November 9, 2004

NYT...looking weak and foolish...

The NYT had a letter from President Bush's uncle yesterday, expressing dismay that the NYT Book Review gave a puff-piece review to that vile scandal-monger Kitty Kelly's book on the Bush family...

...As in any big family there will always be one or two disgruntled exiles, and, not surprisingly, Kelley has used these for some of her material. That they have in some cases retracted the statements doesn't seem to have fazed Ted Widmer, your reviewer, who cites them anyway.

Abundantly clear is the fact that the timing of the release of this book, so close to the election, was clearly designed to enrich Kelley and Doubleday, her publisher. They have greedily published for large monetary gain a book designed by lies, distortion and fabrication to hurt and cause emotional distress to a large, closely knit family.

Might one assume that, by giving this trash such a prominent review, the editors of the Book Review could have been trying to give a slight boost to the candidacy of J. F. Kerry?...(thanks to PowerLine)

A literary journal has a lot of power to shape the reviews it gets, by who it chooses to write them. So who was asked to write this one? You would think, given the circumstances, it would be someone authoritative and respected, wouldn't you? No, it was a Ted Widmer, a former Clinton speechwriter who I've certainly never heard of.

I've read a good deal about the Bush family. They are as decent and honorable a crowd as you are likely to find. Quite unlike the Kennedys. And hard-working; they have more money than you or I, but not the kind of dough that lets them live in idleness. Bush senior, after leaving the presidency, put in about a decade's worth of work earning money to buy the famous Kennebunkport compound from his aunt, to save it from development and preserve it for the whole family.

By the way, if you want something very funny to read, I recommend The Belles Lettres Papers, by Charles Simmons. It's a maliciously witty fictional look at the world of book-reviewing and best-seller lists, by a former editor of the NYT Book Review.

Posted by John Weidner at November 9, 2004 9:22 AM
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