Our pal Dennis Roddy penned his last bit for the Post-Gazette today, before going to work as a speechwriter for Tom Corbett. The whole thing's worth a read of course, but a key section is below. (We doubt this is the last time we'll be quoting from Dennis.)
In December, the hard drive on my home computer crashed. Among the data lost were 11 years of resignation letters, each one a masterpiece of indignation eligible for its own microclimate. One writes a great many resignation letters and livid farewells in a newsroom. When the pivotal moment comes, though, the flame goes out of the prose. A man starts thinking of dead cats in a sack.
I had not planned for this to be my last piece in a newspaper. Possibly it shall not be, but the odds weigh heavily against my return. Tomorrow, I depart for Harrisburg to work the marble halls of government.
As a reporter specializing in politics I have, for 37 years, walked people to the statehouse door, watched them go in, then wondered from a distance what the devil goes on in there and why it costs so much. Now, perhaps, I shall know.
Nonetheless, I am burdened by certainties. I must become a member of a party. I shall advocate for a cause. I must produce results that will be subject of endless critique by people I cannot dismiss as cranks who should have dialed one of the call-in shows. Where I had easy indignation I must have manners. Not only do I lose the comfort of a life that has been an endless abstention, I can't switch sides. I must now be certain in a place where certainty is at once necessary and dangerous.