Super Lawyers
William C. Altreuter

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Joe Biden is 72 years old. Granted, he is a young 72. I like Joe Biden, but I like Bernie Sanders more. My only Bernie Sanders objection is that I feel sort of bad voting for an old white guy. In any event, I doubt that Joe Biden is going to run, because it is not in his nature to be a spoiler. Maureen Dowd somehow got a hold of a story about Beau Biden's deathbed plea to the Vice President, but things that Maureen Dowd says shouldn't be taken seriously. Joe Biden is not going to run for President.

Which reminds me. One of my favorite summertime things to do on a Sunday is to sit in the back yard with Orng, my cat, drinking coffee, reading the paper, and writing crank letters to the editor. This past Sunday Margaret Sullivan, the Public Editor of the NYTimes wrote a column about the treatment Hillary Clinton receives from the Times. Apparently she wandered around the press room and asked people if the former Secretary of State was treated unfairly by the paper. You will be relieved to know that the people who cover former Secretary Clinton deny it. I've met Ms Sullivan-- she used to be the publisher of the Buffalo News. (I think she uses her high school yearbook photo for her column.) I figured the Buffalo connection might get a letter read, so I fired this off:
Dear Ms Sullivan:
I'd say that among the greatest failures in the history of Times are the way the publication treated the Clintons- and the way it covered the run up to George W. Bush's war against Iraq. I'm inclined to think that the common denominator might be access or the lack of it. The Clintons recognized back in Little Rock that the press was no friend. Like a lot of liberals they also recognized that although the story that they thought was important was government, the press was bound to be more interested in personalities. This has proven to be true, and as a result we find that Hillary Clinton is not inclined to open up to the people who have made careers out of rubbing her face in shit that any person would spend a lifetime trying not to think about. Maureen Dowd is almost certainly among the worst: as Ms Dowd herself might put it, she acts as though she is the head cheerleader Bill dumped to date Hillary, the honor roll dweeb. (Actually, that in a nutshell is every Maureen Dowd column.) Contrast this with the warm tongue bath Judith Miller gave to Scooter Libby. It must have been thrilling to have that kind of access, and I guess when the facts are too good to fact-check doing so might have seemed downright unpatriotic.
Here's how to cover Hillary Clinton's campaign: what does she say? Fact check it, and report on that. All campaigns should be covered that way. I shouldn't have to say it, but really, NYTimes, seriously, Ms Sullivan, news is different from gossip. Gossip is what the NYTimes ran up to President Clinton's impeachment. News is why he wasn't recalled- because President Clinton had a pretty good record as President, and that was all anybody really cared about. Let me make you a proposition: send MoDo to Paris for the next little while, and get someone whose mind hasn't been in high school for the last 40 years write about politics.

Cheez Louise,
William C. Altreuter
I will let you know if I hear back. 

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