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Category Archives: Bits and pieces

Commoditizing the news

Interesting bit in the New Yorker on covering earthquakes: Upon repetition, covering earthquakes gradually became less pure. The reason is that as a newspaper correspondent, at least, one became schooled in the editor-feeding subgenres of earthquake coverage. These subgenre stories passed like months on a calendar across the twelve days that generally constitutes the entire […]

Mikey Hicks, an 8-year-old from New Jersey, is on the terrorist watch list. The first time he was patted down, at Newark Liberty International Airport, Mikey was 2. He cried.

Well that was bound to happen sooner or later

Cue feigned surprise/indignation

From the New York Times: Five years after famously dodging questions about steroids during a nationally televised Congressional hearing, Mark McGwire admitted on Monday to using them throughout his career.

From the most excellent Baseline Scenario: … yes, bankers are like athletes. Their individual contributions are overrated relative to their supporting environments; they are overpaid; they are paid based on where they randomly fall in the probability distribution in a given year; and paying a lot for bankers is no guarantee that your bank will […]

What will they think of next

I have this thing where I watch commercials on American television and I say to myself: There must be something wrong with Americans. This is one of those commercials. It reminds me of the part in Idiocracy where, 500 years in the future, Luke Wilson learns that modern medicine is extinct because researchers wasted all […]

Fox News continues to polish its reputation for sophisticated thought and intellectual rigor by signing on Sarah Palin as a contributor. No word yet on whether she’ll be teaming up with Mike Huckabee for a special Alaska episode of his Praise the Lord Hodown Conservative Variety Show Hour Thing.

Good for you, Mrs. Robinson

If there were ever a scandal made for headline writers: The sex scandal that has transfixed Northern Ireland in recent days has a cinematic echo: a 60-year-old Mrs. Robinson who was caught in an affair with a man who was 19 at the time, and is now at the center of a scandal that threatens to bring […]

You stay classy, ICE

From the New York Times: … as the administration moves to increase oversight within [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] , the documents show how officials — some still in key positions — used their role as overseers to cover up evidence of mistreatment, deflect scrutiny by the news media or prepare exculpatory public statements after gathering […]

A best-to-worst ranking of 200 careers is making the rounds. Number 184 on the list is Newspaper Reporter, ranking just below Seaman and Machinist but just above Stevedore and Sheet Metal Worker. Glad I went to college.