Saturday, July 21, 2012

Greenwald to The Guardian

Here's a little mindless minutia for a Saturday afternoon: 

Some of you may have heard by now that Glenn Greenwald will be leaving Salon next month and taking up writing residence at The Guardian. I suppose that it shouldn't come as a shock to anyone that when a British paper goes looking for a columnist to headline their expanding U.S. edition, they pick someone who writes about U.S. politics from Brazil ;-)

But actually I'm looking forward to it.

A couple of years ago I started commenting on Michael Tomasky's blog at The Guardian. Tomasky does a pretty good job of keeping his ear to the ground about what's driving the political conversation in this country. Whether I agreed with his take or not - talking about what he's writing about means that you're in the thick of the fault lines in American politics.

But the other thing that drew me there was that he had assembled a group of commenters that spanned the range on the political continuum. These days with our polarized media, there aren't many places you can have meaningful discussions (not necessarily agreement) with people who are everything from extreme leftists to moderates to blue dogs to conservatives to extreme rightists. But that's what I found there.

And then Tomasky left and went to The Beast. Back at The Guardian, they tried replacing him with Anna Marie Cox (she of Wonkette fame). I knew that was going to be a major fail the minute I heard about it. Ms. Cox tends to embrace cynicism as her point of departure and then focuses her writing on whatever seems obscure to the general public.

So The Guardian has been trying to find a way to jump start this new U.S. edition and will now build it around Greenwald. You can be sure that GG will bring his crew of bots along with him from Salon. On that front, his new employer will reap the benefits of more clicks and eyeballs. But they also now brand themselves firmly in the camp of the very small contingent in American politics that cling to progressive poutrage. They'll be catering to that ever shrinking market that doesn't see any difference between Republicans and Democrats. In other words, the margins of the political conversation in this country.

What I'll look forward to is engaging in the comments section. Its the reason I went to The Guardian in the first place...I love dissenting opinions. Heaven knows that with GG there - I'll find plenty of those.


  1. So the question now is -- will Salon become or less inclined to poutrage absent Greenwald? I like some of their cultural commentary. But between Joan Walsh's race-baiting (lying about Ishmael Reed's NY Times op/ed and then failing to apologize for her deliberate misrepresentations were the final straw for me) and Greenwald's Daily Bash Obama screeds, I seldom had a reason to follow their political writing.

    1. What we'd all love to know is whether GG leaving Salon was his idea or not. If it wasn't, then I expect Salon might be moving in a new direction.