Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Nobel Committee will not be getting back to him

One of the most striking characteristics of Post-Star managing editor Ken Tingley is his pomposity. One of the ways it most often manifests itself is his penchant for breaking his arm patting himself on the back. Take this most recent example.

His column opens:

We try to eliminate excuses with our election coverage.

That's how I see our mission here at The Post-Star. We want to eliminate every possible excuse that a citizen might have for not voting. From not knowing where the polling place is, to not knowing who is on the ballot, to not knowing what a candidate stands for.

Over the past few days, we hope we have provided all that information to our readers.

I can sense a Nobel Peace Prize nomination this year... no doubt Tingley will nominate himself. I just hope when they give him the winner's ribbon, the pin doesn't puncture his ego.

That they try to remedy a citizen's 'not knowing who is on the ballot' a farcical claim, since the paper's reporting virtually ignores the majority of candidates who will be on my ballot.

Tingley self-love fest adds: I often tell people that they cannot be a good citizen if they do not subscribe to the newspaper.

And I often tell people that they cannot be a good citizen if the newspaper is their ONLY news sources. Listen to NPR. Read Watch al-Jazeera English. Read regional blogs to get perspectives the corporate daily has no idea exists (or willfully ignores). Broaden your horizons beyond the extremely narrow focus of the local newspaper and the narrower focus of the wire services most of them rely upon.

Someone who relied on the Glens Falls daily as their sole news source would have little idea of all the candidates on the ballot for governor, would have no idea of all the candidates on the ballot for comptroller, attorney general and both US Senate races and even less idea what these candidates stand for. The rent may be too damn high but some candidates have an agenda broader than that.

People who relied solely on The Post-Star would know nothing about the serious candidates but would be greatly informed about Andrew Cuomo's love life and Carl Paladino's penchant for horse porn. Thanks Ken!

Oh wait, amidst the hundreds of articles on the corporate party candidates, the paper did do a real article (singular) on one of the smaller party candidates for governor: Howie Hawkins and his visit to Glens Falls.

Tingley's right. This IS their most in-depth election coverage ever!

Except it's a sad indictment of what Tingley and most of the media view as worthy of flowery self-congratulation.

Note: If you really want to learn about all the options, forget The Post-Star which is obviously uninterested in doing such legwork (gotta have room for horse porn and poll analyses!). Instead, check out this voter guide by the non-partisan and well-respected New York state League of Women Voters. It has information about ALL the candidates running for statewide office.

Update: I was listening to a wrap up on WAMC about the attorney general debate where the questioners were discussing the event. New York public radio’s Karen Dewitt said she was going to ask a question about hydrofracking but didn’t because they were running out of time and they’d promised to ask a question about Carl Paladino.

Here, you have one of the most respected reporters of state politics scrapping a question about a tremendously serious issue of public policy to a large chunk of the state in favor of one about tabloid personality politics. I think most voters would’ve rather had the serious question in the debate and been allowed to go to the
New York Post instead for the tabloid stuff.

1 comment:

MARQUIL said...

Oh, please. Mr. Tingley has difficulty constructing a simple sentence. Telling people they can't be a good citizen?? He really should consider going back to school. Hadley-Luzerne, perhaps?

And speaking of snark, Mr. Tingley's soaring rhetoric is thoroughly undermined by the words he puts in the mouth of his avatar Don Coyote. Here is just a sample of Coyote quotes from the past twelve (12!) days:

•"I can't wait for tomorrow. I'm dying to know who our next governor is going to be."
•"Maybe each election season, the candidates should give us all a bye week, like they have in the NFL. I could sure use one about now."
•"Honestly, no matter who wins the Congressional race, I doubt my life will change much."
•"I'm pretty sure that Bill Clinton's appearance at a Scott Murphy rally might hurt the local congressman more than help him."
•“I heard the Congressional debate at Queensbury High was kind of boring. They needed someone from the Rent is 2 Damn High Party.”
•"I wonder if candidates would stop running campaign ads if they knew we didn't believe any of them."

The message is unmistakable: Democracy? Why bother?

Sadly, it is the sneery little quotes that will be read more, and have a greater impact than the editor's self-fluffing column.