I am, if nothing else, a creature of habit. I do the same thing every morning: I get up at 5:30, drink a glass of water, make coffee, fire up the TV for background noise and get on the computer. I read the NY Times, the WSJ, The Richmond Times Dispatch, the Roanoke paper, Realclearpolitics.com, some IT Websites and then Facebook. It takes about an hour. Then I make breakfast – again – the same thing every morning: a single fried egg (whole, not that egg white crap) on whole wheat English muffin with turkey sausage. Yes, I'm a weirdo. I don't tell you this to somehow embellish my intellectual credentials. No, I pass that along just to give you a little background.
I've watched this election through the lens of these many media outlets and one in particular has bothered me: The New York Times. I'll admit, I love the Times. It has great writers, a great food section and some truly amazing people write there. They report on things that nobody else is talking about. However, as this election progressed, I really began to feel that the Times migrated from reporting on the Republican process to sniping at it. I played along for awhile – it really was a 15-ring circus after all. However, when Trump was nominated that sniping turned to full-on assault. It's part of the reason that they missed the "Trump Quake". They were so invested in defeating him they were blind. Indeed, I'd argue they contributed heavily to Hillary's loss. Sure, their editorial page has been left-leaning the entire time but if you actually read the Times the staff stuff was good. That changed this time around – they forgot their mission.
Take, for instance, their headline this morning: "Democrats, Students and Foreign Allies face the reality of a Trump Presidency"
Now, it's not wrong but contrast that with the Wall Street Journal: "A New Political Order"
The first is all boo-hoo special snow flake and the second is a statement of fact. Someone needs to take the helm at the Times and help Make Them Great Again. Newspapers and reporting are crucial….just crucial….to the health of our Country. Look, I don't feel that Fox was ever "fair and balanced" either but Fox is always going to be Fox and TV is a different media than print. The Times – and our other great newspapers – doesn't have that luxury. They need to do hard reporting – the kind that roots out corruption and helps our citizens understand what the hell the politicans and our other leaders are doing. They need to get it together.
While we're on "The Media", in talking to people about this election cycle almost everyone decried the lack of a local paper. Did you know, for instance, that the Land Use committee of our very own City Council has decided to initiate a Comprehensive Plan update that could add somewhere around a THOUSAND condo's to the intersection of Euclid and Liberia? Do you think traffic is bad on Liberia now??
My point in bring that up is not so much to beat up politicians (although they may deserve it) but it's this: Who knew that happened? Is there a way to make some sort of news site on the internet with a handful of volunteers?