Monday Morning Read
You can read Jim Heaney’s recommended reading on Monday morning. Or Sunday morning, along with a wrap-up of Investigative Post’s reporting of the previous week, if you subscribe to WeeklyPost.
Common Council President Darius Pridgen is not seeking re-election next year. In my dealing with Pridgen over the years I found him to be smart, charismatic and street savvy. Unfortunately, the Council under his leadership has been a rubber stamp for Byron Brown. His approach has been to go-along to get-along with the mayor. The city needs an independent and vigilant Council.
Brown gathered people Friday to express their horror over the beating death of Tyre Nichols by Memphis police. This from a mayor who has done next to nothing to reform his own police department, which has been involved in the deaths of four civilians in recent years.
The New York Coalition For Open Government documented how governments across the state get around legal requirements that they meet in public. A damning report.
For you political junkies, Ken Kruly has a rundown on what local politicians have in the bank. Spoiler alert: Sen. Tim Kennedy has a lot.
A Buffalo News report lends credence to allegations of corruption involving the award of a state contract at inflated prices for Covid tests. The company that got the contract was a major contributor to Gov. Kathy Hochul’s campaign last year.
Margaret Sullivan’s retirement didn’t last a whole lot longer than Tom Brady’s. She stepped down as media columnist for The Washington Post late last summer to do a little teaching and write fiction. She resurfaced last week with The Guardian, which said she’ll be writing a weekly column on media, politics and culture. In her first piece, she writes about what she would do if Elon Musk handed her the keys to Twitter. I’m glad she’s returned to the ranks of working journalists; she’s an important voice.
In other media news:
- There’s a new movement afoot to help save local news. Axios takes an in-depth look. Well, in-depth for Axios. I like some of what Rebuild Local News is advocating, but let’s face it, most chain-owned daily newspapers are dead men walking. (One chain is actually downsizing a college paper it owns.)
- The Washington Post is laying off journalists. Even the quality papers are hurting.
- Slate is worried about U.S. libel law, whose bedrock principles were established by the Supreme Court nearly 60 years ago in the The New York Times v. Sullivan case.
- The strike at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has passed 100 days. Hang, tough.
- Canada has its own ProPublica, of sorts. Welcome, the Investigative Journalism Foundation.
- Radio Free Europe rocks on.
Fewer and fewer people want to work for the government, The Marshall Project reports.
Journalism lost a giant last week with the death of Victor Navasky of The Nation. What a career.