posted by Alan Greenblatt
That's not exactly the zippiest topic -- even for Governing -- so I shared my surprise with Rox Laird, one of the Register's editors, that they were interested in reprinting the story. Laird noted that the paper had editorialized in favor of the abortive attempt to merge the Des Moines and Polk County governments and so had an abiding interest in the topic.
It's not entirely surprising that a newspaper would take a strong stand in favor of regionalism efforts. Some papers will pick apart talk of merger or consolidation, wondering whose ox will be gored if the promised savings ("we'll spend $35 million less on police services!") were actually to occur.
In general, though, newspapers are among the leading cheerleaders for (often doomed) regionalism discussions. The Courier-Journal, for instance, provided a major platform promoting the Louisville-Jefferson County merger. But why are journalists enthralled with regionalism?