I’ve had postings from my friend George in Louisiana and my friend Marsha in Toronto, telling me that the “Pittsburgh Post-Gaztette” fired Rob Rogers, their longtime cartoonist.
Rogers has been doing cartoons that are critical of Trump’s policies, and the new publisher is pro Trump and pro Republican, which makes him one of the stupidest men in the United States.
Not that all Republicans, or even all Trump supporters, are stupid. But any businessman who doesn’t know his market, and supply his market with what the consumers want is dumber than a box of rocks.
Pittsburgh is a Democratic town.
I was twelve or thirteen when i helped my mother work for the last serious Republican candidate for mayor of Pittsburgh.
John Tabor ran a good campaign, with television ads, and flyers, and all the rest of it. He lost to Pete Flaherty, who was a doofus, but a Democratic doofus.
With some notable exceptions, folks in the Steel City, don’t like Republicans.
When I was old enough to vote, I had no trouble with my parents when I registered as a Democrat, because instead of explaining that it would be a cold day in Hell before I joined the party of Nixon, I simply explained that the mayor of Pittsburgh was chosen in the Democratic primary, and I wanted to have some say in who was elected.
Now and then, there’s a Republican candidate for mayor too. But mostly, the Democratic nominee runs unopposed.
Summer Lee, an African American woman and a Democratic Socialist, just defeated Jay Costa, a longtime political figure, for the Democratic nomination to represent my district in the state legislature. There is no Republican nominee. So, she’s going to be our representative.
Pittsburghers know that it was the Democrats who stopped the steel mills from making great grampa work 24 hour shifts. They know it was the Democrats who made sure Great Uncle Mike went to high school, instead of working in the mine at 14. Pittsburghers know that it was the Democrats who helped grammy keep her kids at home and raise them herself, after her husband died, instead of having to send them to an orphanage.
Pittsburghers know that it was largely thanks to the Democrats and their support of organized labor, that Nikita Kruschev thought all the late model cars parked in the lot outside a steel mill were there for propaganda purposes. They couldn’t possibly belong to the workers. Except, of course, they did.
Donald Trump was here once. He spoke at the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial, across the street from the University of Pittsburgh campus. He praised Penn State, not knowing, apparently that Pitt and Penn State are serious rivals on the football field.
(Stay out of Oakland when the Panthers play the Nittany Lions, unless you like police.)
The city went solidly for Hilary. When Trump was elected, indignant yuppies blocked traffic on Penn Avenue. Infuriated young people raised Hell on Carson Street.
(There are a lot of bars on Carson Street and a lot of young people in the neighborhood. This can be a volatile combination. Stay off of Carson Street on Saturday night, unless you like police.)
Trump hasn’t been back since the election. He has visited the suburbs. That seems to be where his supporters live. He hasn’t been to Braddock, a mill town making a serious comeback, because the mayor, John Fetterman, is a Bernie Sanders Democrat. (He’s also running for Lieutenant Governor.)
In short, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s support for Donald Trump is nothing short of insane. They were losing subscribers before they fired Rob Rogers. As of 7:30 Friday morning, lines were busy at the subscription department, and I don’t think people were calling to renew.
Richard Scaife published his right wing “Pittsburgh Tribune Review” until he died. He poured a fair sized chunk of his fortune into it. Then he went, and the paper dried up. It’s published online now.
The Post-Gazette’s management may want to kill the paper. Which would be a shame. I’ve read the P-G most of my life. I’ve even written for it. And, glory of glories, when I was 9 years old, my cat won their pet show, and we got our picture on the front page. Letting the whole world, at least that percentage of it who read the “Post-Gazette” that I had the greatest cat in the world.
But if the “Post-Gazette” continues on it’s current path, it will go the way of the “Sun Telegraph”, “The Press”, “The New Sun”, “The Forum”, and other publications.
I’d hate to see that happen. But if it does, they will have nobody to blame but themselves. They should have paid more attention to their readers.