Let’s admit it. No one on this blog, and virtually no thinking person, mourns Bill Kristol’s loss of his weekly column at The New York Times. It is prime real estate, and one can only look at Kristol’s yearlong sinecure there and say: what in God’s name was the Gray Lady thinking? Mr. Bill Keller, you have got some serious ‘splainin’ to do. Mr. Andrew Rosenthal (editorial page editor), no snap decisions allowed. Having Jayson Blair and Judith Miller (she of the quivering aspens) associated with your brand is not enough self-inflicted damage?
So we come not to bury Bill Kristol (although I’m down with that), nor to praise him, but to discuss some replacements for him. There are thinking and breathing conservatives out there, who observe well and write even better. The New York Times is in search of a new columnist.
Let’s help in that effort. I challenge backchannelers to name and claim their conservative columnist candidate to replace the ignoble (but well connected!) Kristol scion.
To that effect: I am thinking Christopher Caldwell, now a Financial Times columnist, who is famous for his 1998 “Southern Captivity of the GOP” Atlantic Monthly article. That one was superbly written; thought for years that David Brooks had penned it. (That used to be high praise from me.)
Need to reread of “Southern Captivity” to see how it has fared with 10 years time; also some other Caldwell work.
Trivia item: CCaldwell is Robert (Prince of Darkness) Novak’s son in law, but that cannot fairly be held against him. If anything, it appears he has strengthened the Novak family gene pool.
SO: I shall make my case for Caldwell, in coming days. Unless (dog’s prerogative) I encounter an even better candidate during my investigations.
Any challenges from other backchannelers (or impassioned lurkers) who would nominate another columnist to replace Kristol?
Obviously, the Times cannot do it on their own. For all we know, they are considering Fred Hiatt (WaPost editorial page editor and neocon masseur; the leading reason I no longer subscribe to Katharine Graham’s once outstanding newspaper).
They need help, folks. Step up to the plate!