Christopher Daly

Christopher Daly teaches writing and the history of American journalism at Boston University. He has written for The Washington Post, The Atlantic Monthly, The Boston Globe and the Columbia Journalism Review. He is the co-author of Like a Family: The Making of a Southern Cotton Mill World.

Recent Articles

Candidate of the Century

A s the Republicans prepared for their national convention, the party's official Web site welcomed party members to Philadelphia and pointed out helpfully that the city has two airports. In a telling aside, the GOP planners also noted that one of the airports could "accommodate private and corporate planes." Once they get off their jets, the Republicans will engage in ideological time travel and proceed to hash out a platform from the days of the horse and buggy. The official statement of party principles, full of platitudes and hedged with the rhetoric of compromise, is likely to be soon forgotten. But before that happens, it's worth imagining how the platform would read if it were put in plain English and boiled down to its essentials. The bumper-sticker version might be: repeal the 20th century! If you listen to the speeches and read the position papers of George W. Bush, it becomes clear that the Republican candidate and his supporters want an America that looks like this: Income...

The Trust: The Private and Powerful Family Behind The New York Times

Works discussed in this essay: The Trust: The Private and Powerful Family Behind The New York Times, by Susan E. Tifft and Alex S. Jones. Little, Brown; 870 pages. On the evening of June 26, 1996, there was a rare public display of the American Establishment. The setting was the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the nation's pre-eminent bastion of high art. The occasion was a special anniversary for The New York Times , the nation's pre-eminent bastion of serious journalism. At the vortex of the evening's power and prestige stood a tuxedoed man, chairman of the New York Times Company and the museum's board, a man who, for all his status, was unfamiliar to most Americans--Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, known since childhood as "Punch." Although few outsiders could have picked Punch Sulzberger from among the hundreds of politicians, society figures, business executives, and journalists at the Met that night, almost all would recognize the name of his newspaper. The party was a...