Category Archives: Print Media

A Slow News Day…

Wow. Talk about your slow news day, eh? The New York Times published an astonishing front page story exposing the CIA’s practice of using empty shell companies, some apparently run by people who don’t exist, to hide the agency’s use of civilian plane to perform clandestine government business.

Two days after the French public dealt a serious blow to European unity by rejecting the EU constitution, French president Jacques Chirac fired his Prime Minister and appoints Dominique de Villepin, France’s former foreign minister from 2002-04 and leading critic of the United States-led invasion of Iraq.

Sir Bob Geldof announced a series of “Live 8” shows in cities in Europe and the US to commemorate both the 20th anniversary of “Live Aid” as well as to call attention to the impending G8 summit of the leaders of the USA, UK, France, Russia, Germany, Japan, Italy and Canada. The European Commission is also represented and this year’s summit is set for Gleneagles, Scotland on July 6-8, 2005.

Oh….and one of the largest political mysteries of modern times was solved when the identity of the chief source that enabled Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein to break the Watergate scandal in the early 1970’s. Like I said. Slow day.

Journalism Takes Another Right Hook To The Jaw

Podasa-4

In this day of dwindling journalistic skills and ethics, in this era of buried leads and half reported stories and in this time of governmental bullying of chicken-shit major news organizations that cave under governmental pressure, the hits just keep on coming.

Last week Luis Posada Carriles, an accused terrorist, was arrested in Florida by federal agents. Posada is wanted in Venezuela to face charges (well substantiated charges, I might ad) that he was involved in the bombing of a Cuban passenger airliner in 1976. This right-wing scumbag has been linked with the murders of hundreds, including the 1976 Washington D.C. bombing of former Chilean government minister Orlando Letelier and American Ronni Moffit, one of the worst acts of foreign terrorism on American soil. He was also a CIA employee and helped to organize the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in 1961.

Continue reading Journalism Takes Another Right Hook To The Jaw

In The “Where Did You Go To School?” Department

In a Washingtonpost.com story dated Friday, March 18, 2005, about rapper Lil’ Kim’s clothing choices during her trial, Post staffer Robin Givhan writes the following:
“The jury found her guilty of perjury and conspiracy, and the Associated Press reported that she could face a penalty of as much as 20 years in the joint at her June 24 sentencing. Her assistant Monique Dopwell was also convicted.”
Excuse me? The joint? The JOINT!!?? When did “The Joint” become AP/NYT/Washington Post style guide synonymous with Federal Prison? I did a Google search on “Lil’ Kim”, joint. Care to guess on what other publications came up? The New York Times? No. Christian Science Monitor? Nope. Not one other publication with a story about the conviction turned up. Now, when I replaced “joint” with “prison”….Newsday, NYT, Boston Globe, Reuters, AP, etc.
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that Ms. Givhan is the Post’s style editor. Why is this important? Well, it’s not, but I have another post about Ms. Givhan’s, uh, journalism, later today. I’m too damn tired, now.

“Neverehhdd uvvit!”

Rafasmaller.jpgOne of the few reasons I haven’t completely given up on the New York Times, despite their complicity in the Bush administration’s phony baloney war in Iraq and myriad other abuses of power emanating from Washington, Albany and other seats of government, is that the Arts, Metro, Home, Travel and other sections are often still damn interesting sources of information. One recent example is this article about Liverpool and the peculiar dialect of English spoken there, called Scouse.
Liverpool, in the Northwest of England, is the home to the team I support in the English Premier League, Liverpool FC. When English football is mentioned in US newspapers outside of the sports sections, the team almost always mentioned is Manchester United. For example, there are 657 references to “Manchester United” in the New York Times since 1996 and, well, far fewer for any combination of words and phrases I can combine for Liverpool. (Americans tend to drop the “FC” so a search for “Liverpool” doesn’t help and “Liverpool FC” yields zero results.) Additionally, we’re having a very rough season, so attention is even harder to get.
That said, not only is this piece interesting from a linguistic and cultural standpoint, the third and fourth word of the piece are “Rafael Benitez,” who happens to be the Spanish-born manager (the NYT called him the “coach”) of Liverpool FC! Not only that, but the story on the website has a picture of ‘Rafa” as well as one of our Captain, midfielder Stephen Gerrard.
Care to guess what the title of this post says?