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I was working for the New York Post when the first issue of the Sun came out in April 2002. A wag put up a "Sun Death-Watch" in the newsroom and almost everyone at the paper put in a wager as to the Sun's lease of life. Most bets hovered around the six-month mark. It was extraordinary that the Sun lasted so long in an economic climate so hostile to newspapers, especially a newspaper as deliberately and delightfully old-fashioned as the Sun.

The paper's founder and editor, Seth Lipsky, sought to revive the newspaper traditions of his childhood - he even ruled that his youthful staff had to wear suits and polished shoes - and to counter the influence of the New York Times, which often seems like the Pravda of bourgeois New York, instructing the residents of the Upper West Side as to acceptable opinion on all matters political and cultural.

As Herb London, president of the Hudson Institute, says, for many New York conservatives "the Sun became the real paper of record". Slim and lively, it was bracingly pro-American, pro-Israel, pro-Bush and pro-war and covered the UN with rare attention and scepticism. It became essential reading for New Yorkers who care about the murky politics of state and city government. It also won praise and non-conservative readers for its sports and arts pages. The latter were happily highbrow, with none of the Times's desperation to seem cool. Like the New York Observer in the 1990s, the Sun gave a platform to ambitious young journalists, many of whom were then hired by bigger, richer publications. In the meantime it lost $1.5 million a month and Lipsky had the misfortune of having to look for new financing just as disaster hit Wall Street.

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Steve Beaman
November 20th, 2008
9:11 PM
Mr. Foreman, are you the same Jonathan Foreman that hung out with the scout platoon in Iraq in 2003?

Glenn Horowitz
November 1st, 2008
3:11 PM
The key unasked question in Mr.Foreman's elegant piece is: when the crisis concludes, as all crisis' must, will the traditional high income jobs NYC depends upon return in abundance or will enterprises avail themselves, finally, of new technologies to do what humans once did? The downtown may provide the space and time to implement the promises new technology has long held out for efficiency and speed.

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