A conservatory of Ldotter blogs.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

If only half of this is true. . .

. . .the conservative press has let us down on a very basic, shameful level. George Archibald spent 21 years as a top reporter at the Washington Times. In those 21 years, he was nominated for four Pulitzers. So, obviously, there's some credibility to his words.

As I've said again and again, much to the chagrin of many friends, there is simply no room in the debate over immigration - illegal or otherwise - for hatred, white supremacy, xenophobia, or nativism. Those are the tired ideas of angry idiots that have been rightly cast aside by all people of goodwill. There is a rational case to be made for clamping down on immigration in any form, and it needs to be heard out. But, when it turns out that the case is being driven by people who seek to return America to a time when the value of human lives was based on skin color and heritage, it needs to be exposed for what it is: evil.

Mr. Archibald's piece follows one that he wrote regarding a posting at Media Bistro's blog, FishbowlDC, written by Patrick Gavin, deputy editorial page editor of the Washington Examiner, which currently employs former Washington Times writers Bill Sammon and Rowan Scarborough. Gavin recounts a flare-up between Robert Stacy McCain, Assistant National Editor for the Washington Times, and Deputy National Editor Victor Morton, which led McCain to storm into the office of National Editor Ken Hanner and loudly resign his position before kicking and slamming doors on his way out of the building. At the time of Gavin's posting at FishbowlDC, the speculation was that Hanner and Fran Coombs, Managing Editor, would try to smooth things over in order to bring McCain back into the fold in order to keep a full-blown scandal from erupting that would threaten the paper's future.

In his blog post on this incident, Archibald goes on to describe a newsroom controlled by bullying white supremacists, crumbling under the weight of incompetence and mismanagement as a consequence of agenda-driven editorial policy. In the piece written on September 11 (linked at the beginning of this post), he illustrates his assertions and demonstrates connections between members of the editorial staff and various white nationalist/supremacist organizations and their members. He holds nothing back, and his contempt for the people who now control the editorial policies of the Washington Times is clear and visceral.

Apparently, the atmosphere in the Washington Times newsroom has led a considerable number of its staff members to talk to Max Blumenthal, son of the execrable Sidney Blumenthal. Ostensibly, there were more than a dozen "highly placed" staffers at the Times who agreed to speak with the left-wing reporter for the loudly, proudly leftist magazine, The Nation, albeit off the record, fearing the career consequences of publicly speaking out against the belligerent editorial regime. Archibald himself, feeling freed by no longer being in need of a paycheck from the Times, related the following to Blumenthal in the story:
Countering the "feel-good perspective" on race appears to be Coombs's passion. George Archibald told me that when he showed Coombs a photo of his nephew's African-American girlfriend, Coombs "went off like a rocket about interracial marriage and how terrible it was. He actually used the phrase 'the niggerfication of America.' He said, 'Not in my lifetime. If my daughter went out with a black, I would cut her throat.'"

Archibald went on to tell of an incident in which he and several staffers were discussing their pro-life stances and how to work them into the paper, when Coombs argued, "How do you think we're going to stop the population growth of the minorities and all the welfare people?"

In his defense, Coombs responded to the accusation by saying, "Anybody who told you that I support some kind of genocidal abortion policy is beyond deluded. . .Do you truly believe that in a modern American newsroom a person could use phrases like that? That is beyond preposterous. That is just unbelievable. Anyone who says that is a complete liar."

It's tough to know what to make of all of this, but the reading has been fascinating, and it behooves all conservatives of good faith to know what's going on. Perhaps we're not getting the full story. It's quite possible that Archibald has a personal vendetta against Coombs, McCain, and Pruden. But, when accusations such as these are leveled by people of Archibald's stature who, unlike Blumenthal, don't appear to have any ideological motivations for damaging The Washington Times, further digging is warranted. The Times is far too important a paper to conservatism to allow it to be dragged into the muck and slime of racial demagoguery and nativist lunacy.

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