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Comments about ‘In our opinion: Explaining editorial elements’

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Published: Sunday, Aug. 17 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

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marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

This makes me scratch my head: "...and care for the underprivileged in their honorable self-betterment as a duty for all individuals."

The Deseret News editorially doesn't care about shifts in distributions of wealth and income favoring the wealthy. These shifts are stressing all those who are not wealthy. You seem to imply: "the capitalist system knows best, and that system is not to be questioned - ever." Do I state this correctly?

Owen
Heber City, UT

It seems like something's missing. Although not exclusive to the editorial section, the reader comments in the online edition are an important part of the editorial dialogue - else why the focus on "most commented?" Voices from across the nation weigh in on nearly every issue. The problem is they are anonymous voices.

Not allowing anonymity could make the Deseret News' comment feature better reflect the paper's and its owner's proclaimed commitment to civil dialogue. A registration process that requires contributors to own their comments, as in your Reader's Forum, would make life easier for your moderators, raise the level of the dialogue, and make the Deseret News as unique as it claims to be in today's divisive media.

liberal larry
salt lake City, utah

With several notable exceptions, Deseret News editorials typically take hard Right political views, and many times they show an real lack of research on the part of the writer. Many of them seem to be inspired by a single article, or study, that takes a view that affirms the Deseret News conservative world view.

That being said, the DNews has taken a courageous stance by only gently moderating comments that disagree with their editorials.

RC in WJ
WEST JORDAN, UT

Thank you for the "Explaining Editorial Elements" article! It answered several question I have had, but the statement "Although neutral on matters of partisan politics" was a little more than even the most gullible could swallow!

Thanks again for the inside look on your Editorial publishing policy!

The Educator
South Jordan , UT

Please don't take my criticism and deny this comment. Take it as constructive criticism.

The dnews rarely "analyzes" anything. They simply copy and paste articles, many which are outdated or discredited by peer review, from Heritage and the Cato Institute. The editorial page is a hodgepodge of cut and pasted articles, often, they contradict each other, in an effort to support their right wing agenda.

I remember a few weeks ago an "analysis" offered by the dnews which attacked democrats and stated that democrats were discouraging people from having children. That somehow smaller families was a bad thing and the state could support unlimited growth. This was on their editorial page (copied from Heritage).

Then, literally a day later, in another section of the paper, there were scientists sending out warnings about the lack of water in the state. A day later, a report on our worst in nation air quality. A day later, a landslide in north salt lake which destroyed a home.

So after all of this, I felt like the "analysis" offered in the editorial section was debunked by the Dnews's own reporting in other sections. We cannot support unlimited growth in this state.

Schnee
Salt Lake City, UT

@Owen
"Not allowing anonymity could make the Deseret News' comment feature better reflect the paper's and its owner's proclaimed commitment to civil dialogue. A registration process that requires contributors to own their comments, as in your Reader's Forum"

Honestly, I think that it risks other problems that discourage discussion. Like an LDS member that disagrees with something church/BYU related might want to have the discussion but not want to be known. A business owner who disagrees with minimum wage increases might not want any negativity to come about (I've seen some posts that were of the vein of "what business do you own so I know what to never visit").

I think they do a good job. Sometimes I'm confused as to why a comment of mine didn't make it through but hey if that's the price to pay for the good system they have, I'm fine with it.

1aggie
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

Liberal Larry.
I agreed with your comment until the line. "only gently moderating."
How would you know the scope of moderating? I know from personal experience that, too often, the moderators deny comments which adhere to stated their guidelines. I once had a comment denied because, according to the moderator, i had overused "all caps" when in fact i only used caps twice in referring to California as CA.

liberal larry
salt lake City, utah

I agree with Owen in principle, but not in practice.

Some of us have positions in business, or government, where our personal opinions are not part of the job. Strongly stating our religious, or political preferences, could be a huge detriment to our careers, or more importantly, to the livelihoods of members of our families.

Requiring full names for the comment section would cut out a huge swath of us who are vested in the community, and who would simply cease reading, and commenting, if our names where required.

The Deseret News is doing a huge service to the community by reasonably moderating, and allowing anonymity on its comment section.

marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

At some point in the near future you will have to change your statement of advocacy as follows: "Although neutral on matters of partisan politics, ...it boldly advocates for the protection of the environment as a fit place for human habitation."

gmlewis
Houston, TX

I read news publications from around the world, but I prefer Deseret News above them all because of the online reader comments. When I submit a comment, I am genuinely interested in hearing the alternative views they spark, and occasionally these comments change my point of view. That makes it a great learning experience, which is why I read the news in the first place.

That is also why I enjoy the anonymity that this publication inspires. It would be embarrassing if everything I wrote could come back to publicly display my ignorance.

Mark l
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

Anyone concerned about helping the poor need to realize that "handouts" don't help the poor in the long run. Teaching someone how to take care of themselves would be the better way.

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

My position on anonymity should be obvious from my screen name. I live in a community where there are only so many members of the church and I prefer not conflating my political points with my church life.

David
Centerville, UT

I have enjoyed reading and participating, through moderated comments, the editorial pages of the Deseret News. I liken the moderated comments and the debate that ensues to the days of John Adams when men would meet in taverns to discuss and debate topics of concern and interest.

Thank you, Deseret News, for providing an excellent forum.

Phil Allred
New Rochelle, NY

@marxist,

I don't believe your statement is correct. The Deseret News, like its readers, want shifts in the distribution of wealth. They just don't believe it is best done by the force of government. And I bet they would disagree about capitalism as well. Capitalism does better than any other economic model at efficiently distributing goods in a society. Yes, it has its weaknesses, but compared to socialism, it does a far better job. This means there is more wealth for PRIVATE individuals to distribute. When private citizens, in the form of churches and non-profit organizations do it. It carries FAR more meaning to the receiver.

marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

The governing philosophy of the Deseret News emphasizes personal responsibility. I have no problem with that. People need to act as if everything depends on their own discipline and initiative.

But the system they live in is of consequence. The current recession was triggered by the housing bubble on whose subprime mortgages a fantastic array of financial instruments were built and are being built many of which are of questionable value. When the housing bubble popped the world was caught holding securities worth at most 10 cents on the dollar.

The Deseret News has not once, to my knowledge, questioned the ethics of the banking industry or the system of which they are the center piece. This demonstrates ideological bias of an extreme kind.

BTW, one third of American households are in collections. Does your term "underprivileged" include them?

Jack
Aurora, CO

I would like to offer my opinion on the matter of "wealth distribution." First, it isn't distributed by some single source; wealth is created, it is acquired, it is earned. There isn't some person or committee somewhere that decides who gets what in our economy. The problem is that people don't know how to allocate their money or wealth, so they don't accumulate it. They overspend on convenience items, they make poor decisions with credit so they pay higher interest, they don't understand how it works. You cannot become rich punching a timeclock, you must save and invest to increase your wealth. If you view money as only to be spent, you don't get it. If you think someone else having it means you won't get any, you don't get it. If you think taking it from someone else to give to you is the way to "even things out" you don't get it. Societies that try that way never succeed, because you always run out of other peoples money.

Tekakaromatagi
Dammam, Saudi Arabia

@Liberal Larry:
"With several notable exceptions, Deseret News editorials typically take hard Right political views, "
Could you mention any of those rather than being vague. I consider the Deseret News to be a liberal voice in Utah. They support education, families and traditional marriage which are powerful forces to fight poverty. They condemn gambling and pornography. Again these are liberal positions. They are promoting religious freedom which is THE human rights issue for our time.

I disagree with their stand on their support for Israel, but it isn't blind support.

They are liberal, without being dogmatic.

UtahBlueDevil
Durham, NC

Deseret News is non-partisan... who knew. Or is that they are non-partisan when it comes to conservatives versus tea-party... that would make a whole lot more sense.

I mean, look at the coverage of ACA. I get that the DN Staff doesn't approve of the act, and that is fair when it is an issue based objection. But if it were truly based solely on the "issue", the paper would hold the conservatives as equally responsible for lack of providing a solution that would work, that most Americans can get behind. But alas, the critic only extends to one side, moving the discussion from issue based to party support.

DeseretNews non-partisan... about as much as FoxNews and Rush Limbaugh are. I don't think so.... but thanks for trying.

Hugh1
Denver, CO

The Educator's comment was off-base and erred by generalization. I see the point of the editorial page differently, it is not to validate facts presented in the news section, it is an independent opinion written to appeal to the readers of the paper. That's important because the comment section is the only counterpoint that some DN readers are ever likely to see. I often comment on same-sex marriage issues because I am same-sex married, I live in Colorado (also 10th circuit), and I also have married same-sex friends in SLC. Will I change anyone's mind? Not likely, but my comments may help open a necessary dialogue. Also, if my comments were not semi-autonomous, I could not comment because my views would potentially represent those of my employer. My words need to stand on their own merit.

Hutterite
American Fork, UT

Not sure how I got cut; must have exceeded 200 words again. I appreciate the DN explaining more or less where they're coming from on the editorial page. I did post, expanding on how this stance manifests itself. It's too bad you all didn't get to see it.

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