The New York Times to Hillary: I’m Gonna Keep On Loving You

| 2/22/2008 11:25:18 AM

The New York Times for HillaryBeware the passion of the hometown newspaper. It can seep from an editorial-page endorsement into news coverage, transforming campaign reporting into spin-infested idolatry. Such is the case with the New York Times, whose news pages of late have been stamped with Hillary-approved storylines and sources.

The most egregious case in point was a front-page feature on February 9 that, in essence, whined that Barack Obama had trumped up his drug use:

Mr. Obama’s account of his younger self and drugs, though, significantly differs from the recollections of others who do not recall his drug use. That could suggest he was so private about his usage that few people were aware of it, that the memories of those who knew him decades ago are fuzzy or rosier out of a desire to protect him, or that he added some writerly touches in his memoir to make the challenges he overcame seem more dramatic.

Reporter Serge F. Kovaleski chooses door number three, smoking out old college and high school acquaintances who didn’t remember Obama as much of a party animal. Then he dissects Obama’s drug use (which Kovaleski acknowledges takes up 1½ pages of a 442-page book):   

Mr. Obama wrote that he would get high to help numb the confusion he felt about himself. “Junkie. Pothead. That’s where I’d been headed: the final, fatal role of the young would-be black man,” he penned in the memoir.

But, Kovaleski implies, there was really no such risk. Just listen to Obama’s old prep-school pal, Keith Kakugawa, who recollects: “As far as pot, booze, or coke being a prevalent part of his life, I doubt it.” (See, no chance of slipping down an ill-fated path. And what has Kakugawa been up to since those days? Well, Kovaleski reports, he “spent seven years in and out of prison for drug offenses beginning in 1996.”)

Bruno T
3/23/2009 1:46:59 AM

The latest spending bill, going for about $410 billion, isn’t any exception. Republicans have vilified the bill as being laden with earmarks, a spending practice Obama himself had criticized. This raft of easy loans to pet projects was cobbled together before the election, which is why he’s already signed it. The earmarks are something that Obama pledges has a limited shelf life. After this spending bill passes, he’s going to tighten the spending belt. To read more check out this articles at

3/2/2008 9:55:23 PM

Maybe the NY Times is trying to balance the lack of journalism ethics which are so rampant and so pro-obama that it makes anyone cringe. Obama blows his nose, obama farts, it is lovely and news worthy.

Dave F.
3/2/2008 7:04:55 AM

The last two episodes of Saturday Night Live is now obnoxiously pro-Clinton. This might have been because Tina Fey hosted the first of the two episodes and set the tone by sneering at supposedly impressionable reporters swooning over Obama and ignoring the supposedly more experienced, skilled and down-to-earth Clinton. The show might have proven your point by having both Clinton and former mayor Rudy Guliani on this past episode, framing their segments to make them appear wise, clever and personable. I'm not voting for either Clinton or Obama, but there does seem to be a recent desperation emitting from smug establishment neoliberals and party hacks, particularly those who are weak defenders of civil liberties. Clinton's push to allow flag burning is a story itself. Great post by the way, Ms. Lobel.

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