]

Rangel Ways and Means Chairmanship Over

Charlie Rangel is apparently on his way out as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, a story that’s got the blogosphere buzzing but only merits A22 treatment in the New York Times, his hometown paper. Caught in a swirl of ethics inquiries, Representative Charles B. Rangel, the dean of the New York Congressional […]

Harold Ford Tennesee Tax Resident, New York Political Resident

Harold Ford, who is seeking to get elected to the United States Senate from New York has been filing his taxes in Tennessee instead.  Or, more accurately, not filing them since the Volunteer State doesn’t have income taxes. Gawker‘s John Cook: When it comes to his shadow run for Senate, Harold Ford is a New […]

Newsday Pay Wall Experiment Failing

Newsday‘s experiment with putting its content behind a pay wall isn’t going so well. In late October, Newsday, the Long Island daily that the Dolans bought for $650 million, put its web site,, behind a pay wall. The paper was one of the first non-business newspapers to take the plunge by putting up a […]

NYT Online Going Pay-Per-View

The NYT is joining the WSJ in making noise about putting a subscriber wall around all its content. New York Times Chairman Arthur Sulzberger Jr. appears close to announcing that the paper will begin charging for access to its website, according to people familiar with internal deliberations. After a year of sometimes fraught debate inside […]

NYT Dreaming of a Colored Christmas

The New York Times‘ “Of Color” holiday gift guide, featuring is drawing some bemusement from all corners of the blogosphere.   But it’s a pretty good idea. The premise is both amusing and self-contradictory: Somali fashion, do-it-yourself henna kits, children’s books that draw inspiration from the lives of Barack Obama and Sonia Sotomayor: it’s not hard […]

The Media React to President Obama’s Afghanistan Speech

Egads. I’m in agreement with Tom Friedman: Let me start with the bottom line and then tell you how I got there: I can’t agree with President Obama’s decision to escalate in Afghanistan. I’d prefer a minimalist approach, working with tribal leaders the way we did to overthrow the Taliban regime in the first place. […]

Journalistic Ethics and Illegally Acquired Documents

Ed Driscoll, Jonathan Adler and Glenn Reynolds take the New York Times and other mainstream outlets to task for their decision to not republish the stolen emails from climate scientists on the grounds that they were illegally obtained and written with the expectation of being kept private.  After all, these outlets famously publish illegally obtained […]

Douthat Blogging Again

A few months ago, when Ross Douthat became a New York Times columnist, I was pretty excited that the Times had chosen a fresh, conservative perspective for its editorial pages. Since then, I admit I’ve been a little disappointed. Douthat’s columns have, by and large, been pretty lackluster–there was none of the depth, wit, or […]

Limbaugh: Reporter Should Kill Himself

Rush Limbaugh has gotten everyone from Media Matters to The Guardian to Andrew Sullivan to Paul Krugman to Raw Story to FireDogLake up in arms because he allegedly suggested that a NYT reporter kill himself.  Except that, to anyone familiar with either Limbaugh or the conventions of American English, it’s rather obvious he was illustrating […]

NYT and the Farrell Rescue

Tunku Varadarajan argues the New York Times has a moral obligation for getting two people killed by sending Stephen Farrell into a situation it knew was treacherous in order to get a scoop. Stephen Farrell was a British citizen reporting from Afghanistan. He’d received very strong advice from British troops to stay out of a […]

New York Times Malware Ads

This weekend, I got one of those fake “virus clean” popups after clicking a link to a New York Times article from Memeorandum.   Apparently, I wasn’t alone as there are a dozen or more posts about it today at Techmeme. The NYT itself has this Note to Readers: Some readers have seen a pop-up […]

Charging for Online News

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: A news executive has a plan to start charging for online news. The Financial Times editor, Lionel Barber, has predicted that “almost all” news organisations will be charging for online content within a year. Barber said building online platforms that could charge readers on an article-by-article or […]

Selling Online News

Having apparently learned nothing from its TimesSelect debacle wherein, by charging a nominal fee to read its opinion columnists, the NYT ensured no one read said columns much less linked to them, the paper is floating a trial balloon of charging $5 a month to read its online edition. Michael Crowley is enthusiastic: Given that […]

Obama Approval Dropping as Hard Choices Made

As President Obama settles into his fifth month in office, his personal popularity remains high but his job approval is slipping drastically, according to a new NYT/CBS News poll. A substantial majority of Americans say President Obama has not developed a strategy to deal with the budget deficit, according to the latest New York Times/CBS […]

Kindle Makes Newspapers Obsolete?

Nicholas Carson points out that, “it costs the [New York] Times about twice as much money to print and deliver the newspaper over a year as it would cost to send each of its subscribers a brand new Amazon Kindle instead.” Andrew Sullivan terms this “A devastating little insight into the obsolescence of newspapers” but […]

Bite Size News

Michael Scherer had an epiphany yesterday searching for a transcript of Dick Cheney’s CNN interview and stumbling on nine different stories in Politico about it. What struck me about all this was not just that Politico had created a hassle for me, the reader. It was that they were doing news online smarter than the […]

Douthat Moving To The New York Times

In a rare display of sound editorial judgment for the op-ed page, the New York Times has hired Atlantic editor Ross Douthat as a new opinion columnist. It’s one step back for the Atlantic, but an order of magnitude forward for the country: my colleagues and I learned today that senior editor Ross Douthat will, […]

Obama ‘Working the Refs’

Barack Obama is taking great pains to reach out to opinion journalists, Michael Calderone reports for The Politico, and it’s paying off.  After some anecdotes about Obama personally calling pundits who wrote negative things with respectful explanations of why they were wrong, Calderone observes, The communications team for President George W. Bush would have been […]

Blue Chip Penny Stocks

Barry Ritholz has a depressing list of companies the were going gangbusters quite recently and are now damned near worthless.  A partial list: AIG (39 cents) Citigroup (98 cents) E*Trade (66 cents) Unisys (37 cents) Ford ($1.83) GM ($1.83) For those of us who don’t buy individual stocks, here’s some perspective: The bankrupt New York […]

The End of Print Media

Mark Dillen‘s precis of recent developments in the news media is staggering: The news out of Philadelphia is that there is no news — no newspapers, that is. The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News have joined the swelling ranks of American print media that have gone bankrupt. Last month, it was the Star […]

College Grading: An ‘A’ for Effort?

College students increasingly expect to be rewarded for trying hard, Max Roosevelt claims in NYT: “Many students come in with the conviction that they’ve worked hard and deserve a higher mark,” Professor Grossman said. “Some assert that they have never gotten a grade as low as this before.” He attributes those complaints to his students’ […]

Caroline Kennedy’s Nanny Problem

Caroline Kennedy’s “personal reasons” for dropping a bid to a Senate post for which she was demonstrably unsuited had something to do with taxes and a servant, according to the most poorly reported New York Times article I can recall having read. This is the lede: Problems involving taxes and a household employee surfaced during […]

Obamas Denied Public Housing

Helene Cooper of NYT is trying to make a big deal out of something that rather clearly isn’t. In a story entitled, “Sorry, We’re Booked, White House Tells Obamas,” we’re told “The White House has turned down a request from the family of President-elect Barack Obama to move into Blair House in early January so […]

Robin Toner Dies of Colon Cancer

Sad news: Robin Toner, who was the first woman to be the national political correspondent of The New York Times and who had a significant hand in the coverage of five presidential elections, innumerable Congressional and gubernatorial campaigns and the great legislative debates of the day, died early Friday at her home in Washington. She […]

Brightest Not Always Best

Frank Rich entitles his latest column “The Brightest Are Not Always the Best.” IN 1992, David Halberstam wrote a new introduction for the 20th-anniversary edition of “The Best and the Brightest,” his classic history of the hubristic J.F.K. team that would ultimately mire America in Vietnam. He noted that the book’s title had entered the […]

Newspaper Style Guides

Clark Hoyt, the NYT public editor, has an interesting column explaining the paper’s inconsistent use of courtesy titles, middle names, and the like.   He insists, with strong credibility, that there is no political malice in referring to Sarah Palin as “Ms. Palin” vice “Mrs. Palin” or Condi Rice as “Ms. Rice” vice “Dr. Rice.”  Similarly, […]

Mainstream Media Obsessed with Sex, Sex, Sex!

Cernig is outraged at the sex-obsessed American press. I am now officially disgusted with America’s insular and navel-gazing punditry. En masse and on a bipartisan basis the media, commentators and bloggers have decided that the Edwards Affair story is more important than events in South Ossetia. What happened, folks, did your minds cloud over at […]

Edwards Admits Affair, Denies Love Child His

After months of speculation — and, let’s face it, lies — John Edwards has admitted to having an affair with Rielle Hunter but denies that he fathered her child. Former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards on Friday admitted to an extramarital affair while his wife was battling cancer. He denied fathering the woman’s daughter. Edwards […]

Afghanistan Death Toll

The NYT has a feature story highlighting the increased death toll in Afghanistan under the headline “500: Deadly U.S. Milestone in Afghan War.” Oddly, however, that milestone passed some time back and we’re well past it now. June was the second deadliest month for the military in Afghanistan since the war began, with 23 American […]

McCain Op-Ed Rejected by New York Times (Updated)

The NYT has declined to run an op-ed piece by John McCain in response to last week’s by Barack Obama, CNN reports, instead giving what’s known in academic circles as a “revise and resubmit.” In an e-mail to the McCain campaign, Opinion Page Editor David Shipley said he could not accept the piece as written, […]

McCain and Obama on Iraq and Afghanistan

William Arkin contends that recent political maneuvering has put Barack Obama and President Bush in almost identical positions vis-à-vis Iraq: The Bush administration’s potential Iraq withdrawal plan, floated in The New York Times over the weekend, to draw down brigades further before September of this year and to accelerate withdrawals in 2009, has collided with […]

Why Rush Limbaugh is So Popular

Ezra Klein believes a recent NYT Magazine profile of Rush Limbaugh is a “puff piece.” He lists, for example, Rush’s “presidential platform” as published: 1. Open the continental shelf to drilling. Ditto the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. 2. Establish a 17 percent flat tax. 3. Privatize Social Security. 4. Give parents school vouchers to break […]

Al Qaeda in Iraq Defeated?

Al Qaeda in Iraq [AQI] is all but defeated, Marie Colvin reports for The Sunday Times. A huge operation to crush the 1,200 fighters who remained from a terrorist force once estimated at more than 12,000 began on May 10.  Operation Lion’s Roar, in which the Iraqi army combined forces with the Americans’ 3rd Armoured […]

Supreme Court Focus of 2008 Election

The NYT editorial board want you to know that they’re very disappointed in the Roberts Court, particularly its upholding of Indiana’s law requiring would-be voters to be able they are who they claim to be, allowing Kentucky to continue using lethal injection for convicted murderers who’ve exhausted seventeen years of appeals, and its ruling that […]

Obama, the South, and the Black Vote

Thomas Schaller,  the author of Whistling Past Dixie: How Democrats Can Win Without the South, argues that the notion that Barack Obama has a good chance of winning Southern states because he’ll energize black turnout is based on fallacious reasoning. The first myth is that African-American turnout in the South is low. Black voters are […]

Bush Sewage Plant

Some creative San Francisco bar patrons want to rename a sewage treatment plant after the, um, sitting president. From the Department of Damned-With-Faint-Praise, a group going by the regal-sounding name of the Presidential Memorial Commission of San Francisco is planning to ask voters here to change the name of a prize-winning water treatment plant on […]

George Carlin Dies at 71

George Carlin, a comedian known for his combination of raunchy language and intellectual humor, died of heart failure last evening. He was 71. Carlin was an interesting guy, combining brilliant observational humor with political activism. Like too many comics in the HBO era, though, it often seemed that he was vulgar and outrageous simply because […]

Tim Russert Dies of Heart Attack

Tim Russert has died of a heart attack at the age of 58. Family members say NBC’s Tim Russert has died. They tell The New York Times that Russert died of an apparent heart attack. The host of NBC’s “Meet the Press” was 58. Longtime NBC anchor Tom Brokaw has now confirmed Russert’s death, in […]

Swift-Boating Here to Stay

Michael Kinsley hopes that Swift-Boating, a combination of smear and truth that “exploits its own complexity and the reluctance of the media to adjudicate factual disputes” and thus sticks, will not reappear this election season. The raw material for swift-boating this year is already apparent. There is Obama’s loony pastor, his friendship with a former […]

NYC Chief Crane Inspector Arrested

New York City’s chief crane inspector has been arrested and charged with multiple charges of bribery in the wake of two fatal crane accidents in recent months. The city’s chief crane inspector was arrested on Friday and charged with taking bribes to allow cranes to pass inspection, the authorities said. He was also accused of […]

Clinton to Bow Out, Endorse Obama

Along with a few hundred thousand other folks in the area, the power’s been out at my place since yesterday afternoon, so I’m a bit behind on my blogging. As everyone knows by now, Hillary Clinton has put out word that she will suspend campaigning and endorse Barack Obama at a rally in DC Saturday. […]

Why Obama Beat Clinton

AP’s Stephen Ohlemacher explains why Barack Obama, the young upstart, is going to be the Democratic Party nominee for president while Hillary Rodham Clinton, the hands-down favorite, is getting a set of steak knives. Unlike Hillary Rodham Clinton, rival Barack Obama planned for the long haul. Clinton hinged her whole campaign on an early knockout […]

Two Blogs that Pass in the Night

Yesterday’s exchange with Thers over the state of conservatism reflects a major defect in the blogging medium. For the most part, we write blogs in serial fashion, as a conversation with our readers, and presume that recent posts on the same subject have been read. Most blog readers, on the other hand, parachute into posts […]

NYT Columnists Need Better Editors

Think Progress‘ Matt Corley notes that for the NYT has been forced to append a correction on a Bill Kristol column for an egregious factual error. Citing Obama’s 41 point loss in West Virginia, Kristol exclaimed, “I can’t find a single recent instance of a candidate who ultimately became his party’s nominee losing a primary […]

Girls Sports Injuries More Severe

A long, anecdote-laden New York Times Magazine feature, “The Uneven Playing Field,” examines the fact that, excluding football — which girls generally aren’t allowed to play — female athletes are getting injured far more frequently and seriously than their male counterparts. Girls and boys diverge in their physical abilities as they enter puberty and move […]

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