Surprise! Ever-more-far-Right Wall Street Journal investigates Boulder, calls it “a cautionary tale.”

Via on Feb 13, 2010

Instead of giving successes and failures equal play, The Wall Street Journal (which used to represent the best of conservative, quality journalism, but was bought by Darth Murdoch and Co, and has instituted a conservative filter according to its own writers) comes to Boulder and summarily finds what it expected to find: that going green is hard, that business owners (like our new Councilperson, George K. “don’t care” about closing business doors in winter), that even lazy liberals fear “Big Brother.”

Lesson? Wall Street Journal needs to go back to journalism ethics 101 and remember that it can’t “report” what it “believes” but instead what it “finds.”

To read the cheery piece of yellow journalism, click here.

Wall Street Journal Boulder green

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9 Responses to “Surprise! Ever-more-far-Right Wall Street Journal investigates Boulder, calls it “a cautionary tale.””

  1. R Gilbert
    as much as I despise Murdoch (google "justice for the 96"), you need to fact-check and refute the article. what parts of it are wrong? as a local government employee, I want all of it to be wrong–but is it?

    Waylon Lewis
    Great question. Yes. The facts they present may be true…but the facts they leave out are legion. Enthusiasm is broad and deep, both, in Boulder, as is pride in our efforts. My complaint is with the general slant…their sins in reporting are primarily sins of omission, bias, slant.

    They had a good idea of the story they wanted to tell, then went out and hunted down facts that would fit their story.

    Sherlock Holmes would NOT approve!

    • Dave Burdick says:

      Laura wrote up a nice piece on this, with a few specifics, over at Big Green Boulder.

      Quick excerpts:

      "So if Simon’s article wasn’t entirely inaccurate (though there were some minor problems with numbers and dates and facts), was it unfair? And this is where we head down the slippery slope of tone."

      "So it stands that Boulderites, perhaps like everyone, don’t make energy-efficient upgrades like they know they should. But, Boulderites do make other green changes that others often don’t. They are nearly 20 times as likely to bike to work, and they take the bus in much larger numbers than average Americans. They also divert more than 50 percent of all their waste from landfills."

    • Dave Burdick says:

      Laura wrote up a nice piece on this, with a few specifics, over at Big Green Boulder.

      Quick excerpts:

      "So if Simon’s article wasn’t entirely inaccurate (though there were some minor problems with numbers and dates and facts), was it unfair? And this is where we head down the slippery slope of tone."

      "So it stands that Boulderites, perhaps like everyone, don’t make energy-efficient upgrades like they know they should. But, Boulderites do make other green changes that others often don’t. They are nearly 20 times as likely to bike to work, and they take the bus in much larger numbers than average Americans. They also divert more than 50 percent of all their waste from landfills."

  2. Via my friend and mover/shaker Valerie…love her point about being "green" as a way of life, not a take-it or leave-it to-do list.
    ~
    I sometimes can't wrap my head around this town, but I definitely feel like we DO care and we DO try. George, why drive a Prius in the first place if you won't close the door? It isn't about changing one thing, it's about changing how we view everything. It's all connected, except maybe George! :)

    Thanks for pointing out the slanted view of the reporter, I liked the Sherlock Holmes comment, so true, Watson, so true!!

    Have a great day, Waylon!

  3. Deborah says:

    But Waylon, is what they reported not true (like emissions being down only 1%)? I think in our green zeal we should keep our eyes open to facts. I don't know what the facts are (like are a lot of changes really happening or not), but I don't think we should rule either way without more data (and not just anecdotal).

  4. Alden Wicker Alden says:

    I canceled my subscription to WSJ this summer when they reported on all the trouble those meddling environmentalists were giving to those poor coal companies in West Virginia.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703

  5. KC Becker says:

    I think the city plans to come up with some response to this article, because we have made progress in some areas. Instead of noting all the stuff that is being achieved, they make the challenges sound insurmountable. Ultimately, I think the article is about how hard it is to change individual human behavior. That is true no matter what the goal is.

  6. [...] greeting George K, the ungreenest Boulder greenie of the week (our newest City Council member, he was just qu… as saying that being eco-responsible was cool and all, unless it interfered with his [...]

  7. Tom Weis says:

    Thank you, Wall Street Journal, for telling the world Boulder is powered by a coal plant – that will help us end the coal burning even sooner. We should take it as a compliment that the WSJ felt compelled to belittle our efforts like they did. In the words of Mahatma Gandhi: "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win." We're already at step two.

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