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January 09, 2005


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For mainstream news, there are market tested scripts and formulas. You can, as Emerson mentioned, emulate Izzy Stone and still get a lot of value out of them. That's largely thanks to the what's left of the journalists' professionalism -- a quality that's nearly "value neutral", in my opinion. The upstream editorial staff ensures the eventually published story fits the newspaper's guidelines. Raw, fact based news isn't exciting and won't hold the consumers' interest.

I wish more people would put themselves in detective shoes when they read. There's no story that stands on its own and the classifieds, picture ads and positioning of the stories in the body of the paper tell you as much the news content itself. For every Tom Matrullo or Inspector Lohmann (just two of my favorites), there are dozens of bloggers deconstructing one story at a time and missing the bigger picture. It's the same as treating symptoms while ignoring the underlying illness.

Karl Krause in Vienna between the wars would cut up the newspapers and interleave comments, then republish. He would drily note how the paper would pontificate about monality on page one, while selling ads for prostitutes on page 12. Vienna during that era, of course, saw the rise of Hitler. In Krause's notes to papers you can see how Hitlerism was received, how the camps were treated, how for example a truck load of Jews might go by all beaten and bruised. "The had had a bad fall," might be the official explanation. Bad faith and bad humor. The insidious bargains between owners, advertisers, supine populace, and structural violence. We can all agree on the importance of protecting our precious Freedoms.

Isn't it a well-known journalistic practice that a reporter will place his most astringent observations in the last paragraphs of a story, while adhering to the pyramid for the rest?

When I used to read newspapers I would make it a practice to shift from the first paragraphs to the last, and then read the middle, if at all.

Er, I meant to add: and that is co-opted rebellion on the reporter's part?

Bloggers are not journalists, but journalists aren't either.

This is a key point that has been bothering me to no end (literally;-) for the past couple of years. The MSM journalists are almost at the other end of the pole from the blogger's buried detail that is the holon of the story ... information, sound or otherwise, passed through the corpo-goverate ideology, the publisher's or director's philosophy andaeshthetic, sieved through the respective journalist's mind and biases, crimped by availablespace (or not).

A sorry state of affairs - over-rigid hegemony of role with the MSM, and over-loose anarchitecture of standards wrt blogging when it pertains to what is called "news".

yeah, bloogers are picking fly-shit off the silverware while the dinner burns.

I don't know if that's the case anymore, though I recall reading about it in the past. Editorial homogenization and inserting bits of titillating nonsense guarantees advertising revenue stream.

I'd love to get a look at Harper's accounting. It's a consistently high quality publication that thrives despite having character. Of course, they have a foundation backing it, as does NarcoNews.

Giordano got peanuts compared to what MacArthur must shell out for a glossy mag.

"Picking fly shit off the sliverware," while maybe Rome burns. I wish academics would do serious studies of the FOX News consumers. What does it do to the consumers psyche when facts are introduced, does the galvenometer go haywire, does the consumer need to be medicated? Cognitive dissonance is a terrible thing. Once you become a member of a cult suddenly everything makes sense, as long as you don't listen to the outsiders.

Hey, the Fox knows many things, but hedgehogs can get distracted too.

I wouldn't limit fly-shitology to the right.

Up thread .... klaus, are bloogers the progeny of bloggers ?

.... now that we're all in this shorter-cycle world, maybe generations are compressed too ?

In some cases, it is wise to let typos persist.

"Once you become a member of a cult suddenly everything makes sense" ...because...
...because what we really are is not individual consumer units set loose in a landscape of opportunity. What we really are are packet-carriers of gene-matter. What that is, is beyond me at the moment.
But the reality of it is now the reality-is-our-copyright-brand-and-trademark folks are working that edge as surely as they're herding the more productive hens into the Fox house.
The hive sees the options of the hive more clearly than the drones see the options of the hive, but the drones see their own options clearly enough. Worship the thing that promises your genetic material a place at the table, while it weaves your single thread into the skein and the skein into the warp and woof of near-eternity, the human earthly stepping-stone. We live at the cusp of infinite power - Ponce de Leon with warp-drive idling just around the bend, soon as we get these rebels off our backs.
Cowardice is as much a survival strategy in that context as heroism, and has a good shot at triumph in a world as profaned as this one's becoming.
Death squads in Iraq! Damnation! Now, don't that beat all!
What's next - Ozzy Osbourne, Ambassador to Uraguay?
The Roman thing overall went and did what it did overall, rise and fall etc.; but there were real folks, like maybe what? sandalmakers and barley merchants, wheelwrights and tinsmiths, who just made the best of what they had in front of them, while up in the hills the educated nobility arranged genteel pacts of mutual and graceful self-death, before social decay made personal degradation inevitable.
It gets written up as whole-system events transpiring, because it also was, but that's the cult thing, you see? Whole-system. Not individual. Hive history.
Most of us have lives that mean nothing within that history.
Unless we make them so.

Sounds like you are a good candidate for Candidia's milking machine.

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