Friday, March 18, 2005

Credit Where Credit is Due

by Kyle Michaelis
As much as it pains and surprises me, I must admit the Omaha World-Herald ran a pair of fine editorials in today's edition (3/18). The first covered an issue I wrote about only yesterday - President Bush's use of public funds to manipulate news media and jointly commit fraud against the American people.

Although, I feel the Omaha World-Herald is too often an eager participant in the Republican propaganda machine, there's no arguing with their making a statement, at least in principle, against such abuse of the public trust. How heartening to read:
"These attempts to manipulate the free flow of information amount to something more than a perceived contempt for the press. There's also an implicit disrespect for the people. Bush can argue all he wants that these practices are legal. It would be a harder argument, though, to claim that they are honorable."

Dare I say I couldn't have said it better myself?

The second editorial displaying a surpising degree of critical thinking concerned Democratic Party efforts to reform the Presidential Primary process. There's no doubt New Hampshire and Iowa exercise undue influence over the election, and it's become even worse as media hype has become more prevalent in recent years. The OWH wrote:
"It's good that Democrats are re-evaluating the system. Republicans would do well to do likewise. With all respect to our Iowa readers, a perpetual "first in the nation" status for any state may not be best for the nation."

That one I actually could have said better, but - still - it's nice to see anyone take up the cause of primary reform. There are a number of different reforms on the table. Personally, I like the idea of a rotating non-regional schedule spread out over 2-3 months. Just an idea. Maybe not doable entirely before 2008, but eventually something should be done. What time better than the present? Sadly, there seems to be a lot of reason to think nothing's going to happen on this front any time soon.

And good Lord, did the OWH Editorial Board just praise the Democratic Party? Even tempered as it was, this is a rare occurrence indeed, and it must be savored. One hates to be so distrustful (and perhaps paranoid), but could they have gone on record praising the Dems just so they could later condemn them when no reform gets passed?


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