Former Little Rock Anchor: Little Rock TV News Sucks
Former KARK Anchor Ron Gardner was recently in town and spent some time watching the local news scene and he isn't impressed with what he saw. Gardner posted his recent observation on his facebook page:
..so now I've been spending some time in Little Rock and watching the local news programs in this capital city. Guess what? It sucks. The coverage of the recent oil pipeline leak just outside Little Rock is a classic example. What the local broadcasters have done, for the most part, is use statements from the EXXON spokesperson and in one case, an attempt to determine whether Sen. Jason Rapert and some others are totally in the pockets of big oil companies, simply let Rapert totally off the hook with a story under a headline saying the Senator had "cleared the air" about a Bill some people thought gave pipelines the power to claim a person's private land using the power of eminent domain. The Bill clearly says exactly that. It was exactly that. And not only pipelines, but pretty much ANY utility company. However, Senator Rapert told the tv photographer that it didn't say that.. so.. he "cleared the air." End of story. !!! Jesus Christ. Everybody involved in putting that sort of shit on the air should be fired.. from the News Director to the Producer, the Anchor who let that shit go into his show the way it did and the Assignment Editor, if one was involved, who sent that photographer out to get that statement with giving him/her a copy of HB1042 and pointing out the language they wanted the Senator to comment on. I suspect Sen. Rapert is more than smart enough to know that the kids playing reporter on local tv have no freakin idea what the Bill says and are not going to take the time to educate themselves about the subject "before" they broadcast their stories.
Now comes their comedian-turned-news anchor.. and a great guy.. a former friend of mine named Craig O'Neill who apparently does what they laughingly call "commentaries" on "issues." If you read the little commentary I've linked to here, I hope you'll realize what a joke it is. It points out that the ruptured pipeline is old. For a pipeline, it's really old. And that its a sign we need to improve our infrastructure. Period. It isn't a scathing indictment of politicans owned by oil companies who seem to find ways around regular inspections, etc. None of that. Just an observation that our infrastructure is old.
Now what cracks me up is that people who are loyal viewers of Craigs' "news" program will sing high praises of this meaningless observation as if it were a Bill Moyers indictment of ALEX. (look it up) It's shameful, disgusting and depressing and bodes ill for the future of our country when the local media does such a piss poor job of educating the people about issues, who their politicians are, what is happening behind the closed doors in the capital building, etc. etc. etc.
Instead they read emails from viewers or show us pics from Mable of the pretty flowers that are blooming on her porch.