Author Archive

Articles by Brian Montopoli | Email the Author


  1. Magazine Report

    A Supposedly Good Idea We’ll Probably Never Try Again

    March 8, 2005 02:50 PM

    This, readers, is a good week for your magazine reporter. First and foremost, the Atlantic has a cover story by one David Foster Wallace, whose knowing and discursive sort of meta deconstruction of his subjects so excites him (that... Continue reading

  2. Politics

    Read Between the Lines - or Miss the Story?

    March 7, 2005 03:55 PM

    Yesterday, Matthew Yglesias wrote on his blog about a panel discussion he participated in with Washington Post reporter Mike Allen. Yglesias, according to his account, said that journalists often try to act as "neutral arbiters" between opposing parties, and... Continue reading

  3. Politics

    America Must Change, Right Now - Well, Maybe

    March 7, 2005 02:55 PM

    Here's the subhead of this month's Washington Monthly cover story, "The Case for The Draft": America can remain the world's superpower. Or it can maintain its current all-volunteer military. It can't do both. And here's the last paragraph of... Continue reading

  4. Politics

    Terror as a Label

    March 7, 2005 11:27 AM

    By Brian Montopoli President Bush, we now well know, is drawn to dramatic phrases designed to stir emotions rather than concrete statements that convey a specific meaning. When Bush says something like "freedom is on the march," Americans have... Continue reading

  5. Behind the News

    “But It Says It Right Here in the Press Release!”

    March 1, 2005 04:37 PM

    Here's some of what you learned if you read Editor & Publisher's article today on the New York Times' decision to replace William Safire with John Tierney on its op-ed page: -- Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. finds Tierney "a... Continue reading

  6. Behind the News

    Being and Nothingness: The Los Angeles Times asks, “What Is a Journalist?”

    February 25, 2005 04:01 PM

    The Los Angeles Times ran a curious piece today which attempts to brush off the Jeff Gannon/Jim Guckert mess as little more than another wacky episode in a lovable White House briefing room full of rakes, flakes and raconteurs.... Continue reading

  7. Behind the News

    “Never Explain, Never Apologize”

    February 24, 2005 03:58 PM

    Doug Wead, the man who released tapes of his private conversations with President Bush, has had a tough week. After the New York Times ran a story about the tapes on Sunday, pundits quickly pointed out that Wead had a... Continue reading

  8. The Water Cooler

    Richard Falk Talks About the New York Times

    February 23, 2005 01:29 PM

    There aren't a lot of people who don't have a problem with the New York Times these days. Those on the far left dismiss it as a lackey running dog of imperial capitalism, reluctant to ask tough questions of those... Continue reading

  9. The Water Cooler

    Joan Walsh on Losing Subscriptions Over the Ohio Election, Conservative Ideological Crusades, and Being Compared to Judith Miller

    February 18, 2005 03:49 PM

    Joan Walsh Joan Walsh is the new editor-in-chief of She joined Salon as its first full-time news editor in 1998 and became managing editor in 2004.... Continue reading

  10. Blog Report

    Voices in the Wind

    February 17, 2005 02:02 PM

    Excuse me, bloggers? Can I have a moment of your time? I know you're busy and everything -- that "Daily Show" segment last night was pretty awesome -- but I'm trying to figure something out. I've scrolled through hundreds... Continue reading

  11. Blog Report

    Mail-order Brides, Cities on a Hill, and the Anti-Gannon

    February 16, 2005 12:45 PM

    We missed this on Monday, but it's just too good to ignore: Up-and-coming blogger "Libertarian Girl," it turns out, is a Russian mail-order bride. Well, kinda. A commenter at the blog Catallarchy noticed that the picture on the Libertarian... Continue reading

  12. Blog Report

    All Jordan, All Gannon, (Nearly) All the Time

    February 14, 2005 03:46 PM

    Last week, The Brad Blog informs us, the good folks at posted a photo of a nuclear plant in North Korea. Also last week, posted a photo of a nuclear plant in Iran. A Brad Blog tipster with... Continue reading

  13. Behind the News

    Out Come the Talons

    February 10, 2005 01:15 PM

    As you likely know by now, critics of the White House press corps don't have "Jeff Gannon" to kick around anymore. Gannon, whose real name is James D. Guckert, quit his post at the conservative Talon News, a website operated... Continue reading

  14. Magazine Report

    News Magazines, Cast Adrift, Turn to … News!

    February 8, 2005 04:01 PM

    For once, well-reported, smartly written stories of import grace the covers of the Big Three newsweeklies -- no more "What Would Jesus Eat?" at least for the time being. Newsweek provides a Social Security primer, Time tells us... Continue reading

  15. The Water Cooler

    Ed Gordon on Cozy Relationships, Journalists Who Don’t Listen, and Chatting With Trent Lott on BET

    February 4, 2005 12:29 PM

    Ed Gordon Ed Gordon is the host of National Public Radio's "News and Notes with Ed Gordon." He is an on-air contributor to "60 Minutes Wednesday" on... Continue reading

  16. Behind the News

    Well, Somebody’s Unstable

    February 1, 2005 03:07 PM

    Last week, a piece of paper covered with doodles and notes was found on Tony Blair's desk at the Davos World Economic Forum. The British press seized on the occasion and asked handwriting experts to analyze what was assumed to... Continue reading

  17. Politics

    It Helps to Remember that the Wolves Arrive in Sheepskins

    January 31, 2005 03:04 PM

    One of the most striking developments to come out of the three payola flaps involving conservative pundits that have surfaced recently -- the first involving Armstrong Williams, who took $240,000 from the Department of Education to promote the No Child... Continue reading

  18. Politics

    Inauguration 1984 2005

    January 31, 2005 01:42 PM

    If you missed Paul Farhi's Washington Post report on the "minders" that the Bush administration was kind enough to provide to reporters at the president's various inaugural balls, stop what you're doing, get rid of any lingering distractions, and go... Continue reading

  19. Blog Report

    John Burns, James Wolcott and Assorted Rabble

    January 27, 2005 12:58 PM

    The fearless John Burns of the New York Times is regarded by his colleagues and competitors to be one of the -- if not the -- premier reporters in Iraq. So it's not surprising that Burns' starkly depressing Baghdad dispatch... Continue reading

  20. Blog Report

    Popcorn, Tantrums and Chest Hair

    January 26, 2005 11:02 AM

    Warblogger Rusty Shackleford has the goods on American hostage Roy Hallums, who was shown pleading for his life in a video released yesterday. In the tape, Hallums says that he is "not asking for any help from President Bush... Continue reading

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