As a sports writer, I covered many events that I was not a fan of personally. Collegiate gymnastics comes to mind. But as an avid sports fan, I had enough knowledge to write fairly and without showing my distaste for a sport that I covered. If I ever publicly admitted to not liking a sport, it would have likely been in a tone to admit pleasure once actually watching the sport in length – for instance curling. What this writer did was to show the line of thought held by many in a newsroom that their columns are actually, somehow, important to the world at large.
Professionally speaking, Shannon, would you as a sportswriter admit publicly that you were scared to go in the ocean and creeped out by zoos? Wouldn't that be like the Arts & Entertainment writer admitting he's always thought theatrical productions were too frou-frou or the Automobiles writer saying he won't go anywhere the subway lines don't go?
First off, this columnist reminds me of the person in the newsroom -
and in life - who thinks too much of themselves and their product to
understand how their opinions can come across to others, especially
hours after the death of an iconic figure like Steve Irwin.
fact that Rick Telander is a sports columnist should not go unnoticed.
Why was he writing about Irwin's death in the first place? Commentary
on Irwin's life and contributions to conservation efforts seem best fit
for an outdoors columnist or a lifestyles columnist, not a writer who
sandwhiched the column in between articles about Rex Grossman of the
Chicago Bears and the US Olympic basketball team.
It seems as
though Telander wanted to be "cool" in writing something different.
Instead he comes off inconsiderate of the circumstances around Irwin's
life and death.
Like most I was saddened to hear of Steve Irwin's death this week, and like most I wasn't surprised at how he died — on the job, victim of an animal attack. The unjaded among us might say he "died doing what he loved."
Unlike the Chicago Sun-Times'Rick Telander, however, I don't find the occasion worth sneering about. Telander finds "something very much like karma at work" with Irwin's death, and that's after he calls the late naturalist an "animal provocateur" and "hyperactive entertainer whose giddily-excited expression was part-lemur, part-carnival barker." (Aside: does anyone understand the "part-lemur" bit?)
Most grating to Telander is that Irwin was "lauded as a conservationist," but he didn't meet Telander's expectations of a conservationist. Telander never spells those out exactly, but apparently they don't include "mesmerizing awe-stricken kids crouched in front of TV sets" in "130 countries." No, apparently reaching all those viewers with one's great love for and excitement about nature did nothing. And worse, Steve Irwin ... well, he made money doing it! (Horrors!)
Telander's perspective on nature? Well...
I put on my bathing trunks, sprinted across the white sand into the warm water and instantly was stung by a Portuguese Man-of-War. ... Believe it, I never went back in the Gulf.
Circuses always gave me the creeps ... I never liked zoos, either. ... When I saw Siegfried and Roy perform in Tokyo 15 years ago, I was creeped out ...
The natural world always amazed me.
And it scared me, too.
Pity Steve Irwin didn't run into a jelly fish and not the end.
What a feckless taunt, a nanny-nanny-boo-boo coming from the plastic bubble! As for me, I loved Irwin's show and found his boyish enthusiasm over ivv'ry creachah he encountered to be downright infectious. The world would seem a less magical, awesome and exciting place if "The Crocodile Hunter" had been the shrinking violet to raw nature that Mr. Telander is.
Nevertheless, it is true that Telander lives on — "exploiting" the death of Irwin for lucre while not sharing a passion for nature with kids (and adults) in 130 countries.
Public sector collective bargaining is one of the worst ideas since......hmmmmm.........government control of education? Inflation? Protective tariffs? There are plenty of contenders here. Suffice it to say that North Carolina has sensibly stood firm against this horrible idea, one of the few states that has kept Pandora's Box firmly shut. In states that have caved in, like NY and California, the result has been constantly rising costs for public sector "services."
Big Labor wants to be able to dip into the public trough. The legislators had better say no.
Evan Coyne Maloney has released his latest documentary, this one
looking at the Sept. 11 terrorist attack through the eyes of eyewitness
footage. There are also 911 calls sprinkled into the documentary,
titled "Crystal Morning." He is also the producer of documentaries that, in the past, have examined academic problems in higher education.
If ABC allows the docudrama "The Path to 9/11" to air unchanged under pressure from Clintonista thuggery, I'll be very surprised. When Clinton slits his eyes and wags his finger at the network execs, I think they'll cave. But...
they don't, I think this will signal the end of Clinton's hold on the
American artistic Left. It will mean that his temper tantrums have
finally become tiresome, even to those most in his thrall for the past two decades.
show, which is, by all accounts, a fair representation of about 15
years boiled down to five hours, airs on Sunday and Monday at 8 p.m. on
You're the state capitol's premier newspaper. You are the news source for government and politics in the state. You have the most committed coverage of the governor's beat.
So, when a judge rules that your governor has violated the state constitution by wrongfully taking money for other purposes, what news slot does it deserve? Front page? Inside front? Front of section B?
Nah, just a mention in your everyday political briefs rundown on Page B-5.
BAGHDAD, Iraq - Coalition forces handed over control of Iraq's armed forces command to the government Thursday, a move that U.S. officials have hailed as a crucial milestone on the country's difficult road to independence.
Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki signed a document taking control of Iraq's small naval and air forces and the 8th Iraqi Army Division, based in the south. However, it is still unclear how rapidly the Iraqi forces will be prepared to take over their own security.
"From today forward, the Iraqi military responsibilities will be increasingly conceived and led by Iraqis," said Gen. George Casey, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, at a ceremony.
Handing over control of the country's security to Iraqi forces is vital to any eventual drawdown of U.S. forces here. After disbanding the remaining Iraqi army following the U.S.-led invasion in 2003, coalition forces have been training the new Iraqi military.
However, it is unclear exactly how quickly Iraqi forces will be prepared to take over their own security.
That's title of this excellent Wall Street Journal editorial today. The writers acknowledge the originator of the phrase, economist Joseph Schumpeter, who used it to capture the essence of competitive markets, namely that investments in old ideas are eventually wiped out by new and better ideas.
One of the points made is that the "social democracies" of western Europe have done much to prevent creative destruction. With enough political muscle, it's possible to shelter industries and workers from having to adapt to changing conditions -- for a while. But the results are not good even in the short run (high unemployment and economic stagnation) and in the long run, nations that attempt to prevent the market from working will end up like Cuba or North Korea. Human and financial capital will flee.
Political intervention leads to something akin to arteriosclerosis, but the short-sightedness of most politicians and voters brings it on anyway.
This BARS are on the prowl in Western North Carolina, so if you see a bear do these steps according to the Asheville Citizen Times:
If you see a bear:
• Do not approach.
• You’re too close if the bear stops eating, heads in a different direction, or watches you.
• Being too close might make the bear aggressive. It could run toward you or swat the ground.
• Don’t run, but slowly back away.
• If a bear persistently follows without vocalizing or paw swatting, try changing your direction.
• If the bear continues to follow, stand your ground.
• If the bear gets closer, talk loudly or shout at it. Act aggressively and try to intimidate the bear.
Act together as a group if you have companions. Throw nonfood objects
such as rocks at the bear. Use a deterrent such as a stout stick.
• Don’t run and don’t turn away from the bear.
I don't know about you, but if a 500 pound black bear charges me I'm not going to stand there and embrace it, are you?
The UNC-Chapel Hill Employee Forum voted yesterday on a resolution to seek a repeal of a state law to allow employees access to collective bargaining. In other words, employees at UNC-Chapel Hill want to start a union and they want President Bowles to support their efforts.
Both JLF President John Hood (in National Review Online) and longtime JLF ally Drew Cline (in The Weekly Standard online) have commented in recent days on the impending changes for candidates seeking the Democratic presidential nomination.
This year, the American Left has dusted off one of its all-time favorite "issues," the supposedly unfair distribution of income. Politicians who appeal to envy for votes the way McDonald's appeals to hunger for sales will undoubtedly be sounding the theme.
The New York Times led the campaign off with a bit of advocacy journalism prominently placed on page 1. Recently, the Washington Post has piled on, but the indefatigable Alan Reynolds here rips apart the two pieces it has run.
It's good stuff.
The trouble with the statistical approach taken by the leftists is that it ignores individual effort. One of the Post writers complains that "The richest fifth of households took hom 50.4 percent of all income, the largest share since the government began tracking data in 1967." Even if accurate (Reynolds attacks the data), so what? Why does it follow that government needs to do anything because some people succeed more than others?
The Post's Sebastian Mallaby advocates a set of new redistributionist policies and Reynolds torpedoes them. But that won't make any difference to politicians who are looking for "issues." Undoubtedly, we will hear the likes of John Edwards talking about plans for taking from the wealthy and giving to the poor.
According to Clint Bolick, school districts, like the Los Angeles Unified School Monster, are finding ways to skirt the school choice provision under No Child Left Behind. Under NCLB, a Title I school that does not make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) in the same subject for two or more consecutive years must offer parents the choice to transfer to another school. School districts must notify parents that they have the option to transfer their child.
Bolick points out many parents with children in Monster schools 1) did not know that their school was failing 2) did not receive notification from the school district that they have the option to transfer their child to another school, and 3) when presented with the option, expressed a desire to transfer their child to another school. Bolick, as president of the Alliance for School Choice, is obligated to mention that students cannot (but should be allowed to) transfer to a private school.
I have little doubt that the Monster failed to inform parents of their right to transfer their child. For obvious reasons, school districts avoid the subject of choice as much as possible. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings is frying bigger fish, i.e., NCLB's teacher quality and performance measurement issues, to focus on choice.
Recently, Spellings threatened to withhold federal funds from districts that do not abide by the NCLB law. Let's be honest. She is not going to do it. She is a softy. If she were to do what needed to be done, she would withhold all federal funds from public schools and eliminate the Department of Education.
But that is a totally different subject altogether.
But that is a totally different subject.