Earlier in my career I took over as the editor of a Jewish newspaper, and among the changes I’d made were moving the editorial page to the right politically and expanding the paper’s coverage of national-security issues and the arts. I was asked, at one point, how to describe the paper’s new approach; my response was something along the lines of: COMMENTARY, but as a weekly newspaper. Which should tell you how thrilled I was, a few years later, to come to work for the real deal, and how bittersweet it is to leave COMMENTARY four years after arriving.
Coming to work for COMMENTARY was a homecoming, both literally and figuratively. Literally, because I had been living in Washington D.C. and returned to my old uptown Manhattan neighborhood of Washington Heights (and then to New Jersey, where I grew up). Figuratively, because for a Jewish conservative COMMENTARY was the matzah ball soup of your intellectual diet. To feel ideologically and religiously at home is a great gift, and one I hope I never took for granted over the past four years.
To say that a workplace environment is like a family has become a cliché, but in this case it’s true: my wife Bethany and I were hired by COMMENTARY together. But that aside, the point remains true, and that is a testament to the honor and the privilege of working for John Podhoretz. The good news for me is that I will be taking over as the opinion page editor of the New York Post, which means I’ll still be working with John.
Probably the most common question I get about working at COMMENTARY is: How does Jonathan Tobin write so much, and so well, and so often, every day? To work with Jonathan every day on the COMMENTARY blog has been immensely educational, though I remain no less in awe of his output for having worked alongside him.
And I can only hope that now that I won’t be able to stroll down the hall to Abe Greenwald’s office to get his take on events, he’ll write even more than he already does. I remain a fan of everyone here, and all our COMMENTARY contributors as well, and I’m thankful to all our readers for keeping our mission going.
I’m grateful to COMMENTARY, and I’m excited to be joining the Post, another storied institution of the media landscape in the very best city in America.