A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

What Are They Serving Up Down the Rabbit Hole?

Burke said there were Three Estates in Parliament; but, in the Reporters' Gallery yonder, there sat a Fourth Estate more important far than they all.  (Thomas Carlyle)

Over this first year of my blog's existence, I've come to realize that local pols can often spin to the media whatever stories they find politically useful. The local press -- namely the writers at The Independent and The Asbury Park Press -- are often like servers in an Army mess, standing by Cook's steaming vat of nondescript food, large spoons at the ready, ever prepared to dish out to their readers whatever Cook has produced for the day. I'm sorry. That's a company newsletter, not a newspaper, friends.

I bring this up because I failed to point out in my previous update that the APP Race to the Top article clearly cites Cook -- I mean Mr O'Malley -- speaking on behalf of both the school board and the teachers union. Does anyone else besides me feel that it isn't his role to present the teachers' position? To be sure, maybe the paper ran with information he provided for background as a courtesy and he's just as surprised as I am that he is cited this way by APP?

The "glass half full" argument would be that the local media is only seeking to present alternate perspectives.  But isn't it a no-brainer that journalists shouldn't cite one public official on both sides of any story?  (Don' t make me dig out that graphic I handmade a few weeks ago of the Slippery Slope.)

Our local school students may somehow get to the top despite all the bickering and scheming, but the race to good journalism long ago headed down the rabbit hole around here.


Post a Comment