Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Invidious Comparisons

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Dick & Don


“The similarities between Nixon and Trump leap off the page like crickets.

“There is, first and most superficially, their nonpresidential looks . . . . More substantively, there’s the matter of their Old Testament fury at the news media. (‘The press is the enemy,’ Nixon told his aides. ‘Write that on the blackboard 100 times and never forget it.’)

“What else? Their thin skin. Their skyscraping paranoia. Their cavernous memory for slights.”

—Jennifer Senior, reviewing John A. Farrell’s book in “‘Richard Nixon,’ Portrait of a Thin-Skinned, Media-Hating President,” The New York Times, March 29, 2017.
 

Editorial Comment: Well, sure. But aside from that . . . .


PeezPix by Ted Pease

Makes the Garden Gnome Look Good












Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Vietnam Revisited

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War and Remembrance

“There’ll be moments when you hate it, because it’s saying the thing that’s opposite to what you feel or what you believe. But wait two minutes, and it’ll be saying exactly what you feel and believe. And then be prepared because two minutes after that, it might be yet another thing that you didn’t know whether you liked or you didn’t like.”

—Ken Burns, filmmaker, in Erik Mink, “Vietnam: A Measure of Hope and Healing,” HuffPo, Sept. 14, 2017. (Thanks to alert WORDster Mark Larson)
 

Editorial Comment: As I remember Vietnam, there wasn’t much likable about it.


PeezPix by Ted Pease

Berrybush








Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Monday, September 18, 2017

What Happened?

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Media Mess-Up


“But the press is among the groups that messed this up, badly, in particular through the relentless push in New York Times coverage that made ‘but, her emails!’ a rueful post-campaign meme. With this book, Hillary Clinton has gone a considerable distance toward facing her responsibility for the current state of the country. Before any news organization tells her to pipe down or stop explaining herself, I’d like to see them be as honest about their own responsibility.” 

—James Fallows, national correspondent, “Why Hillary’s Book Is Actually Worth Reading,” The Atlantic, Sept. 15, 2017.

Editorial Comment: As Jon Stewart would have said, the whole thing was a clusterf%@k

Related: Judy Woodruff’s interview with Hillary Clinton is worth watching. “Dissecting the election, Hillary Clinton sees dangers for democracy,” PBS, Sept. 15, 2017 


PeezPix by Ted Pease

The Luffenholtz Serpent











Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Friday, September 15, 2017

The ‘Free Speech’ Circus

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Media Mosh Pit


“The Free Speech Movement of the 1960s was led by UC Berkeley students who protested the administration’s ban on campus political activities. Berkeley is once again a battleground, but five decades later two things are glaringly different: This isn’t a student movement, and it’s not about free speech. . . .”

“For this contrived ‘free speech’ movement, UC Berkeley is an open-air fighting arena, the most popular destination for a clown who needs a media circus to drum up business.”

—Otis R. Taylor Jr., columnist, “Rhetoric fails to match reality on UC Berkeley campus,” San Francisco Chronicle, Sept. 14, 2017.


Editorial Comment: Goals of free expression and ideas taken over by goals of free media attention and spectacle.


PeezPix by Ted Pease

Stranded Velella









Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Dissent

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. . . Is Essential

“The enemy in any democracy is not dissent, from either within or without. Dissent, in fact, is essential. The enemy is dishonesty, ignorance, indifference, intolerance. The ability to hold journalists accountable has never been greater, and we take legitimate criticism as a challenge to do better.” 

—Nancy Gibbs, managing editor, “Jefferson's Warning to the White House,” TIME, Feb. 2, 2017. (Thanks to alert WORDster Steve Marston)

Editorial Comment: Let’s hold government accountable, too.


PeezPix by Ted Pease

Low Tide Perch





Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

News Deserts

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Civic Responsibility

“Concerns about the role and ownership of newspapers have been voiced and debated since the founding of the country. However, the dramatic shift in ownership of newspapers over the past decade – coupled with the rapidly deteriorating finances of community papers – brings added urgency to a new version of an age-old question: In the digital age, what is the civic responsibility of newspaper owners to their communities?”

—Penelope Muse Abernathy, Knight chair in Journalism and Digital Media Economics, University of North Carolina, “The Rise of a New Media Baron and the Emerging Threat of News Deserts,” 2017


Editorial Comment: In too many U.S. towns — “news deserts” — what passes for local news is Twitter and the Fox feed.


PeezPix by Ted Pease

Christine’s kitty








Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Storm Warning

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Not Enough Sense . . .


“My msg to @nytimes reporters in Florida: do not risk your lives by standing out in the middle of the storm like some of your TV colleagues.”

—Marc Lacey, New York Times national editor, tweets to staff covering Hurricane Irma, in Meg Dalton, “Out in the Storm,” Columbia Journalism Review, Sept. 10, 2017.





Editorial Comment: . . . to come in out of the rain. Image: Dan Rather did it first, in Hurricane Carla, 1961.


PeezPix by Ted Pease

Into the Woods












Get TODAY'S WORD ON JOURNALISM in your email every weekday morning during WORD season. This is a free “service” sent to the 2,000,000 or so misguided subscribers around the planet, to infinity and beyond. If you have recovered from whatever illness led you to subscribe and don’t want it anymore, send “unsubscribe” to ted.pease@gmail.com. Or if you want to afflict someone else, send me the email address and watch the fun begin. (Disclaimer: I just quote ’em, I don’t necessarily endorse ’em. But all contain at least a kernel of insight. Don’t shoot the messenger.) #tedsword
 
Ted Pease, Professor of Interesting Stuff, Trinidad, California. 
(Be)Friend The WORD

“I don’t think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” —Tom Stoppard