A Question of Emphasis

This is honestly the only thing that needs to be said about the ongoing self-fucking chicken that is the NYT opinion section:

They could write about anything. Like, get paid to start conversations about literally anything on this earth, conversations that would then be backed up with action by people with the capacity to enact change. Can you even imagine? Think about that.

It would be like if I could write in this space that all Americans should knock off wearing sleeveless turtlenecks and immediately YouTube would fill with people burning their sleeveless turtlenecks in the trash. The UN would introduce a resolution declaring that if it’s cold enough for a turtleneck it’s too cold for bare shoulders. Lawmakers would pass legislation fining people for making themselves look like sausages. My personal word would save us all from this fashion abomination for all time.

I’m joking, but think about that kind of reach, that kind of power. David Brooks and Bret Stephens and this Bari Weiss person and all the other Mousketools in that office have that.

And they choose to write about people on the Internet, being mean to them.

It’s not even that they’re wrong, although they are. It’s that they’re small, on the largest stage there is for a newspaper journalist. Give them the chance to write the world, give them journalism’s largest piece of real estate, and they describe … themselves.

Like, say what you want about Nick Kristof and I’ll say plenty but he does at least pay attention to people with less power than he has, and try to tell their stories even if he never completely manages to get out of his own way. Say what you want about most of the NYT but most of their journalists are actually trying to tell us about other people’s lives and then along come these assclowns making their workplace a punchline.

That they’re wrong, and they’re bad, and they’re overpaid and dishonest, those things are bad enough. The real crime they commit against their trade is their news judgment, their sincere belief that there is nothing larger than them happening right now in the world. That more than the subject of any correction should be a fireable offense.

A.

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