Seipp on Lacey and friends

Cathy Seipp, writing at the National Review Online, says that New Times founder and executive editor Michael Lacey has never been famous for his tact. She expects to see even less politeness [some might call it "maturity"] when he moves in on the LA Weekly.

[Lacey] has long had the habit of dismissing competitors in the Birkenstock-wearing world of alt-weeklies as “raggedy-ass” publications filled with “espresso-crazed lefties,” and he expands his empire with all the diplomacy of Germans marching into the Sudetenland. He’s also notoriously foul-mouthed, a tone that trickled down into New Times L.A. via “freakin’,” the paper’s favorite all-purpose adjective, followed closely by “bulls**t” and “retard.”


A Phoenix-based westerner by way of New Jersey, Lacey is impressed by neither the venerable Voice name nor its literary heritage in New York, which he’s been known to derisively spell “New Yawk.” He has little patience with the earnest p.c. culture that permeates the Weekly, and I worry about the feelings of people there, some of whom I’ve known for years. (I would like to be a fly on the wall, though, when he meets Nikki Finke.) I spent some time with Lacey when he tried to hire me away from the old Buzz magazine to the upstart New Times L.A. ; I liked him, although I stayed at Buzz. But when I read this week that one of his former Phoenix editors remembered the boss as a combination of W. C. Fields and Pol Pot, I thought, well, that sounds about right.

Her larger point is that New Times, and especially its former L.A. paper edited by Rick Barrs and starring Jill Stewart, does not deserve or fit the "neoconservative" label. Seipp picks up the thread at her blog, where the president of the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies emails his agreement.

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