Reporters in The New York Times newsroom deeply resent the paper's editorial page, and the dissent has “reached the boiling point,” the New York Observer reports Tuesday.
It's not an ideological dispute, the Observer says, but rather the sense that the paper's editorials and columns are boring, ineffectual, poorly written and poorly read. The story was based on interviews with more than two dozen current and former Times staffers, mostly on condition of anonymity out of fear of editorial page editor Andrew Rosenthal.
Rosenthal was described as a petty tyrant, and lazy in his supervision of an opinion staff that is widely seen outside the newsroom as the voice of the Left-wing establishment.
But many saved their most pointed criticism for foreign affairs columnist Thomas Friedman, noting that his writing in recent years has been widely parodied and ridiculed.
"As for the columnists, Friedman is the worst. He hasn’t had an original thought in 20 years; he’s an embarrassment. He’s perceived as an idiot who has been wrong about every major issue for 20 years, from favoring the invasion of Iraq to the notion that green energy is the most important topic in the world even as the financial markets were imploding," said a former Times writer described as having "gone on to great success elsewhere."
"Then there’s Maureen Dowd, who has been writing the same column since George H. W. Bush was president.”
Right about now, many conservatives are probably nodding their heads.