Tuesday, September 17, 2019
Miles from the Mainstream
D. R. ZUKERMAN, proprietor

On the Freedom of Opposition Research

September 5, 2019 --

The August 26 front page of the Times carried an article with this headline: "Trump's Allies/Scour Internet/To Punish Press."

The story reported that conservatives "allied with the White House" were amassing dossiers containing information that would embarrass "hundreds of people who work at some the country's most prominent news organizations." The Times article asserted that the apparent purpose is "to undercut the influence of news reporting."

There the New York Times goes again, effectively asserting that conservative reaction to attacks on President Trump amounts to assaults on freedom of the press.

LPR is disappointed that the Times did not refer to research appearing at this website, responding to hypocritical media attacks on President Trump. Consider, for example, Maureen Dowd's July 14 column criticizing Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for suggesting that Speaker Pelosi had targeted "'newly elected women of color'" when she dismissed the importance of Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and her colleagues, Representatives Ilhan Omar, Ayana Pressley and Rashida Tlaib. Ms. Dowd wrote that Rep. Ocasio Cortez "should consider the possibility that people who disagree with her do not disagree with her color."

LPR , re-reading Ms. Dowd's July 14 column the other day, was struck by the criticism of Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, suggesting an allowance that a leftist would never make in a Trumpian context. Indeed, Ms. Dowd's July 14 column concluded by referring to Mr. Trump as "a racist backward president." No willingness there to consider that the president did not disagree with the color of people with whom he has disagreements.

The Times August 26 article was apparently prompted by a report, first posted at Breitbart, that a Times political editor, some years ago, had tweeted anti-Semitic comments. The paper indicated that the matter is under review, and "'a clear violation of our standards.'" LPR has a hunch that if a conservative writer were discovered to have made anti-Semitic comments, some years ago, the Times immediately would denounce him as an "anti-Semitic white nationalist" and demand that he be fired.

As Michael Goodwin indicated, in his August 25 New York Post column, dissent at The New York Times, as to its anti-Trump bias, is non-existent. Mr. Goodwin reported that the transcript of a staff meeting indicated no concern that reporters included their personal anti-Trump views in their articles. Also, not one Times columnist can be considered neutral on the subject of the president. The "conservative" columnists at the paper are all Never-Trumpers. The news columns are filled with articles that seem intended to put the president in a negative light, Even the story about the president's interest in purchasing Greenland from Denmark was dripping with derision. And no thought was given the possibility the president was justified in canceling a planned visit to Denmark after Prime Minister Mette Fredericksen called the idea of buying Greenland "absurd." The idea, going back to 1946 and the Truman administration, has drawn some serious comment, noting Russian and Chinese interest in the area.