Archive for December, 2006

No, I’m not talking about Brad Childress. I’m talking about Glen Mason. Here’s what the Strib’s Chip Scroggins is reporting:

One year after signing a five-year contract, Gophers football coach Glen Mason was fired Sunday. The move comes after Mason’s 10th season and two days after the Gophers blew a 31-point lead against Texas Tech in a 44-41 loss in the Insight Bowl. It was the largest collapse in bowl game history.

Mason’s firing is a complete surprise to me. Frankly, this firing totally blindsided me. I don’t know if Minnesota AD Joel Maturi has a plan at this juncture. Frankly, I’m not confident in Maturi’s decision-making abilities, especially after seeing him fumble the Dan Monson travesty. If I were Bob Bruininks, I’d fire Maturi & start from scratch.

Glen Mason fielded some fun teams but they never got over the hump. His defenses were porous & his offenses were panicky at all the wrong times. On the plus side, Mason did recruit some awfully talented runners, including the Patriots’ Laurence Maroney and the Cowboys’ Marion Barber III.

While the running game was the positive Mason trademark, fourth quarter collapses were the negative downside. Avid Gophers’ fans were heartbroken when the Gophers squandered a big halftime lead against Michigan in 2003. That Gopher team lost 38-35 because they gave up 31 points in the fourth quarter. Remember that this was a game where the Gophers running game was hitting on all cylinders, ripping a talented Michigan defense for 424 yards rushing in just 53 carries, an 8 yard per carry average.

This past Friday night, Mason’s Gophers ran up a 35-7 halftime lead, only to lose 44-41 in overtime, giving up 24 fourth quarter points. A veteran team with a senior QB and a talented pair of running backs shouldn’t lose after getting that big of a lead.

In my opinion, it’s time to clean house within the Gophers’ athletic department. Mason isn’t a bad coach but his teams definitely underachieved based on the talent he had.

Technorati: , , ,

Michigan’s hyperpartisan representative John Conyers has admitted that he “possibly violating House rules by requiring his official staff to perform campaign-related work, according to a statement quietly released by the House ethics committee late Friday evening”, according to this Hill Magazine article.

The top Republican and Democratic members on the ethics panel, Reps. Doc Hastings (R-WA) and Howard Berman (D-CA), said in a statement that Conyers acknowledged a “lack of clarity” in communicating what was expected of his official staff and that he accepted responsibility for his actions.

“[Conyers] agreed to take a number of additional, significant steps to ensure that his office complies with all rules and standards regarding campaign and personal work by congressional staff,” they stated. “We have concluded that this matter should be resolved through the issuance of this public statement.”

Regardless of the “additional, significant steps” taken, this is proof of the Democrats’ own culture of corruption. It smacks me as hypocritical if further steps aren’t taken by incoming Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Whether she realized it or not, she set the bar by bypassing Alcee Hastings because he was impeached by a Democratic House and convicted by a Democratic Senate. How can Conyers chair the House Judiciary Committee in light of his admitting his unethical behavior?

I’d further suggest that the Ethics Committee’s work isn’t finished, contrary to their statement saying that “We have concluded that this matter should be resolved through the issuance of this public statement.” Issuing a public statement and putting in place some undisclosed “additional, significant steps” isn’t nearly good enough. This behavior isn’t nothing. Instead, it’s rather disturbing. Conyers’ actions were deliberate and they were repetitious in nature.

This is an early test of Ms. Pelosi’s veracity, too. She’s already letting John Murtha, one of CREW’s most corrupt Washington politicians chair the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. If she’s willing to let a corrupt person like John Conyers chair one of the most powerful House committees, how can we take her seriously when she says that she’ll run the most honest, ethical, and open Congress in history? That a nice soundbite but it isn’t based in reality, at least based on the facts I’ve presented thus far.

The finding by the ethics panel could spark debate, and perhaps eclipse, the first week of the incoming-Democratic majority’s plans to change the House ethics rules, as well as raise questions about Conyers’ standing to chair the Judiciary Committee.

Ms. Pelosi isn’t the only person on the hot seat over this issue. If the editors at the Washington Post, the NY Times and the LA Times don’t give this serious coverage, then we’ll have additional proof that these media outlets aren’t serious about reporting important facts about Democratic corruption. This wouldn’t be shocking but it is more ammunition that the major media outlets aren’t serious, reliable news-gathering outlets.

A spokesman for Incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said Conyers will remain chairman of the Judiciary Committee.

The Hill is a respected Capitol Hill magazine. They generally employ trustworthy reporters. Let’s see how the ‘Big Three’ newspapers react to the Hill’s article. Let’s see if they take Ms. Pelosi to task for keeping Conyers as Judiciary Committee Chairman. Let’s see if the major media outlets will start questioning Pelosi’s ability to lead. Let’s see if they start questioning her judgment. Based on the decisions she’s made thus far, it’s safe to say that she’s a walking disaster for the Democratic Party. She’s giving Republicans a ton of ammunition to campaign on already and she hasn’t even been sworn in yet.

The Hill reported last March that two former Conyers’ aides alleged that he repeatedly violated House ethics rules by requiring aides to work on local and state
campaigns, and babysit and chauffeur his children. Deanna Maher, a former deputy chief of staff in the Detroit office, and Sydney Rooks, a former legal counsel in his district office, shared numerous letters, memos, e-mails, handwritten notes and expense reports with The Hill.

It’s obvious that Conyers knowingly and repeatedly violated House ethics guidelines. I don’t see why a slap on the wrist is in order for such a willing disregard for the House ethics rules. What’s more alarming is that Conyers is the clown that’s all bent out of shape over President Bush’s infamous Sixteen Words, claiming that that sentence, combined with the Downing Street Memos, constitute grounds for impeachment.

Let’s also remember this bit of Conyers history:

Working with Conyers, the Ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, Democrats have introduced legislation to end racial profiling, limit the reach of the Patriot Act, and make immigration safe and accessible. Leader Pelosi is a proud cosponsor of the End Racial Profiling Act, the Security and Freedom Ensured Act (SAFE), and the Safe, Orderly, and Legal Visas Enforcement Act (SOLVE).

In other words, John Conyers has a history of caving into his Muslim constituents by attempting to gut the USA Patriot Act. That official statement was made prior to the Democratic National Convention in July, 2004. If you think that’s ancient history, think again:

Turns out among those attending their conference was Rep.-elect Keith Ellison, (D-MN), who will be the first Muslim sworn into Congress (with his hand on the Quran). Two days earlier, Ellison, an African-American convert who wants to criminalize Muslim profiling, spoke at a fundraiser for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Muslim-rights group that wasted no time condemning US Airways for “prejudice and ignorance.” CAIR wants congressional hearings to investigate other incidents of “flying while Muslim.” Incoming Judiciary Chairman John Conyers, (D-MI), has already drafted a resolution, borrowing from CAIR rhetoric, that gives Muslims special civil-rights protections.

Part of this legislation is to make racial profiling illegal, thereby gutting the USA Patriot Act.

Technorati: , , , , , , , ,

Cross-posted at California Conservative

Yesterday, Michael Broadkorb of Minnesota Democrats Exposed (MDE) and my good friend King Banaian of SCSUScholars went through their year end observations. The show’s most hilarious segments were about Michael being named The “worst political person” in the state. Michael received that badge of honor from this lefty blog. When King & Michael started joking about the ‘award’, I decided to call in & join the fun.

I posed the question to them about why Noah Kunin & Tara McGuiness shouldn’t share that honor? After all, Mr. Kunin is the hacker who needed 18 tries before gaining access to Scott Howell’s password-protected website. After hacking into Howell’s confidential website, Kunin passed the information to Tara McGuiness, who viewed a previously unreleased Kennedy ad.

My point is this: Michael is vilified for telling the truth about liberals & moonbats. Mr. Kunin didn’t make the top 10 even though he’s the subject of a full FBI investigation. This should tell you everything you need to know about moonbats’ moral compass. It should tell you that they don’t have one.

Before anyone says that this is about the 10 worst Republicans, I’d like to quote from the article itself:

With apologies to Keith Olbermann, I am going to embark on my own personal end of the year list of the “worst” persons in Minnesota Politics.

I’d point out that it doesn’t say Republicans. I’m sure that some liberals hate me for being a literalist but that’s who I am. To them, I simply say “GET OVER IT!!!” I’d further point out that neither Hubert Humphrey or Paul Wellstone would tolerate criminal activity such as this regardless of the goal. They’d run Mr. Kunin out of politics by hauling them to jail. I’m certain that they’d do it without thinking about it, too.

When a writer thinks that a criminal shouldn’t be part of the worst people in politics but a man who tells the truth does, something’s seriously wrong. I’d submit that this writer should check himself in for a serious moral examination. It’s one thing to be partisan; it’s another to be so partisan that you excuse anything. Shame on Mr. Mindeman for such questionable judgment.

Technorati: , , ,

I decided to read the original blogpost announcing that MDE’s Michael Broadkorb is the “worst” person in Minnesota Politics. I know that this story isn’t new anymore but something was gnawing at me. What I found was one of the most factually inaccurate accumulations of information I’ve ever seen. Here’s the first inaccuracy:

It has gotten so out of hand, that Mary Kiffmeyer invites Brodkorb to a transition meeting with newly elected Mark Ritchie….for purposes only apparent to Kiffmeyer herself…. but we know Brodkorb’s agenda is to simply “hatchet” another Democrat.

Anyone listening to yesterday’s Final Word found out that Mary Kiffmeyer didn’t invite Broadkorb. It might seem like a trivial detail but one of her staffers invited Michael.

Michael’s explanation made it rather apparent why he was invited.

Mark Ritchie ran a slash & burn campaign, going so far as calling Ms. Kiffmeyer “the most partisan Secretary of State in Minnesota history”, a storyline echoed by every DFL activist. Kiffmeyer’s people simply wanted someone there to make sure that Ritchie didn’t try pulling any stunts after the meeting. They didn’t want him marching out of the meeting & saying that Ms. Kiffmeyer was being a partisan. Anyone reading Michael’s post on the meeting knows that it was scheduled to last an hour but that it lasted only 18 minutes. They’d also have read that Michael thought Ritchie looked “unprepared” for the meeting. It isn’t unreasonable to think that Ritchie wasn’t there for a serious transition meeting but to make some harsh accusations against her.

I’d question why you’d schedule a meeting if it only lasts 18 minutes. You could handle that amount of information via faxes or emails.

Mr. Mindeman thinks of Michael’s attendance as part of Michael’s ongoing “hatchet job”. There was a time when candidates were honorable enough to not need an observer. It’s apparent that that point is lost on Mr. Mindeman. Instead, Michael is portrayed as the villain. It doesn’t dawn on him that Mr. Ritchie is the villain. This brings me to the next fallacy:

But Brodkorb envisions himself as some kind of “investigative” reporter…. with little or no regard for both sides of the issue and even less for factual content.

Mr. Mindeman’s hyperpartisanship won’t allow him to admit that Michael’s digging into Matt Entenza’s hiring of an opposition research company to spy on Mike Hatch is investigative reporting. Mr. Mindeman refuses to admit that Michael broke that story over a year before the Agenda Media picked it up.

Isn’t it ironic that that’s more investigative reporting than the Strib did on Democratic candidates during this entire election cycle?

Michael also broke the story exposing Denise Dittrich’s scandal, whereby Dittrich used her legislative office to dramatically increase the value of property she owned next to the LRT line in downtown Minneapolis. Are we to think that Mindeman opposes exposing that type of corruption? Or just that Michael doesn’t deserve credit for reporting it?

I’d further take issue with Mindeman’s statement that Michael has “little or no regard for both sides of the issue and even less for factual content.” Clearly, Mr. Mindeman is upset that Michael is only exposing Democratic corruption. Michael’s reporting is the conservative counterbalance to the Strib being the DFL’s investigative tool. Notice that Mr. Mindeman doesn’t think that that’s relevant in this discussion. His argument seems to suggest that there’s more than one side to a scandal.

  • How many sides need to be presented to know that Dittrich abused her power?
  • How many sides need to be presented to know that Mr. Ritchie was up to no good?
  • How many sides need to be presented before we know that Matt Entenza is corrupt?

Finally, I can’t let this section go:

Blogs used to be a genuine discussion of events and positions; they admittedly have slanted points of view, but that’s usually not hidden from the reader; they editorialize but don’t pretend to be giving “hard” news….however, thanks to Brodkorb, blogs are rapidly becoming just another arm of political campaigns…

Is Mr. Mindeman suggesting that Michael’s agenda is hidden when he writes “they admittedly have slanted points of view, but that’s usually not hidden from the reader”? I’d suggest that Mr. Mindeman take a look at the title of Michael’s blog. It’s called Minnesota Democrats Exposed. What does Mr. Mindeman find mysterious or sinister about Michael’s reporting? What part of “Minnesota Democrats Exposed” doesn’t Mr. Mindeman understand? Is Mr. Mindeman the only person who thinks that Michael’s agenda is hidden? Surely, Mr. Mindeman can’t be serious in thinking that Michael’s agenda is hidden from anyone with a 4th grade education or higher.

I’d further suggest that the examples I’ve cited are hard news stories worthy of major media coverage. Does Mr. Mindeman want to argue that exposing Democrat’s corruptions isn’t newsworthy? I’d love having that debate with him.

When all the dust settles, it’s apparent that Mr. Mindeman is the political hatchet man, not Michael. The biggest difference between Michael & Mr. Mindeman is that Michael has a genuine following of thinking people…

Let’s remember that this doesn’t even include Michael’s reporting the Noah Kunin/Tara McGuinness scandal. More on that in an upcoming post.

UPDATE: Welcome MDE readers!!! I’ve posted something on who I think should be named the Worst Person in Minnesota Politics. I think any rational person would agree with me, not Mr. Mindeman.

Technorati: , , , ,

From time to time, I check my usage details to see who’s reading my blog and to find out who’s referring people to LFR. First, let me offer a little background. One of the regular blogs that refers people is They pick out the top stories of the day, then accumulate different bloggers posts on the top stories.

The hands down winner of today’s top story is the Saddam execution to nobody’s surprise. One of the blogs listed was The Wide Awake Cafe. I’d heard of Wide Awake before but I hadn’t checked them out before. My mistake. After scrolling through Wide Awake’s posts, I realize that I need to make them part of my daily blog reading list and I strongly recommend them to LFR’s readers. Based on what I read, I’m certain that you won’t be disappointed for checking them out.

Technorati: , ,

Readers who’ve visited LFR for any amount of time know that I’m a big fan of Ralph Peters. After reading his NY Post op-ed on Saddam’s execution, I can proudly recommend that you read his entire op-ed. Here’s two of my favorite paragraphs:

Everything changed in 2003. For all of its later errors in Iraq, the Bush administration altered the course of history for the better.

It may be hard to discern the deeper meaning of our march to Baghdad amid the chaos afflicting Iraq today, but President Bush got a great thing right: He recognized that the age of dictators was ending, that the era of the popular will had arrived. He and his advisers may have underestimated the difficulties involved and misread the nature of that popular will, but they put us back on the moral side of history.

Ralph Peters isn’t a Bush apologist but he’s an honest man who calls things as he sees them. He’s right that President Bush put us on the morally right side of history by vanquishing a tyrant like Saddam. That’s why I believe history will regard George W. Bush’s accomplishments as historic. I’d doubt that they’ll consider him a great president on a par with Jefferson, Lincoln, FDR & Reagan but I’ll guarantee that they won’t be able to ignore his liberating 50 million Afghani and Iraqi people within months of each other.

They won’t be able to ignore the thugs that those wars uprooted and killed. They won’t be able to ignore the images that those wars produced, the ink-stained fingers of the first legitimate Iraqi elections held just 23 months ago to the day of Saddam’s execution. They won’t be able to ignore the video of a Saddam being lifted out of that infamous spiderhole north of Tikrit that made him look little. Defense Secretary Rumsfeld said:

“Here was a man who was photographed hundreds of times shooting off rifles and showing how tough he was, and in fact, he wasn’t very tough, he was cowering in a hole in the ground, and had a pistol and didn’t use it and certainly did not put up any fight at all,” Rumsfeld said. “In the last analysis, he seemed not terribly brave,” he said.

They won’t be able to ignore the fear the attack on Iraq had on Qaddafi, either, even though John Kerry tried trivializing it.

Here’s another great section of Col. Peter’s op-ed:

Supported by other English-speaking democracies, Bush acted. Breaking Europe’s cynical rules, our forces invaded a dictatorship to liberate its population. And suddenly, the world was no longer safe for tyrants. No matter the policy failures in the wake of Baghdad’s fall, the destruction of Saddam’s regime remains a historical turning point. When our troops later dragged the dictator out of a fetid hole, every other president-for-life shivered at the image.

What wonderful, vivid imagery Col. Peters evokes with his writing. Unfortunately, not all “presidents-for-life” learn from other’s lessons. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad shows no signs of worrying about meeting the same fate that Saddam met this morning. How sweet it would be to see Old Mahmoud meet the same fate as Saddam.

Technorati: , , , ,

Cross-posted at California Conservative

That’s the official videographer’s account of Saddam moments before the “Butcher of Baghdad’s” demise.

Ali Al Massedy was 3 feet away from Saddam Hussein when he died. The 38 year old, normally Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s official videographer, was the man responsible for filming the late dictator’s execution at dawn on Saturday. “I saw fear, he was afraid,” Ali told NEWSWEEK minutes after returning from the execution. Wearing a rumpled green suit and holding a Sony HDTV video camera in his right hand, Ali recalled the dictator’s last moments. “He was saying things about injustice, about resistance, about how these guys are terrorists,” he says. On the way to the gallows, according to Ali, “Saddam said, ‘Iraq without me is nothing.’”

As I said moments after the news broke, Good riddance!!! I agree with Captain Ed that this will be a big thing inside Iraq because it eliminates any illogical hope that the Ba’athists had of regaining control. This will also give a little morale boost to the Coalition forces but it’s unlikely that it’ll be more than temporary.

What’s striking to me is that Saddam went out with a wimper, not with the roar of a lion. For all his bluster over the years, images of his capture and his execution will portray him as a little man when removed from the mechanisms of destructions that he fashioned to bully people. Remember how timid he looked coming out of the spider hole. Here’s what Defense Secretary Don Rumsfeld said about Saddam’s capture:

“Here was a man who was photographed hundreds of times shooting off rifles and showing how tough he was, and in fact, he wasn’t very tough, he was cowering in a hole in the ground, and had a pistol and didn’t use it and certainly did not put up any fight at all,” Rumsfeld said. “In the last analysis, he seemed not terribly brave,” he said.

Based on the videographer’s quotes, I’d say that those quotes would fit Saddam’s execution perfectly. At the time of his capture, he seemed anything but the Supreme Iraqi ruler. He looked more like a man who wanted his mommie. I have a hunch that that’s how Uday and Qusay felt when they realized that they were trapped and about to die. Let’s hope that that image is played throughout the region. Let’s hope that the image of a powerless Saddam gives the region the same type of boost as the raised purple finger did 2 years ago. What a great New Year’s gift that would be.

Technorati: , , ,

Cross-posted at California Conservative

Saddam was hanged just minutes ago according to this article:

U.S.-backed Iraqi television station Al Hurra said Saddam Hussein had been executed by hanging shortly before 6 a.m. (0300 GMT) on Saturday.

The former Iraqi president ousted in April 2003 by a U.S.- led invasion was convicted in November of crimes against humanity over the killings of 148 Shi’ite villagers from Dujail after a failed assassination bid in 1982.

An appeals court upheld the death penalty on Tuesday. Iraq’s government has kept details of its plans to conduct the execution completely secret amid concerns it could spark a violent backlash from his former supporters.

Good riddance.

Technorati: ,

Cross-posted at California Conservative

I just got an email from a close friend who has been digging into the Pendleton 8 scandal. Tim will be appearing on Kit Jarrell’s show Friday night. I strongly recommend everyone tune it in. Here’s what’s going on:

BREAKING: Radio Interview about the Pendleton 8

This information was just posted on Free Republic. This is a ‘heads up’ so you can make plans to listen and alert others to listen………

Don O’Nesky

Radio Interview about the Pendleton 8.

December 29: Coverups and Corruption
Written by Kit Jarrell 23 December 2006

Listen at 10 PM on Friday, 12-29-06…….

It’s my first show on BlogTalkRadio, and it’ll be absolute, MUST-listen radio! If you’ve followed the saga of the Pendleton 8 cover-up at Euphoric Reality, then you’re well aware of the lengths that certain folks have gone to in order to keep their dirty little secrets buried. But no more. We’re hitting the public.

The story we’re telling is beyond important, because it goes to the heart of the problem in the War on Terror: Our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines are being offered as sacrificial lambs for the political gain of those in power.

Do I agree with the War on Terror? Absolutely. I support the mission. However, the military justice system is broken. Instead of being a system for justice and integrity, a place where the innocent are exonerated and the guilty punished, it has become a place where the end is known before the first witness is called; the winners are the generals and admirals and attorneys.

The losers are the men who go out day after day and hold their fire when they’re shot at for fear that they will be charged with murder. Just in case you still don’t think what I’m talking about is really happening, allow me to tell you a story.

In 1990, the executive officer of the USS Mars was court-martialed and convicted of dereliction of duty. It was just another court-martial, another win to chalk up for military prosecutors–who have a 97% conviction rate. But this case was different. Even the prosecutor is on sworn record as saying there was not enough evidence for conviction.

We have hard copy proof of the following: The admiral who started the investigation against the XO not only ignored all evidence proving the XO innocent, but he actively engaged in unethical conduct throughout the investigation, Article 32, and trial.

In fact, this admiral named himself as the convening authority for the case and handpicked the jury from his own staff. The admiral’s Staff Judge Advocate, contrary to ethics and military law, continued to advise the admiral in secret throughout the case, even though he was the accuser against the XO. In one memo, he assures the admiral that “there is no copy of this memo” on his computer or in his office.

The Staff Judge Advocate also complained about the prosecutor on the case, claiming that he didn’t want to “win” bad enough. The defense attorney forged the XO’s name to an official Response to the Letter of Reprimand after the court-martial. The XO never even knew this document existed for years after, and yet the Navy maintains that the XO’s signature is real and that the document is a true and legal one. A handwriting expert, however, says that’s not true.

The NCIS is involved, as well, doing the bidding of those who stand to be embarrassed by the information coming out. Last year four NCIS agents showed up at the XO’s residence. The armed agents told him to leave the situation alone, to stop making waves or they’d have him arrested by the county sheriff. In the last few weeks, the Department of Homeland Security have been to the XO’s residence six times.

What does all this have to do with cases like the Pendleton 8? I’ll give you a hint. The head NCIS agent outside the XO’s home that day last year just happens to be the same man in charge of the investigation of the Pendleton 8.

This story has it all: lies, betrayal, treachery, and dishonor. I’ll be talking about it on the 29th, live. I will have Tim Harrington from the Warrior Fund with me, going over the piles of evidence implicating everyone from the former head of Combat Logistics Group One, all the way to members of the current Congress. And, we’ll be taking your calls.

This is not a show you can afford to miss…but if you do, the archive will be available both as streaming and download on BlogTalkRadio and at Euphoric Reality.

Stay tuned…this is about to be a hell of a ride.

Listen at 10PM on 12-29-06…….

Knowing Tim like I do, I strongly recommend everyone tune into Friday night’s show. Tim’s one of those guys with immediate command of the facts. Lots of facts pertinent to these cases.

If you care about justice, then this is a radio program that you must tune in.

UPDATE: I just got an update from Kit Jarrell on how to participate in the program, which I strongly recommend. Here’s the relevant portion of Kit’s email:

Go to and click the huge listen live button that shows up while I’m on the air. This is the easiest. No registration needed, that I’m aware of.

If listeners would like to call in, the number is 646-915-9926, and I will let folks know when we’re taking calls. If listeners would like to email me a question or comment, the email address is

After the show, the podcast version will be available for streaming or download for free, also with no registration. They can stream it at:

which will automatically begin playing the latest show. They can download the podcast by visiting Euphoric Reality or by going to blogtalkradio.

Technorati: , , ,

Cross-posted at California Conservative

That’s just one of the multitude of laments in Nick Coleman’s latest collection of whinings, otherwise known as his column. Here’s the segment that I’m referring to:

Here is some of what is going away: the Star Tribune Foundation, which has funded nonprofit groups in the Twin Cities for decades; and the Washington bureau and foreign correspondents, including those in Iraq. They’ll still be working, but not for the Star Tribune. Also disappearing: the pooled financial resources a chain can use to gather news and resist the fickle winds of market forces.

Poor Nicky Coleman. If he chooses to stay, he’ll be forced to work at a newspaper that actually has to produce a quality product. He’ll be forced to work at a newspaper that actually checks its facts. He’ll be forced to work at a newspaper that tells the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. The poor dear. He might even have to work for an editor who will actually hold him accountable for the things he writes. The injustice of it all. What is this world coming to?

If you think that’s the extent of Little Nicky’s whining, then you obviously don’t know him. Here’s another whiny rant:

McClatchy CEO Gary Pruitt did not bother to come to Minneapolis on Tuesday to say he surreptitiously had sold the paper and to kiss us goodbye. But McClatchy brass gave us some nice parting gifts from afar, complaining that the Star Tribune had lost value (and proving it in a secret auction at fire-sale prices), calling the flagship a drag on profits and saying McClatchy would have shown a one-percent increase in ad sales if the Star Tribune weren’t included. One percent! Huzzah! Sound the trumpets!

The truth is that McClatchy dumped a newspaper at a big loss. Here’s what one article said about the sale:

The newspaper industry has long been fighting circulation declines. More recently, classified advertising, a pillar of the newspaper business model, has come under attack by cheap or free Internet ads for jobs, cars, and homes. The Star Tribune has been no exception.

“Certainly in straight financial terms, based on what’s been happening to circulation, ad revenue and earnings, it’s a much tougher business than it was eight years ago,” said Rick Edmonds, Media Business Analyst at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla.

TRANSLATION: Newspapers are DYING, partially because blogs and the alternative media are drying up newspapers’ advertising revenue streams, partially because they’re producing a lousy product. They’re dinosaurs that likely will be dead within a generation.

McClatchy got out while the assets were still worth something. McClatchy operated from a ‘Better late than never’ perspective. Whether they knew it or not, the reality is that they just dumped a newspaper that isn’t in touch with mainstream readers and that doesn’t care about anyone to the right of center politically. That isn’t a way to make money. That’s a guaranteed way of losing ground annually.

But McClatchy brass gave us some nice parting gifts from afar, complaining that the Star Tribune had lost value (and proving it in a secret auction at fire-sale prices), calling the flagship a drag on profits and saying McClatchy would have shown a one-percent increase in ad sales if the Star Tribune weren’t included. One percent! Huzzah! Sound the trumpets!

There’s the market for you: The Star Tribune held down ad sales one percent. So One-Percent Pruitt axed his best newspaper. Brilliant.

Pruitt sold it before more people noticed how biased Coleman’s employer was. Pruitt sold it before people noticed the poor underlying condition the paper was in. Profit margins notwithstanding, the truth is that the profits weren’t the result of growing circulation; they were the result of ever-shrinking expenditures. It wasn’t that ad sales were growing. In short, though the profit margins looked good, the underlying trend was that of deterioration.

If that’s what Coleman wants to think that the Strib is still a great newspaper, that’s his right but he’s kidding himself. Coleman should read some of Powerline’s articles that simply excoriated the Strib’s product. Coleman would get the real picture by reading some of Mitch Berg’s commentaries on the Strib, too.

The telltale signs aren’t difficult to find. The truth is that they’re abundant if you don’t have your head buried in sand like an ostrich. Sadly, that isn’t the Strib’s strength.

Technorati: , , , ,

Cross-posted at California Conservative