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Another Meltdown At The New York Times

Monday, September 24, 2007  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

The radical Democrats have a favorite newspaper, the New York Times.  But the Times is a publicly traded company which is shedding value faster than the leaves will fall in October and November.  Now it is caught in a bald lie and botched-cover-up.  From Thomas Lifson writing at the American Thinker:

Once again, the Watergate maxim that “the cover-up is worse than the crime” is proving valid. And Clark Hoyt, “public editor” (ombudsman) of the New York Times is playing the part of John Dean in what could be titled “All the Publisher’s Men.”

The revelations about the MoveOn “betray us” ad contained in Hoyt’s column today raise serious questions about the integrity of the company’s management. Members of the Sulzberger/Ochs family who control the Times have even more reason to be gravely concerned the very survival of their patrimony is being jeopardized by incompetence or worse on the part of Pinch Sulzberger and the management team he has installed.

The New York Times made a severe error when it violated its own policies in allowing a scurrilous personal attack on General Petraeus to be published in a full page ad and in providing a deeply discounted rate to Hoyt properly describes the discount as a “mistake.” But that term is inoperable (to use another Watergate era expression) when it comes to the cover-up. When the paper’s management was challenged and the company learned of the errors, it continued to maintain otherwise for almost two weeks.

Read the whole thing.  The years of crisis at the paper –from Jayson Blair to Howell Raines to repeatedly publishing national security secrets to Times Select and crashing advertising revenues– suggest nothing but simple incompetence fortified by intellectual exhaustion. 

It is a mess, but nothing will change until the falling profits drain the once great institution of all its defenders.  The stock of the company closed at $19.81 on Friday.  Five years ago it was above $50 a share.  How much longer will shareholders allow ideology and incompetence to destroy the value of their investment?

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