Friday, June 30, 2006

Slapping The New York Times

The Wall Street Journal tells their side of the terrorist-financing story ($) in an editorial. The Journal printed the story after a Treasury official came to them with it, and that was after the Times had refused not to print. Ooooh, I wish you subscribed so you could read it all, but I'll give you a taste. Which to choose, which to choose...um, here yes,
The obligation of the press is to take the government seriously when it makes a request not to publish. Is the motive mainly political? How important are the national security concerns? And how do those concerns balance against the public's right to know?

The problem with the Times is that millions of Americans no longer believe that its editors would make those calculations in anything close to good faith. We certainly don't. On issue after issue, it has become clear that the Times believes the U.S. is not really at war, and in any case the Bush Administration lacks the legitimacy to wage it.

So, for example, it promulgates a double standard on "leaks," deploring them in the case of Valerie Plame and demanding a special counsel when the leaker was presumably someone in the White House and the journalist a conservative columnist. But then it hails as heroic and public-spirited the leak to the Times itself that revealed the National Security Agency's al Qaeda wiretaps.

My one quibble with the piece is when the editors state they don't know whether the news editor would have broken the story, given the opportunity. Seems like something you could ask over the water cooler or during a lunch break.

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