Monday, May 19, 2008

The NYT's latest Kristol embarrassment

Glenn Greenwald

In the short time since he was named an Op-Ed columnist at The New York Times, Bill Kristol has written a series of sloppy, error-plagued and incomparably hackish columns. He has already had to issue two factual corrections -- including one for the very first column he wrote -- and even his former comrades in war cheerleading, The New Republic Editors, said on Friday that Kristol's columns are "{b}landly written, intellectually lazy, and -- worst of all -- hopelessly predictable," and asked: "does Bill Kristol have to be this bad at it?"

But it just keeps getting worse. With today's column -- devoted yet again to hailing John McCain's greatness and Barack Obama's grave weaknesses -- Kristol makes yet another painfully slothful factual error. As this blogger at Room Eight notes, Kristol today wrote:

On Tuesday night, while the G.O.P. Congressional candidate was losing in a Mississippi district George Bush carried in 2004 by 25 points, Barack Obama was being trounced in the West Virginia Democratic primary -- by 41 points. I can't find a single recent instance of a candidate who ultimately became his party's nominee losing a primary by this kind of margin.

As is typical for Kristol, he just spits out factual claims without caring if they're remotely true, and apparently his NYT Editors -- if such a thing exists -- share his indifference. As Room Eight notes:

It took me all of 2 minutes to find what Kristol couldn't find --

Utah {Primary}] Updated 11:02 a.m. EST, Feb 14, 2008

Romney 255,218 -- 90%

McCain 15,264 -- 5%

Paul 8,295 -- 3%

Huckabee 4,054 -- 2%

The NYT should be very proud of itself. Of course, Kristol was hired at the NYT because his dad, Irv, was really good friends with former NYT Executive Editor Abe Rosenthal, whose son, Andy, currently runs the NYT Op-Ed page. Andy and Bill followed in their dad's footsteps by becoming good friends (and in every other sense), and Andy then hired his friend, Bill (son of his dad's friend), as the new NYT Op-Ed writer. So this is typically what one gets -- and deserves -- when driven by nepotistic impulse...............

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