Four In The Afternoon: This, That And Oh Yeah That

Special “the editor has a cold and is wiped and took most of the day off, so I’m just doing this now” edition–sorry for the delay. It’s not like anything happened anyway…

1 WE GOTS US AN ELECTION  Here’s the CBC, The Globe and Mail, The Toronto Star, The Washington Post, er well the Associated Press in the Post anyway,  and the BBC. The government fell after a non-confidence vote that came out of parliament finding the government in contempt of Parliament. So. I think our readers have some slight idea of our thoughts on the federal Conservatives, i.e. the Republican Party of Canada. I have a question: any thoughts on how you’d like us to cover the election? Suggestions? Requests? We have lots of ideas but I’m interested in feedback before we get started. Any preferences on tone? Funny? Savage? Even-tempered? Scratch that, we can’t do the last one. But is there anything relating to the election you’d like to see in the next couple of issues?

2 LIBYA, SYRIA, JAPAN AND WISCONSIN Read about it here, here, here and here.

3 HAVE YOU BEEN FOLLOWING THIS IRONIC STORY ABOUT AN UNDERSTAFFED CONTROL TOWER AT REAGAN AIRPORT AND THE PILOTS WHO HAD TO LAND PLANES WITHOUT TOWER ASSISTANCE? Update here and why this is ironic here. Anti-union types either don’t understand things like this or maliciously ignore them. Boo anti-union types.

4 DOG SMASHES THROUGH A WINDOW TO ATTACK A LETTER CARRIER Holy crap, little overprotective there little dude!

Author: Stephen Whitworth

Prairie Dog editor Stephen Whitworth was carried to Regina in a swarm of bees. He's been with Prairie Dog since May 1999 and will die at his keyboard before admitting his career a terrible, terrible mistake.

10 thoughts on “Four In The Afternoon: This, That And Oh Yeah That”

  1. I read an interesting comment on the Globe and Mail website (yeah, yeah, I know.) Here it is:

    What this country needs is to really think about what we stand for here in terms of values and then a political party that campaigns on that. The conservative agenda is edging us towards more Americanization and while I love them deeply I would not chose to live in that society. Let’s cut the rhetoric and have a debate about the real issues rather than attacking each other – that adds no value and disrespects the intellect of the Canadian population. They say we get the government we deserve and I don’t think we deserve a government led by Mr. Harper. (Link)

    So, I guess my angle of attack would be taking the ethical high ground? God knows the Harper government doesn’t lack for moral decay. What I would really like to see is a refresher on his past wrongs – i.e. Cadman etc. and many others that have been glossed over and pushed under. The Sixth Estate blog is doing a good job on keeping the spotlight trained on Carson, as well.

  2. Well, I asked because feedback could be helpful. We have more ideas than we have room to publish or time to write so reader feedback could help us choose between them.

    Also, this is an important election. The Conservatives are a U.S. Republican-style party and people aren’t aware of that (or think that makes them an attractive option). A Conservative majority government would be devastating for Canada. We’re the only media outlet in Saskatchewan that can attempt to spell that out clearly and persuasively. I appreciate any feedback I can get that helps us do that.

    Katie’s feedback, for example, was helpful.

  3. I think your reply makes my point, Stephen. There’s no sense in my suggesting any approach when the approach has already been decided. But thanks for asking, pro forma.

  4. There’s a difference between our approach and our assessment of the situation.

    We do have a well-formed take on the Conservatives. Obviously! As you know! So that’s in good shape.

    We don’t have a detailed plan for editorial coverage yet. there’s a lot of different things we can do. Long features? Short interviews? Personal essays? Cartoons? What kind of mix?

    Sorry if I’m being unclear again. I do that sometimes.

  5. “So that’s in good shape.”

    Or bad shape if you’re a staunch Conservative supporter. (Smiley winking face symbols.)

  6. Hey, I’m being cautiously optomistic here (not usually the case.) A lot can happen in the time between now and May, and I think some of the mud is starting to stick to the Conservatives.

    A lot of people (my stats are a little, um, anecdotal) dismiss prairie dog as rabid partisan leftists. (It’s hard not to rant, I understand.) If you can corner the “real news” angle and give the impression that you have the actual stories, you could capture those who are dissatisfied and suspicious with the L-P or S-P. I’m not saying become less angry, I’m just saying be insanely professional and beyond rebuke. Well, as much as your budget allows, I guess.

    I imagine you have discussed this already and probably at length, but I’m curious as
    to what your position is on starting to charge money for prairie dog and Planet S. I remember reading somewhere (I’ve been trolling Google but can’t find it, perhaps it was a book) that people will take newspapers etc. more seriously if they are paying money for it. I think sometimes that your efforts get lumped in with Verb and those other free things that lurk in the corners of coffee shops and sandwich joints. You could split the paper and still keep a free section going, with arts and culture listings and what-have you.

    Also, more cartoons and illustrations would be nice, but I am biased and thinking of my colleagues who aren’t as fortunate as I to have a steady job. MOAR ART!!!

  7. What I would like to see is something specific to Saskatchewan ridings, and in the case of the PD, Regina and area ridings. Give a blow-by-blow outline of what our local MP has done / has supported / has failed to do throughout the last several years. Specifics, things we can challenge the candidates and our neighbours on.

    If you want to be effective, you have to think globally (nationally) but work locally. Pay attention to *that local person* and their actions, not just the big picture of getting rid of the Cons.

  8. Very helpful guys, thanks. Katie: It’s tricky. Doing what we do gets us readers like you and Madeline and Barb. I want more readers like you. I don’t really want readers who think, for example, that David Suzuki is a commie. There are irrational people out there.

    As for being a paid paper, I think that’s unworkable and we don’t wanna anyway–we’re part of a noble, free pick-up alt-paper tradition. And anyone who lumps us in with Verb (i.e., business advertisers run by people who don’t read and have no sense of style) is an idiot deserving of cruel, cruel mocking. Verb is despicable. Only jerks read it. Feel free to yell at Verb’s advertisers for encouraging an uglier, stupider Saskatoon. Verb. Yuck.

  9. Haha, fair enough. You want to draw off the intelligent readers, not the paranoid conspiracy theorists (they ARE coming out of the woodwork lately, must be all the fluoridated water). I like Verb: it lets me know exactly where NOT to be!

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