The End of the Sun


After almost seven years of publication, Seth Lipsky and Ira Stoll's little neocon newspaper that could, The New York Sun, has printed its final issue. Stoll and Lipsky bravely (or naively) entered a highly competitive, ideologically unfriendly media market in an era when newspapers were hemorrhaging readers—a trend that continues, though The Sun managed to survive far longer than any of its detractors predicted. Regardless of how you viewed the paper's conservative editorial position—a point often made by friends and comrades in New York, when I praised various aspects of the paper's coverage, was that if they didn't agree with its Israel policy, they could hardly trust the accuracy of previous day's boxscores—it is indeed a sad day for those of us who were regular or even occasional readers. After a few years of working as a farm team for bigger media outlets (e.g. Robert Messenger, Rachel Donadio, Ben Smith, Seth Mnookin) The Sun developed an impressive stable of reporters (Eli Lake, Jacob Gershman) and critics (the brilliant Adam Kirsch and Daniel Johnson, now editor of Standpoint).

A recent example of an ignored Sun scoop: On September 12, The New York Times broke an important story. American military forces, The Times wrote, were conducting cross-border raids into Pakistan with the approval of President Bush but without the approval of Pakistan. PBS's Newshour followed up, giving credit to the The New York Times for the scoop. Few noticed, however, that it was Lake and The Sun that broke the story earlier in the week.

Although I never contributed to The Sun (they did, though, publish a pedantic email to the editor I wrote in 2002 where, in the nit-picking style of Stoll's Smarter Times, I upbraided an editorialist for not knowing that Salvador Allende committed suicide), you can read Nick Gillespie and Brian Doherty shining for all here, here, and here. Earlier this summer, visited the Sun's offices in Manhattan to talk with Deputy Managing Editor Robert Asahina and Culture Editor Pia Catton.

One final point, understandably overlooked by the paper's obituarists. Thanks to the terrific designers at Lucie Lacava's studio, The Sun was also the best-looking paper in New York.

It will be sorely missed. And for those of you in New York, there is still time to heed the New York Observer's advice and "Contribute to some great journalists' severance packages by buying a copy at the newsstand."

NEXT: Eminent Domain Abuse on Hold in Brooklyn

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  1. Where’s Jennifer? I would trust her pronouncements on this matter. Assuming she cared of course.

  2. Good riddance.

  3. glad the little neo-con rag is kaput —

  4. So it is true that we wouldn’t know the Sun disappeared until eight minutes after it happened.

  5. This is nothing compared to the forthcoming mission to blow up the moon

  6. I’m just hoping that Global News Enterprises has a successful launch.

  7. Always bad to see newspapers go away.I’m not helping by mostly reading them only in internet form.I used to buy 2-3 a day.

  8. When I saw this title I thought for sure it was going to be an article about the failure of congress to pass the bailout…because there is no hyperbole too hyperbolic to describe that you know…

  9. toddb,

    I thought at first it was another Large Hadron Collider article.

    “CERN physicists . . . you have some ‘splainin’ to do . . .”

  10. Large Hadron Collider…sad…$5B Euros just doesn’t buy what it used to…that thing turned out to be one sorry excuse for a doomsday machine.

  11. The CERN scientists have released a statement to the press:

    “Our beautiful machine has been sabotaged by incompetents and enemies of science, but be assured, this is merely a temporary setback. Soon, we shall have the machine back up and running again, and we will let nothing stand in the way of our glorious enterprise. Then, CERN will be the most powerful entity in the U . . . NI . . . VERSE!!!!”

  12. I didn’t care for the paper’s politics, but Will Friedwald is a damn good music critic. RIP.

  13. The Sun provided a fresh perspective on our insane local politics–one you certainly didn’t get in the other papers.

  14. When I first read the headline, I assumed this to be a post on the peak solar crisis.

  15. “After almost seven years of publication, Seth Lipsky and Ira Stoll’s little neocon newspaper that could, The New York Sun, has printed its final issue.”

    But don’t the Zionists rule the world? How could it fail? This has to be a dirty Jew trick.

  16. I tried subscribing to the Sun here in little Wilkes-Barre, Pa at the opposite of the valley from Scranton, Pa. We get the NY Post and NY Daily News in our grocery stores plus our other local newspapers, but the Sun was unable to send me copies even with me asking for a subscription.

  17. RIP. It was really a great paper.

  18. They should have known that Neoconservatism was a one trick pony (9-11). Well, maybe a two
    trick pony with the Iraq War needing to continue past the 2004 election.

    But didn’t the Sun recommend war with Russia?

    That is when they and many other neocons jumped the shark.

    The Post remains in business because it is entertaining and full of pictures.

    The Sun would have tried to compete with them in a shrinking market.

    The Sun could have backed Libertarianism and gotten further…but probably not from New York City.

    At least the Sun would then be in a position to mock the Post and the Times that way.

  19. Video from the Summer? Leather coat=Fail

  20. Mahmoud, sorry to disappoint. But we’re mailing out 30 million “Obsession” DVDs. Got yours yet?

  21. Yes, it was a wonderful paper, though I only had access to it online. We dropped our subscription to the NYTimes thinking we’d pick up the Sun, but, alas, no delivery beyond NYC. Eli Lake was the best.

  22. Always a sad day when another daily, of whatever political stripe, dies.

  23. if they didn’t agree with its Israel policy, they could hardly trust the accuracy of previous day’s boxscores

    Apparently, they thought the inability of the NYT to keep editorial opinion from warping straight reporting was a universal problem, although their failure to see that this is just as much of a problem with papers that hang left makes them nitwits nonetheless.

  24. It’s a shame that it’s gone, leaving the tired, arrogant old New York Times and the knucklehead Post and Daily News tabloids.

    Despite the Sun’s fairly neocon view of foreign affairs, it had the best local political coverage. It was too pro-Bloomberg at times, but it didn’t shy from reporting on the various pecuniary misdeeds of everyone from the Port Authority to Charlie Rangel.

  25. so are you trying to say that the CIA didn’t help overthrow the guy?
    Declassified transcript of Nixon-Kissinger phone call
    September 16, 1973
    KISSINGER: The Chilean thing is getting consolidated and of course the newspapers are bleeding because a pro-Communist government has been overthrown.
    NIXON: Isn’t that something. Isn’t that something.
    KISSINGER: I mean instead of celebrating â€â?’??” in the Eisenhower period we would be heroes.
    NIXON: Well we didn’t â€â?’??” as you know â€â?’??” our hand doesn’t show on this one though.
    KISSINGER: We didn’t do it. I mean we helped them. ______ created the conditions as great as possible.
    NIXON: That is right

    if your trying to say the CIA wasn’t involved here then you smell like such a agent. With your promoting for war with russia(while knowing that we depend on them to hold onto a half trillion in US gov debt) and your other suspect articles are giving it away.

    why don’t you follow up on Balko’s work with the DEA murdering people and then threatening former agents for being too honest.

    Most of us are happy that the neo-con and other manipulated rags are suffering, when the NY and Washington Post’s have their computer illiterate left-right paradigm trapped zombies die off then it will be interesting to see what a internet informed public does.

  26. I am weeping nearly as hard as Loki did upon the death of Baldur. However, I am not (presently) dressed as an old lady.

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