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Jul-26-2010 19:28printcomments

Op Ed: Deceitful Dialog, Doubtful-Named, Damages Democracy

No Latitude for Lying About Facts In Comments Here.

Internet comments
Comments are meant for honest dialog in stories

(SEASIDE, Ore.) - From Day One Salem-News has stood up for full, open, honest --and thus democratic-- American dialog. Our Comments format was shaped to encourage and permit precisely that kind of full statement, strong and potent precisely because it reflects REAL PEOPLE --in their own words, after cogitation on strong feelings.

ONLY THUS can trustworthy sentiments stating the deepest feelings and most significant understandings of EVERY ONE making any Comment on S-N channels be accorded any credibility, demonstrating the realities of true open-and-honest “informed public opinion” -- informed both by fact and by experience.

That is why NO SIGN-IN or any “MUST USE-name” was originally required: Open, honest dialog occurs at S-N as in any other honest conversation: One does NOT demand ID in a friendly conversation. --even with someone NEWLY-met !! For many of our readers, S-N has become that one single source so-far/found dedicated simply to achieving that sole purpose: Honest, open “conversation” shaping democracy -- surely that much more potent and powerful because of deep failures in the mainstream media, now significantly and heavily polluted by political-pandering propaganda, often from powerful corporate sources and plentifully paid-for by carefully-covered modes and means.

Those current dangerous failures are now widely recognized as “a cancer eating at the heart of our American democracy” via further politicized denigration. (See E.E. Dionne column “Enough Right Wing Propaganda” at, 7/25/10; several others sourced and documented.) Even within the failing-media, one can know the source because of the standard long-required “Written by...”/line, introducing the person on the sending-end of every “conversation” encountered --by “honest name” !

At S-N, that vital source-ID heads each and every substantive report or Op Ed, with fully detailed further information given in our Staff-section and Terms of Service, as legally-required.

Have you read it ?

We openly, honestly and continously carry open and easily-understood guidelines--clearly stated for all to read and surely easily understand: See our “Terms of Service.”

That statement assumes YOU to be ONE-ONLY thinking American --not someone posing behind the false-front of “anonymous” OR using multiple names for both concealment and ostensible plural-power. Centuries of communications research and plentiful experience clearly demonstrates that use of multiple names is “always intentional and deceitful, dedicated to damaging rational, reasonable conclusion from realistic information”.

That is WHY it is now a growing tool for heavily funded Right-wing massive invasion of Internet sources, known to be underway by direct statement of those so involved. (Quotes, sources available on request.-hcr) At S-N we have allowed full flexibility in publishing Comments simply to further promote and encourage widespread, trusting-and-trustworthy participation -- obviously desperately-needed today. YOU should be potently aware of the First Amendment granting us “rights” and simultaneously demanding of us certain inalienable responsibilities, too.

IF you have any question on those responsibilities, your request to Editor Tim will bring you a detailed documentation of Supreme Court actions covering key cases, in full text and with professional summary. At S-N we always have welcomed open, honest -- and also very-democratic !!-- dissent, from ANYone, on point or about ANY issue: see our columns for massive main-and-minor/issue confirmation.

Dissent is the engine driving honest, open and democratic dialog --as in the famed Federalist Papers, disseminated in dailies current-then !-- and widely recognized as the birthing pangs for our “experiment in democracy” --still continuing, and in growing danger.

What we deplore and will defy, deny and defeat by demanding rapid reference and/or easy Internet-link to an authoritative source --thus known as reliable, recognized nationally as trustworthy, and of professional stature-- is resort to deceitful, distorting and perverting usages threatening the fundamental value of our dialog here.

That definitely includes intentional, deceitful use of multiple-names by any Commenting participant. We demand potent, powerful and fully professional source/information from every one of our S-N writers-- available on request to the Editor, whether or not cited in the report or Op Ed itself. Many of our published pieces require 20, 30 or even 50 documenting sources.

It is simple reality that most of us are not engaged personally in the complex participation demanded for professional “informed opinion”, thus demonstrated here. SO we do NOT demand that level of proven-fact from our Commenting readers.

But we do expect, on occasion for demonstrated need, compensating concentration on factual statement that can be supported by sourcing any and all points, preferably via Internet-link to the same level-and-kinds of foundation/fundamental sources as we demand from our writers. That seems only fair and equitable to us, and surely also strongly supports Comment quality.

As always --and unavoidable in any honest “Public Opinion” summary-- personal life-experience is worth a great deal, when honestly reflected and supported by documenting statement from originating authorities. YOUR personal status --occupation, training, any special expertise and/or experience, and likewise--are fully acceptable and fundamentally authoritative, too.

Sharing those very-fundamental bases for your feelings --and conclusions from them-- is highly desirable and greatly appreciated --AND admired ! Just make sure you can support whatever you choose to use, sharing with us what you have thus learned --sometimes “the hard way”-- thus adding more realistic, pragmatic, and communicative worth to what you write. We seek precisely that purely-shaping level and kind of insight, honestly stated and openly sourced.

What must be avoided, to guarantee both worth and value for the attention and time-demanded by reader participation, has been all-too-well demonstrated on several S-N threads lately: Unfortunate and perhaps illegal usage of false-ID and multi-name Comment-supply --as if from several persons when coming from a single traceable source-- demands both positive preventive action and a strong warning from S-N. Here is that warning: Deceitful abuse of our Terms of Service cannot be tolerated, will be the carefully-recorded content of our reports to both State of Oregon and FCC authorities and wiill be legally opposed as deemed necessary.

There is no possible question that such actions are damaging to the S-N reputation and professional image, and thus legally damaging to our status as a private business, dependent upon that reputation and image for our successful continuance.

Thus you and all other readers will understand our clear statement of the realistic working situation now at S-N --governed in depth and detail by our Terms of Service, to which you are referred since your current participation demonstrates your acceptance. Thank you for your careful and caring continuing participation, and welcome to our honest, open and democratic channel built for YOU!

At 21, Henry Clay Ruark was Aroostook Editor for the Bangor, Maine DAILY NEWS, covering the upper 1/4 of the state. In the ‘40s, he was Staff Correspondent, then New England Wires Editor at United Press-Boston; later Editor for the Burlington, Vermont 3-daily group owned by Wm. Loeb, later notorious at Manchester, New Hampshire UNION LEADER for attacks on Democratic Presidential candidates.

Hank returned to Oregon to complete M. Ed. degree at OSU, went on to Indiana University for Ed.D. (abd) and special other course-work; was selected as first Information Director for NAVA in Washington, D.C.; helped write sections of NDEA, first Act to supply math, science, foreign language consultants to state depts. of education; joined Oregon Dept. of Education, where he served as NDEA administrator/Learning Media Consultant for ten years.

He joined Dr. Amo DeBernardis at PCC, helping establish, extend programs, facilities, Oregon/national public relations; moved to Chicago as Editor/Publisher of oldest educational-AV journal, reformed as AV GUIDE Magazine; then established and operated Learning Media Associates as general communications consultant group. Due to wife’s illness, he returned to Oregon in 1981, semi-retired, and has continued writing intermittently ever since, joining S-N in 2004. His Op Eds now total over 560 written since then.

Comments Leave a comment on this story.

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Henry Clay Ruark August 9, 2010 9:52 am (Pacific time)

To all: Every point made on quality, care in statement, content itself, and complete documentation, is intended in this one to apply equally 00if NOT "more so" !-- to every single piece any one of us writing --"regulars" or intermittent-voluteers-- does produce. As stated here before, with clarity to be hoped-for: "You pays your nickel, so can then choose which paper you trust"!

Henry Clay Ruark August 4, 2010 1:52 pm (Pacific time)

Ben: You make good point re Congress countermanding when moved by people-pressures... "Wit, wisdom, will" of the people refers realistically to public opinion expressed to them directly, not contingent on shaping (thus distortion) by corporate/owned media. There have been at least six major points in our history when that direct-pressuer "by the people, of the people, for the people" changed national direction, always for solution better than perverted party-pressures permitted in our representative system. moresoon on that in threads here and Op Eds upcoming...

Henry Clay Ruark August 4, 2010 9:52 am (Pacific time)

Ben: My apologies for "anon"-label on mine-to-you... Haste and age-driven inattention are no excuses but will use 'em anyhow !! Thank you for thoughful participation, and stay tuned for sue-to-come FCC forced- intervention on Internet to control malign interlopers.

Anonymous August 3, 2010 3:41 pm (Pacific time)

Ben: FCC is fed/agency, friend, and thus always under same changing influences...which is why government-then gave away billions/trillions in spectrum for what became part of political deal set up to "balance interests." What we need is strong and independent agency empowered potently and with same trust and confidence built into operations as for Supremes... who, even though politically appointed, over time run very close to public opinion. (Documented in new book: The Will of The People;Barry Friedman. Will review soon.)

Ben July 31, 2010 6:13 pm (Pacific time)

To give the FCC too much power can be quite dangerous. Thankfully we have a congress that can truly represent the will of the people (eventually?) by counter-manding any and all political appointees/operatives and/or those who create rule/regulations without proper oversight. I have noticed how quickly some people change in their support of the FCC and other federal departments depending on whose in power at the Whitehouse.

Hank Ruark July 29, 2010 3:47 pm (Pacific time)

Friends:For how a famous U.S. daily operates via Internet, see WPost on any story: "Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards,terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions. You are fully responsible for content that you post." Note action on "unsigned", i.e. "anonymous", and on any form of multiple-source. In addition WPost requires sign-in name-and-password now for full access; that's first step to ID of any user,sure to come if Internet abuse now so evident is allowed to continue which is why FCC is working on remedial action by law.

Hank Ruark July 28, 2010 12:33 pm (Pacific time)

Friends: For an authoritative national insight into our growing strong concerns here at S-N, see: "No Comment" by Rem Rieder, Editor/VP American Journalism Review, Summer 2010 issue. For your rapid convenience here is link: moresoon on this issue re abuse of Internet access, from FCC project and other national sources. We need to keep S-N as open, honest, democratic channel, undamaged by those who do so for their own private-gain purposes.

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