Gov. John Kasich doesn’t need an adjunct public relations firm, but he has one nonetheless in The Columbus Dispatch, which has had a corporate crush on the former budget committee whiz kid since his first days in politics nearly four decades ago. Citizen Kasich, in 2010, inherited a state on the mend from an economic catastrophe that unfolded largely at the hands of conservative Republicans whose policies and programs enacted in Washington under President George W. Bush sent the nation and Ohio into an economic ditch Ohio’s go-go CEO has yet to climb out of despite a friendly all-GOP legislature at his beck and call and tools made to his order with billions to dole out.
Dispatch’s Broken Record Syndrome
Like a record stuck in the same groove, Ohio’s capital city newspaper faithfully regurgitated the false but widely accepted narrative that Gov. Kasich’s brilliance as a money manager and policy guru saved Ohio! “He [Gov. Kasich] had to claw back an Ohio economy in freefall and a state budget in chaos. Ohioans had lost jobs and in many cases their homes, by the thousands,” the CD anxiously chortled Sunday. “Much of Kasich’s first term was spent rebuilding and realigning the economic, financial and governmental foundations of the state, because disarray in all of these spheres deterred businesses from making investments and robbed Ohioans of the opportunity to make the most of their talents.”
The legacy newspaper failed to mention the harms that would have come had Gov. Kasich been in charge of the state during the great recession. Kasich repeatedly bad mouthed the president’s stimulus plan and the funds it provided to keep Ohio’s budget deficit from being far worse. And Mr. Kasich continually poo-pooed President Obama’s unique effort to save the auto industry and the nearly quarter-million Ohio jobs related to it. The paper chose to remain quiet on just how bad Ohio would be today had the White House adopted Citizen Kasich’s and Mitt Romney’s suggestion to just “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt,” The Dispatch shows again why it’s not objective or neutral.
“Today’s Ohio is a far cry from the train wreck it was four years ago. Looking for a job no longer is a fruitless exercise,” it boasted, failing to say that Gov. Kasich is still 109,000 jobs short of full recovery, and that most of the jobs Gov. Kasich touts as his first term legacy are mostly minimum wage jobs with few or no benefits, hardly what working families need to stay afloat.
“We need to own our own actions and be responsible for our own decisions. Don’t blame others. There are no excuses,” said Kasich, who always blames others, specifically President Obama and former Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland, while resurrecting the GOP’s chiseled-in-stone mantra about the value of personal responsibility—which doesn’t include corporations even though Mr. Kasich, Mr. Romney and every other Republican believe they are “people”—and helping the less less-fortunate by making the rich richer.
Dispatch Endorses Ted Strickland
Never mentioned anymore for obvious political reasons, The Dispatch, in its Sunday Oct. 8, 2006 editorial for governor, endorsed Congressman Strickland over the ‘bold” quackery of then GOP Secretary of State Ken Blackwell. “Ohio is falling behind in jobs, education and optimism,” The Dispatch editorial staff wrote after a dozen years of failed Republican policies that had put Ohio on a downward trajectory. “It has been riven by bitter and closely decided presidential elections. More than anything, the next governor of Ohio must be someone who can bridge political gulfs and enlist the help of all Ohioans to make the state a national leader again. For this reason, The Dispatch urges voters to elect Democrat Ted Strickland on Nov. 7.”
Back in 2006, The Dispatch, whose parent company Wolfe Enterprises last year donated a maximum of $10,000 to Gov. Kasich second inaugural festivities, slammed Mr. Blackwell for proposing to privatize the Ohio Turnpike, something Kasich did and the paper adored. It also criticized Mr. Black for proposing a constitutional amendment to limit government taxing and spending, which it said would mean “devastating cuts to police, fire, education and other local services.” With full support by The Dispatch, Gov. Kasich is now trotting around the country pushing his quackery for a federal balanced budget amendment, which experts say will do for the nation what the Dispatch argued against when Ken Blackwell proposed essentially the same idea for Ohio. “Strickland’s moderation and consensus-building style are more likely to be effective regardless of the legislature’s political makeup,” the paper wrote when faced with a choice between political insanity and sanity.
When the Great Recession brought most states including Ohio to their knees, the newspaper, setting its compass headings to Kasich, suddenly blamed Ohio’s troubles on Gov. Strickland, who took the worst the economic meltdown dished out and still managed to put Ohio on a roaring road to recovery. That recovery, coincidentally, stalled under Gov. Kasich, who admitted as much on national TV, even though his razzle dazzle, including the creation of JobsOhio, his secret job creation group that has so far performed amazingly poorly despite years of operation and billions in funds to dole out. For the Dispatch, who admitted Gov. Kasich’s second inaugural address “dealt little with policies and programs he expects to launch or further in his second term,” the best of Mr. Kasich has yet to come.
“We’ve tuned up the machinery. And we’ll have Ohio back on the road again,” Gov. Kasich said again in his sermon at the Southern one week ago. Ohio is “gathering speed,” he said, adding, “We’re charting the course. We’re moving forward. And together we’re reaching out to more and more of our neighbors and friends who had been left behind. And we’re giving them a chance to share in the growing prosperity of our state. This is our work. This is Ohio’s work. And look how far we’ve come.”
In 2006, with Ohio failing from years of total Republican rule, a fact The Dispatch failed to call out with any fervor, it reluctantly endorsed Ted Strickland. “Strickland acknowledges that his ideas lack the flash of Blackwell’s. But they are more carefully conceived,” it said. Four years later, in 2010, Mr. Kasich’s flash, the same flash seen with Mr. Blackwell, nonetheless memorized the paper’s editorial department, as it went with the speedy but undependable hare over the steady and tested Strickland who kept Ohio from becoming an economic basket case.
“Ohio’s future will be built one brick at a time and will require all hands. Strickland is best equipped to lead the state forward,” The Dispatch said.