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Miesian Corners

Tara Servatius

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Just curious. With the transit debate, delvelopment issues, parks, I try and keep up and read all the local media. The Observer, Rhino Times, Charlotte Post, and CL. The standout in all these is one (and I use this term loosley) journalist who seemingly could not write a positive article if her life depended on it. Tara Servatius. She beotches about EVERYTHING. So this is my question: has she ever written a story with an upside? Did I miss it somewhere? After reading today's CL, I have just about had it with her negativity. If Charlotte is such a horrible place, why the hell doesn't she leave?

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^I saw that today too. I've actually spoken with a friend that used to work at CL -- most on staff can't stand her for all the negativity, but he did spoint out that it was her job. She also seems hell bent on deriding gentrification when she herself has purchased properties in gentrifying areas. Double standards are always fun to watch, eh?

I just wish Creative Loafing as a whole hadn't been hijacked as such a negative rag overall. Years ago it was a great local entertainment magazine that has since veered off into easy journalizm -- negative mud-raking for the most part.

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If Charlotte is such a horrible place, why the hell doesn't she leave?

I could apply that statement to plenty of folks in town that seem to hate everything yet keep on keepin on in the Queen City.

Tom Ashcroft, Jeff Taylor, anyone on the Rhino Staff (ever notice each cover has a couple photos of people happy and having fun, yet NEVER an article about any of that, just those two photos...everything else is b*tch, b*tch, b*tch). I respect their opinions for a while, and then it comes down to your question, what do they actually like or enjoy?

If I hated the way things were going where I lived I'd find a place more suitable to my needs and wants.

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I was a regular reader of Servatius' column back when she wrote for The Leader, a now-defunct weekly that was somewhat to the left of the Rhino but still to the right of CL. This was during the period when CMS was undergoing a major identity crisis and right before the bus-assignment lawsuit hit. I actually thought she did a really good job of researching issues down to the nitty-gritty, interpeting them in understandable terms, and offering a well-supported opinion.

I am sad to say that I have never been as disappointed with a Charlotte-area journalist as I was the first time I heard her radio show on WBT. I couldn't believe how overtly slanted her "reporting" had become. She was no longer looking for truth or facts, just digging for dirt on her political opponents and making broad-based accusations with little or no factual backing. I gave her a couple of chances, but after listening to her lobbing softball questions to an anti-tax activist, while asking no followups to inaccurate statements and chittering like a schoolgirl when he'd make a lame joke at the expense of his political enemies, I wrote her off for good.

Tara has name recognition because she was a real journalist once upon a time, easily better than the Observer's crew during the '90s. But she has sold out completely to right wing political interests, and has debased Charlotte's political dialogue in the process.

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I quit reading anything Tom Ashcraft writes. I always disagree with him and his anti-gay diatribes just seemed over the top to me. So angry and venomous that you think he might welcome the opportunity to inflict physical harm if he could get away with it. I notice the Charlotte Observer rarely, if ever publishes him anymore.

Citizen Servatius is less venomous, but yes, always negative. Still, she supports her arguments with facts (unlike the angry Ashcraft.) But some of her cheerleading for Raleigh-"better schools"-conveniently ignores that Raleigh has fewer poverty-classified students and schools; - "better roads"-ignores the state's complicity in giving Raleigh better freeways than Charlotte. (Not to mention the freeway lighting drama.)

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I stopped reading Creative Loafing once David Walter's stopped writing for it....it became painful. As for Tara, beyond what has been said, I worked for a highly respected consultant in Charlotte that she called while "researching" her article. The interview didn't go to her liking as she couldn't get the "sound bites" she was looking for with her loaded questions, and essentially stopped in the interview and used none of it in her article since it didn't prove her point. I'm sure lots of journalists are the same way.....I stopped reading/watching all opinionated media

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I have been convinced that Tara Servatius is evil since the article about the 4th of July arrests uptown. She could very well be most negative and uninteresting columnist I have ever read.

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She's the sounding board for the libertarian types in town. I typically like muckrackers, but she's not an honest muckracker. She never applies the same tactics to her cronies as she does to her enemies. And, from what little I can tell, she cannot handle criticism. I've posted a few comments critical of her methods and hypocrisy that she has not posted on her blog. Anyone who thinks they are always right about everything usually isn't.

Plus, she's not that bright. She wonders why parents are too scared to let their kids play in the neighborhood while scaring the bejeezes out of everyone about crime, criminals and pervs. Go figure...

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I should have made this thread a poll. Evil? Not Evil?

Seriously, her show on WBT has become the Charlotte version of Rush Limbaugh--only difference being that Rush has no education in journalism. She is a black eye and embarrassment for her alma mater in Chapel Hill.

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I am not a fan of many of Tara's viewpoints but she is a columnist and it's her job to rankle and rustle feathers. She has a very loyal following. Her dogged pursuit and exposure of the hypocrisy of many of Charlotte's "leaders" liberal and conservative is needed. I think she is misplaced at CL though and would be better suited writing for The Rhino. I concur with Atlvr's regret about Walters leaving. He wrote the only interesting and thoughtful column in the paper. I read CL every week because there is no other alternative. No pun intended. But it's quality of journalism in all aspects is laughable compared to The Indy in the Triangle, Mountain Xpress in Asheville and The Charleston City Paper. These papers have a focused mission to push progressive ideas and they inspire and make their readers think. CL is mostly a bar guide every week with halfhearted local non-relevant filler thrown in the middle.

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And, from what little I can tell, she cannot handle criticism. I've posted a few comments critical of her methods and hypocrisy that she has not posted on her blog.

I know of instances where groups/organizations have extended personal invitations to her to come and see first hand how wrong she can be, but they tend to go ignored.

There's a reason she doesn't work at a real newspaper.

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I am not a fan of many of Tara's viewpoints but she is a columnist and it's her job to rankle and rustle feathers. She has a very loyal following. Her dogged pursuit and exposure of the hypocrisy of many of Charlotte's "leaders" liberal and conservative is needed. I think she is misplaced at CL though and would be better suited writing for The Rhino. I concur with Atlvr's regret about Walters leaving. He wrote the only interesting and thoughtful column in the paper. I read CL every week because there is no other alternative. No pun intended. But it's quality of journalism in all aspects is laughable compared to The Indy in the Triangle, Mountain Xpress in Asheville and The Charleston City Paper. These papers have a focused mission to push progressive ideas and they inspire and make their readers think. CL is mostly a bar guide every week with halfhearted local non-relevant filler thrown in the middle.
But she herself is a hypocrite. She rails against the "uptown types" who buldoze and gentrify, yet she herself is one of the gentry! She's a hack.

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So should journalism have a mission to push ideas? Or simply explore them and give time to all views? I'd argue that if the mission is to push something, the periodical cannot rightfully call itself journalism but should rather be labeled an advocacy channel (or something like that.)

It's not that I'm unaware that most publications take sides. But the more they do that, the less it's journalism (uinless they confine it to a pundit page.)

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So should journalism have a mission to push ideas? Or simply explore them and give time to all views? I'd argue that if the mission is to push something, the periodical cannot rightfully call itself journalism but should rather be labeled an advocacy channel (or something like that.)

It's not that I'm unaware that most publications take sides. But the more they do that, the less it's journalism (uinless they confine it to a pundit page.)

Alternative papers like the ones I mentioned are in a niche that serves as an outlet for liberal or "alternative" viewpoints. Similar to The Rhino's conservative lean on the other end of the political spectrum. Tara Servatius fits this mold within her ideology. This is different from mainstream dailies like The Observer that have to hew an impartial line. Although most major national dailies get labeled as liberal they do ostensibly stay neutral off the editorial pages. Alternative press have no such constraints by their very nature.

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But you said "quality of journalism".... ;)

In other words, these papers you like advocate a viewpoint you like. Nothing wrong with that and I'd likely share many of the same views.

Actually I like muckrakers, too. Afflict the comfortable, unless they're one of my favorites of course!

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Just thought you all would enjoy this....here Tara is presenting at a "League of the South" conferece.

tara1.jpg

Some other pictures from the same event.

miken.jpgclyde1.jpg63NC.jpg

A few quotes from the event she spoke at (none from her though):

"We have the modern Robert E. Lees and Nathan Bedford Forrests in the leadership of the Southern movement. Let's get busy behind our leaders, and take our country back."

and

"We Southerners produce the best literature because we have a civilisation. The Northeast is just a bunch of people who watch the same sports teams and pay taxes to the same government."

^ And yes, he did misspell civilization in the same sentence as proclaiming to produce the best literature.

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I guess we have different definitions then. I believe there can be advocacy journalism when the bias is open for all to see and not trying to be hidden and passed of as impartial. Liberal examples are The Nation and Progressive magazines and conservative The American Spectator and Newsmax. God I am getting way :offtopic: Tara's role as nag in chief for the anti-everything crowd can get old but she does give voice to a viewpoint that has adherents in this town. There back on the reservation. ^_^

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^^^

Oh dear. She IS evil. League of the South. Creepy.

And an embarrassment to my alma mater.

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Yes, atlrvr, you have made my day. I do have to say, though, perhaps the gentleman who wrote "civilisation" is English. :rofl:

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I always worry about people who play dress-up in old soldier garb and re-enact long-ago battles.

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League of the South?

Is she affiliated with groups like this for real? I didn't care for her at all, but now I'm more bewildered. I agree with Voyager 100% when it comes to alternative viewpoints and freedom of speech and everything that comes with it. But I had no idea she might actually be an extremist. If so shame on Creative Loafing for giving someone with what appears to be an antique view of the world and the south a podium to speak from. WBT? Doesn't surprise me there, but conservative speak vs. hate speak is another thing.

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She's the sounding board for the libertarian types in town. I typically like muckrackers, but she's not an honest muckracker. She never applies the same tactics to her cronies as she does to her enemies. And, from what little I can tell, she cannot handle criticism. I've posted a few comments critical of her methods and hypocrisy that she has not posted on her blog. Anyone who thinks they are always right about everything usually isn't.

Plus, she's not that bright. She wonders why parents are too scared to let their kids play in the neighborhood while scaring the bejeezes out of everyone about crime, criminals and pervs. Go figure...

She is evil and not bright. She wrote a column in CL (maybe about a year ago) trying to debunk global warming, but made some really basic and embarassing scientific errors. One of her points in the column was that Antarctica, which as we all know is frozen over with ice now, once had a really warm climate as shown by fossils of plants and animals etc. She tried to use that fact to show that the Earth was way warmer back in ancient days. She either didn't know, or ignored, the fact that Antarctica was not always where it is now. It was once much closer to the equator. I considered writing a letter to the editor at the time, but didn't. I was pleased to see the next week though that someone else had written and pointed out her really embarassing mistakes. I haven't taken a word she says seriously since then. Previous to that, I assumed she knew what she was talking about even if it was contrary to my own opinion. Now, I just think she's a hack.

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Perhaps someone else already mentioned this but there was a letter to the editor in this week CL's taking Tara to the woodshed on her critique of the "discs" along S. Blvd. Nailed it pretty good I would say. The writer has some credence as it's noted at the bottom that she was formerly a visual arts writer for Creative Loafing Charlotte .

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There was a house right next door one of Tara's flips on Logie street, that I tried to buy in 2004. The bank would not budge... (and sold it to another investor for what I offered a few months later.)

Anyway, as for her articles, they have become cliche. Yeah I know she doesn't like CATS but sheesh, it seems like every time, she reaches for yet more quotes from David Hartgen. It gets old and gives me the impression she is running out of ideas.

CL on a whole is pretty lame for an alternative newspaper. I mainly read it now for the Bizzarro cartoon reprints. Even the OC Weekly in SoCal was better (a poor sister to the LA weekly).

She's not alone for writing the beotchy, sour, negative article of the week, though. Nsenga Burton gives her some competition in that realm.

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^^^

Oh dear. She IS evil. League of the South. Creepy.

And an embarrassment to my alma mater.

Fully agreed. Some of the ignorant statements she made just blew my mind. I'm sure her professors wouldn't be very proud.

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