Reader Dave Clemens writes:
I’m a ’60s liberal academic, registered Independent voter, consumed with anger that the New Republic has forced me to cancel my decades-long subscription. The sublime film criticism of Stanley Kauffmann, Jed Perl’s art criticism, numberless fine book reviews and poems, and intelligent political commentary — gone with the wind. I endured the Glass Affair, winced through Chait’s juvenile “I hate Bush because he reminds me of guys in high school,” even made peace with the magazine’s recent lurch to the Left. I used to recommended TNR and The Weekly Standard to students for balanced political perception. But TNR’s presentation of Beauchamp’s fictions and fabrications just can’t be tolerated. I’m angered but also mournful at what has become of this once fine and important publication. Glass was a journalistic embarrassment; Chait was ludicrous; Beauchamp, though, has put TNR in the gutter.
Strictly speaking, Beauchamp has somehow led “the editors” to put TNR in the gutter. Their nonsensical and contradictory “updates,” their faux “re-reporting,” their “correction” that destroys the thesis of the “Shock troops” column, their tortured silences, have turned an embarrassment into an institutional disgrace. And the disgrace continues and deepens, with this week’s misdirected attack on Bill Kristol by Jonathan Chait.
Following the Clinton damage-control playbook, Fridays have been big days for “the editors.” Their Beauchamp-related statements have occasionally appeared late on Friday afternoons — on July 20, for example, and August 10. In their next “update” — late this afternoon would be nice — perhaps they could address the discovery by Bob Owens, quoting an expert on the record, of TNR’s distortion of his views and of TNR’s phony “re-reporting.” Perhaps they will tell us whether Scott Thomas Beauchamp is taking their calls or responding to their emails and, if so, what he is saying or, if not, what inferences they draw from that.
Or perhaps they will advise readers that they have assembled themselves together with the publisher, the editor-in-chief, and the staff to sing a round of “Turn Out the Lights, the Party’s Over.”
UPDATE: Bob Owens offers up his services to bring TNR’s investigation to a conclusion.