Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Now That's What I Call "Producing" The News

I think I've figured out the secret to getting your photo on the front page of the News-Press. Dress up like a stalk of broccoli.

On the left, Tuesday's News-Press. On the right, the front page from last July.

Yesterday's featured story on the front page of the Wendy McCaw owned paper, complete with a large photograph, was about the growing popularity of the vegetable. It was less than a year ago, (July 24, 2008 to be exact) that the News-Press had run another front page story on broccoli.

Yesterday's article, written by Dave Mason, breathlessly reported that: "It was near impossible on a recent day to find anyone on State Street who hated the vegetable that made President George H.W. Bush cringe."

Kind of reminds me of what they used to say back when I was an attorney in the DA's office: "If you haven't lost a case you haven't tried enough cases." In other words, if you can't find someone who hates broccoli you haven't asked enough people.

I should point out though that I've noticed a lot more locally by-lined stories on page one of the News-Press in recent weeks.

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Inside Tuesday's News-Press, Travis Armstrong used his op-ed page column to continue to crusade against Helene Schneider's candidacy for mayor. The headline to the column read: Would Helene Schneider bankrupt the city?

In the column he ran down a list of atrocities Schneider had committed. At or near the top of the list was the fact that she had sent out holiday greeting cards that promoted her candidacy.

I'm sure if Schneider wears white after Labor Day, Armstrong will be the first person to report it and to come up with a reason as to why that would make her unfit to lead the city.

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Had the pleasure of attending a very nice gathering Tuesday evening out at UCSB's Davison Library on the occasion of former Washington Post reporter Lou Cannon donating many of his personal papers to the library's special collections department. The papers donated include many of his notes and the source materials he used for his books on Ronald Reagan.

Lou was accompanied by his bride Mary, who had organized and indexed the papers and documents.

There was a large crowd on hand (I'll leave it to Jerry Roberts to give an accurate head count). I even had the pleasure of meeting and shaking hands with Chancellor Henry Yang for the first time.

I must say, the Chancellor looks even smarter in person than he does in pictures.

If I'd had been a little quicker on my feet, I would have asked him if he knew where any good parties were in the neighborhood.

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Back at the end of January, I reported that the Regional Counsel of the NLRB had declined to act on the News-Press request to prosecute the Teamsters Union for conducting an unlawful secondary boycott.

On Monday, it was announced that the NLRB's General Counsel in Washington D.C. has declined to overrule that decision. Among the reasons urged by the News-Press as to why the Teamster's actions were unlawful and intimidating was the "larger than usual size" of the Teamster representatives.

I figure as long as the News-Press has Scott Steepleton on its payroll, both sides are on equal footing.

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Now that Carpinterians have settled their controversy over Native American imagery at their high school, they can turn their attention to the high price of water in the town that boasts it has "the world's safest beach."

The water board is reportedly considering another substantial hike in rates. The matter will be taken up at 4 pm today (Wednesday) at the Water District's Headquarters 1301 Santa Ynez Ave., in Carp.

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And finally, congratulations to the Santa Barbara Daily Sound, which on Monday, celebrated its third anniversary.

Here's to keeping it free, for at least another three!
© 2009 by Craig Smith and