Still, as Mr. Bundy surveyed the dusty landscape last weekend, the only sign of law enforcement was Brad Rogers, the sheriff of Elkhart County, Ind., who had flown 1,800 miles to stand in solidarity with the embattled rancher.
What the blue hell? First of all, patrol your own meth-ridden hick-haven county, you asshole. The taxpayers you claim to revere don't pay you to grandstand out of state.
Second, this LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIAL sees nothing wrong with an armed resistance to the government:
Rogers is an outspoken critic of federal government overreach. He says he took an interest in the Nevada case because it has the potential to affect those in Elkhart County as well.
YOU ARE THE GOVERNMENT. Or is this one of those things where you wish the county sheriff holds all the power and can tax the people in the name of Prince John?
Look, if these nutjobs want to stage a peaceful sit-in in protest of a law they believe is unjust, I believe they should be able to do that. But when they show up packing heat, determined to start a firefight, that's where it becomes a wee bit different from the claims of "civil disobedience" they're vomiting all over the press.
If this rancher was a young black man in a housing project refusing to pay his rent, these assholes would be demanding Obama send in the 101st. And if any law enforcement official stood up for that kid, he'd be unable to leave his house without body armor thanks to the very same whackjobs now claiming the government's tyranny is forcing them to gun up.
Patton: There is no such thing as the absolute most perfect person. There’s no such thing. I know that in your 25-year-old world you believe that there is, but there just isn’t. … What you want in a mate and in a partner will change and evolve over time, and what might feel like the most absolute best perfect love of your life at 25 may not feel that way at 30, and what feels like the most perfect love of your life at 30 may not feel so wonderful at 40.
Fallon: But if we change so much throughout our 20s, why should we get married at the beginning of them?
Patton: Because the best you can do is to find yourself a husband or a life partner who shares your love of learning, shares your core values, shares your fundamental vision for a life plan and you grow and evolve through the decades together. It’s easier to do it together than do it alone alone, for most people.
Fallon: But that isn’t born out in the divorce statistics.
Patton: Well, divorce happens 50% of the time…
Fallon: And the risk goes down the longer you wait to marry.
Patton: No, I think that …
Fellow old people, can we please stop pretending that everybody who is not one of us olds is the same? There are 25-year-olds with vastly more life experience than I will ever have, so stop watching Girls and thinking this is what they're all like. Most of the loathing of unmarried women just comes off as jealous old hags chiding young ladies for having the drinks and the sexing, and it's so obnoxious.
What the hell is she even talking about here? "There's no such thing as a perfect mate, so make a spreadsheet and tally up all the ways you and Prepster McChipperson are similar, and get hitched based on that?" This is somebody whose whole THING is about how young women need to find love. This sounds about as romantic as tongue-kissing your taxes.
Don't get me wrong, I rail all the time against the idea that there is only one perfect mate for each and every person. If you build that shit up in your head you will be absolutely flabbergasted when you or your spouse is attracted to someone else after you're married. What are these feelings? I thought I was finished now that I've found True Love (tm Kay Jewelers). And instead of correctly interpreting your sudden wild desire to bend the sandwich girl over the counter as human nature, and your feelings as feelings and not imperatives, you'll fuck your life up flatter than hammered shit.
(I am not romantic. I am the person who watches Sleepless in Seattle and yells at Annie to stay with Walter. Walter is the only person in that movie who's not an asshole.)
But that doesn't mean you shouldn't want to find someone you love to spend your life with. That doesn't mean it's naive or only exists in a "25-year-old world," whatever that is. That doesn't mean that by X age you need to marry somebody you've matched credit scores with.
That certainly doesn't mean her unoriginal bullshit is worthy of every morning news program in the country:
It was now clear that, unlike the producers of the nation’s most highly rated news programs, Fallon and I had done a little research. Savannah Guthrie might have frowned when Patton said that high-school girls should consider cosmetic surgery before starting college and that women were responsible for preventing their own sexual assault, but she never challenged her on the facts. Patton was allowed to simply recite her talking points, piss off the peanut gallery and go home.
I honestly don’t have a problem with Patton herself. I think she sincerely believes her advice is beneficial to women. And like the kooky aunt at the wedding, she has the right to say what she likes.
My problem is with a culture that gives a megaphone to a woman with nothing to offer but retrograde opinions and no facts to support them. My problem is with national newspapersthat treat the statement “men won’t buy the cow if the milk is free” as an argument worthy of its op-ed page. My problem is with television news producers who can’t be bothered to do a quick Google search before inviting an anti-feminist boogie-woman on the air.
My blog post about Patton was entirely unoriginal, as it merely repeated information that had been published in The New York Times, The Atlantic.com, Salon, Forbes.com and Slate. The women in the audience at Princeton were fact-checking the event on their laptops in real time—why couldn’t anyone at NBC/Universal do the same?
I work in public relations at Cook Children's. It’s my job to be on social networking sites, peruse the internet and keep up with the latest Apps offered on smartphones. It’s a great job and I love what I do, but over the last couple years, I have learned so much about the dangers of Smart Phone Apps. It’s downright scary.
So is your Random Capitalization.
Technology, especially if you’re a little behind the times, can be very deceptive. Your kids may be downloading Apps that you think are innocent and just a simple way for them to keep in contact with their buddies, but unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.
- Yik Yak – This App is one of the newest and one of the most dangerous. It allows users to post text-only Yaks of up to 200 characters. The messages can be viewed by the 500 Yakkers who are closest to the person who wrote the Yak, as determined by GPS tracking. Users are exposed to – and contributing -sexually explicit content, abusive language and personal attacks so severe that schools are starting to block the App on their Wi-Fi. Although the posts are anonymous, kids start revealing personal information as they get more comfortable with other users.
As they do in locker rooms, the lunch table, and during cheerleading practice! BAN ALL COMMUNICATION.
SnapChat – This App allows users to send photos that will disappear after 10 seconds. Once the recipient opens the picture, the timer starts. Then it’s gone. From both the sender's phone and the recipient’s phone. However, the recipient can take a screen shot of the photo and have it to share with others. This App enables kids to feel more comfortable “sexting” with peers.
Or it enables kids to ... send photos that will disappear after 10 seconds. What is in those photos is up to the kids, and if their parents didn't raise irresponsible little sociopathic shitheads, they've got nothing to worry about.
That alone doesn't scare me. What does scare me is that these kids aren't using condoms because Jesus doesn't like birth control.
Whisper – This is a meeting App that encourages users to post secrets. You post anonymously, but it displays the area you are posting from. You can search for users posting within a mile from you. A quick look at the App and you can see that online relationships are forming constantly on this App, but you never know the person behind the computer or phone. One man in Washington was convicted of raping a 12-year-old girl he met on this App just last year.
And if he'd raped a girl he met at the library, would we be hearing about how libraries are dangerous and you need to delete them from your communities?
Omegle – This App has been around since 2008, with video chat added in 2009. When you use Omegle you do not identify yourself through the service – chat participants are only identified as “You” and “Stranger”. You don't have to register for the App. However, you can connect Omegle to your Facebook account to find chat partners with similar interests. When choosing this feature, an Omegle Facebook App will receive your Facebook “likes” and try to match you with a stranger with similar likes. This is not okay for children.
NEITHER IS FACEBOOK, unsupervised. Jesus. This entire story could be replaced with, "Try not to raise little assholes and also keep an eye on their electronics and online activity," but then, that wouldn't give paranoiac Luddites the thrill that PHEAR THE ANONYMOUS HOOKUP APP does.
Tribune Publishing Co. LLC's new CEO, Jack Griffin, may earn as much as $3.5 million annually, and could be owed $2 million if he exits after a sale of the company.
Mr. Griffin is slated to earn a $1 million salary, a potential bonus of the same amount, and a $1.5 million stock award each year, according to an employment agreement that parent Tribune Co. filed on April 11 with the Securities and Exchange Commission as part of its preparation for a spinoff of its publishing business. That transaction is expected by midyear.
He could get $2 million if the business is sold and he doesn't stay with the company, or if he leaves within 12 months of the closing of a sale, according to the agreement dated March 3. A $2 million “cash severance” is also possible if he's fired or quits. Mr. Griffin, formerly the CEO of Time Inc., was appointed to lead the Tribune publishing company last month.
So if he stays he gets $2.5 million a year, and if he quits or gets shitcanned, he gets $2 million? I can tell how you fast I'd get fired if I basically got paid if I got fired, and it would be FAST. Sit in a hammock in Jamaica and have people bring me pineapple daquiris while still collecting basically my salary? Hell yeah, son.
These severances, these "exit packages," reward failure as much as they encourage risk-taking, and while they're unconscionable in any industry, it's especially galling to see one at a news organization which is laying people off and telling those still around that it's the fault of the Internet and "changing reader tastes" and that everyone must learn to iPhone to keep their jobs.
The Ann Arbor News, owned by Advance Publications, changed in July 2009 from a daily newspaper to a web-first model that produced a print edition only twice a week, making Ann Arbor among the first American cities to lose their only daily paper. Since then, The Michigan Daily has been the only Monday-through-Friday print publication in town.
As daunting financial pressures force newspapers around the country to shut down or severely trim staff and budgets, a new model has emerged in many communities in which college journalism students increasingly make up for the lack of in-depth coverage by local papers.
“I keep questioning whether this scandal would have come out sooner if we had a vigorous local paper here,” said James O’Shea, a former editor in chief of The Los Angeles Times and managing editor of The Chicago Tribune who is now a visiting professor of journalism at the University of Michigan. “But I also don’t know if it would have ever come out without The Michigan Daily.” The place-kicker, Brendan Gibbons, has not been criminally charged.
Get it, kids.
“The key to beating poverty is not about beating racism, as nice as that might be to do. The key to beating poverty is to educate people. In the black community right now, 78% of kids that are born are born out of wedlock. That is no father in the household to be there to control the kid, to make sure the kid gets a good education, to make sure the kid goes to school, to make sure the kid doesn’t get in trouble. When 78% of those families are broken up, what makes that kid believe that the education he’s getting in high school is something he has to have to come out of the poverty level. And the answer is simple: nothing.”
This is like the perfect encapsulation of everything your racist brother-in-law says at the Christmas party, followed by a defensive comment about how it's science, of course. Even assuming this clownstick was correct (which of course no), what exactly about being raised by a single mother makes you give up on high school automatically? If he said something about presuming a lack of parental support for education which then led to dropout rates, that would be one thing, but instead it's single parent = diplomas are bullshit. I have no dad, and therefore I hate books.
“Listen to what [Jimmy Carter] said yesterday talking about Hurricane Katrina. Now bear in mind, 10,000 people there are listening to this, and the current sitting president of the United States of America — this is what Jimmy Carter said. ‘We only have to recall the color of the faces of those of Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi who are most devastated by Katrina, to know’ — listen to that, he knows — ‘that there are not yet equal opportunities for all Americans.’ You got to be kidding me. ‘Look at the color of the faces and know there’s not equal opportunity’? As far as I can tell, Mr. Carter, everybody had equal opportunity to get out of the way of a Category 5 storm that we all knew was coming for over a week. How do we know this? You’re looking at it, brother. I was right in the heart of the storm. The eye of that storm came right over my house, my friend.”
And it's not just changing culture. Over the last half century, various branches of government have also taken plenty of proactive steps to marginalize religion. Prayer in public school has been banned. Creches can no longer be set up in front of city hall. Parochial schools are forbidden from receiving public funds. The Ten Commandments can't be displayed in courtrooms. Catholic hospitals are required to cover contraceptives for their employees. Gay marriage is legal in more than a dozen states and the number is growing rapidly.
"Gay marriage" being legal doesn't marginalize "religion," just some flavors of some faiths, not all of which have made up their doctrinal minds on the subject.
Marginalizing cetain ostentatious displays of faux Christianity isn't marginalizing "religion," either, unless you define religion down to the six things your sanctimonious sister-in-law is pissed about this week. Taking a bunch of fake issues that have fuck-all to do with the actual practice of religion in this country and using incorrect assumptions about them to agree with the general wingnut position that Christianity is somehow under siege, is ... reductive, at best.
I expect this kind of half-assed shorhand from middlebrow media outlets and commentators whose audiences are just biding time until the orderly comes round with the pudding, but my standards for Mother Jones are a little bit higher.
U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman has sent a letter to Tribune Co. CEO Peter Liguori saying interviews with experts “raised serious concerns about the future of the Los Angeles Times” should the company go ahead with its plan to spin off its newspaper division.
Poynter’s Rick Edmonds is among the experts Waxman consulted.
Waxman is concerned about Tribune Co.’s plans to saddle the newspapers with debt and keep their real estate, but he also says the company’s plan to consolidate some newsgathering functions “raises concerns about the ability of the papers to continue putting resources into local coverage.” The plans, he says, “will place the long-term viability of the Los Angeles Times and other Tribune papers at risk.”
Ligouri's response is predictably bitchy and defensive:
As publisher of the Los Angeles Times for the last six years and soon-to-be Chairman of the Board of Tribune Publishing, I am extremely confident that the plan put forth by Tribune Company is sound, reasonable and will help protect and build a strong future for the Los Angeles Times and Tribune’s other newspapers for years to come.
5. Set plans are dead. People have options and up-to-the-minute updates on their friends (or other potential romantic interests) whereabouts thanks to texts & social media. If you aren’t the top priority, your invitation to spend time will be given a “Maybe” or “I’ll let you know” and the deciding factor(s) will be if that person has offers more fun/interesting than you on the table.
God. Not everyone is from Rich Kids of Instagram, and just because there are high-profile examples of people being trivial assholes does not mean that every young single person is a dick. A person who can't keep a date or tell you honestly when he or she is busy is a jerk, and Twitter has nothing to do with it.
7. The only difference between your actions being romantic and creepy is how attractive the other person finds you. That’s it, that’s all.
No, that's not all. I find Harrison Ford ridiculously attractive but if he hid my car keys so I could no longer go anywhere without his permission that would be creepy and his being Indiana Jones wouldn't help that. Plenty of relationships that start out being hot end up in murder.
9. Some people just want to hookup and if you’re seeking more than sex, they won’t tell you that they’re the wrong person for you. At least, not until after they score your prize. While human decency is ideal, honesty isn’t mandatory.
"Score your prize?" Eww.
13. Social media can also create the illusion of having options, which leads to people looking at Facebook as an attractive people menu instead of a means of keeping contact with friends & family.
This is IDIOTIC. Social media isn't used to troll for extramarital poon unless that's, you know, what you're using it for. If you're that far gone in your relationship that seeing a photo of an ex-girlfriend leads you to start thinking about cheating, let me politely suggest that you re-evaluate YOUR ENTIRE LIFE.
16. When dating, instead of expressing how they feel directly to you, a person is more likely to post a Facebook status or Instagram a Tumblr-esque photo of a sunset with a quote or song lyric of someone else’s words on it, and while it may not mention your name, it’s blatantly directed at you.
Are we talking about 12-year-olds here? Because unless we're actually talking about teenagers, if someone does this, RUN.
The entire piece (and is it me or is Thought Catalog just a total shitshow?) seems designed to give the impression that all single people suck now and the Internet is somehow to blame.
Just one problem: Hobby Lobby’s owners have little control over where their employees’ money is invested. As Ryan Ellis of Americans for Tax Reform explains:
401(k) plans are directed and invested by employees, not by employers.… They are the ones—not their bosses—who choose which mutual funds to invest in. This is true both of the employee’s elective deferral and the employer’s match. The menu of choices is primarily provided not by the Hobby Lobby employers, but by the 401(k) plan administrator, who helps select a wide menu of mutual fund (and, increasingly, exchange-traded fund) choices so that the fiduciary obligations of the plan are met.
Hobby Lobby’s 401(k) simply provides a structure for individuals to choose from mutual funds that best meet their needs and savings goals.
Ideally Hobby Lobby's health care coverage would simply provide a structure for individuals to choose from treatments that best meet their needs and medical situations. Nobody's coming around the floral design aisle forcing everybody to take the pill, for fuck's sake. These are the champions of individual freedom? I've had more logical arguments with Claire.
Plus, is it me or was the above quoted portion written by someone who's never made an objection to an investment? You absolutely CAN tell your investment advisor which mutual funds with which you will not associate due to the companies involved being scumbags, and you aboslutely can place restrictions on which types of funds you'll offer as investment choices. In fact, there are funds explicitly designed for those with moral restrictions of one kind or another. They're called MRIs.
Now, investing solely in those might limit the amount of cash you haul in from your investments, since the Ignorant Tight-Ass Fund doesn't pay out dividends like it used to, but this is about Sincerely Held Religious Beliefs, after all. RIGHT?
Interestingly enough, Mother Jones doesn’t disclose the companies that its own employees invest in under the news site’s 401(k) plan.
BECAUSE MOTHER JONES ISN'T IN WASHINGTON YELLING AT JUSTICE ROBERTS. That's not "interesting," it's irrelevant.
With more people attending colleges charging ever-higher tuition, the number of borrowers has increased 70 percent in 10 years. So has the amount that the average student borrows. In 2004, 23 million people had student loans, and the average balance was $15,651. By 2013, 39 million people had student loans, and the average balance was nearly $25,000.
Tuition at even a state school is now so expensive that even if I'd be able to get into Madison these days (my GPA was decent but not outstanding and I sucked at standardized tests) I wouldn't have been able to afford to go. But hey, everybody who is poor should just make different choices, like be born to millionaires! Get on that, zygotes!
Stelter featured two partisan commentators, Marc Lamont Hill and Ben Ferguson, to debate the divisiveness of the issue not as pundits but as “regular people” confronting the barrage of coverage.
The crux of the disagreement came over why the right had been so successful at getting the anti-Obamacare narrative to stick. Hill argued that it was because the so-called liberal media (of which MSNBC is a metonym) had been unsuccessful in forcefully countering Fox News’ drumbeat of criticism, while Ferguson said the narrative was a representation of a reality in which millions had their coverage cancelled.
Or it could be that supposedly non-partisan media has just given the fuck up, and now wishes for nothing more in a story than two equal opposites that can be listed together, thus absolving themselves of institutional responsibility for sorting out bullshit from not.
It could be that inviting partisan pundits on "opposing" sides to debate the issue of why the issue is so debatable is a fucking idiotic thing to do, the sort of thing you do when you don't want to come to any sort of factual conclusion.
It could be that asking pundits to pretend to be regular people is stupdendously dumber than, I DON'T FUCKIN' KNOW, interviewing some regular people about where they are getting their Obamacare information and why they are trusting the sources they have.
It could be that declaring MSNBC and Fox News the same "partisan media" thing and then having people on to lament that one half of that thing isn't viciously anti-fact enough to adequately oppose the other vicious, anti-fact thing isn't a contribution to the conversation at all.
Back on March 24, Cruz posted an informal survey on his verified senatorial Facebook page. It read: "Quick poll: Obamacare was signed into law four years ago yesterday. Are you better off now than you were then? Comment with YES or NO!"
It's probably fair to say that he didn't expect the tsunami of "YES" votes that have shown up on the page among the 47,000 that Facebook says have been posted.
Respondents have listed, among other things, their newfound ability to obtain coverage despite preexisting medical conditions, the right of young adults to stay on their parents' policies to age 26, lower premiums and the end of lifetime benefit limits.
Some posted impolite remarks about Cruz's personality or political positions.
You don't say.
Courtney Everette has been on birth control since she was 17. Did it help prevent unwanted pregnancies? Probably. But the reason this Chicago mom has maintained a regimen of estrogen-based hormonal contraceptives for nearly 20 years has more to do with a desire to walk upright without doubling over in pain – and a hope to preserve her fertility.
Everette has endometriosis, a painful condition in which the uterus essentially grows out of bounds, invading spaces of the body where it doesn’t belong, causing severe pain and often infertility. Unless, that is, it’s treated – quite successfully – with hormonal birth control.
Because she has been using hormonal contraceptives, Everette has avoided surgery. Because of these important drugs, she has delivered two children without complications. And, yes, she is able to afford this care through her husband’s insurance plan, one that adheres to the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate.
I had two surgeries for fibroids and endometriosis prior to getting pregnant with Kick, and neither had been a problem for me at all before I went off the pill. Afterward? Deblitating pain, anemia so severe I wound up in the hospital, and major surgery to scrape it all out. Fun! So every time some wingnut yobbing off about his religious freedom tells women to just not have sex and they won't need birth control, I pretty much want him kneed in the nuts every hour of every day for a week every month. See how productive he is at work and life with that going on.
The property tax you pay is basically determined by multiplying the tax rate by your property's value. If your property's value is $100,000 and the tax rate is 10 percent, then you pay $10,000 in property taxes.
In a TIF district, a portion of the property taxes is diverted to bank accounts controlled by the mayor. He's supposed to use that money to generate development in blighted, low-income communities.
But the law's so riddled with loopholes that he's pretty much free to spend it wherever he pleases. Which is why he gets to spend at least $55 million on a hotel for Marriott in a gentrifying South Loop neighborhood.
Generate development by paying a gazillion dollar corporation to ... make more money. I would get a TIF district that gave funds to, say, genuine small businesses or infrastructure improvements needed to make large-scale development happen, but too often this nonsense ends up subsidizing major corporations that could afford to pay for such improvements themselves.
It's absurd to pay a business to make money where it's going to make money anyway. Making money is what they do. A hotel is not a nonprofit organization. A hotel company doesn't seek to site a new building where there's no cash to be found. Yes, these things create jobs, and that's valuable, but for fuck's sake, let's stop acting like the jobs are why the company's there. They're there because stacks of money are there.
It's absurd to continue having idiot conversations about pension "reform" and how "broke" municipalities are, too:
Remember, the mayor says he's cutting benefits for geezers cause Chicago's dead broke and he wants to limit the burden on beleaguered taxpayers.
Who are still getting a little more beleaguered.
But, as I like to point out, there's "broke" as in "We gotta make some retired Water Department clerk live on less" and broke as in "Ah, what the hell—might as well add a little more slush to the pile.
Documents filed with the Department of Labor and dated December 2012—three months after the company's owners filed their lawsuit—show that the Hobby Lobby 401(k) employee retirement plan held more than $73 million in mutual funds with investments in companies that produce emergency contraceptive pills, intrauterine devices, and drugs commonly used in abortions. Hobby Lobby makes large matching contributions to this company-sponsored 401(k).
Several of the mutual funds in Hobby Lobby's retirement plan have holdings in companies that manufacture the specific drugs and devices that the Green family, which owns Hobby Lobby, is fighting to keep out of Hobby Lobby's health care policies: the emergency contraceptive pills Plan B and Ella, and copper and hormonal intrauterine devices.
All the nitwits who flocked to this company. All the people who supported them because they were so godly, so sincere, so pure. Everybody who argued that forcing the availability of contraceptive coverage on these folks was the equivalent of putting them in a concentration camp. All y'all who made them your mascot because you thought they were like you and believed what you believed.
DO YOU GET IT NOW?
They don't give a shit about you. They don't give a SHIT about abortion. They don't give a shit about the unborn babies or whatever the hell they think Plan B does, and they don't give a shit about Jesus. At all. They give a shit about MONEY. They don't want their employees to have evil Obamahitlercare because they have to pay, and that's it. That's all this is about, that's all this has ever been about, and if for one second you'd all stop falling for it America would be much, much better off. You got worked.
You know the score, or you should, after four decades of Republicans promising that if you just vote for them all the little Jesus babies will stop dying when there's no chance in hell they're going to be able to make that happen even if they wanted to WHICH THEY REALLY DON'T. You're just patsies to them, all you pious people with your rosaries and your coupons for half off the fucking yarn. You're just getting played, over and over and over, and you still hate the LIE-BERALS who are honest with you more than the people who wine-dine-69 you and haven't heard a damn word you've said.
Just stop TAKING the booty call. Don't get me wrong, the majority of my contempt is still reserved for those operating the switchboard. I blame them for dialing, but after a while you can STOP PICKING UP.
All but one student wanted the SPJ Code of Ethics to be the law of the land.
Most were surprised that SPJ’s code is an unenforceable suggestion instead of a punishable regulation.
Jesus fucking Christ in a bundt cake. No wonder we end up with endless editorials about how awful it is that bloggers don't have to pass a Journalism Exam to type words on the Internet. This isn't about the kids; they're too easy to pick on. What the hell kind of instruction are they getting upstairs, that this is what they come to the lecture thinking? What the hell kind of chickenass nonsense is this? Law of the land? Should the journalism police take your Cracker Jack badge away if you're bad?
The answers were longer and less clear when another panelist, FIU professor Juliet Pinto, asked, “How would you enforce this certification?”
“Well, we could start, like, a group to do that,” one student said. “Like a guild of journalists to decide.”
And if the guild found a fellow journalist to be unethical and unworthy?
That was easy, replied a student named Dennis: ”The punishment for violating the Code in those cases? You lose your job and you have to find a job somewhere else.”
Look. I get you want your degree to mean something, and it's a bummer when you realize that anybody with a notebook who happens to not suck at journalism can do journalism, too. But I'm not sure designing a system basically modeled on the Catholic Church's method of dealing with pedophiles is really the way to up the value of your diploma.
You don't go to journalism school to become a journalist. You go to journalism school to get a journalism degree, which makes it easier to get a job with a media company. Journalism school CAN make you a better journalist, if you have good teachers and that's how you want to do it. Working as a journalist can make you a journalist, too. It is hard, when you've been categorizing and labeling everything your whole life, to wrap your brain around the idea that the work makes you what you are. Not the place you do it for, not the card in your wallet, not the piece of paper on your wall. The work.
Plenty of people call themselves journalists, who aren't, which is a problem to those they're scamming. But it's a problem we have to solve by being smart about what we read and watch and listen to, not by handing out membership cards. Before anybody throws doctors and lawyers in my face, journalists are not performing open heart surgery or sending anybody to death row, so let's nip the idea of a certified board of people giving out licenses right there.
It's reductive and lazy, and while it might lead to more stringent public shaming of bullshit artists like James O'Keefe, it would also lend official sanction to bullshit artists like David Gregory. We should not be willing to accept the horror of the latter in return for the dubious benefit of the former.
“Mobile journalism” is a ridiculous title, like “camera journalism.” It’s just journalism and the mobile part just refers to the tools. The techniques that make solid journalism don’t change when we carry our publishing equipment in our pocket.
Not pharmaceutical companies, not overloaded and under-educated doctors, not even school administrators' zero-tolerance policies or the general paranoid parenting culture. Nope. It's all about women:
"We are pathologizing boyhood," says Ned Hallowell, a psychiatrist who has been diagnosed with ADHD himself and has cowritten two books about it, Driven to Distraction and Delivered from Distraction. "God bless the women's movement—we needed it—but what's happened is, particularly in schools where most of the teachers are women, there's been a general girlification of elementary school, where any kind of disruptive behavior is sinful. What I call the 'moral diagnosis' gets made: You're bad. Now go get a doctor and get on medication so you'll be good. And that's a real perversion of what ought to happen. Most boys are naturally more restless than most girls, and I would say that's good. But schools want these little goody-goodies who sit still and do what they're told—these robots—and that's just not who boys are."
Is there anything feminism hasn't destroyed?
The article in which this guy opens his cakehole is actually very interesting, in its outlining of the history of the drugs most commonly used to treat ADHD and the history of the diagnosis itself, but this fellow is the first "expert" quoted. And he lays the blame directly at the feet of female teachers who just can't handle the exuberance of real men.
Or maybe this has something to do with it, too:
And there are other underlying reasons for the recent explosion in diagnoses. Stephen Hinshaw, a professor of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley and the editor of Psychological Bulletin, the research publication of the American Psychological Association, presents evidence in a new book that ADHD diagnoses can vary widely according to demographics and even education policy, which could account for why some states see a rate of 4 percent of schoolchildren with ADHD while others see a rate of almost 15 percent. Most shocking is Hinshaw's examination of the implications of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, which gave incentives to states whose students scored well on standardized tests. The result: "Such laws provide real incentive to have children diagnosed and treated." Children with ADHD often get more time to take tests, and in some school districts, tests taken by ADHD kids do not even have to be included in the overall average. "That is, an ADHD diagnosis might exempt a low-achieving youth from lowering the district's overall achievement ranking"—thus ensuring that the district not incur federal sanctions for low scores.
Rumsfeld and McNamara seem to be very different kinds of people.
They couldn't be more different. But they presided over disastrous wars. That's not OK. You can be reflective, you can be remorseful, you can be really engaged by the tales of what you have done and haven't done. And McNamara realized this. There's no magic slate for any of us; we can't just pull up the acetate and it all goes away.
McNamara at least had some regrets that he was willing to share.
Rumsfeld is also willing to share the fact that he has no regrets, isn't sorry, sees nothing wrong with what he's done. In fact, he's proud of it.
Well, and I'm not sure it matters either way. If he's sorry, then fuck him. If he's not sorry, fuck him. The dead are dead. The wounded are wounded. There aren't degrees here, where if you're sorry you go to a slightly higher level of hell. Nobody cares about their immortal souls but them. To the rest of us, all that matters are the results.
DailyCandy and Television Without Pity, two high-profile Internet content properties owned by NBCUniversal, are being shuttered, a move that management told staff this morning would be occurring next week.
Local recommendations site DailyCandy had been purchased by the Comcast media unit in 2008 for $125 million from the New York-based Pilot Group. The sassy TWoP TV review and recap site — its motto is “Spare the snark, spoil the networks” — was purchased by NBCU’s Bravo cable unit in 2007. Both were founded in the Web 1.0 era.
Attempts to sell the properties were made, but apparently were unsuccessful.
You all know it because of the Galactica recaps, because while I might try to talk about that show Jacob ripped it open and found God inside it.
Whatever face the messenger wears, and I don't honestly think it matters, the message can't come clear, through all this dirt and fear and pain. Until you burn off what doesn't work, between stars and between your lovers and your lies, until you lay down the burdens of hate that keep you tied to the pain of your childhood, unable to see your way clear, you can't hear the message properly. Until the rain washes you clean again. You'll never hear it right, until you watch it unfolding and realize it couldn't have been any other way. I don't know if the Cylons can see time this way, but I know the Hybrid can, which is why nothing surprises her, or Leoben. But it's also the way Kara can write her own destiny, and have it written for her: this is just a story she's been telling herself, all along. It's the only way we can live. If we knew what was going to happen -- if we knew the pain and fear and ugliness that's part of our fate, if we forgot that it keeps the world turning -- who knows what we'd do differently? That's why the Oracle only has one eye, because this is not part of the physics: God and time work together to tell you this story, as many times as it takes, until you start paying attention. If it doesn't hurt, if it doesn't feel like death, you're just pretending to change. Burn sage and sweetgrass and get a haircut and move to another city, go on a diet and swear off men for six months, a year, the rest of your life: that's cosmetic. Nothing really changes until you close your eyes and jump. That's half the confusion right there. Take a drop of water, or mercury, and divide it: whatever face the messenger wears, the message stays the same. Socrata, the Lords of Kobol, the Oracle, Leoben, the Hybrid. The message stays the same, it's just that we keep hearing it wrong. Over and over again, until we get it right.
I have a little plastic box with file cards in it and I write down things that stick with me, put them on index cards and put them in the box. There's an entire SECTION of things that I re-read when I need to, things like bits of books and quotes from movies, and in there there's a whole handful of Galactica reminders:
"This is how change works, all change: it feels like dying because it is."
"The question is, 'When Will the Work Be Done?' And the only answer is: Never. You don't get to lay down your burdens, the rough spots are all you ever had."
There's a Facebook group for people archiving the recaps Jacob wrote for this and other shows. I'm copying some of them myself; go and help out if you can.
Internal documents obtained by WW show that a quota system is being put in place that calls for steep increases in posting to Oregonlive.com, and promises compensation for those employees who post most often.
The new policy, shown to the editorial staff in a PowerPoint presentation in late February, provides that as much as 75 percent of reporters’ job performance will be based on measurable web-based metrics, including how often they post to Oregonlive.com.
Beat reporters will be expected to post at least three times a day, and all reporters are expected to increase their average number of posts by 40 percent over the next year.
In addition, reporters have been told to stir up online conversations among readers.
“On any post of substance, reporter will post the first comment,” the policy says. “Beat reporters [are to] solicit ideas and feedback through posts, polls and comments on a daily basis.”
This is what happens when you have management by panic, and that's how newspapers have been run for at least the last 40 years. Forget the Internet: The minute TV news came around, newspapers had to be more immediate, more visual, because that's what TV was good at. Then the 24-hour networks, so let's all cover whatever they're covering, in the same half-assed way they're covering it, because people like that now.
And now this jumping at every goddamn online trend that whistles past the door. I don't actually think this is an impossible goal or anything, and good reporters usually can throw out enough cheap stuff to keep editors happy while still working on longer term stories, but the rationale is what burns my ass:
The new policy will likely increase Oregonlive.com’s use of daily, short posts that follow an original news post by reporting on readers’ comments, creating polls to gauge reader reaction, and “aggregating” the site’s most popular stories—as a way to build page views.
The policy says Advance is aiming to increase Oregonlive.com page views by 27.7 percent by the end of the year. (The paper’s traffic is already sizable, with online metrics site Quantcast showing 23 million page views last month.)
“Advance, for better or for worse, has been the most aggressive American newspaper company in moving to the web,” says Joshua Benton, director of the Nieman Journalism Lab. “This is their bet. It makes sense that they would want to align their staff with that bet.”
First of all, can you think of anything less compelling than reporting that is based on reader comments? (If they were my reader comments, this would make sense, but in the case of a newspaper web site it's more likely to lead to headlines like, AREA RESIDENTS SAY THEY HATE OUR BEET RECIPE, BLAME NEGRO PRESIDENT.)
Second, if the paper already has good web traffic, why screw with it? I mean is there any other business that says to its customers, "So this thing you like, we're gonna make it like this other thing instead, because people like that thing, too?" In what universe does that make any kind of sense?
You don't have to be everything to everybody. You don't have to sell floor wax and pizza. You do have to figure out whether you're better at producing pepperoni or shining the linoleum, pick one, and go with it. That can be hard to do, but flailing from one Internet trend to another is just going to make it harder.
Two University of Texas journalism students called me last week hoping to get some experience/clips in exchange for class credit. I had to reluctantly turn them down, and both even countered with the offer to write articles “for free” just to amass a few clips with a reputable publication. I told them that would get me in even more trouble with Uncle Sam. They were really bummed.
I don’t have the official word from my management about the “why.” I suspect, like a lot of employers, it’s too easy to get sued with the relatively new FLSA standards so we’re steering clear of the potential liability. But our relatively few $10 an hour internships are still in effect.
Your company made $6.5 BILLION last year. If corporate doesn't want to spring for some barely more than minimum wage jobs, that's hardly something that can be laid at the feet of "new federal regulations." Sorry you're losing your unpaid labor. Pay some people a very small amount, if you want them to work for you. You can pay freelancers whatever you want, basically. This isn't about the feds.
It's about corporate being cheap, and people who supposedly work for news organizations falling for a line of bullshit.
Cardinal Columns graphic designer Austin Klewicki was the one student who spoke to the school board Monday. He asked members to revoke the new policy regarding the school paper.
“Asking it be reversed, because we bring out the truth and we try to help everyone that’s affected by it,” said Klewicki.
Cardinal Columns editor-in-chief, Tanvi Kumar wrote “The Rape Joke” for the February issue.
District Superintendent James Sebert told us he doesn’t have a problem with the article as a whole, but questions parts.
“A picture inside the first cover that looks as if one of our students isn’t fully clothed. I had issues with some of the verbiage that was used to describe sexual assaults,” said Sebert.
The superintendent also took issue with an editorial in the February edition challenging the “Pledge of Allegiance.”
“It was actually encouraging students to test their teachers’ knowledge of their rights and encouraging them not to stand,” Sebert explained.
Sebert told FOX 11 these reasons led to the policy change. Now the high school principal has the final say on what will be published.
“We’ve now set up, what I believe, the the help of our legal counsel, to be very reasonable expectations for a publication that’s produced during the school day, with school resources,” said Sebert.
Telling students to challenge their teachers! We can't have that! What will happen?
Look, if your teachers are so buttheaded stupid that they can't answer reasonable questions about civics in a school environment (reasonable questions like if you are, in fact, legally required to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance, which pretty much every citizen should know that no you're not) then they deserve whatever criticism they get from the students.
I mean, is it me or are we not setting the bar very high here?
These are not your struggling baristas with their undergraduate degrees and mountains of debt, or your former-newsmen-turned-retail-drones. They’re not “overeducated and underemployed.” No, this demographic group, the undereducated and underemployed, are in far more dire straits. This subset of millennials might not look like the “Gen Y” that’s commonly portrayed in the media — this site included. They aren’t the duck-faced “Rich Kids of Instagram,” the Lena Dunhams or the Mark Zuckerbergs that we use as generational stand-ins (rather than, say, wealthy and successful millennials LeBron James and Kendrick Lamar).
Alternatively, by looking at the recent employment figures of people aged 16-24, the Brookings Institution has cast a light upon the tenuous fates of the undereducated underemployed, a group still experiencing levels of unemployment and underemployment that haven’t existed in this country since the Second World War. The study focuses on ”labor force underutilization,” a measure that attempts to quantify underemployment by grouping the “officially” unemployed with those who desire employment (but have stopped actively looking) and those who are working part-time (but would prefer more hours).
Youth unemployment historically tracks at twice the national average, regardless of the economy’s health. While 7 percent unemployment is certainly a national crisis, it also augurs an even bigger issue — a staggeringly high underemployment rate for young Americans. Seven years past the recession, the youth underutilization rate remains stubbornly high: above 40 percent for 16-19-year-olds, and nearly 30 percent for millennials aged 20-24.
They must just not want to work! They're too busy playing with their iPhones! They'll only stand in line for gadgets! Nobody makes good music anymore!
We tend to forget our wars are being fought by kids this age. The violence in our neighborhoods affects kids this age. And the jobs we got at this age -- working at a farm market, in my case, a bookstore, and a florist -- are harder and harder to get. Without those jobs, without that work experience, getting a better job is even harder.
I always say I wouldn't be that age again if you put a gun to my head. When I graduated from college I had people fighting over my meager skills because I knew what the Internet WAS, and these kids are expected to have mastered every aspect of every technology available, while still being willing to work for peanuts hauling garbage. And those are the lucky, well-educated ones, who may or may not have piles of student loan debt from having the temerity to attend state schools.
I heard this in the car over the weekend and laughed so hard I almost drove off the road.
Why is David Hasselhoff there? I mean, not that his presence doesn't improve everything.
BONUS: Watch at 1:52 for the FERRET SELFIE.
Republicans obviously thought to themselves, "That Mitt Romney was such a hit with the common people. He was so down to earth, so relatable. Let's nominate us one of those."
There's the 6,870-square-foot Rauner mansion on a half-acre lot in Winnetka; two units, including a penthouse, in a luxury high-rise overlooking Millennium Park; a waterfront villa in the Florida Keys with a 72-foot-long pool; ranches in Montana and Wyoming; and a condo in an upscale Utah ski resort.
Most carry price tags well into the seven figures. But topping the list is a penthouse in a landmark co-op building along New York's Central Park, which property records show Rauner bought in 2005 for $10 million.
Rauner has amassed a larger stable of high-end residences than Mitt Romney, the 2012 GOP presidential nominee whose plentiful and opulent homes lent ammunition to foes who portrayed him as an out-of-touch elitist.
"I'm very thoughtful and disciplined with my money," Rauner said in an interview Friday, adding he doesn't like to "spend frivolously or for big consumption."
He said he looks for value in things like art, land and buildings that can appreciate over time.
"I like to spend money on investments," he said. "If I think it's beautiful; if I can hunt on it."
Now, there's nothing inherently wrong with having a shitload of money (though there is something wrong with using it for union-busting). But having seen the results of the 2012 presidential elections is it really the smartest move strategically to nominate a fellow whose idea of a smart purchase is land he can hunt on?
Remember, John Kerry was unfit for the presidency because he windsurfed.
Living here is starting to look like a blockbuster awesome decision, despite the winter hellscape that was the past two months, because at least we aren't assholes:
Speaking of Alaska, when you factor in both categories, the three best states are Alaska, Colorado, and Illinois. As we've mentioned, Alaska's tip % is the highest, and Illinois has the highest statewide percentage of people who tip (61.1%), possibly because they're scared if they don't tip, they might be forced to eat more deep-dish pizza. Colorado does well in both categories, and Denver has the highest average tip percentage of any city in America, at 16.8%. It would be simplistic to say that this last fact is because it's hard to do long division after your eighth bong hit and you tend to err on the side of generosity, but it's a working theory.
People who don't tip make me crazy but the people who really make me crazy are the ones that don't tip and then have a whole sanctimonious speech pre-loaded about WHY they don't tip. It usually goes something like BLAH BLAH HARD WORK BLAH COFFEE USED TO COST FIVE CENTS BLAH BLAH KIDS TODAY BLAH, and not one of the people making it looks like they've ever waited tables even once.
The second concern, as expressed in the Journal article, is that “Critics fear genetically vetting embryos can be used to create so-called designer babies.” Ah yes, designer babies, the Frankenstein fear the media has been mongering for years.
“If embryos can be selected to be free of harmful genes, they [the unnamed critics] argue, who is to say they will never be screened for particular genetic traits that parents might desire or want to avoid?” notes a 2009 article in the Telegraph. “Enter the ‘designer baby’ who is destined to be top of the class, excel in sport, and have hair, eyes and other physical characteristics that fit his or her parents’ wish list.”
But designer babies are “a whole lot of media hype without a lot of science,” writes former embryologist Carole Wegner on her blog Fertility Lab Insider. “Frankly, we don’t know which genes to pick, if we could pick them and how and when to turn them on etc etc. And even if we could ... there’s this little thing called environment and self-determination that would foil that game plan.”
The designer baby argument is actually a close cousin to every argument about abortion: Women are morons who approach childbearing as one would approach picking up some milk at the store. As if it's nothing, tee hee, let's pick out the baby's eye color like we're getting a puppy! Let's chuck out all the embryos that won't be good at soccer!
Trust me on this, as somebody who spent ten years trying to have a baby and fully six in infertility treatment: By the time you have been briefed on everything that can go wrong with you or a developing pregnancy, by the time you have spent untold amounts of money (either yours or your insurance company's) on doctors and tests, by the time you are staring down the tunnel of IVF protocols which involve multiple injections of multiple horrifying drugs several times a day, you do not give a flying fuck what kind of hair your baby will have or if it will display proficiency in math.
Your only concern at that point is that you've been unable to get or stay pregnant because there's some kind of hideously scary disease lurking in either your or your partner's genes, or because the combination of the two of you somehow creates something poisonous. Your only concern is that your child might not be able to be healthy, and that even if you can carry him or her to term, you're creating a future full of pain.
This isn't something anyone does on a whim. The one thing the article doesn't mention is the cost of genetic testing. It runs into the thousands and insurance doesn't cover it. If you're doing this, if you're down this rabbit hole, you have more serious concerns than wanting to determine what instrument your science fiction baby will play someday.
But for the crowd that wants to regulate women's health care, pass personhood amendments that would wind up suppressing or outright denying IVF treatment altogether, and generally treat ladies as if we have no idea how our own bodies work, it's so much cuter to think of us flipping through a catalog, buying a rug on one page and a baby on the next.
But, oh, CNN was not done. A couple of minutes later, Lemon brought out more tweets in order to say, "Whether it was hijacking or terrorism or mechanical failure or pilot error, but what if it was something fully that we don't really understand? A lot of people have been asking about that, about black holes and on and on and on and all of these conspiracy theories. Let's look at this. Noha said, 'What else can you think? Black hole? Bermuda triangle?'" And then Deji says, 'Just like the movie 'Lost."'"
Okay, Lemmywinks, if you're relying on someone who doesn't realize that Lost was a TV show, you're scraping under the barrel for the goo that's dripping from it. Sorry, Noha and Deji, for spoiling your moment in the dying sun of cable news. But, wait, he continued, "And of course, it's also -- they're also referencing The Twilight Zone, which has a very similar plot. That's what people are saying."
People are also saying it's the Illuminati in cahoots with, fuck, let's say Mossad and, why not, the Masons. And what episode of Twilight Zone? The one where the plane was an illusion? Or the one where it went back to dinosaur times? Or are you saying it was gremlins? Was it gremlins? Do we need to get a psychic to talk to the gremlins with her mind? Goddamnit, where is Medium when you need her?
Lemon was quizzing Mary Schiavo, former inspector general of the United States, about black holes, Bermuda Triangles, islands where everyone is dead (except they're not, but maybe they are; goddamnit, that was a waste of six years), and gremlins. "I know it's preposterous," Lemon scoffed, then added quickly, "but is it preposterous, do you think, Mary?"
Schiavo looked like Lemon had asked her if she spits or swallows as she said, "A small black hole would suck in our entire universe. So we know it's not that. The Bermuda triangle is often weather, and Lost is a TV show."
Thank God our traditional media employ gatekeepers to keep this kind of crazy theorizing confined to the Internet.
Why, exactly, do mall and school shootings attract such intense media scrutiny? Is it justified?
Kelly McBride, an ethicist at the Poynter Institute, believes several factors combine to put the national media spotlight on events like the Columbia shooting. One is that such public shootings tend to occur less frequently than the seemingly routine urban violence throughout the country. Another is that most mall and school shootings get reported in real time, while domestic and drug killings are often over by the time they are reported.
And with breaking news involving violence, McBride said, “there’s a business imperative to it, because you know the audience is going to follow that story.”
Seemingly routine. Emphasis mine.
Matt Zapotosky, a reporter who has been covering the aftermath of the Columbia shooting for The Post, said a double murder in nearby Prince George’s County would draw 12 inches in the newspaper when he was on the police beat there — perhaps because the county had as many as 100 homicides a year.
“There is a difference,” Zapotosky said. “In those cases, they don’t resonate with people enough, because they think, ‘It couldn’t happen to me. I’m not in the drug trade. I’m not in a gang. I’m not involved in the things these people are involved in.’”
White and Zapotosky said they felt it was important to write about the shattered sense of safety resulting from a shooting in a public place.
“There are domestic shootings that are really awful. There are shootings on city streets that are really awful. Frankly, all of them are awful,” Zapotosky said. “They just don’t resonate with our readers like something like this does.”
People who live in neighborhoods where violence is a daily fact of life clearly don't have a shattered sense of safety. They likely have no sense of safety at all.
Which is probably just routine.
They've got their justifications locked and loaded before the question's even asked. You'd think after years and years of suburban, school and mall shootings, not to mention the hot new trend of shooting up movie theaters, those shootings would become "routine" as well, but somehow they're "unusual" and "resonate" with "our readers." All by themselves, they're these things.
The coverage deems them outliers. The coverage says so. The coverage comes right out and declares that THIS is something to get upset about, and then blames readers' levels of upset for the coverage. The coverage declares something routine, then blames its routine-ness for the lackluster coverage. This isn't exactly a risky position. Read a few papers, watch a couple hours of local news, you get the idea. Everybody does it. Your industry peers will nod their heads, you say stuff like this. I mean, what can you do, right?
I'll tell you what you can do. Just come right out and say it: Scaredy-cat middle-class people, if they thought the shopping mall was no longer safe, would LOSE THEY DAMN MINDS. Therefore, every mall shooting is treated as an aberrant horror, with this "shattered sense of safety" bullshit, so that we can continue to perpetuate the absolutely wrong idea that in a nation of gun-crazy loonballs at least the Forever 21 is sacred ground.
Same goes for all the schools everybody moved to the suburbs to get their kids into. If that no longer works to keep your kids safe and make them successful, the earth will absolutely cave in. It's one of those assumptions so basic our entire economy rests on it, so it can't be undermined.
Shootings that happen in these places have to be exceptions. They can't be the rule, no matter how many times they happen, because if we start actually thinking that what happens every day in what Paul Ryan recently so charmingly termed "the inner city" could happen to the wealthy and white, the wealthy and white could not breathe. Certainly they could not continue living the lives they live, in which bad things happen elsewhere and the only thing standing between America and its destruction is a sale at the gun store.
While school officials are within the law to exercise prior restraint on student publications created as part of a student course, they should not.
If the descriptive words used in Kumar’s story are at the heart of this issue, then it’s better that the district address the use of those words, not employ a policy that allows censorship of topics some might find disagreeable.
Supreme Court Justice William Brennan Jr., in Texas v. Johnson (1989), wrote: “If there is a bedrock principle underlying the First Amendment, it is that the government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea itself offensive or disagreeable.”
Sebert has not said the story resulted in a flood of calls or emails from parents angry that their students were exposed to these terms. According to the students, Principal Wiltzius told them Cardinal Columns should have more “positive” articles.
More "positive" articles. Because honestly addressing an issue isn't "positive." Shining a light on an injustice isn't "positive." Exposing crimes isn't "positive." And encouraging a more welcoming environment for those delicate creatures who want school to be a place where they don't have to HEAR JOKES ABOUT BEING RAPED AFTER THEIR RAPES isn't "positive." As if positivity is a lack of offense. As if it's the same as passivity. As if it's not movement toward justice.
Reporters hear this positivity line all the time, from readers who can't separate storytellers from subjects of the stories they tell. Why do you have to show us the ugliness of the world? Why can't you just ... you know, tell us about nice things? My kid's preschool pageant, or some hedgehogs, or something? Why can't you be a booster for the community, reinforce the readership's every prejudice and desire, and for God's sake make the weather forecast predict 68 and sunny every day?
BECAUSE THAT'S NOT THE JOB OF ANYBODY. It is not the job of anybody practicing journalism to make you see only rainbows and kittens. It is not the job of anybody writing for any newspaper down to and including the supermarket shoppers to show you what you want to see. It is the job of the journalist to tell you what he or she sees. To tell you the story that's there. It's the best and most frustrating thing about that job: Sending what is important to the writer out to the world, knowing nobody is required to care one bit.
And if you don't like the way the world looks, if you don't like the stories your storytellers tell you, there's a much more productive option than breaking the mirror into which you're gazing: MAKE A BETTER DAMN WORLD. Go make a story you want told. It is amazing how the misery of the everyday is tempered when you know you're doing just a little bit to alleviate it, so put your energy into telling the next person who cracks a rape joke to get bent. Hard as it may be to believe, you are actually creating the world you then get told about, so stop asking for more positivity in your news coverage and go get more positivity in your LIFE.
To illustrate the threat outsourcing agreements pose, Free Press released on Wednesday an updated version of its report Cease to Resist: How the FCC's Failure to Enforce Its Rules Created a New Wave of Media Consolidation. The study examines the current wave of consolidation sweeping across the broadcast industry.
The report documents the increased use of outsourcing agreements by Gannett Company, Nexstar Broadcast Group, Raycom Media, Sinclair Broadcast Group, Tribune Company and other broadcasters. Through these deals, station owners create so-called "sidecar" or shell companies to evade the FCC's rules and establish near-monopolies over local TV news production in markets across the country.
These arrangements do not simply concern two stations sharing some common functions. Rather, they involve one large broadcaster owning all of the physical assets of another in-market station. The broadcaster runs all of that station's day-to-day operations, produces 100 percent of the local news programming and keeps most of the station's profits.
These agreements are used to evade the FCC's ownership rules in nearly half of all U.S. media markets. They are used to form otherwise illegal duopolies between two top-four ranked stations in 78 markets. This rule is particularly important for ensuring communities have access to the greatest number of independent sources of news and information, which are often produced by the major network-affiliated stations.
The problem for modern-day Republicans, like Ryan, is that most of them were trained during an age when direct mail marketing was the primary GOP outreach tool. This allowed them to send direct messages to targeted groups where they could really let the "Southern Strategy" loose, sending out vile rhetoric without the risk of it reaching mainstream audiences at the national level. Now that we're in a digital age, these Republicans haven't yet seemed to figure out that once you send out a message, it's likely to reach well beyond your intended audience.
This would explain why they seem so genuinely shocked that people find out about their stupid crap. "Ooh, we never expected actual black people to hear about how lazy and shiftless they are!"
However, I do feel like this theory gives them simultaneously too much credit and too little. These guys throw this stuff out there so their rabid nutball base hears it, then they apologize, and their wingnut base knows the apology was just more persecution by the liberal media and that the original statement still stands.
The message is still out there, reaching the people it was intended to reach in the first place.
I keep going back to this line, from Doc's excellent Friday post about a school district freaking out when a student newspaper has the temerity to point out that rape is not hilarious:
The student PUBLICATION is being punished for pointing out that RAPE IS REAL and it SUCKS WHEN IT HAPPENS TO HIGH SCHOOL KIDS.
After I read the article, I had a conversation with another parent in my kid's class about it and the reaction from the parent was, “Well, when your kid gets to high school, would you want her reading about this?”
My answer, looking at the tiny girl human in her play swing in front of me at the moment? Of course not.
Of course I wouldn't want her reading about rape in high schol.
Of course I wouldn't want her reading about rape jokes, ha ha so funny.
Of course I wouldn't want her reading about how she must prepare for a situation in which she might be attacked and then be belittled for it. Be told it's her fault. Be told it wasn't "really" assault.
Be told she shouldn't have walked alone at night. She shouldn't have been at that party. She shouldn't have had that drink. She shouldn't have smiled at that nice boy she liked, that she should have been able to expect liked her back. She shouldn't have let him kiss her. She shouldn't have let him anything. Let him.
Of course I don't want her reading about rape. But she has to read about rape, if only to understand that if (when, most likely, god, when) it happens to her friends, or God forbid to her, it will not be her fault, and she will not be to blame, and there will be nothing she could have done to prevent it.
As Hobbes put it in the comments on Friday:
High schoolers know rape exists. I would have found high school a lot easier to deal with if this had been the framing of the conversation - particularly that "punchline" note from the editors about how ridiculous it is that amongst the stories told by the three girls, one still has trouble believing that it wasn't her fault, one makes distinctions between different kinds of assault and won't call most of them "flat out rape", and the last won't even go so far as to call her assault "assault". Dear GOD that's a thing that EVERY high school girl should be reading.
You know what's worse than reading about rape? RAPE. Rape is worse than reading about rape. And rape will keep happening while the issues so excellently raised in this high school publication are buried so deep that young men and young women think this is something they can't talk about. Can't deal with. Can't eradicate.
I listened on Friday to an excellent radio interview with Tanvi Kumar, the editor of the paper, and what struck me immediately was the disconnect between the image administrators want to paint of these high school students (impressionable, fragile, at risk of destruction from the slightest unpleasant thought) and the composure and courage these students were actually showing. I mean, this young woman:
Kumar says she talked directly with superintendent Dr. Jim Sebert about his concerns about a picture that appeared in the article, some of the words used to describe sexual assaults and potential confidentiality breaches.
“Something Dr. Sebert mentioned several times during our meeting was that we had to keep in mind that our audience was between the ages of 14 and 19,” Kumar said. “Something I said in response was kids between the ages of 14 and 19 are getting raped, kids between 14 and 19 are acting as rapists.”
Interfering with the educational process, this person? I want her RUNNING IT. When I was her age I was scared of my own shadow. If she doesn't have college presidents fighting to recruit her like she's a quarterback, those people are not paying attention, because someday she will own them.
We think teenagers are so delicate. We don't want them reading about scary things. We act like every natural disaster, every politician's peccadillo, every human tragedy, is something we have to "explain" to our children, something that has to be carefully couched, lest the information wreck them, lead them down a treacherous path, harm them irreparably. When nine times out of ten, they not only know already about all the horrors of the world, but are actually properly horrified by them.
And I think that shames us, sometimes. Because they're horrified by what we've come to accept as normal, and they make us ask why we're not as outraged as they are. Why we've gotten so lazy and chickenshit. Why we sit back and take it. I think that shames us, and we're afraid of being ashamed.
We think teenagers are so delicate, which is probably why they think everybody over 30 is so stupid. They're not delicate. They're fierce and wild and angry and they should be. They should rage against the world they see around them. They should confront the things they find outrageous and try to change them. They should loathe any easy acceptance of the way things are, if the way things are is unfair or stupid or bullshit.
And instead of being afraid of them, instead of trying to tamp down all that righteousness and glory and energy so the contrast doesn't make us feel weak, we should be inspired by it. We should be inspired to try to change what we don't want them reading about.
We should, most of all, keep our eye on the ball here, as Kumar so beautifully points out. I don't want my daughter reading about rape in high school. And I don't want my daughter BEING RAPED IN HIGH SCHOOL, and thinking it's her fault, and watching the person who did it to her be excused while she's excoriated.
If the former prevents in any way the latter, the editorials these students in Fond du Lac have published should be broadcast from every billboard ten stories high, and if the so-called adults in the room can't hack that, they should take a lesson from their teenage betters, and take a good hard look at the world they live in. If it's not the one they want their children reading about, they've got some work to do.
What was controversial when you were in high school?
Besides the usual sex, drugs and rock n roll, my high school paper got into trouble for pointing out that the new TVs installed in every classroom showing "Channel One" were mostly airing commercials, and that students legally required to be in school were thus being forcibly advertised to, more than they were being informed. I was proud of that story.