New York Times culture, flat and round!


How to read better or boil an egg, but also sex/race/gender:
We'll admit it—we've been serially gobsmacked by New York Times culture of late.

This morning, "How to Read Better" is back in the daily "Here to Help" feature on the reimagined page A3, which serves as a constant source of amazement.

To her credit, Tina Jordan never tires of teaching Times subscribers how to improve their reading! In this morning's feature, subscribers were given such pointers and bullet-points as these:
"To read deeply, make sure you set aside at least 15 minutes to read your book."

"Notice if you start to skim or skip sections."

"Keep a dictionary nearby."

"Use a highlighter (or sticky notes)."
At one point, Jordan seems to suggest that readers should use their fingers to sharpen their focus as they fight their way through their books. "It can help to use your finger on the page to underline text as you go." Or so Jordan alleges.

Presumably, the Times knows its readers and subscribers much better than we do. That said, we're constantly amazed by the way the paper talks down to these people on its reimagined A3.

Page A3 is almost always an education—and a source of puzzlement. Higher up on the page this morning, we were offered the day's top quote:
Quote of the Day

"I could miss a home run, but if I hear the crowd, I could always look up. It's not over by the time I look up."

VICTORIA POJRAZOV, a regular at Toronto Blue Jays games who appreciates the pace of baseball games because they allow her and other knitters to enjoy two hobbies at once.
A lot was happening in the world yesterday. At the constantly puzzling Times, that was some editor's idea of the day's most arresting statement.

Breaking! In the daily feature called "The Conversation," the article How to Boil the Perfect Egg has finally disappeared. As we noted yesterday, this report had spent two days on the list of most-read, most-discussed articles.

That said, one article concerning food did appear on today's "most read" list—Weeknight Dinner Around the World, in which "food editors asked families around the globe to show us what they have for dinner on a typical weeknight."

There's nothing "wrong" with a widely-discussed article of that type. That said, we were struck to see one of yesterday's opinion columns on today's most-read list:
The Conversation


5) Why It Matters That 'Emily Doe' in the Brock Turner Case is Asian-American
This Op-Ed article by the novelist Lisa Ko argued that the history of white demonization of Asian women should inform how readers understand the narrative of Chanel Miller, the victim known as "Emily Doe" in the infamous Brock Turner rape case, who released a memoir this week.
We'll bite! Does it matter that Chanel Miller has turned out to be, in Ko's formulation, "white and Chinese-American?"

Opinions will likely differ! For ourselves, we'd say that Ko didn't "argue" the point the Times describes so much as she simply asserted it. Your assessment may be different.

At any rate, it seems to us that Ko published a column which captures the essence of a great deal of onrushing New York Times culture. That's especially true when her column is conjoined to Concepcion de Leon's earlier report about Chanel Miller's new book, a news report we briefly mentioned earlier this week.

No one should ever be a victim of a sexual assault. That said, the Times' "infamous Brock Turner rape case" didn't involve a conviction on rape, or even any such charge. The possible problems with New York Times culture continue on from that relatively minor error.

No one should ever be the victim of an assault. When we review Ko's column and de Leon's news report, we won't be debating that obvious point. Instead, we'll be discussing some of the ways the Times, and the wider liberal world, are currently dealing with important matters involving sex, gender and race.

Ko's column struck us as quite poor, in highly recognizable ways. We thought it tells us a great deal about evolving New York Times culture.

We'll discuss Ko's column in the next day or so. Did we mention the fact that no one should ever be the victim of a sexual assault?


  1. My very liberal wife is contemptuous of Chanel Miller's book. She minimizes Miller's experience, pointing out that a woman very close to us was in fear of her life while she was viiolently raped. OTOH Miller was not actually raped. And, she was unconscious. She didn't even know what had happened until she woke up.

    P.S. My wife and I are irate over the unfair treatment of Judge Persky. He did nothing wrong. His sentence was precisely as recommended by the official guidelines. His recall was unjustified. His firing as a tennis coach was utterly unfair.

    1. Miller was penetrated by a foreign object while unconscious. Does that make it OK? Of course not.

      Your wife doesn't sound like a very nice person. You choose her, so that explains a lot about you. You should both be ashamed of yourselves for your lack of empathy for the victim of these three (count them, three) felonies. The maximum sentence for the crimes of which Turner was convicted is 14 YEARS (not months). His recall was fully justified. Men need to learn that it is wrong to rape unconscious women. A man who doesn't take this seriously does not belong around young women. How would he react if one of his students came to him with a story like Miller's? Would he tell her she was asleep when it happened, so no harm, no foul?

    2. The judge was also a noted sex crimes prosecutor. He obviously thought the case was faulty. No evidence either of penetration. Witness statements were vague and -- sorry -- hysterical.

      Judge was treated very badly.

    3. You misogynists really stick together, don't you?

    4. Through his actions, Brock Turner was showing Republicans his Supreme Court bona fides.

  2. Somerby says Brock Turner was never convicted of rape. Here is what he WAS convicted of:

    "On March 30, 2016, Turner was found guilty of three felonies: assault with intent to rape an intoxicated woman, sexually penetrating an intoxicated person with a foreign object, and sexually penetrating an unconscious person with a foreign object."

    It sounds like Brock Turner was too drunk or too messed up to function sexually or he would have raped her too. But the fact that he used foreign objects doesn't make his crimes any less serious. Somerby doesn't tell the truth here. He leaves us thinking that Turner was convicted of something that didn't deserve the much longer sentence the public wanted the judge to impose.

    1. He was convicted based upon witness statements and vague inconclusive physical evidence. Not rape.

      Her story makes no sense. She's traumatized, but has no memory of the incident. Sorry.

      On a scale of 1-10 it was about a 3 if true. I have more sympathy for real victims.

    2. Better trolling please.


  3. "Presumably, the Times knows its readers and subscribers much better than we do. That said, we're constantly amazed by the way the paper talks down to these people on its reimagined A3."

    The NY Times was giving advice about how to focus attention while reading. Somerby may be unaware that many young people who spend a lot of time using screen, especially those who play games, have serious problems paying attention to anything for any length of time. They are used to being distracted by multiple media under the delusion that they are "multitasking." In reality, they are training inattention and that interferes with reading for prolonged periods (such as 10 minutes at a time). They NEED the advice given in that particular column.

    1. You're making Bob's point. It's a dumbed down world.

  4. ' Did we mention the fact that no one should ever be the victim of a sexual assault?'

    Why then are you a supporter of Trump and Roy Moore ?

  5. I read links from the NYT when I haven't reached their monthly firewall quotient. I've never gone to their site to peruse the news or bought the newspaper.

    I use to subscribe to our big regional newspaper, and it seems to me that the articles in the NYT "Here To Help" section are the kind traditionally featured in sections such as "Cooking", "Lifestyle", "Issues", etc, though offered up in a less condescending manner.

    Someone needs to inform the NYT thst they don't have to make a Section A effort to seem less than high brow nowadays. They long ago managed to lose that rep.

    1. Seriously, Cecelia.
      The NY Times keeps interviewing the same 6 moron Trump voters, and trying to pass them off as independent heartland of America types.

    2. Well, to be fair, those are the conservatives in Manhattans.

    3. Or, in the vernacular...Manhattan.

    4. The conservatives in Manhattan work on Wall Street and at the NY Times.

    5. Cecelia writes:

      I read links from the NYT when I haven't reached their monthly firewall quotient.

      Even if you don't know how to clear "nyt" cookies in your preferred browser, why wouldn't you just use different login emails on different browsers to avoid being shut out by the monthly Times firewall quotient?

  6. Somerby supposedly rants against income-integration in schools because it is impossible to implement (according to deadrat), meanwhile Bernie is on the right track with this:

    "Sen. Bernie Sanders, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, said Wednesday night that he “cannot begin to understand the casual cruelty that motivates Trump and his billionaire friends to harm vulnerable children like this” as the White House moved closer to implementing a rule that would end free school lunches for 500,000 school kids.

    The Washington Post reported this week that President Donald Trump’s proposal to strip food stamps from three million Americans could cause a half-million children to lose free school meals “since food stamp eligibility is one way students can qualify for the lunches.”

    “Trump is depriving 500,000 kids of their school lunches for no damn reason—even after 139 members of Congress warned him not to,” Sanders tweeted, referring to a letter he sent along with House and Senate lawmakers last month condemning the food stamps rule as “unconscionable.”

    This is what Somerby ought to be talking about. Children don't learn when they are hungry -- no one does.

    Maybe someday we will live in a world where this kind of action gets a president impeached.

    1. Somerby supposedly rants against income-integration in schools because it is impossible to implement (according to deadrat), meanwhile Bernie is on the right track with this: [a screed about Trump taking away food stamps from poor families]

      First of all, TDH rants against posturing about racial integration. To be fair, income is often distributed along racial lines.

      Secondly, both types of integration are impossible, but that’s not “according” to me. That’s according to housing patterns set in place by historical discrimination, white flight from public and urban schools, and the Supreme Court limits on inter-district solutions.

      Lastly, Bernie can bellow all he wants about food stamps, but that’s a topic different from school integration. You get that, right?

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