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Post Axes Froomkin's "White House Watch"

By Andy Alexander

After five and a half years as a regular feature on the Web site, Dan Froomkin’s White House Watch column is being axed.

Froomkin was quietly passing the word today that he was told by The Post that his contract will be terminated in early July.

Post spokeswoman Kris Coratti confirmed it with this response to a query:

“Editors and our research teams are constantly reviewing our online content to ensure we bring readers the most value when they are on our Web site while balancing the need to make the most of our resources. Regrettably, this means that sometimes features must be eliminated, and this time it was the blog that Dan Froomkin freelanced” to The Post’s Web site.

"I’m terribly disappointed. I was told that it had been determined that my White House Watch blog wasn’t 'working' anymore. But from what I could tell, it was still working very well," Froomkin said. "I also thought White House Watch was a great fit with The Washington Post brand, and what its readers reasonably expect from the Post online."

"I think that the future success of our business depends on journalists enthusiastically pursuing accountability and calling it like they see it. That’s what I tried to do every day," he continued. "I’m not sure at this point what I’m going to do next. I may take White House Watch elsewhere, or may try something different."

Froomkin bills his often-irreverent online column as a “pugnacious daily anthology of White House-related items from news Web sites, blogs and other sources.” He does not operate as a White House reporter. Rather, he compiles material about the White House and offers his own commentary, often with a liberal bent.

That slant seemed to attract a large and loyal audience during the Bush administration, but it may have suffered when Barack Obama became president.

Editorial Page Editor Fred Hiatt, whose stable of contributors includes Froomkin, said late Thursday: "With the end of the Bush administration, interest in the blog also diminished. His political orientation was not a factor in our decision."

When it began, the column was called “White house Briefing.” But the name was changed after concerns by some at The Post newspaper that readers might believe Froomkin was a White House reporter, working alongside those offering objective news reporters.

Froomkin has been associated with The Post’s Web site since 1997, when he was a senior producer for political news. He held a number of other positions at the web site before writing his column on contract beginning in early 2004.

By Andy Alexander  | June 18, 2009; 4:03 PM ET
 
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Comments

The utterly predictable, hostile neocon and imperious Charles Krauthammer remains and Dan Froomkin goes. Washington Post, so go I, too.

Posted by: harper-d | June 18, 2009 4:49 PM | Report abuse

I'm appalled. Has the Post decided to fill its pages exclusively with establishment hacks, left and right? Froomkin's work was a great link between traditional media and emerging media, a link to the future. Does the Post really need to make more room for the same tired rants and "observations" from Krauthammer, et.al.? Shame on you.

Posted by: mhaire | June 18, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

This is pathetic. Froomkin has been excellently compiling huge and informative amounts of White House news ever day, and the Post has been consistently trying to stop him, cut him off at the knees and otherwise undermine him. So I guess this was only to be expected. That's one less reason to bother with this amalgamation of local news, celebrity hype and a stable of columnists emanating thin, right-wing piffle.

Posted by: NotoriousBIVALVE | June 18, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

This is a sad moment in the Post's life. Froomkin offered sharp, informed opinion and information about the workings of both the Bush and Obama White Houses, and rounded up a good selection of other material, from standard media to blogs to editorial cartoons. I guess E.J. Dionne and Eugene Robinson are all that are left to weigh against the cheerleaders for war and torture like Will, Krauthammer, Gerson, Kristol, and Kagan. I guess taking on Nixon 35 years ago exhausted the Post's courage and critical abilities for the present and future.

Posted by: VonZeppelin | June 18, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

A baffling decision. Froomkin was the only reason I read the Post at all. I guess I won't have to bother now.

Posted by: OllyMcPherson | June 18, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

I live far away, so I can't cancel a subscription. The least I can do is remove the bookmark from my web browser.

Posted by: cthehill | June 18, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Goodbye, Washington Post.

Posted by: the_Stranger1 | June 18, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Uhm, Froomkin generates a lot more net traffic than anyone else the WaPost has. Who wants to read Richard Cohen's lame work? Who can get through Krauthammers predictable 'Obama is always wrong, torture is good and Isreal is always right' tripe? Or David Broder, master of the obvious, who's words are a recitation of inside the beltway conventional wisdom? Let's not forget George 'did I mention I love baseball' Will? Foomkin is the only writer I'd read every day. Who'd wanna read Fred Hiate's 'And by the way the Iraq War WAS a good idea' crapola? I guess that having ONE voice on the left was too much for the WaPost. The post has no problem with lame-brains like Krauthammer who always speaks from the nut-job Right and hasn't had a fresh opinion since the 1970s, but Froomkin is on the left so he has to go. I hope he has a soft landing. I'll read the WaPo for television and movie reviews, but as for political editorial content, I might as well be reading the Weakly Standard or national Review. My dad was a WW2 vet who read the post every day. He died of cancer in 1982 and is buried in Arlington. I bet he's spinning in his grave over what a s**trag the post has become. Congrats idiots.

Posted by: marcedward1 | June 18, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

As the Post has ceased its relationship with contributing blogger Dan Froomkin, the Post, its readership, and the American public are the poorer for it. This is an extremely poor editorial decision made on the part of the Post. I predict significantly fewer hits on the Post's web edition going forward (due to Froomkin's absence).

Posted by: Buster3 | June 18, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

A very poor decision by the Post. Some other forward-thinking organization will no doubt pick him up.

Posted by: seantolsen | June 18, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

I began reading the Washington Post when I was in law school 20 years ago, and it has been "my" paper ever since - I have stayed true even as I came to disagree with its editorial board more and more frequently. Dan Froomkin's column was one of the last examples of the Post that I fell in love with long ago - smart, brave, honest, critical, intellectually curious, and willing to speak truth to power. This terrible decision forces me to realize that the Post that I loved is gone. Mrs. Graham must be turning over in her grave. I will be canceling my subscription today.

Posted by: mmadd | June 18, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Well, I can get comics and the TV guide elsewhere, so goodbye Wapo. And I just moved here.

What is wrong with you?

Posted by: leftwingrightbrain | June 18, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

It is so baffling that Corratti's Stalinist-like comment justifies firing one of the few innovative voices at the Post.

Can anyone understand that PR, Orwellian statement?

Froomkin, we'll follow you anywhere.

Posted by: spenceradams | June 18, 2009 5:27 PM | Report abuse


Izzy Stone had to start his own newspaper--

I'll read yours, wherever you go, Dan.

Thanks for getting me through the darkest years of US history.

With the exception of Meyerson and Robinson, the WaPo editorial staff is on militarist-corporatist-elitist, wrong side of that history.

Posted by: lichtme | June 18, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin was the single best thing on the Washington Post website during the Bush years, if judged by the quantity and consistency of his work covering the White House. Work that the rest of the paper, like most everyone else, failed to do, especially between 9/11 and Katrina.

The only silver lining to this was that I'll be far less inclined to come the WaPo now on, and far more diligent about supporting Dan Froomkin's work wherever and however it continues. My WaPo bookbark, which has been #3 on my daily list for years, is in the trash. Good business model you got going there. You certainly drove this loyal reader away.

Posted by: bullsmith | June 18, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Re: Dan Froomkin firing

Please note my IP address, washingtonpost.com. This is the last time you'll see it.

Posted by: ejdun | June 18, 2009 5:39 PM | Report abuse

By firing Froomkin, The Washington Post sheds the last bit of credibility it had.

Consider me unsubscribed.

Tulliver, conservative

Posted by: Tulliver | June 18, 2009 5:41 PM | Report abuse

I got it really. You guys are nuts. The one lone dissenting opinion at your paper and you fire him. Yet some of the biggest nut jobs keep their jobs.

And you idiots wonder why no one reads print media anymore? Simple reason.. no one trusts you.

Posted by: cragthehack | June 18, 2009 5:44 PM | Report abuse

I was a daily reader of the Froomkin column. Without Froomkin there is one less reason to read the Washington Post. I'll be terminating my RSS feeds and local paper subscription which is owned by the post.

Posted by: troyd2009 | June 18, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

This truly does stink. Royally stink. He kept watch on what was being done by the White House and where to read more about it. This is a major mistake on the paper's part.

Posted by: jaynashvil | June 18, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Unbelievable.

Posted by: TSearl | June 18, 2009 5:58 PM | Report abuse

I no longer need the WaPol in my life if neocon censorship is allowed to exist in it. I am regular reader of the WaPo (I average 3-4 visits a day). I wasn't even a huge fan of Froomkin, actually moreso of Krauthammer. But CK is too thin skinned that he has have to Hiatt, et al do his dirty work for him...well, if the WaPo hasn't figured out by now, it's an online world and there are plenty of alternatives: Goodbye WaPo!

Posted by: mgardner666 | June 18, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Does this clear a spot for a "Doughy's Report, featuring Jonah Goldberg" blog?

Posted by: flounder2 | June 18, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Truly unbelievable. I've been a near daily reader of the Washington Post for 25 years. I have grown more and more concerned in recent years as the editorial board shifted hard to the right and as it became more and more hostile to dedicated Washington Post readers (see, e.g., the online bulletin board discussions with Jackson Diehl). You guys do realize that Washington is overwhelmingly populated by liberal people? Maybe you should consider retaining a few liberal voices? Perhaps refrain from hiring big money conservatives fired by the NY Times?

While I will still return to the Post for local news and sports, you can definitely count me as one of the many who will turn more and more often to blogs and other internet news sources for daily news and opinion. Between this firing and your, frankly, pitiful coverage of the protests in Iran, I can see no reason why I should continue to trust that the Washington Post will provide me with top-notch daily news and opinion.

Again, as a long time reader I say this with great sadness. I love the Washington Post as an institution, but its decline is incredibly evident and an unexplained firing like this one (let's face it, that's not a real explanation) accelerates the decline.

Posted by: acslater | June 18, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Goodbye, WaPo. You can keep your neocon drivel to yourselves. I won't be visiting you further.

Dan Froomkin will land somewhere else, and his readers will follow him happily.

In the near future, when the bones of the WaPo are being picked over for clues about its demise, this will be a shiny example. You can blame the ethertubes, but it's terrible editorial decisions that doom the paper.

Posted by: angryamerican1 | June 18, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

I have been derisively referring to this paper as "The Washington Post-Times" for years, and now you make it the absolutely accurate name. You have lost fired anyone with balls & brains, so now you are left with wingnuts & their syncophants. I understand newspapers are dying, and now that you are investing only in old hacks that have been wrong about everything for decades, the Post-Times deserves to be the next paper to go under.

Posted by: durk2 | June 18, 2009 6:08 PM | Report abuse

The vile Krauthammer, partisan hack Cohen and "he was just the moron's speech writer for f*ck's sake" Gerson remains but Froomkin gets the boot.

Goodbye WaPo - jesus what a stupid idea. Consider me unsubscribed and you're gone from the website list of links. Rot in bankruptcy. Idiots.

Posted by: polaris11 | June 18, 2009 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Yet one more boneheaded choice by the WaPo.

Honestly, the competition you battle is less from the internet than the alternative voices one can find there. Your editorial lineup is largely redundant within itself, and to every other trad press outlet. Froomkin was the exception. One could wonder if he wasn't outpacing everyone else and making them look old and tired by comparison. You used your toes for target practice on this one.

Posted by: bystander007 | June 18, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

All it takes to get fired by Hiatt is to call Krauthammer out, it appears.

I don't plan to use the WaPo again.

Posted by: ALL2 | June 18, 2009 6:18 PM | Report abuse

I'll take Froomkin in a heartbeat, and trade you 2 Krauthammers, 3 Broders, and a future draft pick (to be named later).

Posted by: seattle_wa | June 18, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse

OK, now Krauthammer goes. (Who the hell is Hiatt?)

Posted by: GeneTouchet | June 18, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Bye, bye, WaPo. Dan's gone? So am I.

Posted by: otkws | June 18, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

I'm deeply disappointed in the Post's decision to release Dan Froomkin. I was a regular reader of his blog and found his posts well supported and reasoned -- unlike the Post's reasons for letting him go. Despite being a Washington metro resident, they are just giving me more reasons to look elsewhere for my news and commentary.

Posted by: keithmo | June 18, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin goes? What a dumb idea. Really dumb! His blog was the primary reason I was a regular visitor to WaPo.

Peter Brewster

Posted by: ppeterb | June 18, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Norm Coleman will need a job soon...I guess the Post had to make room for him.

Seriously, what kind of guff does Kris Coratti think he is selling?

"Editors and our research teams are constantly reviewing our online content to ensure we bring readers the most value when they are on our Web site while balancing the need to make the most of our resources. Regrettably, this means that sometimes features must be eliminated, and this time it was the blog that Dan Froomkin freelanced."

It sounds similar to the excuse my ex-girlfriend gave me when she dumped me for a taller guy.

Posted by: wasntme543 | June 18, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

You pick up Kristol and put Froomkin on waivers. You guys would make great managers for the Baltimore Orioles.

Posted by: yellojkt | June 18, 2009 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Well, there goes that last reason to check into the Post. The rest of this rag is beneath contempt. So calling out Krauthammer for being a complete hack is somehow a mortal sin? The whole editorial staff of the Post is a joke and would do well to start looking for other work.

Posted by: pidgefuni | June 18, 2009 6:49 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin did become popular while Bush was president, for good reason. Now he criticized Obama with the same fervor and is told that his blog "isn't working". If it smells fishy -- and it does -- it probably is. I suspect Andrew Sullivan is right when he says it's because of the torture debate he had with Krauthammer.

This is an idiotic decision. Keep Krauthammer (whom I do read even though I agree with nothing the man writes), and fire Froomkin for calling it as he saw it? Idiotic.

Posted by: deannaizme | June 18, 2009 6:50 PM | Report abuse

This step is consistent with the Washington Post death spiral and it moves ever further into the cocoon of the Beltway and loses touch with its national readership. Froomkin stood head and shoulders about the neocons, hacks, and Beltway insiders that the Post normally uses to write columns. I guess I'll be seeing a lot less of the post and a lot more of whatever paper picks up Froomkin.

Posted by: Leisureguy | June 18, 2009 6:50 PM | Report abuse

You have Gerson, Krauthammer, Broder, Kristol. Blehhh.

Froomkin was one of the only reasons I visited WaPo online. You are making a huge mistake on this one, folks. Froomkin has been right on so many issues and this is how he is rewarded? Pathetic.

Posted by: marSF | June 18, 2009 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Unbelievable...

Best of luck to Dan wherever he lands and shame on the WaPo for firing him.

Posted by: WileQuixote | June 18, 2009 6:55 PM | Report abuse

So long, WaPo, I'll go somewhere else now....

Posted by: news5 | June 18, 2009 6:58 PM | Report abuse

So Krauthammer, Gerson, the Kagans, Will, etc. continue to spew lies and hate... while you let your most honest and best writer go. Wow. Hiatt wins. Post loses.
Very, very stupid. Goodbye, Post... 45 years I've read you, but no longer. Hello McClatchy. Gary Van Ess, Green Bay, Wi.
P.S. Thanks, Dan... you spoke for a heckuva lot more of us than Fred's puppets. Unbelievable.

Posted by: badgervan | June 18, 2009 6:59 PM | Report abuse

As opposed to what this says, Froomkin is great specifically BECAUSE he attacks both the right AND the left, even if it was from a liberal bent.

Some of his stuff on Obama and torture has been downright excellent.

A sad day for us all.

Posted by: mcd410x | June 18, 2009 6:59 PM | Report abuse

I have been reading the Post since I moved to Bethesda in 1959. I've
read it thru moves to Il.,Ca.,Or.,Mn. and Hi. But you've lost what little credibility you had left. I'm gone and not coming back. I've deleted your bookmarks.
Enjoy the rest of your slide to oblivion: you won't be missed.
Aloha

Posted by: lyndenmcphee | June 18, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

A very sad development for a newspaper I once respected. Your editorial pages are already top-heavy with neocon blunderheads. You don't have room on your web site for one alternative voice? Pathetic.

Posted by: radiumgirl | June 18, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse

over 10 years of reading the Post online, and for the last 4 Froomkin was the only thing worth reading. Who's taking his place, Bill Kristol? Why not just just give it to Dick Cheney outright, along with editorial control?

Well at least George Will can still cherry pick sentences to change the message of global warming researchers, or devote entire columns to denigrating jeans.

Posted by: betrayer_of_hope | June 18, 2009 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Hmm. Firing Froomkin might be dumbest decision by WaPo.com since, oh, thinking it would be good idea to hire Ben Domenech.

At least the management is consistent... and we all know what Mr. Emerson said about foolish consistency....

Posted by: montag1 | June 18, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Firing Froomkin is a pitifully foolish decision. I demand that you publish your rational in an editorial. Froomkin is articulate, incisive and compelling. I do not find these attributes in your other columnists. Who are you going to hire next, the Cheneys?

Show me the evidence, the rational, the argument.
Show it now.


Posted by: chris905 | June 18, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Utterly predictable, with the extreme right wing direction this newspaper has gone.

I get the impression from the ombudsman's columns that the paper is simply terrified of getting angry letters from Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck fans, which strikes me as absurd since no matter how loud they are, they represent less than 20 percent of the population, the same who still call themselves Republicans at this point.

Wrong side of history, WAPO. Strange choice. I don't mean just getting rid of you best writer as you did today, but the entire Fred Hiatt Neocon revival meeting that the opinions page has become.

Strange.

People talking about newspapers dying, but in the WAPO's case it's definitely a matter of suicide.

Posted by: BillEPilgrim | June 18, 2009 7:20 PM | Report abuse

As opposed to what this says, Froomkin is great specifically BECAUSE he attacks both the right AND the left, even if it was from a liberal bent.
___________________________
The only time he ever attacked the left was when President Obama didn't have Bush and Cheney shot for treason. He was a left wing reactionary; not a liberal.

Posted by: amazd | June 18, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

The Post's most dogged, insightful reporter on the incompetence and contempt for democratic institutions of the Bush-Cheney administration gets the axe and a hopeless hack like Bill Kristol eats up valuable column inches with one lame self-justification after another. I shudder to think how the current management of this paper would handle the reporting on Watergate by Woodward and Bernstein. Just shameful.

Posted by: tunesofglory | June 18, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

I might as well pile on here, Froomkin was the last reason for me also to read the Washington Post, that's me gone, bookmark deleted, my daily rounds will now skip this paper on the Web.

What a crying shame, what this paper has become.

Removing the most well-known writer you had in terms of the online world may not have been the wisest idea, but that's your decision, not mind. I guess Charles Krauthammer being criticized was simply too much.

Nice.

Posted by: BillEPilgrim | June 18, 2009 7:27 PM | Report abuse

This is outrageous. The Post brings more and more conservative voices and gets rid of their best liberal voice. The Post acts like they have to satisfy conservative complaints about media bias. But, during the Bush years, the Post crouched down and accepted all the outrageous things Bush did, without ever questioning it. Except Froomkin. Well, maybe he'll get a job blogging somewhere else, and I'll read there instead.

Posted by: SherylE | June 18, 2009 7:28 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin's firing is shameful, and leaves the Washington Post even further in disgrace than it had already fallen. The editorial board has decided to circle the wagons against the future. Let's just call them what they are: the Left Behind crowd.

Posted by: PutDownTheKoolaid | June 18, 2009 7:30 PM | Report abuse

The WaPo bookmark has been removed. So much for the liberal media...hah!

I'm guessing Krauthammer got his panties in a bunch after being called out by Froomkin for lame attempts justfiying torture. Then I'm sure it was a NeoCon pile-on as that's all that on the Editoral staff any longer.

It's a shame the once famed Washington Post has become the last holdup of those who drove our country into a ditch. Truly sad.

So long WaPo. I hope you continue to enjoy your slow spiraling death of irrelevancy.

As for Dan, he will land on his feet and do just fine. He is well-liked and read by those who are in the know.

Viva New Media!

Posted by: danielburns | June 18, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who thinks that the media is left leaning only needs to look at the editorial pages of the Washington Post, a supposedly liberal newspaper to see how wrong that is. Dan Froomkin was the best thing to happen to the Post in the last 10 years and now they dump him. Instead we get the garbage spewed by columnists such as Billy Crystal (oh I am sorry I mean Kristol) who has proven time and again that even a blind squirrel does NOT find a nut. Newspapers are dying because their columnists and editors do not seek the truth, instead they try to impress their cocktail party buddies with their beltway insider insights. I hope this hastens the death of this newspaper and you can count one less online reader. Dan, wherever you end up, I will be there to read the facts and truth.

Posted by: k60jordan | June 18, 2009 7:34 PM | Report abuse

To all the posters who say they will never go to the Post's website again: Don't let your browser hit you in the butt on the way out. The Post can now attract a better class of advertisers. Bookstores, universities and upscale shops that didn't like the existing demographics of Froomkins readers. No more ads for pizza delivery schools and public speaking classes for McDonald's Drive-Thru order takers. (Ergh, ergh uh uh fries ergh that.)

Posted by: amazd | June 18, 2009 7:35 PM | Report abuse

Disgusting! Goodbye Washington Post!

Posted by: shap1 | June 18, 2009 7:40 PM | Report abuse

I can not believe the Wash-Post would do this; if they think that people who read the loony-moony times will jump to them, good luck and all I can say is good bye to your paper and your book mark.

Posted by: dennispbrown1 | June 18, 2009 7:47 PM | Report abuse

to quote Molly Ivans: newspapers are not dying, they are committing suicide.
Dan F was the only reason I had WP on my favorites list. Has anyone in management been outside the beltway in the last two years? Dan F is the future.

Posted by: rbest1 | June 18, 2009 7:56 PM | Report abuse

I'm from Minneapolis and I'm appalled. I only wish Katherine Graham was still around. At least we'd have a shot at getting an honest answer why Froomkin was let go and not some b.s. pablum from the Post's p.r. department. I'll probably get a better take on what really happened from The Washington Times ombudsman.

Posted by: james441 | June 18, 2009 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Kristol and Krauthammer remain while Froomkin goes? You have to be kidding! Did the Mooneys buy you guys too when I wasn't looking? I just lost my last reason to visit or read the Washington Post.

Posted by: kamus | June 18, 2009 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Wow big surprise. The Wash Post keeps Broder and gets rid of Froomkin and keeps Krautwurst. Hey, I have an idea! Why not hire lobbyists and former Bush lackeys to write for the Post. That way the "inside the beltway" daisy-chain can continue unabated.

Really, is there anyone out there who doesn't think Broder is inane? Of course the same thing could be said of the Post anymore.

Posted by: tony773 | June 18, 2009 8:26 PM | Report abuse

I, too would like to voice my disapproval of poor decision. I've been reading Dan Froomkin daily for years. I'll gladly read him elsewhere, and the post will lose out on 3-4 daily visits. Great business decision, Mr. Hiatt.

Posted by: jmglatz | June 18, 2009 8:31 PM | Report abuse

Excellent decision to fire Froomkin!

It has been fun watching the old newspapers go under...wierdly enough, they don't seem to understand why.

You "geniuses" still haven't figured it out.

Posted by: bonsai5966 | June 18, 2009 8:33 PM | Report abuse

You keep that idiot protofascist Krauthammer, yet fire the best columnist you have and a genuinely fair Obama critic?

Well, expletive you, WaPo. You still stink of the right-wing asskissing that Debbie Howell brought.

I read the Post online every day, and in print every few days as we can get it.

You bring him back, and I'll come back. Until then, I'm off. And guess what! I'll pick specific big advertisers who work with the Post, boycott em, and tell 'em I'm doing so because they work with you.

So bye bye WaPo, Salon, etc! You and Kristol and Krauthammer cna go have your little circle dance without my webclicks.

Posted by: Gazizza | June 18, 2009 8:34 PM | Report abuse

This is disgusting. Dan was a breath of fresh air during the very dark days of the Bush administration when the mainstream media remained silent about the obviously trumped up war in Iraq, torture, gulags, Guantanamo, etc., etc., etc. Dan was one of the few journalists who was not afraid to call a spade a spade. How can you possibly employ right wing shills and liars - Krauthammer, Will, Kristol and Gerson - but let Dan go. Way to piss off your readership Fred.

Posted by: Midknight | June 18, 2009 8:34 PM | Report abuse

Very sad news.

Is the Washington Post trying to become the Washington Past?

Posted by: wizard2000 | June 18, 2009 8:41 PM | Report abuse

This is stunning. Froomkin is one of the few who have really documented and framed the torture and Bush era well. He also was a breath of fresh air to the standard journalistic practice of reporting anything the President says as front page news, whether it is true or not. Further, unlike columnists Will, Krauthammer, Gerson, Kristol, Cohen etc. I feel like he gives much more in depth analysis, facts and independent thinking. Some of these columnists just seem to set up questionable straw men to knock down adding little to the debate.

Although the Obama Admin is still in it's infancy, I am sure Froomkin would have had more to say about Obama in the long run. I am also sure that the Bush torture and privacy invasion stories are far from over. There are people in this country that are not going to let those stories die.

In the end, I am pretty sure Froomkin will survive. He would make a nice fit at Salon or Slate or Politico, where I frequently go now. I can't say I will stop going to the Post site, but I have noticed a decline in quality over the last 12 months. My habits are already starting to change. We will see.

Posted by: jmII | June 18, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

I wish that this news was met with a silent "unbelievable" by me. Sadly, it is not. All I can say is that I'm glad the former giants who ran this paper proudly for so many years are now dead so that they did not have to witness the current sorry state of the Post.

It is my considered opinion that the Post of today would never have broken Watergate, much like it didn't question for a moment the criminal invasion of Iraq. I am totally ashamed for you.

Pathetic.

Posted by: JoelB8 | June 18, 2009 8:46 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry to see Froomkin is getting the ax here, but I suspect he'll be picked up quite quickly at a solid online site like Salon.com. As for Krauthammer, all I can say it is so time for him to go. I avoid coming to WaPo on Fridays or the weekend now, when his column starts running. Just seeing his headline gives me the creeps. He is so not interested in learning anything new/fresh to share with his readers; his columns are always all about what he has determined that he already absolutely KNOWS, and everything he writes is driven by anger. His diatribes on paper are as hostile as O'Reilly's bullying rants on air. In sum: his columns are toxic, and he should be fired.

Posted by: nken75 | June 18, 2009 8:46 PM | Report abuse

Hiring Froomkin seemed to be one of the better moves that the Post made in trying to cope with the Web and survive in the 21st century. Now you fire Froomkin and keep Krauthammer and Will? WTF?

Good luck with this newspaper thing. (You'll need it.) I'll be clicking elsewhere to get my news and opinion.

Posted by: platypus1 | June 18, 2009 8:47 PM | Report abuse

A sane, independent voice was "eliminated" by some clueless bean-counter. One less reason to read the Post.

Posted by: jimmybane | June 18, 2009 8:49 PM | Report abuse

And newspapers wonder why they're dying? Honest reporting/commentary, regardless of its economic value in readers/traffic, is not valued if it hits too close to home. Let's see what right-winger is going to replace him? Or maybe you'll get a nominal lefty who sucks up to Obama. We don't need sycophants, we need integrity, something that's entirely missing from the Beltway.

Posted by: jenrinda | June 18, 2009 8:55 PM | Report abuse

What an amazingly stupid decision. Mr. Froomkin wrote the best original material that the Post had. I'll be looking to see where he lands and will go there instead of the Post in the future.

Posted by: mapunapuna | June 18, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Here is Dan's full statement (which should have been published in full by the ombudsman)...(h/t Glenn Greenwald)
____
"I’m terribly disappointed. I was told that it had been determined that my White House Watch blog wasn’t "working" anymore. But from what I could tell, it was still working very well. I also thought White House Watch was a great fit with The Washington Post brand, and what its readers reasonably expect from the Post online.

As I’ve written elsewhere, I think that the future success of our business depends on journalists enthusiastically pursuing accountability and calling it like they see it. That’s what I tried to do every day. Now I guess I'll have to try to do it someplace else."
____
of particular not is that Dan linked to a piece he'd written for NeimanWatch in 2006 in his statement. (http://www.niemanlab.org/category/themes/danfroomkin ) Jay Rosen, of Pressthink, has twittered that he thinks that it was Dan's willingness to call "Bulls**t" that got him fired -- and I think Jay is right.
_
what dan was doing was contrary to the rest of what the Post does -- which is act as a stenographer for the DC power elite. Dan didn't play that game, he simply told the truth (rather than the approved spin.) The minute the merger of the "dead-tree" Post and online Post took place, Dan's days were numbered, because Dan was about the truth, and that was incompatible with the Post's overall mission, which is to communicate the agenda set by K Street lobbyists for the nation.

Posted by: Paul_Lukasiak1 | June 18, 2009 9:00 PM | Report abuse

Is Fred Hiatt helping the GM of the Washington National make personnel decisions? That would explain a lot.

Posted by: dougom | June 18, 2009 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Newspapers are in trouble as much because of the "new media" as because of the fact that they are becoming like infomercials for conservative ideas. soon enough Krauthammer will be in the "center-right" and Cohen will be the left-winger on the WaPo page. Are you really so arrogant as to think people will swallow this trash?... don't blame the new technology, blame your shoddy content. I will take my business elsewhere.

Posted by: yusefhijazi | June 18, 2009 9:15 PM | Report abuse

I can't believe this! I started reading Dan Froomkin regularly during the Libby trial and have been a devotee since. His was the most refreshing, honest work in your paper. I will continue to follow his career but will not continue to read the Post. Hello New York Times.

Posted by: fpmom3 | June 18, 2009 9:17 PM | Report abuse

I just want you to know I am done with the Washington Post. From George Will making stuff up to a Bush's speech writer making stuff up to Charles Krauthammer defending any neo-con torture or killing that thrills him to the establishment High Broderism of Broder, Marcus, Kurtz, The Fix and others, it has for a decade or two been an awful op-ed section. Froomkin was the best and sometimes only good thing you had going for the 75 percent of America that is not republican. Today you fired him and left all the fools. So I go too. Goodbye.

Posted by: havok26 | June 18, 2009 9:17 PM | Report abuse

It is a sad day. I thought that somehow the Post would find a way to survive. But decisions like this make it crystal clear that they won't. The dead tree edition is a just a shrinking relic of a once-great newspaper, and now they're killing off one of the best features on their web site. What idiots.

Posted by: evenadog | June 18, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

I am a 25 year subscriber of the Sunday Post, but I will be terminating my subscription.

You have loaded the paper with neo-cons and conservative idiots like Will, Krauthammer, Gerson, and Ponnaru, and gotten rid of quality progressives like Froomkin. He, Dionne, and Robinson were the only honest voices left, and now Dan is gone.

Do us all a favor: merge with the Moonie Times, and be done with it. Your opinion page won't be fit to line a bird cage with any more, once you get rid of Dionne and Robinson.

Consider this my notice. Good-bye Post; the great paper that broke Watergate is no more; it's now just another house organ for the reactionaries and neo-cons.

Posted by: robndipayne | June 18, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin is the reason I read The Washington Post. His column was too good to miss. His reporting was excellent. I'll try to find him on other sites and bypass this one.

Posted by: dianeclay | June 18, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Congratulations, Fred Hiatt -- your job seems to be convincing the hardcore rightwing activists that any deviation from the Cheney/Yoo/PNAC worldview will be swiftly punished. Unfortunately, Cheney lost the last election, and Hiatt is losing the Washington Post readers.

I'm looking forward to following Froomkin wherever he ends up.

Posted by: AnneLaurie | June 18, 2009 9:22 PM | Report abuse

I find I read the Post online less and less in the past year. This move will decrease it even further--not the trend I would think Post management seeks.

Posted by: ABDavis | June 18, 2009 9:24 PM | Report abuse

Mindboggling. The Post's hunger for mediocrity and irrelevance continues.

Posted by: chagen | June 18, 2009 9:25 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin was a daily must-read for me. If he elects to continue blogging elsewhere, I am certain that I and others like me will happily follow him at his new site. Still, I suppose others will continue to "flock" to WaPo to read the fascinating Charles Krauthammer (I myself remember this particular "gem" with great fondness: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A22191-2004Jul1.html). Adios, WaPo.

Dan, You are a journalist, and though you likely have many opportunities to consider now, I ask you to keep doing somewhere else what you did so well at WaPo - for the sake of people like me. We need your voice, and we need your questions.

Posted by: TuiMel | June 18, 2009 9:26 PM | Report abuse

The original white house briefing was excellent and I read it daily. The change was for the worse and Mr Froomkins blog became a get bush column rather then a report on the white house. He really did become a hack the last couple of years> Probably a good decision on the part of the Post but the bad decision was making the change in the blog several years ago, it stopped being news and became strictly opinion, and predictable opinion at that. Now if they just get rid of Gerson the paper will be better off

Posted by: chet_brewer | June 18, 2009 9:26 PM | Report abuse

I am done with the Washington Post. You are removed from my bookmarks.

Posted by: observer23 | June 18, 2009 9:41 PM | Report abuse

I remember when the Post was relevant. I think it was yesterday. Not today.

Posted by: fan1 | June 18, 2009 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Smart move. Did you hire George Bush to replace him? If you think people come here to read Will and the Kraut, you would be sadly mistaken. Lot's of luck in the future, you'll need it.

Posted by: Ralphie1 | June 18, 2009 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Actually, on second thought, this is good. Take heart. Froomkin will find a new, better position and outline and now won't have to go down with the ship. And the ship is clearly going down.

Posted by: fan1 | June 18, 2009 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin will land on his feet, but this effort of yours to make the Post into a New York Post Right Wing clone is despicable. It's getting so I feel like I'm reading Pravda rather than an American Newspaper.

He's been one of the few reliably honest
voices on your editorial page.

If anyone deserves the axe its your editorial board.

Chris

Posted by: chris_holte | June 18, 2009 9:54 PM | Report abuse

I don't like excessive partisanship from either side and Froomkin's column was over the top most days (at least when Bush was in office).

Posted by: mikem1 | June 18, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin's columns consistently (and recently) hit high in your "Most E-mailed" and "Most Read" lists. If, as is being said, he truly was fired because Krauthammer had a hissy fit, I have to assume that you are no longer making judgments based on the success of the newspaper.

Add me to the list of disappointed readers. Sorry, ex-readers.

Posted by: cabridges | June 18, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

I've been a Post subscriber for 31 years. Never once posted a comment. I'm here now to protest this stupendously bad decision. Time to trim the budget -- maybe the subscription cost is a good place for savings.

Posted by: Observer54 | June 18, 2009 10:04 PM | Report abuse

This firing reeks of a smugness that is destroying newspapers. "Liberal bent?"- since when was Kristol or Kraut descibed as neo-con or Israeli bent.

Journalism is at its nature LIBERAL. Ask questions. Dig deeper.

Keeping stories quiet and hidden is a conservative ideal.

Posted by: tallertapas311 | June 18, 2009 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Cancelled my Sunday-only Subsription today at 4pm!!!!

Posted by: tallertapas311 | June 18, 2009 10:12 PM | Report abuse

Add me to the list of people who will now boycott reading The Post either online or in print.

What a foolish, transparently political decision you have made. How do you get rid of Froomkin and keep every one of the half dozen or more neocon columnists? It's true that many liberals are more complacent since the Obama election and are reading the paper less. However, I guarantee that means they are also reading their enemies' opinion columns (Krauthammer, et al) just as infrequently as they've been reading Froomkin's. Yet you only axe Froomkin.

Message received loud and clear, Post. I won't be back.

Posted by: hakc56 | June 18, 2009 10:12 PM | Report abuse

And the WaPo wrings its hands over its crash-and-burn numbers. This isn't murder, WP, it's suicide by absolute ignorance.

I haven't found anything relevant on this site in a long, long time. The paper is so deadlocked by ego that it's stayed mired in the past.

Good-bye!

Posted by: caridee1 | June 18, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

Besides hiring Charles Krauthammer, this is the worst decision Washington Post has ever made. Katherine Graham must be turning in her grave.

Bookmark deleted.

I'm gone.

Posted by: truebluetexan | June 18, 2009 10:16 PM | Report abuse

It was with complete and total astonishment that I read on the blogs tonight that the Washington Post had terminated Dan Froomkin.

I have been reading his blog for the past 3 years (at least) and I always read his bi-monthly conversations with readers. There is NO other voice inside the Post who has spoken out so strongly on issues that are important to me: issues of how the media does it job, issues of executive power, and perhaps more important than these: the concept that the US committed acts that were unlawful according to the Geneva Conventions, an issue that the media in this country has desperately tried to bury. Witness the NYTimes inability to even use the word torture.

Every week your paper publishes unabashedly right-wing views like Charles Krauthammer, Robert Kagen, Bill Kristol, Michael Gerson. Every week you publish center-right voices like David Broder, David Ignatius and Fred Hiatt, but you can't find room for a voice from the left??? A voice that, I might add, has been highly critical of the Obama administration for the same failings of the Bush admin, so you cannot say he was openly partisan.

You publish Dana Milbank's pap column, you publish 14 part articles on Chadra Levy, and you can't put one honest voice in?

I am appalled.

At this point your paper has become simply a tool of the Washington establishment. Yet another place to read the same garbage I can get anywhere else. I was happy you brought in Ezra Klein, I think he brings a great perspective, but it makes me wonder why the Post thinks it cannot have left voices when the right and center-right voices are so dominant.

I am truly disappointed and wish with all my heart that this decision had not been made. Your paper is less for this act. I have been coming daily to read the reporter chats and Froomkin. I will be rethinking those choices now.


Posted by: joyousMinn | June 18, 2009 10:18 PM | Report abuse

The Post's new motto: "All neocon, all the time!" Goodbye. I'd like to say I'll miss you, but I won't. I'll miss Froomkin until I pick him up at his next stop.

Katherine Graham must be twirling in her grave!

Posted by: thrh | June 18, 2009 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Unbelievable. Just un-freaking-believable. Insane. Just all-out bat---- crazy.

And as everyone else has already said, keeping the Hammer, Kristol, Will, Gerson, Parker, and featuring a handful of NeoMorons like Kagan et al., and that pathetic "On Faith" dribble.

It's just...inexplicable.

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | June 18, 2009 10:29 PM | Report abuse

And people wonder why newspapers are dying....

Posted by: thrh | June 18, 2009 10:30 PM | Report abuse

And you will continue to wonder why newspaper sites become more and more irrelevant? I did not visit WaPo to read the bitter and predictable rage of the likes of Krauthammer or Broder. I visited to read a careful and insightful analysis of someone who held both Republican and Democratic leadership accountable. I predict that you, and your advertisers, just lost considerable traffic -- I know I have no desire to visit WaPo after today. Let me know when Froomkin finds a new home where a commitment to honesty and accountability still exists and is valued? I shall follow.

Posted by: CRome | June 18, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

This is a mistake of gargantuan proportions. You would do well to reconsider this decision, eat some humble pie, and give Froomkin a raise. How could you not know that Dan was the one Main Stream Media commenter who spoke the truth during our painful and protracted walk on the Dark Side.

Did Rupert Murdoch just buy the Post? So much for taking over as the paper of record after the New York Times' Judith Miller years. It's like chunking Bob Woodward after the Watergate years had passed. I'm just speechless...

Posted by: jnardo | June 18, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin was the only reason I have read your paper for the past few years....

Stunts like this is why the Post is dying.

Posted by: ssgbryan | June 18, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Other than Joel Achenbach and, my guilty pleasure, Liz Kelly, with Froomkin gone, I see no further reason to read the Washington Post.

Oh, wait. I forgot Michael Dirda.

Posted by: rickoshea0 | June 18, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

The Smugness of newspaper elitists killed newspapers. They sit in Washington with their Oliver Peoples glasses and think were all idiots.

Well my wallet spoke today. It spoke for Froomkin.

Maybe Ill get the WashingtonTimes, but really, is their a difference anymore with the post.

Newspapers has alzheimers. They may not know it, but they are dying a slow death.

Posted by: tallertapas311 | June 18, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

A terrible and sad decision. You are keeping numerous ideologues and firing a man of integrity.

Shame on you.

Posted by: UpperWest | June 18, 2009 10:41 PM | Report abuse

We have been daily subscribers for the past 31 years. The release of Dan Froomkin is the dumbest decision we have seen the Post make in all of that time, particularly when you have loaded up the editorial page with a bunch of right wing tripe. At least with Dan you got something worth reading!

Posted by: stuart011 | June 18, 2009 10:45 PM | Report abuse

Isn't the customer always right? Read the comments ! You are fools. You will only lose readership for the paper. Firing Froomkin is a huge mistake.

Posted by: lillianlil | June 18, 2009 10:56 PM | Report abuse

By Dan,

You're worth the whole bunch of them.

Posted by: krm13 | June 18, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

What utter and complete nonsense.

1. Froomkin's columns are in the top five most linked to columns in the Washington post.

2. Liberal criticism of Obama somehow "doesn't work". However, an editorial page already filled with right wing neo-cons and demagogues like Michael Kinsley and Krauthammer needs the addition of ROBERT KAGAN AND BILL KRISTOL, two of the jackasses who were directly responsible for the Iraq war and who were WRONG ABOUT EVERYTHING?

Screw that,
Fred Hiatt you can continue turning this paper into the Project for a New American Century if you want.

I'm through

Posted by: jbanks979 | June 18, 2009 10:59 PM | Report abuse

A huge loss. Froomkin's blog is terrific. What a bizarre action to take.

Posted by: abmcc | June 18, 2009 11:01 PM | Report abuse

That's it, Post. We're done. I've been reading you for over 30 of my 37 years and telling all my American Government college students that they should be reading you and not the Times. No more. Truly, and embarrassment for a once great organization.

Posted by: hankgreene1 | June 18, 2009 11:05 PM | Report abuse

Fire Will.
Fire Krauthammer.
Fire Gerson.
Fire Cohen.
Fire Ponnaru.
Fire Kristol.
Fire Broder.

And most of all, Fire HIATT, but bring back Froomkin! This has to be the most stupid editorial decision ever to come out of the Washington Post. Froomkin was the most insightful and refreshing columnist you had, and you canned him. I can't believe that you could be such idiots.

The voices of reason at the Post are getting fewer and fewer, and today there is one less reason to read your site.

Posted by: ancient_mariner | June 18, 2009 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Just wanted to be one more voice expressing my disappointment. Used to read the Post's opinions daily; more recently, has been a couple times a week. Sadly, I think that from here on out, it will be far more sparingly.

There has just been to much sloppy analysis (and sloppy fact checking) on the editorial/columnist pages in recent months/years.

This is the final straw. Sad day for a formerly great paper.

I look forward to reading Dan elsewhere.

Posted by: loserboy86 | June 18, 2009 11:12 PM | Report abuse

Even though I am only an online user, between the firing of Dan and the hiring if the ultimate hack Krauthammer it's time to admit the Post's good days are over as is my time reading it online.

Posted by: jsfox | June 18, 2009 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Dumb move, to put it mildly.
So long, Wapo. Hello Neiman Watchdog and wherever else Froomkin will go.

Dan's post on NW from yesterday:

A veteran journalist and Washington insider has completed an empirical study of the elite press’s performance in the run-up to and early days of the Iraq war and – big surprise – has found it badly wanting.

Leslie H. Gelb, writing in Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, concludes that American’s finest journalists failed to even minimally evaluate administration claims. “For the most part, the elite print press conveyed Administration pronouncements and rationale without much critical commentary,” he writes.

Gelb and assistant Jeanne-Paloma Zelmati focused specifically on the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, Time and Newsweek. They coded 576 news and opinion articles from three key moments in 2002 and 2003, using the following scale:

0: A story is entirely slanted, suppresses skepticism, and is completely supportive of the Administration line
1: A story is somewhat slanted to the Administration’s side, with skeptical and questioning sentences over-weighted by supportive ones
2: A story dutifully reports both sides by balancing experts or political leaders
3: A story raises questions about official statements and events and generally projects skepticism
4: A story casts fundamental doubt on Administration explanations, policies, and claims
5: A story casts fundamental doubt and then reports the Administration’s reaction to such doubt

Gelb writes he would have been satisfied with a solid three. But he ended up giving the elite press scores in the high ones and low twos. Some of the examples he cites, from the likes of Karen DeYoung, David Sanger, Richard Cohen, Jim Hoagland, Michael Gordon, Richard Wolffe and Daniel Klaidman, Bill Keller and Vernon Loeb are enough to make you weep.

http://blog.niemanwatchdog.org/?p=1083#more-1083

Ironic much?
When the MSM finally dies, can the last corpse out the door please turn off the lights?
Perhaps Dan will be able to help you all find work.

Posted by: gord_metcalfe | June 18, 2009 11:15 PM | Report abuse

The decision to fire Dan Froomkin and keep all the right-wing neoconservative dead wood at the Washington Post is incredibly stupid and ridiculous. It is, however, perfectly consistent with the ongoing process at this paper of promulgating neoconservative views despite all logic and facts and sucking up to the right-wing element of the Republican Party which has done so much to bring our country down and trash our proud traditions. Words cannot describe my incredulous disgust with this decision.

Posted by: ejs2 | June 18, 2009 11:16 PM | Report abuse

Goodbye washington post! You keep your lineup of warmongering, torture-defending, accountability-avoiding pundits. I will follow Froomkin to wherever he inevitably lands. You've just accelerated the demise of the washington post. Probably a good thing considering what it has become.

Posted by: jdcllns | June 18, 2009 11:21 PM | Report abuse

Now this alleged news source is not even worth the effort of a free sign in.
Could you give Krauthammer more work or something; my local paper runs his columns, and it is embarrassing how uninformed and frankly dimwitted that clown is. I have a child who should not be exposed to such facile "analysis" until she's at least ready to face it with sufficient education-say third or fourth grade.
Since virtually the only columnist worth reading is being fired, please please please do something to take up more of Krauthammer's time.

Posted by: jnkekoa | June 18, 2009 11:28 PM | Report abuse

What everyone else said. Froomkin's column was the sole reason I came back to the online post during the Bush years. I found his candor refreshing. He always calls a spade a spade. I guess that we all enjoy reading someone of a like political mind. I could live with Froomkin's politics, even during the times when he's been critical of the present administration. The rest of the folks on the opinion page don't accurately represent my political view of the world. The WaPo has lost its remaining bastion of the left. Very sad, indeed.

Posted by: -jack- | June 18, 2009 11:28 PM | Report abuse

Unbelievable but why am I not terribly surprised? Dan was anti-establishment. He asked the tough questions without fear of loosing that invite to the right cocktail party or dinner. Good luck Dan, and as so many comments say, one less but major reason not to visit WaPo.

Posted by: stockwell66 | June 18, 2009 11:33 PM | Report abuse

For a long time now, Dan Froomkin has been the only thing worth visting on the Washington Post website, other than to point and laugh at the gang of hacks and dissemblers that otherwise populate its opinion pages.

One imagines that there was a time when holding our government accountable was considered the raison d'etre of the Washington Post, rather than a reason for dismissal.

It's sad, but I guess we've had a long time now to get used to the new Washington Post, so it's hardly a surprise.

One thing I'm certain of is that Dan Froomkin will be a greatly respected journalist for longer than the Washington Post will be a newspaper.

Posted by: Mork1 | June 18, 2009 11:39 PM | Report abuse

This is a disgraceful move, and the explanation by Mr. Hiatt seems utterly disingenous.

First, to call Dan Froomkin "liberal" totally misses the point. He was critical of Obama as well as Bush. He was in favor of openness in government, honesty by officials, and against torture. These aren't exactly "liberal" positions. Unlike many of the Post's columnists, he wasn't a regurgitator of the conventional wisdom.

Dan Froomkin's column was widely read, so it must have made the Post a lot more money than he was paid. Anyway, if readership is the criterion, is that criterion being applied to all the other columnists at the Post, like David Broder, Bill Kristol, Robert Kagan, and other people who write for the Post?

The newspaper industry is dying for lots of reasons, but surely a big one is that newspaper editorial staff have become too attached to the political establishment, and not sufficiently to the truth, openness, or principle.

Posted by: swamus | June 18, 2009 11:50 PM | Report abuse

A sad and pathetic day. If anyone has any lingering doubts why the WaPo continues to fall ever deeper into irrelevance and unprofitability, Dan's firing should answer them. A bad business decision, and an even worse journalistic one. Dan was one of the few people left at the Post who was concerned about accountability - among politicians AND the media.

WaPo, were you threatened by Froomkin's media criticism? Like his arguments with Krauthammer over torture? Because no one believes for a second that he got axed because his column "wasn't working" anymore.

Posted by: unojklhh1 | June 18, 2009 11:56 PM | Report abuse

i'd call this move "hilariously inept"...but there's really nothing funny about it.

the nation may not survive without newspapers, but it will do just fine without this ersatz washington post.

Posted by: spaceneedl | June 18, 2009 11:58 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone seriously believe that a columnist like Anne Applebaum has more readers and gets more web hits than Froomkin? Yet Anne soldiers on, largely unread, I'm guessing.

Is she an affirmative action columnist? Wouldn't look good to keep a man and let a woman go?

Posted by: unojklhh1 | June 18, 2009 11:59 PM | Report abuse

It's no surprise that a paper with an op-ed board that has so vociferously supported torture would fire the torturers biggest critic. In addition, all bloggers and lesser known columists better learn not to criticize the rich and powerful, like Charles Krauthammer. Krauthammer certainly has a thin skin, but he knows how to get back at his enemies or anyone who dares criticize him. He learned a lot from the Bush White House. I'm a 13-year subscriber to the post. There won't be a 14th year. I guess the news industry is doing well enough that they no longer need to worry about paying customers.

Posted by: chadborman | June 19, 2009 12:13 AM | Report abuse

Goodbye WaPo.

Posted by: cdlogan | June 19, 2009 12:14 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin gone? Me too. Bookmark deleted, someone will pick him up.

Posted by: tarantulakeeper | June 19, 2009 12:26 AM | Report abuse

This was a bad, bad, bad decision. And more: it indicates failed leadership at the top of the newspaper.

The Washington Post clearly is in decline, and not only due to pressures from the internet and the recession.

Thank you, Dan Froomkin, for your oft-demonstrated courage and tenacity. Thank you for holding fast to American and journalistic principles. Thank you for all that you did, throughout a dark time in U.S. history, to keep the lights on.

As you prepare to leave the Post, Mr. Froomkin, you can hold your head high. Those who terminated you, who remain, cannot.

I have been a Washington Post supporter for more than forty years. Today, as I write this, I feel a deep sense of disgust and disappointment.

Posted by: egb3 | June 19, 2009 12:26 AM | Report abuse

This decision may be helpful to the confused souls out there who believe that the Post is a liberal newspaper. It has never been a liberal newspaper. The legend of Watergate causes people to misremember that the Post supported the Vietnam War as ardently as the Iraq invasion. But perhaps the Post has never before been this determined to turn its lineup of columnists into a sick right-wing joke.

Posted by: GL07 | June 19, 2009 12:42 AM | Report abuse

No surprise, this--the Washington Post wouldn't have so many useless gasbag columnists if the people running the show had a clue.

Posted by: rbjones1 | June 19, 2009 12:54 AM | Report abuse

I will now check the Washington Post only occasionally to read Harold Meyerson and Dana Priest, if they don't quit first. What a collection of perenially mistaken contributors the Post now has: Kristol, Bolton, and Wolfowitz, no less. The demise of the Post is hastened by the departure of Froomkin.

Posted by: rufusflorida | June 19, 2009 12:54 AM | Report abuse

Another reason not to read WaPo.

Posted by: mszimmy | June 19, 2009 1:04 AM | Report abuse

What kind of logic makes one think it makes sense to keep multiple neo-con hack writers who can’t even recognize the truth, yet fire the best columnist you have?

Froomkin was a shining light during the Bush administration, pointing out the lies and criminality when few others were. Yet, he has been just as willing to criticize Obama when it was justified.

Good luck with your all neo-con all the time policy. What is so weird is that supporting these morons is like publishing flat-earthers after Magellan’s voyage. They were wrong about everything, yet they are still pontificating as though they were proven right.

The Washington Post has a great legacy, but sadly, that is all you have left. The greatness of the Post is as dead as Katherine Graham.

Posted by: hgillette | June 19, 2009 1:08 AM | Report abuse

I am dismayed. I agree with other posters that the Post's decline is linked to its increasing tunnel vision and that Mr. Hiatt's explanation is as hollow as a pipe. We aren't buying it, and the same goes for you paper. I hope that Mr. Froomkin lands on his feet in another venue; I look forward to reading his work elsewhere.

Posted by: Okonkolo | June 19, 2009 1:13 AM | Report abuse

Like we needed fewer reasons to visit here...

some guy upstairs:
"Hey, let's crash the place!"

another guy upstairs:
"Yeah, that'll show'em!"

first guy upstairs again:
"But how do we do it?"

that second upstairs guy again"
"I got it!"

Way to go, geniuses.

Posted by: hidnusr | June 19, 2009 1:15 AM | Report abuse

"When it began, the column was called “White house Briefing.” But the name was changed after concerns by some at The Post newspaper that readers might believe Froomkin was a White House reporter, working alongside those offering objective news reporters."

When it began, the paper was called "The Washington Post". But the name was changed after concerns by some at The Post newspaper that readers might believe The Washington Post was an objective news source, concerned with the accuracy and bravery of it's reporting above all else, working alongside those offering objective news.
Therefore, we proudly announce our redesign and renaming - we are now the Bergen County Shoppers Guide!
Let's go shopping, America!

Posted by: hidnusr | June 19, 2009 1:22 AM | Report abuse

I am interested in whether the Post is going to offer up any plausible justification for this firing, esp. given the context that the Post recently hired Ezra Klein as a blogger. Surely if the Post felt that online blogging was "not working" they would not have just hired Klein. Correct?

Here's how it looks to an outsider, and I'm going to use this as the reason until something non-ludicrous comes from the editorial board. Froomkin pissed off too many people. In particular, over the course of the past few months he has criticized George Will for factual inaccuracy and Charles Krauthammer for moral depravity.

So those two and Hiatt saw to it that Froomkin was fired.

This is entirely an ideological move. Mind you, the Post has yet to offer up a coherent explanation for Will's pathetic manufacturing of science data, nor of Krauthammer's endorsement of Marquis de Sade interrogation tactics for, well, any reason that may come to mind. Instead, you guys just stick your fingers in your ears, tired of being ridiculed by your intellectual betters, and throw your financial power around by firing a critic.

Squelching dissent in such a heavy-handed manner is a sign of moral and intellectual weakness. If you clowns had real brains and/or integrity to your arguments, you could stand up to Froomkin in a fair intellectual battle.

Since you cannot, he is fired.

Posted by: rick_desper | June 19, 2009 1:25 AM | Report abuse

And really, let's not pretend this is about web traffic. Froomkin was by far the most popular feature on the entire Washington Post website.

Stop insulting our intelligence.

Posted by: rick_desper | June 19, 2009 1:28 AM | Report abuse

I think the real reason that Froomkin's blog was ended was because he was too good. When General Taguba accused the Bush administration of war crimes it should have been front page news but in the Post the only place you saw the story was on Froomkin's blog. I guess the Washington Post editors and "research teams" didn't think a former general accusing a president of war crimes was newsworthy.

Posted by: pmorlan1 | June 19, 2009 1:50 AM | Report abuse

Editorial Page Editor Fred Hiatt, whose "stable of contributors" includes Froomkin..

Great, now that the only thoroughbred is gone all we have left are the nags and the stable boy who mucks out the stalls.

Posted by: pmorlan1 | June 19, 2009 1:55 AM | Report abuse

THEY FIRED DAN FROOMKIN FOR REPORTING ON TORTURE.

AND LOOK - IT'S THE SAME OLD OBAMA-HATING CRAP FROM KRAUTHAMMER ON THE FRONT PAGE.

HOW MAY NEOCON HACKS DOES THE WASHINGTON POST NEED, REPEATING EACH OTHER AD INFINITUM?

BOYCOTT THE WASHINGTON POST.

BOYCOTT THE WASHINGTON POST.

OBMUDSMAN@WASHPOST.COM

LETTERS@WASHPOST.COM

Posted by: PacNW | June 19, 2009 2:02 AM | Report abuse

THEY FIRED DAN FROOMKIN FOR REPORTING ON TORTURE.

AND LOOK - IT'S THE SAME OLD OBAMA-HATING CRAP FROM KRAUTHAMMER ON THE FRONT PAGE.

HOW MAY NEOCON HACKS DOES THE WASHINGTON POST NEED, REPEATING EACH OTHER AD INFINITUM?

BOYCOTT THE WASHINGTON POST.

BOYCOTT THE WASHINGTON POST.

OBMUDSMAN@WASHPOST.COM

LETTERS@WASHPOST.COM

Posted by: PacNW | June 19, 2009 2:03 AM | Report abuse

THEY FIRED DAN FROOMKIN FOR REPORTING ON TORTURE.

AND LOOK - IT'S THE SAME OLD OBAMA-HATING CRAP FROM KRAUTHAMMER ON THE FRONT PAGE.

HOW MAY NEOCON HACKS DOES THE WASHINGTON POST NEED, REPEATING EACH OTHER AD INFINITUM?

BOYCOTT THE WASHINGTON POST.

BOYCOTT THE WASHINGTON POST.

OBMUDSMAN@WASHPOST.COM

LETTERS@WASHPOST.COM

Posted by: PacNW | June 19, 2009 2:04 AM | Report abuse

THEY FIRED DAN FROOMKIN FOR REPORTING ON TORTURE.

AND LOOK - IT'S THE SAME OLD OBAMA-HATING CRAP FROM KRAUTHAMMER ON THE FRONT PAGE.

HOW MAY NEOCON HACKS DOES THE WASHINGTON POST NEED, REPEATING EACH OTHER AD INFINITUM?

BOYCOTT THE WASHINGTON POST.

BOYCOTT THE WASHINGTON POST.

OBMUDSMAN@WASHPOST.COM

LETTERS@WASHPOST.COM

Posted by: PacNW | June 19, 2009 2:07 AM | Report abuse

I just signed in to say I won't have any reason to come back to this site. Robinson is gonna feel pretty lonely around here.

One more letter to the editor, and I'm gone.

Posted by: braktooth | June 19, 2009 2:27 AM | Report abuse

This is an appalling decision. His work was one of the features I most looked forward to. Froomkin's insights were astute and provoking. I am increasingly finding that if I want accurate news and thoughtful editorials, I need to read the BBC news and the Toronto Star. The major newspapers here are increasingly timid.

Posted by: Sharon48 | June 19, 2009 2:44 AM | Report abuse

Really disappointing. You've got a fair number of mediocre opinion writers and political bloggers; I thought Froomkin stood out.

Posted by: Seytom1 | June 19, 2009 2:56 AM | Report abuse

What a terrible move. If I could read only one item a day from the WaPo, it would easily be Froomkin. Incredibly well-sourced, he has the big picture, which obviously Fred Hiatt doesn't.

And how can you fire Froomkin and justify keeping the likes of Gerson, Krauthammer, and Kristol? The rightwing takeover of the media continues.

Posted by: opterra | June 19, 2009 3:08 AM | Report abuse

What a mistake. I used to read the physical paper, but now that I live far away, I've been reading it online.

Froomkin is your most consistently independent writer. You're now left with writers who are generally uninterested in the truth unless by mere happenstance it happens to overlap with their narrow worldviews.

Your editorial staff should begin a daily regimen of reading Glenn Greenwald of Salon (going into previous columns as well), to learn what journalism is supposed to be about.

Posted by: larrywest42 | June 19, 2009 3:18 AM | Report abuse

Bye-bye Post bookmark. Bye-bye Post. Bye-bye Froomkin.
I could just as well read the Washington Times now as read the Post, since the slant of both their editorial pages is now almost completely coordinated.
But I don't.
Please cancel my membership.

Posted by: richhein | June 19, 2009 3:35 AM | Report abuse

The decision to let Dan Froomkin go makes no sense to me.

He's going to land on his feet because he's that good.

WaPo, not so much. And much less now.

Posted by: amberlynmorgan | June 19, 2009 3:35 AM | Report abuse

Dear Mr. Alexander:
I suppose that the ombudsman’s office has supported the firing of Froomkin, since your office has previously expressed concern over his so-called liberal bias. Nonetheless, you need to know that I became a daily reader at washingtonpost.com because I admired his work. His work has been uniformly excellent and I have followed his work more than the work of any other Post reporter, writer or columnist.
As an ombudsman, your blog entry today about Mr Froomkin’s departure is a travesty. Where is your advocacy of the interests of the reader? Other than reporting the fact of the departure and quoting the P.R., you provide no insight or explanation. No one seriously believes Ms. Coratti’s statement that the Froomkin column is the least valuable to the Post’s readers. The Post undoubtedly can tabulate how many “hits” that his blog received in comparison to other opinion columns. Even if a decline occurred over the past six months, I cannot believe for one moment that his blog provided the least value to readers, or that the Post has any serious editorial or customer research to back that up. No one seriously believes that Froomkin’s column was not an attraction for readers.
The newspaper was foolish to fire Froomkin, and I will be forced to fire the Washington Post. I am sure that the Post has no cogent reason for firing Froomkin. How the Post expects to attract new readers after firing one of its best columnists is baffling. Perhaps this is just another example of ‘inside the Beltway’ thinking, a form of false self-importance that means nothing to the remainder of the country. Who will be fired next?
You brag at your web-site that the Post has 10 million readers worldwide. Whose columns do you think are being read? Do you really think that all 10 million readers are only interested in Will and Krauthammer? Froomkin told the news and the stories that Will and Krauthammer treated as inconvenient to their world view. Who is employed by the Post who can fill the shoes of Froomkin? You brag that the site has won four Murrow Awards? Who earns those awards? Do you think that the advertising sales department or the business manager earn those awards on their own? Frankly, I think that Murrow would be the first one to criticize the close-mindedness which obviously led to the Froomkin firing. The Post is now officially on the way to having as much news value as Pravda.
If General Motors can be ruined by poor management decisions and poor planning, then no business is immune. The road to bankruptcy is paved by poor decisions about the product that is being sold. The Post has just made a seriously bad decision, and I am sure that I am not the only reader going elsewhere.

Posted by: PittsburghReader | June 19, 2009 3:35 AM | Report abuse

Congratulations WaPo. Seriously do you understand why you're losing readers?
You brought Bill Kristol on board and let Dan Froomkin? Your march to clone WashingtonTimes is unmistakable. Good luck on your journey.

Posted by: r_python | June 19, 2009 3:57 AM | Report abuse

"The Washington Post" during the 1970's was one of the two or three most distinguished newspapers in the country. The dismissal of Froomkin is just another sign of how the neo-cons dominate the newspaper and is arguably a warning to remaining liberal or progressive columnists associated with the paper not to stray too far from "acceptable" opinions.

Unfortunately, in its columns, editorials and at least some articles, a strong neo-con slant is dominant at "The Washington Post." People seeking more balanced news coverage and far fewer neo-con propaganda from columnists should turn to "The New York Times."

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | June 19, 2009 4:07 AM | Report abuse

what a buncha chumps WaPo management has become under the editorial guidance of lil 'neocon lite' freddy hiatt -- had to laugh as announcement day for froomkin's axing included op-ed pieces by krauthammer and wolfowitz. painful to watch the paper of Watergate fame slit its own deep throat.

don't WaPo's management clowns read their own published polls of public opinion and population trends? do they think that by pandering to the rightwingo 30% of the US population (and falling rapidly - to their considerable dismay) they are doing their readership OR shareholders any long-term favor? don't look for all the rightwingo dittoheads outside washington dc to take up that much slack - these folks listen to limbaugh all right (all 30% of 'em), but many are what we may generously call 'slow readers' and unlikely to spend much time or money (or thought) on print media.

whatsamatta with you dummies -- froomkin was a good reason to look at WaPo every day (not because you always agreed with his POV but because he provided the links that helped speed the rest of your day).

we're not saying in disgust (although we are pretty disgusted) that "we'll never read WaPo again" - sure we'll read it from time to time, but not as often and with more distrust. we read washington times and daily standard from time to time as well -- but why does WaPo wish to become more like them? (is that really what the Graham family aspires to -- or was dumping froomkin a pre-condition to a contemplated murdoch buyout?)

oh well, WaPo readership's loss is the NYT gain if NYT has practical business sense to quickly snap up froomkin; gee, if NYT able to dump kristol (who WaPo happy to garbage pick) and gain froomkin, guess that's a pretty good trading day for them; reminds us of Boston and the Curse of The Bambino, eh?

aside to lil freddie hiatt: do you really think we need to buy tomorrow's Washington Post to find out if krauthammer, kristol and gershon approve of what obama or any in his administration did today? duh, do you think we could maybe guess the answer without reading their columns?

Posted by: ithejury | June 19, 2009 4:24 AM | Report abuse

Not a single positive comment about Froomkin leaving. Not one. Does the WaPo care? Not at all. So long as Wolfowitz, Kagan and Kristol can have their say all is ok. Compare the comments following Wolfowitz today with those on Froomkin! In your face whiners? The outrage grows, where it stops no one knows.

Posted by: danigo | June 19, 2009 5:13 AM | Report abuse

The Post is making a mistake here. Gerson and his ilk may attract gawkers, but not a loyal readership. Froomkin will carry a lot of web traffic with him wherever he goes.

Posted by: pythonS | June 19, 2009 5:15 AM | Report abuse

Dan was always ready to get the President and let nothing stand in his way - not even the USA's national interest. Anything would do to bring the President down. If he were to be Republican.

But nobody wrote more than Dan. He was a hard worker and in his own way an honest voice. Few did better.

Posted by: GaryEMasters | June 19, 2009 5:24 AM | Report abuse


Firing one of the few liberal columnists you have — while retaining your stable of racist (Richard Cohen) reactionary (Krauthammer) and plain foolish (Dana Milbank) commentators and reporters. You should be ashamed of yourselves.

Posted by: trexbean | June 19, 2009 5:41 AM | Report abuse

This is a very stupid WaPo decision. In any event, I'll follow Dan to his new location and will be spending a lot less time at the WaPo site.

Posted by: JCinCT | June 19, 2009 6:19 AM | Report abuse

The Post is now FULLY a DC "Establishment" news organization.. In the battle for the soul of the Post the "Neo-Cons" have won..

Posted by: d_j_garcia | June 19, 2009 6:37 AM | Report abuse

Writers that bring this many negative comments about their employers have no place in the newspaper business. A columnist job is to reflect the views of the editor and Froomkin failed miserably in that job. Readers who support this kind of column are welcome to take their business elsewhere who need you.
Good Riddance
Fred

Posted by: vwallen@bellatlantic.net | June 19, 2009 6:43 AM | Report abuse

My first and last comment at The Washington Post, whose management seems to be so dumb and single-minded that it would be funny if it weren't so indicative of the sad pathetic downward spiral most newspapers and other media are in. Froomkin was one of your only real reporters, and one of your only real writers. I'll read him wherever he goes, and not return here.

Posted by: fortum | June 19, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

If Fred Hiatt actually believes what he said, then he's the one who should be sacked, not Froomkin. If he was merely acting as messenger boy for some higher-up, then his salary should be cut and the higher-up should be sacked — again, for incompetence.

Froomkin is a major asset to journalism, one of the few keeping it alive at this point in time. I wish him the best of luck finding a new, very likely, more respectable home for his blog. I suspect the current administration headed by Barack Obama has not heard the last from him.

Posted by: nevereven | June 19, 2009 7:12 AM | Report abuse

HEY OMBUDSMAN - DO YOU EVEN READ THESE COMMENTS?

RESPONSE?


,

Posted by: PacNW | June 19, 2009 7:13 AM | Report abuse

The lesson here folks is to never click on another conservative op-ed.

Not one. Don't click on Will, Krauthammer, Ponnuru .... none of them. Not a single click.

If it's really about the click count then they'll be gone.

Posted by: James10 | June 19, 2009 7:29 AM | Report abuse

So sad. So predictable. So long, WaPo.

Posted by: snakedoctor | June 19, 2009 7:36 AM | Report abuse

I lived in Washington, DC from 1970 -1976. I LOVED the Washington Post then. Now it is little more than a neocon rag, and I wouldn't buy it to line the bottom of my bird cage.

And now the WaPo decided to fire Dan Froomkin, who did more than the rest of the Post op-ed staff COMBINED to expose George W. Bush and Dick Cheney to be the war criminals they are. If nothing else, this was an incredibly bad business decision. Molly Ivins was right. Newspapers aren’t dying; they’re committing suicide.

Dan Froomkin was the ONLY reason I logged into the WaPo website on a daily basis. From there I would click on articles he wrote about. But for years I haven't read the drek on the WaPo editorial page that is spewed out by the WaPo's op-ed "stars:" the morally deranged, torture-loving Charles Krauthammer; fact-challenged Bill Kristol (fired by both TIME and then the New York Times for his inability to get his BASIC facts straight); sociopath Richard Cohen (who, when asked in 2006 to reflect on his support for the Iraq war, wrote, "In a post-Sept. 11 world, I thought the prudent use of violence could be therapeutic"); and the intellectually and morally bankrupt David Broder, Fred Hiatt, Jackson Diehl, George Will, David Ignatius, and Michael Gerson.

When Dan's gone, I'm gone. The Washington Post's only hope now is to merge with the Moonie Times and continue to cater to the 25% of the country who still think George Bush was the greatest thing since sliced bread.

Pathetic, just pathetic.

Posted by: annemwelsh | June 19, 2009 7:56 AM | Report abuse

The first thing I did when landing on the WaPo site was to read Froomkin, always interesting and well-researched. With his departure I believe that I will stick with the NYT and other sites that maintain better standards of journalism, and that aren't a cheering section for torture, death, repression, regression, and just plain being wrong all of the time.

Posted by: ExperimentalTheologian | June 19, 2009 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Of course Froomkin does not fit the new WaPo. Hiatt has turned it into Neo-Con Resort.

Sad.

Posted by: AMviennaVA | June 19, 2009 8:21 AM | Report abuse

I had to check it wasn't April 1st. This is outrageous. What the hell are they thinking? WaPo's credibility is flushed down the toilet...again.

Posted by: astudent1 | June 19, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Did you seriously believe that I read WaPo for Will's cute metaphor's applying the inflied fly rule to arcane political kerfluffle? I'll be reading Froomkin long after WaPo sells off its assets. If NYT had the slightest sense, they'd sign Froomkin up. But more likely, HuffPost or the Atlantic will.

The sound of barking laughter that you will hear from time to time is the reaction to a WaPo nomination for a Pulitzer. Opps, scooped once again. Get used to it.

Posted by: mstephenson99 | June 19, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Congratulations to the Washington Post for having finally managed to become completely irrelevant. Enjoy the wilderness into which you've driven this once sterling institution. At least, by releasing Froomkin, you have put him in a position to remain relevant, rather than to be dragged down by the morass of mediocrity the Post opinion page has become.

Posted by: aravir | June 19, 2009 8:33 AM | Report abuse

This is not surprising. The Post's conversion into an organ of right-wing propaganda, in favor of secrecy and opposed to any kind of accountability, was already clear. The Post is dead.

I'm sure Dan Froomkin will find a new and better forum, hopefully one that will get him reporter credentials at the White House. Then Froomkin will be able to do an even better job of showing what a propaganda organ the Washington Post has become.

Posted by: Aformerjournalist | June 19, 2009 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Goodbye, Washington Post. You once were a great newspaper, but you've become a puppy-dog little newsletter of the neo-cons. I didn't always agree with Froomkin, but he was a true journalist. Nice move, firing him.

Posted by: BluGrass | June 19, 2009 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Sometimes when a company fails or is in it's death throes the hourly workers get a crack at training for new jobs. But it's really the management that needs to be re-trained because they're the ones responsible. Mr. Hiatt will soon be another example of that. RIP WaPo

Posted by: garrettb | June 19, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

I recently realized I get better and more timely news from Huffington Post (for instance, right now they're twittering events in Iran, have tons of photos from the streets ...) than the establishment press anyway. WaPo used to be my first stop in the morning; now it's HuffPo. But I still visited the Post three or more times a day. No more. I'll catch Meyerson over at The American Prospect (http://www.prospect.org/). Tootles.

Posted by: MeBitter | June 19, 2009 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Thank you Dan Froomkin. Once again, thank you for all you do. You have been the best the Post has had to offer for 5 years.

We have read you from the start, and loved it. You have daily exemplified the Nieman Watchdog ideals for journalists. You are why our homepages are set to the Post.

You were a lone voice, a lifeline to some of us, during most of Duhbya's reign, but validated by its ignominious end. You made a graceful transition to the Obama administration, demonstrating that telling truth to power is non-partisan. Unfortunately, you have had plenty of fodder. Your blogs are on target today and lastyear.

Now you will have the opportunity to watch as Don Graham's Wash Post follows Rick Wagoner's GM path to collapse. There is no joy in either, but they illustrate evolution. Failure to evolve is fatal.

Mr. Ombudsman, do your paper and its readers a service. Wake up management and get Froomkin a more prominent spot at the Post. Its a twofer, and part of a strategy to save the Post. It generates web traffic as the Post struggles to evolve from newsprint. It provides readers content aggregated to inform, and linked for access to source material.

I've been a Post reader for more than 50 years. My mother worked at the Post in the hot type era. I was an early adopter of Digital Ink. Froomkin and folks like him, are the Post's window to the future.

I've been loyal, but this is it. If Froomkin is cashiered, I am gone too. Graham/Hyatt et al will find themselves left at the Post.

Regretfully,


Posted by: cliff6 | June 19, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Wow, unbelievable. Froomkin was the only reason I visited washingtonpost.com daily. This really sucks!

Posted by: cwarddc | June 19, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

I'll be dropping the Post as well. I read it each morning, and then checked for updates especially on Dan's column during the day. Dropping him while keeping partisan right-wing hacks is a clear signal of where the Post is going. I guess the Post simply can't handle the truth anymore. I'll get my news elsewhere, and hopefully we will see Dan's column somewhere else soon. As for the Post, maybe a real paper will appear in the DC area to show them what they used to be.

Posted by: HuckTim | June 19, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Well, thanks for saving me the 5 minutes I spent every day visiting your site and reading the White House Watch. Dan's column was the only thing that kept me coming back to the Post. Who's going to take Dan's place Rush Limbaugh? I believe he is the only conservative not on your opinion's page. The Post does realize that D.C. already has a newspaper with a conservative slant already in the Washington Times, right?

Posted by: justin023 | June 19, 2009 9:03 AM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin has been the primary reason I have been a devoted follower of the Washington Post for the last few years. Although there have been some good balanced investigative articles, the overall slant has been definitely conservative, and Dan tended to balance the scale. I believe you have made a grievous error in terminating this association, and you have lost a reader.

Posted by: mriles | June 19, 2009 9:04 AM | Report abuse

Add me to the number of people who are dropping WAPO.com. This is the final straw.

Posted by: jjjanow | June 19, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin goes, Krauthammer remains. And that's how the once great Washington Post became the Washington Past.

Posted by: rudyard1 | June 19, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

"That slant seemed to attract a large and loyal audience during the Bush administration, but it may have suffered when Barack Obama became president."

"Seemed", "may have"! You're the ombudsman, and you don't even know these things? Incredible! I'm a teacher, and I'd give an F to a student who used such speculation to support her point.

Posted by: pjrogers | June 19, 2009 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Firing Froomkin is even more stupid than hiring only neocon old farts who have been wrong about everythingfor decades (Will, Kraphammer, Hiatt, Kagan, Pommy, Broder, etc.) to take over the editorial pages.

Posted by: durk2 | June 19, 2009 9:20 AM | Report abuse

A sad day for the WaPo. You guys fired one of your best reporters. I guess the drive to lower your readership and ultimately kill your business is overwhelming. Seriously, whoever decided to fire Froomkin should be fired, and Krauthammer too. It's a long and sad fall from heights of glory the WaPo had in the past. Now you're no more serious or credible than the moony rag across.

Posted by: ssfs20007 | June 19, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

So many neocons with blood on their hands remain to spout their lies and misinformation, plus the conservative hack George Will and spineless inside David Broder, remain....one guy who'd take on anybody, regardless of party or ideology, ina devotion to truth -- THAT'S the guy you can?

Pathetic. I probably can't completely boycott the Post -- I'm sure there will be links to stories from other websites that will take me here-- but I'm going to do my best to stay away, and will certainly lobby against the paper's overt ideological bias towards the establishment and the Right.

Anybody remember the CIA's "Project Mockingbird"? Frank Church's commission brought it to light, the old Post reporter Carl Bernstein wrote about it in Rolling Stone, couple other people have as well. With all the money being doled into the secret services, how much stronger is "Mpckingbird" today?

Long way from Watergate, guys.

Posted by: AdHack | June 19, 2009 9:27 AM | Report abuse

To whom it may concern:

It's shortsighted of WaPo to fire Dan Froomkin, one of the best writers and synthesizers of information you had. He questioned the decisions at the highest level. He is a liberal it is clear, but when Pres Obama pulls some of the same tricks that Pres Bush pulled, he's right in there calling "Foul!".

I was in the past a NYTimes reader on a daily basis, and I was one of those that paid them the $50 for access to content when they had that experiment. I found Froomkin and he was a daily read, and that got me visiting other pages and writers. I would have been willing to pay for access to your paper as well, but with the firing of Froomkin and the hiring of Kristol (equally apalling, given his abyssmal track record as a pundit), I think I won't be calling the WaPo one of my daily reads any more. I do hope you reconsider your decision in this case.

Best regards,

Matt A. Wood, Professor
Florida Institute of Technology
Physics & Space Sciences Dept
Melbourne, FL 32901, USA

Posted by: mattw | June 19, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

I've been a loyal WaPo dead tree edition and now online reader for decades. Without really thinking about it, I recently realized that I look at the OpEd material less and less - there's just nothing there anymore. Now you can someone with something interesting to say. Good Lord, I'm sure that his web traffic was down since the election and end of the Bush era, but that's true of all your content I am certain.

Posted by: utec | June 19, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

I can't unsubscribe to this peace of crap newspaper, bacause I did that in 2003, after Fred Hiatt supported the Iraq war. But the Post isn't going to be getting my clicks either. I'll say it again. Fred Hiatt is a warmongering pig.

Posted by: August30 | June 19, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Well, please post a link to where we can read Froomkin from now on.

Posted by: fallschurch1 | June 19, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Sigh. I guess I have to let go of the last scraps of my respect and affection for the WaPo. You put frothing-at-the-mouth torture loving right winger (Krauthammer) and a bunch of neo-con beltway insider hacks who are completely on the wrong side of history (everybody else except the mildly liberal Meyerson and Robinson) and hide Froomkin's little blog off in an attic somewhere. And yet that isn't enough--a few people managed to find his reporting about torture and he continued to show up the rest of the paper by being a truth-telling journalist. So he had to go.

My favorite comment so far was Paul Lukasiask1's: " . . . Dan was about the truth, and that was incompatible with the Post's overall mission, which is to communicate the agenda set by K Street lobbyists for the nation."

And by the way, the people complaining here are people who read and think--you know, the sort of people who might still read newspapers. Whom you might not want to alienate completely?

Posted by: phoebesdatter | June 19, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Firing Froomkin was the last straw. The Washington Post's move to the Neocon wing has been completed. I simply don't find you a credible source of information anymore and will stop coming here for news. Froomkin was perhaps the best journalist you had. He came at the news with one goal-to find the truth. It's not his fault if the truth has a "liberal bent"

I'll be looking for a new news source now, and looking forward to wherever Dan ends up. Their gain is WAPO's loss.

Posted by: atlliberal | June 19, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

When Mr. Froomkin leaves so do I.
I am sorry that the late great Washington Post has become a neocon RAG. Their stellar reputation earned from exposing Watergate is truly lost.
Mr. Froomkin's last day will be my last visit to this site.

Posted by: mwamp | June 19, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Hey Ombudsman! Over 200 comments supporting Froomkin, and NOT one supporting you or Hiatt. What does that tell you? Do you know how to do your job? Or is your job buttering up Hiatt?

Posted by: August30 | June 19, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Bad decision. Hope it comes back to haunt the Post. And woe, woe, woe unto the Post if it comes out Froomkin was released because Krauthammer's feelings were hurt.

Posted by: elsid | June 19, 2009 9:49 AM | Report abuse

I am so over the Washington Post for firing Froomkin.

Now that WP has gone the way of the Washington Times, I have no other recourse but to give up the print medium altogether and cull my news from the Internets.

Great job, WaPo. If you're trying to doom your paper, you're on the right track.

Posted by: ericapple | June 19, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

'The Washington Post" should merge with Fox "news." They could let Eugene Robinson and E.J. Dionne leave, hire Cheney and Rove to replace their columns, to offer "fair and balanced" news coverage."

The Washington Post" coverage of international events has become similar to the old days of Hearst newspapers, famous for "yellow journalism," as well as jingoism, imperialism and militarism. The Spanish-American and Iraq wars were similar in being based upon false premises, propaganda by the respective administrations and their supporters in the media, reflecting imperialistic, militaristic policies.

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | June 19, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

perhaps Froomkins endless, braying criticism began to fray nerves. I imagine he was self-rightous and grating to deal with in person as well. He championed causes, like impeachment, that were never, ever going to happen, then when The One came forth, he started in on him for criminal probes that were never going to happen. I think it was the steady drumbeat of negativity without recognizing the differences between campaigning and governing that got his far left a$$ canned.

Posted by: ronjaboy | June 19, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

I've been a loyal reader of the Post for years so it really pains me to say that my 3 or 4 daily visits to this site will end today. It's not just the fact that Froomkin was let go, although that is a significant reason. The plain truth is that I find more and more that when I post comments on a Post story my comments are usually about the person writing the story and not about the story itself. Why is that happening? Because the reporters are leaving out significant facts and they are spinning other facts in order to adhere to the narrative that they want to push.

The columnists and editorial page are an absolute disgrace and I very rarely even bother reading any of them anymore. I kept coming here in the hopes that things would change but looks like things are getting worse, not better as evidenced by the firing of Froomkin. I will check this site to see if there are any exclusives (Dana Priest is a jewel) but I will no longer have the Post as one of my primary sources of news nor will I bother to post any comments anywhere on the Post website. I truly hope that one day soon someone will wake up at the Post and get it back on track.

By the way Andy, thanks for your efforts. I actually thought when you came on board that the Post was actually going to get better but sadly that didn't happen. Good luck to you.

Posted by: pmorlan1 | June 19, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin's posts are a "must-read" for me. I am very disappointed in the Post for this decision; I thought that they were in favor of journalism, rather than stenography. Perhaps I was wrong.

Needless to say, I'll be spending far less time on this website than I used to. There's going to be much less stuff I'll be interested in reading.

Posted by: dbitt | June 19, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Hard to compete with some of what's already been said here, but I too will greatly miss Dan's fantastic work of pulling relevant information together on the White House beat. Same as many others here, he was one of the few reasons I have made WP online a daily habit. Hard not to notice the increase and prominence of neocon voices lately at the Post, at the same time Froomkin is being let go. Coincidence, I think not.

Posted by: bienefes | June 19, 2009 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin is, by far, the best feature on the Washington Post website. That he would be axed, while such appallingly awful writers as Gerson, Krauthammer and Kristol remain, is stunning. The only reason I come to the site is to read Froomkin and also get some kind of perverse pleasure out of seeing the latest idiocy spouted by the hacks listed above. Since the latter is a waste of my time, and since I'll no longer have Froomkin to provide anything meaningful, I intend to skip the site altogether from now on. It's been real.

Posted by: SLSP | June 19, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

I've been posting on this site since it's beginning, because it was fun to speak out against the right wing swill that has been slowly filling up the pages of the Post like an overflowing toilet. No longer. I'm joining others who have said they will no longer give the Post a hit. Let the Post preach to the neocon choir until all these shrill voices drown out any modicum of perspective, and they all plunge into the abyss of their own insanity.
You more than likely won't miss me, but if more and more people boycott the Post, advertisers will take notice. This morning I didn't link to the Post first thing in the morning. It now feels like I quit hitting my head with a hammer.
Good bye, and I definitely do not wish you good luck in your future endeavors to destroy all that is honorable in America.

Posted by: iacitizen | June 19, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Way to go WaPo! Now all you ned to do is ax Dionne, Robinson, and Meyerson and you'll be right up there with the Washington Times.

Posted by: foxn | June 19, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I'm sad that I cancelled my subscription because this news makes me want to have the satisfaction of doing it all over again.

Posted by: j_cristof | June 19, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Throughout the Bush years Mr. Froomkin's point of view accurately reflected what I saw happening in America; an administration violating our Constitution and its fundamental principles and Democrats refusing to stand up to those violations. He was critical of power and held it accountable when so few others were. I respect and admire him for that. His writing continues to reflect these traits now that Democrats are in power.
Dan Froomkin's column is simply the best thing about the Washington Post and, if the Post no longer has room for his work, then I no longer have room for the Post. I've been reading the Post for 37 years and have subscribed to it for the 18 years I've lived in the Washington area, but I'll be cancelling my subscription.

Posted by: DCDave48 | June 19, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

I signed in for the first time last evening so I could voice my dismay at Froomkin's firing. Below is the a copy of the email message I sent to the Ombudsman last night: "Wow. Sorry about Froomkin's column. What's happening at your paper anyway? Who's next: Dionne? Robinson? Soon there'll be nothing but tiresome neo-cons/Reagan-Bush cons: Gerson,Krautheimer. Hiatt. Kagan. Kinsley. Yikes. Guess I won't be stopping by so much, unless I want to get the predictable right-wing spin on something. The thoughtful conservative writers are elsewhere. Yours are hacks."

Then seeing the paper today and what do we have? Paul Wolfowitz on what Obama should be doing in Iran. (Like he was so good on Iraq.) Who's up next? Liz Cheney? Oh, that's

Thanks,
Lynn

Posted by: lkschweik | June 19, 2009 10:22 AM | Report abuse

I signed in for the first time last evening so I could voice my dismay at Froomkin's firing. Below is the a copy of the email message I sent to the Ombudsman last night: "Wow. Sorry about Froomkin's column. What's happening at your paper anyway? Who's next: Dionne? Robinson? Soon there'll be nothing but tiresome neo-cons/Reagan-Bush cons: Gerson,Krautheimer. Hiatt. Kagan. Kinsley. Yikes. Guess I won't be stopping by so much, unless I want to get the predictable right-wing spin on something. The thoughtful conservative writers are elsewhere. Yours are hacks."

Then seeing the paper today and what do we have? Paul Wolfowitz on what Obama should be doing in Iran. (Like he was so good on Iraq.) Who's up next? Liz Cheney? Oh, that's

Thanks,
Lynn

Posted by: lkschweik | June 19, 2009 10:22 AM | Report abuse

I signed in for the first time last evening so I could voice my dismay at Froomkin's firing. Below is the a copy of the email message I sent to the Ombudsman last night: "Wow. Sorry about Froomkin's column. What's happening at your paper anyway? Who's next: Dionne? Robinson? Soon there'll be nothing but tiresome neo-cons/Reagan-Bush cons: Gerson,Krautheimer. Hiatt. Kagan. Kinsley. Yikes. Guess I won't be stopping by so much, unless I want to get the predictable right-wing spin on something. The thoughtful conservative writers are elsewhere. Yours are hacks."

Then seeing the paper today and what do we have? Paul Wolfowitz on what Obama should be doing in Iran. (Like he was so good on Iraq.) Who's up next? Liz Cheney? Oh, that's

Thanks,
Lynn

Posted by: lkschweik | June 19, 2009 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin's articles, and then blog, were the primary reason I clicked on the Post. I never bother with the inane garbage spewed by Gerson, Will, Cohen, Broder or the rest, and I don't have enough interest in abnormal psychology to read the insane ravings by Krauthammer, Kristol, or the neo-cons they give free reign to.

I'll go with Froomkin and take my clicks with me. Bye.

Posted by: charles14 | June 19, 2009 10:22 AM | Report abuse

You fire Froomkin, and the next day you run an Op-Ed piece by Paul Wolfowitz to complement the usual drivel from Charles Krauthammer et. al?

It's been said before, but it's never been more true: newspapers aren't dying, they're killing themselves. You're a sad, sad joke. If the Post had been this pathetic during Watergate, we'd be flying in and out of Richard Nixon Washington National Airport. Enjoy the rest of your downward spiral. Idiots.

Posted by: EdTheRed | June 19, 2009 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Like most of the posters, firing Dan seems like such a ridiculous and shortsighted move. But it has been obvious for awhile now that WaPo is neo-con. Even the so-called media critic Kurtz seems to think O'Rielly's inciteful rants and raves on primetime are ok, yet an adult only site like Playboy are over the line with their article about conservative women. I wasn't reading WaPo back in '02-'03, did Kurtz or anybody defend the Dixie Chicks for their right to freedom of speech the way conservatives are screetching about Parjean and Palin? It was conservative media outlets that led the charge against the D.C.'s, calling three traditionally married women with kids and no surgically enhanced body parts obscene names, and professionally ostarsized them. Did I mention the death threats?
This firing is just another example of the "beltway thought process", still caught in the whole "constant campaign mode". No wonder Prez Obama has moved onto other media outlets instead of embedded and stuck in the mud outfits like WaPo, run by and run for conservative white men. What was it Chris Cillizza asked one time? "Is President Obama risking the wrath of the media movers and shakers who set the conventional wisdom for a presidency?" News flash Hiatt!!! You are now limiting your readership to an interested 25 to 30% base, the GOP base. The same one Bush pandered to for eight years, and where did that get him and the GOP? Same place you are going, in a hand basket.

Posted by: katem1 | June 19, 2009 10:31 AM | Report abuse

This is the straw that broke this camel's back. After reading the GOP talking points on page one and finding out that Froomkin has been fired, there really isn't any reason to come back here. I can get this crap on Fox News, but I don't go to Fox and I won't come back here. Froomkin is an excellent journalist and if you can't see that, then you can't see that the Post is going the way of the dinosaur.

Posted by: aevans11 | June 19, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

What in heaven's name are the editors at the WP thinking???????? I RELY on Froomkin not only for his well argued and challenging opinions, appropriate to a blog, but primarily for a review of contributors to debate on issues of high importance through his scrupulous and timely embedded links to other articles, sites, etc. I cannot imagine my days without reference to this essential tool in current awareness. This does not appear to be an economic decision, as Froomkin's blog's popularity kept me and others going to the WP site every weekday, giving the WP site high traffic and exposure. So it must be politically motivated, based on outspoken and consistent argument and point of view.
FOR SHAME, WP!!!!!!!!!!!!
I will follow DF to whatever medium allows him to continue with this valuable and informative service.
B. Stewart, MLS

Posted by: bstewart5 | June 19, 2009 10:40 AM | Report abuse

I have never logged on to comment before but the disgraceful removal of Dan Froomkin cannot pass without protest. I have watched with dismay the dilution and besmirching of the Washington Post brand over the last few years, the departure of gifted political reporters such as Jonathan Weisman and Peter Baker, the encroachment of righteous hackery among the political columnists, and this is the last straw. Froomkin advocated transparency in government at the highest levels, a worthy goal no matter which party holds power. We need more advocates of the the people's right to know, not fewer. Shame on you for silencing his voice.

Posted by: madams712 | June 19, 2009 10:40 AM | Report abuse

a) I don't think this is much of a surprise. Over the years the WaPo has progressively buried DF's work in more and more obscure parts of the website beneath far less compelling material. I have often wondered why Dan din't get out of his own accord!

b) The WaPo is canning someone who is unpredictable - his criticisms of Obama's handling of the torture legacy do not make comfortable reading for people who voted for the president, despite the fact that he is always tarred as liberal by the right. Dan's kind of integrity-driven work is rare and very, very valuable - Brooks sometimes has it at the NYT, which is why he is also worth reading.

c) I'm certain Dan will land something big that is a more worthy vehicle for his talent and integrity and, dare I say, his readers - there are a hell of a lot of us out there and Dan's departure will just make the WaPo less visited by people who want to be surprised, questioned and made to think by what they read.

Posted by: RichardHooker | June 19, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Here's the letter I wrote to the ombudsman:

I am writing to express my frustration and exasperation at Washington Post Online's decision to fire Dan Froomkin.

For so many years the paper's editorial pages expressed monotonic support for the Iraq War, torture, illegal spying, and for all of the most egregious unconstitutional excesses of the Bush White House. The *only* exception was Froomkin.

While the print edition does include some columnists who are generally regarded as liberal, most of them (Kinsley, Dionne, Cohen) have very centrist, pro-establishment sensibilities and all of them were cowards with regard to Bush/Cheney. This leaves Eugene Robinson as the only strong liberal voice at the Post to do battle with an entire army of extreme right-wing voices: Krauthammer, Will, Gerson, Kagan, etc.. The right-wingers can be counted on to toe the party line on every occasion while the "liberals" are constantly bending over backwards to be nice to the conservatives.

Through it all, Froomkin was one of the only voices in the Washington Post, or really anywhere in the mainstream media, who could be counted on to provide a true liberal critique of the Bush administration. And even now, his voice is immensely valuable as one of the few people in the media to offer a consistent liberal critique of the Obama administration.

While I am not a Washington Post subscriber, I have visited your web page almost every day for the last several years for one reason and one reason only: Dan Froomkin. That's it for me. I am done. The Washington Post is dead.

Yours Sincerely,

Joel Bloom
Albany, NY

Posted by: joeldbloom | June 19, 2009 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Bookmark deleted. Subscription cancelled. Neocon hysteria wins. Factual reporting backed up by factual links and a great memory of past events loses. The great Washington Post, winner of many Pulitzers and champion of Watergate, is now a front for Fox News. Goodbye.

Posted by: cpusss | June 19, 2009 10:47 AM | Report abuse

All I can say is disgraceful! As a self-confessed news-junkie and reader of the Post for decades, I now confront the reality that the Washington Post has become the demented uncle who tells vulgar jokes at the dinner table. I thought I would shed tears over the Post's almost inevitable demise -- no more. And it's demise is now just that -- inevitable and deservedly so.

Management should be ashamed of themselves.

Posted by: bcave | June 19, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin's White House blog is the best thing about the Washington Post. Shame on you all for eliminating it!

Posted by: kttaylor1 | June 19, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Add me to the ranks of the disappointed/outraged/disgusted. WHW is usually my first stop for news - its compilations, links to various news sources (traditional and new), and summaries are outstanding. And of course the commentary Dan provides is humorous, sarcastic, thought-provoking, and as much a part of my morning as coffee.

Like many others, I live too far away to cancel a subscription, but I'm doing it in spirit.

WaPo - you (used to) provide a valuable and unique perspective on our government. Take it from one who used to live inside the Beltway and now lives in sunny SoCal - you do nobody any service by dropping WHW and Froomkin. You lose credibility and move one step closer to the irrelevant "old media" by doing this.

And Dan - you'll be missed on these pages. Please provide updates on your writing whereabouts.

Posted by: kcInSD | June 19, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

WaPo,

You have to be kidding right?

Today's Op-Ed has a neo-con trifecta of Wolfowitz, Krauthammer & Hayden.

And you fire Froomkin???

Now that's what I call very un-fair and un-balanced.

And WaPo wonders why it is losing subscribers & eyeballs...

tyson's corner reader

Posted by: thrasher1 | June 19, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Upon hearing this I won't be reading the post any more. At all. Froomkin published exhaustive columns exposing much of the excesses and corruption that occurred during the Bush years. And during the Obama period he has proved that he's not simply a partisan hack because he has taken Obama to task on a number of things. I really was shocked when I heard that Froomkin would no longer be a part of the paper. Bye bye Washington Post - you've lost a reader.

Posted by: bluecat12345 | June 19, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

The critics of this decision are short-sighted. Now, there will be more space on the website for Sally Quinn to opine on religious issues. More room for fashion coverage from Robin Givhan, bringing you the latest from Paris and Milan.

Oh, news? Why would you come to the Washington Post for news?

Posted by: mdean3 | June 19, 2009 11:01 AM | Report abuse

I'm deeply saddened to hear of the cancellation of Mr. Froomkin's contract. His White House Watch column is one of the tabs I have automatically load when I start my browser and has been a daily ritual that I have come to enjoy and depend on as part of my daily news. While it will not prevent me from reading the Washington Post in the future, it will definitely lessen the value of the Washington Post brand and news delivery.

Posted by: eapadilla | June 19, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

P.S. Anyone have any suggestions for other (online) news sources while we wait for Froomkin to ramp up somewhere else?

Posted by: kcInSD | June 19, 2009 11:04 AM | Report abuse

It is no surprise that on the same day you fire Froomkin, you run an opinion piece by Wolfowitz.

How'd that war in Iraq pay for itself, Wolfowitz?

The WaPo should be ashamed. If your doors closed tomorrow, journalism would be no worse off.

Intellectual cowards.....

Posted by: jimimhendrix | June 19, 2009 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Just another sad chapter in the Post's dogged determination to commit corporate suicide. It's just too bad that Hiatt and his supporters are taking down everyone else there with them.

And it's not any one action, it's the totality of so many stupid moves over several years now. It's getting to the point where they won't be able to GIVE away this crap any longer. Calculating the cost of everything and the value of nothing does not a good future make... duh

Posted by: eggtrailer | June 19, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Good riddance.

Posted by: tresangelas | June 19, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

HEY

OMBUDSMAN

ARE

YOU

READING

THESE

COMMENTS?

.

Posted by: PacNW | June 19, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Given your paper's widening embrace of the right wing, I can certainly understand, and accept, its firing of Dan Froomkin. What I can't understand is its reluctance to share this reason with its readership.

It's as if your paper had developed a phobia against telling truth in any form, on any subject whatsoever.

We can't get over these phobias by indulging them, and it isn't helpful to have a readership that enables them. And so I fire you.

Posted by: rarand | June 19, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Nice work WaPo. You want to know what's not "working"? This NeoCon rag you call a paper. You have cast your lot with warmongering, fascist zombies and it will not soon be forgotten, although you may be. After all, the nation's capital already has the Washington Times. Somehow I doubt there's room for two psychotic screeching wingnut rags in the same town.

Posted by: downwarddog1967 | June 19, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

What's the difference between the Washington Post and the Washington Times? It's a trick question.

Posted by: cloudripper | June 19, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

I started reading this blog from it's inception (around the same time as Arkin's blog rose and fell) as I was no Bush Administration supporter. I have always sought out the multiple arguments and debating points and this blog was a terrific forum for that in particular b/c of the comments section.

Froomkin may have single-handedly kept the torture debate alive in the mainstream.
There is less objectivity now in part b/c the Bush presidency was so polarizing, (really it was like shooting fish in a barrel). The Obama Administration has much more to report on because it is the new administration, becausue of the many issues it is dealing with and MOST IMPORTANTLY because it ISN'T the Bush Administration. The public and the press have a greater duty now to maintain relentless investigation into those in power precisely because many people tuned out politics when they new the Bush Administration was out of power.

Keeping an already vibrant forum alive with minor modifications to maintain objectivity would have been a better solution. Perhaps Mr. Froomkin was unwilling to modify his writing...

I suggest readers of this blog focus their attention over to Antiwar.com as there are many good pieces aside from the more-than-occasional Justin Raimondo rant

Posted by: jbrady84 | June 19, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

So, let's see. Richard Cohen, Howard Kurtz and BILL KRISTOL will be keeping their jobs and Froomkin is out?? Well, makes perfect sense to me.

Conventional wisdom, corporate shill and partisan hack = totally ok. One of the washingtonpost.com's only voices of reason for the last eight years = don't let the door hit you on the way out. Smells fair and balanced.

Posted by: Barrett1 | June 19, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Last night I thought about canceling but thought better of it, that I shouldn't punish the print edition for what the .com did.
Then I read this morning that indeed Fred Hiatt was the instigator for Froomkin's firing. The editorial page has become boring and one-note. The only truly liberal voices are Robinson, Dionne and Meyerson. Cohen is a joke. The number of rightwing neocons on the op-ed page has multiplied.
The A section has become weaker in its coverage of national and international news since the business section was folded in.
The Book World is no more.
The Metro pages look more like an obit section.
Froomkin's firing was the last straw. After 11 years, I've canceled my subscription.

Posted by: Elkay1 | June 19, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

This was dumber than hiring Ben Domenech. This was even dumber than keeping Krauthammer, Kristol, Will & Hiatt.

You need to check your HVAC system there for traces of aerosolized Teh Stoopid.

Posted by: lexalexander | June 19, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

about time they got rid of that horsecum swallower.

Posted by: BO_Stinks | June 19, 2009 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Like good, thought provoking TV program, the White House Watch blog is now canned. Blogs like this will ultimately save the WaPo - stupidly cleaving to serving one politicla view will not.

Posted by: kcsphil | June 19, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

In my 20 years as a subscriber, I have never written to the Post. Today, I have managed 3 posts & one letter to the editor to voice my extreme frustration at the turn that Post has taken. I hope that someone's mind is changed and that Froomkin remains. He is the most thought-provoking and interesting columnist you have. I read his blog everyday and discuss it amongst my friends. As I have said in each posting, I simply can't understand why the Post feels the need to drive away its most loyal readers. I will not be renewing my subscription or viewing the online edition any longer after he is gone. There is nothing that makes your paper stand out. What a loss.

Posted by: mtl1 | June 19, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

You're keeping dull, dusty Broder and firing your best asset? Froomkin is your sharpest writer.

Please explain this decision.

Posted by: KevPod | June 19, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

There is no reason, other than to vent, to believe that any of these comments supporting Dan Froomkin will penetrate the neocon armor of the Post powers that be.
It wouldn't surprise me to learn that WaPo is taking the same business path that the self-adoring Jon Meachem at Newsweek has embarked on, i.e, to whittle down subscribers to a core of "elite" readers who truly understand how remarkable the Washington media establishment truly is.
They just don't give a crap what we think.

Posted by: rosieO | June 19, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

It amazes me how successful the movement conservatives have been in intimidating what I once perceived as powerful independent journalistic institutions. The Washington Post has been cowed into providing megaphones to many arch conservative voices who envision a militaristic, nationalistic USA firmly in the mold of Dick Cheney. And those who call for accountability are fired.

It is very telling that the Post provides a medium for Glenn Beck who bases his career on adolescent tantrums and juvenile name-calling at the same time it fires the thoughtful Froomkin.

It is clear that the days of a Woodward and Bernstein representing the Post with honor and integrity in the face of conservative attacks are a relic of a different time. Perhaps the Post should focus more features on American Idol and teen TV stars, as these can be good moneymakers when one is no longer interested in the hard work of honest journalism.

Posted by: gator711 | June 19, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin's last day at the Post is my last day, too. Congratulations! You've managed to purge the last person at the Post who was willing to take a long-term look at the hard, unpleasant truths.

Wherever Dan Froomkin ends up, I will read his work - even if I have to pay. Meanwhile, the Post will be deleted from my bookmarks, and I will no longer be reading it - ever.

You people really have no clue what journalism IS any more, do you? That's just sad.

And by the way, Mr. Alexander: being an ombudsman means actually making some sort of COMMENT about the actions of Post management, and even acting as the voice of the readership TO the Post. You represented none of that. Apparently, you feel that "ombudsman" means the same thing as "stenographer".

I'm afraid that in you, the Post has the ombudsman that it both wants and deserves.

Posted by: PMaranci | June 19, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

You fired the best, most reality based writer you had. You kept the horrible, always wrong, neocon establishment conservatives. Great job Washington Post. It's like you want to go out of business. People are leaving the establishment newspapers in droves because of this right wing bias. I am no longer bookmarking your paper, there's nothing here I want.

Posted by: deshop | June 19, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Krauthammer: Angry neocon with clear psychological issues keeps his job.
Gerson: Christian apologist who should be working in a seminary keeps his job.
Kristol: No apparent qualifications for non-ideological work, keeps his job.
Froomkin: Insightful reporter who presents actual information, not just opinions, is eliminated.
Might as well read the New York Post, or the Dallas Morning News. It was nice knowing the WaPo for a while. Goodbye.

Posted by: jerryo2 | June 19, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse

I will also stop reading WaPo articles online. Tanks for nothin'!

Posted by: merickson3 | June 19, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin was the only reason I read this site consistently. With him gone I will have no use for it.

If you actually READ Froomkin's work you'll see that he is working tirelessly to bring context to Obama administration decisions as he did for Bush. Yes, we're early in the term. No, there is not as much outrage to drive readership. But, the "blog" still has value. If the Post can't see that then it deserves to be relegated to the recycling bin of history.

The Post seems hellbent on appealing to the Fox News and Wall Street Journal readers who are only interested in hearing from conservative columnists about the alternate reality they try to create.

Posted by: fletc3her | June 19, 2009 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Ok - I took the Post daily for more than 20 years. I took the Post monthly when I moved to Tucson. I canceled my monthly subscription when I realized the Post editorial page was becoming more and more an outlet for neocon trash-talk rather than an analysis one could respect. Its a sad demise of a once great newspaper. I will be searching for wherever Froomkin lands next.

Posted by: gbollinger88 | June 19, 2009 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Unbelievably stupid move.

And what an incredibly bs explanation for it.

Plenty of room for every nutbag neocon, warmonger, and 'go along to get along' beltway cocktail party circuiteer out there, but no room (online mind you) for Dan's excellent column.

Just unbelievable.

Posted by: STTPinOhio | June 19, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin gone?! What are you, nuts? Here's hoping Danny pops up on the NYT.

Posted by: erin_go_bragh | June 19, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

What a load of crap:

"That slant seemed to attract a large and loyal audience during the Bush administration, but it may have suffered when Barack Obama became president."

I don't believe this at all. Can you back it up??

Posted by: PresumptuousInsect | June 19, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

I just wanted to add my voice to the outporing of support for Dan Froomkin. I agree completely with the idea that the WaPo is now the necon bastion with little or no independent thought. A very sad day!

Posted by: noqwus | June 19, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I’m sure man of Froomkin’s readers don’t agree with him politically, It shows up in the comments, however that just might be the case with most of the Post’s opinion writers. I don’t agree with George Will and have trouble with him when he stretches the truth or bends facts, but I still respect him because he is a good writer. Kathleen Parker is another good writer whom I don’t always agree with. Whether you agree with him or not Froomkin is a good writer. He is easy to read and follow and is a writer the post should always be proud to have. Sadly though they choose to keep hack writers like Krauthammer rather than real talent. What a waste of an opportunity to improve journalism.

Posted by: m_mcmahon | June 19, 2009 12:08 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Post had a place on my favorites toolbar, with Froomkin's site as the starting point.

"Froomkin's site"--whether it's his other site, or somewhere new--will retain the bookmark. (I had even thought writing in to suggest that Froomkin get his own WP-related favicon, for those of us who care about bookmark icons).

The Washington Post will not. I'll still visit for news, but they lost me as a daily must-check, always starting with Dan Froomkin.

Posted by: wistlo | June 19, 2009 12:12 PM | Report abuse

This is a very disappointing loss of counterbalance to the heavily conservative OpEd staff. By the logic provided shouldn't Kristol and Krauthammer go as well? Perhaps the trend is toward more 'Fair and Balanced' coverage. I guess there will be more column space for trenchant reporting on denim from George Will...

Posted by: AngusCrumm | June 19, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Are you kidding me? I guess Fred got his wish, too bad he couldn't get his man McCain into office.

To follow everyone else, bye Washington Post. I'll read the NY Times and the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, and follow Dan Froomkin wherever he goes. I guess Weingarten is going also.

Posted by: JohnLease | June 19, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

You know, Washington Post Editors, I was just about to help you guys out by resubscribing to the paper.

With this decision, I've reconsidered. I will not being giving you a nickel.

Posted by: scorbett1976@hotmail.com | June 19, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Well this is really the cherry on top of your s***ty decision cake. I've been coming here (this site) for years (ever since I had to cancel my subscription upon coming to France). Ever since I was a journalism student, I've come here as if to church of journalism, hoping to find some shred of Woodward and Bernstein's cred, and the last shred of it has left the building. Howie Kurtz is very good at explaining the beltway journalist's POV and well worth reading for that, but I shan't be reading him anymore either.
I have actually founf Froomkin MOREinteresting since Obama's been prez because it's shown what a true journalist is: not just an attack dog against the opposition. He was holding Obama's feet tot he fire just as he did Bush's, acting as the loyal investigator any journalist should be.

I have not idea what the true story behind this is. Doubtless there will be no journalist of Froomkin's caliber left at WaPost to find out. Shame on you. You guys are dancing on your own grave and too clueless to know it.

I can read most of your remaining columnists in the Weekly Standard.hall be goingthere before returning here. At least they're hones tabout their POV.

Your ship is sinking and you're pushing the guy with the only patch-kit overboard.

Posted by: ddevice1 | June 19, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

one more sign of the dying of journalism that is worth reading. the wapo is a private enterprise and its owners have the prerogative to publish whoever they choose, however as a consumer of the printed word, i have the prerogative of concluding that its best days are behind it and it is no longer worth reading.

congratulations hiatt. you're getting closer to turning your paper into another version of worldnetdaily or nro.

Posted by: jimfilyaw | June 19, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Please include me in the count of loyal Froomkin readers dismayed by the WaPo's poor judgement. I'll wait until Dan's gone, then leave myself.

I started reading the Post as a delivery boy in Reston 38 years ago. I miss that paper; I don't think I'll miss the current incarnation.

Someone asked for interesting alternatives to WHW. I enjoy The New Republic's blogs at tnr.com

Posted by: tadks | June 19, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

No more WaPo.com for me, too. Nice work, oh serious people who are better and wiser than all of us.

Henceforth I'll even try to stifle my morbid curiosity and avoid following the many mocking links in the liberal blogosphere to the latest inanities or shameless lies of the likes of Cohen, Broder, Krauthammer, Kristol, Will, and and the rest of Hiatt's bipartishanship-for-its-own-sake, torture-loving, and global-warming-denying "stable."

Posted by: Enceladus | June 19, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse

...and the Washington Post becomes more irrelevant with his firing.

Enjoy your upcoming irrelevancy and bankrupt status WaPo. You've earned it.

Posted by: khoreia | June 19, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Heard about this from Salon and was shocked. I grew up in DC and the Post was always my "go-to" paper for many years, but for the last decade or so, it's become increasingly clear that its star is has fallen. To the Right, I might add.

Off the favorites list as of today...

Posted by: dawnlp1967 | June 19, 2009 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Disgraceful collapse of a once brave and great newspaper organization.

Posted by: petercapitolhill | June 19, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Hiatt's statement is underwhelming. Froomkin's column was one of the most widely read voices at WaPo. No doubt as Hiatt puts it "With the end of the Bush administration, interest in the blog also diminished." But does anyone doubt that interest in Froomkin's blog was still very high? Far higher than for most of WaPo's blogs?

Posted by: crust1 | June 19, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Keep Dan Froomkin! Letting him go lets me believe the worst about the Post. Froomkin is principled and honest in reporting on Obama's failures just as he reported on Bush's. It sends just the wrong message to kick him out while -- as others here have pointed out -- partisan, ideological, and discredited writers like Krauthammer, Will, and Kristol stay. Unlike these people, Froomkin actually thinks. Is there no room for a non-blowhard at the Post?

Posted by: roger17 | June 19, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

I read Dan Froomkin daily even when I have to go searching for his column in the deep down in the blog directory. Thanks Dan. I hope you'll continue your column elsewhere.

Posted by: PortlandReader | June 19, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

This is disgraceful -- if the Post seriously wantsto improve it's content, it shoulf fire Fire Fred Hyatt, Krauthammar, and all the other neo-con subversives the foul the editorial page with.

Posted by: cbgittings | June 19, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Time for me to add my good-bye to the others here. Froomkin was the first and foremost reason for me to check into the Washington Post website daily. He will be the last reason for me to do so. It is such a sad thing to say, but I have no more unique reason to turn to the Post.

Thank you, Dan, for your exemplary professionalism, your commitment to real journalism, and your independent voice. i look forward to reading you from your next perch.

Posted by: prairieman1 | June 19, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Alexander,

You write: "That slant seemed to attract a large and loyal audience during the Bush administration, but it may have suffered when Barack Obama became president."

If you are a reporter, can't you do better than "seemed to" or "may have". Did you ask? What did The Post say?

If your role is to give "voice to readers' concerns," I hope you will do so in response to the comments on this blog.

Froomkin delivered freshness and diversity. This is a loss to The Post and its readers.

Posted by: marcgunther | June 19, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

dear readers,
at the very least it can be said, unequivocally, that cries of "liberal media" are no longer relevant. That notion has been discredited.
There has been an insidious cloud forming over our Nation's Capitol for sometime now, before our 43rd president, and in it are rumbles of thunder which speak, "the man living in the beacon on the hill must come down and rain fire upon all who live contrary".
Keep in mind however that the U.S. Gov't has tremendous resources left over from the Cold War, resources NeoConservatives are perfectly aware of and recommend their useage very effectively in their rationale.

I will say the NeoConservative voice is dangerous foremost because at it's heart it relies on SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS. Furthermore the philosophy espouses the notion that America play judge, jury, and executioner in all manners of foreign policy, discounts the "natural order of things", and ultimately contradicts itself because it eliminates that which presumably the NeoConservative holds most dear as a vital element to liberty, that being Free Choice.

It is true, the Washington Post is officially a follower, public sentiment and market forces have clearly moved in the direction of Evangelical Americanism. If this were untrue the Post would be, at the very least providing "Fair and Balanced" coverage, alas the NeoConservative voice is still the dominant voice in and of Washington D.C.

Posted by: jbrady84 | June 19, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Wow! I leave the country for 3 weeks and my first bookmarked Post column is axed! What a travesty! In a world where Krauthammer and Broder get facetime where ever you look — for no apparent reason — I suppose a guy who knows what he's talking about was bound to lose his job. It was Froomkin who brought me to the WashPo website on a daily basis and I've even thought of trying to subscribe to the dead-tree version from here in California just to show my support for what the online version has accomplished. But if the choice is Krauthammer, Hiatt, Broder et al OR Froomkin, it's time to send my clicks elsewhere.
Really bad decision, fellas!

Posted by: jhcooper | June 19, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

In my opinion the deterioration of the WP accelerated sharply in the second Clinton administration, seeming, at least to me to become more of an echo of avaricious finance policies and administration foreign policy than an honest broker of information or a conduit for PENETRATING questions/ devil's advocate about policies.

WP's failure to take a hard look at Bush policies leading up to 9/11/01, and especially in the aftermath, steepened the decline to an alarming slope - at least to me. We still don't know the failures that allowed the attack, and the as the hometown paper the WP is the signal failure of the print media in that area.

Later addition of blogs like Froomkin's offered careful readers a form of redemption for the failure of the WP print version to perform its duty as an honest analyst and questioner of conventional wisdom.

At sixty I have bought a Sunday WP for much of my adult life in addition to subscribing to the WSJ and other generally respectable print media, at least in part to support print media.

Going forward because of bad decisions like firing Froomkin I shall not be buying my Sunday Washington Post - and probably more to the point, shall immediately stop promoting the WP to others.

Posted by: WLWelch | June 19, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

The only thing the Post will understand (maybe?) is the consequences of lost revenue. Any reader disgusted with the Post's termination of Froomkin should cancel their subscription.

Dan will be fine, the Post is a lost cause. Merge with the Washington Times and get it over with already.

With that, I delete the Post from my browser forever. I've had enough!

Posted by: lhnorville | June 19, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

You get rid of the best comic in the paper (Zippy) and keep the worst (Prickly City, Family Circus, Dennis The Menace). You get rid of the best political commentator (Froomkin) and keep the most worthless (Krauthammer, Kristol, Will, Gerson, Broder, Cohen). You get rid of Book World but keep Parade. You keep a sports section that faithfully covers the worst teams in sport, but devote at most a page a week to science and technology.

How the hell do you hope to stay in business?

Posted by: Theophylact | June 19, 2009 1:18 PM | Report abuse

I guess this move was necessary to make room for more articles by Bill Kristol, who is widely "credited" with suggesting Sarah Palin for John McCain's running mate. Good move, Washington Post. Good-bye, Washington Post.

Posted by: gsross | June 19, 2009 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Simply appalling. The only reason I will continue my subscription for the next three days or so is to see the "phony mea culpa" in the ombudsman column. Then I will take my Post subscription money and support Froomkin wherever he may go. Look up the word "firestorm" in the dictionary. This comment thread will be listed there. Previous commenters have done a great job summarizing my feelings about this once-great, now pathetic, newspaper.

Posted by: arsubscriberfor30years | June 19, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Pathetic! The paper will print utter garbage (Kristol,anyone?), but when it comes to actually having worthwhile content in the Post, it is carelessly jettisoned. The "credibility" the Post's editors desire so badly just went down a notch. Homogenizing is not the answer, you dummies. Thank God for Salon.com.

Posted by: tsacco | June 19, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

One more voice here to stupid-stupid-stupid decision.
Providing context to the vast amount of information regarding the presidents and white house actions has run its course??? Readers are not interested in accountability?????
Ridiculous!!

Posted by: cjensen37 | June 19, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Unbelievably sad, to witness the self-immolation of the Post after having been an avid reader for 40 years. Like many others have testified here, Dan's blog was one of the few things to sustain me during the last eight horrific years. I have been very disappointed to observe the changes in editorial slant over the last decade, but it didn't come clear to me how bad it was until I learned about this termination. Today I couldn't read the Post without feeling nausea, so you will soon cease to be my home page.

Posted by: ctnickel | June 19, 2009 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Bye, wapo. No more hits for you.

Posted by: mck-at-wapo | June 19, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

OMBUDS - Read these comments and write an article about our concerns. You haven't done that yet. Then read Greenwald, hamsher, Emptywheel, Neiman Watch, Politico, and the rest. Then realize what an amazingly stupid decision you made.

Is it true that Wolfowitz is new to the editorial staff this week? Unbelievable.

Didn't Wolfie tell us that the Iraq war would pay for itself? What other gross lies do we know he told.

FROOMKIN WAS THE ONLY WRITER ON YOUR STAFF WHO WOULD CALL A LIE A LIE, THE REST TOLD BOTH SIDES.

Posted by: NeilSagan | June 19, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Say good-bye WaPo. Sometimes I imagine what it must have been like to have a large, liberal (ie questioning authority) paper in DC but those days are long gone.

Posted by: philb1987 | June 19, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

What a smart decision. How do you make your product more interesting and valuable? You get rid of those things that make you unique. Great move. See ya.

Posted by: cmpgm | June 19, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

This was an awesomely bad decision, and it is hard to understand from the point of view of journalistic excellence or integrity.

Fromkin provided, besides good reporting analysis from a left-liberal point of view, an important balance to the many conservative columnists. Besides, on questions of content, his blog was frequently simply more interesting, incisive, and informative than many of the right-leaning opinion pieces.

So I am forced to conclude that, since the firing makes no sense from a journalistic or business perspective, there were only two possible reasons for this action.

1. A personality clash
2. A conscious decision to move the editorial line of the paper still further to the right.

... or some blend of these.

In either case, the Post comes out looking poorly. Fromkin will survive, but the paper is in fact the big loser. This is a big blow to its reputation and standing. The Washington Post has taken careful aim and shot itself in the foot.

Posted by: trobador | June 19, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

NOOO! I love White House Watch! It was one of the things that would make me come here instead of to other papers...

Why WaPo, why?

Posted by: LGray2 | June 19, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

I have to add my voice to those trying to figure out why the Post would fire Froomkin.

The Post really owes its readers something more than the mushmouthed reason it gave. It's irresponsible to simply portray it as a case of providing "the most value" for their readers.

I look forward to reporters pushing the Post's management to offer a full-fledged examination of their motivations, and forcing them to defend their decision instead of trying to write it off as a case of reduced reader interest.

It's not enough to simply say that last year Froomkin was at X views per day and now he's at Y -- they need to put it into context of all of their content as well, including their overall declining print readership.

Otherwise, how can people like Hiatt defend their calls for greater openness in Iran if they employ extremely opaque tactics of their own.

Posted by: uuuaaauuu | June 19, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

What's left after Froomkin goes? Gerson, Krauthammer, Will? Bad enough that the print version is getting skinnier and more content-lite by the week. (I'm a 7 day a week dead tree subscriber for the time being.) Now, you're turning the website into celebrity sightings and advice to the lovelorn. WaPo, you're starting to look like Newsweek, and I dropped my 30-year subscription to that fluffy little mag last year.

Posted by: n_mcguire | June 19, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Wow. I guess now the editorial board can go back to reporting that "torture" is really spelled "fluffing-with-daisies". Heckuvajob Posty!

Posted by: flavor13 | June 19, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Washington Post just showed everyone their hand. They are now just a mouth-piece for the teeny tiny party going the way of the dinosaurs. They just cut off both of their feet.

Posted by: aevans11 | June 19, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Out; Dan Froomkin, In; Paul Wolfowitz? WTF?

Posted by: Czarathustra | June 19, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for signing in. Your washingtonpost.com User ID, aevans11, will be never be seen again! Bye Bye Post. Signing off for good!

Posted by: aevans11 | June 19, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin must stay!

Posted by: crredburn | June 19, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse

How does the Washington Post decide whom to feature on its op-ed page?
Increasingly, it seems, the most important litmus test is:

(1) a relentless, knee-jerk neocon viewpoint,

(2) an eagerness to compromise fundamental American principles--due process, habeas corpus, separation of powers, freedom from torture and domestic spying--on the (styrofoam) altar of "improved" national security, and

(3) an absolutely STUNNING record of tragic, willful ignorance and ineptitude (Kristol, Wolfie, Kagan, Feith on Iraq, Iran, and so much more; "Dr" Krauthammer, the Post's torture-rationalizer-in-chief; Will on global warming (and blue jeans -- sheesh!), etc.).

White House Watch was my favorite feature of the Post and - in the past year or two - it has gradually become the only part of the editorial section that I follow regularly. As a physician and medical educator profoundly mistrustful of the pharmaco-industrial complex's alliance with insurers (not to mention the Faustian collusion by the AMA), I had looked forward to Froomkin's skeptical analysis of all players (including President Obama) involved in the health-care debate.

The Washington Post--once the proud home of independent thinkers, balanced journalism, and Watergate newsbreakers--has now joined Fox News and the Wall Street Journal as yet another brainless fixture in the right-wing echo chamber.

Like so many other disappointed Post readers, I'm confident that Dan Froomkin will be writing for another (wiser, better) publication very soon -- and I'm looking forward to following him there.

As for the Washington Post, this is the last straw. Starting today, I'm cutting my subscription (and deleting all my links to the Post's columns and blogs). The $ saved can go toward a subscription to whichever publication is lucky enough to land Dan Froomkin!

Posted by: ManateeMD | June 19, 2009 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Everything you need to know about where the Post stands editorially was on display during the week after Katrina in 2005. It ran a series of editorials praising Bush for his response. With this kind of bias, should anyone wonder why they dumped Froomkin? And using the sort of credibility-free, ham-fisted excuses beloved by neocons everywhere?

Posted by: ryanvb | June 19, 2009 2:09 PM | Report abuse

I found the Washington Post website through Froomkin's column, but I can tell I won't be visiting the site any more: nothing now to draw me there. I'll be following Froomkin wherever he ends up. The Post's loss. My Bookmark for the Post is no more.

Posted by: martona | June 19, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin told the truth and stood up to power. That's why he's being fired. Congratulations, Washington Post! You've taken a major step forward in moving the Post closer to the Moonies at the Washington Times. What a disgrace.

Posted by: rsangeorge | June 19, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin's White House Blog has been one of the Post's most consistently valuable features. The justification offered by Fred Hiatt makes no sense, and can only be seen as insincere. Froomkin's continued coverage of the Obama White House, using the same standards he applied to the Bush White House, is what I have so much admired about him. I can only see in this the Post's determination to exercise a greater hidden control over what range of editorial opinions is allowed to be expressed: Krauthammer & Co.? yes, and with more of an oligopoly on opinion than ever. Froomkin? no: he might commit candor. This will not be a formula for the future success of this newspaper. As for Dan Froomkin? -- he has been a distinctive and valuable voice, and the Post will be weaker without him.

Posted by: Pragmatix | June 19, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

I was also a daily reader of Dan Froomkin's column. He was the only journalist who regularly pointed out the growing chasm between what the Obama administration did and what it said. I will follow him wherever he goes. As for the Washington Post, it has lost any semblance of balance. I'll check in and read it from time to time, not to be informed, but to be entertained by a caricature of a news outlet. I do the same with Fox News.

Posted by: tmoore1 | June 19, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

HOW CAN THEY DO THIS??? Froomkin's White House Watch was the best thing in the Washington Post, bar none! Fools, fools.
Well, I'll follow him wherever he goes; bye-bye WaPo.

Posted by: etenglish | June 19, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

I am appalled at the current state of the Washington Post. I have stopped reading the op-ed pages, which I find almost uniformly incompetent and offensive--the fact that the WaPo sees fit to pay columnists who advocate for government lawbreaking, against transparency in government, and for torture is incomprehensible to me. I am saddened that the Post is firing one of the only people in its employ left who actually practices journalism. If it weren't for Carolyn Hax, I wouldn't be reading the Post anymore. As it is, I will not be visiting its op-ed pages or discussion groups.

Posted by: Katya2 | June 19, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

What can I say that hasn't already been said by all the sane people that used to read your publication. Just another nail in the WaPo coffin. See ya, I'm outta here.

Posted by: Mark27 | June 19, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

"With the end of the Bush administration, interest in the blog also diminished."

I'm sure Mr. Hiatt has some statistics to back that up, because it's not at all clear from the outrage across the web.

So Freddie, why don't you post a chart showing the diminished interest in Dan's blog?

Posted by: BigTunaTim | June 19, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

I'm saddened that the Post's online presence doesn't have room for Froomkin's lively, freethinking and thought provoking blog.

I'll be looking for his blog elsewhere.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | June 19, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Going all-in with neoconservatives in 2009 is like going all-in with the Nazis in 1944.

(apologies for the clearly loaded reference, but I can't think of any similar absurdly-shortsighted situations)

Posted by: BigTunaTim | June 19, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Meet-up WAPO corporate office 5PM.
Bring signs --
"Where's My Froomkin Vote?"

Posted by: HereComesTheJudge | June 19, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

I think Froomkin has gotten repetitive and am one that stopped reading him after the Bush years ended. Even during the Bush years he was a predictable voice that kept hammering home the same points over and over. I'm a long-standing liberal who thinks he just wasn't that interesting anymore. Agree with the decision to cut ties.

Posted by: mcnamarajj | June 19, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Yes nothing to see here. Let's not look behind the curtain. I guess the WaPo wants to become journalistic hacks and stay on the surface rather than have a blogger who will actually lay it all out. I too worried how Froomkin would do after Bush was gone; and you know what: he remained as refreshing and consistent as he did over the last four years.

What a waste. What a loss

Posted by: jrav | June 19, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Excellent job, WaPo! Bravo! Axing Froomkin was a stroke of genius! Giving Wolfowitz a column, fantastic!

Why employ actual journalists when you can have war criminals, partisan hacks, and GOP stenographers gracing your editorial pages?

Posted by: mcaicedo | June 19, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Not sure what is the Post's agenda...but it's wrong. Froomkin's reporting on Obama's White House is hitting it's stride, and the Post is nuts for letting his contract go. The Post seems intent on getting rid of loyal readers...this finishes me off. I'm ending my paper subscription, and am changing my home page from the Post to a real news source.

It's just sad to see it die such a long, protracted death...and then pull it's own limbs off...gross, actually.

Dan, i'll find you! Thanks for your great work...and keep nailing Obama for his transgressions!

Posted by: las100 | June 19, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

On the day I read about the Post's dismissal of Froomkin, I see a guest column from another of Post's recurring cadre of incompetents, liars, and outright criminals. I am referring, in this case, to Paul Wolfowitz; if he hasn't been throughly discredited by history, I don't know how anyone could be. (Others of this genus include "Phil Gramm is right!" Shlaes, Gerson, Krauthammer, "Deficits don't matter" and "torture is good" Cheney, and of course Hiatt himself.)

Because of Dan Froomkin, the Post was one of my top "must view daily" website. In fact, if the day of "pay per view" newspapers ever comes, I would have (or, have had) no objection to paying for his intelligent summary of numerous news sources.

As for paying to view the Post's remaining neocon and neofascist propagandists, or the occasional breaking news story, as Bush I might have said, "Ain't gonna happen."

Posted by: dwiltzee | June 19, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Hiatt says that interest in Froomkin's columns (mistakenly referred to by Hiatt as a "blog" ) has "diminished."

My interest in the WaPo has also diminished. Hiatt's roster of radical right-wing advocates is unappealing. Gene Robertson and E.J. Dionne are the only persons on Hiatt's staff that usually have something interesting to say. The rest are Republican puppets and miscreants. How long before Robertson gets the message?

Posted by: jkrogman | June 19, 2009 2:27 PM | Report abuse

I guess DC needs TWO conservative, neocon rags...

I'll use the few remaining issues of my subscription to line the birdcage.

EJ's not enough to make me re-subscribe.

Posted by: AlSwearengen | June 19, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I'm absolutely appalled by the firing of Dan Froomkin. While your editorial section kept getting piled with neocons and people who were plugged into Beltway Received Wisdom so much that they no longer were able to function as objective reporters and writers, I was surprised at how far the paper had gone from its old journalistic standards.

Living in the Midwest, I used to consider the idea of subscribing to the Post as a near-impossible dream; when I got a Kindle at Christmas from my family, I subscribed to the WaPo for the first time ever and was happy to get it.

Yes, I know Dan wasn't on that service, and I still had to go here and check it out. But taking him out and putting Wolfowitz in? To me, that suggests that you're in a race to neoconner-than-thou with the Washington Times, and now your sky is the color that you think it *should* be. Probably paisley, but certainly not blue.

You want to know why papers decline? Because management messes up the reasons that papers are read - it becomes a fawning acceptor of the lowest common denominator in news handouts and propaganda, and mindless trash fills column inches, while the supposedly smart guys at the top play games with the stock price, the over-leveraged debt that drowns them eventually...I could go on for a while, but I'm just too disgusted.

As soon as I finish this, you lose another Kindle subscriber, and I'll encourage my friends to help you set up your paper's funeral pyre. Dudes, you did this to yourself, and you haven't the first clue as to what's going on.

Washington Post, Requisicat in pacem. You were a great institution once. No longer.

Posted by: jrittenh | June 19, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

I'll be dropping my bookmark to Washington Post and adding a bookmark to the NY Times. Froomkin provided thoughtful, independent analysis and maintained a skeptical distance from the people he was reporting about. More and more the Post just parrots the meme of the day or the talking points provided by the government. Or wastes ink on infotainment.

Dan Froomkin didn't undermine the Post's credibility, he augmented it. I am saddened by the Post's decision to snuff out a dissenting voice. Dissent, and the free exchange of ideas, is democracy.

It is sad to witness the decline of the Post. Even more so to think that Froomkin's firing was because Froomkin called out Krauthammer on torture. He was absolutely in the right to do so.

Why the Washington Post is in the thrall of the neocons, I find it truly baffling.

Posted by: NW_Washington | June 19, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

The Post has the nerve to publish the architect of the disasterous Iraq War, Wolfowitz, and one of the biggest mouthpieces of the criminal neocons, Krauthammer, on the day your readership finds out that Dan Froomkin has been sacked. And we will continue to be subjected to the rubbish of Will, Ponnuru, Gerson, Kagan and Parker. What the he11 has happened to the Washington Post?

Posted by: Midknight | June 19, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Can't believe it. Now there is no one to keep the Kraut and the Gerson straight. WOW! I'll follow his column elsewhere.

Posted by: warrenjasper | June 19, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Decisions like this are the reason I abandoned my journalism major. The further I went in my "education" the more I realized how broken the system was. The dismissal of one of the few true journalists in political reporting confirms that I made the right choice just as much as the rapid shuttering of long-standing newspapers around the country. There is no longer any reason to even follow a link to the Washington Post if they no longer have actual journalistic standards.

Posted by: thedmg | June 19, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Wow - there goes my last reason for checking out the Post - I'm off to delete the bookmark... Can't wait to read Froomkin's blog and buy from his advertisers!

Posted by: disappointed_and_done_with_wapo | June 19, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin's column has been one of my favorite reads for the past 6 years. He was one of the first to take advantage of the "new media" and link directly to news articles, blogs, etc. and put this together with his own opinion on events. He has been consistently skeptical of the White House, and pays more attention to actions than press releases (something the actual reporters at the WaPo would have done well to learn from).

On the other hand, I stopped reading Broder, Will, and Cohen because they kept regurgitating the same old arguments, as if the world is the same now as it was 30 years ago. Gerson is, at best, an intellectual lightweight- I read a couple of his columns when he first started, but cannot take him seriously. Safe to say, with Kristol's almost perfect record of being wrong on everything he writes about, I'll never read him.

I don't know what the WaPo was thinking when they chose to drop Froomkin, but I know I will follow his work wherever he goes next.

Posted by: TEL1 | June 19, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

A stupid, ideological decision that betrays a newspaper's obligation to report all viewpoints.

I agree with the other posts.

Posted by: nbauman | June 19, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Pathetic. That's it. I literally have no reason to read The Washington Post anymore. I have been a daily reader for over a decade. I am done with your hideously managed paper. I'll just go wherever Froomkin is hired next. You all are complete fools--you at the top of the list, Mr. Hiatt.

Posted by: willallison_2000 | June 19, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

I will read Froomkin elsewhere. I won't say the same of Hiatt...

Posted by: BethWellington | June 19, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin's "White House Watch" is the only opinion column at the Washington Post I read faithfully. I do so because he writes vigorous, well-though-through arguments about issues that concern me deeply (e.g., executive branch secrecy & law-breaking, the growing national security apparatus, relations between government & the press). Moreover, each column is extremely well researched & larded (more so than any comparable source I can think of) with useful links to other sources on the web. Now that he is gone, I will no longer come to the Post's web site spontaneously, but only when someone at another site links to an important article there. I find the writing of most of the rest of the regular columnists either to be empty & predictable (Broder, Ignatius, Cohen) or empty, predictable, and repugnant (Will, Krauthammer, Kristol). These people are the worst sort of establishment courtiers. Froomkin was a rare (certainly at the Post) & original voice.

I must repeat the sentiment I've read so many times across the web since yesterday: firing Froomkin is surely one of the most dramatically idiotic & self-destructive moves the Post's management could have made. What have you been smoking? If you want to jetison the worthless past & look to the intellectually renewed future, where profits lie, fire Krauthammer & Broder & company & hire more Dan Froomkins!

Posted by: zenomax | June 19, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

WaPo is screwed. This paper will die slowly.

Posted by: MrInternational | June 19, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

During the Bush years, Dan Froomkin's column provided a rare oasis of sanity and common sense. The transition to Obama has changed none of this, nor has it detracted anything from Dan's supreme relevance as a political reporter.

Dan Froomkin is the best there is. Period.

Without his blog, Eugene Robinson will be my only reason ever to glance at the Washington Post. Broder and Cilizza, Krauthammer and the neocons -- these guys stay, while Froomkin goes? WaPo is nuts.

Posted by: SeattleVoter | June 19, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

You can read Dan's work at:

www.niemanwatchdog.org

Wherever else he might land, I don't know.

Posted by: whizbang9a | June 19, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

There's no further reason to read the Post. The remaining columnists are virtually all right-wing extremists and the value of the Post's reporting was established when they colluded with with Bush Administration to sell the Iraq war.

It's a shame. Before they blew off journalism to be Republican Party courtiers, the Post was a great paper.

R.I.P.

Posted by: MollyNYC | June 19, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

What does this mean: "interest in the blog also diminished"? From the response to the firing, interest seems to be quite high. Such a lame excuse for firing someone of course would be suspicious. Many have pointed out that Krauthammer is allowed to continue his crazy rants, but Froomkin who is always careful and judicious about his comments is let go.
On the same day I hear about the firing, I see that WP publishes both Krauthammer and Wolfowitz on the Iran situation. Those two are certainly the first ones I turn to for advice about the Middle East. Froomkin has far more credibility than those two. I knew that he at least would not distort the facts. Hiatt should be ashamed, but then neocons never are.

Posted by: bafield | June 19, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Andrew Alexander,

As the ombudsman giving voice to the Post's readers, can you find out specifics instead of 'may haves' and other ambiguous statements? For instance, what was Froomkin's traffic compared to other columnists? Please put the rumors to rest that Froomkin was let go because of the dust up between himself and Charles Krauthammer by providing a factual explanation of the decision, and not one based on innuendo or unsubstantiated claims. Thanks in advance!

Posted by: rpmcginn | June 19, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

The ombudsman says "The slant... may have suffered when Barack Obama became president."?

On the contrary. Froomkin was invaluable in pointing out the secrecy and anti-American-values policies of Bush, and took some heat for that from the right wing, even though he said he would hold the Obama administration to the same standards. He is doing exactly that, and HE is the one who gets dumped?

What about George Will and his distortions of global warming? (He should be fired for his fake hair alone.)

What about Krauthammer and the other Post columnists who bash Obama no matter what he does, with no standards other than "If Obama does it, it's wrong"? If Obama had come out in favor of the Iraq demonstrators, Krauthammer would have said he should have exercised caution. Since he hasn't, Krauthammer says he should have been bolder. No consistency of principles, just a consistency of opposition.

Then the ombudsman makes it worse by just accepting at face value the explanations given instead of looking deeper. I have to agree with many of these commenters, that if the Washington Post wants to make itself increasingly irrelevant, this is a good way to go about it.

Posted by: dnfree | June 19, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

What a revolting development...

The same day we find out the Post is dumping one of the few writers they have left who is worth reading they are putting Paul Wolfowitz's brain-dead opinions on the editorial page.

I used to identify the Washington Post with the highest standards in journalism, now I only come here to mock David Broder and the neo-conmen who have taken over this once great paper.

Posted by: AHermit | June 19, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

"The Washington Post: Bringing You Conventional Wisdom, From Roughly The Center to Far Right."

"The Washington Post: Publishing All The Writers From Georgetown Cocktail Parties."

"The Washington Post: David Broder Only SEEMS Dead."

Posted by: mdean3 | June 19, 2009 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Playing it safe is going to make the WaPo like everyone else. Boring, predictable, trite and eventually, irrelevent, redundant and obsolete.

At least there will be more trees.

Posted by: molsonmich | June 19, 2009 3:29 PM | Report abuse

If the Washington Post actually cared about good journalism, and well argued, interseting opinions, Dan Frromkin would not be fired. Instead, they would be firing Fred Hiatt, who consistently makes factual and logical errors in his editorials.

This decision, along with reducing the size of the comics, is making me reconsider being a subscriber, and will definitely reduce my interest in the web site.

Posted by: jvgressang | June 19, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

I'm done, too, after years and years. EJ Dionne and Eugene Robinson are great, but they don't counter Will, Gerson, Krauthammer, and guests like Wolfie.

Posted by: RollaMO | June 19, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

I can understand that newspapers have to trim any fat that they can to remain financially viable, but it is extremely disingenuous to imply that the firing of Dan Froomkin was anything but a hatchet job. I assume that the statement that his column "wasn't working anymore" meant that he was not attracting either readers or advertisers. I challenge Fred Hiatt to show me anyone, apart from a few Kool Aid drinkers, who is attracted to the WAPO by the fatuous comments from Bill Kristol. I could say the same about Krauthammer, but I don't see the WAPO dropping their entirely predictable and consistently wrong opinions from the paper. You will lose many readers by dropping Froomkin, but you could gain many more by dropping some of the ridiculously right wing mouthpieces.

Posted by: magicmike | June 19, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

I am appalled. Besides Dionne and Meyerson, it was difficult to find the 'emperor has no clothes' journalism and opinion that is the benchmark for healthy media and an indicator for healthy government as well. You in the 'mainstream' media need to keep government accountable, but you seldom do it anymore. Froomkin did, speaking truth to power with fact-based reason, and he did it with both
the Bush administration and the current one. If you wonder why your subscription rates are dropping, look no farther. If we wanted beltway neocon fantasy propaganda, we'd take up Townhall.com and Fox News. You should be ashamed. The Post has become a shadow of the great paper that once spoke truth to power and toppled an administration.

Posted by: zoragoth | June 19, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Charles Krauthammer hasn't been licnesed to practice medicine for 25 years, yet you let him play "doctor" (often laughably). George Will opines on blue jeans (about 40 years too late) and demonstartes a lack ofprofessional reportage on the environmenrt and he stays. Broder recycles teh same columns over and over again and has a generous contract. Richard Cohen writes incoherent drivel and he gets to soldier on. EJ Dionne has turned into a beltway hack who has trouble criticizing John McCain and he sticks around. This is what has become of the WaPo op-ed page. It gets filled with Kagans and, I wouldn't be surprised to see LimBaugh with a column.

Froomkin was a refershing voice and has shown Obama the level of skepticism and analysis he showed Bush. he also had no trouble taking on the likes of Krauthammer. The Post feared Barry in the 90s and withdrew from meaningful coverage of DC politics. In the past decade, it often was equally craven with Bush. the paper has done plenty of stenography for cmorally compromised people like Starr and Cheney. Apparently having someone who isn't on script or respectful of childish pundits is apparently too much for your deleicate senstivities. It also creates more reasons for people to abandon you on line and certainly in print.

This appears to be a craven power play, as well as a shortsighted business decision. I would guess that has other papers shrink the syndication revenues for Broder et al will shrink, too, and you'll decide to retire some of this waxworks. In the meantime, you've lost your one pundit who is in tune with the times and the oneerson whose criticism of Obama isn't knee jerk nonsense.

Posted by: thebuckguy | June 19, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Alexander's average blog post gets 4 comments, maybe none. Dan's firing got over 350 comments. 'Irreverant'? I think not. Keep spouting your stupidty, Ombudsmoron.

Posted by: August30 | June 19, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

As many others have posted, I no longer have much reason to sign in to this site. I sure won't miss the miserable advertising that you have to wade through just to read an article. It was fun while it lasted. Thanks, Dan!

Posted by: jimstewart37 | June 19, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

It should be mentioned that Dan is a regular contributor at Neiman Watchdog, an excellent site.

http://www.niemanwatchdog.org/

See ya WaPo. Write when you get work....

Posted by: gord_metcalfe | June 19, 2009 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Are you guys nutz?

Not surprising that Mr Hiatt had something to do with this moronic decision.

I want my Froomkin!

Posted by: bmschumacher | June 19, 2009 3:46 PM | Report abuse

No Froomkin = No WaPo for me.
And I will look on with joy as this neocon infested rag crashes and burns.
It couldn't happen to a better warmonger.

For instance: Many more Americans will be in anger over the stupid firing of the WaPo's Froomkin --WaPo's sole consistent voice of reason-- and the continued drumbeat of war on Iran by the numbers of old, male, white, misguided chickenhawks, spooks and cowboys here than Americans supposedly in danger if CIA officials involved in torture continue to be criticized and questioned about what crimes they carelessly and blatantly did.
When one has blatantly done wrong (war crimes!) when did lies and denials ever reconcile a rightfully angry people over truth, course correction and apology? (We the people apologize when we're wrong, but our country shouldn't?! Bull****!)

Might NEVER trumps Right.

Washington Post, you now officially and totally suck and I for one am gladly done with you. I'll be waiting for your just karmic retribution...

Posted by: CherchezlaFemme | June 19, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

I would like to say the reason Dan is being let go is this:

He was a great attack dog for the WashPost during the Bush years, but has little value (for the Post) to do the same to the Obama WH. The WashPost is the 2nd most liberal paper in the land (close behind the NY Times). They can't afford to have someone keeping tabs and calling out the misdeeds on the media's "anointed one".

Though rarely in agreement w/Dan's take on issues, I liked reading his postings in order to get the "other sides" POV. I really like the fact that his willing to poke some holes and question the Obama WH as well. Unfortunately, this unique ability is what I believe lead to his dismissal.

Posted by: dillerjames | June 19, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Well, you certainly stepped in it this time, didn't you? Oopsie!

350+ comments raining censure upon you; meanwhile a quick look at the other posts on your Ombudsman Blog shows comment totals in the single digits. I guess you found one way to get YOUR blog traffic up! Just remember, in general you can only fire someone once. (Maybe you should reconsider and re-sign Froomkin, so you can fire him again the next time you need traffic!)

Posted by: liberalrob | June 19, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Thursday: Froomkin fired.

Friday: Wolfowitz gets an Op-Ed.

Coincidence? I think not!

Posted by: lambert_strether | June 19, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Yes, dillerjames, the Post is just full of liberals like Krauthammer, Will, Gerson, Hiatt, and guests like Woflie.

Posted by: RollaMO | June 19, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Since when is advocacy for good government (accountability, transparency, all that sort of thing), when pursued vigorously against BOTH the Bush and Obama administrations, "liberal"?

Obama himself as a candidate mocked his "most liberal" ranking by another Washington dinosaur print publication, because it ranked support for a Senate ethics committee as a "liberal" position.

I may be a liberal myself but I dread the day that ethics, morality, and other good government values are assigned solely to one partisan perspective. Of course conservatives, independents, and liberals all value good government. Of course such an independent-minded critique of the Obama White House is needed.

This is not the first time I have had the impression that the Post editors make decisions not based on content or actual reading of same, but on their "sense" of what it "probably is like." The other was the embarrassing and inappropriate apology for Gene Weingarten's innocuous gorilla joke (which clearly also assumed that his dialogue partner, Gina, was a literary conceit instead of a real live woman and distinguished professor). A gorilla reference "seemed like" it was probably racial (to someone who didn't read the specific column and also had no familiarity with Weingarten's other columns) and Gina "sounded like" an imaginary female counterpart. Don't bother such editors with the facts.

I have literally never, ever even thought about canceling my subscription before. I thought of my subscription money as supporting something that's important for our democracy. At this point, I genuinely don't know if it's right to continue. This is the last of many disturbing signs that the Post, as I knew it, has gone pretty far down a shoddy, intellectually lazy, reflexively pro-establishment road. I don't think the new direction can be attributed solely to budget cuts. I mourn the true spirit of the Washington Post.

Posted by: fairfaxvoter | June 19, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

I liked Froomkin. The word on the street is that he was too liberal for the Post or some such. One site said his columns were considered "tendentious and unfair."

Well, well! What do we then call the neocon gasbag Charles Krauthammer, whose columns are regularly full of fact-free, outrageous blather?

Froomkin is a reporter and a commentator. Krauthammer is a partisan propagandist. Clear to see where the Washington Post has cast its lot.

Posted by: MagicDog1 | June 19, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Let me ad my voice of disgust also. Started reading the Post in college in 1980. Was fortunate enough to live in areas that got the Post up until 1999, and even wrote a number of freelance pieces for the paper.

(One of the proudest moment of my life was my first Post article - reading the Post was what inspired me to become a writer in the first place!)

Continued reading the Post online for the last ten years, even having it as my home page. But the rightward slide was undeniable. Also there was/is the mind numbing regurgitation of "conventional wisdom," and the "reporter as media-star syndrome." It's not working. When your reporters are more worried about getting their mugs on television than their words on the page - the product suffers.

It's so obvious the Post has no idea what it wants to be, other than to keep being a Washington "insider." A right leaning one at that. So yesterday I changed my home page - to Talking Points Memo.

The Washington Post is officially a dinosaur. May it sink into the pit of neocon bile that so readily drips from its pages.

It's a sad goodbye, but long overdue.

Posted by: retzlaff44 | June 19, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Disgraceful. A slate of overpaid, irrelevant neoncon warmongers is being employed by Hiatt, and the on-line version, which is the only hope of saving this newspaper, can't keep Froomkin's voice alive.

WaPo is sinking into the tarpits of history. And then it whines when it can't understand why.

Posted by: boxwell02 | June 19, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse

I started reading you in 1968.

You used to stand for something. But since 2004, Dan was the only thing keeping me coming here.

No more.

Goodbye, Bushington Post.

And good riddance to this neocon rag.

Posted by: solsticebelle | June 19, 2009 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Truly the respectable media is a joke, and the jokers are the only remaining source of critical coverage of important events. Goodbye Dan, hope to see you soon elsewhere. Goodbye Washington Post, what a disappointment.

Posted by: paezha | June 19, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Fred Hiatt should be fired for destroying WAPO. Drivel spews from the pathetic man ...

Posted by: edfunk1 | June 19, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse


Now, if The New York Times is smart....

Posted by: RonHayes | June 19, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I'm in utter disbelief. I suspect I will not be utilizing your site after axing the best journalist you had, the only one you had as far as I could tell, who was (and still is) interested in holding government officials accountable and asking the right questions when being fed BS.

Posted by: Hvordan | June 19, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

What a worthless response by Alexander to the many complaints he received. The claim that interest in Froomkin's column "may have decreased" with the demise of Bush is entirely misleading. Froomkin was applying the same kind of objectivity to Obama as he did to Bush.

Obviously, Froomkin was too good a reporter, to objective with too much integrity for the Washington Post. The Post, a supporter of illegal wars, surveillance, and torture, is now completely corrupt. Just look at it's stable of hard core conservative columnists!

Read the New York Times instead.

Posted by: dougd1 | June 19, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

I'll have to admit I haven't read White House Watch as frequently lately, but mostly because I hated the new format. Probably Obama's being President was another reason. Nevertheless, I'll miss it. Dan, you have been an inspiration for speaking truth to power!

Posted by: njbpitt | June 19, 2009 4:41 PM | Report abuse

My interest has actually increased with Bush's departure and I am deeply disappointed that Mr. Froomkin's column/blog will no longer be a part of the Post. My trips to washingtonpost.com will be far less frequent come July.

Posted by: gagliastroc | June 19, 2009 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin was the best thing about the Post. His dedication to the truth and his passion for his job were refreshing in a time when journalism seems to have lost its sense of purpose.

Farewell and godspeed as you further drift into irrelevance! I will not be back to your site.

Posted by: vancouverbc | June 19, 2009 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Ironic. Froomkin was the only Post writer who called Bush's bull$%!t from Day One. They fired him for competence - no doubt scared that their wing-nut ranters like Will and Krauthammer looked bad, and their most patronizing piece of offal - Richard Cohen - looked something more than just senile. Cue Chopin's funeral march for the once-relevant Post.

Posted by: nowukkers | June 19, 2009 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin is/was the best thing about WaPo online. Honest, critical tough analysis and criticism of the White House, regardless of occupant. Hiatt firing him because Krauthammer was (justly) criticized by Froomkin is pathetic. And an "ombudsman" repeating a spokesperson's talking points (the column "may have suffered"? well, can WaPo track traffic or not?) is beyond pathetic. This is not the Post of Graham and Bradlee.

Posted by: mikeinaustin | June 19, 2009 4:50 PM | Report abuse

I will really miss Froomkin's column here. I've been reading him regularly since 2001.

I do hope the Post reconsiders this decision.

If the Post needs to axe someone, one columnist jumps to the front of my mind: the one Froomkin courageously called out on the torture issue.

huh.. does that suggest the Post is pro-torture?

Posted by: xen_22 | June 19, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

I would ask what business model you were operating under that mandated you fire someone who is both motivated to and demonstrably doing their job with great enthusiasm, but I already know.

Dan's job was journalism, and the WaPo wants to be doing PR. Oh, and advertising.

Posted by: StealthBadger | June 19, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Dear Mr. Alexander,

I find it very sad that the powers that be at the WaPo have fired Dan Froomkin. As you offer no substantive rationale for this action, I am assuming that he is too incisive, too cogent, too "liberal" for the pitiful right-wing mouthpiece the once-great Post has become.

Perhaps you ought to offer Michelle Malkin or Dick Cheney a byline to further speed the metamorphosis of Washington into the Washington Times.

Posted by: AnnExreader | June 19, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

WaPo decended to the Fox cable news level of credibility. I saw Froomkin's Iraq war media critism in the Nieman Wathdog. It was dated June 17th. I suspect that was why he was fired.
The old fuddy duddy WaPo and its FOX opinionators need to learn to be skeptical, quit granting anonymity, and call a lie a lie. They should have learned from Dan. Please quit being a neocon mouthpiece.

Posted by: johnedwards2 | June 19, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

oops, should read...speed the metamorphosis of the Washington Post into the Washington Times

Posted by: AnnExreader | June 19, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin is 50% of the reason I visit the Post online. The Post has too many antiquated dinosaurian opinion writers that just repeat the same baloney week in and week out. It won't take much more of this kind of reader abuse to cause me to scratch the Post off my reading lineup.

Posted by: Gramps3 | June 19, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Let me add my voice to the deafening (but sure to be ignored) chorus. Firing a real journalist like Froomkin while hiring a vacant idiot like Kristol is just beyond the pale. I have read the Post for years; I have loved it; I have held it up to others as a source of real journalism. No more. This is the straw that breaks the Post's back. This is why you are losing readership, in print and online. The internet is not defeating newspapers; they are killing themselves by becoming sycophantic corporate mandarins instead of the guardians of truth.
Hire him back. Hire him back. You must hire him back.

Posted by: mtimberlake | June 19, 2009 5:13 PM | Report abuse

I cancelled my subscription, and have downloaded Ad-block for my online viewing of Capital Weather Gang and Soccer Insider.

I hope you're happy.

Posted by: mason08 | June 19, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

What a big mistake. I'm reading the Post less and less these days -- mainly Kinsley and
Froomkin. So when will they fire Michael? With Gerson, Kristol,Krauthammer et.al., it won't be long before the paper adopts the slogan Fair and Balanced.

I don't watch the Fox and soon won't read the Post.

Posted by: anon41 | June 19, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

If newspapers such as the Washington Post expect to be viable online they need a diversity of views and Froomkin's column fit that bill. This firing was a significant set back to the Post's website usefulness for reader's like me who live as far away from DC as we can get (Sarah Palin Land) but still want to be informed citizens. I'm much less likely to look at the Post website on a daily basis without my Froomkin-fix. A poorly thought out decision by Post Management -- no shame in admitting you were wrong and hiring Dan back, now!

Posted by: BAnderson2 | June 19, 2009 5:16 PM | Report abuse

I, too, was disgusted by the Post's decision. I considered complaining to management. But, what's the point? They don't care, and they wouldn't listen. I'm just a reader.

Posted by: bcamarda2 | June 19, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

For years I've heard that the Post's editorial pages were leaning further and further rightward, but I paid those voices no mind. After all, why would it make any sense to try and accommodate the rightwingnut crowd when the Post was universally viewed by them with suspicion and hostility? Trying to rehabilitate the Post's image in their slitted reptilian eyes was a fool's errand, especially since the wingnut Moonie Washington Times was the undisputed champion of that readership demographic.

Yet time has proven me o so wrong. It appears that Fred Hiatt has neither business sense nor common sense, only a peculiar desire to prove that the Post can lean over backward for the neonut crowd, and to hell with quality journalism or institutional integrity. I wish I could say I'm surprised at this move, but I'm not, really. To be honest, given Hiatt's amazingly tone-deaf track record, I fully expect his next brilliant move will be the rehiring of Janet Cooke to be chief fact-checker for Will, Kagan, Krauthammer and the despicable Wolfowitz.

Farewell, Washington Post. You were one of America's greatest papers, once upon a time. But now you're just a dying right-wing rag. Too sad.

Posted by: whatmeregister | June 19, 2009 5:26 PM | Report abuse

?That slant seemed to attract a large and loyal audience during the Bush administration, but it may have suffered when Barack Obama became president."

Seemed to, may have... you're sort of broadcasting that you are just repeating what you've been told-- and that you don't necessarily agree. How about some actual reporting? This isn't hard to find out. Froomkin got a certain number of hits, and surely you can find out if he has more or fewer hits than other columnists, and/or if his hits have gone down disproportionately. Come on. You guys are always making such a big point about how "reporting" is so much better than "blogging". So report. You know if there's a vacuum of information-- especially if, in this case, there's a history of obfuscation (John Harris)-- there'll be speculation. The way to end speculation is to offer information. You're not doing that. But I bet you can.

You're supposed to be the reader's representative, not the editor's. The editor can speak for himself.

BTW, it's being reported that Fred Hiatt fired him, because Hiatt's in charge of "opinion". But Froomkin is only on the washingtonpost.com. Does Hiatt control that as well as the print edition's opinion page?

Posted by: lister1 | June 19, 2009 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Count my comment as yet another statement of near-disbelief at the sheer stupidity of this decision.

We readers are indeed expecting the most value when we are on your Web site, and understand that you must balance the need to make the most of your resources. Regrettably, this means that when worthwhile features are eliminated (this time it was the blog that Dan Froomkin freelanced to The Post’s Web site), the perceived value of your product plummets.

This is most shameful that a unique and perceptive offering was terminated in favor of increasing the slate of conservative mouthpieces. Since when does homogeneity increase the value of journalism?

And yes, my daily visits to WaPo online will cease along with the hundreds of others who commented above. Hopefully your business model has enough "value" built in to compensate for a few thousand clicks less than normal...

Posted by: brownbagger46 | June 19, 2009 5:31 PM | Report abuse

I give up.
I will erase my bookmark.
I will read Froomkin where ever he lands.
And I will try not to think about the WaPo I once admired.

Posted by: frenchtoast | June 19, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Silly little WaPo. Cancelled Subscription today. Bye-Bye.

Posted by: clh3 | June 19, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

With any luck at all, this will be the last time I ever sign in to this site. You retain know-nothings like Broder, and intellectual thugs like Krauthammer, but your one honest, informed, and even annotated reporter is fired. Pathetic.

Posted by: BlinnC | June 19, 2009 5:36 PM | Report abuse

A very unfortunate decision by the Post.
Froomkin was one of its greatest assets.

Posted by: teu1 | June 19, 2009 5:37 PM | Report abuse

Seriously? I hope that the editors will reconsider between now and next summer. I think that Froomkin's analysis of news and events has been accurate and valuable. I'll echo the thought: "I will read Froomkin, where ever he lands".

>> That slant seemed to attract a large
>> and loyal audience during the Bush
>> administration

Perhaps that "slant" was ultimately reflected in the growing percentage of Americans who disapproved of President Bush's job performance? As people came to realize that those writing/reading with Froomkin-style skepticism had *good reasons* to be skeptical?

>> but it may have suffered when Barack
>> Obama became president.

Let's see the numbers, please. Over time and compared to other columns and feature.

Posted by: adamwiz | June 19, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin was the one constant for me in reading the Post. His columns were informative, clarifying, and funny. No more WP RSS feed for me. The Post doesn't deserve him. Bet he lands on his feet in a far better medium representative of the journalistic principles that he practiced - make them accountable, search for the truth, confront those in power. You can bet that there are an increasing number of us out here who value that and realize just how much those qualities have been missing in a lot of media coverage of urgent issues that affect the nation and the world. Thanks to the WP for the years of providing readers the opportunity to read him. And thanks to Dan for his insights. I expect to see him up and writing soon. I'll be there to sign on for his RSS, tweets, whatever the source of access.

Posted by: dohlink | June 19, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

As a reader's advocate, would you consider expressing an opinion on this decision? So far you've just reported the management's announcment; you haven't spoken one way or the other on whether you think this is good for the Post readers.

Posted by: JonquilSerpyllum | June 19, 2009 5:51 PM | Report abuse

How sad. And on the same day that Paul Wolfowitz gets a column. And two days removed from Kagan's OBAMA SIDES WITH REGIME column. Deep Throat is spinning in his grave.

Posted by: mleitner1 | June 19, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

I have read Dan Froomkin's column regularly for years. I'm sure this move will hurt the WaPo.

Another brilliant decision by Fred Hiatt!

Posted by: BradW_S | June 19, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse


A very sad day.

Mr. Froomkin was a tenacious adversary, one who the rest of the MSM could learn from.

Sadly, the WP seems to drift farther from the mainstream, and farther from me.

Perhaps I will have to visit less. A sad day for the public. A shameful day for the Washington Post.

Posted by: kraigster | June 19, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Post death spiral continues with Froomkin going. Today we have Fred Hiatt publishing Krauthammer and Wolfowitz, essentially saying the same thing. And we all know every day what Krauthammer will say - he never surprises or challenges us to think. Same with Broder - so immersed inside the beltway and the world view his small coterie he can't write for other than DC insiders.

Why can't the WaPo be a great paper, challenge us intellectually with commentary from left and right side of the spectrum who are not afraid to challenge their own orthodoxies and the readers? I think WaPo has become a paper run for the senior editors' circle of friends, not for the readers.

Dare to be great, Fred Hiatt. Intellectual, self-serving mediocrity does not a great paper make.

Posted by: wapofail | June 19, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

FIRE FRED HIATT

Posted by: edfunk1 | June 19, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

The Post has become worse and worse over the last few years. Hiring billy krystal was nearly the last straw - but I kept coming back because of Froomkin. With him gone, deleting the Post is a given.

Posted by: rstone3 | June 19, 2009 6:25 PM | Report abuse

So you remove pretty much your only independent writer, leaving a stable of curmudgeonly neo-cons like Krauthammer? You might as well change your tagline to "Fair & Balanced." The only reason to read to this site has disappeared.

Posted by: brudy918 | June 19, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Colbert is correct, there is not such thing as a newspaper, this is what we call and oldpaper. See Yah WAPO, nice knowing you over the years, hope you find the next war you seem to be looking for.

Posted by: teresa_mccarthy | June 19, 2009 6:31 PM | Report abuse

I simply can not believe that the Washington Post is canceling Dan Froomkin from the online edition. Dan is one of the most articulate, thoughtful, and accurate commenters on the site. His opinions are well reasoned and he quotes extensively from others so the reader gets both the facts of a story he is commenting on and what other writers say about it. With Greg Sargent and Ezra Klein, the Post was finally getting a critical mass of informed writers on politics, government, foreign affairs, and the economy. Froomkin was the first Post columnist that actually challenged some of the other opinion writers and called them out when they spouted conventional wisdom disguised as original thought. I would think that the post would want to leverage these three exceptional writers and create a roundtable discussion once a week to provide a new way to drive readers to the WaPo site. By removing Froomkin, the Post is shooting itself in the foot. Please reconsider this ill-informed decision.

Posted by: srw3 | June 19, 2009 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Lost another reader here - See all you editors at the unemployment line. Be nice to the regulars and remember they were there first.

Posted by: sc1128 | June 19, 2009 6:35 PM | Report abuse

I have to agree that Dan Froomkin's firing removes one of the last reasons I have for reading the Washington Post. Perhaps they can lure Frank Gaffney from The Washington Times as Dan's replacement.

Posted by: russ351 | June 19, 2009 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Simply shameful. In firing Dan Froomkin The Post eliminated their only reporter who truly spoke truth to power - every day - no matter the party, no matter the issue. He did the one thing that any smart, relevant media company, especially newspapers, need in the 24/7 information age. He was the daily chronicler of a massive amount of facts on the relevant major issues of the day. But his real strength was distilling these disparate facts, exposing the lies, calling out the BS and developing a cogent narrative that was as close to the honest, rational, unvarnished truth as any reporter in America.

In a different era, he would have been the golden boy for a newspaper like the Post. Brilliant. Articulate. Daring. Honest. But instead of awards, the bought-and-sold management that runs the dying remnants of a once great newspaper gave him the ax, in favor of partisan hacks like Kristol and Krauthammer. Don't worry about Dan Froomkin. He'll be just fine. Send your condolence cards to the Post's senior management who just hastened their own demise. Rest in peace, Washington Post.

Posted by: marathonsy | June 19, 2009 6:41 PM | Report abuse

One giant step toward total loss of credibility. Froomkin can at least show you how to spell a-c-c-o-u-n-t-a-b-i-l-i-t-y.
Goodbye, WaPo.

Posted by: Caneel1 | June 19, 2009 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Just to take an example, what are 'research teams'? Journalists should be puncturing such empty, pompous language rather than using it--or worse, hiding behind it. Froomkin did that and was a rarity at the WAPO: you need more people like him, not fewer.

Posted by: stans | June 19, 2009 6:46 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry I no longer have a subscription to the Post to cancel as a reaction to the decision to fire Dan Froomkin. I cancelled my subscription to the Post when it became a cheerleader for Cheney/Bush and their Iraq war. I've bought the Post and the Times three times a week- Wednesday for food (that section hardly exists anymore), Friday for Weekend and Sunday for (well) Sunday. No more purchases of the Post- another buyer lost! By the way,try showing some respect for your wonderful editorial cartoonist, Tom Toles. If you look for him online, he's listed in the section that also has horoscopes and cartoons. Is the Post gonna do to Toles what you've done to Froomkin?

Posted by: ChevyChase3 | June 19, 2009 6:47 PM | Report abuse

An idiotic decision by an increasingly irrelevant publication. It's great to see this outpouring of support for Froomkin. Count me among the many who are finished with the WaPo, but look forward to reading Froomkin's work elsewhere.

Posted by: jstiles1 | June 19, 2009 6:48 PM | Report abuse

With Froomkin's firing WaPo accelerates its drift toward irrelevancy. This action speaks volumes about Froomkin's integrity and highlights the sorry state of stenographic MSM.

Posted by: chipprof | June 19, 2009 6:50 PM | Report abuse

I have long appreciated Mr. Froomkin's frank commentary and his ability to pull together various on-line articles in a way that lends creditablity to his arguements and fosters a critical examination of the most vital issues facing our democacy. I chose the Post as my electronic homepage largely because I knew that I would find something significant and insightful in Mr.Froomkin's blog on a regular basis. This decision is extraordinarily disappointing.

Posted by: mjmwise | June 19, 2009 6:54 PM | Report abuse

The most vital function of a journalist is
to question authority. In this respect, Mr. Froomkin excels. He demonstrably proved the lies being peddled by the Bush Administration during the build up to the Iraq war. Most importantly, Mr. Froomkin
held all political leaders to the same standard. He always approached government officials with skepticism and followed through to make sure that their actions matched their rhetoric.

You have done a grave disservice to your readers by terminating Mr. Froomkin's employment. Since there will always be a need for investigative journalism I have no doubt that Mr. Froomkin will find
that his services are needed elsewhere. The Washington Post is losing a ton of its credibility and trust with its readers.

Posted by: tsnyder1 | June 19, 2009 6:55 PM | Report abuse

I guess I should have left when Hiatt got the job. What a schmuck. He seems like a Dartmouth MBA type. Next time the renew notice comes around, I'm out.
I hope Eugene Robinson doesn't suffer too much..since he is the only star WaPo retains.

Posted by: chuckelvis | June 19, 2009 6:56 PM | Report abuse

What a bullsh!t whitewash. The Washington Post fires someone like Froomkin and leaves such as Will and Krauthammer- who are constantly objectively wrong and who lie continually.

Your paper seems to be doing everything it can to shred any last ounce of credibility that it still retains. This mealy-mouthed defense of the action- like the one to defend Will's Global Warming piece- takes the WaPost a step closer to irrelevance. I thought the job of the Ombudsman was to QUESTION editorial decisions. You seem to play the role of defending editorial decisions with weasel words instead.

Posted by: tgoglia | June 19, 2009 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Firing Froomkin: really terrible decision by the WaPo.

He was far and away your best reporter. Most of the rest -- mediocre, lame, predicable, cowardly.

I'm a political independent, so this opinion can't be attributed liberal bias.

Froomkin's firing is the WaPo's loss, in a sense. But it's all of ours, too. But the paper has a responsibility, frankly, to the public to hire and support good reporters. That's a responsibility that, with this Froomkin firing, the WaPo gets further and further and further from fulfilling.

Posted by: vartan1 | June 19, 2009 6:58 PM | Report abuse

Wow, what an awful decision. Froomkin was the only good thing the Post's online editorial section had going for it. Followed him since the beginning when he was the only reporter making sense during Bush, and he hasn't let me down. Consistently great commentary on what's going on.

But if you need to fund another factless columnist, I suppose that's what you have to do. But I'll put my page views into the Times, where at least it'll go to fund pointless commentary, instead of actively terrible and harmful commentary. I can just as easily get the news there as here.

Posted by: jlowery1 | June 19, 2009 6:59 PM | Report abuse

It's 6:00pm in Texas and the Washington Post still sucks.

Posted by: jimmybane | June 19, 2009 6:59 PM | Report abuse

What a ridiculous move! I will no longer read anything published by the Post, online or in print. The Post used to be my favorite paper, but now it is merely part of the neocon media establishment.

Posted by: saraidmac1 | June 19, 2009 7:01 PM | Report abuse

One more example of the Washington Post's slide towards complete acquiescence to the Right and it's remarkably truthy worldview. A body blow to anything like balanced commentary on the Post site, and a bloody shame.

Posted by: WaPo_onlineRdr | June 19, 2009 7:04 PM | Report abuse

A while back, I wrote that Dan Froomkin's column is one of the few that I would pay to read. I wanted to emphasize that this wasn't just venting: When the NYT asked readers to pay for their editorial content, I cheerfully ponied up, because I happened to think that Paul Krugman was a world-class economist long before the Nobel Committee ratified that notion. It didn't work for the Times, but I'm still ready to pay for quality -- and unique-- internet journalism.

I was a fulltime newspaper reporter, editorial columnist and editor for two small-city dailies for a dozen years before I quit out of disgust and disillusionment -- and what's proved to be an accurate assessment of the future of my "profession." So I went to law school and things have worked out quite nicely.

Newspaper men and women of a certain generation know who Larry Fanning was. (If you don't, google Fanning + Pulitzer.) Maybe someone at the Post remembers something he said: "Sometimes in an argument one guy is right. When that happens, people deserve to know who is right."

But now, the Post has proved the truth of another quote that I long ago committed to memory: "That Awful Power, the public opinion of the Nation, is in our country created by a horde of ignorant simpletons who failed at shoemaking and ditchdigging, and fetched up in Journalism on their way to the poorhouse."

Mark Twain.

Lotsa luck, Wah-Po!

Posted by: dwiltzee | June 19, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse

Wow, a real two-fer.

First, and less importantly, you've made your "product" far less valuable now that its true nature is made plain. Gone is the Nixon era speaking truth to power; today's Post is the home and protected sanctuary of neocon-tinged, Beltway insider only, good-for-the-status-quo conventional wisdom. The message here: challenge that and get sacked. To me, the Post is dead. Never buy the printed copy again, never again go to the website. Buncha hacks...

But second -- and this is the true loss here -- you're doing the American people a huge disservice by quieting an honest, independent, critical voice. Our democracy is less w/out Mr. Froomkin's voice being part of the debate.

Shame on you, Post. Your trip to irrelevancy is well deserved.

Posted by: dan_gordon981 | June 19, 2009 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Hey, WaPo, you ever had this many people in this short time expressing a singular, unanimous opinion that you just screwed the pooch? I didn't think so.

Posted by: jstiles1 | June 19, 2009 7:08 PM | Report abuse

An incredibly stupid shoot-itself-in-the-foot decision.

As for the alleged reasoning that Froomkin's column has 'run its course,' Crooksandliars.com says it better than I can: "David Broder, who has been at WaPo since God was a little boy and whose never been in a coffeeshop he couldn't find some colorful local to confirm his preconceived (and generally wrong) notions, is still relevant? Bill Kristol, for whom the Washington Post had to issue not one or two, but THREE retractions for direct misinformation he tried to squeeze into his typical hack op-ed, is still worth holding on to. Charles farkin' Krauthammer, who has no business opining anywhere he has gotten so much wrong, is still collecting a WaPo paycheck. But Dan Froomkin, whom Andrew Sullivan calls the "best blogger" at the paper and who is the author of 3 of the 10 most linked to articles at WaPo, is not someone worth keeping on staff?"

Posted by: Phaedrus1 | June 19, 2009 7:11 PM | Report abuse

This seems like such a strange decision to me. Froomkin's reporting was fresh and interesting, in comparison with most of the Post's columnists. I mean, if you have read one Broder column, you have read ALL of them. The post's editorial board, like Broder, is a dinosaur, and I really hope you guys aren't working too hard to figure out why people like me don't want to read you anymore. You simply don't have anything interesting to say. It's as simple as that.

Posted by: blueoysterjoe | June 19, 2009 7:11 PM | Report abuse

I am thoroughly disgusted by the Post's decision to fire Dan Froomkin. Far too often the Post's regular political reporters simply recite a series of talking points fed to them by both sides of a given issue, without actually reporting on the underlying truth of the matter. I enjoyed and regularly read Dan Froomkin's column because he pointedly did not engage in that behavior, but rather sifted matters the underlying truth. His willingness to extend that scrutiny to the Obama adminsitration as well as to the Bush administration marks him as one of that vanishing breed, an independent journalist who is doing his job of informing the public. Shame on the Post for bowing to neo-con pressure to be rid of him. My respect for your paper just dropped immeasurably, as I expect my visits to your site will, since Froomkin will no longer be here.

Posted by: k_campbell | June 19, 2009 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Not that any confirmation was needed but this certainly is the proof that the WAPO is circling the drain. You didn't deserve Froomkin. You don't deserve readers. I won't be back.

Posted by: sadsadsad | June 19, 2009 7:16 PM | Report abuse

You had no business firing him apart from the nature of your business.

Too paradoxical? Take a timid step past your job description and you'll find you can think the whole thing through. Even time-servers can work wonders.

Posted by: wjingber | June 19, 2009 7:17 PM | Report abuse


Dan's column was the only thing that brought me to the Post site every day.

Because of his firing, I've lost the tiny sliver of respect that remained for your once grand paper.

Posted by: whenpigsfly | June 19, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

From: A reader of over 40 years--Shocking, stunning, unbelieveable, senseless, shortsighted, wrong--just a few words that come to mind about the decision to fire Dan Froomkin. I used to rush out to buy a copy when my subscription to the Washington Post wasn't available. It was such a great paper, especially in the early 70s, but for the last 10 years or so, it has really gone downhill on the editorial pages. Katherine Graham must be, unfortunately, deleting WaPo links from the grave.

In reference to your reason for firing Froomkin, I want to see the stats on links to columnists Krauthammer, Kristol, Wolfowitz, Will, etc. vs. Froomkin. I simply do not believe that, "...interest in the blog also diminished[,]" to the point where he should have been fired and these others correctly labeled as right wing "nuts" and who don't even write very well, should be kept. I simply find it hard to fathom that readers are just clammoring to read their views online.

I don't live in the D.C. area, so I will still go to the Post to read Redskins news, and perhaps, a few news stories, but I will go to other sources first. There will have to be a compelling reason for me to read your paper. I will no longer read out of habit. Your have some good people left, but you are nowhere near the paper you used to be. I do not know why. I do not know how you make decisions, but you made a foolish one in respect to Dan Froomkin. If I subscribed, I would cancel my subscription.

Posted by: dirich1111 | June 19, 2009 7:19 PM | Report abuse

If firing Froomkin is a financial decision, then you should save a lot more by going completely into bankruptcy. No one will miss it, except wingnut neo-cons. & Broder, Will, Krauthammer, Hiatt, Cohen, Kristol can all be moved to the Old Folks Home for the Wrongheaded. You know, the place where all the people urging us to "help Iran" should live, because a month ago they wanted us to bomb it out of existence.

Posted by: durk2 | June 19, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

As if I needed another reason not to buy the Washington Post. This latest of many self inflicted wounds will surely kill whats left of this once great newspaper. Just like the Democrats in congress The Post is so afraid of a small group of idiots (the ones who listen to Rush Limbaugh and would never read The Post anyway) that they are willing to lose all of their loyal supporters. I suppose Krauthammer, Kristol, Will and the rest of the dittoheads will use the Washington Times to spread lies and be wrong about everything.

Posted by: socomcorky | June 19, 2009 7:26 PM | Report abuse

I used to live in DC back in the 1980s. The Washington Post was a newspaper back then, but today? When you fire one of the few real journalists you still have and retain neocon propagandists like Krauthammer?

You´ve lost the thread. Pity our republic saddled with a dysfunctional press which you all too well exemplify.

Posted by: seydlitz89 | June 19, 2009 7:28 PM | Report abuse

You have George Will, Charles Krauthammer, and Michael Gerson representing the extreme right wing. Dan Froomkin represented...a truly independent point of view. What a shame. I have been a faithful reader and evangelist of the Washington Post since the 1980s, even as my favorite editorialists have retired or been removed one by one. I've been going to the Post less and less these days, still holding out the hope for a truly original and interesting point of view. I'm not sure why anymore.

Posted by: floomby | June 19, 2009 7:29 PM | Report abuse

The only columnist with the guts and integrity to question the official baloney (whether Bush's or Obama's), and you fire him. That leaves WaPo with basically nothing but neocons like Krauthammer, and sycophants like Howie Kurtz & Ruth Marcus... The Washington Post: Mouthpiece for The Rich and Powerful™
The days of reporters like Woodward & Bernstein doing REAL journalism, shaking up the corrupt halls of power by dogged investigative sleuthing-- those days are dead forever at the WaPo. Hopefully your rag will soon go the way of the Rocky Mountain News: your fate will be much more richly deserved than theirs ever was.
Dan Froomkin deserves a better paper anyway; I pray he finds it, because he is one of the best journalists in the US.

Posted by: pointy | June 19, 2009 7:30 PM | Report abuse

When I moved to Virginia in 1995, one of the reasons I was excited was because I was finally in the Post's delivery area; my parents had formerly lived in Oakton, and I had delighted in reading their copy of the paper every morning during visits.

I subscribed that fall and kept my subscription for over a decade, reveling in the chance to enjoy a paper that epitomized the best that journalism had to offer: crack sportswriting, coverage of crucial local stories (the DC sniper, the Chandra Levy case, etc.), and the best comics page around.

But with its increasingly out-of-touch editorials, and particularly with the firing of Dan Froomkin, the modern-day Post has proven itself to be fundamentally uninterested in one of the paper's traditional strength: uncompromising reporting on politics.

So long as the Post sees the repeated falsehoods of George Will and neoconservative moaning of Charles Krauthammer as the only sort of political writing worth sharing with readers, it is failing in its journalistic duty.

And if that's the case, perhaps it's time for the Post to realize something I realized a year or two back: I can get sports, news, and comics online. That's why I let my subscription lapse.

And now that I know I can no longer get quality political analysis at washingtonpost.com, I don't see much reason to visit your website anymore, either.

This is a sad day for journalism.

Posted by: Cash42 | June 19, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

When I first moved to Washington DC in the fall of 1985, I was excited to read pick up the Washington Post every day, Sunday's in particular. It was a real newspaper. I came from a relatively small town, so when I opened up the WPost, I felt like I was reading the most important paper in America, the same paper decision makers read, the most important paper in the most important city in the world.

I know, I know, people always say the "NYT is the paper of record," but to me the WPost was the paper of Watergate fame, it held politicians accountable, it was in the nation's capitol, the WPost was the best.

I read the WPost every day for 17 years, and over that time, dadly, I saw it diminish in stature, lower its standards, engage in frivolous news stories, and become a shadow of its former self, afraid of its own shadow.

From 2002 until today, the WPost has been a journalistic enterprise obsessed with access and afraid to be called "liberal."

As the war drums for Iraq were beaten by the Neocons in the Bush Administration, the WPost was there, pushing stories by Walter Pincus to page A17. As the misinformation on the Scooter Libby Trial was at its highest, the WPost was more than willing to assist in the effort, nearly engaging in jury tampering by publishing the 2,000 word screed by Victoria Toensing before the verdict was announced. Good the thing the Scooter Libby Jury cared about facts more than the WPost as they found Libby guilty. When they did, the WPost yawned. The joke was that the WPost came out with its "Award Winning" invesitgative work "The Angler" a month later. After a year of investigation, the Wpost reporters hardly mentioned this perfect example of Cheney's power as Vice President, the orchestrated effort to out a CIA agent as political push back. To paraphrase Richard Cohen, "What did they (Amb Wilson and Plame) expect?" This from the paper of Watergate fame. The WPost should be ashamed.

The WPost was there at nearly every step of the way as powerful forces on Wall Street took away consumer rights, worker rights and environmental protections.

Reading Froomkin, I had a chance to read what the Woodward of 30 years ago WOULD HAVE written. Froomkin gave me hope that the WPost still had a soul. But the Woodward of today, like the WPost, is a journalistic punch line.

The Wpost didn't get Steve Colbert's comedy routine at the correspondents dinner in 2006, and they didn't get Froomkin. Becuase what Colbert jokes about and Froomkin wrote about were both hilarious, and both at the expense of the DC press corps and establishment.

Bit by bit, the WPost has betrayed the public trust. The best part is that the WPost doesn't even recognize it. Freddy, your op-ed page is lousy, it reads like the Moonie Times.

Froomkin is too good for the Wpost. The Wpost doesn't deserve him. I'll watch Jon Stewart for some real journalism.

Posted by: MGDub | June 19, 2009 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Honestly? WaPo needs to be giving us more reasons to read it, not fewer. Froomkin was a unique and extremely appealing voice at the paper, not only because of his clear thinking and writing and ability to see the big picture, but also because he was equally fair in his analysis of both administrations he's covered.

I don't understand why you are keeping modestly talented or simply mediocre writers like Krauthammer on board, who are ruthlessly biased. Are you determined to further your own demise? That's what it seems like to me. As an earlier poster said, "Make a note of my ISP address. This is the last time you'll be seeing it." Goodbye, WaPo, and I'm afraid, good riddance.

Posted by: mamazboy | June 19, 2009 7:52 PM | Report abuse

Andy Alexander=Stooge

What a worthless column given your job description.

As for the Post, what a national disgrace it has become, completely abrogating its responsibility to its readers and America in general.

Posted by: MickVV | June 19, 2009 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Are you insane? Firing Dan Froomkin is nuts. His work is excellent. He is all I read at WaPo.
Goodbye WaPo, without Froomkin, I'm gone.

Posted by: mona9999 | June 19, 2009 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Completely out of touch! Just like the Ayatollahs in Iran. Congratulations!
Toady's and lick-spittles for the Authoritarian Right Wing

Posted by: mjpottebaum | June 19, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin is one of the few hardworking, clearheaded journalists of the past several years (along with the Knight-Ridder guys). He was one of the few reasons I visited the post (what's left at this point--crazy Krauthammer? Andy Rooney, er, George Will?). I'm not usually given to kneejerk reactions, but I'm removing my post bookmarks. I did the same several years ago when CNN went tabloid, I don't think I've been back since. Good luck Post--you're gonna need it. I'm obviously not alone.

Posted by: moderatecentrist | June 19, 2009 7:57 PM | Report abuse

I am sorry to hear that the Post has decided to fire Dan Froomkin. I assume that this means the Post is either in total liquidation mode or is changing its business model completely. Perhaps the Post can leverage its brand to sell cell phone calling plans? I'm am disappointed that it is leaving the journalism business, but I wish it the best of luck.

Posted by: teddycb | June 19, 2009 7:57 PM | Report abuse

I started reading the Post during the G.W. Bush era\40 years in the desert. I had respect for the paper. Thats over.

Posted by: ebreenjr | June 19, 2009 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Now that the Post is entirely made up of neocon wrong-about-absolutely-everything cheerleader ditzes, it will be hard to remember which Washington paper is the "real" one, you know, not the one run by moonies that's so farcically conservative, no one in their right mind would ever rely on it as a source for anything resembling accurate reporting and intelligent commentary.

Enjoy your newfound irrelevance!

Posted by: hake_flake | June 19, 2009 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Firing Froomkin is ridiculous. It is plainly obvious the reason is he made the legion of neocon contributors look silly by simply pointing out how they got their facts wrong and how they got their opinions wrong in retrospect.

Dan was too liberal and that made the WaPo look bad and decreased their credibility. The big problem with that is in our current political climate coming out of the Bush years, being "liberal" simply means things like the rule of law, torture being bad, the 4th amendment, and government lying to the public being wrong, all suddenly were "liberal" causes.

Simply telling the truth and calling lies lies is what makes Froomkin so darned "liberal". Being an actual journalist instead of a stenographer makes Froomkin "liberal".

It certainly wasn't any bias toward one political party and their candidates and the next. The man has spent this new administration doing exactly what he did to the last, subjecting it to basic skepticism. I've been reading for weeks now as he has been calling Obama to account for his failures in promises of government transparency and in covering up possible criminal torture misdeeds by our government and many other issues.

If the concern was credibilty, the perception of the Post is terribly twisted away from reality. Today is a great example. How many times does Paul Wolfowitz have to be demonstrably wrong at the expense of thousands and thousands of innocent lives and billions of dollars before he is considered to have a lack of credibility? Apparently a few more times, because one day after firing Froomkin because he represented a lack of credibility due to his "liberal" bias to the Post, they give this guy a chance to stand on the soap box and get it wrong again.

Like so many other readers here, when Froomkin leaves the Post, so do I.

Posted by: dbushik | June 19, 2009 8:12 PM | Report abuse

I've started to spend more time with the FT. WaPo -- once my first choice -- hasn't proved sufficiently challenging.

In my opinion an already far too predictable newspaper just got unbearable.

Posted by: generaljdp | June 19, 2009 8:16 PM | Report abuse

The Post fires the one guy who consistently got things right, and keeps the ones who consistently get things wrong. Is there no such thing as quality control?

I grew up in DC and have been reading the Post for 50 years. This is a sad day for Washington journalism.

Posted by: AlanSF | June 19, 2009 8:20 PM | Report abuse

C'mon, everyone. This is hardly shocking or inexplicable. Just like a good Boy Scout must "be prepared," a good WaPo op-edder must "be wrong," demonstrably and repeatedly, especially about the ease and wisdom of waging war and the proper role of America in the world. Dan made the mistake of being right, and because Charles and his boy Fred felt bad, Dan had to go.

Posted by: rmichaelsx | June 19, 2009 8:20 PM | Report abuse

How have we come to the point where holding the White House accountable for defending the Constitution is now a partisan issue? Some people will defend injustice, lying, secrecy, torture, and tyranny just because it's their guy doing it. Now Froomkin is taking the fall for honest reporting.

Anyway, writing well is the best revenge. Dan Froomkin, your journalistic career will easily outlast the Washington Post's.

Posted by: imback | June 19, 2009 8:22 PM | Report abuse

In its march to irrelevance, it was only right for the Post to fire its only relevant columnist. The picture is now complete. Your paper is now officially a complete joke.

Posted by: gavbrown01 | June 19, 2009 8:25 PM | Report abuse

Time to cancel the White House Watch RSS feed. Oh-- no need, since the source will soon go dark. Too bad, it has long been my portal to anything else of value in the WP. No more, I see.

Posted by: lkrndu | June 19, 2009 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Include me on the list of readers whose *only* regular visits to the WaPo site have been to read Froomkin's analysis.

FWIW, I've been a lurker, not a poster, but I just registered--just now--for the purpose of letting y'all know what a huge mistake you've made.

With Froomkin's departure, I no longer have a reason to return to your site, and, in fact, I won't.

Patrick Meighan
Culver City, CA

Posted by: patsburgh | June 19, 2009 8:29 PM | Report abuse

The main reason I used to come to WaPo was Froomkin. As I said in a personal email to Mr. Froomkin yesterday, I will follow him where he goes next. But I will not visit WaPo anymore.

Krauthammer, Will, Ponnuru, Broder - Jurassic Park!

Posted by: suvro | June 19, 2009 8:32 PM | Report abuse

I was going to rant and rave about the stupidity of this move, but it's clear the Post isn't listening.

Excuse me, Mr. Alexander, but aren't you supposed to be the readers' advocate? Are going to follow up on the outrage? We don't need pabulum and press release quotes. Dig, man, dig!

Stand up for us now or forever be just a lapdog for your masters.

Posted by: jelogan222 | June 19, 2009 8:32 PM | Report abuse

It's all neocons, all the time from now on at the post. I won't be reading it, though.

Posted by: drlutz | June 19, 2009 8:35 PM | Report abuse

I'm in favor of boycotting your navel-gazing, beltway cocktail party fishwrap. Hiatt is a despicable hack. The WaPo is an organ for a petty Establishment that chatters in an increasingly worthless echo chamber.

Posted by: jimimhendrix | June 19, 2009 8:39 PM | Report abuse

Wish I would have heard about Froomkin a couple of weeks earlier.

I sent Thom Shanker (NYT Washington Pentagon reporter) a copy of my long letter to Senator Webb "Did They Teach You How to Lie Yet?" laying out a detailed case why General McChrystal was the central figure behind the Army's whitewash of Pat Tillman's fratricide.

Thom didn't do a thing with it, although it rebutted every single point in his NYT 3/26 article saying that McChrystal was "cleared of wrongdoing."

I sent much of this same information to the Post's pentagon reporter as well (can't remember her name off the top of my head).

No follow up. The Post just printed the lies. And the mainstream press wonders why they are a dying breed. Good riddance!

Posted by: GuyMontag451 | June 19, 2009 8:42 PM | Report abuse

The geniuses running The Washington Post have outdone themselves this time. They take the one writer they have who isn't utterly predictable and they fire him. Truly pathetic. Wapo: you've lost yet another reader. Goodbye.

Posted by: TheOldSchool | June 19, 2009 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Well, we can be grateful for one thing. The Washington Post website with this decision has demonstrated what has been true for years which is that the tired cant of "liberal media" from conservatives is utterly without foundation. Dan Froomkin, someone who actually engages in adversarial journalism and is thereby labeled as a dirty liberal, goes and the long line of conservative hacks (Will, Krauthammer, Kagan, Wolfowitz, Parker, Kristol, Gerson) sail blissfully on.

Posted by: ozma1 | June 19, 2009 8:55 PM | Report abuse

What great news! Anything that brings the WaPo closer to its demise is a good, good thing. Keep shooting yourself Wapo. You will hit a vital organ eventually. Or is the plan to slowly bleed out from all the self-inflicted flesh wounds? Either way, keep up the good work!

I hope Froomkin lands on his feet, as he is one of our country's best reporters. I think he'll be around long after the WaPo is gone.

Posted by: TimB1 | June 19, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Goodbye, Washington Post. I will take my search for honest, unbiased news elsewhere...

Posted by: jerkhoff | June 19, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Are you kidding me? A real journalist like Froomkin is fired while a neocon talking points memo reader tool like Krauthammer stays? Oh well, another good reason not to bother reading the Post and other irrelevant dinosaurs.

Posted by: ChrisSF | June 19, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

I guess I can delete my washington post bookmark.

Seriously, George Will writes columns about jeans and completely inaccurate articles about global warming and you can afford to keep him.

Posted by: tdd1 | June 19, 2009 9:00 PM | Report abuse

When I saw that Froomkin had been fired by the Post, I thought it couldn't descend lower into the world of right wing reaction. Then I saw that you were featuring the war-criminal and serial liar, Paul Wolfowitz. The Post has by-passed the Moonie Times, it is now aspiring to compete with Stormfront for readers.

How sad that a once great newspaper has self-destructed or, perhaps it is more accurate to say, it destroyed by Hiatt and his right wing friends.

Bye Washington Post, I'm off forever to follow Froomkin to what ever news source is lucky enough to hire him.

Posted by: JustinaJustice | June 19, 2009 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Dan was your best journalist. He was one of the only people at the paper who didn't hesitate to call bullsh!t when he saw it.

So you're keeping the neocon hacks who haven't been right about anything? Do you have any numbers to show that his readership was lower than your other columnists? If it weren't for Ezra Klein, I probably wouldn't bother visiting the site any more. Stenographers are a dime a dozen.

Posted by: ex-reader | June 19, 2009 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Not that the point has not been made and made well, but I have to join in and suggest that it was a sad day when I heard he was fired. It was even sadder to read the inane explanation by Andrew Alexander. You strive for mediocrity and surprisingly you'll get there. Rather than firing Froomkin, you should have hired more like him.

The Post has been in a death-like descent for years but tossing away one of the engines that gave you life just speeds up the approach of the ground.

Posted by: llyonnoc | June 19, 2009 9:04 PM | Report abuse

No reason to stop by the WAPO every day to check out Froomkin and see if there are other things to look at. Like the LA Times which I used to look at on a regular basis, I now go there about once every 6 months.

Posted by: donutter | June 19, 2009 9:07 PM | Report abuse

Real journalism is now dead at the Washington Post. All that is left is the soft stenography of David Broder and the far right-wing rantings of Krauthammer, Will, Kristol, et al. The truthtellers are
gone and the establishment apologists remain.

Posted by: TomPaine2 | June 19, 2009 9:10 PM | Report abuse

intellectually bankrupt. hiatt is an embarrassment to journalism.

Posted by: supercollide | June 19, 2009 9:12 PM | Report abuse

Andrew Alexander is a spineless stooge. I didn't think it would be possible for the WP to find a less competent ombudsman than Deborah Howell, but this craven lickspittle easily soars past her. Mr. Alexander, some of us are actually old enough to remember the details of the sordid campaign to push Mr. Froomkin off the front pages -- apparently we readers were just too stupid to understand that he is a commentator, just like Howard Kurtz who is still featured prominently on your main page. Fred Hiatt has been scouring Dan's numbers ever since, looking for some kind of dip in his popularity, no matter how small.

Mr. Alexander, you may be able to kid yourself, and your dog probably loves you, but you are a sorry excuse for an ombudsman -- the READERS' representative...

Posted by: jerkhoff | June 19, 2009 9:14 PM | Report abuse

It is clear that I really won't be able to continue with the WaPo. Your trajectory to the right is now complete. And so I bid you goodbye.

Posted by: linrey | June 19, 2009 9:15 PM | Report abuse

your reasons for letting him go hold less water than cheesecloth; you've been trying to hide his column for the last few months and he's raised legitimate issues concerning the Obama administration, unlike the knee-jerk neo-con pap that's been running on the op-ed paged recently. It seems that his insinuations that you're less than honest are correct.

Posted by: mojotron3000 | June 19, 2009 9:15 PM | Report abuse

So Froomkin's cardinal sin was his "liberal bent"?
Since when has supporting the constitution, freedom and rule of law become a liberal domain?
And what is to be said about the neocon bent of the "columnists" who act as Bush/Cheney stenographers and cheered on rights abuses, unjust war, surveillance of citizens?

As Stephen Colbert said, the truth has a liberal bias!

Posted by: akhan2 | June 19, 2009 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Why does Fred Hiatt still have a job?

Froomkin out, and Paul Wolfowitz is in? Is Douglas Feith next? John Yoo? Dick Cheney? David Addington?

I mean there are only, what, 25 neocons left in the country. Will Hiatt be happy when they all have their own Post column?

Dan, thanks. There were times in 2002 through 2005 when I wanted to pull my hair out because the media refused to call the Bush administration on their rhetoric. You stood out because you were pretty much a lone voice during those years.

And I have admired that you have held Obama to the same standards and been just as tough on him. We need more journalists like you, not fewer.

And certainly not more neocons with columns in the Post.

Posted by: ken22 | June 19, 2009 9:16 PM | Report abuse

So, the same day you write this tepid bit of stuff, the Post publishes a bit of crap by Paul "Let's kill some Iraqis" Wolfowitz. You really just don't give much of a damn, do you, old boy?

Posted by: anaximander471 | June 19, 2009 9:23 PM | Report abuse

This is a truly terrible decision by the Post. Froomkin was one of the few people who had the courage to speak the truth, and now he's gone. What in the world has happened to the Washington Post? Can it ever hope to reacquire its integrity?

Posted by: rlplant | June 19, 2009 9:30 PM | Report abuse

As Mr Hiatt fires Dan Froomkin, he opens the WaPo editorial page to Paul Wolfowitz, a principal architect of the Iraq war to deliver the same moronic drool we hear already from Krauthammer and the rest of Hiatt's Neocon friends. Hiatt wants to take us to war again. Froomkin was the best argument for reading washingtonpost.com, he was a genuinely independent and critical voice in a paper filled with hacks and warmongers. It's no longer difficult to define the old media. Hiatt is it, and his editorial page exemplifies everything that is wrong with the Beltway press mentality. Dan Froomkin won't lose his audience; it will follow him wherever he goes. But the Washington Post is destroying its credibility.

Posted by: shorton99 | June 19, 2009 9:30 PM | Report abuse

A liberal bent?

Froomkin's "bent" was an accountability bent. Anyone who read his work regularly would recognize that.

Mr. Froomkin, I've been a regular reader for years, and I can't thank you enough for all the work and insight you have provided. I will make a point of following your work wherever you end up.

After all, how else will I learn the fate of Bush's optimistic rug?

Posted by: lame_man | June 19, 2009 9:35 PM | Report abuse

I just signed up to the Washington Post.com in order to post this comment and then I am promptly quitting (if I can) seeing that you just fired your best blogger, one of the sharpest voices anywhere, someone who knows what it means to be a journalist and hold those in power accountable (rather than just spouting established party talking points) . I guess Dan Froomkin had too much integrity for a newspaper that helped send your country into Iraq on false pretenses. I guess what readers "most value" is being lectured to by the likes of Bill Kristol and George Will rather than challenging white house propaganda, which I guess makes Froomkin "too liberal" and "irreverent" (as reverence is apparently the name of the game at the new Post).

This is a sad decision and some dark days for a newspaper that once broke the Watergate scandal. R.I.P journalism at the WaPo. But then you're behind the times, and I've no doubt Froomkin will soon get a more credible platform from which to offer his very valuable (and much-needed) insights. We need his voice!


Posted by: durnford1 | June 19, 2009 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin is the one reason I had the post bookmarked on my computer. He has been part of my daily news diet since the 2004 campaign. I will follow him to whatever outlet he chooses, and of course I will erase that WaPo bookmark from my computer. No need to read this paper anymore.

Posted by: kmjoyce | June 19, 2009 9:39 PM | Report abuse

With all due respect to the Post, this is an idiotic decision. Froomkin was definitely one of best things on this site. The good thing is that Froomkin will find another home, and he retains his credibility. Meanwhile, the Post seems determined to squander what's left of its credibility.

Posted by: Dilbatt | June 19, 2009 9:53 PM | Report abuse

Newspapers are more and more things that are read only in retirement homes. The rest of the world read blogs, without regard of whether they are newspapers' blogs or independent journalists' blogs.

The good news for newspapers is that newspapers will still have readers, since there are still (and more and more) people in retirement homes.

The good news for newspapers is also that they can become more and more conservative - because that's what people in retirement homes are becoming. (I have no illusion, I won't be an exception: when I'll be in retirement home, my only goal will be to... conserve myself as long as I can. I'll probably be starting living in the past, and naturally become more conservative).

The bad news for newspapers is that people in retirement homes don't consume much, which means that advertisement money is going away, away, away...

The good news for the rest of us is that there will be more and more independent (ex-)journalist bloggers.

Posted by: JRandomReader | June 19, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

You know, my husband has been trying to get me to cancel our print subscription for ages; we call it the "air paper" due to its degrading quality and lack of meaningful content. You guys just fired the one guy who gave me hope. Dan Froomkin is what we need in the media: someone skeptical of authority and not a media hack!!! Unbelievable.
CYA WAPO!!!

Posted by: acave1 | June 19, 2009 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Just not seeing the reader-hating despicable lying apparatchik Deborah Howell's name at the top is a bit of comfort. But boy, is today a good day for that functionary/government agent/corporate prostitute, or what?

"Take THAT, Froomkin. NO MORE WILL YOU DILUTE THE BRAND! And all you .. you ... you @$#$ing READERS who liked READING Froomkin, will you please just ALL go away? The Washington Post needs a better, more loyal and upscale and well, just simply elite class of readers, I always thought. And thank God, this step puts us well on the way to that goal!!"

Posted by: MarionDelgado | June 19, 2009 10:13 PM | Report abuse

What a pitiful statement from Fred Hiatt. Dedicated Post readers like myself deserve details of the thought process behind the decision or else we are left to assume the worst. The Post is letting go a writer who's served the website for TWELVE YEARS and giving him this disrespectful brush off? What, is it editorial page anger that Dan tried to hold powerful people accountable to their words and actions while Krauthammer and the like didn't? Again, this is pitiful and seriously makes me question the judgment of this company.

Posted by: schujo | June 19, 2009 10:19 PM | Report abuse

I've read every comment here and can't think of anything else to say. However, I still feel the need to express my opinion.

Firing Dan Froomkin IS the last straw for me, too. I will not be back to this site again. Too many neocons, too many liars.

Posted by: lassair | June 19, 2009 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Alexander:

Firing Dan Froomkin was certainly a terribly disappointing decision.

But what I want to address is your pitiful comments.

Are not you supposed to be independent, by benefit of a contract that enables you to be "the voice of the reader?" What a load of crock.

Here we have the comments of nearly 500 angry readers (compared to an average of half a dozen for your other posts). And the most you can do is copy down some pap from the Post's spokeswoman about how it was time for a change, or something.
Throw in a quote from Fred Hiatt about how it wasn't a political thing, and you're done.

Where's the fire? The passion? Are you nothing more than another Post corporate shill (as was your predecessor Deborah Howell), trying to subdue readers with public relations speak? And what's this nonsense about Froomkin "may have suffered" now that Obama is in? Well, did he suffer or didn't he suffer? How? Examples? What's that weasel word "may" doing in there?

We expect an ombudsman---a reader advocate. Instead we just get more of the same PR ejaculate we get from any other corporate flack.

Posted by: wasntme543 | June 19, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Agree with all of the above- Froomkin was a lifeline during the Bush years. He spoke truth to power and set a great example for the rest of us. Power corrupts! We still need a watchdog and Froomkin was the best! So why exactly is he leaving? I haven't heard a convincing reason.

I respect the WaPo's reporting but I'm very disappointed in your opinion pages. Why in the world do you keep publishing stale, outdated pundits like Krauthammer when there are many talented writers now that you could support? I'd really like to keep reading your paper online but there are fewer and fewer reasons to do so. Get it together or say goodbye!

Posted by: rocks11 | June 19, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse

What a huge descent from Watergate reporting to Fred Hiatt. I may come back every once and a while for the crosswords, but the meat is gone from this paper.

Posted by: svand | June 19, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Way to stifle dissent, and drive away the young people your advertisers are looking for..
Rot in neocon hell..

Posted by: BringFroomkinBack | June 19, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

H.L. Mencken wrote that, "The only way for a reporter to look on a politician is down." Froomkin shows it. If that were the guiding principle of the reporter's craft, we'd be in a much better place right now.

Posted by: crazytrain1 | June 19, 2009 10:48 PM | Report abuse

Hiatt has already made himself eternally infamous as running the equivalent of Murdoch's Australian in the battle against science, using George Will as his proxy. Chris Mooney's sequel to "The Republican War on Science" should be co-written with Al Gore as a sequence to his "Assault on Reason"

"THE WASHINGTON POST'S ASSAULT ON SCIENCE AND REASON"

Maybe St. Martin's Press will print it.

Posted by: MarionDelgado | June 19, 2009 10:49 PM | Report abuse

Well, fair enough. I need to edit down the number of news sites I visit regularly anyway. C U, WaPo!!

Posted by: MB16 | June 19, 2009 10:53 PM | Report abuse

What a cynical, disrespectful (to your audience/readership as well as Froomkin), short-sighted, indefensible move on the part of the Post.

I have spent YEARS defending the Post's coverage of political events even while it served up major disappointments on a seemingly increasing basis. I defended its editorial staff, I defended its management, and I defended the establishment that is the paper itself. Even in its darkest moments, I still recommended it to friends and family members as a resource for political coverage.

No. More.

This was the last, and one of the biggest, straws. There is absolutely NO proper justification or defense of this firing other than the seemingly commoditization and homogenization of political opinion on the Post's staff. None.

Perhaps due to a vocal response, the Post will offer some lame, plausible-sounding but utterly trivial "justification" in the future, but any non-ideological person who's kept up with editorial opinion on the Post will see right through that.

In-depth political coverage is in CRISIS right now whether the Post staff admits it or not. Those willing to fund true investigative journalism are becoming fewer and fewer each day. Editorial opinion enhances that coverage by creating discussion and drawing attention to important stories, thereby increasing the value of investigative reporting in the marketplace (both commercial and of ideas).

The Post has now jeopardized (I would even say violated) that relationship within their own establishment by excising one of the most successful and interesting voices, and one who just happens to be the only contributor who regularly criticizes the current White House from ANY perspective other than that of the insular, cliquish beltway pundit class or the nattering ideological right.

This is UNACCEPTABLE.

For shame. I've watched the Post shoot itself in the foot over and over again in the last decade, and I've defended it every time. But there's a point for any reader when the damage becomes too great to have any hope of recovery, and that point has now come.

There will come a time when management finally regrets this decision. It may not be today, and it may not be tomorrow, but it WILL come. And from all evidence in recent history at this institution, that time will come way, WAY too late to do them any good.

Posted by: Prospero424 | June 19, 2009 11:00 PM | Report abuse

We already have the Wall St Journal to keep us up to date on what the lunatic US rightwing wants. Until the Post fires Krauthammer, Gerson, Kristol, Will and Broder, and finds itself half a dozen Froomkins, it's just another vehicle for nauseating, America-first bigotry.

Posted by: pb1123 | June 19, 2009 11:12 PM | Report abuse

This is a step away from good watchdog journalism as well as profitability. What the hell happened to the newspaper of Watergate? I'm done with opinions at the Post, as - apparently - are many, many others. Smart thinking, Post.

Posted by: aacochran | June 19, 2009 11:21 PM | Report abuse

I've been a dedicated reader of Froomkin's blog for a long time--not because I'm a political ideologue or found him to be so, but because he provided a voice for truth. I remember reading his column during the 2002 presidential election contest, and he was certainly just as tough on John Kerry as he was on George W. Bush.
I can see that publishing truth is a hard thing to do, and makes the Post a magnet for complaints--but it also is what used to make this paper great.

Posted by: patersonfalls | June 19, 2009 11:31 PM | Report abuse

There must be empirical evidence re the readership of Froomkin's column--how it has fared both over time and in relationship to other Post columnists. Providing some of this data would seem to be the least of the ombudsman's responsibilities. Not that difficult, surely.

Posted by: theoanderson1 | June 19, 2009 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Firing Dan Froomkin is a stupid move. Shame on the Washinton Post!!

Posted by: kreecher5 | June 19, 2009 11:46 PM | Report abuse

It's time we flushed this rancid neocon rag right down the toilet where it belongs, or at least neuter it to the point where everyone in this country who matters recognizes the fact that it is absolutely no different from its "fair-and-balanced" sister.

Posted by: dsmth7848 | June 19, 2009 11:50 PM | Report abuse

Hey Alexander, it appears from your previous milquetoast columns if you got 6 responses that would be a good day. You idiots fire Froomkin and you have over 500 posts. Does that give you a clue there genius? Where does Fred Hiatt and the Silver Spoon "Sonny" Graham find losers like you?

Posted by: lomaxsports | June 19, 2009 11:50 PM | Report abuse

I want Andrew Alexander's job!

I just never realized that "ombudsman" was the same thing as "human stenographic machine." Nice (gutless) gig, if you can get it.

Posted by: dsmth7848 | June 19, 2009 11:53 PM | Report abuse

Note to Freddie - the Neocon sploogemeisters who occupy way too much column space in the WaPo are the braintrust that:

A) destroyed Iraq
B) destroyed the Republican party
C) almost destroyed America in 8 loooong years

America rejected their policies roundly in the last 2 elections yet they strangely have a welfare plan on the Post's dime. Bizarre

There's a reason why the skipper of the Exxon Valdez couldn't even get a job on a rowboat, Fred, you knucklehead.

Posted by: cucafish | June 19, 2009 11:54 PM | Report abuse

Jesus. Did I read this right? The public editor, who is supposed to dig into the backstory of what happens at a newspaper, simply recited what he was told by Fred Hiatt.

He didn't ask him about data in support of his contention. He didn't note that this followed a showdown with the increasingly irrational Krauthammer.

There's no mystery here. The WaPo's "thinkers" live in a bubble of willful ignorance and they don't want anyone like Dan Froomking bursting their bubble with reality.

Forget the readers. Let them read cake recipes. They don't know what they should be reading any more than they know what kind of health program they should be asking for.

Neocon noblesse oblige. It rocks!

Posted by: grazer | June 20, 2009 12:03 AM | Report abuse

I was just beginning to consider actually subscribing to the WaPo next month when I heard that Dan is going to vanish.

Now there's no point.

Posted by: elfpix | June 20, 2009 12:06 AM | Report abuse

It's heartbreaking to see the shell of a once great newspaper get even worse. As an example of that - the latest pointless hunk of bile from Krauthammer remains and a real journalist is fired.

Thank Jesus we don't have Nixon in office now - the Watergate coveerrage might have never happened. In fact, it's quite doubtful the Post has had that kind of courage in some time.

This is not just a "liberal" grumble. I know most newspapers are battling tough times, but all sorts of readers of the Post are noticing the downsizing in quality, also.

It's self-defeating for the paper , it's loss for their reputation and it's just a damn shame, period.

Posted by: MissOtis | June 20, 2009 12:10 AM | Report abuse

Sorry Mr Hiatt - you'll out-compete Murdoch by product differentiation, not emulation.

You are as deluded as your stable of snoop-tolerant torture-tolerant patrician global-warming-denying corporate-shill warmongers: the pseudo-liberal ones, the venerable eminent serious centrist ones, the mentally-atrophied bow-tied ones and the utterly predictable crazy neocon ones.

You'll of course never know this due to the rarefied company you prefer to keep. You have no clue how out of touch your comfortable island of reflexive idiocy is with the real America, let alone the civilized democratic world outside.

Posted by: AlanDownunder | June 20, 2009 12:12 AM | Report abuse

Unbelievable. I read Froomkin during the Bush years in amazement that the "media" was missing what he was reporting. He maintained some semblance of sanity during one of the worst power grabs in our nation's history. Now, the Post is getting rid of him. I can do likewise to the Post.

Posted by: Gruvers | June 20, 2009 12:14 AM | Report abuse

This is truely one of the dumber things that Fred Hiatt has done. To fire someone like Fromkin and then give space on the OP-Ed page to a useless, discredited twit like Paul Wolfowitz is so laughable that I can't believe he would do it with a staight face. Thank God I cancelled my subscription to the Post in mid Bush world when the up is down editorial policy of the Post was running a race with the Wall Street Journal to see who could be most out there and out of touch. Sad end for a once great paper.

Posted by: drvaughn | June 20, 2009 12:18 AM | Report abuse

Is Wapo starting to get it after 511 comments in 30 hours? Doubt it.

Posted by: gord_metcalfe | June 20, 2009 12:22 AM | Report abuse

So aside from E. Robinson, WaPo has how many opinion writers that did not support the biggest strategic disaster in U.S. history, the Iraq War? Zero?

The rest of the country is going one way, WaPo is going the other.

You're just talking to yourselves now.

Shame.

Posted by: jvill | June 20, 2009 12:22 AM | Report abuse

Alexander, let me help you do your job.
Now, Mr. Hiatt what are those numbers you point to as a reason for Froomkins firing?
Mr. Alexander, this would be the first question I would ask Hiatt if I were an Omnubudsman. Unfortunately, this column and your lack of a responsible response to Hiatt is further proof that your a journalistic gelding. A clown. A Yes Man. "Whatever you say, Fred."
In other words, everything Froomkin wasn't.

Posted by: lomaxsports | June 20, 2009 12:22 AM | Report abuse

I think a lot of you people are missing how much we'll GET from not having Froomkin's column any more. There'll be a LOT more room for sycophantic dictations of lies from politicians by the WaPo "journalists", for example. Who needs someone who's not willing to swallow just any piece of BS the government throws out. AND...WaPo can use the space for George Will to dictate to climate scientists what their opinions are, and to wax rhapsodically about how bad denim is. You just can't find that level of drivel just anywhere. Oh no, that level of insipidness can only come from a Washington Post columnist. Only they can write such awful pieces as to provide prime material for Stewart and Colbert.

Posted by: fkutzler | June 20, 2009 12:23 AM | Report abuse

Washington post: Done like dinner.
Enjoy your early retirement.

Posted by: gord_metcalfe | June 20, 2009 12:23 AM | Report abuse

Oh, I get it now. How things work at the WaPo. The more you toe the republican neocon line, the more out of touch with basic, easily provable facts and reality you are, the more you are wrong about the important issues of the day, time after time, year after year after year after year......... you are rewarded with even yet more space in which to publish your deranged views in the Washington Post.

If you are, on the other hand, a astute observer and principled critic of whomever happens to be in charge of the government without regard to what political party they belong to.......... you get fired in order to provide more writing space to yet another neocon failure.

Brilliant!

Posted by: cfeher | June 20, 2009 12:31 AM | Report abuse

I grew up around DC so the Washington Post was my first "real" newspaper. That's why it hurts that I feel hesitation when clicking on washingtonpost.com news links nowadays. Because they publish trash from people like George Will and Krauthammer and Wolfowitz for god's sake, but they fire someone like Froomkin. A guy who actually thinks holding the establishment accountable is the job of journalism. I voted for Obama and I think he's doing a good job, but I sure as hell want people out there watching him and asking him questions, like they WEREN'T with Bush, except for some small number of people...like Froomkin.

Posted by: JRandomReader | June 20, 2009 12:35 AM | Report abuse

Andrew, as Ombudsman, I assume you will be given access to the online statistics tracking page views and unique visitors for Froomkin--as well as for every other columnist and blogger? And that you'll be sharing the results with Post readers soon?

As you can see, the firing of Froomkin (as you bring aboard someone like Wolfowitz?!?) has left a bad taste in many a mouth.

That his audience "may have" gone down won't cut it. Please get on the case and let us know what you find out.

Posted by: OctoberLanguage | June 20, 2009 12:38 AM | Report abuse

this from the newspaper that exposed watergate...pathetic...with this comment it's goodbye to the post...

Posted by: majomor | June 20, 2009 12:39 AM | Report abuse

So you're axing the best columnist you have, but keeping the editors of the comics pages? Why not change the banner to "The Washington Compost"?

Posted by: Brian42 | June 20, 2009 12:46 AM | Report abuse

Paul Krugman on Froomkin's firing:
_________________________________________________________________

"That’s why the firing of Dan Froomkin now makes a perverse sort of sense. As long as the right was in power, he was in effect the Post’s designated moonbat, someone who attracted readers but didn’t threaten the self-esteem of the self-perceived serious people at the paper. But now he looks like someone who was right when the serious people were wrong — and that means he has to go."

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/06/19/the-froomkin-firing/#more-2737
_________________________________________________________________

To paraphrase Voltaire: It's dangerous to be right when the editors are wrong.

Posted by: carole2 | June 20, 2009 12:53 AM | Report abuse

With the firing of their only real journalist, Dan Froomkin, the Washington Post solidified its right wing, pro-war, pro-torture bias in the eyes of the general public. What kind of selfrespecting publication insists on publishing the discredited opinions of extremist hardline Fox News propogandists? Bill Kristol, Charles Krauthammer, and the Neo-Con ilk that insist on terrorizing the rational mind via their polemist screeds, day after day, and year after year. What's next for WaPo-- bringing Judy Miller for her "insight"???? (congrat's on the Wolfowitz hire, BTW). "The Neo-Con Hack Rag Washington Post" is how I will refer to your miserable publication for as long as I live..

Posted by: koolaid1 | June 20, 2009 12:56 AM | Report abuse

"Editorial Page Editor Fred Hiatt, whose stable of contributors includes Froomkin, said late Thursday: "With the end of the Bush administration, interest in the blog also diminished. His political orientation was not a factor in our decision.""

Further evidence that Hiatt cannot make the simplest declarative sentence without lying.

Froomkin's firing is an astonishingly stupid decision, and pretty much nixes any doubt that the WaPo doesn't have too much longer to run. I wouldn't be at all surprised if business schools make its phenomenal mismanagement a case study in how NOT to run a firm.

So count me in with the VAST MAJORITY here. After watching it play Pravda during the Bush-Cheney criminal years, I would **never** pay a nickel for the printed WaPo. Now I'm not even going to bother with the web site. I can get daily lies and Sudoku lots of other places -- that's all the WaPo has to offer, any more.

And Froomkin will almost certainly prosper.

Posted by: SGlover910 | June 20, 2009 12:56 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin was pretty much the only one of you bastards worth reading ... the rest of you are pretty damn useless

... enjoy your irrelevance.

Posted by: zsa123 | June 20, 2009 1:06 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin's affiliation with The Washington Post was destoying HIS brand, not the other way around. Better he not consort with WaPo. It's editorial page is home to hypocrites , liars and those wonderful folks who brought us the war in Iraq and torture. He's too good for it.

Posted by: gary9 | June 20, 2009 1:10 AM | Report abuse

The Washington Post was ruining Dan Froomkin's brand, not the other way around.

A terrible decision and completely unsurprising.

Posted by: gary9 | June 20, 2009 1:19 AM | Report abuse

Screw Iran, we have a FROOMKIN REVOLUTION going on here.

FROOMKIN LIVES!!!!!!!!!

Hiatt the tyrant!! Neocons have lost and will keep losing- so I guess the get more columns.

Maybe the Omsbudsman will finally see the point through he snobby oliver peoples glasses.

TAKE NOTICE ADVERTISERS!!!!!!!! BOOKMARK DELETED!!!!!!!

Posted by: tallertapas311 | June 20, 2009 1:24 AM | Report abuse

I have signed in for the last time at wapo.com. The Froomkin firing has demonstrated that wapo is nothing but a mouthpiece for neocon war mongering. Never again will I come to this site. No more online ad revenue from me!!!

Posted by: mark93109 | June 20, 2009 1:33 AM | Report abuse

Hiatt and the post's editorial staff are stuck in a time long, long ago when Will, Broder, Krauthammer could be considered authoratative and mainstream. Boy, have things changed. Froomkin epitomizes excellence in modern web jounalism. Froomkin's star is rising while the post is collapsing into a black hole. Dan, all the best to you. PS. Krauthammer on FOX is the biggest joke in all of journalism.

Posted by: rlrobertsmdphd | June 20, 2009 1:35 AM | Report abuse

And yes, Froomkin was a casualty, given how staid and crusty he had become. Totally unlike David Broder, who has only been at the Post since 1966, or Charles Krauthammer, consistently wrong since 1985. And is there anyone more relevant and hip with it than elitist "liberal" Richard Cohen? He's only been at the Post since 1976, so he remains fresh and has plenty of course to run. And any dude who wears a bow tie, like George Will, is the epitome of relevant, even if he has been using his Post real estate since 1979 to simply make **** up.

And since the village protects itself against all reason, it was mighty nice of the Post to reward those who haven't hit upon the truth in decades, like Bill Kristol. Being wrong about everything means he's perfectly suited for the Post's op-ed pages.

So it's quite clear Froomkin was the odd man out -- he's been right a lot, he was popular, and he's not a 980-year-old relic of a bygone era. It's only natural he'd be the columnist to get the ax.

AFTER FROOMKIN LEAVES, THE AVERAGE AGE OF A WAPO COLUMNIST WILL BE 87.

THEY'VE BEEN AT THE POST SINCE WHEN? 1966??? I MEAN, FOR REAL - 19 SIXTY FRICKIN SIX? THAT'S BEFORE I WAS BORN.

Posted by: PacNW | June 20, 2009 1:38 AM | Report abuse

One more thing: I'm deleting all wapo cookies from my browsers so that no ad agency will mistakenly think I'm a wapo reader!!!

Posted by: mark93109 | June 20, 2009 1:39 AM | Report abuse

Terrible, terrible decision by WaPo. Froomkin was not, is not liberal. What he was/is/always will be is a TRUE JOURNALIST. Perhaps the only one at WaPo. And you fire him? Shame on you.

Actually now that I think about it, this is probably a good thing for Froomkin. Not having ties to WaPo will only increase his credibility!

Goodbye WaPo. You've lost me for good, too.

Posted by: pro8000 | June 20, 2009 1:54 AM | Report abuse

Firing Dan Froomkin is idiotic. What happened to reporting the news rather than simply echoing talking points. I am very, very disappointed in the WAPoST. This is not right.

Posted by: reyvee | June 20, 2009 2:04 AM | Report abuse

The remaining dregs of the Post's credibility has been washed away by Froomkin's firing. During the last few years I've tried so hard to be a faithful reader, but now I'm done.

Posted by: amkm9 | June 20, 2009 2:08 AM | Report abuse

Dear Mr. Alexander,

I can't claim to have read EVERY. SINGLE. POST. responding to Mr. Froomkin's firing
by The Post, but I CAN say that EVERY. SINGLE. POST. That I HAVE read agrees with
me that this move by your newspaper is wrong. That is, one-hundred per cent of your
readers responding have the same impression that I do: bad move on the part of
The Post.

The Post is bookmarked in my web browser; White House Watch has been one of my
few RSS feeds. As I posted in response to your article about Mr. Froomkin's firing, I'd
remove the RSS feed as my response, but that won't be necessary because the source
will be going dark anyway. As to the Post bookmark, I can tell you without irony that from
now on when I peruse it among the other possibilities under 'NEWS' in my browser I'll be
more inclined to pass on to something else than I had been until now.

Thank you for considering what I write. 'Andrew Alexander gives voice to reader concerns
about The Post' is a great masthead tag line, but now I'm reminded that it hardly means I
may expect either you OR The Post to take action accordingly, following your readers'
concerns. Even when they are as clear and as passionate as now. Tell me again, what IS an 'ombudsman'?

And, by the way, was there a reason for letting Mr. Froomkin go? None given, so far as I
could see.

Posted by: lkrndu | June 20, 2009 2:10 AM | Report abuse

Couldn't let this bit pass:

"When it began, the column was called “White house Briefing.” But the name was changed after concerns by some at The Post newspaper that readers might believe Froomkin was a White House reporter, working alongside those offering objective news reporters."[sic]

Circumscribed lazy-minded formulaic access-addicted stenographic race-calling difference-splitting courtiers like Harris and Vandehei were "objective news reporters"?

Mr Alexander, your job is safe.

Posted by: AlanDownunder | June 20, 2009 2:25 AM | Report abuse

I like Mr. Froomkin's work.

I'm disappointed he's parting ways with the WP.

Posted by: Mill_in_Mn | June 20, 2009 2:45 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin's audience "may have suffered when Barack Obama became president"? Don't you have the necessary data to answer this question? Any random person could make lazy speculation like this; I thought the point of the Ombudsman was to get answers from the inside.

Posted by: ispivey | June 20, 2009 2:58 AM | Report abuse

I haz a sad. I have been reading the Post since I was 5, front to back, the whole thing, every day. I thought I would be a Post dead-ender and keep my subscription till the bitter end. But I am seriously rethinking that position.

Under the current Editor, I've seen the Post become a shell of its former self. They *say* there's a wall between editorials and the news room, but in reality, the wall is meaningless. When editorial hacks who should have given up their columns years ago are allowed to dictate who stays and who goes from the news operation, the myth of separation is proven to be a lie.

There was a time not too long ago when the Post wouldn't have been afraid to make a few radical conservative commentators angry. It's sad that time has passed.

Posted by: bucky_katt | June 20, 2009 3:24 AM | Report abuse

At this point, the only difference between the Washington Post and the Washington Times is that the demented right-winger running the Post is not a Korean religious cult leader.

From Krauthammer to Wolfowitz, from Kagan to Hiatt, from Samuelson to Will, it's all war-is-good, and torture-is-good, and taxes-are-for-the-little-people, all the time. There's something deeply broken about these people. It's frightening and tragic to see people lose so completely their most basic sense of decency, and be so completely unaware of it.

Good luck to the Post selling papers to the 23-percenters. Here's a hint: they don't buy newspapers much, and there's not enough of them in the DC area. The Post will have fully deserved the forthcoming bankruptcy.

Posted by: mikezz | June 20, 2009 3:50 AM | Report abuse

coupla questions on everyone's (probably including WaPo shareholders) mind at this time:

* anyone done a count of number of posters who as result of froomkin banishment are alleging they will (a) cancel subscription to WaPo, or (b) won't read WaPo as often in future?

* what, historically, seems to be rate of actual cancellations and reduced traffic to threats of cancellation and reduced traffic?

* are number of seemingly outraged readers over this froomkin firing higher, lower or about average for other WaPo firings?

* how long of an employment contract does fred hiatt have at WaPo, and when is it up next?

* is there some established mechanism or precedent for WaPo going back to Froomkin as result of readership outcry over his firing, and retracting his firing -- and adjusting his reporting relationship from the editorial dept to somewhere else?

Posted by: ithejury | June 20, 2009 3:53 AM | Report abuse

No more.

I remember when Mel Blanc died, there was a poster, called "Speechless", that showed the cast of his voices gathered together, standing silently beside an unattended microphone in an empty spotlight.

The Washington Post has redefined the word, given over its last bastion of respectability in a time when we, the people, truly needed an insightful voice at a paper of record.

Speechless. It is truly difficult to render me so. But the Post has done just that.

My deepest thanks and appreciation to Mr. Froomkin for his work. Unfathomable disappointment for the Washington Post.

Posted by: bidi1 | June 20, 2009 4:07 AM | Report abuse

WashPo-- I'm done with you. Breaking news source and Froomkin's 5-pagers were the only reasons I had you bookmarked. I no konger have the former and can get the latter at any of a large number of sites, so bye-bye.

I doubt that it will involve any in the upper echelons who made this misguided decision, but there will be consequences for Froomkin's firing. It will be played out ultimately in the form of former WP staff being out of a job as your paper swirls (ever further) down the drain to irrelevancy-- and for no good reason other than the calculated political gains of the editors.

Shame on you and may there be a pox on your house. Your actions have betrayed the responsibility of the 4th estate and I, along with many, will cheer your corporate demise.

Posted by: swoody1 | June 20, 2009 4:38 AM | Report abuse

Say goodnight, Pravda.

Posted by: berkeleyhoward | June 20, 2009 5:18 AM | Report abuse

I came to DC in 1969 and relied on the Post through the dark days of Nixon and Watergate.

I revered it and the NYT.

The quality of the Post has declined over the last several years [Len Downie's appointment as editor was a starting point], and two years ago I canceled in total frustration.

However, Froomkin was one of my bookmarks, and I read his every column. Once on the WaPo page [thanks to him], I often read other stories.

No more. What a huge bunch of idiots now run the Post. Eugene Robinson I adore, so I'll keep his bookmark, but nothing else.

I'm hoping Warren Buffet recognizes how badly the Post has slipped and divests Berkshire Hathaway of its Post holdings. The Post truly stinks.

Posted by: Mauimom | June 20, 2009 5:43 AM | Report abuse

Well, I have read every comment - every word - took me hours, and I've got to say "impressed" doesn't begin to describe my assessment of my fellow posters' articulate, clever, passionate, and often hilarious remarks. I mean what a top notch readership the WaPo is about to lose. In a show of solidarity, I'm seriously considering subscribing to WaPo *in order to cancel.*

Posted by: daphne5 | June 20, 2009 5:58 AM | Report abuse

Katherine Graham is rolling over in her grave.

Posted by: SleepsWithCats | June 20, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin was your last claim to respectability. Shame on you.

Posted by: ilatreat | June 20, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

It's OK Fred, I'll still come for the sports, but thanks for the memories of what the Post was a decade+ ago.

Posted by: Bartolo1 | June 20, 2009 7:08 AM | Report abuse

I print out Froomkin's article every day and am disappointed when he skips a Friday, and after reading it bit by bit I give it to a colleague. So I'll miss him, along with Tony Kornheiser's Talking Points and other items that the Post has axed. How big is Krauthammer's audience? What a predictable writer he is! (But I have to say that Froomkin's articles were more fun to read during the Bush years.)

Tokyo

Posted by: jbjohnbowen | June 20, 2009 7:24 AM | Report abuse

I've lived in the DC area for almost 30 years, and I quit subscribing to the Post 4 years ago. I did read Dan Froomkin's column regularly, and I remember kidding Dan at the first YearlyKos convention about his connections with the Washington Post. I thought at the time that he deserved better. Wherever he ends up, I'll be following him.

Dan's series at Nieman Lab on "news' future" is a fitting comment on how such papers as the Post got where they are today. Give it a read: http://www.niemanlab.org/category/themes/danfroomkin/?=sidelink

Q: Who has the worse job in DC: Manny Acta or Andy Alexander? A: The Nats win once or twice each week; WaPo, not so much.

Posted by: infoshaman | June 20, 2009 7:41 AM | Report abuse

I guess there's little value in piling on at this point, but I have to say: Not only was Froomkin one of the best writers on post.com, he was by far the best journalist. Plugged-in, inquisitive, and unafraid of jousting with his ideological foes. Just check his chats for that. I always looked forward to his work, and I'm a conservative. If it weren't for a household member, I'd be canceling my subscription too.

Posted by: FurnaceCreek | June 20, 2009 7:44 AM | Report abuse

I've been a WP reader for forty years and I am saddened at what has happened to this paper. I'm finished with it.

Posted by: larry34 | June 20, 2009 7:55 AM | Report abuse

The Washington Post has turned the corner into irrelevancy with its termination of Dan Froomkin. What a beautiful and smart job he did for the Post and all of us. How depressing it is to see this once-great newspaper transform itself into a sorry piece of crap. I won't be reading this new Post, it's just not good enough. Only one word fit for those in charge here: Fools.

Posted by: bgeorge33 | June 20, 2009 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Breathtakingly poor judgment and transparently motivated by content. Fine. That is the Posts's right. But for Hiatt to pretend that it is a decision based on anything other than that is an insult to the intelligence of your readers. I hope Hiatt and Krauthammer and Howell and Brady and soft, round, lil' John Harris enjoy their petty, shallow victory.

Disgraceful.

Posted by: hongdb | June 20, 2009 8:10 AM | Report abuse

IF Froomkin's blog has "suffered" (where are the numbers proving this, pls?), it's because of WaPo online actively trying to marginalise it. Very often, "White House Watch" can't be found on the WaPo opinion page, there's only that Froomkin link under "Post Opinion Writers". Just look at the opinion page today - where is Froomkin's column from yesterday? Instead, there's a link to an "Outlook" story dated 6/14!

Imho Froomkin did a great job in covering the Obama administration, despite false prophecies by his critics that he wouldn't manage to make the switch. But he couldn't manage to overcome the barely hidden antipathy of WaPo's editors, for which he is a nuissance because he makes a courageous stand for good American values, for instance being against torture, an overbearing government spying on its people, and the US starting preemptive wars based on made up evidence. All issues where WaPo's editors have stayed largely mum, and failed to "speak truth to power".

Of course, he made no friends with his determined stance, and what we see now is only the result of what's been long in the making. White House Watch has been deliberately pushed to the sidelines, and now the alleged loss of readership is used as an argument for firing him. At the same time, other columnists whose shallow, uninteresting opinion pieces really don't inspire the readers, hacks like Cohen or Gerson, are still held in high regard by the editors. It's obvious that this is a firing based on political reasons, or else half of WaPo's columnists would be fired, too, and replaced by more intelligent and interesting bloggers. It's not Froomkin who is so yesteryear, it's WaPo's editors. This fish smells from the head!

Posted by: Gray62 | June 20, 2009 8:11 AM | Report abuse

Somewhere in heaven Edward R. Murrow is weeping.

Posted by: koyak23 | June 20, 2009 8:21 AM | Report abuse

Dismissing Froomkin is the stupidest thing I've seen in a long while. He is one of the only true journalists out these, unlike some of the partisan hacks you employ.

I'll no longer have any reason to read the WaPo and will be removing my bookmark when Dan leaves.

The good news is that Dan will be fine and will bring many, many loyal readers to wherever he surfaces.

Posted by: JCinCT | June 20, 2009 8:24 AM | Report abuse

As a devoted, regular reader of Mr Froomkin's blog, I am very disappointed at the paper's decision. I strongly urge the editors and publisher to reconsider this decision.

Posted by: Haralambos | June 20, 2009 8:29 AM | Report abuse

When the real journalists are all fired, the columnists who dare to speak truth to power are tamed, the "opinion" pages heavy with the scent of conservative "common wisdom" and the reporting of the news blotted by mere stenographing, you will finally notice that there are not enough "serious people" in US establishment to ensure the survival of the Washington Post!

Posted by: Gray62 | June 20, 2009 8:31 AM | Report abuse

While the firing of Froomkin was tragic and, we can only hope, a poor business decision on the part of the Post the other tragedy here is the utter failure of the Ombudsman. I thought an ombudsman was a trusted intermediary not a shill. Shame on you Mr. Alexander. You bring dishonor to your profession.

Posted by: morrowjanee | June 20, 2009 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Alexander:

I have rarely seen such a combination of passive condemnation and caricaturing innuendo as is present in your post. It's sad that the Post can't be a newspaper, but must instead be a stenographic service for viewpoints that buttress the power structure. I hope that someday reporters with a fraction of Mr. Froomkin's acumen will be permitted to write for your paper again. Until then, I see little reason to read your paper or its online component.

Posted by: eruditeogre | June 20, 2009 8:54 AM | Report abuse

@Froomkin = WaPo FAIL

(twitter-eeze)

Posted by: NeilSagan | June 20, 2009 9:22 AM | Report abuse

I have never commented before, but I have read Dan Froomkin since before the Iraq war. He is one of the few journalists with the real credibility that comes from being proved right after announcing very unpopular information. Unfortunately, you have now lost the little credibility you gained by associating with him.

Posted by: Judah1 | June 20, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Alexander

I sent you an email upon learning that the WP had let Froomkin go, but I thought I ought to add a comment here as well.

You've obviously noted that the responses to your piece above are unprecedented. With any luck at all, you (and others above you there at the Post) will glean some understanding of one key reason your paper is now suffering far more keenly than it might.

Simply count up the number of columnists and op ed contributors appearing regularly in your paper who also can be found as regular guests and contributors or even recipients of paychecks from Fox News. There's no other significant daily like you in this. And it does not speak well of your operation and its policies and "journalistic" direction.

Your paper, more so than many others, is now cursed by comparison and contrast with new media examples which often demonstrate a level of independence, objectivity, honesty and intellectual integrity which your institutionalized structures and relationships increasingly work to place you in a very poor light.

There are a lot of voices above advising you to wake the hell up. We need good news-gathering and journalistic operations such as the Post previously represented. The irony is that, increasingly, we need such operations to help expose operations such as your paper is slowly becoming.

Posted by: bernielatham | June 20, 2009 10:05 AM | Report abuse

I've looked at every comment prior to this one: I found 8 that criticized Froomkin or supported his firing. I'm not sure where to find the totals, but the estimates of over 500 comments seems credible.

The Post seems to be at war with its readers -- not just on Froomkin, but in general. Look at the comments under any column by Krauthammer or Kristol. These pundits are despised by the readers, and rightfully so.

You have a strange business model, Mr. Hiatt.

Posted by: dougmuder | June 20, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I just registered with WaPo online so I could make a comment. Then, I'm gone.
Is it so surprising to this newspaper to hear of the death of real journalism? WHAT journalism? Dan Froomkin was the only voice within your sphere that consistently strove for facts, truths, objectivity. Remember those? I suppose the Bush legacy will continue to make its small assassinations by proxy for some time to come.

Posted by: midkiffpam | June 20, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Another bad move by the Post. Keep the dullards Broder & Krauthammer and get rid of an independent thinker. Well, congratulations, you also just got rid of another reader.

Posted by: jk_hopp | June 20, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

One of the most unique writers in standard newspaper land and he is fired. Don't you understand we can get all the stuff on your pages elsewhere, instantly? He was one of the few things I read in your paper regularly (Brian Krebs is another). You just gave me one less reason to read the Post.

Posted by: kdoren | June 20, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin was the reason I was originally drawn to your online paper. His was an distinctly un-ideological perspective.

It is unfortunate for us all that your staff and leadership can't stomach speaking truth to power, as Mr. Froomkin has made his habit over the past few years.

Instead, you'll now simply be toadies to the establishment, and no longer will I need to visit your site.

Good-bye.

Posted by: ostrom808 | June 20, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Bye, WaPo. You've removed any reason to ever visit your site.

Good luck!

Posted by: jimpharo | June 20, 2009 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Now that Dan's gone, Colby King and Eugene Robinson are the only reasons for which I would consider paying for online access to WaPo.com when the time comes.

It's hard to believe that the benefits the Post thinks it will receive by releasing Dan will outweigh its actual costs of letting him go.

Posted by: bighack | June 20, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Paul Krugman, nobel prize winner and columnist at competing newspaper NYT, just weighed in, and, as usual, he voices his opinion more elegantly eloquent than most of us mere commenters can do:

"That’s why the firing of Dan Froomkin now makes a perverse sort of sense. As long as the right was in power, he was in effect the Post’s designated moonbat, someone who attracted readers but didn’t threaten the self-esteem of the self-perceived serious people at the paper. But now he looks like someone who was right when the serious people were wrong — and that means he has to go."

Well, exactly! It really looks like being wrong on all important issues is the best way to keep a job at WaPo. Those who stubbornly insist on not simply following the flow, and even dare to be right, are not "teamplayers" and deserve to be fired, of course.

Posted by: Gray62 | June 20, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

The comments on this blog leaves one with the impression that, despite all of the whining about Froomkin's "independence", he really only appealed to very intolerant liberal partisans who are incapable of posting anything with saying "neocon" three or four times.

It's OK folks. Let's not forget that the Post still has Robinson, King, Meyerson, Cohen, Jacoby, Capeheart, Milbank, Toles, Shales and Telnaes to outnumber the handful at conservatives on staff. Stop the moaning already.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 20, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

What a stupid move, and what a weak piece from the ombudsman in explanation. This is further proof, if any were needed, that Hiatt is a fool.

Newspapers aren't dying because of technological innovations, 'new media,' or whatever. They're dying because they're run by puzzling incompetents who have resolved to court the one readership (movement conservatism) that has no use for journalism.

Good luck with that.

Posted by: eugyppius | June 20, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Thank you for your work Mr. Froomkin, I too will follow you wherever you go.

During the run-up and early years of the Iraq war, I felt there was far too little critical analysis and tough questions about the reasonableness of war from our media (for which NYT apologized - did WP?) - I began viewing London Times regularly for a less entrenched viewpoint - and they are not a bastion of liberals there.

I was very grateful when I found Froomkin's articles and he hosted online chats - I appreciated the freshness of his analysis, the pushing of all of us to question what we were being told, reminding us what questions were no longer being posed, what still needed to be answered.

Thank you for your work, I look forward to continuing to learn from you - I hope you will seek accountability from this administration as you have pushed for from Bush's.

Posted by: smmcdonald | June 20, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

"The comments on this blog leaves one with impression ..."
- bobmoses | June 20, 2009 11:34 AM

One? Don't understate your case Bob. I reckon two at least, maybe even three or four.

Posted by: AlanDownunder | June 20, 2009 11:55 AM | Report abuse

I've removed your bookmark from my browser, Washington Post.

Posted by: shungry | June 20, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

The Post is purging Dan Froomkin, their only columnist who consistently speaks truth to power, whether that power is in the government, the Post newsroom or on the editorial side.

Ombudsman, if you don't also quit, it will be apparent that you are just a lackey for the corporation.

The Iraq war, torture, abuse of personal freedoms - all black marks against our country and the cheerleading Post.

I know Dan will land on his feet, but for me the Post is dead!

Posted by: rb42 | June 20, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

... because you folks are apparently not serious about adversarial journalism and holding people accountable.

Posted by: shungry | June 20, 2009 11:59 AM | Report abuse

I am incredulous at this move, WaPo. Another poster used the word "speechless." Dan Froomkin's column was the only thing I read consistently in your paper--I will certainly follow him wherever he goes. He has been such a breath of fresh air: clear, thoughtful, honest, committed, diligent, intelligent, and hardworking are the adjectives that come to mind. The WaPo feels more and more like just a shell of what it once was.

Posted by: sham1 | June 20, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Typical neo-con neanderthals; 'we scared, we hit with clubs!' (Although this is likely an insult to neaderthals.) What an astonishingly stupid thing to do. Goodbye irrelevant, corrupt, and now foolish Washington Post. May your death be more honourable then the last sad years of your once noble existence.

Posted by: anonys | June 20, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

June 20-Glenn Greenwald: **Email from John Harris, the ("Post's then-National Political Editor (and now Politico Editor-in-Chief") regrets dispute with Dan Froomkin"**

http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2009/06/20/harris/


Posted by: gord_metcalfe | June 20, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

"I reckon two at least, maybe even three or four."
AlanDownunder | June 20, 2009 11:55 AM

Only Froomkin's angry liberal supporters care enough to comment. I wouldn't read too much into the ratio of comments.

The truth is that Froomkin's blog only appealed to rabid partisans who wanted to read yet another Bush hater. Now that Bush is out of power, Froomkin has no purpose and his readership has declined to the point where he is no longer an asset to the Post and like a poorly rated TV show, he was axed.

If the Bush hating crowd really cared about "speaking truth to power", his readership would not have declined so precipitously. Unfortunately, it seems that most of that crowd really only cared about partisan hackery and aren't interested in reading a guy who questions someone on "their side".

Posted by: bobmoses | June 20, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

"Typical neo-con neanderthals; 'we scared, we hit with clubs!' (Although this is likely an insult to neaderthals.) "

Yes. Conservatives should be more intellectual like you and call people name and use exclamation points gratiuitously.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 20, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Post has become a national disgrace. Still espousing the spectacularly failed neocon worldview; no room for anything that might burst their little fantasy bubble.

Good luck with that.

Posted by: rachelle1 | June 20, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

I just went through the trouble of signing up just so that I could add my name to the ever-growing list of angered Post readers. There has been (from time-to-time) other content in the Post worth reading, but Froomkin's dismissal offends me in a way that I can't forgive. You've sent me packing as well.

Posted by: WashingtonJoe | June 20, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Same here Washington Joe. I may have given you a new registered person but it is only to express my displeasure with your decisions.

Posted by: jaybarr31 | June 20, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Dan's columns spoke truth to power, and I along with many others writing here will follow him wherever he ends up. As for the Post, continue on your way to the graveyard praising the Emperor's clothes.

Andy, if you have any integrity remaining within you, you would fulfill the purpose of your title as ombudsman - which according to Merrium-Webster is to be "one that INVESTIGATES reported complaints (as from students or consumers), reports findings, and helps to achieve equitable settlements." Here, the extension of this is to advocate for the interests of the readers against the Post's established corporate/neo-con power base.

As you read through these comments, look within yourself and find that grain of integrity if it remains and find your redemption. Otherwise time will march on, leaving your future self to look back on this time in regret that you had not the courage to defend what REAL journalists are SUPPOSED to be doing - exposing lies and seeking accountability for them that the truth may be known. Shame.

Dan, hold your head high and wipe the dust from your feet as you continue on your way with the rest of us.

Post, I clearly see the days approaching where your bones lay drying scattered in the desert along with your tripe-writing, ring-kissing establishment columnists and so-called "journalists."

Posted by: FormerPostReader | June 20, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Add my voice to those sorry to see Dan go. I've been a loyal WaPO reader since the '70's when I watched Woodward and Bernstein unravel the puzzle of Watergate, but I guess like many of the other posters to this site I will now start broadening my journalistic horizons. Without Dan's column, the Post is just not an every day must read anymore.

Posted by: DaveNJ1 | June 20, 2009 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Well, Broder posted mindless cr"p again today, krap wants to save the people he wanted to blow up a month ago, & Will is lying about something he knows nothing about--again.
By firing Froomkin, you have turned this paper over to the dull witted old wingnut farts.

Posted by: durk2 | June 20, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Shame on the Washington Post decision-makers who decided to terminate Dan Froomkin's contract. I have been a daily reader of wapost online for years primarily due to Mr. Froomkin. I'll now move on to other, better sources of journalism.

Posted by: brotherdoug | June 20, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

I confess I haven't waded through all these comments. Forgive if this has been discussed or disclosed: What do the data about page views say about Dan Froomkin's popularity among Post web visitors? If his column was not "working," then it should be reflected in page views. And for the Post management to justify the elimination of a great source of timely information and commentary, that drop-off should be precipitous.

I cannot fathom why the Post continues in good conscience to publish the screeds of discredited neocons such as Wolfowitz and Kagan while axing voices like Froomkin's. I cannot fathom how Krauthammer is allowed ot continue to spout his vile, destructive, bullying, Strangelovian venom. Let's be frank here: The man is a foamy-mouthed Zionist fascist.

I also wonder why conscientious journalists (I'm sure there are a few) at the Post are not taking a stand over this cynical and transparent witchhunt, and its patently dishonest justificaiton. Go ahead, scribes, and get back to your stenography. Your once-august publication just sunk deeper into the ooze of irrelevance. (I'd say muck, but that would suggest that y'all actually rake it.)

Posted by: jayvee | June 20, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

While at Georgetown for seven years in the 90's, I became very attached to the Washington Post, so much so, that I continued to read it even though I left town 12 years ago. Sadly, I will have to end our relationship now, as I see that the post is more interested in becoming a propaganda arm of the morally and ideologically bankrupt neoconservative cabal than it is in remaining an entity that actually practices journalism. Froomkin was one of the only journalists who could still refer to himself using that title. The remainder of your papers reporters or pundits fall in two other categories - stenographers and propagandists. Froomkin was the only journalist who dared to actually do what journalists are supposed to do - question authority, and call them out for their lies. The fact that he did so not only for the Bush White House, but also the Obama White House, made him the rarest of creatures, a Beltway establishment media personality who actually believed in principal over party. The fact that the Post would choose to support a vicious torture advocate like Krauthammer over a thoughtful principled journalist like Froomkin says everything we need to know about the Post. And you wonder why your newspaper is dying. Reap what you sow. I will look forward to reading Froomkin wherever he lands, and will not miss visiting this site in the future.

Posted by: deaton41 | June 20, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

What a poor decision by the Post to get rid of one of it's most consistently accurate reporters. I agree that "both sides" shoud be heard, but when people like Krauthammer and Kristol are as consistenly wrong on the big issues as they have been over the last 15 years, and someone with a record like Froomkin gets fired, it boggles the mind. I thought you guys were in the truth business? I'm a three-time Iraq vet and always appreciated his ability to cut through the BS and actually report some news. Bad move WaPo!

Posted by: andrewpache | June 20, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

I am a longtime reader and former staffer of the Washington Post, and I am truly dismayed by the firing of Dan Froomkin, whose excellent column with its many links is just as needed during the Obama Administration as it was in the Bush administration. When my Post subscription expires, I don't plan to renew. i really find it hard to believe that you've actually done this. You owe Daniel Froomkin an apology.

Posted by: EastofKansas | June 20, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

I didn't want to believe it--but I see the Post really is letting Froomkin go. I'm sure it'll be on to bigger and better things for him and his journalism. Still, I was struck by the lameness and smallness of the Post spokesman's statement quoted in Politico--implying that White House Watch had somehow run its course, as if truth-seeking and petitions for transparency can fall out of favor. And, the dig that he was "freelancing" your column seemed a low blow, again, as he were a lower form of Post-man, because he wasn't on staff. So what! As if your thousands of readers should be placated, because you weren't really full-time? What's that got do with anything? What an insult to readers. Oh, well, it's hard to soar like an eagle when you're on the ground with the turkeys! Go on, Dan, and soar into the future.

Posted by: philipturner | June 20, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Hearing about and then reading Dan Froomkin's column was what started me reading the Washington Post. I don't think I'll be reading it much, if at all, once he is gone.

Seriously wrong move, WaPo.

Posted by: litigatormom | June 20, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

What will you do, rename it the Washington Fox? Fox Post? Y'all fired one of your last remaining journalists? Why, did Karl Rove need another job?

Posted by: BurningFeet | June 20, 2009 2:09 PM | Report abuse

More evidence that the Post is a right-wing paper with little regard for its readers or objective journalism if being objective upsets the in crowd. Being wrong about most things while being viewed as an establishment creature is essential. Being right is cause for firing.

As Brad DeLong says, another episode in the ongoing 'WaPo has crashed and burned' chronicles.

Posted by: fuse | June 20, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

I am glad the Post fired Dan Froomkin. He'll have another job within a week and I'll be able to read him without having to wade through all the predictable pro-Bush/Cheney talking points.

Regarding the Post's use of the word "objective" when referencing Froomkin, to quote The Princess Bride: "I do not think that word means what you think it means."

Posted by: jamesbrown2 | June 20, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Buh Bye, WaPo. 'Nough said.

Posted by: jhnny_doe | June 20, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

What the friggin' HELL??

Posted by: theRealCalGal | June 20, 2009 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Alexander, my representative, where is your response to this outpouring of disbelief, disillusionment and anger? Is this your seven minutes of "calm," while hoping the nasty disruption will go away,and that we'll all just quietly continue to read "The Pet Goat?"

Posted by: bgeorge33 | June 20, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

If Froomkin is so "non-partisan", why does he only cite liberal pundits and blogs?

Surely, if he was really "non-partisan", he would quote some conservatives once in a blue moon.

The truth is that Froomkin's fans are as hard-core partisans as Rush's dittoheads and refuse to acknowledge their own mindless partisanship, let alone Froomkin's.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 20, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Astounding decision. Has the Post no pride left at all? Have they considered changing the masthead to read, "Kissing Up To The Conventional Wisdom"? If for NO other reason, how about keeping Froomkin around because he was RIGHT about Iraq, RIGHT about torture, RIGHT about a hundred things that were just morally wrong (if defended on the op-ed page by professional apologist Fred Hiatt). Why should this paper exist? Why do we need it? What is it giving us that we can't get from the Washington Times? More comics, I guess . . . they did bring Judge Parker back, after all.

Posted by: Gunga2009 | June 20, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

What are you guys thinking?

Old media is in trouble and papers are going bankrupt and you're firing the one guy who is bringing eyeballs online everyday?

Let's call this what is was - a long-overdue reaction to the whole blowup with Deborah Howell and the powers-that-be at the Post. Nothing more and nothing less. It's idiotic, but it is payback plain and simple.

I'm considering whether I can do without my Post in the morning, because the only voice I'll have in this matter is if I cancel my subscription and move to just reading online (I kind of like the irony there too).

Posted by: dbjackso1 | June 20, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

This is a hatchet job. Froomkin was the only one at the post doing any real reporting, not just during the fiasco of the Bush administration, but now as well. Apparently towing the newcon line is the new standard for WAPO reporters, columnist and bloggers.

It is a standard that will cost you valuable readership and web traffic. I have already canceled my subscription, and this will be my last visit to the is now tepid and worthless site.

Posted by: jimcummings | June 20, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin's firing is very sad. Your paper will be much the worse for this. I certainly won't be visiting your website nearly as often once he leaves. He definitely had attitude, but just like I. F. Stone in his heyday he did his homework and was reality-based unlike your (mostly flaky and totally predictable) op-ed contributors. Mr. Ombudsman, why dont you do a column on the palace intrigues that led to this?

Posted by: sennj | June 20, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Fred Hiatt is a petty little man and his paper is a hive of neocon kooks and crazies. Krauthammer just makes stuff up, George Will invents things, Gerson is a pantywaist and a liar. That's some paper you have there. Fred.

Posted by: tabby_titsworth | June 20, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I grew up reading the Post -- I learned to read by picking out words from The Evening Star (adieu!) and the Post. I haven't read the Post in years, having switched to the NY Times in my early 20s, but I did read Froomkin as long as he's been writing his column.
The reasons given for his dismissal are stupid and disingenuous. Call it what you want -- the real reason Froomkin was fired was because he called people out on their garbage, constantly reminding other "reporters" what they were lacking: to seek the truth and speak it. The Post is an embarrassment to print journalism, which is now only being practiced by a few reporters and the bloggers. I'm sure Dan Froomkin will land on his feet in a great place that appreciates his brand of shoe-leather reporting as much as his readers do. We'll follow him wherever he goes, and I can't say the same about any reporter from the Post.

Posted by: AGrenadier | June 20, 2009 3:59 PM | Report abuse

OK, I've been just a reader and a lurker. But no more. I'm disgusted and appalled that the formerly great institution known as the Washington Post will henceforth fail to balance its drivel reporting and comment (except for Pincus and Priest--are they still around?) by eliminating Froomkin. Good by.

Posted by: McKinless | June 20, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

I hope and believe Dan Froomkin will find a far more compatible home than your right-wing war-mongering smear rag.
We will follow him there. You are being left in the dust.
Real journalism is alive and well in the persona of Dan Froomkin.
WaPo is dead to me now.

Posted by: mona9999 | June 20, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

I hope and believe Dan Froomkin will find a far more compatible home than your right-wing war-mongering smear rag.
We will follow him there. You are being left in the dust.
Real journalism is alive and well in the persona of Dan Froomkin.
WaPo is dead to me now.

Posted by: mona9999 | June 20, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Just heard the sad and disappointing new that Dan Froomkin has been fired. It's acts of bad choices in journalism like this that has cause the demise of Newspapers.

Dan, if you read this I'm sure you will land on your feet in a much better venue for your talents. Take a little time to enjoy the break, we'll be looking forward to seeing where you land.

Posted by: SmileySam | June 20, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

I am 85 years old. I have been reading the Post since my family moved to this area when I was 17.
You have junked the Book World and gotten rid of the Sunday puzzle that brought joy to my weekend afternoon (but you have room for a photographic picture match for those that are brain dead) and now you have fired Mr. Fromkin who along with the reporters who uncovered the Walter Reed scandal made the Post a quote newspaper endquote.
I find less and less of interest to read each day.
I hope you will reconsider your decision.

Posted by: bandg | June 20, 2009 4:46 PM | Report abuse

The WashingFoxPost pulls another stop in its march toward Media Monopoly neocon-style fluff n fascism.

So long, sukkahs...

I'm joining the exodus to other sources that are less committed as globalist propaganda tools, and more dedicated to journalistic substance and reportage. WaPo has failed in its service to the US people/freedom loving world. You helped enable the current catastrophes and Froomkin's firing is a blatant move to CYA.

WaPo is a disgrace.

Posted by: artforhumans | June 20, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Dear Mr. Alexander, we are waiting with bated breath to hear from the WP your response to these hundreds of comments which are running (conservatively) about 100 to 1 in favor of Mr. Froomkin. H. Hewitt did make an appearance in Jeff Goldberg's blog yesterday, with something of a put upon aire (or so it seems to me), and is sticking to his story. "The disappointingly dull truth is that the decision not to renew Dan's contract--which was not made by me, but which I supported--was based on viewership data, budget constraints and judgments about how well the column was or was not adapting to a new era." Are all these comments going to be dismissed as vituperative (instead of impassioned, if they were running more in your favor), are all of us going to be dismissed as left-leaning or liberal (which seems to be a weird code for what, exactly?), are you going to point out that you got fewer than a thousand comments from a readership of, well, what is it now? I'm looking forward eagerly to your next column and how you and the Post handled this impassioned onslaught of people who are not only deeply pained about Mr. Froomkin, but also the legacy of the Washington Post. I hope you rise to the occasion.

Posted by: formerloyalWPreader | June 20, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

The recent George Will climate change fantasy/outright lie (unchecked by the Post's PTB) was the last straw for me with the this paper. Firing one of the very few accountability journalists in the country, Dan Froomkin, stomps a mud hole in the hearts of lovers of open democracy.

Posted by: re22 | June 20, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse

In times of turmoil, citizens of an authentic republic turn to reality-based reportage, not a faith-based commentariat reciting partisan dogma. Froomkin was a rare example of genuinely Socratic inquiry, and his observations were an asset to anyone trying to adapt, or help his/her institution adapt, to these times. The Post management has once again gone for denial rather than adaptive behavior. Bradless noted in his memoirs that the paper soft-pedaled the Iranamok mess; now you've gone into reverse. Shameful.

Posted by: spwiggins | June 20, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin was doing serious journalism. The Washington Post has become a poor home for such endeavors.

Posted by: pending | June 20, 2009 5:33 PM | Report abuse

I think the Post made a terrible mistake when it fired Mr Froomkin. His column is excellent. I'm sure that it will bring massive traffic to whatever new site he uses.

I think the Washington Post need Froomkin much more than Froomkin needs the Washington Post.

Posted by: rjw88 | June 20, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

I find it strange that the Washington Post and the few conservative trolls who have listed comments have complained about Froomkin's "partisanship," although they apparently are blind to the intense partisanship of Krauthammer, Gerson, Kristol, Kagan, and Will. This type of action is ultimately irrational, like so many of hte Washington Post business decisions of late (essentially giving the customer less and charging the customer more - see the termination of the business section, the shrinking of the sports section, and the increasing ratio of bad writing (more Dana Milbank, less Dana Priest and Walter Pincus) to good. As Brad DeLong says, the Washington Post death spiral continues, a death spiral primarily the result of the WaPo Village allergy to facts that don't agree with their ideology, facts such as the fact that Americans have engaged in torture as official policy or that we engaged in a war of aggression in Iraq that has resulted in the deaths of at least 100,000 Iraqis and 4,500 Americans.
I end with Glenn Greenwald's comment from his Salon web site, which along with McClatchey, the Washington Independent, and TPM will get my atttention as opposed to the Froomkinless WaPo.

"One likely benefit of the Froomkin firing is that it highlights the principal and long-standing editorial function of Fred Hiatt, Donald Graham and the Post: to justify and defend Bush radicalism and lawbreaking and promote neoconservatism. Along those lines, the Post today has an Editorial condemning the recent decision of a federal judge who is a Bush-43-appointee (a fact the Editorial omits) allowing a lawsuit brought by Jose Padilla against John Yoo to proceed (I wrote about that decision here -- see Item 5). As a result of memos written by Yoo, Padilla -- an American citizen -- was imprisoned for years without charges, without any access to the outside world (including a lawyer), and was brutally abused."

Posted by: rickstersherpa | June 20, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Moses: if I and others concede Froomkin is, indeed, a partisan liberal, will you concede that upon his removal from the equation the conservative/liberal ratio is way out of balance? Now I fully expect the list of phony progressives who are anything but...starting with Cohen. Sorry, you've already tried that.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 20, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin should stay and that fish-faced Dana Milbank should go. Howard Kurtz is excess baggage also. There are many who should go before the excellent Dan Froomkin.

Posted by: jam754 | June 20, 2009 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin was one of the very few reasons I would visit the WaPo web site. I am tired of the neocon slant of your newspaper. My wife and I are both college-educated and have a household income at least double the average in Virginia. We will not be buying single issues of your paper nor will we visit your web site. Please let your diminishing number of advertisers know. It's sad to witness the death of a great national news organization right before your eyes. You can keep Krauthammer and Wolfowitz. So long.

Posted by: perezski | June 20, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Froomkin, thanks for all the great columns. Let us know where you land.

Washington Post, the loss is yours. We will continue to read Mr Froomkin in some other paper.

Posted by: news-junkie | June 20, 2009 6:23 PM | Report abuse

I shouldn't waste my own words when all that needs to be said, has been said before:

"The only security of all is in a free press. The force of public opinion cannot be resisted when permitted freely to be expressed. The agitation it produces must be submitted to. It is necessary, to keep the waters pure." --Thomas Jefferson to Lafayette, 1823. ME 15:491

Apparently, The Washington Post does not want waters to be pure. How weak is your neocon message if it can't stand the risk posed by one lone voice?

Posted by: interactbiz | June 20, 2009 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Have been a loyal Post reader for 25 years. Increasingly have been not bothering to read paper as delivered in driveway. Been going online for news, blogs, etc as Post reporting stale, Op-Eds terrible (Will, Krauthammer, Broder, etc). Still, out of inertia kept subscription for family - no more. Froomkin was great to read on-line. This decision confirms the Post is dead. Ombudsman: are you there? Are you listening?

Posted by: Bethesda12 | June 20, 2009 6:48 PM | Report abuse

The self-selection phenom for choosing media outlets that reinforce one's own opinion just got worse. Americans, more than ever, need to read civil discussion and dissent. Hosting dissent under one banner was the one way the Post could remain relevant - and ahead of an increasingly tough game. Oh well.

Posted by: nisenson1 | June 20, 2009 6:57 PM | Report abuse

I already sent an email to the ombudsman about Mr. Froomkin's firing but have to add to the comments posted here. I was going to read all of them but don't have the time it would take. There are so many! I can only hope that the ombudsman is required to read them all as part of his job, but have my doubts. When management make decisions, they tend not to care what the fallout will be, and someone like the ombudsman is chosen to take the heat. The offered explanation rings hollow to say the least.

If economics were the criteria, then Mr. Froomkin would stay. He generates a great deal of traffic for the website, even if it is less now than it had been during Bush's administration. Others have suggested other criteria, and they are all poor bases if The Post actually wants to remain a beacon of reporting the truth.

Make no mistake; The Post has dimininshed itself by this action. We can hope that this clearly unwise decision will be reconsidered but that would require that someone in power at The Post cares what we readers think. Though I hope I am wrong, that does not appear to be the case.

In the past, The Post has been a newspaper of exceptional quality, excellent investigative reporting, and incisive analysis. By firing Mr.Froomkin, the paper has reduced itself in all three of these areas of its own accord. Obviously this is not a smart move in a time of struggling for all print/online media.

Posted by: allenofwoodhaven | June 20, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Amazing- your previous post--about that WaPO-CNN lackey/stenographer/sycophant Kurtz obfuscating for his employers yet AGAIN (along with the other neo-con hacks--drew 12 responses, mostly agreeing that the WaPo-Times hires a lot of hacks. This post, on the firing of one of your best reporters, will hit 700 by the end of the day. What conclusion does neocon hack Hiatt draw? Fire anyone who gets the story right?

Posted by: durk2 | June 20, 2009 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Ombudsman, if you do not make a clear, strong statement on this, you are a fraud.

Posted by: tkinnama | June 20, 2009 7:10 PM | Report abuse

Is the Post now getting the impression that its readers are much more intelligent and far more aware of its role as patently dishonest right-wing propagandists than they had previously realized?
682 responses so far and the weekend is young.
Doesn't bode well for the Post, does it?

Posted by: gord_metcalfe | June 20, 2009 7:12 PM | Report abuse

I just went back to the 12 comments on your Kurtz is a hack story. 8/12 of them slam Hiatt for firing Froomkin. So this story will hit 700 comments correctly calling Hiatt et. al. neocon hacks, & your previous story will have 4 comments on Kurtz avoiding the truth. & Kurtz is still employed. Wow.

Posted by: durk2 | June 20, 2009 7:17 PM | Report abuse

You fired Frookin, I fire you. Took you off my Bookmarks. Buh-bye!

Posted by: billythepirates | June 20, 2009 7:17 PM | Report abuse

I can't add much more to what has already been said regarding this outrageous firing of Dan Froomkin; however, I would like to ask a question:
Who does Fred Hiatt think the audience for the WaPo is? Oh yeah, you are a "national" newspaper, but the vast majority of the print editions are sold in the greater MD/VA/DC area. How does that area typically vote, year after year? Does Hiatt think that by featuring a heavily neocon stable of writers and guests that somehow his readership will "drink the Koolaide" and convert? I doubt it, and apparently so do the hundreds of others who have written in here. This was a very stupid decision that will cost the WP more than a few readers.

Posted by: Pearl77 | June 20, 2009 7:22 PM | Report abuse

I look forward to the former Washington Post going out of business. The paper no longer exists. We just need the company to cease publishing. Champagne time.

Posted by: annegreen | June 20, 2009 8:24 PM | Report abuse

Stupidity of this magnitude is rewarded with what it deserves. OUTRAGE. Name me one time you have generated this many comments over any issue, ever. I have scanned through the comments and they are running 99.9% pro Froomkin.

Nice work morons. At least you get to see the "Free Market" in action as your viewership nosedives.

Posted by: empy | June 20, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Civil words fail me. I am reduced to a spluttering, seething mass of invective -- that a fascist like Krauthammer can retain his access to the public and a genuine journalist like Froomkin gets fired -- all I can say is that the Washington Post richly deserves its black, bankrupt future.

Posted by: mlnberger | June 20, 2009 8:59 PM | Report abuse

Another stupid move by the Post.

What "value" does Fred Hiatt bring to Post readers? None whatever--just the increasingly-predictable neocon bilge.

Bring back Dan, kick Fred to the curb.

Posted by: DAVLAUREL | June 20, 2009 9:07 PM | Report abuse

I have been retaining my Washington Post subscription just because I felt guilty about reading Froomkin for free.

The Post's other White House reporters seem to be addicted to the "background" tidbits and leaks that "anonymous sources" throw their way: they won't ask really tough questions or write skeptical stories because that would jeopardize their access to the tidbits, and I thought it was worth it to have at least one voice at the Post who was willing to use the word "torture" to describe torture.

As Froomkin goes, so does my subscription.

Posted by: Pablo01 | June 20, 2009 9:32 PM | Report abuse

I couldn't possibly exaggerate how disappointed I am with this decision. Your op-ed page generally is teh sux. Anymore, I don't even bother to read anything except your local coverage and sports. The only other thing I kept up with was Froomkin's blog. Now that that's gone, I'm going to make it a point to go to blogs and other sources for my local news and sports coverage. As long as the WaPo stays on this course, it can rot for all I care.

Posted by: esibley76 | June 20, 2009 9:47 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Post has just eliminated the last reason to read it.

What a cowardly, pathetic rag you've become.

Posted by: rochrist | June 20, 2009 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Congratulations on firing one of the greatest political writers to ever grace your pages (or anyone else's). Where Dan goes, I shall follow. I'm never reading your newspaper - online or in print - ever again. Buh-bye.

Posted by: orfidude | June 20, 2009 10:14 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin has brought me to the Post every single day, for several years.

No more.

Foolish, foolish, foolish decision.

Froomkin is one of the few heroes of the Bush age -- with Stewart and Colbert, and few others -- willing to call shenanigans when the whole country had drank the snake oil and gone mad.

He CONTINUES to speak truth to power (as expected by those of us who have followed his work) regardless of the party in power. That's real journalism.

And Froomkin has been key in defining online journalism for the 21st century.

Dear Washington Post editors:

What the heck can you possibly be thinking?


Posted by: chabot744 | June 20, 2009 10:16 PM | Report abuse

Terrible decision. WaPo was getting worse and worse, but I'm officially done with you guys after this.

WaPo Ombudsman will go out of his way to defend conservative bimbo's like George Will even when he is pretending he has a PhD.

Yet Froomkin decides to speak uncomfortable truths and he gets fired.

What is really tragic is that ya'll don't even realize what a huge mistake you are making; both in firing Froomkin and in NOT firing Will.

Posted by: zosima | June 20, 2009 10:24 PM | Report abuse

We knew that Fred Hiatt had no integrity. Now we'll find out whether the ombudsman does. A real story about why the Post fired its best and most popular asset is overdue.

Posted by: husker2 | June 20, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

This was an idiotic decision by WaPo and I am tremendously disappointed. I came to your site all the time to read Froomkin specifically.

The reasons offered are patently absurd, and this is a horrible self-inflicted wound. Your credibility is less, and I have no doubt your revenue will be less as well.

Hire Froomkin back and apologize.

Posted by: jeffrjohnson | June 20, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

After Dan Froomkin leaves, the Washington Post will not be a credible newspaper.

Posted by: JaniceDorizensky | June 20, 2009 11:06 PM | Report abuse

There are still plenty more liberal columnists at the Post than there are conservatives.

If you want to read a paper with all liberal columnists save one, go read the Times and stop the whining.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 20, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

"Moses: if I and others concede Froomkin is, indeed, a partisan liberal, will you concede that upon his removal from the equation the conservative/liberal ratio is way out of balance?

Posted by: daphne"

Liberal Post columnists:
Joel Achenbach
Jonathan Capehart
Richard Cohen
E.J. Dionne Jr.
Susan Jacoby
Michael Kinsley
Ruth Marcus
Harold Meyerson
Eugene Robinson
Anne Telnaes
Tom Toles

Conservative Post columnists:
Michael Gerson
Fred Hiatt
Robert Kagan
Charles Krauthammer
William Kristol
Kathleen Parker
George F. Will

That's 11 liberals and 7 conservatives. So yes, the balance is out of wack, but not in the direction you are claiming.

Now, that's better than the pathetic 9:2 ratio of the Times, but it is still biased towards liberals.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 20, 2009 11:18 PM | Report abuse

Goodbye, WaPo.

Posted by: rbochnermd | June 20, 2009 11:26 PM | Report abuse

The Post claims that Froomkin was fired because he had lost readership, but gives us no hard numbers about how many were reading his blog, and how that compares with its other bloggers. I assume the numbers are being withheld because they are actually in Froomkin's favor.

I would like to point out that, given how the Web works, it is rather likely that the numbers will come out pretty soon, anyway. Someone on the Post staff will post them anonymously, or someone will hack into the computers, or some clever person will figure out the numbers from some external source, like ISP server logs.

That's the thing about the web. It's bigger and smarter than you are, you can't keep secrets from it, and if you try to manipulate it, it will always be one step ahead. Think of how it is being used by the Iranian protesters, for instance.

Posted by: eduardo24 | June 20, 2009 11:44 PM | Report abuse

Well, that was predictable: labeling "liberals" those who are clearly not. Several may as well be the token house commentators on FOX they represent the "liberal" perspective so pathetically.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 20, 2009 11:55 PM | Report abuse

Bobmoses,
Did it ever occur to you that maybe Froomkin was so popular with readers from the left and the right because he actually valued principle over a person. He actually demanded accountability from our political elites, regardless of party. He has been at the forefront of calling Obama out for breaking campaign promise after campaign promise in the areas of transparency and accountability. You must have missed those dozens of posts. His kind of journalism is far more valuable than that generated by almost any of the columnists listed above, because it is the most intellectually honest, and has no agenda other than printing the truth, something that our media class has an extraordinarily difficult time ferreting out these days.
I suppose you don't find it odd that you are the sole voice in the wilderness cheering Froomkin's termination. I suppose it's the rest of us that are wrong. Only you see the world as it truly is. Bully for you. Perhaps if you push hard enough, you can get Robinson and 3 other of the "liberal" columnists fired so you can finally bring balance to the Post. Good luck to you.

Posted by: deaton41 | June 21, 2009 12:02 AM | Report abuse

FIRING FROOMKIN?

Dear Sirs,

I thought you were still the venerated bastion of journalism, The Washington Post, not the crosstown, reactionary "Moonie" Times. So you fire one of the three best columnists you have (the others being Gene Robinson and Harold Meyerson), while keeping the neocon propagandists for war and torture (Krauthammer, Kagan, and Kristol), an out-of-touch and pompous pundit (David Broder), and the right-wing editorial shill-and-swill of Fred Hiatt?

"Have you no decency, sirs? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?"

Posted by: radlib1 | June 21, 2009 12:39 AM | Report abuse

deaton41 -

"Did it ever occur to you that maybe Froomkin was so popular with readers from the left and the right"

LOL. Saying that Froomkin was "popular" with the right is like saying Bill Kristol is popular with the left. It ain't so.

"He has been at the forefront of calling Obama out for breaking campaign promise after campaign promise in the areas of transparency and accountability."

All of Froomkin's criticisms of Obama come from the left.

"His kind of journalism is far more valuable than that generated by almost any of the columnists listed above, because it is the most intellectually honest, and has no agenda other than printing the truth."

If this is so, why does he solely cite liberal pundits and blogs? If he is so "non-partisan", why does he never cite conservative pundits or blogs?

"I suppose you don't find it odd that you are the sole voice in the wilderness cheering Froomkin's termination."

You are a poor reader. I have not "cheered" Froomkin's dismissal at all. I have simply pointed out that there are still more liberal voices at the Post than there are conservative voices.

Do you find it odd that almost every one of these posts attack conservative pundits or rant about "neocons"? I suppose you think these folks are "non-partisan" too.

"Only you see the world as it truly is."

This is a silly and baseless ad-hominem attack.

" Perhaps if you push hard enough, you can get Robinson and 3 other of the "liberal" columnists fired so you can finally bring balance to the Post. "

I have no interest in getting anyone fired or bringing balance to the Post. Even if I did, the Post's management staff is likely to ignore me.

It is unfortunate that you are incapable of debating the argument I actually made instead of knocking down a bunch of straw men.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 1:07 AM | Report abuse

daphne5 -

Who on my list is not liberal? Be specific.

My guess is that you are like one of Rush's dittoheads who refuses to acknowledge that anyone who is not as extreme and intolerant as they are is not a conservative.

Please tell me who on that list is not liberal and I will provide evidence that they are.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 1:11 AM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin's obvious replacement: Jonathan Krohn.

Posted by: tiowally22 | June 21, 2009 1:15 AM | Report abuse

BM: No, because MY guess is you know exactly who's actually liberal and who merely plays one on the WaPo, clue: they undermine their own side's cause. My guess is that you'll take my refusal to engage in YOUR game and raise me a "that's because you can't," when you're as privy to the complaints about faux liberals from Greenwald to Digby as anyone commenting here. My guess is you'd be only too delighted to take this thread more on a tangent [hint: the point was never about liberal vs. conservative head counts until you attempted to make it one, and that's what I get for not simply ignoring it] than you already have. So @#$ your Limbaugh comparison or I will play one of your games by labeling you an Olbermann wannabe on the right. Oh, doesn't make sense? That's MY point.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 21, 2009 1:43 AM | Report abuse

Still no word from the ombudsman? The sheer number of comments is news! Perhaps you don't understand what your job is.. Froomkin basically says "the emperor has no clothes", and he applies that evenly. He is skeptical. So are we. Those who think he's over the line are prone to want an emperor.

Posted by: lillianlil | June 21, 2009 2:03 AM | Report abuse

Lillian: My guess i...oh, sorry, I've started so many sentences with those words lately...anyway I wouldn't bother waiting for Mr. Ombud to get back to us, on this post nor any subsequent one regarding this matter. Seems he's already on to some other topic in today's edition, since he so fully addressed the previous one, you know. So completely and thoroughly satisfied the rabble rousers with his honest, forthcoming explanation vis a vis the Froomkin affair.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 21, 2009 2:19 AM | Report abuse

"Froomkin bills his often-irreverent online column as a 'pugnacious daily anthology of White House-related items from news Web sites, blogs and other sources.' He does not operate as a White House reporter. Rather, he compiles material about the White House and offers his own commentary, often with a liberal bent."

"That slant seemed to attract a large and loyal audience during the Bush administration, but it may have suffered when Barack Obama became president."

Dan Froomkin's column was only "irreverent" if you worshipped the powerful. It was only "liberal" if you agree with Steven Colbert that "reality has a liberal bias."

What he wrote was honest critiques of the dishonesty and unconstitutional behavior of, first, the Bush II Whitehouse, and then the similar aspects of the Obama Whitehouse. And, either it suffered when Obama took office, or it didn't. This: "it may have suffered when Barack Obama became president" is pure weasel.

That you received over 660 responses to your column would indicate to me that the column probably didn't suffer, though the Post will when he leaves.

This is the most overt censorship since the Red Scare.

You should be embarrassed to have written this column.

--
"One of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in their struggle for independence." --Charles A. Beard

Posted by: michtom | June 21, 2009 2:32 AM | Report abuse

Bookmark removed. Well done WaPo!

Posted by: didactic | June 21, 2009 2:58 AM | Report abuse

I have never posted a comment before, but I felt that I had to register to express my profound disappointment at the dismissal of Dan Froomkin. You have made a huge mistake. Froomkin's column was the main reason I used to log onto the Washington Post regularly. It was invaluable for anyone trying to understand what was happening in Washington. I plan to continue reading Froomkin wherever he ends up, but like many others, I doubt I will feel the need to log on to the Washington Post as often in the future. Maybe you don't care, but I thought you should know.

Posted by: McDally | June 21, 2009 3:06 AM | Report abuse

“Editors and our research teams are constantly reviewing our online content to ensure we bring readers the most value when they are on our Web site while balancing the need to make the most of our resources."

If that was even remotely true, they wouldn't have signed up Kristol, wouldn't publish the opinions of Doug Feith and Karl Rove on _anything_, and would sack Gerson, Broder, Will and Krauthammer in a heartbeat.

Froomkin was interesting because he brought content; the abovementioned only in the sense that it gives you something to do in the morning to refute their falsehoods and tired old spin & talking points.

Posted by: sembtex | June 21, 2009 7:26 AM | Report abuse

Approaching 700 angry comments on the WAPO-Times idiotic firing of Froomkin (with a few wingnut neocon "contributions"), and the Ombudsmen's Kurtz thread is now 9/13 about the idiocy of firing Froomkin (& keeping the mindless hacks who have been wrong about everything for decades-Krap, Broder, Gerson, Hiatt, Cohen, Kristol, etc.) Most Ombudsmen threads get between 0-3 comments.

Posted by: durk2 | June 21, 2009 7:40 AM | Report abuse

durk2-

"Approaching 700 angry comments on the WAPO-Times idiotic firing of Froomkin (with a few wingnut neocon "contributions")"

Ah yes, because anyone who does not share your personal views is a "wingnut neocon".

Thanks for showing us the intolerant partisanship that defines Froomkin's reader base. Let me guess. You don't consider yourself a partisan. Just like Froomkin.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 7:52 AM | Report abuse

daphne5 -

Thanks for demonstrating the utter intolerance, anger and unwillingness to engage in civil and factual debate that defines Froomkin's followers.

You want to claim that the liberal Post pundits I cited above are not liberal. I ask to tell me who among the list is not liberal and you respond not by backing up your argument, but with angry, partisan and vulgar attacks.

It is laughable to see so many hardcore partisans claim that Froomkin is no partisan. Read the comments on this blog and tell me that any of these folks would not be such fans of Froomkin if he was not such a partisan.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 7:57 AM | Report abuse

bobmoses, your list of columnists is fraudulent and incomplete. Richard Cohen is a liberal? You seem to confuse him with Roger Cohen of the NYT. Dick is a centrist, if at all. Actually, his reasoning is so shallow that it's almost unpolitical. And the guy has no humor at all. The same is true for Kinsley, one of those "serious people" toeing the moderate line, who was too uninteresting for the LA Times to keep him. Almost nobody would miss him here, too. Why does he still have a job?

Apropos humor, Tom Toles is a cartoonist, not an opinion writer. Not correct to list him here. And who the, uh, female, is Susan Jacoby? She isn't on the list of WaPo opinion writers at all - check the opinion page, pls! On the other hand, a prominent conservative voice you omitted mentioning is Samuelson. And what about Broder, who largely supported the totally failed Bush policies? Shall we still consider him a centrist?

But all this is totally besides the real point. For those who prefer conservative opinions on the columnist page, there is already the Moony Times. So, why should competing WaPo have so many right wing voices at all? Not to speak of the conservative editors, who very much steer the direction of the reporting to the right? I don't think the readership really wants "their" newspaper to be so much on the right side, offering them only a lukewarm alternative to the diehard conservative Wa.Times. Looks like a totally failed marketing strategy to me, ignoring the quality, value based reporting that readers want (Froomkin) and harassing them with purely ideological neocon talking points (Krauthammer) instead. If Don Graham wants "his" newspaper to spread his political views, fine, but then nobody at WaPo should complain about the decreasing returns. That's what you get for ignoring your readers!

Posted by: Gray62 | June 21, 2009 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Gray62 -

Well, it is clear that your compass is set pretty far to the left, where Froomkin is a moderate and anyone to the right of his is a conservative. (Broder and Samuelson are conservatives, yet Cohen is a moderate? Please.) In addition, you believe that anyone who fits this absurd definition is only capable of spewing "purely ideological neocon talking points".

I think your one quote says it all:

"why should competing WaPo have so many right wing voices at all?"

Thanks for showing us that good old liberal "tolerance" for other views. If you want a liberal echo chamber, you can read the Huff Post or the NY Times for that matter.

Again, I have to note that despite all of the moaning about how Froomkin is not a partisan, his supporters are as partisan liberal as it gets, all the way down to being unable to make any posts without calling folks "neocons".

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 8:39 AM | Report abuse

Hey Alexander... enjoying the comments, genius?

Posted by: rachelle1 | June 21, 2009 8:49 AM | Report abuse

So let's assume that neither the Ombudsman nor the Post writ large will divulge any statistics about how many people actually cancelled their print subscription in the one-week period following the Froomkin firing (rather than just saying they would). Are there any Post guerrillas who can find that information...and make it known?

Posted by: FurnaceCreek | June 21, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

"Froomkin is a moderate"? Who knows? The important point is, Froomkin's primary goal is quality reporting, digging deeper than the common stenographing, exposing the truth, whatever it may be, in the best tradition of journalism. His second motivation is to stand up for good ole American values: Being against torture, fighting against an overbearing government that spies on its own people, opposing spin and publicity stunts, etc. Those used to be values that were popular among Republicans, too, until they got corrupted by Cheney and all those who advocate that the end justifies all means!

But back to Froomkin: Only in the third place, he may hold liberal opinions, but he wouldn't let them taint his work, as is evident in his very critical reporting about the Obama administration. He certainly isn't a partisan guy, or else he would treat the Dems much nicer than he does. So, that's a journalist that conservatives can like, too. No suprise Andrew Sullivan and Ed Morrisey voiced concern about his firing.

As for Broder, I clearly said I'm not sure if he should be called a centrist. I didn't say anywhere that he is as conservative as Samuelson, whose right wing attitude nobody can really deny. But maybe you're so far on the right side that you question that? Ha! And criticizing that I call that right wing hardliner Krauthammer a neocon is really rich! How do you wanna see him called, a "compassionate conservative"? Brouhahaha!

As for the tolerance of liberals for other views - tolerating something doesn't mean abstaining from trying to change it. And this comment thread shows that WaPo fails large parts of its leadership. Good marketing is the art of making your product desirable for the biggest possible group of people. Since the Moony Times has a firm grab of the right wing part of the market, that leaves the center left part to WaPo. But the paper is badly positioned to capitalize on the full potential of that market.

It doesn't necessarily have to assume a more center left position, but it should put much more emphasis on substantial, factually based opinions, not boring recitations of partisan talking points. And those columnists don't have to be expensive, there's lots of well educated, intelligent bloggers out there waiting for their chance. In an era where opinion is so cheap and customers can read blogs for free, paying much for columnists doesn't make much sense anymore. Get rid of Krauthammer and maybe Broder too, and put the money in more quality reporting, like the Walter Reed series, which distinguish newspapers from blogs. That wouldn't be a partisan reform, but certainly something that would attract a larger readership.

Sadly, it was Froomkin who just recently offered great tips on how to create a newspaper for the 21st century. Well, it seems to be true that "a prophet is not without honour, but in his own country".

Posted by: Gray62 | June 21, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

I grew up in Washington, DC and am old enough to remember when the Washington Post was an excellent newspaper. Those days are long gone. The dominance of rightwing neocons on the Post's editorial pages is a travesty and an unforgivable disservice to readers who are fed up with the lies and delusions that are the neocons' stock in trade. With the firing of Dan Froomkin, the Post slides even further into irrelevance as a serious newspaper. Shame on you, Washington Post.

Posted by: btbwt | June 21, 2009 10:34 AM | Report abuse

The amusing part is that this firing will open the Post to criticism on both sides of the political spectrum. Was Froomkin let go because of his dogged pursuit of the Bush Administration, or because he was doing the same to the Obama Administration?

Posted by: disgruntledfan | June 21, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Fred Hyatt, WaPo editor: "interest in the blog also diminished"

Dan Steinberg, of WaPo's "D.C.Sports Bog", certainly a blog that draws quite a lot of readers: "* Farewell to Dan Froomkin, one of the blogging pioneers at The Post and a man whose traffic numbers regularly made me want to jump into the Potomac."

Now, whom shall we believe???

Posted by: Gray62 | June 21, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

I really don’t care if Froomkin is thought of as liberal or conservative. What makes his writing interesting to me is the uniqueness of his method and the corresponding space he has created for himself to be critical. This all got much discussed when DF had the name of his column changed from “White House Briefing” to “White House Watch” and it has to do with the fact that he doesn’t go to the White House and therefore doesn’t need to build up relationships there with people so as to gain and maintain access. Rather, he collects and reviews what other people write about the WH and compares this material with what the WH says it is doing. DF asks over and over again: 1)Is the White House doing what it is saying? 2)is the coverage of the White House explaining what the White House is doing, or what the WH it is saying it is doing? This is why Jay Rosen has so aptly called DF’s work “accountability journalism”.

There are two two mutually reinforcing aspects of DF’s accountability journalism a) his fearlessness in writing about the White House regardless of the occupant b) his scathing critique of contemporary access journalism. DF has, pretty much single handedly, developed this critical space for himself and he executes, boy does he execute!

The firing of DF leaves me with two fundamental questions:

1) if it really is the case that White House Watch has “run its course”, then how is it that any of the other opinion writers have not run their course?

2) Yesterday, Glen Greenwald posted an email from John Harris where the latter wrote of DF:

“I particularly admire the entpreneurialism [sic] he has shown in his career--using the power of the Web to build a community of followers and create his own franchise.”

Whether you admire his work or not, Dan Froomkin has become an unlikely hero to many, many people. How is it good business to can him?

Posted by: RichardHooker | June 21, 2009 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Axe Krauthammer. Keep Froomkin.

Is the Post ed. page going over to the "Dark Side"? It's already 9/10ths there.

Posted by: bobskis | June 21, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Just want to add to the list of people here disgusted with the Washington Times, er, Post.

After 8 years of transcribing for the Bush regime, the Post finds itself unable to support a true journalist. Unbelievable.

Goodbye WP and not good luck.

Posted by: hrobert02 | June 21, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Are you people crazy? You are going to lose thousands of subscribers and many thousands of online readers. And for what? Froomkin was one of very few truely independent voices at your paper. Now there is no real reason to look at your website anymore. It seems to me that you are willing to kill off your business just to impose some insane sort of intellectual rigidity. For shame.

Posted by: jashir | June 21, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

I am disgusted by the fact that you haven't even made an effort to hide the fact that this is a blatantly partisan hitjob. Now that we have a liberal president we don't need a liberal columnist? What the hell is this kool aide doing at one of the great names of news?

I don't live near washington and don't have a subscription but I do have the lovely program called Ad Block Plus. Before I would endure having Exxon Mobile Ads leeching all my bandwidth so that WaPo would get it's 30 pieces of silver. I will now start enjoying having my pages load much more quickly.

Posted by: theamazingjex | June 21, 2009 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Washington Post, you have lost all credibility. Goodbye Washington Post, and I suppose, good riddance!

Posted by: acuwerner | June 21, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

One of the few people worth reading on washingtonpost.com gets the ax so I don't think there is any reason for me to access this site in the future.

Posted by: mrbill1128 | June 21, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Please note that when you do statistics of comments, many may have been removed. At least mine was, where I noted that I had canceled my 16 year Washington Post subscription after they started running Kristol. It was not abusive, but apparently upset the defenders of neoconservative orthodoxy here at the Post.

Posted by: KarlD | June 21, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

This is terrible didn't know the Reverend Sun Myung Moon had bought the Post too!

If I wanted to read the Washington Times, I would read the Washington Times. Looks like after 30 years of reading the post has come to an end for me too.

Posted by: TheCaptainDamnIt | June 21, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Everybody else has said it in one way or another, but in this case I think a pile-on is called for:
.
So long, Washington Post! Blind, shortsighted, establishment/neocon-apologist-toadies.
.
Buh-bye!

Posted by: lgraham1 | June 21, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

What a sad day for the once-great Washington Post. Please reconsider.

Posted by: finnin1 | June 21, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

It is not just that you fired Froomkin, it is that by doing so you showed a misunderstanding of (or disdain for, I can't decide which) serious adversarial reporting -- the supposed backbone of the type newspaper the Post claims to be. It's like a baseball player who doesn't know what to do with a bat or a doctor who doesn't recognize a stethoscope -- the lack of understanding the essentials of your alleged purpose is breathtaking.

Posted by: patrick27 | June 21, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Post of the halcyon days of yore when it was a newspaper of value are long since gone. I've watched the steady decline and cancelled my subscription of over 30 years a few years ago. I do now get it on the weekends and have learned how to evaluate stories by noting the bylines. Most is taken with a grain of salt. Even with that said, the firing of Dan Froomkin was a real surprise to me.
And the bottom line is, the Post doesn't care what any of us think even if there were 10,000 comments here.
It will shrivel in size and importance just as its sister publication, Newsweek, has. And that's okay with them. The reason the Post Poobas fell in love with the neocons is that, like them, there is only one Truth. Reality just does not register.

Posted by: rosieO | June 21, 2009 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Your opinion page has become indistinguishable from the Washington Times' opinion page. Now with the firing of Dan Froomkin, the final nail in the coffing has been hammered. Your "paper" sucks, and I will stop reading it.

Posted by: nickthap | June 21, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Idiots

Posted by: polaris11 | June 21, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Just like the cast of thousands posting here to express dismay and outrage with the firing of Dan Froomkin, I will add my voice. Numbers are important. Paul Krugman (http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/06/19/the-froomkin-firing/#more-2737) put his finger on the reason why Dan was fired when he wrote in his blog that Dan "…was in effect the Post’s designated moonbat, someone who attracted readers but didn’t threaten the self-esteem of the self-perceived serious people at the paper. But now he looks like someone who was right when the serious people were wrong — and that means he has to go." Along with many others posting here this is the last time I visit the WaPo website.

Posted by: dabeckster | June 21, 2009 3:06 PM | Report abuse

editorial page editor lil freddie hiatt has done for Washington Post readers and shareholders what the neocon weasels did for iraq and the republican party.

there's an idea freddie -- why not bring in L. Paul Bremer as Coalition Provisional Authority for running Froomkin's column following your 'shock & awe shiite' regime change? he could re-name the column, 'The Green Zone'.

adios suckers, we'll be thinking of The Washington Post every time we wrap fish.

Posted by: ithejury | June 21, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

I'm actually happy to see this news. Since I discovered Dan Froomkin several years ago, I have found in coming to the Post site to read his blog I inevitably get caught up in many many other Post articles and columnists, spending hours at the site each week - that won't be a problem anymore! I will of course follow Mr. Froomkin wherever HE goes but I will save lots of time in skipping the Post site that will undoubtedly allow me the freedom to explore other sites. Not to mention the money I will save that I have spent buying things I've seen ads for on the Post site. Got to love a decision that will save me both time and money - well done, Washington Post powers-that-be.

Posted by: GingerNPeach | June 21, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

BM you parody of the essence of a troll - hijacker of the conversation of the 1st and worst order - I said I wasn't going to play YOUR game. That I wasn't going to answer your -here it comes, the key word - irrelevant question. PS Thanks to Gray for venturing into the deep muck which, of course, BM will insist on deepening even though, have I already mentioned it? the liberal/conservative ratio was beside the point.And by point I don't mean my point so much as the point of this post.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 21, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Just coming up to 700 comments, and nothing beyond the boilerplate above from the Great Ombudsman. Instead he turns an inconsequential column about a spat with the DC schools.

Posted by: jquiggin | June 21, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Further to - 'KarlD | June 21, 2009 1:23 PM', - "Please note that when you do statistics of comments, many may have been removed. At least mine was, where I noted that I had canceled my 16 year Washington Post subscription after they started running Kristol. It was not abusive, but apparently upset the defenders of neoconservative orthodoxy here at the Post."

It also seems this whole column, along with the comments was purged from the Archive listing for Andrew Alexander's previous postings. Can't find it going in the front door. Had to go back to Greenwald to find a link. How courageous WaPo.

Posted by: jhnny_doe | June 21, 2009 5:23 PM | Report abuse

This is an impressive set of generally carefully considered and well-written comments.

Authors of such are apparently not in the Post's desired demographic.

Posted by: pmp2430-wp | June 21, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

I guess to write for the Post-Times you have to be adamantly wrong about everything. And now there are over 700 posts complaining that you fired one of the 3 writers who knows how to be a journalist. I will not mention the other two, because you will probably fire them & hire broder's or krauthammer's brother.

Posted by: durk2 | June 21, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

"And now there are over 700 posts complaining that you fired one of the 3 writers who knows how to be a journalist"

Bah. Not only are there some posts that are defending the decision, most commenters have submitted multiple posts.

It's like a write-in campaign for a crappy sitcom that nobody wants to watch.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

daphne5 -

LOL. Thanks for the name calling and demonstrating the hyper-partisan and intolerant nature of Froomkin's fans.

I wasn't hijacking any conversation. I was responding to your own comment in which you said:

"if I and others concede Froomkin is, indeed, a partisan liberal, will you concede that upon his removal from the equation the conservative/liberal ratio is way out of balance?"

Now when I directly counter your factually incorrect argument you say:

"the liberal/conservative ratio was beside the point."

Sorry that I actually tried to engage you in factual debate instead of joining in the angry partisan name calling game that you seem to prefer.

As I have said, Froomkin's supporters are like Rush's dittoheads: angry, intolerant and hyper-partisan.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

nickthap:

"Your opinion page has become indistinguishable from the Washington Times' opinion page."

Really? Does the Washington Times have more liberal pundits than conservative pundits too?

The utter intolerance of Froomkin's fans for diverging views is sad. If you want endless liberal opinion go to the Huff Post or to the New York Times.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Read your own previous comments, BM. I humored you after you mentioned an irrelevant issue. Nice try though - as you might say - in pretending I was the original actor to whom you reacted, as opposed to the other way 'round. On 2nd thought, it was actually a lousy try. LOL indeed. And reading further, I see the ratio issue is alive and well in one poster's mind.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 21, 2009 6:43 PM | Report abuse

jhnny: really? They disappeared the whole thing? I don't know if that's more cowardly or shocking. Actually, yes I do.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 21, 2009 6:46 PM | Report abuse

Look at your roster of OpEd writers at the post. I have never seen a greater collection of discredited writers. I can predict exactly what they are going to write before they set pen to paper. Where is the accountability that should follow being disasterously wrong on most major issues of the day? How come they are ensconced in a protective bubble, while the one writer who was willing to take a "truth-to-power" position (with Obama as well as Bush) is out on his keester?

I used to read the Washington Post and the New York Times on a daily basis. I can honestly say, I will no longer read the Post.

Posted by: RoMoCT | June 21, 2009 6:50 PM | Report abuse

daphne5 -


"Read your own previous comments, BM. I humored you after you mentioned an irrelevant issue"

You mean the irrelevant issue that YOU raised? Don't blame me if you think your own discussion points are irrelevant.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

"How come they are ensconced in a protective bubble, while the one writer who was willing to take a "truth-to-power" position (with Obama as well as Bush) is out on his keester?"

Well gee, I guess you think Rush Limbaugh is a "truth to power" speaker as he attacked McCain from the right just like he attacks Democrats from the right.

You are right to describe the Post's pundits as predictable partisans. They are, but no more so than Froomkin.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Apparently "LOL" (Lord of [the]Lies") applies to someone beyond Dick Cheney.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 21, 2009 7:36 PM | Report abuse

WAPO is becoming more Conservative everyday. It won't be soon enough when WAPO has lost its moderate and liberal reader's to more moderate and liberal leaning newspaper organizations, e.g., NY Times.

One day, WAPO will soon remember that it's award winning successes in past years was because of it's moderate/liberal, honest, and accurate reporting from both its staff and opt-ed writers.

As of right now, WAPO is turning into nothing but another conservative trash talking media machine.

Posted by: lcarter0311 | June 21, 2009 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Goodbye, Post. By getting rid of one of your better columns, you have made it an easier decision for me to not read your NeoCon talking points anymore.

Consider me another "former Post reader."

Posted by: jagold131 | June 21, 2009 8:23 PM | Report abuse

I think this is why the public respects journalists just a little more than congressmen and pedophiles. The Post has truly been captured by the neocon American
Enterprise Institute.

Posted by: Acharn | June 21, 2009 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Hey boneheads, yes you people who make such decisions, you know who you are.

That column is one of the reasons I read the Post. It's one of the reasons why I have Adblock plus turned off.

This guy's one of the best working journalists in the business and you can't manage to work something out? What's wrong with your sense of direction as it were?

I'm not sure what sort of A-word-clown journo 2.0 HR metrics some twit is peddling like a third world corner mystery meat vendor, but perhaps it might be time for a rethink on just how hungry you are. The digestive consequences of such decisions often involve a lot of avoidable pain.

Posted by: timscanlon | June 21, 2009 8:39 PM | Report abuse

daphne5 -

"Apparently "LOL" (Lord of [the]Lies") applies to someone beyond Dick Cheney."

Let me guess. You consider yourself non-partisan, just as you consider Froomkin non-partisan. Your resorting to lame zingers demonstrates that you can't respond substantively to my response to your own questions. Not surprising.

At least you didn't use the word "neocon", which seems to be the touchstone for all of the other "non-partisan" Froomkin fans.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 8:43 PM | Report abuse

"It won't be soon enough when WAPO has lost its moderate and liberal reader's to more moderate and liberal leaning newspaper organizations, e.g., NY Times."

First of all, I don't see any "moderates" lamenting the loss of Froomkin on this blog.

Second of all, it appears that the Post's simple majority of liberal pundits does not satisfy the average Froomkin fan. There must be an overwhelming majority of liberal pundits to satisfy them.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 8:47 PM | Report abuse

BM's got a perfect track record of guessing wrong (hint: I'm as partisan as it gets). And in so doing, he continues to insist on keeping his end of the discussion so far along a tangent he'll never find his way back. This - not what he's doing, but what I'm doing - is called addressing the subtext. Meanwhile, there's a great discussion on an Orcinus post re: how to beat meanderers and disrupters like BM at their own game (my paraphrase):

http://dneiwert.blogspot.com/ (Community Open Thread)

With this, my indulgence posts conclude. To coincide dwindling conversation and gibberish.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 21, 2009 9:27 PM | Report abuse

daphne5 -

"BM's got a perfect track record of guessing wrong (hint: I'm as partisan as it gets)."

Wow! I never would have guessed that :)

Your groaning about tangents and laughable ad hominem attacks just demonstrate the bankruptcy of your ability to have a civil debate.

Look, if you didn't want to have a discussion with me, you shouldn't have initiated it.

All of your silly complaints are a poor substitute for addressing the direct response I gave to your own question that you posed to me. If you don't want people to answer your questions, don't ask them, particularly when you direct them at specific people.

Did you not want me to answer your direct question? If not, why did you ask it of me specifically?

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 10:01 PM | Report abuse

daphne5 -

Perhaps you should re-read the article you cite, particularly the section on ad-hominem attacks.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 10:02 PM | Report abuse

"Second of all, it appears that the Post's simple majority of liberal pundits does not satisfy the average Froomkin fan. There must be an overwhelming majority of liberal pundits to satisfy them."

Are you crazy - there are no "liberal pundits" at the Post. Not now. I'm a proud liberal and I know one when I see one. I don't see one.

Posted by: mona9999 | June 21, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

"Are you crazy - there are no "liberal pundits" at the Post"

Too funny. So Eugene Robinson, EJ Dionne and Harold Meyerson are not liberals? Both they and 99% of the readers who are familiar with their work would disagree.

Besides, your own intimation that Froomkin is a liberal is at odds with most of the above posts.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 21, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

An inside source told me over this weekend that it was Krauthammer who got Froomkin fired, it had nothing to do with site statistics even though that excuse was used to pull the plug. Even today White House Watch gets more hits than the Fix and and Media Matters, so site statistics claim is just bogus. Sorry....couldn't reveal my source's name because that person is scared to end up like Froomkin. Without a job.

Posted by: playa_brotha | June 21, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

This is a shocking decision by the Post. Froomkin's column is (was?!) required reading for anyone interested in closely following the executive branch. Froomkin has been so essential, I'm having trouble understanding what would make the Post drop him. Are there any publicly available statistics on Froomkin's blog traffic?

Do the editors realize that this leaves a huge hole in their coverage? Froomkin's comprehensive coverage and thoughtful analysis lent the Post a forward-leaning intelligence that largely defined the paper for me. Without Froomkin, the Post lacks the allure that vibrant, healthy publications need to project.

I guess I'll be following Froomkin to his new home, and just hope he will continue his excellent work on the executive branch. I'm sorry it has come to this, old friend, Washington Post.

Posted by: tjshire | June 21, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

Is the Post entirely consumed with proving it is not part of the "left wing media"?

I have no objection to a variety of viewpoints, and find Krauthammer intellectually honest but when you slam Froomkin as "liberal" opinion journalist but promote David Broder's lame regurgitation of the conventional wisdom and defense of the permanent Washington establishment as actual journalism, you lose me.

And many others, no doubt.

Posted by: neumann103 | June 22, 2009 12:00 AM | Report abuse

I left here yesterday determined never to return, but was intrigued by a link in a blog I read regularly about the "700 comments" on the firing of Froomkin. I'm glad I swung by for a quick look. It seems as if the number of comments on this page is now a thousand or more. And many, many people share my sentiments about the inappropriateness of, on the one hand, firing Froomkin who exercised true journalistic even-handedness in speaking truth to power, and, on the other, giving column space to yet another tired neocon war criminal and known liar, Wolfowitz. And now that Jane Hamsher has the stats on Wah!Poo readership, it looks as if The Huffington Post is not just drinking your milkshake, but eating your lunch as well. Shoot, it's even sweeping up all the crumbs for later dispersal to the birds. I admired and respected the Washington Post of Katie Graham, although I never agreed with its politics. It was a good paper, though, and earned its laurels. What Fred Hiatt and the Graham scion have done with it leaves it barely fit for fishwrap. Goodbye again, Wah!Poo. Judging from the figures, you'll soon be part of teh Moonie Times anyway.

Posted by: thepoliticalcat | June 22, 2009 12:48 AM | Report abuse

What is the WaPo thinking cancelling Dan Froomkin and keeping empty suits such as Gerson, Krauthammer, Will, Broder, Cohen and Kurtz?

Froomkin's persistent and principled opposition to torture masquerading as interrogation will earn him more than one national journalistic prize. Show me one of the above commentators who can compare.

The public data says Froomkin dominates the WaPo online punditocracy. To be sure, without Bush and Cheney, I don't need to read Froomkin as sanity check. The distressed economy and need to literally work 100 hour weeks has greatly reduced my news grazing and ability to sample Froomkin.

I also say that the WaPo changed the Froomkin format in a most distressing manner that many regulars like me found annoyingly disjointed. We could no longer see a summary of items, but had to jump from topic to topic with back buttons, tabs, etc. manner we chose.

As to Froomkin's coverage of Obama, we're finally getting into serious contentious issues in DC such as healthcare and carbon credits where there are many points of view and not simple FauxNews vs reality. Froomkin's capability to provide a survey for people like me is invaluable.

To summarize, this looks like a lousy business decision as well as a an appalling political decision.

Posted by: boscobobb | June 22, 2009 2:29 AM | Report abuse

What is the WaPo thinking cancelling Dan Froomkin and keeping empty suits such as Gerson, Krauthammer, Will, Broder, Cohen and Kurtz?

Froomkin's persistent and principled opposition to torture masquerading as interrogation will earn him more than one national journalistic prize. Show me one of the above commentators who can compare.

The public data says Froomkin dominates the WaPo online punditocracy. To be sure, without Bush and Cheney, I don't need to read Froomkin as sanity check. The distressed economy and need to literally work 100 hour weeks has greatly reduced my news grazing and ability to sample Froomkin.

I also say that the WaPo changed the Froomkin format in a most distressing manner that many regulars like me found annoyingly disjointed. We could no longer see a summary of items, but had to jump from topic to topic with back buttons, tabs, etc. manner we chose.

As to Froomkin's coverage of Obama, we're finally getting into serious contentious issues in DC such as healthcare and carbon credits where there are many points of view and not simple FauxNews vs reality. Froomkin's capability to provide a survey for people like me is invaluable.

To summarize, this looks like a lousy business decision as well as a an appalling political decision.

Posted by: boscobobb | June 22, 2009 2:29 AM | Report abuse

For many years I admired the WaPo's ability to find and present information. Over the past few years I've watched it turn into an exercise in stenography and particularly in regard to the Right or neo-cons. I used to quote and link the WaPo, sometimes mockingly, mostly respectfully. The decision on Froomkin reinfrorces my view that your subscription problems are more related to journalistic failure than any other cause. We're probably done.

Posted by: chuckbutcher | June 22, 2009 2:32 AM | Report abuse

Dan's last day will be my last day EVER on the WP. Your editorial board is a cast of cowards.

Posted by: catsmom | June 22, 2009 2:34 AM | Report abuse

WaPo, you've just confirmed my choice of username for the last time.

Posted by: youarestillidiots | June 22, 2009 3:23 AM | Report abuse

One reason, I moved to DC 26 yrs ago was for the The Post. I never thought I'd be so disappointed in my breakfast companion. Dan is too good for what the Post has become.

Posted by: jhbyer | June 22, 2009 4:09 AM | Report abuse

The majority of the individual items on the Post site you could eliminate and I either wouldn't notice or care too much, and I certainly wouldn't bother leaving a comment. But Froomkin's column was one of the few items I genuinely sought out and read regularly - and now you're getting rid of him?

Do you not really want people to visit the Post site? Are you secretly trying to undermine the quality of your own product for some reason? Do you not realize that there are many of us who want a newspaper with actual journalists who consider it their job to hold those in positions of power accountable, rather than to operate as mere messengers for elite opinions?

This move is a real head-scratcher, but then again if you truly are interested in eliminating items of real value from your site, all I can say is "Well done."

Posted by: bigfatdogz | June 22, 2009 4:48 AM | Report abuse

Just one more point, showing how WaPo shortchanged Froomkin and tried to divert attention from his blog:
If you go to the "political blogs" page via the scroll down list under "politics" on WaPo's frontpage, you'll find a lot of bloggers, among them Dana Milbank and Chris Cillizza. But there's also more obscure blogs that most probably you've never heard of: "44", "Capitol Briefing" "The Federal Eye", "Opening Arguments", "Race to Richmond", "Daily Dose". But where is "White House Watch", which certainly is about politics, and a quite popular blog?

Just scroll down a bit more, and near the end of the page you'll find both Froomkin and Greg Sargent, the Cinderellas among Washington Post bloggers, under a section simply saying "more blogs". The disdain is obvious! Will Greg Sargent the next to be fired?

And btw, where can I find a link to new WaPO blogger Ezra Klein, who covers healthcare politics and economics? Can't find him anywhere. Wouldn't be surrised if his contract isn't renewed, too.

That's the kind of "promotion" some WaPo bloggers receive! And then comes Fred Hiatt, who is responsible for the missing progress at the online publication, and explains the firing of Froomkin with "declining traffic" (without giving any exact or at least relative numbers, of course). That's rich!

Posted by: Gray62 | June 22, 2009 5:30 AM | Report abuse

Hundreds of readers are angry, furious, frustrated. How many people do you think would be upset if Boring Broder, Dull Dionne or the other cautious dudes were axed? He's second only to Tom Toles in popularity...... Post, you are rapidly making yourself obsolete.
Dan, start yourself and new and better Huffpost.

Posted by: johnqpublic3 | June 22, 2009 6:26 AM | Report abuse

"What is the WaPo thinking cancelling Dan Froomkin and keeping empty suits such as Gerson, Krauthammer, Will, Broder, Cohen and Kurtz?"

Why don't you be more direct and say, "How dare the Post retain pundits who do not share my political views?"

Froomkin's supporters clearly do not want to be bothered reading anything other than hyper-partisan liberal commentary. That's what the Huff Post is for. Enjoy it.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 22, 2009 7:09 AM | Report abuse

Well, Andy, at least you've got 50 or so comments supporting the WaPo on this one. Pity they're all from the same troll.

Posted by: jquiggin | June 22, 2009 7:25 AM | Report abuse

I am very disappointed that the WaPo fired Dan Froomkin. He was a far better journalist than many of the Post's remaining writers. Moreover, it doesn't seem to make sense from a business perspective. It feels to me that he was fired for being right all those years.

Posted by: Rafael_DeGennaro | June 22, 2009 7:34 AM | Report abuse

"Well, Andy, at least you've got 50 or so comments supporting the WaPo on this one. Pity they're all from the same troll."

Of course, as anyone who dares disagree with you must be a troll. Liberal tolerance and all.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 22, 2009 8:05 AM | Report abuse

If you folks believe that Froomkin was let go for political reasons, why are there still more liberal pundits at the Post than conservative pundits?

Posted by: bobmoses | June 22, 2009 8:08 AM | Report abuse

When I read Post columnists it's generally for one of two reasons:
1. To stay up to date with the extremists; that is, the elite pundits who are extremely allergic to basic facts, logic & a coherent argument(Krauthamer, Ignatius, etc.).
2. To get a sensible, well-written and well-sourced analysis of some important issue of the day -- from Dan Froomkin.
With Dan gone, I expect my Post reading time will decline about 33%.

Posted by: JohnM9 | June 22, 2009 8:22 AM | Report abuse

A reactionary troll, not a conservative troll, but someone with nothing else to do. Where's Andy Alexander?

Posted by: lillianlil | June 22, 2009 8:32 AM | Report abuse

"To stay up to date with the extremists; that is, the elite pundits who are extremely allergic to basic facts, logic & a coherent argument(Krauthamer, Ignatius, etc.)."

Why not be more direct and say that you refuse to acknowledge that any views that do not come from a hyper-partisan liberal perspective are valid? (Ignatius is an "extremist"?)

I thought liberals were supposed to be tolerant of other views. Apparently the liberals who have been posting on this thread disagree.

Posted by: bobmoses | June 22, 2009 8:35 AM | Report abuse

It's no surprise why newspapers are dying when you will continue to pay Bill Kristol over Dan Froomkin.

This assessment isn't a function of political leaning or even much of opinion: Bill Kristol has been wrong on nearly every issue for which he's written in the past 6 years (as long as I've been reading him). His opinion pieces omit critical details, make fallacious arguments, and otherwise cheapen the discourse (I no longer need to read what he writes to still predict exactly what he says). Yet he still gets great coverage in the Post!

The funny thing is, I'd never heard of Froomkin until last week. I'm not some 'loyal follower' who is standing by his friend, I only now read his pieces and find them more engaging and relevant than anything else I've found in the Post in recent memory.

I grew up with the Post delivered to my door, and believe it was instrumental in shaping my curiosity in the world and it's events (thanks, Mom and Dad). When I have kids (or even permanent residence, as I'm in college), I'll get another newspaper, either because I now find the Post irrelevant for decisions like this, or it went out of business for the same reason.

A flood is coming to journalism, for which I'm one of many rainclouds. Don't be the animal too stubborn to get on the Ark.

Posted by: paul_meier | June 22, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Bob, you're making the same point over and over again, and that's really trollish!

Simply accusing people of partisan blindness is lame. Many readers here have come up with credible arguments why they think columnists like Krauthammer are a waste of money for WaPo. Those opinion hacks are simply too predictable, and have been wrong much too often. Probably, for less than half of ther salaries, the Post could get fresher, more interesting voices, both from the left and right side. Not to speak of that it may be a good idea to get a replacement for the editor! Hiatt seems to be totally clueless about what to do with the online publication. Not a single new idea from him about better promoting the blogs, and increasing click rates, as far as the readers can see.

So, this isn't about partisanship in the first place, even though it would be good for the Post to show a much more liberal profile to distinguish itself from rival Moony Times. But even without a new positioning, it would make much sense to make more of the scarce "resources" by firing boring old dinosaurs like Krauthammer, Broder and Cohen. Maybe largely uninteresting Ruth Marcus,Michale Kinsley, Michael Gerson, and the advocat of failed monetarism, Robert Samuelson, too. Hire some cheaper, new voices instead.

This would save money, raise interest in the opinion pages again, and part of the savings could go into an overhaul of the online presence. Sadly, this is unlikely as long as unimaginative editors like Fred Hiatt are around. Hell, it would be a good idea to replace him with Froomkin, who also has experience as an editor, and who has shown to have great ideas for WaPo 2.0!

These are serious ideas, and now don't tell me this is just partisan nonsense. Try harder!

Posted by: Gray62 | June 22, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

This decision is nuts. The WaPo and Fred Hiatt need to spend some time thinking about what it means to be a journalist.

Posted by: sooner3 | June 22, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

BobMoses - We get your points:
1 - You are glad the liberal Froomkin is fired.
2 - He needed to fired, because his column made points that were incorrect.
3 - All us who are disappointed with firing, should remember the WaPo is still has many liberal commentators.

Posted by: danwesjac | June 22, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin was the only reason I bothered with the Post. So long Post.

Posted by: pheemon | June 22, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

The one person at the paper who was a real and serious journalist gets fired. Thanks for this reminder of why I canceled my WaPo subscription years ago: because it became a vehicle for government propaganda rather than a real news organization. Why would I ever read the WaPo when I can get the government's press releases for free? And newspapers can't understand why they are dying.

Posted by: sshafqat | June 22, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin provided a much needed alternative viewpoint from the increasingly predictable right-leaning bias of reporting from the WaPo lately. Hopefully, he will soon find another venue for his excellent coverage of issues that the mainstream media prefers to ignore or thinly cover. The Bush administration provided plenty of material for those who view the journalist's job as watching the watchers but that job doesn't end simply because of a change in administration.

Posted by: kmy042 | June 22, 2009 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Most issues are gray and should be debated, except Torture. It is hard believe so many of my countrymen support Torture. When I read the Krauthammer op-ed, I said, I done w/ the Post. Then I came back to read Froomkin's work and I said, I will take the very good w/ the very bad. Now I am glad that he will be gone, so I can boycott something I no faith in.

Posted by: danwesjac | June 22, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Who would have thought (forty years ago, say) that the Washington Post (of all newspapers)would so amply demonstrate the pitiful judgments that are killing newspapers today? If your idea of journalism is to fire Froomkin while expanding the space for blowhards and panderers, then you deserve the fate so many have predicted for you.

Posted by: sylvie1 | June 22, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Unfortunately, I'm sure that Mr. Hiatt will be able to find another one of his torture apologist buddies from the Bush Administration to take Dan Froomkin's place on washingtonpost.com. Fortunately, I can remove the bookmark from washingtonpost.com. I won't be visiting this website anymore. Another sad day in the history of a once great news organization.

Posted by: 4sl5t | June 22, 2009 12:38 PM | Report abuse

When are we getting some kind of actual RESPONSE from the Post overlords? Are they just going to duck until the hellstorm passes?

Posted by: mdean3 | June 22, 2009 12:58 PM | Report abuse

mdean3
Yes, the silence is deafening.
Howard Kurtz is online at 2 pm. His page says
"Howard Kurtz Critiques the Press and Analyzes the Media" so you would think he might have something to say, but who knows?

Posted by: oncebitten | June 22, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

bye bye Frommie.

You were not the accountability journalist that you promote yourself to be. More like someone who picks articles that fit with your personal political views.
Hence your vendetta against Cheney when all along it was Richard Armitage, working for Colon Powell, who leaked.

Posted by: alutz08 | June 22, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Today I removed every single link to washingtonpost.com from my browsers and replaced them with direct links to White House Watch, which I'll update once Dan moves to his new home. There won't be anything left behind that's worth reading. I feel better already...

Posted by: jerkhoff | June 22, 2009 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Seriously, how can you call yourself an "ombudsman" when you write "He does not operate as a White House reporter. Rather, he compiles material about the White House and offers his own commentary, often with a liberal bent"? This is bias of the worst sort from one who is ethically bound to be unbiased.

Posted by: tlitwinko | June 22, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

tiltwinko wrote:
Seriously, how can you call yourself an "ombudsman" when you write "He does not operate as a White House reporter. Rather, he compiles material about the White House and offers his own commentary, often with a liberal bent"? This is bias of the worst sort from one who is ethically bound to be unbiased.

A writer who is unbiased, would be the best person to call out biased writings from fellow journalists, don't you think?? So it really should come to no surprise that Froomkin's interjections have been primarily biased to the liberal degree. (hint: Froomie spends at least half his time during Obama's administration going after the previous Prez and VP, and hardly ever brought up policies from the Clinton Adminstration that may have affected us during the last 5 years. (Housing administration act of 1998)

Posted by: alutz08 | June 22, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Those you can't change, Rowen and Cohen and Krauthammer come to mind you just axe. Good job.

Posted by: catellyne | June 22, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

I meant Rowan as in Carl Rowan.

Posted by: catellyne | June 22, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Great news... go cut-n-paste somewhere else you tool.

Too bad for BigTunaTim, what will you do now that your mouthpiece for your messiah has been canned?

Posted by: trjn30 | June 22, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Hellooooo? Andy, where are you???? Some of us really are interested in the WP response to all this commentary. Do tell.

Posted by: formerloyalWPreader | June 22, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Thank goodness we still have Richard Cohen...he's soo funny. I hope Hiatt never decides to have him put down.

Posted by: antontuffnell | June 22, 2009 2:20 PM | Report abuse

bye bye Frommie.

You were not the accountability journalist that you promote yourself to be. More like someone who picks articles that fit with your personal political views.
Hence your vendetta against Cheney when all along it was Richard Armitage, working for Colon Powell, who leaked.


Behold! The Washington Post reader of the future!

Posted by: antontuffnell | June 22, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

I know that I am only echoing much of what other readers have said here already, but I'll do it anyway because WaPo fully deserves it. Firing Dan Froomkin was and is a disgraceful act. It is just one more piece of evidence as to how irrelevant WaPo has become. Froomkin was a truthteller. Accurate, responsible, informative, persistent. While Froomkin goes, Wapo insists on retaining and giving a paycheck to folks who have not only been wrong and ill informed about every substantive matter they discuss (Iraq, Afghanisan, Pakistan, Iran, Healthcare, Subprime crisis, bailout, etc.), but spectacularly wrong.

Shame on Wapo. The only reason to read Wapo now is to get the straight dope on the party line. WaPo has become a urinal for both the state and big business.

Posted by: erniesfo | June 22, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Dear Washington Post Editors:

You should be ashamed of yourselves for firing Froomkin while keeping the right-wing commentariat you retain. This is a serious disservice to journalism and the country. I shall remove you from my purview and read of your eventual demise without regret....

what a joke this makes of your pretensions to journalistic integrity!

Ave atque vale, Dan--we'll visit you elsewhere--jnp


Posted by: norwood1 | June 22, 2009 3:16 PM | Report abuse

I'm still not getting this firing, at all. You want to become a lean-mean organization by firing the smart guy, who was right about virtually everything over the last several years?

At least you kept the neocons, who we just can't get enough of right? Look at the elections. We've had enough of those stooges!!!

Posted by: rat-raceparent | June 22, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Any pretense to balance is now shot. Why not just pack up the whole shebang and leave it to The Washington Times? I mean, really, Mr. Alexander...your paper can't get along on its Woodward/Bernstein laurels for all eternity. Maybe a little genuine journalism might rescue the old baggage, but getting rid of everything to the left of Attitla the Hun won't do it.

Posted by: Riggsveda | June 22, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

This is ridiculous and a serious idiot move on the part of management, at a time when newspapers are trying to stay alive.. I grew up in DC reading the Post and since moving to NYC over 20 years ago, have continued to do so. No more. The Washington Post no longer has any credibility to me as a serious source for news and analysis.. I don't want to waste my time w/ your insider-y backslapping slop anymore. I can get that elsewhere.
You made a huge mistake getting rid of Froomkin......someone who is an actual journalist in an era where that's an endangered species....his willingness to question power was refreshing. .....he's been just as tough on Obama as he was on Bush.
Au revoir, sis boom bah, WaPo!

Posted by: bklynny | June 22, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin was one of the few reasons left to read the Washington Post. I am amazed at how quickly the quality of print journalism is evaporating. It's really not qualitatively different than TV news. Thank goodness for "The New Yorker." What else is left?

Posted by: nsauvie | June 22, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Boy, the Post is really stepping up and responding to these questions about Froomkin, eh? (Dripping sarcasm).

Memo to AA: you're supposed to "give voice to reader concerns", right? Not get struck dumb by them . . .

It's embarrassing . . .

Posted by: mdean3 | June 22, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Hiatt has driven the Post into a ditch with this move. Dan was the main reason I would visit the Post each day. RIP.

Posted by: stockwell66 | June 22, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

I join the many who will seldom, if ever, check in with the post - maybe for Milbank, just to get some laughs. Will find Dan wherever he goes. This is sad. Truly sad.

Posted by: nana1ellen | June 22, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin and the WHW was the ONLY thing worth reading here!

Good Bye! Wish I could wish you good luck...

Posted by: bymartwinfield | June 22, 2009 5:23 PM | Report abuse

I don't have time every day to comb through all the news and read the best articles. I have trusted Dan to do that for me for five years--since his blog was called the White House Briefing. I will follow Dan wherever he goes. It's his gain and the Post's loss.

Posted by: org2 | June 22, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

I will really miss Froomkin's summaries and links to important articles. He has been focused on policy and not scandal, rumor or hot button issues that take our attention away from understanding issues. Increasingly our news is being cheapened as it is being aimed to what sells. A pity.

Posted by: phsato | June 22, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

I've subscribed to the Post since I moved to DC in 1981 but I don't trust it any more. I'll turn to it for traffic and sports but stick with the NYT from here on out.

Posted by: JohnDorsey | June 22, 2009 6:51 PM | Report abuse

Fred Hiatt, you lying, hypocritical rightwing hack, you.

I'll enjoy your rag's demise.

Posted by: rachelle1 | June 22, 2009 7:03 PM | Report abuse

I want to ask the ombudsman to tell us why one of the only reporters that calls bull is being let go? I can't because the post doesn't have a good link to his email. WTF?

Posted by: datdamwuf2 | June 22, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Firing Dan Froomkin is an outrage, and the Washington Post should be ashamed. Show your support for Dan Froomkin by protesting his firing by the Washington Post for telling truth to power.

Stephen Colbert was right at the White House Correspondents Dinner in 2006 video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4973617448770513925; the Washington Media elite are terrified of being demonized as "The Liberal Media,"...which begs the question, as the corporate media in this country is in the hands of the powermongers invested in perpetuating the corporate status quo, which is decidedly illiberal and nonprogressive...and so flinches whenever the rightwing screams loudly enough.

Froomkin pointed out the lies that led to the rush to an illegal and immoral war in Iraq, and called torture by the US under the Bush administration what it was and the war crime that it represents.

For telling the truth, he has now been fired, after being marginalized and scapegoated in an effort to drive him out, while Krauthammer, Gerson, and their ilk are lionized and continue to spout neo-con lies unabated.

Without a free and fair press, Thomas Jefferson's fear of an unfettered government running roughshod over its people will be realized to its mutual detriment.

This is an appalling and shameful action on the part of the Washington Post, a newspaper to which I used to point with pride as my hometown newspaper and as a beacon of truth and integrity. Call the opinion page editor Fred Hiatt at the Washington Post and protest this travesty of journalistic abuse of power.

A personal page for Dan may be found at http://www-personal.umich.edu/~froomkin/.

Posted by: LyricalBard1 | June 22, 2009 8:05 PM | Report abuse

You can add my name to the long list of people dumbfounded by your decision to terminate Dan Froomkin. He was a *huge* reason for my almost daily visits to your website. What a profoundly stupid move.

Posted by: sally1860 | June 22, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Shocked, astounded, and saddened when I learned of the Posts decision to terminate Froomkins contract. Why on earth silence the one voice who simultaneously holds the White House and the media accountable? Oh... yes, that is a rhetorical question.

Froomkin is my primary reason for viewing the WA Post. Be assured Mr. Froomkin, we anxiously await news of where you will be working next. They will be lucky to have you in their employ.

Posted by: samantha3 | June 22, 2009 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin posts regularly at Neiman Watchdog, for those that may be unaware.
http://www.niemanwatchdog.org/

Posted by: gord_metcalfe | June 22, 2009 11:07 PM | Report abuse

I refused to be the straight man for your punchlines. And I'm the whiner when you complain about that. Strange world.

Posted by: daphne5 | June 23, 2009 12:15 AM | Report abuse

Fire Cohen and see how many letters you get.

Posted by: NeilSagan | June 23, 2009 12:28 AM | Report abuse

As the number of comments here soars towards 1000, topping your previous blog comments count by, well, pretty much 1000, you might want to consider the impact of what you have done.

1000 comments. To an Ombudsman's blog post. Think about that, Mr. Alexander. And then when you're done thinking, share your thoughts with Mr. Hiatt.

Posted by: dougom | June 23, 2009 12:46 AM | Report abuse

They can't fire Cohen -- the conga line of celebration would tie up traffic in front of WP headquarters.

Posted by: Gunga2009 | June 23, 2009 7:07 AM | Report abuse

One good effect. AA seems to have given up Ombudsblogging. Nothing in response to nearly 1000 comments. I guess he recognises that some lame post about plastic sleeves will only bring forth more comments on the same topic.

Posted by: jquiggin | June 23, 2009 8:25 AM | Report abuse

I add my voice to the chorus here.

Dan Froomkin was/is one of the primary reasons I began reading the Washington Post online. I was in China at the time, and the Bush administration was emerging as an unfettered disaster for America and the world. Reading Froomkin's compilations of news sources regarding the on-going and growing list of secretive and near criminal Bush/GOP activities was extremely helpful to me.

I believe that Froomkin would hold the current Obama administration up to view in an even-handed manner.

While I realize that the Washington Post does make good on its policy of providing commentary from all points in the political spectrum, I believe that Froomkin, in much the same manner as Chris Cilliza, provides a highly valuable, down-to-earth fact checking insight which tends to give the WaPo readership information by which to assess the political rhetoric coming from op-ed ccolumnists, guest commentators, and politcal part spokespersons.

He and the valuable service he provides should not be terminated.

Posted by: ChokoChuckles | June 23, 2009 8:33 AM | Report abuse

BREAKING - WaPo ombudsman Andrew Alexander spotted with Gov. Mark Stanford hiking on the Appalachian Trail.

Posted by: RichardHooker | June 23, 2009 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Darn it. RichardHooker beat me to that joke!

But Andrew Alexander is still missing . . . glad to see the readers' representative ain't workin' overtime . . . or any time, apparently.

We still await some meaningful response from what's left of a once-great newspaper, and now . . . is not.

Posted by: mdean3 | June 23, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

This is a true shame. I have lost yet another reason to read the post. If they fire anyone, they should have fired the boneheaded idiots who made the decision to fire Froomkin.

Dan - just tell me us where you're going to end up, and I'll read you religiously there...


Posted by: amf26 | June 23, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Oh, boy. After reading these comments, I can see why Mr. Alexander wants to pull a "Mark Sanford" and disappear for the next several days.

Posted by: bybrklyn | June 23, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Ombudsman really has gone AWOL:

"A Short Break

I will be off for a few days. Blogging will continue shortly."

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/ombudsman-blog/

I hope he's ok, but it sure is a curious time to take a mini-vacation.

Posted by: oncebitten | June 23, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

I have lived in a DC household that subscribes to the Post (literally) my entire life, but I regret that I must cancel my subscription. The elimination of "White House Watch" on washingtonpost.com is just another in a series of disappointing developments at the organization.

Dan Froomkin pointed out the Bush Administration's lies and crimes even as "those offering objective news [reports]" failed to ask tough questions and investigate the Administration's claims properly and the paper's Editorial Board opined for war. He is one of the few employees who has not joined in the Post's conservative movement. He has also been critical of the Obama Administration when it has been dishonest or hypocritical.

In addition, Mr. Alexander, the Post's "obudsman," does a painfully inadequate job of giving voice to the paper's readers as the comments to this article illustrate perfectly. I will continue reading Mr. Froomkin wherever he ends up, I'm sorry that I cannot say the same of my hometown paper, The Washington Post.

Posted by: TrueNative | June 23, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

dan froomkin's page was the link i had bookmarked & therefore entered the washington post by. i would read his articles/work first and then move on to the greater substance of the paper. now that he is gone how will i enter the paper? what real incentive do i have to do this? getting rid of a journalist of this caliber confirms many of my worst suspicions regarding the papers direction, i.e. decisions made for political & not JOURNALISTIC reasons. the post is that much more irrelevant with froomkins leaving. look forward to adding froomkins newest link (where ever that may be) to my bookmarks menu.

Posted by: ten-milehills | June 23, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

I have suspected for some time that the best way to monetize the web edition of the Post is to alienate intelligent readers in favor of the sort of person who is fool enough to click on the flashing "Mortgage rates are dropping in your state!" banners. My hope was that someone at the paper would have the integrity to stand up against this "destroying the village in order to save it" sort of mentality, but Froomkin's dismissal is just further evidence that that person either doesn't exist or lacks the courage or influence to affect important decisions. First the copy editors, and now this. What's next, a big middle finger on the front page, captioned "Hey colleje boy, this heer iz fer U!!!", as though printing Kristol and Gerson's self-aggrandizing, intellectually incoherent twaddle isn't enough?

Posted by: GabrielFry | June 23, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Pathetic.

Posted by: kendall_watson | June 23, 2009 5:19 PM | Report abuse

I used to get my US news from the web site of the New York Times, until they started charging for access to "premium" content. I changed then to reading the Washington Post online, and Dan Froomkin's column/blog (it's an interesting hybrid) became something I read regularly. The NYT stopped charging for access, but I kept my browser pointed at the Washington Post, just the same. That's over now. Clearly, critical reporting of the White House was easier toward the end of a failed 8-year presidency that toward the beginning of a new one, but that made Froomkin's work all the more vital for the public. It is bad business, bad journalism, and above all bad citizenship for the Post to dump Froomkin. Something has clearly gone completely off the rails in the editorial department. I've got www.nytimes.com open in another window now. I'm closing this one, for a good long while.

Posted by: kevink2 | June 23, 2009 5:43 PM | Report abuse

800 comments now, and instead of at least writing a short notice acknoledging the readers' feedback, Mr.Alexander goes fishing, hiking or what else he does for relaxing from his incredible tough job? Yeah, writing a blog story or a column every other day or so after having a friendly chat with the editors who tell him what to write must be really exhausting. Nice job, if you can get it...

Now, seriously, Mr. Alexander isn't sooo bad. The headline "Post Axes Froomkin" shows a critical stance. But the statements of the editor he cited in the report are simply stenographed. Alexander is either not determined enough or he doesn't have the clout to press the responsible people for anwers that go beyond the normal manager speak. Compare this with the quotes that NYT's Clark Hoyt manages to wrestle from the editors, and the difference is obvious.

Mr. Alexander, pls try harder! We would like to see some real answers from Fred Hiatt, especially about the allegedly declining traffic. Pls consult Mr. Krauthammer for assistance in interrogating Fred!

Posted by: Gray62 | June 23, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse

The firing of Dan Froomkin, coming on the heels of the Post's running a column from discredited Bush hack Paul Wolfowitz, is a sad chapter in the history of the paper that once fearlessly gave us the likes of the Watergate expose. Katherine Graham, where are you now that we really need you? And where is an ombudsman who dares criticize the actions of the paper?

Posted by: wallyballou | June 23, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if Ben Bradlee has weighed in on Froomkin's termination. It seems, at least to me, that Froomkin is precisely the kind of journalist that Bradlee would prize. Does anyone know if Bradlee, who is now 87, has any meaningful input at the Post? If not, that may in part explain the rightward drift of the paper towards irrelevance.

Posted by: marcb1 | June 23, 2009 6:29 PM | Report abuse

i'm very disappointed in this decision; i used to subscribe to the post when i lived in the area, then when i moved to la i stopped subscribing but kept reading online - but i have to say deciding to can froomkin and his blog is going to make the post a much less frequent stop in my search for reliable reporting on ongoing issues in the US... it still irks me to no end that i get more news from BBC/BBC America & comedy central many days than i do from the post

Posted by: alumiere1 | June 23, 2009 7:37 PM | Report abuse

I don't live anywhere near D.C. but Froomkin wrote about politics and the White House more intelligently than most.

Now that Froomkin has been dismissed my association with the Post will end with him.

Posted by: dash_90064 | June 23, 2009 7:43 PM | Report abuse

I'm truly disappointed in the Post. Dan Froomkin is one of the only journalists its readers can depend on to speak truth to power, regardless of who's in office. I'll follow Dan wherever he lands, but I'll never return to the Post-- online or print. I hope one day that WaPo returns to the days when it rewarded journalists that call BS on politicians when they see it. Until then...see ya!

Posted by: lferrand | June 23, 2009 7:44 PM | Report abuse

I regularly read Froomkin. When he was reliably on the front page, I traversed through there and sometimes sidestepped to other news or opinion. Recently, I have linked directly to his blog and more rarely read other WaPo content. In the future, I expect to read the WaPo very rarely.

Posted by: zeno2vonnegut | June 23, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

"Rather, he compiles material about the White House and offers his own commentary, often with a liberal bent.

That slant seemed to attract a large and loyal audience during the Bush administration, but it may have suffered when Barack Obama became president."

rofl. Are you serious? Do you in any way imagine that people will fall for your pathetic attempt to write off Froomkin as a liberal anti- Bush figure? You're too fond of your own internal narratives.

Froomkin was the one single journalist in any establishment newspaper who questioned authority, and provided a professional justification for it. He regularly went out of his way to reinvent the wheel for the purpose of teaching and reminding the rest of you how to conduct journalism - and getting to the story, rather than serving regurgitated mash directly from the White House.

Indeed, anyone who has read the column even briefly will know that there is no slant in Froomkin's column towards a political standpoint - the slant, if any, is towards adversarial prosecution of the issues put on the agenda by the White House - the object of the column.

Meanwhile, the bulk of the column is simply providing information that is lost in your average ten- second statements, or narratively controlled news- stories that purport to explain everything in three paragraphs.

That this puts him in opposition to others has nothing to do with "liberal bent". It has to do with the fact that he did his job well, and provided material that was worthwhile reading - if the purpose was to become informed.

Your dismissal in this way simply illustrates the failure Washington Post has become. It was not enough to sideline the column as "opinion", and then as "liberal". To maintain the model, where the writers are beholden to the establishment before the readers - a fact that explains the difficulty with maintaining the financing prospects of the paper - any actual journalism must in the end be removed completely.

You should be aware that this point is not lost on any of Froomkin's readers, whether they are domestic or international.

In other words - if the Washington Post had the bal.. temerity to actually pursue this question of funding, and how it directly affects and dominates how journalism is conducted - you might suddenly realise that there is an explanation for diminishing sales, as well as a solution.

But in the absence of that open discussion on your part, the failure of resting on movement conservatism (or "liberalism" as it will be now, I suppose) for sponsoring will be taken elsewhere. This episode, naturally, providing a prime and current example of the results it has - on the quality of the journalism, and the readership base.

(btw, good luck to you, Mr. Froomkin. The rest of you, excepting Dana Priest, disappear into obscurity, by all means).

Posted by: nipsen | June 23, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

As Froomkin put it himself, in his June 23 WHW blog:

"In fact, the only real power Republicans have left is granted to them by a media culture that consistently clamors for bipartisan solutions, even as one of the parties increasingly represents a shrunken minority of hardened extremists."

This media culture he is talking about is the WaPo's culture.

note: This doesn't imply that Froomkin is a partisan Democrat. Moderates and rational conservatives are sharing his view of the GOP - by voting with their feet.

Posted by: AlanDownunder | June 23, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse

And everywhere you turn, newspapers are failing and the media is having a fit about it. "ITS THE INTERWEBS OH NOES WE HAF TOO FIR REPORTRS!"
It's dumb-ass decisions like this that are killing newspapers. Hiatt is a loser of epic proportions.

Posted by: klemme76 | June 24, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

WHY HAVE HUNDREDS OF COMMENTS BEEN DELETED ?

Posted by: polaris11 | June 24, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

I'll follow Froomkin wherever he goes. There is no one else writing for the Post I would say that about. As the only one here with the cajones to speak truth to power, I'm surprised the powers that be took so long to axe him. Glad to know this will be a safe haven for Republican has beens to spew their nonsense that has all but ruined this country. What's wrong? The job not yet quite finished?

Posted by: SarahBB | June 24, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

When I stationed at BUPERS in Arlington in the early 70’s the Post was the Paper I bought and read each morning. I went through Watergate with the Post
I just don’t understand you people WTF!!! The metro area already has the Times for a Right slant I’ve had it with the POST… Just like I gave up on the NYT when
They started charging for their content and enabling the war I changed my home page to WP from NYT. As the Post has been leaning more to the Right the last Four years, I’ve change to Huffington and read only Post articles linked by Huffington, and I have linked to Froomkin directly. I have to agree with the numerous comments before me: It’s no wonder that papers are dying with decisions like this… You stay there Mr. Hiatt… The “Loyal audience” Will now be taking a Hike! How do you spell major drop in readership?

Posted by: leftkoast | June 24, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

With the termination of Dan Froomkin's White House Watch, WaPo has completed the transformation of its editorial content of in print and online into a consistent mouthpiece for neoconservative and right wing views and commentary. Your attempt to describe the editorial slant of WaPo as "Postpartisan" is truly laughable. Do you also think that people are fooled by the Fox News claim to being "Fair and Balanced." I have no doubt that Dan Froomkin will do just fine blogging on another site, while WaPo adds yet another nail in its coffin. One would think that someone at WaPo would recognize that readership in the Washington area and the country at large is moving in a distinctly different direction, while WaPo continues its relentless march to journalistic irrelevance and oblivion.

Posted by: hughdh | June 24, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Count me among those who are disgusted by this move. Froomkin is one of the few voices in the Washington Post that offered actual insight. Rather than a partisan hack spewing talking-point pablum (I'm looking at you, Kristol and Gerson), Froomkin is a watchdog. You know, an actual journalist.

Froomkin holds the Democratic president to the same standards he held the previous GOP president. So much for his critics claims that he was merely another Bush-hater. He has consistently held Obama's feet to the fire so far, and rightly so.

Echoing previous commenters, I say enjoy your journey to irrelevance.

Posted by: MktgPhDStudent | June 24, 2009 2:46 PM | Report abuse

I used to link to you every week but now I won't even visit this site.

Posted by: jilly999 | June 24, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse

I too am deeply troubled by the termination of Dan Froomkins column, I have been reading the Post for over 30 years, and Froomkin's column was one of the last good things left and the only reason I went to website.

Big mistake by the Post.

Posted by: dmarcoot | June 24, 2009 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Also, he is so worried by his "slant" suffering under Obama Funny, I don’t recall there was any concern for Will or Krauthammer’s slants under Bush. hypocrites, every last one them.

Posted by: dmarcoot | June 24, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

I'm embarrassed for the Washington Post.

How is it that Froomkin gets canned; while the pundits who cheered on the Iraq War and were played like fools by White House get to keep their jobs?

Posted by: JPRS | June 24, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

This is disgusting. Froomkin is the reason I started reading Washingtonpost.com. And will now most likely be the reason I stop.

Posted by: jamers23nyc | June 24, 2009 6:05 PM | Report abuse

It's worth noting too that the "interest in the blog" line by Hiatt is disingenuous on its face.

Part of what attracts readership are high profile links on the homepage. I've noticed over the past several months that Froomkin has been largely shut off the Post homepage. Of course there will be a drop off in online readership if readers are left to dig through the website for the column.

Try the same experiment with Krauthammer for a few months without publishing his column in the print version or providing him with a high profile on the website homepage and I'm willing to wager that his readership will fall of the cliff too.

Posted by: JPRS | June 24, 2009 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Why did the Post fire such a popular journalist that brought truth to power? We need more Fromkins rather than less. I used to deliver the Post as a child for $1 per paper per month (I had 30 papers on my route). I have been proud to read it as an adult, where ever I might reside, but the direction of editorial policy in recent years is troubling.

Posted by: Kayakbiker | June 24, 2009 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Froomkin was the best thing the Post had going for it. He held the White House's feet to the fire, regardless of who occupied the office. There was no journalistically defensible reason for firing him. Given that right-wing hacks survive and thrive at the Post, the motives for canning Froomkin apparently were ideological. That is sad.

The masthead remains at the Washington Post, but the institution is gutted. I'll shed no tears when the WP goes under --- an event that I'll read about elsewhere.

Posted by: JohnAdams2 | June 24, 2009 6:19 PM | Report abuse

" Editorial Page Editor Fred Hiatt, whose stable of contributors includes Froomkin, said late Thursday: "With the end of the Bush administration, interest in the blog also diminished. His political orientation was not a factor in our decision." "

You're kidding me, right? Interest in Froomkin's column has diminished? I get the print edition every day, and since the latest website redesign that dumbed it down by at least one-third and now doesn't even show the time it was last refreshed (note please: showing stock prices throughout the day without something that indicates the time at which that price was captured is not just beside the point but also thoroughly asinine), I barely come to the website. But I ALWAYS read Froomkin. He is one of the few legitimate journalists both keeping a clear eye on the Obama administration and keeping the heat on the liars and torturers of the previous administration.

You're getting rid of Froomkin but you printed absolute drivel this morning from Gerson in which he says he likes his puppy because it's a conservative dog? By which he means Cuban. And he's not afraid of it, presumably because it's less than 1/20th of his size. So we learned this morning that he's a non-logical creep with irrational fears that no doubt influence his entire Republican worldview. Thanks, but I already knew ALL OF THAT. Gerson can't tell me anything I don't already know, even about puppies.

Froomkin gives me what I didn't already know.

I don't need Gerson. Everyone, whether they agree with him or not, needs Froomkin.

Posted by: Reader3 | June 24, 2009 6:19 PM | Report abuse

How sad to see this once great newspaper spiraling around the drain to irrelevance.

The Post was my favorite newspaper from my early years in the Navy in Norfolk (60's) through the Watergate era and Nixon's resignation (70's) when I lived in Northern Virginia and Maryland...

Now it's become just another corporate haven for neocons and other hard-rightwing ideologues.

Who's next Eugene Robinson?

Posted by: flemsnopes | June 24, 2009 6:21 PM | Report abuse

So long WaPo - have a good journey to irrelevance. I'm heading over to NiemanWatch & NiemanLab with Dan Froomkin. C-ya!

Posted by: cymric | June 24, 2009 6:31 PM | Report abuse

This is a sad day for the Post. I looked forward to reading Froomkin and his roundup of other articles.

Posted by: marcsystems | June 24, 2009 6:34 PM | Report abuse

We're open-minded, and we'd love to hear why "This relationship just wasn't working out." Over and over again, Froomkin called it right, but instead you're keeping the ones who got it wrong. And get it wrong. Who needs the Washington Post?

Posted by: albaum | June 24, 2009 6:44 PM | Report abuse

It was Froomkin's column that got me frequently reading the WaPo online some years ago, and buying the paper when visiting my son in DC where he was a Georgetown SFS student and Congressional intern.
During the intervening years I have expanded the WaPo universe of readers by sending bountiful articles to many friends nearly everyday, discussing WaPo coverage, and coveting the honesty encountered in Froomkin's columns, as well as selected others. I routinely disregard and have stopped reading the cant filled, predictable garbage of C. Krauthammer, mushy Howie K. columns, dull Broder writings, and have been surprised by the space offered for Op-Eds by discredited rightwingers. Online is a moderate and liberal world, so why would you destroy your franchise? Self inflicted destruction seems to be a newspaper man's disease. Recant and bring back Froomkin, one of the very best political journalists online. I've never heard anyone say he was weak or boring, even if they hate his razor sharp ability to disrobe spin and find interesting political truths. The WaPo has really screwed up, and the decline is now inevitable as we flee for higher quality sources.

Posted by: enough3 | June 24, 2009 6:47 PM | Report abuse

Dan Froomkin got us through the darkest days of the Bush Administration. He and Eugene Robinson were the only columnists I always read.

The announcement's implication that Froomkin failed to keep up with the times is mystifying. The odious Krauthammer shows no evidence of having learned anything from the last 8 years. Neither has Kristol, Kagan, nor Gerson, who all remain.

Very, very disappointing from the Post.
You can retire my login as well-- I'm done.

Posted by: HenryWallaceLives | June 24, 2009 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Out of town, but I can can still sign on to your site to cancel my subscription. I've subscribed since 1979.

This is pathetic. I am sick and tired of reading your heavily-tilted right wing op-ed pages. And now this. Like another commenter said, whose next? E.J Dionne and Eugene Robinson. You are now down to two. Quite a slide from the heady days of the 1970s.

Posted by: skrooks | June 24, 2009 7:37 PM | Report abuse

WaPo keeps m*rons such as Gerson, and rabid Neo-cons such as The Kraut, not to mention snobbish Will, but axes Froomkin?

And Hiatt, another Neo-con, has the audacity to say that Froomkin's politics have nothing to do with the decision to terminate his column?

Is WaPo owned by the Washington Times? Murdoch?

Posted by: Gatsby1 | June 24, 2009 7:49 PM | Report abuse

As a HUGE fan of Dan Froomkin I will be swimming against the tide here. I do believe that when he changed his format from one daily post to multiple posts some quality got lost in the change. I used to religiously check WaPo for his daily posts. Over the past few months I haven't seen a reason to read him.

Posted by: rogerlc444 | June 24, 2009 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Suck it WaPo! I've never had a subscription to your print edition, and I never will. I'll also be making it a point to get my sports/local/etc. news elsewhere whenever I can. Good luck Froomkin! You'll land on your feet (someplace better, I'm sure).

Posted by: esibley76 | June 24, 2009 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Hey, maybe you can replace him with The Mark Sanford Family Values Column!

It's fun watching the newspapers destroy themselves.

Posted by: cdelance | June 24, 2009 8:55 PM | Report abuse

I too echo the vast majority here regards Dan Froomkin’s firing. It is indeed a sad (and regrettable) loss for the WaPo, if not a serious error of judgment.

During the last term of BushCo’s corruption, arrogance and ineptness, Mr. Froomkin was a beacon whose brilliant light shone on these rats in the darkness. I have no doubts Mr. Hiatt received a few unhappy phone calls about his columns from the previous administration. That is a badge of honor and integrity for good journalism, not of shame.

"He does not operate as a White House reporter. Rather, he compiles material about the White House and offers his own commentary, often with a liberal bent," you said.

That is a wrong and shallow assessment. Froomkin is not simply a liberal aggregator as you suggest. He has criticized Obama's state secrets privilege overreaches, proposed financial regulations and lack of progress on gay rights issues among other issues. His cogent analyses may not be reporting per se, but certainly represents the best of opinion writing in my opinion.

Besides, if I simply want an aggregator, I can get that from the Google news page. Glenn Greenwald at Slate and Andrew Sullivan at the Atlantic are doing pretty well with this format. Froomkin does as well.

Hell, Hiatt should have elevated Froomkin to the opinion page to balance the vapidness of Will, Broder, Krauthammer, and himself. To bury him on a blog page was a disservice to him and your readers and spoke more about the short-sightedness of WaPo management.

I have no doubts Dan will land on his feet elsewhere where his accomplishments are appreciated and not dismissed. It is a sad day for a once fine news organization.

Posted by: chrisw21 | June 24, 2009 9:26 PM | Report abuse

Let's keep this thread alive...just to make sure the WP knows hwo mad we are!

I've got a question for all of you who say you are logging off of the Post. Besides following Froomkin for his column, if you are in fact giving up on your WP subscription/login, would you share where you are moving to to replace the way you used the Post? It would be helpful to see what faithful Froomkin readers consider functional news sources.

Hope folks respond!

Posted by: las100 | June 24, 2009 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Insulting your customers is not a useful business plan. Insulting their intelligence is even worse.

I am removed my name from you health/weight loss email list.

I will also be sorry to miss Ezra Klein, but, no doubt, he'll be bounced soon, and I'll be able to read him again.

Posted by: SaboPike | June 24, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

It is disappointing news. White House Watch is the only feature that I regularly read on washingtonpost.com. But I guess the paper has to cut costs to try to stay afloat. I'm sure we'll find Dan Froomkin setting up shop at some other address.

Posted by: pwlno | June 24, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse

In the old piece work world, people who worked very fast were supposedly discriminated against by their coworkers. Does a similar mentality explain the continued employment of pundits who never get it right compared with the firing of those who nearly always do.

Also, what ever happened to counter programming. Can it be the Washington Post thinks the Washington Times is a model? Talk about shooting for the bottom.

Posted by: SaboPike | June 24, 2009 10:40 PM | Report abuse

I just heard about this idiotic decision. The only reason I visited the Washington Post site was the insightful commentary of Dan Froomkin. So no need to bookmark it any longer. Good luck fighting over those Washington Times readers.

Posted by: scharlau | June 24, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Post is now officially a joke.

Can't wait until you go bankrupt!

Posted by: Christian_in_NYC | June 25, 2009 12:56 AM | Report abuse

As with the overwhelming majority of those who have commented here, I find this decision illogical and fraught with bias. I visit WaPo because its arts & living section happens to carry the handful of comic strips I enjoy. I come also because of Dan Froomkin's blog (I read Eugene Robinson's column via other sites).

Unlike George Will's opinion pieces, Dan's work is always solidly fact-based. Unlike Charles Krauthammer, Dan has shined a spotlight on the wrongdoing and shenanigans of both occupants of the White House. (It was not Dan's fault that Mr Bush's administration was the source of so much that is at variance with America's core values, just as it is not Dan's fault that President Obama seems to be going astray thus far in several key areas as well. For the former, Dan was often one of the very few voices who insisted on exposing wrongdoing. For the latter, he has consistently shown his adherence to core principles, rather than to personality.)

I can find another way to read my comics. I will continue to read Dan Froomkin, wherever he lands. And don't think I hadn't noticed that the online interface to see Tom Toles's work was changed fairly recently, making it a several-click, rather than one-click operation to be able to see his cartoons. Was this done deliberately as well, given his "liberal" (i.e. truthful, hard-hitting) bent? I will look for Mr Toles's work elsewhere as well.

What a rankly stupid decision. What a dishonest piece of work this "explanation" is— for shame. Shame on Fred Hiatt and the rest of the partisan ideologues infesting the WaPo board at the expense of good reporting and honest analysis. Goodbye.

Posted by: mofembot | June 25, 2009 5:46 AM | Report abuse

This mess just confirms my decision over a year ago to cancel my daily delivery of the WP. That decision came after being a daily reader for over 45 years.

Posted by: JamesHW | June 25, 2009 6:38 AM | Report abuse

Is the Post management insane?! I could hardly believe it when I heard the news about Froomkin's firing! If there was ever a time in history when the country needed real journalists like him, it is now. The financial collapse, the health care crisis, the power of lobbyists, and the concentration of wealth and power in fewer and fewer greedy hands has shown the willingness of those in power to sell out the people. Who will speak for us against power, if not courageous and honest journalists like Froomkin?! Washington Post, your credibility just took a HUGE hit, with this boneheaded decision.

Posted by: lfolwick | June 25, 2009 7:20 AM | Report abuse

Pathetic, pathetic, pathetic. A newspaper with one opinion and news columns to back it up. The new Washington Post. Richard Nixon must be laughing.

Posted by: shapsj | June 25, 2009 8:16 AM | Report abuse

Disgusting.... Froomkin is a real journalist, something sorely missing from the 21st century version of the WaPo.

Read this and let a real writer, "a lowly blogger" set you straight about Dan:

http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2009/06/18/froomkins-sins-of-the-village/

After you read it, please pass it on to management. They have made a HUGE mistake. He is the best you had. This must be a political statement that the WaPo is no longer anything but a corporate shill.

I rarely read even the online version every day. Why? There's nothing there.

Posted by: victoria2dc | June 25, 2009 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Disgusting.... Froomkin is a real journalist, something sorely missing from the 21st century version of the WaPo.

Read this and let a real writer, "a lowly blogger" set you straight about Dan:

http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2009/06/18/froomkins-sins-of-the-village/

After you read it, please pass it on to management. They have made a HUGE mistake. He is the best you had. This must be a political statement that the WaPo is no longer anything but a corporate shill.

I rarely read even the online version every day. Why? There's nothing there.

Posted by: victoria2dc | June 25, 2009 8:25 AM | Report abuse

This is truly an ill-advised deed. Froomkin and Klein are the only counterbalance to the utterly biased neo-con drivel that is the usual fare offered by Kristol, Krauthammer, Kurtz, etc., that WaPo has. The only voice of reason there, I'm afraid. You might as well close up shop now, or maybe join forces with the Washington Times. You're pretty much there already.

Posted by: irascible | June 25, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Washington Post's management demonstrates that it's been hypnotized by Beltway navel-gazing. Well, this decision is no worse than the rest of the bad decisions that have been made by daily newspapers in the past few years.

But the likes of Krauthammer and Wolfowitz stay ... Wolfowitz? Really? How much does that tripe merchant get paid for his contributions to the Post's marketplace ... make that Wal-Mart ... of ideas?

Posted by: dadadata | June 25, 2009 8:31 AM | Report abuse

Your op-ed page is filled with fools who have been wrong for eight years, on the most important questions of our time. Filled with doddering hacks like G.Will, for whom facts are optional in creating an opinion. Krauthammer could be said to belong at the WashTimes, back when the Post was a more editorially responsible paper. Then we get Gerson, sulking over the cock-up his last boss was shown to be. Finally, Froomkin, one writer who was diligent and thus more often on the right track, gets the axe for his popular blog.
On top of whining materialistic yuppies in the weekly magazine, and the triteness of the Style section, you have pretty much wrecked a once-legenday paper, one that I used to eagerly follow the day's events since Watergate.
It seems that the Post has moved beyond "saving the newspaper business" and gone right to euthanasia.

Posted by: labradog | June 25, 2009 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Fred Hiatt's comment that "interest in the blog [Froomkin's] diminished" is a pretty simple one to analyze.

Anyone REAL surprised that, post-election-cycle, MOST of the politically-oriented blogs saw a drop in traffic? I'd like to know if Froomkin's drop (and I assume there is one) is LESS THAN some of the Post's other political blogs that appear to have survived.

The problem with alleging that a decision is based on objective data, is that you have to HAVE data, and that data has to be reliable.

We're waiting, Mr. Alexander. And you, too, Mr. Hiatt, but we know you don't have the stones to respond to your readers. Heck, you barely care we exist.

Posted by: mdean3 | June 25, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

I'll never read the post again

Posted by: drwasdrwas | June 25, 2009 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Looks like the overwheling majority here agrees that more of the same old same old (Krauthammer, Broder, Cohen, et al.) and even less of an innovative new approach (the great ideas that Froomkin and others advocate) can't be the right strategy to ensure survival of the Post.

Would be good, and in their own best interest, if the managers and editors would take note and change course!

Posted by: Gray62 | June 25, 2009 9:31 AM | Report abuse

The Post editorial page is caught up in the same conservative feedback loop as the GOP. And look where that's got the GOP.

Posted by: TboneRex | June 25, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

When I first learned that the Washington Post was firing Dan Froomkin, I was shocked. I have been a reader of the Post since 1968 and I have observed its swing to the right. I have mostly stopped reading the Op Ed pages because the opinions there are mostly irrelevant. Dan Froomkin's blog was a clear voice of reason and facts. You have given me one less reason to continue as a Post subscriber when it comes time to renew. I find more and more that the "news" reported in the paper is old because I have already seen it reported on the internet. Dan Milbank's foolish article on Tuesday complaining about President Obama taking a question from a reporter relaying the question from an Iranian resident is just another example of how out of touch he is. And another reason to stop reading the Post.

Posted by: RLStrombotne | June 25, 2009 9:57 AM | Report abuse

The Post has made its decision regarding Dan Froomkin and I have made mine. I will no longer read the Washington Post, either online or in print form.

The Washinton Post has become a bastion of neocon propaganda. Krauthammer, Kagen, Kristol, Wolfowitz, Lieberman, McCain, Broder, Will, Hiatt, et al spew neocon war fantasies with no offset by contrary views.

Liberal media, indeed!

Journalism is officially dead at the Washington Post. I'll take my readership elsewhere.

Posted by: eewpost | June 25, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

RL, with all fairness towards Dana Milbank, he isn't even the worst of the WaPo bunch. He is a good reporter, afaics, and can be quite entertaining. They just shouldn't let him write serious columns, since his reasoning is missing the depth and the clear values that are necessary for succeeding in this.

Posted by: Gray62 | June 25, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Do you guys even know how to spell "computer"? Do you want to know why print newspapers are dying every day? Do you not realize that there are NO space restrictions online? That you can publish as much content AS YOU WANT online?

No. You can't be that stupid.

"... balancing the need to make the most of our resources"? Ten megabytes of disk space costs one cent. Balance that.

You fired Froomkin because you didn't like his politics. It would be nice if you would stop lying about it.

Like so many others here, I'm following Froomkin to wherever he lands. Go have a global warming denial fest with George Will, and party like it's 1992.

Posted by: keith_pickering | June 25, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

The Post is firing my favorite columnist without bothering to give a real explanation.

Apparently management believes the way forward is to treat their customers with complete contempt.

Good luck with that.

I look forward to reading Dan Froomkin via one of the Post's one thousand competitors.

Posted by: rphumphrey | June 25, 2009 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Btw, looking back at all what has been said in this thread, I see this point should be emhasized more strongly:
Froomkin is so original and refreshing because he bases his stories on a clear and transparent saet of values that he applies. That is why he criticizes Obama for failing to meet these values, for instance secrecy instead of transparency, in the same way that he criticized Bush. He simply isn't a partisan voice, unlike virtually ALL the other columnists, who put partisanship above reason and ethics. And I don't make any excemption for the liberals here, most of them are "guilty" of showing the same hypocritical attitude.
That's why Froomkin is such an important asset for the Post, and that's why even conservatives like Sullivan and Morrisey respect him.

Those commenters here who criticize him show that they are really criticizing his values. But being against torture, for instance, should be an American value, and so I can only see those critics as a fringe group, and not the kind of readership that WaPo should try to attract.

Posted by: Gray62 | June 25, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Froomkin was one of WP's best writers, and one of the reasons I follow the post so regularly. I'll continue to follow his writings, wherever he ends up next.

I find it strange that an institution committed to journalistic integrity hasn't communicated to its readers the reasons for this action, and see no good reason for this choice. Froomkin is in the top tier of US journalists, and I'm grateful for his work.

Posted by: erraticity | June 25, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

We subscribed to the Washington Post for 40+ years.

When our children went off to college we had your weekly edition sent to them.

I always said I could never leave the DC area because I would miss the Post too much but, by the time we moved to Florida 4 years ago that was no longer a consideration. Your paper had changed that much.

Were I still in the DC area I might be sorely tempted to cancel my subscription now. You wonder why readership is down. You really don't get it, do you?

Posted by: rghdgh | June 25, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

When Fred Hiatt fired Dan Froomkin, he fired me as a reader as well. And from the comments here and elsewhere, I don't seem to be the only one who'll be leaving on Dan's last day - not by a long shot.

I'll admit that I was a little apprehensive. The opinion and politics sections of the Post were a daily must-read for me; I often ventured into other types of stories as well. And I often enjoyed reading and participating in the daily chats with reporters and public figures.

But I decided to try NOT reading the Post (apart from my direct link to White House Watch) for the past several days. To my surprise, I didn't miss it. Chats had gone downhill quite a bit over the past few months anyway; they almost always start late, you've lost your best reporter-chatters, and there has been a marked increase in the number of non-question questions.

I read a political chat to hear about politics, not local sports or Bruce Springsteen. An off-topic comment once in a while isn't unreasonable. But EVERY TIME? Multiple times in a 50-minute chat? Then it's just an excuse not to cover the issues of the day.

I've also noticed that the questions selected for posting have become less and less controversial or interesting. This was always a key flaw in the Post's chat system, and now you've broken it wide open.

Another bad habit many chatter-reporters picked up recently is simply re-posting alternating questions representing opposing views with little or no comment ("Here's one view...and another"). This is pure laziness.

Apart from Dan Froomkin, chats were the only really interesting thing on the Post - the only thing you had that couldn't be found on a daily basis anywhere else. You've fired Dan and managed to turn the chats boring. What did you expect to happen to your readership?

I look forward to hearing about the Post's upcoming reincarnation as a celebrity gossip rag and neocon soapbox. You still won't manage to be profitable, though. If you don't give the people a product they want, they won't buy it.

Bye-bye!

Posted by: PMaranci | June 25, 2009 11:51 AM | Report abuse

What a shame. Getting let go for seeking the truth and holding our elected officials accountable (regardless of party affiliation!). You will be missed Dan and I'll be with you wherever you end up. As for WaPo.com, see ya later!!

Posted by: JL-BNA | June 25, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Gray62, Thanks saying the things I feel.

Posted by: danwesjac | June 25, 2009 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Just signed in to say that I no longer have to visit this newspaper anymore. One of the best bloggers is now fired. SOrry Joel Achenbach.

Posted by: bluenawab | June 25, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

I am SO disappointed in the Post and there is much I don't understand: 1) How can there not be enough "resources" to keep DF on-line?!? 2) Why does a column w. the specific, consistent point of view of holding our Executive branch accountable for their words, actions and the times they don't match "Work" during the Bush administration, but not during Obama's? 3) Curious if WaPo mgmnt. believed Sanford's original hiking story, as the 'excuse' for losing DF is almost as plausible.
Bye, Bye, WaPo. DAN - I will follow your writing & find you anywhere!!

Posted by: tiredgirlie | June 25, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Incredibly disappointing. Froomkin's voice and work is very much still relevant and needed. Please reconsider. He does great work assimilating as well as analyzing WH events and more. I find his writing offers unique perspective.

Posted by: philip2 | June 25, 2009 4:05 PM | Report abuse

What would you expect from a corporation that hires William "always wrong" Kristol? That sick, war-mongering hack is in good company with the deranged Krauthammer. Let them read each other's columns. I'm out of here, and so is one of the rare subscriptions to the actual paper. The kowtowing to the neocons and Bush cheerleading had me on the verge for years--this is the final straw. Buh-bye, morons.

Posted by: bluegrasser | June 25, 2009 4:23 PM | Report abuse

With the firing Dan Froomkin, it appears that the Washington Post management is trying to kill the paper. If management continues to make these kinds of decision, it will certainly succeed.

In the last 8 years, standard journalism, as practiced by the Post and other mainstream media, has been an abject failure. Instead of objectively critiquing their performance, the Beltway journalists try to silence the messenger that is making them uncomfortable.

If Post executives had any sense, they would hire Dan Froomkin to run either the news or the opinion section. Maybe then Post journalists would learn to do real reporting, instead of maintaining the Beltway's incestuous daisy chain.

Posted by: renate_riffe | June 25, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

I'm beginning to think that Hiatt's strategy makes some kind of commercial sense. I know it's pointless, but I can't help checking back every day to see if the Post's silence continues. This page clearly has more readers than at any time since the George Will fiasco. And the AA "broken foot" subplot only makes it all the more intriguing.

Posted by: jquiggin | June 25, 2009 6:29 PM | Report abuse

I am extremely disappointed. Both that Mr. Froomkin's even-handed comments will no longer be available through the Post, and that the Post's explanation for firing Mr. Froomkin was totally uninformative and therefore totally inadequate. I look forward to Mr. Froomkin finding a new outlet very quickly, where I can continue to enjoy and learn from his insights.

Posted by: ekbh | June 25, 2009 8:43 PM | Report abuse

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