21 May, 2006

MY TWO CENTS: Time To Let Karben Pick Up The Pieces

It's been a few days now since the story broke about former Assemblyman Ryan Karben's resignation.

The New York City papers have done mostly one-and-done coverage of the story.

The New York Times did one conservatively played story with no mention of rumors or unidentified sources.

The New York Post had a siren headline, but a reasonably sound story assuming they trust their unnamed sources, as they undoubtedly do.

The Daily News had a story on Friday, also based on sources it undoubtedly trusts, and a short follow-up Saturday which didn't really add anything new.

It is the blogosphere that continues to perpetuate the story - some Web sites making outlandish, irresponsible and regrettable accusations while others are busy sporting sophomoric dual-meaning headlines.

I have to admit, the number of hits this Web site has gotten since Friday has been a lot higher than normal, and the largest number of those hits were prompted by people searching the word "Karben."

The only real news left to report on this story is the fact that the spot will not be filled on an interemin basis, according to a story in the Daily News. That should set up quite a scramble for the fall.

This morning's Journal News did a profile of Karben's career.

As for my thoughts on the matter - I'm mostly ashamed to be among the crowd I'm running with. Bloggers have a bad name among most journalists, and the handling of this case shows that the reputation is probably earned. Many bloggers are just hacks with an axe to grind or nothing but dribble to communicate.

The blogs run by professionals, Capitol Confidential and The Daily Politics among others, did good work on the story. Keeping to the facts as best they were attainable without the editorial comment or sixth-grade "humor" evident on other blogs.

As for my part, I have attempted to contact Karben but he has chosen not to respond, and quite frankly I can't say that I blame him.

The news of Karben's resignation is of public concern, since he held a public office. Naturally the question of "why " deserved attention because the resignation came so suddenly.

Karben, however, is no longer serving the public and he should now be left alone to try to put back the pieces and move forward with his life.

For the those of you who clicked onto this blog for the first time to read the Karben postings, I hope you found enough other things of interest that you will come back.

Unless and until there are further developments involving the public interest, I am closing the book on the matter.

For those seeking trash, there's plenty of it still out there in the blogsphere.


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