Tribune is shameless Adam Hill cheerleader

April 10, 2020

Daniel Blackburn


Reading the Tribune’s editorial today, my gag reflex kicked in at the very first paragraph.

Let me say right off: That daily newspaper’s purposely and grievously negligent reporting on the latest, most serious, of San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Chairman Adam Hill’s antisocial misadventures gives its editors absolutely no legitimate platform for voicing their opinion. (Fortunately, fewer and fewer people are reading that pitiful publication. CalCoastNews now attracts at least 10,000 more readers daily.)

The Tribune’s editors rail against partisan politics, all the while oozing partisanship.

Back to that first Tribune sentence mentioned earlier: “The San Luis Obispo County Republican Party is angling to get Supervisor Adam Hill kicked out of the chairman’s seat.”

Well, duh. Without knowing for sure, I’d hazard a guess that local Republicans would always be “angling” to oust Hill. Not just from his post as chairman, but from public life altogether, because he’s demonstrated over and over again that he is totally unsuited to lead normal people.

If you read only the Tribune, you’d have no real idea what happened in mid-March. You would have had to sift through that publication’s very sketchy articles on the matter just to piece some of the story together. You would not have known until today that it was Hill’s county office as well as his home that was searched by the feds. In other words, you would be seriously uninformed on the matter.

I got to wondering if my thinking about the Hill debacle being a matter of intense public interest was perhaps a little addled, or just insensitive. Was this really a private family-type issue?

So I asked a guy I thought might give me a straight answer: Ed Salzman, an adventurous and legendary capitol journalist with nearly a decade as editor of the California Journal and stints with the Boston Globe, the Oakland Tribune, the Sacramento Bee, and publisher of the Golden State Report.

I wanted to know: Are the FBI raids and subsequent suicide attempt by the chairman of a county board of supervisors a legitimate news story?

As expected, Salzman pulled no punches, and I could almost see him glaring at me: “The question you pose is a no-brainer,” he wrote in an email. “It is clearly a news story, and this guy has absolutely no right to privacy.

“This supervisor is a public figure, the chair no less. He is under FBI investigation. He tries to commit suicide. All of this is public information. He says he’s depressed. With the FBI on his ass, he should be depressed.”

Now that’s what I call editorial leadership.

Salzman said it much better, and more quickly, than my droning on ad nauseam.  So I’ll end this diatribe with a parting observation about the Tribune: A newspaper that totally lacks editorial judgment should keep its opinions to itself. To do otherwise is to insult the intelligence of its ever-shrinking circle of readers.

Daniel Blackburn is co-founder of CalCoastNews, retired, not yet entirely thoughtless.

Sign up for breaking news, alerts and updates with the Cal Coast News Top Stories Newsletter.

Mitch C

I cannot understand the logic involved in the Tribune’s lack of coverage of the Adam Hill issue(s). This is important news. Mr. Hill represents one fifth of the county residents, is Chair of the Board of Supervisors (a capacity in which he represents the county on the State level), and serves on numerous committees but he is AWOL. mr. Hill has not been seen since election night, has admitted to attempting to take his own life, has had his office and home search by the FBI and there is no mention of this in the Tribune.

The Tribune is totally far left but this is not a right/left issue. Someone who is being paid with taxpayer dollars and who is called upon to make important decisions the effect the citizens of our county should have whatever issues there are fully explored. If the Tribune considers itself a “news” source this is a story that requires coverage. What we need to know if we as citizens as being well represented or is our government allowed to run amuck and the Tribune is only a casual observer.

This is the Tribune’s opportunity to do some balanced reporting and maybe regain some of their lost respect.


Dont hold your breath for the Tribune to do whats right. Its why they are going Bankrupt.


The old saying “you get what you pay for” does not apply to The Trib where they charge a small fortune now, for what exactly?


Great diatribe Dan! I grew up in SLO and remember when the mentioned newspaper was the Telegram Tribune. Matter of fact, we lived next door to its editor who was a gracious honest man with a gracious honest family. I actually delivered in my neighborhood for about a year so as to earn my way.

Seems eons ago that it was an upstanding publication. It’s sad to see what that paper has become. It’s so bad, that I would never use it as fish wrap, nor to wipe my backside after taking a ‘Tribune’.


I agree, SLOGROWN, it used to be a great read. We used to call it the “TT” and it was accurate and honest. Not so much anymore…….


In the past few years, the Tribune has become so blatantly left wing biased that it is absurd. Not only does the editorial board and many of the “news” story authors take every opportunity to shade (or hard color) each story in a progressive/anti-Trump way, the editors apparently think that their readers actually believe what they print.

The Adam Hill cover up, starting with their ridiculous endorsement for re-election, and now their avoidance of the current Adam Hill facts, does it’s community such a great dis-service that it actually reminds me of the great New York Times cover-up of Germany’s Jewish death camps in the 1940’s. How stupid do the editors think we are?

And the old Telegram-Tribune used to be such a great small-town newspaper–one I looked forward to reading every day.


There used to be a journalistic principle that advertisements never appeared on the opinion page, especially any type of partisan political advertising. So, I guess it’s just me, but I find the juxtaposition of the smiling face of Stacy Korsgaden next to partisan political diatribes being hammered out by editorial staff slightly disingenuous, considering Ms. Korgaden was Hill’s opponent in the last election.

You know what, we get it. You don’t like Adam Hill and you don’t like the Tribune. And, to be fair, you are right in your opinion, he is a scumbag and the Tribune has seriously declined (although many years ago it was a fine publication). What Hill did to Congalton was shameful and the wishy-washy coverage by the Trib was lackluster. But, come on, give it a rest.

Maybe do an uplifting opinion piece on our nurses or doctors or first responders who are currently risking their lives to keep society afloat. I wonder who CCN will focus on next to kick around. Oh, yeah, probably Mayor Harmon. We haven’t seen any unflattering photos of her lately.


“The smiling face of Stacey Korsgaden” is an advertisement for her insurance business, not a political ad. If you think Hill is a scumbag as you say–as do I–then keep up the drumbeat for his removal as Chair of the Board…


I for one don’t know what I would do without the Tribune! My bird hates the Newtimes!


8 pages of heavily filtered SLO Progressive Pravda propaganda for $1.62? (I used to buy it for my Mom) That’s one pricey bird you got there. The worms in my bin are happy with the 60+ page New Times for free.


Nice little story Mr. Blackburn. I agree with your opinion about the Tribune. I personally stopped receiving it or reading it way back in 2002. This is nothing new for them. The Adam Hill situation should be reported in all of it’s detail. We as tax payers need to know the truth about the representatives we’re paying our hard earned dollars to. He brought all this on himself as a public official. Period. No free passes. I’m fairly certain if this was a Debbie or John being conservative supervisor’s, they would be all over it. The Tribune is nothing more than a “fish wrap” or a “liberal rag”. I look forward to the truth about Mr. Hill going forward here at CCN.


Great job Dan,

One small point,

Please think about the Young athletes/ farmers in the community who need to have their name in the paper to get their scholarships.

These kid’s should be held up,

So that someday after they go to a great school other than Poly,

They come back home and make SLO County more of a fabulous place to call home,

Just ask Robin Ventura.


The Tribune long ago tied itself to the tail of the local San Luis Obispo Democratic party. And to be fair, why not. Even 10 years ago, a paper that kicked against the goads of its subscribers, the residents of SLO for which it is named, will have a short life span, and SLO swings decidedly D. What the publisher and editor did not anticipate was that the aging population on which it relied would age and the young population would stop reading newsprint. So while the former editor, channeling Bill Bradlee, cavorted with the left and never saw a progressive trend she wouldn’t jump on, her audience was quickly leaving her.

Now it’s too late to change, and their appointment of Joe Tarcia, who can only be described as a progressive political operative, cements their fate. Only bankruptcy and it’s purchase by a wealthy individual who wants a toy (no private equity company would ever invest in something with such a tainted name), will keep it alive.

Frankly, it just needs to go away. Sadly, as much as I like the feel and smell of fresh newsprint, I subscribe WSJ online, get local news from Cal Coast, weather from my phone, restaurant picks from Yelp and the crossword from the internet. Drudge, Breitbart and Politico aggregate libertarian, Republican and Democrat political sides and I don’t have a birdcage or a wood-burning fireplace. There is no need for the Tribune’s reprint of wire service stories.


You had me until where you listed your balanced news. From Breitbart’s page: Breitbart News Network is an American far-right syndicated news, opinion and commentary website founded in mid-2007 by American conservative commentator Andrew Breitbart, who conceived it as “the Huffington Post of the right”.


You misunderstand me. None of those sites are balanced. They are libertarian, right and left. I read them all.


Well, help me here, folks- I’m searching for just the right comment to make about Hill and his shameful pimp, The Tribune.

Aw, Hell, lemme just say it and get it over with: Anyone who still reads the Tribune, and especially those who still actually PAY for it in terms of subscriptions and/or paid ads, are despicable slime who should be ashamed of themselves. And the people who are involved in putting out the Tribune’s filthy propaganda should be held accountable after the smoke has cleared from this awful year of 2020.

All kidding aside, the Tribune is worse- WORSE- than the stooge media of 1930s Germany who enabled the destruction of that nation and the devastation that destroyed an entire generation of human beings.

And for Dan and Karen- you and your cohorts can go to bed at night knowing that you are the light that illuminates the Central Coast, and your persistence will never, ever be forgotten. Thank you for your efforts, and keep up the great work on behalf of decent humanity.