Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Oregonian's Tram Editorial Today Is Not True

The Oregonian’s assertion in the tram editorial today is simply not correct. The editors write, “But as city commissioners know, the city is legally and morally obligated -- despite the rise in price -- to build the tram.”
They should have sent someone to cover the tram meeting - or cover it better - because the city attorney put it differently. According to him the city is legally obligated to build the tram if the funds are there. It is not obligated to provide the missing funds, and so, if the funds are not there, the city is not obligated to build the tram. Presumably the commissioners have heard from him. Sam Adams was at the meeting as was the Mayor, so for the Oregonian to try and say the commissioners know something else, does not accurately reflect the city's position.
Ask yourself this: If the Oregonian’s claims were correct than why are we even having this debate? If the city is legally obligated to build the tram, there would be nothing to fight over. The city would be over the proverbial barrel. Of course OHSU’s lawyer feels the city is under that obligation, but he could be part of the general spin on this. The city attorney does not feel that way, so the editorial has chosen one legal opinion over another, siding with OHSU. By the way, the city attorney and the finance guy were the only ones at the meeting that seemed impressive to me. I bet he’s right and we’re being conned here. At the very least the Oregonian should have reported the truth, that there are two sides of this. Besides, all the indications seem to suggest the city attorney is right, including the fact that we are even having this discussion. When you throw in the assertion that the commissioners know the Oregonian is right on this, then we have enough here to call the editorial lacking in the area of the truth. Developers should help fill the gap in tram's finances


At 11:24 AM, Blogger true_slicky said...


It's almost like the Oregonian and OHSU have some sort of inside, personal relationship or something that distorts the facts.

But that couldn't be. Right?

At 11:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The editorial writer was exercising his right to create an irresponsible editorial. Under his framing of funding issue, "The city is legally and morally obligated -- despite the rise in price -- to build the tram," no limit exists on how expensive the project could be and still be carried on to completion.

I believe that editorial opinions would become more realistic if each editorial carried the names and email of the person(s) who write them.

At 12:23 PM, Blogger Bill McDonald said...

His right or her right, depending. I hate that gender clarification, by the way. My theory is we should switch to an "individual exercising their right." Just change the meaning of "their" to mean "his or her." You sure wind up with some choppy sentences trying to do it correctly. So it's either sexist sounding or awkward.
Great, I've taken these comments off topic on my own blog.
I love the morally obligated part, but I wanted to try and focus on the legal basis for the tram for now. I don't think leaning on the city for the extra money is particularly moral either. Not with our other problems.

At 1:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm shocked! Shocked to discover there's lying going on in Theo's editorial board!

At 8:18 PM, Blogger Jack Bog said...

Reports are that the O's editorial page editor is the spouse of the OHSU public relations chief. But I'm sure that has nothing to do with it.

At 8:42 PM, Blogger Bill McDonald said...

Guess who I saw at the meeting?

At 9:22 AM, Blogger carla said...

Its like we're watching an episode of Falcon Crest. The old newspaper publisher's spousal relationship creates a conflict of interest..thereby giving us all a reason to pop the corn and tune in.

Of course..most of you probably don't even know what Falcon Crest is...(sigh)

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