Friday, January 07, 2011

Journal coverage begins in earnest

There is a story in the Journal about the upcoming school board election. link.

The Journal cronies in the election, Esquivel, Griego, (Lucero) had their names mentioned; acknowledgment of their
competitors was limited to counting them.

Esquivel and Griego's names came up twice is as many column inches; it constitutes and endorsement through a "news" story.

Name recognition being important at election,
Esquivel and Griego were given a bump, undeniably,
their opponents were not.

Perhaps not all that important if that were the extent of Journal bias, but it isn't. The Journal's sins of omission are calculated to change the outcome of an election.

Explain why they won't investigate and report upon the ethics and accountability scandal in the leadership of the APS;

  • the abdication of the senior most role models of the student standards of conduct,
  • the cover up of corruption in the APS Police Department,
  • the ongoing denial of due process to hundreds of whistle blowers
If Kent Walz could report that the nutty allegation, that Marty Esquivel and Winston Brooks and the Journal are covering up an ongoing suppression of evidence of felony criminal misconduct involving APS senior administrators, link, was false, why won't he?

Esquivel and Brooks are foursquare against an independent audit of administrative and executive standards and accountability. Walz won't report on their opposition. He won't report that Board Member Paula Maes' opposition is on record; "I will never agree to any audit that individually identifies ..." corrupt or incompetent administrators or board members.

If Walz can write,
an independent audit would reveal unequivocal standards of conduct and competence, high enough to protect the public interests
and if he can write,
an independent audit will reveal that APS administrators and board members are honestly accountable to those standards
why won't he?

On another related issue; candidates have received the Journal questionnaire.

By my estimation is that half of the questions; (1), 6, 7, 8, aren't comparatively relevant to the discourse. Do voters really need to know if I what university I attended? Do they need to know that more than anything else?

A question like;
are you currently doing everything you can to deny due process to hundreds of APS employees and their whistle blower complaints against administrators and board members?
would give voters some information they could use.

The Journal's coverage of candidates consists in its entirety (even after voting has begun) of asking candidates a total of four meaningful questions (not the most important four) and then "allowing" candidates 35 words to answer a question like;
what school-based cuts would you make and
what other measures would you take to balance the budget?
Is the Journal really that hard up for ink?

Haily Heinz knows, by the way, about the Audit Committee's failure to review and approve even one complaint though Board Police requires it to review and approve every one.

Which is not to say I hold Heinz responsible for the Journal's cover up of the ethics and accountability scandal in the leadership of the APS.

The responsibility falls in
my opinion, on the
shoulders of Journal Editor
Kent Walz.

I hold him responsible.

Hailey Heinz will catch the flak this year over
Kent Walz' lack of candid, forthright and honest coverage
in yet another election.

She has sent me a list questions and the "rules" for answering them.

Dear Mr. MacQuigg:

Below is the Albuquerque Journal’s candidate questionnaire. Your responses will be published in print editions of the Journal later this month and also will be published on the Journal website at

Please respond to the request for biographical information and the issues questionnaire by Wednesday, Jan. 12. Note that the word length of responses to each issue question cannot exceed 35 words.

If your responses go beyond the 35-word length per question, we may have to cut some of your answers for length. In that event, we will try to keep your answers as close to the original wording and context as possible. We will edit for grammar.
The Journal also requests that you include a head-shot photo when returning the questionnaire that you would like us to use for the remainder of your campaign. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to call staff writers Hailey Heinz and Andrea Schoellkopf or Education Editor Ellen Marks.

Finally, please respond to this e-mail so we can ensure you received it.

1. Please briefly tell us your date of birth, education history, occupation, family, community activities and political/government experience.

2. New Mexico schools face a budget crisis that could result in a reduction of more than $60 million in APS' budget next year. Given that less than 1 percent of the APS budget is central administration, what school-based cuts would you make and what other measures would you take to balance the budget?

3. Please give APS Superintendent Winston Brooks a letter grade, and explain.

4. Do you support tying teacher evaluations and compensation to student performance or academic growth? Please explain.

5. Do you support the idea of splitting the West Side off into its own school district, as some community activists have suggested? Please explain.

6. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been the subject of any state or federal tax liens?

7. Have you ever been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy proceeding?

8. Have you ever been arrested for, charged with, or convicted of drunken driving, or any misdemeanor or felony?

frame grab Mark Bralley

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