Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Lack Of Full Disclosure At LA Times

One of the more... interesting... policies in the very briefly posted on-line corrections of the 'Corrections Section'... is that when columns in the Opinion section are corrected, the column, i.e. the columnist, is never identified. This makes it much harder to even find the actual column since there is never a link to the column.

This makes also it difficult to see which LA Times writers are more unreliable when it comes to getting their facts straight. The same goes for the highly variable quality of the unsigned editorials that range from brilliant (when on international and to a much lesser extent, national, affairs) - to abysmal, and on occasion, so error ridden as to be useless, when discussing local and statewide issues.

Additionally, not being able to see the context in which the error was made, makes it difficult to understand the extent to which the error betrayed the public, 99% of whom will never be aware of the correction.

Today's correction in a perfect example:

Schwarzenegger appointments: An Opinion essay Sept. 4 about gubernatorial appointments and special interests stated that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's $6,000-a-month hotel suite in Sacramento was paid for by a tax-exempt group partly funded by Southern California Edison and Pacific Gas & Electric. SCE and PG&E did not contribute to that group, but the utilities did contribute to another tax-exempt group that has paid for events and billboards, featuring the governor, that promote the state.

Now this sounds like this was an article about the hotel suite and that they just got the names of two of the contributors wrong.


Dead wrong!

Here is the error in situ:,0,7523228.story?coll=la-news-comment-opinions

Suite deal has nuclear glow

By Jack Miles, JACK MILES was a member of The Times' editorial board from 1991 to 1995.

GOV. ARNOLD Schwarzenegger lives in a $6,000-a-month hotel suite in Sacramento paid for by special-interest groups, notably including Southern California Edison and Pacific Gas & Electric, The Times reported on Aug. 24. What do SCE and PG&E expect from Schwarzenegger in exchange for their largesse? The Times rightly raised that question in a strongly worded editorial on Aug. 29.

Ironically, the answer appeared elsewhere in the newspaper on the very same day. Staff writers Jordan Rau and Miguel Bustillo reported Schwarzenegger's nomination — in effect, his interim appointment — of two nuclear industry lobbyists as California's representatives on the Southwestern Low-Level Radioactive Waste Commission, or SWLLRWC.

That's right. The claim that SCE and PG & E gave money to personally benefit Arnold was the entire story! Clear access buying! So there was no story if that was not true! And - it wasn't!

And the claim that local utilities - who depend on business thriving in the state - gave money to promote California - outside of the state of California - is not even close. That Arnold can call attention to California through his celebrity - helps us - not him. It's not as if he needs to increase his name recognition factor in Nevada.

So why doesn't the LA Times let us know who is screwing up in their Opinion section? Why won't the LA Times ever have their 'Correction Sections' keep the corrections up for several weeks, or even days - like other newspapers? Why won't the LA Times show us how each error affected the meaning of the story in the 'Corrections Section' - and then also link to the story in question?

That way, the LAT's readers could know the truth and learn which Times' writers are most factually challenged and... uh... oh...

I just answered my own question - didn't I?

Never mind.


Since Andres Martinez wants us to get to better know who is on their editorial board - I presume he also means former editorial board members who presently write opinion essays. So... I looked up Jack Miles to see what his qualifcations are for pontificating about self-interest and greed and conflicts of interest and... well, you get my drift. So I looked him up on-line and his bio proudly closes with this phrase...

... and a senior adviser to the president of the J. Paul Getty Trust in Los Angeles.

Yes, that is right! Jack Miles is the man who has been advising the president of the Getty Trust, Barry Munitz, in the looting of the Trust for his own personal gain and self-aggrandizement!

So, of course, what better person to blantly lie, I mean, hypocritically lecture us about the morality of such actions!

Only at the LA Times...

EVEN BETTER UPDATE!!,0,7810560.story

An article recently published in the... LA Times, of all papers... exposes, yes, dear readers - Jack Miles! - as one of the leeches feeding off the Getty Trust....

But many staffers saw Munitz squandering the trust's resources on what Margaret MacLean, an anthropologist who used to work for the Getty Conservation Institute, called "shallow vanities."


Jack Miles, a former Los Angeles Times book editor and editorial board member, earned more than $100,000 as an advisor in 2003. "My job is loosely enough defined," Miles, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author of books and essays on religion and foreign affairs, said recently. "I'm not routinely involved in any component parts of the Getty."

So, of course, when the LA Times Opinion section wants to find the perfect person to challenge sweet heart deals and blatant conflicts of interest - why not go straight to the horses's mouth!

And to think... I was actually wondering why the LA Times tries to hide this stuff from us!

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