Sunday, June 14, 2015

With today's editorial, Joplin Globe shows its contempt for its readers

How do members of the Joplin Globe's editorial board walk around this city with their noses in the air and not bump into everything in sight?

With today's editorial, the area's newspaper of record showed its complete contempt for voters in the Joplin R-8 School District.

It is the latest condescending effort by the Globe Editorial Board and its well-to-do friends in the Joplin Progress Committee, CART, and the other incestuous organizations that persist in pushing their own views of what Joplin should be on community members who can think for themselves.

Over the last two years, the voters have elected four Joplin R-8 Board of Education members in a clear message that they wanted change- Debbie Fort, Jeff Koch, Jennifer Martucci, and Lane Roberts.

The Globe and the people who seem to be pulling the Editorial Board's strings are trying to make people forget about the election of Lane Roberts.

The people of the Joplin R-8 School District did not vote for the former Joplin Police chief because they thought he was going to be on the board. The voters were informed and knew full well that Gov. Nixon had appointed Roberts to be held of the Missouri Department of Public Safety and that he was not going to be able to serve.

Roberts won the election because voters wanted nothing more to do with Board President Anne Sharp. The last thing they wanted was a continuation of policies that have put this district in a precarious financial situation, caused the departure of hundreds of good teachers, and filled the ranks of upper administration with people who are unqualified to hold those positions.

When the new board was seated, despite efforts that the Globe never covered to try to keep Jeff Koch from being sworn in, business was derailed time after time by three board members- Mike Landis, Randy Steele, and Lynda Banwart.

They were so contemptuous of the voters' clear message and upset that they were not getting their way that two of them, Landis and Steele, quit, and the third one, one lone board member, Lynda Banwart, prevented the board from seating a replacement for Roberts.

One of the quitters, Landis, gleefully explained that he quit so the Jasper County Commission, rather than Koch, Fort, and Martucci, and let's face it, the voters who elected them and Roberts to enact change, would have to select three new board members.

The Joplin Globe never saw the voters' side of the issue and never tried to see their side. The voters had to be wrong because they did not choose the candidates the Joplin Globe and the Joplin Progress Committee wanted to see elected. Two days before the election, the Globe told its readers that Anne Sharp had been re-elected because Roberts had said he was not going to serve, a mistake the newspaper has yet to acknowledge. The Globe was either so disconnected with its readers that it did not know that there was a movement to elect Roberts to keep Sharp off the board, which is quite possible, or it was making a not-so-subtle attempt to tell the readers what it thought was good for them.

The Globe ran one article after another over several days, making it clear where its allegiance lied. No mention was ever made of the fact that Landis and Steele had been elected to three-year board terms, then quit when things did not go their way. Steele left when people threatened to attend the meetings and has yet to produce any evidence that he received any threatening letters or notes. Apparently, the Globe never bothered to ask for such documentation.

Instead, the Globe became a crusader for civil rights- Landis and Steele had the right to resign and that right was being stripped from them by the evil board members who would not accept their resignations.

That was not an attempt by Landis, Steele, and Banwart to hijack the board from the people who had clearly demanded change. At least not in the Joplin Globe's book.

When Banwart refused to vote for the board candidate she had supported three days earlier, Marsi Archer, the Globe never acknowledged that Koch, Fort, and Martucci had made a clear attempt at compromise. Nor did it mention that one board member, Banwart, was taking a hypocritical step to take the say in who was named to the Board of Education out of the hands of the same voters who had elected her in 2014, and putting it in the hands of a Jasper County Commission, whose members included Darieus Adams, with whom Banwart had a clear conflict of interest.

That conflict of interest was never mentioned in the Globe until after the decision had already been sent to the Commission, and even then, as the newspaper has a habit of doing, it was relegated to the inside jump page and treated like an unimportant issue, the same way the Globe earlier treated allegations of conflict of interest against City Councilman Mike Woolston.

The Globe starts off today's editorial with a snide remark aimed at Koch, Fort, and Martucci:

Perhaps now, problems that have sidetracked the Joplin Board of Education- personal agendas and the inability to follow rules and procedures- will be set aside.

The reference, the editorial notes, is to the attempt to have Jim Kimbrough sworn in to replace Roberts.  The Globe takes a swipe at a possibility that the three members were violating the Sunshine Law, then praises the County Commission's appointing three new members- without a mention of the obvious Sunshine Law violation that took place when commissioners discussed who they might appoint to the board without ever posting that such a discussion would take place and also before Prosecuting Attorney Dean Dankelson had rendered his opinion that the Commission should become involved.

As you would expect, the editorial praises the three new board members, Gary Nodler, Sallie Beard, and Ron Gatz, referring to them as "experienced, strong, independent- just what the board needs to right itself and proceed."

Presiding Commissioner John Bartosh talked about the selection procedure. The Commission purposely avoided choosing anyone who had expressed an interest in serving on the board. The commissioners did not ask any questions about school issues, which is probably just as well, since they were probably not informed enough to ask such questions. Nodler indicated that if he had been asked any questions about Common Core or any other educational issues, he would have turned the position down.

In one of his first statements after it became apparent that the Commission might have to select the board members, Bartosh said he would be consulting the business community. Later, he and the other commissioners, made it clear that they had a list of people they could appoint to various commissions or boards.

In other words, the usual suspects.

And in the ivory tower world of the Joplin Globe's editorial board, a world where the voice of the people is important- as long as those people are connected to the Joplin Progress Committee, CART, or the upper tier of the Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce, sanity has been restored.

This uprising by the voters, those whose names are not included on the Jasper County Commission's master list and those who aren't on Joplin Globe Editor Carol Stark's speed dial, is a mere annoyance.

Things will be straightened out by next April when the Joplin Progress Committee can throw more money into the campaign, the Joplin Globe can do a better job of educating the people about what is good for them, and candidates who understand that listening to the people is important- but you have to keep them in their place- will be elected.


Anonymous said...

And don't count on our judicial system to help in any is horribly broken.

Anonymous said...

As Randy points out - the powers to be (JPC, CART, Chamber of Commerce, Joplin Globe) - want to control Joplin City Council and the Joplin BOE - and ignore the will of the voters.

My question is why is it so important for the "powers to be" to control the Joplin BOE?
What is their "real" agenda?

I can understand why the "powers to be" want to control the Joplin City Council (TIF districts, zoning, government money, etc) but why the Joplin BOE.

Anonymous said...

Has the R8 submitted a response to the suit in Newton County?

Anonymous said...

@ anonymous 10:03 Not that I care one way or the other, but can't the same thing be said about the 3 board members hell bent on getting Jim Kimbrough on the board? The "3" want to control the board.

Anonymous said...

thats what these big money people are banking on tax payers that dont care,and our three school board members that appointed mr kimbroug on the board do care ,and i know that most of joplin tax payer care as well about our school district and our children,a good start would be for people to stop buying the globe,untell that can stare reporting the truth

Whine, whine, whine, whine. said...

There is no reason to suspect that the three named new members will side with Turner or with the CART factions.

In April then the voters get to make their will known then.

I wouldn't trust either side to tell the truth.

Your blog, their newspaper. Editorial slant is decided by the owner.

Get over it.

Anonymous said...

Really? Those 3 were hell bent on it? Is that why they voted the second time for Banwarts candidate in hopes of moving forward only to have her change her vote to no?

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you're confusing editorial slant and facts. There's a big difference. And one of the news sources you mentioned likes to disregard facts.
And if we as voters, voted for change this election cycle, why should we have to wait for that change until the next election?

Anonymous said...

Ultimately, all of this controversy has hurt Kimbrough. The three members strangely pulling out all the stops to get him on, Koch's misguided, somewhat shady attempt to appoint him without being transparent with other board members, petitions after he quit/decided not to run again but now really wants on again after siding with Huff supporters for so long. Funny how everyone wants to just look past all of those things if it is for "their side".

Anonymous said...

It sounds like 12:12 is so blinded by this blog that he/she is unable to recognize that it too strongly favors editorial slant and cherry picks its facts. If only readers devoted to Randy Turner's "honesty" were able to take off their own rose-colored glasses to see that neither side seems to be capable of objective journalism...

Anonymous said...

Look on the bright side. Just think of all the money our local college will make by providing remedial courses in math and English for all the Joplin High graduates.

Anonymous said...

JPC and CART want the use of the new schools auditorium. That is big on there agenda 10:03am

Anonymous said...

If they want an auditorium, they can simply rent "The Civic" in Neosho. It sits empty most of the time.

Anonymous said...

I guess you don't think facts mean anything. Randy might inject his opinion now and again but it's always based on fact.
And if you would bother to read his articles instead of just the comments, you would see that.

Anonymous said...

@6:59....Not that's funny, I don't care who you are. "Randy might inject his opinion now and again" HAHAHAHAHAHA

Anonymous said...

Just because his opinion differs from yours doesn't make the facts they're based in, any less true.

Anonymous said...

2:09 Thank you! Most of these readers are "the herd" and believe Turner is leading them to the promise land. His journalism is so biased and they cant see it. If Turner is really wanting the best for joplin schools why doesn't he ever write anything positive about the schools as in what students and teachers are doing?

Anonymous said...

Move along troll.

Anonymous said...


Nothing wrong that another hundred million or so and an asspocket of buzzwords and some good public relations cain't fix!

Time to buckle down buttercups. Good thing the moneys not lacking- but we sho nuff runnin low on the buzzwords!

Stop the h8te.

Anonymous said...

The new appointees are already lobbying the City Council for funds for a couple of past pet projects for R-8. Each one is about a half million dollars. Just FYI.

Anonymous said...


Because the news is not a society page. Kind of a lame argument you're making.

Comrade Stalin said...

Pravda was the official newspaper of Soviet Russia. As the sole dissemination of sanctioned information it held sway over public opinion and propped up a failed dictatorship until people turned to underground sources that jibed with personal experience. Still, unofficial sources are held to a higher standard of proof, even when the official news has consistently failed to align with reality. Pravda is Russian for "Truth." It should be a red flag, pardon the pun, to anyone when any source claims to be the undisputed gospel.

This is just as true now as it has ever been. When the Globe tells us that their propoganda is fact by mere virtue of being in the Globe, check their assertions against other sources. When any blogger states opinions as facts, use the same litmus test. When your own personal experiences are contrary to any reporting, ask yourself if you should believe what they write above your own eyes. It is this very phenomenon of the human need for actual truth versus manufactured "Truth" that has toppled the self appointed rulers in the past, This is what we are seeing now in our town