Another member of the PEP Squad (Perpetually Erroneous Pundits) has been promoted despite his consistent failures as an observer and analyst. The New York Times just announced that William Kristol, Fox News personality and editor of Rupert Murdoch’s Weekly Standard, has been hired as an opinion columnist.
Attempting to speculate as to the Times’ justification for this is bewildering, to say the least. In their own announcement they point out Kristol’s disdain for the paper and that he believes that “The Times is irredeemable.” They also note his statement that the Times should have been prosecuted for disclosing government programs to spy on the international banking transactions of American citizens. On that score he seems to agree with Ann Coulter who went so far as to advocate a firing squad for the Times’ treasonous editors. The very same editors who just hired Kristol.
The Times’ editorial page chief, Andy Rosenthal, is defending his new personnel move by calling his critics (i.e. readers) “intolerant” for not accepting Kristol as a “serious, respected conservative intellectual.” But why someone who has been so consistently wrong deserves to be regarded as serious, respected, or even intellectual, is not addressed in the defense. Rosenthal furthers his dissembled argument saying…
“We have views on our op-ed page that are as hawkish or more so than Bill. The whole point of the op-ed page is to air a variety of opinions.”
Precisely! If you already have views that are as hawkish or more so than Bill, then what does his hiring do to promote a variety of opinions?
Kristol, who is also a founder of the neo-conservative think tank, Project for a New American Century, has an abundance of pride for the influence of the Weekly Standard. Despite losing a million dollars a year, Kristol brags that “Dick Cheney does send over someone to pick up 30 copies of the magazine every Monday.”
Just a few weeks ago, that other bastion of liberalism, the Washington Post, hired Karl Rove to pontificate at their Newsweek subsidiary. So now, while the Times’ editor complains that his critics are intolerant, and conservatives continue to whine about the so-called liberal media, Bill Kristol, one of the most profound failures of punditry assumes his new perch at America’s Paper of Record. And don’t forget that Rupert Murdoch just completed his purchase of the Wall Street Journal with which he has vowed to bury the Times. Now he has his own man on the inside.