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jayson blair, mark morford and the despair of a would-be writer

While the Times is being raked over the coals (and rightfully so) for Jayson Blair's lying, cheating, stealing and idiocy, SF Gate remains untouched by indignant purists who have amazingly overlooked the fact that the SFG publishes the fantasies and drivel of a man who may not even be from this planet! At least Blair's plagiaristic volumes of work were readable. He wasn't getting paid - like Mark Morford - to throw one retarded monkey into a room with a typewriter and a bong filled with best stuff money can buy and let him have at it.

One one side you have a guy who has obvious deep psychological problems and should never be allowed near a newsroom again. On the other side you have a guy with obvious deep pscyhological problems who should never be allowed out of his straight jacket again.

Really, what's the difference between lies and faked interviews masquerading as real stories a third-grade level name calling pretending to be an editorial?

I suppose the difference is that Mark Morford's near-illiterate syntax abuse calls itself OPINION and therefore is free from scrutiny and obviously free from proofreading or editorial critique.

Turns out it really was all a big joke after all. The war, that is. All a big fat nasty murderous oil-licking lie, a sneaky little power-mad game with you as the sucker and the world as the pawn and BushCo as the slithery war thug, the dungeon master, the prison daddy. You really have to laugh. Because it's just so wonderfully ridiculous. In a rather disgusting, soul-draining sort of way....

No warehouses teeming with nuclear warheads, no underground bunkers packed with vats of boiling biotoxins, no drums of crazy-ass chemical agents that will melt your skin and turn us all into drooling flesh-eating zombies -- unless, of course, you count the sneering vat of conservative biotoxin that is, say, Fox News, in which case, hell yeah baby, we gotcher WMDs right here beeyatch.

I continue to be mystified as to how this guy gets paid for writing this drool. Talk about big jokes and having one put over on you, Morford sits home at night laughing at everyone who buys into the lie that he is a writer. An editorial writer. Even he has to laugh at this great big fallacy.

And who are the people who buy this? How many readers think his crapfest is so worth the paper it's printed on that SFG can justify Morford's existence? Who can he count among his fans besides Ted Rall, whose comics read like picture-book versions of Morford's columns?

I meant to take apart Morford's column and counter-attack his insistence that the war was an unjust failure, but, as usual, I got caught up in the rage that engulfs me every time I get a few paragraphs into one of his screeds. There are so many talented writers struggling to make it in the news business, and people like Mark Morford and Jayson Blair are the ones who make the grade.

Sure, Blair will most likely never work in the news business again, but you can be sure he'll rack up a nice book deal when all is said and done. And Morford, because he's in the moonbat capital of the United States, will forever be that retrarded monkey smoking a bong, pounding on the keyboard and getting a paycheck for it.

With odds like those, I am giving up my dream of becoming a writer. I just don't have the stomach to get rejection notices while Rall and Morford are depositing paychecks.

Comments

Michelle, the only conceivable explanation for Mark Morford is that the SF Gate's readers actually want to read what he writes. That speaks even worse, perhaps, of those readers than it does of either Morford or the Gate's editors and publishers, who, after all, are only responding to market conditions.

That having been said, I wouldn't have guessed that there might be a market for Morford's kind of vicious insanity, either.

There isn't a market for vicious insanity? In this culture? In this century?

I just sprayed milk through my nose.

Welcome to the culture of (to ping up a well-worn phrase) fear and loathing. Population: Everyone.

I don't know, I read his stuff. Yeah it's extreme, but I take it with a pinch of salt. And at least it has some kind of passion and verve to it, which I think is important for what he does - i'd rather read his breathless ranting than irritating "i'm angry but i'm supressing it" uptight columns. like a stifled sneeze, they just get me tense with their 'restraint' which seems to make them feel so 'pro' but just comes across (to me) as gutless and holier than thou.

that said, i can understand why your reaction to him is so extreme. i'm largely sympathetic to him because i broadly agree with his views and am willing to ignore how cheap a lot of his shots are, because they're personally entertaining. but even i can admit that his savaging of the pro-war crowd as sexless joyless xanaxed up Bush-zombies must be as annoying to you as it is to see the anti-war protestors personified as
sandal-wearing spliff-smoking gay tree-huggers.

although, if i may speak candidly for a moment here, if the fact that Mark Morford is a paid writer is enough to make you give up on your "dream", then you clearly never had the passion or commitment to make it anyway. i think there are valid criticisms to be made of Morford's material, by someone more subjective than i, but to be honest this post reeks of bitterness and jealousy to me. sorry.

I'm sorry to say that, when I first read that NYTimes pullout corruption special, my first thought was on how easy it would be to get stuck in that spiral of deceit. Maybe its just me.

My next thought?

That guy's HOW old? And he's been working there for FOUR years? I feel old. Too old, maybe. Although I reserve the right to use James Ellroy as a role model to keep my aspirations afloat.

Anyone needing a reporter for a national newspaper, you know where to come. I have gonzo issues, by the way. Hope that wont deter you.

Thankyou. Drive Thru.

This is primarily directed to Gary, with the understanding that I am not interested in beginning an on-going feud, using Michele's bandwidth as the forum. I want to make the point that it is my humble opinion that one who reads into her posts a taste of "bitterness and jealousy" is not reading correctly. To imply that Michele, or ANYONE for that matter, would be jealous of the illiterate nonsense spewed by Mark Morford, and most of it is not only illiterate but full of lies and innaccuracies, is sheer lunacy. How in the world could anyone be jealous of something like him? To express her opinion in the manner she does says it all: It should matter not what side of the political fence one is on - he is an incompetent, and any newspaper that pays him for what he passes off as writing ought to have its journalism license revoked, if such a thing exists.

And I apologize; my comments are directed to GUY, not GARY.

that's fair enough. i did kind of feel a bit bad about it because although i know "discussion" is welcome i know it's nasty to have people bitch at you in your own comments system. hmm. still, no undo button in life, hey?

and to clarify, i wasn't suggesting she might be jealous of his writing as she clearly thinks it sucks ass and michele is clearly a good writer (with a very different style.) it's just as if the fact he's successful anyway makes him a target of resentment, but i don't believe in undeserved success.

i think i might just not come back here cos i always seem to end up finding something that spurs me into being a bit mean, which is perhaps the reason i do keep coming back. but alas no longer.

Q: what do you call someone who baits a blogger with pointed comments and then leaves forever?
A: whatever you want, he won't hear you.

ps: michele - i'd have really liked to have read your point by point critique of mr morford's editorial, which is why i felt it was such a shame you abandoned it and just criticised his percieved "lack of talent" which is ultimately a matter of taste.

I think that what Blair AND Morford prove is that their respective newsrooms are not meritocracies. We like to think most organizations are, but the truth is very different.

Sorry Guy, but Mofo is completely talentless. If I were to pick up a clarinet right now and try to play, you would say I had no talent when it came to that instrument. And I used to play Sax, so I know how a woodwind functions.

Mofo is talentless when it comes to writing. His thoughts are inconsistent and incoherrent. What he talks about is lunacy. You may agree with whatever point you pull from the article, but it doesn't add to his ability to write.

The "taste" rule is grossly misused.

Morford reminds me of Michael Moore. Both think they have transcended "uptight" considerations such as talent, rationality, courtesy and real-world effectiveness. They laugh at children freed from prison, terrorist bombings, mass graves, tortured dissenters and freedom itself. To them it's all a joke and they can't believe - or understand why - anyone actually pays them money for what they write. They are bitter, sick, overindulged children and I pity them.

Morford is a talented practitioner of a certain style of writing: over-the-top, round-the-bend, reality-free ranting. Basically, it's Hunter S. Thompson without the reporting. Apparently, there's a specialty market for that sort of thing.

I know people who agree with Morford and like his writing... I think that's the key, if you were one of the BushHitler sign waving crowd then his unthought-out bias would be your unthough-out bias. And if you were an aging self rightous hippy as well, you'd have total identification... Just like his readers.

Now why are you reading columns from a webzine on the left coast, Michele? Leave the hippies to their prune juice ok?