The Casey LiveJournal Monologues, blogged
Some time ago, we noted that Chronicle columnist Rick Casey would be speaking to the Harris County Democratic Party.
Certainly, journalists are welcome to speak to groups -- even political groups -- to promote their news organization and their work, whether it's Rick Casey speaking to Democrats or Dan Feldstein speaking to conservative-activist talk-radio listeners (an appearance scheduled and then canceled).
However, it's extremely useful to news consumers to know what those journalists actually say when out and about. Thus, the Houston Democrats blog has performed a fine service to news consumers and media watchers alike in Houston by recounting Casey's remarks. Here's a sample:
Rick says there is a new nationl religion: God wants you to be rich. If you are not rich, you are not with God. Basically, the right wing would like to do away with CHIP, Medicaid, and the school fund. Instead religion says we should worship markets.
Markets aren't all bad, but Rick cautioned that we should consider how to make markets do what they do well and to tame them so they do. The rich say we do not have to do anything to manage markets. The poor just have to get with God, and that will solve their problems. Rick noted that at one time it was the blacks who were not believed to be with God, now it's the poor.
Essentially, the right wing has stollen the identity of Chritianity and turned it against the "non-believers." Rick asked how is it that God wants us to have a 3-5% revenue cap?
It's certainly provocative and informative reading.
Casey's columns regularly lean to the left, and we have pointed out occasions when he seems willing to flesh out details on issues that are of interest to the editorial board. The fact that he is a columnist on the news pages, but regularly offers editorial opinion in his column, seems not to be a concern to anyone at the Chronicle, although it's not clear to me why his column doesn't run on the editorial page where it belongs.
Of course, if he were moved there, the lack of balance on the editorial page would be even more striking (Cragg Hines, Clay Robison, and Casey as the staff writers on the Left, not to mention James Howard Gibbons, Andrea Georgsson, and Mr. Kathryn Kase representing liberal pet causes in unsigned editorials -- with no identifiable local conservatives writing regularly), and the laughable claim that the editorial position is "not liberal or conservative" would be that much harder to take seriously. One does feel sorry for actual reporters who have to share the news pages with Casey, though.
RELATED: My double-top-secret agenda (Rob Booth, Lone Star Times), Pay no attention to that columnist behind the veil (Sedosi Alhambra, Isolated Desolation).