It’s rare these days to hear any real passion coming from the news bosses at the Star Tribune. This is one of those days, however.
Worried about spills? “Though some environmental advocates dispute this, drilling technology has advanced over the past quarter century. Oil companies can drill more efficiently in deeper water with significantly less risk to the environment.”
But there was one unnoted fact: The company that bought the Strib last year is heavily invested in that technology.
That brought a volley from Jill Burcum of the Strib”s editorial board. Once you get past the invectives, her message in Brauer’s comment section was:
The editorial’s point remains a strong one – that it’s worth having a discussion about offshore drilling in light of $4 gallon gas and advances in drilling technology. This is something that many on all sides of the political spectrum are saying. I’m not going to apologize for advocating for families suffering from high gas prices. Or, asking for a debate over opening up new domestic oil supplies, something our experts agreed would help drive prices down and get speculators out of the markets. If that makes us “breathy,” so be it. We’re in pretty good company.
As far as disclosure goes, David, heal thyself. By your own standards, your columns require a lot more of them than the meaningless Gray Plant disclosures you put in. Today’s reality, which you should know as a critic, is that most media companies have owners with vast investment interests. Do these newspapers, TV stations and other outlets disclose this every single time they write about these topics? Has MinnPost ever disclosed its founders’ and funders’ vast investment interests when it writes about various topics? No.
So many interesting issues here, it’s hard to pick which one is better: the question of the value of oil drilling off the coast, or the question of when journalists should disclose the business interests of an increasingly diverse ownership?