The New York Times on Thursday dismissed Larry Kudlow, President Trump’s pick to head the National Economic Council (replacing Gary Cohn) in the article “President Picks TV Commentator as His Economic Adviser.” The conservative economist and associate director for economics and planning in President Reagan’s Office of Management and Budget was reduced to someone who Trump picked for his loyalty and Trump-style audacity. Reporters Maggie Haberman, Kate Kelly, and Jim Tankersley stated:
President Trump loves big personalities, live television, the stock market and loyalty. In choosing Larry Kudlow, a CNBC television commentator, to serve as the next director of the National Economic Council, he has checked all those boxes.
Mr. Kudlow, often clad in a pinstripe suit and colorful tie, is a frequent pundit on the financial news channel where he opines about everything from the economy to the stock market to tax cuts and free trade. He is an unabashed prognosticator who relishes making the kinds of provocative statements that Mr. Trump has turned into an art form. He has lamented “growing government dependency,” touted tax cuts for the wealthy and lavished praise on high-flying corporate executives.
The Times portrayed Trump’s natural decision to appoint a conservative as his economic adviser as a character flaw.
The decision to pick Mr. Kudlow, a longtime cheerleader of the president, is the latest move by Mr. Trump to surround himself with loyalists in high administrative posts.
The stock market may be reaching record highs, but the three journalists emphasized the temporary downdraft after the Kudlow pick was made public, treating it as the specific driving force behind the one-day decline (and not, say, fears of trade war with China):
Stock markets, which have been rattled by the White House tariffs, did not react positively to news of Mr. Kudlow’s appointment on Wednesday. The Dow Jones industrial average was down more than 200 points for most of the afternoon, once news media outlets began reporting Mr. Kudlow was the pick.
They also snobbily deemphasized Kudlow’s credentials; it took the paper an insulting 13 paragraphs to inform readers that Kudlow served in the Reagan administration’s Office of Management and Budget. Again, The Times tried its best to reduce Kudlow to a shallow TV guy:
Mr. Kudlow is a radio and television commentator and an economics consultant. He was a zealous convert to the supply-side economic policies that swept the Republican Party in the late 1970s. He is a protégé of the supply-side economist Arthur Laffer, with whom Mr. Kudlow worked on Ronald Reagan’s 1980 presidential campaign. Mr. Kudlow went on to serve in Mr. Reagan’s Office of Management and Budget.
Like many past National Economic Council directors, he is not an academically trained economist -- he studied for a master’s degree at Princeton University but did not earn one -- but he served as chief economist for Bear Stearns and made a name advising prominent conservative politicians....
In the online version The Times dwelled on irrelevant and ancient personal issues:
In the early 1990s, Mr. Kudlow took a leave from the firm to enter treatment for drug and alcohol addiction; his colleagues said he abused cocaine.
Asked whether he thought the substance abuse could prove problematic for him as a White House staff nominee, he said, “We’ll see how that plays out.”