In one of my last pieces, I described the mechanism of using the deliberate de-municipalization of the Tucson metro …and how it was kept poor, and thusly subservient, to the corrupt Pima County BOS, executed magnificently by its dark prince, Chuck Huckelberry.
Incidentally, Mr. Huckelberry is my #1 pick for the coveted 2020 “Golden Barnacle Award.” (picture out shortly)
None of this deliberate retardation over the last few decades would have been possible without the “aircover” of Arizona’s anti-business, leftist news press, especially the dominant media in Pima County.
Well boys & girls, disruptive technologies and practitioners’ (aka “journalists”) constant liberal sycophancy to a 1-sided national fetish ….have morphed into more chickens coming home to roost, than from Arkansas’ Don Tyson. The wolf is on the doorstep, and he’s sick of eatin’ chicken.
The big Leftist-biased newspapers in Arizona were always on borrowed time, now that threat has arrived. Metro dailies are the walking dead; they just don’t know it. The handwriting on the wall has manifest into the electronic digits of the balance sheet.
Numerous recent stories, both Arizona local & national, are decrying the passing of this sanctimonious liberal age. A period Mark Twain might call, “being holier-than-thou in print.”
Rumor has it—plans are afoot for a special shrine at UA’s Journalism school, one with cry-rooms and oxygen inhalers.
I mean folks, this is serious. We’re witnessing the end of an American epoch, one in which Orson Welles as Citizen Kane was the poster boy for 4-5 entire generations of newsies. And like the arrogant Martians in War of the Worlds, it was “the little things that did them in.” (Orson did that one, too)
The actual events are out there; corporate takeovers, consolidations, daily edition elimination; Bloomberg said just this week, giant newsy McClatchy, “teetered on bankruptcy,” et al.
What should be especially troubling to denizens of the vaunted Forth Estate, we’re not talking a lot of money as today’s mergers go. The current GateHouse Media digestion of the once-mighty (and oh-so-haughty) Gannett empire— ran only $1.2 billion. These valuations reflect highly diminished expectations of advertising revenue potential. So, are you paying attention now, bizpeople?
Yet in a rare twist, LEE Enterprises’ Iowa corporate executives, half-owners of Tucson’s Arizona Daily [Red] Star, have been officially accused by the unionized staff of its St. Louis property, the storied St. Louis Post-Dispatch, of deliberately milking the paper as it slowly implodes.
Heads-up LEE Enterprises, Uncle Warren will not be a happy camper. He’s risking his $600 million debtor-in-possession (their first bankruptcy), 9% coupon, LEE junk bonds in Berkshire Hathaway holdings—now getting priced (read: blasted apart) off-street, by disruptive fintech market-making.
THE BOTTOM LINE, ARIZONA BIZ-PEOPLE: If you buy a lot of print advertising and you don’t press your pricing advantage (over these clowns), you’re an idiot. If they won’t cut your costs by serious double-digit percentages, let ’em come to depend on the not-for-profit-sector, or the ad hoc guys, and see how far that goes.
Just remember, this relationship will be positively brutal in the next big downturn.
Sellers is a South Park Republican who lives in Oro Valley. His background is federal tech-transfer commercialization. Contact him at email@example.com