Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Times Is Stupid

Where do you start?

First off, the NY Times has now hired Bill Kristol to do op-ed's. The liberal blogosphere is peeved about it, but not for the reasons you'd think. Bill Kristol has a right to his opinions just like anyone else, and a right to write about it in major newspapers. But why does he remain so "respected" as an "intellectual" when he's so consistently wrong (see: war, Iraq)? The guy gets a promotion and raise after being thoroughly wrong, over and over again.

Then the Times writes a supposedly nice piece about a blogging pioneer who died recently. Except they get a lot of it wrong. Did Matt Bai even talk to Steve's friends?

The Times has become a sloppy information source constructed by lazy elite journalists. Too bad. And they wonder why they're dying on the vine?

Added: Could it be said (and documented) any more clearly?

All of you aspiring pundits out there take note. The key to reaching the pinnacle of your profession is, apparently, to be 1) catastrophically wrong about everything, 2) utterly unwilling to acknowledge error, 3) willing to repeatedly lie and mislead your readers, and 4) completely batshit crazy.

In all seriousness, it would be difficult to find anyone who has been more consistently and embarrassingly wrong about everything over the last six years than Bill Kristol. When Kristol got his most recent gig at TIME Magazine, I actually went to the trouble of compiling a highlight reel of Kristol's past pronouncements. It didn't take long. Virtually every column he had written since 2001 had some mortifyingly embarrassing passage. And I didn't even start to search through the comments he'd made during his countless television appearances.


I'll leave you with my favorite Kristol quote. He wrote this on the eve of our invasion of Iraq:

We are tempted to comment, in these last days before the war, on the U.N., and the French, and the Democrats. But the war itself will clarify who was right and who was wrong about weapons of mass destruction. It will reveal the aspirations of the people of Iraq, and expose the truth about Saddam's regime. It will produce whatever effects it will produce on neighboring countries and on the broader war on terror. We would note now that even the threat of war against Saddam seems to be encouraging stirrings toward political reform in Iran and Saudi Arabia, and a measure of cooperation in the war against al Qaeda from other governments in the region. It turns out it really is better to be respected and feared than to be thought to share, with exquisite sensitivity, other people's pain. History and reality are about to weigh in, and we are inclined simply to let them render their verdicts.
Yep. The verdict is in. And no matter how wrong you are, you get a new gig!

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