Labor union declares newspaper downsizing due to 'right wing plot'
The Communications Workers of America (CWA) is one of the most far left labor unions in the country, having supported the idea of "community radio stations" and a "living wage." Now, a petition on the union's website accuses a large media company of taking part in a "far right conspiracy" because the newspapers owned by the company are downsizing.
The Communications Workers of America is fighting efforts to cut staff at the Denver Post and other newspapers by accusing Alden Global Capital, which controls Digital First Media, of a “far-right” conspiracy that involves jettisoning unfriendly reporters.
“Alden Global Capital, a secretive hedge fund with ties to the Republican Party and the far right, has been quietly buying up newspapers around the country,” says a petition on the labor website #AldenExposed. “Its executives stash money in notorious tax havens worldwide and operate a complex web of funds and business structures to hide their investors from public view.”
“Under Alden’s reckless management, newspaper staffing levels have been slashed to the bone. In many cases, Alden is laying off the very journalists who otherwise would investigate and expose this kind of business conduct,” says the petition, which has gathered nearly 5,500 signatures.
Several dozen protesters, including some Denver Post reporters, held a demonstration Friday in front of the newspaper building to decry Digital’s effort to cut 26 employees at Colorado’s largest newspaper through voluntary buyouts.
“Hey, hey, ho, ho, Alden Global’s got to go,” the demonstrators chanted in videos posted on Facebook.
Many wore T-shirts and carried signs with the message #NewsMatters. Staffers at other Digital First-owned newspapers, including the Monterey [California] Herald and the St. Paul [Minnesota] Pioneer Press, offered shows of solidarity by posting photos of themselves on Twitter wearing #NewsMatters tees.
Supporters also held signs that said, “Alden: The Public Deserves to Know.”
“We’re blowing the whistle on Alden Global, the secretive hedge fund with ties to the Far Right, pillaging 200+ newspapers across the country,” said a Twitter post by the Communications Workers of America, whose locals include the Denver Newspaper Guild.
The Pacific Media Workers union said Friday on Twitter that First Digital is “laying off the very journalists who would call out their bad behavior.”
Newspapers are losing millions of dollars every year with no end in sight for the flood of red ink. Do these ignoramuses know that the alternative to the cuts is shutting the paper down completely? The ignorance of left wing journalists about guns is matched by their cluelessness of business.
In 10 years, it's likely that there will be no dead tree editions of any newspaper in America. And you can thank unions for that. In an industry that demands quick adaptation to a changing environment, hidebound unions like CWA prevent rapid changes. Media companies have yet to figure out how to make profits online and until they do, CWA membership will continue to shrink.