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August 30, 2006

NY TimesWatch: Oh! The Humanity!

The half-vast editorial staff noted with interest this little item in yesterday's UK Guardian:

UK readers blocked from NY Times terror article

Jill Abramson, a managing editor at the paper, said: "It's never a happy choice to deny any reader a story. But this was preferable to not having it on the web at all."

"I think we have to take every case on its own facts," said George Freeman, vice president and assistant general counsel of the New York Times Company.

"But we're dealing with a country [the UK] that, while it doesn't have a First Amendment, it does have a free press, and it's our position that we ought to respect that country's laws."

Are we missing something here?

Has it not been the avowed position of the NY Times editorial board that it was the right - nay, the duty - of a free and vigorous media in an enlightened society to challenge the restrictions of government? Has not the Times, just this year, not once but several times refused to recognize the rule of law in our own country by deliberately bypassing the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and effectively declassifying national security information by publishing it on the front pages of the New York Times?

Has not the board of the New York Times asserted a non-existent "right" of one of its reporters to refuse to cooperate with a federal investigation the Times itself demanded, citing non-existent federal shield laws which are not on the books, and never have been? Did not the board of the Times underwrite Ms. Miller's defense, effectively encouraging her defiance of the law? Was it not Ms. Miller who, in the past in the course and scope of her employment for the Times, has blown not one but two federal terrorism investigations? Did the Times discipline her for those acts? Where is their "respect" for the rule of law?

Please pardon our confusion. The Times' "respect" for the rule of law would appear to apply only when a Democrat administration is in office. Or, perhaps, only to the laws of other nations. It is certainly not in evidence here at home.

Posted by Cassandra at August 30, 2006 08:54 AM



Posted by: FbL at August 30, 2006 10:48 AM

Of course they have free speech as long as the Times tells them what they can read, right?

Why would the UK readers need to be blocked from reading the story? Would they somehow be upset at knowing there are terrorists in their midst
and would react...inappropriately, by rioting, burning and assaulting members of the religion of peace? After all, it is their duty to report
a faux incident of Koran abuse, and not publish the Mohammed cartoons OUT OF RESPECT, but they dis the British public this way?


Posted by: Cricket at August 30, 2006 12:54 PM

Cognititve dissonance.

Are net servers in the UK really blocking this? Did they learn this from the Chinese?

Posted by: Don Brouhaha at August 30, 2006 12:58 PM

What I find just unbearably funny is that the Times vaunted principled civil disobedience stops at our borders.

Ah! The courage!

Posted by: Casserole at August 30, 2006 12:59 PM

The Times is the new Pravda: Printing all the latest party-approved Truth which you are permitted to hear.

Posted by: a former european at August 30, 2006 02:34 PM

Well, we all know that we are too stupid to think for ourselves, so that is why we hand our brains over to the media.

Honestly, ma Casserole, I just love your blog.
I use it in so many ways. To teach snark. To learn history and the many ways in which it is spun, revised and distorted. To show how phallacious thinking undermines society, safety and well being.

I salute you, mon brave!

Posted by: Cricket at August 31, 2006 08:52 AM

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