Gray Lady Down
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"Carefully chosen case studies paint a not-so-rosy picture of journalistic integrity at the Gray Lady, and are sure to incite readers, no matter what their political philosophy."

—  Publisher's Weekly

"Gray Lady Down is a valuable and rigorous book, a recitation of the convincing evidence of the New York Times's move to a countercultural and largely anti-American perspective across many fields, and of the deliberate destruction of numerous barriers between opinion and reporting in furtherance of that objective. This is an important development and it is impossible to deny that it is happening."

— Conrad Black, Claremont Review of BooksSummer 2011

"He may be right that Sulzberger’s strategy is turning off more readers than it’s attracting and that it’s weakening the paper’s professional public stature. But more alarming to him, what he calls the Times' slavish devotion to the ideology of diversity” may keep certain facts and people from being reported on." 

Jim Sleeper, Washington MonthlyMay/June 2011
— McGowan Rebuttal, Washington MonthlyJuly/August 2011

"Everyone—with the possible exception of Arthur Ochs “Pinch” Sulzberger Jr., who has presided over the Times’ decline—knows that the paper is in deep, serious trouble. But reading (Gray Lady Down)  serves to bring home the point that, even if you’ve been paying close attention, it’s actually ten times worse than you know.....McGowan piles up incident after incident demonstrating beyond dispute that the New York Times of today is very different from, and far inferior to, the New York Times of a generation ago....(He) deploys the sheer repetitiveness of the problems as a way of making clear that they are systemic ones, not just the result of a few bad actors or bad decisions."

—  National Review, 1/24/2011

"Gray Lady Down is a free-swinging bill of indictment against today's Times....McGowan's assault is worth reading for the details it contains on many genuine journalistic misdemeanors and crimes, embarrassing gaffes by callow Times staffers, and failures to pursue inconvenient stories."

—  Columbia Journalism Review, January

"Author William McGowan has compiled a timely indictment of how the paper lost its way. He catalogs well-known mistakes and the cheerleading and other none-too-subtle ways it puts its thumb on the scales of key stories. He shows how its news coverage of President Obama, gay marriage, immigration, the military, the Duke "rape" case, radicalized Muslims, the Ground Zero mosque, and the war on terror are riddled with omissions, distortions and biases. McGowan blames "an insular group-think" for turning the paper "into a tattered symbol of liberal orthodoxy," adding, "How deeply compromised its principles have become are questions inextricably entwined with the Times' ideological commitments."

—  Michael Goodwin, New York Post

"[Gray Lady Down] is a tough-minded but judicious critique of how the Times has declined under the Baby Boom leadership of publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. Sulzberger, the book argues has replaced the Times historical pledge "to give the news impartially, without fear or favor" with his own promise to "enhance society," particularly by doing away with the "white, straight male version of events." Sulzberger's embrace of multiculturalism (and, often, counterculturalism) has eroded the Times' news coverage in a myriad of ways, according to Gray Lady Down, from a refusal to acknowledge the role of Islamic fundamentalism in terrorist crimes like the Fort Hood shootings to a full-bore holy war against the Duke lacrosse team over the now-discredited rape accusations of a stripper." 

 Glenn Garvin, Miami Herald

"Remember the Times’s coverage of the rape accusations against the Duke lacrosse team? Remember the ins and outs of its relation with Judith Miller during the runup to the Iraq war? Remember Jayson Blair, whose “widespread fabrication and plagiarism represent a profound betrayal of trust and a low point in the 152-year history of the newspaper,” as the Times itself ended up having to admit? McGowan reminds us of those stories and much more besides. Particularly in the chapters on race, homosexuality, and the culture wars, Gray Lady Down recounts all the little bits—the slanting of prose, the prettifying of photographs, the assigning of beats—that add up to an astonishing amount of dishonesty at the newspaper: a raging left-wing agenda masked by the claim to be objectively reporting the news.

  Joseph Bottum, The Weekly Standard

"The New York Times is not just another newspaper. It has long been a major influence on the rest of the media and on public opinion, so its degeneration into a propaganda publication in recent years is a national tragedy. McGowan spells it all out in plain words and with numerous examples."

—  Thomas Sowell, Townhall

"While critical of what he considers the paper’s decline, [MGowan] writes as an admirer of the Times and its place in American history. The problem is that the Times has remained a hugely influential organization even as it has abandoned its once lofty journalistic standards."

         —  Jacob Laksin, City Journal

The arrogance is familiar to readers of the Times.  It’s certainly familiar to readers of William McGowan’s new book, Gray Lady Down: What the Decline and Fall of the New York Times Means for America. Therein, Gray Lady Down depicts a newsroom drenched in “subtle and not-so-subtle anti-Americanism, anti-bourgeois hauteur, hypersensitivity toward ‘victim’ groups, double standards, historical shallowness, intellectual dishonesty, cultural relativism, moral righteousness and sanctimony."

—  Daniel J. Flynn, Human Events 

"The book is excellent it really explains a lot." 

—  Claire Berlinski, Ricochet

"“Gray Lady Down – What The Decline And Fall Of The New York Times Means For America” by William McGowan (from Encounter Books), is a carefully researched and devastatingly convincing critique of the Times losing its commitment to objective reporting."

—  Clay Waters, Timeswatch

"Almost ten years ago veteran journalist William McGowan wrote Coloring the News, a devastating look at how a lethal cocktail of political correctness, multiculturalism, and what is now commonly known as an obsession with "social justice" helped lobotomize the newspaper industry's collective ability to reason. As Mark Steyn once said, "in 1978, having driven your print competitors out of business, you could afford to be a dull city newspaper," but by the late 1990s, PC and bias made them even more sclerotic, effete and unreadable... Of course, there's one newpaper in particular that the words PC sclerotic and effete sum up instantly, and it's the subject of McGowan's newest book. It's titled Gray Lady Down: What the Decline and Fall of the New York Times Means for America."

  Ed Driscoll, Pajamas Media

"In a sensational new book Gray Lady Down: What the Decline and Fall of the New York Times Means for America, we learn just what makes this iconic publication tick. Indeed, tick, tick, tick, the old gray lady is about to blow up into irrelevancy....McGowan expertly presents the trouble spots that plague the Times today...One can cope psychologically with learning to consume news in new ways, but the death of a once great journalistic icon is a tough pill to swallow..."

  Jim Fletcher,

"Fascinating look inside the NYT and the changes that have taken place since Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., took over the management of the Times... Highly recommended."


Advance Praise

“A surprisingly sincere critique from the right of America’s leading newspaper.   Here is a thoughtful, vividly supported expose from a journalist who loves newspapers and the Times.  As American journalism is roiled by technology and financial pressures McGowan succeeds in reminding us that arrogance and a limited world view are also to blame for the troubles of even our most celebrated newspapers.”

— Juan Williams, author, NPR and FOX News Channel

"Like many New York Times readers, I got the queasy feeling that something fundamental had changed at the paper with Arthur "Pinch" Sulzberger Jr.'s ascendancy in the early1990s. America's most important paper became somehow more unashamed of its political bias and more insulated.  By skillfully reporting the telling anecdotes, disturbing incidents and outright scandals of thepast two decades, William McGowan shows us that things at the Times aren't as bad as we'd thought. They're worse! If he had common sense, Pinch Sulzberger would read ths book and promptly resign. But if he had common sense he wouldn't be Pinch Sulzberger."

— Mickey Kaus, Newsweek

“Those of us who spent years happily reading the New York Times (not to mention those who—like me—spent years happily working at the New York Times) need to read William McGowan’s book to better understand how and why the Gray Lady has fallen on such hard times. The goal is not schadenfreude. The goal is to help her recover from what ails her.”

— Clifford D. May, President, Foundation for Defense of Democracies; former Times reporter, editor, foreign and Washington correspondent

“McGowan’s Gray Lady Down has the great strength of showing how the Times's multicultural relativism on the home front and xenophilia abroad left it completely flatfooted when it was called upon to report on the rise of Islamic extremism in America. The Times has developed a dangerous capacity to discover “moderation”in what should be seen as Islamist maximalism and cultural practices and values squarely at odds with American norms.

— Fred Siegel,
Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a Scholar in Residence at St. Francis College in Brooklyn


Praise for 

Coloring the News


“Among many of the things in this book, McGowan highlights the clumsy, bureaucratic instruments that some news organizations have institutionalized for monitoring racial, ethnic, and sexual fairness… He also examines the climate of righteous denial and moral preening that discourages the journalistic establishment from needed self-criticism.”

— Rush Limbaugh, Read more from Rush HERE...

“I’ve found great resonance in [Coloring the News]. As someone who said for many years that political correctness is all about elevating sensitivity over truth, I think [McGowan has] hit a nerve.”

— Bill Maher, Politically Incorrect

“Bill McGowan should have won a Pulitzer for Coloring the News. As it happens, the book did win a National Press Club Award and sold reasonably well, but it should have sold phenomenally. The book should have been displayed on every coffee table in Americabecause it mattered.”

— The Weekly Standard

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