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Newspaper hypocrisy

Friday, Jul 31, 2009

[Sigh. Nevermind. Somehow - probably because they look so much alike - I mistakenly thought a Rockford editorial was from the Peoria paper. Oops. I apologize to both papers for the mixup and have taken down the shot. Sheesh.]

* On the other hand, the State Journal-Register editorializes today in favor of changing the campaign finance reform bill. One of the changes it supports is somewhat surprising

* Change a provision that appears to ban special interest groups’ political action committees from making any independent expenditures on behalf of or against candidates.

We’re no fan of many of these groups, but such a law could be an unconstitutional limitation on freedom of speech and expose the state to litigation. […]

The General Assembly has not been given enough credit for the yeoman’s work it did sifting through and analyzing Blagojevich’s transgressions and addressing them.

But the potential for corruption in the legislative branch still is great with the free flow of money allowed under the bill waiting for the governor’s signature. Legislators need to act to ensure their branch of government remains scandal free.

Hopefully, the paper will serve as an example to other newspapers [cough!Tribune!cough!] which have opposed parts of the Quinn Commission report yet slammed legislators for doing the very same thing.

…Adding… I forgot to mention that the News-Gazette has an editorial today which basically admits that it doesn’t know what to do about how U of I trustees should get their jobs…

Clearly, a change in the board’s structure is necessary. But there is no magic bullet.

That’s rare.

* Related…

* Chapman Misdiagnoses His “Problem Child”

* Illinois Lottery To Test DoJ’s Anti-Internet Gambling Resolve

* Quinn to Announce Budget Details Friday

* Quinn hints he will blunt some budget cuts

* Illinois Service Providers Waiting on Budget Details

* How much worse can it get?

* State budget woes make college aid scarce

* Chicago Public Schools fear state cuts will cost it $84 million

* Time to draw a map free of politics

* Transparency (and maybe some blogging) needed on the 3rd Appellate Court

* Southland legislators decline invite to talk about U of I admissions scandal

* Panel Investigating University of Illinois Admissions To Hold Final Meeting Friday

* UI admissions panel narrows in on recommendations

* Mikva says all U. of I. trustees should resign

* Mikva: U of I trustees should submit resignations

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - George - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:31 am:

    The problem for newspapers, and good news for us, is that very few people actually read their editorials anymore.

    Unless, of course, they splash them all over the front page [cough!Tribune!cough!] .

  2. - Master Plan - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:38 am:

    What time is PQ slated to make his budget piblic?

  3. - Coach - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:38 am:

    While much of the problem with newspaper editorial writers may be due to general sloppiness and laziness, I’d suspect that it’s also due to two factors resulting from the continuing implosion of the newspaper industry:

    1) Newspapers are losing people with institutional knowledge. And when I say people with institutional knowledge, I’m not talking about people who go back 15 or 20 years with an organization; I’m talking about people who go back 5 or 10 years. There just aren’t as many of these people around, thanks to buyouts, layoffs, etc.

    2) Everybody remaining within the dwindling newspaper organization is stretched very, very thin. Whereas you use to get a day to handle a particular assignment, now you get half a day or less because you have to deal with five other matters that you didn’t previously have to deal with. And if at the end of the day you produce copy that’s shorter in length or lighter on facts, well that’s just the way it goes.

    So, you’ve got people with less experience and less time - and way more stress - trying to do the same job. You’ll be seeing much, much more of this crappy reporting/editorializing from newspapers.

  4. - Master Plan - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:39 am:

    Oops public

  5. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:40 am:


    There’s a private press briefing at 2.

  6. - wordslinger - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:42 am:

    Everyone who participated in the Wonkette exercise knows how difficult if would be to balance this budget. Massive cuts and tax increases would have been necessary — and both are terrible things to do in a recession.

  7. - Master Plan - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:42 am:

    I caught that just as I hit the say it :)

  8. - Greg B. - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:44 am:

    Sometimes I think an unsigned editorial is license to commit journalistic fraud. I guess I could give them the benefit of the doubt and call it intellectual laziness or no pride in their efforts.

  9. - Reality Check - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:45 am:

    I believe the editorial you cite up top is in today’s Rockford paper, not Peoria. Which knowing the tendencies of each ed board makes more sense.

  10. - Typical - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 10:46 am:

    This isn’t surprising from the editorial board that in one breath once condemned Chicago area legislators’ member initiatives as pork, but in the next breath declared the member initiatives of Peoria area legislators as vital to local economic development.

  11. - Secret Square - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 11:13 am:

    I believe the Gatehouse Media newspapers — which include Rockford, Peoria, Springfield, Galesburg, and others — occasionally run one another’s editorials, which may also contribute to the confusion.

  12. - Secret Square - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 11:15 am:

    Actually, Word, the budget cutting exercise was at WonkISH… though a budget cutting exercise at Wonkette would be a lot funnier ;-)

  13. - lake county democrat - Friday, Jul 31, 09 @ 11:40 am:

    I don’t know if it’s as hypocritical as made out: the Tribune has slammed more than just the legislature opposing parts of the Quinn Commission report — they’ve slammed the entire secretive process. I voiced the same reservations about the Constitutionality of PAC limitations myself, but I 100% condemn the legislators for negotiating in secret and just voting on Mike Madigan-crafted alternatives (often bastardizations) of the proposals. Given a choice between the two, I’d have far prefered and up or down vote on the Commission proposals so the entire legislature could, at a minimum, go on the record and thus can’t argue (as they have to me) “I would have liked to have done more but this the best I could do, so I went with it”).

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