Der Kommissar's In Town? (Uh oh)

October 19th, 2010 · No Comments · Uncategorized

By Arthur Alpert

Riddle: How does the Albuquerque Journal resemble the Red Army?

Answer: The Soviet Union used to attach a political commissar to units of the armed forces to be certain soldiers didn’t stray from the Kremlin’s pravda.

And I surmise – surmise, mind you – the Journal has an editor to preclude flagrant dissent from its party line.

This might explain, for example, some of the Journal’s Op Ed choices.

Though it runs conservative Kathleen Parker often, the Journal notably did not print, for example, her strong Oct. 13 Washington Post column. It opened:

“If you haven’t been humming tunes from “Les Misérables,” you haven’t seen “Inside Job,” the new documentary about how our economic crisis evolved.”

And here is the Parker paragraph that – I would guess – turned the stomach of the Journal’s commissar:

“From the early 1980s, when Ronald Reagan deregulated banks, through the two Bushes, Bill Clinton and now Barack Obama, each administration has endorsed — and each Congress has helped tweak — laws and rules that made systemic abuses and the meltdown not only possible but, looking back, inevitable.”

What temerity! Rejecting partisanship (the Journal’s essence), blaming “systemic abuses” and – worse yet – suggesting both major parties share responsibility for the “meltdown.”

I can hear the commissar shouting “Nyet!” as he spiked the column.

(OK, I doubt he speaks Russian and I know they don’t use spikes in modern newsrooms, but I’m from the era of copy boys, hot type and, yes, spikes.)

The Journal also declined to run an extraordinary column from mild-mannered, liberal political theologian E.J. Dionne, Jr.

He practically shouted in his Oct. 11 piece headlined: “Shadowy Players In A New Class War.”

“The 2010 election is turning into a class war,” Dionne states at the outset. “The wealthy and the powerful started it.”

His column attacked the shame of this election – oceans of dollars aimed almost exclusively at one party’s candidates and most of which cannot be traced to donors – the fruit of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision.

You tell me why the commissar vetoed that one.

If, that is, a Journal commissar exists; he may be a figment of my imagination.

But the columns I have cited – by a conservative and a liberal – are not. And somebody at the Journal decided its readers should be spared those points of view.

Tags: ····

No Comments so far ↓

There are no comments yet...Kick things off by filling out the form below.

Leave a Comment