DANIEL VAUGHAN: The New York Times Has a Communism Problem

October 2, 2017

There’s an old joke from the Soviets about a man who asks, “Is it true, are our labor camps excellent?” And another man replies, “Yes! We sent a man there five years ago to investigate. He has not returned yet, but we hear he likes it.”

Someone forgot to let The New York Times in on the joke. The Times opinion columnists have spent the last month promoting 20th century communism, pushing North Korean propaganda to attack President Trump, and “admiring” Anthony Weiner after his conviction.

The first column appeared in the Sunday edition, where the writer Kristen R. Ghodsee, a professor of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies at Bowdoin University, wrote the following piece: “Why Women Had Better Sex Under Socialism.” The piece gave a glowing review of all the “rights” granted to Eastern Bloc women, while quietly sidestepping the horrors of Soviet life.

The column was part of the Times’ look back at the impact of Communism over the past 100 years. Sex wasn’t the only positive spin put on communism; they also polished up Mao. A column gushed at how Communist Dictator Mao Zedong made women’s lives better under communism while attacking western capitalism. Communism, they’d have you believe, was entirely progressive.

Perhaps the New York Times should revisit the gulags and mass graves of communism from the 20th Century. Because if they did that, they’d know who was giving these rave reviews of communism: those untouched by it.

Soviet and Maoist communists and their progeny murdered approximately 94 million individuals. Those that avoided death entered a life of poverty, neglect, and state coerced activities. Political purges killed men and women who resisted communism in waves.

It’s not the first time the Times has been caught whitewashing communism’s brutal impact on the world. Pulitzer Prize winner Walter Duranty led the charge in Western media in supporting Soviet propaganda regarding the man-made famine from 1932-33 in Ukraine.

The “Denial of Holodomor” helped cover up Soviet genocide against Ukrainians. The Soviets knew a famine was coming and gradually cut off rations and supplies to Ukrainians to starve the population. Officials denied the very existence of the famine, and the denials were widely repeated by Western journalists like Duranty.

Duranty was fully aware of the famine, what caused it, and that the Soviets were covering their atrocity up through propaganda, lies, and manipulation. His support for worldwide communism overruled his commitment to reporting the truth, and he infamously quipped, “to put it brutally—you can’t make an omelet without breaking eggs.”

The eggs that needed breaking: Ukranian dissidents who didn’t want communist rule over their people or country. The Times refused to return Duranty’s Pulitzer prize, even though they knew his reports were false.

From 1932 to the past week of communist puff pieces, it’s hard to see how the Times has shifted from a pro-communist stance. They’re commissioning gender studies professors and freelancers to dig through the failed collapse of communism to find any positive spin. All the while they ignore the incredible human toll of communism on humanity.

Propping up communism didn’t complete the banner week for the Times; they also needed to hit Donald Trump on his response to North Korea. They have columnist Nicholas Kristof in North Korea reporting on what he sees on the ground. One Kristof post claimed that after a Trump speech, thousands of North Koreans were joining the military to prepare for war against America.

The not so subtle point: Donald Trump is to blame for all the escalation, and North Koreans just want to defend their homeland. What’s left out: Kristof is only meeting the people the North Koreans want him to report on for the Times.

Anyone the North Koreans put in front of a western microphone is coerced to tell a story the regime wants. There is no truth. Which sadly makes Kristof nothing but a useless idiot, like Duranty and the USSR, for North Korean propaganda.

Which brings me to the real point here: what type of regressive moral culture does the New York Times have that it spends time running interference for the brutal dictatorships of communism, and then sending columnists out to push North Korean propaganda just to hit a sitting President they don’t like?

It is one thing to speak truth to power. It is another to prop up failed ideologies or support evil regimes just to score cheap political points in a domestic quarrel with the President.

After the riots in Charlottesville, the Times criticized President Trump for his “very fine people” remarks regarding white supremacists. But they’re doing the same thing with an even worse crowd of actual communists and fascists.

What we’re witnessing, from Duranty to the present is a culture of moral relativism at the New York Times. They see nothing morally wrong with any ideology on their side, and everything wrong with any idea even slightly to the right. The popular term for this during the 2016 election was a political bubble. A more apt description would be blinders, as in for a horse.

The Times is marching towards their vision of what the world should be and purposely blinding themselves to the destruction resulting from that view. In this case, they’re propping up communism and giving a platform to North Korean propaganda to hit Trump.

No matter what the scandal is on the left, you can rest assured that the New York Times will find the best in that person. They have their very fine people to support. To wit, after he was found guilty of sexting a minor and sent to prison, the Times opinion pages ran the following piece: “Why I Admire Anthony Weiner.

You can’t make this stuff up.

But rest assured, the Times will return to the “war on women” soon enough, and all the usual suspects will get trotted out. Just know that they admire Anthony Weiner and think women should support regressive communist regimes because it’ll improve your sex life in ways Cosmopolitan Magazine can’t imagine.

If the New York Times were reporting on the communist labor camps today, you could bet that although they had never seen them in person, they had heard on “good authority” that the labor camps were excellent and everyone was happy.

Unless you’re an egg that needs cracking.

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Daniel Vaughan

Daniel Vaughan is a columnist for the Conservative Institute and lawyer in Nashville, Tennessee. He has degrees from Middle Tennessee State University and Regent University School of Law. His work can be found on the Conservative Institute's website, or you can receive his columns and free weekly newsletter at The Beltway Outsiders. Connect with him on Twitter at @dvaughanCI.