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Columnist Corrections


Published: February 30, 2004

This page has been created to prove a point; not to in any way, shape, or form claim to be an official New York Times article. Please see the bottom two paragraphs to gain full understanding of the issue.

ADavid Brooks column entitled "Clash of Titans" from March 6, 2004 claimed that the Democratic Party only nominates candidates whose "family had an upper-deck berth on the Mayflower" and that the Republican Party only nominates candidates who own "a ranch the size of Oklahoma". Over the past forty years, none of the the Democratic Party nominees for President were descendents of the original Pilgrims who settled the Massachussets colony. Likewise, none of the Republican party nominees for President have ever owned a ranch the size of Oklahoma. (Go to Article) (Go to Source)(Comment)

A Paul Krugman column entitled "Social Security Scares" from March 5, 2005 stated the Social Security Administration's 2003 Social Security and Medicare Trustees Reports showed "a system in pretty good financial shape". The SSA Trustees Report describes the fundamentals of the financial status of Social Security as "highly problematic" and projects that trust funds will be exhausted in little more than two decades and will "not permit full payment of currently scheduled benefits." The Report states "Medicare's financial difficulties come sooner--and are more severe--than those confronting Social Security." (Go to Article) (Go to Source)(Comment)

A William Safire column entitled "Found: A Smoking Gun" from February 11, 2004 cited an article, "U.S. Says Files Seek Qaeda Aid In Iraq Conflict", which ran in The New York Times the previous day to assert a link between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq. The article cited by Mr. Safire stated that the letter was not evidence of a link between al Qaeda and Ansar al-Islam. The same column also asserted that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi as an "Al Qaeda leader." CIA chief George Tenet testified before the Senate intelligence committee in February 2003 that Zarqawi considered himself and his network "quite independent" of Al Qaeda. (Go to Article) (Go to Source)(Comment)

A Paul Krugman column entitled "Our So-Called Boom" from December 30, 2003 concludes from recent economic data that "an unusually large number of people have given up looking for work." Employment data from the U.S. Department of Labor shows that the government's official measure of "discouraged workers", currently .32% has flucturated between .15% and .45% over the past ten years. There is nothing unusual about the current rate of "discouraged workers". (Go to Article) (Go to Source)(Comment)

A William Safire column entitled "Missing Links Found" from November 23, 2003 cited two articles in The Weekly Standard based on a leaked memo that had been previously repudiated by The Pentagon. The Pentagon issued a public statement which declared that reports claiming that the new information proved there had been contacts between al-Qaeda and Iraq "are inaccurate."(Go to Article) (Go to Source)(Comment)

A Maureen Dowd column entitled "Bewitched, Bothered, Billy-Goated" from November 16, 2003 quoted Rep. George Nethercutt (R-WA) out of context regarding media coverage of Iraq. The quotation was taken from Mr. Nethercutt's remarks to a Seattle-Post Intelligencer reporter. The full text of his remarks follows: "So the story is better than we might be led to believe in the news. I'm just indicting the news people. But it's, it's, it's a bigger and better and more important story than losing a couple of soldiers every day, which, which heaven forbid, is awful." The use of the partial quotation created the false impression that Mr. Nethercutt was indifferent to the death of American soldiers in Iraq. (Go to Article) (Go to Source)(Comment)

A Paul Krugman column entitled "This Can't Go On" from November 4, 2003 quoted Rep. George Nethercutt (R-WA) out of context regarding media coverage of Iraq. The quotation was taken from Mr. Nethercutt's remarks to a Seattle-Post Intelligencer reporter. The full text of his remarks follows: "So the story is better than we might be led to believe in the news. I'm just indicting the news people. But it's, it's, it's a bigger and better and more important story than losing a couple of soldiers every day, which, which heaven forbid, is awful." The use of the partial quotation created the false impression that Mr. Nethercutt was indifferent to the death of American soldiers in Iraq. (Go to Article) (Go to Source)(Comment)

A Maureen Dowd column entitled "Osama's Offspring" from May 14th, 2003 quoted President Bush out of context regarding the threat posed by al-Qaeda terrorists. The quotation was taken from the president's May 5 remarks in Little Rock. The full text of his remarks follows: "That group of terrorists who attacked our country is slowly, but surely, being decimated. Right now, about half of all the top al-Qaeda operatives are either jailed or dead. In either case, they're not a problem anymore." The use of the partial quotation created the false impression that the president was dismissing the threat posed by al-Qaeda as a whole rather than its members who had been killed or apprehended.(Go to Article) (Go to Source)(Comment)


The Times does not welcome information about errors that call for correction in columns written by Times' Op-Ed columnists. Since The New York Times refuses to hold their columnists to any standard of accuracy, The National Debate has taken upon itself to offer this Supplemental Corrections Page for New York Times readers. Messages may be posted on The National Debate web site by click on the (Comment) link at the end of each correction

To reach the real public editor, Daniel Okrent, and ask him to press Times Publisher Arthur Sulzberger to make good on his promise to change The New York Times "columnist correction policy" which currently leaves the decision on whether to issue a correction up to the columnist, e-mail public@nytimes.com or telephone (212) 556-7652.


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