News not fit

September 9, 2018
By

“All the news that’s fit to print”

Those seven words have adorned the top left corner of the New York Times since 1896.

In a 2012 article for bbc.com, W Joseph Campbell, a professor at the School of Communication at American University in Washington, DC. wrote of the phrase’s origin by then new publisher Adolph S Ochs (who had purchased the paper out of bankruptcy) wanting to “differentiate the Times from its larger, more aggressive, and wealthier rivals – notably the yellow press of William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer.”

This past Wednesday afternoon the Times joined those yellow pages of yesteryear when it chose to publish an anonymous op/ed from a “senior official in the Trump administration”

The paper justified its decision with this disclaimer:

“The Times today is taking the rare step of publishing an anonymous Op-Ed essay. We have done so at the request of the author, a senior official in the Trump administration whose identity is known to us and whose job would be jeopardized by its disclosure. We believe publishing this essay anonymously is the only way to deliver an important perspective to our readers. We invite you to submit a question about the essay or our vetting process here.”

The title is ominous “I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration” (and) “I work for the president but like-minded colleagues and I have vowed to thwart parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.”

And that’s where ominous ends and a whining, self-serving diatribe begins.

The opening drips with all the dime store drama of a 1950’s American Noir crime novel:

“President Trump is facing a test to his presidency unlike any faced by a modern American leader.”

A first grade level cut and paste editing job follows:

“It’s not just that the special counsel looms large. Or that the country is bitterly divided over Mr. Trump’s leadership. Or even that his party might well lose the House to an opposition hellbent on his downfall.”

Backed up with an unbelievable level of arrogance:

“The dilemma — which he does not fully grasp — is that many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.”

And closes with a cowardly cry of “hey, over here, yeh, look at me”:

“I would know. I am one of them.”

The author invokes references to “we” and “us” to bolster his importance and then proceeds to check off the boxes of every negative thought espoused about President Trump in one way or another since Hillary Clinton was forced to admit that she blew it in November 2016.

The John McCain platitudes aside, the most disingenuous, disgusting and quite frankly dangerous of the diatribe can be found in two sentences: “It may be cold comfort in this chaotic era, but Americans should know that there are adults in the room. We fully recognize what is happening. And we are trying to do what’s right even when Donald Trump won’t.”

What level of delusion grips a mind that its host thinks himself so above our Constitutional system that he and his fellow “resistors” deserve praise for subverting it?

What kind of coward is it that thinks himself and his unelected cabal for actively undermining a duly elected President of the United States?

A real patriot would step forth, copy in hand, and present himself ready to publicly explain himself and his reasoning.

A real patriot would not demand anonymity for fear of losing a job but would stand forth proud and ready to face the scrutiny of the public he addresses. (Then again a real publisher would not acquiesce to such a cowardly request.)

A real patriot would follow the precedent of his forefathers.

Like Hancock, Adams and Adams, Paine, Franklin and Jefferson and 50 others did in the summer of 1776 when they signed their names to real words with real meaning: “And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”

When they penned their pledge of resistance it wasn’t against cable news, political media generated hysteria, it was against the most powerful nation in the world.

And they signed their names knowing full well that if they were caught, they would be hanged.

THAT is courage.

And that is exactly the opposite of what both the author and the New York Times exhibited last Wednesday afternoon.

“Yellow” doesn’t even begin to describe it

This Republic can survive a President Trump; it cannot survive seditionist bureaucrats and irresponsible media actively undermining it out of political ideology.

Hopefully one of the thousands of journalists across this country that still believes in a responsible press will soon be revealing what the New York Times insists on covering up.

Publisher Note:  A version of this column first appeared in the September 9, 2018 print edition of the Joplin Globe.

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