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January 4, 2006 [LINK]
Former News Leader publisher sets record straight
An op-ed piece in today's Staunton News Leader by Evarts W. Opie, Jr., former publisher of the local newspaper, laments the "gratuitous personal attack" on then-commissioner of revenue Ray Ergenbright that appeared in an editorial on December 16. He lays out the facts about the difficult transition to the new tax revenue software system and concludes, "Instead of throwing brickbats at the outgoing commissioner we should be thanking him for 11 years of good and faithful service."
It was gratifying to read such a strong condemnation of the unfair campaign against Ergenbright (and former Treasurer Elnora Hazlett) by a person who used to run the newspaper, before it was bought out by the Gannett Corporation several years ago. Unfortunately, this is one of those situations where the phrase "better late than never" does not apply. In my mind, the fact that the voters of Staunton were deprived of the full story behind the property tax software controversy when they went into the polling booths on November 8 was an outright travesty. As I noted on October 20, I remain mystified by the motivations behind the editorial bias that seems to have affected the News Leader's coverage of local news. Small town intrigues...
Marion Barry robbed
Former mayor Marion Barry was robbed at gunpoint in his own kitchen by two youths who had been helping him to bring groceries inside yesterday. This quote from the roguish Barry is a perfect illustration of the prevailing mindset in Washington, making lame excuses for criminal behavior.
There is a sort of an unwritten code in Washington, among the underworld and the hustlers and these other guys, that I am their friend. ... I don't advocate what they do. I advocate conditions to change what they do. I was a little hurt that this betrayal did happen. [SOURCE: Washington Post; apologies for the prior omission]
Barry also used the opportunity to call for stricter gun control laws, notwithstanding the fact that the District already has one of the toughest (and largely futile) anti-gun laws in the country. This incident, and Barry's reaction to it, further undermines the city's image just as the confrontation over stadium financing between the city government and Major League Baseball has escalated, a time when prestige matters the most.
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 04 Jan 2006, 7: 00 PM
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January 7, 2006 ~ DeLay gives up majority leader post
January 12, 2006 ~ Alito withstands Dems' "torture"
January 16, 2006 ~ Michelle Bachelet wins in Chile
January 19, 2006 ~ Views on Iran's nuclear ambitions
January 24, 2006 ~ Fallout from Canada's election
January 31, 2006 ~ Second (& third) thoughts on Iran
February 1, 2006 ~ The State of the Union, 2006
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February 18, 2006 ~ Checks and balances in wartime
February 22, 2006 ~
Neocons & Neolibs: chastened alike
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The Dubai Ports World uproar
March 14, 2006 ~ New D.C. baseball stadium unveiled
March 24, 2006 ~ In the footsteps of France?
April 7, 2006 ~ Immigration compromise fails
May 16, 2006 ~ Bush militarizes Mexican border
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Zarqawi: The death of a terrorist
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Election in Mexico: too close to call
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September 6, 2006 ~ "Crunchy conservatives": for real?
September 25, 2006 ~ Nationalists thwart conservation
October 3, 2006 ~ Nationals: Year in review
October 29, 2006 ~ Virginia's marriage amendment
November 7, 2006 ~ The people render their verdict
November 8, 2006 ~ Republicans lose big time
November 9, 2006 ~ Allen concedes / Election post-mortem
November 13, 2006 ~ Toward consensus on Iraq?
December 1, 2006 ~ Realism and our goals in Iraq
December 6, 2006 ~ Latin America & U.S. trade policy
December 8, 2006 ~ Iraq Study Group reports
December 22, 2006 ~ Yuletide political roundup
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