Wednesday, November 26, 2014

On investigations and trusting them

Well, so much for those officially empowered investigations carried out under intense public and media scrutiny by -- what's that, The Washington Times? -- "the only people who have heard and examined all of the evidence of all of the witnesses." Maybe Sen. Graham can help us through a little pre-holiday mix-and-match game: Which images go with which sentiments from the Free and Independent Media?

National ReviewWhen the facts didn't back their narrative, they dismissed the facts and retreated into paranoid suspicion of the legal system.

Good thing federal officials are still on the case!

Let’s hope he’s able to shed light on what happened once and for all. The victims and their families deserve both justice and the truth.

No, that can't be it. How does it look from New York Avenue?


These purveyors of ... resentment had three months to polish their false and angry narrative, with the help of a compliant media that feeds on wild sensation.

Wow, that doesn't sound like the Lindsey Graham we know. Were the purveyors waving anything in particular?

Rioters armed with automatic weapons* fired on the police and put the torch to police cars.

Maybe the Rutherford Institute could help us put it all in perspective?
What we're really faced with, and what we'll see more of before long, is a growing dissatisfaction with the government and its heavy-handed tactics by people who are tired of being used and abused and are ready to say "enough is enough."
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Monday, November 24, 2014

This looks like a job for ...

Just assuming, for the sake of argument, that the common cold is well and truly cured and the Fractious Near East at peace, thus justifying the expenditure of frontpage space on a story that boils down to Supervisors Don't Mind That Previous Job Didn't Break Any Rules -- is Probie Hoseman* just another Popular Orange Vegetable, or is some deeper meaning afoot?

For all that they're the Voice of The People and everything, tabloids make The People work pretty hard sometimes. You don't just have to get "probie" and "hoseman," you have to know the Bravest from the Finest. Good thing the Daily News had -- um, triple byline and two more in the shirttail, five reporters free to work on bringing this epic to the reader. It does sort of make you wonder: Do you guys have any copy editors left?

* Stay tuned for the sequel, "Four Hosemen of the Apocalypse." Thanks, I'll be here all week.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Another day on Planet Fox

Hey, kids! What do you suppose was the takeaway point of Friday afternoon's report from the House Intelligence Committee?

Washington Post: An investigation by the Republican-led House Intelligence Committee has concluded that the CIA and U.S. military responded appropriately to the attacks on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012, dismissing allegations that the Obama administration blocked rescue attempts during the assault or sought to mislead the public afterward.

AP: ... Debunking a series of persistent allegations hinting at dark conspiracies, the investigation of the politically charged incident determined that there was no intelligence failure, no delay in sending a CIA rescue team, no missed opportunity for a military rescue, and no evidence the CIA was covertly shipping arms from Libya to Syria.

Fair 'n' Balanced Network: A leading Republican wants to expand the House investigation into the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attack by adding a Senate probe, as a new House Intelligence Committee report Friday concluded that the initial CIA assessment found no demonstrations prior to the assault and a primary purpose of the CIA operation in eastern Libya was to track the movement of weapons to Syria.
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Friday, November 21, 2014

Noun pile of the week

In case you missed it while the usurper was distracting you last week, freedom was under assault on many fronts:

There’s a new battleground in the war on Christmas – the suburbs of our nation’s capital. The school board in Montgomery County, Maryland has decided to appease Muslims families by making the school calendar — religious neutral.

The in-the-tank media appear to have let this one slip by, but the newly profitable Washington Times and its readers have stayed on the case, providing the genuinely awesome noun -- at last, by US standards -- noun pile above.

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Thursday, November 20, 2014

Son of "that's what"

Come for the "that's how long," stay for the sequence:

Twelve minutes.

That's how long it took someone to drive by three Pleasant Hill houses Monday morning and fire one or more bullets before driving away. Two people were struck and suffered non life-threatening injuries. More could easily have been wounded or worse, Pleasant Hill police said.

Certainly seems to have taken his sweet time about things, didn't he? (Assuming he was a he
and there was only one of him, I mean.) Unless you wait for the Google map to explain that the houses aren't next to each other or anything, except that makes the "one or more bullets" sound even more jargon-like -- and makes you wonder why the story's cautious enough to say "in the NNN block of ..." when the map gives exact addresses. But it takes your eye off the third graf, which begins "One is Local Teen" without letting on which of the earlier categories he might be one of. And then there's the caption with the mug, which see, but that's piling on.

Sometimes it'd be nice if there was less writing and more reading -- say, of the copy that's about to leave your hands -- at America's Newspapers.

(Thanks to longtime reader Sam for the share.)

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Sunday, November 09, 2014

Whose sari now?

What seems to be the hardest word today, Nation's Newspaper of Record?

An article last Sunday about Bradley Cooper, who is starring in a Broadway revival of “The Elephant Man,” referred incorrectly to the London address where Joseph Carey Merrick — the real Elephant Man — exhibited himself. The address is now a sari store — it is not, our sincerest apologies, “a sorry store.”

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Saturday, November 08, 2014

Today in making things up

Well -- not exactly. Actually, not at all. But with a little head-fakery on an otherwise innocent AP report, the Fair 'n' Balanced Network manages to push a made-up story. And once you've made the Drudge homepage, your work is done.

Here's what the AP reported Friday:

The U.N. nuclear agency said Friday that its attempts to probe allegations that Tehran worked on nuclear weapons were deadlocked — a finding that all but rules out hopes of full nuclear deal between six world powers and Iran by the Nov. 24 target date.

And the version that was Fox's No. 3 tale this morning, under the "Agency claims Iran still working toward nukes" hed shown above:

Hours after the UN’s nuclear agency said that its attempts to investigate allegations that Iran worked on nuclear weapons, an Iranian opposition group claimed to have information showing the country is still working toward nuclear weapons.

See the pivot foot move? Clumsy grammar aside, Fox is grafting one set of claims onto another, allowing a for the bogus hed (after the story fell downpage, the switch was even clearer: "UN agency claims Iran still working toward nukes"). Fox is simply having a little more fun with the opposition press conference, which AP discusses in its 11th graf:
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Transcription follies

Did anybody at the Nation's Newspaper of Record actually listen to the Joni Ernst victory speech? Or, you know, watch the earlier campaign ad?

An article on Thursday about some of the Republicans’ rising stars of the 114th Congress quoted incorrectly from comments by Senator-elect Joni Ernst, who on Tuesday night became the first woman elected to Congress from Iowa. She said: “We are heading to Washington. And we are going to make ‘em squeal!” — not “We are heading to Washington. And we are going to make a squeal!

Sometimes, the best question a copy editor can ask is something on the order of "Why would she say that?"

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