Yes, that’s right. I’ve jumped ship.
As my regular readers know, I tend to disappear and reappear, just like magic, depending on my workload at County Magazine. Spring is the busy time but, oddly enough, is also the time when my brain is operating at almost 20% of its full capacity, and thereby bringing new thoughts into my mind.
So first, let me explain how I appeared here at Wellington Times.
I write these columns for next to nothing. That’s largely because, if I don’t have an outlet for comments on the outrageous misdirections of the County, I will go crazy and end up on the roof of the Post Office building (the old post office, not the hideous new one), with a machine gun, desperately trying to find someone on Main Street that I don’t already know, to shoot.
So the rules for my columns are very simple. Rule 1: Don’t change or edit anything I write.
Sure, this sounds like I’m the egotistical reincarnation of Pierre Berton (I should check to see if he’s still alive). But the reason is: I take the glory and I take the heat for every word I write. I’m okay with that. If it’s changed, I have nothing to work with. I had a good run with County Weekly News. My buddy Wayne Burtch talked me into writing this column in the first place.
But things changed, and changed, and changed again. Then they cut the ending off my last column, which missed the main point and this is really the only rule that has meaning to me. All I asked is: print what you get, or check with me for changes, or kill it completely. Since I’m writing for cheap, I only ask that my material be treated with some respect.
I felt that the integrity of the paper had slipped, and that columns like mine were considered to be just ‘words’ to fill the space between the ads, where the real money is.
Unfortunately, poor Bruce Bell is the one who had to take my complaint. This is a guy who has the old school integrity of proper journalism, a terrific writer, and the one who seems to do the bulk of the editorial work at CWN. Each week and I’m not kidding I check to see if his name is on the masthead page of CWN.
But alas, no.
I don’t know what he earns, but he should make twice what he gets. Trouble is: The corporation has a guy who can do the job, and he’s ignored. They released an editor who was respected in the community. They’ve just announced that Al and Maggie have left the fold. Do they care? Beats me. Now they’re back.
I suspect there won’t be a Big Going-Away Party for me either. You might rightly believe that Sun Media, a Quebecor Media Company, would not be an easy fit for someone like me, who just wants to talk to County people, and get some conversation going.
Leaving CWN, for me, has nothing to do with the new wave of column writers. I quite enjoy most of them. I call them ‘The Young Riders’, because they are me, when I was their age, forging their way through the County with a new fresh look, and a whole new future to be developed.
So that’s my sign off from CWN, and a welcome to Wellington Times.
I have to admit, I’ve been watching and admiring the birth and growth of this paper over the years. I have to say, they were my first pick, because I feel I belong here.
Why? Integrity. That’s No. 1.
Wellington Times is the only newspaper in Prince Edward County that fulfills the role of a community newspaper. They cover every news item they can around the County. They’re not afraid to comment on issues, without restraint, and have some sort of psychic connection with research and background behind the stories. I suspect that the CSI Milford team is supplying them with background info.
And they even sign their editorials, which are written right in Wellington, and not dispatched, unsigned, to everyone in the Quinte area, from some guy somewhere, who pretends to have a handle on County sensitivities and County sensibilities. Ironically, a recent editorial from some other new guy in CWN asked for input into the direction of the paper. I feel for you, man. If you can beat your own System, you should have a bronze sculpture erected on Main Street. Picton, that is. Not Belleville.
So you’ll be hearing from me again shortly, as my last big Spring projects wrap up. Perhaps we might talk some more about the endless wind turbine debate, or the recent lynching of our Economic Development Officer.
In way of a disclaimer, the views in my columns do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Wellington Times.
Filed Under: Steve Campbell
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