Sunday, April 07, 2013

Big Al | How Feinstein rolled out the red carpet

In a recent column, David Rossie, the retired associate editor of the Press & Sun-Bulletin in Binghamton, N.Y., recalls a hilarious task handed to him in 1984, when he was part of a Gannett team covering the Democratic National Convention in San Francisco's Moscone auditorium.

On Day One of the convention, a crisis occurred at Gannett HQ, when word came that a corporate plane carrying Gannett president Al Neuharth would be landing at the San Francisco airport, where civilian motor vehicles were prohibited on the tarmac.

A Gannett limo would not be able to pick up Neuharth as he alighted from the plane. He would have to walk to the terminal, like other mortals. Something had to be done. And it was. Deponent, who was hanging around doing nothing, was sent to the auditorium to seek out then-Mayor Diane Feinstein. His task: To ask that she intervene to allow a Gannett limo onto the tarmac to pick up the boss as he arrived.

The mayor obliged. I don’t know if Neuharth ever thanked her, but I became an instant fan and remain one.

Earlier: In Gannett jet use, a perk that's literally priceless.


  1. Of course the REAL story here is that an elected official could be influenced by a wealthy private company to change a policy as an act of favoritism. Why should the Gannett CEO get special tarmack treatment?

    Also, isn't either the Gannett president or the column writer (or both) clearly in violation of Gannett's own Standards of Ethical Conduct policies in making the request and/or accepting such favoritism from a politician?

    Disgusting conduct. From this mayor AND the Gannett big shots!

    1. It's from 1984. There were no ethical conduct policies back then.

      Not that the policies would stop Gannett executives today from violating them. They don't care.

  2. So Rossie likes Feinstein because [a] thirty years ago she kow-towed to a self-avowed corporate s.o.b., and [b] whether out of ignorance or petulance, she refused to engage in a civil discussion of the constitutionality of her dubious gun proposals.


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