How Predictable is the New York Times?

Sunday, November 27, 2005

The New York Times Strategy:

Assert that Iraq is a disaster.
Assert that there is civil war in Iraq.
Assert that Iraq is hopeless.
Assert there are parallels with Vietnam.
Assert that we are losing in Iraq.
Assert that we must pull out now.

Then write snarky articles about hard it is to pull out and save face at the same time.


"Even in the absence of a sudden and dramatic shift on the battlefield toward a definitive victory, there may still be a slight opening, as narrow as the eye of a needle, for the United States to slip through and leave Iraq in the near future in a way that will not be remembered as a national embarrassment."
At the same time Maureen Dowd intones:

"Democracy depends on us. It depends on our ability to be patriots, to fulfill the founding fathers vision of keeping a check on power."
(See Tom Maguire's discussion re the latest Maureen Dowd example of arrogance, hubris, and Bush hate.)

Never blog when you're angry--and I'm angry--but I'd still like to know how we can fulfull the founding fathers vision by keeping check on the power of the New York Times.

They decide on the narrative.
They decide what is important and what is fit to print.
They decide what the outcome should be.
They shape public opinion.
They call on the administration to listen to public opinion.
They force the outcome.

Then they report the outcome as news and an embarrassment to the country.



terrye said...


You may be giving the NYT too much credit.

I do not know one single person who reads it.

Not one.

I read blogs where the obnoxious editorial page is mentioned, but in real life..who reads it?

The people of Iraq may not want to spend eternity in misery just to make the NYT editorial staff look good and in the end they are the ones that will decide the ultimate outcome in Iraq.

I know I am ashamed of the New York Times. I am ashamed for the New York Times. The Grey Lady has turned into a partisan shrew.

And Mo Dowd is an overpaid and silly example of a self perpetuating elite.

terrye said...

I forgot to mention that the NYT cmplains they do not get critical letters to the editor, maybe you should write one. And do it when you are angry.

Julian Biggs said...

terrye - i know many people who read the NYT. The saddest part is that as well as being convinced by its posturing, they also are convinced that it straddles 'both sides of the political spectrum.'
good grief.

terrye said...


I live in Indiana, people around here read the Indianapolis Star and a lot of them think it is too liberal.

One thing to remember about the NYT, they endorsed John Kerry.

Did him a lot of good didn't they?

Syl said...


One of the problems with the Times is that its articles are syndicated in newspapers across the country.

Your Star has many Times articles in it.

Also, the morning talk shows read the Times to decide what they will discuss on any given day.

The Times drives all news discussion. They control the subjects, what is said, and what is not said.

That's way too much power.

David Thomson said...

“terrye - i know many people who read the NYT. The saddest part is that as well as being convinced by its posturing, they also are convinced that it straddles 'both sides of the political spectrum.'
good grief.”

I would bet that most of these pseudo-educated people possess minimally a master’s degree behind their name. How did they “earn” their degrees? These people never dared defy their liberal professors. They kept their mouth shut and essentially whored themselves. Our mandarin class is not deserving of respect. It’s time to make sure they earn everything they get. No more free rides.

Buddy Larsen said...

A current problem--besides collapsing circulation--is that, having driven so many, many anti-war stories into the ground, they now have a vested interest in a bad war outcome. Like many of the increasingly-frantic left, their nightmare is a resounding success in the war. It's gone beyond Bush Derangement Syndrome--it's to the point of humiliation and loss of legitimacy. We HAVE to lose the war, or else our great NYTimes will never be the same.

Persective, people!

Buddy Larsen said...

Have it, don't spell it!

Peter UK said...

I hate to add fuel to the fire,well no I don't,here's a can of petrol on the front page of the NYT via Donald Sensing

Buddy,Yes but you need persective as well.

terrye said...


I hear you but I have to admit I don't understand the reliance on the NYT. I wonder sometimes if it has to do with the fact that most of the network news comes out of NYC.

Those folks live in a bubble, they really do.

Some of the stories end up in the Star no doubt, but the Star has no desire to alienate their readers and so they are a little more discrete about how much cheerleading they do for Zarqawi and Co.

I think the reliance of the media on the NYT has as much to do with cronyism and elitism and plain old fashioned laziness as anything else.

I know they can effect public opinion, but that did not stop the Soviet Union from collapsing or the Taliban from going belly up.

The Times has too much power, but maybe not as much as you think.

I have not even turned on the news today. I am like a lot of other people, I am sick of hearing it.

Buddy Larsen said...

terrye, I don't know if you follow Chris wallace or not, but he's fast cleaning up aftyer his foolish old dad, and is breaking out into an truly excellent reporter/interviewer. Anyhoo, Sen Carl Levin--one of the two-est of the the two-facers--evidently got more than he bargained for from Mr. Wallace in an interview due on the Fox evening news tonite. There's already some buzz, and it ain't aired yet even.

Buddy Larsen said...

Comin' on rat now!

terrye said...


Well I turned on the TV for the first time all day and I did hear some of that interview with Wallace and Levin and Lugar.

Levin is such a liar.

The American people did not think Saddam was involved in 9/11 because of anything Bush had said, but because we had been hearing for years and years that he was an enemy.

And we heard it from people like Levin.

You know people with D's behind their names.

The truth is I still am not sure that Saddam was not at least aware of what AlQaida was doing and to make that tired old argument about how secular Saddam was is absurd.

He still gave money to Palestinian martyrs didn't he? He helped terrorists like Abu Nidal and Zarqawi, he could have gotten rid of them but he did not.

Hell, the Baathists are fighting with AlQaida in Iraq right now so it seems the can get along when they damn well feel the need to.

Seneca the Younger said...

Syl, like most issues of speech, the remedy is more speech. There was a (historically short) interval in which the big magazines, major nets, and the Times could control the agenda and set the template, but it's passed. Glenn Reynolds has 10 percent of the Times' readership --- and I don't mean the Times On Line, I mean the physical paper.

In the mean time, the major papers are haemorrhaging circulation.

The solution is to keep publishing on the net and on the blogs.

Buddy Larsen said...

That's such a compleat wisdom, that the solution to talk is talk--that one wonders why Mccain and Feingold didn't know it. Now we have the repugnant Soros in all our houses.

Buddy Larsen said...

Terrye, there's just TONs of material on Saddam, WTC, al Quaida, but this WSJournal article by Laurie McElroy of the highly respected terror-network research of Benador Associates, is so startling, so spine-tinglingly right, that you'll never have another doubt in your mind (as if you ever would, anyway, on the strength of the better-known links). Anyway, if you get to it, let me know what you think, if you get a min. Just a yay or nay will do, unless you wish otherwise.

terrye said...

Juan Williams is such a bright ray of sunshine.

After watching the panel I remembered why I stopped watching Fox News Sunday.

He said the American people right now would rather we had not gone into Iraq and it all sucks all the time.... no hope in sight.... it is done... over... finit.....

Maybe yes, maybe no...I have seen differing polls on that but I am sure that in every conflict people have times when they feel that way.I think PEW still gives the pro people a slight edge, but that is not always the case.

If there had been a poll taken of the Colonies at the time of Valley Forge a lot of folks would have been saying that maybe King George wasn't such a bad guy after all.

Buddy Larsen said...

Shoot, a third of all the colonists stayed Loyalists the entire war. Especially in the South--the planters and chevaliers were especially Tory. Matters between the Continentals and the Tories got a whole lot nastier, out in the hustings, than most folks realize. Esp. in the Carolinas, esp along the seaboard there. that British nasty in Mel Gibson's "The Patriot" actually existed, Banistair Tarleton, whose unit was much like Joachim Peiper's in the Battle of the Bulge--terrorize the citizenry into passivity.

terrye said...


That is interesting. I read somewhere else that we do not have anyway of knowing who these people are.

And while people in the west tend to think just of Iraqis or Kuwaitis or Jordanians, a great many people of that region think in terms of tribes.

So what connection might there be between the tribes of the men involved in 9/11 [or any other attack on American interests] and certain Iraqis?

terrye said...


According to the book I just read a great deal of NYC city was Torie, in fact they fought with the British.

Doug said...

I wonder how Chris Wallace still gets interviews w/the beltway BSers.
He had a revealing interview w/Pops a month or two ago.
Dad lives in another universe.

Buddy Larsen said...

They actually held NYC until the end. I believe a Clinton ran the show--but I could be wrong. At any rate, he wasn't from Arkysaw.

NYC also had a lot of copperheads--southern sympathizers--afraid of the slaves coming in as freedmen and competing for jobs. Also had some very bloody draft riots that did as much for the Southern Cause as the Kerry Wing now does for commies and terrorists.

Doug--dunno--but Fox makes it known who is in hiding from them. Makes 'em afraid to seem afraid.

MeaninglessHotAir said...

The NYT asserted that Iraq was a quagmire on, as I recall, the second week of the war.

For me, the NYT doesn't "decide on the narrative" nor do they "decide what is important". I've completely given up on them and I'll never buy another one. They're very haughty and full of hubris but in the long run no business can afford to alienate many of its potential customers.

If it bothers you, don't read it, don't pay attention to it, don't comment on it, don't think about it. I don't read it and I don't watch TV news and I don't read the AP and none of this bothers me. If I want to know what's going on in Iraq, I'll read Michael Yon or Iraq the Model. Maybe those people are all shills, but I have absolutely no reason to believe they're any less truthful or knowledgeable than the NYT.

The NYT exists because we allow it to exist, because we partake of the dance.

Morgan said...

Yes, the Mets are predictable. Oh, the Times... never heard of them.

blert said...

Buddy Larsen said...

Shoot, a third of all the colonists stayed Loyalists the entire war..

terrye said...

According to the book I just read a great deal of NYC City was Torie, in fact they fought with the British.

The name for these people is CANADIANS. That’s where the die-hard tories departed to from NYC and elsewhere. Very few were willing to go back to the old world: no free land! Thus the essence of Canadian foreign relations with America was set at birth. Either you spoke French and lost in the Seven Years War: Quebec; or you spoke English and lost in the Revolutionary War: Ontario.

The defining moment for Canada was its birth war: The War of 1812. The American thrust out of Fort Detroit towards Fort Windsor was repulsed by a scratch company of French trappers. Otherwise, the route of conquest would have been right through the heart of Ontario and Quebec.

Even as late as 1863 the English were pressured into not assisting the Confederacy by Ambassador Adams. He threatened England with war; which was correctly taken to mean the loss of Canada by the Empire. The South did not get her super ship.

Buddy Larsen said...

Never knew that, blert--dammit--we coulda WON if not for those Canadian hostages. But--where would we be now--eleven little Switzerlands, who'd've all fought each other one at a time as the slave-trade came to be be more and more obviously a savage artifact.

Rick Ballard said...

Nah, Buddy, that wedding you attended would have been held in the same place but in one of the southern states of the Republic of Texas. Or maybe in its port city of Los Angeles. Not eleven - no more than five. Of course, Canada would be Texas' northern neighbor just across the Columbia river.

terrye said...

The War of 1812 was without a doubt the most ridiculous war this country ever embarked on, and the best we can call it was a draw...and that is stretching it.

ahh well, who wants the tundra anyway?

Buddy Larsen said...

It's never too late--"54.40 or fight!"

The 1812 War gave us three things I can think of--Andy Jackson, who became prez as the hero of the Battle of New Orleans (which was fought after the war was over but who knew?). And Dolly Madison running back into the White House to retrieve the Gilbert Stuart portrait of George Washington (the $1 bill pic, I think). And then, third, of course, don't let Peter UK play with matches.

Rick, a Canadian/Texas accent? Gimme a roomful of fingernails-on-blackboards!

Buddy Larsen said...

Per Mexico, I've eaten pickled pigs feet, fried rattlesnake, sauteed gator tail and raw Spam, but I will not resort to cancun.

Doug said...

That James Glans is well named:
I'll bet his cerebellum is composed of corpus spongiosum.
Bet 2:
Our own James (IRON) could teach him a thing or two.

Doug said...

I thought Cancun *was* resort?

Doug said...

I meant *IS,* of course.

Doug said...

Has anyone brought up that the Times They are a Changin?

Buddy Larsen said...

Yeh...some guy named Doug, just above.