Journalists Who Don’t Back Down: John S. Adams

by jhwygirl

Why do I call him Supermontanareporter? Because John S. Adams isn’t afraid to back down off of a story. Try and intimidate him – and believe me, it has happened, and it will continue to happen – and he doesn’t blink an eye. Adams is the stuff that becomes a Pulitizer.

And no, I’m not exaggerating. You heard it here first, but when it happens, all the credit goes to him, certainly.

I caught Tea Party jackass Tim Ravdahl, president of Helena’s Big Sky Tea Party on KGVO this morning, reading off his press release – which had appeared to be both taped and rambling, as the host kept playing multiple snippets of it througout the morning. An “exclusive” he said.

The parts I heard, he blamed the whole affair on being misquoted and the evils of political correctness and social justice.

Yep – that damned justice for society is an evil that we need to stop RIGHT NOW!

Well, apparently it was a press release addressing Supermontanareporter John S. Adams’ story in last Saturday’s Great Falls Tribune.

You’ll have to read that pretty quickly, as the GFT archives its stuff pretty quickly.

So Adams caught wind of banned Big Sky Tea Party president Tim Ravdahl’s press release and fired back at him, saying Ravdahl “plays loose with the truth” and lied about being misquoted or misrepresented.

Does Supermontanareporter Adams stop there? Nope. He called Ravdahl this afternoon to ask him for the specifics of the allegations Ravdahl was putting out in his press release. What did Tim Ravdahl do? After stumbling around the subject a bit, he hung up.

And lest Ravdahl try and discredit a good honest hard-hitting reporter like Adams, he’ll have some trouble – JSA taped the conversation. You can hear even hear the abrupt silence of Ravdahl hanging up on him.

Political correctness? Yeah – I’m a bit sick of it too – a liar is a liar, and when a reporter is ready willing and able to label a liar a liar, I’m all for throwing political correctness aside. The idea that you can’t call out a politician as a liar or a lie as a lie has gone on for far too long.

Thank Goddess for journalists like John S. Adams and George Ochenski. Long may they live, and all others like them.

  1. Let’s see if I can still be a dick at this low brow web site. [Yep!]

    Adams interviewed Baucus and called him out on a lie.Baucus reminded him of the code of journalism: Don’t be “confrontational.” Most “journalists” abide by this dictum because their livelihood is access, and politicians use access to control content.

    Has Adams ever been granted another interview by Baucus? Probably not. Have the Baucus munchkins worked behind the scenes to keep him in check? Probably.

    • You’re so far off the mark, Mark, that it’s embarrassing. There is no first rule of journalism. Journalists, columnists, and other media folk are confrontational all the time. That’s their job. Where have you been?

      • It depends on the power equation – the weaker the interviewee, the more confrontational the questions.
        Wolf Blitzer can be tough if the person he is interviewing is from the margins, but was damned near under the table while interviewing Cheney. Russert was and Brokaw is so widely respected because they suck(ed) up so well.

        Much as I disliked Conrad Burns, he used to do open press conferences and go on radio without ground rules. Few are like that.

        A reporter …first comes up with an investigative story idea, writes it up, and submits it to the editor and is told that the story is not going to run. He wonders why, but the next time he is cautious enough to check with the editor first. He is told be the editor that it would be better not to write that story. The third time he thinks of an investigative story but he doesn’t bother the editor with it because he knows it’s silly. The fourth time he doesn’t even think of the idea anymore. (Nicholas Johnson, former FCC Commissioner

  2. CFS

    Fuck you Mark. Low brow enough for you?

  3. OK now, test time! Let’s see which comment they take down. My bet: They take down #1 because of content, and #2 because of embarrassment, and then this one to cover their tracks.

  4. And y’all just thought it was a personal problem twixt Mark and I …


    It’s entirely possible (and reasonable) that Adams hasn’t interviewed Baucus since that first (June of last year) because Baucus became a non-player after HCR passed the Finance Committee. The only press our dear Max has gotten in the last year has been predominately negative. That’s a vastly more likely explanation than that some underpaid staffers are working mojo to keep Adams “in check”.

    • klemz

      Mark, what is the basis for your expert analysis on the tactical wisdom of approaching an interview with a high level source? I’m suspicious because you quoted the former commissioner of an agency that doesn’t regulate print in any way, shape or form.

      by the way, every reporter in Montana knows how easy it is to land on Max’s “do not talk” list. If you are uncouth enough to mention that there’s a mole on his ass while kissing it, you’re pretty much out.

      • Johnson has a pretty impressive resume. I dunno – I think his opinion is worthy.

        It’s very hard to be a journalist in a climate like ours. You must choose to be inside or outside the fence, and if the latter, should probably think about painting houses as an additional revenue source.

        I do not know how I would behave if I chose journalism as my field. I am not Clark Kent. I am Frontier Accountant.

        My ideal is Izzy Stone, who was never invited to a party in DC. I believe that politicians that powerful people should scowl, spit and leave the room when they see a journalist enter, and that journalists should not work with people in power to gather news, but rather around and behind them. Access is control.

      • Mole? It’s a birthmark in the shape of Nevada.

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