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December 06, 2008 06:19 PM UTC

"What About Ewegen?"

  • 47 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

In all the talk this week about the Rocky Mountain News’ impending demise, a voice that might had lent some useful insight to the discussion was notably absent.

Rocky columnist Jason Salzman asks about this today:

The Post has subscribers who’ve been reading articles by Bob Ewegen for 36 years.

He vanished from the Post’s editorial page last month, without a goodbye column or any explanation. It turns out he retired, according to Post editorial page editor Dan Haley.

The Post should have let us know what happened to him. Not doing so makes the newspaper look cold and disconnected – at a time when it is properly trying to develop more personal and interactive relationships with readers.

“We don’t really have a set standard or policy for announcing the departure of employees in the newspaper,” Haley e-mailed me. “But I do understand your point.”

A speculative poll follows–would be nice if speculation wasn’t necessary.

Why did Bob Ewegen suddenly retire?

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Comments

47 thoughts on ““What About Ewegen?”

  1. Bob had a moment of epiphany where he realized that he had been horribly wrong in supporting Labor all these years, and is reconciling it at his new dwelling in Galt’s gulch, outside of Ouray.

    In truth, I hope and pray everything is ok with the big guy.  He’s a very good man, and I certainly miss him around here.

    1. I just saw a lie, I mean an ad [paid for with forced union dues], telling the seething masses that their elected officials must vote for the employee free choice act.

      Ewegen missed out on real employee free choice with Right-to-Work.

      I think that Singleton had told him to prep for a major editorial proposing RTW with the upcoming vote on EFCA coming in January. That probably hacked him off …. you know to have to admit that Coors and Jabs principled approach was in fact right.

      Maybe he got an opportunity to go work for a new organization. Obviously he left quick and unexpectedly. For some reason he has chosen not to blog here — my guess is he is protecting his franchise due to a contractual obligation or assure any new employers that he is not crazy enough to go around blogging about his Larry Craig channeling sessions.

      1. Face it, we don’t know what happened.

        It’s possible he butted heads with Singleton on union issues.  OTOH, it’s not like Bob was the new hire, so let’s ditch him pronto.

        You’re having another union wet dream, wake up!  

  2. If we here didn’t have another angle, maybe retirement would appear logical.  But even then, no goodbyes, no pat on the back, no nostalgia of 36 years?

    Can some Polster call him?  Denver?  At the farm?

      1. Any “retirement” Bob might bet would probably be better called severance.  That is usually private.  OK, no problem.

        I’ll bet most of Bob’s income will be from his pension funds of whatever type and his SS.  Those figures would be outside of departure negotiations and no one really cares.

        The fact that he is just disappeared is the more unsettling fact.  

        1. I don’t care what happened at the Post, it doesn’t explain the absence here at all.

          Maybe some more bait would help.  You know what’s great and shouldn’t ever be altered?  TABOR.

          1. I don’t get the uproar over TABOR. The state can increase spending based on population growth, right? So as long as we keep growing, we get to keep up with spending needs.

            1. Here’s an Op-Ed by William Ayers in the New York Times:

              http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12

              I was cast in the “unrepentant terrorist” role; I felt at times like the enemy projected onto a large screen in the “Two Minutes Hate” scene from George Orwell’s “1984,” when the faithful gathered in a frenzy of fear and loathing.

            1. can contain all sorts of restrictions. I am NOT speculating that this is the reason, but it could be one. It also could be that upon his retirement he took a round the world vacation.

  3. I’m guessing a senior columnist’s salary was difficult to justify. Given the choice between younger journalists willing to work for peanuts or Bob’s salary, the Post made a choice.

    I think Bob is great and enjoy reading his words, but in today’s newspaper business an aging, senior columnist better be planning well for retirement so s/he isn’t surprised when the axe falls.

    The Post probably didn’t like him posting here either, although the only reason I say this is from the last time he posted here year’s ago and had to leave (until he returned under his real name).

    Miss ya Bob…

  4. Up, sorry Mr. Salzman but you are out of a job soon as the Rocky will likely be shuttered. Maybe instead of whining about Bob Ewegen’s treatment you should be typing up your resume.  

  5. About some of the caustic things Bob wrote here under his real name.  I surmised the Post didn’t appreciate his candidness and in your face style here.

    I enjoyed reading Bob in the Post and especially appreciated how he tried to explain Colorado’s Byzantine fiscal policies and advocated for better approaches and good government.

  6. I hope all is well and that you’re enjoying your retirement.

    Get in touch, lets get a cup of coffee and talk politics and media.

    steve_balboni at yahoo dot com

    1. No party, no sheet cake, no parting-shot column, not a word about it in the paper. That was his choice. Perhaps Mr. Ewegen decided to do the same.

      Sanko was the acknowledged productivity champion at the Rocky Mountain News year after year, filing three four five 10 stories a day. Crazy numbers of bylines. But he worked out of the statehouse, so months could go by without seeing him in the newsroom.

      Bob Ewegen, call home.  

  7. If there is a serious health issue involved in the sudden nature of the COMPLETE disappearing act, I’d feel really bad about anything snarky.  If it’s just Bob doing his curmudgeon thing, I hope somebody can at least let us know that he’s OK.

    It HAS crossed my mind that his being so publicly out there on this site combined with his sometimes not PG rated comments could cause him a problem or two but not in the mood to speculate.  

  8. All this speculation about why he retired is as unseemly as it is nonsensical.

    The REAL issue is: Why did the Denver Post treat his retirement like such a non-event.

    A man spends 36 years of his life working for one newspaper and it doesn’t even give him a single column of a sendoff, let alone a page or two reviewing his life’s achievements?

    Hell, the Post gives O.J. Simpson more respect than that. Shame on them.

    “We don’t really have a set standard or policy for announcing the departure of employees,” says the Post’s mouthpiece. Well, DUH. If someone leaves you after a month or a year, they don’t get a write-up. But Jesus H. Christ, here’s a guy who’s worked for you for THIRTY-SIX YEARS and you don’t even have the decency to wish him well?

    I don’t care what he did to you, or you to him. Give him a proper sendoff.

    Bastards.  

    1. Ok, HGF is right, it’s really none of our business.  But from this thread last September, Bob really had his retirement planned out in great detail– in 3 years, or if this enonomy continued to degrade, in 7 years.  Not this month.

      http://www.coloradopols.com/sh

      I was disappointed that Jason Salzman so easily accepted Dan Haley’s disengenuous explanation at face value, because it is clearly not even the tip of the iceberg.

      So, my feeling is that Bob was able to get a tidy little settlement from the Post, but in return had to sign an airtight non-disclosure agreement, allowing Dan Haley to feign innocence.

      1. Haley’s  refusal to give more than name rank and serial number on this is still pretty odd. There would be nothing in such an agreement that would prevent him from making the usual harmless bland comments about appreciating Ewegen’s long years of service yadyadayada. That’s what people expect.  Why make such a point of saying absolutely nothing, not even the usual pleasantries?  

        1. Bob easily ran the numbers he needed to recharge his 401k (see link above), and negotiated a really nice buyout.  

          I could imagine a severe case of lockjaw ensuing on the part of Singleton and Haley as a result.

          Bob, not being a fool, isn’t going to endanger a potential 6 figure retirement settlement just to assuage our concerns over his welfare.

          I have no doubt he’s doing just fine.

          1. …was his keeping secret the fact that he’s retired?  That’s an odd term, especially given that Haley is telling people that Bob retired.

            Presumably the Post management entered into the alleged settlement agreement willingly, with eyes wide open, etc. Why do you think they would bitter about it (causing “lockjaw” or whatnot)?  

            1. If the contract says, “Bob, you will not publish any works, electronic, print or otherwise”, then he can’t blog, write letters to the editor or anything.  At the executive level where he was, that is not unusual.

              It is entirely the Post’s decision how to handle the “retirement” notice, either giving Bob the chance to write a farewell column, or have one of the editors sing his praises.

              Bob, as I recall from his earlier postings, is quite an experienced negotiator.  In my experience, tough negotiations that have a clear winner and a clear loser leave hard feelings.

              The Post’s management is the party offering a blank stare about Bob’s sudden departure.  Thus, at least in my opinion, that makes them the sore losers.

              If they don’t break their silence, then I personally take that as assent.

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