The New York Times loves terrorism if it’s the right sort

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  • Peter Shenkin  On October 28, 2018 at 10:44 am

    Why do you say the NYT (or even the reporter) “likes” it? They were just reporting it. No expression of approval occurs in the article, and I don’t see implicit approval either.

    I thought from the start that the Weathermen were reprehensible and the article demonstrates how people who are living the good life despite having committed horrific crimes in the past can somehow rationalize their past actions as noble. That’s equally disgusting, but certainly of interest and worth reporting.

    I suspect you and I are of like mind on these people. But I really would like to know why you think the Times is more sympathetic to them than you are or I am. I just don’t see any indication of that in the article.

  • luysii  On October 28, 2018 at 12:04 pm

    There is a huge crush of material wishing to get on the front page of the NYT. Anything that makes it, is almost certainly the result of a high level editorial decision. The medium in this case IS the message.

    Sorry, I couldn’t resist putting up the two posts. Even more fantastic is the fact that my wife knew Kathy Boudin when they were both at Bryn Mawr, and really liked another classmate, who Kathy dominated. She was identified by her fingerprint on a finger (all that was left of her) after the explosion in the Weatherman bomb factory. Even more fantastic is the fact that Kathy’s son and my nephew David were Rhodes Scholars together at Oxford.

    It’s why I don’t read novels. As usual, Mark Twain said it best — “It is no wonder that truth is stranger than fiction. Fiction because fiction has to make sense.”

  • Peter Shenkin  On October 28, 2018 at 1:05 pm

    The fact that it was reported on the front page was likely a high-level decision, but it is still beyond me that why anyone would consider that decision an endorsement of the politics or morals of the interviewees. I read the article when it first came out and felt just as I described above. But I did not at the time (as now) see any sign of endorsement in the article, nor do I think that the decision to publish it in any way countenances the behavior of those being interviewed. The Weathermen were super-newsworthy in their day and it seems to me that what happens to Weathermen when they get old remains newsworthy. The comment to the effect that “If I had to do it all over again, I might still do it”, speaks for itself.

    Richard Falk introduced me to Leonard Boudin one day on the Princeton Junction railroad platform. I knew about Kathy and felt very uncomfortable.

    By the way, how did David and Kathy’s son get along in the rarified air of Oxford?

  • luysii  On October 28, 2018 at 5:42 pm

    On the front page of today’s NYT in the lower right is an article titled “A Red-Hot Economy? Women Aren’t Feeling it”. Why do you suppose it’s there? Could it be part of a pre-election agenda with minority unemployment at an all time low, and economic growth over 3%.

    Don’t know how they got along. I’ll ask him

  • Peter Shenkin  On October 28, 2018 at 9:05 pm

    It certainly isn’t there because the NY TImes likes some form of terrorism, now is it?

    I noticed the article about women in the economy but didn’t read it. I suppose it’s trying to make the point that as well as the economy is doing, women are not doing any better than they were. But that’s assuming that the headline is not mere click bait. So often these days, at least on web sites, the headline is provocative and ends up having nothing to do with the actual assertions in the article. Then people get all upset about the headline. But I don’t know whether this happens with NYT headlines.

    Re. the economy, certainly production is up and in in many industries people can’t find enough employees to hire. But wages have not significantly gone up, despite the fact that unemployment is low, in contrast to previous economic booms. The sense I get is that the economy is a mixed picture with a fair amount of mystery. It may be that the previously uncounted (those who previously had given up on finding jobs) are now looking again and increasing the pool, keeping wages down. Recall that the basis of the most widely promulgated unemployment figures is what fraction of people who are looking for work can’t find it, so there are other pools of people who are not working who are not counted. (They are counted in other released figures.)

    Again, my point is that the economic picture is mixed. Ordinarily, when there is a shortage of workers, wages go up. There seems to be a shortage, but we don’t see whatever measure of wages is used indicating an increase.

    But anyway, to the extent that the boom is real, it’s not guaranteed to be helpful to everyone, and if the shortages are in technical fields, it’s not surprising that women are not directly benefiting. FWIW, I’m kind of agnostic/dubious about the proposition that the paucity of women in technical fields is due to some kind of discrimination. There are too many other things going on; but I don’t doubt that women who go that way often tread a lonely path and sometimes get bullied or picked on.

    I remember at a Gordon conference many years ago the organizer reminisced that the crazy and wild behavior that used to take place at the meetings no longer occurs. I said it’s probably because of the civilizing influence of women, who had rarely been present in the old days. After due contemplation, he agreed.

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