Thursday, May 21, 2009

An editorial board goof has the Sacramento Bee red-faced -- and voters now have a clue what the Bee really thinks about them

We may have gotten a glimpse into what the Bee really thinks about California voters, when the Sacramento Bee accidentally published a draft commentary that slammed voters for rejecting several spending measures on the May 19 ballot.

The morning after California's May 19 special election, the Bee published a provocative anti-voter commentary on its web site that was critical of voters who rejected several measures.

The commentary created a furor across the blogosphere, and was mentioned in a segment on the Rush Limbaugh radio show.

Here is the Bee's slam against California voters, initially posted on the Bee's web site, that created the stir:

Editorial: You did it! Uh, so what now?
Good morning, California voters. Do you feel better, now that you've gotten that out of your system?

You wanted to show the state's politicians just how mad you are at them. And you did. Boy, did you ever.

Proposition 1A with its taxes and its spending limit? Too much of one and not enough of the other, you said (or was it the other way around), and voted it down. Never mind that the taxes go into effect anyway. You showed 'em.

Proposition 1B? That was a tougher call.

Proposition 1C? No way. You like the lottery just like it is. And all they were going to do with that extra $5 billion was spend it.

Propositions 1D and 1E? Forget it. You had already voted to put money into preschool and mental health programs. You're not taking it out now.

And 1F? Heck, yeah! Let's not pay our legislators if they can't pass a budget on time. So what if it likely won't have any effect, or that this year they actually passed a budget months earlier than they needed to? That's not the point.

The point is that you're sick and tired of all this political mumbo-jumbo. So you showed those politicians who's in charge. You. You're now officially in charge – of a state that will be something like $25 billion in the hole for the fiscal year beginning July 1.

So, now that you've put those irksome politicians in their place, maybe it's time to think about this: Since you're in charge, exactly what do you intend

...That sounds a lot like work, you say? Sorry, no whining allowed. You asked for this job. Now you've got it, so get on it. Oh, and remember. The entire nation is watching to see how you do now that you're in charge.
But the Bee later pulled the anti-voter commentary down and replaced it with an anti-politician editorial, along with an explanation that the initial commentary was published by mistake. A note from editorial page editor David Holwerk said the first item was a draft for internal discussion among board members.
"Such discussions are a routine part of our work, and frequently lead to editorials that are considerably different from writers' first drafts.That's what happened in this case. After discussion, we decided that our initial editorial about the special election should take a different tack. The result was the editorial that now appears on this page. This editorial is the only editorial about the special election that appeared in Wednesday's editions of The Bee."


You can read the second commentary here. (It's actually pretty good.) But given the major faux pas in posting the anti-voter commentary, readers will wonder if the Bee is really on their side.

FYI, Doug Ross notes the Google cache of the initial editorial was intentionally disabled at the paper.

Hat tip: email, Doug Ross
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18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh, come on. It was an initial draft, and the editors decided not to publish it. That's what editors are for. It's the difference between newspapers and blogs: Adults are in charge at newspapers, and the rantings of children and ideologues (like some on MW) are either edited, rewritten, or not published. The Bee may have problems, but at least it still has editors.

Anonymous said...

"...at least it still has editors."

And we’re all impressed with the outstanding job the editors are doing. Way to go. Insulted voters and embarrassed the Bee. Very impressive.

Anonymous said...

Condescending bastards.

Anonymous said...

What liberal media?

Oh that liberal media.

Those editors need to be waterboarded.

Anonymous said...

The Editorial Boards of The Bees are the most inept technologically and politically.

These dinosaurs store ‘confidential’ information in Unisys pagination system in open baskets.

Anonymous said...

***After discussion, we decided that our initial editorial about the special election should take a different tack. The result was the editorial that now appears on this page.***


6:57 and 7:33: What part of this explanation is too hard for you to comprehend? It's perfectly clear to most of us, including MW, who praised the second editorial.

Anonymous said...

California's brilliant voters have managed to make the state totally dysfunctional, a joke. They should be begging for a king at this point.

Anonymous said...

****They should be begging for a king at this point.****

Why? The Obamababoon is on the verge of becoming Fuhrer.

Anonymous said...

That's a very persuasive comment, and witty also. You are most intelligent and wise.

Anonymous said...

What part of this explanation is too hard for you to comprehend?



If you comprehended that explanation as plausible then you're a bigger idiot than the editorial board was when they decided to test the backlash with their original article.

Only a complete dolt would actually believe their editorial process includes a rough draft that is the exact opposite of the final product.

They said what they wanted to say and they found out in short order that even fellow travelers were not going to support them so they had to change it. It is simple as that.

Dave D. said...

...The Bee editorial board didn't " Goof "......They are Goofs. There, Kev, I fixed it for you. Their defense ? ' We was jis talkin' ', the same defense all lames use when quoted saying what they really think but wish they hadn't said.
...What the Bee really needs is to fire their current readers and buy a whole new group who don't know ( yet ) what goofballs they Bee.

Anonymous said...

We'll vote by Canceling the Bee!!!
Oh, Right...I already did...after they laid us off!

Anonymous said...

I Have a Question:

If the Bee's editorial staff thinks its readers are stupid, why should readers continue to subscribe to the Bee?

Truth Hurts said...

***After discussion, we decided that our initial editorial about the special election should take a different tack. The result was the editorial that now appears on this page.***

"What part of this explanation is too hard for you to comprehend?"

Suppose for a moment that the Bee's initial editorial linked Cali's budget woes to the enormous cost of black & hispanic crime and illegitimacy, resulting in outrage among Cali's black and hispanic communities...

Should blacks and hispanics simply accept the Bee's "explanation"?

And if they deemed the explanation to be insufficient, would you say to them...
"What part of this explanation is too hard for you to comprehend"??

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