In Which the P-G is Discovered to be a Bully

What, exactly, does Bill Toland think that I did to him? Read the Dec. 22 entry in his Casino Journal, in which he refers to "the smarty-pantses at Pittsblog."

It's bad enough that local politicians pander to Mario Lemieux. (I have absolutely nothing against Mario personally, since he's a deity and all, but he whines as well as any owner of a professional sports franchise.) It's irritating as hell to have the bigger local newspaper pandering, too.

The Isle of Capri arena plan is public money disguised as private. If it isn't, then IoC is the first enterprise in the known history of humankind to prove that there really is such a thing as a free lunch. If the P-G believes otherwise, talk to an economist or two. We have quite a talented bunch of them up in Oakland. Prove me wrong.

I can live with the fact that the Trib employs writers who don't know Journalism 101 (talk to your source before you quote him). I'm genuinely surprised that the P-G goes for name-calling. The Casino Journal doesn't do journalism, and I'm fine with that. But name-calling isn't blogging, Bill. That's typing.


1 Response to "In Which the P-G is Discovered to be a Bully"

beltwayburgher said... 1/03/2007 11:02 AM

I was born and raised in the Pittsburgh area, graduated from Pitt in '89 and tried back then (unsuccefully) to find employment that would have kept me in the area. I moved to Washington, DC, and have enjoyed all the career and lifestyle benefits of a growing and prosperous MSA. My partner considered a job opportunity in Pittsburgh in 2001, and I found myself seriously considering a move back to the home turf. The more I thought about the idea, the more I liked it. I've thought about relocation from time to time since 2001.

Then this casino talk erupted.

No way. No way would I attempt to create a future in a city that is hitching itself to casinos for any fraction of its revitalization dreams. It all smacks of desperation, and a low-rent stripe of it at that.

To me, a former Pittsburgher still incredibly fond of the place, I feel the city has failed at selecting from two future portraits of itself:

1). an affordable city full of warm people and a variety of attractions (from sports to high culture), and growing business buzz;

2). sports-centric, nostalgia-driven, and seemingly precoccupied with a revenue savior (gambling) that graces too many other destinations all over the map.

I can't tell you how sad, desperate and pathetic this all appears to a variety of former Pittsburghers with whom I stay in close touch. We all love the place, and a few have even moved back. But none of us enjoys the prospect of Branson-on-the-Mon. It's death by imitation, not reinvention.

It broadcasts conventional thinking. Pittsburgh has given up on being something unique, on daring to be a city of the future built on all that's best about its past. In an anxious, expensive, and rat-race-paced America, Pittsburgh is missing out on its incredibly opportunity to offer America the invitation for which it is so desperate: come home again.

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Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at] Mike also blogs at, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

All opinions expressed at Pittsblog 2.0 are those of their respective authors and of no one (and no thing) else, least of all the University of Pittsburgh.

Pittsblog 2.0 has a motto: "It's steel good in Pittsburgh." Say it aloud, with a Pittsburgh accent.

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