How Maureen Dowd lost her groove
It takes a special type of person to be a columnist. Not only must a columnist have the usual thick skin of any journalist in the newsroom, she or he must also have a sharp mind that never stops working and a wit that can make an unpopular thought seem palpable.
I love reading the opinion pages – and of course, the New York Times has some of the best in the world. In my eyes, Maureen Dowd has been the best of the best for years. Well at least until Hillary Clinton became an official presidential candidate. That is when Dowd lost her ability to be objective and in the process lost her groove.
Dowd’s total lack of objectivity toward Hillary Clinton, combined with her love fest for Barack Obama, has harmed her credibility immeasurably. Personally, I think a columnist should attempt to remain as neutral as possible on political races, but if that is not possible, at least appear somewhat objective.
Maureen Dowd cannot seem to do this when it comes to Hillary Clinton. Not groovy. Not groovy at all.
I am not suggesting that Dowd must write raving reviews of Senator Clinton, agree with the Clinton platform or even vote for Clinton. But is it really necessary to make Obama the shining hero of almost every column and Clinton the crusty villain?
It seems my favourite columnist is as blind about what her readers want from her as George Bush is about what the American people want from him. Is there no open-minded people left in America? Not even the columnists?
I suppose for the next few months I will have to choose another columnist to be the best of the best and Nicholas Kristof seems like just the right person. He seems to still have his objectivity intact and he is brilliant. His columns are always worth reading – like Dowd’s use to be.
How does Maureen Dowd get her groove back? It will happen the day she gets her objectivity back.