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Publisher's column

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Mr. X, May 26, 2007.

  1. Mr. X

    Mr. X Member

    I've put a May 19 column from a publisher of a weekly newspaper in these parts on the bottom of this posting.

    This is the latest of a long set of examples of awful writing I've read around here lately.

    Part of me doesn't like this column because it doesn't recognize the long Washington tradition of people fighting as long as they can to keep their jobs. There aren't too many jobs like World Bank president and it is hard to get back to the top after leaving amid what are at least questions.

    However, I can see the publisher's point in the harm Paul Wolfowitz did to President Bush. However, I also understand Wolfowitz trying to do everything he could to keep his job or get the best exit package possible.

    What especially galls me about the writing is the use of first names. I have no idea if this was just done for effect. It certainly didn't work for me. Perhaps this publisher was trying to show that he is on a first-name basis with important people.

    But what really lost me was his spelling of former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani's first name as Rudi. I wonder what this publisher's response is when asked, "Why did you spell Giuliani's first name Rudi?" I wonder if this column was edited?


    Why did you take so long to make the decision that you will ‘leave?’ You knew from the day the story broke that you were not going to survive it. You had no credibility left among your peers and staff at the Bank anyway. They were the ones who tattled on you in the first place.

    Why did you force the already embattled President to come out and make one more “Stand Behind You” and “Full Faith in Him” statements? It seems that he does not need Teleprompter cards for that any more. He has been saying it quite a lot lately.

    Why didn’t you quit knowing that our foreign policy is in total shambles? The Secretary of State is virtually incognito expect for some photo ops with either the Arabs or some obscure leaders. All is quiet on the Korean front except for a train ride and the Ambassador of Iran states that his meeting is only pertaining Iraq.

    What can one say about Iraq that has not already been said?

    Tony, as the President insists calling him, is leaving and incoming Prime Minister Brown is an unknown entity. I don’t know what we know about Nick Sarkozy except for his taste for innovation and political agility. I am sure they will meet at the upcoming G8.

    Hopefully George and Nick, which sounds like a TV show, will get along for the short time that is left for George.

    Why Mr. Wolfowitz, knowing what all our President has to cope with these days are you putting him through your ‘Love Story?’

    Why didn’t you just say Bye Bye nicely? Now that Ms. Raza has gotten the raise, money shouldn’t be a problem. It is tax-free too.

    One thing I am intrigued about; what will be your fee on the talk circuit? Will you be able to beat the $11.4 million Rudi earned this past year?

    Why am I so curious?
  2. chazp

    chazp Active Member

    If that's the whole column, the writer deserves an "A" for brevity.
  3. Mr. X

    Mr. X Member

    That was the entire column.
  4. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    A publisher not toeing the Bushie party line, and arguing tooth-and-nail that Wolfowitz did nothing, nothing whatsoever, to be ashamed of -- that in itself is remarkable enough.

    As far as the "columnette" itself... meh. ::)
  5. forever_town

    forever_town Active Member

    I've had times when my publisher has written a "columnette." He's probably the only writer directly involved with my paper whom I have to run regardless of how bad his copy is. The fact he's a medical doctor (not retired in spite of being nearly 90 years old) doesn't exactly help matters because I have to read his handwriting to transcribe what he wrote.

    If it were crap from an intern, I just wouldn't run it or give a first-time intern another assignment. If it were a regular full-time reporter, I could counsel him or her. But when it's my boss, I can't exactly keep his content out of the paper if I want to keep my job.
  6. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    Not great, and don't know how many of the typos were original from him, but the first-name section was definitely for effect.
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