Gray Lady Down
What the Decline and Fall of the New York Times Means for America(amazon)
William McGowan (View Bio)
Hardcover: Encounter Books, 2010.
The New York Times was once considered the gold standard in American journalism and the most trusted news organization in the country. Today, it is widely understood to be a vehicle for politically correct ideologies and tattered liberal pieties, as well as a repeat victim of journalistic scandal and institutional embarrassment.
In Gray Lady Down, the hard-hitting sequel to Coloring the News, award-winning journalist William McGowan asks who is responsible for squandering the finest legacy in American journalism. Combining original reporting with critical analysis, he exposes the Times' unhealthy obsessions with "diversity," pop-cultural news, and countercultural attitudinizing. These trends, he argues, have set America's most important news icon at odds with the values and perspectives of a large sector of the American mainstream, as well as compromising its coverage of such fractious issues as immigration, Islamic terrorism and war.
Gray Lady Down considers the consequences for the Times, for the media at large, and, most important, for American society at this fraught moment in our nation's history. Disdaining orthodoxies of all kinds, McGowan has marshaled a case that readers of any political stripe should find concerning. In a highly volatile media environment, the fate of the New York Times may portend the future of the fourth estate.