Monday, October 24, 2005

If You Missed Lynn Sweet’s Commentary, Don’t Worry: You Can Get it in Her Reporting.

So far as I know, the Sun-Times is the only major newspaper that allows its chief (and only) Washington correspondent, charged with reporting the news, Lynn Sweet, which should be a full-time job, to double as an opinion purveyor on its Op Ed pages. It is an admixture of what is purportedly straight news with so-called analysis. Last week the woman who is hired to report the Washington news straight, including the Harriet Miers confirmation, swept grandly onto the editorial page as is her frequent wont to tell us that “to rubber stamp the selection of a woman would be sexist in its own way.” Oh, o.k. if you say so, Lynn. I’m sure that back in the news section you’ll give Harriet the unbiased treatment she deserves, right? Right. The late Steve Neal, an acerbic columnist who despite my ideological differences with him, was an important read for me, declined to report the news at the same time because he recognized it would be a conflict of interest. No other journalist I’m aware of wears these double hats. On second thought, reading Sweet once wherever she appears—in news or “Commentary” seems to be the same.

Another indispensable read for me is Maureen Dowd in The New York Times. If I’ve ever agreed with Dowd on anything, it would be the first time. But you don’t read Dowd on the news pages.


  1. I almost always manage to miss Lynn Sweet.

  2. Well, it looks like you were three years ahead of your time. MSNBC has perfected the slimy tactic of reporting their opinion as news in 2008.