We love it when publicists get sanctimonious about the media but have little to back up their stance. In today's edition of WTF, a Los Angeles Metro spokesman on Wednesday took issue with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's own claim on Facebook, echoed here and elsewhere, that only slightly more than one percent of its own employees use the buses or light rail.
Actually, the statement doesn't so much refute the numbers post, since deleted, as much as it spins them.
You see, because Metro employees work on buses and trains it means they're on them every work day:
This claim is taken out of context and overlooks the fact that about 90 percent of Metro employees spend their days or nights either driving buses and trains that transport hundreds of thousands of people to and from work or maintaining the vehicles and supporting Metro's 24/7 operation in other ways.
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(This argument is akin to saying that, while factory employees of a crappy car company don't drive the cars home, they're in and around them everyday at work!).
The statement also claims that more than 50 percent of the folks who work at Metro's downtown headquarters take buses and trains. So there.
Out of context? The context is the spin, apparently. So, as we've been told many times, us journos have to be more responsible to our readers and make sure and get our spins straight.
But nowhere in the statement does transportation juggernaut take back that sad statistic that only about one in
ten 100 of its own workers go Metro.