Writing at the Columbia Journalism Review, Reason Editor in Chief Matt Welch places 28-year-old Washington Post "wonkblogger" Ezra Klein in a line of (mostly) liberal D.C. opinion-journalism wunderkinds over the past century, from Walter Lippmann to Michael Kinsley and beyond:
But Klein adds some new wrinkles to this stock character of Beltway journalism. Whereas his predecessors were exclusively eastern-seaboard, Ivy-League types, Klein is a California kid from the UC system (Santa Cruz and Los Angeles). Instead of launching his career by leveraging connections to the established elite, he built his reputation by blogging loudly, and sharply, into the void. Yesterday’s Kleins earned their fame at The New Republic; today’s model rose to prominence despite avoiding, and occasionally bashing, progressivism’s flagship magazine. With these departures in style, substance, and comportment, Klein’s meteoric young career underscores not only the dynamic transformation of the media business, but changes in liberalism itself.