We cannot in good conscience hold back any longer. We have waited more than three weeks. The time to wake up is now.
Where is the Courier-Journal on the Robert Felner scandal at the University of Louisville? Why is the newspaper of record and the largest publication in the Commonwealth of Kentucky ignoring this huge, multi-million dollar scandal? I mean, we’ve literally been hand-feeding the paper. Doing the leg work for the C-J day in and day out. And nothing. Nothing, nothing, nothing. Deadening, suspicious silence.
After yesterday’s revelation by WHAS11’s Adam Walser, Kenosha News’ Gary Kunich and this website the Courier-Journal’s education reporter is still silent on the issue. We have no reason to believe the C-J is in collusion with UofL on this matter and we have no reason to believe the paper has been silenced.
But it’s a good idea to mention this: After the CW Louisville was afraid to let us discuss the Felner scandal on television because the station management had gotten its feathers ruffled, we called every news room and reporter in Louisville (except WAVE3– the news director has way too much of an attitude with us) to find out if Felner’s attorney (now attorneys, plural) or anyone else had attempted to silence the story.
Everyone we spoke with assured us they had not been pressured and no one had expressed concern to them about reporting on or investigating the Felner scandal. The only red flag was Nancy Rodriguez of the C-J, who did, it must be noted, tell us that she had not been pressured. But she was very nervous about receiving a call re: Felner. It could have been because Rick is a big, bad, terrifying media critic but let’s get real. It’s likely because she didn’t want to put her tight relationships with UofL’s administration at risk and it doesn’t take much for people from all walks of life to assume as much. Nancy’s a good person and a great journalist, but enough is enough.
What’s Nancy writing about that keeps her too busy to focus on Felner? Why, writing fluff pieces about President Jim Ramsey’s decision to turn down his $113,000+ bonus for the year. It’s mighty admirable of Ramsey to turn down the giant bonus (Lee Todd at UK certainly didn’t), but he’s already making a $331,918 base salary in addition to at least $124,213 he receives from the university foundation. So we’re pretty sure a paltry $100K is chump change to him.
From Nancy’s story today:
At his own request, University of Louisville President James Ramsey won’t receive a raise or a bonus this year under a recommendation expected to be approved today by the university’s Board of Trustees.
Ramsey — who asked trustees not to give him additional money in light of tight budget constraints at the state and university level — will instead receive a lump-sum payment of $700, which other full-time faculty and staff members are receiving under this year’s university budget.
“I don’t want this to be about me,” Ramsey added. “I don’t want this to be about what I get paid. I want this to be about the Univer- sity of Louisville and being what people expect it to be.”
We’re becoming more and more disappointed in the Courier-Journal each and every day. And there’s no reason to believe the same thing isn’t happening with the general public because subscriber rates are dropping like crazy and staff cuts are happening all over the place.
Where is the journalism our major newspaper is supposed to produce? Where is the investigation? Where is the openness and honesty about what is happening right before our very eyes? What is with this complacency?