New York Times Public Editor, 'weasel,' files farewell column...
By Brad Friedman on 6/13/2010, 1:16pm PT  

New York Times' woeful Public Editor/apologist Clark Hoyt ends his three-year term at the "paper of record" today with a column in which he tries to shape his own legacy as their (supposed) "readers' representative." There are, however, some 400,000 low and middle-income families across this nation, struggling to fight off, or emerge from, poverty who would might prefer to remember Hoyt by Tom Tomorrow's recent immortalization instead:

Marcy Wheeler at emptywheel today notes that Hoyt's farewell column reads as a dubious list of how the NYTimes, during his tenure, continued to show its propensity for serving as a mouthpiece for GOP oppo-research teams and dirty tricksters.

She also observes, as we did, that Hoyt succeeded in ignoring altogether --- "to his significant discredit" --- one of the most insidious and weasel-like failings of both the paper and Hoyt himself during his tenure: their dubious role as dupes and/or useful mouthpieces for the phony, yet terribly destructive, rightwing ACORN 'Pimp' Hoax scam"...

Then, finally, there’s the story that Hoyt doesn’t mention, to his significant discredit–the ACORN Pimp Hoax. As BradBlog has relentlessly documented, the NYT not only reported James O’Keefe’s doctored lies as fact, but Clark Hoyt himself scolded the paper for not being more responsive to such tripe. It took six months for the NYT to actually fact check the work of a transparent political propagandist and acknowledge that that propaganda presented a false picture–and they did so with little remorse at the damage they did in the interim.

We heartily associate ourselves with Wheeler's conclusion: "[I]t is a pity that a once-respectable journalist like Hoyt now clings to NYT’s credulous recycling of political hit jobs as proof of the paper’s balance."

As the New York Times, after months of our detailed coverage, only ever managed to offer a partial and begrudging correction to their months-long misreportage --- and even those corrections included blatant inaccuracies --- we can only hope that Hoyt's successor, whoever it will be, takes as his or her first order of business an investigation of the investigator by launching a legitimate look at the still-inaccurate historical account of the ACORN 'Pimp' Hoax as still posted for posterity on the web by the once-great "paper of record."

New NYTimes Public Editor: Please start here. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

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