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Saturday, August 10, 2002
Seems like common-sense advice to me
The governor of Louisianna advises women to arm themselves.

G.I Joe is missing his dangerous weaponKeeping us safe from toy guns
Airport screeners confiscate a two-inch long plastic gun to keep us safe from terrorists.

"Remember, all I want it a little off the top .... IEEEEEEEE!"!
A Mexican surgeon was arrested for accidentally amputating the penis of a man who had sought a simple circumcision. The BBC Website that carried this story had a many interesting links about circumcision (both male and female) around the world.

Airport thugs dehumanize another innocent American
A woman reports that airport security guards forced a woman to drink her own breast milk in order to prove it was not a dangerous liquid. Oh, yeah, it's so much better to dehumanize innocent Americans in the name of safety and security than it is to cough up the dollars to install secure cockpit doors or arm pilots. Because guns are bad.

Friday, August 09, 2002
More on the NABJ squabble
Media Minded(a wonderful site, but the way) had the following take on the Dyson v. Patterson dispute at the National Association of Black Journalists meeting in Chicago:
"I'm not familiar with Rev. Peterson's work, and there are no transcripts of the debate available, but it's entirely possible he's a loose cannon who was in way over his head against Dyson, who's extremely strident and extremely sharp. It seems to me the NABJ wanted a black conservative straw man they could humiliate and heckle as an Uncle Tom. Questions: Why didn't they invite, say, John McWhorter or Thomas Sowell to debate Dyson? (Possible answer: Perhaps they did, but those folks knew they'd be entering a den of vipers.) Why is the NABJ afraid to have a serious challenger to its views engage in the debate?"

Thursday, August 08, 2002
The predictable, logical result of mandated "diversity' in journalism
A journalist should be open minded. They should be devoted to the concept of free speech and a free press. When media and journalism organizations start to equate the number of black and minority journalists on the payroll with quality journalism itself, the end result is journalists who are on the payroll not because of their abilities, but because of the color of their skin. Case in point: members of the National Association of Black Journalists booed and hissed at a black man who dared to express an idea about race that did not comply with the "blacks are always victims of whites" mindset of so many black leaders. To be sure, there are too many small broadcast and print outlets that would never, ever let a black reporter into their midst, especially in markets where there are few black consumers. Byron Tracy, the editor of the Robinson (Ill.) Daily News, once instructed me to never concern myself with stories about black people because the paper's readers were white. But I have also seen newspapers where the upper echelon of bosses were so worried black activists would protest, they backed off anything that could possible be construed as anti-black (such as pointing out the self-evident fact that so many black "leaders" are amoral crooks). Newspapers need to have black journalists. But they also need quality journalists who have gone through the ranks and fought the little battles that teach life lessons about fairness and keeping an open mind. There is too little of that in journalism today.
Roland Martin, editor ot Savoy Magazine, in a letter on the Romenesko's Medianews.org retter site, strongly takes issue with the Washington Times article. I note, however, that he does dispute that dissident black journalist was booed. But he takes great pains to make the dissident out to be a fringe lunatic whose views are offensive (therfore, in Evans mind) acceptable to boo and hiss at him during a speech. Which sort of proves my point: It is politically correct to have more black journalists, as long as they are the right kind of black journalists.

Unethical journalist exposed, Part III
A reporter wrote a scathing article about a candidate for governor of Tennessee without revealing he gave a contribution to the man's opponent. When this ethical violation was exposed, he claimed that because he wrote opinion, he was allowed to make contributions, but maybe he should have disclosed that in the article. Bull. This guy's lame excuses mirror those given by the some of 19 journalists whom the Boston Globe discovered donated money to Massachusetts gubernatorial candidate and former Clinton Labor Secretary Robert Reich. Even writers of commentary should not be active participants. Even a commentator should remain above the fray in order to guarantee his writings are not simply "spin" designed to make it easier for the guy he or she wants to win. Politicians hire consultants to provide "spin." A journalist's job is not to provide biased "spin."
Full disclosure:
In July 1998, I stopped working as a journalist (a situation I planned at the time to be permanent) and started working in a different field. Not long after, I officially joined the Libertarian Party. My membership lasted less than a year, as I soon became disillusioned with the organization. In mid-2001, I began writing articles on a freelance basis for the Peoria Times-Observer and in October 2001, I became that newspaper's editor. I am no longer a member of any political party and have never been involved in politics at any time I worked as a journalist.

Wednesday, August 07, 2002
gno gnews like good gnome gnewsThe mysterious life of lawn gnomes
Wisconsin police were baffled by a string of lawn gnome thefts. The problem is greater than people realize. I once covered a similar rash of missing gnome reports when I was a weekly editor in Tolono, Ill. That case was never solved, and Tolono prided itself on having no felony crimes, which was probably accomplished by having a police chief who would rather have his genitalia gnawed off by wolverines that arrest the star of the high school's basketball team, even though he got caught driving his car in people's yards. Anyway, I doubt the lawn gnomes went missing because of any piddley property crime. I think the lawn gnomes were up to no good. Driven violently insane by the silent G in their name, they took off for parts unknown. Fortunately, there are those who are aware of their menace to society

birdcageApparently, he had no birdcages that needed lining
A man used 215 layers of newspapers to build the walls of his home. I hope he didn't use the New York Times. Think of all the hot air that would generate during summer.

I made Elizabeth feel better Over at girlreport. I would love to know what it was I did or said.

Corporate idiots run amuk
This guy had the same experience I had. I was sending resumes and clips to prospective employers (don't worry, boss; this was long before I took my present job) and was told by the Kinkos clerk that they could not take my order because they were prevented by copyright laws from making copies of newspaper articles with my own name on them. Some of the clips were columns and had my picture. I came back with a letter from the editor -- who happened to be me -- giving them permission to make the copies. It was strange, because anyone with a PC and a printer ould have given them the exact same piece of paper. I hate to blame the company, because they know better than I how many lawsuits that have been filed against them. But, it seems to be that suing Kinkos because someone copies copyright material is like suing the phone company because somebody read the script from the news Staw Wars movie over the phone. Why doesn't Congress just give copy shops like Kinkos statutatory protection form this sort of suit?

Sunday, August 04, 2002
Dude, if I had the money, I'd ... well never mind what I would do
This guy wants to through a party and have guests pay for the entertainment.

Shut the hell UP already!
Clinton refuses to go away. He can help a candidate get the nomination, because many Democratuc activists elevated him to martyrdom after GOP's mostly (not completely unwarranted) attacks. But being perceived as a Clinton friend cannot help in the general election. Most independent voters just want the "Slick Willie" to go away.