Monday, March 13, 2006

Assumptions of the Non-Politik Politik: Massachusetts Style

Often times political assumptions make a lot of sense. For example, people in labor unions tend to vote Democrat. If you go to Detroit and there's actually an automobile factory left, chances are if you meet anyone inside it, they vote Democrat. That's a fair assumption to make, if you know nothing else about a given union member.

Another assumption: the political stump speech. Do politicians actually mean what they say? If anyone listened to President Bush in 2000 or 2004, you'd know that rarely does rhetoric match policy.

Another assumption: politicians prefer to campaign on broad ideas rather than detailed policy, which is something Adrian Walker complained about today in the Boston Globe. Apparently, Deval Patrick isn't detailed enough for the Globe reporter. Equally apparent, a certain Globe reporter can't bother checking a website ( before he writes a story.

In one of those weird twists in life, there just happens to be a political candidate who invalidates a political assumption: Deval Patrick's policies are detailed and easy to find. While I would forgive a political lay-person for not bothering to check facts, I expect better from someone who works for the mighty Boston Globe. I expect better from someone who is supposed to be informing the public (you know, someone who is actually supposed to know about what he writes).

Maybe Walker did check the website and wasn't pleased with what he saw, but he should have disclosed that effort in his story. Otherwise, daily readers of the Boston Globe (such as myself) are left with the impression that Globe columnists can't manage to type the letters and symbols w w w . d e v a l p a t r i c k . c o m, because that would involve actual (minimal) research. Yo, Adrian, try google.

Update: Apparently, I'm not the only one in Massachusetts to blog about this. Greater Boston took notice. Blue Mass Group posted about it as well. There was another, but I can't find it anymore! Sorry!

Additional Update: I'm not criticizing Adrian Walker for diminishing Deval Patrick's chances. He actually seemed to have a positive spin on Patrick. However, I don't care one way or the other. I'm just annoyed at the lack of research in this story. Columnists sometimes think that just because they write columns, they don't need to do research. They're wrong.

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