Collapse of Mainstream News Media Continues

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Collapse of Mainstream News Media Continues
By RAY HANANIA
Southwest News-Herald Newspaper Friday, March 15, 2013

Carol Marin is no Mike Royko. But she does make a bundle of cash, far more than you or I, working for a poverty-stricken media company.

Marin represents the cancer that has plagued the news media for decades, a reporter who picks and chooses when ethics is applicable and when it is not.

She uses her column in the Chicago Sun-Times, her commentaries on the ratings-poor WMAQ TV (Channel 5) and the even more obscure WTTW-TV (Channel 11) to help her political friends and sources.

She’ll promote a convicted felon now and then, like one of the county’s worst crooks, Betty Loren-Maltese, because in Marin’s book, ethics and morality are all relative.

If Royko were alive, he’d be pummeling a crook like Loren-Maltese, not protecting her and fighting her enemies as a favor.

Marin turned her back on so many ethical lapses in Cook County politics because she is “friends” with several of the county’s officials, including David Orr, the former reformer — maybe we can call him a “be-former” — who used his office to help his political friends seek office in the Town of Cicero and elsewhere.

Unlike Marin, I disclose my alliances and conflicts openly. I have owned Urban Strategies Group since the 1990s. I manage media for government officials, including clients like the Town of Cicero.

Marin, on the other hand, hides her conflicts in order to promote their interests and gains.

If Royko were alive, he’d be pummeling Carol Marin, and calling her out as a phony.

How is it that Orr can donate money to candidates who he then supports in election campaigns as the head of the elections agency for Cook County? Isn’t it a conflict of interest for the elections chief to be supporting candidates and then offering rulings criticizing their enemies?

The County Clerk’s office should be shut down and Orr’s elective office should be eliminated. Instead, it should operate like the Chicago Election Board, which is appointed by the judicial system.

Someone needs to revamp the election system that allows people to lie and perjure themselves so easily, such as claiming they qualify as candidates by merely renting an apartment, and then just as quickly return to their real homes in other communities outside the jurisdiction of the offices they sought and lost?

Marin and others like her complain about nepotism — the hiring of relatives — but they are silent about nepotism abuses in the media itself, and in communities where they live. If nepotism is wrong, shouldn’t the state legislature ban it?

Believe me if that happened, the outcry wouldn’t come from the communities targeted by Marin, but by the communities she and others protect.

Carol Marin has attacked me personally many times. But I won’t be bullied by a hypocrite who hides behind her media empire in order to engage in hypocritical politics.

Fortunately, the media where she works is a dying industry. Her newspaper is a decrepit venture, so different from what it was when I worked there and actually covered City Hall – unlike Marin, a TV talking head who based her reports on what she read in my daily stories.

(Ray Hanania is an award winning columnist and media consultant. Follow him on Twitter at @rayhanania.) — City & Suburban News-Herald

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Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania is an award winning former Chicago City Hall reporter and Columnist who began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He covered Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992 (Mayor Daley to Mayor Daley) and has expanded to writing for newspapers around the world focussed on Middle East and American politics.

Hanania loves to write about American Arabs in politics, and focuses on Arab life in America.

Currently, he writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com. He writes on American politics for the Des Plaines Valley News, Southwest News-Herald, The Regional News newspaper and the Reporter Newspapers. He also writes for the online websites TheArabDailyNews.com and NewsAmericaNetwork.com (Illinois News Network at IllinoisNewsNetwork.com).

Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Hanania began in journalism as an activist publishing Chicago’s first English-language American Arab Newspaper “The Middle Eastern Voice” from 1975 through 1977. In 1976, he was hired by the Chicago community newspaper The Southtown Economist (Daily Southtown) and in 1985 was hired by the Chicago Sun-Times and covered Chicago City Hall for both. In 1993, he launched the “The Villager” Newspapers which covered 12 Southwest Chicagoland suburban regions. In 2004, he published “The National Arab American Times” monthly newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East ethnic food stores in 48 American States.

Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.

Hanania’s writings have been published in newspapers around the world. Formerly syndicated by Creators Syndicate, Hanania also has written news, features and Opinion Columns for Al Jazeera English, the Jerusalem Post, YNetNews.com, Arab News, Saudi Gazette, Newsday in New York, the Orlando Sentinel, the Houston Chronicle, The Daily Star, the News of the World, the Daily Yomimuri in Tokyo, Chicago Magazine, the Arlington Heights Daily Herald, and Aramco Magazine. His political columns are published in the Southwest News-Herald and Des Plaines Valley News, Regional News and Palos Reporter newspapers in Chicagoland. Hanania is the President/CEO of Urban Strategies Group media and public affairs consulting which has clients in Illinois, Florida, Michigan and Washington D.C.

Hanania is Palestinian Christian from prominent Bethlehem and Jerusalem families. His wife and son are Jewish and he performs standup comedy lampooning Arab-Jewish relations, advocating for peace based on non-violence, mutual recognition and Two-States.

His Facebook Page is Facebook.com/rghanania

Email him at: RGHanania@gmail.com