Kathryn, the depths to which the New York Times has sunk are worth reproducing here. Here are possibly the worst two sentences from this morning’s editorial:
“The Times reports today that much of the information that led to the heightened alert is actually three or four years old and that authorities had found no concrete evidence that a terror plot was actually under way. This news does nothing to bolster the confidence Americans need that the administration is not using intelligence for political gain.”
Perhaps the Times would like to explain to its readers – many of whom, including this one, live in New York City, in my case just a couple of blocks from the Citicorp building – how old a plan has to be before it ceases to be of relevance, particularly when one considers the long lead times associated with al Qaeda’s spectaculars. Perhaps too the Times, the paper of Jayson Blair, would like to explain its criteria for determining whether evidence is sufficiently ‘concrete’ to take seriously.
In the end, of course, we can be sure of only one thing. So far as the Times is concerned, almost anything that this administration does is wrong. That wouldn’t matter were there not a cost to this grandstanding. But there is. As your e-mailer notes, “Suggesting that this is a political ploy allows folks to diminish the importance of the war we’re fighting. [This]… contributes to complacency and complacency will get us killed.” That’s very true. What’s more, human nature being what it is, the likelihood of a hostile response from the Times – and its fellow travelers (yes, Dr. Dean, that means you) may weigh on the administration before deciding whether to issue some future warning, and, that too, could get people killed.
In conclusion, when it comes to this sort of thing, I’d rather have too much information than too little. How strange that a newspaper feels differently.