Jeffrey Fisher on Sat, 22 Apr 2000 18:36:14 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> ACTION ALERT: NYT Op-Ed Page Shuts Out IMF/WB Critics

     [reformatted @ nettime]

Sheila Conroy wrote:

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2000 1:14 PM
Subject: [FAIR-L] ACTION ALERT: NYT Op-Ed Page Shuts Out IMF/World Bank

                    Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting
               Media analysis, critiques and news reports

New York Times Op-Ed Page Shuts Out IMF/World Bank Critics

April 20, 2000

The recent protests against IMF and World Bank policies provoked a
and widening of debate on globalization in much of the media, yet the New
York Times' op-ed page has taken a remarkably one-sided approach to the

The Times has run five op-eds critical of the Mobilization for Global
Justice, and none that supported it, or even treated its concerns
respectfully ("Saving the Lost World," by Thomas L. Friedman, 3/31/00;
"Parsing the Protests," by Thomas L. Friedman, 4/14 /00; "Learning to Love
the  I.M.F.,"  by E. M. Brown, 4/18/00; "A Real Nut Case," by Paul
4/19/00; and "Protesting, but Why?,"  by David Frum, 4/19/00).

On April 19, David Frum unleashed an unsubstantiated diatribe against the
activists who gathered in Washington, D.C., describing them as incoherent,
intellectually gutless people who "hate dams and airports and economists."
On the same day, Paul Krugman caricatured the recommendations of World
critics, dismissing them as the "rarely fact-checked" notions of "a small,
relatively privileged minority" that would harm the poor. E. M. Brown
portrayed the activists as idealistic but misinformed. Thomas L. Friedman,
after misrepresenting the analyses of many IMF/World Bank critics, angrily
concluded that they are "contemptible," a group of "economic quacks" who
deserved to be labeled "The Coalition to Keep the World's Poor People
and given "the back of your hand."

When will critics of the World Bank and IMF get to speak for themselves on
the Times op-ed page?  Walden Bello, Njoki Njoroge Njeheu, Mark Weisbrot,
Juliette Beck, Cheryl Payer and Ralph Nader all come to mind as experts
qualified to represent the many perspectives on hand in D.C. Instead, the
Times has chosen to feature writers that denigrate and insult their
concerns, goals and considerable expertise. A debate this one-sided does a
great disservice to readers of the paper.

ACTION: If you are concerned that the Times' op-ed page has so far
the complex issues raised by the protesters in D.C. only by featuring
vitriolic-- and, in many cases, substantially inaccurate-- attacks on
contact the paper directly.

New York Times
Katherine J. Roberts, Op-Ed Page Editor
Fax: (212) 556-4100
Voicemail: (212) 556-3652


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