Saturday, April 28, 2012

Great Falls Tribune now Giving Blogging Advice

Tribune Speaks - We Listen
Here is the "other" side

I had to laugh this morning when I read an anonymous comment written by an editorial writer from the Great Falls Tribune, (Gee Guy actually posted the whole Tribune rant in the comment section here) The Tribune was taking me to task for not posting all the “facts” about the Free Prime Rib Dinner story we posted on Wednesday.

My Bad – I guess when I posted the link to the Flint Report and also to the audio tape of the interview with Monica Lindeen’s Communication Director Lucas Hamilton I just naturally assumed all bases were covered. Apparently newspaper reporters are not quite as smart as those that read blogs for information and you have to spoon feed them slowly by repeating information over and over.

The fact of the matter is that Mr. Lucas Hamilton is claiming that these dinners cost the taxpayers nothing. The money is taken out of a “victim’s fund” that was set up to try and educate folks about how to be wary of con artists. The income for this fund comes from fines and penalties against the criminals perpetrating these crimes. It would seem that compelling the criminals to make restitution to their victims in not as important as generating income for this “education” fund in the minds of Mr. Lucas and the Commissioner of Securities and Insurance, Monica Lindeen. I wonder if some of the folks that are taken by these con-artists would actually prefer to have restitution or just leave the money in this fund to warn others about the potential for wrong-doing by other unscrupulous sorts? While trying to downplay the waste of money for these prime rib dinners Hamilton failed to mention that Commission staff plan, travel and attend every one of these events which is not included in the cost of the dinner. Of course they are on the state payroll anyway so they may as well be doing something is the rationale behind this thinking. My thought is that if they have plenty of staff to do all of these kinds of things maybe, just maybe, we have too many people on the state payroll.

The whole jest of the irritation portrayed by the Tribune was against bloggers in general. They said “Often it is too much trouble for bloggers to actually check out the facts behind what they are writing about.” If the Tribune anonymous editorial author was truthful he would have also mentioned that newspaper revenue is way down and nearly every newspaper in the country is cutting staff in an attempt to survive. Bloggers are not professional news people nor do we claim to be. We can however, point out the obvious in the hopes that voters and our so-called professional news people will do some of that investigative reporting they always yammer on about and uncover the complete story. Isn’t that why we pay money for a newspaper? To get the whole story?  Don't they find it odd that Commissioner Moncia Lindeen, who is running for state-wide office, is funding free prime rib dinners all over the state albeit not on her own personal or campaign dime?

If it wasn’t for bloggers “secretive empires” like Electric City Power would still be scamming Great Falls citizens out of millions of dollars of their hard earned taxes. Blogs like the Electric City Weblog not only broke the story of fraud and corruption but they continued pressing until the truth came to light. I read nothing in the Tribune about the city’s power company failures that I hadn’t first seen being questioned on The Electric City Weblog. Bloggers like us are only enjoying a degree of success because of the very failures of the newspapers like the Tribune so kindly pointed out this morning.

Did any Tribune readers know anything about free prime rib dinners in Havre until after bloggers such as The Corrector pointed it out in the article The Governor is Right:   We have Plenty of Excess Money?  Many sources have published stories about this in the last couple of days after seeing it on The Corrector. The Northern Ag Network reported this prime rib nonsense in the Flint Report. I have saw references to the story in several blogs and Face Book postings and The Corrector even obtained a copy of a news letter from the local GOP group here in Havre that had this to say;
I say let's all go to and RSVP to go have a free prime rib dinner on Monica--er  Pat Davison or Bernie Madoff or whomever is actually "paying" for this. Let's pack the Elks club next Thursday evening May 3rd at 6:00 PM!!
Instead of chastising bloggers for breaking stories for them perhaps some of these “professional” investigative reporters should use us as another free source in their oft failed attempts to report on what is happening around the state. I am beginning to think that most newsmen really don’t have it in them to write any stories at all that actually criticize the waste, fraud and corruption that bloggers easily and routinely uncover in our local government entities.


  1. I would not have refered to it as 'blogging advice'

    Quite simply, the Havre Daily Concocter was deservedly editorially bitch slapped.

    The Havre Daily Concocter was caught -red handed- employing the unexcusable use of mistruths, half truths, misinformation, and disinformation- in a Karl Rove type attempt to look credible. This continues as the 'editor' of this poorly contrived republican propaganda cowers in anonymity, yet still makes grasps to be considered relevant or credible.

    Republicans, particularly ones 'editing' this 'blog' need to learn that con men lose everything when they begin to actually believe their own BS.

    No this is not journalism. Journalism in any media is based on credibility.

    The credibility of the Havre Daily Corrector has just been irrevocably nuked to the stone age, just as the republican partys credibility is nonexistant.

    This is an example of the disaster the republican party has in store.

    One can feel the panic and dread in the party by simply viewing Fox News, as one can get get the vibes of what a desperate state the party is in. They ignorantly let Mitt buy his nomination, and he is so unelectable that President Obama will only lose if authentic videotape is found of Obama snorting cocaine off a dead hookers ass.

    Have you heard Rush or any of the other republican cronies use the word 'elitist' to describe President Obama since it was disclosed Mitt has an elevator for his cars?

    Boehner is going to be lucky to make TV commercials for Johnson and Johnsons 'no more tears' baby shampoo.

  2. DeConstructor and Jackie Weaselboy on the HDN comment section sure sound a lot alike lately, both a very angry with Karl Rove and Fox News and are certain the GOPers are finished! One thing I've learned in my more than 60 years on this planet is that betting on political outcomes is not a very "sure" thing, but nonetheless it is fun to listen to the prognosticators prognosticate.

    This particular story is fun, because everyone seems to be running to Monica's defense of these ridiculous dinners all over Montana, but we should all be outraged, especially those who are victims of investor fraud. The truth is this money should be provided to the victims as restitution rather than political campaigning guised as informational seminars.

    I think the Corrector was right to point out this insane waste of money the way they did. If the motivation was truly about education there are much more efficient and cheaper ways of accomplishing that goal, for instance the County Senior Centers could simply have a showing of the film, but then again Monica couldn't take credit for that now could she?

  3. It seems to me that every newspaper in Montana were the ones ‘bitch slapped’ in this story.

    Newspaper editors clearly missed the story here and they must be blushing knowing they were scooped by an unnamed blog author. It is also hard to speak of any credibility differences between blogs and our local papers that constantly publish poor information.

    I read several blogs every week with full knowledge that they each hold their own political slant. This one obviously leans to the republican side but others like the Cowgirl blog are obviously written right from the governor’s own office with democrat contributing. Why don’t I ever see you commenting about lack of credibility when I am reading comments over there DeConstructor?

  4. Armchair apologists attempting to defend the indefensible. Unbelievable.

  5. DeConstructor with respect to your posts collectively on this blog, pot, meet kettle!

  6. In my humble opinion everyone here including the blog creator has missed the most important point in the free dinner post. This isn’t about democrat or republican. It isn’t about whether it is ok to give free food to buy votes.

    The story should be is it ok to waste $28,000 and office resources for something that will virtually make no difference? One thing I will agree with is that the state government does seem to have an abundance of money in the budget and further cuts can and should be made. Every single department of government should be looked at responsibly. With $4 gas I have to think about even going downtown and back an extra time and these dudes are running all over the state giving away prime rib feasts and drawing a state salary

  7. I wasn’t apologizing for anything DeCon, just stating the facts. People obviously want to know how our money is being spent and who is funding what

  8. I did not say you were apologizing Joe.

  9. I have seen a couple of comments I agree with here. Lindeen’s lackey is trying to make you believe they will only spend $28,000 but I don’t believe that for a second. Don’t they consider salaries and travel expenses? Are they buying gas? A motel room or two? How many are coming? Did the $28,000 include the production of the documentary? They did have a professional actor and I would assume they were paid. If they are hosting free dinners in over 16 places like this story says they are going to be woefully over budget. I have seen 2 big ads in the Havre Daily that would cost well over $200 each. Are those included in this price?

    Do they even have any kind of a budget? I think the lackey’s comments were all rhetoric to minimize the ridiculousness of this venture and cover their asses now that the story is out.

    That leads to another question. Why didn’t the Havre Daily look into this squandering of money when they saw the ads being published?

  10. This is great

    I like it when you get everybody stirred up by pointing our their failures

  11. If the Tribune doesn't think these funds aren't state dollars it means the did no investigation. Of course these are state dollars! And they are belong used not only for prime rib dinners but to provide those free dinners to get people to watch a campaign video for Jesse Laslovich , democrat for AG, and Monica Lindeen, democrat for auditor.

    I'm surprised his hasn't been talked about earlier and that the blog here is the only outfit with the story. Laslovich and Lindeen are going around he state, using state salaried time, to promote their own campaigns. The auditor staff spent countless hours, at taxpayer expense, putting his pablum together. An ethics compliant needs to be filed with the legislative auditor ASAP. Anyone can do so anonymously by calling 1 800 222 4446

  12. Perhaps one should consider that these cases are notoriously difficult to investigate and prosecute.

    $28,000 is less than one case would cost. This is a case of an ounce of prevention going a lot further than a pound of cure, and could actually save the state millions in investigation, prosecution, and incarceration costs. This is not to mention social services needed by the victims of these crimes after they are left penniless.

    However, since this blog is more about promoting fox news ideals rather than the business of the people of Montana, and since truth is less important than political jabs, we have this propaganda.

    Good news is, you guys have Mitt Romney. hahahahaha

  13. Here goes DeConstructor again bashing Fox News. Tell me where does Fox News fit into this story? I'm not following this concept of Fox News Ideals.

    Just admit it DeConstructor, Monica Lindeen and Drill Baby Drill is right, Jesse Laslovich are doing this to too their own horns for political reasons, that's why we're doing these events now and not last year. In for a penny in for a pound. Of course they learned this Spiking the Football technique from their Dear Leader, Barack, who apparently single-handedly, in black ops, commando style shot Osama Bin Laden personally.

    I don't think i will personally survive this onslaught of political ads coming our way between now and November, so I will be crawling back to my hole soon! Will you miss me DeConstructor?

  14. Spike the football? Really?

    I don't think mentioning the fact his staff shot Osama Bin Laden in the eye compares to W putting on a stupid costume, landing on an aircraft carrier, and claiming 'Mission Accomplished' before thousands of MORE Amercians were killed and the treasures of the US squandered.

  15. "His staff!" Really? Wow! That statement right there pretty much sums it up, DeConstructor. It's that mentality on its face that is so offensive to folks, that the military is somehow his personal staff as opposed to serving the nation that they're sworn to defend. I don't really expect you to understand, only those who've served in the military will understand what I'm talking about.

  16. Well said Noam, hell even Arianna Huffington said Obama's politicization of the death of Bin Laden was "despicable!". Not to mention that we taught our kids you can't point to one bad thing to justify another. Bush did it so Obama can do it too. Give me a break. By the way, that prime rib was great!!!