A Longtime Democrat on “the One-Sided Tilt of the Times and the Post”

In  1968 I was a Congressional Fellow in the office of Vice President Hubert Humphrey and Ted Van Dyk was Vice President Humphrey’s chief of staff. Ted, who now lives in his native state of Washington, has been active in Democratic politics since 1961, serving in the White House and State Department and several Democratic presidential campaigns. Here’s his Facebook post about the New York Times column written by an anonymous person who says he works in the Trump White House.

The old NY Times, under publisher Punch Sulzberger (grandfather of the present publisher) and editors such as Max Frankel, would not for a moment have considered running such a piece. It also is unlikely they would have tolerated the daily torrent of anti-Trump news and commentary in their paper. The Washington Post, under Jeff Bezos’ ownership, has taken a similar strong anti-Trump tack. It is also hard to imagine the Graham family, the previous longtime owners of the Post, tolerating this one-sided tilt.

Punch Sulzberger and the Grahams were unabashed liberals. Both the Times and Post took strong stances on Watergate and the publication of the Pentagon papers. But they did not publish daily snarky commentary attacking President Nixon on all policy and personal fronts. I knew both the Times and Post ownership and editors and  often wrote essays for both. But today’s owners and editors are of an entirely different mindset.

This goes beyond Trump’s qualification for the presidency or his erratic tweets, policy turns, and narcissism. Of course he is not qualified and of course he annoys us daily. But that does not give license to previously respected media to act irresponsibly.

Voters disgusted and disillusioned by Trump above all want to see alternative sources of power, be they political or in the media, acting credibly and responsibly.

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