Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Side hits a media ‘daily double’

As we warned you in this recent post, we were invited to appear the other day on WCME, the local Brunswick radio station.  We had to use all available navigation aids to find the WCME studio, but lucky for them, we did.

The odds are you missed the live broadcast, so we’re providing you with a chance to redeem yourself by listening to a recording of the spot.  If and when you do, you’ll realize that besides having a face made for radio, your correspondent has a voice made for blogging.

Here’s the recording, in the form of a YouTube ‘video,’ which it plainly is not.  Unfortunately, it’s the only way we could find to get it on the web, since our IT person has never shown up for their first day of work.


With any luck, when you click on the play arrow, you’ll only have to listen to a brief interlude of ‘front matter’ before getting to the heart of the discussion.

Jim Bleikamp, the owner of the station, was a gracious host, suggesting that Side is an “intellectual.”  We have a different understanding than he of what that label means, but we won’t bother exploring the various interpretations, especially as they might relate to the denizens of our local Ivory Tower.

We had briefly discussed what subject areas might be involved in the spot prior to our appearance, so we had a chance to prepare some thoughts.  None-the-less, Jim surprised us by suggesting that ‘conservatives’ have more bozos in their ranks than ‘progressives’ do.  So we were not prepared with citations to refute his assertion on the spot.

More than likely he realized that had he told us this would be a point of discussion, we’d have fire-hosed him and his studio with numerous documented examples to counter his view.  No matter; we will, one way or another, have the last word on this subject.

For now, here’s a trademark Side amuse bouche on the subject.  We hope Jim enjoys the tasty little tidbits and shares them with his listeners.

  • The President pointing out that he had visited ‘57 states, and only had one more to go.’
  • Nancy Pelosi’s comment that ‘you have to pass the bill to find out what’s in it.’
  • “We haven’t had a very collective notion of ‘these are our children,’ so, part of it is that we have to break through our kind of private idea that kids belong to their parents, or kids belong to their families and recognize that kids belong to whole communities.” Your kids belong to the government, so says MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry.  She also said that said that kids shouldn’t count as real human beings “until parents decide” they should qualify as “life.”
  • Maxine Waters, Congresswoman from California: “We don’t need to be having something like sequestration that’s going to cause these jobs losses, over 170 million jobs that could be lost.”  Since we only have about 140 million folks working, that would be quite a decline.
  • Congressman Hank Johnson on Guam: "My fear is that the whole island will become so overly populated that it will tip over and capsize,"

We’re just getting started, but we think discretion calls for us to stop there for now.


Later the same day, we had a lengthy sit down with Rob Montana, the new Managing Editor of the publication we lovingly refer to as The Ostrich.

It was a cordial session, and our host patiently listened to the evidence we accumulated over the years regarding the TR’s less than stellar contributions to ethical, objective journalism and the local area.

As we said in this earlier post, we wish Rob well.  It’s our impression that he comes to the job with good intentions, a clean slate, and an absence of the taint and biases that those long  involved in Maine journalism take on, whether they realize it or not.

We have hope, of a modest level, that he will reverse the obvious decline in The Ostrich over the years, and bring it to a place of value in our community and region.

Only time will tell, but it won’t take much time to tell.  This isn’t a case of trying to change the course of an Aircraft Carrier or Super Tanker.

Most of the barnacles on the hull of the aging ship have been scraped away, and she has a new captain. 

The paper is a daily operation, shaped by daily decisions and leadership.  We’ll be watching with interest for signs of a new commitment to objective, ethical, and locally focused journalism.

Even though we haven’t subscribed to the paper for years, nor do we pay for digital access.

Now that we think of it, though, the bird with its head in the sand doesn’t pay one red cent for full access to our publication.

So we’re all square at the moment.  And we hope Rob isn’t expecting us to change our direction in the same way we’re hoping he changes that of the TR.

We’re just a little dinghy in the great sea of journalism, and we’ve got all we can do just to keep the winds from blowing us off course.

We have no idea where we’re headed, but that doesn’t mean we can’t stick with ‘steady as she goes’ as our guiding principle.


We trust you agree; this is no time for mutiny.  And as long as you’re up, pass the blueberries, Chief.

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