Silly Prince George Citizen, holding a staff writer to account for generously liberating other writers’ work:
To our shock and dismay, multiple incidents of plagiarism were uncovered from work over the last number of months. The staff member plagiarized various online new publications, while writing opinion pieces that appeared in this space. Entire paragraphs were copied and then blended into articles, removing a word here and there, or adding a clause to link certain phrases, but leaving the words of the original writer all or mostly intact, without attribution to the original writer or publication.
As of Tuesday morning, that news staff member is no longer employed at this newspaper.
As Sixth Estate modestly notes:
I can think of a much more important paper than the Citizen which showed us that when a minor charge like serial plagiarism comes along, there’s certainly no need to fire anyone as long as the writer in question says it was inadvertent and is willing to print a vaguely worded apology.
Not to name any names or anything.
[T]here’s a real lack of self-awareness here. Jonathon [sic], after all, is comment pages editor at the National Post, and under his watch it has for years entertained junk science from Global Warming deniers. Sometimes this nonsense has been confined to the OpEd pages; sometimes its made the news, and sometimes the claims have been so egregiously false that defamation suits have been the result.
And as I have written on several occasions, you can’t open the floodgates a little way. You can’t set teh crazy just a little bit free. When you start smearing a particular scientific field, you get mud over the whole edifice.
Editing by click rate is stupid and unethical. Chasing traffic is an abyss. The hamsterization of journalism is degrading the work environment for news professionals. Expecting reporters to report, write, blog, tweet, shoot video, sift the web, raise their metabolism, and produce more without time and training is guaranteed to fail. Trading in print dollars for digital dimes has been an economic disaster for newsrooms that ran on those dollars. Online advertising will never replace what was lost. The editorial staff is the engine that makes the whole thing go. You cannot cut your way to the future. The term “content” is a barbarism that bit by bit devalues what journalists do. Pure aggregation is parasitic on original reporting. Untended, online comment sections have become sewers, protectorates for the deranged, depraved and deluded. That we have fewer eyes on power, fewer journalists at the statehouse or city hall watching what goes on, almost guarantees that there will be more corruption. Bloggers and citizen journalists cannot fill the gap. Experienced beat reporters are the community’s institutional memory. Everyone needs an editor. It’s absurd to claim that “anyone” can be a journalist if we mean by that someone who knows how to find the right sources and ask the right questions, dig for information, counter the spin, produce a fair, accurate and unflinching account without libeling anybody– and do it all on deadline.
Also (and especially) this:
A journalist is just a heightened case of an informed citizen, not a special class.
As they say, read the whole damn thing.
Jim Hightower has never let his pitchfork grow dull, as he shows in this merciless skewering of the latest idiotic bleat from token NY Times conservative columnist Bobo Brooks:
There is a fury in the countryside toward these plutocratic purse-snatchers who are being allowed to keep their exalted executive positions, draw fat paychecks and get trillions of dollars in bailout money from common taxpayers. People don’t merely resent them, they yearn for the legalization of tar-and-feathering!
Yet, Brooks and his political brethren are now bemoaning the plight of the plutocrats, assailing the “redistributionists” who talk of spreading America’s wealth. In his column, Brooks cried out for a conservative vision of “a nation in which we’re all in it together – in which burdens are shared broadly, rather than simply inflicted on a small minority.”
Do we look like we have suckerwrappers around our heads? Where were these tender-hearted champions of sharing throughout the last 30 years, when that same “small minority” was absolutely giddy with redistributionist fervor – redistributing upward, that is?
With the full support of their political hirelings from both parties, this minority created tax dodges, trade scams, corporate subsidies, deregulation fantasies, financial hustles, de-unionization schemes, bankruptcy loopholes and other mechanisms that turned government into a redistributionist bulldozer, shoving wealth from the workaday majority into their own pockets.
Brooks might have missed this 30-year class war, but most folks have been right in the thick of it and are not the least bit squeamish about supporting a national effort to right those wrongs. After all, even a dog knows the difference between being stumbled over – and being kicked.
If only Hightower’s fellow populist Texican rabble-rouser Molly Ivins was still among the living; we need her brilliantly pointed insight now more than ever to help puncture bloated elite windbags like Bobo.
Related: Ok, I can kinda sorta grok fiddling as Rome goes up in flames. But dancing on tables at brunch while sipping on $2,500 ($2,500!) jeroboams of champagne–in the middle of the afternoon? Un-fucking-believable.
h/t Erik Loomis
A Round-about Way of Calling David Brooks, Roger Cohen, David Broder and Jay Leno Fatuous Assholes (Because They, um, ARE Fatuous Assholes)
But the Obama budget is more than just the sum of its parts. There is, entailed in it, a promiscuous unwillingness to set priorities and accept trade-offs. There is evidence of a party swept up in its own revolutionary fervor — caught up in the self-flattering belief that history has called upon it to solve all problems at once.
But that does not change the fact that Obama, in his restorative counter-revolution, must be careful to steer clear of his French temptation.
“The financial [crisis] seems big enough,” Leno said. “[Obama is] also taking on energy and health care. Is he biting off too much? Should we just go, ‘All right, let’s fix the economy; next year we’ll talk about health care or energy.’ Should you pick one and focus on that? It’s like we’re doing everything all at the same time.”
But many of these governmental pros clearly are doubtful whether this administration—or any other—can make it work.
I’m still convinced the administration is trying to do too much too fast and that the hasty planning and execution of these complex policies will lead to untold problems down the road.
My, how farting out insubstantial conventional wisdom can quickly pollute the public commons! Really, it seems that Brooks & the rest of the head-up-ass Beltway pundit brigade are simply in love with the (muffled) sound of their own voices of ‘moderation’, “[offering] no substantive criticism of any particulars of any policy but rather an overall pessimism about the possibility of doing anything,” as DougJ puts it.
Pessimism. The default position for lazy, overpaid, woefully underqualified hacks who, during a time of political upheaval and economic crisis, offer no serious insight whatsoever, much less expertise. And it’s an all-too tired pose that was well-past its best-before date 10 fucking years ago.
Sharpen the pitchforks.
I really don’t give a toss about the A-Rod steroid controversy. Am far more curious why Washington Post reporter Michael A. Fletcher felt the matter was of such national import that he asked the freakin’ POTUS for a response during Monday’s prime time press conference.
As O-Dub put it:
We’re in the middle of a fiscal crisis, two wars, and numerous other national and international issues. A-Rod could shoot up heroin, snort cocaine and disrobe during the all-star game and it would be immaterial.
Still, I couldn’t resist posting the following montage, a fitting tribute to the many insincere career-salvaging expeditions embarked upon by disgraced public figures over the years.
On a related note, I will never, ever tire of Jimmy Swaggart’s iconic tearful confession–even if the nostalgic indulgence in schadenfreude simultaneously resurrects the unfortunate image of him getting a blowjob in sweatpants.
My sincere apologies if any of you were eating while reading that.
(video courtesy CSPANJunkie)
Over at Global Comment, Sarah Jaffe, in a devastatingly on-target critique, utterly eviscerates yesterday’s head-pattingly patronizing L.A. Times article/future-bird-cage-liner (where the credentials of Dr. Jill Biden were examined [and dismissed] in a manner that was maddeningly glib, highly gendered–and entirely sexist).
Jaffe’s point about the underlying (and intersecting) double standards at play is especially sharp:
I have to wonder, if we were discussing a male academic who taught at a prestigious Ivy League university, the reporter would feel the need to spend the entire piece debating whether he deserved the prefix “Dr.”
The article’s dismissive tone is symptomatic of the way the media treats women, particularly accomplished women in the public eye. Jill Biden has several advanced degrees, and yet chooses to teach in a community college, helping students who often cannot afford to attend school full-time. This is worthy of respect, not a quibble over whether she deserves the title as much as someone who stitches up wounds, treats skin conditions, or performs nose jobs.
Highly recommended reading–the whole damn thing, goddammit.
Bite my hyperpartisan ass. Oh noes! Obama is getting shit done and the GOP doesn’t want to be part of the solution — obviously Obama should do whatever is necessary to appease the party most responsible for putting us in this current mess in the first place. I mean, this is why we hire former arsonists as fire marshals, right?
Also, stop using your mouth as an extension of Drudge’s arm, you wanktastic second-rate Broder-wannabe.
Yes, kids, this really is what they call “balance” in corporate media newspeak. We should all be thankful that cable news programming directors are encouraging such a stimulating (snerk) debate as the president attempts to unshit the bed that (too many years) of GOP rule and freemarket orthodoxy has left soiled beyond recognition.
As Digby put it, “If I didn’t follow politics closely, I would think these people [Republicans] are the ones who won the election.”
x-posted @ Rebel Left
If there’s one thing the corporate media marketplace needs, it’s more lazy, arm-chair psychoanalytic trolling masquerading as muckraking (snicker) via the conflict-starved (and unrelentingly trivial) beltway press corps, especially from our friends at the new Capitol Hill Blue, aka Politico:
President Obama made a surprise visit to the White House press corps Thursday night, but got agitated when he was faced with a substantive question.
Asked how he could reconcile a strict ban on lobbyists in his administration with a Deputy Defense Secretary nominee who lobbied for Raytheon, Obama interrupted with a knowing smile on his face.
“Ahh, see,” he said, “I came down here to visit. See this is what happens. I can’t end up visiting with you guys and shaking hands if I’m going to get grilled every time I come down here.”
Pressed further by the Politico reporter about his Pentagon nominee, William J. Lynn III, Obama turned more serious, putting his hand on the reporter’s shoulder and staring him in the eye.
“Alright, come on” he said, with obvious irritation in his voice. “We will be having a press conference at which time you can feel free to [ask] questions. Right now, I just wanted to say hello and introduce myself to you guys – that’s all I was trying to do.”
The president was quickly saved by a cameraman in the room who called out: “I’d like to say it one more time: ‘Mr. President.’”
Yes, thank heavens the Angry Black President was “saved” by another member of his loyal base!!!1 the SCLM (said cameraman has “obviously” been gulping gallons of the Hope and Change Kool-Aid). Why, he might have been driven to tears by the Murrow-like dedication to the craft of journamalism [sic] on display. Or, conversely, pulled out his gat and popped a cap in Jonathan Martin’s punk ass–just ask Jeff Zeleny (who is lucky to be alive!) about the smoldering wrath of Barack Hoo-saayn Obama.
Seriously–check out the full 05:17 clip of Obama’s meet ‘n’ greet, and judge for yourself, since Politco, for *ahem* whatever reason, instead chose (until 12:40 PM EST, at least) to embed a 30-second clip entirely unrelated to their breathless lede:
Oh my–03:21 is when the action goes down. Just look at the Negro-in-Chief as he barely restrains himself from goin’ South Side on poor Martin, the Only Real Journalist in the room (he said with a knowing smile and a flash of “obvious” irritation.)
As Wonkette’s Jim Newell puts it in a devestating post (unfortunately marred by a residually Gawker-like self-aware-and-”ironically”-sexist headline and the gratuitous use of a term highly derogatory to people with disabilities–yes, yes, I’m a humourless PC killjoy. Bite me):
Do Jonathan Martin and Carrie Budoff Brown, the co-authors of this whiny, vapid bullshit, think that anyone else cares how hard they have to work to get information? Why do we even link to this vulgar asshole of a publication anymore, now that the election’s over? We’re keeping people like Roger Simon and Mike Allen and Jonathan Martin employed by doing this! Enough.
Bonus: For shits and giggles, check out the hilariously aggreived comments from feets-stampin’, librul-meeedia-hatin’ conservatives, demonstratively corresponding from the wilderness. Us progressi-commies should take up a collection to start up an inflatable donut cushion fund for our distinguished friends on the right side of the intertoobz (oh, and make sure to throw one in for Martin, too).
Must be highly uncomfortable being perpetually butt-hurt.