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From the Editor
From the Editor
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1 question
3 posts

Russ updated 4 months ago

Should we spend more to fight wildfires? | What would you ask DNR's Hillary Franz this week?

Epic wildfires near Wenatchee and in North Central Washington are happening most every summer as of late. But new plans to do actually do something about them? We haven’t seen many of those. This week we interview state Lands Commissioner Hillary Franz, who actually does have a plan.

State Rep. Joel Kretz, R-Wauconda, is working with Franz and is co-sponsor of related legislation in House Bill 1168. ( 

The bill would substantially increase funding for fighting wildfires, improving forest health to limit future fires, and helping communities become more fire resilient. 

What questions would you put to Franz and Kretz?

Russ Hemphill

World Managing Editor


Madeline updated 4 months ago

We're a local paper, but this story had to dominate A1; calling a mob a mob

(Originally posted on January 7, 2021)

At this morning's daily staff meeting with reporters and editors, we kicked around ideas for follow-up stories. A couple of the angles we're pursuing include talking with more of our Wenatchee Valley neighbors and elected officials about their reactions.

We're also curious about how teachers in our high schools and colleges would frame the chaotic day, and are also reaching out to new citizens for their views on the mob's actions.  Are there stories you'd like to see or questions we should ask?  

And about that word: mob.

In the staff meeting, a reporter asked how we should describe the protesters. If we use the word '"mob," we should be prepared for pushback from those who would say that it wasn't a mob. That we would be accused of taking sides. I guess that could happen.

But after watching the day's events, listening to the comments from reporters at the staff meeting and checking an Associated Press post on how they are describing the ... mob ... I feel very comfortable calling a spade a spade.  

Here's part of the AP post: "Calling it a "mob" or a "riot" would also be appropriate, especially when the protesters' actions were wild, widespread, violent and uncontrolled. The term "insurrection," meaning the act of rising up against established authority, could also be justified."  

What word would you use to describe yesterday's events. And why?  

You can email me at



Madeline updated 4 months ago

Choosing editorial cartoons: They pay me for this?

(Originally posted on January 7, 2021)

I'm Russ Hemphill, editor of The Wenatchee World, and I'll be posting thoughts here about news in the Wenatchee Valley and North Central Washington, and what's going on inside our newsroom. You can follow my column at The Wenatchee World here.

This first post is an invitation to help shape the Opinion Page. Let's have a conversation.


Cartoons are a newspaper staple. As editor, one of the fun parts of my job is choosing the cartoons that appear on the Opinion Page.

Most pages get two cartoons at the top and one at the bottom. (I post many more online but am focusing on the paper in this post.)

Here's how it works: I go to our online cartoon provider, check out a screen full of thumbnail images and look for a variety of the most recent cartoons. I open up maybe a dozen of them.

First hurdle: Make me laugh, which can be tough during a year like 2020. But this one did: My theory is, if we can't laugh a little, it's going to be one long, mean slog.

But it's not all chuckles. I try to balance the two cartoons at the top of the page. Ideally, if one criticizes Trump or the Republicans, the other criticizes Biden or the Democrats.

This does not always work out. It depends in large part on what news events grabbed the attention of the 60 or so cartoonists whose work we... (More)