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The Washington Times (aka The Moonie Times) is Washington, D.C.'s "other" newspaper, perpetually playing second fiddle to the Washington Post. The Times has lost money ever since its inception in 1982. Why do they keep publishing? Mainly because it is owned by the Unification Church which has pumped over $1.7 billion into the paper to keep it afloat. Although much of the early Times staff came from the defunct Washington Star, the paper's board of directors are all members of the Unification Church and the staff undergoes occasional purges, resignations, and faction fights over the direction of the paper. No less an authority than the Rev. Moon himself has proclaimed the Times a "gift" to America to thank the U.S. for fighting Communism in Korea, or something like that. In 2002 Rev. Moon outdid himself by proclaiming he established the Times "in response to heaven's direction" and that "The Washington Times will become the instrument in spreading the truth about God to the world."
The editorial slant of the Washington Times is notably conservative and partisan in favor of the Republican Party. On occasion, they do some bang-up investigative journalism and muckraking, sometimes on other conservative groups which the Moonies are involved in intramural feuds with. Usually though, the Times is a quaint bore, ever pining for a return to the glory days of the 1850s or 1920s, and Ronald Reagan's befuddled dreams of reactionary radicalism.
The paper promotes all sorts of wingnut curiosities, including various pseudosciences (creationism, anti-environmentalism, global warming denial, false claims about abortion and abstinence-only sex education) and bigotry (homophobia, Islamophobia, anti-secularism).
Notable editorial tics: The Washington Times has an inability to mention gay marriage anywhere in their pages, including AP wire stories, without putting gratuitous scare quotes around "marriage".
John Solomon, formerly of the Washington Post (where he was known for doing frequent hatchet jobs on Harry Reid and John Edwards in the name of investigative journalism) recently took over as the executive editor at the Times, then left under murky circumstances when the paper cut most of its staff and eliminated its sports section and weekend editions.
As of May 1, 2010, the Unification Church cut off the paper's subsidy and the Washington Times was reportedly up for sale. This was scooped March 30 by the Drudge Report and denied at the time by the Times, and reported May 1 in the Washington Post. The paper was sold in September 2010 for $1, apparently back to the elder Rev. Moon to solve a feud over the paper among his sons.
The paper has employed some rather, er, "controversial" columnists, including:
- Sam Francis, the white nationalist who they fired after he got a little bit more racist than usual. Found a warmer spot to roost at the Council of Conservative Citizens before he died.
- Frank Gaffney, Islamophobe extraordinaire and Creeping Sharia conspiracy theorist.
- Peter LaBarbera, rabid homophobe, now heads Americans for Truth About Homosexuality.
- Robert Stacy McCain, member of the neo-Confederate group League of the South.
- Bill Sammon, see also Fox News.
- ...and David Brooks. Never mind, Bobo was far too sane for the Moonie Times and went on to the the other Times.
- ↑ Washington Post: "As of this year, Moon and his businesses have plowed about $1.7 billion into subsidizing the Times, say current and former employees."
- ↑ Examples: Should the paper be neoconservative and a voice for free-market robber barons and foreign policy hawks, or should it be paleoconservative and keep company with neo-Confederates and racialists? Should every staff member give total fealty to Rev. Moon or is fealty to the memory of Ronald Reagan sufficient?
- ↑ In reality it is more or less an attempt by the Moonie cult to insert themselves into the mainstream by owning a major newspaper, much as Christian Science has attempted with the Christian Science Monitor.
- ↑ Washington Post
- ↑ August 2007 headline
- ↑ Editorial style comment
- ↑ http://tpmlivewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/03/wash-times-we-are-not-negotiating-with-any-party-to-sell-the-company.php
- ↑ http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/04/30/AR2010043002043.html
- ↑ http://politics.usnews.com/news/blogs/washington-whispers/2010/8/31/washington-times-sold-for-1-just-like-newsweek.html
- ↑ Meet Robert Stacy McCain, Neo-Confederate Wacko Extraordinaire, Holocaust Controversies