Sunday, December 11, 2005

Good Lord, are people still whining about the decision by The New York Times to put that can't-get-out-the-door photo sequence on the front page?

I guess so. Go to the latest Public Editor column and scroll down to "Bush and the Locked Door" for three angry letters. A sample:

Oh, please. No more disingenuous explanations for The Times's delight in making President Bush an object of scorn or mockery. The Times conducts its own three-card monte political game, and you shill the suckers. What unworthy employment.

This is ridiculous. How often does the Times run a front-page, above the fold photo aggrandizing the president -- any president -- in a way that would bring a smile to the face of Goebbels? Once a month maybe? The president walking manfully with world leaders at a summit? The president forcefully speechifying with rows of uniformed soldiers ranked behind him? Or the president rendered magisterial, photographed from below, to the accompaniment of a poll-tested catchphrase? That's what was on the front page of the December 1 Times, which I'm looking at right now. The photo used was the first one here, but the online version doesn't do it justice -- in print it was 8 1/2 inches wide and 5 3/4 inches tall; it covered most of the front page above the fold. It looked a lot like this.

My question for the whiners is: How many of those does the Times have to run before it earns the right to show the president as a mortal, flawed human being?


UPDATE: Here's that front page. (Thanks to MeanMrMustard in comments.)

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