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July 01, 2005

Why Oh Why Can't We Have a Better Press Corps? (Another New York Times Edition)

Tim Noah has some questions:

Malek's Free Ride, Cont'd. - Think the New York Times might be interested in a story about anti-Semitism? Naaah. By Timothy Noah: Page One New York Times story by Sheryl Gay Stolberg about the inevitable partisan battle over who will get to own the Nationals... an attack by Rep. Tom Davis, a Virginia Republican, on George Soros, who is a minority investor in a group led by Jonathan Ledecky, a Washington, D.C.-based financial tycoon who used to be part owner of Washington's hockey and basketball teams (and who, like Soros, gives a lot of money to Democrats). Here is what Davis said would happen if a sale to a group includin Soros went through, "I don't think it's the Nats that get hurt. I think it's Major League Baseball that gets hurt. They enjoy all sorts of [antitrust law] exemptions."...

Stolberg didn't quote this... lending credence to Davis'... false claim that "he never intended any threat." But... [Stolberg] repeated the... objection to Soros (apparently he was convicted of insider trading in France; Soros is appealing the decision) while... [calling] Fred Malek—-who leads the Washington Baseball Club, the group Davis clearly wants to prevail--... "a major Republican donor" and "a former aide to President Richard M. Nixon."... Fred Malek.... I'll let [Sally] Jenkins tell it: "You want a wart? Malek... was summoned by Nixon to discuss a 'Jewish cabal' in the Bureau of Labor Statistics.... He wanted to know how many Jews there were in the bureau, and he wanted Malek to count them. Malek... produced a list. Some of them were later demoted or transferred."...

If you're going to write about Republicans saying George Soros is unfit to be minority owner of a baseball team because of an insider-trading conviction, you're morally obliged to point out the mote-beam problem inherent in this line of attack...

Posted by DeLong at July 1, 2005 03:00 PM