Santa Barbara Politics, Media & Culture

Friday, April 11, 2008

Cabal Updated, Indy Suit Settled and Hypocricy Still Remains

Criag Smith reported yesterday that The Santa Barbara News-Press settled their suit against the Santa Barbara Independent on copyright issues for an undisclosed sum. As Craig points out, it will be interesting to see who covers it and how.

Apparently Film Fest Czar (and the name of the Vice-President character in Tom Clancy's Sum of All Fears) Roger Durling is now a member of the cabal as well as per an editorial piece yesterday. Paula Lopez, who was recently seen at the Citizen McCaw screening, got another jab from Armstrong as well. Considering the work situation at the News-Press, I was surprised to see the following from Armstrong about the KEYT video he wrote about last month: "The whole sorry episode makes you wonder about what kind of workplace atmosphere, hostile or otherwise, that female employees must put up with at the station". Interestingly enough, we don't see KEYT employees leaving en masse do we? Then again, TKA may know of what he speaks.

If that wasn't enough hypocrisy for your morning coffee yesterday, TKA also wondered out loud whether the television station would cover "all the news about themselves". True enough -- KEYT and KSBY should cover news about themselves when relevant. Under prior logic made by Armstrong and others, however, can't they run their business the way the want? TKA can start by making sure the News-Press leads by example.

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Anonymous Watching a once proud paper sink said...

Same, same from a one-note writer. He's hurt and so lashes out in a feeble way. It's tiring and who cares?

4/11/2008 5:49 AM  
Anonymous Louella said...

Roger Durling is Micheal Seabaugh's partner and Michael was canned by Wendy after trashing PhonyDr Laura in a column he wrote for the NP that he now writes for some other paper (Ind or DS).

Don't you guys keep up with anything? This is what happens if you stop reading the NP. You get out of the loop.

Guilt by Association is good enough for American politics today so why isn't it good for TA?

4/11/2008 7:20 AM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

Stop the Madness -- I know you tried to tone it down but I felt compelled to pass on your comment. I see what you are saying though and will consider it further.

4/11/2008 8:08 AM  
Anonymous Gotta find my hip-waders 'cuz it's gettin deeper! said...

To be fair, Travis is at least consistent. He can be counted on to provide us with all the vitriol he's decided we so desperatley need. He must have filled his tank with cheap high octane venom while on vacation; let's hope it's a small tank with a leak.

His strategy is easy to smell out: throw bull manure around and holler " stinks over there!. By God, ranks over that way, too. Go open a window and air it out!" He's hoping we'll overlook the stench that's been emanating from the NP for months now. Sorry TA, but that's an odor with some serious hang time.

And "Poetic Justice" is a little cheesy, don't you think? I mean, considering all the "coverage" of your own DUI.

(P.S. SDLG: Where can I find the full text of Sgt. Rider's letter? I'm not a subscriber and haven't found it online yet. What I've read is very powerful and would like the full read. Thanks!)

4/11/2008 9:48 AM  
Anonymous Gimme a break said...

In one corner we have Paula Lopez, growing up in Santa Barbara, with a long record of local service.

In the other ... Travis Armstrong? Where and when did he arrive, and what volunteer work has he done?

4/11/2008 10:41 AM  
Anonymous Just the facts said...

Dr. Seabaugh was not "canned." He resigned after lifestyle editor Andrea Huebner was fired.

4/11/2008 1:21 PM  
Blogger Rob said...

Out of the loop, are you kidding? I am fully up to speed on the plight of the buffalo, sea turtles, land turtles, birds, horses and one lost blue McCaw (not the human one).

4/11/2008 2:51 PM  
Anonymous shoreline shark said...

Why does Travis Armstrong dislike Paula Lopez so much? What's the backstory here?

4/11/2008 3:15 PM  
Anonymous Piling On said...

The only glimmer of light emerging from TKA's increasingly vitriolic, misogynistic rants is that they are SO over the top that even the most oblivious of readers will instantly be educated as to the irrelevance of this once-great paper that has been reduced to nothing more than an uncorroborated gossip rag.

4/11/2008 5:09 PM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

Gettin' Deeper -- here's the letter as printed in The Army Times as provided to me by a loyal reader. More than a snippet, I think they will understand honoring a soldier as being within the realm of personal use:

It was originally published in the Army Times.

Here it is:

To the fallen
By: SFC Michael Rider

Loyalty. Honor. Sacrifice. Brotherhood. On the 2nd of February 2008 I stood in a formation of probably two thousand soldiers; this is what came to my mind.
It was a cold dark morning in Iraq as we gathered to honor a brother that had fallen. Many were shivering from the cold, stomping their feet trying to stay warm until the commands began; “Detail Attention!” Everyone stopped. They fought their body’s clamoring desire to move and warm itself up. They ignored any itching on their skin or the numbness that was overtaking their hands; discipline took over. They marched in unison and one could hear the thundering of the boots as all moved together as one body towards the American flag at the belly of the plane. As I stood there a few rows back, I could barely see the colors in my periphery, but the faces of those who knew the fallen best were perfectly clear as they peered, eyes fixated on the darkness past me. I never had the pleasure of knowing this young hero, yet my heart sank and goose bumps overcame me as we raised our hands in Salute. I watched as fellow paratroopers carried the American flag draped over a casket past me. My eyes fixed on a young Specialist from the fallen’s unit. Shadows formed cuts in his face as he clenched his jaw fighting the lump in his throat. Our beautiful flag passed me once again, this time it was carried high by a color guard and I noticed the Specialist once more. His expression had not changed, but now it was visible…despite his best efforts, tears had fallen. As they made their facing movement I noticed he wasn’t alone. Behind me I could hear more soldiers fighting tears as I realized that those four words, Loyalty, Honor, Sacrifice, and Brotherhood were embodied today by the 1st Brigade Combat Team of the 82nd Airborne Division.
I have been in the Army for 10 years now and sadly I have done this many times. Cervantes, Oschner, Clark, Katzenberger, Nixon, Dayton, Stoddard, Whitte, just to name a few, and just like my list, we each have our own. We each have lost a friend or more. We each have saluted a casket, or a flag, or a set of dog tags in Honor of someone who has given the ultimate sacrifice to defend “Our Nation”, and when we go home we won’t be able to explain to civilians why we wear a bracelet on our wrist nor will we be able to explain why we walk with our heads high filled with thankfulness that we have had the opportunity to serve in such outstanding units among America’s true unsung heroes. Today they remain as bracelets on our wrists, names on a stone, and memories in our hearts. We remember all of them when we see our brethren and we tell stories of our fallen friends. We remember all of them when another one falls.

To my brothers in arms who I will not see in flesh again,
God has not seen fit to take me yet, but we shall meet again one day. We will tell stories and laugh and cry with each other. But until that day I am humbled at the opportunity to fall into your position in the formation. I know that although you may not be physically present your spirit is with us. I pray that God bless your family and brings them comfort in this time of pain. I promise not to bring dishonor on your name, and I will try to fill the enormous shoes you have left behind. Save me a seat in Heaven.

SFC Michael Rider is a Lompoc High School Graduate; Class of 1996. He enlisted in the United States Army in April 1997 and in June 1997 he left his hometown of Lompoc, California. He will be returning to Fort Bragg, North Carolina from his 3rd deployment to Iraq within days. He has also been deployed to Afghanistan 2 times. He will be attending Warrant Officer Candidate School in April 2008 and then will proceed to Fort Sill, Oklahoma for his Warrant Officer Basic Course. He plans on retiring from the United States Army and will continue to serve his country as long as he can.

4/11/2008 7:44 PM  
Anonymous Gettin' Deeper said...


Thank you. And thank you, Sergeant First Class Michael Rider, for an eloquent reminder of what is truly honorable and deserving of respect. You, and every man and woman who serve, have mine.

4/11/2008 9:59 PM  
Anonymous Mommy Dearest said...

Travis does not like Alpha Females. That is the only pattern here: Rose; Wolf; Blum; Lopez. And a few girlie-men like Barnwell and House.

4/11/2008 11:12 PM  
Anonymous Stop the madness said...

I'll tone it down further -

Reading and discussing Travis Armstrong's rants raises them to an unwarranted level of legitimacy.

Just Don't Do It.

Let me be even more clear. If you value truth, learning, discourse, integrity, and fairness:

Do not buy the Newspress.
Do not read the Newspress.
Do not advertise in the Newspress.

4/12/2008 9:07 AM  
Anonymous Remember the Name! said...

From the first day he published his cabal/enemy list, Travis has attacked anyone in the media or in the public who dared to criticize or be a vehicle for others to tell the non News-Press side of the story.

To me, this is what is so outrageous about his vitriolic rants--not only are they couched in language that is half truths, innuendo, misleading or unfounded allegations- they are designed to discredit or silence those he sees as opposition in the media or in public service.

4/12/2008 8:24 PM  
Anonymous Travis is an entertaining paper tiger said...

Don't-cha just think by now everyone knows it is just Travis ranting and being mean-spirited that day.

Afterall, newspapers today are rarely read by ignorant masses. Those who would believe Traivs unquestioningly go to the tabloids rather than believe his mean-spirited rant against a local politician has any merit.

There is a voyeur train-wreck appeal to Travis rants and they end up creating more sympathy for his victims than the scorn he intends. Plus he has been right on many, many issues when he is not on his personal hissy fit attacks.

Cut him some slack and realize most if not all readers take his attacks with a grain of salt, and salty delight. Just like they take the Angry Poodle to heart when he skewers someone the progressives don't like.

4/12/2008 10:17 PM  
Anonymous Nelville Flynn said...

So what's your point?

I know you are but what am I?

4/12/2008 11:40 PM  
Anonymous There is no point said...

Many solid citizens who once cared what the newspaper’s editorial writer thought have quit the paper and moved on.

4/13/2008 10:08 AM  
Anonymous Travis Rocks! said...

He's still accomplishing his goal by getting people to talk about what he writes about. Even if there is just a shadow of doubt cast, it will be that doubt that is remembered, not the details. He is brilliant!

4/13/2008 12:20 PM  
Anonymous christine! said...

Was I the only person to NOT receive the REAL ESTATE section today?

The Sunday edition is so slim, and no good articles, like the paper of days ago. All outsourced crap.

Why are the milestone events now printed in the Front Section? Weddings and birthdays and anniversary notices aren't in the life section - ever. Stupid.

The daily paper cannot be counted on to provide a week to week paper that has any semblance to it, every week is different.

Even the Public Record gets lost now.....

I want my paper back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

4/13/2008 4:16 PM  
Anonymous 9 points of the law said...

Christine, you wail "I want my paper back". Are you going to buy it or do you think your hundred dollar a year subscription grants you ownership rights superior to Wendy's millions.

The real estate section was there - fat and thick and a delight to read. Wendy does get good columnists on the editorial page. I always learn something from those writers, even if it is not something I have agreed with. And that is value-added for Wendy's NewsPress IMHO.

4/13/2008 7:42 PM  
Anonymous christine! said...

There is no value, not even added at this point hurts my feelings to see my old friend in the shape it is...I have read the NewsPress since I was a young girl- and I am 40 now- so I have a well deserved and earned RIGHT when it comes to judging this VERSION of the paper friend- and it sucks at this point, no doubt about it.

I wonder what a person is thinking when they are "outing" a person for DUI records, when they themselves were HORRIFIED when theirs went published...and gleefull while at it- though PISSED when theirs was being aired.....

I wonder what a person is thinking when talking about a "information station", a former SHELL OF ITSELF- KETTLE PLEASE CALL KETTLE STAT- jees louise Travis- get yourself TOGETHER GIRL!!!!!!!

I am so sick of not having a quality source of info to be delivered- with the voice MY OLD SANTA BARBARA NEWSPRESS HAD- it SUCKS to have to read the Santa Maria Times for local news, it sucks to have to rely on my nightly local news for YESTERDAYS news.


4/13/2008 9:23 PM  
Anonymous xyz said...

Let's have a moratorium on "news" about the News-Press and its editorial page editor! How about, please, no posts about it. None. Not a mention.

Surely, there are other things in Santa Barbara area to write about? The paper really is not newsworthy. The editorials are sometimes interesting in a bile-stirring way but look at that picture of Mr. Armstrong scowling and you can figure the tone of what he writes without having to read it.

If one absolutely can not go without "news" of the N-P, then one can read Craig Smith, always or often or at least sometimes entertaining.

If we can't have a moratorium here (start small, say, for a week and then go to two weeks, and so on), then I, at least, will have to have a moratorium on blogabarbara.

4/13/2008 10:16 PM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

There really have been weeks without news on the NP in the past -- I'll go for it with the proviso that if the court case comes back and the reporters get their job back, I will write something about that.

4/14/2008 5:27 AM  
Anonymous Goodbye Girl said...

Wendy made a smart decision. She has not tried to compete with the immediacy of internet news. Christine, please welcome yourself to the new realities for newspapers today.

Your version of the news is gone and it has been replaced with internet access news. Local papers are soft news and we are so glad those past features reporters no longer misuse the NewsPress with their biased stories.

You were not getting news from the fired reporters. You got articles you liked; but many of us did not. This is an adult reality. Life and papers do not always go your way.

I see your loyalties to the past are deep and blind. These need to be mourned. But until you buy the paper, should it ever be for sale, you need to get a far better grip on reality.

The town has moved in a far more conservative direction. This town is changing and the NewsPress is changing along with it. I think you mourn far more than the loss of "your" NewsPress.

4/14/2008 7:29 AM  
Blogger Bill Carson said...

To goodbye girl: Ditto, ditto, and another ditto!

4/14/2008 9:52 PM  
Anonymous christine! said...

RIP a enjoyable Sunday morning with my local paper..Goodbye girl- you are wrong about what local people want from a local paper- you obviously get your daily info from a handheld gadget- hope you aren't reading while driving, cooking, watching the baby, etc. Fast news is just that, fast.

I mourn my enjoyment of local news, relative articles that had information everyone could use, not just bird owners that need to line their bird cages.

I am sorry that reading a article longer than 9 paragraphs confuses you girl. Some regular folks still enjoy a cup of joe and a worthwhile article in a paper format.

4/14/2008 10:04 PM  
Anonymous xyz said...

SDLG said...

"... I'll go for it with the proviso that if the court case comes back and the reporters get their job back, I will write something about that."

Absolutely, please! That then will be news. All the stuff about the editorial editor is not news and it is not even worth a comment.

Those of us liking his take get the paper; those of us not, not --- or going to the library for the once a week fix of bile which takes about 15 minutes for 5 days worth of papers. (I timed myself the other day.)

There are lots of major things going on: in Goleta, the re-writing of the city's General Plan, with the city being much more open to development. In Santa Barbara, also a general plan updating, with major public workshops scheduled for Saturday/Wednesday. In the County, an important primary supervisorial election coming up in June.

Armstrong's take on all of these is but one voice, not insignificant - nor is any somewhat prepared opinion, but just one voice.

As for the comment that SB has become more conservative, that, imho, confuses the populace with the NP. Not the same thing at all.

4/15/2008 7:08 AM  
Anonymous Goodby Girl said...

Christine, why the vitriol? I take a leisurely time in the morning with the NewsPres.

I like the columnists and the first section I always go to in the editorial page. I read Travis first, except if it is an animal rights story.

Then the front page and work my way through the rest of it, except the sports section. I's a gurl. I don't have much interest in sports except during the Olympics.

I drink my coffee, have my breakfast in bed and feel wedded to my community and its activities before I start each day.

I agree, I too look forward to more local coverage and more local indepth investigative stories. Some good new local writers are emerging. Angel Pacheco is very good. In time, there will be a new solid NewsPress family of reporters and features writers. I can wait, because I sure hated the way the old NewsPress was going.

The A-List and Smilgas were the worst of the lot of features writers and the rest of them were tired in their bias which made what they wrote predictible, rather than newsworthy.

But right now, the NP makes a good start for my day and Travis, rightly or wrongly, makes me think about things or see things from new perspectives. He is a very decent guy on his radio program.

Christine, Your presumptions and bias about who I am, down to vivid detail,were so far off the mark, I am glad you are not part of the new NewsPress.

Readers do not need to be insulted like you just did to me. You do not sound like a happy person and I wonder why you want to spend your life in this town if all you have is contempt for it, its residents and its institutions.

4/15/2008 7:36 AM  
Anonymous shoreline shark said...

>>>I like the columnists and the first section I always go to in the editorial page. I read Travis first, except if it is an animal rights story.<<<

OK, this has to be a joke.

4/15/2008 10:21 PM  
Anonymous Al Bonowitz said...

"The A-List and Smilgas were the worst of the lot ..."

The A-List was a Wendy McCaw innovation and the subject of weekly rant sessions among my colleagues.

I miss a lot of things about working at the News-Press, but copy-editing and designing that elitist column is not one of them.

Spa weekends for the chicas at a $10,000-a-night Mexican hacienda? I think the audience for that is rather limited.

4/16/2008 12:07 AM  
Anonymous christine! said...

In time they'll get good writers- well what the heck are we supposed to do in the meantime goodbye girl???????

Today- the NewsPress FINALLY reported on Mondays earthquake off the coast of Santa Barbara!!!!!

Pathetic...having lived here for 36 yrs goodbye girl- I have a total and absolute right to a decent paper.

Travis is a hypocrite- his own Father died on a casino floor in Minnesota at 4 am, and he hated casinos for that very reason- until he met the Chumash leader. The Canyonization of Santa Barbara streets and his editorials on them make me laugh- he says people have a right to stop big buildings- EXCEPT the residents of the Santa Ynez Valley- we have no right to stop big buildings in our Valley because Indians are building them. He says Santa Barbara should keep it small, but if Valley people want to do that for their neighborhoods- we are country bumpkins- he really makes no point in 75% of his ramblings- though I do admit he can be outright funny at times- his save the wolf rant is great for breakfast laughs.

Bye Bye.

4/16/2008 8:41 AM  
Anonymous cancel said...

>>> well what the heck are we supposed to do in the meantime goodbye girl???????

Cancel. Your dollar is your vote.

4/17/2008 9:52 AM  
Anonymous Goodby Girl said...

Cancel Christine - I just can't get past your inflated sense of entitlement that the NewsPress is "your" paper and that you get to dictate its terms. Sorry.

Please help me understand where your entitlement attitude comes from. Is this a generational thing? I am old.

I don't want your attitude crammed down my NewsPress. The one I continue to support with my subscription.

4/18/2008 6:42 AM  
Anonymous christine!! said...

I ain't cramming anything down your throat- don't read or answer my posts- who is crammin' who here?

Just like the lady who stole my paper- you think YOUR opinion is all that matters. My opinion is just as needed in this forum as yours- that is the purpose of a COMMUNITY paper- that is what most people are bummed about- Wendy thinks she can just stop printing what she doesn't like- THAT IS NOT A NEWSPAPERS JOB- it is to provide the community with the news it needs to know, not just what Wendy thinks we need to be informed about.

I want the paper to reach everyone in the community, not just the old geezers and hoity toity animal petters.

What about the review today of Los Olivos Grocery- WHAT A JOKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hey folks, heres a review of a restaurant that no longer exisits- so enjoy our review and hope you can relate it to your past visit, as we are so dumb we can't even print a current restaurant review at this point!!!!!!!!!!!!

4/18/2008 9:59 AM  
Anonymous Other Sources Exist said...

Looks like Janet Wolf found another venue for response to the non-news written by Travis.
Like many others she used an online vehicle to communicate-

4/18/2008 6:38 PM  
Anonymous Freebird Cage said...

Chirstine, you lost me. The "lady' did not steal your newspaper. She bought it. You did not. It is not your newspaper.

And apparently you find ways to keep reading it for free so what is your beef? Looks like you are getting the better part of the bargain.

4/20/2008 11:04 AM  
Anonymous Goodby girl said...

The NewsPress is now MY newspaper. I pay for my subscriptions and I like it the way that it is.

4/20/2008 11:07 AM  
Anonymous get your facts straight said...

TKA's dad is alive and kicking Christine. Don't pretend to know what is going on in his mind when you don't know the man or the facts. It is obvious you are misinformed and misjudge people.

4/21/2008 7:49 PM  
Anonymous christine said...

I stand corrected- Travis Armstrongs Father survived a heart attack in the tribe Casino at 3 am, and I read all about it in a article titled

by Travis Armstrong published
May 14th, 2000 by the San Jose Mercury News

Very interesting article for those who want to see the OTHER side of Travis Armstrongs opinion on gaming- sure is differnt than the one he owns now.....

4/21/2008 8:34 PM  
Anonymous get your facts straight said...

Christine... for being such an expert on TKA, you should know he's explained his current views of casinos and the differences in his past views in print, yes even in the Newspress. Again, you show your lack of familiarity with the man and who he really is.

4/23/2008 6:40 PM  

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