My New York Times Rant of the Day

This past summer, during the Gaza war, I cancelled my subscription to the New York Times home edition, banishing the arrogantly self-styled “newspaper of record” from my bathroom floor after 40 years. I had enough of the anti-Israel bias of Jodi Rudoren, and more than enough of the supercilious Israel-hating Roger Cohen, so I decided to stop paying their salaries and made the phone call. I asked the agent on the other end to convey a few choice words to her employer on my behalf although I knew, as my grandmother used do say, this would “helfen vi a toiten, bankes.”

A week or so after cancelling the paper, my accompanying right to receive the electronic editions on my ipad and iphone also expired. I soon began to miss the movie and theater reviews, and even the local news coverage the Times provided. I also had nothing to read on the subway. So I came up with a plan: I would wait until I exhausted my free ten articles a month from the electronic edition and then purchase the cheapest subscription I could, the computer edition, which does not include tablets but does include an edition on the iphone. It was a good compromise. I now deprive the Times of several hundred dollars a year this way, and feel some sweet, if insignificant, revenge.

You all might want to do the same. Here are the latest reasons why.

A few days ago, it was reputably revealed and published in the Israeli press that the daughter of Hamas leader Ismail Haniya was being treated for an undisclosed ailment at Ichilov Hospital in Tel Aviv. What’s more, she was one of a thousand or so Gazans treated in Israeli hospitals annually, most of whom are evacuated and returned through the humanitarian crossings Hamas has repeatedly attacked. Great story, right? How could you possibly spin this against Israel? No possibility of injecting moral equivalency. So . . . as of today, nothing in the New York Times. The South China Morning Post even ran the story, you can Google it. Rudoren? Out to lunch.

Not that this is part of a pattern or anything, but the Haniya story might be as good as Israel as being first on the ground with field hospitals after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Well, the New York Times did report on that one, but was possibly the last news organization in America to do so. They were apparently “scooped” by everyone but the “Pennysaver” and a Times article only appeared after half the Jewish population of America emailed the story to the other half.

On a more serious note, yesterday a beautiful three month old baby girl was run down by a Palestinian terrorist who deliberately rammed a car into a dozen people standing at a light rail station in Jerusalem. An open and shut case of the vicious, pre-meditated murder of an innocent Jewish child. Yet the Times article felt compelled to include a full exploration of possible moral justifications of the driver. He lived in Silwan, after all, where, it was noted, there has recently been an “influx of settlers”. Furthermore, it was pointed out, there have been recent clashes at Al Aksa, caused by “hard right Israelis” who have been “demanding the right to pray there.” Plus, there was a recent fatal accident involving a Palestinian child and a Jewish resident of the West Bank, and, according to the Times, “some Palestinians drew a line” connecting the two incidents. And lastly, “tensions have been running high in Jerusalem since early July”, when a local Palestinian teenager was murdered in apparent retaliation for the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli teenagers “in the occupied West Bank.”

You know what? Reading the Times is like watching “The Death of Klinghoffer” every day. If you wouldn’t pay to see that, you shouldn’t pay to read the Times.

About the Author
Bennett M. Epstein is a criminal lawyer in New York