It's almost as if somebody left the barn door at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel open and the horses have wandered out to the field for everyone to see.
There is an itty-bitty flap brewing that by itself might not seem like much. But if you look closely, it tells us a lot about the biggest source of news in the state of Wisconsin. Not only the biggest, but the slowest, least dynamic and, perhaps, even least relevant to people’s lives.
The Journal Sentinel just hired someone named David Paulsen to be Breaking News Editor. Using breaking news and Journal Sentinel in the same sentence is something that occurs less frequently as each month passes. Paulsen comes to the paper after stints as a reporter in Wausau and Poughkeepsie, N.Y., and two years at Fox News.
Well, when the announcement was made the cries from staffers in the newsroom in Downtown Milwaukee could be heard throughout the civilized world.
The first was that here was another case of a white man getting a management job. Staffers complained there were no women in leadership positions. Probably a legitimate gripe, although the publisher of the newspaper is a woman.
But the most revealing complaint came when the staff bitched about this guy coming from Fox News. Everybody knows about Fox News. Right wing. Ultra-conservative. The home of Bill O’Reilly.
How could a "real" newspaper hire someone like this? That was the refrain. Over and over again. More pandering to the right wing.
And here’s the problem.
This is a paper that for decades was one of the liberal lions in the world of newspapers. As circulation plummeted, the boys Downtown decided they needed to broaden their base of subscribers. More conservative stuff. More stuff for the black population. More stuff for Hispanics. More stuff for suburban markets.
And while some people were hired to meet these needs, most of the reporters and editors were cut from the same piece of cloth. They are basically liberal in their politics.
I was, and am, a liberal. Proud to say it. But the reporters try to cover their political leanings under an umbrella of objectivity and fairness. They claim that they are just middle of the road people reporting facts.
But now comes a hire from Fox News and everybody is up in arms. They have revealed themselves and their bias. It is another plank in the wall of irrelevance that the Journal Sentinel is building.
I wonder if the hire had been someone from the ultra-liberal MSNBC whether the outcry would have been as loud. I doubt it. I seriously doubt it.
I Love this article, Dave. If he is good at his job who really cares his or her politics. We teach are kids not to be bullies in school but it does not reflect real life. Hopefully the reporters won't break his lap top. He also could fit in maybe the editor is gay and this may cool some heads. Pesonally, I try to avoid liberal causes and businesses but I love Amazon and Walmart( walmart gave a million dollars to Obama 2012). On another note, the Koch brothers could be buying the LA times, be very afraid.
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