5 things I think about today’s Tampa Bay Times

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As Deputy Editor of Editorials Joni James tweeted, another day, another op-ed from a former Florida governor. This time, it’s Bob Graham, warning of another “voting fiasco.” Graham’s op-ed follow’s one of Sunday in which Republican-turned-Independent Charlie Crist announced he was endorsing Barack Obama’s re-election.

Indeed both of these op-eds are must-read, but this raises an interesting point: Why aren’t more of the columns penned by Times‘ writers, such as Robyn Blumner, Bill Maxwell or Daniel Ruth, ever must-read? When was the last time someone said, “Did you read Bill Maxwell?”

Seventy-two hours after it went live, Crist’s op-ed remains the “most commented” and “most shared” items on the Tampa Bay Times‘ website.

I’ll explain in depth why I think it is the most ridiculous analysis I’ve read about the possibility of Charlie Crist running for Governor in 2014, but Mary Ellen Klas’ reporting that “Alex Sink holds all the cards. ‘If Alex Sink decides to run, Crist is more likely to get out of the Democratic primary but if Sink decides to sit it out and gets behind a Democratic opponent of Crist’s, he’s in bigger trouble.'”

I rarely use this qualifier, but as someone relatively close to this decision-making process — certainly more close than this unnamed Democrat — it couldn’t be further from the truth that any part of Crist’s decision depends on what Sink decides to do.

I don’t doubt that this unnamed Democrat consultant shared their opinion with Klas, but other than that, this is shoddy reporting which would have been knocked down by anyone in Crist-world.

I can’t believe Ernest Hooper actually showed up at my “Full Lid Party” on Sunday, but he did and seemed to enjoy himself. Good for him. I am in disbelief because I have been such a critic of Hooper on this blog, but he apparently doesn’t mind the criticism.

Keeping in that spirit, what a cheese-puff Hooper serves up with his thoughts about what Tampa Bay should do “after the convention.” Hooper boldly argues that “we” need to “embrace more big ideas and stop investing in small thinking” and “work on what’s wrong in Tampa Bay while appreciating all that’s right.”

Kumbaya, Ernest, Kumbaya.

Does Michael Kruse realize he’s on the verge of crafting a whole new writing style with his “Big Tent” blog — he’s mixing the staccato prose of James Ellroy with the breadth and intellectual curiosity of Andrew Sullivan. It’s fascinating to watch this young writer develop into a veritable powerhouse.

That said, how egotistical is it of Times reporter Marissa Lang to Tweet that Kruse has “all” of the RNC news you need. Certainly, Michael hasn’t covered everything.

How “stupendous” is this photo from Leonora LaPeter Anton?

Rebecca Catalanello, who has been covering Pinellas County Schools, has left the Tampa Bay Times after nine years. A New Orleans native, she’s moving back to her hometown with her husband and young daughter. Her last day was Friday.

With both Catalanello and Kim Wilmath recently leaving the Times, half of the newspaper’s education beat is missing — just in time for back-to-school and school board elections. Wonderful.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.