(I apologize in advance for duplicating the subject matter that Patrick posted on earlier today, but since I had most of it written yesterday, I didn’t want to let it go to waste.)
As some of you may have heard, Oklahoma State’s new basketball coach has a bit of a potty mouth. Berry Trammel, in his blog, sums up the problem this way:
The profanity used by OSU basketball coach Travis Ford, calling Obi Muonelo a “f****** idiot,” is alarming on two levels. First, a human decency scale. How did sports ever develop to the point where anyone, even if it’s just the coach himself, thinks that’s acceptable? But also, how could this happen ONLY THREE DAYS AFTER an Oklahoman story detailed how Ford’s vocabulary already had landed him in hot water with some, including his wife?
Really? Those are the problems he culled from this recent incident? Berry Trammel is a f****** idiot.
First of all, reading The Oklahoman leads to nothing but problems for OSU coaches, so it is pretty safe to assume no one (including Coach Ford) read that article. Second, I cannot understand why the puritanical aversion to salty language should eclipse the real issue that should be haunting Travis Ford.
To be fair, I understand that cursing like a sailor is a bad example, and as my mother taught me as a youth, using foul language is an indicator that you are not smart enough to find better words. We even attempt to curb our use of profanity here on TheLostOgle, and no one is accusing us of being a moderator of public decency.
On the other hand, I have spent some time in a fraternity house and grew up on a baseball field, so I have heard and dropped my fair share of f-bombs. So, I don’t understand why Ford’s profanity is supposed to be the greatest sin he could have committed, particularly when the word he uttered was sandwiched between the student body chanting “Bullsh**!” at the referees and the band leading a song that includes the lyrics, “We’re going to beat the hell out of you!”
The real crime, and the issue that should get more attention, is where the profanity was directed.
If scoring 29 points and hitting the game winning shot on a left handed layup is not enough to make your name known to The Oklahoman, what would Byron Eaton have to do?
Apparently, laying off a bunch of employees was not enough to get The Oklahoman out of the red. Now, they are taking further steps to make themselves into the profitable media Goliath they fashion themselves to be. They are cutting benefits for those that remain.
Thanks to an Ogle mole, we have obtained the following memo which details the closing of the OPUBCO Child Daycare Center. Here is what it says:
January 26, 2009
OPUBCO Child Development Center Families
Despite the rate increases that went into effect July 1, 2008, OPUBCO budgeted approximately $150,000 to subsidize the operations of the OPUBCO Child Development Center (“Center”) during 2009. Given the state of the economy, we have made the difficult decision to close the Center effective July 3, 2009. This decision was not made lightly or without a great deal of consideration to the impact it will have on each family, but we simply cannot continue to subsidize the Center’s operations. It is our hope that by providing this advance notice, you will have sufficient time to locate a quality alternative for your child(ren) beginning July 6, 2009.
If you have any questions about the information contained in this letter, please feel free to give me a call at 475-4016 or send an email to email@example.com. On behalf of OPUBCO, please accept our apologies for the concern and inconvenience this decision may cause. We wish the best for your child(ren)’s pre-school care and education.
Vice President of Human Resources
The real shame of this, aside from many excellent early childhood educators being laid off, is that the center was one of the best daycare options in the state. Now, the parents of a hundred some odd newborns to five year olds are scrambling to find day time supervision for their children that at least rivals the quality the ladies at OPUBCO’s CDC provided.
And to save, what, $150,000?** You can bet that Christy Gaylord Everest’s salary won’t be among the things they considered to relieve their hemorraging income statement. She’ll continue to make her ridiculously high salary which she earns simply by maintaining her maiden name. The company could save twice that if they halved the amount budgeted for Christy to buy foam fingers at OU games held at Gaylord Family Stadium. You can also rest assured that the executives of the paper will not be forgoing their uber-suite at the Ford Center.
With those golden calves protected, here are some other cuts The Oklahoman has considered in their efforts to become profitable again.
Rumors have been circulating about this for awhile, but it looks like The Oklahoman and Tulsa World are finally going to announce a partnership where they will start sharing content. There has yet to be any word on if they are going to start sharing other things like wives, power tools or pirated versions of Office 2007. From a statement/press release/story that will probably appear in tomorrow’s Oklahoman:
News organizations to cooperate
Oklahoma’s two largest news organizations, The Oklahoman and the Tulsa World, announced Thursday they will share selected stories, photos and other news content to better serve their audiences throughout the state.
The agreement means some content produced by The Oklahoman’s staff will appear in the World and on the World’s Web site, TulsaWorld.com. Likewise, some news content produced by the World’s staff will appear in The Oklahoman and on NewsOK.com.
Stories and photos produced by one organization and published by the other will carry attribution to the contributing newspaper or Web site.
Ed Kelley, The Oklahoman’s editor, said the collaboration provides more coverage of news in Oklahoma for the organizations’ audiences at an uncertain time for the news industry. Both The Oklahoman and the World have terminated newsroom positions the past four months as part of cost-cutting measures.
Over time the two organizations will focus on reducing some areas of duplication, such as sending reporters from both The Oklahoman and the World to cover routine news events.
“We want to try to make sure the level of coverage doesn’t drop even as our staffs are smaller,” Kelley said. “Partnering with the World and their professionals makes a lot of sense for both of us.”
“We are excited at the quality and breadth of journalism that can be done by combining the two largest newsgathering operations in the state,” said Joe Worley, executive editor of the Tulsa World.
Both Kelley and Worley said the two organizations will maintain their separate voices on their editorial and opinion pages, as well as their individual approaches to gathering news.
As much as I want to complain about this, it actually seems like the smart thing to do. It’s basically the newspaper equivalent of the Oklahoma Sports Blitz, only we don’t get John Holcomb incessantly gazing into the eyes of Dean Blevins.
I guess the only thing that really sucks about the deal is that we are going to have to continue to live with The Oklahoman’s biased editorial and political coverage, but we’ll live with it. And that’s not even too bad of deal, because it still gives us some easy material to criticize. Maybe they’ll combine their sports departments, too, and we’ll finally get good sports stuff to read like Dave Sittler and The Picker.
If laying-off 100+ people didn’t convince you that OPUBCO was going through some tough times, just check out page 5A of the Sunday Oklahoman. On it, you’ll notice a full page ad promoting some interesting products OPUBCO is selling to help you “commemorate Obama’s inauguration.”
The best item, by far, is a $20 “keepsake t-shirt” that will “show a full-color reproduction” of the front page from Wednesday’s Oklahoman. From the website where you can buy the shirt:
Celebrate a moment in time and own a piece of history with these collectible, one-of-a-kind tees and posters featuring the Wednesday January 21, 2009 front page commemorating Barack Obama’s history-making Presidential Inauguration.
The Oklahoman is making a tee-shirt to commemorate Obama’s inauguration? What’s next, classified ads for “sensual massages” on the back pages?
Seriously, OPUBCO hocking stuff that commemorates the election of a Democrat president seems a little weird. It would be like us having a big party and letting Wimgo be the sponsor, or The Gazette selling pro-life coffee mugs. It just doesn’t make sense. That’s why I wouldn’t be surprised if the big article on Wednesday’s front page is an unattributed editorial on tort “reform” or a feature on Glenn Coffee, and the stuff about the actual inauguration is buried in the bottom left corner with the headline “Obama Sworn-In; Nation Mourns.”
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