The media’s the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that’s power. Because they control the minds of the masses. – Malcolm X
Welcome to Monday and welcome to spring 2016!
Today is another one of those days in which there are several major stories out there that I want to comment about – so it’s another “Political Odds & Ends” day!
Today’s topics include the Great Falls Tribune’s 11 Tips for Surviving an Election Year, the Billings Gazette & Steve Daines, Bullock & the Plane, Twitter, and much more!
Tribune’s 11 Tips for Surviving an Election Year:
Late Saturday night I almost busted my gut laughing at the Great Falls Tribune editorial board’s 11 tips for surviving an election year or what they called the column on their website, “11 ways to more productive elections in 2016.” The Tribune’s ‘tips” were posted on Sunday’s editorial page. You can read them HERE.
Some were OK, but here is one “tip” that caught my attention:
Don’t get fooled by attempts to bushwhack a candidate or a party. Democrats in 2006 used a scandal involving lobbyist Jack Abramoff to help unseat GOP U.S. Sen. Conrad Burns of Montana, even though connections between the two later were said to be tenuous.
I remember Montana’s U.S. Senate campaign of 2006 very well. The Montana media were the ones who were “fooled.”
In my opinion, the Democrats and their supporters used Montana reporters Jennifer McKee, Charles Johnson, Mike Dennison, Mary Clare Jalonick, as well as others, plus the editorial boards of the Montana newspapers like the Tribune to convince voters that Conrad Burns would basically be in a federal penitentiary by January 2007. That never happened. It was piss-poor reporting from the reporters mentioned above. It was piss-poor oversight from the publishers and editors of the Montana newspapers. The editorial boards of several newspapers, like the Great Falls Tribune, jumped on the bandwagon.
In comparison, it was a lot like how Fox News reports about Barack Obama these days.
It’s amazing to me that the today’s Great Falls Tribune editorial team of Jim Strauss, Jo Dee Black, and Rich Ecke are just now writing that the connections between Burns and Abramoff were “tenuous.”
The election of 2006 cost Great Falls their F-15s, a squadron of Minuteman III missiles, several hundred jobs, housing for the military, and much more.
It taught a lot of us that you can’t trust the media of Montana to stay neutral. I always have that thought in my mind when I read any story these days from the Montana media. Often the Montana media’s political stories are regurgitated press releases from political parties and candidates.
The Tribune editorial team should have added Tip #12: Don’t believe everything you read about politics in your local newspaper because political reporting in Montana is far from neutral.
Billings Gazette & Daines:
In case you missed it, the Billings Gazette editorial board ripped Montana’s junior U.S. Senator Steve Daines saying it’s ridiculous that they have to beg him to do his job in regard to President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court. You can read it HERE.
The editorial started with this:
What would your boss do if you refused to do your job? Then, what would happen if after refusing to do it, you proudly proclaimed it on email, social media and to anyone who would listen?
That’s exactly what Montana Sen. Steve Daines did Wednesday after President Barack Obama nominated Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court.
The Gazette said that to refuse to even consider that nomination makes Daines nothing more than a partisan shill who is putting his own political interests above his constitutional duty.
I think if Barack Obama would have nominated Jesus Christ to the U.S. Supreme Court, Steve Daines would not want him to have a hearing or even a vote – because it was Barack Obama. I think we all know why. This cartoon probably explains the Republican view better than I ever could.
My opinion is that I would have respected Daines’ stance if he would have at least acted as if he was doing his job by considering the nomination and voting “no.”
Bullock & the Plane:
The Associated Press reported that Montana Gov. Steve Bullock has agreed to reimburse the state more than $2,500 for travel using a state-owned plane that coincided with campaign events after Republicans criticized Bullock’s use of the plane.
I was surprised.
With reasoning like this, a governor in Montana should be reimbursing the state for every plane trip he/she takes during the first term of office – because we all know they are campaigning for the second term at each and every stop.
The Montana GOP and the campaign of Greg Gianforte are the winners in this little battle.
According to USA Today, Twitter celebrates its 10th birthday Monday, marking the date co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey sent the social network’s first tweet.
Follow me on Twitter @TheWesternWord. I have been on Twitter longer than most people (since September 2008) and most of my 21,000 Tweets are pretty interesting…