Look, I don't
want to take anything from Rudy Giuliani. The Fall of 2001 has been his finest hour. Actually, hold on. I'll take a bit away from him: I hear that for the last month or so he's been completely checked out on his job and has been focusing on lining up gigs for his post-mayoralty consulting gig. But I'm not gonna give him a hard time over that. His performance in the midst of tragedy will go down in history, and his mayoralty - though certainly a more mixed picture - seems unquestionably historic.
But Time's decision to make Giuliani its Person of the Year represents a colossal failure of nerve and honesty. And it may even be a small sign of the baleful effects of media industry conglomeration.
Time's self-described criteria for the designation is "the one person on Earth who has had the biggest effect on history throughout the year -- for better or worse."
Can anybody say with a straight face that that person is Rudy Giuliani and not Osama bin Laden?