The Declarer (Floyd McWilliams' Blog)

Tuesday, September 02, 2003


Via Instapundit I found this interview of Bob Kohn, author of the newly released book "Journalistic Fraud: How The New York Times Distorts The News And Why It Can No Longer Be Trusted". Kohn is a self-described New York Times fan who became disgusted with its biased coverage:


During the Clinton Administration, when good things happened they gave Clinton credit by name and when bad things happened it was blamed on "U.S. officials" or "federal officials" or "military officials." Since George Bush took office, when good things happened, like the Bush administration capturing the CEO of al-Qaeda in the Persian Gulf, the word "Bush" doesn't appear in the article at all. Yet on the same front page, when it was bad news such as the Turkish government announcing that it was not going to allow troops to be stationed in Turkey for an eventual assault on Iraq, it was a blow to the "Bush Administration." When Richard Nixon had seven of his cabinet officers and staffers indicted, the Times never said that it "rocked" the Nixon administration, or, "in response to widespread criticism" President Nixon did so and so.


Jesse Oxfeld conducted the interview. His next-to-last question raised my eyebrows:


You're not a journalist, tell me about what qualifies you to make these judgments.


This would have made a good lead-off question because it would have allowed Kohn to expand on his thesis and explain his analytical methods. But when Oxfeld asked this question, Kohn had already enumerated specific instances of bias. How could it matter whether Kohn is a journalist or not?


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