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Just got a Washington Post local text alert telling me that the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development is threatening to cut off funding to District HIV/AIDS programs.


The local text alerts are used once or twice a day, mostly to get the word out about rush hour traffic backups, but also about major breaking news events—-the election of Bob O’Donnell McDonnell as Virginia governor, the execution of John Allen Muhammad, to give a couple of recent examples. But news of a letter from a federal bureaucrat telling District bureaucrats they’re in some shit if they don’t shape up (which they probably will)?

This is not to take away from the diligent and excellent reporting of Debbie Cenziper in exposing massive oversight failures in the D.C. government. She and her paper deserve every award they’re going to get. But a big part of landing these prizes is documenting (and sometimes overblowing) the institutional response to your stories. My guess is that if, say, the Washington Examiner or Washington Times or this paper had broken the story, there would not have been a text alert this afternoon.