Posted by: sweeneyblog | October 27, 2012

Charlie Crabtree mistakenly blames “Stark Reality”

Yesterday Charlie Crabtree, local conservative pundit and state committeeman for the Whatcom Republicans, sent out the following message to his quite impressive email list known as The Fourth Corner.

Crabtree’s Email

I could go into debunking some of this craziness, but let’s start with the premise. John Stark, reporter at the Bellingham Herald, has absolutely zero to do with the endorsements of the Bellingham Herald.

Not to pull a “horses and bayonets” moment on Charlie, but at newspapers they have these people called editors and publishers that get together and write the editorials, while the reporters stick to just reporting the facts. I realize the Seattle Times has been setting a bad example, but the Herald still runs by that model. So I was quite delighted to hear that John Stark himself sent a nice little missive to Charlie Crabtree, that I quote in its entirety:

Hi Charlie–

I recently saw your “Stark Reality” production. I have never been able to get enough of those “Stark” puns!
Just so you know: I am not on the editorial board and I have no input into their endorsements. They and their endorsements have no input into my coverage of these campaigns. A lot of people don’t believe that. Go ahead and believe what you want to believe, and I’ll go on knowing what I know.
Thanks for your time.
John Stark, Reporter
The Bellingham Herald and

Now there are all the accusations of “tokenism” and poor little Jason Overstreet
being “belittled for his passionate defense of the Constitution,” but really that is just the usual stuff from Crabtree. It was the complete ignorance of how newspaper endorsements work that really was the most off-base. Maybe “Julie Shirley” Reality didn’t have the same ring. I really don’t have anything else to add other than I guess I’ll close out with this picture of Charlie and me for your amusement.

He’s the one on the right



  1. The idiotic thing about Overstreet using “The Constitution” as his moral barometer in lawmaking is—yup, surprise!!!—most laws are constitutional. Wow. Incredible.Amazing, isn’t it? The Constitution is a document that describes how a government works; it is not some witches’ brew recipe to magically unwind government.

    Overstreet using the Constitution as some cafeteria menu to oppose that which he dislikes is like selectively declaring bits from Leviticus about not suffering gays as LAW!! while forgetting the parts in Leviticus that describe how one should kill one’s own smart-mouthed children as DROSS.

  2. John Stark is a gentleman and a scholar. I never worked close with the man during my Bham Herald days, but he was always a pleasure to be around. When I needed some advice for a j-school project, he was there to provide it. Plus, his name is right out of Game of Thrones.

  3. […] the end of the era, as Luanne Van Werven lost her seat to Charlie Crabtree, their database guru and journalist-blamer. Congrats to Charlie, who definitely has his work cut out for him this year. You can find the […]

  4. […] Whatcom Republicans Chair Charlie Crabtree has put forth an interesting theory about the election results. He puts the blame on south […]

  5. […] elected in 2010, that did not make them any less legitimate. The chair of the Whatcom Republicans, Charlie Crabtree, has been repeating this argument almost word-for-word since last […]

  6. […] this year is over district only voting. Charlie Crabtree, chair of the Whatcom Republicans and confused newspaper reader, has made it crystal clear his priorities for the Charter Review – district only voting. As […]

  7. […] once on the KGMI morning show and once on her own show where she had to bring Allen Brown and Charlie Crabtree to back her up. It can be rough on such a public figure as Halterman to lose two debates in a row […]

  8. […] approachable, dedicated and sharing my love of language. One of my favorite Stark stories was when Republican chair Charlie Crabtree got confused about how newspapers work, he responded with charm and grace. Thank you for all that you’ve done, […]

  9. […] Charlie Crabtree frequently gets confused over how things are, after all, two years ago, I had to explain to him how newspapers work. He may have just gotten confused, after all, “Riley Sweeney” is very similar to the […]

  10. […] isn’t the first time Crabtree has completely missed the mark. Two years ago, he blamed an editorial in the Herald on John Stark, who was a reporter and has nothing to do with the editorial […]

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