I walked into my neighborhood Bi-Lo a few days ago and there, at the front of the store, was a table set up by a subscription salesman from the Post and Courier. The young man collared me as I sauntered by and asked if I was “familiar” with the paper. I nodded affirmatively as he continued. ”And what is YOUR favorite part of the Post and Courier?” he blurted out with that big ole happy salesman’s grin on his face.
My mind was reeling. Should I say: “I really enjoy articles about devastating plane crashes, drive by shootings, and really bad casino tour bus accidents! Oh, yeah…I like high-rise fires too!”
Should I say: “Well, I mainly read it for the classifieds…specifically the ones advertising seminars and products that are going to make me thin, rich, and irresistible to women! And I’m always looking for cat food coupons and good deals on those little stuffed toy mice they like to bat around. You know…the ones with the little jiggle bells inside! Cats are funny as heck!”
This one coulda been a contenda: “Do you know if there is an adult diaper changing station in the men’s room? Can I take a complimentary copy of your paper in there?”
Maybe I should take it to the ominous side: “Obituaries. My gang robs homes during wakes and funerals.”
I finally opted for: “The Fucking Lies. I Like to Read the Lies!”
The smile stayed on his face but it sort of twisted up on one end as his eyes changed from twinkle to a distant, wistful, “wish I were somewhere else” visage. If real life was like a cartoon, his thought bubble would have said something like: “WTF am I doing standing next to this 2-for-1 display rack packed with Cheeze-Its, styrofoam plates, tomato soup, and instant grits…I should smack this asshole upside the head, kick him in the nuts, take his car keys, drag him outside, chain him to a passing bus, and follow behind in his stolen Honda while blowing a trumpet out the driver’s side window!”
Well, shit. If wishes were rainbows my butt would spit out gold coins.
You’re probably saying to yourself. “Okay, I get it. Strange, but effective lead-in to the story. You paid attention in 12th grade English class. Now get on with it.”
In the April 11 edition of the Post and Courier columnist Melanie Balog wrote a column informing her readers that poor old Palmetto Goodwill was having a donations dry spell and won’t you kind-hearted folks “Please clean out your closets, garages, storage sheds and attics.” To this she added: “Goodwill receives no federal or state funding.”
I didn’t discover this article until about three months after publication. I can’t afford to subscribe to the paper and they make it difficult to look at their website because of the constant pop ups. Occasionally, I do a google search to see how Goodwill’s relationship with the paper is faring. There was a dry period after I wrote the article “Did Palmetto Goodwill CEO Lie to the Post and Courier?” but, judging by the column by Ms. Balog, it would appear that Palmetto Goodwill has mended this formerly shaky relationship and has found a friend at the paper…one who just loves to reword and reprint PR releases from this so-called charity. Sure beats doing all that dad-gum pesky research that you have to do when you practice real journalism!
In case you missed it the first time around, Melanie, here is the gist of what I said a couple of years ago. I am putting it in very large letters so it will sink in:
Palmetto Goodwill gets a Buttload of Money from the Federal Government…Millions of Dollars per year.
If that doesn’t register, maybe this photoshop will help. The little guy pinching the ape boob is none other than Palmetto Goodwill CEO, Bob Smith.
I note that this time around the CEO of Palmetto Goodwill decided it would be best to send one of his gleeful toadies to do his lying for him. When it comes to lying, these executives are like eager firemen sliding down a pole in response to a four-alarm fire….(wee! my turn! no, it’s my turn! weeeeeee….!)
For the benefit of Ms. Balog (and other reporters at the Post and Courier) I am including a link to an article from the Tampa Bay Times from last month.* Feast your weary, wistful eyes on what responsible, intelligent reporters are able to accomplish when they are allowed to do actual reporting rather than pimping themselves out to do public relations for an organization run by a lying, over-compensated slob. You may want to check out the comments section as well:
I also question this constant barrage that we hear from Goodwill regarding the 90% figure going back to employ the poor unfortunates (who they chew up and spit out like worn out plugs of chaw tobacco). Does this 90% figure also include the huge salaries and benefits that are doled out to the top employees (including the son of the CEO)?
The 90% figure means absolutely nothing. I owned a small business in Charleston for 17 years. It was a retail music store. At first I sold mostly new product and, because my suppliers were out of state (Fender & Martin Guitars), about 30% of my gross revenue went out of state. Roughly 70% was spent locally to pay for rent, electric, insurance, groceries, etc.)
After about 9 years in business I realized that I was making much better money on the used product I acquired. I dropped my new franchises and ran ads locally to buy used musical instruments. At this point I joined the “90% back into the community” business model.
I don’t have a picture of Goodwill’s Director for Community Relations so I will go to the ultimate source of the lies with this photoshop: