Richard Wiens, The Triplicate

I'm coming up on 34 years of newspapering, so you'd think I'd know better.

There I sat with my coffee last Thursday, looking over that morning's edition and finding it a shining example of what we're trying to do here three times a week:

A front-page centerpiece about a highly charged local discussion of gun rights well-captured by the writer and photographer. An insightful look at one of the biggest local sporting events of the year and the volunteers who put it together. Intriguing developments regarding two high-profile figures under investigation. A story of a local family and its two generations of Warrior athletes. A preview of the next big community theater event, complete with great shots of rehearsing cast members.

Almost perfect, I thought as I turned through the pages a second time. But there's nothing like journalism to cure a case of pride.

It was a couple of hours later when we noticed that a big chunk of one of those front-page articles had accidentally been left off a "jump" page, where stories are continued inside the paper.

Readers of the article about the reinstatement of Del Norte chief probation officer Thomas Crowell missed the details about the public safety officers' fund he is accused of embezzling from. Gone also was Supervisor Martha McClure's explanation for the reinstatement while charges are still pending: "We don't always have to go for the jugular."

You can read the full article at - it's the first one that comes up when you type "Crowell" into the search engine. Meanwhile, the Triplicate's search for perfection is never-ending, if you know what I mean.

On to a couple of odds and ends:

andbull; He's excelled in public office, even rising to the presidency of the California State Association of Counties, but Supervisor David Finigan accomplished the nearly impossible with his vote on the gun-rights resolution backing the constitutional right to bear arms and opposing all current efforts to tighten firearms regulations.

He joined three other supervisors in favoring the measure, but his half-hearted "sure" instead of a hearty "aye" when it came time to vote angered supporters of the resolution even as it no doubt disappointed opponents.

Thanks, Dave, for helping both sides find that elusive common ground in the gun-rights debate.

andbull; When rifling through the choices for editorial cartoons to print on the Opinion page, I always give special consideration to ones that make me laugh out loud. My sense of humor in these matters is bipartisan.

That's why I chose to print last Thursday's depiction of an elephantine John Boehner tilting a giant ear in the direction of the wealthy and a tiny ear, with hearing aid attached, in the direction of the poor.

It's also why I printed the Jan. 29 cartoon depicting Barack Obama morphing from a business-suited moderate into an Afro-topped hippie after he'd been re-elected and could supposedly show his true colors.

The very best editorial cartoons are insightful. But sometimes, funny will do. Only the Boehner illustration elicited a complaint (see the letter elsewhere on this page) - further evidence that while we geographically jut to the left, we politically lean right up here on the North Coast.