Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A paper too stupid to live

The Patriot News doubles down on its anti-gun crusade. The deciders looked at all the commentary available to publish and chose this piece of agitprop by Cynthia Tucker.

Conspiracy theorists and kooks cowed the U.S. Senate
On a slow day this op-ed would be Fisk-worthy. But I’m busy so I’ll just ask one question: Would the Patriot-News or any other serious paper run an op-ed which painted Muslims or gays or immigrants with such broad, vitriolic brush strokes? Note how Tucker characterizes her opponents (enemies?):

Conspiracy theorists” “kooks” “fanaticism” “lunacy” “lies” “crazies” “easily persuaded” “paranoia”.
To the Patriot-News, this is the language of civil discourse and reasonable compromise.

A question of a different sort: why does the management of a failing newspaper--a paper that has already cutback to a 3 day/week publishing schedule--adopt this extreme editorial tone?

I do not doubt that in some deep blue cities this tone pleases most readers. It seems quite possible that in New York or San Francisco hysterical hoplophobic eloi far out-number serious gun owners and NRA members.

But the Patriot-News operates in a conservative region with a large gun-owning population. Why then do they choose to insult that large bloc of paying and potential customers?


Waypoints on the path to irrelevance and oblivion

A badge of honor, but maybe not the best business model

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