While reading a book about the Minnesota Vikings, a friend came across this declaration of independence by the Star Tribune, Minnesota’s dominant news outlet. It was responding to fan unhappiness when the Star Tribune was critical of a Vikings coach:
That the media have an obligation to support the hometown team, as many callers insisted, is nonsense. When the day arrives that the Star Tribune is the public relations arm of a business it covers, the newspaper will be a licking puppy, not a watchdog.
But when the “home team” is the DFL Party, the Star Tribune is, indeed, its public relations arm. The phrase “licking puppy” matches the case very well, in a context a great deal more important than pro football.