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1,000 Words Beat a Picture

Letters published April 19, 2001

Did a steel processor get the shaft?

I wanted to thank you for the great article you did on our view of the steel issue ["See No Evil," March 22]. I am also impressed by your determination to get things right regarding what we do at Stripmatic and to present my viewpoint accurately. I felt Jacqueline Marino and Andrew Putz were very thorough and professional.

I do have some disappointment in the picture that was taken of our facility, and I was surprised that it was chosen for the article. We've spent millions of dollars renovating a severely distressed building in a blighted area. We even were the impetus for our manufacturing neighbors to upgrade their facilities, as we are the "Western Gateway" to Tremont.

I was pretty much horrified at the picture used to represent our company. The photographer's awkward attempt at creativity resulted in a picture that looks like we're located in a junkyard! He took a picture of our plant through the inside of a rusted wheel that has no connection to our company. You can't even read the company name on the building. It's a shame that your hard work in presenting a clear verbal picture is clouded by the visual that the picture offers.

On a similar note, I offered to take the photographer into the factory to get a picture with me around some processed steel coils (the main topic of the article), but he seemed to be in too much of a hurry and took the standard "prison mug shot" in a chair in our lobby.

Thanks again for accurately reporting our position on the steel issue; however, I'd be more selective about the photos you choose to visually represent your articles.

Bill Adler
Stripmatic Products

A staffer strays from the morale majority:

The March 8 story about budget cuts at The Beacon Journal ["Slouching Toward Mediocrity"] illustrates why readers should be skeptical of anonymous sources and why The Beacon Journal itself does not allow the use of such sources in all but exceptional circumstances.

The story quoted an anonymous Beacon Journal reporter as saying, "It's the unanimous opinion of staffers here that we couldn't win those prizes today," referring to our four Pulitzers. Count me as one reporter who does not hold that opinion. Although we're losing some very talented young reporters, I still believe with all my heart that The Beacon Journal is -- and will continue to be -- the best newspaper in Ohio.

Gregory Korte
City Hall reporter,
The Beacon Journal

Keep Up the Snooping

While I am not a regular reader of The Beacon Journal, I thought the series it did on the coal industry in January was superb, so I've been mystified by the tirades against it.

We need many more expos´s like the one they did on coal. We finally got the goods on tobacco, and in March we got Bill Moyers's excellent PBS report on the chemical industry. People are understandably terrified at the thought of losing their jobs, and the mantra that any cleanup will cost jobs is one all corporations chant constantly. Hopefully, these expos´s will wake people up to the fact that much more is at stake than jobs -- that corporations will not only lie, but kill to keep their profits flowing.

These companies spend enormous amounts of money denying the health hazards of their products and processes. If they had simply faced the truth and used that money to clean up their act, we, our environment, and many other species would be a whole lot better off.

Wanda S. Ballentine
South Euclid

Walsh sounds better since he cleaned up:

I am a Joe Walsh fan, but I'm not blind to his faults [Soundbites, March 1]. His songwriting is spotty at best, and his voice is certainly not ordinary. If you listen to his albums, however, I think you will find that his voice has actually improved with age.

As for his stage presence, I have a number of recordings of his concerts from years gone by, when he was wild and crazy and stoned. For quite some time in the '80s, I fully expected to hear the news that Joe Walsh was found dead in a hotel room somewhere. It is true that he is not quite as exciting since he's sobered up, but I'm glad he did. I would have missed his talent and his sense of humor about himself.

By the way, I have heard him in interviews when he was obviously completely sober. He has a rather pronounced speech impediment, and he shows signs of spastic facial and body movements. I remember reading an old interview with Don Henley where he said something like "Joe Walsh. Yeah, he talks funny, but he's OK."

Naomi Krueger
Bloomington, Minnesota

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