Michael Tomasky

Michael Tomasky is the American editor-at-large of the Guardian (UK). He was executive editor of the Prospect from 2003 to 2006.

Recent Articles

Switching Channels

One of the ways in which conservatives have (if I may) outfoxed liberals on the question of media is that conservatives have turned to the private sector for relief and liberals to the public. As we all know, back in the 1970s, when conservatives concluded -- and accurately so, in those days -- that they were outnumbered on the airwaves and in the op-ed columns, they decided to correct the imbalance by building their own media. The New York Post , The Washington Times , Rush Limbaugh and his hell spawns, The Weekly Standard , and FOX News: As we have learned all too emphatically, two daily newspapers, vast radio networks, and an intellectual magazine (or two, counting the already extant National Review ) -- all anchored by the cable-news channel, which bestows the television medium's uniquely mystical imprimatur on the whole enterprise -- have proven to be a pretty enviable and effective operation. By contrast, liberals have mostly, during this onslaught, sought redress from the...

What Rudy Believes

Gun control? Welcoming immigrants? A woman's right to choose? Never mind his past positions. The only -ism that Rudy Giuliani believes in is sadism.


A BETTER GALLON OF MILK. I think Ezra was right the other day -- it�s silly to expect Rudy Giuliani to know the price of a gallon of milk. For one thing, he�s an empty-nester who might not even buy milk. For another, if he does, he or Judy undoubtedly buys it at a Korean deli on the Upper East Side, where it�s easily north of $4 and, if organic or grass-fed or something like that, probably closer to $7. So he could have given an entirely truthful answer that would have seemed, to his questioner, insanely �out of touch.� However, there are some things presidential candidates ought to be able to attach a number to, aren�t there? Here are 10, for starters, that I think a candidate kinda sorta oughta have a handle on. If you�re like me you�ll be close on some and pretty far off on others, but then, we�re not running for president: 1. The median U.S. household income. 2. The median salary of a schoolteacher (chart gives a range...


�68 AND ALL THAT. I was genuinely surprised by the offense taken by some to my concluding line in my Martin Luther King post , which said, �Don�t trust aging lefties who tell you �68 was a good year because they really shook the system.� Several commenters wrote in to say they were of a certain generation and considered that year living hell; one or two asked me to produce an actual aging leftie who would utter such a thing. That I admit I can�t do on the spur of the moment, but I can say this much. When I was a young adult in the late 1980s, I was a lot more of an actual leftie as opposed to the boring mainstream liberal I�ve since become. I was living in New York, and in the circles I was running in, really at that point looking up to the lefties of the generation before me because they�d been at the barricades during a heady time and all that, it just seemed to me based on the way people talked that it was pretty much a given...


BUT SHE�S DESTROYING OUR FOREIGN POLICY! The Syrians are claiming credit, according to the excellent Julian Borger in The Guaridan , for persuading Iran of the �foolishness� of continuing to detain the British sailors and marines. Uh, who was in Syria yesterday? Wouldn�t it be interesting if it turns out that Nancy Pelosi played some sort of role, even a rhetorical one, in encouraging Syria to encourage Iran to release the 15? It doesn�t seem impossible to me that Syrian officials heard a plea from a reasonable, non-war-obsessed and non-region-destroying American and took it into consideration. Of course, if this turns out to be the case, then she�ll just be accused of negotiating with state terror-sponsors. And this is something the Bush administration never does, as we all know. The fact that the United States is now apparently going to let Iranian officials have contact with the five Iranian nationals being held in Iraq is entirely...