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Quotes of the day: A.M. Rosenthal

Published Friday, May 01, 2015 @ 3:09 PM EDT
May 01 2015

Abraham Michael "A.M." Rosenthal (May 2, 1922 – May 10, 2006), born in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada, was a New York Times executive editor (1977–88) and columnist (1987–1999) and New York Daily News columnist (1999–2004). He joined the New York Times in 1943 and remained there for 56 years, to 1999. Rosenthal won a Pulitzer Prize in 1960 for international reporting. As an editor at the newspaper, Rosenthal oversaw the coverage of a number of major news stories including the Vietnam war, the Pentagon Papers, and the Watergate scandal. Together with Catherine A. Fitzpatrick, he was the first westerner to visit a Soviet GULAG camp in 1988. His son, Andrew Rosenthal, is the editorial page editor of the New York Times. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


Be fanatics. When it comes to being and doing and dreaming the best, be maniacs.

He kept the paper straight. (Epitaph)

I'll steal an idea from anybody if it's not nailed down.

If you don't have a sensation of apprehension when you set out to find a story and a swagger when you sit down to write it, you are in the wrong business.

It has been our policy not to use obscenities in the paper. It's a harmless little eccentricity of ours.

It was an interesting experience being metropolitan editor of the Times, in precisely the same way as being simmered in a saucepan for a few years is terribly interesting.

OK, the rule is, you can (make love to) an elephant if you want to, but if you do you can't cover the circus. ('The Rosenthal Rule')

When something important is going on, silence is a lie.


(May 2 is also the birthday of Benjamin Spock and Jerome K. Jerome.)

Categories: A.M. Rosenthal, Quotes of the day


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