And who is doing that kind of work now?

As further evidence the Las Vegas Review-Journal has run off more good reporters and editors than most newspaper ever hire, witness the Sunday Viewpoints section.

In the lede editorial about the state’s prevailing wage law, the editorialist cites a 2000 series of articles:

“As documented by former Review-Journal writer A.D. Hopkins in 2000, the mandatory minimum wages published by the Nevada state Labor Commissioner sometimes require contractors to pay as much as $13.69 per hour above the highest real wages reported for a given labor specialty during the previous year. Those erroneous “prevailing wages” — dreamed up out of thin air — then became the actual wages that had to be paid the next year on government construction projects, at which point they were factored into the following year’s wage mandates.”

On the op-ed page, former publisher (did I mention run off?) Sherman Frederick calls for former UNLV basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian to be admitted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, even though:

“We were minding the public’s business — which included unblinking coverage of the long fight between the NCAA and Tark — when investigative reporter A.D. Hopkins encountered a guy with a story he claimed would implode the UNLV basketball program.

The hot tub photo (appears to be photo of the front page photo from the R-J)

“Hopkins came into my office and closed the door. ‘You gotta see this,’ he said.

“A.D.’s guy then proceeded to show us negatives of three current UNLV basketball players in a hot tub with Richard ‘The Fixer’ Perry — a man already convicted of throwing college basketball games.

“After verifying the negatives and double-checking the man’s story, we ran the picture, which was taken in 1989. A convicted sports fixer with three UNLV basketball players. And there were subsequent reports of ‘The Fixer’ hanging out inside the UNLV locker room at halftime.

“As expected, it was an undeniable revelation that quickly ended Tark’s tenure at UNLV. It was ugly. He announced the 1991-92 season would be his last at the school.”

And that is just two of the countless stories and projects Hopkins reported and edited that earned him a spot in the Nevada Press Association Hall of Fame. But he and his team of investigative journalists probably pissed off too many advertisers, so they were disbanded and dismissed when a former ad salesman was made publisher.

Just adding a little perspective.

6 comments on “And who is doing that kind of work now?

  1. Steve says:

    I swear those guys will do anything to get their money, anything at all, no matter what the cost to anyone or everyone else.
    Former salesman. That explains it.

  2. bc says:

    The money people cannot run the business, that goes for marketing and sales as well, sales and marketing only look at the deal in front of them, they do not look long term at the health of the company.

  3. I never knew a salesman who could handle confrontation. It is not in their nature. Confrontation kills the sale. Sometimes the sale is to the reader.


  4. Judge Smales says:

    Well off-topic here, Tom, but the LVRJ isn’t the only newspaper in town trying to fool its readers.

    Here’s a comment I made on the LV Sun web site today that you might find interesting. The comment is found on this story:

    “Interesting how the Sun, an alleged newspaper, changed the New York Times headline on this news story into a cheerleading pro-Harry Reid headline.

    As shown in the following link, the original NYT headline: “Harry Reid Draws on Political Calculus as He Leads Senate,” with an alternate headline of, “As Views Shift on Guns, Reid Corrals Senate”

    Yet, the Sun decides to add its own spin, and suddenly the Sun headline reads: “Reid a master of political calculus as positions on guns, immigration, gay rights evolve”

    Sun, answer this question: How did your beloved Harry suddenly become a “master”?

    Sun, you’re not fooling anyone. You think you would learn by now that it’s a big Internet out there, and you can’t hide your spin any longer. Busted — again!

  5. Thanks for the pointer, Judge. That is too rich.


  6. bc says:

    I have worked for manufacturing companies that were led by sales, they struggled with the longer term outlook that the company leadership needs. Don’t get me wrong, you have to have good sales folks, people that can see the needs of the customer and have the killer instinct needed to make that sale and that person is not me. But that instinct focuses too much on the here and now deal, not the future.

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