The Lie David Sanger Told to Sustain NYT’s Non-Stop Campaign against Joe Biden

Predictably, the NYT treated President Biden’s speech to kick off NATO’s 75th Anniversary as if Biden merely invented the date and the event and maybe even NATO itself to cover up a shoddy debate performance. In addition to the subhead that nonsensically complained there was, “no mention of President Biden’s political peril,” in his speech, in this 25-paragraph story, NYT made this a story about Biden’s campaign by:

  • ¶1: Asserting Biden was trying to bolster the alliance and his campaign.
  • ¶2: Describing Biden’s “strong voice, with few errors.”
  • ¶4: Claiming the delivery of Biden’s speech “may have mattered as much as his words.”
  • ¶5: Falsely claiming that the “faltering” of Biden’s campaign “created a test for the alliance that it did not anticipate.”
  • ¶6: Adopting the passive voice to project its obsession with Biden’s delivery onto NATO’s leaders: “Mr. Biden made no mention of his political troubles, but he could not have escaped the fact that every word was being scrutinized for signs of faltering.”
  • ¶7: Declaring that, “By all measures, he passed the test,” but then caveating that judgement by explaining what teleprompters are.
  • ¶8: Quoting Biden’s comments to George Stephanopoulos about his role in leading NATO.
  • ¶9: Mentioning Biden’s attempt to draw a contrast with Trump and derisively adding, “the man he swears he can still beat in November.”
  • ¶10: Describing Biden’s goal for the contrast.
  • ¶13: Explaining that, “Mr. Biden’s own aides concede that no matter how well the president performs [at NATO] he cannot make Americans unsee his debate performance.”
  • ¶14: Falsely claiming that “confidence in its core member” was in doubt only because of Biden’s debate performance, and not Trump generally.

Compare that wildly partisan approach with the WaPo, which said only, “the summit is a moment of intense scrutiny as he faces pressure over his readiness to serve another four years,” in ¶12 out of 43 paragraphs (though WaPo has since added a story comparable to NYT’s, complete with claims of “defian[ce]”).

To sustain this fairytale — that the NATO summit exists merely as a measure of Biden’s ability to recover from his debate — David Sanger and Lara Jakes lie.

As noted, in ¶5, they claim that no one was worried about whether NATO could sustain its support for Ukraine until Biden’s campaign “faltered.”

The faltering of Mr. Biden’s campaign has also created a test for the alliance that it did not anticipate: whether it can credibly maintain the momentum it has built in supporting Ukraine and serving as a bulwark against further aggression when confidence in its most important player has never been more fragile. [my emphasis]

That is a lie. And one way we can be sure it is a lie — and that David Sanger knows it is a lie — is because a guy name David Sanger wrote this article, in February, which the NYT printed on A1 of the newspaper.

The February article not only describes that even before Trump suggested he would let Putin invade NATO countries, European leaders were already discussing what would happen if Trump withdrew from NATO. And that article explicitly contrasts Trump’s threats to abandon the alliance with Biden’s vocal support of it.

Long before Donald J. Trump threatened over the weekend that he was willing to let Russia “do whatever the hell they want” against NATO allies that do not contribute sufficiently to collective defense, European leaders were quietly discussing how they might prepare for a world in which America removes itself as the centerpiece of the 75-year-old alliance.

Even allowing for the usual bombast of one of his campaign rallies, where he made his declaration on Saturday, Mr. Trump may now force Europe’s debate into a far more public phase.

So far the discussion in the European media has focused on whether the former president, if returned to office, would pull the United States out of NATO.

But the larger implication of his statement is that he might invite President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia to pick off a NATO nation, as a warning and a lesson to the 30 or so others about heeding Mr. Trump’s demands.

His statement stunned many in Europe, especially after three years in which President Biden, attempting to restore the confidence in the alliance lost during Mr. Trump’s four years in office, has repeatedly said that the United States would “defend every inch of NATO territory.” [my emphasis]

Now, five months after setting up that stark contrast, David Sanger suggests that when Biden made the contrast himself in his NATO speech, it was just politics.

They were largely complimentary as Mr. Biden talked about America’s and the West’s “sacred obligation” to come to the aid of free nations and democracies under attack. He was clearly drawing a contrast with former President Donald J. Trump, the man he swears he can still beat in November. To drive home the difference between Mr. Trump’s Republican Party and the party of decades past, Mr. Biden quoted former President Ronald Reagan: “If you are threatened, we are threatened. If you’re not at peace, we cannot be at peace.”

Mr. Biden’s goal was clear: to establish Mr. Trump, with his “America First” approach and threats to withdraw the United States from the alliance, as a threat not only to NATO nations but also to his own country.

Even as Trump — in the debate that NYT deems such a disaster for Biden — described speaking to Putin about his invasion of Ukraine in advance ..,

When Putin saw that, he said, you know what? I think we’re going to go in and maybe take my – this was his dream. I talked to him about it, his dream.

David Sanger now ignores his past reporting about the very real threat that Trump posed and still poses to NATO and American security, and rewrites that into a fairytale about Biden’s age.

This election was always going to be at least close. As Sanger himself reported months ago, European allies have been anticipating the significance of a second Trump term for months.

Yet now, because the NYT is so determined to make Biden’s electoral chances the cause for everything, Trump’s own preferences get a pass and are now caused by Biden’s plight.

The cause for NATO’s concerns is Trump. Not Biden’s campaign. And once upon a time, NYT reported it that way.

93 replies
  1. Magbeth4 says:

    Biden is old. He has been old for some time. People become old when they reach an age where they “appear” to be old, even though they might not feel it or recognize it. It’s all so silly, this harping on Biden’s age. He was old when he ran in the Primaries. That was okay. He won them. So he’s the nominee. The ninnies crying out that “he’s too old,” already knew that when he was running in the Primaries.

    Usually, this kind of Media-political nonsense dies out after a week or two. Somebody must really be afraid he’s going to win.

    The Presidency is not, contra Trump’s behavior in Office, a One-Man-Band. It is a cooperative effort by an entire Administration under the guidance of Chief Executive. Biden, for all his verbal stutterings and verbal slips, can certainly still call the shots. A poll, like the sole flower that “doth not a Spring make,” is not a Vote.

    Whatever happens to Biden’s health after Biden is elected, Kamala is there to carry on. We shall survive this silly election season.

    • Rayne says:

      I would like you to consider the topic of this post and the content of your comment.

      The NYT’s Sanger launched an attack on Biden using NATO as the peg to do so, while NATO is still meeting on US soil. This is not just an attack on Biden about his age, but an attempt to undermine a seated president in the middle of diplomatic dialog affecting our national and global security.

      Trump’s rally at Doral last night also mentioned NATO. You’d think Sanger would have touched on that for comparison since this article is supposed be about NATO, a comparison Biden made in his remarks, but perhaps Sanger was intent on his deadline and Biden bashing is easy filler compared to monitoring Trump’s campaign rally for a last minute counterpoint.

      Your comment bolstered Sanger’s attack as the first entry in this thread opening with “Biden is old,” and then never mentioning NATO or Sanger’s sketchy coverage.

      Slow down and think a little more about the post and who might be reading the comments here before publishing a comment.

      • Susanna_04JUL2024_1437h says:

        Since I’m not in the habit of bailing after the first three words in a comment, I want to say that I was inspired by Magbeth4’s words, especially “Somebody must really be afraid he’s going to win” and, even more, “The Presidency is not, contra Trump’s behavior in Office, a One-Man-Band. It’s probably going to take a generation to get that last point through to “we the people,” but now’s a good time to start.

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      • Dark Phoenix says:

        “Trump’s rally at Doral last night also mentioned NATO.”

        Yeah, Trump mentioned NATO to say he didn’t know what it was. And if that’s the case, then he NEEDS to drop out now, because he’s in the advanced stages of Alzheimer’s.

        • Rayne says:

          Especially since he’s also made a mess of nasty comments undermining NATO for years. How does he suddenly forget what it is while NATO is in the US for meetings?

    • Rugger_9 says:

      Convict-1 is old too, and shows all sorts of cognitive issues not present in Biden. He isn’t releasing his full physicals, his taxes and FWIW I don’t recall seeing Convict-1 in a public setting (as opposed to tweets and stock footage) since the day after the debate. Where is Convict-1?

        • Krisy Gosney says:

          I didn’t read the article and I’m not going to (I’m boycotting any ‘But Her Emails!’ style articles). But I highly appreciate EW’s reporting on the lazy, and it sounds like personally dishonest, Biden coverage from the NYT.

          Will it ever stop? The Rs trained the media to be positively biased toward them. Can the Ds do the same?

  2. Clare Kelly says:

    Thank you.

    NYT abysmal and intentionally disingenuous coverage is still, as intended, influencing other outlets.

    KQED Forum’s description of their first segment today with Alexis Madrigal, formerly of The Atlantic:

    “Pressure Grows on President Biden to Step Aside.
    A defiant Joe Biden said Monday that he’s “firmly committed” to staying in the presidential race”

    His guests include a KQED Politics reporter who ‘defiantly’ posted a picture of herself and her fellow Politics reporters at The French Laundry during the Tea Party has-been led Republican attempt at recalling Governor Newsom*, and WSJ/formerly of The Atlantic/frequent Fox News guest reporter Molly Ball.

    While I’m not sure I can listen at that time, I’m also not sure I want to.
    I’m trying to avoid the pervasive, fevered-pitched media angertainment campaign by simply doing what I can to GOTV.

    I did, however, shoot off an “Et tu?” message which included
    “Not the odds, but the stakes”
    ~Jay Rosen

    However unlikely, I hope Governor Newsom calls in.

    He has not wavered in his support for this administration.

    *The usual suspects are gunning for a recall redux 2025, as noisy squirrel distraction.

    • Dark Phoenix says:

      Funny how no matter what the story is, the press considers it VERY important to get multiple Republican opinions on it?

    • Beverley54 says:

      Does Mr. Sanger have a memory problem? Perhaps he should see a neurologist.

      Not sure what is in this post that sent it to moderation??

      [Moderator’s note: we don’t always know what triggers moderation. There may be a troll/bot swarm underway which has heightened sensitivity for all we know. Sorry for the inconvenience, thank you for your patience. /~Rayne]

  3. Bob Roundhead says:

    And yet, still nothing about the Epstein grand jury testimony released two weeks ago which includes child rape and visits to Epstein island among other trump details.

    • Rugger_9 says:

      Given how much air time Amber Rosen has gotten, does anyone doubt for even a second that if Hunter Biden (much less Joe) had been as frequently named in the Epstein dumps as Convict-1 has been the NYT would have devoted 20 full pages to the topic.

      Instead, the NYT does this: .

      Sulz is on his way to wrecking what used to be a responsible source. Also, I don’t think we’re done with Epstein dumps either with all of the muck that will come out then.

      • Thomas Paine says:

        Sulz has gone off the deep end and taken the NYT with it. Undermining the POTUS with our allies while on US soil is beyond the pale. If you haven’t boycotted the NYT print or digital content by sparing them your subscription $$$, now may be a good time to do so.

  4. Stacy (Male) says:

    Marcy, you have proven what no other pundits have even suggested: The Times not only wants Biden out, they want Trump in. Sanger’s brazen prevaricating is in service of the Trumpian goal of reducing everything to political calculation, thus demeaning support for NATO, abortion rights, etc. as having no substance beyond how it plays in the horse-race. Bless your eagle eyes, Marcy!

    • Stacy (Male) says:

      PS: I just restored my monthly contribution.

      [Thank you, Stacy. Please also avoid adding anything in the URL field as you didn’t enter a website with your first comment. /~Rayne]

    • Ginevra diBenci says:

      The Times (and Post) want Trump in office because a Trump presidency sells subscriptions. Their subscription numbers dropped when he left office, because who wants to read about good government?

      I kept my subscription to both as a way of signaling that *I* do, and that surely they could find other things to cover. The Times’s anti-Biden crusade, however, killed my good intentions. I explained this when I cancelled. Do they care? Probably not.

      On the plus side, that’s money I can spend on journalism of real value. Like EW.

  5. wa_rickf says:

    I became politically aware during the fall of 2000 after the November election.

    I’ve never known the NYT to be anything but a Rwing news mouthpiece for the GWBush admin, and subsequent Trump admin, that also happens to have a very good calendar, community, Theater and Arts section. One only need to recall how the NYT helped foster the “weapons of mass destruction” false narrative that lead to fifteen years of American military occupation of Iraq, hundreds of millions of U.S. treasure spent on the military equipment, countless American service folks killed, maimed or psychologically injured.

    • Rugger_9 says:

      Ah, the JudyJudyJudy, Scooter Libby and Aspen connections. Good catch, and it would be useful to compare and contrast the coverage to the NYT’s reporting of Watergate. I think the NYT was even on the hunt during Iran-Contra.

      My mom’s best friend was from NYC (may she rest in peace) and while visiting in CA was pulling her hair out trying to get something like real reporting since the SJ Mercury wasn’t reporting much about it then (it had a RW slant).

  6. Alan_OrbitalMechanic says:

    I stopped having high expectations of the NY Times back in the day they were front and center at transforming Al Gore from a strait-laced do gooder into an inveterate liar. What they did to Clinton before that was execrable, but what they did to Gore was worse than that: obvious. Much like you see with Biden now.

    Aside from that, anything they print about food and nutrition is little more than out-of-date propaganda from the big-player food industry. They do get a few pebbles of reasonable facts in a sea of misinformation there so it is hard to push back against.

    Providing a platform for Paul Krugman makes up for about 2% of it.

  7. LadyHawke says:

    I just listened to President Biden’s speech at the opening of the NATO meeting. Carefully written and read from the telepromter, of course, but with strong emphases where he wanted, the importance of NATO, U.S. support, and Ukraine. He seemed to take pleasure in making the point that when he took office only 9 member nations had made the 2% GDP contribution, and now it is 23 (eat that DJT).

    So, nothing out of his ordinary presidenting. I noticed at the end, as he announced the Medal of Freedom award to the Secretary General, he paused after noting that he had encouraged the AG to extend his term and looking presumably at the AG’s wife with a little laugh apologized to her. He got the SG to turn around with a bit of direction and clipped the ribbon around his neck. And he didn’t once claim credit for the Sun rising.

  8. Dark Phoenix says:

    The Times also decided today was a good day to run an op-ed from George Clooney saying that the Biden we see here is an illusion and the REAL Biden is debate Biden.

    • Rayne says:

      I Love Joe Biden,” Clooney wrote. Right…you love him so, sooo much that instead of calling him or his campaign to express a desire for a different nominee, you ensure this bullshit is posted on the front page of the NYT.

      Somebody’s ego needed feeding more than ensuring the Democratic ticket won this November. He should take a lesson from Kevin Bacon and acknowledge he’s addicted to his fame.

      By the way, where’s that movie about Gym Jordan Clooney was supposed to have produced years ago, still showing as “in production“? Too hungry for the money and the fame to simply distribute it for free over Vimeo?

      • dogshelpgod says:

        Ego is right. What the fuck does George Clooney know? America loves celebrities. So he can raise money and act. He’s pissed because Biden criticized an investigation that his wife worked on.
        And it wasn’t enough that Clooney’s “essay” was published by the Times, but they ran a front page article calling attention to Clooney’s essay.

      • Dark Phoenix says:

        I read on DailyKos that Clooney is strongly pro-Palestine, and that’s apparently clouding his judgement here. The problem with the people this pro-Palestine is that they don’t see that there is NO ONE on either side that is close enough to what they want to be acceptable… Well, unless the plan is to try and crowbar the IMMENSELY unpopular Jamaal Bowman into the candidacy…

        • Rayne says:

          Which doesn’t explain why Clooney hosted a campaign fundraiser just a few weeks ago for Biden if he’s so angry *now* with Biden.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      The mention of George Clooney’s obvious sabotage reminds me that Presidents read from a teleprompter for a reason. They haven’t days or weeks to memorize lines and perfect the affect, or time for multiple takes. They perform live.

      A President does spend time memorizing faces of NATO representatives and their most significant national and group concerns, and what he wants to achieve at this particular meeting. Meanwhile, a President’s day job doesn’t stop, just because he has long complex meetings with dozens of foreign leaders. Gimme a break.

    • synergies says:

      I apologize for being OT & a bit crass but Pelosi, lousy in her old age revenge for her “dementia.” Like we forget. C/Looney, enough said. I repeat dementia.
      My theory, IMO, Obama bowing to the “woman president now,” convinced Biden the super nice guy in morning of his son, to step aside holding that, despite Hillary not being liked to put it mildly, being able to nominate the Supreme Court justice who Obama should have shut down the government to nominate himself would convince DEMOCRATS to vote for Hillary the woman. A gop doesn’t become president without some (it doesn’t take much) jumping ship.
      So IMO here we are now with the Kamala for “woman president now,” Biden drop out and the demented Pelosi “woman president NOW,” thinking they can win against the trumpster. How about we call it what it is, Democrat suicide again.
      I like Kamala but I live in Ca. She’s bland. I hope she doesn’t run if Biden did drop out, out of respect, mainly we’d lose DEMOCRACY. Does that gamble of worldwide destruction sink in? She’s bland. I hope she doesn’t run in 2028. It’s not like the dislike of Hillary but bland.
      For God’s sake, leave our accomplished President alone. He can handle the job.
      We’ve been down this fucking road before, STOP!

    • Beverley54 says:

      This article perhaps is a clue into Clooney’s motives. Clooney is upset by the criticism of Biden of the ICC in their attempts to jail Netanyahu for war crimes. Clooney’s wife Amal is one of the lawyers working on this. Apparently Clooney was calling people in the administration, including Steve Ricchetti, counsellor to the president, in attempts to change his mind.

      • Dark Phoenix says:

        Personally, I thought criticizing the ICC was dumb, too. But joining in a million dollar media pileup because you disagree with a single decision is cutting your nose off to spite your face. Does Clooney think Donald Trump would be better for Palestine?

  9. harpie says:

    1] Jul 09, 2024, 21:27 Change of headline and abstract

    As Biden Opens NATO Convenes, Leaders Worry About a Hole in Its Center Celebration, Turning the Page on His Troubles and Warning Putin A summit meant to convey confidence in the newly expanded alliance now faces uncertainty opened with a dazzling celebration, leaders from around the world, and no mention of the uncertainties over President Biden’s future, and the looming possibility of the return of Donald Trump political peril.

    • harpie says:

      2] Jul 09, 2024, 23:39 Change of headline and abstract

      Biden Opens NATO Celebration Turning the Page on Looks to Move Past His Troubles and Troubles, Opening NATO Summit With Warning to Putin A Summit meant to convey confidence in the newly expanded alliance opened with a dazzling celebration, leaders from around the world, dazzling celebration and no mention of the uncertainties over President Biden’s political peril.

  10. Clare Kelly says:

    This pithy conclusion bears repeating far and wide:

    “The cause for NATO’s concerns is Trump. Not Biden’s campaign. And once upon a time, NYT reported it that way.”

    • dopefish says:

      While looking for info about the NYT’s pro-Trump bias, I came across this CNN article from March:

      In the view of its critics, The Times has been far too distracted as of late by worries over President Joe Biden’s age, allowing it to steal attention away from the larger and far more serious danger posed by a second Trump administration. Critics have also argued that The Times covers Biden and Trump with disproportionate standards, placing false equivalence on issues surrounding the current president to those of the former president, who is facing 91 criminal counts and fantasized about being a dictator on “day one.”

      Lately the NYT seems to be desperately pouring fuel on the Biden-is-old fire. I think they’re afraid of what Trump would do to them if they didn’t favor him so much in their coverage; they know they can pick on Biden and he won’t use the power of the presidency to get revenge on them.

      I hope the Failing New York Times loses a lot of subscribers this month—they have truly become “fake news”.

      • timbozone says:

        The NYT’s is not as important as it once was, that much is clear. And putting Pelosi against their jaundiced reporting and editorial decisions isn’t helping the NYT’s circulation.

    • dopefish says:

      Also from March, a Salon article criticizing NYT’s unequal coverage of candidates Biden and Trump:

      Two things — check that, three things — appear to have gone off the rails at the paper we used to call the Gray Lady. First, whoever is in charge of the paper’s polls is not doing their job. Second, whoever is choosing what to emphasize in Times coverage of the campaign for the presidency is showing bias. Third, the Times is obsessed with Joe Biden’s age at the same time they’re leaving evidence of Donald Trump’s mental and verbal stumbles completely out of the news.

  11. Upisdown says:

    I don’t believe that Donald Trump could ever deliver that speech because he has no appreciation or understanding about NATO. Even reading the speech, Trump would not know when to use vocal inflections, so he would come off as reading something he didn’t understand.

    And though I have nothing to back up my opinion, I also believe that Trump’s “make NATO pay up” kick was given to him by Putin. NATO wasn’t a drain on our budget big enough to demand the unfriendly attention Trump gave it. It seems like the kind of conversation you have with members away from the media. Unless you are attempting to please Moscow.

    • Clare Kelly says:

      Something like [Marcy wrote]:

      Even as Trump — in the debate that NYT deems such a disaster for Biden — described speaking to Putin about his invasion of Ukraine in advance ..,

      “When Putin saw that, he said, you know what? I think we’re going to go in and maybe take my – this was his dream. I talked to him about it, his dream.”

      • LadyHawke says:

        It was disgusting to hear Trump call Putin’s ruthless invasion of Ukraine his “dream,” as though it’s some happy aspiration – totally like Trump’s dream of his spectacular hotel in Moscow’s Red Square. We uniquely important men have such awesome dreams – bow down peasants.

      • ToldainDarkwater says:

        Most of what Trump knows about Ukraine/Zelensky is that they didn’t give him the campaign propaganda he wanted. So to hell with ’em.

        • Dark Phoenix says:

          Pretty sure Trump’s Ukraine hostility came from Paul Manafort, and we know who HE was working for.

  12. Jason_10JUL2024_1240h says:

    I remember watching Sanger on either CNN or MSNBC in early February 2022 before the full-scale Russ invasion. He said, I quote from memory “Ukraine is not strategic.” Sanger believes he is an eminence grise, one more of the NYT’s stable of wise elders who know and understand so much.

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    • Dark Phoenix says:

      In other words, he prefers Trump’s transactional view on everything, where the most important question for any endeavor is “What’s in it for ME?”

    • ToldainDarkwater says:

      In the sense I think Sanger means it, Ukraine isn’t strategic. Not the way Taiwan is for the US. They don’t have anything we absolutely cannot do without. I’m sure that’s what Sanger means, its the way military/diplomatic people have been thinking for decades, if not centuries.

      What *is* strategic about Ukraine is that it is an opportunity to stop the roll of a smaller country trying to become a bigger one (in this case, a return to its glory days). It presents a really good opportunity to take a stand against the whole idea of taking territory by violence.

      • Rayne says:

        What does Taiwan have that the US can’t do without? If you tell me semiconductor chips I’m going to tell you that’s a problem with US policy regarding domestic manufacturing.

        What does Ukraine have that the US can’t do without? Ag products essential to allies in the EU and until weaned off, gas and oil piped through Ukraine to EU and NATO members; without these ag products and energy supplies, US allies in EU and NATO member states are more vulnerable.

        • Rayne says:

          Excellent. This bit I think key:

          “Ukraine has become a battlefield now for America and America’s own future — whether we see it or not — for our own defensive posture and preparedness, for our reputation and our leadership,” she told me. “For Putin, Ukraine is a proxy war against the United States, to remove the United States from the world stage.”

          Russia’s GDP is smaller than that of the state of Texas; its defense spending is roughly 1/11th of the US. What does it say about US capabilities and preparedness when we allow this country to be pushed around and unable to provide defense under an agreement we signed in 1994?

  13. Trevanion says:

    Whatever one’s opinion on should-he-stay-or-should-he-go, I don’t think one can overstate the value (and need) of the sharp dissection in EW pieces like this.

    Something is clearly quite amiss these days at the NYT. But I can’t help but wonder if it is less a specific institutional problem versus something more worrisome that seems to be running wild at a deeper cultural level across the MSM during these strange days.

    As with Sanger’s piece, it has become close to formulaic to produce something within completely blurred lines between reporting, analysis, and opinion: Most strange is how it is almost always undertaken with a display of unusual sloppiness as to basic facts or established timeline, and then combined with (if not overwhelmed by) an equally strange self-important voice pronouncing a “here’s why” answer to a question that no one on earth would ever ask other than when making a particular rhetorical point.

    • WhiteTiger says:

      AG Sulzberger is pissed Biden wouldn’t kiss his ring after the tattered grey lady had already done everything to sink Biden’s attempts at the White House.

      AND he/they are filthy rich and Biden is saying he wants to tax them so they can’t wind up owning everything.

      I do not think we need to make this issue something more complex than it is.

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    • Dark Phoenix says:

      Before Biden was even nominated in 2020, the NYT had it out for him. When there were many challengers for the nomination, the NYT only reported on Joe Biden to talk about his “failure”. When he made the surprise comeback starting with South Carolina, the NYT suddenly asked if they could start over. Then they allowed Maureen Dowd to launder Rudy’s Ukraine-Hunter conspiracy theory, and they were shocked the Biden campaign wasn’t happy about that…
      It went on and on. Every time it appeared that fences might be mended, the NYT did something stupid and acted offended that the White House would respond negatively. And in the middle of that, Sulzberger suddenly decided that the President was REQUIRED to do a one-on-one with him at a place and time of HIS choosing or he wasn’t a legit President… And when the White House blew him off, that’s when the knives really came out.

  14. harpie says:


    Even as Trump — in the debate that NYT deems such a disaster for Biden — described speaking to Putin about his invasion of Ukraine in advance ..,

    When Putin saw that, he said, you know what? I think we’re going to go in and maybe take my – this was his dream. I talked to him about it, his dream.

    David Sanger now ignores his past reporting about the very real threat that Trump posed and still poses to NATO and American security, and rewrites that into a fairytale about Biden’s age.

    Here’s Heather Cox Richardson on that TRUMP quote:

    Letters from an American, June 28, 2024 Heather Cox Richardson

    […] Instead, tonight I want to make a note of something that has been nagging at me for weeks now: Trump’s focus on 32-year-old Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich, who was arrested by Russian officers in March 2023 and is currently on trial for the trumped-up charge of espionage. […]

    At least three times now, Trump has interfered with those negotiations by vowing that Russian president Vladimir Putin will release Gershkovich for him and him alone.

    Somewhere in his discussion of Putin’s invasion of eastern Ukraine in February 2022, Trump said: “Putin saw that, he said, you know what, I think we’re going to go in and maybe take my—this was his dream. I talked to him about it, his dream.” […]

    Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s 2019 report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election explained that Paul Manafort, Trump’s campaign manager and then conduit to Russian operatives, in summer 2016 “discussed a plan [“Mariupol Plan”] to resolve the ongoing political problems in Ukraine by creating an autonomous republic in its more industrialized eastern region of Donbas, and having [Viktor] Yanukovych, the Ukrainian President ousted in 2014, elected to head that republic.” […]

    So when Trump last night said about the 2022 invasion […] it sounded as if he had been in on the Mariupol Plan. And when he talked about how the war needed to end, especially in light of Putin’s recent “peace” plan, it sounded as if perhaps he still is.

    And he promised, yet again, that he and he alone could get Gershkovich released.

    • Dark Phoenix says:

      Isn’t it illegal for a private citizen to be conducting diplomacy around the government’s back like this? At least Nixon and Reagan had the brains to not talk about it…

      • Rayne says:

        Remember Michael Flynn’s dealings with other countries in late 2016 before Trump’s inauguration? Some think he violated the Logan Act which prohibits unauthorized citizens negotiating with foreign governments. He was charged with false statements about his dealings in a plea deal, not with the Logan Act.

        There must have been something which worried the GOP about it because they tried to kill the Logan Act in 2020.

  15. originalK says:

    Almost a decade ago, reading Robert Caro’s The Power Broker, I had a nagging gut response of “why does is he so credulous toward journalists & the press?” It’s a huge book and I’m a weekend reader, so hitting the archives to analyze the coverage of Robert Moses at the time isn’t going to be a thesis topic for me. Funny how the Trump name and wealth stems from that era.

    All of the Snowden reporting, totally sus, I take even my preferred narrative with a grain of salt!

    But like Bond henchmens’ service to Bond villains, there is that ever present question, why?

    The (presumably) donors of CA/NY representatives prefer Trump. It isn’t just a red/blue issue. I’m guessing it has to do with interest rates, not taxes, and is particularly ungrateful (as per usual) considering their banks were made whole last year. Trump’s Truth Social is poster child for the scam – worth billions on paper, massive executive compensation, “all debt (hat), no revenue (cattle)”. This all before it being a conduit for foreign funds/funding.

    I would be interested to hear any ideas for why the international power brokers are cheering Russia over Europe. I go to fossil fuels – what else does Russia have? – but Europe is a relatively small market. We always give evil more credit than it deserves, though.

  16. c-i-v-i-l says:


    Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has introduced articles of impeachment against Justices Thomas and Alito:

    … The first impeachment resolution includes the following impeachment articles against Justice Thomas:
    1. Failure to disclose financial income, gifts and reimbursements, property interests, liabilities, and transactions, among other information.
    2. Refusal to recuse from matters concerning his spouse’s legal interest in cases before the court.
    3. Refusal to recuse from matters involving his spouse’s financial interest in cases before the court.

    The second impeachment resolution includes the following impeachment articles against Justice Alito:
    1. Refusal to recuse from cases in which he had a personal bias or prejudice concerning a party in cases before the court.
    2. Failure to disclose financial income, gifts and reimbursements, property interests, liabilities, and transactions, among other information. …

  17. ggonsbutlongenough says:

    If Biden doesn’t get elected, then Europe gets trump. So, yes, Trump is the threat – but if Biden is perceived as damaged to the point he can’t win then he is also a part of the problem. In which case, Biden’s speech doesn’t really matter and his assurances don’t either and so the NYT is still misplaced in the way they approach the article, but for different reasons than you’re identifying here.

    This blog has turned into the we just elect Biden blog, and anything else is making Dems weaker and therefore not worth engaging with. That’s basically the position I took in the spring before the evidence that does exist and is not manufactured came to light.

    In order to win your argument the people who must be persuaded can likely only be persuaded by Biden himself. The nytimes doesn’t really talk to the American “center” (low propensity/low engagement voters).

    So what is the point of this? To solidify the party and demonize the media. That stinks to high heaven of the logic that birthed the right wing echo chamber. To solidify our loyalty to Biden? Why? He’s just a man.

    Maybe you just think this would provide an edge guy the right to lever against, and if all we’re going to achieve here is that we divide ourselves i can see that argument, but that’s not the argument you are making. You’re just drawing the lines elsewhere and playing whatabout.

    Rayne, I really don’t care if you do decide to deplarform me here. I kind of expect you will. I find this whole exercise of circling the wagons and ignoring reality + while attacking strawmen to be an exercise without value. I suspect I’m fine done reading this after following it and lurking for years.

    It doesn’t smell like honest intellectualism to me anymore.

    • Rayne says:

      This blog has turned into the we just elect Biden blog, and anything else is making Dems weaker and therefore not worth engaging with.

      And yet you spent 307 words “engaging” anyhow to vent your spleen about the strongest pro-EU, pro-NATO candidate. Not certain how you think that helps EU’s or NATO’s cause, speaking of honest intellectualism.

      You can find the exit if you are that put out by the content here.

      • Dark Phoenix says:

        Everything will be better if you can just find “Magic Unicorn That Ticks All The Boxes” and run them! They’ve got to be around here somewhere…

    • JAFO_NAL says:

      Emptywheel isn’t the only politics discussion site that’s decided to limit the hand wringing and Biden bashing:

      They had a number of first time posters with an agenda and decided to be pro-active about it. Huffington Post on the other hand seems to have swung even further than the New York Times toward Biden negativity without depth.

        • Dark Phoenix says:

          Yeah, there’s a handful of long-time posters (a lot of them are involved with the pro-Palestine work, so I’m guessing this is them hoping to get a more pro-Palestinian candidate), and then there’s a BUNCH of accounts that haven’t been active in years and are suddenly activating all at once just to scream about Biden being too old and having to step down.

  18. Clare Kelly says:

    Replying to Dark Phoenix
    July 10, 2024 at 4:11 pm

    Thanks for the link.

    I read the replies, too, and this one gave me the chuckle I needed:

    Matt Blaze
    12 hr. ago • @[email protected] Breaking:
    Secret Service logs show seven visits to
    White House by an arborist in the last six months. Our expert analyst concludes this means Biden
    likely has Dutch Elm Disease.

  19. synergies says:

    So belatedly, today, I watched the Biden speech at NATO’s 75th anniversary. I don’t see Biden not being completely capable to be President. He’s intelligent & a very good President.

      • synergies says:

        That’s so interesting to me. I don’t own a TV. At my level of normal intelligence, I don’t know how people have time to watch TV. I don’t. I’ve been blessed to know intelligent people. I’m a good listener. I love the intelligent people here on emptywheel. I keep learning : )
        The truth is I thought a teleprompter was a background yard wide or so rectangle glass that words were projected upon. So I researched it today. Attached to a camera.
        I kept watching Biden’s eye movement in the NATO speech. His eyes were all over the place. Anyone who can memorize that much speech between eye movements, has it going on, period. He’s remarkable & in front of a group of remarkable leaders. Incredible! I see why Rayne was promoting the NATO speech. Appreciated : )

  20. Twaspawarednot says:

    ¶13: Explaining that, “Mr. Biden’s own aides concede that no matter how well the president performs [at NATO] he cannot make Americans unsee his debate performance.” Of course not. As long as one more Dem continues to call for him to step down and the news media is clinging to every hand wringer that won’t let it go and keeping it up front in the news. “What about Benghazi?”

  21. phichi174 says:

    it’s very telling when the NYTimes and the Washington Post are consistently more disgusting than Fox Sewage


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