Or: "For the moment, the Savile case has shaken the solid reputation Mr. Thompson had when he left the BBC on Sept. 14." For the moment?
The Times has mostly buried Mark Thompson's role in the ignorance and censorship, largely consigning it to official-sounding paragraphs of denial buried late in its BBC scandal stories, deep inside the paper.
Matt Philbin and Clay Waters of the Media Research Center did some counting. Between Oct. 14 and Nov. 6, the Times ran just 16 stories on the BBC sex-abuse scandal, and only one ran on the front page. By contrast, in a two-month period in 2010, the Times published 64 news stories on Catholic sex abuse scandals, 13 of them on the front page. Twenty of these accusatory articles began with sentences linking Pope Benedict to the scandal with phrases like a "growing pressure to address his role" in allowing abuses.
The Times would like to think there is no one to apply "growing pressure" to them when they look askance at sexual abuse at the BBC. The BBC, in their eyes, is a global enterprise in enlightenment, while the Catholic Church is a global conspiracy of sexual repression and male chauvinism.
In an Oct. 15 column, former Times executive editor Bill Keller sneered at Murdoch, the "BBC-hater," for making this an issue. "So far no evidence has surfaced that Thompson, his successor, or anyone else up top had anything to do with dropping the Savile documentary." Keller even tried to smear the stain over all of Britain. He quoted one BBC insider as saying there was ''a kind of national conspiracy which united all of us ... and together we colluded with him.''
Keller, by contrast, wrote a scabrous column in 2002 insisting that the Catholic sex abuse scandal was "of the pope's making." And "The fact that the pope's passing reference to the rape of children as a 'crime' was treated as a bolt of divine enlightenment reflects just how eager we are to let him off the hook ... The scandal is the persistent failure of the church hierarchy to comprehend, to care and to protect."
The scandal today is the persistent failure of Thompson and/or The New York Times hierarchy "to comprehend, to care, and to protect." Keller and Co., heal thyself. Thompson must be dumped.