May 31, 2009

The headline and lead cry of "exposed corpses" littering Mingora in  this AP piece on the Pakistan fighting.  If you care to follow though by reading the entire report, you'll discover the  charnel house image is  is justified by exactly three bodies -- two of them apparent "insurgents" lying in a cemetery. The facts as reported could just as easily justify a screaming headline about  slothful Pakistani gravediggers.


There is no vast media conspiracy, of the left or of the right. But there is a chamber pot full of miserably non-professional  journalism, and you really hate to see it appear so often  on what was once one of the world's great news services. 

The writer of the three-corpse trash was engaging in a venerable newspaper practice -- reaching for a  gee-whiz headline. We've all done it, but the AP pros  are, or were,  damned careful to make sure the body of the report lends some credence to whatever glorious -- or gory -- image is conjured up in the lead.

May 29, 2009

Oh come on!

A Roman Catholic  priest can cancel his vows and go cavorting with women. But such a hot priest can not, repeat not, be named "Father Cutie."   Someone has designs on our credulity. 

May 26, 2009

Idly posted...

While waiting for the  caffeine to kick in:

I just learned  "Magic Jack" is new phone system.  

For the longest time I thought it was Obama's economic program.


May 25, 2009

In Memory of Travis McGee

"He will wonder whether he should have told these young, handsome and clever people the few truths that sing in his bones.

"These are:

"(1) Nobody can ever get too much approval.

"(2)  No matter how much you want or need, they, whoever they are, don't want to let you get away with it, whatever it is.

"3) Sometimes you get away with it."

Travis didn't write that. Neither did his amanuensis. But we can thank Trav for telling John D. to use it on the theme page of "Free Fall in Crimson."  And John Leonard for writing it in "Private Lives in the Imperial  City."