New York Times

John Stossel: Why I Hate The New York Times

Many people think dumb things because most every day The Times runs deceitful, biased stories and headlines that mislead.


My hometown paper drives me crazy.

I read The New York Times because it often has good coverage. The newspaper pays to send reporters to dangerous places all around the world.

This weekend, the Times Magazine did a surprisingly fair profile of Sean Hannity, although they chose photos that make him look evil.

But mostly I read The Times because my neighbors read it, and I need to understand what they think.

Sadly, many think dumb things because most every day The Times runs deceitful, biased stories and headlines that mislead.

Opinion columns have license to do that, but these days, Times' smears extend to "news" stories.

A recent headline said that that President Trump's tweets had "united Britain in outrage." Wow. Really? The whole country?

Only if you read the entire story would you learn that the outraged people include "the opposition Labour party," "several" Conservatives and comedian John Cleese.

That's a whole country "united in Trump outrage"? Please.

Another headline said ending President Obama's net neutrality bureaucracy would be "hastening the internet's death."

Ridiculous. I understand that many statists like the regulation, but all the net neutrality repeal really will do is restore some of the permissionless innovation that allowed the internet to blossom in the first place.

Yet the continuation of the Times story carried the headline "So long to the internet."

Give me a break. That's just irresponsible scaremongering.

Now that the Republicans' tax bill passed the House and Senate, some legislators say they will try to reform entitlements.

Yes! Finally! This is a responsible thing to do. But Times reporters hate Republicans so much that they twisted this new effort at reform into a headline that said: "Next objective—cut the safety net."

That is just a smear.

Billions in entitlement dollars go to relatively rich people. The Times once applauded entitlement reform. But if Republicans support it, then it's bad.

Apparently, Republicans' "objective" is not delaying America's bankruptcy; it's "cutting the safety net."

No wonder President Trump keeps shouting, "Fake news!"

But Trump gets plenty wrong, too. He often talks about "the failing New York Times."

But The Times isn't failing. In fact, they gained readers since he was elected—300,000 new subscriptions last quarter.

The Times also makes money selling ads. I find it funny that so much of that money comes from glitzy ads directed at the rich people who Times reporters constantly criticize. The newspaper's magazines are filled with expensive ads for lavish apartments, $2,000 purses and dubious beauty treatments that many people could never afford.

This weekend's fluff included a worshipful feature on Jay-Z by Times' executive editor Dean Baquet. Baquet didn't criticize the rapper for living in an $80 million mansion but instead asked him penetrating questions like, "Would you rather be a trend? Or Ralph Lauren?"

But this week's most disgusting feature was a nearly full-page "Style" section profile of black-clad antifa thugs. The Times made them sound fashionable and fun as they punch people who aren't looking for any physical fight, just spouting their beliefs.

The headline: "What to Wear to Smash the State."

The Times explained what a stylish vandal wears: "Black work or military boots, pants, balaclavas or ski masks, gloves and jackets, North Face brand… makes it easier for saboteurs to take the offensive against storefronts…"

Gee, thanks, New York Times. I doubt that you'd be so enthusiastic about property destruction if the "saboteurs… take the offensive against" your storefront.

Fortunately, Times readership is relatively small—probably less than 1 percent of Americans. Unfortunately, that readership matters because many of those readers work for other media, so what The Times prints gets imitated.

Sometimes that's good. Much of what's in the "paper of record" is important and fact-checked.

Unfortunately, much of it is mean-spirited and absurdly biased.

I'll keep reading it, hoping to separate the good from the bad.

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  1. “What to Wear to Smash the State”

    …until a Democrat is in office again.

    NYT headline, January 20 2020/2024: “FASCION WEEK: A Visual Guide To Spotting Anti-Government Militiamen”

  2. The foaming at the mouth and scaremongering of those on the left in regards to the net neutrality issue is actually quite hilarious.

    This is a real article title:

    Welcome to 2018. There’s No Net Neutrality. We Made Dystopia a Reality.

    It’s hard for me to distinguish if that is a new class of scaremongering or if the people who wrote it are actually delusional enough to believe that.

    1. It’s frankly amazing. Everyone seems to think net neutrality regulations from 2 years ago are all that’s keeping the internet going. I even get messages from Mozilla (developers of the Firefox browser about it). Reason is the ONLY place I’ve seen any sensible, non-fainting coverage. This is one of the main reasons I sent them a contribution.

      1. What saddens me the most is that I’m sure 2-3 years from now, when the internet is still alive, affordable, and more innovative than ever, NO ONE will point their fingers at the scaremongers and declare them to be full of shit.

        1. Absolutely. The scaremongers can be as irresponsible as they want because they know if nothing they say actually comes to fruition, their feet will never be held to the fire by their idiotic readers.

          1. That’s why it will be our job in 2-3 years’ time to constantly remind people, when appropriate, how f*ing idiotic and needless hysterical people were about the supposed “death of the internet,” and that they should get a f*ing clue the next time irresponsible fear-mongers make hyperbolic claims.

        2. See Paul Ehrlich on the economics of overpopulation.

        3. They’ll just cherry pick some isolated incidents where lightning knocked someone Internet out on occasion and other such shit and claim it proves them right.

      2. Ars Technica ‘s pants-shitting retardation about “ending” net neutrality is particularly hilarious. The writers there often remind me of the future beavers from that Cartman story arc.

        1. Ars Technica ‘s pants-shitting retardation about “ending” net neutrality is particularly hilarious.

          A major component of the pro-NN posture is this idea that Net Neutrality has been the de-facto state of affairs *forever* (nevermind Obama’s FCC only proposed its rules as recent as 2015 and never implemented them)… and that this rescinding of the NN proposals amounts to a ‘sea change’ in the state of affairs.

          Even the EFF, which is an organization that i’ve supported in the past and which has had a techno-libertarian bent since the 1990s, plays this same card:

          The FCC’s decision to gut net neutrality protections isn’t just partisan business as usual; it’s a withdrawal from over a decade of work to protect Internet users from unfair practices by Internet service providers. While the FCC’s approach has changed over the years, its goal of promoting net neutrality did not. Two years ago, it finally adopted legally enforceable rule…But, as the saying goes, “elections have consequences.” One consequence of the 2016 election is that the FCC has new leadership that feels free not just to change the rules, but to get rid of them altogether.

          “the pro-NN side is the *normal* view” is the basic claim. Its basically historical revisionism for the sake of a rhetorical posture.

    2. And still no one lying on the fainting couch over net neutrality rollback can even explain what it is. It’s just another talking point to them.

    3. To be fair, once Ajit Pai’s plan goes in to effect, we’ll be heading in to basically uncharted territory when it comes to regulation of the net. Removing Title 2 regulations undoes what Obama added, but it doesn’t doesn’t go back to Title 1 either – what the net was being regulated under for the majority of it’s existence. Title 1 had been the name of the game for years, but after a court said what the Obama administration was doing didn’t fall under Title 1, Verizon challenged it in court and won. For a short while before Title 2 went in to effect, there were even less regulations than before. That’s what we’re heading in to.

      I’m definitely not running around with my hair on fire like many on the left are: I do think a lot of that is scaremongering, and people latching on to “net neutrality” with an otherwise poor understanding of the issue. However, I think it’s slightly disingenuous to say there’s absolutely nothing to worry about because we’ve been here before. We really haven’t.

      1. Wasn’t Title 1 only instituted in 2012? It might have been a little earlier than that, but I don’t think it’s correct to say this is “uncharted territory”. At the very least, this has been charted territory from the 90’s to the late 2000’s.

        I also never said there was anything to worry about. There’s always concern when you have government backed monopolies. I just don’t think more government is the answer to a problem that, besides for a few isolated cases which were solved by consumer pressure and demand, not government, pretty much hasn’t existed up until this point.

        Show me historical examples in the United States of ISPs straight-up blocking content, charging us access for certain internet sites, etc. It hasn’t happened. The major reason the internet has been so amazing, in my opinion, is the relative lack of government regulation and oversight. Why would we want that to change for concerns that have been more-or-less academic up until now?

        1. RE: Show me historical examples in the United States of ISPs straight-up blocking content, charging us access for certain internet sites, etc. It hasn’t happened.

          Well that’s exactly why I’m not overly concerned about this, especially relative to the level of noise coming from the left. I think it’s telling that the most high profile cases of Title 2 enforcement has been the government stopping companies from offering their customers cool perks.

          What I think is much more concerning is the amount of mergers that are happening in the tech space. When the ISP and content provider are the same company, the opportunity and incentive for fuckery goes way up. With this roll back, the FCC will be tying their hands proactively, meaning if something does happen, there’ll be no direct way to address it. I’m not super-thrilled about that, but hopefully it proves to just be speculation.

          1. I’ll admit I’m not exactly comfortable with the AT&T and Time Warner merger either. I don’t think if it does happen it’s going to be as bad as a lot of people think it will, but I’m still not exactly comfortable with the idea.

            1. Anti-competitive behavior will still be policed, but now by the FTC. Title II didn’t even pertain to that subject.

              1. Agreed. I was speaking more generally but you’re right.

  3. Does the Times really think it would be spared in an antifa uprising?

      1. It would be funny to see the look of surprise and horror n their faces when they find out just how wrong they are.

  4. Does the Times really think it would be spared in an antifa uprising?

  5. Does the Times really think it would be spared in an antifa uprising?

    1. Yes.

  6. Does the Times really think it would be spared in an antifa uprising?

  7. Does the Times really think it would be spared in an antifa uprising?

  8. Does the Times really think it would be spared in an antifa uprising?

  9. Does the Times really think it would be spared in an antifa uprising?

    1. Of course not, don’t be ridiculous. I mean really.

  10. Does the Times really think it would be spared in an antifa uprising?

    1. Come again? I didn’t catch that.

    2. You know who else thought they would be spared?

      1. The ribs I ate last night?

  11. The idiots wringing their hands about net neutrality seem to be perfectly fine with Google and Facebook dictating the course of free speech on their platforms, and by extension – most of the internet.

    1. There does seem to be a naive belief that the right kind of government of the right kind of persons will bring about the right kind of society. Of course since “they” will be in charge there is no recognition that such power will inevitably be used against them. Like I said, naive, and no amount of lessons from China or Russia will make a dent in that level of fantasy and denial.

      1. Those kinds of people never imagine a person like Trump in power. Even while Trump is in power. Their cognitive dissonance must be deafening.

        “We must give Trump more power, so we can fight Trump! Aaargh! Eeerk!”

  12. I really wanted Palin to win her suit against them. The op-ed accusing her of imspiring Jared Loughner wasn’t a theory, it was a flat out provable lie. What was even more insane was that the article claimed that there was no evidence that the Republican baseball game shooting was politically motivated, despite the guy being a Democrat campaign worker who asked somebody in the parking lot if those were Republicans on the field.
    Fake fucking news.

    At least the judge did call out the NYT super hard and basically said they were reckless and irresponsible but they couldn’t prove it was a deliberate lie.

  13. John’s Youtube video is much better and more enjoyable than reading the transcript. You all should go right now and watch it. Now. What are you waiting for? G’on, git!

  14. Loved the article Mr. Stossel! Always admired you since I was a kid, loved your stories and your voice.

    Two people that led me to libertarianism were you and my fantastic high school physics teacher Mr. Lapp. He never even talked about, just left a Reason magazine lying around and I saw it, was curious, and researched it. In the Bay Are in the heart of old rich liberal ex-hippy social justice warrior country in Marin County, Mr. Lapp thrived. Two examples:

    “Every year, physics teacher David Lapp brings his Korean War era M-1 carbine to school, fires a shot into a block of wood and instructs his students to calculate the velocity of the bullet.

    Unusual experiments are a hallmark of Lapp’s five physics classes, two of which are honors courses. In addition to the ballistics test, Lapp also lies on a bed of nails and invites students to break a cinder block on his chest with a sledge hammer.”…..496202.php

    Guy is awesome. Really admired him, he even wrote his own physics textbook.

    Moral of the story, libertarians have a positive message and can inspire he young with a quality few others can offer: independence, vigor, hope for the future, rationalism, etc. Progressives and traditional conservatives only offer class warfare, whining, and pessimism towards freedom and change. I thank you, Mr. Stossel, and Mr. Lapp for helping lead me towards this path.

    1. Great post. Mr. Lapp sounds pretty awesome, too.

      It seems to be a pattern with science teachers being kooky in a cool way.

      I had one, Mr. Luke, who while maybe not libertarian, was wonderfully anti-authoritarian. He never missed an opportunity to complain about the school officials being stupid.

      One time, he read aloud to the class a letter sent to all teachers by the superintendent, asking them to please save on paper. “Look at this idiot,” he said. “Prints up hundreds of copies of a letter requesting that we not waste paper.” I learned a lot about how government in general works from comments like that.

    2. My parents were Stossel fans, until they found out that he is a Libertarian. Same with Drew Carey.

      1. Does that mean you’re out of the will, too?

    3. I loved Stossel’s big coming out show. He had been a progressive liberal “consumer advocate” for years, and he had a show about dangers in America. First half he followed the ususal schtick, with promises to reveal the greatest danger facing our children after the break. Then the last half he revealed it: The number one killer in America was… poverty. Merely being poor killed several magnitudes more children than radon, cigarette lighters, swimming pools, and unlocked firearms combined.

      One of the few era changing events I actually managed to witness because I was bored and channel surfing. I wish I had recorded it.

  15. The Liberal/Progressive Left sold us two myths about news reporting;

    1) Once upon a time every town of any size had two or more newspapers, so multiple points of view were available to the public and Media neutrality wasn’t important.

    This is bushwa. H. L. Mencken’s autobiographical works make it clear that while there may have been cities (such as New York) that actually supported two major english language papers, in most cases there were two papers. One, which supported the party currently in power in the city and got the government printing contracts (and made money) and another, which was supported by some opposition hopeful.

    2) That unbiased reporting is possible.

    It just isn’t. But by pretending that it is, the Left can pretend that their own point of view is the unbiased one.

    1. Any opposition is handily demonized as fascist. And the NYT does a fashion article on them.

    2. I’ve lived in a number of places, a number of cities both large and small. But only one ever had two newspapers.

      1. I’ve lived in two cities where the only significantly circulated paper was left-leaning. Both of those papers are down to printing 2-3/wk. I’m schadenfreuding all over the place. Luckily I have towels.

  16. The Capital District (NY) tri-cities newspapers (Albany Times Union, Schenectady Gazette, Troy Record) is a prime example of NY Times regurgitation. You can set them side by side and the articles mirror each other. 15 years ago we did an anti male content analysis of the Albany TU over one month where there were 4 articles about men with 3 negative and 20 about women with no negative articles. Set in front of the editorial board they looked at the disparate stack and proudly announced “we don’t see any bias here”. We gave the board the “Pretty Pig” Award for the amount of lipstick they put on that one, and sent them all little votive boxes with pink ribbons to carry their testicles around in. Bernard Goldberg’s “Bias” was 100% right about the liberal slant in the big media markets (NY, LA) and how the smaller markets follow suit for expediency.

  17. I so like the libertarian John more than the Consumer Report John. Even waaaaaay back when I was of the opinion that eating paint chips was not the mark of a child bright enough to care whether there was lead in it or not.

  18. “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed.”

    ? Mark Twain

  19. The NYT is for bourgeoisie in denial.

    1. The NYT is for the millionaire socialist or academic who wear Che t-shirts to pretend they’re ‘keeping it real’ and speaking ‘truth to power’.

      1. …and occasionally for those aspiring to portray Nazis as ordinary nice salt of the earth Ohioans

  20. Would it be a surprise to find the same people who squawk about the ‘end of the world’ if we don’t enact draconian climate change policies, pant shit over the ‘death of the internet’ with ending NN?

    I remember sane and logical arguments from 15 years as to why NN was a bad idea – and those arguments still hold up.

    But they won’t learn. They’ll just move on to something to foam at the mouth over.

    Party of science and reason my ass.

  21. “Deceitful bias in the New York Times” — gee, what insight into the newspaper whose motto should be “all the news that fits, we print”. But the old gray lady need not fear, Stossel will keep reading it. Must be for the crossword puzzle (which is overrated).

  22. Both Antifa and hipsters wear North Face. Coincidence? Or conspiracy?

    1. Or confluence?

  23. This weekend, the Times Magazine did a surprisingly fair profile of Sean Hannity, although they chose photos that make him look evil.

    Nah, that’s how Hannity looks. Your problem is with his looks.

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