The Nossiter Net
The net that shall enmesh them all
Edited, Written, and Published by Josh Nossiter
Life Without the NYT?
Monday, June 15th, 2009
The Nossiter Net is cast  to
snare some of  the riper
rascalities of the day.  
Send a letter to the
$845.00 for a newspaper?! That's the annual cost for
home delivery of the New York Times at their new
rate, a 13% increase over the old price. If the
Timesmen are trying to hasten the demise of the Daily
Newspaper Reader, an extinction already taking place at
an alarming pace, they are going about it in the right
way. It's enough to make even lifelong subscribers
wonder what life would be like with no morning paper
propped against the coffee pot. It prompted this
particular subscriber to prepare an accounting,
Robinson Crusoe style, of the costs and benefits of
doing without the NYT:

On the plus side, no more of that blatherskite David
Brooks. One reads him only by accident anyway, when
the eye wanders involuntarily to his portion of the op-ed
page. But even skimmed by mistake, his leaden prose,
unnatural worship of Ronald Reagan, infantile
attachment to what a real journalist used to call country
club wisdom, the comfortable philosophy of prosperous
well-fed men gathered around the 19th hole, frightening
fondness for fatuity and instinctual inclination to inanity,
is enough to ruin a morning. He never will be missed.

On the facing page, the letters to the editor  can likewise
be consigned to oblivion. This used to be one of the
more entertaining features of the newspaper. Now
letters appear to be hand-picked for pomposity, self-
righteousness, ignorance, and humorlessness. Either
that or they are edited to remove all evidence of wit, or
indeed of any mental activity whatever. It defies belief
that all Times readers are as boring and stupid as the
ones whose letters appear in the daily paper. Indeed,
the always lively letters in the Sunday books section
proves otherwise. Perhaps the daily letters editor feels
he is doing the reader a favor by producing a feature  
that can be safely skipped. But at the Times new price,
every word of every edition should be utterly

And what has become of the Week in Review? As
fussy a reader as Nero Wolfe made a point of reading
the section cover to cover in the Rex Stout stories. It is
intended to be the home of insight and thoughtful
analysis. But that was then. The most recent edition
included two first page articles of such surpassing
imbecility as to cause the reader to choke on his coffee.
An account of the money trail in the health care debate
was an empty recitation of insurance, pharmaceutical,
and hospital industry propaganda against rationalizing
our medical system. Vaporings on the centrality of
Ronald Reagan in the Republican pantheon simply
reproduced the standard lies about the reign of Ronnie,
such as that he "presided " over the end of a cold war
that was in fact ended by Gorbachev, or that he cut
taxes when what he cut was tax rates, especially for the
rich. Reagan, the Timesman failed to mention,
increased payroll taxes. On a net basis the tax burden
for most people with a paycheck increased.

Once could go on. And on. But fairness demands that
we enumerate what would be lost without the morning
Times. There would be no plausible escape from
conversation at breakfast. An alternative source of
fireplace kindling would have to be found. Lining the
floor for chores like oven cleaning and touch-up
painting would suddenly become vastly more complex.
There would be nothing in the house for the bottom of
the birdcage. On balance, the Times really is

©Joshua C. Nossiter, 2009

                                         * * * * *

A NOTE TO READERS ***Update***
Another three week plus hiatus, from April 30th until May 23rd, again
due to Yahoo Geocities dismal service.

There was nothing new at The Nossiter Net between March 3rd and
April 26th, 2007, nearly eight weeks.  The reason:  tech sabotage.
Yahoo Geocities, the host for this site, denied access for the entire
period.  At one point, they even managed to lose all the files.  In many
discussions with Yahoo staff, no clear explanation was forthcoming.  
No one seemed able to fix the problem.  Ruling out the possibility of
Dubbya’s revenge, I finally wrote to Mr. Terry Semel, Chairman and
CEO of Yahoo! Inc and described the ordeal the page had undergone
since the beginning of March.  A week later, a helpful Yahooo engineer
named Jason called.  He had my letter before him.  Though he couldn’t
do the repairs on on the spot, he promised a fix by the next day.  That
was April 26th, nearly two months after shutting me down in the first

The Nossiter Net apologizes, which is more than I can say for Yahoo

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