Hit & Run stalwart and blogger extraordinaire Alan Vanneman tipped me toward just about the oddest article I've encountered in The New York Times. It's a retraction:
In 1994, Philip Bowring, a contributor to the International Herald Tribune's op-ed page, agreed as part of an undertaking with the leaders of the government of Singapore that he would not say or imply that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong had attained his position through nepotism practiced by his father Lee Kuan Yew. In a February 15, 2010, article, Mr. Bowring nonetheless included these two men in a list of Asian political dynasties, which may have been understood by readers to infer that the younger Mr. Lee did not achieve his position through merit. We wish to state clearly that this inference was not intended. We apologize to Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew and former Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong for any distress or embarrassment caused by any breach of the undertaking and the article.
That is the whole thing but read it at the Times' site.
The apology is part of a $114,000 defamation settlement in favor of the Singaporean meritocracy in which the International Herald Tribune went so far as to suggest that, just like Notre Dame football or the Bushes, not every win came out of thin air.
And while it's slightly off-topic, I do want to apologize to Dizzy Gillespie, for trading off his name and, occasionally, causing distress by arguing in favor of drug legalization, open borders, and abolishing the minimum wage.