Aw, come on, admit it. You’ve seen ‘em, the great big tractor trailer rigs with the huge arrow running the length of the trailer, its point ending at the cab. “Our company’s greatest asset is found here.” (Analysis dreads considering what affect this has on the driver knowing that he is being equated with other ledger sheet resources like the company’s vehicles, buildings, IT logistic system, etc.) Analysis fails when considering what such an arrow, with its accompanying hyperbole, would point to if it appeared on the top of each front page of the Gannett Company’s Newark Advocate. The “readers”, residents of Newark and its surrounds who subscribe to and purchase the paper? Doubtful. The advertisers? Too few. Major PACs operating city and county gov’t? Fewer still, and too simplistic an answer, but intriguing given that the paper and the area’s sole radio outlet comprise the total advertising expenditure on both PACs’ financial disclosures. The intellectual labor at the Gannett media factory? Close, but with its ever shrinking commitment and size (both staff and reporting, the printing operation vanished in 2014, something not covered by the paper’s annual review of the past year), not convincing enough. The Newark Advocate itself? Bingo! The paper itself (both print and online) is the Gannett Company’s “greatest asset”.

Central Licking County can do better than a media source only capable of insuring that its monopoly publication appeals as broadly as possible in order to benefit from the largest number of readers and advertisers (along with the two “captive” PACs). Let’s look at some previously prescribed portions of this made to look like, but really isn’t, meat recipe:

City residential/commercial property maintenance: The Advocate position – Well, Newark needs it badly but we don’t want to inconvenience the landlords who own 43% of the city’s residential housing. A good thing too since that might affect the rents. But we’re all for it.
Jobs/connecting Newark’s unemployed to those jobs: Advocate position – Kudos to Grow Licking County and jobs created off 79 in Heath. The health care industry park off W. Main is the community’s greatest asset (and employer)! We champion job opportunities and growth in central Ohio. We regret that little is actually within Newark itself. Celebrating the projected Canal Market District we’ve purposely elided that once we celebrated this very same space as a proposed public transportation hub for the residents of Newark to access the area’s major employers along 79, W. Main, Granville Rd. and the expanding north end. Best left unsaid since we don’t want to alienate our car dealer advertising partners.
Public funding for the promotion of religion: Advocate position – We feel publicly funded institutions should not promote religion. However, we find the necessity of an anonymous and unnamed area resident challenging such promotional activity through the use of outside representation to be utterly reprehensible. This marginalized individual should have outed themselves. Our paper strongly endorses religion with a regular Faith section featuring acceptance and forgiveness. (Analysis indicates the Advocate editorial board completely missed the strong and obvious correlation with a representative democracy determined by anonymous, er, secret ballot)
Street paving: Advocate position – Newark’s streets urgently need to be paved and bridges maintained but the property owners who benefit from the public access provided by these thoroughfares should not bear any cost. Of course, residential water users will see their rates increase but that “benefits” them by allowing for the mandated replacement of 100 year old waste lines in the downtown business district.

Had enough tofurkey?

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