Calbuzz Rants: Snowbilly Logic and Chronicle Watch


palinwaveSympathy for the devil: The enterprising Chris Cillizza at the WashPo’s The Fix reports on a new Gallup Poll that finds a “Palin Sympathy Effect” wherein 53% of respondents say coverage of Palin has been “unfairly negative.”

Calbuzz is not among them.

In fact, we think Eugene Robinson of the WashPo cut right to the bone when he said “All of us who ever took Sarah Palin seriously — or pretended to take her seriously — should be deeply ashamed.”

The latest evidence, in addition to her Snowbilly stream-of-unconsciousness press conference resignation was her comment in an interview with ABC News in which she explains why the frivolous complaints that are driving her out of office in Alaska wouldn’t hurt her in Washington.

“I think on a national level, your Department of Law there in the White House would look at some of the things that we’ve been charged with and automatically throw them out,” she said.

Suddenly, it hit us that we’ve misdiagnosed the tundra bunny governor. Her problem is that living so long in Alaska, all she sees is the trees. She can’t see the forest. So instead of seeing the Department of Justice, she sees the Department of Law. Which, of course, there isn’t one of.

Along with your Department of Law, surely Palin would be studying up on your Department of Order. (Fred Thompson quit, but maybe Sam Waterston still works there,right?) And there’s your Department of Concrete (which oversees roads, houses, swimming pools and the like), the Department of Germs, the Department of Rocks and that old retro favorite, the War Department.

ancientpressWhy newspapers are doomed, Chapter 876: Our friend Marcia Meier took the occasion of the passing of the King of Pop to once again set forth the clear and compelling case for why newspaper editors should stop making themselves look silly with big banner headlines proclaiming “News” the morning after everybody knows what happened.

Meier’s Huffpost blog hit a special chord coming the day after the Chronicle took to the streets to shout to the heavens that they’ve improved the look of their newspaper by shifting to new printing presses. Really? What’s next? Color TV? Phones you can carry around with you? Indoor plumbing?

Mother Jones has a lovely little take down on the Chronicle’s sadly funny claim that “a new era gets rolling” because they’ve found a way to put ink on dead trees with decent color registration.

And speaking of the Chron . . .  chronbanner

Great newspaper lets mayor peddle swill

What’s not working: The San Francisco Chronicle is letting the city’s mayor get away with trumpeting alleged accomplishments without lifting a finger to fact-check his claims.

Ever since he started running for governor, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom has traveled up and down the state, telling voters everywhere he goes that as the city’s mayor he has led the way in solving a series of intractable social and economic problems, a splendid performance he says makes him the best-qualified candidate to lead California.

From universal health insurance to financial aid for schools, from balanced budgets to economic development and job creation, from homelessness to immigration, to hear him tell it, there’s seemingly no area of public policy where the Superman Mayor has not made San Francisco a veritable paradise on earth.

Maybe all this is 100% accurate. We have no bloody idea. Because throughout the months of civic-self promotion, Calbuzz has been waiting and waiting and waiting for the mayor’s hometown newspaper to help California’s voters –- and its press corps -– make an informed judgment of how Newsom’s extravagant claims stack up against the true facts. And waiting . . .

For years the mighty Chron trumpeted, as a model of service journalism, its “Chronicle Watch,” in which reporters would chase down tips about small-bore community problems –- from dirty swimming pools to missing stop signs –- publish the name of the no-account bureaucrat responsible for the outrage and keep a running score of how long it took to fix things.

Today Calbuzz begins its own “ChronicleWatch” on the Chronicle’s failure to hold their mayor politically accountable. We’ll stay on the story and let you know when they fix the problem.

How long it’s been broken: Since April 21, when Newsom announced his candidacy.

Who’s responsible: Executive Vice President & Editor Ward Bushee

Note to the Silicon Valley paper of record, the  Sans Jose Mercury New: We’re eagerly awaiting those bleeding-edge storiMN_Logo4ies on Meg Whitman and Steve Poizner that will give us some clues about their management skills, temperament, vision, political views (who was it who reported that Meg just recently registered Republican?)  and anything else that will shed light on whether candidates in your back yard are qualified to be governor.  Could be a “MercWatch” on the horizon, too.

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There are 5 comments for this post

  1. avatar starstation says:

    Maybe the Merc or another of the dying breed could inform us poor working folk about Meg Whitman’s purchase of a Gulfstream V. What was the logic? What was the cost? Was it really necessary?
    A thorough examination of how she spent shareholder money will reveal how she would spend taxpayer moolah, doncha think?

  2. avatar evan says:

    I think you missed one of the major problems with what soon-to-be-ex Gov. Palin said. The DOJ doesn’t have the right to “throw out” valid ethics complaint. I think the difference is the White House Counsel’s office is probably just better equipped to work on these lawsuits than whoever does that job in Alaska.

    Just because you’re president doesn’t mean your “dept. of law” gets to just wave their hand and throw out ethics complaints they don’t like.

  3. avatar Silent Sleuth says:

    OTOH – if there were any ethics complaints against a Pres. Palin, she could just get all mavericky and resign her office. I believe she’s resigned the last three positions that she’s been elected to “also”.

  4. avatar Hap Hazard says:

    Perhaps Palin should have referred to the Department of Law as the Law Czar and have avoided your sneering — of course I know that nothing will do that, even though, instead of Palin, we were awarded one of the most gaffe prone VPs currently in American history.

  5. avatar madmax says:

    I love the idea of the CalBuzz “ChronicleWatch” as well as including “Watch” updates on other papers in CA. The unique naming conventions used for politicians in CalBuzz posts such as ‘eMeg’ and others could be used for these paper’s “Watch” updates as well. Someone in my family likes the names “The Sacramento Bee-minus Watch”, “The Depressed Democrat Watch”, and the “San Francisco Chronic Watch”…just a suggestion from the Department of the Redundancy Department. Thanks CalBuzz!

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