When I read that the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette was refusing to endorse a candidate in the Presidential election, opting instead to publish a “voting guide” that is absurdly biased and inaccurate, I was swallowing bile while trying to find the words to explain the situation to Lecat.
The jokes and the hideous screams of outrage just made themselves.
John Robinson Block is the new Richard Mellon Scaife, just with less money and less integrity. The Post-Gazette is now obviously his pet project instead of a credible media outlet. And he doesn’t give a fuck what we think. Or what his actual editors think. He’s a Trump acolyte and has swallowed the Apprentice kool-aid, a beverage made with rich white people water versus that nasty poor folks tap water.
The obvious “Fonzie jumps the shark” analogy. But that happened years ago, probably when Fonzie was still a culturally relevant analogy.
The fact that the editorial board is made up entirely of men
- John Robinson Block, publisher and editor-in-chief
- David M. Shribman, executive editor and vice president
- John Allison, editorial page editor
- Tony Norman, associate editor
- Dan Simpson, associate editor
- Joe Smydo, associate editor
Note – Susan L. Smith is the managing editor, but not on the editorial board.
One consequence is that this impacts the credibility of the board members actually doing reporting, especially Norman and Smydo. Joe Smydo has historically done excellent, hard-nosed and compassionate reporting on mental health in this region. I refer people to him because I trust his professionalism and integrity. So now what do I do given this simple sentence that carries his credibility?
For some Americans the choice is between a crook and a nut.
Hillary Clinton is not a crook, so that is a blatant lie. And Trump is the nut. When did this sort of innuendo and slur-language become fodder for an editorial?
So in reality, Tony and Joe and everyone else had zero input into this editorial. It was bought and paid for by the publisher. He’s responsible for what he’s done to this paper. He’s the sycophant who outlived Scaife. Hurrah. We aren’t fooled, Mr. Block. You are a genuine jagoff and a terrible human being. But you also don’t care what lesbians or women or people with disabilities think.
Rest assured, the Post-Gazette will continue to get my subscription fees because I value local news even knowing I have to filter out the publisher’s bias. I’m not going to fill anyone’s voicemail or email with outrage over something that they simply can’t control. They have a boss and he calls the shots. Media is not the fourth estate, no matter what Aaron Sorkin wants us to believe. It is an industry and all we can hope for is that reporters like Joe Smydo continue to do the necessary work even while shouldering the burden and corporate obligations of his editorial role.
Now I’m going to read the other 14 pages of the PG Sunday edition and get on with my day.
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