New York Times fudges on its op-ed expert


A couple of days ago, we rhetorically asked how low the New York Times is willing to go to slime Republicans. The occasion was this ridiculous claptrap op—ed purporting to show that John Bolton shares the psychological characteristics of psychopaths (and business executives!).

The author of the op—ed, Belinda Board,  was identified as "a clinical psychologist based at the University of Surrey and a consultant on organizational psychology" by the New York Times.

The University of Surrey website identifies Ms Board as a PhD candidate, in other words, a student, not a faculty member. Surely, the Times knew that by identifying her as they did they were implying something more than a graduate student status. Moreover, the University of Surrey boasts

Our Department is considered to be one of the biggest departments of psychology in the UK and has over 70 PhD students

so Ms. Board is not exactly a member of a tiny academic elite of doctorate—holding scholars, but rather one of a hoard of would—be psychology laureates at a provincial university. She reported that the "research" on which she based her op—ed was done in 2001, four years ago. We have to wonder what her status was at time. An undergraduate?

This is the kind of "reasearch" and the level of outside "authority" figure the Times will use to attemtp to discredit John Bolton? Shame on Gail Collins, opinion editor of the Times.

Just recently, the Times solemnly promised to work harder to rebuild readers' trust. Is this sort of flim—flammery what they had in mind?

The answer to our rhetorical question is obviously very low, indeed.

Thomas Lifson  5 13 05

UPDATE:  It gets worse.