This is from today’s mostly good New York Times lead editorial making recommendations for the Obama administration’s policy toward Latin America.
We have no patience for Mr. ChÃ¡vezâ€™s corrupt and autocratic ways. But the Bush administration did enormous damage to American credibility throughout much of the region when it blessed what turned out to be a failed coup against Mr. ChÃ¡vez.
This is absolutely correct. But the Times editorial writers neglect to remind us who else blessed the failed coup: the New York Times editorial page.
From the April 13, 2002 issue of the Times:
With yesterday’s resignation of President Hugo ChÃ¡vez, Venezuelan democracy is no longer threatened by a would-be dictator. Mr. ChÃ¡vez, a ruinous demagogue, stepped down after the military intervened and handed power to a respected business leader, Pedro Carmona. … Wisely, Washington never publicly demonized Mr. ChÃ¡vez, denying him the role of nationalist martyr. Rightly, his removal was a purely Venezuelan affair.
The New York Times has a long history of holding political and business leaders accountable. By criticizing the Bush administration for doing something that they themselves did, however, the Times appears to be holding itself to a much lower standard.