WND Removes Article Complaining About How New York Times Bestseller Lists Treat End-Times Author Jonathan Cahn

For some reason, WND has scrubbed an article complaining that End-Times prognosticator Jonathan Cahn has been unfairly neglected by the New York Times bestseller lists. The article was headlined “N.Y. Times shafts best-selling Christian author – again!”, and unusually for WND it did not include any byline.

Perhaps the author had second thoughts about the title after the likely etymology of “shaft” in the sense of “treat cruelly and unfairly” was brought to his or her attention (“overtones of sodomy”, according to the Online Etymology Dictionary), but that could have been amended without removing the whole piece.

Cahn himself did not contribute to the article – he “declined to be quoted”, according to its author, which is itself a bit odd: WND has heavily promoted Cahn and his work, including producing tie-in products, and he will be very soon be leading WND‘s third Israel tour alongside WND editor (and Donald Trump’s birther guru) Joseph Farah. Perhaps he (or his publisher, an imprint of Steve Strang’s Charisma House) didn’t want to risk antagonizing the New York Times, but he could have provided something vague and innocuous.

The article itself concerns Cahn’s new Book of Mysteries, which “consists of 365 stories of short revelations a fictional seeker of biblical wisdom receives on a spiritual one-year journey”. The NYT apparently is not clear whether it is a work of fiction or non-fiction, or a devotional, and so it is not appearing on the fiction list. In contrast, Publishers’ Weekly and the Wall Street Journal have both included it on their fiction lists.

Farah himself is quoted in the article:

Farah’s publishing company, WND Books, has produced the highest percentage of New York Times bestsellers of any publisher in the world over the last 15 years. About 10 percent of WND Books releases over that time period have made the grade.

“I’ve been studying the list for decades,” says Farah. “I worked with Hal Lindsey when the New York Times discovered his book sold more than any other book in the decade of the 1970s. I worked with other best-selling authors as a collaborator through the 1990s. And in 2001, I launched WND Books. So that’s nearly 40 years of experience with the New York Times best-sellers list.”

The problems started for the New York Times calculations when they didn’t measure sales in Christian bookstores, he says.

Farah is correct about Hal Lindsey, whose cold-war End Times The Late Great Planet Earth (famously described by James Barr as “a farrago of nonsense”) was indeed the USA’s best-selling book of the 1970s.

Works published by WND Books include a 2003 polemic entitled Journalistic Fraud: How The New York Times Distorts the News and Why It Can No Longer Be Trusted, and, more recentlyWhere’s the Birth Certificate?: The Case That Barack Obama Is Not Eligible to Be President.

3 Responses

  1. Thanks for this, Barth.

    Maybe it would be awkward to be endorsing Cahn so close to his disconfirmable prediction “100% Dollar Will Collapse on 27 September 2016 LAST WARNING To America”?

  2. Good catch. I was going to do my own piece on this odd article, but I’ll have to credit you now :-) I get the feeling that WND got so hung up on trying to bully the Times into putting Cahn in a more prominent place on its bestseller list that it rather aggressively made the point that Cahn writes fiction — not the designation a self-proclaimed biblical scholar and akin-to-prophet wants to have. My guess is that Cahn made WND pull the article for that reason.

  3. It seems the Cahn prophecy video has now also been removed. What someone would bother to remove it just three days short of the end of the world puzzles me.

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