When William Kristol was given a regular column on the New York Times’s op-ed pages, there was a lot of criticism of the decision from us readers. A conservative columnist on a liberal op-ed page? What were they thinking?
But, really, having a conservative column to read isn’t a bad thing. One needs an opposing viewpoint to consider. One needs thoughtful opinions from the other side. I read George Will, sometimes, for example, and I used to enjoy a good William F. Buckley column when he was alive, whether or not I agreed with what he had to say.
No, the galling part was the choice of Mr Kristol, a “Fox News” type of conservative. William Kristol isn’t Michelle Malkin, say, nor Ann Coulter, either of whom would have taken them beyond the brink. But neither is he the sort of columnist I’d expect to find with a contrasting point of view that I’d want to read.
And so I was not surprised when he wasn’t. His columns haven’t been insightful nor entertaining. He hasn’t had anything to say that was worth the print space or the Internet bandwidth to carry it. The experiment was every bit as silly as I thought it’d be.
I am, therefore, happy to see that it’s coming to an end. William Kristol has written his last regular column for the New York Times.
And that last column is as useless as the ones that came before it. He praises Ronald Reagan for putting conservatism back in front of the country. He hopes that Barack Obama will bring in a conservative liberalism that he — Mr Kristol — can live with. Blather, blather, blather.
The Times won’t say what they’ll do about replacing his pen with another conservative one. They’ll only say that they have “some interesting plans.”
That they may. In any case, I won’t miss William Kristol’s column at all.