Sunday, September 13, 2009

On Reading the New York Times

If you were expecting a continuation of last week's post -- well, that comes next week. I'm going to give my readers another opportunity to comment on my "Two Nation" solution to the political mess we find ourselves experiencing. (Surely such a radical notion conjures up a few thoughts -- even though I told you I didn't really believe it was the answer!)

So, today, you get to experience vicariously the enormous pleasure I got out of reading the New York Times a few Sundays ago. Herewith, the essay I wrote in early August, saving it just for this occasion:

Yes, it's expensive to subscribe to every day home delivery. But where else, in one edition of any publication, can you read about:

* the impact of economics professors on real-life American financial meltdowns;

* the arrest of a homeless man for being homeless while he sleeps in a shelter;

* the impact of special interests on what otherwise would be an effective cap-and-trade system on carbon emissions;

* the awakening of our defense department to the security threats posed by climate change;

* the questionable ethical behavior of former Treasury secretary Henry M. Paulson during the economic turmoil of late 2008;

* the drug industry's plan to spend up to $150 million to run TV ads in support of health care change(wow, where did all that money come from? can you say "consumers"?);

* the demise of printed textbooks in favor of electronic delivery of sometimes-free content;

* the continuation of presidential signing statements;

* orthopedic problems associated with young baseball pitchers throwing too many fastballs; and

* President Obama's improvisational sense of humor?

Wait, there's more! Alberto Gonzales answers a question about his "ethical failings" by saying "All the inspector-general investigations, they're over now. They found that I had not engaged in any criminal wrongdoing." (Hmm, let me see -- is he equating unethical behavior with illegal behavior, or is he just evading the question? I report, you decide.) He follows up by saying, in response to a question about whether he has been offered a job with a law firm since le left government service, "I can understand why a company or a firm would want to make sure that the investigations are complete and there is no finding of wrongdoing before they make a hiring decision." And he's writing a book, publisher still to be identified. OK, I can relate to him on that last point.

Wait, there's STILL more! The word "fail" is becoming an adjective, as in "I'm so fail." (Is that somehow related to "Me bad"?) Human beings evolve, so does language. Who woulda thunk?

On Sunday, August 9, 2009, all this and more provided me with hours of enjoyment (not to mention the content for this blog post).

By the way, the New York Times actually has something in common with the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin -- neither is perfect. The photo of Sonia Sotomayor on page 1 of the Times, taking her oath of office as a Supreme Court Justice, says the accompanying article appears on page 12. It doesn't; it appears on page 10. (Does the Daily Bulletin make a few errors from time time? Don't get me started! Recently, a "reporter" kindly informed me that "entertaining entertainers" would be present at the Los Angeles County Fair.)

OK. I know you have 23 more blogs to read and 7 messages on your Facebook wall informing you what your friends had for dinner last night. So I'll end this here. But first, in the interest of full disclosure, I have no financial interest whatsoever in your subscribing to the New York Times! Do so only at peril of finding out what's really going on in the world.

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