This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 11, 2013 9:47 AM. The previous post in this blog was Something hinky going on in Lake Oswego. The next post in this blog is Bullet train to Eugene: "The fix is in". Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Friday, January 11, 2013

Credit where credit is due

We love to stick pins in Portland's moribund daily newspaper, which is usually mighty skimpy on real journalism. But O reporter Joseph Rose's recent exposé on Tri-Met's "culture of exhaustion" was really good. It's having real results, and it could literally save someone's life. Kudos to Rose and his editors.

Comments (10)

He's getting better. He used to be a total hack, but he's all grown up now!

Agreed. In addition, I would add the recent story about the HR consultant at PPS raking in the dough as a good job by the big O. Not sure if that one will have serious results given the rampant corruption going on at N. Dixon but the bottom line is that these are type of stories that readers want and expect from a serious newspaper. Not cut and paste jobs drafted by PR flacks.

Now that Adams is gone from the mayor's office, perhaps the O is a little less fearful of ruffling feathers in local government.

I see more of a lead paint chip lining to this story. It just means TriMet's union will hike their compensation packages or employee count even higher, sending TriMet asking for more taxpayer monies. Just like the property tax fairness front pager in this week's Portland Tribune. The ultimate aim is not to rein government and improve government service, but rather to expand government largesse through popular media distraction veiling the real effort at work.

So when we need to see our local paper expose waste, fraud and abuse in local government... we need to read the commuter pages?

Well, it's a start.

Maybe Rose can teach the recent U/O journalism grads how to WRITE an investigative journalism piece instead of cut and pasting government press releases.

Nah, probably not. What was I thinking?

"The ultimate aim is not to rein government and improve government service, but rather to expand government largesse through popular media distraction veiling the real effort at work."

Newspapers should have no aim except getting the story. The choice of what is covered (or not) is at issue probably more often than how a story is covered. But certainly there should be no "aim" of reining in government anymore than expanding or improving it. Revealing it, yes.

Good news coverage is tough. Mr. Rose's piece looked exhausting and exhaustive. It is not the reporter's or paper's problem what is or isn't done with the information (other than editorializing, hopefully on their editorial page).

For example, Harry Esteve has done some excellent coverage of the PERS problem. For all that it seems to be remembered or applied I wonder if he wonders if he should even bother.

There will be lots more reporting for Mr. Rose on the TriMet beat.

Heard a headline on the radio today that said the Transit Union was offering to trade a cap on overtime hours for a 10 gap between shifts.

At first blush that sounded peachy, then the light bulb went on: No more split shifts ie, 4 on, 4 off then 4 on again.

With split shifts gone, the only way to add drivers for the peak hours is to hire more of them. A lot more.

oops. 10 hour gap between shifts


I am sure the Transit Union is ONLY concerned with improving public safety and reducing the number of accidents.

I further condemn all you knee-jerjk cynics who might suggest the Transit Union would even consider employee compensation or the growth of the union membership when it conflicts with public safety.

That's why they only allowed drivers to work 22 out of 24 hours. That's why they defended employees with spotty safety records, even after they killed a few pedestrians. To improve safety.

How you forget they're Madders.

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