Saturday, March 18, 2006

Appreciation To Tim Rutten For Defending Press Freedoms

I just want to express my appreciation and admiration for Times media columnist Tim Rutten for taking such a strong heartfelt stand in today's Calendar Section for freedom of the press, and protection of confidential sources.

Earlier this year, Tim found a lot of fault with New York Times correspondent Judith Miller for her role in the Libby case.

Now, Tim seems to see things in a different light.

Libby, it turns out, wants to subpoena one reporter after another, and the net result could be a highly destructive.

Writers who gather wisdom and change their minds command our admiration. I've always thought well of Rutten's integrity. I think even better of him for acknowledging that he's made a mistake.

Now, Rutten realizes that First Amendment Rights are threatened by the Bush Administration and others.

Tim quotes Clary Pruitt, director of the McClatchy newspaper chain, today as saying, in the Wall Street Journal this week, "Self government depends on civic conversation. which in turn depends on people having a common vocabulary. Without a shared sense of what the problems are, there's little hope of finding solutions. That shared middle--a place where people basically agree about the facts and the issues. even if they differ about what to do about them--is where we believe our responsibilities as newspaper owners lie. And it is under assault by spinmeisters. partisans and ideologues."

Upton Sinclair once wrote, the grand novel, "It Can't Happen Here." It can, if we don't have the Tim Ruttens standing up for us.



Anonymous MichelleH said...

It was an excellent, well written piece. Just one question...why the Calendar section?? I thought this an odd location.

3/19/2006 3:30 PM  
Anonymous Amy Alkon said...

Rutten's a Calendar section columnist, Michelle -- the best one they have in Calendar, in my opinion.

I'm also very disturbed by how hard it's become to get a grasp on what the facts are theses days. It's possible, of course, that "the facts" weren't so solid in the past, but there were fewer news sources, and this feeling now is just a reflection of the growth of media. That could be part of it, but I tend to agree with the guy from McClatchy.

And I, too, always admire a writer with the integrity and guts to acknowledge a mistake. Those are the writers I want to read.

3/25/2006 2:28 PM  
Blogger Timothy Usher said...

Hi Ken,

Nice to see you've got your own blog. I'll be reading through it - just spotted it now searching for stuff on Harry.

I cannot thank you enough for your kind words following his passing. Your article still sits atop my piano.

Tim Usher

4/01/2006 2:08 AM  
Blogger Ed Padgett said...

Good Morning Ken,

I hope your recoverery is a quick one. Thanks again for coming to our dinner and speaking, the men enjoy seeing you.

Get well soon,

4/02/2006 9:31 AM  

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