"I don't believe in journalists having 'responsibility.'"
-Seth Lipsky, October 16, 2003

Seth Lipsky and Ira Stoll demanded on August 20, 2003, that Washington "finish the war" against "the Arabs."

Seth Lipsky and Ira Stoll assembled their staff for a Champagne toast to mass death on the commencement of hostilities against Iraq. Stoll called it "my war." CNN maintains a running update here of Americans killed in Ira's war.

On February 6, 2003, Seth Lipsky and Ira Stoll wrote, in all seriousness, of a pending anti-war demonstration that the "the New York City police could do worse, in the end, than to allow the protest and send two witnesses along for each participant, with an eye toward preserving at least the possibility of an eventual treason prosecution."

The June 9, 1995 Wall Street Journal quoted an SEC complaint against New York Sun backer Bruce Kovner as saying Kovner had "altered and destroyed" subpoenaed evidence. We wish you'd do the same to the daily print run of your God-awful newspaper, Bruce.

Also, Professor G. Harlan Reynolds alleged on August 27, 2002 - when the Sun was several months in publication - that Seth Lipsky and Ira Stoll had not yet paid him for a piece authored for their inaugural issue.

 
 
   
 
Friday, November 07, 2003
 
Paul Colford, in today’s New York Daily News, reports (bottom item) that the New York Sun is claiming a 54% circulation gain in the last 6 months, up to 40,483 from 26,263.

Now, keeping in mind that this figure, according to Colford, is from “the Sun’s unaudited report to the Audit Bureau of Circulations”, and also keeping in mind that the disreputable rag cut it’s price to 25 cents, and also also keeping in mind that this figure is less than 10% of the circulations of the Post, Daily News, and Newsday, this still sounds like complete and utter bullshit. The only buzz the Sun gets is when it prints something reprehensible (Richard Perle’s libel suit threat, Ira’s encouragement of treason charges against anti-war protestors), when one of its reporters gets arrested (I’m looking at you, Manicure Mauldin), or when its staffers leave for other, better jobs (Mnookin, Donadio, Benj. Smith). No way does the Sun move that many copies.

Or maybe it does; perhaps Big Daddy Steinhardt acquires multiple copies daily, as bedding for his little friends.
 
Bush's "Oh Wait, This Was Really About Democracy, Not Those Weapons of Mass Destruction or Other Things We Don't Talk About Anymore" speech yesterday, one figures, was for SethAndIra pure bliss. It's neocon crystal meth.

So, in case you miss the screaming lead headline in today's Sun, or miss the headline on the jump on page 5 ("Reaganesque Bush Challenges Mideast" -- Reaganesque how? Big deficits and official lies?), you are offered two samplings of the speech on the idiotorial page.

In "Bush Versus the Skeptics" SethAndIra attempt to make an idiotorial out of the speech, but they are so spent that they can only manage a few sentences of original text, mostly of this ilk: "The president clearly understands the story of the century." Which is Jonah Goldberg quality incoherence.

Then, in case you missed the key passages of the speech in the "news" story or the idiotorial, they just print the damn thing.

Hacks. Yes, speeches are nice.

Thursday, November 06, 2003
 
I don’t get all this outcry over CBS (Cowardly Broadcasting System) dumping its Ronald Reagan miniseries. Lots of people seem outraged over the decision, which is celebrated by some asshole named Brian Anderson in today’s Sun. (Anderson’s column is reprinted from City Journal, published by the Manhattan Institute; recall that the Sun is a wholly-owned subsidiary of said Institute.) Anderson writes about the newfound power of the right to fight for the forces of truth, honor, etc. (Of course, not so much truth, as Anderson states that Barbra Streisand spent weeks on the film’s set, whereas Streisand says she was there for just a day, but I digress. Oh, yeah, Matt Drudge also revealed on national television that Streisand’s son is HIV positive. Nice people you’re fond of, Anderson.) Anderson breaks the big story that “conservatives have a sizable—and growing—press presence of their own, and not just on talk radio.” Really? Does anyone else know about this, Woodstein? Showing the reportorial skills of a Walter Duranty, Anderson informs us that right-wing Internet sites now “serve as 24/7 B.S. detectors, relentlessly exposing liberal bias and lies wherever they show up,” then hilariously states that “left-wing best-sellers such as Al Franken’s jeremiad against Fox News, ‘Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them,’ amount to book-length tantrums over the liberal monoculture’s loss” of total media domination. So in other words, exposing liberal “lies” (aka that which we don’t like) awesome; liberals who expose lies, whiners.

This is great too: obvious paranoiac Anderson rants that “No longer does a cabal of left-wing book editors and reviewers maintain control of book publishing, as it did even a few years ago.” Yeah, remember the bad old days when Michiko Kakutani and Henry Kisor were running Simon & Schuster? Brian, isn’t this the sort of thing y’all were making fun of Hilary for a couple years back? Don’t give away your tinfoil hat, Bri; those pricks from the New York Review of Books may still be reading your thoughts!

But anyway, pointing out right-wing hypocrisy is a tiring, never-ending job. (By the way, how come none of these fucks complained when dialogue was made up in the Rudy Giuliani biopic (I’m specifically thinking of James Woods’ ad-libbed Wayne Barrett/panty-sniffer line) and the Bush 9/11 movie? But I again digress.) The reason I am writing this is to thank CBS and the right-wing maniacs behind the network’s choice. See, this means that from now on we no longer have to sit back and tolerate these damn entertainers going around and airing unpleasant truths about public figures.

Which clears the way for my biography of Bill Clinton, in which no mention is made of Monica Lewinsky, Whitewater, impeachment, Waco, or any of the other things that reflect poorly on his presidency. Instead, the film (title: “A Man For All Seasons, Too”) will focus on a time of incredible prosperity in American history, presided over by a charismatic, popularly elected leader (George Clooney), ably assisted by his loving wife (Cate Blanchett).

Thank you, right-wing psychopaths, for ushering in this brave new era of Soviet-style revisionist history!
 
Yes, it is clear that Saddam Hussein's government was not that bright. After all, if you want to bring a back-channel offer of peace, why in God's name would you try to deliver it through (Hollinger board member) Richard Perle?

After all, there's no profit in peace.

Meanwhile, things in Iraq just keep getting better and better. Right, Ira?

Wednesday, November 05, 2003
 
It's Fashion Day at the Sun!

On the front page, we are offered a tasty "Rosie Watch" feature, a story on turmoil at Gucci, and this mind-altering Democratic debate fashion analysis, brought to us by Ira Stool aka Stoolie VaVaVoolie:

"The candidates attempted to dress to attract a younger audience, departing from their usual debate uniforms of suits, dress shirts, and ties. Mr. Kucinich wore a black mock turtleneck and suit. Mr. Lieberman walked in wearing a tie and a suit jacket, but immediately removed the jacket. Dr. Dean started with his shirtsleeves rolled up above the elbows. Mr. Kerry wore no jacket and no tie; Mr. Edwards wore a jacket but no tie and took off the jacket during a commercial break. General Clark wore a black mock turtleneck and black blazer, and he took off the blazer during a commercial break. Rev. Sharpton started off in a three-piece suit and tie, then took off his suit jacket and unbuttoned his vest as the debate wore on."

No word on who Carol Moseley-Braun was wearing.

But the fun just rolls on. Pia Catton, eminent hottie, brings us a GOP press release on CBS's shitcanned Reagan docu-drama.

In one particularly objectionable line, screenwriter Elizabeth Egloff interpreted Mr. Reagan’s attitude toward the AIDS crisis by inventing the statement: “They that live in sin shall die in sin.”

Reagan biographer Lou Cannon, who covered the president and his administration for 30 years, takes particular issue with the line.

“Not only did he not say it, it is completely uncharacteristic of Ronald Reagan,”Mr.Cannon said.“He wasn’t a bigot. He never made those kinds of biblical judgments of anyone.”

Oh?

On the WETS front, the idiotorial column today produces a whirlwind of mush with "Russell Simmons for the Defense," though the case they refer to is actually one in which Simmons is the plaintiff.

And VaVaVoolie, "Staff Reporter of the Sun," is not done yet. His crayon-drawing is available for all on the op-id page.

"The deputy secretary of defense, Paul Wolfowitz, will find few more ardent admirers than me," Ira gushes, "Yet when it comes time to speak in public on the matter of Israel, even the great Wolfowitz can make a misstep."

"The great Wolfowitz."

What did Wolfowitz do to make VaVaVoolie go "hmmm." He dared to suggest that peace in the Middle East might require peace between Israelis and what SethAndIra call "the Palestinian Arabs"! Wolfowitz is a closet Islamofasicst!

"Contrary to Mr. Wolfowitz, most Arabs and Muslims don’t care much about the Palestinian Arabs," Ira summarily declares, contravening reason, fact, and all available evidence. How does he know? Norman Podhoretz told him so!

"Mr. Wolfowitz, has, in all seriousness, been doing a terrific job in Iraq, where, despite a few well-publicized security setbacks, the situation improves daily," Ira continues, amusing us all with the prospect that he has to take the energy down enough to get "serious" because the rest of his anti-Arab rant was somehow all glitter and whimsy.

I guess "well-publicized security setbacks" is the new Bushspeak for "American body-bags." And, by Ira's standards, I guess the situation in Iraq improved even more today.
 
WETS, Installment 74.

A reader writes:
You missed the best thing about yesterday's Sun. Day at the top says Tuesday, instead of Monday. I was looking at the paper today (still on my desk from yesterday) and couldn't figure out why it had front page story and photo of marathon runners when it said Tuesday at the top. Then I opened the paper and saw Monday on the inside pages.

Tuesday, November 04, 2003
 
Barbara Amiel, aka Lady Black of Cockandbull, jumps on the "I can't believe how these liberals hate Bush so much" bandwagon with her Sun column today. "'Bush hatred' is on the boil. His name ignites conversation like kerosene," testifies the Royal Canadian Mounter (of C. Black), while writing that the Clintons once “reminded me of a team of horses with nosebags” and that she found them “unspeakably annoying.” Yeah, hard to understand where all this hate comes from, eh Babs? Well, baby, Bush-hating makes perfect sense to me, but then again I am an American (unlike you) living in America (unlike you), and find myself unable to purchase a new car, let alone a British title (unlike you). Stupid twit [sic].
 
The joys of medical pira- ... I mean privatization...

Monday, November 03, 2003
 
A big LFLS welcome to new Sun columnist John P. Avlon, who debuts in today’s “paper”. We assume that John Avlon is taking a position vacated by J.P. Avlon, who himself replaced departed Sun columnist Fipp Avlon. No word on whatever happened to former Sun scribe J.P. Avon.

Meanwhile, from today’s New York Desk sidebar: “Subway workers labored around the clock to restore service to several Harlem stations on the nos. 2 and 3 trains after an electrical [sic] shut them down Friday morning.” You really have to look out for those pesky electricals.
 
The Sound of Silence, Part II

A helicopter is shot down in Iraq, killing American soldiers. The Sun reports it on the front page in typically hilarious fashion"

"Many Iraqis feel that suicide attacks are outside the character of the Iraqi people.

"For instance, the failed suicide bomber at the Baghdad Jedida police station carried a Syrian passport, said U.S. officials. But the Iraqi guards standing around one checkpoint last night outside the cluster of hotels filled with foreigners believe that the Saddam loyalist and Islamist fundamentalists are collaborating."

Whatever. Editorial silence pervades, though. Where are the calls to the slaughter of other people's sons and daughters, Ira?

The Sunnis do have something to say, though, on Dr. Dean's Dixie Flag comment. As usual, they teem with righteous indignation, asinine trickle-down theory, and condescension:

Yet we don’t have the slightest doubt that the ordinary American driving a pickup truck understands President Bush’s formulation that “during the last few decades, the terrorists grew to believe that if they hit America hard — as in Lebanon and Somalia — America would retreat and back down.…Leaving Iraq prematurely would only embolden the terrorists and increase the danger to America.We are determined to stay, to fight, and to win.”

As if SethAndIra, who take towncars to work, have the slightest idea what "the ordinary American driving a pickup truck" thinks, how that person lives, or what that person's priorities might be.

I drive a pickup truck. And I think Bush should be tried by the ICC.

You may recall that this is a bunch who think blowing the cover of a CIA operative is no big deal.

 

 
   
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