Archive for February, 2006

February 17, 2006

Dear Mr. Henry—

It’s been a very long time since I made contributions to your nightly newscast, which then was called TV5 Eyewitness News. In the 70’s our live reporting from the streets—and from the original Chopper 5—was cutting edge stuff, seat-of-our-pants and never taken for granted . How many of your viewers today, do you suppose, remember the roller coaster rides and kaleidoscopic moments of your newcasts 30 years ago?

I’d like to seize the moment to commend you for taking the initiative—and the occasional pot-shots—that go with blogging. The least that can be said of you, Ted, is that you accept how rapidly your medium is changing, how fast local television is morphing into the internet. Even your harshest critics should credit you for standing out in the open, earnestly asking for input .

How many of us have decided that the grass is greener elsewhere, and have left clients, colleagues and our bosses behind to pursue a better deal across town …or across the country? Isn’t that part of living in a free country? Is there any reason to believe Art Modell shouldn’t be able to live by the same credo? Other loyalties very often do take a junior position within this established paradigm. By the time you get to own an NFL franchise, you’ve demonstrated that you can make business decisions, sometimes tough ones, that rise above the level of emotion.

I’d be interested in some candor about Art Modell from his peer group. Meaning, the likes of Jerry Jones, Al Davis and William Clay Ford, Sr. Cleveland, you ought to have seen the vilification that’s been directed at Bill Ford, Sr. for years here. He’s often been profiled by passionate fans as a sort of inept Elmer Fudd who owns a football franchise and has done Detroit dirty since the 1960’s. A Yale man couldn’t be as dumb as Mr. Ford’s been portrayed so often on the opinon pages of our local media.

In fact, the NFL owners revere the Ford family nearly as saints. Now 80, Bill Ford, Sr. may well be the most admired and beloved of all 31 team owners. The truth that emerged was, it was purely an NFL tribute to the senior Ford that brought the ‘Bowl to this town.

I wonder if Art Modell and Bill Ford, Sr. get together to compare media coverage, trying to determine which of them is the most contemptible figure in professional sports today.

I’ve said for a few years now that Bill Clinton is looking remarkably like the late FDR. I think it’s hard to miss. And it’s an opinion I’ve begun forming lately that the maturing Ted Henry is beginning to resemble …Paul Harvey. Just slightly, so far.

jay s. bacchus, from Detroit now …
Good Day!



Jay Bacchus is one of the all time good guys of television news reporting. As I recall from back in the seventies, Jay never met a story he didn’t like, or report well.

Almost all of what he has to say is of value. The exception is his comparing me to Paul Harvey. I wish!

I must have once told Jay that my connection to Paul Harvey (who is still on the air daily on ABC radio stations around the nation) goes back to the mid fifties. Really. I was a ten year old kid sweeping the floor of my dad’s hardware store in Canton. (Lincoln Hardware on West Tuscararwas Street-Rt. 30-The Lincoln Highway-get the connection?)

In the background my dad always had the hardware store radio tuned to WHBC and two or three times daily I would top in the middle of my floor sweeping and just dream of having a job one day like Paul Harvey’s. Trouble is, he never retired. He must be 97 by now. Anyway, I got to do the next best thing. I traded in my broom stick and started reporting the news on WKNT for $1.25 an hour.

A year later I jumped to WHOF radio where I read the news on weekends for $1.30 an hour. Then on to WCNS for $1.45 an hour and finally I realized there was nothing else I would ever want to do.

Send me your blog item and I promise to publish it as is. (The exception will be extreme crudity)

Obviously, the world has too many blogs, and as they say, this is one of them. But maybe we can make this one a little different. This blog’s in your hands.


Start Blogging With Me
February 8, 2006

People have pestered me to start a community blog about Cleveland, the news and cultural and sports events.

So let’s do it.

Just write me your thoughts, slug it with a name of some sort, hit the send button and I’ll then include it in our blog.

This is pretty much up to you.

I’ll start this all by saying that some people are asking why we are not broadcasting the offensive political cartoon that has caused so much trouble around the world. Actually, our network news program, ABC’s World News Tonight did show the cartoon in question one night. But we have chosen to take a pass on that.

Agree with our decision or do you disagree? We’ll talk about it.