[Ed. – Fire, sword, famine, yada yada boom.]
This Fred Ryan cranks the Reaganmeter dangerously into the red. He started working for Reagan in 1982 as “Deputy Director of Presidential Appointments and Scheduling.” After various promotions, he eventually rose to become a top aide to Reagan in the latter years of his administration. And then he followed Reagan out of office, serving as his post-presidential chief of staff from 1989 to 1995. Since then? …Well, more Reagan stuff: …
One might say Ryan is “pro-Reagan,” in other words. A lot of people, for whatever reason, are. But we’re talking about the world’s No. 1 Reagan superfan, here. And now the Washington Post’s editorial board answers to him. This is news. (In his previous non-Reagan work, Ryan served as CEO of Politico. He helped co-found the organization back in the “old days” of 2007, when it was known as THE POLITICO and survived on Drudge links.)
Ryan is promising “editorial independence” and blah blah blah, like all right-wing publishers do when they take over a media property. And that may or may not turn out to be a lie. Assuming he were to press his own views on the editorial board, though, just how much difference would that make? Very little on the foreign policy side. The post’s editorial board is already run by editor Fred Hiatt and his deputy, Jackson Diehl, who run a comically hawkish all-war-all-the-time shop. On domestic policy, the Post is vaguely center-left — generally supportive of government programs’ ability to effect change, but also priggishly concerned about bad manners.
Reagan stuff aside, what a lame, classically Washington choice this is from Jeff Bezos: some Reaganite lawyer. Just when it looked like the Post was finally pulling its head out of its ass, it’s pulled right back in.