AZ Republic’s tacky message to subscribers

February 2, 2016

The shiny white postcard arrived with a terse message oddly bunched in the upper left quadrant. Besides the stiff salutation addressing the recipient by first and last name, were four sentences and the closing, including a replicated signature.

On its reverse side the return address indicated The Arizona Republic as the sender, with the now ubiquitous azcentral.com logo on the next line. That’s the newspaper’s techie moniker letting readers know that the days of publishing a hard copy newspaper are closing in. The front page usually carries a vaguely proctological sounding “go deeper with digital” message.  The communiqué?

 “We want to let you know about a change to your subscription effective March 2016. There will be a change to our subscription cancellation policy. Refunds will only be made to positive account balances of $10 or more. We appreciate your loyalty and thank you for your subscription. 

Sincerely,

Barbara Smith, VP Customer Service” 

Barbara, Barbara, Barbara. How smart is this? We all know the newspaper is in the proverbial toilet. But to admit that so many subscribers are ditching its increasingly lightweight and leftwing content that you affix a monetary punishment as they exit, is not exactly an exhibition of business savvy. This reeks of larceny. There is no restocking fee, as if an electronic product is returned, requiring repackaging and a discounted price. What you are alerting the few remaining readers to is the fact that you intend to keep their money if they have the audacity to leave and still have a balance of…let‘s say, $9.52. That’s indefensible, Barbara.  It’s beyond cheesy. Rational subscribers are leaving because they are tired of being insulted by the editorial policy, reporting slant and the ASU sweatshop student reporting crew that replaced the reporters who took the early buy-out packages the newspaper offered to stay afloat.

So you intend to add further insult to that effrontery by clipping us as we take a hike? It sounds an awful lot like the antiquated concept of alimony — the old pay-up-for-walking-out proposition.

We‘ve never even held hands, Barbara. Don’t even think of grabbing any additional money.


Irrelevancy personified: exposed in a box of collectibles

January 13, 2016

Arizona’s shrunken and failing daily newspaper is a topic we’ve covered from time to time. Its favored themes are steeped in unabashed liberalism and the in-tandem editorials, columnists’ blather  and vicious cartoons are calculated to propagandize those few who still rely on the left-wing medium for information.

Examples are numerous. The recent editorial taking conservative state Sen. John Kavanagh to task for SB 1044, actually exposes a sensible bill he has introduced to exclude illegal aliens from Census population counts. Fiscal appropriations are tied to the head count. Population numbers also determine apportionment of congressional districts, making his proposal even more rational. Monday’s rank editorial refers to him as “Arizona’s immigration bad boy” in a headline.

Sen. Kavanagh didn’t just fall off the turnip truck. His impressive bio would be the envy of the newspaper’s top brass were it not for his political bent. 

This attempt at degradation of a popular Republican is nothing new. The list of conservative office holders — local, statewide and national — who have been routinely disparaged in the newspaper’s pages is lengthy.  With the world in turmoil, the newspaper did, however, devote the entire front page to a mega pic of the crowd at the College Football Playoff National Championship and the death of celebrity rocker/pervert David Bowie. His former wife revealed she and bi-Bowie were late for their own nuptials due to the fact that they were engaged in a ménage a trois. 

Of corollary interest is the box a neighbor bought at a garage sale. The unopened container was sold as a grab bag item for $15. Examining the assorted contents, obviously worth far more than his purchase price was entertaining.  But what was even more eye catching were headlines in the newspapers wrapping the treasures, proof positive that nothing changes at the irrelevant daily:

Fri. Aug. 26, 2005: Arizona gets tough on teacher licensing  (Sexual predators are still teaching.)

Sun. Oct. 23, 2005: An entire Viewpoints section devoted to “immigration,” filled with the words “migration,” “undocumented” and “migrants.”  The report by Richard deUriarte, then on the editorial board, is  titled, “Border fight forgets migrants’ humanity.” Sens. John McCain and Jon Kyl each expounded (blah, blah, blahing) on the need to update laws and for additional resources ($$$) and reform. The favored amnesty term  ‘comprehensive,’ too long for the headline, was tucked inside the report.

Sat. Nov. 12, 2005:  Homeless get their own court. (The article explains that charges will be cleared as an incentive for rehabilitation.)

The one certainty at the daily newspaper? Everything old is new again.


AZ Republic’s predictions omit “The Big One”

January 2, 2016

Fishy_Arizona_Republic

A few decades ago Sanford and Son was a popular TV comedy. When Fred Sanford, a cantankerous schemer, was caught in a ploy, he would often clutch his chest feigning a heart attack, look skyward and call out to his dead wife, “This is The Big One, Elizabeth! I’m coming to join ya honey.” This ongoing and anticipated satirical antic was a reliable laugh producer.  

Unfortunately for the Arizona Republic, its repeated routines are neither funny nor able to retain old readers or capture new ones.

In an effort to fill space in the incredibly shrinking newspaper — which has morphed into a slim entertainment review, increasingly staffed by Cronkite student reporters — the New Year’s Day edition takes a stab at making predictions. There are nine. Accompanying the obligatory sports forecast most of the rest use Republican candidates as punching bags. In fact, the newspaper is not above stretching the truth when it cones to giving cover to John McCain, shamefully running for a sixth six-year term at age 80. If he’s elected and is able to function in office, he’d be closing in on staring 90 in the eye at the end of that term. Increasingly unpopular, he recently had trouble generating an audience for his kickoff announcement.

There was a time when the Republic endorsement list was clutched in the hands of voters standing in line at neighborhood polling places. Newcomers to the state will find it difficult to imagine that the publication was conservative in its previous incarnation. Today, an endorsement is likely to be the kiss of death for an issue or candidate.

Now there are few polling places since registering as a voter can be accomplished online and voting is increasingly done at the kitchen table with ballots mailed in. We are repeatedly told that voter fraud is non-existent, but the ease of registering and voting makes that a tough sell.

This Oct. 2012 Pew Research report details the sharp decline in newspaper readership, which has only worsened in the intervening years.

Reflections of a Newsosaur illustrates the plummeting advertising and the deep generational divide in newspaper readership. While 53% of the Boomer generation (those 55 and older) said they read print newspapers, only 22% of Millenials (ages 18-34) and 32% of Generation Xers (ages 35-54) read hard copy news. It’s a certainty these numbers have continued a downward spiral since the data was collected. Digital news distribution fares no better.

The Arizona Republic’s “Big One” on its prediction list is concealing the fact that it’s on life support. Employees have been pink-slipped and buyout options have allowed many older, higher paid staffers to take the money and run. The hard left newspaper is struggling to stay afloat, but continues to insult the very readers it needs to survive.

The good news is fewer Arizonans notice.


Border hypocrisy, lies, flung by McCain & AZ Republic

December 30, 2015

Chronic deceit from AZ’s senators and local newspaper

Arizonans are routinely treated as fools. Not only are we subjected to colossal dishonesty on issues related to our dangerously porous border by U.S. Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake, but the open border proponents at the Arizona Republic conspire with them to bend facts to suit a distinctly leftwing agenda.

Tuesday’s editorial,* “Fences? We don’t need no stinking fences” is a case in point.  The prevailing opinion of the “editorial board,” whom we are led to believe write this preposterous dreck in unison, is that any political discussion regarding securing the border is “stuck in a time warp.”

The fence, they claim, is “a largely completed component of a broader border strategy that relies on technology” — rather than an “ugly, unneighborly concrete and steel barrier, between the U.S. and Mexico —- a valuable trading partner.”

According to the wizards at the newspaper, “solar-powered towers with radar, cameras that offer real-time and day-and-night surveillance” are part of the border technology plan. Hot off the drawing board and supposedly in place, are “underground sensors, imaging sensors, remote surveillance stations and mobile units.”

We’ve been down this road before. Since Thanksgiving was just a month ago, lets “talk turkey” instead of preposterous liberal notions.

Back in Feb. 2008, Michael Chertoff, the second Homeland INsecurity Secretary, visited our state and declared that a brand new high-tech “virtual fence” along the Arizona /Mexico border near Sasabe “looks good.”

By April of the same year, the technologically advanced virtual fence intended to provide an alternative to “divisive” walls and federal agents policing the Arizona-Mexico border was exposed as a “virtual flop.”

Two years and $700 million later, Janet Napolitano, who followed Chertoff, froze the funds for the virtual fence, before axing it altogether.

And Arizona’s senators?

Here’s the REAL John McCain as opposed to the phony candidate border hawk strolling Arizona’s southern border with Pinal Sheriff Paul Babeu and declaring the need to “complete the dang fence.”

On February 24, 2010, John McCain questioned then-Homeland INsecurity Secretary Janet Napolitano during the Budget Submission Hearing for Fiscal Year 2011, where he stated the “border fence issue has been a waste of billions of dollars.”

Who are you going to trust? John McCain or John McCain?

McCain underling Jeff Flake is also adept at differentiating his campaign border stance from this actual one. Haven’t you had enough?

*The hard copy and online versions carry different headlines and reworked content.


Disciplinary actions against AZ teachers unrecorded

December 12, 2015

Failure to share serious criminal and breech of trust issues leave children vulnerable

The Arizona Republic sprang into incensed editorial mode on Friday noting that State Board of Education investigators have, since 2010, failed to properly record all teacher disciplinary information to state and national databases —- leaving children unprotected. It correctly noted that lacking the input of this vital information, offending teachers can go on to other districts or states and prey on other students. Among the offenses listed were: “sex crimes against minors, other improper relationships with students, teaching while under the influence of alcohol, teaching inappropriate material to students and physically harming students.”

Seeing Red AZ began tracking teachers who sexually exploited students in 2009, referring to our posts on Arizona’s predatory teachers as “The endless parade.”  Eventually, local and national politics as well as world events got in the way since these cases were occurring in rapid succession.

Due to the damning information which came directly from school administrators, we’ve selected this Sept. 2009 post for perusal. — which is far from the first as you’ll notice when you see links to earlier articles.  This April 2009 post also contains shocking admissions from Board of Education officials who said they would have divulged the information to the new school, if, (presumably like clairvoyants), they would have asked. This case involved a “love triangle” with a teacher in which one student lover stabbed another student rival to death.

Still the left-leaning teachers unions go all out to protect the predators as this Wall Street Journal report by former news anchor Campbell Brown factually details.


The AZ Republic actually wants you to buy a paper?

November 25, 2015

After expending a great deal of time and effort begging its increasingly meager reader base to “Go deeper with digital,” the failing local newspaper has done an about face — at least for Thanksgiving. The anorexic daily, skinny and wan, has done its damnedest to veer away from hard copy publications requiring newsprint, ink, delivery drivers and editions hitting driveways — though fewer do these days. 

Gannett execs offered generous bonuses to longtime employees just to get them out the door and lower their overhead, replacing them with ASU students, who have no idea what actual journalism is and not even a passing familiarity with the First Amendment. Editors are gone, so the news reports are filled with teen colloquialisms and Snoopy-like, “It was a dark and stormy night” approaches. Pertinent details are missing and, let’s face it, the once towering beacon of reliable standards now does little more than dole out leftist, agendized spew with a hefty side of food news, sports and entertainment, aimed at a nearly nonexistent audience. The internet has replaced stale hard copy with fresh up-to-the minute reports.

For the holiday, however, the aptly nicknamed Arizona Repugnant promises “Another Thanksgiving Tradition: The Giant Newspaper!”  A screaming headline blares, “It’s almost time for our BIGGEST paper of the year including inspiring stories, your holiday gift guide, things to do for the long weekend, last minute turkey tips and the GIANT crossword puzzle. Plus, all the details on the weekend’s sports scene and up to 100 inserts full of deals.” 

You can, if so inclined, pick up this gargantuan bunch of dead tree pulp “as an early bird copy at your favorite store,” they advise. “Or, if you subscribe, we’ll bring it to you Thanksgiving morning.”

That sounds like more of a threat than a promise.


AZ Republic: Hypocrites in face of ISIS jihadist attacks

November 19, 2015

Newspaper lobs misplaced brickbats at conservative Republicans

In an irrational editorial that clearly defines its radically leftist lurch, the Arizona Republic places the blame for unspeakable acts of terror not on ISIS, but on…..conservative Republicans.

 Carrying the absurd title,“ ISIS hits and the right goes wobbly,” making the Islamic jihadist organization sound more like a paper tiger than a dedicated killing machine committed to ensuring  every knee bend to Allah and in total submission to Sharia law.

Barack Obama, who refuses to use the words radical Islam, referred to the coordinated murderous attacks across Paris as “a setback,” after one day earlier foolishly claiming ISIS was “contained.” (Video under link) Previously he deemed ISIS a “JV team.” French President Francois Hollande hesitated not a moment in declaring the slaughters as “an act of war.”

But in Republicese, blaming Republicans carries the day, since there’s not a chance liberal Democrats could ever be culpable. There’s no need to read the entire frenzied editorial, the first 83 words will more than suffice.

As to Barack Obama, the incompetent President of the United States, it’s well to remember his Sept. 25, 2012 speech delivered at the United Nations just days after the Sept. 11 Benghazi attack when Islamic militants stormed the American diplomatic compound in Libya, killing the American ambassador and three other Americans attached to the embassy.

Obama’s speech contained these words, “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.”

With the forced release of Hillary Clinton’s emails, we now know Obama deceptively blamed what he termed “a crude and disgusting video [that] sparked outrage throughout the Muslim world,” as he tried to rationalize the attacks with trickery.

Obama is a liar. His regime’s operatives lied on his behalf, denying what we now know was a pre-planned act of terror and definitely not “spontaneous.” And Hillary Clinton, who will likely be the 2016 Democrat presidential nominee, and will undoubtedly win the endorsement of this embarrassing rag masquerading as a newspaper — lied as well.


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