Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

By Donna Westfall – August 13, 2017 – Two newspapers serve our metropolitan area, The Curry Coastal Pilot, run by Scott Graves and the Del Norte Triplicate run by Robin Fornoff. It seems that mission of those two newspapers could not be more different.

Almost all of the editorials by the Pilot’s Scott Graves seem to do with either problems of Curry County with solutions or something uplifting like the July 4th editorial which was entitled Truth Justice and the American Way. I don’t think I have ever read an editorial where someone is bullied or belittled. These editorials usually offer something positive. This seems to be part of the reason that there seems to be no lack of advertisers. Readers and advertisers alike, seem to like the tone and tenor of the newspaper.

Contrast that positive approach of the Pilot with a very different approach on the part of the Triplicate’s editor, Robin Fornoff.  Let’s take a look at a sample of the editorials from editor Fornoff;

*  On August 8th, editor Fornoff devotes a majority of his editorial comments with an attack on Del Norte County Supervisor Roger Gitlin. Fornoff even speculates that a criminal investigation is underway against this supervisor.  Look at this quote and see if this is not deliberately poisoning the well.  Fornoff writes this, “A spokesperson said the sheriff wasn’t available but complaints under possible investigation aren’t usually released to the public unless the district attorney brings charges.” So the question is where is the proof for the accusation that there is a possible investigation. Fornoff doesn’t offer any. It smells like fake news.  But then Fornoff goes further in the realm of speculation by saying. “If the allegations are found factual, Gitlin needs to be reminded either by criminal charge or censure by the board, that he cannot use his elected public trust to abuse or bully or defy a basic constitutional right to privacy.  The only one who is the bully here is editor Fornoff. It seems that he has stepped over the line with wild speculation and cornered the market on the stupid gene.

*  On August 5th, Fornoff wrote this, “Cowan has had the courage to side against Supervisors Roger Gitlin and Bob Berkowitz on some of their pet issues. Sutter and Westfall are in the political payback camp of Gitlin and Berkowitz.”  I really don’t know what that he means by “the political payback camp.” Don’t you think he would explain that a little further?  It would seem that he must have graduated from journalism school at the bottom of his class.

Fornoff forgets that Linda Sutter was as outspoken against Supervisor Gitlin and Supervisor-elect Berkowitz last year as she is against Cowan this year.

*  On July 1st, Fornoff wrote this in an editorial; “Cowan is the target of Westfall because Cowan has voted against Supervisors Bob Berkowitz and Roger Gitlin on issues dear to their hearts. Westfall is an unabashed Berkowitz-Gitlin cheerleader.”  Where is the evidence for that statement?  There is not one piece of evidence to support it. It seems to be pure speculation of what he would like it to be. Did he not watch or listen to the BOS meetings, or read my articles wherein I complained about Cowan not being a person of her word, that she flip-flops and is an opportunist? He even published my rebuttal to his article attacking me.  Well, he didn’t publish it right away because he banned me from submitting articles or Letters to the Editor.

By now you can see that editor Fornoff is a bully, with three editorials in a little more than a month that attempt to skewer Supervisors Gitlin and Berkowitz with accusations without evidence, speculation without facts and assertions without proof.

Editor Fornoff needs to be held accountable for his fake news reporting and unfounded speculation. Unfortunately, without a publisher on staff, he is allowed to run amuck, promoting his constant bullying of Del Norte County Supervisors. It seems that he is living proof that evolution can go in reverse. I’m thinking of dropping off a banana to Editor Fornoff at the Del Norte Triplicate office this coming week



15 thoughts on “A Tale of Two Newspapers”
  1. The Triplicate has taken an obvious stance against corn and other cobbed harvests such as myself and the industry and animals our billions of kernals help to feed nation wide. We are corn, hear us and tell our story.

  2. Both supervisors should step down, they are too old for a progressive job like that. Their idea’s and opinions are old and obsolete.
    Not to mention they don’t follow the very people’s wish that elected them.
    They should help at the senior center or convalescent something that they could be of use for.
    Bob is one odd fellow.
    Roger is just as bad.

      1. Your so far from the truth with that statement, but you can ASSume what ever fits your needs.
        Progressive thinking is beyond both of these peoples

        1. Apparently, beyond most everyone else too. If only there were a universe of clones, it might even work. Sad to say progressives have to deal with a world of individual human beings, where it doesn’t work out so well. Nice try though.

        2. TWML attacks the person instead of the issue. It’s a great display of the purest form of bias. Just plain, pure bias. Comes off as regressive to the dark ages, not progressive. Not sure TWML understands the term “progressive”.

  3. Triplicate stories have nothing on the story of the whore house your publication exposed or the lengths this entity went to justice check the Brueder and Ranger cases. They need to vet their stories and lay off of the Bobger Gitlowitz

  4. I like all three papers. I like The Pilot for a perspective in Brookings, The Trip for local events and this paper for the obvious.

  5. Fornoff’s favorites are made of sugar and spice and everything nice. The rest are made of snakes and snails and puppy dog tails. Mr. Fornoff’s black and white (or red and blue) view of the world is pretty shallow. Opinion pieces and editorials are not factual news reports and should only be given credit for their usefulness as bird cage liners.

  6. Thank you Donna for pointing out the obsession with bullying of two county supervisors by editor Fornoff. In his mind supervisors, Howard, Hemmingsen and Cowan are always right and Gitlin and Berkowitz are always wrong. But don’t take my word for it. Check out the Triplicate for yourself going back for the past year and a half. Here is the most recent example. In the last meeting, our board of supervisors voted to ask Congressman Huffman to formulate legislation that would fund a bypass over Last Chance Grade. If passed this bill could mean up to a billion dollars in funding. We would get this roadway bypassed in record time. Did you read anything in the Triplicate about this? Of course not. Why not? Guess which supervisor made the motion and you will be able to figure it out.

    1. Mr. Berkowitz, I believe people around the county as well as writers for the newspaper would be on your side more if you didn’t appear to be best buddies with Mr. Gitlin. No offense, but it appears as though he is the boss of you two and you just follow along with whatever he says/wants. You are allowed to have your own opinions, even if they don’t match up with what Roger wants. You seem like a nice man with good intentions. I think you could be a good Supervisor, but siding with Roger on everything is not the way to do that. Obviously join his side on whatever you want, I just hope it is for the right reasons and because you actually agree, not because you feel like you have to stay faithful to him.

      1. Boy, you don’t know Supervisor Berkowitz at all. Pretty clearly you also fail to understand the dynamics of what is going on at the Triplicate either. There is a real failure of leadership on the BOS and Supervisor Berkowitz recognizes that problem and all the damage that has come of it. It doesn’t really matter much whether he agrees or disagrees with Supervisor Gitlan or not. The current Board has made some very poor decisions based on a 2 to 3 margin, and Supervisor Berkowitz recognizes that failure. The fact that he is often lumped in with Supervisor Gitlin presumes at least on your part and most definitely by the editor of the Triplicate that his decisions are some how a bad decision for the County and is based on what? As I and many others see it, it is Supervisors Cowan, Howard, and Hemmingsen that are the problem and Editor Fornoff right along side of them. Editor Fornoff has become almost unhinged by his dislike of Roger Gitlin and paints with far too broad of a brush. Articles and the editors opinion page have lost all semblance of proper journalism. Yellow journalism, that plays fast and loose with facts has made the Triplicate nearly the last resource for news in the County for many of us. The editor of the Triplicate takes every opportunity to tar both Supervisors whether it is warranted or not. His reporting and opinion pieces quite often are missing important elements in the story which cast his conclusions in doubt. Believe me when I say that Supervisor Berkowitz is his own man with his own path. Your observation can’t be further from the truth. If you attend Board meetings most of the decisions are 5-0 anyway,so you would be closer to the truth if you imagined he followed the other Board members, not just Supervisor Gitlin.

      2. Mr. Falco, I have to disagree with your philosophy that Mr. Berkowitz goes along to get along with Roger Gitlin. I have personally witnessed them to be at opposite sides of the streets on different issues. They Respect each other’s opinions and their relationship is built on that respect. They do however see eye to eye on many things in as well as outside the BOS meeting arena….In order for you to see that you would need to attend the town hall meetings at 0600 hours and come to other governmental meetings. Otherwise your opinion is mere thoughts based out of fear assumptions.

      3. Sam and Linda are right. Falco’s assertion sounds like more of an attempt to divide and conquer by asserting that agreeing with Roger is negative. Sounds like you judge according to the person and not on the issue. I’m starting to think if Roger were in favor of oxygen, some idjits would consider suffocating themselves.

  7. Perhaps one difference in the two newspapers is that Scott Graves has been the editor of the Pilot since about 1995 while the Triplicate has had numerous editors (and publishers) during the same time period.

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