Last night on Hugh Hewitt’s show, I said that the L.A. Times reaction to the ethical violations of Michael Hiltzik would say a lot about the LAT’s credibility. Later we learned that the LAT had suspended Hiltzik’s blog — a good start. But Hewitt has a another recommendation
My recommendation: The paper should admit that their journalists are just polemicists who carry their opinions with them into battles they care deeply about. They are as biased as the day is long and getting longer. They aren’t objective, and never have been. They should admit that Hiltzik gave as good as he got, and that this whole Code of Ethics blarney forced him into absurd deceptions because his editors wouldn’t let him swing for the fences.
Let Hiltzik be Hiltzik, and come clean about the paper and its deep commitment to the left and the left’s agenda. It is ex-editor John Carroll who is the embarassment for spreading that piffle about pseudo-journalists versus the Times. Michael Hiltzik may be the most honest guy at the Times.
Give him back his blog and give up the absurd pretensions.
You quote a section from Hewitt:
The paper should admit that their journalists are just polemicists who carry their opinions with them into battles they care deeply about. They are as biased as the day is long and getting longer. They aren’t objective, and never have been.
That’s really not germane to the situation, as Hiltzik is a columnist, not a straight reporter, and his blog was obviously not straight news. If it *was* a news blog (as opposed to a newspaper blog) then it would make a difference, but Hiltzik is clearly expressing opinion–spin. I’m not familiar with his reportage, but from what I’ve read, nobody has ever stated his ideology was a factor in what he wrote before becoming an “analyst” or columnist.
Good point. I quoted that passage from Hewitt because I agree with the overall point he