New York Times admits it’s liberal, aims to repair itself

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The Article

An internal New York Times report suggests that the bible of liberalism (aside from Michael Moore’s tomes and Barbra Streisand’s web site) the New York Times, come clean and that they confront their inner conservative.  (Hat tip: Frogg from the discussion forums)

However lovely that pitch sounds though, it sounds to me like they can’t get out of liberal-mode.  They’re so liberal, they no longer even know how liberal they are any more.  This is a common affliction amongst liberals.  Liberals continue to speak in large crowds as though they assume everybody agrees with them.

To wit: 

The report concluded that the NYT must expand on both sides of the political divide. “Our news coverage needs to embrace unorthodox views and contrarian opinions, and to portray lives both more radical and more conservative than those most of us experience,” it says.

See, they don’t think they’re really being too “liberal”, they think they’re being too “moderate”.  They think they need to expand coverage on both ends.  Not liberal enough, in other words, in addition to being too liberal and anti-conservative. 

They think like liberals even when trying to cure their liberal bias.  One advisor suggested a pure liberal response.  To wit:

In January Todd Gitlin, professor of journalism and sociology at Columbia University, New York, met NYT staff to discuss turning round erosion of confidence and stagnant sales. One asked: “Should we have affirmative action for conservatives?” on the paper.

Here’s some other amusing tidbits from the article I’m referring to—which not surprisingly wasn’t in the New York Times, but rather Britain’s Guardian.co.uk.

Broader reporting needed to offset liberal opinions

The New York Times, America’s most venerated newspaper, is responding to growing pressure by pledging to increase its coverage of religion and the rural areas in the US, while also recruiting journalists who have military experience.

[…] “In part because the Times’s editorial page is clearly liberal, the news pages do need to make more effort not to seem monolithic,” says the report. “We should seek talented journalists who happen to have military experience, who know rural America first hand, who are at home in different faiths.”

“We need to listen carefully to colleagues who are at home in realms that are not familiar to most of us.” However, the recommendations suggest a belief that the paper needs to correct a leftwing bias, through recruiting journalists and altering coverage, to balance “clearly liberal” comment with news pages that “make more effort not to seem monolithic”.

What’s really happening here is that the New York Times is being found out.  Readership is growing increasingly wary and untrusting, and readership is stagnating.  The readership is getting wise to them, and they want a paper that more accurately reflects truth, facts, and their values.  I can’t help it if that means “conservative”, but others have figured it out.  Us, for example, and Fox News Channel, and a few million others.

Joel Johannesen
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