Tuesday, September 27

What I learned in the Washington Post today...

by justmy2 @ 9/27/2005 07:48:00 PM

The Washington Post was in fine form today. And I was lucky enough to have an entire plane ride to take it all in.  They really outdid themselves.  Their sources, opinion writers, editors, and editorial board really went out of their way to boost the sales of advil today.

Lesson 1:  If a newspaper reserves space for your story on a protest no one attends, write a story about a different protest, but go ahead and keep you original headline.

Let's see.  There is a protest that 400 people attend.   Hmm...that may make it difficult to fill two pages worth of copy.  What should a reporter do?

First, start out by not mentioning how many people attended.

The afternoon rally was tiny in comparison with Saturday's antiwar demonstration, for which D.C. Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey gave a crowd estimate of at least 100,000.

And then, dedicate 65% (19 of 29) paragraphs to the protest.  Use the other 10 paragraphs to bury the story about anti-war protest across the city on the same day, WITH MORE PEOPLE.

In the ballroom of a Holiday Inn on Capitol Hill, about 350 "jurors" sipped coffee and ate desserts as they watched a mock trial of Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, former CIA chief George J. Tenet and U.S. Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales. The men were accused of violating U.S. law and the Geneva Convention in supporting torture.

"Obviously, this isn't a real court of law," said Jennifer Harbury, a coordinator of the program. "I don't expect Mr. Rumsfeld to show up here and answer questions."


A few blocks away on the Mall, about 200 people who planned to be arrested today if President Bush would not agree to meet with them gathered in tents for a workshop on what to expect from police.

Ah..the smell of false equivalence in the sky on a fall day.  The Washington Post and the DC Media at its best.

Lesson 2:  Learn the mantra.  If something is repeated over and over, then it must be true.

In an actually pretty well-thought out and informative article regarding evolution, I find this gem.

Asked to provide examples of non-obvious, testable predictions made by the theory of Intelligent Design, John West, an associate director of the Discovery Institute, a Seattle-based ID think tank, offered one: In 1998, he said, an ID theorist, reckoning that an intelligent designer would not fill animals' genomes with DNA that had no use, predicted that much of the "junk" DNA in animals' genomes -- long seen as the detritus of evolutionary processes -- will someday be found to have a function.

(In fact, some "junk" DNA has indeed been found to be functional in recent years, though more than 90 percent of human DNA still appears to be the flotsam of biological history.) In any case, West said, it is up to Darwinists to prove ID wrong.

As soon as Mr. West proves the Theory of the Flying Spaghetti Monster is implausible, I will embark on this effort.  May Mr. West be touched by his noodly appendage

Lesson 3: A course is a course, of horse of horse...horsesh** that is

Now I have heard of moving the goalposts, but is it politically legal to morph them into a lottery ball drum of randomness?

President Bush and other administration officials continue to speak about Iraqi democracy in glowing terms, but you don't hear similar language from the military. After watching Iraqi political infighting for more than two years, they're more cautious. "I think we'd be foolish to try to build this into an American democracy," says one general. "It's going to take a very different form and character." The military commanders have concluded that because Iraqis have such strong cultural antibodies to the American presence, the World War II model of occupation isn't relevant. They've sharply lowered expectations for what America can accomplish.

What Abizaid and his commanders seem to fear most is that eroding political support for the war in the United States will undermine their strategy for a gradual transition to Iraqi control. They think that strategy is beginning to pay off, but it will require several more years of hard work to stabilize the country. The generals devoutly want the American people to stay the course -- but the course they describe is more limited, and more realistic, than recent political debate might suggest.

Got that...Everyone needs to stay the course, as soon as we get around to telling you what this week's course is...Can someone please give me a call when David Ignatius returns to the english speaking world?

Lesson 4:  The Washington Post Editorial Board has hired mind readers.

Fred Hiatt and company apparently have performed a mind meld with John Roberts.

A second important factor is temperament. One reason Judge Roberts seems so different from conservative justices such as Antonin Scalia is that he does not project a desire to use the bench to wage a war for the future of American society. Rather, he portrays the court as a place to resolve disputes between parties that cannot do so on their own. Mr. Bush should once again avoid a nominee who displays a grandiose vision of the judicial function. Similarly, nominees who display a commitment to precedent are far less threatening to those who disagree with them than ones who appear eager to overturn decisions with which they disagree. Justice Clarence Thomas is the court's most radical justice precisely because of his blithe willingness to revisit holdings that are decades old.

You know what, after reading the following quote from the confirmation hearings, they may have a point .

"I think overruling a case or reconsidering a case is a very serious matter. Certainly, you would have to be of the view that a case is incorrectly decided, but I think even that is not adequate. There are some cases that you may not agree with that should not be overruled. Stare decisis provides continuity to our system, it provides predictability, and in our process of case-by-case decision-making, I think it is a very important and critical concept. A judge that wants to reconsider a case and certainly one who wants to overrule a case has the burden of demonstrating that not only is the case incorrect, but that it would be appropriate, in view of stare decisis, to make that additional step of overruling that case."

Well, if you put it that way, who would dare label this person a radical justice.  OH WAIT!!!

That was Clarence Thomas in 1991.  MY BAD.

It is nice to know that psychics now are writing for a national news source.  However, I will stick with actually waiting for Judge Roberts to make a few rulings before I determine his judicial "temperament".


What a privilege it was to be a Washington Post reader on such a glorious day...I needed good laugh that early in the morning.  I just wish I was reading the comics while I was laughing.  My head also hurts.

Pass the advil.


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