Santa Barbara Politics, Media & Culture

Saturday, April 07, 2007

SBNP Files 97 Exceptions

Wow. 97 exceptions to the NLRB decision were made by the Santa Barbara News-Press on Thursday according to the Santa Barbara Independent Media Blog. Here's the full 59 page text if you have a bit of time to read the tome. Many thanks to the Independent for publishing these PDFs.

To the point, the News-Press basically filed an exception for everything that was said by Ira Gottlieb, The Organized and Judge Schmidt. During the hearing, Judge Schmidt wondered out loud why McCandless and company didn't do more to prove their case. They certainly have the right to appeal and protest the ruling -- but perhaps they could have done more to help their case during the hearing. They also could have done more to accept what is so. Amid the exceptions is a great deal of talk about SBNP employees "physical and emotional well being"; as well as, something about "core values" of their employee unit. What "core values" are they exhibiting at the News-Press? Democracy? Integrity? Honesty?

This war of attrition continues as these 97 exceptions mainly serve to line lawyers pockets in hopes that the News-Press 8 will give up and find work elsewhere. It's got to be more expensive to pay Sonnenschein, Nath and Rosenthal than it is to capitulate and make amends with back pay and current employment. Isn't it far more financially prudent to sit across the table at this point?

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Anonymous nomdecrayola said...

Financially prudent?! That is clearly a non-issue for McCaw. She could out spend everyone and still be way ahead with billions in the bank. She could care less about how much all this is going to cost.

4/07/2007 10:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How much groundbreaking reporting could Wendy McCaw's enormous legal fees in this fight have funded? Maybe the community wouldn't have been as surprised by the gangs, as one example.

Wendy McCaw might be able to bully people like Jerry Roberts or shop owners with the threat of ruinous legal fees no matter the outcome, but the Teamsters have staying power. She's losing.

Wendy McCaw would be smarter to invest her billions in innovation and quality rather than lawyers. As the New York Times aptly put it, the newspaper is in "suspended animation." Media is changing radically and, so far, she doesn't get that she's fighting last century's battle.

4/07/2007 11:03 AM  
Anonymous Bev Blondage said...

Agree with 10:40 anonymous. It's long past being about money - it's about power, revenge, "rights", free choice, etc. It's about Wendy's right to close down the business, sell the name to someone, turn de la guerra HQ into a rehab site, or do whatever else she wants to do. This is America after all - these rights are bundled under the right to pursue happiness. The reporters need to move on, and the new website could be the start of that, rather than a holding pen. All the best to them.

4/07/2007 12:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Core values? Those went bye-bye with the New York Times. Wendy, Nipper, Travis,Scott, plus others don't even understand the concept!
If they did, this mess would never have happened.

4/07/2007 2:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wendy hasn't been worth billions for quite some time.

4/07/2007 3:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Defending private property is a core principle. Can't imagine anything worse for all parties concerned than forcing a working relationship where there is mutual contempt.

4/07/2007 4:52 PM  
Anonymous everyday man said...

What a legacy to leave. All of the good that she could have done with her power & her money has instead gone towards alienating good people and destroying lives.

4/07/2007 7:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Read her history with lawsuits- how she won her money from her ex by pitbulling his colleagues and how she lost her suit against her former fiance (and was described as refusing to acknowledge the facts presented to her). She is in her own little world that only money can buy. This is all to be expected. I don't know law but hopefully somebody soon will have the authority to say enough!

4/07/2007 7:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The brief illustrates that -- for all of her bluster and mute strangeness -- the blogs have Wendy on the run.

4/07/2007 8:20 PM  
Anonymous Been there said...

I'm just so danged happy to have our reporters back doing enterprise stories on That was a brilliant move on their part. There are many pluses: The reporters keep their reporting and writing skills sharp. We all get free online news about Santa Barbara, which we haven't had for a decade. And if this works out, it could become a legit news source complete with advertising and full sustainability. Bravo News Room Eight!

4/07/2007 8:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with 7:38: what a waste this is, a waste of good reporters (although, hurrah, for, but that won't pay the rent, at least not for a while) - and a waste for all the good things McCaw could be doing with her time and money. Whales are being hunted; seals are being slaughtered; environments for beast and plant are changing under global warming; and even here in SB, she could help: wild habitats are shrinking and animals are in need --- but instead, rather than helping, Ms McCaw prefers to battle and pay her gladiator-lawyers....

What a sad business this is!

4/07/2007 10:23 PM  
Anonymous anon a rama said...

I can't believe I read the whole thing (Exception). Yes, I may have too much free time.

This is what I learned.

1. That it’s 59 pages long because the same information is repeated over and over.

2. That the public and the NP employees are easily confused, simple minded and weak willed.

3. That there was much fear among the NP employees of threats pre & post union vote...what the actual "threats" were/are is never stated.

4. That Blogabarbara is pro Union.

5. That someone apparently has the job of reading and copying the content of the local blogs and assorted newspapers for the powers that be at the NP.

6. That Storm Trooper is not an inflammatory term and that Storm Troopers can mean marching quietly.

7. That brushing up against someone (or thumping into them) in a crowded hallway and an unpleasant facial expression is really really threatening ...of what wasn’t stated.

8. That T. Armstrong is gay & Am. Indian.

9. That anon. posts on blogs are Union inspired/ backed if they are not pro NP statements.

10. That supervisors can't witness a pro Union rally in person. That Mr. Myers probably should have kept his opinions to himself.

11. That I should have known that if a protesting staff member had tape over her mouth and stood with her hands behind her back it would make me believe she was simulating being handcuffed.

What I didn't learn.

1. Why didn't the NP have all the case references used in the 57 pg doc. (the last 2 pages are not part of the main doc.) when they presented their case at the original hearing?

I don’t work for a paper, have never worked for a paper, don’t belong to a union and have never belonged to a union.
I like the use of anon. on line names…this enables me to read the posts of others without preconceived notions. I also think it creates equality among posters. No “some pigs are more equal then others” in blogland.

4/08/2007 2:21 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon a rama, you have summed up the NP's b.s. pretty well. Its main weapon in this brief, as it was in the campaign, is distortion, exaggeration and hype: turning a resolution about subscription cancellation into "all-out war", three-minute walk into HQ takeover, and trying to associate the 2006 union with the Teamsters of old (and as you point out, every anti-Wendy blogger is a Teamster plant), though there was nothing remotely offensive or objectionable going on in the campaign from the union's side, and the NP knows it.

As for citations to legal authority, the NP is citing the same inapplicable cases it cited to Judge Schmidt in post-hearing briefs to him, and it can be expected to have the same outcome, eventually, when the NLRB is done.

4/08/2007 9:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hope they worked for free on this... Wendy deserves something for the money she's shelled out to them.

4/08/2007 2:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wendy deserves a jail cell, frankly, for her contemptuous outlaw behavior, and in a just world, she would land in one, only to come out when she's ready to take her fired employees back, reestablish the wall, and sign a union contract. The last thing we need is to give Wendy the power to unleash her blustery untethered-by-ethics-or-law lawyers on the world without even the tiny restraint of having to pay for their abusive antics.

4/08/2007 11:02 PM  
Anonymous allegro805 said...

Can anyone comment substantively on two issues at the crux of this matter:
a) What will the possible timeline be for NLRB's review of this Exception? i.e., where does this go from here?
b) What is the status of the proposed request for an injunction for immediate rehiring of the SBNP-8?

4/09/2007 8:18 AM  
Anonymous Bob Guiliano said...

Looking at the overall ongoing situation at the News-Press, I must say it is indeed a sad misuse of a monetary fortune to behead what was perhaps years ago an honorable public servant, and to watch its headless body jerk around spastically out of reflex action while its blood drains into the streets of Santa Barbara.

Meanwhile, you have inept journalist-wannabes like Travis Armstrong, Scott Steepleton and Laura Schlessinger just peeing into that river of blood and laughing as the once vital institution's life force ebbs away in a slow, cruel death.

I have never been so ashamed of a business parodying a newspaper as I am of the Santa Barbara News-Press.

Granted, I've butted heads with the editors and publishers of other newspapers over their reluctance to report the truth, who choose instead to publish fluff pieces quoting a few public officials here and there just to fill up their news pages.

I lost count of how many inside story tips I gave the editors and reporters at other newspapers on relevant issues such as serious problems within school districts, slum landlords taking advantage of renters, DUIs among high school students, health inspectors allegedly extorting money from restaurant owners, human trafficking and sex slavery, drug dealing and gangs. Only to be told we were "waiting for arrests" or that we "could not report the truth" because we'd "risk committing libel" if we got something wrong.

I even researched and wrote an expose on alleged abuse of special education students within the school districts in North San Diego County, the state and nation, only to have the piece held indefinitely and finally never printed. No explanation ever given. Since no story I had ever written in my 30-year career ever required a correction, inaccuracy was not a factor. Cowardice to publish definitely was.

I'd see fellow reporters and lower-level editors act beaten and submissive after repeated attempts to pursue hard-hitting indepth investigative pieces were thwarted in favor of light fluff pieces to meet quotas. As one lower-level editor once told me, you can only beat your head against the wall for so long, then you give up!

My perspective on journalism is that it's been flushed down the toilet over the last 20 years. It was so different in the late 70s and early 80s when I first started. I was reporting for The Daily Dispatch in Douglas, Ariz., when Arizona Republic reporter Don Bolles was killed while meeting a source for a real estate corruption story he was pursuing.

The days of reporters like Bolles started growing shorter and shorter after his death, until now there are just slivers of light emanating from less and less rare breed reporters.

Newspapers and mass media today for the most part are geared more toward providing entertainment than the truth about what's really going on in government, local communities and the world.

One person, such as Wendy McCaw, could have made such a great difference bringing the profession back on track and kicking the asses of so many pathetic "pretend newspapers" nationwide. Instead, she makes those newspapers look like they're examples of the pinnacle of the profession.

And that's what I find most sad about this whole situation.

Wendy McCaw has an opportunity to be one of the greatest newspaper publishers of all time just sitting in her lap. And she doesn't even realize it, or how she's instead going down in history as one of the worst and most inept.

Which legacy shall it be, Wendy? Inquiring minds would like to know!

4/09/2007 1:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And if I was a potential future employer of the infamous 8 I'd turn and run as fast and far away from them as I could. Who needs self proclaimed troublemakers backed by Teamsters?

4/09/2007 1:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Allegro, I'm no expert or tea leaf reader, but I would expect the NLRB has a pretty good idea what's going on at the SBNP, now that a couple of the disputes have reached DC, and the regional office has asked it to consider going to court to ask a federal judge to put back the 8. So, it is reasonable to expect a decision on whether to invoke that injunction procedure in the next month or so, and if the Board is convinced of the urgency (as it should be), then it could also put the election issue on the front burner, which could get it done in a few months. But there is no set timeline for the certification decision

4/10/2007 7:07 AM  

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