Kristof's message: "The system is rigged"

I could not even consider voting for Nick Kristof for Oregon governor unless and until the serious questions about his legal eligibility for that office are resolved convincingly in his favor. (And I doubt that they can be.) But it's interesting to see what his pitch is, no doubt crafted with help from his buddies from the New Republic. Today I got a fundraising pitch email that included this passage:

"The system is rigged." Sounds kinda Trumpy, doesn't it? Maybe that's going to be the strategy. It will play pretty well in the red parts of the state. But among Democrats, whose primary votes Kristof needs, it's pretty hollow.

Meanwhile, here's a not-so-glowing critique of his career as a New York Times opinion writer. It concludes:

Kristof’s brand of soft liberal journalism often rightfully pined for an end to injustice, authoritarianism and poverty, but typically saw privatization and the market as the solutions to those problems. He brushed aside the brutal conditions in manufacturing labor, passing off worker suffering in the Global South as the price of modernization. This was basically a part of the failed Clinton era pivot away from the Democratic base of organized labor toward business interests.

Kristof, like any citizen, should feel free to step out of the media and directly into the political sphere. But his career on the Times opinion page, despite being thought of as the voice for moral crusading, has left quite a bit to be desired from people who care about labor rights and US militarism.

I'm not sure what Kristof thinks he is doing. But at this point, I'd put the odds of him being the next Oregon governor at 100 to 1. 


  1. I could not even consider voting for Nick Kristof for Oregon governor.

    That says it all.

  2. Of course it's rigged ... for people like Nick. Or Tina. Or Ellen.

  3. What good paying jobs have left the town of Yamhill? I have family out there and it looks about the same to me year in and year out except an extra winery here and there.

  4. Professor, realistically, could you share with us who haven't been around that long what the odds are of his residency issues preempting an actual victory could be? If he turns these millions of dollars into a good campaign, and he wins, would the courts have to invalidate that? I just don't see that happening but that's why I'm asking. Maybe it's happened before.


Post a Comment

The platform used for this blog is awfully wonky when it comes to comments. It may work for you, it may not. It's a Google thing, and beyond my control. Apologies if you can't get through. You can email me a comment at, and if it's appropriate, I can post it here for you.