The New York Times Company has named Mark Thompson, the outgoing director general of the British Broadcasting Corporation, as its new president and chief executive.

So, the most powerful American news organization (most powerful because they are the Paper of Record of the US establishment, and because they drive so much TV news coverage) will now be headed by the outgoing chief of the most powerful UK news organization. Which makes sense, inasmuch as I am sure the newsrooms of both the BBC and the NYT are full of people who have culturally more in common with each other than they do with most of the people in their respective nations.

I learned about this from an American friend married to a Brit, so he’s not opposed in principle to transatlantic mergers. He says, “It is making something visible and tangible that we knew was happening, about the merging of trans-Atlantic elite culture, and it isn’t good.”