Tag Archives: Thomas L. Friedman

‘The only award I want to win is from my readers’


It is routine to hear super-achievers claim that the ultimate stamp of approval of their achievement comes when they are recognised and rewarded by their peers and compatriots.

Three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times foreign affairs columnist Thomas L. Friedman, in a discussion with the editorial staff of the New Delhi-based Indian Express, strikes a discordant note:

“People ask me what I do for a living. I tell them I am a translator from English to English. I sit down with that banker who really can only speak in the tongue of the financial market and I take that and I turn it into something simple that, hopefully, readers can understand.

“The trick is to make something much more readable without losing the complexity. We are in the communications business and sometimes we forget that. We are not in the obfuscation business and I have never written for my colleagues.

“I don’t want to win the journalist-of-the-year award from my colleagues. I want to win it from my readers. The reason why you should never read your critics is that if you do, you start writing for them and your reader picks up the paper and says, what the hell is this about?”

Read the full article: ‘There’s no Wall Street or Main Street, only one street, and we are all on it

Photograph: courtesy Discovery


Thankfully, the world’s flat or else he would’ve…

New York Times‘ foreign affairs columnist, Thomas L. Friedman, went to Brown University to talk about how “Green is the new Red White and Blue”, i.e. how corporate environmentalism can restore America to its “natural place in the global order.”

Instead, the author of The World is Flat tasted a piece of pie. The protestors said Friedman deserved it:

# for his “sickeningly cheery applaud for free market capitalism’s conquest of the planet”.

# for telling the world that the free market and techno fixes can save us from climate change.

# for helping turn environmentalism into a fake plastic consumer product for the privileged.

# for his long-standing support for the US Occupation of Iraq and the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

# for his pure arrogance.