I have yet to meet this new publisher of our Union Newspaper but he seems to me to be an OK guy. I have not heard any bad stuff about him except in one local radical lefty blog. So I have kept a low profile about the paper and the staff at the Union so far. I usually don't complain about the paper and I have both a subscription to the hard copy and the Internet. I believe we have to support our local paper so we don't see them go the way of "Newsweek" and other publications.
Today Mr. Hemig did a "opinion" piece of the difference between "bloggers" and "journalists". HERE is the article. I have to admit I thought it was a pretty defensive piece and he was making the case for his profession fairly well. But, having been on the front page many times in my past life as a County Supervisor and Founder and CEO of CABPRO, I would debate some of his points. I know he has only been here a short while so we cannot hold his feet to the fire yet about the "fairness" of the reporting. Or the veracity of articles. But hell, I have an opinion!
Hemig made some blanket statements about bloggers that seemed to me fairly accurate. Sure we start our blogs because we want to bloviate our personal opinions out into the ether. Most of us are very opinionated. We are not afraid to speak our minds and most of us are man enough to take the arrows of criticism. But some are not. I put up with many personal attacks from Union personnel when I was a County Supervisor then CABPRO rep. Most of the time I was never given a chance to defend myself and when I sent "press releases" to clarify a story the paper would never run them. So, I had to take it and I did. Eventually, editors who could care less about telling the truth about me were given their walking papers and went to do their personal dirty business in other poor communities. Too bad for them.
When I had a radio show at KNCO for four years we had call ins and of course, the community being what it is politically, I had many spirited discussions with liberals. I found that they were not as willing to listen or to debate and were always trying to shut me up and get me booted. (just like they did to Rush) I found this strange since liberals always tell us they are so "enlightened" and should always support "free speech" no matter what. Well, just another liberal lie. Here in our community we have seen the rise of blogs of which mine is one. We did it out of necessity some say.
A few local blog sites are what I would call "unwilling" to debate. They usually moderate those that disagree. They boot contra points of view. I too moderate but only people using derogatory personal languor. I do allow parody and sarcasm though. The piece by Hemig of the Union gave me a bit of pause. I understand he says they are fair and try to get other viewpoints and perhaps he truly believes that. But, like my blog, I see the Union picks and chooses their stories and does the obligatory articles from AP to make the space get filled. Of course they have a daily paper with many stories and I just post one or two a week so just on its face, filling the pages of the paper is difficult. But still, I read articles on things like "global warming" and "SYRCL" positions and others that never have the other side asked for their input. AP has come to be called AP Obama because they are so biased and when they do an article I sometimes get really upset about their bias. The Union should get other input on many of the articles.
But we all know there is a local fellow, a person who was once a Editor at the paper, who has a big chip on his shoulder since he was shown the door a few years ago. That blogger thinks he is a "purple", nonaligned non partisan and tells us that all that all the time. But he isn't and we all know it. It would be like me telling people on am a liberal when they all know I am a conservative. Anyway, that blogger can't shake the fact that he was shown the door and we have read his relentless diatribes against the Union, Jeff Ackerman (former publisher) and the others in charge. On and on this fellow drones about the paper and the people there. I have run into a few folks that worked there when this blogger was there and all are happy he was shown the door. Attitude and respect. If you have both in the "good" column, you can survive in a small town. If you treat all here as this blogger fellow does, you become disliked, and bitter.
Hemig must be getting sick of this blogger guy but my advice is simple. Don't read him, read the "Ladies Home Journal" instead. (besides he has just a few viewers) Why give any time to a hapless bitter wise-ass? So, don't fret Hemig, as one person who had to read all about myself for so many years, mostly all in the negative, I can tell you don't let anyone occupy any space in your noggin. Especially if it is a negative person. Daffodils and strawberry milkshakes man. Toughen up. Bloggers like me thrive on storytelling.