TO: Mark Thompson, incoming Executive Editor New York Times
FROM: Mike Kersmarki, Tampa, FL
RE: Seeking correction for serious errors in the Times’ political coverage
My Dear Mr. Thompson:
I know you don’t take over until Nov. 12.
And I see that your time may be initially focused on some serious issues of your own now that Margaret Sullivan, the Times’ Public Editor (ombudsman), has questioned your suitability as executive editor in her blog Tuesday (Oct. 23).
… the incoming chief executive of the New York Times, Mark Thompson, is facing new questions over what he knew about the Jimmy Savile scandal over sexual abuse and a possible peodophile ring when (Mr. Thompson) was director-general of the BBC, amid apparent inconsistencies in his public statements, the Guardian newspaper of London reported Tuesday.
I leave the inconsistencies in public statements between you and Ms. Sullivan, though I wouldn’t mind being present when you two are formally introduced next month.
In her article, Ms. Sullivan called for the (Times) to cover “more aggressively” Thompson’s knowledge of the scandal and allegations of a cover-up, the Guardian reported from merry old England.
Your own personal issues aside – and, for the moment, forgetting the irony of my request for a correction to a man being accused of ‘inconsistencies’ in his own statements – I still want to make you and the staff you might be joining aware of a serious error of omission.
I believe there is, in fact, a deceitful and even deliberately false interpretation in Jeremy Peters’ 10:28 p.m. blog Monday in the New York Times’ supposed ‘fact-checking’ of the third and final presidential debate in Florida.
Either inadvertently or deliberately, Mr. Peters makes false and defamatory claims about the ‘infamous’ New York Times op-ed by Mr. Romney (though it should be instead referred to as the ‘infamously written HEADLINE’ for the Romney op-ed).
Mr. Peters waxes poetically about there being no market-financing available. (Socialist political reporters who don’t believe in capitalism are so ‘cute’ when they try ever so feebly to tackle economics).
BUT MR. PETERS APPARENTLY DIDN’T BOTHER READING THE OP-ED.
Because if he would have, he would have seen how Mr. Romney concluded his piece about MANAGED bankruptcy:
“The federal government should provide GUARANTEES for post-bankruptcy financing AND assure car buyers that their warranties are not at risk,” Romney wrote.
You would think that since Mr. Peters probably has so lovingly has coveted, er, uh, I mean covered Obama during his career at the Times that he would have at least understood the term ‘ Government GUARANTEE.’
This is a SERIOUS error of omission – AND a complete lack of understanding of how the capital markets work. It needs to be corrected because Mr. Peters’ partial explanation also made it sound as if Mr. Romney was fully aware that private financing would not be available and therefore was, in reality, advocating Chapter 7 liquidation.
Considering the New York Times lack of news judgment for NOT putting Benghazi on your front page – and your own Ms. Sullivan calling out her fellow Times’ editors on that – I’m not surprised that someone who supposedly is impartial in his coverage of political stories for the Times would deliberately distort – and therefore LIE – about what Mr. Romney wrote and also fabricate some false interpretation about what the governor actually meant.
Mr. Peters even clumsily tried to use ‘guilt by association’ with an aside about Bain Capital.
Even if it were true – and I certainly don’t accept that from just reading a LONE ANONYMOUS SOURCE in the NYT – the plain fact is that MR. ROMNEY NO LONGER HEADED THE FIRM IN 2008. He hadn’t for several years.
And considering that Mr. Peters is a political reporter at the heralded New York Times, he would have known that about Mr. Romney and Bain just from paying attention to the current campaign.
Of course, the irony is just killing me that all of these falsehoods and distortions are occuring in a supposed ‘FACT’ checking exercise by one of your soon-to-be reporters … well, assuming you actually start working at the Times, Mr. Thompson.
Newspapers are going out of business NOT just because people are turning to social media, etc., but because of reporters such as Mr. Peters who take such a slimy, dishonest approach to what used to be an honorable profession.
I feel dirty just writing about Mr. Peters.
Then again, at least Mr. Peters isn’t being accused of ‘inconsistencies’ in possibly trying to cover up a peodophile ring by your old pal Mr. Sevile at the BBC.
Hmmm. Just exactly what kind of newspaper is the New York Times these days?
HERE IS WHAT MR. PETERS WROTE at 10:38 p.m. MONDAY:
HEADLINE: Fact-Check: ‘Let Detroit Go Bankrupt’?
Mr. Obama just stated that when Mr. Romney argued in late 2008 that Detroit auto companies should be denied a government bailout and instead turn to the private marketplace, no private financing was available. This is consistent with what auto executives have said.
At the time Mr. Romney wrote his now infamous New York Times op-ed the financial markets had ground to a halt. It was November 2008, and there was little available liquidity for anyone seeking financing. There were certainly no financial institutions — not even Bain Capital, Mr. Romney’s private equity firm — looking to invest to the tune of the $80 billion the car companies needed at the time.
No private companies would come to the industry’s aid, and the only path through bankruptcy would have been Chapter 7 liquidation, not the more orderly Chapter 11 reorganization that the company ultimately followed, people inside and outside the car companies have said.
In fact, the task force asked Bain if it was interested in investing in General Motors’ European operations, according to one person with direct knowledge of the discussions.
Bain declined, this person said, speaking anonymously to discuss private negotiations.