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San Antonio Paper Axes Conservative Cartoonist, Keeps Liberal One
NewsBusters.org ^ | Matthew Sheffield

Posted on 08/21/2007 12:38:06 PM PDT by RatherBiased.com

For a long time, the San Antonio Express News was unique, not in its predictably liberal editorial page or in its port-skewing news coverage. No, instead, it was one of the few American newspapers to have two editorial cartoonists, one liberal and one conservative.

That is no longer the case. Under pressure to cut jobs and staff in the midst of the overall decline of print media, Express-News editorial page editor Bruce Davidson decided that the paper should drop conservative cartoonist Leo Garza, a fixture at the paper for over 20 years. Liberal cartoonist John Branch will remain on the staff.

You'd think that given the Express-News's posture of demanding accountability from government and (other) businesses, that it would be consistent and respect the "public's right to know" what prompted this politically charged decision. Alas, no such explanation seems in the offing for us plebs.

Looking for such an explanation, I spotted a column from Davidson announcing Garza's termination which gave no explanation whatsoever. Similarly, EN "public editor" Bob Richter did little to explain this decision to the public, stating that Garza was "simply a victim of the numbers" without any explanation for why Branch wasn't terminated as well. After all, wouldn't the Express-News save more by firing all its cartoonists like the Los Angeles Times has?

Hoping to find some sort of explanation, I emailed Davidson thinking that maybe he just had not been asked why the political disparity. His email was similarly useless:

Keeping Branch instead of Leo was judgment call we had to make. I'll refrain from a line-by-line comparison. But I will tell you it was not easy, but it was about the numbers. It was not about Leo's politics. You, of course, will be skeptical. I understand that, but I'm telling you the unfortunate truth.

I emailed back the following and have yet to receive a response. I'm not exactly holding my breath for one:

A "judgment call?" "About the numbers?" What does that mean? You provide no specifics which gives you no credibility.

Don't you find it the least bit hypocritical that you are refusing to disclose your decision-making process when you routinely publish editorials demanding that government and other businesses do just that? How are you doing anything but using the "unfettered power" (your phrase for the Bush White House) you have over your editorial page without having the respect for the public opinion to explain yourself?

You owe it to the public to explain your actions with more than peremptory phrases and dismissive language, especially as a member of our self-appointed "fourth estate."



TOPICS: News/Current Events; Political Humor/Cartoons; US: Texas
KEYWORDS: bias; cartoonists; diversity; expressnews; leogarza; liberalmedia; msmdeathwatch; nachoguarache; saen; sanantonio

1 posted on 08/21/2007 12:38:11 PM PDT by RatherBiased.com
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To: RatherBiased.com

Sad, but can anyone truly say they’re surprised?


2 posted on 08/21/2007 12:40:14 PM PDT by Nervous Tick
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To: Nervous Tick

I’m not but was wondering if any of the local San Antonio FReepers could report on how the Express-News’s opinion columns are in terms of left-right so I can put that in the article.


3 posted on 08/21/2007 12:41:44 PM PDT by RatherBiased.com
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To: RatherBiased.com

4 posted on 08/21/2007 12:47:33 PM PDT by GalaxieFiveHundred
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To: RatherBiased.com
Damn! I post a lot of his stuff in my daily cartoon threads:-(

Some recent ones:


5 posted on 08/21/2007 12:48:31 PM PDT by pookie18
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To: RatherBiased.com

The Kansas City (Red) Star has taken to dumping a free paper on my driveway every Saturday, possibly to get me to subscribe, I don’t know.

I’m thinking of reporting them for littering.


6 posted on 08/21/2007 12:50:34 PM PDT by MrB (You can't reason people out of a position that they didn't use reason to get into in the first place)
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To: RatherBiased.com
Nacho Guarache.

A great cartoon. I read the Express News every day and I will miss it.

Nacho was a rare bird. He was a conservative Hispanic fellow dealing with liberal Hispanics in day to day situations.

7 posted on 08/21/2007 12:51:32 PM PDT by Responsibility2nd
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To: pookie18

Would be interesting to see what that Liberal cartoonist draws in comparison ....and also, how long he was at the paper ... here in Seattle we unfortunately have two liberal papers and no Conservative one .....but then, are there any????


8 posted on 08/21/2007 12:53:21 PM PDT by SkyDancer ("If builders built airplanes the way FAA writes FARs then the first pilot would have been a woman")
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To: SkyDancer

Both have been at the paper for over 20 years.


9 posted on 08/21/2007 12:56:20 PM PDT by RatherBiased.com
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To: RatherBiased.com

They want to go out of business, that was the criteria.


10 posted on 08/21/2007 12:58:36 PM PDT by Doctor Raoul (What's the difference between the CIA and the Free Clinic? The Free Clinic knows how to stop leaks.)
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To: pookie18; All
I thought of you Pookie, when I saw this bad news. I knew Nacho was one of your favorite cartoons.

Naturally, the Express-News is taking heat for this stupidity....

http://www.mysanantonio.com/opinion/letters/stories/MYSA082107.01O.nachofocus.22e8aa6.html

11 posted on 08/21/2007 12:58:42 PM PDT by Responsibility2nd
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To: RatherBiased.com

the l.a. times dumped ramirez

for the same reason.


12 posted on 08/21/2007 12:58:45 PM PDT by ken21 (28 yrs +2 families = banana republic junta. si.)
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To: MrB
When we lived in the Twin Cities, we subscribed to the Sunday Strib. The paper called and asked if I would take the Saturday at half price, since I was taking the Sunday. I agreed.
A few months later the paper called to offer Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at half price. I said I would take Thursday and Friday at half price but wanted Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday for free. They agreed.
Finally, the left-wing content arriving in my mailbox everyday got to me and I canceled everything.
I felt a whole lot better within a week.
13 posted on 08/21/2007 12:59:02 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (BTUs are my Beat.)
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To: pookie18

That’s some really good stuff.


14 posted on 08/21/2007 1:00:24 PM PDT by Doctor Raoul (What's the difference between the CIA and the Free Clinic? The Free Clinic knows how to stop leaks.)
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To: RatherBiased.com

Houston Chronicle did the same thing with Mallard Filmore (sp?), a conservative cartoon. It was the only one I would read if ever I came across the Chron rag. Won’t buy it anymore for YEARS.


15 posted on 08/21/2007 1:01:11 PM PDT by In God I trust
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To: RatherBiased.com

They’ve got Pastor John Hagee down there in San Antonio, and he sure never minces words when it comes to the libs! I wonder what he’ll have to say about this.


16 posted on 08/21/2007 1:07:15 PM PDT by Joann37
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To: SkyDancer
here in Seattle we unfortunately have two liberal papers and no Conservative one .....but then, are there any????

Regrettably, very few. The Washington Times and the New York Post are two exceptions that leap to mind. But it is the Post in Washington and the Times in New York that dominate their respective markets--not the other way around.

Come to think of it, the Big Apple's latest entrant, the New York Sun, is pretty conservative too. And Chicago's Sun-Times is certainly a bit to the right of its rival, the Tribune.

But it still is nothing more than a small minority of the nation's newspapers.

17 posted on 08/21/2007 1:12:16 PM PDT by AmericanExceptionalist (Democrats believe in discussing the full spectrum of ideas, all the way from far left to center-left)
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To: SkyDancer
At least you get Mallard Fillmore...for now ;-)


18 posted on 08/21/2007 1:18:37 PM PDT by pookie18
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To: In God I trust

Mallard Fillmore is still in the Houston Chronicle.


19 posted on 08/21/2007 1:20:00 PM PDT by Tolkien (There are things more important than Peace. Freedom being one of those.)
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To: Responsibility2nd
I can only hope that Leo lands somewhere else...as Michael Ramirez did...


20 posted on 08/21/2007 1:21:05 PM PDT by pookie18
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To: Doctor Raoul
Hope he catches on elsewhere. Enjoy your calls to The Great One, Doctor Raoul! (have only spoken to him once)


21 posted on 08/21/2007 1:23:05 PM PDT by pookie18
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To: RatherBiased.com; Liberty Valance
Hispanics are not allowed to be Conservative. Just ask the pukes over at LULAC or La Raza.

The Express News has called me a couple times lately about a subscription. I enjoy telling them that I refuse to give one red cent to their crap paper. NACHO was one of the few bright spots in the rag.

Diversity? It’s about pretty colors and hues... it’s not about diversity of thought.

Nobody hates like Liberals.

22 posted on 08/21/2007 1:24:01 PM PDT by Brucifer (G. W. Bush "The dog ate my copy of the Constitution.")
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To: FrogHawk

SA *ping*


23 posted on 08/21/2007 1:27:41 PM PDT by toomanygrasshoppers ("In technical terminology, he's a loon")
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To: MrB

Be polite. Tell the subscription office of your intent first. That is as far as I had to go to stop our local Gannett rag from showing up on my doorstep. It may save a police officer from taking one more report and save a tree.


24 posted on 08/21/2007 1:32:19 PM PDT by magslinger (Be wary of strong drink. It can make you shoot at tax collectors. And miss. R.A.Heinlein)
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To: SwinneySwitch

ping to SA Express-news readers..


25 posted on 08/21/2007 1:34:57 PM PDT by Responsibility2nd
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To: Tolkien
Mallard Fillmore is still in the Houston Chronicle.

Really? What section? Again, I don't buy the rag, but do see it in various places occasionally. Haven't seen that cartoon in the cartoon section in a long time.

26 posted on 08/21/2007 1:39:37 PM PDT by In God I trust
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To: RatherBiased.com

It figures that they would axe the mexican guy and keep the white guy. Damn liberal racists!


27 posted on 08/21/2007 1:42:17 PM PDT by PLM
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To: RatherBiased.com

They’re trying to put themselves out of business. Let’s hope it works.


28 posted on 08/21/2007 1:46:15 PM PDT by popdonnelly (Our first responsibility is to keep the power of the Presidency out of the hands of the Clintons.)
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To: RatherBiased.com

“By the numbers” means they have more liberal readers than conservative, maybe a large margin.

The articles right though, they should have bounced both cartoonists. It would have spared them the appearance of being partisan and kept defections from the right down. Now they got the worst of both worlds.

Who’s making the decisions at that rag? If I owned it I’d fire the idiot just for being so stupid...or clearly partisan.


29 posted on 08/21/2007 2:10:58 PM PDT by Bob J (Rightalk.com...a conservative alternative to NPR! Check out nat synd "Rightalk with Terri and Lynn")
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To: Responsibility2nd; RatherBiased.com; AnimalLover; rineaux; Roamin53; genxer; time4good; ...

30 posted on 08/21/2007 4:37:21 PM PDT by SwinneySwitch (US Constitution Article 4 Section 4..shall protect each of them against Invasion...domestic Violence)
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To: In God I trust

You can find Mallard Fillmore at Jewish world review.com


31 posted on 08/21/2007 5:14:46 PM PDT by ol' hoghead (He is not here; for he is risen.)
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To: In God I trust
Chronicle

2nd one down

32 posted on 08/21/2007 7:56:21 PM PDT by Tolkien (There are things more important than Peace. Freedom being one of those.)
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To: Brucifer
"Nobody hates like Liberals."



You said it first ... ;o)))
33 posted on 08/21/2007 10:16:06 PM PDT by Liberty Valance (Keep a simple manner for a happy life :o)
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To: MrB

Ah, yes, the Kansas City Bar, I mean, Star. The news that’s fit to be written by alcoholics.


34 posted on 08/22/2007 12:15:16 AM PDT by xc1427 (It's better to die on your feet than to live on your knees...Midnight Oil (Power and the Passion))
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To: RatherBiased.com

Ordinarily you’d expect a decision between a Latino and a Gringo to go PC for the Latino in a city which is more than 50% Latino.

I guess the Excuse & News will justify themselves as being above the PC apellation since they kept the Gringo—who just happens to be a lib.

I hope Leo catches on somewhere soon. His brand of ethnic humor is a treat in this ethnically polarized world.


35 posted on 08/22/2007 9:24:15 AM PDT by wildbill
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To: MrB
When I was taking care of my mom, she had to read the KC Star for the obituaries and editorials. She HATED liberals, any size, shape or form, and would call the Star to complain about it’s liberal leanings. When she died, I canceled the subscription and told them I would never continue taking the paper because of it’s blatant liberal bias. Obviously, they didn’t care.
36 posted on 08/22/2007 9:33:42 AM PDT by peggybac (Tolerance is the virtue of believing in nothing)
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To: MrB

Also, unfortunately, the JOCO Sun is just as bad. At least it’s free.


37 posted on 08/22/2007 9:34:56 AM PDT by peggybac (Tolerance is the virtue of believing in nothing)
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To: peggybac

We used to get it for our business, to see the real estate listings.

We cancelled it, then they kept calling, and I told them that their bias was why I would never pay another dime for their paper.


38 posted on 08/22/2007 10:27:18 AM PDT by MrB (You can't reason people out of a position that they didn't use reason to get into in the first place)
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To: RatherBiased.com

Thanks ... would be interesting to know why the Conservative one went instead, but then .....


39 posted on 08/22/2007 7:11:12 PM PDT by SkyDancer ("If builders built airplanes the way FAA writes FARs then the first pilot would have been a woman")
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