The other day I read a story that said the New York Times was lamenting the steady decline of freedom of speech in America.
I did a double-take.
Was that correct? Or was this a typo?
I checked out the editorial in the Times. Sure enough, the editorial board of the Gray Lady had actually written an editorial that said:
“Americans are losing hold of a fundamental right as citizens of a free country: the right to speak their minds and voice their opinions in public without fear of being shamed or shunned.”
The editorial didn’t stop there:
“People should be able to put forward viewpoints, ask questions and make mistakes, and take unpopular but good-faith positions on issues that society is still working through—all without fearing cancellation…Freedom of speech requires not just a commitment to openness and tolerance in the abstract. It demands conscientiousness…We believe it isn’t enough for Americans to just believe in the rights of others to speak freely; they should also find ways to actively support and protect those rights.”
Hallelujah! Does this mean that the Times is now a staunch supporter of the First Amendment? Will wonders never cease?
Then I recalled that the Times has not in recent years been a great supporter of free speech—especially speech that conflicts with its inflexible and unyielding leftist philosophy.
In his new book “The Grey Lady Winked: How the New York Times’s Misreporting, Distortions, and Fabrications Radically Alter History, Ashley Rindsberg lays out a disturbing pattern of journalistic fabrications and distortions dating back to the 1920s and 1930s when its Berlin bureau chief, who was a Nazi collaborator, skewed coverage of Adolf Hitler, calling him someone “actuated by lofty, unselfish patriotism.”
In his unflattering book, Rindsberg calls the New York Times “a truth-producing machine,” adding that the “fabrications and distortions it has peddled for the past one hundred years were a system of twisting facts to manipulate public opinion about everything from Hitler’s Germany and Stalin’s Russia to Vietnam and the Iraq War.”
Times “reporting” is designed to “support a narrative aligned with the corporate whims, economic needs and political preferences” of the New York Times.
Rindsberg alleges that a former Times star reporter parroted Soviet propaganda to defend Stalin and cover up his Ukraine famine and genocide of the 1930s that killed millions. The newspaper’s owners directed the cover-up in order to advance their own financial and ideological interests, Rindsberg writes.
Rindsberg writes that the NYT coverage in the lead-up to the Vietnam and Iraq wars seemed like government disinformation designed to support going to war.
More recently, Rindsberg points to the stories that the New York Times published about Russia putting a bounty on U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan, which the Biden administration later conceded was misinformation.
He also points to the story about Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick being “murdered by rampaging Trump supporters” during the January 6 riots, though it was later proven that he had died of a stroke.
Similarly, Pulitzer-prize-winning journalist Glenn Greenwald accused the New York Times of participating in “one of the most successful disinformation campaigns in modern electoral history.” Greenwald says The Times, which before the 2020 election dismissed the Hunter Biden laptop as Russian Disinformation, later conceded that it was authentic.
Rindsberg writes that the New York Times coverage of the Covid Pandemic isn’t any different from its coverage of Hitler, Stalin, Vietnam, the Iraq War, January 6th, the Russian bounty on American soldiers, or the Hunter Biden laptop.
Then there is the NYT propagation of the fraudulent “1619 Project,” a cynical, ideologically driven attempt to revise American history by rooting the nation’s birth in slavery instead of liberty.
In essence, says Rindsberg, the New York Times doesn’t just cover the news, it creates it.
Like most of the major big tech platforms, the Times appears to have worked closely with Dr. Anthony Fauci and others, as representatives of the U.S. Government, to control and propagate a specific narrative about the Covid pandemic and to do what the government can’t legally do itself—censor ideas that it disagrees with or narratives that might be harmful to its corporate partners.
For example, the Times censored The Real Anthony Fauci by Robert F. Kennedy Jr. It ranked the book #7 on its non-fiction bestseller list even though Kennedy’s book outsold every other book in America that week by thousands of copies. Then it refused to allow Skyhorse Publishing to place an advertisement for the book because its censorship division, ironically called “Standards Management,” decided that the book itself constituted misinformation, despite their stated policy that “Standards” only looks into whether an ad itself is “non-defamatory and accurate.”
Finally, the Times refused to review The Real Anthony Fauci or so much as comment on its historic grassroots success, even though it’s become a cult classic, selling over 1,000,000 copies, and launching a worldwide movement against government corruption and corporate greed.
Referring to the Times’ editorial bewailing the deterioration of freedom of speech, Tony Lyons, President of Skyhorse Publishing, wrote the following in a recent commentary:
“The irony of the most powerful and impactful violator of First Amendment rights lamenting the lack of free speech and offering up ideas to protect the rights of Americans was palpable, inescapable, and despicable. That’s where we are in America today. There is no debate, no public discourse, and we have lost the ability to resolve conflict. We have separated the country into two Americas, at least partially because of the policies and practices of the New York Times.”
The New York Times actively suppressed Robert F. Kennedy Jr’s book and his allegations of corruption against Dr. Anthony Fauci. It defended Dr. Fauci without any investigation, without a full, free, and fair discussion of what is clearly the most important book of the decade. By ignoring Kennedy’s book, refusing to review it, not allowing advertisements, by misrepresenting its success on its bestseller list, it clearly did everything in its power to avoid any debate whatsoever about the real science behind the origins of Covid or the best practices for controlling the virus and protecting the public. The New York Times has shown a total disregard for the scientific process, individual due process rights, or for any real search for truth.
And, once again, it did all this while lecturing us about the importance of free speech.”
Indeed. In its editorial on free speech, the Times said the following:
“At the individual level, human beings cannot flourish without the confidence to take risks, to pursue ideas and express thoughts that others might reject…When speech is stifled or when dissenters are shut out of the public discourse, a society also loses its ability to resolve conflict, and it faces the risk of political violence.”
We have clearly entered the realm of George Orwell’s “1984” and its system of “Doublespeak” when the so-called “paper of record” floods the world with disinformation, censors books, cancels authors, skews its own reporting, and yet claims to be working tirelessly to protect free speech and our access to unfettered and unadulterated information.
You have to wonder if America hasn’t become Orwell’s totalitarian superstate Oceania and the New York Times our Ministry of Truth.
2 thoughts on ““America has a free speech problem:” The New York Times”
And, during the previous administration, the NYT led the mass media in converting Orwell’s daily Two-Minutes-of-Hate into 24/7 hatred directed at the president.
That, the NYT did–followed closely by the Washington Post, the networks, CNN & MSNBC.