Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Death of Credibility at The Moncton Times

Today, Saturday, Dec. 4, /the Moncton Times published the most important column it has ever published- not just in what the column said, but in the implications of what it said. The Moncton Times is imcompetent and it lies. It's all on the op ed page (opposite the editorial page in a guest column by Karen Branscombe, Superintendant of District 2 schools.

Both the Superintendant of District 2 and the District Education Council, (both of whom has been publicly insulted and virtually spat on by The Moncton Times in past months) had made Moncton High their top priority for essential repairs for several years. But they could not authorize anything without money. And governments have refused to make that money available.

In another newspaper, even one almost as low in the gutter as The Moncton Times and Tribune, reporters would have made enquiries of politicians, (with an unusually large group of Ministers of Education to draw on).  If it did not do that, if it launched such comtemptible  attacks without checking with the responsibe ministers, then the paper is incompetently edited.

If they did ask, and the ministers answered truthfully, then The Moncton Times lied to us.

If the ministers didn't tell the truth, then the  New Brunswick press has an obligation to publicize who lied about what.

Frankly, even if they lied, a cub reporter for a high school newspaper should know that a local district simply does not have the power to allot money on such a scale. Whatever their faults, nobody at even the Moncton Times could have been so stupid as to believe  it had such power. Any way you look at it, The Moncton Times and Transcript lied.

Apparently, it lied on another point, too. It said that the superintendant had decided not to go the the parents' protest (which represented less than one percent of the parents. That certainly gives the impression that they asked her, and she told them she had "decided" not to attend. (Of course, it could be that The Times editors and reporters are mind readers - but I doubt it.)

That's lying. That's outright, bare-faced lying. In good newspapers, people get fired for that.

The very least The Moncton Times can do is to  apologize for its vicious and vile editorials about education over the past year or so. It apologize for acting as a propganda sheet for Atlantic Institute of Marketing Studies so AIMS can do so much damage with its long discredited notions of standarized testing and ranking.

It seems to me The Times has also said that the teachers' union is too strong. Really? If they're so powerful, why have they never said a word in defence of their own members. So far as I've been able to tell, the teachers' union has all the power and courage of a kitten with a tummy ache.

Why haven't other "leaders" in this community defended the schools? Thousands must have realized that what The Moncton Times was doing was lying and scurrilous. But not a peep. Is Karen Brnscombe the only person in this city with brains, integrity and courage?

Boy, I feel like writing a letter to the ownership of The Times, telling them what a lying rag it is.
But they would probably feel flattered, and give all that wretched crowd a raise.

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