Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

UPDATED: Memo to journalistic colleagues, including self

Investigate this moron.

UPDATED: Memo to journalistic colleagues, including self

Investigate this moron.

UPDATE: You would be shocked, shocked to learn that the Rocky Mountain News --whose death is being celebrated here by Democratic U.S. Rep. Jared Polis -- endorsed Polis' opponent in last year's Democratic primary, and said some harsh things about the eventual winner Polis. They wrote:

Just in case the viewer failed to get the point, words flashed on the screen: "Jared Polis, Standing up to Big Oil."

It always gives us vertigo when a powerful man mimics Huey Long, so we checked Polis' Web site to see if he provided a more sophisticated analysis of Big Oil's sins. No such luck. The "TV ad fact sheet" there was just as simplistic.

As it happens, federal marshals could confiscate every penny of Big Oil's assets and not moderate prices at the pump, but never mind. When a populist is talking trash, nothing can slow him down.

We actually had hope for Polis' campaign given his obvious intelligence, attractive record as a entrepreneur and avid support for educational choice. But we should have foreseen trouble when he pretended last year that he had never backed the state's pilot school voucher program, though he clearly had. When he went to Iraq and started issuing feverish blog posts suggesting that contractors might "have me killed as an 'accident' if I published anything they didn't like," we knew he'd veered into a ditch.

Ironically, this whole exercise proves why we need more watchdogs -- both newfangled bloggers and also those old-school conventional journalists whose job loss and personal misery (disclosure: a friend and former Daily News colleague was one of the many who lost her job there last week) is of no concern to Jared Polis. Because there needs to be someone to point out that maybe his glee over the rise of new media is really just old-time, ugly and kind of pathetic personal schadenfreude over the death of a paper that didn't endorse him.

Unfortunately, the Denver Post, the only remaining daily paper in town, didn't mention Polis' personal history with the RMN, even though it took literally 30 seconds to find out on "The Google." Ironically, one of Polis' pet issues is ethics in government, but he's quite content to have one less set of eyeballs following up on that commitment, and on him. That's unethical.

Just by way of background, Polis' remarks do expose a schism that I've sensed evolving in liberal-land. Some progressives, especially since the mostly horrendous coverage of the run-up to the 2003 Iraq invasion, are so angry at the mainstream media that they are happy to see news orgs fail. Other liberals -- and bloggers like Philly's own Atrios have written frequently on this -- don't want the traditional media to fail, only for us to do our job better. Celebrating the death of the mainstream media is traditionally what conservatives do. Progressives should think long and hard before jumping on that bandwagon.

By the way, regulars here know I have a strict rule of not endorsing candidates. I might break that rule if this Will Shafroth guy runs again.

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