Jill Abramson, axed editor of the New York Times, made a sensational plea to her supporters in the media last night to button it about alleged pay inequality and her brusque sacking.
“They are doing so much more harm than good,” Abramson wrote in an open letter: “I lost the job because I was crap. That was bad enough. But now the nutters on the net are making sure I never get another one.”
OK, OK, I made that up. Abramson has said nothing of the sort. But my God the woman must be spitting tacks at the ranks of male feminists in the American liberal media corps, who have been bleating on her behalf since she got the chop.
Forced to respond to an avalanche of false allegations, Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., according to a tweet from a Times reporter last night, issued the following statement, comprehensively refuting claims of unfairness in pay and shedding further light on why Abramson was shown the door:
In case your eyesight isn’t up to making out that text, it accuses her of: “arbitrary decision-making, a failure to consult and bring colleagues with her, inadequate communication and the public mistreatment of colleagues.”
She was warned “several times” about her bullying behavior, but failed to remedy it. Evidently she was deeply unpopular with subordinates.
In a word: ouch. History will now remember Abramson as the woman who couldn’t hack the top job. Advocates for women in the workplace just lost one of their most powerful and revered role models.
Understandably–particularly given the newspaper’s liberal attitudes–the Times could not allow false allegations to stand. It was always going to respond. And Sulzberger had little choice but to drop Abramson in the merde. The facts of the case seem clear: she was rude, authoritarian and couldn’t perform the functions of her job. And that will be her enduring legacy.
The absurdity of it is that this situation was entirely avoidable. By deploying hysteria instead of reasoned questioning, campaigners have ensured that the lingering bad smell around her speedy dismissal has morphed into the shattered legacy of “another bossy, incompetent broad.”
Not quite what the frothing feminists were hoping for, is it? As my colleague James Delingpole is fond of saying: it’d take a heart of stone not to laugh.
Let’s hope the grievance-mongers have learned their lesson by the time Anna Wintour retires, or is let go, from Condé Nast. Because something tells me Wintour will bite back at the idiotic commentariat and their well-meaning but bone-headed interjections.