SLO New Time’s Shredder spreading false holiday smears

December 19, 2019

SLO New Times Editor Camillia Lanham


The factual inaccuracies in the latest San Luis Obispo New Times Shredder column titled “Drama machine,” show a desperate attempt to produce drama and a failure to accurately report the news.

While trying to draw a parallel between the partisan disagreements at the SLO County Board of Supervisors and the Oceano Community Services District Board’s latest tussle, the Shredder claimed three conservative members of the Oceano board attempted to block a liberal environmentalist, Cynthia Replogle, from serving on any committees.

Sorry to have to inform the Shredder, but the two Oceano directors who motioned to block Replogle, Karen White and Shirley Gibson, are both liberal Democrats. The Shredder’s epiphany appears to be based on a badly made guess that the bullies were Republicans, which a few minutes of research could have corrected.

This was not a partisan move at all, this is the life-long old guard of Oceano and Halcyon circling the wagons to protect what they believe is the preferred way of life for their depressed community. Replogle is a refreshing voice for progressive change.

In another paragraph, the Shredder inaccurately maligns the south county community with claims that John Wallace used to be the Oceano district’s administrator while the Wallace Group provided engineering services. It appears the Shredder is aware Wallace was convicted of conflicts of interest for funneling money to his engineering firm while serving as the administrator of a public entity.

But sorry Shredder, you’ve mixed up your public entities. The Oceano Community Services District and the South San Luis Obispo County Sanitation District, where Wallace was a former administrator, are two different agencies. Oops!

While it is clear the Shredder is no fan of my “incessant crap-stirring,” the New Times editor cannot champion Replogle’s right to free speech and quash mine at the same time. Knowing that many Oceano residents would likely stand up to the old guard, I filed a formal complaint – also known as a Cure and Correct Demand — to compel the district to do the right thing and rehear the matter.

The Shredder is seriously out of touch and the inaccurate reporting is damaging to our community.

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Let’s be honest, SLO New Times Editor Camillia Lanham is a journalistic hack.

Just saying.

For those of you who disagree with my take on New Times, they’re offering an opportunity for you to donate money to support their brand of “free and independent journalism” on the central coast. This rag gets weirder and weirder.

Actually I wholeheartedly agree with your take on the New Times, other than I thought you were being too nice about it.

I really thought the New Times was doomed when middle-aged married men started to use the internet (instead of personal ads) to hook up with 19 y.o. heroin addled college drop-out moms with three kids.

The New Times was Steve Moss’ baby, his legacy. He was brilliant, and he made the New Times one of his greatest life achievements. But the day Steve did a face plant into Bandini mountain, the party was over. When penned by Moss, the Shredder was edgy, funny, and poignant. The “Shredder” had become the New Times’ unofficial mascot. If I’m not mistaken, I believe Dave Cognalton put on that sweaty-smelly mascot uniform and penned a shed or two (which clearly explains that the post-Moss Shredders have been less than “fair and balanced”).

The only two other remotely memorable names that splashed through the New Times puddle were Glen Starkey (the county’s oldest groupie), and King Harris (Santa Barbara’s version of Rick Martel, except for being seemingly immortal).

I myself still pick up a copy of the New Times on occasion, mostly to check the concerts section or to read Brezhnev’s Real Astrology. But I don’t think Julie should be so offended by what the “Shredder” ignorantly alleged what is going on in Oceano, or the motives of the participants.

Remember, the New Times once aspired to be a more legitimate news source than the Tribune. Then they told us to “pay no attention to that dead founder in the garden,” the New Times will always be the same. Today, they’re a very reliable source of free drop-cloth material for minor painting projects. Save your energy Julie for when a more reputable and relevant news source behaves badly.

New Times has become an irrelevant fringe document weighing down life in slotown. It used to be vibrant, full of news and good stuff. Now it’s soul deadening “news” cover-stories as often as not are irrelevancies like Grizzly academy meanderings (whose kids aren’t locals) or worse, the sob sister collections of allegations found in lawsuits or gossip among wronged women. Give us a break, New Times, this stuff isn’t news and occupies space better used otherwise.

As for the Shredder, it’s neither clever, funny nor witty, as Steve Moss tried to make it. Aside from not knowing which end is up, it’s often just mean. Like what kind of idiot editor would think it’s good to pillory common folk because they wrote something said editor thinks is stupid on Facebook or in a letter to the editor or said something the supercilious editor thinks dumb in public comment at a government meeting? It’s at best chicken journalism to keep author identities hidden. In Shredder’s case, anonymity is license to toss bombs at civilians with impunity. The Shredder needs a permanent shredding.

I am convinced the “playbook” this move against Replogle was taken from is more like this majority (same players, White, Austin and Gibson) did to Jim Hill than anything going on at the Board of Supervisors.

Austin made the motion to put censure of Hill on an agenda. White, serving as the board alternate, was the one who cast the vote. Gibson, as a member of the AG Historical committee, was at Arroyo Grande City Council and Sanitation District meetings pushing for the investigation and censure.

That investigation and censure did nothing but black the eye of an innocent man and blow over $100K in ratepayer funds.

Oceano doesn’t have $100K to spend on defaming Replogle, so they tried this, which has already back fired. It is they, White, Gibson and Austin who look the fool!