The values of the New York Times!


They’re as simple as S-E-X: Is our nation in a state of moral and intellectual paralysis?

Yesterday, we spent some time on the latest drivel from Maureen Dowd, queen of the Bulger trial and Paris. She defines the New York Times’ fatuous values.

But she isn’t alone.

On Sunday, Dowd devoted her column to the Gotham mayoral race. Her piece sat on page one of the Sunday Review. This was her sad stupid headline:

“Who’s That Candidate in the Teal Toenail Polish?”

Dowd’s column was so fatuous that many commenters complained. But the Times ran two other columns that day about the mayoral campaign. Those columns captured the values of this paralyzed newspaper too.

On page 3, Frank Bruni offered the latest gigantic treatment of Anthony’s much-maligned magical Weiner. (It was the third column by Bruni alone about Weiner’s sexy-time troubles.) The piece was accompanied by a large drawing of someone holding a pair of men’s briefs on the end of a stick. Bruni's headline:

“The Freak Show as Fable”

On page 5, the Times returned to the mayoral race, this time with Jodi Kantor offering a large, pointless column about Anthony’s troubling Weiner. To give her piece a distinguishing characteristic, Kantor explored the way Jewish people are reacting to this mess. Or something! Who could possibly force himself to read this endless dreck? It ran beneath this headline:

“When Politics Catches Up With ‘Portnoy’”

The Times devoted three columns this Sunday to the mayoral campaign. Two concerned Weiner’s sexy-time troubles, one concerned Quinn’s nail polish.

These are the values of the Times in this 21th century. This is a source of social paralysis, but none of us liberals will say so.

Krugman, Drum, Dionne, Chait or Hayes? None of the insider play-for-pay crowd is willing to cop to this Joyce-sized problem.

Joyce said the Dublin of his youth was caught in a moral and intellectual paralysis. He said he wanted to explore the “deadly work” being done by that disease.

Our nation is dying of deadly work too! But none of your favorites will tattle.


  1. Bob,
    Its ALL about the Benjamins.
    Bob, you can decry the fatuoiness? (fatuosity?) of the NYTimes all you want -
    $1,500,000 dollar houses in the Azores, Prague, Buenos Aires - but here we are. BTW, I agree with you. The Times is joke.
    Punch, Pinch, Pench, Ponch, Panch, Judith Miller,etal.
    Make shit up NYTimes. Bend over backwards to be "fair" to the right-wing nuts. Slime progressives. Upper east side liberals will go with the flow. Except for me. Me (and my children) recognize that The NYTimes is full of shit.
    Nevertheless, here we are.
    Keep hammering them.

    God bless.

  2. Wait a minute - if morality has been declining since Joyce's time - about a hundred years - what's left to decline from? Or was there a resurgence in between that was missed by everyone - no one has ever perceived that morality is improving.

    Or could it be that it is normal for people to think that morality has declined since their youth, or since some golden age? Would that golden age be medieval times, the Victorian era, or what?

    1. "decline" (your word), "paralysis" -- is it all the same to you?

      Identifying this as a problem is really just gramps yelling at the kids on his lawn, is it?

    2. Actually, Anon @6:56, in the case of Somerby's blog, it is Gramps yelling at
      Great Gramps on C-Span. See his post this date about Jim Lehrer.


  3. The NYTimes did not force Weiner to resign his seat in Congress. Nor instruct Weiner to have press conferences about why he was resigning. And the NYTimes did not force Weiner to embark on a campaign for a new office.

    Notably, TDH fails to mention what significant issue is being short-changed by the NYTimes coverage. That's because there is no such issue in the contest between Quinn and Weiner.

    So, frankly, it is just gramps yelling at the kids on his lawn.

    1. If Dowd is talking toenail polish and Irish temper, no other columnist could be replacing her and talking about something legitimate?

      That makes sense.

      No, wait. It doesn't.

    2. Unsurprisingly, you fail to mention the important issue that is central to Weiner's campaign....because there isn't one.

      Also, you better get that list of "legitimate" topics rushed over tho the NYT headquarters as soon as you type it up-that way, columnists can pick from your list of subjects instead of expressing their own ideas. Also, please send it to the Wall Street Journal and Fox News because I'm sure they too will be eager to follow your rules of discourse.

    3. A quick Google search:

      * trimming city government health care and pension costs
      * food and hunger issues
      * pollution issues (via Wikipedia: "In September 2012, New York was named the #1 "America's Dirtiest City," by a Travel+Leisure readership survey."
      * "massive housing problem" because of Superstorm Sandy (via CNN)
      * racial profiling, inequality problems (via NBC)

      Go back under your bridge.

    4. Anon 1011,

      And which of those issues is being addressed by the Weiner campaign and ignored by the NY Times?

      You must reside in Somerbyland where newspapers cover the issues raised by philosopher-kings. Back here in New York, a candidate is texting Sydney Leathers rather than addressing the worthy issues you highlight.

      So should papers cover real life politicians or not?

    5. Shouldn't the papers cover how the politicians would perform their jobs, not their personal lives? There used to be an unspoken agreement separating the two.

    6. Weiner resigned from his last job. Do you remember why? Does that count as performance?

      What is your next high-minded claim, that the Lewinsky affair didn't affect Clinton's performance in office? (Except for that impeachment thing.)

    7. Yes, it does count as performance. But if you think that these journalists are doing their jobs, and not wallowing in titillation, then you are the one who is naïve.