Wednesday, April 25, 2007

How it's done in the big leagues

An especially egregious example of editorial chicanery came to light today, involving The New York Post, operated by Rupert Murdoch (Mr Fox), "rewriting" an AP story under byline. This might be instructive for Courier readers.

Editorial: "Prop. 200 represents Arizona voter's will"

At last, a Courier editorial that is all original writing conveying a viewpoint with relative clarity. The viewpoint amounts to pointless flailing at a favorite inflatable punching clown, the Ninth Circuit, which did something the editor didn't expect, which is uphold the law -- we've grown so used to the other thing under the Bush adminstration, after all -- but the unnamed editor gets a cookie anyway.

As a poll worker I've had to deal with the effects of Prop 200 on the retail level, and believe me, guys, it's not just Dems and minorities who are pissed off about this. Those most affected among my customers have been older Republicans.

Letters: Love for Lovell

Tom Gatchell gives Terry Lovell another attaboy for facing down a whole planet of scientists with a brain so amazing it got him a job on KYCA.

Anybody else on this bus remember when those of us who understood the threat of atmospheric heating due to fossil-fuel use were the radical fringe? It's fascinating how people can deftly shift their arguments from 'we're the majority, so we're right' to 'we're smarter than the majority, so we're right.' The rub is that science may not accept a given theory, but once it does it never rejects it again in favor of the previous model, because the previous model has already proved inadequate. The boat's already left, folks.

Goodman: "Conservatives taking women out of the abortion debate"

Today's column, originally headlined "Politicians Playing Doctor," on the Supreme Court ruling is complete and only marginally harmed by the Courier's arbitrary edits and introduced errors. It slays me that the editors are compelled to 'improve' on work already done by some of the nation's best writers and editors.

A1: "Sewer upgrade costs could exceed $500 million"

So now we're getting an idea what the bills will look like for the large-scale growth the City has been encouraging for two decades. If the projections are roughly correct -- and for $300,000, they'd better be -- new sewer projects, no maintenance, no repairs, will cost $5,000 per living soul in Prescott, or $10,000 per person showing up to live here over the next 25 years. That's a fair bit higher than the impact fees on new construction, of course, but you can bet this cost won't be paid by developers.

Good work, Cindy.

A1: "Program teaches girls self-defense techniques"

Brava, PV! Shari Lopatin's story on the collaboration between PVPD and educators to teach girls about self-defense techniques demonstrates good thinking by both. I suspect it also has something to do with promoting women police officers to positions of authority.

Couple things: We learn that it's a new curriculum, and in the last graph one of the girls says it's mandatory, but we're left to infer that all middle-school girls will get this training. I'd also like to know how many girls are involved and whether girls in charter and home-school programs will be included.

A1: "Renzi steps down from more committees"

Joanna Dodder gives us a rundown on the sniff-test situations that Rick Renzi has been slowly simmering in since October, resulting in Friday's FBI raid on the Renzi business in Sonoita and his committee resignations. But she missed a couple of important details: Attorneygate and ROMP.

Update, 1pm: WSJ continues its coverage with new stuff, via Kos.