Many in the rightosphere are making much of Clark Hoyt’s Sunday New York Times column about his paper’s lack of speed in reporting several stories that generated a lot of heat in conservative media and on FoxNews:
But for days, as more videos were posted and government authorities rushed to distance themselves from Acorn, The Times stood still. Its slow reflexes — closely following its slow response to a controversy that forced the resignation of Van Jones, a White House adviser — suggested that it has trouble dealing with stories arising from the polemical world of talk radio, cable television and partisan blogs. Some stories, lacking facts, never catch fire. But others do, and a newspaper like The Times needs to be alert to them or wind up looking clueless or, worse, partisan itself.
That’s the journalistic understatement of that year. I do wonder if the Times picks up on those stories “lacking facts” from left-wing blogs and opinion sites.
Jill Abramson, the paper’s managing editor for news, agreed with him “that the paper was ‘slow off the mark,’ and blamed ‘insufficient tuned-in-ness to the issues that are dominating Fox News and talk radio.'”
To remedy all this, the Times has now “assigned an anonymous editor to ‘monitor opinion media.’” Questioning Hoyt’s claim that the paper lacks a liberal bias, Michelle Malkin asks him to “address directly and openly the paper’s own complicity in covering up the ACORN story before Election Day” when the paper had information about financial shenanigans at the controversial left-wing organization.
More often than not, reporters from MSM outlets like the Times don’t seem particularly interested in conservative opinion. In the controversy over whether NBC producer Jane Stone called Alex Rosenwald, media director of Americans for Limited Government “Jew Boy” in an e-mail, she claimed she had merely told him “Take me off this list!” So, her defense of unbecoming conduct is that she, a news producer, asked to be removed from a list which might be a source of information and opinion, you know, news of the events and ideas shaping public discourse.
Guess they’re just not interested in what those free-marketers are saying and doing. That she would want to be removed from a libertarian e-mail list helps confirm the reports Matthew Vadum receives from “fellow right-leaning journalists that getting rude and offensive emails from reporters in the mainstream media is a fairly common occurrence.“
These reporters seem to have become accustomed to leading a cloistered life, cut off from people with opinions at odds with their own.
This is nothing new. It’s been going on in the mainstream media for well over three decades (at least). WIth the passing of William Safire, John Podhoretz reminds us that when that eloquent columnist took a job at the Times, he “was a breakthrough figure—the first professional Republican ideologue of his time to become a mainstream fixture in journalism.”
Indeed, when he was hired by the New York Times to write a column after his tenure as a speechwriter and intimate of the president in the Nixon White House, the shock and horror with which his new position was viewed in the Times newsroom and in the journalistic corridors of Washington were unprecedented in their ferocity. Safire himself said that people would barely look him in the eye in his place of employ for years.
Reacting with ferocity to his appointment? Barely look him in the eye merely because he had a different opinion? If this is how they treated an intelligent conservative and gifted wordsmith, it’s no wonder the Times has missed so many stories picked up in conservative media.
RELATED: Life Amongst The Nattering Nabobs