Monday, March 20, 2006

Pot. News Bias on Full Display

As I suspected when my services as a columnist were terminated, the efforts of the Potomac News to become a more balanced journal, more representative of the community it purports to serve, died when "former Goldwater Girl" (as she is wont to remind Conservative critics) Susan Svhilik became Managing Editor.

From a personal perspective, among my first interactions with her was her criticism that my columns should be more focused on local issues. So far as I could tell from my colleagues, no one else was given this mandate, to it may well be that she was setting me up for an excuse for discontinuing my columns. Sadly (for her), I was able to stave off her efforts against me when I was able to focus locally. It wasn't until four years later that she persuaded management to discontinue my column, upon the excuse that I was "boring and repetitive," notwithstanding the fact that no local columnist generated more letters to the editor.

Any notion that "balance" is desired by
Pot. News management should have been thoroughly dispelled in today's edition, in which a story appears discussing anti-war protesters interfering with traffic on Saturday and Sunday.

Here's one telling excerpt:

Many people honked their horns and gave thumbs up in support for the group's message during their two hours holding signs in the blistering cold at the intersection of Sudley Road and Rixlew Lane.

The cost in lives wasn't Harms' only concern, though. She contacted National Priorities Project, a nonpartisan organization, to find out what the cost was for Fredericksburg, roughly $17 million; Manassas, $52.4 million; and Woodbridge, $40.4 million.

"The taxpayers should know how their money is being spent," she said. "Money that could be better spent elsewhere."

Not everybody was copacetic with the group's message, though. Several people shouted opposing remarks -- remarks that included that the group was damaging troop morale.

"The negative response is just as good as the positive," Reynolds said. "That means people are thinking about this."

Thus, while lip-service is paid to the negative response, the positive response is described as "many people," while the negative response is merely described as "not everybody" and "several people." Moreover, the far-Left National Priorities Project -- a group whose Board is made up, of among others, ACORN refugees, advocates for the so-called "living wage," and union activists -- is described as "non-partisan." Yeah. Just like

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