That's why the article in the latest edition of Missouri Southern State University's newspaper, The Chart, on the proposed sale of MOHELA assets is so disappointing.
The article, for the most part, sloughs off legitimate concerns about the proposed sale while echoing the sentiments of college officials, Governor Matt Blunt, and Lt. Governor Peter Kinder that no reasonable person could possibly oppose the sale. Consider the following passage:
Attorney General Nixon has filed several lawsuits already and has threatened suits against individual board members, claiming the sale of MOHELA assets violates the charter of the organization. Others have claimed the initiative favors capital improvements over students, though the plan allocates $25 million in general revenue for scholarships. In addition to the capital improvements and scholarship money, the Lewis and Clark Discovery Initiative would provide construction jobs in the communities slated to receive buildings.
While the scholarships are definitely a plus in the deal, they have absolutely nothing to do with the affect this sale might have on students who have MOHELA loans. The most likely suitor for the MOHELA assets is Sallie Mae, a large contributor to Gov. Blunt's campaign. The problems this company has caused for student whose loans it holds, were chronicled recently on 60 Minutes.
Reporter Alexandra Nicolas provides a forum for Sen. Gary Nodler in the story, allowing him to criticize Attorney General Jay Nixon:
"He sees what a huge, huge success this could be for the governor that he's running against," Nodler said. "He's a party crasher, he doesn't have an invitation."
By making the whole story boil down to the impression that Attorney General Jay Nixon's opposition to the asset sale is based solely on his political rivalry with the governor, the Chart is skirting its obligation to examine an issue of great importance to its readership.