In my opinion, his opinion isn’t worth the paper it is printed on

I’ve spent nearly four decades in the newspaper business, most of it as an editor with an opinion column. In all those years, I don’t recall ever telling someone in print that they should just shut up. I certainly have told others their opinons weren’t worth a damn, but I think more speech is better than a gag.

I may make an exception for the Las Vegas Sun’s J. Patrick Coolican, who today basically told casino mogul Steve Wynn to shut up. (By the way, Wynn hates the moniker “mogul,” because it conotes an autocrat, which in fact is a part of most dictionary definitions. So for years I banned its use in news stories as being editorializing, though I’ve seen it since creep back in.)

Now, I have no particular affection for Steve Wynn, who once called me stupid during an editorial board meeting for disagreeing with him on some matter I can no longer recall, but Coolican’s rationale for criticizing Wynn’s criticism of President Obama is as full of holes as Swiss cheese.

“Back in 2011,” Coolican writes, “on an earnings conference call reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Howard Stutz, Wynn said he’d declined to do the deal because of the federal government’s ‘insatiable appetite for money.’ What he’s referring to here is unclear — again, tax rates have remained stable under Obama.”

Perhaps, just perhaps, he is referring to the fact the federal government under Obama and a Democrat Senate has racked up trillion-dollar-plus deficits in each of the past four years, borrowing 40 cents-plus of every dollar spent. Perhaps, he is referring to the costs that will be incurred when ObamaCare comes to rotten fruition in 2014. Perhaps, he is referring to bailouts and stimulus and crony capitalism.

Coolican concludes by writing:

“The lesson here is that for all the apocalyptic talk on the left and the right before the election, the country goes on much as before, with people building new things, winning and losing fortunes, raising children and caring for their parents.

“The other lesson, though I doubt he’ll heed it, is that Wynn should take a breather on the politics and stick to doing what he does best: building casinos I’ll never go to.”

Wall Street Journal chart showing deficit spending

I guess he’s not heard that unemployment is still bumping up against 8 percent or that since Obama’s re-election that scores of companies have announced layoffs or that the economic recovery is the weakest of any since World War II or that GDP growth is an anemic 2 percent.

Maybe Coolican will agree with Wynn when the joint operating agreement between the Sun and the Review-Journal is renegotiated so that the Sun in print is either reduced or eliminated and he is out of a job. It is a recession when your neighbor is unemployed and a depression when you are.

And all those restaurant jobs will be part-time thanks to ObamaCare.

51 comments on “In my opinion, his opinion isn’t worth the paper it is printed on

  1. Rincon says:

    The recession is perpetuated by a government that isn’t functioning due to an inability to compromise. This crerates uncertainty, which depresses spending and investment Both parties are complicit. Reaching a consensus, even if flawed, would have a profound positive effect.

  2. Obama won’t bend on punitive taxes on the “rich,” Rincon.

  3. Vernon Clayson says:

    Rincon doesn’t read Harry Reid’s comments, or if he does, not with comprehension. There will be no consensus, to say nothing of a formal budget, in this new all in government style. Pigs will fly before Barry, and Harry, agree to tax and spending reductions under a formally established budget, that process has been pushed aside in favor of an ephemeral debt limit. Compromise and cooperation is getting along with Obama and his crowd, and no one should believe Harry is actually an integral part of that crowd, he’s feathering his nest while the Senate still has some influence, and that is fading quickly. If there is contact between them it will be one of Obama’s coutiers telling him he’s drawing too much attention to a debt limit they intend to stretch out to infinity. As for the Sun’s Coolican, he’s like a fenced and chained toothless old poodle barking at a passerby, no one is impressed or has the time to care what a moribund newspaper has to say.

  4. brucefeher says:

    What did you expect from the Sun, Tom? I wish I has the option of NOT getting it with my daily RJ, but I don’t.

  5. Steve says:

    The RJ is in serious trouble. Its new leadership is clueless and lost. None of them know which way to turn or if they will even be there in 6 months.

  6. Rincon says:

    I agree that the liberals contribute greatly to the ossification of Congress. Can you say the same about the Republicans?

  7. Steve says:

    Republicans are liberals too. Yes I can say the same. Anyone else?

  8. Athos says:

    Cut spending, for real. We need a Gingrich revolution that is as intractable as Ø and THE CROOK.

    And Don’t look for the suntan man to lead the Republicans. Why not Paul Ryan?

  9. nyp10025 says:

    Wow – “athos” is still around. I had no idea.

  10. Rincon says:

    Try Googling “taxes lowest in 50 years” and you will find that Americans in 2009 paid the lowest percentage of their income in taxes since the 1950’s. In light of this, I find anyone that signs a pledge to not raise taxes to be inflexible. I believe that includes virtually all Conservatives. So Steve, are true Conservatives contributing to our deadlock?

    And Athos, I agree that we need to cut spending. Should include spending on defense?

  11. That’s because their income was down and they dropped to a lower rate, but the spending continued unabated, Rincon. Yes, trim defense. And, yes, Repubs can get in the way and many are big spenders.

  12. Steve says:

    08 to 09 Democrats had full control. What was it they concentrated on? The sinking economy?
    All healthcare all the time for 2 solid years as the economy died. That was the reason conservatives took over the House in the midterms. Who was it caused this new round of intractable deadlock? True conservatives know what happens when today’s liberals take over, we just saw it plain as day.

  13. Rincon says:

    To say Obama did not concentrate on the budget is disingenuous, Steve. Certainly, an administration must move forward on many fronts. If we managed to bring health care expenses to the level of the next most expensive country, we would be able to pay off the deficit (about 7% of GDP), so it’s worth addressing.

    Alas, Obamacare is not the solution. There was a piece of it that promised to control costs, but the Republicans condemnerd it as rationing. A billion dollars was budgeted towards research on the effectiveness of medical procedures. Turns out 3/4 of artery stents provide no benefit and the PSA prostate test is useless for a healthy man, etc, etc., but Medicare is still paying for them due to politics.

    Thank you Thomas, for your impartiality. From 2003-2007, we had a Republican President and a Republican House and Senate – and government spending increased dramatically. The problem isn’t Obama, nor Democrats, nor Republicans. It’s with voters that are loyal to one party or another. Neither party deserve loyalty or excuses. If we all condemn them when they deserve it, they will respond, but as long as they each have a loyal base, they’ll keep playing their games.

  14. Steve says:

    All we heard about was healthcare, the economy. Nothing. Its what gave rise to TEA. I guess it was good for conservatives then, too bad the Republicans didn’t learn from it.

    I know they had to work on multiple issues, they chose to publicize the wrong one.

  15. nyp10025 says:

    Gee. I was under the impression that Obama and Congress spent most of their first year working the economic stimulus program, the auto industry rescue, the AIG rescue and the reform of Wall Street financial practices.

    I didn’t realize that they paid no attention to the economy. Must have been a dream on my part.

  16. Steve says:

    Sure publicized that stuff well, huh…

    Lip service, as Billy C might say. In fact that was probably the biggest reason Billy C was so down on the big O in the first couple years.

  17. nyp10025 says:

    Yeah, that stimulus program and auto industry rescue were completely under the radar.

  18. Steve says:

    Compared to that one thing everything else might as well not have existed. It wasn’t till this election the economy became priority number one. Its true as far as Bill Clinton was concerned, he was pissed off at Obama for appearing to ignore all else in favor of healthcare. Even Harry Reid was known to say healthcare first then we can work on those other things.

    Perception is 60% of reality as the ’10 midterms taught the Democrats and even then it was almost too late to fix. I never wavered in my prediction of an Obama reelection but I was surprised at how close the Republicans came with a very weak candidate. My prediction all along was based on just how weak the Republican candidates (all of them) were. Not on how strong Obama was. To me Obama is little more than the smiling face of a matchstick man.

  19. nyp10025 says:

    Harry Ried never said that. You simply made that up. Same thing with your bogus statement about Bill Clinton.

  20. Steve says:

    Bag over your head and hands over your ears.

  21. nyp10025 says:

    Very simple – show us the quotes.

  22. Steve says:

    Can’t show something to those with their eyes and ears covered.

  23. nyp10025 says:

    They aren’t covered. All you need to do is provide a quote that backs up your assertions that (a) President Clinton was upset “at Obama for appearing to ignore all else in favor of healthcare,” and that “Harry Reid was known to say healthcare first then we can work on those other things.”

    And even if my eyes happened to be closed, you would still be able to convince the half-dozen or so other readers of this blog that you don’t simply make things up.

    But you can’t do that, because the back-up for your statement doesn’t exist. You simply made something up. Best thing to do now is to just admit it.

  24. Steve says:

    Nyp, you already said you don’t do links and you don’t do vids. So you are blocking all the sources.

  25. Reid during campaign against Angle: “We had to do health insurance reform (first?) to remain competitive in the world economy. And it creates jobs — thousands and thousands of jobs.”

  26. nyp10025 says:

    I don’t know whether to laugh or cry when, like a guilty school-boy, you stick the word “first” into that Harry Reid quote in order to support “steve’s” phony allegation that Reid said that Congress needed to work on healthcare reform before turning to economic issues. You want to give it the full Sherman Frederick treatment, but your conscience forces you to stick in that question mark and the two parenthetical marks.
    A psychologically compelling performance, but you end up only undermining Steve’s case. Harry Reid never said that Congress should deal with “healthcare first then we can work on those other things.” Steve simply made that up.

  27. Steve says:

    Prove it Nyp. I follow links and I watch vids.

  28. nyp10025 says:

    Prove a negative??

  29. Steve says:

    That’s how civil law works, I say it, you prove it wrong.

  30. Steve says:

    Really, they accuse the boat for being a drug transport. The owner then has to prove a negative to prove the boat was not a drug transport.

    Prove me wrong.

  31. nyp10025 says:

    How utterly bizarre. Do all conservatives think like this?

  32. Steve says:

    Forgive me Nyp I took the page right out of Harry’s playbook. He showed me the way during the campaign.

  33. nyp10025 says:

    So your claim about what Reid said — and about what Clinton said — was indeed false.

  34. Steve says:

    Reid said Mitt Romney did not pay taxes. That was false.

  35. nyp10025 says:

    Yes, it appears to have been false, although we will never know for sure, since Romney wouldn’t release his prior-year tax returns.

    But let’s talk about you. Was your claim about what Reid said — and about what Clinton said — true or false?

  36. Steve says:

    Lets talk about how you fought so hard to get Romney to prove a negative.

  37. nyp10025 says:

    I didn’t fight at all to get Romney to prove a negative. Nor did Harry Reid. After all, all Romney had to do was what every recent Presidential candidate has done, and release his prior year tax returns. Would have been simple to show that Reid was wrong.

    But let’s talk about you: Was your claim about what Reid said — and about what Clinton said — true or false?

  38. Steve says:

    Its true. All of what I wrote is true. Prove it wrong.

  39. nyp10025 says:

    No, I can’t prove a negative. I can’t prove they never made the statements that you ascribe to them without posting every single word they have uttered in public since January 2009.
    But all you have to do is provide the quotes from Reid and Clinton that support your assertion. Do you have such support, or not?

  40. Steve says:

    Everything I wrote is correct as written.

  41. nyp10025 says:

    Good. Then provide the quotes that back up your contentions that Senator Reid said that Congress “should deal with “healthcare first then we can work on those other things,” and that President Clinton “was upset” at Obama for “appearing to ignore all else in favor of healthcare.”

  42. Steve says:

    First get Harry to provide his source. Then, and only then, will I provide mine.

  43. nyp10025 says:

    I don’t speak for Harry Reid. Never met the man. Have nothing to do with him. But you speak for yourself. Was your statement true or false?

  44. Steve says:

    As true as it it is written.

  45. nyp10025 says:

    I think we have seen enough here of this illustration of the contemporary conservative mind at work.

  46. Steve says:

    Taught by the actions of the liberal hero of Harry Reid. We can learn new tricks, dirty as they be.

  47. Steve says:

    BTW follow my link its much more fun than Winstons was.

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