Tuesday, April 08, 2008

One wheel in the ditch, another spinning in the air

No matter how long and bitter the winter, eventually spring always comes. The sun shines, the snow melts, the trees bud, the grass turns green, the robins appear, and...

...the Star Tribune FAILS to win a Pulitzer Prize. Our faithful correspondent Jim has once again been on his annual Strib Pulitzer watch and once again he reports that the local newspaper of record has come up empty-handed:

Back in 2004, I wrote a post for Fraters Libertas mocking the Star Tribune for not having won a Pulitzer Prize since their only prize, in 1990. Since then it has become a yearly tradition for me to update the taunt (2005, 2006, 2007).

This year, the Strib's eighteenth consecutive without a Pulitzer, has got to sting them especially hard. With a major bridge collapsing just blocks from their building and a Senator getting caught with a wide stance down at the Minneapolis-St. Paul airport, you would think that they would have at least been a finalist in the Breaking News category (the Idaho Statesman was a finalist for their coverage of the Craig affair).

Instead, the Strib didn't have a single finalist in any category. To add even more insult to injury, the Pulitzer committee decided to give no award for Editorial Writing this year--so the Strib editorial board lost out to None of the Above.

I must admit that I'm starting to feel a little sorry for them.

Ha! Ha! Strib, even your fellow far-left lefties think you suck!

Only a little sorry for them.

Here are the newspapers that are smaller than the Star Tribune that have somehow managed to win a Pulitzer Prize since 1990:

Newsday (11)
Boston Globe (8)
Miami Herald (8)
Portland Oregonian (5)
Sacramento Bee (4)
New Orleans Times-Picayune (4)
Atlanta Journal-Constitution (3)
Baltimore Sun (3)
Birmingham (Ala.) News (2)
Christian Science Monitor (2)
Hartford Courant (2)
Lexington (Ky.) Herald Leader (2)
Seattle Post-Intelligencer (2)
Seattle Times (2)
Newark Star-Ledger (2)
Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal
Albuquerque Journal
Arizona Republic
Asbury Park Press (Neptune N.J.)
Biloxi Sun Herald
Block Newspapers, Toledo, Ohio
Boston Phoenix
Cincinnati Enquirer
Cleveland Plain Dealer
Daily Tribune (Ames, Iowa)
Dayton (Ohio) Daily News
Des Moines Register
Grand Forks (N.D.) Herald
Great Falls (Mont.) Tribune
Indianapolis Star
Kansas City Star
Lawrence (Mass.) Eagle-Tribune
Los Angeles Weekly
Louisville Courier-Journal
Memphis Commercial Appeal
Raleigh (N.C.) News and Observer
Orange County Register
Philadelphia Daily News
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Santa Rose (Calif.) Press Democrat
Providence Journal-Bulletin
Riverdale (N.Y.) Press
Rutland (Vt.) Herald
San Diego Union-Tribune
San Francisco Chronicle
St. Paul Pioneer Press
Toledo Blade
Village Voice
Virgin Island Daily News (St. Thomas)
White Plains (N.Y.) Journal News
Willamette Week (Portland)

And the three newspapers who move past the Star Tribune this year:
Concord (N.H.) Monitor
Investor's Business Daily
Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

As Jim notes, 2007 was quite an eventful news year in the Twin Cities. But despite having a number of big stories literally fall into their laps, the Strib failed to live up the journalistic standards of excellence set by their peers like the Rutland Herald and Willamette Week.

You would think that with a national political convention coming to town this year, there might be an opportunity for the Strib to break the streak. However, given their lack of interest in pursuing genuinely interesting stories (flying imams anyone?) and the paper's generally poor quality of writing and reporting, I don't think anyone is going to surprised to see Jim usher in spring 2009 with another Strib Pulitzer update.

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