Posts Tagged ‘LBJ’

The column with no photo

March 16, 2012

The conflict inAfghanistanhad its Tet Offensive moment last Sunday, when a soldier, whose name wasn’t initially released by the Ministry of Truth, went on a shooting rampage.  Just because the Peaceniks believe that proves that the war inAfghanistanis unwinnable, they are ready to call it quits.  President Obama can now sound like George W. Bush and urge the folks to continue fighting the war inAfghanistanfor no appareanet reason or he can mimic Lyndon Johnson and decline the Democratic Party’s nomination.  By mid-week, President Obama was recycling many of the Bush clichés about staying the course.

On Tuesday, Rick Santorum won two more primaries and thus underscored the sourceless contention that Mitt Romney is not a member of the <I>Herrenvolk</I> and thus ineligible to receive his Party’s Presidential nomination.

The Republicans believe in a Republic which means that only eligible people (men who own land according to the Founding Fathers) can vote and thus they will have no philosophical objections if the Party elite perform an intervention and deliver the Party’s Presidential nomination to someone who is a member of the <I>Herrenvolk</I> and is obviously qualified to reestablish the Republican domination of the White House.  (A Republican has been in the White House for 28 of the last forty-four years or 36 of the last sixty years.)

During the week we saw an item online that asserted that inEnglandtwo reporters involved in the Murdoch-gate phone tapping scandal had attempted suicide.  Don’t the Brits call the investigation Operation Weeting?

The Porngate scandal inIndiadoesn’t seem to be getting much play in American media.

On Tuesday, Uncle Rushbo fresh from a day off for golfing, started his program with a meticulous examination of the meaning of the numbers for oil prices and oil production.  Since there had been an item online reporting that a Canadian study asserted that Conservatives tended to be less educated and more insecure than Liberals, we marveled that the man who flatly stated that there is no Republican war on women, was able to mesmerize his audience, reputed to number 20 million, with facts and figures that might tend to bore all but a very specific college classroom full of students ready and eager to join the BP assault on undersea oil reserves around the globe. 

Does Uncle Rushbo’s disk jockey have permission from the artist to play the old hit “I’m the Pied Piper”?  We ask that quesiton because, apparently, he has the magic touch and can lead his vast audience into some very arcane and esoteric facts and figures and not suffer any perceptible amount of listener defections. 

On Thursday, Uncle Rushbo was mesmerizing his millions of listeners with a discourse on the history and purpose of the strategic oil reserves.  That, in turn, made us wonder what would Lenny Bruce have said about Limbaugh’s “slut” slur?

Speaking of adventuresome college radio, this week we heard a well done report on KALX (the UCB student radio station) from North Gate Radio about fecal transplants.  It was one of those unusual bits of news that usually shoots to the top of the list on odd news websites such as Fark and/or Obscure Store.

The World’s Laziest Journalist has noticed that using a photo to illustrate the columns usually means a better chance of catching the reader’s eyes, but the challenge (and time consuming nature of the task) of finding an appropriate still shot and then getting the photographer’s permission to use it is very daunting, and so (after struggling with learning to include the photos with the posting) we often resort to taking an appropriate photo and using that. 

It works out rather well if the columnist manages to get some shots of some news worthy events that are mentioned in the column, such as arrests at a “No Justice; No BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit)” protest, or some events at Occupy Oakland or Occupy Cal; but for a week when there are no high news value images available, that means either running a mundane weather shot or mooching an extra shot from a former high-school classmate who covered the Amelia Island Concours D’Elegance, a high profile car event held in Florida, for the Just Above Sunset Photo website or not using any and losing a chance for the column to be more noticeable.

The World’s Laziest Journalist missed such a photo op inBerkeleylast weekend, when Louis Frakaan delivered some controversial comments at a speaking engagement at theUniversityofCalifornia’sBerkeleycampus.

Wasn’t there some concern in the early days of the Internet media revolution that quality content would be accorded diminished value as “bells and whistles” graphics were added to various web sites? 

Here is a hypothetical example of how an item without a very noticeable graphics can loose reader appeal.  Recently we picked up a copy of “The New Journalism” by Tom Wolfe (“an anthology edited by Tome Wolfe and E. W. Johnson” [Harper and Row paperback edition]) and began to assemble some information for writing a column about the 50th anniversary of the start of the “New Journalism” branch of news reporting.  The publication of “Joe Louis the King as Middle-aged Man” in Esquire magazine in 1962, is cited by Wolfe as a significant milestone in the demarcation of the birth of the trend.

The anthology includes all of the essential examples of the New Journalism (called “Gonzo Journalism” by Hunter S. Thompson) but it also piqued our curiosity.  Does You Tube offer a hilarious obscure example of “Parajournalism” (as Wolfe dubbed it) that consisted of video of Hunter S. Thompson interviewing Keith Richards?  We learned that several versions have been posted there and a still shot from that tsunami of mumbled unintelligible syllables would serve as bait for luring unsuspecting new readers into the latest example of this columnist’s attempt to preserve the traditions of “thee dot journalism” . . . if we could figure out how the heck to insert such a still shot touting that interview before the (self imposed) Friday morning deadline. 

In the past, the World’s Laziest Journalist has made efforts to draw attention to the idea that Philip K. Dick, in his speculative history work of fiction titled “The Man in the High Castle,” seemed to accurately predict Hunter S. Thompson’s life and writings.

Our efforts to draw attention to that coincidence have been just as successful as our Hans Brinker-ish efforts to warn Liberals that Karl Rove will use delegate gridlock at the Republican National Convention as a smoke and mirrors diversion to hand the nomination to JEB Bush. 

The Conservative pundits will ignore the JEB angle because they don’t want to tip Rove’s hand and the Liberal commentators can’t or won’t acknowledge that scenario because . . . they receive their generous paychecks from media owners who don’t want any spoiler material put into the national debate . . . until it’s too late.

Perhaps some folks who have a rare form of diarrhea and are in need of some therapeutic bacteria are not the only ones who qualify for fecal transplants?  Could that concept be used as a metaphor for the Liberal voices employed by Conservative media owners?

The topic of objectivity vs. a reporter’s emotional involvement with a news story got an example of the inherent dangers on Thursday night when a KALX reporter on the evening newscast became overcome with emotion and had to hit the cough button.  The story was about an event at a zoo inGermanyto draw attention to the arrival of a new bunny.  Unfortunately during the course of the media event, the bunny was trampled to death by the attending journalists.  The reporter seemed on the verge of tears when she deactivated her microphone for a few moments.

In “The New Journalism,” Wolfe describes the task facing subservient “wordproles” (on page 44):  “The reporter . . . (manifests) behavior that comes close to being servile or even beggarly. . . . They supply mainly ‘vivid description’ plus sentiment.”  Then they are free to (as Liberace once put it) “cry all the way to the bank.”  (Do you honestly think that any on-air personality at Fox would dare show any sign of disapproval if JEB gets the Republican nomination?)

Now the disk jockey will playRoyOrbison’s “Workin’ for the Man,” Gene Autry’s “Here comes Peter Cottontail,” and Bing Crosby’s “When Irish Eyes Are Smiling . . . .”  We have to go find our green T-shirt and green Branch Motor Express jacket.  Have an “Erin go Bragh” (Ireland forever!) type week.

 

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