By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

In Alan Lupo, Alexander Cockburn met his match

If you read the New York Times obituary of the radical journalist Alexander Cockburn, then you may have found yourself surprised by this tidbit about his departure from the Village Voice:

Mr. Cockburn, a fierce critic in the columns of Israeli policies in the Middle East, was dismissed from The Voice in 1984 after The Boston Phoenix reported that he had accepted a $10,000 grant from a group that its critics called pro-Arab. David Schneiderman, The Voice’s editor at the time, suggested that the grant created a conflict of interest.

The Phoenix has now reposted that article, which was reported and written by the late, great Alan Lupo. An essential bit of Boston journalism history, and well worth your time.

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  1. Bob Gardner

    It would have been a nice precedent if journalists felt constrained to report outside income,grants, gifts, or free trips. The impression I get is that this is only done selectively.
    I laugh whenever I see someone write “In the interest of full disclosure . . . ” If there were anything like full disclosure involved, you would be able to find a complete list of all the conflicts and potential conflicts. Then readers could decide for themselves.
    In retrospect, it doesn’t seem that Alexander Cockburn’s views on the middle east were influenced by money, any more than were the views of the Phoenix.

  2. J.M. Lawrence

    Thanks for bringing to mind Al Lupo. He was a great mentor at the now departed Boston Globe City Weekly. I still ask myself how would Lupo handle this story? Just wish I could still pick up the phone and call him.

  3. Jerry Ackerman

    Thanks for posting, Dan.

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