Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Inside the Big Tent it's about meeting expectations

Inside the Big Tent on Sunday, the theme was expectations — for the media's performance, for individual accountability, for the political future of a certain former governor. Excerpts from the best of the blog:

Some of us ARE here for A very good reason

Journalism professor and media critic Jeff Jarvis aimed a series of strident questions at the media covering the convention:

• Why are you there?

• What will we learn from you?

• What actual reporting can you possibly do that delivers anything of value more than the infomercial — light on the info, heavy on the 'mercial — that the conventions have become?

• Would you be better off back at home covering voters and their issues?

• Can we in the strapped news business afford this luxury?

I'd say those are fair questions. I can't answer for the industry in its entirety. I can't even answer for my own paper. But I'll say what I think. I think the Tampa Bay Times does important work. I think PolitiFact does important work. I think there are too many stories (see the rebuke of media by Eric Deggans on his blog, the Feed) that are simplistic and lazy.

But I also think there are many that aren't (see Adam Smith's piece today on why Florida matters). I think being here and being back home "covering voters and their issues" shouldn't be an either-or thing. I think the answer is not to stay away. I think the answer is to come and work better and harder and smarter.

He swings hard

The Tampa Bay Rays' Luke Scott has super strong opinions:

Obamacare, he says, "needs to be taken and thrown into muriatic acid and just absolutely disintegrated and never spoken of again. We can't afford it. It's not right. It's the unaccountability thing, where people can smoke cigarettes and be lazy and be unhealthy, and then you and I have to pay for their health care bills. No, I'm sorry, it shouldn't work that way.

The 'not so sunny' belt

From Adam Nagourney's piece in Sunday morning's New York Times:

"There is a soaring rate of poverty in these new suburban regions," said Lisa McGirr, a history professor at Harvard. "I think it's bound to have a political impact and to transform the ability of the Republican Party to appeal to suburbanites with private, individualistic solutions."

The last time the Republican National Convention happened in Florida was in 1972, at the start of the country's shift from the Rust Belt to the Sun Belt. I wrote about this in my recent story on local host committee chair Al Austin and Tampa. Politics went right. People moved south. Now it's 40 years later. Is this the beginning of a similarly profound national rejiggering going the other way? Florida's where the future happens first.

Oops, he did it again

Republican Party leaders seemed unsurprised by the timing of former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist's (formerly of the GOP, now independent) endorsement of President Barack Obama.

Republican Party of Florida chairman Lenny Curry: "Today we have seen a repugnant display from a self-centered, career politician. While the people of Florida, and thousands of visitors who've traveled here, are facing an emergency, Charlie Crist has demonstrated, yet again, that his political ambition will always come first."

Inside the Big Tent it's about meeting expectations 08/26/12 [Last modified: Sunday, August 26, 2012 10:23pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. NFL commissioner, players' union angrily denounce Trump comments on national anthem


    SOMERSET, N.J. — The National Football League and its players' union on Saturday angrily denounced President Donald Trump for suggesting that owners fire players who kneel during the national anthem …

    President Donald Trump walks off the stage after he speaks at campaign rally in support of Sen. Luther Strange, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Huntsville, Ala. [Associated Press]
  2. Forecast: Tampa Bay's first fall weekend brings scattered showers


    It may officially be fall, but Tampa Bay won't have any cooler temperatures this weekend.

    Tampa Bay's 7 day forecast. [WTSP]
  3. Romano: The choice does not have to be poverty or gentrification

    Local Government

    The memories must be protected. The music and the lore, too.

    The owner of Sylvia's Queen of Soul Food is refusing to give the city information on the restaurant's sales as required by his contract to occupy the city-owned Manhattan Casino. The information is needed to calculate whether the nonprofit Urban Development Solutions, headed by Larry Newsome, owes the city more than the $3,000 monthly base rent.
  4. Tests show North Korea earthquake not caused by nuclear test


    SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea's weather agency said a magnitude 3.2 earthquake was detected in North Korea on Saturday close to where the country recently conducted a nuclear test, but it assessed the quake as natural.

    People watch a TV news program reporting North Korea's earthquake, at Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. South Korea's weather agency said an earthquake was detected in North Korea on Saturday around where the country recently conducted a nuclear test, but it assessed the quake as natural. The signs read " The weather agency said a magnitude 3.0 earthquake was detected in North Korea." [Associated Press]
  5. New earthquake, magnitude 6.1, shakes jittery Mexico


    MEXICO CITY — A strong new earthquake shook Mexico on Saturday, causing new alarm in a country reeling from two still-more-powerful quakes this month that have killed nearly 400 people.

    Locals play pool at a venue in Mexico City's La Condesa neighborhood, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, four days after the 7.1 earthquake. The upscale Mexico City neighborhood was one of the hardest hit, with more than a half-dozen collapsed buildings in the immediate vicinity. The few Condesa residents who ventured out Friday night said they were anxious for relief from an anguishing week. [Associated Press]