Starting tomorrow: SCRIPTED / ARROGANT / DUMB AND TOWN!

MONDAY, MAY 10, 2021

Can Our Town hope to survive this?: This very morning, on page A3, the New York Times presents a list of seven Noteworthy Facts drawn from today's editions. 

There are seven "noteworthy facts" in all. This is one of the listings from today's version of this daily feature, which is available in hard copy only:

Of Interest
NOTEWORTHY FACTS FROM TODAY'S PAPER

[...]

In 2016, two media scholars analyzed a data set of 300 million tweets from the 2012 election. Twitter users, they found, “selectively share fact-checking messages that cheerlead their own candidate and denigrate the opposing party’s candidate.” 

These media scholars today! Two such giants had uncovered a noteworthy fact—people [sometimes or frequently] selectively cheerlead for the candidate they favor, while denigrating the candidate they oppose!

To someone inside the New York Times, this seemed like a "Noteworthy Fact." It was a noteworthy fact deemed to be of special interest. 

Nor is this the only example of dumbnification found in today's "Of Interest" feature. Whoever selects this newspaper's "noteworthy facts" had also spotted these. We're presenting each listing in full:

NOTEWORTHY FACTS FROM TODAY'S PAPER

[...]

Edmonton's Connor McDavid, 24, ranks fourth in the N.H.L. with 1.4 points per game in his career, behind Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Mike Bossy. He has 31 points in his last 11 games.

[...]

Southern California is home to the nation’s largest concentration of warehouses.

The Scythians inhabited the steppes that eventually became Ukraine from the 7th until the 4th century B.C. To the classical Greeks, they were known for their fierce fighting, for their elaborate funerals and for smoking marijuana. 

Those ancient Scythians, with their "Mary Jane!" But also, these noteworthy facts today! 

You've now seen four of the seven listings in today's compendium of New York Times Noteworthy Facts. For the record, we're omitting the "noteworthy fact" about when Cirque de Soleil originated. ("In the 1980s.")

We're often struck by the world-class dumbness displayed on the Times' page A3. This morning's effort seems especially noteworthy, what with the newspaper's shocking discovery  that people (sometimes or frequently) cheerlead for their favored candidate while denigrating the candidate they oppose.

Who would declare that a "noteworthy fact?" In our view, the answer to that question is itself a noteworthy fact.

Remarkably, someone at the New York Times judged that fact to be noteworthy! Someone at the New York Times decided to single it out. 

As a bit of anthropology, that selection strikes us as an extremely noteworthy fact. This is why we say that:

You'd think that no one could be so dumb as to see that blindingly obvious fact as especially noteworthy.  But someone inside Our Town's smartest newspaper did in fact single it out. 

That strikes us as a significant anthropological and cultural fact. Can Our Town really hope to survive this kind of intellectual leadership?

How dumb is life inside the world of the current New York Times? How dumb is life inside that org, but also how scripted and arrogant?

We plan to explore that topic this week, focusing on one major news report. 

In print editions, that report appeared above the fold of yesterday's (Sunday) Times. First, though, consider this:

In its print editions on Friday, April 30, the Washington Post published a front-page report about foster care in the state of Ohio.  The impetus for the front-page report was the recent shooting death of 16-year-old Ma'Khia Bryant. 

Bryant was living in foster care in Columbus, Ohio at the time of her shooting death. In print editions, the headline on the Post's report said this:

Teen's death ignites call to reform foster system

What followed was a lengthy, competent news report about foster care in Ohio. The report had been written by two experienced, veteran journalists—Tim Craig of the Washington Post and Randy Ludlow of the Columbus Dispatch.

In fairness, the world's isn't going to change because of Craig and Ludlow's report. That said, their report included a lot of information about the stresses on Ohio's system, starting with "a surge in the number of foster children" caused by "the nationwide opioid crisis." 

In somewhat cursory fashion, the reporters described the way Bryant had ended up in the foster care system. They quoted various people with various views about Ohio's overall system, ending with a cautionary note:

CRAIG AND LUDLOW (4/30/21): Many foster parents also say they, too, would like to see the day when their services are not needed. But in Ohio and elsewhere, they know it’s only a matter of time before they get another call from their agency pleading for them to take in another child.

“There is literally nowhere else for these kids to go,” [foster parent Laura] Flynn said. “So for people who want to criticize foster parents, you instead should think whether you can take in a teenager.”

Stating the obvious, a person can criticize some state's foster care system without criticizing foster parents. That said, there's no perfect way to run foster care, these reporters had seemed to suggest.

Yesterday morning, above the fold on Sunday's front page, the New York Times offered a more detailed account of Bryant's history in the foster care system. In something resembling a break from standard practice, they even named the person who kicked the other young woman in the head right before Bryant was shot.

The Times now offered its account of Bryant's history within the foster care system and of her shooting death. It's hard to find the words to describe how scripted, arrogant and dumb this New York Times' effort was.

The lead reporter for the report is one year out of college. (In fairness, approaching two.) He was joined by a second reporter who's working for the Times for one year as part of its Newsroom Fellowship Program, a recent successor to its summer intern program.

These cub reporters were joined by a veteran reporter who ought be ashamed of herself for having her name anywhere near any such report. That said, there seems to be little sense of shame available at the Times, the most famous news org in Our Town.

Does anyone care about Ma'Khia Bryant, or about the many other kids living in foster care? Does anyone care about how kids end up in foster care? 

Does anyone care about what sometimes happens to such kids when they're in foster care? About what happens to such kids after they "age out?"

The report in yesterday's New York times was disgraceful for its arrogance, but also for its world-class dumbness. 

By our lights, the dumbness bled all the way over into the realm of stupidity. In our view, the dumbness was largely driven by Storyline, narrative, script.

The Times had assigned a couple of kids to handle this important topic. Joined by an award-winning veteran, the youngsters produced a front-page report which was arrogant, scripted and dumb.

Some editor or editors waved the report into print—and who knows? Those editors may have been the source of the report's large dumbness!

Briefly, let's be clear. Nothing is going to change at the New York Times. Also, nothing is going to change in the streets of Our Town, where we Townies seem to believe that we're all above average.

Yesterday's front-page report is the fruit of the culture we've chosen. But can Our Town expect to survive in the face of such arrogant dumbness? 

Leading, highly credentialed experts insist that it probably can't.

Tomorrow: The roll call of the scribes


114 comments:

  1. "We're often struck by the world-class dumbness displayed on the Times' page A3."

    Meh. That's nothing, dear Bob. If you do appreciate world-class dembottery, you should read your own blog's comments sometime.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You were funnier when you pretended you didn't work for the Establishment.

      Delete
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  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  3. "You'd think that no one could be so dumb as to see that blindingly obvious fact as especially noteworthy."

    Once again, Somerby seems to think that the newspaper is written only for him, and anything he already knows should be omitted.

    He mocks a notable fact about California warehouses because he doesn't understand that this is now a major source of jobs in the state, especially in areas that have previously lacked work. Those warehouses support the huge online sales that have sprung up in the past decade.

    Somerby mocks facts about the Scythians, even though I doubt he himself could have named the modern country that these ancients inhabited.

    Newspapers serve many interests, not simply those that Somerby considers important. I get so tired of his small-minded self-centered narcissism. Somerby is a small town version of Donald Trump's massive ignorance, lack of curiosity and self-focus.

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  4. When it comes to nonsense, nothing will ever top when they tried to sell bigotry as economic anxiousness.

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  5. "We're often struck by the world-class dumbness displayed on the Times' page A3. This morning's effort seems especially noteworthy, what with the newspaper's shocking discovery that people (sometimes or frequently) cheerlead for their favored candidate while denigrating the candidate they oppose."

    Psychology, as a field, hears this complaint a lot. People seem to think that when psychologists confirm a widely held belief about human behavior, by collecting evidence and testing a hypothesis, that they are discovering the obvious and wasting time and effort.

    Science doesn't accept the obvious as a given but must hold open the idea that reality could be different than common sense. That is referred to as scientific skepticism. When you wish to study a topic, you start by testing the foundational beliefs, not simply accepting them. Partisanship may not work the way Somerby believes it does. In this case, the studies confirmed his assumptions, but they could just as easily not have. That's because human observations arising from daily life are unsystematic and flawed by things like confirmation bias and selective memory. The only way to know for sure whether a belief is correct is to test it using a controlled study.

    Somerby doesn't understand science much. He doesn't appear to know how it works. He both relies upon and contests views based on his own life experiences and attitudes, thinking that his privileged opinions outweigh serious research. Today he mocks a finding he agrees with, because he says he not only knows it to be true, but so does everyone else. That is about as ignorant as someone can be about research. With Somerby's approach, we would still be living on a flat earth, offering sacrifices to local gods and living by widely held superstitutions about nearly everything, challenging none of the folk wisdom of our day.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. If my default mode was to hop to an avenue in which to oppose Somerby, I would have countered his criticism of the NYT’s fatuous “Noteworthy” information about partisan behavior from the standpoint of the social media echo chamber that has influenced our entire culture.

      Granted, that’s overhyped business, but it’s not silly, as is your attempt to equate the information as being noteworthy as scientific verification of a particular human behavior. That would be some dumbass conclusion hopping experimentation by the scientists, for sure.

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    2. You are ignoring Somerby's continual attacks on academia, professors and research. This is a continuation of that theme. If he wanted to mention the social media echo chamber, he would have. Today, he is saying that for the NY Times to highlight a finding that "everyone knows" is journalistic malpractice. That's why I addressed the motives for conducting research.

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    3. That’s not a point, that’s a personal opinion that it is somehow wrong to challenge experts. And it’s a strawman, because that is not what Somerby did. You’re the one who linked that “noteworthy” info to scientific expertise.

      It’s not bad form or unreasonable to criticize journos either.

      Delete
    4. If you want to challenge an expert, you do so by addressing the issue, not the expert or the idea of expertise, or the person's resume. Somerby attacks the person, not the idea. Just as he attacks today's journalists for being too young.

      Delete
    5. Somerby didn’t challenge expertise in the way you described. You deemed the noteworthy fact as being noteworthy because it verified a heretofore assumption about a particular human behavior.

      Somerby criticism of the assignment of cub reporters on what is now a particularly tender subject is another issue.

      And yes, time-earned experience is a relevant area of criticism too.

      Delete
    6. Yes, he did challenge expertise -- he doesn't believe in it and he regularly mocks those who claim to be experts. He just didn't do this as explicitly TODAY. You claim to have been a regular reader here. How did this escape your attention?

      Delete
    7. It didnt capture my attention because it didn’t happen. Somerby didn’t argue against experts who had, via Twitter data, confirmed what had only been assumptions about the predictability of a certain human behavior.

      That was merely a strawman set up by the Anonymous in order to scold Somerby.

      That Anonymouse then resorted to same argument you have here- but he ALWAYS does such and such when experts make a judgment.

      No such experts in sight, unless the scenarios that come out your butts are how you’re defining them.

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    8. Now you are being an idiot and I am done with you.

      Delete
  6. "That said, there's no perfect way to run foster care, these reporters had seemed to suggest."

    An article about reform isn't seeking a "perfect" but a better system. Why does Somerby round up a report on needed improvement to perfection? This is how people excuse themselves for doing nothing about a problem.

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  7. Somerby calls the news report about Bryant "dumb" but he doesn't state any specific criticism of it. I read the report and I don't understand what he is objecting to.

    Somerby seems to think that a young or inexperienced reporter cannot do good work, so that simply listing the ages of the reporters is sufficient criticism of their writing. That seems ridiculous to me. It is also lazy of Somerby to think that all he has to do after smearing these reporters is point to their inexperience without stating anything they have done wrong in the article.

    It is wrong for Somerby to malign beginning reporters this way. One might accuse him of trying to get these two rookies fired, without any actual evidence. Why is it OK for Somerby to do this to beginning journalists but not OK for a rookie cop to be put on trial for his actions?

    ReplyDelete
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    1. “ It is wrong for Somerby to malign beginning reporters this way. One might accuse him of trying to get these two rookies fired, without any actual evidence. Why is it OK for Somerby to do this to beginning journalists but not OK for a rookie cop to be put on trial for his actions?”

      One might think he was trying to get them fired by his criticism of upper level editorial decisions, if one was grasping for anything including the contents of their butt.

      Delete
    2. There are academic studies showing that when people read for answers to specific questions, they pay better attention and remember more of what they read. That is why textbooks pose study questions for students and it is why subheads tend to be phrased as questions.

      Those notable facts may be intended to engage reader interest and help them retain what they read, in the same manner as textbooks use. If people are already wondering about the large increase in warehouses, they may be more likely to read a warehouse story encountered later on, more likely to retain what they read and more likely to engage with the material. This is a benefit to readers.

      Somerby was a teacher. He wasn't particularly well-trained, having arrived via Teach for America. I doubt he has kept up with new developments in pedagogy. His ignorance doesn't keep him from shitting all over the efforts of professionals to do their jobs. If he doesn't like the notable facts, he can skip that section, just as I skip the sports and financial sections, being uninterested and unaffected by those topics.

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    3. Yet another scenario pulled out of your nethers concerning what was really intended in selecting these particular things as being noteworthy, doesn’t obscure the fatuous of most of this stuff as compared to the more salient and noteworthy info within the story.

      You’d do better to argue that the trivia pursuit aspect is what the Times is going for. But then a newspaper doing that is the sort flippancy that tends to make people roll their eyes.

      BTW- you can take your own advice and skip Somerby’s blog if you don’t like it....right?

      Delete
    4. Ignorance isn't pretty, Cecelia.

      Delete
    5. Rank assumptions aren’t knowledge, Anonymouse 4:33pm.

      That’s true no matter how many nonexistent scientists you reference as being the authority behind the noteworthiness of the NYT fact. No matter how many theories Corby has about certain facts being culled for their ability to key our memories as to important NYT reports.

      That’s not the evidence required in order to logically cast the aspersions that you do upon someone for being of the opinion that the NYT shows its triviality with this feature.

      Delete
    6. LOL.
      Cecelia asking for proof before she'll believe something.
      LOFL.

      Delete
    7. Cecelia sees dead people...vote.

      Delete
    8. In the mirror.

      Delete
    9. "I see lame people."
      Yes, but not enough of them to overcome Biden's landslide victory.

      Delete
  8. "Does anyone care about what sometimes happens to such kids when they're in foster care? About what happens to such kids after they "age out?"

    In Los Angeles, Christine Devine, one of the anchors of the nightly news is a former foster child who came up in the foster care system. She not only endowed a scholarship for other foster kids, but featured adoptions on her show and recognized such kids for their achievements in school and other activities. She was a big supporter of foster kids offscreen, and of other child-related charities and systems to help children and families. She quite obviously cares and she is a journalist.

    http://www.christinedevine.com/about-christine/

    Somerby has no idea who is working to help children in his community or who is themselves a former foster child. He only uses this issue to excuse a trigger-happy cop and to batter the press. He himself no doubt has plenty of room beneath his pear tree to shelter children who have entered the foster care system. I would bet he does nothing whatsoever to help them -- it is sufficient to call others names and accuse them of not caring.

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  9. "Yesterday's front-page report is the fruit of the culture we've chosen. But can Our Town expect to survive in the face of such arrogant dumbness? "

    What is arrogant or dumb about describing the life of an unhappy child who was shot by police while trying to protect herself and her sister?

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    1. anon 10:43, I thought she was shot while she was coming after another girl with a knife. On the other hand, I don't see why TDH is so bent out of shape about this particular NYT item. He certainly doesn't explain the basis of his howl about it.

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    2. The NYT says that it has conveyed a noteworthy fact in reporting that people share tweets that are complimentary of their candidate and that are derisive of the opposition’s candidate.

      Surely you’ve been at this blog long enough to know that this specious and fatuous offering from the “Newspaper of Record” would cause him to rend his garments.

      Delete
  10. This is the same media that says the Right are "anti-illegal immigration", instead of "pro-bigotry".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The media doesn't attach those labels, it repeats what the right says about itself. It REPORTS, it doesn't INVENT.

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    2. Turns out, the "liberal media" are Right-wing stenographers.

      Delete
  11. Here is why the number of warehouses in California is important:

    "Southern California air quality regulators adopted a landmark rule late on Friday that would force the thousands of warehouses that have exploded across the Inland Empire to clean up their emissions. The rule could spur the electrification of fleets of trucks rumbling through the region."

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    1. Wouldn’t the information about the emissions issue be more noteworthy than the fact that Southern Cali has the largest number of these facilities?

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    2. The conceit of the listing is that it identifies facts, not larger issues. No doubt the fact that was listed was plucked from a story about this overall issue of the impact of the huge increase in warehouses on California communities and its economy.

      Somerby tends to focus narrowly, which is why he considers such facts to be trivial or irrelevant. He frequently misses the bigger picture. That is why I am trying to put the fact Somerby complains about hearing into a larger context.

      Delete
    3. Actually, it’s the NYT misses the bigger picture with their “noteworthy” facts.

      What better illustration is there of that, than the NYT simply highlighting the number of warehouses, rather than the far and away more noteworthy fact of a “landmark ruling”?

      Delete
    4. Actually, it’s the NYT misses the bigger picture with their “noteworthy” facts.

      What better illustration is there of that, than the NYT simply highlighting the number of warehouses, rather than the far and away more noteworthy fact of a “landmark ruling”?

      Delete
    5. Since you are posting using a nym, can't you go back and delete the duplicate comments?

      Delete
    6. I assume that their ghe story that generated the misnamed “Noteworthy Fact”.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/2021/05/08/climate/e-commerce-warehouse-smog-regulation.amp.html

      Never underestimate the propensity of elites to indulge in efforts to make themselves and their circle as cutesy and endearing as is possible in their warped view of what constitutes such attributes.

      Its not enough that they’re smarter than average bears, they’re cute and adorable while being geniuses too.

      I guess all the jokes about daily struggles with the NYT cross puzzle weren’t enough.

      Delete
    7. Meanwhile the Republican Party cries rivers of tears about "cancel culture", instead of passing laws where I get to over-rule corporate boardroom decisions (which they are totally in position to propose).

      It's almost like they think Right-wing voters are a bunch of mouth-breathing morons, who they can continuously play for suckers. Without the "It's almost like" part, of course.

      Delete
    8. I don’t think you’re going to find a lot of Republicans wanting to legislate laws against what the NYT finds to be a noteworthy fact.

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    9. The many voter suppression laws being passed in Republican-held state legislatures after the NY Times reported the fact that Biden won the 2020 Presidential election says otherwise, Cece.

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    10. Well, maybe they’ll get around to censoring the Noteworthy Fact section of the paper and whether or not NYT staff can talk politics within 1500 feet of a company water cooler.

      My bet is that these same staffers will issue those and a plethora of other restrictions on the behavior of their colleagues all by themselves.

      Delete
    11. Well, maybe they’ll get around to censoring the Noteworthy Fact section of the paper and whether or not NYT staff can talk politics within 1500 feet of a company water cooler.

      My bet is that these same staffers will issue those and a plethora of other restrictions on the behavior of their colleagues all by themselves.

      Delete
    12. No one is having trouble using their computer except you, Cecelia. Please stop this duplicate posting. It is anti-social behavior.

      Delete
    13. Believe that I’m not doing it or don’t.

      It’s all the same to me.

      Delete
    14. It isn't "all the same" to those who must wade through your duplicate comments. It is a matter of common courtesy to figure out how to use your computer and stop inconveniencing other people. Unless your point is that conservatives don't give a shit about anyone but themselves.

      Delete
    15. I’ve attempted to do that and can’t.

      You don’t have to wade thru duplicate posts, you can’t tell that they are duplicates within seconds.

      You don’t have to read anything that I write if you’re worried about duplicates.. You have only to see “Cec” and pop right off the comment.

      Delete
    16. Cecelia's posts are just as stupid duplicated, as they are in the original.

      Delete
    17. Fun facts from the NYT, it's just fluff, which readers apparently find amusing. There's tons of this on the internet, most of it about celebs. At least the NYT doesn't do horoscopes.

      Delete
  12. Here is an interesting report on the effects of early childhood education:

    https://messaging-custom-newsletters.nytimes.com/template/oakv2?CCPAOptOut=true&abVariantId=0&campaign_id=9&emc=edit_nn_20210510&instance_id=30528&nl=the-morning&productCode=NN&regi_id=80274045&segment_id=57667&te=1&uri=nyt%3A%2F%2Fnewsletter%2Ff71bc80c-51b0-5a66-9de7-3a6826e9bb7d&user_id=867e73dc33de24a854d1da80fe2c8ab4

    Somerby's insistence on using NAEP scores, as if they measured everything important about educational outcomes for minority students, is undermined by the long term positive outcomes emerging in this study. There are real benefits but they won't appear on the NAEP.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Kayla Frawley says:

    "Every year before Mother’s Day I pull out The Action Network’s link to its Black Mamas Bail Out fund to donate. I join dozens of other organizations in cities across the nation to bail out as many mothers as possible who may otherwise spend Mother’s Day in jail because they simply could not afford cash bail.

    According to The Action Network, every day an average of 700,000 people are condemned to local jails and separated from their families. A large majority of them are still in jail because they cannot afford to pay bail, something that continues to disproportionately hurt Black and Brown families."

    This is a reason why kids end up in foster care. People can help in many ways, but reform of cash bail is a good way to prevent foster care placements.

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    Replies
    1. Kayla writes for Colorado NewsLine and she cares about foster kids. I don't know how old she is or how many years she has been a journalist. I think it is better to judge her by her writing than her age.

      Delete
    2. anon 11;20, I assume what is meant here is that on any given day an average of 700,000 people are incarcerated in local jails and not out on bail - not that each day, an average of 700,000 people are put in jail - which would be 255,500,000 people a year. We lock up a lot of people, but not that many.

      Delete
  14. Washington Post: In the 911 audio released Wednesday, a woman’s voice can be heard talking to the dispatcher. “We’ve got these grown girls over here trying to fight us, trying to stab us, trying to put their hands on our grandma,” the person says. “Get here now!”

    No, don't call 911! Call BLM.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Or let's run an experiment and let some of our multi-millionaire TV pundits take such calls, especially the ones where the person is armed and resisting. Say for a year we let Don Lemon and Joy-Ann Reid take these calls. Though they already claim to be experts on what should be done in such cases, we'll give them whatever training they desire and even pay them their current salaries.

      Delete
    2. Or you could institute a national service program in which every citizen has a chance to be drafted into police service for a two-year hitch. That way everyone would be vested in policing and the people who show up when 911 is called, may be someone you know personally or a family member. Like Job Corps only for police service.

      Delete
  15. https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2021/04/22/makhia-bryant-police-shooting/

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    Replies
    1. Such hypocrites. They want to de-fund the cops, but as soon as a counterfeit 20-dollar bill breaks into their homes and threatens their children, who do they call?

      Delete
    2. If the person doing something you think is bad is Black, never call the cops, always call BLM.

      Delete
    3. Gloucon is perhaps too young to remember the Guardian Angels and Curtis Silwa, organized in 1979. They patrolled the streets as a crime deterrent and alternative to calling the cops. They are still operating.

      We think of the cops as an inevitable institution, but police used to be privatized entities operating for specific purposes (like the Pinkertons). There is no reason why others cannot do police functions, much as mall cops do, bodyguards and corporate and university security forces.

      Delete
    4. I agree, call in the BLM angels!

      Delete
    5. Corby, libertarians have long made that argument.

      Delete
    6. Yeah, that's what they do in favelas of Rio, we hear. The police rarely get involved.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comando_Vermelho

      Sure, why not.

      Delete
  16. The quickest way to defund the cops is for Black people to stop calling them and to call BLM instead. If we do this, half the cops will be immediately laid off since half the crime in this country is done by Black people. That would be a huge step towards our goal of defunding.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Or we could train the cops to treat white people like they're black.
      That will de-fund the cops in a heartbeat.

      Delete
    2. That wouldn't work since 70% of deaths by police are non-Black people. They don't treat non-Blacks any better in dangerous situation. Better to call BLM and let them take the knives and guns away from your friends.

      Delete
    3. I love it.
      BLM will do a much better job, anyway.
      Directing police funding to BLM should start yesterday.

      Thanks for coming around on de-funding the police, Glaucon X. Even if it was obvious decades ago.

      Delete
    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    5. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    6. Thanks, my pleasure. I've always felt that Black Lives Matter should take charge of policing Black crime, they know more about it than anyone else.

      Delete
    7. The lack of thugs in BLM, as opposed to police departments currently, is refreshing.

      Delete
    8. I really think that we should have a BLM led police/social worker presence in areas of high Black crime areas who should be the first responders

      Delete
  17. I'm also for getting rid of all non-Black cops. It's the only way to be sure that the cop is not acting out of anti-Black racism or from white supremacy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What nonsense. Haven't you heard of Internalized Racism ™ ?

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internalized_racism

      Delete
    2. Sure, Americans have internalized a lot of stupid and harmful zombie ideas. Republicans internalize the the worship of plutocratic capitalism and fundamentalist crackpot Christianity. But these crackpot ideas that denigrate humanity can be fought and overturned by reasoned opposition. Yes, even you can be a part making the world a better place.

      Delete
    3. Why don't you pull the plank out of your own eye first, dear dembot? Take a cue from Bob, from our dear Bob.

      Otherwise, you ain't no different from the rest of 'em brain-dead dembots here. We observe you mimicking humyn beings; let it not all go to waste.

      Delete
    4. Let us try together to live a life that's not centered on mindless ego-aggrandizement and other delusions and instead work together to create a caring world where each person has what they need to live and contribute to the wellbeing of all.

      Delete
    5. I do agree not all the things that Dems say and do have contributed to the better world we seek.

      Delete
    6. We aren't so naïve as to fancy ourselves world-changers. All we can do during our fleeting existence on this here planet is to observe and comment.

      Delete
    7. Humans have always been world-changers. Even if you desire to stick you head in the sand, the world's still going to change with you or without you.

      Delete
  18. "But can Our Town expect to survive in the face of such arrogant dumbness?

    Leading, highly credentialed experts insist that it probably can't."

    We certainly agree with your highly credentialed experts, dear Bob.

    But what do your highly credentialed experts say about the harm your cult is going to inflict while agonizing and collapsing this way?

    ReplyDelete
  19. The net wealth of the richest 1% is about $40 trillion. According to my calculations we could give reparations of $1M to each the 40M Blacks for the cost of only $4 trillion. So let's tax 10% of the wealth of the richest 1% of whites and give it to Blacks as reparations for the crime of slavery and segregation.

    An all Black police force and reparation are the only ways to demonstrate that we care about about solving this problem.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. An all black police force won't work unless you also demilitarize and reform policing. Some of those shooting unarmed people are black cops. Policing has problems above and beyond racism.

      Delete
    2. Right, that's why I'm for totally disarmed Black cops and BLM members to talk the Blacks out of doing harmful stuff. As for the other non-Black 87% of the population, they don't seem to complaining about cops, so fuck-em.

      Delete
    3. What % of BLM is black? Do you even know?

      Delete
    4. I trust them to handle the details.

      Delete
    5. "As for the other non-Black 87% of the population, they don't seem to complaining about cops, so fuck-em."

      According to this report, the vast majority of BLM protesters are white people protesting within their own cities:

      https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/new-report-reveals-demographics-of-black-lives-matter-protesters-shows-vast-majority-are-white-marched-within-their-own-cities-301079234.html

      Delete
    6. You statement that the other non-Black 87% of the population isn't complaining about cops is clearly wrong. Further, your idea that turning over policing to BLM will ensure black cops do policing is also wrong, since the majority of BLM is not black. That's what.

      Delete
  20. No one ever talks about why someone is in foster care in the first place. It is likely that their parents should never have been parents. That's where the genesis of anti social behavior begins.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you prohibit from parenthood every person who ever declared bankruptcy, got sick, lost a spouse, got arrested for a crime (whether they committed that crime or not) or struggled with drugs or alcohol, our species would die out. People help each other when we have problems. We don't condemn and abandon those who are unfortunate, and we especially do not blame children for the faults of their parents. All of us, except Somerby, of course.

      Delete
  21. We're only talking about foster care because a Black was shot by white a cop.

    ReplyDelete
  22. We spent $3 Trillion to get rid of Saddam Hussein after he gassed his own people. How much do you think we'll need to spend after the cops spent last Summer tear-gassing their own people?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, the money that when to the Pentagon for the useless wars that Bush started was over $6 trillion, more than enough for slavery reparations.

      Delete
    2. Exactly.
      Richest country in the history of mankind, can totally afford it.

      Delete
  23. The amount of money hoarded and hidden in tax shelters by the rich is more than enough to give everyone in the world a decent chance for life. We probably wouldn't even have to take it all, maybe even less than half. The problem is that great accumulated private wealth has no other end except to amass more wealth. And that where the danger lies, resulting the power to corrupt. Our internalized worship of the wealthy keeps this corruption going and degrades the world. A mass media controlled by such people will never lead us towards real solutions.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wonder why the Panama Papers have received such little coverage. Seems it would make more sense to go all out on that, instead of the US being a "white supremacist" country. Corporate media, perhaps.

      Delete
    2. Both things can be true, AC. The Panama Papers deserved more attention, and the US is a white supremacist nation. The US hasn’t acknowledged this any more than it has acknowledged the troubling things revealed in the Panama Papers.

      Delete
  24. Humans have a history of noticing and focusing on superficial differences such as skin color and fearing and exploiting such differences for profit. This habit was made possible by ignorance and the will of evil people to exploit other for profit. These habits and impulses can and must be fought by our rational minds and our desire for a better world. Where there is no vision and desire for a better world, the people perish.

    ReplyDelete
  25. The whole ludicrous idea of a billionaire-owned national mass media discourse is the Independence Day-style mothership "Howler" that we must condemn as dangerous and illegitimate. Somerby focuses too much on its endless tedious details and not enough on its grievously harmful scale and strategy.

    ReplyDelete
  26. When was Gloucon elected chief troll?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Somerby appointed me to replace you.

      Delete
    2. A blog is not a democracy.

      Delete
    3. All Somerby has to do is turn off commenting.

      Delete
  27. It always seems like space filling when Somerby applies his snark to the “noteworthy facts”, a feature that has been part of the print version of the NYT since 2017.

    I’m sure there were other more serious items he could have critiqued, but it’s a lot easier just to rehash previous lampooning of the noteworthy facts, with the list of facts updated.

    And by mentioning/not mentioning the fact about Cirque de Soleil (passive aggressive?), it makes me think that I would actually prefer reading a story about Cirque de Soleil than about Albert Pujols, which Somerby devoted an entire column to the other day. I am more interested in the arts than in sports, but at least I recognize that it takes considerable talent and skill to be a fine baseball player as well as member of Cirque de Soleil, so I don’t make fun of the attention paid to Pujols.

    Also, since the noteworthy facts are only in the print edition of the Times, and the number of print subscribers is only about 12% of the the total number of subscribers, one wonders why Somerby bothers. The noteworthy facts are probably meant to appeal to the less savvy dinosaurs who still read paper copies of newspapers.

    ReplyDelete
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