And then the Lee Enterprises puppet at the State Journal, editor John Smalley, has the nerve to go out and write a cop-out editorial saying their journalists should not sign recall petitions because "if journalists are not neutral, how can our audience expect us to present fair and unbiased stories about political matters?" Well Johnny, if your bosses aren't neutral and give to Republican candidates and order you to support Republican candidates in editorials, how can we expect you to allow your journalists to call it fair, espeically when inconvenient things come to light that make the corporate board's politicians look bad. You know, kind of like last month, when the State Journal had two of its NEWS reporters give the non-neutral OPINION that a video showing Scott Walker to be a liar on collective bargaining in the 2010 camapign was "underwhelming".
Let's also give "Mr. Short-Term Memory" prizes to the Green Bay Press-Gazette and Wausau Daily Herald, who first used the pathetic tactic of copying the same editorial that several of its Gannett brethren did, condemning staff for committing the political act of signing recall petition (gee, you wonder if they were told to run that?). And then they turned around this week with the Wisconsin primary and local elections approaching, and demanded that citizens get out and vote. Even better is the language they used in these editorials as to why people should get out and vote.
The GB Press-Gazette calls voting "a great equalizer in this country, the chance for us to decide who we want to conduct the business of public affairs," and that "we owe it to our neighbors" to show up to vote. But God forbid that workers at the Green Bay Press-Gazette take action to BE the great equalizer, decide that our politicians are acting indecently in conducting the business of public affairs, and sign a recall petition to avoid further injury to ourselves and our neighbors. THAT is just simply a step too far, and they should lay back and take it, accepting the breaking of the law and the breaking of the social contract that has helped make Wisconsin the great state that it is.
The Wausau Daily Herald tried a cute "reverse psychology" type of editorial, and included the following paragraph.
You don't have an interest in government transparency or responsiveness. It's really best if our public agencies make their decisions behind closed doors, where we can't see them. After all, they know best! For that matter, there's no difference, really, between a government that really pays attention to its constituents and works to accomplish goals and one that glides along, satisfied with the status quo. The best way to guard against transparency and responsiveness in government, of course, is just to stay home today.Oh, but when our government violates these goals of transparency and responsiveness, and acts in the interest of corporations and think tanks instead of the public that pays its salary, Wausau Daily Herald workers don't have the same right as other citizens to sign a recall petition and hold those politicians accountable, RIIIIGHT? Does that make any fucking sense at all?
Of course it doesn't, but in right-wing Wisconsin media consistency and decency and demanding standards of politicians is not something that their workers should take action on. That's a duty that only right-wing editors, talk show hosts and CEOs can do - the rest of the plebes should apparently sit quietly and know their place.
The hell with that. When it comes to the hypocrisy and one-sidedness of the Wisconsin corporate newspapers and their partners in talk radio, I quote what I watched this man say on the Capitol steps 13 months ago (and what you can see around 1:00).
WE HAVE HAD IT!