Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Editorial: Law judge decides correctly on water

The reader may notice something odd about the leader of the opinion page today: it doesn't offer an opinion.

Oh, there's an opinion of sorts in the headline, but there's no supporting argument in the text for characterizing the decision as "correct." There's only a recitation of the facts of the ruling.

The unnamed Courier editor's Barcalounger is hard at work again, turning in an echo of the front-page story, something that would better fit a breezy column on the business page. It's like he just wanted a little vacation today.

What it really means is that while the editor understands intuitively that the court result has some sort of meaning, he can't quite figure out what it is beyond an apparent win for the side he prefers in the contest. A reader would be excused for concluding that his grasp of the complexity of the pipeline issue is weak and shallow.

The facts are that this ruling was expected by everyone involved, ending a technical, preliminary bout that opens the doors for the brutal main events to come. The results there are far less clear, all we know for sure is that they'll be complex and very costly, involving many stakeholders beyond Prescott and SRP.

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