The West Valley (Obstructed) View; F-35 Sensationalism Irresponsible

You may have read the front page story in Friday’s West Valley View newspaper where (in the first two paragraphs of the article) it was sensationally reported that;

  1. The F-35 is twice as loud as an F-16
  2. There were errors in the Luke EIS report upon which the public can comment at public meetings next week

The WVV article goes on to leave the reader with the impression that;

  1. According to the Mayo Clinic (WHAT?), increases in noise level will be clearly noticeable. (How did the Mayo Clinic get into this?)
  2. The errors cast doubt that the Air Force has any idea about the projected noise levels of the F-35 vs the F-16 since the WVV says that according to the Air Force, how the noise increases will affect West Valley residents, “has yet to be determined”.

The first two statements above are true, but in an example of media misrepresentation in order to make a story more sensational while masquerading as news, the impressions formed in the story in the second two statements are highly misleading and in my opinion border on irresponsible reporting in order to create a news story.  And in this case, wouldn’t you know, the WVV has gone sensational just one week prior to public meetings to be held on the Luke F-35 question.  This is a textbook case of a media outlet reporting only selected relevant facts, and leaving out other extremely relevant facts which are required in order for the reader to obtain an unbiased view of the issue.

pro·pa·gan·da noun \ˌprä-pə-ˈgan-də, ˌprō-\

 the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person

I’ve given you lots of examples of this going on out here in the west valley before.

  1. Both the Obstructed View and the AZ Rep chose not to even report on the dirty hands of GY’s city council and city management around the prison debacle. Prison Debacle.
  2. And how about misleading reports about the mall ahead of the last elections?  The Mall
  3. Or how both papers reported on the city of GY satisfaction survey?  Media Truth?.  Here is what they missed; GY Survey.
  4. The AZ Republic even INcorrectly “fact checked” me (their version of “look how unbiased this news paper is”), published it in the local section of their newspaper for all to read, and then only corrected it in a few lines on the back page of the front page one day weeks later.  AZ Rep “Fact Check” of hgblog.

Let Me Explain

  1. At the point of sound generation, the F-35 is twice as loud.  That does not mean that at distances the same will be true.
  2. There were a few typos in ONE table out of a 218 page Air Force report. The same error was repeated in the same relative table for all of the bases being considered for F-35, not just Luke.
  3. I have confirmed today with Rusty Mitchell, Luke Director of Community Initiatives that NONE of the errors that are in the Air Force’s EIS report appear to change any of the computer generated expected sound curves included in the report. This includes the worst case scenario Fig. LU 3.2-7 which I included and referenced in my report on the Luke situation a few days ago. Here is the entire one table, two page error report. F-35 DEIS Errata Sheet Jan 2012
  4. All of the various Air Force sound curves such as in Fig. LU 3.2-7 which were generated for six different scenarios of Luke F-35 acquisition show that in fact, the Air Force has a VERY GOOD IDEA of what the impact will be to the community.  All one has to do is read and understand those figures.
  5. As with many topics, the impact on the surrounding community can NEVER be completely determined ahead of time. I have a pretty good idea that it will be a relatively sunny day in Goodyear tomorrow but I am not nor will I ever be 100% sure until the sun rises tomorrow.

So why does the West Valley View want to try to sensationalize these non issue topics in a front page article?  To sell soap?  If you read their recent editorial, they are very worried they’re going to lose their public notice business in the classifieds section to the internet. I’ve suggested before that the amount of dollars that local government spends with financially strapped local papers like the WVV and the AZ Republic may have an impact on what they choose to report on as well as how they do it.  They sure don’t want the next administration to stop advertising if they think they’ve been mistreated in the press.

I’ve still not figured out both papers’ logic when they both picked the incumbents in GY’s last election.  Their main reason stated was that they picked the incumbents because they were incumbents (experience counts!).  That is a disconnected view from the general populace who according to polls distrust incumbent politicians.

And don’t think that who the local newspaper endorses is not worth many, many votes.

Moral of the Story?

If you want to place a classified ad to sell your furniture or read Roy Azzarello’s rants, pick up a copy of the West Valley View.

If you want to get accurate reporting of the facts surrounding complex issues, keep reading howardsgoodyearblog.

Now go back to your naps Creekers, and wrap the fish in a local news paper.


9 Responses

  1. Send WVV a message – stop having them deliver their free misrepresentation, I never asked for this paper it just showed up, it ends up in my recycle bin without ever opening it.

    However, I did see the headline about the F35 and was appalled. Let’s figure out how we can disrespect our armed forces even more, drive more business away from Goodyear as well as more homeowners, and drive our local economy further into ruin. I for one, look forward each evening to see our armed forces flying above our heads protecting our liberty and freedom and the few seconds the engine roars is just simple applause

    Challenge to the WVV – Develop a story on the following topic – if Luke closes what would be the impact to AZ and Goodyear

    Cancel the paper delivery campaign

    Please stop delivering the newspaper to my address, your article on the F35 yesterday was the final straw on what your paper represents misrepresentation and misinformation. I did not request a paper from you and we have enough garbage in our landfills

    • To CL: There was no “disrespect” in the WVV article. Take a pill and settle down… the F35’s ARE coming to Luke, no ifs, ands, or buts. It’s already been decided by the people in charge. These “meetings” are simply ‘dog and pony’ shows. However, you may be singing a different tune after the F35’s are here and your property value drops by 50 – 75% because of the NOISE.

  2. It makes a great lawn ornament in front yards of abandoned/foreclosed homes!

  3. I think “propaganda” is the right definition for Howard’s article. Twice as loud “at the point of sound generation” will also mean twice as loud when you’re a little further away – it’s simple math. He’s obviously biased, and it shows in all of his “articles”. Which is also why nobody pays him for his “articles”.
    Editor’s note; Just couldn’t resist the name calling eh, Tom? That makes your comment much more believable, you know. NOT!

    • If Tom would simply read my previos article or even just read the Air Force EIS study, a copy of which I have provided in that article, then Tom would realize that it is NOT as simple as 2×2 as he suggests. If in reality, Tom actually does not believe the Air Force report then that is a separate issue now isn’t it, Tom?

  4. Thanks again for the blog. Great.

  5. Why not look into the air pollution created by these jets in the west valley. Do these jets have any anti pollution devices on them at all? I fear the harm done to our health here in the west valley by the air pollution of these jets, far outweighs the harm done by the noise they make. Both will be a contributing reason why land values will go down. Fewer people will want to move to this area because of the noise and pollution created by these jets, and others will move out for the same reasons.

    • Excellent point, Ray! Too many people let Luke AFB do anything they want for fear of being thought of as “unpatriotic”. The air and noise pollution created by these jets will destroy both the quality of life and the land values here.

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