Speaking of biz journalism feuds
Holman Jenkins, an editorial page writer for the Wall Street Journal, takes New York Times business reporter Gretchen Morgenson, who has won a Pulitzer Prize, to task in his column in Wednesday’s paper, but does so in a way that only those who have read her articles will know who he is talking about.
In other words, Jenkins doesn’t name Morgenson in his column, which was about a CEO who turned down stock options from his board. Jenkins noted that Morgenson’s piece, in his opinion, failed to include some relevant details.
He wrote, “It struck me then and strikes me now that the problem here wasn’t just journalistic gullibility or a failure to ask the obvious question. It was a lack of any real feel for human beings or messy reality on the part of a reporter known for relentless but unanalytical execrations of CEO pay.
“It was no surprise when the same byline turned up again a few weeks ago above a front-page story airing allegations that John Mack, now the head of Morgan Stanley, had helped a hedge fund engage in insider trading.
“Many paragraphs down, the story acknowledged there was no evidence that Mr. Mack had possessed insider information, or that insider trading had occurred. Rather, the story was apparently justified simply because an ex-SEC attorney, positioning himself a ‘whistleblower,’ claimed he had lost his job because his superiors were afraid of antagonizing the prominent Mr. Mack by allowing the attorney to question him.”
Read more here. John Carney of Dealbreaker noted, “Ordinarily, the Wall Street Journal treats the New York Times business section much like a lot of people who work on Wall Streetâ€”as if it didn’t exist. Today, however, Holman Jenkins takes notice of the paper and isn’t amused at what he finds.”