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But he didn't have anything, or very little to do with the origin, getting the idea of the
Op-Ed page into the New York Times.
Let me ask you one more question about your relationship with him. How regularly did
you meet, and how did you supervise him? What were you like? What kind of authority did
you have? Was it a creative authority as well as a kind of do-not-do-this authority?
Well, I think it was a creative authority, yes.
Could you describe what it was like?
Well, it's very hard for me to put that into words. Now we did not as I recall it -- I
don't think we had any regular set meetings. I certainly saw him and talked to him initially
every day. But I'm not the kind of person to lay down the law. That's not my style. Nor was it
in running the editorial page for nearly 16 years. My discussions with Harrison were very
frequent, though we didn't have a specific hour to meet every day. We certainly didn't do that
-- Mostly, I think it was done by frequent memos and more or less informal conversations.
I would discuss whatever was coming up and we'd work out an agreement as to how it would
be done. The difference with Harrison was that Harrison would rarely initiate such a
discussion with me. He very much was the kind of person who went off on his own and if
there were things that I objected to, usually they would be post facto. He certainly --
nominally -- recognized that I was the man in charge, but he also knew he was Punch's
appointee. He ran the page to the greatest degree possible on his own without subjecting
himself to my authority, while never denying it.
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